Saturday Morning, Snow Covered, Random Thoughts…by Chuck Duboff

© Chuck Duboff

  • Bill O’Reilly: you hypocritical, misogynistic, smug piece of garbage; if you had even an ounce of decency in you, you’d give those millions that Fox paid out to you, to women’s shelters…You, Bill O’Reilly, represent all that is wrong with America today.O'Reilley
  • It’s snowing this morning, no really, it’s snowing this morning…after just a beautiful spring day yesterday!!  It’s freakin snowing this morning.
  • Day 5 of no elevators in our building…my legs feel like rubber going up and down those 8 flights of stairs.  Starting to feel locked in, claustrophobic.
  • Did I happen to mention that I was sitting at the ballpark yesterday, under a beautiful warm sun…the weather so nice the Goldeyes could have played…and this morning…SNOW!!   SNOW!!   NO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    snow
  • It feels like we are mere moments away from WWIII…Russia flying jets within miles of both the USA and Canada; North Korea flaunting its nuclear mite; China, a behemoth flexing its muscle with North Korea…and Donald Trump playing golf, while trying to decide whether or not to Nuke North Korea!!
  • I can’t thank the Winnipeg Goldeyes enough; you guys are simply the best.
  • Giant snowflakes!!!!
  • Can not wait for by six days at the cabin in Falcon Lake…peace and quiet.
  • That home run that the Yankees Aaron Judge hit against the Chicago White Sox  on Wednesday, has just landed in New Jersey…man oh man oh man…did he destroy that pitch!!  Super star in the making!!

    Judge

  • After all of these years of watching the Yankees sign over the hill stars, it is so refreshing to watch some young blood on this team; and they’re playing well without two of their young stars, Gary Sanchez and Didi Gregorious.  It’s nice getting some solid starting pitching and seeing players like Starlin Castro, Chase Hedley and Matt Holiday really contributing.
  • If the Jets had Mike Babcock behind the bench and Fredrick Anderson in net, they’d be in the playoffs.  The Jets are far more talented than the Leafs, but Babcock has them playing a much more disciplined game than Paul Maurice could ever get out of the Jets.  It also doesn’t hurt when you get solid consistent goaltending.
  • Two weeks from today and the Winnipeg Goldeyes start training camp; without SNOW, please!!!
  • My dear, dear friend Lisa; yesterday was your birthday.  I can’t put into words how very much I miss you…I hope you have found some peace.  You just knew me, understood me…you displayed empathy when I needed it and lit into me like nobody else could.  You know my pain, you understand my pain…yet, you too, didn’t have the strength to carry on.
  • It’s amazing how many of Trump’s minions have fallen since he took office…from Mike Flynn to Bill O’Reilly, it is only scratching the surface…
  • You caption the above…sad, so very, very sad.  I may not have been a fan of Reagan, but at least he was composed and had some dignity.

  • If you’ve never read Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale…it is a very important read, given the circumstances of the world today.
  • Well according to Ben:  Max Scherzer of the Washington Nationals is old (32), Carly is turning 40 and she’s really old…and Zaida Chuck “you’re really old Zaida”…oh to see life again through the eyes of an 8 year old!!!
  • Kim Jung Crazy and Donald Bloated Psychopath…they will be the undoing of this planet…
    Un
  • And finally…Aaron Hernandez…what a sad, sad, story…what a wasted life.

Those moments…awareness prevails. By Chuck Duboff

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© Chuck Duboff

Those Moments…Awareness Prevails

What does it all mean?
What’s the point?
When will we understand?

It’s in the moments
That fill your soul
With a joy
Unexplained.

The warmth of a hug,
A genuine smile,
Kindness expressed,
Love shared.

It’s a child…
Holding you tight;
The grass…
A lush, brilliant green;
A song…
Perfect in every way.

There’s no book,
Course,
Tutorial,
Lecture…
To explain those moments.

When your soul
Is overcome
With a happiness,
Real and profound…

That’s what it’s all about,
No grand announcement,
No cataclysmic event.

It’s being aware,
Genuinely alive…
To the here…
To the now…

That my friend
Is what it’s all about.

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From ABC news, written by Karma Allen: Muslim activists raise funds for vandalized Jewish cemetery. A VERY IMPORTANT READ.

