Sunday, October 30, 2011

Movember's Almost Here

Each November, Movember encourages men to grow moustaches (mo's) to raise money and awareness for men's health, especially prostrate cancer and other cancers that affect men.  

 Men register on Movember 1, at with a clean shaven face and work their stubble to glorious Mo's by the end of the month.  By virtue of their very appearance and through social interaction/dialogue, they focus on the issue of men's health.  There are prizes for Mo Bros, Mo Sistas (supporters of Mo Bros, not Mo growers themselves) and Team Mo's.

For Mo information visit their site 

To see the best Mo's of all time visit this site 

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Shakespeare's "King Lear" in NY

Last night, I saw Shakespeare's King Lear performed at the Newman theater by the Public Theater of NY city, directed by James Macdonald and featuring Sam Waterston (of TV's Law and Order fame) as King Lear.  It was the opening night and the theater was packed.  I should make it clear at the outset that it is hard to mess up Shakespeare's plays.  The lines are so powerful that even a lackluster actor couldn't spoil their effect.  Not that these actors were in any way lackluster.  Richard Topol (The Duke of Albany), Kelli O'Hara (Regan), and even Sam Waterston (Lear) may have flubbed their lines once or twice, but no matter.  Goneril (Enid Graham) and Regan were outstanding. Only Cordelia (Kristen Connolly) was a bore.  The actress looked angelic but she wasn't the quiet-but-strong person she should have been; she definitely lacked conviction.  She was limp with no firmness to the voice, and no queenly elegance.  She looked scared to death of Lear.

I always supposed King Lear to be a large, tall man with a mighty voice that was fit to bellow at the storm, getting old and bent almost overnight. Waterston's voice suited the character even if his appearance did not suit my mental image of King Lear.  Gloucester's performance was understated.  I remember reading the scene in which  Edgar (disguised as Tom) pretends to lead his father up the cliffs of Dover so he can hurl himself down to his death--that is such a poignant scene, it has all the potential of Lear's melodrama--would be funny too, if it weren't so tragic.   Michael McKean as Gloucester made it seem quite flat-- the pathos of the scene didn't quite come through. Stoicism seemed to cover up his introspection and anguish.  Less certainly wasn't more here.  Arian Moayed made a good Edgar, a little too trusting of Edmund in the beginning, frightened into disguising himself as Tom O'Bedlam and gradually developing strength as he faces one trauma after another.

The stage was mostly bare except for a table here and  a bench there.  However, the actors still managed to make  it quite untidy.  They did not take the props out with them as they normally do in Shakespearean  plays.  But all this emphasized the chaos created by Lear.  He opened up the Pandora's box and let evil loose upon the world.  I normally quote Shakespeare for everything but this time I choose Yeats to describe the havoc King Lear caused by his vanity and ego:--

Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.
                                                               (The Second Coming)

 I think the stage was a little too close to the audience.  The tales that concern nobility and royalty have to be a little removed from the common man.  I didn't understand why the actors crowded at the edge of the stage when there was so much space behind them that was not being used.  The chain link curtain was awesome but it kept moving and pushing the actors to the front of the stage.  Obviously there is some significance to that; maybe it gave a physical depth to the heath when the curtain finally fell and the starkness of the setting was revealed.  I loved the lightning and the thunder.  The characters of the play, exposed to the elements saw with utmost clarity the deepest truths that lay as naked as poor Tom (Edgar).

What/who did I like the best in the play?  The fool--played by Bill Irwin. The "all-licensed fool"(I,iv).  He portrayed the right mixture of innocence, mischief, humor, grief, bewilderment and sarcasm, disappearing when King Lear took over his job (the world wasn't big enough for the two of them to be fools).  Besides there were too many mad men running loose on the heath that stormy night.  Seth Gilliam as Edmund did a great job as a sly, conniving charmer, as did John Douglas Thompson as the loyal (to Lear) Kent.  

I give it a 4 out 5 rating.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Steve Jobs (1955-2011)

Forget Apple (not really), I am grateful he started Pixar.  Life would have been utterly depressing without Toy Story, Monsters Inc., The Incredibles....

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Its the Thank-you season: Cheers to Google

Its Google's 13th birthday. I wonder how I ever got along without it. Used Google Search at least 25 times today. Used Google Maps, the Gmail, the Google talk and the blogger all within the last hour. It's so talented!! To think that communication before Google was only through a rotary phone that entertained us by dialing wrong numbers. Now, we have Google's Youtube to do the entertaining. We have with Google a window that opens into the world.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Sunny Day, Sweepin' the Clouds Away...

