Showing posts with label Torture. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Torture. Show all posts

August 11, 2019

The Humanity of Routine

People are creatures of habit. 

They form routines and function with relative comfort and efficiency within that. 

And for the most part, we can recognize our own patterns in life. 

Get up, brush our teeth, dress, daven (pray), go to work and so on. 

After a while, you can do it mostly in your sleep. 

We sort of become like automatons. 

Flip the switch and we go.

When routine and structure become so rigid that we can no longer improvise or innovate then we have a big problem in higher order functioning. 

But also when we break people's structures and habits, we find that they can quickly lose their sh*t. 

People need to control their time and maintain their patterns of life. 

Therein lies a certain safety and comfort in that repetitive doing.

You know what you're doing--you've done it before, so you can do it again.

If you strip a person of their control over their time and the structure of their behavior, they are truly naked and in much more than a physical sense.  (They articulated this in The Punisher, Season One, on Netflix)

All of a sudden they don't know what to do or how to do it. 

Do they go crazy, breakdown, or tell you everything you want to know. 

Torture is not just physical, but also mental and emotional. 

It is not hard to take away something so simple and a person is no longer a full person anymore. 

People need solid coping as well as survival skills to deal with the unknown.

Finally, appreciate when everything is more or less under control, because that's truly a blessing.  ;-)

(Credit 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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February 24, 2018

Iron Maiden Torture


Check this out. 

This is called an Iron Maiden.

It is from Nuremberg, Germany. 

This one is from Medieval times, but they were apparently still around even in the 19th century!

It has 14 spikes on the inside that were designed to pierce the eyes, throat, and heart. 

People placed for torture and death in the Iron Maiden sarcophagus would be completely mutilated. 

Is this one of the reasons that so many people suffer from claustrophobia?  

I remember seeing in a movie where someone was placed in a dungeon cell, but this one was carved into the rock wall horizontally. 

The prisoner would be forced to lie down in it with iron bars caged over the side vertically. 

S/he could not sit up, roll over, or move. 

Can you imagine the sheer terror and torture?

How people could be so evil and inflict such suffering on others and often for crimes like heresy is extremely hard to understand. 

Why in G-d's name does anyone call it the "good 'ol days?" 

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

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September 9, 2017

A Holocaust Bar Mitzvah

So there was a bar mitzvah in synagogue today. 

It was very memorable, I think not only for the young man and his family, but for many of the congregants--and frankly, it brought me to tears.

The family was from the Israeli embassy, and they did something that I had never seen before. 

When the father got up with his wife and son at the pulpit to speak, he didn't talk about how great his son was.

Instead he spoke about a young boy from the Holocaust who never made it to his bar-mitzvah.

The father told of the just 12-year old that lived in Europe and was murdered by the Nazis in the Jewish genocide that killed 6,000,000!

The father presented a certificate from the Remember Us program with the name and information of the murdered boy to his son. 

The message of this father and Israeli official on his son's bar-mitzvah was very clear--Never again!

Never again--the hate, prejudice, discrimination, and murder of Jews just because they are Jews.

The people that were murdered by the evil Nazis and other hating bigots throughout history showed no mercy towards G-d's creatures--in fact, quite the contrary--they relished in the absolute torture and killing of each and every one.

Never again, is not just a phrase, but it is a determination and a commitment to be a "light unto nations" not to forget how some can fall under the evil influence and not to allow it to happen again that people engage in the most outrageous and vile atrocities against their fellow man. 

Unfortunately these days, hate and bigotry comes in many colors, races, genders, orientations, and affiliations--and the haters may often pretend--like the Nazis did as the "Aryan Nation"--that they are superior, better, and even righteous in their (evil) cause. 

However, we have to know better--we have to be able to discern good from evil--raise up good over evil--and fight for good to win against evil. 

It is not just a single battle, but a long intergenerational war, and one that will be won.

G-d Almighty will most assuredly see to it that those who hate on and perform the vilest of deeds against their fellow man, they will end up paying the ultimate price not only with their rotting flesh, but with the eternal burning of their sickening souls. ;-)

(Source Photo: here with attribution to the Holocaust Education and Archive Research Team--HEART)
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August 11, 2017

Like Removing A Nail

So you always hear about the techniques used when people are being tortured...one of them being have their nails ripped off.

Ouch!

So this week when I had a ingrown toenail removed, I said jokingly to the podiatrist:

"Do you do waterboarding also?"

Ok, funny, not-funny.  Still got a chuckle!

