*Sigh*

If you are as unlucky as I’m then you probably have 1 choice of English speaking channels. That being CNN. Since I’m spending xmas alone having been stuck right here for many reasons, I went last night to Movie and I enjoyed it. Once I arrived home I turned on my TV and it was CNN that showed up, and there I heard a disturbing bit of news. So here it goes:

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A Saudi Judge, refused to divorce an 8 years old child girl from a man who is 47 years old. He claimed that the request made by the mother is irrelevant and can not be held in court. He also “advised” the “Husband/Pedophile” to not consummate his marriage until the girl has reached puberty! Yes you heard it correctly. Three men, non of them listened to his conscience. A father who gave his child daughter to an old man in repay of a family debt. An old man who accepted a child as a wife, and a judge who held the marriage in court. All three of them had no conscience to save a child. Pretty shocking and saddening. How did this happen?

Judges in Saudi arabia are followers of the Wahabi sect who consider themselves the puritans and the only true followers of Islam. The story of Prophet Mohamed (PBUH!) that he married his wife Aisha when she was 9 years old is what guided this inhuman decision. Many respectable scholars agree that this story is a fraud, but nevertheless the Saudi’s consider it a true story, and hence a child can get married by her father to a grave old man. It is a no biggie, in fact it is rewarded as an act of following the prophet.

Imagine this, an 8 years old child married to a 47 years old man. Stop and think about it for a minute. Imagine a dear child in your family being married and even more shocking to this old man, STOP and think about it. If this does not turn your stomach then something must be wrong with you. 

Such a thing can never happen in my home country, Egypt. And the sole reason is that Egypt is a secular country and you can not marry unless you have reached the age of consent, that being 18y/o. Speak to me now about Sharia law and building an Islamic state, will you please? Would any asshat of those supporting such a religious state in Egypt dare marry his 8 year old daughter to a 47 years old man? It will happen when your judiciary system is religiously motivated!

All that aside, I can not help but notice the negative impact of religion on people’s minds. Any conscionable man would not marry such a child let alone marry her to grumpy old man. But religious thinking suspended and altered their conscience. It turned them into a slave trader father, a child molester old man, and a child molesting supporter judge. All in a whim. 

This is not the only case in Saudi Arabia or Yemen. It is in fact common. And even if the king interferes and saves this child, can he prevent such a rotten system from ruining another unlucky child’s life? it all surfaced because the Mother took the case to court, but what if a mother consents? All three child molesters would sleep at night safe and sound while a child is being abused, because they followed the orders of god.

Do not tell me it is because they all got their religion wrong. Even then, don’t we need a system to prevent those who get it wrong from doing wrong? This system is not a religious state, not remotely close! Bottom line is, in all religions, what god wants, no matter what it is, god gets.

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Global Freaken Warming

I have never been a skeptic, and have always thought Global Warming was not only real, but was caused by Human activity. Particularly the human activity thing was what I thought was most important. I doubt not that global warming is true. But I doubt now that we humans caused it. this intriguing documentary shocked me to a considerable degree. Highly recommended, and done by BBC Channel 4. PLEASE DO NOT consider the blog on which it is posted to be of any interest to me. This blog is a wingnut stronghold. So do not look for wisdom anywhere beyond this video.

Let me know your thoughts…

UPDATE: I’m a buffoon. The documentary is discredited and turns out to be bullshit according to Daniel’s comment below. BEWARE don’t believe me again!

Rolling my eyes!

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It is no news of course that the US does not like to keep good company, and always longs for going to bed with the bad guys. Just this week some encouraging news surfaced which makes me content that the US might part from its bad company at least on one front. You see, the United States in about 1989 institutionalized a ban by the HHS on HIV positive travelers from all over the world entering the united states. This ban was further put into a law in 1993 strangely under the Clinton administration, but with a republican congress of course.

This simply means that if you happen to be HIV positive you are banned from entering the united states, for any purpose whatsoever, period! The only way you can enter is by asking for an HIV waiver, which was given in extreme circumstances, with the added shame of having to disclose your status to the US government, and most delightfully to anybody who happen to be traveling with your sorry ass on that same black day you decide to enter the US. And I repeat, the waiver was a lengthy and shameful process, that made it practically impossible for any dignified person to think of applying for one. Such a discriminatory policy is unheard of in Europe, Japan, Australia, Canada, etc. etc. A very short list of countries had similar policy, these being the United States, Sudan, Saudi Arabia and North Korea and as far as I’m concerned China removed such policy a while ago.

So what happened? Well, a couple of months ago Dubya signed the PEPFAR bill for HIV aid to Afrika, and Senator Kerry along with that bill attached an amendment lifting the ignorant, discriminatory and unheard of in the civilized world HIV travelers ban. Dubya and the democratic congress both approved the measure and it was signed into law. Hurray! no more travel ban, but does this mean an HIV positive ass can now visit the US? well, not exactly. You see, the HHS still maintains HIV on the list of communicable diseases with danger to public health in America, which means you still can not fucken enter the US, unless you do like criminals and hide your medications deep in your bags and hope for a safe passage through US customs!! Rolling my eyes now!

The reason I’m blogging about it today out of all days, is that just last week the HHS posted a note that they are revising the process, and will later issue updated guidelines lifting the ban completely on par with the civilized world. Obama promised to speed up the process and get this shameful story over with. 

So until the US learns to keep better company than Sudan, Merry Xmas and Happy new year!

P.S. sorry for the sad photo above, this was the most decent one google can offer me.