© CHUCK DUBOFF: IN THESE TROUBLING TIMES, IT IS SO WONDERFUL TO SEE MUSLIMS AND JEWS COMING TOGETHER…AND SETTING AN EXAMPLE FOR ALL THE WORLD TO SEE HOW DIFFERENT RELIGIONS CAN CO-EXIST.

Muslim activists raise over $70,000 to aid vandalized Jewish cemetery

As of early Wednesday morning, a crowdfunding campaign started by Muslim activists had raised over $70,000 in an effort to help repair a vandalized Jewish cemetery near St. Louis, Missouri.

“Muslim Americans stand in solidarity with the Jewish-American community to condemn this horrific act of desecration against the Chesed Shel Emeth Cemetery,” read the crowdfunding campaign’s website, which was spearheaded by Muslim-American activists Linda Sarsour and Tarek El-Messidi. “We also extend our deepest condolences to all those who have been affected and to the Jewish community at large.”

The effort comes after more than 170 headstones were damaged late Sunday or early Monday at Chesed Shel Emeth Cemetery, located in the St. Louis suburb of University City, according to a report by the Associated Press on Tuesday.

As of early Wednesday morning, the LaunchGood-hosted campaign had raised more than $58,000, far surpassing the original $20,000 fundraising goal that the organizers said had been met in just three hours.

Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens called the cemetery vandalism a “senseless act of desecration” in a tweet on Monday.

The incident at the cemetery comes amid a spate of threats directed at Jewish centers across the nation this year. The FBI and the Justice Department announced earlier this week that they would investigate the multiple bomb threats directed toward at least 60 Jewish centers, including 11 threats made on Monday alone.

The Anti-Defamation League called the situation “alarming” and “disruptive” in a statement and said that the threats should be taken seriously.

In a speech on Tuesday, President Donald Trump denounced anti-Semitism after facing criticism that he had not acted strongly enough against the threats.

“The anti-Semitic threats targeting our Jewish community and community centers are horrible and are painful and a very sad reminder of the work that still must be done to root out hate and prejudice and evil,” said Trump after touring the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C.

The fundraisers for the “Muslims Unite to Repair Jewish Cemetery” campaign said they launched the campaign in an effort to “send a united message from the Jewish and Muslim communities” and to condemn “hate, desecration, and violence.”

The campaign said the proceeds would go directly to the Chesed Shel Emeth Cemetery, and that any additional funds leftover after the cost of restoration would “assist other vandalized Jewish centres nationwide.”

First They Came…by Pastor Martin Niemoller

© Chuck Duboff:      I am asked why I keep talking, writing about issues like racism, tolerance, human rights…when racism ends, when human rights for all is not questioned, when tolerance is our way of life…then I will stop…until then…ask yourself why, in 2016, racism still permeates society.

Chuck's Eclectic Blog.

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First They Came

Pastor Martin Niemoller

First they came for the Communists

And I did not speak out

Because I was not a Communist

Then they came for the Socialists

And I did not speak out

Because I was not a Socialist

Then they came for the trade unionists

And I did not speak out

Because I was not a trade unionist

Then they came for the Jews

And I did not speak out

Because I was not a Jew

Then they came for me

And there was no one left To speak out for me.

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Basic Human Rights…what are they? What are your own personal thoughts about the state of human rights in the world today?…by Chuck Duboff

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© Chuck Duboff

“Human Rights: rights which are inherent to all human beings, regardless of nationality, race, sex, ethnic origin, colour, religion, sexual orientation, or any other status.  We are all equally entitled to our human rights without discrimination.”  United Nations.

Questions to ponder:

Ask yourself these questions: do you believe that every human being living on this earth is entitled to basic human rights?  Is there a piece within you which believes that you are more entitled to these rights than others?  Do you look at individuals and say that they are deserving of their less than ideal living conditions and are therefore not as entitled to basic human rights?  Do you believe that basic human rights are bestowed upon all individuals throughout the world, or is there a class of human beings which controls and subjugates others, to their benefit?  Do you ever look down upon others?  Do you generalize and stereotype others and develop a belief that they are less worthy of basic human rights?

Do you believe it is your responsibility to ensure that all citizens of this planet are receiving basic human rights or do you hide your head in the sand and let others do the hard work?

