Tuesday, November 06, 2012

An open letter to citizens of the world.

We stand at a unique time in our history, the rise of the internet and computer technology have contributed to an unparallelled rate of prosperity for the First World. We have created for ourselves and empire unlike any other, a global network of constant trade and communication, a new age of technological advancement. We have come a long way fro
m our humble roots in the Industrial Revolution and the days of Manifest Destiny.
We are now pioneers on new digital frontiers expanding our domain from the quantum world to the far reaches of space.

And yet, the empire faces a crisis, a global recession, growing poverty, rampant violence, corruption in politics, and threats to personal freedom. As it was before in other times of crisis, the old stories have begun to repeat themselves. The half truths, this time repeated nightly on cable news and echoed through a series of tubes onto the internet: the empire is strong, change is unwise, business as usual is the answer. In times of uncertainty there are those who seek to add to the confusion, to prey on our insecurities and fears. Those who would seek to keep us divided for their own gain.
The pervasive strategy takes many very convincing forms: Liberals and Conservatives, Christians and Muslims, Black and White, Saved and sinner.

But something unexpected is happening. We have begun telling each other our own stories. Sharing our lives, our hopes, our dreams, our demons. Every second, day in day out, into all hours of the night the gritty details of life on this earth are streaming around the world. As we see the lives of others played out in our living rooms we are beginning to understand the consequences of our actions and the error of the old ways. We are questioning the old assumptions that we are made to consume not to create, that the world was made for our taking, that wars are inevitable, that poverty is unavoidable. As we learn more about our global community a fundamental truth has been rediscovered: We are not so different as we may seem.
Every human has strengths, weaknesses, and deep emotions. We crave love, love laughter, fear being alone and dream for a better life.

You must create a better life.

You cannot sit on the couch watching television or playing video games, waiting for a revolution. You are the revolution. Every time you decide not to exercise your rights, every time you refuse to hear another view point, every time you ignore the world around you, every time you spend a dollar at a business that doesn't pay a fair wage you are contributing to the oppression of the human body and the repression of the human mind. You have a choice, a choice to take the easy path, the familiar path, to walk willingly into your own submission. Or a choice get up, to go outside and talk to your neighbor, to come together in new forums to create lasting, meaningful change for the human race.

This is our challenge:

A peaceful revolution, a revolution of ideas, a revolution of creation. The twenty-first century enlightenment. A global movement to create a new age of tolerance and understanding, empathy and respect. An age of unfettered technological development. An age of sharing ideas and cooperation. An age of artistic and personal expression. We can choose to use new technology for radical positive change or let it be used against us. We can choose to keep the internet free, keep channels of communication open and dig new tunnels into those places where information is still guarded. Or we can let it all close in around us. As we move in to new digital worlds, we must acknowledge the need for honest information and free expression. We must fight to keep the internet open as a marketplace of ideas where all are seated as equals. We must defend our freedoms from those who would seek to control us.
We must fight for those who do not yet have a voice. Keep telling your story. All must be heard.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Unlawful Killings by US Drones

-From the Amnesty International USA website:
In the words of the recent report compiled by NYU and Stanford University:
“Drones hover twenty four hours a day over communities in northwest Pakistan striking homes, vehicles and public spaces their presence terrorizes men, women and children giving rise to anxiety and psychological trauma among civilian communities”
Drones operating under the CIA do not require any form of approval from the United States Senate or the U.S House of Representatives, in official terms there is no drone program and no war declared against Pakistan, or Yemen or Somalia.

Until now, 500-800 civilians have been killed killed from the  drone strikes, including 176 children. When killing by remote control fails to distinguish between funeral processions and weddings and alleged militants, they should be concerned about the glaring lack of accountability surrounding the drone program.