This is how to get to Sesame Street

Kermit with Old MacDonald

I love this one!!

Let the Ham soliloquize..,

And finally this one...

Monsterpiece Theater

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Jim Henson

I couldn't possibly say it better than Kwame Opam of Gizmodo:

"Happy 75th Birthday, Jim Henson. And Thank You

Today is Jim Henson's 75th birthday. And in my mind, there ought to be parades to honor this man's legacy. Because, as a filmmaker and innovator, he did it all. Whether you're a kid or an adult, he touched us all. So celebrations are in order."
As a part of these celebrations I present to you my favorite Sesame Street/The Muppet Show videos


Will post some more tomorrow. Also read Jim Henson's son's post -- a tribute to his father in the Official Google blog.

Wanted Dead or Dead

The death penalty is plain wrong.  When a man is behind bars anyway, serving time for a crime he may or may not have committed, why in the world should he be executed?  Is the prison too "free" for him?  Or is it the fact that it is he and not the victim that walks alive that makes it unbearable for some to see?

Troy Davis maintained till the very end that he was innocent.  Pleas to save his life were ignored even though Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Pope Benedict XVI, Harry Belafonte, Jimmy Carter, Amnesty International and the European Parliament all campaigned on his behalf.

Dr. Allen Ault, retired Director of the Georgia Department of Corrections and former Warden of the Georgia Diagnostic and Classification Prison where he oversaw executions for the state  told Rachel Maddow (The Rachel Maddow Show: Sept 21, 2011 )
"When you're in the death chamber ordering an execution, and even if in your mind, if you're a man of conscience, actually believe somebody is guilty, it's still a very premeditated murder. I mean, it's scripted and rehearsed. It's about as premeditated as any killing that you can do. And then when there is doubt, either way it exacts a heavy toll on those who are charged by the state to execute somebody."
The MacPhails, the relatives of the man Davis allegedly killed, talk of closure.  Dr. Ault said in that same interview with Rachel Maddow that the sense of relief felt by relatives of victims at "justice" being done is, at best, fleeting.  Of course it is.

In the end, we are a bloodthirsty species.  Hammurabi is still alive in us. Just look at him--I can readily believe this is the man who demanded an eye for an eye. 

It seems, that even the makers of sodium pentothal ( the drug used at executions) do not want their name tainted with this practice.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Doing the NY Times Crossword

The Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday puzzles are do-able.  Come Thursday, most clues are about obscure movies and old television shows. Last Saturday was this clue:  “Fifth in a series of seven old comedy films”. ??   For a late 80s immigrant, it is quite a struggle to get those answers.   (btw, the answer to that question is Road to Rio)

Then I begin cheating…I go to Google for help.  I discovered in my surfing two websites that take all the fun out of doing the crossword.  One is – it’s a site that allows you to enter the clue and it just spits out the answer. It is always a temptation to go to it. The other is  -- the blogger is a Rex Parker who says of himself “I am the 31st Greatest Crossword Puzzle Solver in the Universe!”  Don’t ask me who the other 30 are!!  Rex Parker takes 2 minutes to do the NY Times crossword and by the time I solicit Google for help at about 9 a.m., HE is there – on top of the search list.  All smug and done, the fastest pencil in the east.   

And, of course, I follow his blog.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Its Past 6 p.m. and All is Well on May 21, 2011.

Our Get-Ready Man, Harold Camping, a preacher from California is wrong once again.  “Rapture Day” passed, in fine weather one might add; the 2% of the world’s population that were promised Heaven waited for the Grand Boat that never came.
After 70 years of studying the Bible, he claims to have developed a system that uses mathematics to interpret prophesies hidden in it. He says the world will end on 21 May, because that will be 722,500 days from 1 April AD33, which he believes was the day of the Crucifixion. The figure of 722,500 is important because you get it by multiplying three holy numbers (five, 10 and 17) together twice. "When I found this out, I tell you, it blew my mind," he said.

It all came about when Camping concluded that the number 5 signifies "atonement", 10 is "completeness" and 17 means "heaven." So the product of these numbers squared signifies the end of the world. D-uh.  How could anyone have missed this!

A Rosetta stone he ain't, that much he's proved.  He should go back to his dusty trusty crystal ball.

Camping says God even showed him a sign. Of his vast media company, he remarks:  "We are now translated  into 48 languages and have been transmitting into China on an AM station without getting jammed once. How can that happen without God's mercy?"

