Category Archives: Activism

Search for truth

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a blind man moves
slowly among the thorns-
media rumor mill

Today as I was meditating I thought about the following quote and how it applies to modern life. There have been many times I have read, seen or been told things that were true or from a credible source only to find out that certain details were omitted, added or embellished to create the version of truth to fit the needs of the group trying to persuade or influence me.

I suggest that when one interacts with the media including the Internet that keep the quote in mind and look for the truth behind the illusion.

“Don’t blindly believe what I say. Don’t believe me because others convince you of my words. Don’t believe anything you see, read, or hear from others, whether of authority, religious teachers or texts. Don’t rely on logic alone, nor speculation. Don’t infer or be deceived by appearances.”

“Do not give up your authority and follow blindly the will of others. This way will lead to only delusion.”

“Find out for yourself what is truth, what is real. Discover that there are virtuous things and there are non-virtuous things. Once you have discovered for yourself give up the bad and embrace the good.”

– The Buddha

Work for peace

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A very brave statement. Let us all be so compassionate.

The Jizo Chronicles

Last week, I became a war tax resister. I’ve been thinking about this for a long time, and finally this spring my actions aligned with my intentions and I sent the following letter to the Internal Revenue Service:

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Empowering women and girls

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As the father of two wonderful girls I am always excited to find another way to help empower them and others as well. Today I stumbled across an ebook called “I Am More Than “Just A Girl” written by blogger Impower You. Please take a moment, visit the blog and support the effort. The more we can empower the more society will benefit

Radio host Bryan Fischer dishonors “Medal of Honor”

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As a Veteran I get really upset when people who have no idea what combat is like think they can judge who is a good soldier and who is not. Recently it came to my attention that Bryan Fisher of “Rightly Concerned” a “American Family Association” said this about the “Medal of Honor”

We have feminized (sic) the Medal of Honor. I would suggest our culture has become so feminized (sic) that we have become squeamish at the thought of the valor that is expressed in killing enemy soldiers through acts of bravery.

Rev. Fischer continues saying

So the question is this: when are we going to start awarding the Medal of Honor once again for soldiers who kill people and break things so our families can sleep safely at night? We know instinctively that we should honor courage, but shy away from honoring courage if it results in the taking of life rather than in just the saving of life. So we find it safe to honor those who throw themselves on a grenade to save their buddies.

The soldiers who have been awarded the Medal of Honor were all kick-ass soldiers and I would have been proud to serve with any of them. All but one of the eight, who have been awarded this medal from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, died in the line of duty. Even though I served in the U.S Infantry as a sniper I do not agree with the war or killing but I do support the soldiers and applaud their heroism.

For those who wonder what are the criteria for being awarded the Medal of Honor, (other than killing enemy soldiers as Rev Fischer thinks) the following is the what Authorization 10 U.S.C 6241 says:

The Medal of Honor is Awarded by the President in the name of Congress to members of the naval service who conspicuously distinguish themselves by gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of their lives above and beyond the call of duty.

  • while engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States;
  • while engaged in military operations involving conflict with an opposing foreign force; or
  • while serving with friendly foreign forces engaged in an armed conflict against an opposing armed force in which the United States is not a belligerent party.

Army Specialist Salvatore A. Giunta – Charged the enemy, throwing grenades to rescue an American soldier who was being carried away by insurgents.

Army Staff Sergeant Robert J. Miller – After his patrol was ambushed he charged the enemy, shooting and killing 10 insurgents and calling in enemy position until his radio went silent. The rest of his patrol, 22 soldiers, was able to recover and overrun the enemy position and retrieve Spc Miller who died of his wounds.

Army Staff Sergeant Jared C. Monti – While on a mission his patrol of 16 men was attacked by enemy forces much greater in size. Sgt Monti called in for indirect fire support then engaged the enemy with his rifle and grenade successfully disrupting them while his patrol was able to retreat. Sgt Monti was mortally wounded.

Army Sergeant First Class Paul R. Smith – First Sgt Smith’s unit of 100 men was working on construction when they were attacked by a company sized unit (75-200) of enemy soldiers. First Sgt Smith engaged the enemy first with grenades, anti-tank weapons, then when fearing they would be overrun he manned a .50 caliber machine gun to offer support. He was mortally wounded during this action.

U.S Navy Lt Michael P. Murphy – During an operation in an enemy controlled area Lt Murphy’s team of 4 was discovered and attacked by enemy forces, 30-40. Lt. Murphy encouraged and led his men to attack, the result was numerous enemy casualties. Realizing that if the enemy was given enough time their position would be overrun Lt Murphy left cover to call for assistance. Lt Murphy was successful in getting assistance but died while providing cover for his team.

U.S Marine Corporal Jason L. Dunham – A car approached the checkpoint that Cpl Dunham was manning and an insurgent jumped out of the car and attacked Cpl Dunham and others. The insurgent pulled out and dropped a grenade. Cpl Dunham fell to the ground and covered the grenade with his body and died of his wounds but saved the lives of the numerous civilians, U.S and Iraqi forces.

