We need your help …


Please help Change.org to fight the homophobia in Russia!

There is a petition on Change.org to try and blow away the homophobia that has been built into the 2014 Sochi Olympics in Russia. Please sign the petition and the tweets to alert the international sponsors about your objections to this sad twist to what is otherwise a level playing field for humankind:

IOC Threatens to Punish Gay and Supporting Athletes

The IOC is more interested in their income than the rights that gay Russians should have. Please join us!

https://www.change.org/petitions/stand-against-russia-s-brutal-crackdown-on-gay-rights-urge-winter-olympics-2014-sponsors-to-condemn-anti-gay-laws

Let’s show Putin that he can’t always have his own way and wash away his anti-gay laws with a wellspring of digital democracy!

Advertisements

The smoke and mirrors window-dressing of the seemingly guilty


Babis Dimitriou, the chairman of the Farsala village Roma association, told The Daily Telegraph: “There was a Bulgarian husband and wife who were working around Greece in temporary jobs, who used to stay here sometimes. At one point they left the girl to be raised by the family here in the village. The family raised the child as if it was their own, although her father would come back every now and then to see her. The last time he visited was only five days ago, after the arrests had been made.
“All the other Roma here were telling the Bulgarian man to explain to the police that the girl was his, but he has now disappeared.” So they let him go? More lies.

gobbledegooked

On the day that a Roma couple is to appear in court to face charges brought against them concerning the child, known as Maria, found at their home in Farsala in central Greece, the Roma community that surround them have started what can only be described as an orchestrated campaign to brush away the appearance of wrongdoing.

child's bedroom

The media today featured photographs of the one-bedroom home, arguing that the little girl had the exclusive use of the only bedroom while the family slept ‘elsewhere’. Images were also shown of a chest of drawers, the only item of furniture for storing clothes and also argued that this was solely for the use of the child.  I have taken the liberty of reproducing the images here, although I claim no ownership to them.

child's COD

Is there anyone that seriously believes this farcical concoction? I am not saying that the family mistreated the child, but…

View original post 335 more words

The smoke and mirrors window-dressing of the seemingly guilty


"Maria’s hair turned blonde naturally"

“Maria’s hair turned blonde naturally”

On the day that a Roma couple is to appear in court to face charges brought against them concerning the child, known as Maria, found at their home in Farsala in central Greece, the Roma community that surround them have started what can only be described as an orchestrated campaign to brush away the appearance of wrongdoing.

child's bedroom

The media today featured photographs of the one-bedroom home, arguing that the little girl had the exclusive use of the only bedroom while the family slept ‘elsewhere’. Images were also shown of a chest of drawers, the only item of furniture for storing clothes and also argued that this was solely for the use of the child.  I have taken the liberty of reproducing the images here, although I claim no ownership to them.

child's COD

Is there anyone that seriously believes this farcical concoction? I am not saying that the family mistreated the child, but what I am saying is that I don’t believe for one second that all of the family slept in the sitting room while the little girl had her own bed, in her own room, complete with a chest of drawers – the only chest of drawers in the house! I don’t believe it any more than I believe the absurd comment from another of the Roma, saying that “Maria’s hair turned blonde naturally”.

Given that the family and their acquaintances appear to be habitual liars, it really does beg the question: where did the child come from? The Roma community in Farsala are now saying that the child was left behind by an itinerant Bulgarian couple, who worked in Greece. They had left to seek work, leaving the family to look after the child. Yet the brother of the man claiming to be Maria’s father repeated the defence that she had been given to them lawfully after her birth, according to the BBC’s Mark Lowen in Athens. Several explanations have now been given and it would be prudent for any authority dealing with these people to question the veracity of any statement that they make.

If, as has been intimated by the Greek police, that this case is not unique, then the relevant authorities need to be aware that other such, possibly adducted, children with Roma are now at serious risk. They are clearly living, breathing evidence of what must surely be one of the most vile criminal pursuits seen since the travellers in the UK who enslaved people with learning disabilities to work for them for nothing. Those children are in a precarious situation indeed, make no mistake.

What is becoming clear is this: Given the extent of child abduction and trafficking, shouldn’t the nation states of the EU now be consolidating their efforts by acting together in a more cohesive sense? A good starting point would be a mandatory 21-year sentence in prison for child exploitation, to include abduction and trafficking as a specific offence.

Will the Muslim-on-Muslim war now come to Britain?


