Friday, November 08, 2013
Some great multiculturalism in Britain today
A paramedic was hurled against the window of an ambulance and punched repeatedly in the head until he lost consciousness by the drunken thug he had been trying to treat.
In a depressing indictment of modern Britain, Akinwunmi Akinyuwa attacked Qasam Pervez as they were travelling to hospital in the early hours of the morning.
The 29-year-old student, who had been found slumped and intoxicated in a communal stairwell at his home, began shouting ‘angel of death’ before unstrapping himself from the stretcher.
He then threw Mr Pervez against the window so he hit his head on the glass before reigning blows on the back of his head as he lay defenceless on the floor.
Akinyuwa, of Blackfriars in Salford, fled the ambulance when it came to a halt. He was arrested the next day. He pleaded guilty to assault when he appeared at Manchester Magistrates' Court yesterday.
Barry Cuttle, defending, said the Nigerian-born defendant, was ‘deeply ashamed and deeply sorry’ for his actions. He said: 'This man has made the first mistake of his life and is deeply upset.'
Akinyuwa, who is studying a management course at college, cannot remember anything about the October 22 attack after getting drunk while celebrating his birthday with friends.
Akinyuwa’s victim Mr Pervez has suffered blurred vision and headaches since the attack. He has also struggled with anxiety and fears he will be assaulted again.
The paramedic had initially been laughing and joking with his attacker and had been filling in paperwork when he was assaulted.
In a statement read to the court, Mr Pervez said: 'I feel angry because I am there to help people. I feel anxious about returning to work.
'Every patient could be a potential suspect or attacker. This assault has definitely knocked my confidence. The assault was totally unprovoked.'
The paramedic, who has worked as an emergency medical technician with North West Ambulance Service for four years, said he was determined to return to work.
Akinyuwa is due to be sentenced on November 27 after the case was adjourned for reports.
Cinemas in Sweden introduce ratings that indicate if a movie features SEXISM (and every Star Wars and Lord Of The Rings film would need one)
Cinema goers are used to looking out for warnings of nudity and violence in films. Now another category has been added to the list of movie dangers – male chauvinism.
Cinemas in Sweden have introduced an ‘A’ rating to highlight films that have a shortage of ‘female perspectives’.
The guidance system – named the Bechdel test after US feminist Alison Bechdel – will monitor whether at least two female characters talk to each other about subjects other than men.
‘The entire Lord of the Rings trilogy, all Star Wars movies, The Social Network, Pulp Fiction and all but one of the Harry Potter movies fail this test,’ said Ellen Tejle, the director of Bio Rio, an art-house movie theatre in Stockholm's trendy Sodermalm district.
Bio Rio is one of four Swedish movie theatres that launched the new rating last month to draw attention to how few movies pass. Most visitors have reacted positively to the initiative ‘and for some people it has been an eye-opener,’ said Tejle, reclining in one of Bio Rio's cushy red seats.
Beliefs about women's roles in society are influenced by the fact that movie watchers rarely see ‘a female superhero or a female professor or person who makes it through exciting challenges and masters them,’ Tejle said, noting that the rating doesn't say anything about the quality of the film. ‘The goal is to see more female stories and perspectives on cinema screens.’
The state-funded Swedish Film Institute supports the initiative, which is starting to catch on.
Scandinavian cable TV channel Viasat Film says it will start using the ratings in its film reviews and has scheduled an ‘A’ rated ‘Super Sunday’ on Nov. 17, when it will show only films that pass the test, such as The Hunger Games, The Iron Lady and Savages.
The Bechdel test got its name from American cartoonist Alison Bechdel, who introduced the concept in her comic strip Dykes to Watch Out For in 1985. It has been discussed among feminists and film critics since then, but Tejle hopes the ‘A’ rating system will help spread awareness among moviegoers about how women are portrayed in films.
In Bio Rio's wood-panelled lobby, students Nikolaj Gula and Vincent Fremont acknowledged that most of their favourite films probably wouldn't get an ‘A’ rating.