But in removing the nail, the technique is really so amazing.

They inject the toe with a local anesthetic, but hey even the injections into a sensitive toe could be pretty uncomfortable. 

So before the injection, they spray you toe with a freezing spray, so you don't even feel the injections.

When he actually removed the nail and chemically destroyed the nailbed so it wouldn't come back, I didn't feel a thing.

I mean, I literally didn't feel a thing!

It was a wonderful feeling--whatever he did, however much it would've hurt--it didn't.

I thought to myself in a wave of anesthetic and freeze-numbed delight, this is absolutely wonderful.

No pain, not even a pinch. 

I could sense everything going on around me, take it in, think about it, even mull it over again and again, and just smile. 

In a way, I thought how wonderful life would be to have the ability to think in the head and feel from the heart, but have no pain or suffering in the body. 

Yes, there are plenty of damning and painful thoughts, memories, and heartaches, but for the body to be numb (even momentarily) to all the bad stuff that actually felt pretty good.

How would it feel if the mind and heart also felt no pain and only bliss--I smiled even more. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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April 27, 2017

I Love A Strong Woman, But...

Ok, admit it or not.

This is certainly something that every man fears: ~Castration Phobia~

Of course, I don't know what she's planning, but with that huge sickle-shaped knife and that big disarming smile, I definitely don't want to find out. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal) 
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March 24, 2017

Locked Inside Your Own Body

So being imprisoned in torturously tight spaces and uncomfortable positions is...physically, mentally, and emotionally harrowing. 

Of course, the criminal justice system centers around incarceration (and less so rehabilitation) and for most of history--from chains, cages, and dungeons--the most vile despots have placed people's bodies in desperate restraints. 

But I have learned that people can be not only physically incarcerated and shackled, but they can also literally be imprisoned within their own bodies. 

My own dear mother suffered terribly with Parkinson's Disease and I watched helplessly and in horror as the degenerative rigidity, contortion, and incredibly horrendous pain made her suffer so. No amount of pain medication could ease her unbelievable suffering...only death itself.

In another instance, a colleague's spouse got sick with ALS and as this horrible disease ran it's course, the person could not move, eat, speak, and eventually even breath on their own.  Their mind worked fine, but it was imprisoned within a body that continuously closed in on itself and could no longer function. 

In both these cases, the body itself was the prison of the mind and soul--no bars, no barbed wire, and no high walls necessary. 

Another case, I read and watched about his week, was of a husband and father who suddenly became a quadriplegic.  Kevin Breen was a healthy and active 44-year old, when suddenly he came down with a case of strep throat that traveled to his stomach and almost ended up killing him. He survived, but had to have his hands and feet amputated. Can you imagine the absolute horror of this?

There are so many good things that can happen in life, but also so many, G-d forbid, misfortunes--it is frightening to think about let alone confront. 

Locked up or imprisoned within our own failing bodies, leave mankind looking out into the darkest and deepest of the abyss, and that is when we need G-d's ultimate mercy and to answer us more than ever.  ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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March 9, 2017

Who Are The Real Animals

So if you want to know who are the real animals in this world...

It's people!

If you can stomach it, watch this graphic video of elephant taming

The elephant is caged, chained, poked, prodded, beaten, spiked in all the sensitive areas. 

It is tortured and left with festering sores and then made to do sickening slave labor. 

While animals generally kill for food, people abuse, torture and kill for profit and maniacal enjoyment. 

Sometimes, we wonder why G-d punishes the world. 

But look at how the world behaves. 

Is there no heart or soul in some people? 

G-d forgive us for our sins and evil inclinations, and have mercy, and make your people better than this, much better. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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November 21, 2016

You Can Take This Niqab And...

So here is the quote of the day (compliments of the Wall Street Journal)...

From a woman fleeing the inhumane treatment in Mosul by ISIS religious terrorists:


"I want to take this niqab and stuff it down the throat of ISIS."

I've now read over and over again how one of the first things the women do, who get away from these ruthless fanatics, is to remove their confining "religious"-mandated garb that covers them so fully and put on normal clothes and be free human beings again.

While I certainly and highly respect women who freely and modestly cover up--especially in marriage--it is abhorrent to violently force women to dress a certain way or make them in any way lessor than or subservient to men. 

The women under ISIS are taught to be ashamed, when they have nothing to be ashamed about!

ISIS and these other radical Islamists that force their distorted version of religion on others goes like this when it comes to women:

"It is permitted to buy her, sell her, and give her away as a gift. They are just a possession and you can do whatever you want with them."  In their FAQS, they even ask, "Can I have sex with a slave who hasn't reached puberty?"

