Showing posts with label Human Rights. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Human Rights. Show all posts

May 30, 2020

A Neck Is Not Something To Step On

A neck is not something to step or kneel on. 

Justice for George Floyd!

Murder is murder. 

While I greatly respect and admire our law enforcement for the difficult jobs that they have, police brutality and racism is not something that can be tolerated. 

Our law enforcement is better than that!

Hold the responsible officers accountable, but also bring peace and civility back to our cities and streets. ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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April 29, 2020

Towards Peace and Freedom Among Nations

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, "Towards Peace and Freedom Among Nations."
Natan Sharansky showed tremendous personal strength and integrity to respond with humor and wit while suffering under the Soviets in prison, separated from his wife, deprived of all outside contacts, placed in “punishment cells” cold, hungry, and sleep-deprived, and regularly interrogated to try to get him to incriminate himself and his fellow refuseniks and human rights activists. Sharansky is truly a hero who stood up as a Jew persecuted in the Soviet Union and as a human rights activist leading the way to help other refuseniks to get released, with eventually millions escaping through the “Iron Door” to emigrate to freedom in Israel and the United States.

Yesterday, we celebrated Israel’s 72nd Independence Day, so I will add that for too many years since the founding of the State of Israel that the Soviets armed and supported the Arab League nations in warring against Israel and in seeking its destruction. However now, Israel and Russia not only have an anchoring of social idealism in common, but also Israel has 15% of it citizens from there. Further, as Israel has made peace with Egypt and Jordan decades ago, and has a warming of relations with the Gulf States, perhaps Russia will also continue to come around to growing a mutually beneficial friendship with Israel.

(Free Photo via Pixabay)

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December 14, 2019

Another Week, Another Anti-Semitic Attack

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, "Another Week, Another Anti-Semitic Attack."
From The Tree of Life Synagogue shooting in Pittsburgh to the Poway Synagogue shooting in California to the shooting at the kosher market in Jersey City this week. The latest shooting occurred literally just the day before President Trump issued an executive order at a White House Chanukah celebration to cover anti-Semitic acts under the civil rights laws that ban discrimination based on national origin. Yet, despite the Constitution and all the protective laws and orders on the books, we are getting to the point where it is starting to look and feel awfully like there is nowhere safe anymore if you are a Jew, even in this great land of freedom.

What anti-Semitism, G-d forbid, will the next week bring, and the week after that, and after that? This vile behavior coming from people that hate us just because we are Jews, because we are Jacob and not Esau. May our eyes be open to what is happening around us, and may Hashem have an abundance of mercy on us.

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

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November 10, 2019

Harriet And The Underground Railroad

We saw the movie Harriet today. 

Obviously, it was about Harriet Tubman and her rescuing the slaves through the Underground Railroad of secret routes and safe houses. 

She was an amazing heroine that they even called her "Moses" for her rescuing the black slaves from the southern plantation where they were sorely abused in every way. 

Even though she herself was a runaway slave who made it though a100 treacherous miles from Maryland to Pennsylvania to Freedom, she went back over and over again to save others. 

The movie said she saved 70 other through the underground railroad and then in the civil war led the black troops to free another 750 slaves!

Her courage and faith through it all was truly inspirational.

I was so glad when she carried a gun and shot at her nemesis who enslaved her and her family before he could kill or capture and torture her. 

She didn't kill him, but she told him in no uncertain terms that people were not meant by G-d to own and enslave other people!

We need more people like Harriet Tubman in the world who fight for what's right and clearly know the difference between good and evil. ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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June 6, 2019

Amazing Cuban Art







I never knew about Cuban art until we visited Cernuda Arte gallery in Coral Gables, Florida.

They treated us like royalty and gave us a personal guided tour of two buildings filled with works by Cuban artists still at home in Cuba and here in exile. 

This was better than many museums that I've been too. 

I just want to thank the gallery owners and our guide for a wonderful showing and tell them how impressed we were with the art there. 

