Tag Archives: Human Rights

Some of the many Ironies which are American-Intervention:

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Barack Obama

“Irony” in one of its purest manifestations:

The United States (Obama the House-Nigga) wants to police Syria & stop Bashar al-Assad from using “chemical-weapons”, against his own people. However, one has to really ponder over the following: 1.Why is it that with all of the killings being done in Syria, with merely the usage of conventional-weaponry, the “International-Community” (aka U.S. & Co.) stayed on the sidelines, until the buzz-word Chemical-Weapons surfaced in the media; is it safe to assume that the U.S. would’ve let Bashar al-Assad continue to kill his own people, as long as he only used conventional-weapons?!!! 2. Which nation, in today’s world was there to police & stop the U.S., when they stood idly by, allowing White-People to use trees to lynch hundreds of thousands of their own countrymen, out of racial-hatred, from the 1870’s to the 1970’s, or when they stood idly by, as city/state authorities water-hosed (nearly to death), beat, arrested, and killed thousands of their own citizenry, during the 1950’s & 1960’s because these people were fighting for basic-rights due to any/every Human being, or when they used chemical-weaponry (Napalm in particular), against thousands of innocents during the Vietnam-War, bombing the life out of Vietnam, Cambodia, etc., classifying it as merely “collateral-damage”?!!!

#ThinkAboutIt#Irony#IronicAintIt#JustStatingTheObvious

Gareth Bryant/2013

Shari`ah & Women’s Rights in Islam: Who’s entitled to interpret it?

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Oz Sultan pic

In the past decade, we’ve seen a huge debate around the concept of “Sharia: in America “, what it means, as well as what it’s implications are on Americans as well as to women, on a more global scale.

I’ve known Carlin for a while and we’ve started to have some discussions on the matter. Discussions that I hope might lead to more posts like this over time – for as we can open dialogues, we begin to break down the walls that separate us.

So on to why I’m writing today:

Yesterday, Deutsche Welle (The German News Service) published an article that covered the issue of Women’s rights, specifically the holdup around  legalizing a Women’s Rights law in Afghanistan.

(http://www.dw.de/afghan-widows-would-rather-die/a-16562576)

So what’s the holdup you ask? In a country now redefined after almost 40 years of continuous war – first at the hands of the Russians, Civil war, Warlord fighting and US reparations post- 9/11 – you’re dealing with more uncertainty than certainty. Governments often last less than the years it takes for a child to grow into adolescence.  The family unit is the only sacrosanct thing and anything that could lead to divisiveness in the family is viewed as a threat by a lot of the old guard – especially Mullahs and  Leaders that are averse to change.

Then…there’s the whole Sharia issue: So what is it?

Simply put “Sharia” is a code of conduct that includes the practice of law (“Fiqh”) and is complimented more often than not by tribal law (“Wali”). Now, here’s where it becomes fuzzy for a lot of folks who’ve never dealt with this before. In most countries where you see the subversion of human rights or women by Mullahs – you’re dealing with Wali – a code of conduct and tribal law that often precedes Islam and Sharia by centuries.

So what does this do? It creates an environment where fear of change and fear of the loss of control by a few is used to limit the advancement of women. The use of Wali in this respect is rampant in countries that have been war-ravaged or where technology and change are viewed as potential harbingers of oppression by foreign forces.

What has this led to? Let me use an analogy – Countries like Afghanistan, Pakistan and parts of North African nations are dealing with a rise of fundamentalism tied to Wali that uses Sharia as a guise to keep Status Quo. Status Quo here means that if a Mullah or group of Mullahs or Elders or Local Civic leaders has grabbed control – they’re reluctant to share or give it away. Especially when sharing has unknown consequences and everyone is looking for their nickel out of any arrangement.

There’s also the big misunderstanding outside the “Muslim World” of what the Muslim World is. There is no Muslim World. The concept is a figment of policymakers imaginations – and a term that allows diverse groups of varying people to at least be comprehended.  Muslims in Afghanistan alone are divided by multiple ethnic groups and a myriad of languages and dialects. Often the Wali of one village can be at odds at the Wali of a neighboring Village – differing from National policy, National Law and how Sharia is interpreted on a local, state and National level.

So ultimately when Afghani (MP) (Member of Parliament) Masooda Karochi says “If a lunatic protests that this law is against Sharia you can imagine the consequences it can have.  .. these proponents make it impossible to have a constructive discussion.”

What she’s speaking to is the core issue that Muslim Nations will have to address, as they begin the long process of getting past Colonialism and being buffer states for foreign interests. It’s Fear. Fear of change. Fear of disrupting the Family unit (Under current mandates – victims of domestic violence can escape to shelters – often preventing further assault of death)..fear of political-uncertainty and fear of what an empowered Female populace might lead to (It wasn’t so long ago that in the US – we thought unrestrained female autonomy would lead to anarchy…or dancing).

So what to do?  Starting to understand that Sharia is a blanket moniker for a complicated system of National, Regional and Local laws that are coupled with the interpretation of law (Fiqh) and tribal law (Wali) is the beginning.

I worked with a few NATO campaigns in the past that used video to try and show Afghanis that US troops and Coalition forces were there to help and how. Engagement is key, if we’re to break the cycle of Fear that has pervaded these nations. Social Media and outreach allows us to interact to get involved with Women’s rights; Child Health and Domestic Abuse.

