Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Birthday # 54

Yet another birthday will arrive at midnight and my new life is moving along.  My children are doing well, my parents are still here, I have great friends, a job I like, and even with a small amount of serious family drama going on, my new life is wonderful....and I'm so grateful to have been able to make it happen! 

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Pashtunwali vs Sharia

I find that I get annoyed when people say things about the Koran,  Islam, or Muslims, that lump all the people of this faith into the "stoning women" category.  Therefore, I thought I would post this so that we could all be better educated.....

From the book Captive: My Time as a Prisoner of the Taliban, by Jere Van Dyke

"In brief, the main tenet of Pashtunwali is honor. All other tenets -- hospitality, revenge, right of refuge, inheritance, marriage, divorce, and all forms of punishment --- stems from honor. It goes to the heart of what it means to be a Pashtun. A man has no tolerance for anyone who attacks his personal, family, or tribal honor.

Pashtunwali demands blood vengeance, contradicting the Koran, which states that a man must not kill another Muslim. A man must never let an insult go unpunished.  Sharia, or Islamic law, on the other hand, is interested in arbitration, settling a dispute, paying blood money for murder."

This is the really interesting part......

"All men are equal under Pashtunwali, and noble, but if a man looks at a women with the slightest slant, demeaning her honor, it is grounds for murder.  Courtship and romantic love are forbidden. A man and a woman who elope lose respect. The family can retrieve its honor and status only if they kill the elopers. The woman must die first. Nowhere in the world are they safe. Male and female are stoned or buried alive.  Under Sharia, adultery must be witness by four people. Under Pashtunwali, a rumor can end a woman's life."

Pashtunwali is obviously the more fundamentalist brand......the brand that the Tailban practices......

Food for thought....

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Happy Birthday, Harry

I have loved Science Friday from the very first moment I stumbled upon it via the Internet almost six years ago....and firmly believe that had I found it years earlier, perhaps my life would have gone in a very different direction.

Because of Science Friday, I got an H1N1 flu shot (and learned to stop calling it "swine flu.)

Because of Science Friday I have become considerably more aware of how my actions may be contributing to climate change and have actively done things to change my behavior in the hope that I might make a small difference.

Because of Science Friday I know more about the Higgs boson, black holes, nanotubes, graphene, and carbon sequestration than I would ever have thought possible.

Because of Science Friday I have bought books like The Zookeeper's Wife, About a Mountain and In Search of Memory.

Because of Science Friday, I have been educated by watching entertaining videos, like how to de-skunk my dog (if I had one), and what kind of car I might want to drive (if I didn't use the subway ever day). I've seen permafrost defrosting, understand the physics of basketball, know what it's like to see through the eyes of an armadillo and how water balloons behave in space. I have been able to not only hear some of the scientists that are interviewed, but also see their desks! How else would that have ever been possible, if not for Science Friday?

Because of Science Friday, I have been able to hear the words of people like Jane Goodall, Eric Kandel, Carl Sagan, and Sylvia Earl, just to name a few of the many, many guests who have been interviewed. I’d like to think that if Einstein were alive, I would have also gotten to hear him too.

Because of Science Friday I know the origins of words like antibiotic, physician and comet.

It’s impossible for me to detail all that I’ve learned over the past five years of being a Science Friday listener. I have been horrified by what is happening to our planet, (and the people who don’t believe it), yet still feel encouraged that there are so many smart people out there, diligently working on ways to effect change.

Science Friday feeds my curiosity on so many different levels.

And, certainly, last, but not least, there’s Ira Flatow……without whom Science Friday would never have existed. With his unlikely sounding radio voice he has helped me and all his other listeners, to better understand the scientific world around us by bringing science into our lives for two hours every week, and on a level that we can understand.

If it were not for Ira, I would not be using the phrase “Scientific evidence is NOT a matter of opinion!”

Yes, I am proud to be one of the many fans of Science Friday……..