Let’s Move Palestine Out of Palestine because… GOD

Let’s Move Palestine Out of Palestine because… GOD

Mike Huckabee is a fruit cake but at least he’s an honest one. Speaking to Arutz Sheva TV on Sunday, Huckabee called for the forced relocation of an entire people. Because GOD.

Huckabee cited there being “plenty of land in the world” to find a place for a Palestinian state outside of Israel.

“If there’s a two-state solution, the Palestinians state needs to be outside the boundaries of the nation of Israel. There’s plenty of land in the world where we can find a place and say, ‘Okay, let’s create a Palestinian state.’ But not within the confides of a secure Israel.”

Speaking at the event, Huckabee said “we never can accept the notion that Israel will be divided,” citing the boundaries of Israel being given “not by the United Nations but by almighty God.” [Buzzfeed].

Well, at least he’s not pussy-footing around the issue. One can’t even be too surprised though because as Daniel Larison concludes:

[This] would normally be the sort of thing that would doom a person’s political career, but in this case it probably helps Huckabee with his target audience and mostly elicits a shrug from the press.

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Eff Game of Thrones

Eff Game of Thrones

Or… Am I about to be banished from popular mass culture?
[Note: contains one minor spoiler so if you haven’t watched the first two episodes, please skip].

For years, I’ve resisted being drawn into the popular HBO series, Game of Thrones. Mostly out of laziness. As with most HBO shows, it has a fanatical following. People who wouldn’t otherwise like Fantasy have been drawn in. People who love Fantasy love it all the more.

I acquired season one a few years ago and then just never watched it. My friends used all kinds of reasons to get me to take it up. Arguments about the quality of the production (whatever the #$%@ that means). The acting. The storylines.  The huge amounts of violence. The gratuitous sex and nudity; apparently Game of Thrones boasts the most boobs per episode of any major television series.

Last fall, I watched episode one. My friends weren’t wrong. The opening sequence is really cool. The acting is good. Attractive people having sex. Yay. And yawn.

A couple weeks ago, I watched episode two. And well, eff that shit. Read more about Eff Game of Thrones

The USA doesn’t owe its damned allegiance to Israel or Saudi Arabia

The USA doesn’t owe its damned allegiance to Israel or Saudi Arabia

In an Economist.com article on a scheduled summit between American and the six members of the Gulf Co-operation Council on May 13th and 14th, this blurb caught my eye:

And he [President Obama] cannot meet all the Gulf requests for advanced weaponry, because congressional legislation requires that Israel must maintain a “qualitative military edge” over its neighbours. [Emphasis mine]

That the USA and Israel have a special relationship is no surprise. Israel has been the only consistently functioning democracy in a region of states replete with strife and governmental incompetence.

It also makes some type of sense that the USA would want to ensure that its favored state in the region should have the ability to defend itself. But I find no compelling interest in the USA hamstringing itself because of a requirement that Israel continue to be able to kick its Arab neighbors’ collective arse. Read more about The USA doesn’t owe its damned allegiance to Israel or Saudi Arabia

Would MLK be able to help today?

Would MLK be able to help today?

When in doubt, look to Ta-Nehisi Coates to describe the situation in Baltimore so much better than I could:

When nonviolence is preached as an attempt to evade the repercussions of political brutality, it betrays itself. When nonviolence begins halfway through the war with the aggressor calling time out, it exposes itself as a ruse. When nonviolence is preached by the representatives of the state, while the state doles out heaps of violence to its citizens, it reveals itself to be a con. And none of this can mean that rioting or violence is “correct” or “wise,” any more than a forest fire can be “correct” or “wise.” Wisdom isn’t the point tonight. Disrespect is. In this case, disrespect for the hollow law and failed order that so regularly disrespects the rioters themselves.

I find myself wondering whether, even someone as titanic as Martin Luther King, Jr would be able to affect the situations we find ourselves in these days? Yes, Dr King faced a lot of hostility from the establishment. But, we have also outsourced the jobs previously done by communities to our police force. Read more about Would MLK be able to help today?

Muslim or Black in America

Muslim or Black in America

I think, if there’s one thing I will like about President Obama’s term coming to an end, it is that perhaps the extreme right-wing of this country will go back to their classic culture wars tropes – wars on the poor, black people and a little misogyny thrown in for good measure. Actually a lot of misogyny if Hillary Clinton is the Democratic nominee. (Yes, the Left has its own classics so shut up).

