Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Questioning objectivity and "who is right"?

It's practically impossible to answer. Nobody is right, and at the same time, everybody is right. Due to our tunneled vision, and limited realities, all players in a game will always think they are right. Still, when posed the question "Why are we right?" - specifically surrounding the attempt of the Western world to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons, we must think. "Why can we have weapons, but Iran can't?"

This is an absolutely legitimate and important question. I'm glad that some of us have used history to our advantage in recognizing humanity's capabilities and flaws.

Here is what I think about who is right, and why:

I have a very unique approach to how I see things; which I hope makes me even more objective than you think. I hope to influence people by exposing my mind set.

First, let it be known, that I believe in an idealistic world without religion and the concept of nations. I believe in establishing a human network that is blind to race, ethnicity and gender – essentially embracing diversity as one. All are equal. I believe that most of our problems throughout our history dating to today is a result of classifications; a system that differentiates humans based on certain factors. This results in competition, ego, and pride - 3 flaws of human behavior.
I believe humans as a species share a common goal – but we have not yet matured enough to understand and learn these goals. We are still evolving as a peoples, and have come a long way from where we were.

**

The ability to incorporate circumstantial thinking into your objective lens is crucial. I can be objective regarding a certain issue - but at the same time, as it affects humanity to such grave proportions, one must have the capability to make deeper and further judgment. It's called circumstantial thinking (ultimately, it will be subjective to the ethics and morals you grew up with.). This is something that most people in the world lack as a result of the "limited politics" structure. For example, in the US, due to the political structure of a two party system (Democratic vs. Republican) - citizens are victims of limited politics. You are either right, or left.

If you grow up as someone who is “left”, and influenced by the “left” through your parents, and then on your own, how can you completely be objective?
That is one of the main reasons that Israel has lost support from the left in the USA – because Bush, a man representing the right, had a favorable policy towards Israel, and people on the left would rather get hit by a bus then find themselves agreeing with Bush on something.

You ask me, “Which is it?” when I say that Israel is extremely progressive in large part to her objectivity. I am not speaking in terms of the future. I am speaking in terms of the past and now. Israel is already progressive and objective (that was the purpose of listing the incredible achievements). Remember, Israel is only 60 years old. The way I view things, not everything is black and white. I am not right or left. I am not liberal or conservative. I have the ability to look at specific issues and judge them in their own light, without blind obligation to “whom my pre-determined loyalties belong to”.

Objectivity has led to the mass amounts of progressive movements within Israel and around the globe, but at the same time, reason and ethics served as a basis to these changes that have sustained us. Two Members of Knesset just traveled to Syria. Are you kidding me? That’s how liberal we are, and how objective we can be.

It wasn't the objectivity of Chamberlain that saved the Western world and showed how "fair" we can be. Yet, it was his naïve nature and desires to appease the Nazi’s that led to the horrifying incidents that has forever stained us. In other words, when issues revolving the survival of an easily targeted entity are on the horizon, one should not turn a blind eye - even the most objective people amongst us, who with or without knowing share a larger scale commonality with Western principles.

Remember, Jews represent less than 1% of the humans on this planet.

Hitler had nothing to do with the Middle East, and was ruler of a great Western nation called Germany. This point alone shows me and you that we're not isolating Islam when talking about the dark side of humanity. We're talking about evil in its worst terms stemming from the West. Evil, like love, does not discriminate; remember slavery, etc. Hitler was mad at all the Western nations post WWI (Versailles treaty). Perhaps he tried to shed light on an issue? Why does USA, England and co. get to impose their will on us?

Well, maybe it's because of your actions during WWI? Or maybe it's because of your rhetoric, your threats, your beliefs and your actions - in essence, your reputation? Hitler (Germany) crossed the border that we, Western nations together, defined as being the line of reason; ethical and moral ideology. (Remember that our definition was a result of our own lack of humanity, i.e. slavery)

Questioning these elements is extremely high level, but is linked to the liberal purpose - advancing social behavior and adopting tolerance. If I asked you, what do you think about re-introducing the law that forbids women to vote in the USA? You would immediately flip out. But why? What if it’s common practice in certain parts of the world? Who are we to be appalled by this law, and who are we to oppose it?

Many say that Hitler succeeded, and many go beyond to calling him a genius, due to the will of the Western world to understand him, to engage in dialogue, to not jump to conclusions.

To question thy selves is important. But ignoring the answers is wrong.