Lastly, we need to educate ourselves on the issues and find ways to engage. With over $1 Billion in aid going to many of these nations, it makes good sense for us to engage our lawmakers and give them our own mandate – A mandate to put Cultural Education of our policymakers on the agenda and earmarks, where our Foreign Aid spend is tied back to initiatives that will help raise the voices of our sisters – beyond the issues of domestic violence, towards more equality and participation in the decision-making of their own lives.

 Oz Sultan/2013

A Story of Islamophobia: Bias, Fear, and Injustice

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Author’s note:
This is the story of someone whom I know personally, whom was a victim of malicious, immoral, unethical, and illegal, Islamophobia, just because they were Muslim, had an Arabic name, came from, ancestrally, from a part of the Muslim-World, and, because they were neither a U.S.-citizen, nor a citizen of their respective native-land.

This is what was told to me:

“I was traveling to visit one of my relatives; I really don’t like to take for granted the freedom and the respect I have been enjoying since I came to America. But this weekend, I have felt very humiliated and mistreated by authorities in both the nation in which I was in, as well as the US. When I arrived in the country my relative lives, the authorities denied entry in the country: they said that I did not have a passport. I’ve used American travel-documents, which is issued for refugees without citizenship, on more than one occasion, and had no previous issues, traveling to places outside of the U.S., prior to this incident; likewise, I had went to this particular country, last year, using these same travel-documents, without any problems.

They took seized my travel-documents, and also my green-card, after they denied me entry. I told them that if they are not going to allow me in, then at least just allow me to return to the U.S.. But, these guys weren’t trying to listen to me, at all-they really started treating me like I was nothing but piece of garbage, which disturbed me greatly. They thought I had no government that defends my rights, which is true-I do not have citizenship to any country yet. I am holding neither US passport nor any other national-passport. The authorities had told me that, if I had at least had a passport along with my U.S. travel-documents, then I could’ve been allowed to stay.

So, here I am, on a plane going directly back to where I had came from, heading back to America. However, there’s a lot more this-it does not just end, here. When I had boarded my flight back to the U.S.,  my green-card and travel-documents weren’t even returned to me, they were given, instead, to the airline & I was told that I’ll get everything back once I land in the U.S., and this is where frustration & anger started to really kick-in: I had told them that they had no right to keep my documents & property away from me and that I’m leaving this country. They said no, you can’t have it back. I felt so humiliated and realized how weak and unfortunate I am.

When I arrived back into the U.S., the airline gave me back my documents. When I checked in, a U.S. Customs & Border Protection officer took my fingerprints, and then, forwarded me to another officer who then further inspected me. He started to ask me why I went to the country I had just came from, where did I get travel-money from…he started an argument, with me, about my recent trip. He said, ‘You were re-admitted last January and now, again, you are traveling?’…’Who helps you?’. I told him I that I have jobs to support myself. He then asked how much I am paid an hour…he then took away my wallet and checked everything it, asking me about how I got my credit cards. He asked me to open my suitcase and to take everything I had out of it. He then took away my backpack and opened my iPad, a binder, and some letters in it, this was a blatant invasion of my privacy. When I asked why is this even necessary, he told me I am not a US citizen, so I am subjected inspection.

After that, then in the checking area, two guys took me away to a room, after I was fully checked with an x-ray machine. They did a full pat-down on me, touching every part of my body. Then, another guy took my backpacks and coat for further inspection, itt was so stressful. I just wish that I did not have to undergo all of these troubles simply that I have a name which starts ‘Abu’ or that I am an immigrant, or tourist from a country that’s viewed negatively, by the U.S., and her allies. This year, I had about 4 trips on my schedule, but I am going to call off all of them. I just don’t want to undergo what I have went through this weekend.”

Anonymous

So, upon learning of this, I had immediately, told the person who told me their story, to inform CAIR/Council on American Islamic Relations, and I specifically gave them the contact-info. of the CAIR-NY Director, Muneer Awad. Sadly, this person was just too afraid to come forward & share their story. I even assured this person that the details of their story would be honored as anonymous, that they wouldn’t be required to give their name, rather, just their statement. But, alas, they even refused that, because they were so shaken-up & fearful that if they were to say anything that they wouldn’t be able to stay/live here (in the U.S.), any longer, that they’d lose their financial-aid status & may even get kicked-out of school, get deported to their respective land of origin (even though they either never grew-up there, never been there & were only born there), detained, tortured, killed, etc.

All of this is so deeply disturbing, how our government, as well as governments like ours deems it okay to intimidate persons, just because they’re Muslims, immigrants, residents/illegals, as opposed to full-fledged citizens, etc. But, at the end of the day, these are still the lives of Human beings, and as such we all, regardless of subjective national, state, or local, religious or secular, laws, are entitled to basic Human-Rights of the following: life, dignity, property. And, unfortunately, at least two out of these three were severely violated, to the extent that this person was made to feel as though their status as a Human being had absolutely no value.

This is not how things are supposed to be: I should never have to walk the streets in fear (of being detained, deported, arrested, beaten-up/having to beat someone up, being killed/having to kill someone, etc.), just because I’m a Muslim, or an undocumented-immigrant, a resident, a Non-English speaker, Non-European/White person. This story really affected my heart, mainly because I know how it feels to be harassed by authorities; but, also because at least with me (someone who was born here/a U.S.-citizen), I know certain important elements of the law, which can protect me from most things, pretty much; but, with people like this person, by virtue of the fact that they are not at least citizens, they’re made to be “easy-pickin’s”, or “fair-game”, of predatorial Islamophobes & Xenophobes, whether they’re as micro as a Dunkin’ Donuts employee/Manager, refusing to serve you, or as macro as the President of the United States of America, who orders/co-signs drone-strikes, or religious/ethnic round-ups against its own citizenry.

