The Truth Shall Set You Free…It might piss you off first, but it will set you free.

Archive for October, 2010

Besa: A Code of Honor (Albanian Muslims Saved Jews During WWII)

Posted by politicalmonkey2010 on October 23, 2010

Sometimes in the most unlikely places one finds a pearl, in this case it is in a small Jewish congregation in Creve Coeur, Mo.  Temple Emanuel is premiering a groundbreaking exhibit of photos that reveals Albanian Muslims who saved 2,000 Jews during World War II.

It’s a story you’ve likely never heard. It is a story told through the faces of Albanian Muslims who risked their own lives to live by a code of faith and honor called Besa.  Besa is an Albanian word, it is part of Islamic culture and teachings, it is  an ancient code which requires people to endanger their own lives if necessary to save the life of anyone seeking asylum. To this day, Besa is the highest moral law of the region, superseding religious differences, blood feuds, and even tribal traditions.

Of course you won’t find this story on Fox News, in particular the O’Reilly Factor or Glenn Beck, nor I doubt will you find Juan Williams the newest rising star of Fox News covering it, because sadly the truth does not garner ratings or incite.

I found a few videos on You Tube, well worth watching.

Normal Gershman is the photographer for the exhibit.

Stories of Besa

More stories..

Rabbi Justin Kerber of Temple Emmanuel discuss the exhibition

Then we come today’s world…it has all gone so wrong…


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NPR Says Adios to Juan Williams

Posted by politicalmonkey2010 on October 22, 2010

If you have been reading this blog for awhile you are well aware that I am a devoted fan of NPR – because they offer facts, not opinion.  Yes, I think they were perfectly justified in giving Juan the boot, particularly with what was a blatantly Islamaphobic remark on Fox New’s O’Reilly Factor “”Look, Bill, I’m not a bigot. You know the kind of books I’ve written about the civil rights movement in this country. But when I get on the plane, I got to tell you, if I see people who are in Muslim garb and I think, you know, they are identifying themselves first and foremost as Muslims, I get worried. I get nervous.”  (Just for the record Juan, those folks that were responsible for 9/11, they weren’t dressed in “Muslim garb”.)  Given the fact that O’Reilly has caused such a stir earlier on The View in which he directly blamed Muslims for the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks and co-hosts Joy Behar and Whoopi Goldberg walked off the set in the middle of his appearance, he should have been more aware.   In no way does his I’m not a bigot preface let him off the hook that he literally painted an entire ethnic group as terrorist with one broad stroke.  He then went on In the same interview and made reference to a Pakistani Muslim immigrant who, earlier that month, had pleaded guilty to charges that he had tried to plant a car bomb in New York’s Times Square. Said Williams: “He [the would-be car bomber] said the war with Muslims, America’s war is just beginning, first drop of blood. I don’t think there’s any way to get away from these facts.”

Juan has been a panelist on Fox News for three years, and this has without a doubt been a bone of contention.  Fox news has made its mark for fanning the flames.  Part of the whole problem is we have entirely too many “commentary” shows that people believe like gospel truth.  We need more news shows, based in fact.  Don’t tell me your opinion, give me the news and let me form my own opinion.  Like NPR, like Washington Week in Review, like PBS Newshour.   NPR issued a statement praising Williams as a valuable contributor but saying it had given him notice that it is severing his contract. “His remarks on The O’Reilly Factor this past Monday were inconsistent with our editorial standards and practices, and undermined his credibility as a news analyst with NPR.”

Then of course we have those Right Wing Nut Jobs weighing in..Sarah Palin, Newt Gingrich, Erik Cantor – why is it that when Helen Thomas, or  Rahm Emmanuel speak their mind, they should be fired, but not Juan?  A bit of a double standard from the right wing isn’t it?  Or do  they think that we forgot?

This is not Juan’s first rodeo with inappropriate behavior and comments…

At the Washington Post, 50 female employees came forward, some to accuse Williams of verbal sexual harassment, others to press management to punish or fire him. “It pained me to learn during the investigation that I had offended some of you,” wrote Williams in an open letter of apology reported in the Washington Post on November 2, 1991. “I have said so repeatedly in the last few weeks, and repeat here: some of my verbal conduct was wrong, I now know that, and I extend my sincerest apology to those whom I offended. I have committed to Post management, and I commit to you — and to myself — to change my ways.”  In 1998  his book Thurgood Marshall: American Revolutionary discussed unverified rumors of this first African-American Supreme Court Justice’s purported marital infidelity and sexual misconduct.

