Saturday, September 11, 2010

We can't inflict pain and expect to heal

Amazing Grace

Ordinarily on this day, I return to a letter I wrote in 2006 to my daughter who was attending preschool for the first time.

It talks about how I saw the country change in the years since Sept. 11, 2001 and how I hoped we could overcome fear and find true strength.

Today, and for months, it seems everyone in the mediascape is talking about a Christian pastor who has made a name for himself by threatening to carry out a very anti-Christian act – burning another religion's holy text. (Of course given the history of the Church of What's Happening Now, it may very well be in keeping with the many, many atrocities perpetrated in the name of Christ throughout time.)

Some folks believe this story has been blown out of proportion, and that he is a brand of nut that shouldn't get a crack at international exposure. Does national outrage take place when citizens of the world burn our flag or our presidents' image in effigy?

Whether true or not, the 24-hour news cycle will debate that, too. The media loves to analyze, interview experts and make pretty graphics to keep us all tuned in.

In this country, the freedom of speech protects this person't right to engage in racist rants. It protects his ability to destroy something held sacred by someone else as long as he hasn't stolen it from them. It also protects our right to be outraged.

The real issues aren't about this man and his ignorant threat. It's not about an Islamic cultural center's location two blocks from the World Trade Center site.

It's about tolerance and how little of it we as human beings have for each other. It's also about fear and how it can only lead us to destruction.

A mosque needs to be at Ground Zero, not just two blocks away. It needs to be there because American Muslims suffered there. Because American Muslims lost their lives there. Because American Muslims are serving this country in its war against terror. And most of all because American Muslims are part of our future as a nation. They are part of us.

When we soothe those who hurt we help them heal. When we help others heal, we heal ourselves.

For anyone who asks themselves “What Would (INSERT DEITY HERE) Would Do” if they come up with an action as hateful as this pastor, they are not in legion with a higher power.

11 comments:

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Kcoz said...

Why is this guy even a news story?? So they can distract you from the real problems and issues, capitalizing on the human instinct to distrust and hate others that are different than you…”FEAR !!”

I’m thinking about burning one of each of their sacred books of propaganda, than handing out Science books to all who show up to protest…and maybe a few Dr. Seuss books too as they are actually more enlightening with the teachings of morality.

To those who say do not criticize one beliefs…I say, when your belief causes pain and suffering…encourages hate and war to others that have a different view or lifestyle than you…than I have a problem with your beliefs.

Here are just a few who have used their Godly beliefs to manipulate others, than cause death, pain and suffering to others.

Jim Jones
David Koresh
Charley Manson
Klu-Klux-Klan
Adolph Hitler
The Christian Crusades
The Inquisition…and on and on

Later...

toyfoto said...

As for the media response ... A "Tweet" i read today sums it up:

"Have you ever seen three male dogs running together? One lifts its leg on a tree and pretty soon the other two are lifting their legs in the same place. That's pretty much journalism."

Kcoz said...

All three networks produce the same news story at the same time with the same commercial breaks…never anything new and in depth. They are simply counting on their audience favoring one personality (talking head) over the other guys for their ratings, as apposed to producing actual investigative journalism against a corrupt corporation that may advertise with them.

If the network execs can get together to synchronize this, it is not that far of a stretch for them to get together to create story’s they want you to think are important…or even have the politicians they want elected shown in a positive light while ignoring another voice.


Later...

Kcoz said...

BTW…those are some great pictures you have to accompany this post, much better than the other. I love the sepia look they have…would that be the right word to describe that effect, “sepia” ??

Later...

toyfoto said...

The network execs aren't in collusion. They're just producing the cheapest stories they can and hoping to make a profit. The next step is having the public do most of the work. They're hoping to harness the Wiki world.

As for the photos ... I took them during a moment of silence for 9/11 at our town's Community Night. They're cross process-like more than sepia-like.

Kcoz said...

toyfoto said...
The network execs aren't in collusion.


You should have a look at the movie “The Insider” (Russell Crowe & Al Pacino)
A true story that shows networks execs DO interfere with news stories for the benefit of a corrupt corporation (big tobacco) while compromising the journalistic integrity of their news programming…for profit.

Pacino plays “60 Minutes” producer Lowell Bergman who actually leaves CBS news after this interference for the same reason that I and many others no longer watch such shows, they lost their credibility with their audience by trying to repress valuable health information to the public…for profit!

The real Lowell Bergman went on to work for PBS and produce the highly acclaimed, investigative journalistic show “Frontline”.

Later...

toyfoto said...

I don't doubt that there is interference. I know first hand how the corporations buddy up to the money and are not likely to bite the hand that feeds them. That's why there is need for non-profit media the same way there is need for non-profit health care.

Kcoz said...

So have you seen this movie “The Insider” ? If not I highly recommend it…5 stars. Russell Crowe’s performance is excellent as this nerdy scientist. He won an Oscar for it.

Another good movie is “The International”, about international banking. “Its all about the debt” as they say in the movie. And another reason we need to end our contract with the Federal Reserve Bank, which is actually a privately owned international bank.
JFK tried to do that with the Silver Certificate…and that ended badly, as did the Silver Certificates.

Later…

toyfoto said...

I haven't seen "The Insider." I will certainly check it out.

Kcoz said...

What did you think of “the International” ?
I thought it had a great screenplay and am surprised it has not received all that much recognition. I don’t know the actors name but think he did an excellent job of portraying a dedicated Interpol agent determined to bring this bank down.

If you want to have a good laugh watch “The Men That Stare at Goats”, Clooney, Bridges, Spacy…and a few others....interesting story too.

Later...