‘I guess it does make sense, but to me it would not influence the way I watch films because I'm not so aware about these questions,’ said Fremont, 29.
At least one Hollywood star sounded excited by the idea when asked about it by The Associated Press. ‘A feminist ratings system? That's so interesting!’ actress-producer Jada Pinkett Smith said in Beverly Hills, California, where she was attending a benefit dinner for gender equality. ‘I say, hey, let's see if it works!’
The ‘A’ rating is the latest Swedish move to promote gender equality by addressing how women are portrayed in the public sphere.
Sweden's advertising ombudsman watches out for sexism in that industry and reprimands companies seen as reinforcing gender stereotypes, for example by including skimpily clad women in their ads for no apparent reason other than to draw eyeballs.
Since 2010, the Equalisters project has been trying to boost the number of women appearing as expert commentators in Swedish media through a Facebook page with 44,000 followers. The project has recently expanded to Finland, Norway and Italy.
For some, though, Sweden's focus on gender equality has gone too far. ‘If they want different kind of movies they should produce some themselves and not just point fingers at other people,’ said Tanja Bergkvist, a physicist who writes a blog about Sweden's ‘gender madness.’
The ‘A’ rating also has been criticized as a blunt tool that doesn't actually reveal whether a movie is gender-balanced.
‘There are far too many films that pass the Bechdel test that don't help at all in making society more equal or better, and lots of films that don't pass the test but are fantastic at those things,’ said Swedish film critic Hynek Pallas.
Pallas, who moved from communist Czechoslovakia to Sweden in the 1970s, also criticized the state-funded Swedish Film Institute - the biggest financier of Swedish film - for vocally supporting the project, saying a state institution should not ‘send out signals about what one should or shouldn't include in a movie.’
Research in the U.S. supports the notion that women are underrepresented on the screen and that little has changed in the past 60 years.
Of the U.S. top 100 films in 2011, women accounted for 33 per cent of all characters and only 11 per cent of the protagonists, according to a study by the San Diego-based Center for the Study of Women in Television and Film.
Another study, by the Annenberg Public Policy Center at the University of Pennsylvania, showed the ratio of male to female characters in movies has remained at about two to one for at least six decades. That study, which examined 855 top box-office films from 1950-2006, showed female characters were twice as likely to be seen in explicit sexual scenes as males, while male characters were more likely to be seen as violent.
‘Apparently Hollywood thinks that films with male characters will do better at the box office. It is also the case that most of the aspects of movie-making - writing, production, direction, and so on - are dominated by men, and so it is not a surprise that the stories we see are those that tend to revolve around men,’ Amy Bleakley, the study's lead author, said in an email.
In 2010, Kathryn Bigelow became the first woman to win the Academy Award for Best Director for The Hurt Locker. That movie - a war film about a bomb disposal team in Iraq - doesn't pass the Bechdel test
Shock: Military Manual Says White Men Have Unfair Advantages
A controversial 600-plus page manual used by the military to train its Equal Opportunity officers teaches that "healthy, white, heterosexual, Christian" men hold an unfair advantage over other races, and warns in great detail about a so-called "White Male Club."
“Simply put, a healthy, white, heterosexual, Christian male receives many unearned advantages of social privilege, whereas a black, homosexual, atheist female in poor health receives many unearned disadvantages of social privilege,” reads a statement in the manual created by the Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute (DEOMI).
The manual, which was obtained by Fox News, also instructs troops to “support the leadership of people of color. Do this consistently, but not uncritically,” the manual states.
The Equal Opportunity Advisor Student Guide is the textbook used during a three month DEOMI course taught at Patrick Air Force Base in Florida. Individuals who attend the training lead Equal Opportunity briefings on military installations around the nation.
The 637-page manual covers a wide range of issues from racism and religious diversity to cultural awareness, extremism and white privilege.
I obtained a copy of the manual from an Equal Opportunity officer who was disturbed by the course content and furious over the DEOMI’s reliance on the Southern Poverty Law Center for information on “extremist” groups.
