Can you dispute any of these ten points as basic human rights?

1. YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO BE FREE.
2. YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO BE HEALTHY.
3. YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO BE BRILLIANT.
4. YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO BE SAFE.
5. YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO BE LOVED.
6. YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO BE COURAGEOUS.
7. YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO BE ALIVE.
8. YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO BE TRUSTED.
9. YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO BE EDUCATED.
10. YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO KNOW YOUR RIGHTS.

What is your reaction to those ten points?

  1. Is it something like  – “Yes, they all make sense.”
  2. Or is it something like – “No, that’s bullshit.”
  3. Or is it something like – “Hmmm….tell me what the source is first?”

If it is the second one, fine.  Off you go.  You’re welcome to this site, but you probably won’t find anything you want here.

If it’s the third one, fine – here’s the source.

Now you know the source, is your answer 1 or 2?

Just a thought for the day.  Hat-tip to The Edge of Sports podcast.

Sorry we haven’t been posting much lately.  We hope to get back to it soon.  JLP

#IANWAE

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MLK quote gets perfectly applied to #blacklivesmatter but also can be used for other struggles against injustice

In the latest Best of the Left podcast there is a segment taken from Dave Zirin’s “The Edge of Sports” where he deals with the reaction to American football player Colin Kaepernick’s refusal to stand for the US national anthem in support of the #BlackLivesMatter movement.

Zirin uses a quote from Martin Luther King to describe the reaction of several influential people from the sport’s community to the protest, whereby they essentially say “I support the ends but not the means”.

I have almost reached the regrettable conclusion that the negro’s great stumbling block in his stride toward freedom is not the white citizen’s Councillor or Ku Klux Klan-er, but the “white moderate”, who is more devoted to order than to justice, who prefers a negative peace which is the absence of tension to a positive peace which is the presence of justice.

Who constantly says “I agree with you in the goal you seek but I cannot agree with your methods of direct action”.

Who paternalistically believes they can set the timetable for another man’s freedom, who lives by a mythical concept of time. And who constantly advises the negro to wait for a more convenient season.

Personally I have more respect for someone who bravely stands up for what he believes in than I do for someone who blindly stands up for a song and a waving piece of cloth.

But I also believe the quote is significant for wider issues around the world.  Take what we have here in Ireland, like #RepealThe8th #Right2Water and #StopTTIP.  Please understand that I appreciate the many differences between those struggles and those of the African American community in the US.

What I do mean is that such struggles should not be fought against the extremists at the far end of any ideological argument.  It should instead be directed at those in between who stand with their backs to the resistance because while they do appreciate the injustice, they don’t see the point in resisting…at least not right now.  “Maybe that day will come, but it is not today”, is essentially their argument.

They should be shown that not only can it be today, but it can also be done peacefully.  If enough people believe, it can be so.

 

 

Cenk Ungur of @TheYoungTurks puts Tulsa shooting perfectly into #blacklivesmatter context

A while ago I tried to explain #blacklivesmatter with a post of my own.  It’s not easy when you aren’t living in the US and haven’t for a long time, but I wanted to at least try.

But if you really want to have it explained, watch the video below.  If the explanation doesn’t get you, the genuine emotion has to.  If it doesn’t, then I can’t help you any further.

NFL quarterback takes a stand for #blacklivesmatter by not standing for US anthem before game

It is pretty well known that San Francisco is one of, if not the, most liberal cities in the USA.

It is also relatively well known that the NFL’s franchise owners make up arguably the most conservative group in world sport.

So what happens when the two come together?  We may be about to find out.

Democracy Now! has the story

Colin Kaepernick remained seated while his teammates stood for the playing of “The Star-Spangled Banner” ahead of a match against the Green Bay Packers.

In the interest of full disclosure, the 49ers happen to be the author’s favourite football team.  Do I believe this to be an honourable action by Kaepernick?  In sentiment, definitely.  His heart is most certainly in the right place.

“I’ll continue to sit. I’m going to continue to stand with the people that are being oppressed. To me, this is something that has to change. And when there’s significant change and I feel like that flag represents what it’s supposed to represent, and this country is representing people the way that it’s supposed to, I’ll stand.”

Do I think it will actually lead to anything being done about race relations among US police?  To use a football term, it’s probably something of a “Hail Mary pass”.

It will be interesting to see how owners, fans & mainstream media react to this “stance”, especially if he proceeds to carry it through the upcoming season.

Six points on the #blacklivesmatter movement

  1. If you have been using hashtags like #alllivesmatter and #bluelivesmatter recently, you are being stupid.

  2. If you think that my point number 1 above means I believe that all lives don’t matter or that blue lives don’t matter, you are being stupid.
  3. If you think that the way I present my points 1 and 2 above makes me sound unbelievably arrogant and condescending, you’re probably right.
  4. But if you think I care about what I say in point number 3, you’re definitely wrong.
  5. I take the overall theme of the #blacklivesmatter movement to be one of listening.  An entire community feels (rightly so IMO) they are consistently not being heard.  So when they make a statement that obviously means “black lives matter TOO” yet what you hear is “ONLY black lives matter”, all you are doing is proving them to be right.
  6. I believe you have two choices after reading this post – you can either spend time coming up with a sarcastic point number 7 to attack the author, or you can LISTEN.

Black Lives Matter is an ideological and political intervention in a world where Black lives are systematically and intentionally targeted for demise.  It is an affirmation of Black folks’ contributions to this society, our humanity, and our resilience in the face of deadly oppression.