Agree or Disagree: The Mainstream Media does not fully understand Islam


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I’d like to start this conversation by showing this picture.  This was a picture of a rally in Toronto over the summer.

On one side there were Muslims supporting Palestine. The other were Jewish people supporting Israel.

The general feedback of this specific rally was it was peaceful. However, I saw some on the Pro-Israel side call out some insults to Muslim woman. Too rough to mention here.

Now, if I was too make a blanket statement about Jewish people and what their religion promotes, there would be offence taken. And that would be fair. The Jewish faith is generally a beautiful faith.

Often, there are statements about Christians being homophobic, racist etc.. Westboro Baptist Church does not represent Christianity. Other “extreme” actions are often distanced by Christians. And Christians will often state these actions are not fully  what Christianity is. People generally agree with that.

However, what I’m noticing a trend when it comes to the current perception of Islam. There seems too be, and maybe it’s only me noticing this, that we have made some blanket statements about Islam. It seems many try to connect actions from groups like ISIS and Al-Queda to what the Muslim faith teaches.

Reza Aslan has a response to that.

In this  interview with CNN, Aslan argues that the current issues going on in what we have generally called Muslim countries, is not a Muslim problem, but a people problem.

He also states that while people argue that Islam is a religion of violence, he argues that Islam is neither a religion of violence or peace. I’ll let you listen to his explanation on that. You will also notice his anger towards the interviewers at CNN.

Which leads to this question.

Do you think that The Mainstream Media have given a fair representation of what Islam is? Or, are we dealing with some blanket statements about Islam?

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Agree or Disagree: The USA should put troops in Ukraine.


The above video is but a small sample of what is going on in Ukraine.

Protests that have gone violent. Violence that has led to deaths. From the story of deaths, we now see Russian tanks crossing into Ukraine territory.

We enter the USA and Barack Obama.

President Obama has said Russian President Putin “will be on the wrong side of history.” Obama has asked Russia to pull away their troops.

Russia has not.

If you are not sure what is going on in Ukraine, one of the people that is following the story is Patti-Pierce Miller. She wrote this post http://runningpastor.blogspot.ca/2014/02/land-i-love.html

We used it as a part of https://kevinolenick.wordpress.com/2014/02/10/agree-or-disagree-peaceful-protests-work/

As it always seems when things like this happen, the question is what the United States should do about it. We can debate if it is always effective, but it is a question we do end up asking.

Is it time for the USA to put troops in Ukraine? Or, is there a better solution to this situation? Should anyone get involved in this situation at all?

Agree or Disagree: The White Poppy is disrespectful to veterans.


Agree or Disagree: The White Poppy is disrespectful to veterans.

I’d like to take back to a time of 1914 to 1918. Or, maybe a closer how about 1939 to 1945?

These were the times of World War 1 and World War 2. I wasn’t alive during these times, but I can imagine what it was like. Times were tough. Many families were trying to make ends meet. Many worked hard. Many were also patriotic. That led many to volunteer to be a a part of the Canadian army. Other young men in 1917 for example were conscripted to be a part of the war.

Now imagine if you will, these young men many that were married and had children. That goodbye, which you don’t know was a final goodbye. That possible last moment they had with their loved one. They weren’t leaving for a quick tour to see a cool country. They fought in dirt, mud and rain. They ate little, and slept less. Some had to grow up far too fast and die far too young.

There was no Facebook, Twitter and Instagram where you can track the progress. Where you can “like” the picture, or retweet to your followers with a cool hashtag. There was no Skype or Facetime or even texting where can you be in instant contact with your loved one. There was letters. some that took far to long to send and far to long to return. Some had to here news births of children they never get to see again. Others heard of their wives having affairs and breaking up over a letter.

There was no blogging, peace protests, or quite frankly opinions. Some had no choice but to fight to defend the honour of their country. Fight they did. In some cases, perhaps far too late as a group of people were being dishonoured, dismembered and disgraced because of who they were. But they fought. And, they “won”.

Many died far too young. But many got to come home. Some were never the same again. Dealing with a loss of their friends in battle. Or even dealing with that they actually killed another human being or beings with their own hands or guns. Many having tremendous difficulty adjusting to the world they returned too. Dealing with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, depression and in many cases suicide.

Many people want to honour the tremendous sacrifice our war veterans made. We do that with a red poppy as a very small token to say thank you for the freedom we have today. The freedom of speech, human rights and human dignity. The freedom of choosing to wear a red poppy or a white poppy.

This brings me to this story. A co-worker of mine is heavily involved in supporting the Veterans Food Bank. She was quite angry when she read this story http://www.calgarysun.com/2013/11/04/students-dont-care-if–white-poppy-offends-vets

Basically, a group of students want to wear a white poppy to speak for peace. Many are very offended by this. However, the students are not worried about offending them.

“We can’t account for other people’s feelings, however, no one has a monopoly on Remembrance Day” Celyn Dufay, a student at the University of Ottawa.

This what I will say to Dufay, or anyone else that chooses to wear a white poppy.

Feel free to wear it. In the meantime, you should thank a war veteran you can.

Because without them, you wouldn’t have been able too.

Agree or Disagree: Israel handling of Palestine. And should the USA Step in


This book has a lot of pages with many chapters. And we have new chapters that have been written recently. 

Depending on which version of the book you read, you get a different perdpective. As a matter of fact some have argued that their “Book” tells them to support Israel has they are the chosen people.

There are others that would argue that the way the Palestinians have been treated is very sad. and unacceptable. That they are people who simply want to live on a land that they also feel their “Book” has told was theirs.

Both sides feel justified in their stance. There are so many reasons for this. But the problem is there is so many innocent people losing their life. If they are not dead, their live conditions are horrible enough.

I really liked Donald Miller wrote after his recent trip. You can read this here. http://storylineblog.com/2012/11/19/the-painful-truth-about-the-situation-in-israel/

The questions I bring up is this.

Is there someone that is “right” here?

And is it time for the US, or others to step in.