But don’t cry to hard for Juan, he has landed a job with Fox News.  Let us watch the evolution of Juan Williams on Fox News, I think he is going to give Glenn Beck a run for his money.  This is a dream for the right wing to embrace a “fallen liberal” and watch him flourish under the guiding hand of Faux News.

For the record – I feel uneasy around people dressed like Juan Williams on planes, on earth, wherever…

***UPDATE*** ran across this site of Muslims wearing “things”..


Read Micheal Moore’s take on it http://www.michaelmoore.com/words/mike-friends-blog/juan-williams-right-political-correctness-about-terrorists-must-end-open-letter-juan

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If You Need A Reason to Vote Here It Is..

Posted by politicalmonkey2010 on October 21, 2010

Posted in fox news, Glenn Beck, right wing nut jobs, sarah palin, Tea Party, US Politics | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

Awesome Political Ad – Prop 8

Posted by politicalmonkey2010 on October 21, 2010

I laughed tooooo hard!

Note this was over a year ago..but I just found it, still worth watching


and Fox New’s Take

Posted in religion, right wing nut jobs, Tea Party, US Politics | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Anatomy of Political Mis-Information

Posted by politicalmonkey2010 on October 21, 2010

In case you ever wondered how this stuff morphs….



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God Speed Nadia

Posted by politicalmonkey2010 on October 21, 2010

It is with a heavy heart that I say say goodbye to Nadia.  The world was a better place when she was in it, and her touch will be forever felt.  Be at peace Nadia  you are free.

Don’t Stand at My Grave and Cry

Do not stand at my grave and weep

I am not there
I do not sleep

I am a thousand winds that blow
I am the diamond glints on snow

I am the sunlight on ripened grain
I am the gentle Autumn rain

When you awaken in the morning’s hush
I am the swift uplifting rush of quiet birds

In circled flight
I am the soft stars that shine at night

Do not stand at my grave and cry

I am not there
I did not die

Author Unknown

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Campbell’s Soup and Islamaphobia

Posted by politicalmonkey2010 on October 11, 2010

There’s a title I never thought I would write!  It seems that there is a call for boycotting Campbell’s soup because they have introduced a “Halal” product about a year ago.

So what is halal anyway?  It simply refers to the way in which an animal is slaughtered, just like “kosher” beef is slaughtered in accordance to Jewish law.  Keep in mind not all halal food is kosher and not all kosher food is halal, but they are similiar.When an animal is slaughtered in a halal manner, it means the following:

1.  The animal is offered food and water up until shortly before the slaughter.

2.  The animal is laid on the right side, facing Mecca.

3.  The animals must never see the  knife.

4.  The cut must be such that it is one slice,  generally you will have somebody holding the animal’s head, exposing the neck for a clean cut.

5.  A brief prayer is rendered before the slaughter, it is bismi-llāhi r-raḥmāni r-raḥīm, which simply  means in  the name of God, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

6.  Absolute no dressing out of the animal occurs until after the soul has left, that means that not only has the heart stopped beating, and the blood drained, but there are no muscle ticks.

For all of those right wing nut jobs who like to harp on being accountable, here is the ultimate accountability in a halal slaughter – when you are at the final judgment (yes in Islam there is a final judgment, just like Christianity) you will be asked to recount your actions, and that animal that you slaughtered will come before God and say, yes, this is the person who slaughtered me and he was kind and did his job well.

I grew up in cattle country, and I would highly recommend all those Islamaphobic folks take a tour of any US slaughterhouse, and then witness a halal slaughter.    I promise you you will either become a vegetarian, or you will ask for your meat to be halal.

None of this really should come as a surprise.  I am still mulling over the result of the Pew Poll on religion, which in short says we as Americans are relatively poorly informed not only on Christianity but on other religions.  My gut tells me this is the same caliber  of people who protest mosques, burn Qu’rans and in general find it unpatriotic if you aren’t white, protestant and a gun toting right wing nut job.

Posted in conservative values, islam, religion, right wing nut jobs | Tagged: , , | 2 Comments »

1960’s Politics – John F. Kennedy

Posted by politicalmonkey2010 on October 4, 2010

I was surfing the net looking at political ads, they are slick, well produced, worthy of an Oscar.  Credibility may be lacking, but the zing is there!  I ran across this, John F. Kennedy’s political ad circa 1960 – While I am quite confident that politics were as dirty and underhanded as they are today, it certainly seemed to be a more cordial time, even in the midst of the all the changes the US was going through, there seemed to be a sense of decorum.  We could learn something from history….

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