civil rights

All posts tagged civil rights

Hand in hand

Published May 29, 2011 by Michael C Leeson

“My father always used to say; don’t raise your voice, improve your argument” ~ Desmond Tutu

Why Gay Rights and the Greater Progressive Agenda Go Hand in Hand

Posted May 25th, 2011 by Evan Hurst @truthwinsout

No matter the brand, mainstream or main street politics does not deliver a truly progressive politics and any advances are limited. My argument if you are to advance Gay rights then it is by looking to Green politics in its embrace of universal diversity in moving forward. The article that inspired me provides a relatively interesting argument but is confusing in comparing and contrasting two conservative political philosophies. While I may or may not agree with the key points, it is nonsense to pretend that there is a difference between the two. Liberalism and Conservativism by their very nature are both cheeks of the same arsehole; in Australia, this is more evident.

 The Rainbow Nation is socially and politically progressive because traditional or conservative institutions question our very existence in taking every step possible to marginalise us. The idea of gay conservatives seems to be counterintuitive, when our culture stands in stark opposition to the worldview of conservatives.

This is where I become confused what is the point of argument here, as any political theory is a broad church of thought. Conservatives have a well-proven economic theory and often Liberals might be socially progressive while holding a conservative economic position. If you are talking economics, all mainstream politics worship capitalism on both sides of the aisle. If you are talking social then mainstream politics tends to sit somewhere around the centre of the political spectrum this is where you find legislation like DOMA, and  DADT  the right to be treated as an equal citizen is traded for maintaining the lie of the status quo. Please note both these pieces of legislation where signed off on during the Clinton Presidency. A social centralist and economic conservative from a supposedly Liberal-progressive party.

Amanda Marcotte  in tying together all the different arms of liberalism

Economic justice This is labour movements, anti-poverty initiatives, fair taxation, health care reform, social services, government that is functional, etc. Anything that helps secure the middle class, bolsters the economy, and lifts people out of poverty.

  • Strange proposition the example is a real ice cream sundae, socialist foundations with a liberal topping of no tax reform and a middle class cherry on top. Our lot is not with the middle class but the working/poor, to achieve true economic justice we need to seek tax reform. So those who can pay their share rather than gorging themselves on the tax returns of the worker.

Social justice. Feminism, anti-racism, gay rights, anti-colonialism, things like that—anything that divides people against each other on the basis of identity hierarchies.

  • The underpinning principle is fair however, poorly articulated the example, social justice is about social equity or fairness.

Environmentalism and rationalism. Preserving the planet, promoting science, using the now to work towards a better tomorrow

  • It is about sustainability, risk management and the application of the sciences to keep our home Earth viable in the face of rabid capitalism, which seeks profit for its own sake. Many philosophical perspectives and discourses go some way to explaining the interconnectedness of life including green politics, socialism and Black Feminism but neither Liberalism nor Conservatism.

Insightful

This seems like a good time to point out that gay conservatives tend to be upper-middle class white men, or those who dream of one day being so, and are willing to overlook where they actually are in service of who they might be, maybe one day, if things go well for them.

  • Here the author is talking about class and class conflict, where gay conservatives as members of an elite sell their cultural identity for perceived personal gain. This situation may lead to the individual being conflicted between their individualism and cultural root.

The Rainbow Nations rights might go hand in hand with a progressive politic however, can mainstream parties really deliver anything but a centralist agenda because of them trading off justice for maintaining their privilege.

Australia

Australia has an atheist unmarried woman PM who comes from a left- faction of her supposedly socially progressive party the contradiction lies in

Her defence of the Marriage Act 1961 as amended by  Marriage Amendment Act 2004 in which marriage not previously defined is stated as being between a man and woman. Hence, she is denying marriage equality in any form to same-sex couples for an institution she does not believe in herself.

Her support of rebranding and extension of  Northern Territory National Emergency Response or Intervention a package of changes to welfare provision, law enforcement, land tenure and other measures including exemption of NTI under the Racial Discrimination Act 1975 (Cth)

Vote Radical not Progressive

The Rainbow Nation has no friends in mainstream political parties they are more interested in maintaining their privileged position or attaining a privileged position. .It is not our rights they campaign their aim to appeal to the majority with pie in the sky fairytales. Until we stand up and demand our rights by holding these politicians to account they will sit on their laurels and fat bank accounts believing they do not have to answer for their words and deeds.

Stop being nice become politically active

Reject the rhetoric of politicians filled with good intentions, hot air and bullshit

It is the 21st century it is now or now

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We are many but We must act as one

Published May 16, 2011 by Michael C Leeson

The reality of the Rainbow Nation

The B of LGBT

The B in LGBT is a blog entry by @tcwaters reflecting on a story about perceived biases against people who identify as bisexual titled Lady Gaga Is Not an Ally to Our Community on The Bilerico Project. @tcwaters does not deny that people who identify as bisexual are not members of our community it just he has never thought about it previously until he read the Bilerico Project article. The author makes two interesting observations that Lesbian and Gay men may or may not really consider the bisexual experience and that we are not really one big homogenous “community.

The Personal

I use many different labels to define my identity including Queer, Gay & Bisexual but never heterosexual discounting it as a nonsense. In my early teens, I often thought of myself as bisexual, however, I could not say that I really was but it gave me comfort. Therefore, I can comfortably say that bisexuality is no alien concept to me it is a reality that your love is not limited by arbitrary gender divisions.