The California radio broadcaster’s wrong prediction about the rapture and the end of the world reflected poorly on Christians, said Ed Stetzer, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s LifeWay Research and LifeWay's missiologist in residence. You think?  ( I should look up the word "missiologist".  Someone that is "missing" something, like an attic? )

Ed Stetzer wants his pound of flesh -- he wants Camping to apologize "for being wrong about his doomsday prediction and leading people astray."  The kettle Terry Jones, the pastor who publicly burned the Koran in Florida, cast one of the first stones claiming the pot Camping was "irresponsible". "I think it's misfortunate," he said. "I've been a pastor for some 30 odd years and this has happened what some half-dozen times. People twist it and turn it to make it look like Christians are kind of nutty."
(Misfortunate? more "mis" words)

Meanwhile, in a related story,  an American Atheists conference in California is celebrating a "Rapture that wasn't" party later tonight.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Osama is Dead, Long live Obama

Osama bin Laden has been killed by US forces.   It is such a relief to know he is not out there anymore, plotting more deaths.  One thing that really gets my goat is that he has been living in a mansion in the suburbs of Islamabad for the last six years-- in luxury-- not in caves, not in spider holes!! Well, maybe not in a whole lot of luxury, because the Wall Street Journal reports, " There were no airconditioning units, meaning bin Laden would have had to suffer through the Pakistan summer. " (I bet it is hotter where he is now). And what comfort could there be when, "No phone lines or Internet cables ran to the property"?  Ha!

Abbottabad, Pakistan-- Osama's home

The US military must have experienced tense moments when one of the helicopters used in the raid crashed and exploded into flames after it dropped off the Navy SEALs (Navy Sea, Air and Land Team) behind the walls of the compound. But, as we see, it didn't affect the operation.  Maybe it's like saying "Break a leg"!

Anyway, that is that. Don't want to think about the guy.  So many of my neighbors worked in or near the World Trade Center buildings--my husband too.  Kids were in school when planes crashed into those buildings that morning of Sept.11, 2001; some parents came home that night and some didn't.

What can be said about a man who terrorized the world and hid behind his wife when he was attacked? Life to him was precious then and not so precious when he incited men to suicide bombing.

God Bless America, my home sweet home.  And if, after all this, Obama does not win the 2012 election, I'll eat those hats in my previous post!!

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Hats- At the Royal Wedding Of Someone And Someone Else

Must comment on the most posh event of the year.
What's with the hats?  They are all pasted on the foreheads these days--creating modern versions of unicorns.

Victoria stood stiff, trying to balance the hat and hide her baby bump(why, I have no idea).  She is dressed all dark and somber too--you know, dear, they are getting married, not buried.

Victoria-- Can't Bend it like Beckham

This hat in beige looks like an enormous door knocker.  Anybody home?

Princess Beatrice

Tara Palmer-Tomkinson
                         Methinks the blue hat on the right looks like a kayak.

Sigh! There was a time when hats actually sat on heads.

An old flame of William's

           Can't seem to get this out of my mind.


My all-time favorite is THIS hat :

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Talk Amongst Yourselves

I've not written anything for a while which prompts me to quote Mike Myers from "Coffee Talk with Linda Richman" on Saturday Night Live.  "I'm a little verklempt.  Talk amongst yourselves.  I'll give you a topic. The chickpea is neither a chick nor a pea.  Discuss."
That ought to buy me some time...

Monday, April 4, 2011

Happy Ugadi 2011

The New Year Srikhara begins today.  Happy new year to all.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

What's in a Name? Apparently Everything

You like potato and I like potahto, 
You like tomato and I like tomahto
Potato, potahto, Tomato, tomahto, 

Let's call the whole thing off.

Louis Armstrong (or was it Gershwin?) gave up too easily.  If tomato, tomahto confused him,  how would he have referred to the Libyan leader Gaddafi? (Qadafi? Khadaffy?...Never mind.)

