Politics


Civilized Discussion on Religion & Politics 7

When meeting someone after many years, there aren’t many times I would recommend discussing religion and politics but that was part of a rather pleasant conversation I found myself in recently. My friend’s mother who I possibly had not seen since my high school years was genuinely curious about how I felt about the aforementioned topics but that left me in a curious spot about whether I should say the politically correct answer or go with what I really felt. I decided that since my friend usually has no filter and is often pretty blunt with statements, it would probably make sense to go with the no non-sense, brutally honest approach in hopes of having a genuinely good dialogue… and I’m glad I did.

One of the first things I was asked was what my religion was and subsequently a follow-up on what my thoughts were about how I was treated in the immediate aftermath of 9/11 – much of which I already provided in greater details (September 11th Aftermath – My Story) on how I was treated but can be summarized that no matter how great everyone may be, there are always a few bad apples which you can’t always avoid. As we continued the discussion, we moved onto topics about why groups like al-Qaeda on what I thought about their affiliation with the religion immediately made me think of a reference back to West Wing that I used and which I have linked below:

The conversation did take a turn towards racial profiling and when it may be beneficial for authorities to do their jobs without sacrificing civil liberties or breaking laws. Having agreed on majority of the topics of discussion like the treatment of Muslims after 9/11 and how religious fundamentalists isn’t limited to just Islam, I would say the one thing I did disagree on was the effective use of racial profiling in catching criminals or potential-criminals. One thing that I took away immediately was having to explain the difference between the terms Islam and Muslims which is maybe something I took for granted.

Regardless, it was simply enjoyable to have a civil conversation with people I don’t regularly speak to on topics that have the potential to get very heated and one, that I hope I could have again in the future.


I See Racist People 2

It is sad to see people who have grown up here and gone through the public school system (although that is much to say at times) are still be capable of such statements like which truly shows their ignorance and blatant racist ways. A lot of people I went to high school with know the person a whole lot better than me but just from that statement there, I think I know plenty to decide for myself.

A couple of my better friends are probably the staunchest conservatives I know but you know what, I can respect them because we differ solely on issues that matter and don’t discredit a candidate simply because of his or her name. I have told some of my closest friends that although there is a very high probability that Barack Obama is going to be elected President, the likelihood of him bringing the country together really lies in the hands of those who refuse to see beyond a skin color, beyond a guy with a funny name and refusing to accept that he may be just as much of an American as you are is what is holding this country back.

Let’s not be naive and think just because an African American can reach the highest position in our country that all of a sudden and overnight, racism will disappear. As the economic conditions of our country continue to deteriorate as they most likely will, regardless of who is President, expect to see race rise once again and those looking to prey on the weak blame this solely on a “black” man being not qualified to run a country. There is probably a chance that this will flame the fire even more in those minds of the hateful but this is where an opportunity arises. This country has a far too dark of a history to continue to ignore this issue and deem it to insensitive to brought into the spotlight.

Maybe I was too naive to think this would occur in a community where I went to school but maybe that was asking too much? Maybe this will be an educational experience that those with a different name than your Joe Smith are just as human as you, can realize this “American Dream” that everyone speaks about. To some however, this so called American Dream* comes with a fine print:

*Some restrictions apply. Not available in all states and certainly not to all races especially those with a dangerous sounding name that will threaten the freedom of America.


If Politics Was A Sport…

Got this from a friend earlier today…

Some in the media are declaring the series over because the Boston Celtics have won four of the six games played so far. But I don’t understand why, with a series this close and hotly contested, anyone would want to shut it down before we play a seventh game and have all the results in. As anybody who follows the NBA knows, a seven-game series would be good for the league, and the added competition would make the eventual victor, whomever it might be, a stronger opponent against the Los Angeles Lakers in the Finals….

Yes, Boston has won four games and Detroit only two. But it’s hard to imagine a more arbitrary and undemocratic way to determine this series’s outcome than “games won.” It is, after all, a bedrock value of the game of basketball that all points must be counted. But how can that be the case when every point beyond the winning point is ignored? There are literally dozens of layups, jumpers, free throws, and (yes, even) dunks that our opponents want to say don’t count for anything at all. We call on the NBA to do the right thing and fully count all of the baskets that were made throughout the course of this series.

Once you abandon the artificial four-games-to-two framework that the media has tried to impose on the series, a very different picture emerges, with the Celtics leading by a mere 549 points to 539. Yes that’s right, the margin between the two teams is less than one percent — a tie, for all intents and purposes. This is probably the closest Conference Finals in NBA history, though I will thank you not to check on that.