When listening to the news about Islam in the UK, a term that is frequently heard is ‘British Muslim’, but I have been saying for almost a decade now that such a notion – certainly not just a name – is anathema to those who live in Muslim lands. Islam does not recognise frontiers and neither does it allow the gradation of being Muslim, which is exactly what the term implies, that is, if you are a British Muslim, then there must be something about the Islam that you follow that is different from other Muslims and their beliefs. In short it is considered heretical.  We in the West have acknowledged this subtle distinction for over a decade now, as it has been currency since the aftermath of 9/11, but the shift is not so subtle for hard-line Muslims abroad. Their core belief is ‘either you are a brother, or you’re not’. 

Muslims based in western democracies have had a hard time since 2001, as non-Muslims have attempted to elicit from them the condemnation that most people in a democratic society would want to hear, from those who share a religion with fundamentalist terrorists. That can’t have been easy as they grappled with the political and religious implications of what was taking place. Worse was to come.

British police issued a warning on Friday to prominent Muslims in the UK of a video made by extremists linked to Somalia’s al-Shabaab militants, which reportedly threatens the lives of prominent British Muslims who it claims are “enemies of Islam.” Don’t underestimate the threat therein: it is not just aimed at Britain and the deportation of Abu (the Hook) Hamza as it names several prominent Muslims that condemned terrorist attacks, such as the murder of Lee Rigby. They argue that  ‘British Muslims’ have assimilated into British society, thereby acquiring a bastardisation of the straight path – al mustaqeem – that the radicals deem is Islam.

The Prophet Muhammad is supposed to have lead a perfect life and the Qur’an is supposed to be the ‘perfect word of Allah’ thus neither can be changed, not by a covenant nor failure to emulate the Prophet in all his beliefs and deeds. An example of this is the Prophet’s marriage to 6 year old Aisha, which he consummated when she was 9. It is perfectly reasonable to argue that that is what happened 1,500 years ago and, indeed, many European kings contracted marriages to children in the middle-ages, though normally for the purposes of ensuring peace. However, the Prophet’s ‘protected’ and ‘perfect’ life leaves many arguing that what was good enough for the Prophet is good enough for them. This is but one example of the difficulties facing Islam in the 21 century.

The fact that Muslims are making jihadist death threats to other Muslims means that they no longer consider them to be following the faith – al mustaqeem – and thus they are kafireen because they are deemed to be ‘denying’ their religion.  This is indeed a serious and unprecedented development because now the intimidation and even execution of ‘British’ Muslims may well follow in the wake of this watershed threat.

A public letter to David Cameron – where is the ‘Big Society’ going?


James Oxfordshire16 October 2013

The Rt. Hon. David Cameron
10, Downing Street
London SW1A 2AA

Dear Mr. Cameron

I am writing to you concerning a possible constituent of yours – he lives in Oxfordshire – who has Downs Syndrome. His sister has started a petition on his behalf because of problems that beset him regarding his care and how this will affect his semi-independent living.

His name is James and he has been helped throughout his life, to the point where he lives reasonably independently with another person who suffers from learning difficulties. Their domestic situation is both sustainable and affords a reasonable measure of dignity, though clearly it depends on a care plan which Oxfordshire County Council funds. He has now been informed by his Local Authority that it can no longer afford to pay for his care and thus he will be evicted and relocated to a care home at the beginning of December: all this simply to save money.

I would ask you to cast your mind back to the Andrew Marr show of the 2nd May 2010. I am sure that you remember the interview and the discourse, which included your statement:

“The test of a good society is you look after the elderly, the frail, the vulnerable, the poorest in our society. And that test is even more important in difficult times, when difficult decisions have to be taken, than it is in better times.”

Fine words before an election, but what happens when you are in office is the real measure of that test and it appears to fail someone who, given his life’s difficulty, it seems to be true could not be much more vulnerable. When Andrew Marr moved on to international development you said:

“We’ve said what we said about international development because of the sort of country I want this to be – tolerant, compassionate, generous to people who live in deep, deep poverty.”

I am not quoting this to try to parallel it in any way with those in strife or the straving of this world but simply to pick up on what you say are your aspirations for our society, namely “tolerant, compassionate, generous to people” but again the case of James seems to fail this test too.

As I write, James’s sister’s petition on change.org has passed 94,000 and will doubtless be over 100,000 by the time this day is out: The tolerance, compassion and generosity of the people in this country is welling up behind James and his soon-to-be disastrously modified life.