Eight years of people screaming about creeping shari’a law. Eight years of the President supposedly being a Muslim and facilitating the rise of militant Islam in the USA. Eight years of not understanding what the hell the President Obama’s speech in Cairo meant. Eight years of people posting stupid bullshit taking the President’s tolerance completely out of context while throwing their hands up in the air saying, “No really I don’t hate Muslims!”

Did you hear that [insert geographic location] was bombed the other day? Whodunit? Too late – almost every single Muslim in the USA already thought, “oh please let it not be a Muslim!” How relieved I was when the Oklahoma City bombing was found to be done by a non-Muslim. Praise Jeebus!

But I was struck tonight, after reading another half-assed attempt to tar and feather Islam and President Obama, that this ain’t shit compared to what blacks in this country have and continue to endure. Read more about Muslim or Black in America

Hillary Clinton and the Theatre of Stupid

Hillary Clinton and the Theatre of Stupid

… Or Hillary Clinton for President! Because Rednecks, That’s Why…

Yesterday, Hillary Clinton finally officially announced that she’s running for Pres-o-dent of the Amrika. I’m sure Fox News freaked out and MSNBC spun and spun and spun. I was pleasantly surprised that my Facebook feed didn’t blow up too much; perhaps because it’s still pretty early in the madness election cycle.

There were a few pretty predictable responses. Some folks excited and others already complaining that they (Republicans) would be tarred and feathered for being sexist or misogynist because they oppose her candidacy. I love seeing these sort of “[s]he hate me” laments on both sides.

It’s the culture wars, people! Republican accuse Democrats of being lilly-livered godless communists who hate America. Democrats accuse Republicans of being sexist or racist or homophobic. And if you actually believe all this political palabra, whether you’re slinging it or receiving it, then you’re falling into the trap of being distracted by the parties. Read more about Hillary Clinton and the Theatre of Stupid

Prophet human

Prophet human

Or… God Uppercase

Removing the Middleman Vol 1I just started reading Rashed Hasan’s new treatise, Removing the Middleman: Deciphering Faith Without Ritual. The book is intended to be an examination of accepting faith without being bound to ritual. Just in the foreword, he makes an assertion which I think is worth contemplating and with which I think many Muslims fail to engage:

It is important to note that some Muslims who lack knowledge or proper understanding of the essence of God or prophethood tend to elevate Prophet Muhammad to some level of divinity while vehemently opposing any notion of divinity to Prophet Jesus, who is showered with divine attributes by his followers.

I could not agree more. I was once told by an unkel that Prophet Muhammad could not make mistakes. When I asked him how this was not making equals with Allah, he replied that that the Prophet was an exception. A friend once told me that he saw no reason to even recognize the birth of Prophet Isa (Jesus) because, “we have our own Prophet”. This despite the fact that the Qur’an even recognizes the significance of the Virgin Birth, though our story of Prophet Isa’s life is vastly different. Read more about Prophet human

I’m Glad I Didn’t Get Into An Ivy League School

I’m Glad I Didn’t Get Into An Ivy League School

… Or I Would Choose Pitt over Penn if I Had To Do It Again

It’s the silly time of the year known as College Admissions Season. Gawker, as is their wont to do so, published a provocatively titled article, Ivy League Admissions Are a Sham: Confessions of a Harvard Gatekeeper. It’s totally TL;DR. I read through one-third of the piece before feeling I’d gotten the gist. Or got distracted by something shiny. Perhaps this is telling of why I didn’t get into Wharton in the first place.

I’m betting there are two major reactions to the piece:

  1. From some (though not all) Ivy Leaguers: Whatever. Haters gonna hate.
  2. From almost all non-Ivy Leaguers: No sh*t, Sherlock!!

Oh, I kid the Ivy Leaguers, I does. I’ve known many of their ilk in my time. I’m related to a few. And most seem to have come through their years in the Academy with some humility, some sense of humanity intact.

I wonder if I would have stayed grounded.

Stereotypes of the elitist, snobby academic high-major graduate exist for a reason. Because those people simply do exist. The University of Pennsylvania was my dream school from the time that we dropped off my oldest sister in Philadelphia. I applied early-admission to Wharton. Getting wait-listed, then getting rejected in the regular admissions period was a huge blow. I can still remember the envelope. It was regular-sized, not one of the big ones you get when a school says, Yes. “We are sorry to inform you…” etc. #$%^&*

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