Gareth Bryant/2013

Aside

Mustapha Ndanusa pic

Author’s note:

Mustapha Ndanusa, Esq. is an Attorney, practicing in NYC, where he grew-up. He’s very well-versed in social-issues plaguing the Muslim, minority, and immigrant communities, all across the United States. As a result of 9/11, there have been multiple cases of individuals, both Muslim & Non-Muslim alike, whom have been killed, deported, detained, etc. & all based upon baseless pretences, exclusively conjured by the whimsical policies/agendas of the U.S. government, with the direct assistance of local, state and Federal Law-Enforcement agencies & departments. What Mustapha has written about is how to look for potential governmental red-flag, entrapping tactics, which we all need to be intelligently aware of.

Not long ago, before President Obama had him killed, Anwar Al-Awlaki was the darling of fear-mongers. Videos of him defiant against the US and US interest were played often at the height of the Awlaki hysteria. I waited anxiously for the elephant in the room to ultimately be discussed by Fox News and other even more supposedly liberal news outlets. But it never happened. The elephant went undiscussed, and now I think it was because the world simply did not know, is that Anwar Awlaki was very very popular in the Muslim households with his series on the Lives of the Prophets, the Life of the Prophets and many others.

It is unlikely, even today, that you can ask three Muslims about Awlaki’s audio classes and not find one that possesses a copy in his/her home – or at least did so at one point. I still have cassettes of his series. I mentioned Anwar Al Awlaki’s series because if one was tested with being charged with terrorism charges, no matter how minor, better pray to God that you don’t still have a dust covered copy of any Anwar Awlaki contraband in your closet.  If you do, be sure that you will be found guilty, or at least your chances of being found guilty is increased significantly.

If you doubt what I have just said about your changes of  being “gitmoed,” consider the evidentiary value of something so innocuous as “Bulugh Al-Maram” or “Riyadus Saalihin”. Bulugh Al-Maram, a book well known in the Muslim world, is a collection of Ahaadith (sing. Hadith) on Fiqh/Islamic-Jurisprudence. Another book, Riyadus Saalihin, gives samplings of Islamic beliefs, drawing from selections of Ahaadith and Quranic-verses. Having either one of these books, particularly the latter, might be dangerous contraband used to confirm a mind bent on destruction.  Contained in Riyadus Saalihin is the book of Jihad and several Ahaadith exclaiming the virtues of archery, horse riding and other acts.

In 2007, Dr. Rafeeq Sabir was convicted providing material support to terrorists. While there were many other things that were used to convict Dr. Sabir, one piece of evidence was his possession of one of the two books mentioned above.  In particular, one of the books, more than likely Riyadus Saalihin, contained passages encouraging the riding of horses and the practice of archery – the passages having been highlighted by Dr. Sabir himself. As fate would have it, Dr. Sabir owned a cross-bow and had learned to ride horse while in Saudi Arabia. Well, there you have it, if you legally own a cross-bow and dare learn to ride a horse and you are a Muslim, you are likely a terrorist in training or a terrorist already. So, what should one do?

There is no law that says you cannot own a copy of either of these two great books or that if you bought a copy of Mein Kampf you are a Nazi waiting to be awoken. One should not be worried about buying such books.  However, be smart, read the book and for God’s sake, don’t highlight anything.

Mustapha Ndanusa/2013

Literary Legal-Advice & Awareness: What you read may get you locked-up!!!

Oppression is wretched!!!

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It is something that will taint your soul.
You’ll never reach Paradise, our goal.

Tyranny is something that which Allah has banned for Himself.
Yet, we have the audacity to strip the creation of their wealth.

This wealth is priceless: they are our lives, properties & honor.
Violating, taking these things from others is an action of terror.

As Human beings, we are haters-by-nature.
Envy is a poison, causing us to be immature.

Our hearts are corrupt, black & filthy.
Oppression makes all our deeds petty.

We must ask Allah to remove us all from the path of the dreaded & cursed Shaytan.
Or else, in the Hereafter, we’ll remain in the darkness and will not see another dawn.

Gareth Bryant/2012

My thoughts on Women & Women’s History Month (Part I):

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Author’s note:
Since the month March is Women’s History Month, I will be writing several things about women, at random times during this month. In this particular post, I plan to highlight some things about the unjust treatment of women all around the world, particularly & especially in the Muslim-World, more specifically in the Arab-World. I find it very relevant & important that we are made aware of the realities of the general mistreatment of women everywhere. The subject matter in which my discussion will be based upon highlights only one of many types of problems which women globally face.

Human-Trafficking & the hypocrisy of Politics which fuels it:
Human-Trafficking is a Human disease of the heart. It’s a disgusting industry, which ruins the lives of millions of Human beings each and every day, particularly the lives of women & young girls. It is my hope that this post will shed some knowledge and/or awareness of the reality of the ugliness of Human-Trafficking, whose involved & who profits from it.