Mr. Cameron, we, the almost 100,000 expect you to pick up the phone and put a stop to this blatantly unfair penny-pinching exercise where the poorest and most vulnerable actually end up, in practice, with the biggest burden of the austerity measures.

Reading the papers the other day, I saw an article wherein a spokesperson from the Embassy Club in London was quoted as saying “A regular spend for bankers here would be around £5 -7,000 a night. Sometimes we’ll get £10-15,000.” While I celebrate the success of any individual, perhaps you could tell me why your government is nurturing such a grossly inequitable society that sees one man going out to spend ten thousand pounds or so on champers while another man, with severe learning difficulties and in need of care to sustain his semi-independent living finds himself facing eviction because his local authority cannot pay his care bill?

Your respectfully,

Henry Page

http://www.change.org/petitions/oxfordshire-county-council-don-t-take-my-brother-s-home-away-justiceforjames?share_id=vQcimfgKEx&utm_campaign=signature_receipt&utm_medium=email&utm_source=share_petition

Rich man poor man …


Job Centre fire

The two stories that follow demonstrate remarkably how polarised parts of our society have become. The two separate stories are a sad testimonial of what our country is becoming: A land where the poor go without food for days and the rich throw tens of thousands of pounds around on a night out.

From the Manchester Evening News:

An unemployed man who hadn’t eaten for three days tried to set fire to the job centre – so he could have a meal in police custody.

Bee O’Brien, 49, flew into a rage after a row over his benefits payments and set fire to the customer telephones at Moss Side job centre. O’Brien had not eaten for three days after his benefits had been stopped. He told police: “I will commit a crime and get arrested. I need some food.”

From The Telegraph Online:

Russian multimillionaires rack up £130,000 bar tab at Mayfair club

Two Russian multimillionaires racked up a bar tab of more than £130,000 at a Mayfair nightclub after going head-to-head to see who could produce the most extravagant bill.

A spokesman for the Embassy venue described the tab as “off the scale” as the men worked their way through 30 Magnums of Cristal and 20 bottles of Dom Perignon. By the end of the evening the bills were an eye-watering £66,778.91 and £64, 279.70 – making a grand total of £131,058.61. “Even compared to pre-recession, that’s a huge spend,” the spokesman said.

He added: “A regular spend for bankers here would be around £5 -7,000 a night. Sometimes we’ll get £10-15,000. But this is a massive, massive spend.”

So there you have it. City bankers regularly go out and spend between £5,000 and £15,000 a night! How did our country ever become like this? How did we ever get to the situation where it is normal for anyone to go without food for days while city bankers regularly go out and spend thousands and thousands of pounds on a night out clubbing?

Russia is strangling freedom of speech and expression


Arctic 30 free

Hello!

I’ve started the petition “President Vladimir Putin (via H.E. the Russian Ambassador to London): Set free the Greenpeace protesters that you have illegally detained.” and need your help to get it off the ground.

Will you take 30 seconds to sign it right now? Here’s the link:

http://www.change.org/petitions/president-vladimir-putin-via-h-e-the-russian-ambassador-to-london-set-free-the-greenpeace-protesters-that-you-have-illegally-detained

Here’s why it’s important:

The Greenpeace 30 were arrested whilst trying to raise awareness of the risks of exploiting the natural resources of the Arctic. It was an environmental action and had nothing to do with the aims that the Russian authorities are suggesting. Even to those with little interest in the matter it is evident that the aims of the Greenpeace protest did not include piracy.

To assist, here is the OED definition:

It is absolutely clear from this definition that Russia’s pursuit of a prosecution for piracy is being pursued solely to intimidate the protesters and warn off any similar, future actions. Piracy was not the intention or aim of the protesters involved and they must be released without charge and without any delay as Russia is severly damaging its reputation by its actions and will cause many people to re-evaluate the respect that the country gives to human rights, which include the right to protest – about anything. 

Please sign this petition. Please ask your friends and contacts to sign it too. Help set free the Greenpeace protestors and make Russia realise that they represent the hopes and opinions of hundreds of millions of people around the world.

http://greenpeaceblogs.org/2013/09/27/arctic-30-to-be-held-in-russian-jail-pending-piracy-investigation/

You can sign my petition by clicking here.

Thanks! 
Henry Page