Yet, while they are having sex with abducted pubescent and pre-pubescent girls, they force women to stay at home, and they are not allowed to go out unless accompanied by a man (forget education, working, driving or traveling). 

Even at home, "Woman are cautioned to stay away from rooftops, balconies, and windows so they wouldn't be seen by outsiders."

And should a women be accused of sex outside of marriage--even when the women are the ones forcibly (gang) raped--they are the ones subject to death by public stoning for their being licentious. 

Are these "religious" fanatics with guns so weak that they fear sexual temptation more than they trust in the bonds of family, personal righteousness, and the ability of people to freely choose right from wrong?

Imagine...as they abduct and enslave women and children, rape them, sell them, and force them into bogus marriages, starve and torture them, these people actually think they are religious. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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September 22, 2016

Did You Know You're A Sinner

So walking down the street here yesterday, I ran into a sign and was handed a postcard, declaring:
"Sin Awareness Day"

Then I was confronted by a gentleman (or not so gentle) who proceeded to explain to me that I--and everyone else--are sinners!

Innocently, I ask, "Well, what have I done?"

The missionary answers with a stern face, "I'm sure you have lied!"

I said, "I don't think so," but then to play alone, I smirked and said, "Well what if I did?"

He answers and says, "You'll need to repent!"

Thinking that Rosh Hashanah (Jewish New Year) is right around the corner in a couple of weeks, I thought to myself, hey that's right in line with where I'm going anyway...

The guy continues--of course--to try to enlist me to his "savior" that he believes can save us from all our sins. 

I challenged and said, "Well, how about Moses?"

He roars back, "Moses?!!!" and starts railing on about "convert, convert, convert." 

Uh no, thank you, I am fine with the faith of my father, and grandfathers, and great grandfathers, etc. 

And I appreciate if we can avoid the forcible conversion parts of yesteryear from various empires, caliphates, crusades, and inquisitions, with no shortage of associated torture, executions, and expulsions. 

Then breaking this historical context and glancing at the back of the postcard that he handed out, I did like this one thing that it said:
"Sin is not primarily a measure of how bad you are, but a measure of how good you are not."

Heck, why be negative about ourselves (we are not inherently bad); instead see that we not living up to our potential and try, always, to do better. 

In that I am definitely a believer!  ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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September 9, 2016

To Evil ISIS

I was thinking of holding this photo for "the next" big terrorist attack (G-d forbid). 

But it's just two days before 9/11, and I thought of all the victims of ISIS terror and said, why wait.

So this is to memorialize all the victims of ISIS, Al-Qaeda, Hezbollah, Hamas, Islamic Jihad, Taliban, Boko Haram, the PLO, BDS, and other vile terrorist groups.

For all the victims--men, women, and children--you brutally and ruthlessly:

Beheaded.

Crucified.

Hung.

Shot.

Stabbed.

Stoned.

Threw off of Roofs.

Burned Alive.

Ran over with tanks and other vehicles. 

Poisoned. 

Abducted.

Raped.

Tortured.

Imprisoned. 

Enslaved. 

Sold.

Made refugees. 

Bombed. 

Gassed.

For the mothers and fathers you made childless.

For the children you made orphaned.

For the husbands and wives you left widowed. 

May the one G-d in heaven recompense you for all your evil deeds, may he thwart all your plans and attempts to harm, kill, and destroy, and may he thrust his heavenly spear of judgement through your devilish hearts and straight into the endless depths of Hell. 

(Source Photo: America)
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May 31, 2016

Only Our History Is Colored

Last night, my daughter and I watched the premier of the new miniseries, Roots (on the History Channel). 

The story of American Slavery like all tales of racism, oppression, terrorism, and genocide is completely appalling. 

It represents the worst of human nature whether for motives of profiteering, power, or plain unadulterated hatred. 

We watched, my youngest daughter (in college), literally in tears.

And frankly, we watched until we literally couldn't watch the suffering on the screen any more (but to be continued another evening). 

What people can do to other people...beyond words, comprehension. 

Is it people doing these things or is it a vicious animal or evil within?

Either way, humankind has a lot to be sorry for...whether for slavery or the Holocaust. 

I can't imagine what G-d must think or how we can in any rational sort of way explain these things to our children. 

The stain is marked on the souls of the aggressors, and the only thing colored is our history. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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January 24, 2016

The Need For Speed

In the gym this morning, I watched Joel Osteen giving his Sunday sermon on the monitor. 

