Something to remember

Something to remember. Remember sufferings and madness causing it. Remember that no one is safe when hatred raises its ugly head. Remeber that everyone can turn into a victim, when people around become blind and deaf. Remember that while people around  turn away , you become increasingly small, insignificant, disposable, invisible….

We have survived two major wars during  the  XXth Century and it seems like yesterday. We have piled horrors upon horrors in a short period of time like madmen, like it wasn’t our ownsociety’s fabric we were tearing up, it weren’t our homes crumbling and our loved ones dying. We let ourselves lured by fanatics and populists, we bought their poisonous promisses while they lead us one against the others. Like so many times in  HUMAN history we have found amongst us the ones to be used and abused as scapegoats for all our miseries and failings. We herded them as cattles towards the slaughter houses and turned them into ashes. They were our former neighbors, our former friends, our former loved ones, our former fellow humans…

We as majorities we have chosen some of the minorities and tagged them. We decided that they were less than us. We have decided that they were less than humans. Through this WE became less than humans. We let them be butchered in the name of prejudice; but all that prejudice was and still is OUR sickness. We were carrying this SOCIAL DISEASE and we let them be killed for that.

Almost 70 years ago the madness came to an end. At the trial  some of the surviving victims had the chance to speak out for the first time about all  they’ve put through. For decades the story was told about the rightful sentences given to the perpetrators.  An entire nation was redeemed and the world made amends towards it. But not all the victims got redeemed then. NO. Because prejudice had not died  with the last gunfire. More than 50 years after the Nurnberg Trial a great number of victims and survivors of the Holocaust were still outcasts in their homelands. Politics and prejudice erased them again and criminalised them just like during the war. Once again they were considered less than humans, disposable citizens, criminals.

I am not that shocked  by the fact that  society had been unable to get over of its basic flaws. But I am  apalled and sickened by the thought that those who have suffered side by side with these people, had kept silent and never spoke up publicly about the invisible ones! How was this possible?! How could this happen?! How much sufferance has anyone to endure in order to overcome  prejudice and remain solidary with its fellow humans?!

I am the descendant of one of the victims of the Holocaust and I sincerely believe that my gentle Grandfather would’ve spoken out about Gays, Romas and all the others who until recently were treated as low rank citizens, somebody to be overlooked. These  years and these days monuments were raised in the memory of the forgotten ones. The Gay Holocaust was comemorated  in Germany, Italy  and then in Israel. I feel more at peace now but I am not entirely happy.

There shouldn’t be a different memorial for each category of Holocaust victims; they were ON THE WHOLE victims of the same madness and murderous political vision. They have been annulated  and wiped out for the same reasons, with the same  ease and had been subjected to the same horrors that now we find hard even to recall. NO prejudice should separate the  victims!

Today is a special day. It’s about something to remember.All these humans had been killed for something that wasn’t their choice! They had  been killed after they were tagged. We must never forget them. We must never forget what WE are able to do to one another.

Remember: prejudice has not died. Ugly mother of mindless hatred, she’s still around, thriving on the same ground that made her great and powerful just yesterday. The worshipers of prejudice, the constant gardeners of fear and hatred against diversity are still here,  undermining out humanity whenever we lend them an ear or our trust.

This is a day of remembrance! We shouldn’t turn deaf and blind anymore .  We shouldn’t turn away from sufferance and injustice. We cannot afford the slaughter of the innocents become the trade mark of our history as species.

NEVER AGAIN!RESPECT!

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Cine ingroapa democratia?

O privire sumara asupra economiei si a societatii romanesti dovedeste ca in Romania cine munceste nu are timp sa castige.

Cei mai valorosi fii ai patriei si cele mai vajnice fiice ale sale sunt fie membri ai clasei politice, fie sustinatori ai acesteia, in traditia “minunatului” capitalism de cumetrie din Romania. Pe majoritatea ii poti recunoaste dupa aroganta declaratiilor, dupa zambetul de cotoi satul sau dupa revolta isterica cu care intampina orice intrebare legata de modul in care au dobandit primul milion.