The Library of Congress lists 72 variations of the Libyan leader Gaddafi's name and newspapers have added 40 more to that list in the last decade. Here goes:
Qaddafi, Muammar;  Al-Gathafi, Muammar;  al-Qadhafi, Muammar;  Al Qathafi,  Mu'ammar; Al Qathafi, Muammar;  El Gaddafi, Moamar;  El Kadhafi, Moammar; El Kazzafi, Moamer;   El Qathafi, Mu'Ammar;  Gadafi, Muammar;  Gaddafi, Moamar;  Gadhafi, Mo'ammar;  
Gathafi, Muammar;  Ghadafi, Muammar;  Ghaddafi, Muammar; Ghaddafy, Muammar;   Gheddafi, Muammar;  Gheddafi, Muhammar;  Kadaffi, Momar;  Kad'afi, Mu`amar al-;  Kaddafi, Muamar;
Kaddafi, Muammar;  Kadhafi, Moammar;  Kadhafi, Mouammar;   
Kazzafi, Moammar;  Khadafy, Moammar;  Khaddafi, Muammar;  Moamar al-Gaddafi;   Moamar el Gaddafi;  Moamar El Kadhafi;  Moamar Gaddafi; Moamer El Kazzafi;  Mo'ammar el-Gadhafi;  Moammar El Kadhafi; Mo'ammar Gadhafi;   Moammar Kadhafi;  Moammar Khadafy;  Moammar Qudhafi; Mu`amar al-Kad'afi;   
Mu'amar al-Kadafi;  Muamar Al-Kaddafi;  Muamar Kaddafi; Muamer Gadafi;  Muammar Al-Gathafi;  Muammar al-Khaddafi;  Mu'ammar al-Qadafi; Mu'ammar al-Qaddafi;  Muammar al-Qadhafi;  Mu'ammar al-Qadhdhafi;  Mu`ammar al-Qadhdhāfī ;  Mu'ammar Al Qathafi;  Muammar Al Qathafi;  Muammar Gadafi;  Muammar Gaddafi;  Muammar Ghadafi;  Muammar Ghaddafi;  Muammar Ghaddafy;  Muammar Gheddafi;  Muammar Kaddafi;  Muammar Khaddafi;  Mu'ammar Qadafi;  Muammar Qaddafi;  Muammar Qadhafi;  Mu'ammar Qadhdhafi;  Muammar Quathafi;
Mulazim Awwal Mu'ammar Muhammad Abu Minyar al-Qadhafi;
Qadafi, Mu'ammar;  Qadhafi, Muammar;  Qadhdhāfī, Mu`ammar; Qathafi, Mu'Ammar el; 
Quathafi, Muammar;  Qudhafi, Moammar;  Moamar AI Kadafi; Maummar Gaddafi; 
Moamar Gadhafi; Moamer Gaddafi;  Moamer Kadhafi;  Moamma Gaddafi;  Moammar Gaddafi;  Moammar Gadhafi;  Moammar Ghadafi;  Moammar Khadaffy;  Moammar Khaddafi; 
Moammar el Gadhafi;  Moammer Gaddafi; Mouammer al Gaddafi;  Muamar Gaddafi;  
Muammar Al Ghaddafi;  Muammar Al Qaddafi;  Muammar Al Qaddafi;  Muammar El Qaddafi;  Muammar Gadaffi; Muammar Gadafy;  Muammar Gaddhafi;  Muammar Gadhafi;  
Muammar Ghadaffi; Muammar Qadthafi;  Muammar al Gaddafi;  Muammar el Gaddafy;
Muammar el Gaddafi;  Muammar el Qaddafi;  Muammer Gadaffi,  Muammer Gaddafi;
Mummar Gaddafi,  Omar Al Qathafi,  Omar Mouammer Al Gaddafi;  Omar Muammar
Al Ghaddafi;  Omar Muammar Al Qaddafi;  Omar Muammar Al Qathafi;
Omar Muammar Gaddafi;  Omar Muammar Ghaddafi; Omar al Ghaddafi.


Says The Straight Dope's Cecil Adams  (June 1986), "In most cases where there is doubt about how to spell somebody's name, the usual journalistic practice is to accept the preference of the namee. For many years, however, the Mummer was too busy promoting global chaos to devote much time to the niceties of orthography."  C.A. has a couple of suggestions too. "I say we just call him Duckbreath. It's short, it's easy to spell, and Lord knows it satisfies the soul" and "My personal feeling is to chuck all the preceding and just call him Poohead, which is easier to remember and has an undeniable evocative power as well. But to each his own."

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Japan's Double Whammy--Earthquake and Tsunami
Cannot bear to look at the pictures of devastation in Japan.  I hope Japan gets the help it needs.  Please donate generously to Red Cross and other relief organizations.

Each day thousands of new pictures are posted on the internet of the destruction in Japan.  What a tragedy!  And now these folks have to battle the effects of radiation too?

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Doing the Math

The turnpike authority says many drivers were also overcharged, which overall probably kept the turnpike's losses a lot lower.

(Toll collectors have also been accused of intimidating drivers.  One collector told a woman using a wrong lane that she would be strip searched.)