The guy is a genius--always on message, always inspiring hope, always uplifting the masses. 

Today, he spoke about acceleration. 

The idea was that no matter how deeply bad our situation in life (e.g. illness, debt, demoted) and no matter how many months or years it would normally take us to recover or get out of it, G-d can accelerate things so that we are healed, solvent, or promoted tomorrow. 

He didn't say this, but as I understand it, G-d is above time and space, and so he can move you faster out of your funk then anyone would normally think.

Osteen gave the analogy of a bow an arrow, and the further back you are pulled--the more pressure and tension you are under in life--then the further and faster, G-d can propel you forward. 

To me it's interesting that when we are enjoying a wonderful moment in life, that we wish time would slow or completely stop, so we could savor the good times that much longer or just "stay in the moment forever."

And at other times, when we are down and suffering, the days of despair and defeat can drag on and on, and it seems like the hours and days just don't pass fast enough...it's almost like torture in that it seem to go on forever. And that is when, we hope and pray for a speedy resolution to whatever ails us--we just want to be free from the problems, the illness, the suffering--and so if only, we could leap forward in time and this "would all be over." 

If you are happy, life is too short.  But if you are in pain and suffering, every moment can be torture.

So if we are worthy, time can magnify and be an accelerant for prolonging the good times and getting out of the bad times (or G-d forbid, it can work in reverse as well--shortening the good times in life and extending out the bad ones). 

Similarly, long life can be a blessing if we are healthy and able to enjoy a real quality of life or it can be grueling for those in pain and suffering. 

My wife told me about this news item from a couple of days ago, where a guy won the lottery, but shortly after was murdered--his life cut short--in a home invasion (this "lucky" guy never got to enjoy his winnings).

G-d who controls time (and space) has quite a lot of leeway to test us or meet out justice--just speed things up or slow things down and the experience and feelings are magnified accordingly. ;-)

(Source Photo: here with attribution to spitfirelas)
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December 8, 2015

Counter Terrorism Response Level: DYSFUNCTIONAL

OMG, this is completely dysfunctional and embarrassing. 

Can we stop the fighting among ourselves--Democrats and Republicans, Judeo-Christians and Muslims, CNN and FOX, NRA and gun control advocates, immigration pros and foes, etc.)

AND

Instead focus and go after the real murderous culprits--the radical Islamist terrorists who are killing, imprisoning, torturing, raping, enslaving, and taking over vast lands to build a shariah-rule caliphate and take our freedoms and lives away?

We are losing the war on terror, because we can't get our collective act together! ;-)

(Source Photo: adapted from here with attribution for original to Elliott Brown)
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September 11, 2015

Remnants Of The Holocaust

So I had coffee with a wonderful gentleman this week.

And he--like myself--is a child of Holocaust survivors. 

Two quick stories he told me:

- His father, a survivor of the notorious concentrations camps that killed millions, had a number tattooed on his arm by the cursed Nazis. As the years past and his father worked to resume a normal life, what did he do with that number to try and help forget all the atrocities he went through? Get this...he used the number on his arm as the code for garage door opener. As he told his son, this way, I will never forget the code to open it.

- As a child, my new friend wanted to go to summer camp, he once asked his father, "Dad, when you were my age did you go to camp?" And his father replied, "Yes, I went to concentration camp!" Indeed, a very different sort of experience for a child. These days our children run, play, and swim in the beautiful outdoors at summer camp, but in our parents time, as Jews, they were hauled in cattle cars to suffer at the hands of the Nazis in slave labor, starvation, disease, beatings, torture, and in extermination camps behind razor-sharp barbed wire, attack dogs, and watch towers with machine guns.

How on Earth did these atrocities and genocide occur just 70 years ago--in the 20th century?

As much as I have learned, I am still dumbfounded by it: people (really more like vicious animals or Zombie devils) brutalizing other people, human beings--men, women, children, old people, the sick and disabled--and exterminating millions in the most horrific and brutal ways.

Now, the victims, their children, and grandchildren are left to go on and rebuild, where a tattooed number by the Nazis in the infamous concentration camps becomes a reminder for the everyday garage door opener in what we try to make of a normal life once again. ;-)

(Source Photo: here with attribution to HolocaustSurvivors.org)
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May 29, 2015

Pain Pain Go Away!

So I am more the emotional type who cries at sad songs or heroic endeavors. 

But with the hip surgery, I have to admit that I have had some moments of literally screaming pain. 

