Friday, December 31, 2004

Welcome 2005

In California, we're still a few hours away from 2005. Happy New Year to those who have already entered the new year.

Every new year, I have this wierd feeling of loss. Kind of like the feeling you get when you read the last page of a good book. This year is no different, except that I'm looking forward to change. It's all I have hope in at this point. My hopes for next year are grand, but grandness is not impossible.

I hope this year brings more kindness and humanity than the last. I hope we learn from our mistakes and recognize our accomplishments. I hope everyone hears at least one good thing everyday; I hope that everyone gives or does at least one good thing everyday. I hope we can relearn how to smile and to laugh so hard that we cry.

Someone told me the other day that the energy of the world has shifted from Yang to Yin, which is supposed to mean that empowerment and achievement is no longer individually driven, but collaboratively. So let's toast to collaboration, cooperation, mercy, and holding ourselves and others up through the times.

It's also my mother's birthday today. Happy Birthday Mamma.

Happy New Year to everyone.

Sunday, December 26, 2004

Results of Fear Based Politics

Cornell University Study on Civil Liberties, views of Islam and Muslims in the US

This report actually came out last week sometime, Friday I think. The link below takes you to the summary of the most recent survey conducted regarding the restriction of Civil Liberties, views of Islam, and Muslim Americans. The results are overwhelmingly depressing. Almost half of those questioned agree that there should be restrictions on the civil liberties of Muslims in the US, and about a quarter agree that Muslims should be made to register their names and whereabouts to the federal government.

It should be mentioned that this survey only measured opinions of people who identify as Christian, Agnostic, or Athiest though party affiliation is more comprehensive. I'm not clear on why the only religion they focused on Christianity, but I do understand that that is the predominant religion in the US.

Now, I'm not one to bring up the Holocaust when it's inappropriate, but I do think this survey gives a part of the answer to those who wondered how things got such out of hand. It all begins in stages, and this is the stage we're in now. What next, I wonder.

My questions were answered in the last week, after the release of this survey I might add.

1. This was a letter written to a Muslim school in Texas that was seeking membership in an association of Private and Parachial Schools. Read the questions they ask the school to respond to. Now, I understand that associations can deny membership to anyone they want. I just would hope that the reasons make sense and aren't based in hatred or fear. What do you think the relationship between that Muslim school and this collective of others will be from now on?

Letter from TAPPS to local Muslim school seeking membership

2- A pregnant Muslim woman in New Orleans was brutally stabbed 33 times in her home. She's a known Muslim leader and teacher in her community, and nothing was taken from her home, leading some to wonder whether this is a hate crime. I think it's highly possible.

New Orleans Muslim Teacher stabbed

3-I was going to put another recent story (a bloody murder), but I can't find it anywhere online. And I don't report word of mouth rumors.

Oh, yeah.... happy new year folks.