“I’m participating in teaching things that are not true,” the instructor told me. He asked not to be identified because he feared reprisals.
“I should not be in a position to do that,” he said. “It violates Constitutional principles, but it also violates my conscience. And I’m not going to do it – not going to do it.”
DEOMI instructors were also responsible for briefings at bases around the country that falsely labeled evangelical Christians, Catholics and a number of high-profile Christian ministries as domestic hate groups.
I contacted the Pentagon as well as the DEOMI multiple times for comment on this story, but so far they have not responded to my requests.
DEOMI opened in 1971 in response to the civil rights movement. It’s responsible for Equal Opportunity/Equal Employment Opportunity education and training for military active duty and reservists, according to its website.
The subject of white privilege emerged in a 20-page section titled, “Power and Privilege.”
“Whites are the empowered group,” the manual declares. “White males represent the haves as compared to the have-nots.”
The military document advises personnel to “assume racism is everywhere, every day” and “notice code words for race.” They are also instructed to “understand and learn from the history of whiteness and racism.”
“Assume racism is everywhere, everyday,” read a statement in a section titled, ‘How to be a strong 'white ally.'"
“One of the privileges of being white is not having to see or deal with racism all the time,” the manual states. “We have to learn to see the effect that racism has.”
On page 181 of the manual, the military points out that status and wealth are typically passed from generation to generation and “represent classic examples of the unearned advantages of social privilege.”
“As such, the unfair economic advantages and disadvantages created long ago by institutions for whites, males, Christians, etc. still affect socioeconomic privilege today,” the manual states.
The guide also points out that whites are over-represented and blacks are underrepresented in positive news stories, that middle class blacks live in poorer neighborhoods than middle class whites and that even though there are more white criminals than any other race, the news coverage of black criminals is about equal to the news coverage of white criminals.
The military manual goes into great detail about a so-called “White Male Club.”
“In spite of slave insurrections, civil war, the 13th, 14th, and 15th amendments, the women’s suffrage movement leading to the 19th amendment, the civil rights movement, urban rebellions and the contemporary feminist movement, the club persists,” the document states.
DEOMI states that “full access to the resources of the club still escape the vision of equitable distribution.”
The military also implies that white Americans may be in denial about racism.
In a section titled, “Rationalizations for Retaining Privilege and Avoiding Responsibilities,” the military lays out excuses white people use.
“Today some white people may use the tactic of denial when they say, ‘It’s a level playing field; this is a land of equal opportunity,’” the manual reads. “Some white people may be counterattacking today by saying political correctness rules the universities or they want special status.”
DEOMI points out that if “white people are unable to maintain that the atrocities are all in the past, they may switch to tactics to make a current situation seem isolated.”
They said some of the ways whites may claim to be victims include saying things like, “I have it just as bad as anyone else,” “They’re taking away our jobs,” or “White people are under attack.”
The military concludes the section by urging students to “understand and learn from the history of whiteness and racism” and “support the leadership of people of color.”
I called former Congressman and Lt. Col. Allen West (ret.) to get his take on the manual. In a nutshell – he wants a congressional investigation.
“This is the Obama administration’s outreach of social justice into the United States military,” he told me. “Equal Opportunity in the Army that I grew up in did not have anything to do with white privilege.”
West said he is very concerned about the training guide.
“When the president talked about fundamentally transforming the United States of America, I believe he also had a dedicated agenda of going after the United States military,” he said. “The priorities of this administration are totally whacked.”
West said the DEOMI manual reminded him of a similar program inflicted on the military by President Clinton.
“They came down with a new training requirement called, ‘Consideration of Others Training,’” he said. “The soldiers were supposed to sit around and go through vignettes and talk about their feelings.”
I truly wish the Pentagon and the DEOMI would return my telephone calls. I’d like to know how teaching soldiers, airmen and sailors about white privilege and fomenting racial division helps them protect our nation from the enemy.