Even while the Cuban people are repressed by their dictatorial leaders, there is so much of interest in Cuba: from their colorful colonial architecture to their cool "oldie cars", renown cigar smokes, some pretty talented artists, and I'm sure much more. 

Cuba is only 485 miles from the USA!

I pray for the freedom of the Cuban people. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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January 31, 2019

Respecting Native Americans

So I don't know what went down with the students from Catholic Covington High School and the Native Americans in the video that was widely circulated the other day.

People claiming all sorts of racism and hate, and others saying nothing happened--usually the truth is somewhere in between. 

In light of this, I wanted to share this awesome painting, and say we should absolutely respect the Native Americans and do everything we can to help them. 

These are the indigenous people that were here long before we ever were, and let's just say that they suffered and lost a lot when the first Europeans arrived on these shores. 

We are all G-d's children, and no one acting with integrity and peacefully should ever be mistreated or disrespected, no one! ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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January 30, 2019

Slavery Touches Us All

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, "Without Slavery and Genocide."
Coming out of the museum, my daughter asked how anyone could actually do something like this to another human being. I had no answer to this...just like I have none to the Holocaust or any of the other incredibly cruel, sick, and wicked things that people do to each other. 

Hopefully we can all have a brighter future without slavery and without genocide.  ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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January 21, 2019

@MLK Celebration



(Source Videos: Andy Blumenthal
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December 8, 2018

A Blind Eye and A Wink

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, "The UNjust United Nations."
This week the United Nations failed to pass a General Assembly resolution designating Hamas a terrorist organization, despite Hamas being designated as such by the United States for 25 years already. What the United States knows intrinsically and based on the day-to-day terror activities of Hamas, the corrupt and anti-Semitic United Nations fails to acknowledge or, perhaps worse yet, condones.
Certainly, the UN is not living up to its charter to maintain peace and security and uphold human rights...with the UN, it's just the opposite! ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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November 10, 2018

Democrats and Democracy

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, "Democrats and Democracy--Could It Be Again?"
The polarization, opposition, racism, and hatred is despicable and seems to only be getting worse. Two more people came to me today after synagogue to tell me they are “resigning” from the democratic party. We all used to love the Democratic Party and what it stood for, especially as Jews, who know the endless and murderous barbs of discrimination and anti-Semitism. What has happened? What once stood for freedom, respect, and dignity for all has turned upside down and inside out. All I hear now is hate, hate, and more hate.

Whichever political party and leadership can do what's right for the nation and adhere to civil rights, human rights, and doing what's right--that's the one for me. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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October 15, 2018

The United Nations At Work For You!


In case you wondered why the United Nations is always so full of sh*t?

- When the U.N. is done aimlessly sitting around watching on the sidelines while weapons of mass destruction proliferate, millions are being killed, maimed or made into refugees, and genocide and war crimes are occurring...

- When the U.N. is done elevating dictators, sponsors of terrorism, and human rights abusers...

- When the U.N. is done denigrating and making endless anti-Semitic resolutions against the democratic and Holy Land of Israel...

- When the U.N. is done laughing at the President of the United States and his accomplishments...

This is what the UNjust United Nations spends our valuable time and dollars on. 

This photo of a U.N. garbage truck say it all.

Perhaps, this is the only thing that the U.N. is actually good at!

(Thank you to a good friend for forwarding this photo to me)
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July 6, 2018

The Diversity Tapestry

I really liked this sign with the saying by civil rights leader, Maya Angelou:
"We all should know that diversity makes for a rich tapestry, and we must understand that all the threads of the tapestry are equal in value, no matter what their color [or race, or origin, or religion, or age, or gender, or sexual orientation, or disability]."

Ok, I added the "or" statements at the end. 

But the point is the same and important.

Discrimination, bigotry, prejudice, and bias are stupid. 

They are a function of ignorance. 

- We learn from diversity. 

- Life is richer with diversity. 

If everything was in monocolor...if life was homogeneous...if there was only one type of everything, then what type of humdrum, monotonous, and boring place would this be?