The surgeon said he did about a full half hour of cauterization to prevent another bleed (hematoma) and infection that happened last time...so not sure if this is causing the extra-extra sting. 

Usually when they ask my level of pain, I say like 2-3, because I imagine a 10 being some horrible torture like being sawed in half (while hung upside down--actually saw this in a movie) or flayed of your flesh, burnt alive at the stake, or quartered by horses--or countless variations on these.

Let's just say, the medieval tormentors had this torture stuff down.

In a way, I almost feel guilty expressing my post surgical pain (sort of child's play) relative to these made-to-order cruelties.

Of course for pain, the doctors give you medicine, but honestly I don't like to take these because of side-effects and even addictive properties. 

But the nurse and physical therapist told me not to let the pain get ahead of me, because then it is harder to control it (and also harder to do the full PT and get the benefits from it).

In the hospital, I was amazed that some people had so much pain (i.e. me) and others just sat there in PT seemingly shrugging off the whole experience. 

Still I made it the full loop with the walker the first day (which the therapists told me is maybe 3x what most others do at that point).

Another thing that I am thinking about with pain, is how do you compare emotional and physical pain--which is worse?

The loss of loved ones, deep disappointments, suffering with sickness or disability, anxiety and depression can certainly cause a lot of pain inside--those are the screams that often no one hears.

Also, that hurt can often lead to physical sickness and bodily pain and vice versa--so they are not mutually exclusive.

My father used to tell me that "When you have your health you have everything."

I think this is partly because if you don't have your health, you can't really do or enjoy much else anyway--so good health is sort of a precursor to all other activities and pursuits.

Probably the worst pains are the ones where their is simply no hope of getting better...and you just have to accept the loss or the end. 

The corollary that my father taught me was "Where there is life, there is hope!"

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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April 19, 2015

How You Treat Animals

This little bird is singing pretty with his Coronoa.

But this isn't always how we treat animals. 

Some absolutely revere their animals as integral parts of their family or faith--as pets, they may be loved and cared in nice homes, and as source for milk, dung, and tilling, they may even considered sacred as in Hindu India, or for sacrifices on the Temple alter in Judaism. 

I've seen dogs picked up after and wheeled around in baby strollers, while in the Movies like "Meet The Fockers," Jinx the cat is exalted for doing her deed in the toilet, the same one used by the family.

One colleague told me how she had to run after her dog cleaning up all over her house, when it was sick and had a bleed out of its butt--yeah, ick!

And I remember learning about how in Nazi Germany, dogs would walk on the sidewalk, while Jews were forced into the gutters. 

On the other side of the animal coin...

We have animals sickeningly and inhumanly confined and caged in tiny spaces; starved or fattened; pepped up on antibiotics, and clubbed, electrocuted, given lethal injections, shot and cut up.

Animals are used for food, fur, and even so-called fun from cock fighting to bull runs.

Further, animals are used for research in everything from new medications to abusive studies in mind control and even punishment.

Animals have also been used for horrific torture of POWs where masks were attached to victims faces and a fire would heat the other side and force the rodent locked inside to burrow into the faces of their victims.

Similarly, in Nazi Germany, gruesome studies were conducted on humans by sewing live cats into the stomach of victims.

In more positive ways, animals have been used to locate everything from disease to the implements of war--from dogs being used in identifying human diseases like cancer and tuberculosis to giant rats used to locate land mines

Also, animal products are used in many life-saving medications. 

I found the remorse of an animal experimenter today in the New York Times to be refreshing, and those who choose to become vegan or disavow the use of fur and other animal products to be noble, as long as they accept that others may feel different. 

When the experimenter in his guilt thinks about the tables being turned, he imagines aliens coming to Earth and abducting and conducting experiments on us humans...oh, he seems to go, now I know how it must feel. 

Guess he didn't think to walk in that chicken's shoes before...

While to carnivorous animals, we are just another piece of beef in the food chain, other domesticated animals can be "man's best friend."

Killing an animal for survival is one thing, and where people draw that line can vary quite some--for example, how badly does Kim Kardashian need another fur to keep her warm?

But pure abusive and sick treatment of animals for amusement, profiteering, or psychotic ends is wrong, period. 

Animals are not people, but they are G-d creatures and sentient, and they should not be harmed or pained just because some of us like to act like animals too. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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April 11, 2015

Disabled, Can You Imagine?

A very important article in the Wall Street Journal by Anthony Weller about what it's like to Paralyzed From The Neck Down.