Culoarea politica nu are nici o importanta in acest caz. Interesele sunt de multa vreme transpartinice, cum sunt si apucaturile generate de statutul de “arendasi” ai tarii.  Exista in randul clasei politice o atitudine de dispret fata de populatie greu de disimulat. Indiferent cat de vocal isi clameaza fidelitatea fata de interesele natiunii, mai scapa  cate un porumbel din gura.

Nu pot sa uit tupeul lui Nicolae Vacaroiu care afirma intr-o sedinta de guvern ca “daca ii asfaltezi taranului drumul pana la poarta, te voteaza si nu-i mai trebuie nici mancare”. Aceeasi atitudine batjocoritoare se degaja din epopeea galetilor si pungilor cu alimente din campanile electorale ale tuturor partidelor de la stanga la dreapta si inapoi.

Odata cu venirea la putere a lui Traian Basescu, noi , electoratul am fost “reevaluati”: suntem un popor nerecunoscator si incapabil sa intelegem ca onor Presedintele si guvernele sale ne vor doar binele. Cunoscand versatilitatea lui Traian Basescu care-l ajuta in continuare sa abureasca cu succes cca. 30% din votanti, nu ma surprinde prea mult neobrazarea acestei perspective asupra noastra.

Ce ma surprinde insa in mod neplacut este viteza cu care victoriosul june Premier si-a insusit aceeasi atitudine in mai putin de un an si jumatate. Dupa ce guvernul a redat bugetarilor cei 25% taiati de Traian Basescu cu mana lui Boc, domnul Ponta a intors foaia promisiunilor electorale. Incercand sa traga presul de sub Presedinte, a imbratisat brusc toate proiectele de investitie controversate pe care le dezavuase galagios si a devenit cel mai mare sustinator al acestora. Rezultatul schimbarii la fata a fost un val de proteste in marile orase ale tarii si in localitatile periclitate de proiectele miniere.

Victor Ponta s-a sifonat. S-a iritat si ne-a umplut cu reprosuri si etichete. Din cetateni ingrijorati si revoltati cum ne stiam, am ajuns medievali,eco-terosisti  si subversivi. Am ajuns sa punem in pericol siguranta nationala. Ca sa vezi…

Posturile de televiziune, finantate din surse santajabile s-au pliat pe rand si au ingropat subiectele suparatoare pentru coalitia de guvernare. Acum Premierul isi poate permite sa aleaga subiectele de discutie, sa persifleze altele care sunt incomode, chiar daca ele sunt de o deosebita gravitate la nivelul societatii. Aidoma lui Traian Basescu, Premierul frecventeaza doar televiziunile care-i ridica mingea la fileu.  In felul acesta a murit a patra putere in stat; cainele de paza al democratiei si-a luat lesa.

In timp ce actuala putere a decis sa ignore opinia si ingrijorarile cetatenilor, o alta institutie se apleaca asupra lor si preia initiativa, consolidandu-si pozitia.

Pungestenii sunt decisi sa mearga pana la capat in a se apara, indiferent unde e capatul. Au comemorat taranii cazuti la 1907si victimele colectivizarii fortate din 1965. Preotul ii sustine.

La Rosia Montana preotul ortodox si reprezentantii celorlalte culte ii sustin pe cei care se opun proiectului RMGC.

BOR s-a exprimat in mod deschis impotriva proiectului Rosia Montana si nu a dezavuat nici o clipa prezenta preotilor sai la protestele din diverse zone le tarii.

Biserica,oricare ar fi ea, nu priveste cu ochi buni subminarea si dislocarea comunitatilor pe care le pastoreste. Daca politicienii si-au facut un calcul cand au pompat bani cu nemiluita spre Biserica, s-ar putea sa-i astepte o mare surpriza. Politica Bisericii nu este cea de retragere din teritoriu. Majoritatea proiectelor miniere controversate sunt situate in zone rurale iar subminarea acestor comunitati pericliteaza interesele Bisericii.

