Hand written letters from climate scientists – How they feel about #globalwarming http://ow.ly/ANEPg
I found this draft in my WordPress dashboard from January 2012. I don’t know why I never published it. It was finished, except perhaps a few tweaks for grammar and spelling, but for the most part complete. What I find most interesting is that it’s more relevant today than it was back then. We’ve come a long way, but our work is far from done.
January 31, 2012
When I think about being a westerner, I think about having certain freedoms. Having traveled to and lived in the east, specifically Muslim countries, I particularly appreciate that I was raised with a privilege that many women don’t have in other countries, freedom.
There’s a lot of hoopla lately about censorship of the internet, privacy acts and democratic rights to peacefully protest. I’ve been paying close attention not only to my corner of the Universe but to the world in general and I’m a bit disturbed by what’s going on. A general movement towards the erosion of our freedoms seems to be taking place.
I wouldn’t believe it if it wasn’t happening to me personally or if I hadn’t witnessed first hand some pretty weird shit. I know I just used a cuss word in my blog and I rarely do that (actually never) but I wanted to get your attention. I’m sure you’ll agree that there’s a lot going on in the way of people-powered change this past year.
Political upheavals, mass occupations, record numbers of signatures on petitions and generous support of humanitarian causes have been front and center both in the mainstream media and our private social networks. I spend 2-3 times more reading and sharing information than I did last year. My social reach has increased and my Klout score has rapidly risen.
Why? Possibly because besides being fed-up, people are afraid. Shit’s going on and we don’t like it. (there I go again with the cussing) We want change. When we discover something that smells rotten, we share it with our friends, and they share it with their friends, and so on and so on.
I no longer think of myself as an individual; as a woman born in the west. I think of myself as part of a greater whole, part of the solution, part of the mass. My horizons have broadened and my connection to my fellow beings has strengthened. Through internet and on the street, I am joined in solidarity. I am no longer alone in my struggles for justice. My posse is behind me, we shout in unison at injustices.
The Big Boys have noticed that we’re stepping up and speaking out… and guess what? They’re starting to play even dirtier. Manipulating government, lobbying for stricter controls, arresting peaceful protesters, suing whistle-blowers, launching smear campaigns and producing anti-truth propaganda… They have deep pockets and will stop at nothing to protect their interests.
Who are THEY? The greedy corporations, corrupt politicians, CEO’s with carbon footprints big enough to stamp out us little guys. And they are doing just that… and they will continue to do so for as long as they can get away with it.
So what are WE supposed to do about it? How do we protect our rights, salvage our crumbling democracy and protect our precious wilderness and resources? We do exactly what we’re already doing. We stand up, speak out, sign petitions, write letters, sit-down (or sit-in) for those who can’t and blow whistles at those who violate us.
Who are We?
Well first off, what we’re NOT…
- Radical Ideologists
- Wing Nuts
- Hippies or Homeless
We ARE citizens of the world. Global ambassadors of humanity and preservers of the planet. We are proud and strong. We are determined and steadfast. We are NOT giving up.
WE ARE THE 99% and SO MUCH MORE!
Be the kind of person who significantly and positivly impacts others ~ Noni
We’ve all had people in our past who were instrumental in shaping our lives. A teacher, scout leader, neighbour, clergy… or in my case, my first real boss. While most of my friends were working for a buck twenty five an hour at the skating rink or the ice cream parlor or flipping burgers, I was learning how to run a business, (Radio Shack) from top to bottom. And, I was getting paid $5 per hour. (Standard was less than $2/hr for most teens then)
It was a dream job for an over achiever like me. I played with CB radios, sold stereos, learned how to build electronic stuff, balanced the register and maintained the inventories. When a customer demanded to speak to the manager, we were to tell them that in his (Herman Gerrits) absence, we were his replacements. He handed me the keys and asked me to close on Friday night, do the bank deposit, and open again Saturday morning. I think we got extra hours because Herman was pushing us towards excellence.
I never questioned my abilities because he never showed any doubt in them. He was matter of fact when he delegated duties. I look back now and realize he had a lot of faith in us. I have taken those experiences and built a work ethic that has set me apart from others in my field.
Sadly Herman Gerrits passed away on Mothers Day this year. I had lost contact with him over the years but thankfully had reconnected via Facebook. I’m glad I had the opportunity to thank him and share with him my experiences over the 30+ years that had flown by since our days back at the Shack.
He will be missed, but in every project I do, there’s a little bit of Herman… the dedication, enthusiasm and confidence I have today is greatly due to his guidance and encouragement.
If you’re in a position to mentor or lead young people, give them the benefit of the doubt… expect greatness from them and challenge them to push past their comfort levels and have fun! Herman always loved to have fun!
Originally posted on The Dish:
What is one to make of the fact that the deputy speaker of the Knesset has called for ethnic cleansing in Gaza?
He’s not an obscure blogger for the Times of Israel. He is a luminary of the Likud – a man who got 23 percent of the vote in a contest for the Likud Party leadership. He was appointed to his current high position by Benjamin Netanyahu. And this is his proposal for Gaza:
a) The IDF [Israeli army] shall designate certain open areas on the Sinai border, adjacent to the sea, in which the civilian population will be concentrated, far from the built-up areas that are used for launches and tunneling. In these areas, tent encampments will be established, until relevant emigration destinations are determined. The supply of electricity and water to the formerly populated areas will be disconnected.
b) The formerly populated areas will be shelled…
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“I #StandWithJada #jadacounterpose – Brave 16-year-old shares story after photos of drugged rape went viral.” http://feministing.com/2014/07/10/stand-with-jada/
Powerful images of tragic conditions. In my travels I have witnessed such oppression. Thanks to Lisa Kristine for capturing these stunning photos of modern day slavery. Be sure to watch the Ted Talk videos for an in depth look at some of these atrocities.