Voices

I truly believe that a multi ethnic, multi cultural society is a stronger society. I’m sure not the only one who believes so, and history testifies to this view. Rising voices in Europe warning against immigration and particularly Muslim immigration are a danger to Europe in the same way as terrorism is. To my mind both are forms of terrorism, one being Jihadist and the other being intellectual. Every now and then I encounter a moderate voice that try to counter this xenophobia by reason. Reason is important, because those who perpetrate hate speech are predominantly pseudo intellectuals with shady and dubious intellect. I’m yet to see an outstanding scholar, or intellect who tries to promote such ignorance. In fact the overwhelming majority of such outstanding individuals are moderate and liberal voices. In the few 3-4 decades since the arrival of immigrants from our regions to the Americas and to Europe success stories from the immigrant communities are numerous, just for one, the average income of a Muslim in America is significantly higher than the American national average, we have so many nobel laureates and outstanding scientists, engineers and doctors. And this has happened in much less time that many other immigrant communities. So how will it be like in a few more decades? Die with envy xenophobic freaks!

Recently I have come across this article by Hans Magnus Enzensberger  who is an influential German intellect and literary figure. He echos my personal beliefs about the role Islamic civilization played in history, and the value of openness of the society to other cultures. The moment a civilization isolates itself and lives in its own bubble is the moment it loses momentum and dies. Those xenophobic voices in America and Europe are as much powers of destruction of their own civilization as anything else. Not only are they intolerant of the other, but are also intolerant of people of their own creed simply because they hold opposing views. These people are dangerous, and we must stop them, before they spoil all the fun. They are the Grinches who want to steal our shared human values.

Cheers to Daniel for reassuring me that voices like him are so many, and we will win!

Disgust

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Earlier Renegad, one of the insightful bloggers I follow, pointed out that the Islamists (although I prefer the terms “Criminals, Murders”) have no regard for who is collateral damage to their actions. Spot on. They stand no moral high ground above anyone including the always guilty Bush administration. This is but one reason those criminals turn my stomach. They are disgusting, cold blooded murderers who deserve nothing less than total annihilation!

I watched the events that unfolded in Mumbai with a mix of both disgust and outrage. I’m so pissed right now that I would be willing to annihilate those criminals with my own bare hands, call it whatever you want, but I’m outraged beyond my ability to describe it in words. What can I do to let this outrage out? I’m feeling helpless in the face of those cold blooded murderers, any ideas?

They were acting upon their own twisted logic trying to be robinhoodian  when they attacked, searching only for American and British subjects, It is a disgrace! then in addition to that they end up killing everybody that came their way! what is the mind behind this? does this seem to them like a dignified act? Do they really think this is Jihad? and for a good cause? what the F*^%*$#*%K is their cause?  There seemed to be an ideological change in the minds of those criminals, as they wanted the world to know that they only consider Americans and Brits to be their enemies, which was not the case before. Yet, their methods did not change, killing everyone they can possibly find! This was sickening, I’m feeling so disgraced. WHAT ON EARTH CAN I DO TO HELP?! IDEAS PLZ!

I’m going through an internal struggle at the moment. I was never anti religion per se, yet my logical mind can not help but see how it works! Religion is designed to be vague, and subject to multiple interpretations. There are no clear cut lines between what is true and what is not! it is inherently misleading, you can interpret it to suit your nature, be it peace loving or a criminal psychopath! tear down the wall!!!!!

Damn it! I’m going to explode in outrage! May they burn in earthly and heavenly hell if that exists!

Worshipping America

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One thing I haven’t told you about my vacation in Egypt this summer…I lost a friend, he was swallowed into oblivion. My life has changed a lot over the past 3 and a half years after having gone through a life changing experience. This does not scare me even one bit, but it makes me appreciate everything I ever taken for granted more. Friendship to me means a hell lot more, it is so precious and dear byond what I can tell you.

So what happened? Well, he was a friend since childhood, and although his life seems unchanged, his mind has changed a great deal. He is now one of those people who think the Jihadists are correct, and that Laden et al. is doing the right thing. He has come to such a conclusion having read their literature over the internet! (should we chace them online and disable their altars of hate? I bet we should, they spoil minds still). We met after a long time during my last visit and we had a discussion, spurred by his advise to a friend to leave Egypt and live abroad! I thought his mind changed, but no, he simply believes that all societies including Egypt are societies of nonbelievers, and that they are all the same so it does not matter where you live anymore, they are all KAFER! I tried to convince him he was wrong, what do I get? a blunt accusation that I’m an America worshipper and that this will do me no good! Just like that he accused me, just like all of them do with their sense of insecurity and that everyone who does not agree is their enemy and is KAFER.

Alas, I failed to save him, and left him with his delusions, opting to take my distance and let life teach him its lessons. Hate is not my virtue and our roads do not meet. One friend lost to oblivion, with a split personality disorder, living in modern life with a backward frame of reference. Sad, but true.

Yes he can!!

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It was a sensational night. I had betted my friends over here that McCain is the winner and that the fundies and their elk are so strong in the US that Obama wouldn’t be able to really make it. I WAS WRONG! and that was one bet I’m delighted to have lost. In 1 single night my view of America flipped. Indeed there are still 54 million McCain voters, but there are 64 million who said no, thats enough. They have overcome race, and religion and into a new era for America and the world. I’m elated, and I for the first time feel like I’m ready to visit the united states. Just this win restored loads of a long lost American glamour.

I have sent many congratulatory emails to my American friends, and many had tears in their eyes at the moment Obama won. They felt like they reclaimed back their country. Words can not really describe how I see America now and how I saw it a few weeks ago. It is a stark reminder as to why America is what it is. Will Obama be able to continue the journey and redeem America’s image and soul? I’m optimistic he can, he looks and acts like a normal human being, he wears his frailty on his skin. So many reasons to be optimistic.

One question I have still, will the American embassy be nice enough and grant me a visa to visit the US? it is about time for me to see this country, and know how it manages to renew itself and make history time after time. That remains to be seen. I will let you know how they behave with the visa 😉