It’s apparently from a 2003 film named Go Further that curiously slipped my I must watch all films that have a green message radar. Anyway, I came across it on Facebook via Occupy Love and was so awestruck I thought I’d share it. Appropriate for Earth Day methinks.
I sometimes feel like an alien creature
for which there is no earthly explanation
Sure I have human form
walking erect and opposing digits,
but my mind is upside down.
I feel like a run-on sentence
in a punctuation crazy world.
And I see the world around me
like a mad collective dream.
An endless stream of people
move like ants from the freeway
cell phones, pc’s, and digital displays
“In Money We Trust,”
we’ll find happiness
the prevailing attitude;
like a genetically modified irradiated Big Mac
is somehow symbolic of food.
Morality is legislated
religion is incorporated
the profit-motive has permeated all activity
we pay our government to let us park on the street
And war is the biggest money-maker of all
we all know missile envy only comes from being small.
Politicians and prostitutes
are comfortable together
I wonder if they talk about the strange change in the weather.
This government was founded by, of, and for the people
but everybody feels it
like a giant open sore
they don’t represent us anymore
And blaming the President for the country’s woes
is like yelling at a puppet
for the way it sings
Who’s the man behind the curtain pulling the strings?
A billion people sitting watching their TV
in the room that they call living
but as for me
I see living as loving
and since there is no loving room
I sit on the grass under a tree
dreaming of the way things used to be
which of course is before the rivers and oceans,
and skies were polluted
before Parkinson’s, and mad cows
and all the convoluted cacophony of bad ideas
like skyscrapers, and tree paper, and earth rapers
like Monsanto and Dupont had their way
as they continue to today.
This was Pre-us
back when the buffalo roamed
and the Indian’s home
was the forest, and God was nature
and heaven was here and now
Can you imagine clean water, food, and air
living in community with animals and people who care?
Do you dare to feel responsible for every dollar you lay down
are you going to make the rich man richer
or are you going to stand your ground
You say you want a revolution
a communal evolution
to be a part of the solution
maybe I’ll be seeing you around.
Coca-cola: Apart from it being a very unhealthy drink that totally rots your pearly whites (yes even diet coke), the company also partakes of some crafty activity of a socially irresponsible nature pertaining to India’s water supplies, which results in inconveniences such as pollution, water shortages and toxic waste. And did you know that in 2004 coca-cola used 283 billion litres of water to make its product? When you consider the many millions of people who can barely find enough water to get them through a single day, for a company to have the freedom to take so much of this dear Earth’s water in order to produce a crap product and then sell it on to the Western world in tin cans has got to be an unbeatably gross injustice. And by the way, to add insult to human injury, they waste two thirds of the water they take.
Caterpillar: Caterpillar sell bulldozers to Israel who then use said bulldozers to trample all over the homes of Palestinians. I know my boycott won’t be very effective seeing as I’m not likely to ever buy or even hire one of their bulldozers but I can boycott them symbolically, as a gesture of support towards the Palestinians who are being entirely and brutally settled upon by the Israeli’s without so much as an excuse me please, may we join you? The lovely, courageous Rachel Corrie was killed in Gaza eight years ago by an Israeli army Caterpillar bulldozer while trying to defend the Palestinians whose homes were being destroyed by the Israeli settlers.
Harrods: Again a symbolic gesture in that they won’t miss me much because I’ve hardly been a devout customer having only ever been there twice with my parents when I was a young girl. My dad paid a silly amount of money for a teddy bear that I begged for one Christmas and I lost it on the beach in Wales the following Summer. I was gutted. My dad was furious. Well the Harrods teddy line may be sweet and cuddly and harmless but their real fur collection is built on cruelty and exploitation. Harrods is the only department store in Britain that still stocks fur products. Many thousands of animals are tortured and killed in order to supply Harrods with its fur products. The animal rights issue is seen as a mis-prioritisation by some people who believe it’s impossible to care about human rights and animal rights but the way I see it, exploiting animals for reasons of vanity and cosmetics is wrong and will always be wrong. And gasp! Yes, I care about humans too.
Bluefin tuna: Bluefin tuna is critically endangered on account of our overfishing. There’s a global call to have the sale of bluefin banned and predictably, Japan is going to ignore it, saying it would “hunt as a matter of principle” Japan will blatantly disregard the most endangered label. It’s not the hunting I’m against. As a species, humans have to eat too. But we have to use sustainable methods. Humans are the only species that takes more they need to survive and in doing so, we disharmonise the whole food chain thus disenfranchising other species and pushing them into extinction. And in any case, it’s not for survival. It’s for profit.