What is Human-Trafficking?
Human-Trafficking-
The illegal trade, transportation of Human beings, for the exclusive purposes of reproductive slavery and/or commercial sexual exploitation (i.e. prostitution), forced labor, or a modern-day form of slavery.

The Evils of Human-Trafficking:
I won’t go through the ridiculously long lists of stats, which recall how sinister this trade is. It’s very obvious how inhumane & disgusting Human-Trafficking is. However, what I do plan to do is expose the incredible levels of hypocrisy, which are displayed, when countries like the United States condemns nations who indulge in Human-Trafficking, yet the ironic fact is that in countries which are red-flagged as being the lowest-tier Human-Trafficking countries (meaning the the nations with the highest reported cases of Human-Trafficking), are outright allies of the United States & vice-versa.

These countries which I plan to highlight for this discussion are the following:
Bahrain-
Bahrain is a country where both men & women from places like India, Pakistan, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Thailand, the Philippines, Ethiopia, and Eritrea, migrate voluntarily to work as domestic workers or as unskilled laborers in the construction and service industries. But, unfortunately, they are often duped & coerced into forced labor & more specifically, forced prostitution. Some of the classic abuses that people who migrate to Bahrain, in search of greater economic opportunities for themselves & their families are the following: unlawful withholding of passports, restrictions on traveling through the country, under-handed contract substitution, non-payment of wages, threats, and even physical or sexual abuse.

According to a study, by the Bahraini government’s Labor Market Regulatory Authority (LMRA), 65% of average migrant workers in Bahrain had not seen their employment contracts, and 89% of migrant workers were unaware of their terms of employment upon arrival in Bahrain. Many labor recruitment agencies in Bahrain require workers to pay high recruitment fees, a practice which makes workers highly vulnerable to forced labor once in the country. This same LMRA study also revealed that 70% of migrant workers either borrowed money or sold property, in their countries of origin, in order to secure employment in Bahrain.

Some Bahraini employers illegally charge workers non-contractual fees in order to keep them in Bahrain, working for third-party employers, under the “free-visa” arrangement facade. The LMRA estimates that 10% of migrant workers in Bahrain work under illegal “free-visa” arrangements, a practice that can contribute to debt-bondage. The Bahraini Chamber of Commerce and Industry puts this statistic at 25%. Women whom are most likely forced into prostitution in Bahrain are from Thailand, the Philippines, Morocco, Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, Russia, China, Vietnam and Eastern European states.

Israel-
In Israel, men and women are trafficked & often used for forced labor and commercial prostitution. Low-skilled workers from China, Romania, Turkey, Thailand, the Philippines, Nepal, Sri Lanka, and India flock to Israel for contract labor in the construction, agriculture, and health care industries. Israeli migrant workers are often confronted terrible conditions of forced labor. Many labor recruitment agencies in Israel charge fees ranging from $1,000 to $10,000. This causes migrant workers in Israel to become highly vulnerable to trafficking once in the country, and in some cases, situations of debt-bondage are ever prevalent. Israel is also a destination country for women being trafficked from Russia, Ukraine, Moldova, Uzbekistan, Belarus, China, South Korea and possibly the Philippines, for the exclusive purposes of sexual exploitation. In addition, NGO’s note an increase in the internal trafficking of Israeli nationals, for commercial sexual exploitation, and report new instances of trafficking of Israeli women abroad to Canada, Ireland, and the United Kingdom.

Kuwait-
Men and women readily migrate to Kuwait, from countries like Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Indonesia, and the Philippines, looking for employment as domestic servants or low-skilled laborers. Upon arrival, however, some are often subjected to conditions of forced labor, especially women, who are most often, once caught up in the web of Human-Trafficking,  forced into commercial sexual exploitation. For example, some female domestic workers are forced into prostitution after running away from abusive employers, or after being deceived with promises of employment in different sectors. Kuwait is also a transit country for South and East Asian workers recruited by Kuwaiti labor recruitment agencies for low-skilled work in Iraq. Oftentimes, these workers are deceived, as to the true location and nature of this work, while others willingly transit to Iraq through Kuwait, but endure conditions of involuntary servitude while in Iraq. Some Kuwaiti nationals have even reportedly traveled to foreign destinations, including Morocco, Egypt, Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, and Bangladesh to engage indulge commercial sexual exploitation.

Oman-
For men and women, primarily from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, the Philippines, and Indonesia, some of whom are subjected to being trafficked, specifically under conditions indicative of forced labor, Oman is a haven for Human-Trafficking. Most of these South and Southeast Asian migrants travel willingly to Oman, with the expectation of employment as either domestic servants, or as low-skilled workers in the country’s construction, agriculture, or service industries. Some of them face conditions indicative of working for long working hours without food or rest, threats, and physical or sexual abuse.

Recruitment agents, as well as labor brokers in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Oman, and Iran, very often deceive workers into accepting work, that in some instances constitutes forced labor. Many of these agencies produce falsified contracts for employment, either with fictitious employers or with fictitious wage rates, charging workers high recruitment fees (often exceeding $1,000), and urge workers to enter Oman with tourist-visas. Oman is also a destination and transit country for women from China, India, Morocco, Eastern Europe, and South Asia, who may be forced into commercial sexual exploitation, generally by nationals of their own countries. Male Pakistani laborers, and others from India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and East Asia, transit Oman en route to the UAE, are often exploited in situations of forced labor upon reaching their countries of destination.