Value the variety.  Value the diversity.  Value the differences. 

They make us better and stronger than we could ever otherwise be. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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July 4, 2018

March 16, 2018

Homeless DC

So aside from all the Washington, D.C. weighty monuments to our esteemed values of democracy, freedom, and human rights.

And aside from all the prestigious institutions and people of great power that formulate the policies and rules and keep us abiding by them. 

This is what I see in D.C. 

The plight of the poor, homeless, and downtrodden. 

Those that have fallen by the wayside.

People who are down on their luck.

Human beings--that's right human beings--that need and deserve help or even just a chance.

Why does anyone have to live--if you can even call this living--like this a couple of blocks from the White House. 

I know there are people all over the world who are hungry, homeless, sick, and abused.

Yet, nowhere is this more stark an example than in the U.S.A where there is such an enormous divergence between "the haves" and "the have nots" and where our values are supposedly bound up with equality, human rights, charity, and kindness.

Yes, we are supposed to be equal in treatment and in opportunity, but we all know that is not really the case. 

Sure, some work hard and others are perhaps lucky/blessed, but then are those that are born with a "silver spoon in their mouths" and excel through a tight weave of corruption, narcissism, nepotism, and abuse.

Yet a real chance for everyone, a living wage, and basic dignity and respect should be afforded to all.

Money and power is ephemeral.  

Those with it, that abuse it, shall see it pass between their fingers ever trying to clutch unto it with dear life. 

Only the way we treat others will last in this world and in the world after. 

Everything goes around and comes around. 

This is the cycle of life and the lot of those who abuse their good fortune as well as those that harness it. 

G-d will judge with His mighty hand and bring to bear the deeds and intentions of those that mock His holy will. 

Because His children lay in rags and heaps, while others dance their folly jig. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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February 27, 2018

Politics On A Cow

I saw this "Antifa" (Anti-Fascist) symbol on this painting of a cow in Washington, D.C. 

As a child of Holocaust survivors, I certainly understand and can even sympathize with the view of the anti-fascist movement--certainly, we should all unequivocally appreciate, love, and want to protect freedom and human rights!

However, I think throwing around labels like fascist, perhaps where it is more about political disagreements doesn't help to identify the really bad actors out there in the world and what they can and even would like to do to harm all of us. 

Anyway, I am pretty sure that this cow is no fascist.

I would also like to say that the red and black with this symbol here is way too close to looking like how the genocidal Nazi's themselves portrayed the dreaded and infamous swastika in red and black.  

It would be great if we use symbols and labels carefully, and let the cows go back to being cows. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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January 12, 2018

Washington Democracy

Nice photo of the Capitol, the Reflecting Pool, and the Botanical Gardens.

Even in cold January in Washington, DC, it is a mighty impressive sight. 

Some of the most important lessons for me:

Democracy never ceases as long as the people rule, freedom is protected, and human rights is respected.

Those in power have an even greater responsibility to ensure they do the right thing and maintain the utmost integrity.  

We have a lot to live up to!

Hope everyone enjoys their weekend and MLK holiday.  ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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December 31, 2017

Social Media Totalitarianism

The Chinese government has the most brilliant as well as frightening use and control of social media. 

I am not just talking about blocking Internet sites and free information flow. 

They actually have mastered the use of social media for tracking and rewarding or punishing citizen behavior.

Their social credit system rates people's behavior online for everything they do!

Similar to likes and dislikes, you are either labeled a "model citizen" sought after for jobs and good housing or you can be an "enemy of the state" treated as a social outcast who can't even leave the country anymore. 

Everything about you is now based on what you are rated (whether true or not)!

Now in China the government has added a snitching tool/app where people are encouraged through a points system that offers rewards like store discounts, coupons for coffee, taxis, and music streaming, in order to get them to report covertly on their neighbors--are their fellow citizens fighting, is there mental illness, are people cheating on their taxes, etc. 