Zoos/Marine Parks: A trainer was killed recently by an Orca whale while performing circus acts. I’m genuinely sympathetic towards the trainer and her loved ones but really, think about it, huge killer whales in goldfish bowls, captive, having to perform circus tricks daily for their supper. It’s not hard. Same can be said for zoo animals.
That’s it for now. Tune in next week to see the top 100 greatest corporate swindles. If I can be bothered.
I’ve just finished reading Helen‘s wonderful poetry book entitled Better With Friends. Poetry is subjective but even the toughest person couldn’t fail to be moved by such a collection of moving and thought-provoking poems.
Helen writes beautifully and has an ability to interpret the world in a lyrical and compassionate way and although her Christian spirituality often comes through in through her writing, it’s not preachy or self-righteous. It’s gentle, tender and unintrusive.
Having a ballet-dancing daughter, one of my favourite poems is Rookie at the Barre but all the poems included in the book stir my emotions in one way or another and it’s hard to choose a favourite. Another one that stands out is Eulogising Rosa, a poem about Rosa Parks – the woman who dared to defy racism. There’s also Then I Wander and Charmed by the Music, both wonderful. Then there’s Where the Reverie is Apt to Lead which is in my view, quite simply stunning.
A wonderful book. I am cherishing my signed copy. Thanks Helen.
It’s no secret that the Christian right have been warping the message of Jesus to justify their compassionately-challenged views of the world for many years. Well there’s a rumour going round that the BNP is now seeking to exploit the good name of Jesus in order to promote their own ideology. According to an (unfounded) email, circulated (allegedly) by Nick Griffin with the intention of testing the water, he bangs on about being persecuted and excluded and about the demonisation of social groups (I know!). He also (again allegedly) provides a preview of a European election campaign poster which asks . . . what would Jesus do? the obvious implication being that Jesus would have opposed those evil forriners too.
Hell, they’ll be telling us next that Gandhi would have supported torture in Guantanamo.
Well anyway, I can’t find any evidence that the email or the campaign poster is genuine (and I’ll update as and when) but since the question has been raised (even if it was only to discredit the BNP which really isn’t necessary because they’re doing just fine on their own), I decided to ponder over said Big Question and throw about some analytical theological philosophical random thoughts of my own.
Basically, none of us can really speak for a guy who lived over two thousand years ago but given the many teachings pertaining to his good self that are widely available, I reckon it’s pretty safe to say that Jesus would reject the bigotry and the prejudice of the BNP. I mean you don’t need to look far to find a parable or a quote that challenges almost everything they stand for and I doubt that even Nick Griffin would be arrogant enough or stupid enough to expect us to believe that Jesus would support them.
When it comes to indecency and bad taste, it would be hard to sink any lower than the BNP when they used the London bombings for their propaganda . . . and in terms of huge political gaffe’s, their Polish Spitfire advert remains unbeatable. But any attempts to spin the words of Jesus into some kind of endorsement of such hateful and totally unworkable policies would be a desperate and humongous step closer towards the land of political obscurity and irrelevance. Here’s hoping that the rumours are true then.
Whoever you believe Jesus was, whether you believe he was divine, historical or a totally fictional character dreamed up for propaganda purposes, one thing that we can all be sure he wouldn’t do is vote for the BNP. He’d probably forgive them but he definitely wouldn’t endorse them.
“Would you like to see Britannia rule again my friend? All you have to do is follow the worms”. Pink Floyd.
Update: Well it seems that they have enrolled Jesus as their poster boy. The BBC has an article up about it. Very ridiculous indeed. Dearie me boys and girls of the BNP. Haven’t you read the oft-quoted Sermon on the Mount – the world-renowned outdoor lesson written and narrated by the man himself – Jesus? You must know it. It’s the one that’s all about equal rights and social justice for all and is admired and applied by the worlds best scholars, theologians, philosophers and spiritual leaders alike. No? You can’t recall it? Well what about the parable of the Good Samaritan? Surely you remember that one. It’s one of the first things we get taught in primary school RE. Come on now, everyone knows that one. Back to RE class methinks for a little recap.
