Posts tagged ‘America’

September 13, 2010

Tired of all the hate

One thing that bothers me more than most things is close mindedness. It gets my blood boiling and I find myself taking it almost personally. There is something inherently wrong about it, something unfair and unjust. So let me just say that I have been very angry of late.

This anger stems from the current discourse surrounding muslims in this country. It has been very ridiculous, totally irrational, yet amazingly mainstream.

The idea that muslims living in America do not deserve the same rights afforded other Americans is flat out unAmerican. This is precisely why people come to this country, to have an opportunity to succeed. “Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,The wretched refuse of your teeming shore,Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me…” Does this sound familiar?

I do agree that building a mosque at ground zero would be insensitive. However, most of the people opposing the mosque don’t come up with an alternative solution (The Imam has offered to move it). This is because they don’t care about that. There just appears to be a concerted effort to turn this into a political issue in an election year. Never mind that it is not even a mosque or at ground zero. Or that muslims already go to that spot to pray for the 9/11 victims.

Let’s also remember that some of the people that died on that awful day, were muslims. There was a prayer room on the 17th floor of the South tower. If you’re keeping count at home, terrorism is a disease that afflicts muslims, christians, atheists etc. No one is immune and to find a cure, we must all work together.

Lady Liberty

Image by Don Sullivan via Flickr

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August 13, 2010

Rio 2010 Homeless World Cup

Jacked from Homeless World Cup site

I love soccer. It is one of my favorite things to watch and I thoroughly enjoy watching the World Cup. The idea that every four years, people around the world get together, plop down in front of a television set and watch the same spectacle always amazes me. There is truly nothing like the World Cup. Battles have actually come to a stand still as warring factions agree to take a break to go watch a match or two. That’s how powerful soccer can be and that power is now being turned towards fighting homelessness?

Yes, you read that right. Doing some reading, I stumbled upon this article on former College soccer star Lisa Wrightsman, who is now homeless. She had succumbed to addiction and ended up finding herself in a very bad place. She checked into a shelter to find a job and get her life back together but was also recruited to play for the soccer team there.

While I was excited to read about the positive changes she was making, what caught my attention was the tournament she was playing in; The Street Soccer USA Cup.

This was not the style of free-form street soccer played in many places around the world. Instead, it was an Americanized version, a fast-paced four-on-four game with referees ensuring adherence to rules and walls confining play on a 52-by-72-foot field, the goals being 12 feet wide and 4 feet high.

Apparently, “About 200 players came from teen shelters, refugee resource centers and recovery houses from across the country, as well as one team from St. Petersburg, Russia. The Russian team won the title, beating a team from San Francisco in the final, 6-1.” I also couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw there was indeed a World Cup which would be going down in September in Rio. 64 nations will be participating and I for one will be keeping a close eye on the proceedings. More to come but for now I’ll leave you with this….

January 19, 2008

Why there needs to be change

Some say that America has lost its brain. I’d like to submit that we have lost our hearts. Sure, one could pull out statistic after statistic to show that we are getting lower test scores, our teenagers are disconnected from the real world, college students don’t even know the basic tenets of history and grammar anymore, etc. but that isn’t what is wrong here.

The real problem I believe can be summed up in one phrase; “we just don’t care anymore”. Notice I said we. I am including myself in this conversation. We have buried our heads in the sand of circumstance and refuse to see what is going on around us.

To illustrate this point, consider this; a majority of the population especially young people do not believe that any politician is honest or is trying to serve the people. Let that sink in for a second. Then remember that this is a democracy. This is a government of the people, by the people and for the people. We’ve taken the people out of the equation and now its a bunch of politicians just doing their thing.

This same apathy can be seen in our everyday life and not just in politics. Yeah katrina was bad but the government ought to have done something about it. Yeah there is racism still left in the world but someone ought to do something about it. And so on. That someone is me. I want to do something about our problems.

But I need you. I need your honesty. I need your help. I need your heart. I want you to care. I want you to ask the right questions with me. I want you to pick me up when I am down. I want you to feel with me for the homeless guy on the street corner. I want you to feel for the little boy in the hood whose hopes are going to be dashed because he has no avenue to survive. Change needs to happen because the way things are going now isn’t going to cut it and its up to us to do something about it. I can’t do it alone and neither can you. So join me.

January 11, 2008

And so it begins

It hasn’t been but a mere three days since the New Hampshire primary and well, there has been so much “drama” surrounding these events that my head threatens to explode trying to keep track.Then a close friend pointed me to this article. To follow along with what I am about to say, it would be helpful to read the article first.

The dilemma or the issue at hand is that Sen. Barack Obama lost New Hampshire after every poll had him leading Sen. Hillary Clinton by nearly ten points (Clinton ended up with the win). So were the polls wrong?

Note that this wasn’t the case with the Republican primary. Sen. John Mccain won with about the same margin that the polls had him leading with.

Andrew Kohut, President of the Pew Research Center and the author of the article claims that a possible explanation for this discrepancy is “the longstanding pattern of pre-election polls overstating support for black candidates among white voters, particularly white voters who are poor.” Kohut is making the argument (backed by personal research) that college educated white voters with higher socioeconomic status tend to participate in polls. These polls are then expanded as a representation of the entire population of white voters and in the case of New Hampshire, they were way off. The implication being that college educated white voters are open to voting for Obama while voters without a college education are less likely to do the same (the votes reflected this trend).

So here is the million dollar question; why won’t the aforementioned group vote for Obama? I have my answer but I am not going to push it on you. I want to hear yours.