Daca Guvernul va continua sa-i calce in picioare pe cetateni, acestia s-ar putea  reorienta spre institutia dispusa sa-i sustina.  Biserica joaca acum la doua capete: ia bani de la clasa politica, santajandu-i in mod indirect cu lasitatea si disperarea lor de a fi realesi. In acelasi timp, Biserica isi extinde influenta asupra enoriasilor sai si se insinueaza tot mai puternic in societate, subminand in mod subtil modernizarea si functionarea  ei democratica.

O societate ale carei institutii fundamentale se afla in vesnica rafuiala (Presedintie-Guvern-Parlament) nu poate functiona in favoarea cetatenilor. Cu atat mai putin poate s-o faca in conditiile in care exista o alta institutie nedeclarata, bazata pe persuasivitate care- si negociaza serviciile la sange. Acest comportament nu i se poate imputa; este vorba aici de efectul lipsei de etica si competenta a clasei politice, de incapacitatea ei de a oferi o perspectiva sustinuta cetatenilor.

Coruptia si populismul reprezentantilor politicului au dus in timp la discreditarea democratiei si a institutiilor statului. Scaderea nivelului de trai, scaderea nivelului de informare si educatie, atomizarea societatii au dus la franarea evolutiei sanatoase, deschise si moderne a Romaniei. Atunci cand, in loc sa-si proiecteze un viitor oamenii se refugiaza in asa-zisele modele traditionale incercand sa refaca o lume care a devenit desueta, avem o mare problema iar drepturile civile sunt in pericol.

Caci nu e suficient ca aceste drepturi sa fie inscrise in legi sau in Constitutie; discreditarea democratiei are ca rezultat direct reaparitia fanatismului religios sau national, discriminarea si abuzarea minoritatilor de orice fel, ignorarea si abandonarea categoriilor sociale vulnerabile.

De aceea, minimalizarea problemelor reale, refuzul dialogului cu cetatenii, ignorarea criticilor aduse activitatii politice  genereaza in societate dezechilibre subtile care prin acumulare si efecte reciproce duc in ultima instanta la subminarea democratiei.

Aroganta si lipsa de talent a Premierului, conjugata cu versatilitatea agresiva a Presedintelui departeaza electoratul de interesul pentru constructia democratica. Lucrand unul impotriva altuia si ambii impotriva natiunii vor reusi, daca ii lasam, sa ne ingroape toate aspiratiile.

 Daca ii lasam….

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Even if ignorance is bliss, the dragon is still out there

I had the chance to be born and raised in a less complicated society.  There was a great respect towards scientific education and religion was kept inside churches and homes. Religious belief was not a norm but it wasn’t forbidden either.

My parents were free thinkers and they held no prejudice against anyone. I have never encountered discrimination or bullying in my life, either against me, or against anybody else around. This wasn’t by far a perfect society but certain aspects of social behavior were missing from the everyday life.

Though homosexuality was outlawed and was considered a health problem, people were not pursued or persecuted, or seldom. Information was scarce, attention and interest in this field almost zero. My basic knowledge came mainly from literature (novels, short stories) and magazines from a neighboring country that was at the time largely opened to a wide range of information.

Since by nature I’m interested in everything concerning human behavior, feelings and diversity, I kept an open mind about gender diversity. Never had a chance to talk about, since the subject was a taboo. Even before I had read about the genetics of gender identity, I knew deep inside that this was not a personal choice and that gay people were just like anybody else. Nothing more, nothing less.

Then the revolution came, along with freedom and democracy, or least it looked like. Religion emerged from its den and claimed a bigger chunk in everyday life…then took over whatever it could, hand in hand with the mediocre politicians ruling the country. As a free thinker, I became for the first time member of a mostly silent minority. Along with religion, prejudice surfaced and the moment somebody spoke out publicly in the name of gay people, I saw the ugly face of bigotry and hate.

This was something I would’ve gladly missed. Tens of years I had been oblivious how full of prejudice my fellow countrymen were. Tens of years I’d seen no such ugliness around me, nor did I suspect that they are capable of it. My faith in humanity and the people around me was deeply affected. It still recovers from the initial blow. Ignorance had been bliss for such a long time.