Mysoul has a wonderful and moving way of expressing her thoughts. This powerful and touching poem that she wrote on her blog is one example:
Its a long walk to the border
Little tired legs swing
As she rides the strong shoulder
“Daddy, how much farther?”
“Just beyond that Hill” says the Man.
“How many times is that?” the Man wonders
On this long journey to the no man’s land
Fear hides behind these mundane words
“Just a little further”,
“Beyond that tree”,
“Beyond that river”,
“Across that valley”,
“Just another day’s walk”
“Just… just… just”
Knowing full well,
Just beyond the horizon
Is the great Unknown
Yet he walks,
Picking up courage,
Building faith within,
His daughter may live,
Without the scars of war. Mysoul
See. The asylum-seeker has a face . . . a human face. And a heart that hurts.
In Britain there are those who believe we should always give asylum to genuine refugees. There are those who believe that refugees are putting a huge strain on our country’s resources and that we have no choice but to reject their applications and deport them. And there are those who believe that they are all disingenous scroungers seeking to exploit our generous welfare.
Mysoul’s poem shows us the human face of the refugee.
Unfortunately, those who make the decisions – the cold and detached officials who see only faceless names on paper, and the current government and it’s opposition party who impose knee-jerking asylum policies that pander to the tabloid hysterics about the country being swamped by refugees, they will never see the human story within. And it’s to their great shame.
This weekend, the British National Party are holding their annual rally in Derbyshire and it’s being dubbed by anti-BNP groups as a hate-fest. Groups are forming to protest against the rally which the BNP, with a remarkable show of unlimited imagination, have named the Red, White and Blue (RWB) festival. Whoopee! Go Britannia! They promise a family festival of fun and – get this - diversity and they describe their event as a celebration of White European Culture. However, the BBC’s Panorama report of previous RWB events challenges this wholesome image by claiming that when the camera’s were taken down so were the masks. Racist jokes, straight-arm salutes and SS music to name but a few examples of hate.
I detest the BNP and everything it stands for but, sadly enough, they are a legitimate party and for as long as they are doing nothing illegal, they have the right to hold their fascist rally. Of course the Camp for Climage Change people had the right to hold their rally too but that didn’t stop the police from harrassing them from the offset and trying to smear their campaign. And it appears that the police are intending to be just as restrictive towards the BNP protesters.
Sure, the BNP has the right to hold its xenophobic little hate-fest, but the anti-BNP groups have as much right to protest against it, such is our democratic privilege. This is where that old civil rights issue might rear its rather uncivil head and it remains to be seen as to whether the police will react with any sense of proportion.
Anyway, here’s my presentation of all the fun things the BNP say you can expect to enjoy at this year’s family BNP fun-fest:
- Appearance by Patriotic C&W Artist Traven Tucker. Will present songs in a cultural educational context, ie, will contain not-very-subliminal messages about patriotism and more crucially, white supremacy.
- Folk Song competition. All songs must be sung in English or any other European language. The BNP is NOT racist and loves diversity. However, any song entries in an inferior, non-white language will be disqualified immediately. Entries must be submitted at the *Traditional* Food Hall by 1pm Saturday. Traditional food being salt-soaked fish ‘n’ chips, mushy peas, liver ‘n’ onion and that delicious delicacy, black pudding.
- Home-brewed traditional beer competition. Nick Griffin must not be permitted to take part in the judging because a few slurps of the hard stuff might result in him marching up and down the beer tent singing Third Reich military songs. Sure, that would be good fun and all but some stray, England-bashing reporter might twist it all out of proportion and (gasp!) accuse him of being a neo-Nazi.
- Children’s Drawing and Poetry Competition. To be inspired by the RWB. The kiddies are given the chance to demonstrate in art form what they’ve learned from their not-at-all-racist parents about those evil muslims, those dreadfulsome Jews and those horrid black crime-lord gangs.
- Wide range of stalls selling Excalibur merchandise. A chance to buy your swastika’s and other beloved Nazi memorabillia here. Also available will be DVD’s and CD’s produced by the Great White Records label.
- Smoking bar. Brave and rebellious challenge to the illiberal smoking ban. In this room, you will also be able to purchase unhealthy snacks such as Mars bars, crisps and (gasp!) pork scratchings. And also available will be seafood sold by nubile young serving wenches lassies - because the BNP laughs in the face of political correctness. Whoopy-doo.
Oh, and there will be good old traditional Engish Morris Dancing – enough to make you weep.