Originally posted on ideas.ted.com:
Even though many of us likely imagine that slavery is a relic of the ancient past, the practice is alive and well. Since 2009, photographer Lisa Kristine has been documenting those caught up in the barbaric trade. Her images are shocking, powerful, in-your-face. Yet they are also dignified portraits of those with no choice. “No matter how dire, how hard their experience of life has been because of their suffering as a slave, these people still have dignity, sensitivity, humanness and beauty,” she said on the phone from her home in California, shortly before another trip saw her head off to southeast Asia. “These images are not intended to be spectacles of horror; they’re intended to engage people in connecting so we realize we’re all brothers and sisters.” Here, take a look at 17 of Kristine’s astonishingly powerful photographs.
Here, watch Lisa Kristine’s TED Talk, Photos that bear witness to modern slavery — and three other TED Talks that…
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A young woman went to her grandmother and told her about her life and how things were so hard for her. She did not know how she was going to make it and wanted to give up. She was tired of fighting and struggling. It seemed as one problem was solved a new one arose.
Her grandmother took her to the kitchen. She filled three pots with water. In the first, she placed carrots, in the second she placed eggs and the last she placed ground coffee beans. She let them sit and boil without saying a word.
In about twenty minutes she turned off the burners. She fished the carrots out and placed them in a bowl. She pulled the eggs out and placed them in a bowl. Then she ladled the coffee out and placed it in a bowl. Turning to her granddaughter, she asked, “Tell me what do you see?”
“Carrots, eggs, and coffee,” she replied.
She brought her closer and asked her to feel the carrots. She did and noted that they got soft.She then asked her to take an egg and break it.
After pulling off the shell, she observed the hard-boiled egg.
Finally, she asked her to sip the coffee. The granddaughter smiled, as she tasted its rich aroma. The granddaughter then asked. “What’s the point,grandmother?”
Her grandmother explained that each of these objects had faced the same adversity–boiling water–but each reacted differently.
The carrot went in strong, hard and unrelenting. However after being subjected to the boiling water, it softened and became weak. The egg had been fragile. Its thin outer shell had protected its liquid interior. But, after sitting through the boiling water, its inside became hardened.
The ground coffee beans were unique, however. After they were in the boiling water they had changed the water.
“Which are you?” she asked her granddaughter.
“When adversity knocks on your door, how do you respond? Are you a carrot, an egg, or a coffee bean?”
Think of this: Which am I?
Am I the carrot that seems strong, but with pain and adversity, do I wilt and become soft and lose my strength?
Am I the egg that starts with a malleable heart, but changes with the heat? Did I have a fluid spirit, but after a death, a breakup, a financial hardship or some other trial, have I become hardened and stiff?
Does my shell look the same, but on the inside am I bitter and tough with a stiff spirit and a hardened heart?
Or am I like the coffee bean? The bean actually changes the hot water, the very circumstance that brings the pain. When the water gets hot, it releases the fragrance and flavor. If you are like the bean, when things are at their worst, you get better and change the situation around you.
When the hours are the darkest and trials are their greatest do you elevate to another level?
Did you ever play this game when you were younger? All the kids on my block would gather in the empty lot and we’d play Red Rover Red Rover, Dodge Ball and Red Light Green Light.
Here’s how it goes: One person is “It” They stand a determined distance (20, 50, …however much space available) away from the others players who stand side by side in a line. The person who is “It” then turns their back to them and calls out Greenlight, GO… Go…. Go….and when they feel ready they shout, STOP! The point is to catch the other players moving because while the “It” player has their back turned, the other players quickly try to sneak up on them. But, they must freeze when STOP is called.
Players who are seen moving are eliminated from the round of play. (or they go back to the starting line and try to sneak up again) The object for the advancing players is to try to reach the player calling Go, go, stop without being caught moving. If they manage to “TAG” the leader they take a turn as “It” It’s a fun game and one I remember fondly. Of course there were always disputes about whether someone was actually seen moving… or the person calling being accused of turning before calling STOP but for the most part we just played and had fun.
I was recently reminded of this game while working on a project to bring awareness about global warming.
We’re calling the campaign STOP. Basically, while we’ve all had our backs turned, global warming has caught up on us. There are many who will argue that it is just the natural cycle of the earth. But, it’s not. Global warming is real and it’s sneaking up behind us. The longer we turn our back, the closer it gets. What are the challenges we face today?
Economic Shock, Peak Oil, Manufacturing, Food Scarcity, Pollution and Overpopulation… are 6 categories which are forefront and relevant today. On his website, Ingienous.com - James Gien Varney Wong has collected and curated an abundance of data, solutions, support materials, videos and articles to drive home the urgency of our current situation.
But knowing we’re in trouble isn’t enough. It’s time to act. So, we’re busy gathering experts and concerned citizens to join our efforts to STOP the damages being inflicted on mother earth. We hope that through a concentrated effort and with international collaboration of everyone (yes, EVERYONE) we can find solutions to our current dire circumstance. Some say it’s too late, that we’ve already passed the point of no return… but I prefer to believe that somewhere in this world there is a person capable of envisioning a solution to clean and heal our planet. If we all focus our energies on that outcome, perhaps we have a chance. Collectively, we can STOP the destruction of humanity, ready…? Let’s GO!!!