Qatar-
People from Nepal, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, the Philippines, Indonesia, Vietnam, Sri Lanka, Ethiopia, Sudan, Thailand, Egypt, Syria, Jordan, and China travel to Qatar as laborers and domestic servants, but some face very inhumane conditions once in Qatar, among many other things, predominately involuntary servitude. These conditions include threats of serious physical or financial harm, withholding wages, charging workers unnecessarily for employment benefits, which the employer is fully responsible for by default, traveling restrictions, including the confiscation of passports and identification documents, illegal detention, threats of deportation, as well as physical, mental, and sexual abuse. In some cases, arriving migrant workers have found that the terms of employment in Qatar are wholly different from those they had previously agreed to in their home countries. Individuals employed as domestic servants are particularly vulnerable to Human-Trafficking, since they are not covered under the provisions of the labor laws in Qatar. Small numbers of foreign workers transit Qatar and are forced to work on farms in Saudi Arabia. Qatar is also a destination for women who become caught up in prostitution-rings, but the extent to which these women are subjected to forced prostitution is unknown.

Saudi Arabia-
Regarding Human-Trafficking, Saudi Arabia is notoriously known to not fully comply with the minimum standards of anti-trafficking enforcement & are currently not any making significant efforts to do so. Saudi Arabia is a destination for both men & women, from South East Asia & East Africa, to be trafficked for the purpose of labor exploitation. Also, children, from countries like Yemen & Afghanistan, have very often been trafficking victims, for forced begging. Hundreds of thousands of low-skilled workers from places like India, Indonesia, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Eritrea and Kenya migrate travel to Saudi Arabia, some fall into conditions of involuntary servitude, suffering from physical and sexual abuse, non-payment or delayed payment of wages, withholding of identification & traveling documents, restrictions on their freedom to travel within Saudi itself and non-consensual contract alterations. According to international organizations, such as the Ansar Burney Trust, young children from Bangladesh and India are also smuggled into Saudi Arabia, to be used as camel-jockeys. These children are underfed, to reduce their weights, in order to lighten the load on the camels used for racing. Saudi Arabia has been classified as having a Human-Trafficking Tier-3 status, since 2005.

United Arab Emirates-
Women from India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Ethiopia, Eritrea, and the Philippines travel  to the U.A.E. to work as domestic servants, but some subsequently face conditions of involuntary servitude such as excessive work hours without pay, unlawful withholding of passports, restrictions on traveling, non-payment of wages, and physical or sexual abuse. Oftentimes, they are not even given legitimate employment, but rather, they’re smuggled into the sex trade in the U.A.E.
Similarly, men from India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, and Pakistan are drawn to the U.A.E. to work in the construction industry, but are often subjected to similar conditions of coercive labor, as we as debt-bondage, as they work to pay off recruitment costs, often exceeding the equivalent of a 2-year salary. Women from Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Ukraine, Russia, Kazakhstan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Somalia, Uganda, India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, China, the Philippines, Iraq, Iran, and Morocco are reportedly trafficked to the U.A.E. for commercial prostitution.

Non-Emirate women are reportedly recruited to work as secretaries or hotel workers by third-party recruiters, perhaps even in their countries of origin. But, they were often coerced into prostitution or involuntary domestic servitude. The U.A.E. may also serve as a transit country for women trafficked into forced labor in Oman, and men deceived into working involuntarily in Iraq. And, much like the neighboring Tier-3, oil-rich Arab states, which border the U.A.E., the Emirate government does not fully comply with the minimum standards for the elimination of Human-Trafficking.

What all of these countries have in common-
What these countries have in common is their collective importance to U.S. interests in the Middle-East. each of these countries provide enormous resources, like petroleum, as well as influence & insight into the Muslim-World, the Arab-World, and the region known as the Middle-East generally, which is essential for America to maintain dominance in this part of the world. These particular countries are highly valued by the U.S. America has deeply vested interests in the economic sustainability as well as the geo-political survival of these nations, against any of their would-be rivals in the region. Likewise, these nations have also managed to acquire a substantial influential foot-hole into the economic fabric of the U.S., to such an extent that many of these countries have so much money invested into our economy, that if they were to remove their assets, America’s entire economy would collapse. And, because of this need for the U.S. to keep these countries invested in the American economy & to ensure the safety & security of these regimes to stay in power, they’re willing to turn blind-eyes when it comes to things like Human-Trafficking.

Honestly, if the U.S. really wanted to do something really substantial to these countries, for their lack of diligence in dealing with the issue of Human-Trafficking, they would put them on blast at U.N. meetings, commence economic-sanctions against these countries, decrease the amounts of foreign-aid given to these countries, decrease their consumption of foreign goods from these countries, thereby making the economies of these Human-Trafficking havens stronger via U.S.-patronage, etc. But, which should not be surprising, none of what I’ve mentioned is happening, and it won’t happen, so long as the symbiotic relationship between money & power exist in our world.

The U.S. thrives particularly upon maintaining its dominance & influence in the Middle-East, via supporting the following countries mentioned whom clearly, blatantly violate the sanctity of basic Human-Rights, on a daily basis; yet, they are left alone, to do as they please.

What “Change” has there really been in America?!!!

