As the Olympic athletes, fans and media descend on our fair city of Vancouver and many Vancouverites prepare to leave, the airport is making sure security is ready for all those would be terrorists. We have been on alert since December when Detroit and Northwest Airlines inadvertently played host to a nut case that decided to load his underwear with more than the traditional package sported by males. As a result we Canadians were only allowed to carry on the essentials; medications, canes,wallet, laptop and camera....more
How do we know the truth of what is happening in Haiti - especially those of us who are in the global north and west, our perceptions shaped by a tragic history, largely unknown, in which our governments have often been complicit? As the immediate rescue effort becomes a sustained task of recovery how do we know when ideology and naked self-interest warp news accounts and recovery efforts? ...more
Editor's note: To find out how you can help survivors of Tuesday's devastating earthquake in Haiti, see here.
Haiti holds a romantic and tragic place in the historical imagination -- a nation birthed by a successful slave rebellion, it was the first to abolish slavery in the Western hemisphere and briefly served as a beacon of hope for American abolitionists. However, it never realized its promise, for reasons that scholars and analysts can debate ad infinitum.
"All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood"--Article 1 of The Universal Declaration of Human Rights...more
UPDATE 9/25 PM: The Washington Post reports that John Allen Muhammad was executed by lethal injection tonight as family members of his victims watched.
He maintained his innocence until the end.
November 20, 2009 is the 20th anniversary of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC). According to UNICEF, "The Convention on the Rights of the Child is the first legally binding international instrument to incorporate the full range of human rights—civil, cultural, economic, political and social rights." ...more
One of the most frustrating things I come across nearly on a daily basis is a clear lack of understanding when it comes to certain words. The most recent has been the definition of the word "right".As humans, we all have certain rights. The United Nations has a clear doctrine in place that covers what rights we have as humans. The United States expounds further on what basic rights we are afforded....more
Separate initiatives by the House and Senate make it likely that the 16-year-old policy of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" which bars homosexual people from serving openly in the US Armed Forces, will come to a vote sometime this fall. The policy, first imposed by Pres. Clinton and Congress in 1993, allows gays and lesbians to serve as long as they remain closeted. Since its imposition, more than 13,000 service people have been separated from the service because of their sexual orientation, and the policy has come under increasing fire, even from high-ranking retired military leaders and former Pres. Clinton himself.
At the end of a week-long tour that included meetings with Russian leaders, attending the G8 Summit and an audience with Pope Benedict, Pres. Barack Obama generated both excitement and sharp questions with an overnight stop in Ghana and a speech to that country's Parliament. While the speech did not attract the attention of his so-called speech to the Muslim world earlier this year, the importance of US policy toward Africa is difficult to overstate.
By now you might have seen the wrenching YouTube video: A young woman shot dead on the streets of Tehran as she and her father (some reports say he was one of her professors) watched a crowd of protestors on Saturday. You see her standing; you see her fall; you see the desparate effort to save her as blood spurts from her nose and mouth and streams down her beautiful, youthful face.