Well, this is childhood’s end. No more innocence. The moment the truth was revealed, I couldn’t pretend I knew nothing about. I started to read and learn. Now there are days when what I learn about human downsides wear me down and I’m unable to read another paragraph. But I know that the dragon is still out there and it feeds on blissful ignorance. So I take a deep breath and keep on reading, writing and learning.

As long as I had no means of proper information, I had an excuse for my ignorance and naivete. Now I live in a troubled, complicated and not very functional democracy but I have access to proper information. In this case, my ignorance would be a matter of choice. I cannot afford this; people who are hurt and discriminated cannot afford my ignorance. That would only mean that I support their tormenters. I would not.

I would not silently support injustice, discrimination, murder in the name of narrow mindedness and mental comfort of people who are disrespectful towards other’s basic human rights. AWARENESS IS MY REAL CHOICE.

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A letter to India

The 9th  January 2014

To

THE CHIEF JUSTICE OF INDIA

 

Dear Sir,

 

 

My name is Mrs. Brindusa Poenaru and I am addressing You this letter from a far country, Romania/Europe.

I have great respect and admiration towards your country, your nation and your rich and diverse culture. I come from a very different one but we share one basic trait that unites us throughout the world. We are all humans.

We came from many different directions, we walked very different paths, we saw and experienced so many different things in our journey. Yet just as the colors of the rainbow, we ALL have to unite to create the purest light. Nobody can be left out from this unique combination or we’ll be forever left in the dark.

Just like a wise philosopher once said: “The goal of every intelligent being is to reach happiness”. And I’m sure that you know that the best way leading to happiness is LOVE. This is the one and only dream that lies in every human heart. This is the most beautiful connection between all of us, wherever we are.

I have written this letter to express my hope that my words would reach You and that you would reconsider the Supreme Court’s decision about Section 377. My deepest wish is that you get down this Section and stop criminalizing love.

As I wrote a few sentences before, we had come a long way in our common Human History. We live in a century that finally values human life and  individual rights. India has known a huge development and it’s a great country among the others. It was about time to take another step and make justice to some of her citizens that were grossly mistreated during history. In my opinion, the fact that section 377 had been turned down, and then reenacted it is an act of cruelty and disrespect towards those citizens of India who were directly affected.  I am fully aware that there is a lot of misunderstanding about the LGBTQ community but we will never be able to reconcile and surpass misrepresentation if we build walls between us and them.

Despite all reluctance and religious motivations, you have to keep in mind that these people are OUR children, our brothers and sisters, lawful citizens contributing with all their might and talent to the building of the country. They deserve to be treated equally and respectfully simply because they are CITIZENS. If you have concerns about morality, you can support the education and with learned and well informed citizens you won’t need laws to enforce morality. In my opinion, a healthy society is built upon the trust and respect and the free will of its citizens, not on spying on each other. Privacy is an important element of self-respect; please, don’t make “bedroom-laws”. They are meant only to trample on human dignity and I’m sure this is not your goal as an important and respected member of society.

Thank you for your undivided attention.

Sincerely yours

Brindusa Poenaru

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Dear Facebook!

My friend, Facebook, we have a problem and I’d like to sort it out. A few days ago a good friend of mine, a young man whose judgment I trust reported you a page named “Say No to Roma Gypsies”. He reported the title, the content and the graphic symbols of that page as being an example of “hate speech”.

Your swift answer had this conclusion: “We reviewed the page you reported for containing hate speech or symbols and found it doesn’t violate our Community Standards.”

So I’ve decided to look into this myself and I must admit that I am puzzled. I don’t understand what is your problem. Maybe we have reported this page to a computer that has limited understanding of human behavior. If that’s the source of misunderstanding, I suggest that either you refine the skills of your computer or better, you put a human at the end of the line. He would be able to understand us.

You also might have some people looking into these reports with a pencil in the hand, sorting out what is within or outside of your Community Standards. That’s fine but this might prove a difficult job when things are not plain obvious.

Of course, the incriminated page doesn’t display a swastika and doesn’t incite the reader to grill the Romas or Muslims either. They are not that stupid. They have upgraded and refined hate speech and wrapped it up in patriotic discourse.

So in order to find out what’s really wrong on that page you need to read carefully the logo, the materials posted inside and look beyond the words and symbols. Only after you properly understood the intention behind the words you can hit the button.