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Since we are approaching the last official year of the 1st. presidential term of Barack Obama, one has to honestly reflect upon how his presidency has affected this country & the world. We cannot just get caught up in the nostalgia of “He’s the first Black President, woo hoo!!!”. We must critically think about what policies that he’s supported & carried out as the Chief Executive of the United States, during his nearly four-year tenure of what could potentially be his only term as the leader of the “Free-World”.

No, it’s not time to break out the worn out Obama hats, shirts, bumper stickers, etc. labelled “Yes, We Can”, or “Change We Can Believe In”. It is truly time for reflection as to whether the U.S. is truly a better country since this man’s been a President. For this reflection, I’ll be taking the liberty of mentioning several happenings throughout the current tenure of this U.S. President & I’ll let you decide has “Change” that this man had promised for this country truly come.

Hate crimes:
Dec. 3rd, 2010-
A twenty-seven year old Black man, by the name of Frederick Jermaine Carter, was found hanging to a tree, in Greenwood, Miss. The Obama administration has yet to even acknowledge the event taking place, and there was no mention of a Federal investigation of this case (ironically enough, Greenwood is a mere 10 miles away from Money, Miss., where Emmett Till, a 14-year-old Black youth, was tortured and murdered by racist whites, over 50 years after the Emmet Til tragedy)-This case was just swept under the rug, by Leflore County Sheriff Ricky Banks, along with the county coroner, declaring Carter’s death a “Suicide”, as a result of him having a history of “Mental-Illness”.

Now, for you & I, who possess basic-intelligence, here’s some serious questions for us to sincerely ask ourselves: When is the last time that a legitimately mentally-ill person used a tree to assist them in a “Suicide”?!!! (Never); when is the the last time that a Black man used a tree to assist him in a “Suicide”?!!! (Never!!!); also, how is the man going to “hang himself”, when he was found tied/bounded to the actual tree that he “hanged himself” from?!!! (Impossible!!!).

Now, just by virtue of the fact that there’s a Black man in the White House is justification enough to have had this case world-wide news; however, sadly, it was just another important issue that was kept under cover, for fear that people would truly realize that having a Black man as a President doesn’t secure shit for Black people, those who came out in droves to vote for this man, really believing that he was their savior-If a White man, or any group of Non-Black individuals would’ve done the same to one of them, this case would’ve been treated the same exact way, especially if they weren’t of any type of known, significant status in our society.

The economy:
It’s not that the Federal bailouts given to the Wall Street titans were bad enough, but to add insult-to-injury, they’ve grown more wealthy & powerful during the Obama years, thus far-According to a report, by Zachary Goldfarb, of the Washington Post:

  • Wall Street firms — independent companies and the securities-trading arms of banks — are doing even better. They earned more in the first 2 1/2 years of the Obama administration than they did during the eight years of the George W. Bush administration, industry data show. [...]
  • The largest banks, including Bank of America, Citigroup and Wells Fargo, earned $34 billion in profit in the first half of the year, nearly matching what they earned in the same period in 2007 and more than in the same period of any other year.
  • Securities firms — the trading arms of big banks and hundreds of other independent firms — have fared even better. They’ve generated at least $83 billion in profit during the past 2 1/2 years, compared with $77 billion during the entire Bush administration, according to data from the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association.

#Enough said!!!

International-Relations:
Anwar Al-Awlaki, a Muslim, as well as a U.S.-citizen, was violently blown to bits, by a CIA-controlled drone-missile attack in Yemen. What still puzzles me, till this very day, is the simple fact that none of the actual charges of “terrorist-activity” against this man was even established, until after he conveniently out of the country, relocated to Yemen, even though he was continually probed by the Feds for at least 5 years before he even left the U.S. to spend the rest of his life in Yemen-Ironically the charges that he had actually gotten arrested for & then released while in the U.S. had absolutely nothing to do with “terrorist-activity”. This is something really difficult to wrap my head around: Anwar Al-Awlaki was accused of being the chief recruitment figure for Al-Qaeda in America, yet you wait until the man leaves the U.S. to go to Yemen to do something about it?!!! What sense does this all make?!!! (None).

He was denied his right as a Human being & a U.S.-citizen to have his day in court/any court, via due-process, even though his historical counterpart, Oliver North, the most corrupt U.S. Military official on record, who aided known terrorist-groups, by supplying them with money gins, in exchanges for drugs to be smuggled into the U.S. during the 1980′s, infamously known as the Iran-Contra Affair, did more than Al-Awlaki was even accused of. Yet, North was eventually acquitted of all 16 counts of Federal felonies thrown at him, received an official Presidential-Pardon, and retired with full rank & pension as a Lt. Colonel of the U.S. Marines (check out my article on this same blog, titled, “If Anwar Al-Awlaki were Oliver North, he’d still be alive & chillin’” for more info. about the Iran-Contra Affair). Then, there’s Somalia, the mythical land of African Al-Qaeda & pirates, even though, unlike the Taliban, Saddam, and Qaddafi, Ash-Shabab have not been ousted (check out my article on this same blog, “Somalia [The Anatomy of a Tragedy]” to find out why).

These are just a few of the countless examples of how the mythos of Barack Obama has continually become a political epic-fail, and has been able to keep the American people deaf, dumb & blind. It’s very obvious to me, and should be just as obvious to you all, that Obama being a President, the first Black President, or what ever posthumous title that you’d wish to refer to him by, has not changed any of the business-as-usual policies well-established in this nation.

In short, “Ain’t shit change, except da number after da dot, on da Range (Rover).”
Christopher Wallace (AKA: Notorious B.I.G.)