The Turnpike Authority is accepting proposals from private vendors to take over toll collection, one of the conditions being that the vendor will have to make up for any shortages.  Happily, 75% of the toll collection is now electronic so more accurate and will gradually phase out manual collection.  When that happens, I'll miss those sometimes friendly, sometimes surly men and women  because they are, at least, oases on lonely, dark winter morning commutes. Remember the sitcom "Dear John", and Ralph the toll-collector? "These civilians",  he would contemptuously say of car drivers -- sitting aloof from them and the traffic, cocooned in his little booth.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

A Bizarro Robin Hood

Teachers should take cuts, pay more for health benefits and pensions while the rich should get tax breaks.  Hmm.  Governor Walker of Wisconsin has now donned the role of a bizarro Robin Hood!!  Or is he using the deficit as an excuse to hurt public sector unions? 
...even as he proclaims that Wisconsin faces a terrible fiscal crisis, he has been pushing through tax cuts that make the deficit worse. Mainly, however, he has made it clear that rather than bargaining with workers, he wants to end workers’ ability to bargain.

The Senate Democrats in the State of Wisconsin went into hiding because at least one Democrat needs to be present to vote on the bill to ban collective bargaining rights of public employees in the State.  

 Teachers protest
It must be catching---the fleeing bit, I mean --because the Democrats in the State of Indiana are also AWOL, battling the same issue. 

At this rate, the people of Wisconsin might as well try and become like Belgium which has managed without a government for 255 days, longer than Iraq.   An absence of a government in Belgium does not worry its people although the unemployment rate there is 8 %.  A "nonexistent national government is unable to spend any money, which has proved an economical policy". 

No pay for Governors and Senators and Wisconsin can still keep the unions.  An answer to its prayers!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Bolsa Família -- A Success Story in Brazil

Launched in 2003, as part of the Fome Zero (Zero Hunger) program by the  Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, Bolsa Família (Family Stipend) is seen as the world's leading wealth redistribution system.  It is a conditional cash transfer program that has benefited about 46 million poor people in Brazil, almost a quarter of its population.

The program provided income supplements to poor families subject to certain conditions such as 85% school attendance for children ages 6-15 and mandatory participation in socio-educational activities after school, 75% attendance for teenagers ages 16-17, vaccinations for children, nutritional monitoring and health education for women.

plastic id card for members
Besides reducing the income inequality, the program provides tremendous support to women.  93% of the program's beneficiaries are women and 27% of those are single mothers.  It strengthens their position in their households and communities, gives them more respect and increased influence within their family and has reduced domestic violence.  It has also initiated policies for development of labor skills.  The Ministry of Labor and Social Development works together with the local governments to link employment and social protection policies to ensure poverty reduction.  Bolsa Família gives poor families their first experience with banks, debit cards and credit cards thereby offering them "financial inclusion".  These people have access to small business initiatives and financing.

Bolsa Família gives children freedom from bonded labor and works in cooperation with the Ministry of Education.  It targets households with monthly per capita income lower than US $52.  The program offers US $13 per child/pregnant woman and US $19 per teenager (16-17 yrs. old).  Extremely poor families receive upto US $79 dollars a month.  The government does not put conditions on how the money is to be spent.

Enrollment is conducted at the municipal level and families are registered into a unified central database called the Cadastro Único.

Of course, the program has its glitches.  This blogger quotes a UNDP report,
Bolsa Família uses unverified means-testing conducted at the municipal level to select its beneficiaries. Given the programme’s large size, it would be very costly to use verified means-testing or proxy means-testing to identify eligible households. The programme’s unverified selection method has been criticized on the grounds that its highly decentralized process could lead to selection distortions, such as patronage and leakage.
And so, sometimes absurd things happen.  According to the blog SEMANCOL:  NOTÍCIAS ABSURDAS e PENSAMENTOS (Absurd news and thoughts)
Mother of ex-BBB Grazi gets Family Allowance
The seamstress Cleusa Massafera Smith is a 3204 recipient of the Bolsa Familia in Jacarezinho, in northern Paraná. The federal program of income transfer is aimed at families in poverty and extreme poverty. The problem is that Cleusa is the mother of actress and model Grazielli Massafera, known to participate in the program Big Brother Brazil.
(translated from Portugese by Google)
The main criticism about Bolsa Família is that while it ensures children go to school it has not improved the quality of education and it will not provide higher education.  One comment on BrazzilMag reads:
First, this money doesn't change miserable people into real citizens! If they were just poor, now they are the ones who receive "alms" from the government.
Second, the main criterion to receiving the money is something ridiculous: you just have to send your children to school. if they have attendance, it's ok. They don't need to really learn, just pass. what is not difficult, since teachers can't fail them.
What seems to be good is actually malefic, because when these students are aged to get to University, they won't. First, because there won't be Bolsa Familia when they are to enter High School, second because they won't have learned the basics of the subjects.
Another criticism is that the program has a rural bias; the urban areas demand a higher cost of living and the stipend is just not adequate to alleviate poverty.
No one, however, can dispute that poverty has fallen from 22% of the population to 7% of the population which is a remarkable feat. It costs only about 0.5% of Brazilian GDP and about 2.5% of total government expenditure.