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights:

  1. We are all free and equal
  2. Don’t discriminate
  3. The right to life
  4. No slavery – past or present.
  5. No torture
  6. We all have the same right to use the law.
  7. We are all protected by the law.
  8. Fair treatment by fair courts
  9. No unfair detainment
  10. The right to trial
  11. Innocent until proven guilty
  12. The right to privacy
  13. Freedom to move
  14. The right to asylum
  15. The right to a nationality
  16. Marriage and family
  17. The right to own things
  18. Free to say what you want
  19. Freedom of thought
  20. Meet where you like
  21. The right to democracy
  22. The right to social security
  23. Worker’s rights
  24. The right to play
  25. A bed and some food
  26. The right to education
  27. Culture and copyright
  28. A free and fair world
  29. Our responsibilities to others
  30. Nobody can take away these rights and freedoms from us.

While reading this list of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights, what were your thoughts?  Did any of these rights make you uncomfortable?  Do you believe that our society is making these rights available to all of our citizens?

I asked a wise man, my very good friend, Al Bryski, retired teacher, writer, philosophizer, how he would define Human Rights:

“To me a human right  is the right  for every person, every single one, to have equal rights to choice and opportunity, whether it be the freedom to get a job, to get a partner of one’s choice, the right to   move freely, and the right to work at any job that they, the person,  is qualified for, without threats of harassment, without any abuse, or any threat of being fired. It also means to me the right to freedom of religion and freedom of speech and the right to equal treatment in the due process of law. Summing it up, it is for me treating every person with the dignity and respect they are entitled to.”

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What are you doing to help promote Human Rights?  Are you sitting on the sidelines or are you doing something to make this a healthier world in which we live?

“Poverty is the absence of all human rights. The frustrations, hostility and anger generated by abject poverty cannot sustain peace in any society.”  Muhammad Yunus

Tolerance: the foundation of a healthy society…by Chuck Duboff

 

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© Chuck Duboff

Tolerance is defined  as:  a fair, objective, and permissive attitude toward those whose opinions, beliefs, practices, racial or ethnic origins, etc., differ from one’s own; freedom from bigotry. … a fair, objective, and permissive attitude toward opinions, beliefs, and practices that differ from one’s own.

Some thoughts and questions to ponder:

A society which encourages tolerance of those who differ in their beliefs, opinions, religious teachings and cultural behaviours…is a society which will function peacefully,  respectfully and in harmony.

A lack of tolerance for others…resisting change, fighting back against new cultural norms, denigrating the religious beliefs of others…leads to a society filled with chaos, tension and disunity.

Ask yourself: are you able to tolerate new cultures within your community?

Do you value, respect and listen to the opinions of others?

Are you set in your ways and not able to have an open mind to change, to accept that society is always evolving?

We often imagine that things were greater in the past…ask yourself honestly, were things really great “back then” or have you sugar coated the past?

Tolerance…without it, societies fall apart; there is lack of mutual respect, people live in fear and anger towards others is the overriding emotion…which fuels a society on the brink of anarchy.

Christopher Hitchens:

I learned that very often the most intolerant and narrow-minded people are the ones who congratulate themselves on their tolerance and open-mindedness.

Muhammed Ali and Gordie Howe…the greatest!! by Chuck Duboff

Ali boxing

 

© Chuck Duboff

It’s difficult to write about two sports icons who shaped our child hoods.  “Down goes Frazier”; “There’s another Howe goal, assist and fight!!”  “Cassius Clay manhandles Sonny Liston!!”  “It’s Gordie Howe and the Houston Aeros at the Winnipeg Arena to play Bobby Hull and the Winnipeg Jets!!”  “Chuvalo goes 15 rounds with Ali at Maple Leaf Gardens!!”  Gordie Howe stops by at Rae and Jerry’s and wishes my parents a Happy Anniversary.

Gordie Howe

They were the best  in an era when our sports heroes were bigger than life.  Yet, off the field of play, they were great men, who took the time to make this world a better place.  Ali grew up as Cassius Clay, but changed his name to Muhammed Ali when he converted to Muslim.  He was recognizable throughout the world in his efforts to bring happiness and peace to all.  I dare say that Ali, a Muslim, brought more peace and love to this world than a bigoted Donald Trump ever will.