Gareth Bryant/2012

Both Misogyny & Feminism are evil and here’s why:

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Author’s note:
Now, for many of you out there who may have a gender superiority-complex, from either gender, may be pissed at me for saying what you’ll end up reading from this post. But, it just needs to be said. This post is not at all meant to offend anyone’s personal views about anything, and if you feel offended in any way by that which you will read, I sincerely apologize in advance.

For educational purposes, I will be fair enough to explore both the historical dynamics of both Misogyny & Feminism, to give those who read this a better understanding of why I take the general position of hating both equally. I plan to start off with the linguistic definitions of both concepts, as well as how these two concepts have ruined the general nature of how men & women are supposed to exist with one another in harmony.

Now, let’s start with defining both concepts:

Misogyny-
Hatred, dislike, or mistrust of women.

Feminism-
The doctrine advocating social, political, and all other rights of women equal to those of men.
(Both definitions are courtesy of Dictionary.com)

Now, I know some of you will be saying to yourselves, “Okay, this Nigga done lost it!!!”. Obviously, on the surface, it doesn’t seem like they are at all the same. But, as we go along, you’ll see how they are exactly the same in practicality. To be fair, it’s not at all surprising that a concept like feminism has sprung up, in an attempt to globally combat Misogyny-After all, Misogyny is in and of itself a very objectifying & oppressive concept. But, as we have seen in our recent history, the natural harmony between men & women have not at all improved; if anything, they’ve gotten worse, and both men & women have become even more at odds with one another.

Allah says in the Qur’an, “Men and women are guardians of one another.” (Chpt.9, V.71 ). This indicates clearly that both men & women have a Divine obligation, from Allah, their Creator, to provide respect, honor, trust, love, appreciation, comfort, companionship, protection, advice, care to one another, not to oppress one another. It’s a blatant sign, that men & women exists to cohabitate in harmony, as opposed to being opposition to one another.

Unfortunately, as a direct result of oppressive social-constructs, laid down by those ruling over others, without proper guidance from Allah, there has been a perpetual disease, that we know of as Misogyny, that has spread like wild-fire, and has compelled women to seek out justice for themselves in any way that they can. But, unfortunately Feminism is not the solution to Misogyny; we’ll get to the reason why after we go a little deeper into he history of both Misogyny & Feminism.

The History of Misogyny:

The History of Misogyny as we know it to be can easily be traced back to several civilizations, namely: ancient Egyptian, Chinese, Greek and Roman civilizations. In ancient ancient Egypt, women were excluded from the scribe & priest classes-Women were not deemed worthy of being religious authorities, and were not trusted enough to be official record-keepers; in ancient Greece, it was understood, as a societal precedent, that women were generally viewed as lesser forms of men, according to several philosophers, writers, poets, etc., they were also denied to participate in the Olympian games as players, or even as spectators, and they were denied the right participate in the democratic-process of electing representatives of the governments of Greece’s many city-states; in ancient Rome, women were just as degraded, and treated just as less than men, as they were in ancient Greece, not really that much difference. In ancient China, much like ancient Greece & Rome, very similar misogynistic elements were visible there. In all of these three respective societies & civilizations, the general treatment of women was unfair, biased, and were bent upon keeping women subjugated socially, economically, politically, and even sexually. For example, in Greece, depictions of men in art were always favored above women, because the male anatomy was viewed as more desirable than the female anatomy. And, in China, Rome & Greece, women were exclusively excluded from the realms of political influence, with the rare exceptions of women from the noble classes, as well as politically astute and powerful families-Even in Egypt, there was a female Pharaoh, by the name of Hatsheput, whom her successors tried in every way to historically erase her from existence, because the ancient Egyptians didn’t want people to know that a female had ruled Egypt all on her own; it’s even possible/probable that she was assassinated, just to get her out of the way. Although I only chose to highlight four of but many civilizations, Misogyny has been a major aspect of many various societies & civilizations throughout history.

The History of Feminism:

Feminism, as we know it, emerged from the Suffrage-Movement. The Suffrage-Movement was the first official movement to directly attack the misogynistic elements of their environment. However, their were in and of itself many elements of the Suffrage-Movement had very racist elements; it’s truly ironic that the founders of the Suffrage-Movement wanted rights for all white women, but not rights for all people. I’ll definitely explain. After Slavery ended, with the passing, of the 13th Amendment (contrary to popular belief, the Emancipation Proclamation did not end Slavery in the U.S.), the issue of givig African-American men the right to vote became an issue of discussion. This is when the evil of the prelude of Feminism lifted its head out of the sand. The Suffrage-Movement had an official split concerning this issue. There were those, like Susan B. Anthony & Elizabeth Cady Stanton, who displayed blatant racist opposition against supporting African-American men to acquire the right to vote, also, they were only concern with grant White women to be granted the right to vote, not even all women-They were so bent upon gaining their own individual rights, that they were willing to deny someone else of theirs. Those on the opposite side of the fence, like Lucy Stone & Julia Ward Howe, who knew that this racist approach was fundamentally wrong, and it would be impossible to get the right to vote for women, without granting the right to vote to Black men first. Thus, the official split between members of the Suffrage-Movement via off-shoot organizations, had begun, because of racial discrimination.