In fact, most of us answer this question every day: "Why are we right?"
We are right, because we are given the freedoms to question and understand why we are right. We have been privileged with a basic human right – freedom of speech, and freedom of thought, which enables us to act both subjectively and objectively so that we can better our society as we evolve. We are surrounded by a growing cloud of morals, ethics, and concepts related to improving humanity. You criticize your government, and you are still alive. How? Why? The answer is simple. It’s because you don’t live in a dictator ruled country that imposes inhumane laws on you. You live in the West - the lands whereby Theocracy has no room, and tolerance and acceptance of diversity and democracy is the way of life; the symbol of progress. [*Note I say “growing” because I do recognize our flaws, our history, and see this as further proof that that all humans share the task of progressive change - from the modernized USA, to the religious state in Iran. ]


It's idealistic, and imperfect, but it's all a phase in our evolutionary pathway. We are hypocritical, we act on self-interests, and we are scandalous. Welcome to planet earth - the land of humans.


**

Every time I read or hear about a civilian casualty within the Palestinian population, I feel horrible. For a few minutes, I think strongly about the victim and share sorrow.

Because I truly welcome into my home with warm heart Muslims, Christians, and Jews (heck, throw in Buddhists, Pagans, and Atheists.), I know that I'm right within the confines of my definition of what this world should be like. Obviously my view is subjective to the Judeo-Christian principles that define our environment. Growing up in two democratic and liberal societies, the morals and ethics I was raised around are directly linked to humanity.

As a kid, I used to stare at homeless people in complete astonishment and sadness wondering “How could that be? How could a human being, like me, find him/herself in such a grave situation? No home, no family, no money, no food, nothing!” Or I used to ponder the LA riots and try to figure out why they were happening. On the news I saw kids sitting in shelters with gas masks, and then I saw tanks and bulldozers tearing down homes. These are all horrible images and events. I naturally felt that these things were not right.

In my idealistic world women should have the right to vote. I can be objective and try to understand why Iran forbids women to vote - but you know what, that is where I draw my line of being objective. That is when my inner organs start to swirl and radiate signs of natural disgust. That is when my naturally embedded sense of reason and ethics kicks in and raises an alarm. That is when I know, for a certainty, that it's not right.

Just like you know that slavery, discrimination, oppression, and brainwash are all products of complete disregard to life; to humanity. Just like you know that tolerance is key to a peaceful environment – considering our diverse nature.


I have to stress the importance of realizing that these realities exist not because of Israel’s actions, but because of the systematic brainwashing and hate that has been continuously streamed to millions of people. It is crucial to recognize that the civilians of these nations are not to blame. We solely place the blame on the rulers of these nations that without hiding it, disregard humanity by voiding basic rights. No freedom of speech. No free press. All media is government controlled. All school text books are Government controlled. Religion is imposed on people. Women have no rights. Men have very few rights. And the horror stories can continue all night long. And still I don’t hear any outcries regarding the goal to impose Islam on all the sinners. How come? This goal has been in effect for hundreds of years!

So now I ask you, what’s wrong with this picture? Do you ignore such realities because it’s far from you? Or is it because they’re Muslims? Or is it because you respect their ways of life and find no room to criticize it?

I know that together we can build a huge list of places world wide suffering from the same symptoms (lack of basic human rights). Hasn’t history already shown us the negativity and flaws of Theocracies? How about them Dictatorships? The common link of these entities is not their desire to improve humanity - it’s to force a religion upon people with goals that don’t serve the people. In more current and specific terms, to establish an Islamic empire in the Middle East that doesn’t recognize the most basic human rights – as we, the West, define them. I thought the bible days are long gone and these religious battles are over? Perhaps I was wrong.

To take the time to question and think deeply about the situation is important. But realize what can happen when you don’t address the critical issues at hand: not why the West is right, but why threatening and acting to destroy a nation is wrong.

Why tolerance in all facets is right, and why brainwash is wrong. Why freedom of speech and press is right, and why imposing religion is wrong. Why questioning our own government is right, and why murdering those who question is wrong.

It may not be an intellectual answer to why we are right. But it's humane. And that's who we are, and that's all we have left. Our humanity. Not our objectivity.


**
Some say I lost my objectivity being in Israel. I hate to say this, but I say millions of people have lost their humanity (especially those in the USA) by being whirl-winded into a narrow stream of anti-Bush liquids which has resulted in a delusional adoption of irrationality and immorality.