Jews and Christians Play the Interfaith Kumbaya
The first chapter of the Koran, Al Fatiha, is recited at the start of Muslim prayer rituals at five different times of the day for a total of 17 recitations daily. The Al Fatiha entreats Muslims to follow the straight path - obedience to Allah and his messenger Mohammed - and not the path of those who have angered Allah or gone astray. For centuries, revered Islamic scholars have interpreted this foundational surah of Islamic doctrine as referring to Jews and Christians: Jews as those angering Allah because they know the "truth" about Islam and knowingly reject it, and Christians as those gone astray because they are ignorant of Islam and therefore misguided. Thus, the idea of both Jews and Christians as having strayed from the "straight path" is reinforced daily and also in later verses of the Koran.
The significance Al Fatiha can't be underestimated. According to Robert Spencer, an expert on Islam and author of 13 books on the subject, "Mohammed said that the Fatiha surpasses anything revealed by Allah."
Given the damning inherent in this compulsory prayer and the active and historical enmity of Muslims toward them both, it is puzzling and even dangerous that both Jews and Christians today engage in many interfaith activities and forums with committed Muslims. Indeed, they often reject alliances with each other, even to the point of occasionally working at cross-purposes. In the face of the serious worldwide threat Islam poses to both religions, their failure to work together could eventually prove to be a fatal mistake.
Christian Anti-Semitism Motivates Jews
For Jews, the idea of forming alliances with Christians and Christian organizations seems risky, given the long history of Christian anti-Semitism. That history includes blame and damnation for the death of Jesus, the Inquisition, the Crusades, the Jewish ghettos, the forced conversions and kidnapping of Jewish children, the pogroms, and unrelenting proselytizing efforts, just to name a few examples. Equally seared in Jewish consciousness are myriad and fairly recent, 20th century examples of prejudice against employing Jews, admitting Jews to private clubs, accepting Jews at elite prep schools and colleges, and welcoming Jews in certain neighborhoods.
More recently, Jewish fears of aligning with Christians to counter the mutual threat posed by Islam have not been calmed by the ongoing assault from certain segments of the Christian community that demonize and delegitimize Israel by labeling as "apartheid" efforts by Israel to build security fences to prevent Islamic suicide attacks on its civilians. The boycott, divestment and sanction (BDS) movements against the Jewish state by many mainline Protestant churches, plus their alliances with Palestinian groups with ties to terrorism, have also understandably done little to abate Jewish fears of joining forces with Christians.
Given centuries of persecution and discrimination by Christians, a significant percentage of the American Jewish population is wary even of pro-Israel Christians, suspicious of their motivations, and reject expectations of Jewish gratitude. Another concern is the underlying fear that Christians want to establish a toehold in the Holy Land and await mass conversions by Jews for a "second coming."
By contrast, many American Jews have little or no direct experience with Islamic anti-Semitism. They may be unaware of centuries of Jewish massacres - beginning with Mohammed's siege against the Qurayza Jews in 627 A.D. - and the historical subjugation and persecution of Jews by Muslims, as well as the more recent purging of Jews, 1947 to 1974, from the Middle East and North Africa. They may know that Muslim anti-Semitism exists, particularly in the Muslim world, but may attribute acts of terrorism against Jews and Jewish establishments as the work of a minority of otherwise "peaceful" Muslims. Generally, most American Jews, not unlike their Christian counterparts, are relatively unaware of virulent Islamic doctrine that rails against them.
Dangerous Liaisons - Jews & Muslims
Thus, Jews who reach out to Muslims often hold the view that Christianity represents the greater threat. This perspective has led to some alarming and potentially threatening affiliations and collaborations.
For example, Wilshire Boulevard Temple, founded in 1862 and the oldest synagogue in Los Angeles, has fostered an interfaith program with Muslims for nearly ten years. This includes an annual Passover Seder, which (ironically given the damning inherent in the Al Fatiha) includes a break for the Islamic call to prayer, and an Iftar breakfast in celebration of the end of Ramadan. For their recent rededication ceremony following a multi-million dollar renovation, the temple invited Imam Asim Buyuksoy from the Islamic Center of Southern California (ICSC) to give a benediction during which he chanted Arabic verses from the Koran.
