Skip to main content


Showing posts from February, 2006

Activism - Mrs and Ms are fakes and don't work

Dear Ruplestilt

Thank you for your attention. Most companies I have contacted have already had some form of encouragement to address this issue and send me back a note to say, ‘Already added to list of things our programmers must attend to.’ And I am pleased to report that although at the start of a new year, or after some communication on my part with the various companies, I have occasionally reverted back to Ms, I pop through an email and am returned to my no-reference-to-marital-status status, over and over and over. (I have an infinite amount of patience in this regard.) I have had ongoing communications with several companies, and you have provided the most comprehensive response to my suggestion. Thank you.

Dear Fetsiboomsticks

As the IT manager for CENSORED, the CENSORED call centre has forwarded your communication to me for response. Thank you for your email and address update - your records will be updated accordingly.

Please be assured that your email address will never be …

Should free speech include racist speech? Fine line to incite?

Epsilon, my opinion is - free speech no matter what.

I believe birds of a feather stick together and we can see each others feathers better if they are loud and bright and gleam. So if the Sunday Independent or whatwhat publishes something that I find distasteful, I vote with my feet. If you don’t like the TV programme, turn the TV to another channel, or off. If you don’t like the newspaper, don’t buy it.

In a way I prefer if the racist, fascist pigs should speak their minds, that way debate is stimulated, it gives children the opportunity to see their parents responses, adults another opportunity for debate. Talk, Talk, and more talk. Talk day, talk night.

IT’S THE VIOLENCE THAT IS WRONG, NOT THE TALKING. Focus on where the actual problem lies.

The media are the poor bastards through which we talk, and then we screech at them when they don’t say what we want to say. But for the last 3 billion years they said what we wanted to say, but today NOT. How will they guess what day is what? …

702 discussion of cartoons published about Muslims

Someone sent me this to illustrate what the big hooha is that the Muslims are having because their prophet was depicted pictorially by Danish 'fascist' newspaper insensitive to the consequences of publishing.

Discussion by various representatives on the radio is informative: 1. Defence of republishing picture in local newspapers: Editorial freedom to republish the image but to recontextualise in a more sensitive light - 'This is the image that has caused the problem, you the public can make up your own mind.' 2. Muslim response: No way, you are not Muslim, you have no right, you will not, you will be sued, your editorial rights are moot.

Another response to the publishing of cartoons about Muslims

Comment by Karen Armstrong, a leading British commentator on religious affairs and author of Muhammad: A Biography of the Prophet

Each side needs to appreciate the other's point of view. I think it was criminally irresponsible to publish these cartoons. They have been an absolute gift to the extremists - it shows that the West is incurably Islamophobic. It sends a very bad message.

But, more seriously, it is letting ourselves down. We trumpet abroad about what a compassionate culture we are. But these cartoons depicting Muhammad as a terrorist are utterly inaccurate, feeding into an Islamophobia that has been a noxious element in Western culture since the time of the Crusades. It can only inflame matters at this very crucial juncture of our mutual history.

On the other hand, in a secular Europe, freedom of speech has developed as one of our sacred values. We fought hard for it, but we have to remember it carries responsibilities. For example, do we have a right to say whatever we …


“A young widower, who loved his five year old son very much, was away on business when bandits came who burned down the whole village and took his son away. When the man returned, he saw the ruins and panicked. He took the burnt corpse of an infant to be his son and cried uncontrollably. He organised a cremation ceremony, collected the ashes and put them in a beautiful little bag which he always kept with him.

Soon afterwards, his real son escaped from the bandits and found his way home. He arrived at his father’s new cottage at midnight and knocked at the door. The father, still grieving asked, ‘Who is it?’ The child answered, ‘It is me papa, open the door!’

But in his agitated state of mind, convinced his son was dead, the father thought that some young boy was making fun of him. He shouted: ‘Go away!’ and continued to cry. After some time, the child left. Father and son never saw each other again.”

After this story, the Buddha said, “Sometime, somewhere, you take something to be the t…

Persistence is a key to maintaining friendships - an anecdote

Noma was one of my grandmother’s best friends. I wish I could get to know her again now that I’m an adult, but she died years ago. I loved going to visit Noma in the summer, because her house was near a small lake, where they would take me swimming. Her house was wonderful, too.

It was a glass and cedar contemporary ranch with a sunken living room and a wrap-around deck. The place was buried in thick woods and birds continuously fluttered around her feeders. Noma had short, white hair and wore funky outfits and made her own pottery. I think Noma was married, but I don’t remember ever meeting her husband. She was probably much more interesting and complex than my 10-year-old brain could fathom.

Shortly before my Grandmother died she told me a story about how she and Noma first met. They were on some committee together, and my Grandmother didn’t like her at all because she thought Noma was the kind of woman who didn’t have other women as friends -- just men. Noma caught wind that my Gra…