Sunday, November 29, 2015

Multiculturalism is not achieved by denying religion, but by honoring all of them.

Today's Guardian has an article about an Italian headmaster who has banned Christmas carols from the schools winter concert.

Last year evidentially, during the concert, a bunch of Muslim students were ordered by their parents not to sing the carols. They stood there silently while the other kids sang. Some of the Muslim parents went onto stage and pulled their kids out of the chorus. The Headmaster Marco Parma decided that it was not a good sight and decided to cancel the carols.

Mr. Parma is wrong. He wants a school that is multicultural. That is not what he is promoting, he is promoting segregation and a heckler's veto (Where a legitimate voice is stifled by a dissenter who creates a scene causing the former to be quieted by authorities to "Keep the Peace". )

In a multicultural world, every religion and every culture is celebrated by everyone. Music is an international language. The notes are the same if you are Catholic, Jewish, Muslim or a Sub Genius.
They tell a history, music can cause revolution (See VERDI and the Italian Unification) it soothes a child, it honors heroes. It can expose villains.

Stifling Religious music, teaches nothing but distrust. It causes dislike and hate. What's more, is in Italy, there is an official state religion, it is Roman Catholicism and that makes this kind of decision even more dangerous. It teaches majorities to dislike minorities, to fear that the acceptance of others means that the majority's culture no longer matters.

Now this isn't about making fun of another religion, It doesn't mean that participating in the music of another culture is accepting the ideals of the other culture. It means that one respects the culture of all people. That is what music does. It breeds acceptance. If you don't want to accept the views of others, then go off and be among your own. You may not learn anything, you may be disliked for your parochial attitudes but at least within your bubble you can be what you want to be.

What Parma fails to see, is that he has missed a teaching and a learning opportunity. He is a failure as an educator. He needs to stand down or be fired and let someone who gets it, teach it. Multiculturalism is inclusive, not exclusive. It adds it does not take away. If you do not want to participate, don't, but if you do, you may learn a thing or two about people you do not understand and they may learn about you.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

An Open Letter to President Obama : The Problem With Accepting Syrian Refugees.

Dear Mr. President,
Don't you EVER call me bigoted or frightened or xenophobic because I will not support your half baked plan to admit Syrian refugees into America. Its not b/c of them that I object, its because of YOU!
You have proven yourself to either be the dumbest President since Harding, or the biggest liar since Clinton. You may be both, but I fear more the latter than the former.
You see, in order to engender trust in your work and that of those that work in your administration, you have to be RESPONSIBLE. You are not.  You never take responsibility. Any problem you encounter is always someone else's fault. You claim to never know anything when there is a MAJOR screwup in your administration. You find out when you read it in the newspapers. This does not engender trust.
You also say things you cannot prove or back up! You see Mr. President, ISIS was not the JV team; you do not have Isis contained; Your former Secretary of State knew a lot more than she allegedly told you, and she used private e-mails which she later destroyed without your approval, and  your staff (ie Ms. Jarrett) planned lies about most if not all of it.
By the way When the President of the United States of America draws a "line in the sand" and then has to let the Europeans pull your foot out of your mouth, that does not engender trust in you or your word.
You promised transparency, but yours has been the least transparent administration since Nixon. You promised to not spy on us, LOL! Nixon is in the clouds saying "Whoa, this guy is good". Hell even J Edgar Hoover would be impressed. You spied on our allies and lied to them about it. Your IRS targeted your "enemies" but you take NO responsibility for their actions. Instead your administration has covered its wrong doing up. Cover ups do not engender trust.
Personally,  I don't think you or anyone working for you, could spot an Islamic or for that matter ANY Terrorist if he was standing in front of them with a lit bomb screaming "JIIIIHADDDDD!" and wearing an Allahu Akbar!!! Pin. Hence I do not think your administration can be trusted to properly vet incoming refugees to determine which of them may be the one to blow something up in the USA.
No Mr. President, I am neither a bigot nor a xenophobe, I am just an ordinary American citizen who has lost faith in his government's, and more importantly his President's ability to preserve his freedom OR his safety. That is why so many Americans are against taking in Syrian Refugees right now. If you would step out of your Rose Garden for a few minutes and talk to the part of your constituency that you do not like, you might learn a thing or two. Who knows, you might even apologize correctly for your past behavior and that of your staff and start to get back the trust of the public that you had three short years ago but squandered since.
Yours truly
Anthony Colleluori
AKA That Lawyer Dude.