The ICSC background illustrates the folly of these interfaith efforts. According to a report issued by Investigative Project on Terrorism (IPT), which researches radical Islamic terrorist groups, the ICSC was incorporated as a nonprofit, 501 (c)(3) in 1953. It is an umbrella organization with over 1,000 members and collaborates with over 30 local mosques. ICC leaders have been tied to Yasser Arafat, the late chairman of the Palestinian Liberation Organization and leader of the Fatah terrorist group, who is commonly referred to as "the father of modern terrorism."
The Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC), an ICSC offshoot which retains close ties with ICSC and supports BDS efforts, was listed in a recent Anti-Defamation League (ADL) report as one of the top 10 anti-Israel Groups in America. ADL National Director Abraham H. Foxman said in a statement that these groups "are fixated on delegitimizing Israel and convincing the American public that Israel is an international villain that deserves to be ostracized and isolated."
As part of that effort to vilify Israel, Maher Hathout, ICSC spokesman and MPAC founder, has accused Israel of being behind the 9/11 attacks and of pushing the United States into Middle East wars. He has referred to Israelis as "butchers" guilty of "racial apartheid," has praised the terrorist group Hezbollah as "freedom fighters," and condemned U.S. and Israeli counterterrorism policies.
Another Jewish-Muslim interfaith venture, NewGround, described as a "Muslim-Jewish partnership for change," was established in 2006 as an alliance between MPAC and the Progressive Jewish Alliance (PJA). Housed at the City of Los Angeles Human Relations Commission, NewGround's teen leadership program earned it recognition as "California's 2013 Faith-Based Organization of the Year" by the California governor's office. The idea behind this coalition is that outreach and fellowship - knowing people on a personal level - will "bridge the faith boundary."
NewGround has created programs, partnerships and consulting relationships with a number of organizations including American Jewish University, Birthright Israel NEXT, the Jewish Home for the Aging, Jewish Family Services, the Museum of Tolerance, UCLA Department of Jewish Studies, and Hebrew Union College, as well as several area temples and the Islamic Center of Southern California. In addition to the problems previously mentioned about MPAC's ties and the nefarious statements of its leadership, another questionable MPAC official, Edina Lekovic, serves as NewGround's chairman of the board.
Lekovic accused "Zionists" in "Palestine" of "massacring" Muslims, according to an IPT report detailing her activities. The report states that in the late 1990s, while a UCLA student and editor of Al-Talib, UCLA's Muslim news magazine, Lekovic identified Osama bin Laden as a "freedom fighter and philanthropist" and urged Muslims to strictly follow Islamic doctrine. Following bin Laden's declaration of war on the West, Al-Talib continued to represent him as a "freedom fighter" fighting in "Allah's cause," according to the report. The report continues that Lekovic, still as the Al-Talib editor, published articles claiming that the Blind Sheik, Omar Abdal Rahman, convicted 1993 World Trade Center bombing mastermind, was falsely accused and tortured in his North Carolina prison cell. Another article claimed that accounts of the Holocaust were exaggerated and should be subject to scrutiny and possible revision.
Of course, similar examples across the country abound and it is indeed shocking and disconcerting that prominent Jewish organizations and their members would fail to conduct due diligence and seek alliances with such obviously anti-Semitic, anti-Israel entities such as MPAC, the ICSC, and other Muslim Brotherhood groups when a cursory review of readily available sources exposes their true agenda. Sadly, Jews who participate in these so-called interfaith forums are operating under the misguided belief that coming to the table in the spirit of peace and reconciliation will motivate Muslims to abandon their 1,400-year- old anti-Semitic doctrine, to forego the Islamic requirement of jihad, to condemn acts of Islamic terrorism on the West, and to join them in fellowship.
