Thursday, April 22, 2010

When are the Rights too much of a right?

I am all for rights. Free speech, freedom to associate, freedom freedom freedom! I like that. I like the ideal of it, but well, not the practice of it. I am sure that the tea party, the radicals, the liberals, all have their say in politics. However, there is such thing as “abusive of rights”. Personally I would draw the line at wishing the president’s death. Think I am pulling this off my air-brain, here is the site. Really? The excuse of those who join is that this is a joke, and that they have the freedom to say what they want. Is it just me, or is this not remotely funny!
I admit, this is coming from a selfish concern. I mean, I do care about what happens to Obama, but a much bigger issue, I simply do not want somewhere down the road someone to feel that it is right to wish my death just because of my opinions. No thank you….I do not fancy the idea of losing my life for my opinions. I like my life.
I have been raising this question since I started on this political field: Where has history shown that one man can change a nation? Forget all these “emperors” and Kings, and Hitler. They had a lot of help, to bring about the “good”(debatable) or “bad” change. Yes, Hitler might have been the man on the front, but behind him were Nazis...Queen Elizabeth might have been a virgin queen, but she had enough counselors and army to change history.
So what makes Obama different? First of all, he is a MAN, limited and not all powerful. Now if he could move mountains, split the seas into half, drain the oceans, command giants etc…there would be some hope. Unfortunately, this kind of power exist only in Greek Mythologies. Obama is not Zeus, nor is he Jason with the Argonauts, for Americans can never be as silent and obedient as the Argonauts.
Therefore, since Obama is not Zeus, nor Jesus, we can only hope that he does his best. There has never been one man who can change a nation in a year, not even four years for that matter. It has taken more than four years to bring about the mess, and it would take double the time to clean the mess out. Point of disclaimer: Obama never promised to clean up the mess in a year, nor four. He said it would take time and hard work. I gues people forget that part of the conversation.
There is a lesson to learn. We cannot assume that Obama is some kind of a god who would save the world from their problem. He might not be perfect... Infact, he is not perfect, but people joining groups wishing him to die is a bit extreme.- scratch that, it is ignorant, uncalled for and shows a level of close-mindedness that has caused a lot of problems in the world. They say that those who ignore history are bound to repeat it….seems like the statement is right. For we see history repeating itself and the only word I can think of is – SCARY!

Thursday, April 01, 2010

The Politics of Food.....

Food Inc. has become the most popular film as far as food is concerned. There have been others, but I have not seen any documentary that has caused some upheaval. The film industry has always benefited from a dependency on the effectiveness of media. and I am seeing that happening as I listen to friends freak out about their food. There are undoubtedly other films that have been made telling the public that if you eat this and that, you will die. The good news, we are all destined to face that particular fate-death.
The way I view this whole situation, is the same way I view the big vs small government. The two are going to kick each other, until one of them wins. Everyone has an opinion. If there is anything controversial, there will be vast opinions.
Now if I wanted to have my voice heard, and get more people to buy my "organic" food, I would start by getting a socially conscious director. Aka Robert Kenner. I have nothing against the man, he makes good films, its just that, I doubt that the world needs another Michael Moore.

I have recently discovered my own amazement at people who are willing to change their lifestyles based on films and books. Before I get myself into too much hot water, let me state that I do admire these people...if for nothing else they put a lot of effort to make those changes. Additionally, I am a supporter of health, and anyone who seeks to be healthy is golden in my book. I think that total well being ie spiritually, mentally, physically, environmentally etc is important and for people to be truly happy, they have to achieve health in all those areas. Not everyone would agree with this, but to each his own.
My puzzlement has come from getting to a place where people have a choice of whether they can eat meat or not. Organic or not. I LOVE meat. Friends and family know of this fact, and maybe tease me a bit too much. But I have balanced that with a good dose of vegetables.
Anyways, what gets to me mostly is the the judgment that come along with the pursuit of vegetarianism. To be fair, these judgments are passed on without one being aware of it.
My first irk moment, is when I am being told the reasons why I should become a vegetarian. I am sure you've heard the classic one: Our bodies were not meant to consume meat. Now, I am a history junkie, so naturally, I want to know how it is that our bodies were not meant to consume come history shows man from the earliest times eating meat. I mean, these people were hunters and gatherers. and they ate ALOT of meat, and surprisingly they did not kee over and die. So forget all that old rubbish, people are sophisticated and need to improve themselves, and since they are better off...No Meat.
My other favorite argument, "We are the only animals that eat the product of the other animals".
First of all, it is offensive for those of us who enjoy chicken, cheese, milk, the goodness of desserts and the occasional steak. You might wander why it might be offensive....Well think about for a minute, think about it for a minute. You are indirectly telling those that are eating chemically induced muscled chicken that they are defiling their bodies. Second, that scientific notion that we are animals has ruined people really. Unless I am off this one, not very many people will enjoy being compared to a chimpanzee, or a squirrel. Thirdly, we (if we are animals) are not the only ones eating other animals or their by-product....Lions, tigers, bears oh my! I am sure if you walked over to any of these animals, they will gladly use you as an experiment to see if they liked eating other animals' by-products. But don't take my word for it.
It is good to aspire to be healthy, but we are looking for a BALANCE. Eliminating food groups from your diet, not so smart. Although again, that is purely a matter of opinion.
But lets go back to the original topic...FOOD INC.
I would like to have this film shown anywhere else but America. The difference between the West and the rest of the world is that the media has ALOT of influence on people's lifestyle. But again, I am skeptical of a lot of things. I keep imagining the faces of Europeans who are being told that they should give up their cheese because it is a by-product of another animal, or give up their steak and poulet. Oh and the Africans who can barely afford food, being told that they can't have the food they barely get because it is not organic. They would look at it exactly the same way I look at it...BONKERS!
Now referencing to a blog I wrote a while back on organic food trending, organic food is not a new thing. Africans have been doing it for a long time. But the politics and economic demands of the west dictated that subsidies become the norm of agricultural production. Therefore, this film is not a new revelation, but it reveals a deep seated struggle between government and small scale farmers.
To take such a film seriously and life changing, is like watching a Michael Moore film and taking it as the political gospel and basing one's lifestyle and beliefs on the writings of Ann Coulter or the ramblings of Rush Limbaugh. Being open minded is good, wanting to always improve one-self is an admirable goal. But changing a lifestyle all because food Inc. says so, or some "brilliant" writer says so is not rational nor smart. Like most of everything else in life- take it with a grain of salt.