Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Girls and Women Rock in Soccer

As we bring in the new year, how about changing any perceptions you might have about women as athletes. It's not about the men anymore.

Here is a video of women great at handling a soccer ball. Athletes every one.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Illegal Immigrants - Those of European Dissent

In a  role reversal where Native people take on the role of whites in the United States as deciding legal status for people from other places, the Native American National Council will offer amnesty to the estimated 240 million illegal white immigrants living in the United States.

Chief Sauti of the Nez Perce tribe explained that they will give Europeans the option to apply for native citizenship.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Islam - Cloak of Hierarchy Being Removed?

Thomas Friedman, in a New York Times op-ed entitled "How ISIS Drives Muslims from Islam," gives the following quote:

"As an outsider, I can’t say how widespread this is (blowing the lid off some long simmering frustrations in the Arab Muslim world). But clearly there is a significant group of Muslims who feel that their government-backed preachers and religious hierarchies have handed them a brand of Islam that does not speak to them."

When religious hierarchies use judgement, oppression, ridicule, and clergy only from a select group, they often hide behind the cloak of religion allowing them to further their hierarchies with little opposition.  Often if the hierarchy becomes too extreme, people see it for what it is, which Mr. Friedman indicates is happening to some extent with the violent interpretation of Islam by ISIS.

Republicans Championing a Death Struggle?

We are at a decision point in the United States – will we support hierarchies or not? Are we seeing death struggle in those efforts that are intent on keeping hierarchies strong? Are their efforts to care more about hierarchies than the health of our country, and to maintain the long-standing privilege of a few not going to be successful?

Maybe so. Since Republicans now are the strongest visible supporters of long-standing hierarchies, Houston Chronicle columnist Chris Ladd, who goes by the handle GOPLifer, gives us cause to believe that the death struggle is real.

Coming Apart at the Hierarchy Divide

In a blog post by Francis Wilkinson in Bloomburg View, he states that the United States is coming apart at the seams. He points out that the rights and opportunities of people in this country are determined more by where a person lives than the United States Constitution.

Wilkinson gives clear examples of how health care, abortion access, gun regulations, and voter access are very different according to in what state a person resides.

In hierarchy terms, we are living in a time where we are deciding as a country whether or not we will support people working hard to maintain hierarchies which increase the divide between the haves and the have-nots. The people who are supporting hierarchies are championed most by the Republican Party.

It's no surprise that places where Republicans are dominant tend to enact laws that work for the haves and against the have-nots. We see differences in support of hierarchies "as red and blue states pursue their sharply divergent versions of government," a phrase quoted from Mr. Wilkinson.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Accountability for Police

Redditt Hudson, a former cop, now works for the NAACP and chairs the board of the Ethics Project. He left the St. Louis Police Department because he could no longer "participate in a system that was so intentionally unfair and racist."

Like any top group with power who is allowed to act without considering the interest of people in lower groups, Mr. Hudson says of the police department, "The problem is that cops aren’t held accountable for their actions, and they know it. These officers violate rights with impunity. They know there’s a different criminal justice system for civilians and police."

He goes on to say, "Even when officers get caught, they know they’ll be investigated by their friends, and put on paid leave. My colleagues would laughingly refer to this as a free vacation. It isn’t a punishment. And excessive force is almost always deemed acceptable in our courts and among our grand juries. Prosecutors are tight with law enforcement, and share the same values and ideas."

All over the country, we are having a conversation about holding police accountable. In many ways, allowing police to be unaccountable is similar to many other hierarchies where the top wants to call the shots, no matter how it detrimentally affects the lives of the people it works to control.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Lower People Get It, the Top Needs to Change

Chris Rock (an American comedian, actor, screenwriter, television producer, film producer, and director) in an interview with New York magazine, described well the concept that in hierarchies, the lower groups know what is going on, while the top groups can go their way clueless to how their attitudes and behaviors affect everyone else.

"When we talk about race relations in America or racial progress, it's all nonsense. There are no race relations. White people were crazy. Now they're not as crazy. To say that black people have made progress would be to say they deserve what happened to them before…"

"So, to say Obama is progress is saying that he's the first black person that is qualified to be president. That's not black progress. That's white progress. There's been black people qualified to be president for hundreds of years."

"There have been smart, educated, beautiful, polite black children for hundreds of years. The advantage that my children have is that my children are encountering the nicest white people that America has ever produced. Let's hope America keeps producing nicer white people."