This page I am talking about is promoting ethnic discrimination, suggesting that the Romas are only beggars and thieves, because of their ethnicity. This is a very popular backwards logic, used by the nationalist extreme right wing. A thief is a thief, no matter what ethnic he belongs to. Ethnicity doesn’t make anybody a criminal. Mr. Zuckerberg should know better from the recent history of his/and my/ancestors what happens when an entire nation is criminalized and then almost wiped out on that ground.

Those people the page is referring to are citizens of the EU so they are entitled to travel around it, including the UK. Though they belong to a specific country, for them the EU is the larger home. You cannot say NO to them because they are Romas since that would be ethnic discrimination. You cannot say No to a foreigner because he’s not an Englishman since that would be xenophobia. You cannot say NO to somebody and rule him out from society because he’s a Muslim, since that would be religious discrimination. You cannot also suggest that if some Muslim religious leaders use hate speech, all Muslims are terrorist wannabes. All these assumptions are discriminating and they are generating/instilling hatred in society towards the members of certain ethnic groups or religious ones. This is HATE SPEECH.

This is what the “Say No to Roma Gypsies” page is about.

Dear Facebook!

Since we are friends, I strongly suggest that you check and upgrade your Community Standards. It badly needs improvement. Times are rapidly changing and you have to keep up with the pace. It’s for a better cause and a better world.

Thank you!

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From the stars above. Chapter28. Happy ending,new beginning

Things worked out perfectly for all of them. Sagitarius lead his people out from the depths of the planet to the light warming the surface. Hand in hand with the humans and other intelligent creatures aboard the ANTARES 4004 they’ve built a new, wonderful world for all of them. They unearthed the starship that brought them there, restarted it and took the first stellar flight.

Kian and Sheera married the same day Antares committed to his love, Andrew.

The two happy couple traveled to the Earth on the ANTARES4004.  Kian and Sheera took the young Night Flyers all around the world where they had met. The four of them took a trip to the planet of Angels and for the first time, the descendants of the Night Flyers returned to their homeland. The planet was beautiful, untouched and…lonely. There was no intelligent creature to love and cherish her; it was Andrew who suggested that they might return and conquer their former home. Kian was elated by the idea. Antares and Sheera shared the enthusiasm. In less than two years, the new settlers were building the first city after more than 500 years. Angels and Night Flyers, hand-in-hand, were rebuilding the planet of their common birth.

 

 

The new world was born out of love and trust.

This was a world that was home for everyone.

They were all ONE. Forever.

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From the stars above. Chapter27.Relieved

Kian was listening to the conversation for some time; he was appalled by the risks this young stranger took to save the life of a so called “enemy’. He felt humbled. Was he such an important person? What has he done to deserve such a sacrifice? He could understand now the anger of Commander Eron; he was deeply concerned for the future of his beloved nephew. Kian took a deep breath and stepped out, next to Antares and Sheera.

-Whatever it would happen you’d never be alone; you are dear to both of us and we’ll be here beside you. About your concerns…our doctor could sort this out, if you agree. I take responsibility for the outcome, whatever might be.

Sheera stood up and put a hand around the Angel’s waist. She smiled encouragingly towards the young Night Flyer.

-Come, Little brother. Let’s see what is bothering you.

The three friends walked together to the medical area. The doctor was helpful and supportive. He scanned carefully the body of the troubled youth and laughed.

-You’re fine, young man. No need to worry; you’re not pregnant but you’re changing. The Power of the Nova has found its way in your body and it’s rebuilding it on a higher level. I’m oblivious about the result of this subtle work but knowing Kian’s…talents I expect some proper surprises about you. I cannot appreciate when would this procedure end but you’re welcome here anytime. I’ll keep an eye on you.

They all joined the doctor in a happy and relieved laughter. Antares jumped and almost knocked off the ceiling. Kian and Sheera caught him, kissed him lovingly and they all left to celebrate the news.

Commander Eron learned all about this at the dinner table; Sheera and Kian invited him to their place to share the good news and finally reconcile the two men.

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