Friday, December 12, 2014

The New Social Movement?

The post-Garner/Staten Island protests continue, not just in the US but around the world. People who are/will be potentially affected by today's police brutality, as well as the supporters of those oppressed by police brutality, are coming forward to protest. I like this action, and I hope it continues for as long as it takes to create action and new policy. But in order to be an effective social movement, it must have a clear set of goals and objectives. The strategies used must be for those goals and objectives. Each win must lead to new movements towards reaching the ultimate goal. We cannot stop here--we must alter existing power relationships in this society.

Wednesday, December 03, 2014

RIP Ms. Tugce Albayrak

Germany mourns a true hero today. Ms. Tugce Albayrak, a 23-year-old woman, died earlier this week after she was beaten by a man she had just stood up to earlier for harassing two teen girls. Her story is important to know. Her courage stands out, and the potential sexism and racism in the assault against her says much about how far Germany needs to go as well when it comes to dealing with diversity in its society.

In American society, the great divide is one of race. We are perhaps one of the only western countries that has this racial divide. The rest of the west is divided by ethnicity. Germany has a long history of prejudice and discrimination against its Turkish community. Only in the recent past (2000) did Germany "soften" its laws to allow children born in Germany of Turkish parents to become German citizens (in a reverse sort of way, that is what the Right-Wing wants to see happen in the US--not allow citizenship to children born in the US of non-citizen parents). Germany, like the US, has a long way to go to fully incorporating its minority into its society. With a small population (only 3-4% of the total population), the German-Turks have a long battle ahead of them.

I admire the courage of Ms. Albayrak. Her actions, though, should not have cost her her life. 

Tuesday, December 02, 2014

Post-Ferguson Analysis--Rebuild Impoverished Communities

Again, there is nothing "new" in this analysis by the Economist. It is so "simple" as well to many on the sidelines. Yet, if we discover the forces that provide the barriers to community redevelopment, then we truly discover those who want to maintain poverty and division for their own profit-motivated purposes. I want to help those who live in poverty to rebuild their communities. Want to join me?