Now, back to the present:

So, in knowing the history of both Misogyny & Feminism, we can now look, through a clearer lens, how they both feed off of one another. One of the perfect examples of how Misogyny & Feminism feed off of one another is the Pornography industry (and just so you know, most porn stars are women, by the way). Every aspect of the Pornography industry is exclusively geared towards the dehumanization, subjugation, of women; yet, you have Feminists, like Wendy McElroy, who mentions in her book, “XXX: A Woman’s Right To Pornography”, that, “Pornography benefits women, both personally and politically.” Now, what the hell is this that she’s talkin’?!!! How in the hell is pornography of any benefit to any woman?!!! Please, someone answer this one for me!!! And, these types of positions are a direct result of the whole notion that a woman is equal to a man. My question is this, if a woman wants to be viewed as an equal counterpart with a man, why in the hell would they co-sign the complete & blatant cultural/societal dishonor of women?!!! Many Feminists would so argue that a woman has a right to express herself as she wills. But, then when they are disrespected by men, as a result of how they express themselves, now they wanna bitch & complain about “Human-Rights”/”Women’s-Rights”. You can’t have it both ways, you either want to be respected or not!!!

Firstly, the issue of how equality is interpreted from a Feminist perspective is completely ass-backwards. Many Feminists simply view equality as being able to do anything that a man can do, which is in and of itself is very relative, or that a woman is the same as a man. Well, men & women are men & women for a reason: because we are in fact different; we’re not the same & we’re not supposed to be the same. Men have qualities & abilities that women will never have, and women have qualities & abilities that men will never have-This is just a reality!!! Men & women don’t have to be the same in order to be equal. Now, still, the concept of equality is unrealistic, because both men & women exists to complement one another, not to conflict one another. But, this is the direct result of when you have a society that is bent upon establishing man-made laws to govern themselves, as opposed to establishing Divine laws, that represent true justice & equality for all, regardless of ethnicity, gender, social-status, etc.

The reality of how Feminism & Misogyny function:

Corruption in society, as a result of not placing the laws of Allah as the standards to live one’s life is like a trigger-finger; the ruling classes of society are like a gun; Misogyny is like a bullet; the bullet wound would be the results of Misogyny’s destructive effects on society; and Feminism is like a band-aid over the bullet wound. Feminism is not solving the problem of the destruction of Misogyny at all in our society, it’s just like placing a band-aid over the bullet wound, without even removing the bullet from the wound. If anything, Feminism, the band-aid, has made the wound worse, because the bullet has not been removed from the wound, which has prevented the wound from healing, and that’s exactly what Feminism has been like for our society.

Feminism has in  fact contributed to the further degradation of women, by supporting women to exploit themselves, as opposed to men exploiting them, which many Feminists find more liberating. And, this explains why Feminism is in fact evil, because it gives the impressions that a woman can exploit herself all she wants, as long as men don’t exploit her-The example of how many Feminists view pornography as liberating for women has already proven my point many times over. You may be wondering still what my general point is, by even bringing this issue up. The point is that neither men nor women have the right to deny one another their rights over one another as Human beings. What ends  up happening is that both Misogyny & Feminism breeds hatred between the genders, spreading & encouraging this outrageous superiority-complex.

The great fallacy of Feminism, being a counter-concept & greater alternative to combat Misogyny, actually, makes Feminism exactly the same as Misogyny; the only difference is that Misogyny is used by men to oppress women & Feminism is used to oppress men. There’s even a Feminist, by the name of Christine Hoff Sommers, who has authored the book, “The War Against Boys”, who gives great detail into how Feminism has had negative results relating to male youth, in our societies. In her work, she has shown how falsified stats were used to push the Feminists agenda, to consolidate further gender superiority of women over men. This is smoking gun evidence, just from the work of Sommers alone that Feminism is just as destructive to our societies as Misogyny is.

Now, back to Misogyny:

To all of my men out there, just stop mistreating the women!!! The whole reason that Feminism has even been allowed to exist and fester in our societies is because the men don’t give the women their due rights, according to the commandments of Allah, which in turn, compels women to seek out their rights, and because they’re so desperate to be treated fairly, they begin to overstep bounds that Allah has set forth, and begin to have unwarranted bias towards men generally, which lead to the pathology of women thinking that they are better than men, just because they’re women, just like with Misogyny, which leads men to develop the pathology that they are better than women, just because they are men.
And, this pathology comes directly from the Devil, when Allah says, in the Qur’an, how He commanded the Angels, along with himself, to prostrate to Adam (Peace be upon him) in the Paradise, yet, the Devil refused & stated that he was better than Adam, but he didn’t have any proof that he was better than Adam (Chpt.7 V.11-13). Likewise, regarding Misogyny & Feminism, these two concepts encourage men to believe that they’re better than women, without any justified reason & women believing that they are better than men, without any justified reason. In all reality, what makes a man better than a woman, and what makes a woman better than a man?!!!

The answer is very simple: No man nor woman can honestly say that they’re any better than any other member of the opposite gender, because Allah, the Lord of the Universe never said that men are better than women, and He never said that women are better than men. The real underlying issue is that people both men & women gravitate towards either Misogyny or Feminism as an excuse to fill some type of confidence or self-esteem void, at the expense of lowering someone else. Whenever people don’t have positive self-esteem, they often use things to make themselves feel better, at the expense of hurting others, and that’s exactly what Misogyny & Feminism are used for.

Gareth Bryant/2012