Jews, referred to in Islamic scripture as "the worst of creatures" (Koran 98:6), "transformed by Allah into apes and pigs" (Koran 5:60) and even rats (Bukhari 54:524), are gravely mistaken if they believe they can change an ingrained mindset of such historic proportions and intensity, especially given the background of the groups referred to above.
As far as Christian-Muslim interfaith endeavors are concerned, they generally involve joint Christian-Muslim efforts of demonizing and delegitimizing the Jewish state in support of Arab-Palestinians using the reasoning that "authentic" Christianity requires Christians to embrace the "Palestinian" narrative.
Churches within the Christian faiths including Presbyterian, Methodist, Anglican, United Church of Christ, Episcopal, the Society of Friends (Quakers), and others have allied with Muslims to vilify Israel. They conveniently ignore Israel's legitimate security concerns following scores of suicide bombings and attacks on Israeli civilians, as well as the constant barrage of thousands of rockets. Instead, they focus on Israel's supposed wrongs, raising false claims of brutality by Israeli police and military and decrying "apartheid walls," "war crimes," and "oppression of Palestinians." As part of this subterfuge, Israel is held to an impossible standard and the brutal acts of its enemies are ignored or excused.
These mainline Protestant churches engage in boycotts, divestment and economic sanctions against the Jewish state. More dangerously they incorporate a codified anti-Zionist liturgy equating so-called Arab-Palestinian suffering to the crucifixion of Christ, evoking the imagery of Israel as a nation of Christ killers. Of note is that few of these groups have conducted similar extensive campaigns against Turkey's annexation of northern Cyprus, its oppression and violation of the rights of its native Kurdish population, China's occupation of Tibet, the Muslim takeover of the Indian state of Kashmir and many other conflicts of truly oppressed and occupied populations.
For some Christians, fear of Muslims - despite centuries of Muslim conquest of Christian land that led to massacres and extensive periods of Christian subjugation - is superseded by deep-rooted anti-Semitism stemming from such beliefs as "Jews control the world," "Jews killed Christ," and "Jews are damned for not accepting Jesus as a messiah." Replacement theology, in which the Church replaces Israel, also feeds anti-Semitism.
These Christians remain silent about Islamic terrorism against Christians and Jews and the current cleansing of Christians from the Middle East, despite wholesale Palestinian-Muslim persecution of Christians in Gaza and the West Bank, where Hamas has bombed churches, used Christian homes for sniper attacks on Israel, and forced Christians to abide by the tenets of shariah. Given the Koranic-sanctioned Muslim persecution of Christians throughout the Muslim world, it is hard to fathom that many Christians willingly seek alliances with Muslims, condemn Jews and Israel, and ignore the reality that Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East.
In his recent book, Crucified Again: Exposing Islam's New War on Christians, author Raymond Ibrahim cites the long history and theological underpinnings for Muslim persecution of Christians and how they are unwelcome in Islamic states. In actuality, Israel is the only country in the Middle East where freedom of religion exists and where Christian populations have increased.
As non-Muslims continue to be persecuted and murdered in the name of Islam, which literally means "submission to Allah," and Muslims proceed with their encroachment on Western democracies with creeping Islamization and shariah, these feeble attempts by Jews and Christians for interfaith solidarity with a prevailing threat are foolhardy. It is high time that Jews and Christians became aware of the reality of the situation they jointly confront, put aside differences -
Including long-held anger over past discrimination and atrocities - and stand together against a medieval doctrine that threatens adherents of both faiths. Rather than apocryphal alliances with false friends who bear ulterior motives, Jews and Christians must unify and fight the onslaught and destruction of the Judeo-Christian culture, values and traditions, as well as fight to preserve their freedom.
Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.
American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of other countries. The only real difference, however, is how much power they have. In America, their power is limited by democracy. To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges. They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did: None. So look to the colleges to see what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way. It would be a dictatorship.
For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and DISSECTING LEFTISM. My Home Pages are here or here or here. Email me (John Ray) here.