The Rainbow Nation

The dream, that one day the diverse communities of the Rainbow Nation will sit down together in an open and frank conversation to address strategically the discrimination we all experience. In a hostile heteronormative world, even with all the advances over time we still fight everyday to defend our right to be who we are. Our greatest barrier it seems is the lack of leadership to breach our internal biases, which see us discriminate against our own. This situation sees us construct, maintain, and reinforce politically convenient divisions, which in turn perpetuate the sameness that imprisons us. We like other marginalised people sit on the back stoop of the Master’s mansion fighting over scraps from his trashcan while trying not to be shot.

The greatest threat to our rights is ourselves

Only United shall we overcome

Nakba 2011

Published May 16, 2011 by Michael C Leeson

Violence erupts on Israel’s borders (31/05/11)

Violence erupted on Israel’s borders with Syria, Lebanon and Gaza on Sunday, leaving at least eight dead and dozens wounded, as Palestinians marked what they term “the catastrophe” of Israel’s founding in 1948. (ABC News Aust)

Israel seemingly has become the paranoid bully of the region today being Nakba Day it has launched a violent attack on its neighbours. This in is in no way an isolated event but another episode in an active long-term political and military campaign by Israel to neutralise any perceived Palestinian and Arab threats to its sovereignty. My thesis in a post-WWII the world seeming racked by guilt because of its inaction over Nazi Germany’sFinal Solution’ the Allies  enabled the establishment of Israel. This has effectively seen the destruction of Palestine evident in the Nakba & other regular violent disputes between the Palestinian peoples and the State of Israel. Israel has the seeming universal backing of The West in its ongoing campaign to establish and maintain its legitimacy.

It is time for the world to take this bully to task and apply the wisdom of Solomon by dividing the land equally between the disputing parties.

I support the right of both these nations to exist as equals among other countries of the world

Bullying

Published October 5, 2010 by Michael C Leeson

The recent suicide related deaths of five teens in the US supposedly related to homophobic schoolyard bullying has wiped up a bit of a storm. In no way does this commentary seek to minimalize the human tragedy of suicide and especially that involving children for their family and the community. Rather on these occasions a gaggle of media personalities rush out to tell their story ably aided by mainstream media. Being a cynical old bastard, I tend to take these biographies with a shovel of salt with most of these people having not seen a schoolyard for quite a while. Homophobic bullying affects all children it controls their behaviour to ensure compliance with a limited view of gender identity that needs challenging. Especially, when homophobic bullying does not end at the schoolyard gate, as it is both codified and institutionalised

Do I give a damn YES I DO!

In my three years of secondary schooling, bullies targeted me every day of the week and staff offered no comfort let alone protection.  On some occasions, staff even blamed me for causing the abuse, which still confuses me to this day. I still experience anxiety issues, which often limit my social participation because I do not really trust people. I often hide behind roles, which provides structures that limit the nature of my interactions with others

Does it get better, yes as an adult I discovered my voice, realised,  I have choices and the views of others do not count as much as when I went to school.

Why are Australian Churches Losing their Religious?

Published August 20, 2009 by Michael C Leeson

Bishop blames ‘weak’ churches for losing their religious – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

The article reports on the views of Professor Tom Frame, concerning why he sees ‘The Church’ failing Christianity in Australia. Professor Frame is the Director of St Mark’s National Theological Centre and head of the School of Theology at Charles Sturt University. He identifies three rather clear reasons for a ‘weak’ church losing their followers.

  • “To some degree some churches are caught in a time warp, they’ve got the social and cultural forms of the 1950s and 1960s and have been unable to embrace the 1990s and the new millennium, so they do seem to be locked in time and their message with it,” he told ABC Online.
  • “Many of the churches are totally overcome by internal bickering about minor points of doctrine about which the world could not care less, because they don’t bear upon everyday life.
  • ” the churches themselves have conducted some of the internal debates in public and given the impression that not even the churches are sure about what they believe.

Professor Frame reflects on the

  • Significant changes in religious observation during the last 100 years.
  • Consequences for social welfare services
  • moral and ethical void

He makes one key observation

“And if they can’t articulate a clear message then why should anyone bother listening?”

What can be made of these reflections?

Strangely, I believe the teachings of Jesus of Nazareth are even more relevant today than ever in history. Much has changed over the last 100 years in that change it seems the Church has lost sight of Christ’s simple message of unconditional love, respect and acceptance.

However, those who identify themselves as his representative are as barren and corrupt as the priests in the temple that Christ himself condemned. The Church overwhelmed by the bigotry and ignorance of hate, preaches a doctrine irrelevant to the masses that seeks to hold on to the last vestiges of heteronormative privilege. Christ walked the people of the margin, He did not walk with Kings dressed in the silk robes and gold ornaments of social respectability. In one example He stood before the crowd ready to stone a woman accused of adultery and challenged the man without sin to cast the first stone.

What is the message of the Christian church today, how consistent is it with the teachings of Christ?

International Day of Indigenous People

Published August 11, 2009 by Michael C Leeson

Indigenous Logo

“The Declaration is a visionary step towards addressing the human rights of indigenous peoples… I encourage Member States and indigenous peoples to come together in a spirit of mutual respect, and make use of the Declaration as the living document it is so that it has a real and positive effect throughout the world.”
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

09 August

International Day of Indigenous People