The New York Times has reported that President Obama has placed himself at the helm of designating a “secret kill list” that decides without any judicial or legislative input who the drones can target.
In Pakistan, the country where the majority of drone killing is taking place, the funerals and refugees coming from villages plagued by drone attacks are harder to ignore. Drone strikes have displaced hundreds of thousands of innocent people sending them into overcrowded refugee camps and teeming cities. Even more alarming, the anger and outcry at the violations of Pakistani sovereignty have actually driven many to be sympathetic to the militants allegedly targeted by the attacks.  Instead of focusing on the ravages and cruelties imposed by militant groups like the Tehreek-e-Taliban in Pakistan, the imperial over reach of the drone program, the ease with which it can target anyone at any time and shoot them from afar, has prevented the very reckoning that would allow Pakistanis to defeat and purge terrorism based on their own impetus.
In June of this year, the UN Special Rapporteur on extra judicial killings Christof  Heyn said that “drone strikes threaten 50 years of international law” expressing special concern about the fact that in several cases one strike closely following another actually kills rescuers attempting to aid casualties from the attack.  It is time end “the conspiracy of silence” the UN rapporteur said emphasizing that drone attacks were most devastatingly an attack on the system of international law. Amnesty International has also repeatedly condemned drone attacks, what we know about the attacks already demonstrates that they are unlawful and violations of the fundamental human right to not be arbitrarily deprived of life.

Stop the NDAA act from being passed. Save the civilians, save the children, save the innocent and protect justice.

You can sign petitions to be sent to:Leon Edward Panetta (Democrat), Eric H. Holder (Democrat), Hillary Rodham Clinton(Democrat), Barack Obama (Democrat).

Do not sit idly by. We are the ones who have to make things better. Stop complaining, start doing.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Free Your Mind

I make this post after seeing, reading about and hearing people complain, about burdens of expectations, how they can't do things they yearn to because of the society they live in, the god they worship or the race or caste they belong to.
Since childhood we are told do as we told. As long as we are doing things that are right, it's fine.
But when you let people boss you around too much, you become afraid. You become submissive.
You accept all  the crap that's fed to you by parents, teachers and society in general.
When you read the things written below, read with a completely open mind. I mean it.
Let me tell you how-
Every one wants to be successful, right? What's your definition of success? 80% or 90% of you would say, having a successful job, with a good salary, big house in a posh area,  kids in ivy league schools? This is not success. This is acting the way society wants you to. This is not knowing what you really want. This is becoming a selfish and ignorant person who always cares about what someone else thinks. 
Ask yourself, is being a person who is selfish, someone who ignores the pleas of help, someone who made his way to the top by betraying friends, forgetting friendships and love, successful?
Everyone is just running around trying to become what others want you to be. Stop. 
People think that they're failures because they couldn't be rich, because they don't live in big houses. Why? Because that's what success is. Who said that? Everyone. You see what I mean? You want to be successful, become someone who helps others, someone who's a good friend for others, someone who's not ignorant to all the oppression and injustice around him.
Are you ready to change? 
Are you strong enough to change?
Are you determined enough to change? Are you going to become a cog in the wheel or are you going to actually live, rather than just survive
Do not be influenced by the media. Do not be influenced by your friends and family. Make the society better, don't become part of an ailing one. 

You aren't free until your mind is. The day you realise and understand what is wrong and what needs to be done, you have escaped from the claws of injustice.
-Free thinkers change the world.- 

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Defeat Injustice.

From Amnesty International:
"Jalila al-Salman and Mahdi 'Issa Mahdi Abu Dheeb are former leaders of the Bahrain teachers Association who are awaiting their final verdict on 21 October that will determine whether they will be sent behind bars. Jalila is facing three years in prison and Mahdi ten years.

After calling for a teachers strike to support protestors’ calls for reform in Bahrain, Jalila and Mahdi were arrested and tried before a military court. Whilst in detention they were held in solitary confinement, subjected to torture and were forced to sign “confessions”.

They face a range of charges including attempting to overthrow the ruling system by force and inciting hatred of the regime. Neither of them advocated violence during the protests and Amnesty has not seen any convincing evidence supporting such accusations, nor was there any such evidence presented at trial.

Jalila al-Salman was conditionally released pending her appeal but could be joining in prison Mahdi 'Issa Mahdi Abu Dheeb if their convictions are upheld. Amnesty International would consider both as prisoners of conscience."
A letter is to be sent to Bahraini authorities, to look further into the matter and to investigate the reasons of unfair justice given to Jalila al-Salman and Mahdi Issa Mahdi. You can do your part by signing the letter in your name, by clicking here, please spread the word and tell everyone you know, we've only got until 20th  October.

Helplessness no more.
Ignorance no more.