Most people use that extra income to buy their children clothes and shoes. That is how it should be.

A similar program called Opportunity NYC was a privately funded $63 million initiative, the first of its kind in the United States.  The pilot program, however, closed on August 2010. I believe that these ventures must have the backing of the government and must involve several social, educational and economic reforms which are outside the reach of private enterprise.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Serious Farts

The world is a chaotic place what with the civil unrest in Egypt, war in Afghanistan, floods in the Philippines, Baby Doc in Haiti...the list is endless.  But we do have comic relief--in the shape of an anti-trouser cough (fart) law gaffe in Malawi.

Malawi's Minister for Justice and Constitutional Affairs, Dr. George Chaponda said in a radio interview with Straight Talk that he would table a bill in the parliament to make farting in public a punishable offence.  “We are entitled to introduce order in the country..I think the government has a right to ensure decency,” he justified.  "You can control your farting. Why not go to toilet instead of farting in public?" It is as disgusting as urinating in public, he said.  "Of course nature can be controlled, when somebody wants to go to the toilet is advised to go to toilet and if somebody maybe you are in public there you decide farting left and right it becomes a nuisance.”

Gosh! Left and right?

He later said he misinterpreted this clause in the legislation:
“Any person who vitiates the atmosphere in any place so as to make it noxious to the public to the health of persons in general dwelling or carrying on business in the neighbourhood or passing along a public way shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.”
The solicitor-general Anthony Kamanga explained to him that the clause was alluding to "pollution" and not farting.

Dr. Chaponda will now let people "break wind" in peace in public.

Read more on this in the Nyasa Times.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Boot Out the Looters

 This is the Egyptian Museum in Cairo. Nine men managed to enter the museum on Saturday, January 29th, 2011, and break a few things belonging to King Tutankhamen of the 14th century B.C.  So sad.  I took this picture when I went there last year.  Pity we were not allowed to take our cameras inside the museum. I hope the present unrest in Egypt does not take away from this world all the priceless treasures in this building and other parts of the country.  I'd like to go back there again some day.  There was so much to see and such little time!!
Tourism is Egypt's main industry; it's ancient peoples are such an inspiration to all of us. I hope we can keep everything and everyone safe.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Time on their hands

This school year, there were 90 pregnant girls in Frayser High School, Memphis, Tennessee.  That is absolutely tragic!!  These kids need to be involved in other extra-curricular activities.  The township should be responsible since, clearly, there isn't much of an age difference between the parents and the students either and so the parents are in no way competent to take responsible decisions.  Also, these  student mothers and infants are very likely to become a burden on the State. The township could also consider all-girls public schools?  How is it that a deeply religious South fails in teaching its communities the importance of marriage as a condition to parenthood? Churches have to wake up to this issue as well.

More on this from Sylvia Gayle, on Saturday, January 15, 2011:

This is absolutely ridiculous. Don't they have a sex education program that makes them take care of an egg or doll? Where are these teenagers parents? I do not intend to offend anyone's morals, but I also blame the extreme religious values of the South. There are some cases that abortions should be allowed. Up North we don't have these problems, maybe one pregnancy every 500 students. These children need to be educated, by both their parents and their school system, as well as their church.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Guns off their hands

On Saturday, January 8, 2011, Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, an Arizona State Democrat was shot in the head at an event held outside a grocery store in Tucson, Arizona by gunman Jared Lee Loughner (22) who later opened fire into the crowd killing 6 people and wounding 18 others.  Loughner has had a history of mental instability and was even suspended from Pima Community College because of his erratic behavior; however, he had no problem getting his handgun legally.   Giffords, who is pro-gun and called gun ownership an "Arizona tradition" is now, ironically, a reason for us to enforce stricter gun laws.  Madmen simply should not tote guns.