Wednesday, August 31, 2005

a bit perplexed

As I watch the TV coverage of the Katrina aftermath I feel that things are being severely downplayed. Am I the only one?
When 9/11 occurred our nation was in a state of shock. I don't get that same feeling when I watch the Katrina aftermath news coverage. I don't get that same feeling when I go to work and the recent news out of the south is talked about like a Mondday Night Football game; "Man, did you see that shot of the looters stealing things out of stores all over New Orleans."
The final death toll of the 9/11 incident was 2,752. I just checked and the lead story title is 'New Orleans Mayor Fears Thousands Dead.' That's only in New Orleans. 25,000 refugees from the New Orleans area will be shipped to Houston as they evacuate New Orleans. I would be shocked if there were only 25,000 people stayed behind prior to Katria hitting shore. My point is, the death toll from those that chose to stay behind could be staggering.
A whole city evacuated, yet you can turn to any major TV channel right now (3:00 in the afternoon) and see a soap opera instead of coverage.
Maybe as time passes and bodies are found in attics, garages, pinned under heavy materials under the waters surface, and body count tallies come in we'll be in shock and devastation. I am just disturbed at how most of America seems to be moving on with "business as usual (myself not exempt)." An entire city has been devastated and EVACUATED, and many other towns have been ravaged.
Are we fed a diet so high in reality television that we are looking at this with reality television lenses and reality television hearts?

Monday, August 22, 2005

A New Day?

Much controversy and debate has been circling the past few months as Israel announced that it would be pulling all settlements out of the Gaza strip and a few out of the West Bank, transferring power to the Palestinian Authority. The settlements--which are the result of 1967 war where-by Israeli forces gained control of the West Bank, Gaza Strip, and Golan Hieghts for nieghboring Arab's--have technically been an infrigement of International Law and have been the cause of many Palestianians worries, fearing less autonomy and land for themselves. The settlers on the other hand have heldfast that the land was given them by God, and that they must settle in order to restore the borders of historical Israel.

The Israeli-Palestianian Conflict is a complex and noble one if ever there was. Both groups have been the brunt of a diaspora and historical oppression. Since the creation of Israel, the region has been plaqued by violence and a horrid cycle of revenge and attack resulting in the deaths of thousands of innocent individuals. Yet as this latest intifada cools off and settlements are removed from the Gaza Strip my hopes rise. Despite concerns that the pullout may be taken as a victory for Islamic extremist groups, I view it as mature, bold, and much needed decision by Israel. Long have I been critical towards Sharon and his bulldoze first ask questions later policy towards Palestian, so this move caught me by surprise. Yet as the soveriegn state, I welcome Israel's ability to provide strong leadership, I only hope this sets the tone for the future and instills confidence in Abbas who has spoken widely and positively but failed to muster the tenacity reguired to pull his fellow Palestinians into line.

Saturday, August 06, 2005

Amandla has a Mascot

Bam Bizzle! For those of you out there who don't know yet, Paul B-daddy has a new cat. His parents in their ever continuing tenderness, brought in a stray that was living under a car in his neighborhood. This tough mo-fo though he acclaims to be 10 months appears 10 weeks. However, don't let his size fool you. This guy his packed full of love and has been appropriately named Amandla. For this reason, and just because he is a jazzin dude, I make Amandla the cat the official mascot of Amandla. Take care and pictures of the bloke sometime.