Army Specialist Ross A. McGinnis – While out on combat operations an enemy combatant threw a grenade into Spc’s McGinnis’ vehicle, without hesitation Spc McGinnis covered the grenade with his body saving the lives of the rest of the squad.

U.S Navy MA2 Michael A. Monsoor – Petty Officer Monsoor’s was on a mission to offer early warning in support of troops moving into the area. While Monsoor’s team was taking fire from both sides of their position, an insurgent threw a grenade that hit Monsoor in the chest and landed at this feet. Petty Officer Monsoor, instead of leaping to safety to save himself, dropped down and covered the grenade sacrificing his life for the rest of the team.

According to the logic of Rev Fischer we should applaud bullies, terrorists, misbehaving children, domestic violence and anyone else who hurts others, break things (like the budget) and does not value life. Rev Fischer is really generating lots of negative karma!

There is one bit of sanity on Rev Fischer’s blog, THE RESPONSES! To them and all who think like them Thank you.

sources:
http://www.defense.gov/home/features/2010/1110_moh/
http://usmilitary.about.com/library/milinfo/navawards/blmoh.htm
http://www.jasonsmemorial.org/about.html

Sen Bernie Sanders says GOP plan is “Totally absurd”

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I think that Sen Sanders is one of our legislators who is actually saying it like it is. Senator Reid, President Obama and the rest of the Democratic Party need to stand up to the Tealiban. I thought this country had a policy of not negotiating with terrorists! That is exactly what Sen Boehner and the Tealiban act like. They are holding our Country hostage, in 2012 “We the People” will take charge and vote them out.

A letter to American Protesters from a Aussie Conservative.

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Fellow Activists,

What follows is a letter from a person on FaceBook. After you have read it you might want to contact him at his FB_Page. I thank him for telling me what others think of our actions. It is obvious that our voices are being heard so keep up that great work.

Dear Protesters,

your thinly veiled disguise as political motivationists is a blatant sham, made evident by your consistent use of force, blatant and unmitigated destruction of property and vandalism, and almost total ignorance of the issues typically at hand. You are an utter disgrace to both the concept of protest and the country you inhabit.   It becomes very clear when the issue you feign interest in falls by the wayside to smashing up banks and other representations of “The institution”.  It is there that all of your supposed interest in “The facts” and “The issues” drop like the proverbial sheet over the eyes, revealing your true nature.  Middle class, idiot youth whose only wish is to throw a brick or two, only to be seen doing so and for those onlookers think you stand for something.  The irony is, you stand for nothing, and possibly never have.  You need to be well read and intelligent to stand for something.  You are neither.  You want all the contention and attention, without doing the hard work and finding out what the fuck you are talking about.  You don’t read books, you don’t investigate claims, you hear one hippie say “The man is bad, man” and that’s all you need to hear.  To steal and slightly modify a line from the film “Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang”, do you know what you’d see if you were to look up ‘cretin’ in the dictionary?  The definition of the word ‘cretin’, which you fucking are.

By all rights you should be made to clean up every inch of paint, pay for all costs to windows smashed and cars scratched, and then have the actual shit beaten out of you. Don’t even dare pretend you have some moral high ground, as your compass on morality has been due south since the early 90’s.  You are merely a new face for anarchism, only with added naivety.  I hope the police smack you about as harshly as they’ve done to the people who didn’t deserve it, back when protest was actually a method of free speech and stood for something.  It’s possibly the only way cowards like you will get the fucking message.

Sincerely,

Dave R Gallacher.

PBS’s Mr. Rogers speaks with compassion to Senate.

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In 1969, Mr. Rogers appeared before the United States Senate Subcommittee on Communications. He spoke in defense of funding for PBS and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, in response to significant proposed cuts by President Nixon. Where is the next Mr. Rogers? Would Senator Boehner and others even listen to him now? Mr. Rogers speaks with such love and kindness in his delivery that during his speech the tone of the senate changes from one of anger to a tone of understanding and willingness to listen. I urge everyone to speak up, ask Congress the Senate and the President to listen to “We the People” with an open heart.

Full Speech from Jobs with Justice and US UnCut Rally with Montage.

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April’s “First Friday” Jobs with Justice and US UnCut Video

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Video of the Jobs with Justice and US UnCut “First Friday” There are four speakers but the video is only 3 minutes. Take those few minutes to learn about Jobs with Justice and US Uncut. I start at 1:30 into it.

US UnCut Chicago’s Bank of America on April 2nd Photo’s

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Today US UnCut Chicago went to voice its displeasure with Bank of America the tax dodgers. Next week we will team up with AFL-CIO, Jobs With Justice for a nationwide protest. In Chicago, statewide events and mobilizations will culminate in a “We Are One” rally on **Saturday, April 9th at 1 PM in Daley Plaza, 118 N. Clark St.

Please plan to join this rally with “thousands” of your brothers and sisters from community and labor organizations.*

The Illinois AFL-CIO and the Chicago Federation and allies across the state will be gathering for this statewide massive rally in support of workers and workers’ rights! Following the events in Madison and in response to copycat legislation being introduced in other states, we are mobilizing to let our elected officials know that here in Illinois support workers’ rights and organized labor!

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