You're being surveilled not just by the grid system, where every 300 households are watched and checked-in on by a "grid manager," but you are subject to daily intrusion by anyone that wants to report on you. 

Communication to "Big Brother" is way overvalued, while privacy and respect of the people are no longer important values or concerns. 

Instead of a Security Operations Center to monitor and command response to life-threatening catastrophes and emergencies, now there is a "Social Governance Integrated Command Center" to display video and biometric surveillance from throughout the country as well as to show what are the "moods" and which "issues" are trending. 

Talking about having a finger on the pulse of what's going on...

I say this is all brilliant and malign, because social media which can be a tool for connecting people and for the free flow of information and progress is instead used for near ultimate control and enslavement of the masses--both their minds and their behaviors. 

People should not be treated as servants of the state and subjected to ever-encroaching social media surveillance and control that is not carefully balanced directly to absolutely necessary national security. 

Rather the state and its levers of people's supreme power should be subject to the wants and needs of its people who must freely decide on their collective futures and maintaining human rights. 

Totalitarianism by police state, imprisonment, torture and "re-education" is now unfortunately facilitated by social media monitoring,  and credits system where truly you are watched by Big Brother in the flesh and in the bytes. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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September 1, 2017

From My Cats To Yours

Diversity is a very beautiful thing.

Whether you're an orange, red, or green cat.

It doesn't matter--you are a cat!

All cats gotta get along. 

Might does not make a right in any catfight.

But brotherhood of cats does us all good. 

Does every cat need to stand up for it's daily food?

Sure, but there is more than enough catfood and nip to go around. 

I like to be in a great cat sea purring and frolicking all day long.

Live and let live--and love--all cats and dogs and people and others!

And from the great Martin Luther King Jr. 
"We must learn to live together as brothers 
or 
perish together as fools."

Shabbat shalom and happy Labor Day holiday weekend!

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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August 17, 2017

Ok To Be Ourselves!

Someone shared this beautiful Jewish wedding gown on Facebook and I wanted to share it with you, because it represents life, love, and faith. 

While perhaps normally I wouldn't just post this to my blog...

I thought that in light of the report that came out of 917 hate groups operating right now in the United States, that I would take this as an opportunity to be me.

To hell with all the haters out there!

- The more they hate us, the more I will love my Jewishness. 

- The more they try to stamp out our religious freedom, the more I will relish in it. 

- The more they try to kill us, the more I will live as a Jew.

No more Holocausts...no more bigotry...no more hate--it is enough! ;-)
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July 22, 2017

Hate Proliferates

I was really surprised to see this sign for White Supremacists right in front of our nation's Capitol like this. 

Identity Evropa is yet another hate group--this one focuses on people of European ancestry and their website claims, "We are the future."

But whether you come from Europe or Asia, the Middle East or Africa, America or the moon, aren't we all just people at the end of the day.

Who cares whether your black or white or yellow or brown, or what religion you practice, or your gender, or sexual orientation, or whether you lean left or right. 

At the end of the day, are we all not flesh, do we all not bleed, have we all not hopes and fears, do we all not answer to the one G-d Above. 

Hate proliferates from our farm belts to our inner cities, from our universities to our board rooms, from the gazillionaire to the guy who has to shovel shit for a living, from our nasty national politics to the United Nations, there is plenty of hate and bias and bigotry to go around. 

Look to the Heavens, cry a bitter tear, your hatred is your self-destruction. 

You will pray with an evil and hate-filled heart and none will answer you. 

The living G-d of Hosts who created us and loves all his children will not stand idly as hate and supremacy of one over another presides. 

The chains of our affliction, the bullet to the back of the head, the noose and the death camps, the whip, the gas, and the ovens, the hunger, the sick experiments, and the slave labor.

Only G-d is supreme over all and those that seek an advantage on the backs of their brethren will find themselves a fiery hell to contend with. 

From just a little gnat to a growing tumor--that is all that it takes to bring justice and re-level the supremacy playing field and teach who is the King of Kings and there is no other. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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