Weller has suffered for 10 years with primary progressive multiple sclerosis. 

He describes losing everything...from "incalculable personal pleasures" to being "totally helpless."

And what's more, you have to save your chips in asking others for things, because "you'd be asking the whole day."

"Say goodbye to any sense of personal space, too"--in needing everything, you're essentially left like an open book to everyone around you.

Here, I can't help thinking about those moments of personal indignity--in caring for our own bodies--that even that someone else must be there for.

Then, there is the just sitting around and endless thinking..."There isn't much else to do."

I remember learning about some medieval torture methods and one involved lying a person down in the space cleaved into the stone face of the dungeon and there a person would essentially rot--not being able to move, sit or stand up, or even roll over. 

How long could a person last like that before completely losing their mind?  

While Weller says that he used to imagine being paralyzed as feeling like being "encased in stone," but now he see it more that your limbs just ignore you, to me whether you are paralyzed in your own body or embedded in medieval stone, the challenges physically and mentally are as scary as anything that can be imagined. 

How do you keep your sanity, let alone any hope?

Weller says, you live in the past, "happiness isn't is, but was, [and] you try not to contemplate the future too much."

G-d should have infinite mercy on his creations and lift up the fallen, cure the sick, and release the innocent that are imprisoned...please, please, please let it be. Amen.

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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February 6, 2015

Stop Picking On ISIS!

ISIS is one of the most brutal and uncivilized enemies that we are now facing. 

Their tactics against their victims have included:

Beheading, burningtorturing, raping, crucifying, burying people alive, and abducting and selling children as sex slaves

Similar to Iran who threatens nuclear Armageddon on the West, and we seek to pacify them, make agreements, and unravel sanctions against them, with ISIS, our response again in the face of evil, has been tepid and now we are making excuses for their completely sick and immoral behavior.

At a National Prayer Breakfast yesterday, the President stated:

"Unless we get on our high horse and think this is unique to some other place, remember that during the Crusades and Inquisition, people committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ."

Yes, that is why those times in history are referred to as "The Dark Ages," while in 2015, we are supposed to be a shining light of democracy, freedom and human rights.

The President also went on to cite Slavery and the Jim Crow [laws] as other examples. 

Hmm...interesting though, if you are going to cite examples already, why completely omit to mention the evils of the Holocaust that killed 6 million Jewish people in the most inhumane genocide of our times--just 70 years ago! 

Then again, what was the purpose of giving the examples that he did of other great historical misdeeds (and also leaving out other prominent ones) in the face of another great evil in our times. 

From the specific words, perhaps:

- It is to excuse it? (Get off your high horses)

- To give them some sort of pass?  (Other people have committed terrible deeds)

But should we be making excuses or giving a pass to ISIS and for that matter Iran (which has one of the world's worst records of human right abuses and has threatened to annihilate Israel and attack America) for their ongoing brutality, immorality, threats and terror?

Maybe what is correct here is that we should "get off our high horses," and INSTEAD finally consider putting some darn boots on the ground and some serious firepower with it to end this march of terror quickly, rather than excuse it, ever. ;-)

(Source Photo: here with attribution to Tv9)
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January 28, 2015

Noticeably Absent From Auschwitz Liberation Memorial

So yesterday was the 70th anniversary memorial of the liberation of the Auschwitz Death Camp,

More than 1.1 million Jews and 100,000 other POWs and ethnic minorities were EXTERMINATED there.

There was forced labor, beatings, torture, starvation, the gas chambers and crematoria, the electrified barbed wire and attacks dogs, the human experimentation, and every cruelty known to mankind. 

At yesterdays memorial at Auschwitz 50 countries sent delegations "with heads of state leading those from:" 

- Germany
- Austria
- Belgium
- Bulgaria
- Croatia
- Lithuania
- France
- Netherlands
- Poland 
- Switzerland
- Ukraine (even though they are currently fighting a war with Russia!)

And even Russian President Putin "marks day at the Jewish Museum in Moscow."

It is quite mysterious, why like with the recent Unity Rally in France after the terror attacks there on Charlie Hebdo Magazine and a Jewish grocery store that left 17 dead, that the head of state for the United States was once again noticeably absent.

This time, a meeting in Saudi Arabia took precendence--why of course.

At least, the million plus murdered at Auschwitz got a (prepared) statement to mark their tragic deaths.

What does all this say about our commitment to human rights and fighting blind hatred, discrimination, racism, Islamist terorrism, and outright genocide?  

(Source Photo: here with attribution to Ricardo Francesconi)
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