You are in essence blindly legitimizing a Theocracy that does not let Women vote and has no religious tolerance. Is that what you stand for as we attempt to make progress on this globe? Is that your idea of being objective? But you know what, let’s pretend that wasn’t the reality. You still have a crazy man who is already funding and sponsoring violence towards Israel, gets on TV and publicly calls for her destruction, and is fighting hard to build nuclear weapons. Is this not enough evidence to convince any reasonable democratic nation that Iran is a very serious threat to Israel? If you are hesitant to answer, then you have been victimized by the new liberal movement. You do not recognize Israel’s right to exist.

I would say that’s why we think we can impose our will on Iran. For the same reason we eventually imposed our will on Hitler. Oh yea, Hitler was also “democratically” elected.

To flip the switch; Why is it ok for Iran to attempt to impose their will and religion on other nations and societies? Why is it ok that in the Koran, it is preached that Islam should “be spread by the sword”?

***

I am writing as if I am speaking to peoples taking part of a trend within Democratic nations. In my eyes, it’s sad. Always having voted left in Israel & the USA (I voted 4 times), I am frightened by the lucid extremism emerging on the Left, just like I have always been appalled by the extreme right (bible loving anti stem-cell research knuckleheads). I do not call for our “intervention” to conquer nations and establish “our ways of life”. I realize that this is something we have done and continue to do, and this is something that should raise questions. Imposing our system is wrong, especially because we selectively do it based on our own interests. This is Hypocrisy in its worst forms. Why don’t we do the same in Africa where much help is needed? Sadly, we have no interests there. However, it is still our duty as progressive human beings to recognize when a certain line of humanity has been breached. Then it is our duty to voice our opinions, to share our angers, and to influence to the point where change is ignited. It is not our duty to impose our ways by use of force. Apparently, that is the duty of extreme Islam.

"Hello, Darfur has been crying for help for a long time. Is anybody home?"

"No, we're too busy watching them imperialistic Israelis bomb the hell out of millions of innocent civilians. We're too focused on criticizing Israel - we don't care about Darfur now. Come back later, and maybe we'll cry with you. But I don't think we'll help you. There must be a reason for the inhumane horrors you are facing."

***

2 Comments:

Blogger alex said...

i realize now that i couched my comments badly. in the NYT (which you probably see as an "extremist" left wing publication), roger cohen has done a much better job of summarizing why engagement and diplomacy are the right avenues. it has nothing to do with ideology, with appeasing a nazi...and everything to do with advancing our interests.

the last few paragraphs:

"Burns knows about effective carrot- and-stick diplomacy. He was a central member of the team led by Richard Holbrooke that a decade ago cudgeled the warring parties in Bosnia into a compromise that has held. That exercise involved sitting down with mass murderers. Up to now, Ahmadinejad has only talked the talk.

Let's think about this. Any chance of controlling the mayhem in Iraq without Iranian cooperation? Nope. Any chance of a peace between Israel and Palestine without Iran putting a brake on its surrogates? Nope. Any more promising potential partner on the other side of the widening abyss between the West and radical Islam? Nope.

In the Bush-led quest to transform the Middle East, a stick has been applied in Iraq. Its corollary almost certainly has to be a carrot deployed in Iran. It's time to swallow hard and start talking."

http://select.nytimes.com/iht/2006/09/23/world/IHT-23globalist.html

4:24 PM  
Blogger thehashman said...

Sitting down with mass murderers?

It's funny that he doesn't mention what happened after the nice exercise. Close to 120,000 people were killed and murdered as a result of talking (Milosovic, who was later tried and convicted of crimes against humanity - ironic, eh?) You think any of the agreements that were signed with Arafat stood? No.

In any case, I totally agree with you and him in terms of need to conduct dialogue for the sake of the region. Where we disagree, is with whom, and when (which does have to do with ideology). You believe that we have no choice but to talk to this crazy man, and I believe that history has taught us that we don't and shouldn't talk to this crazy man; considering the circumstances.

It's a matter of principle. If you don't believe in my most basic right to exist, to breathe, to live - then you are not worthy of my dialogue, for it has already been proven as meaningless.

Perhaps if Ahmadinejad spoke to the world, and preached tolerance, peace, understanding, diversity, the need to conduct means other than terror to achieve goals, then I would not say "we have no choice but to talk to Iran", but would say "we want to talk to iran, and we will talk to iran".

You and I are already familiar with his stubborn yet hurtful rhetoric.

You think Ahminejead actually wants to talk. You think he wants to eliminate extreme Islam. You think he actually wants peace and tolerance.

I have clear evidence that he doesn't - and choose not to ignore it, whatever the reasons are.

1:41 AM  

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