Friday, October 14, 2005

Why my friends are my family, not my blood relations

Hey baby, what'cha know good
I'm just gettin' back, but you knew I would
War is hell, when will it end,
When will people start gettin' together again
Are things really gettin' better, like the newspaper said
What else is new my friend, besides what I read
Can't find no work, can't find no job my friend
Money is tighter than it's ever been
Say man, I just don't understand
What's going on across this land
Ah what's happening brother,
-Marvin Gaye (What's Happening Brother) from What's Going On

I got a really distressing email from my mother today. Since music has been the one constant in my life to give me peace either in the form of the lyrics (such as Marvin's album What's Going On), or simply musically, I decided to post some of Marvin's lyrics. This was written in around 1971. Vietnam was still raging, political unrest in the country, students were finding their voices still and guess what....the lyrics are just as true to me today as when he wrote them.

Now, I don't care what religion you are. I'm a pagan. I know some folks that are Jewish, I know some that are Christians, I know maybe a Buddist or two. The fact is that all the people I know of different faiths talk to me about their religions (with the possible exception of the Buddists because it's more a philosophic way of looking at life) and what I've heard is about a God of love. All the major religions talk about love and how great love is and how God loves us, etc. So I ask you this...why has it turned into a war of "my god is better than your god" with people? I mean really, when can we just realize that whatever you believe in, you're still going to be a human being and simply try and love that person? [Christianity says love the sinner hate the sin] So it really hurt me to see my mother emailing this to me. I'm posting it because I want to know other people's opinions on it.

I think I have further strained the relationship with my mother because I cuttingly told her not to send me anymore hate mail like this. I reminded her that Muslims are people too, no different than she is or I am. Not to mention the biggest sin, which was telling her I wasn't going to pull the skeletons out of the Christian closet (can you say Crusades where people are being killed in the name of Christ? Yeah...that was really his message now wasn't it? Make them believe in me or kill them.). I recieved a reply with the words "I love my country" in it and it really bothered me. She won't think for a second? She won't look at a bigger picture of things? Why? Why pass on more hatred and mask it as being "patriotic"? I love this country as well. I hate the government but I love this country (well hate the current government and we'll see what happens in the next elections). Honestly, why pass something this hateful? Is it to try and make people hate more? And what about the American Muslims? Should we just corral them up like we did with the Japanese during the second World War? I mean seriously, what's next then? It frightens me and saddens me.

I'll welcome any comments you have on the email she sent. Here it is:

"Muslims do not believe in the holy birth of Christ and yet, they're getting their own "Christmas Holiday" stamp.

Christians cannot even "dream" of posting the ten commandments on federal property, yet, the USPS, who is funded by the Federal Government, is HONORING the Islamic Religion.

This one is hard to comprehend. Scroll down for the text. If there is only one thing you forward today.....let it be this!

REMEMBER the MUSLIM bombing of PanAm Flight 103!
REMEMBER the MUSLIM bombing of the World Trade Center in 1993!
REMEMBER the MUSLIM bombing of the Marine barracks in Lebanon!
REMEMBER the MUSLIM bombing of the military barracks in Saudi Arabia!
REMEMBER the MUSLIM bombing of the American Embassies in Africa!
REMEMBER the MUSLIM bombing of the USS COLE!
REMEMBER the MUSLIM attack on the Twin Towers on 9/11/2001!
REMEMBER all the AMERICAN lives that were lost in those vicious MUSLIM attacks!

Now the United States Postal Service REMEMBERS and HONORS the EID MUSLIM holiday season with a commemorative first class holiday postage stamp.
REMEMBER to adamantly and vocally BOYCOTT this stamp when purchasing your stamps at the post office. To use this stamp would be a slap in the face to all those AMERICANS who died at the hands of those whom this stamp honors.
REMEMBER to pass this along to every patriotic AMERICAN you know
"

Is it just me, or is this an open invitation to add more hatred? I still can't believe my own mother sent this to me. Why the hell do people have to try and keep hatred going? And yes, she is an ignorant woman. (my own words about her) I've even heard her use the "N" word much to my disgust and she doesn't understand why it upsets me?

I don't know how to post music here, wish I did because I wanted to hit you all with another dose of Marvin Gaye. This song is definately in my top 20 (and I'll get around to that list soon), but it's his song What's Going On. If you don't know the song, find a place to download it from and give it a listen. If you don't do that, I hope you at least read the lyrics on the link.

PEACE

8 comments:

ScandinavienNova said...

Hi!