Ali and Peace

The Champ, a Muslim, brought peace and happiness to all those he met.

I remember Gordie Howe playing for the Detroit Red Wings and his elbows and grit on display when he played Johnny Bower and my Toronto Maple Leafs.  He was awe inspiring and dominated the play when he was on the ice.  When he moved to the WHA, being able to see both Gordie and Bobby on the ice at the Winnipeg Arena seemed like a dream come true.

Bower and Howe

Gordie Howe and Johnny Bower!!

Bobby and Gordie

It’s hard to say good bye to our sports heroes.  Unlike a certain writer for the Winnipeg Free Press, I would suggest that both Ali and Howe were sports heroes:

Miriam Webster dictionary defines hero as: “a person who is greatly admired for great or brave acts or fine qualities.”

Muhammed Ali, in his actions, brought peace and love to all those who were fortunate to meet him; Gordie Howe, quite simply, was a good soul, a man who cared about others and brought smiles to all those whose presence he graced.

Ali and kids

Gordie fans

First They Came…by Pastor Martin Niemoller

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First They Came

Pastor Martin Niemoller

First they came for the Communists

And I did not speak out

Because I was not a Communist

Then they came for the Socialists

And I did not speak out

Because I was not a Socialist

Then they came for the trade unionists

And I did not speak out

Because I was not a trade unionist

Then they came for the Jews

And I did not speak out

Because I was not a Jew

Then they came for me

And there was no one left To speak out for me.

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John Lennon…Imagine

© Chuck Duboff

With the insanity all around the world right now…wars being fought in the name of religion, gun shootings, cultures battling cultures, corporations like VW purposely lying to their customers, elections being stolen…with so many individuals feeling disenfranchised…with starvation, homelessness and climate change being ignored by the powers that be…

JL

Perhaps John Lennon’s beautiful Imagine should both be listened to…and his lyrics thought about…perhaps then some real Peace will come to this world.

“Imagine” John Lennon

Imagine there’s no heaven
It’s easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people
Living for today…

Imagine there’s no countries
It isn’t hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace…

You may say I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope someday you’ll join us
And the world will be as one

Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people
Sharing all the world…

You may say I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope someday you’ll join us
And the world will live as one

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Four Cultures, a Magnificent Wedding and two Fine Restaurants demonstrate peaceful co-existence can flourish.

© Chuck Duboff

I sat down last evening to watch the movie the Hundred-Foot Journey; being completely unaware of the plot or any of the characters, my mind recognized a connection between this wonderful movie and my nephew Jonathan’s wedding, just a few short weeks ago.

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The plot-line of the movie is quite a simple premise; a family of Indian origin decides to open an Indian restaurant nearby a classy proper English dining establishment. The initial reaction to the Indian family having the audacity to establish their business in a secluded French hillside is quite predictable. Racist actions and words are hurled at the family from the local citizens, while the owner of the one star Michelin restaurant is terribly snarky and rude towards her new neighbour.

Expectedly, it is the children and young employees of the two owners who open the eyes to civility and mutual respect. Through cooking, fine dining and achieving success, the elders are made to see that all human beings deserve respect, compassion and love. A beautiful family of East Indian origin learns to peacefully co-exist with the British upper crust.

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One month ago my nephew Jonathan got married to his bride, Narisa. What was so wonderful about this three day celebration was the fact that Jonathan is Jewish, while Narisa is Muslim. That’s right, a dynamic young Jewish man marrying an awe inspiring Muslim woman.

Thee pic of J and N

The beautiful manner in which both families got along that weekend was breath taking. To see a Jewish family and a Muslim family have such a wonderful weekend together was truly amazing. Laughter, hugs, dancing, singing, smiles and two beautiful ceremonies showed the world that it is possible for cultures to peacefully co-exist. Whether it was a Jewish grandmother making friends with a Muslim grandmother, a Jewish family sitting in a Mosque watching their son, nephew, cousin get married or enjoying the Muslim family dancing to Hava Nagila…it truly was a wedding for the ages!!

both families

The weekend of two cultures coming together in joy is what the CBC, CNN, Time Magazine should be focusing their attention on. A light should be shining on the Duboff and Lalji families; you have shown the world that it’s not just in movies that cultures can live in peaceful co-existance, but rather, in day to day life peace is possible.

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