In this time a lot of bad things happens. And there are people getting killed everyday from terrorist attacs. The one who do this horrible things are Muslims. When people gets scared and angry they always looks for someone to blame. And unfortunaly many can´t see that this extrem-muslims are only a pice in the sea. Cause most of the muslims are GOOD and desent people that dont agree to actions like a terrorist-attac on inocent humans.

I get sad when I read stuff like that. (Your e-mail from your mother) But I think that that was one of these e-mails that you recive and then shall send to all of your friends, dont know what it is called in english. And people are ignorant, they just pusch the "send" button and dont think that it will spread the hate against Muslims even more. I dont think your mother did it cause she trule hate every muslim, I think it was just something she would have done even if it was a funny story.

Sorry that I wrote so much, but since english isn´t my language I cant write short when I want to explaine something..Big problem..

The only thing we can do is to pray that people one day understands that you is not a terrorist only beacuse you are Muslim.

NOW I wil stop.. :)

Take care! And one advice.. Talk to your mother and tell her what you think and ask her why she send it.

Steve said...

It sounds like your mom forwarded you an e-mail she received from some lunatic, and the tone of your post suggests there are already some other issues between you two, so I won't go there. Sometimes, it's little things we let weigh us down, so if it were me, I wouldn't give this much thought. Just my 2 cents worth. And yeah, I miss Marvin Gaye. He was a genius.

Alex said...

i agree i wouldnt give it much thought.

jason said...

I don't want to jump in the middle of what seems to be a rocky relationship between you and your mother, but I have to respond to this... Religion happens to be one of my pet peeves. And I wouldn't let it go; that perpetuates the ignorance and silently agrees with the message.

Ask her how many Muslim lives were lost in the Crusades and how many were lost during the Inquisition.

Then remind her that the USPS Muslim stamp is almost five years old, as is the POS e-mail she forwarded.

Also ask why the Eid stamp (short for Eid al-Adha) would even bother her since it's the Muslim account of the Judeo-Christian story of Abraham and Isaac...

Finally, remind her that Christianity has wrought more death, destruction, and hatred throughout history than any other religion -- period. It continues today; check the news at any time and you'll find them practicing hate, bigotry, hypocrisy, intolerance, and otherwise being downright evil and mean -- completely contrary to what they claim to believe.

Does the strategic rape and abduction of child soldiers by the Lord's Resistance Army in Uganda represent all Christians? Did Nazi Germany represent all Christians? Does the war between Christian denominations in Northern Ireland represent all Christians? Get the point?

Oh, and a footnote: Muslims don't commit terrorism, Muslims don't murder, and Muslims don't hate. People do these things in the name of Islam, but they aren't Muslims from my reading of the Qur'an -- and the vast majority of Muslims throughout the world agree with that sentiment. Terrorists may be hijacking the religion and committing atrocities in its name, but they don't represent it.

Chris said...

I don't get crazy stuff like that. I grew up with a Catholic father and Protestant mother... never a fight about religion--not once.

Everyone believes slightly differently--even within a religion. I'm a practicing Catholic, but I can safely say--in particular as a gay man--that the Pope does not speak for me. I have strong issues with the Catholic church, but I am strong in faith that they will come to change.

As Rodney King said, "Can't we all just get along?" Seriously, while I may disagree with another's beliefs, I firmly support their right to have those beliefs. In fact, I think those who support another's right to worship differently are the true patriots. This country was founded on the belief in religious freedom--that includes Muslims.

I'll get off my soapbox now...

Michael said...

You guys literally are the greatest! Jason, you wanna call my mom and go off on her? I'd love to hear it man. Hell, I'd even pay ya to do it! lol

And welcome to my friend from Sweden. (now I feel like I need to learn a little swedish so I can return the favour *grin*)

Family for me is definately a rock and a hard place. Course being pagan doesn't help smooth things over any ;)

Adam said...

It is unbelieveable that people feel that it is right to discrimate against an entire group of people based on the actions of a few. Moreover, you can find "facts" to prove just about any point you want to make, but chances are they aren't showing the entire picture.

Just my opinion, but anyone who forwards that doesn't stand for the values of America - "land of the free" isn't what you're national anthem says?!

Miladysa said...

I shall throw my penny into the pot ..

I agree with everything you wrote.

For your sake please let your anger go and forgive your mother. In the words of Marvin Gaye:

"We're all sensitive people
With so much love to give,
understand me sugar
Since we got to be
Lets say, I love you"

(Let's Get It On)