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The Forum > General Discussion > Are We Truly Free?

Are We Truly Free?

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The intent of this thread is not to highlight Racism, never, but are we free to talk about our concerns without being called racists?
I understand the imprisoning of that school teacher in Sudan is no proof all Muslims are strange.
But are we free to question the intelligence of those who hold her?
To ask can it truly be that a God has that much power over common since?
We are about to say sorry, yes it is time, but are we free to say just maybe we played no part in the whole issue, could not have changed it?
And dare we mention sometimes those wrong ,and they are wrong, actions saved lives?
Is it ever ok to hold honest views that are not politically correct ,but may well be true?
Am I free to say we should not trade with a nation like Sudan in any way until such bigoted actions are a thing of the past?
And can I ask why we who are so concerned for some ignore such as a rape victim being flogged for her crime?
We are not free we are bound hand and foot by the wish not to upset some, to wait still for some to find human compassion and stop enslaving people.
To indeed stop hating us sometimes .
If published please remember the thread is not meant to be racist some will clearly say it is but that is a symptom of the problem not an answer.
Posted by Belly, Friday, 30 November 2007 5:53:59 AM
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belly, you and every ozzie are truly free in just the same way a sheep in a paddock is free.

i do wish you'd stop worrying about serious matters though, there's absolutely nothing you can do about matters of consequence. those are for the upper class.
Posted by DEMOS, Friday, 30 November 2007 6:49:32 PM
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Dear Belly,

The Soviet-style socialist societies of Eastern Europe and Asia claim to be democratic and dedicated to human freedom, although their political systems have few of the features that we have . Yet the leaders of these societies are not necessarily being cynical. They, and no doubt many of their citizens, believe that they live in democracies and that their people are free.

The source of the difficulty lies in the way 'freedom' is defined.
In our society we are primarily concerned with freedom - 'of' :
freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, freedom of the press, freedom of the individual to make a fortune. In their societies they are primarily concerned with freedom - 'from' : freedom from want, freedom from hunger, freedom from unemployment, freedom from exploitation by people who want to make a fortune. Put another way, we interpret freedom as meaning 'liberty' ; they interpret it as meaning 'equality.'

Liberty and equality are uneasy bedfellows. In general, the more you have of one, the less you will have of the other. Your liberty to be richer than anyone else violates the other person's right to be your equal; other people's right to be your equal violates your liberty to earn more than anyone else. Our society has chosen to emphasize
personal liberty, an emphasis that can lead only to social inequality.

Most people don't of course rationally consider the various alternatives. No matter what country they inhabit, they tend to simple accept the system they have been socialized to believe in.
Posted by Foxy, Friday, 30 November 2007 7:23:14 PM
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Absolutely. In fact, I think you'll find pretty strong condemnation of Sudan's ridiculous, draconian actions including from Muslim groups (See: http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk_news/story/0,,2219601,00.html )

Personally, I'm not surprised the Sudanese were offended jeez, imagine the reaction of some people on these boards if their child had a black Sudanese teacher who encourage said child to call teddy "the lord Jesus Christ". But no one has the right *not* to be offended, and the teacher's incarceration should be condemned in the strongest terms. In fact, sometimes when the government is hamstrung by diplomacy, the citizenry is obligated to express its disgust at a foreign government's action.

Obviously, if you blame all Sudanese including the ones who live in Australia because they've fled from that government for the actions of the state, then you're a bit of a moron.

But, otherwise, go for it. I think you'll find you're not quite as oppressed as you think you are.
Posted by botheration, Friday, 30 November 2007 7:28:05 PM
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Dear Belly,

We in the West swallow what people tell us - that the values of Islam are compassion, tolerance, and freedom. If we were to look at reality, at real cultures and governments, we would see that it simply isn't so. We swallow this sort of thing because we have learned not to examine the religions or cultures of minorities too critically, for fear of being called racist.

But of course we must speak out. It would be wrong to elevate cultures full of bigotry and hatred toward women to the stature of respectable alternative ways of life. The oppression of women causes Mulsim women and Muslim men too, to lag behind the West. It creates a culture that generates more backwardness with every generation.

It would be better for everyone - for Muslims, above all - if this situation could change.

As for our life and freedom - our life is better because - human relations are better, and one reason human relations are better is that life on earth is valued in the here and now, and individuals enjoy rights and freedoms that are recognized and protected by the state. We don't accept subordination and abuse because our God willed it. In our society cruelty is not implacable and inequality is not the law of the land. Dissidents are not tortured and women are not policed both by the state and by their families. Our families do not give the state power to rule our lives.
Posted by Foxy, Friday, 30 November 2007 8:24:41 PM
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There are 2 matters here, the Sudan and I assume "Sorry" to Aboriginal Australia.

I know that values of freedom of speech and the culture that follows has not manifested in any Bill or Charter of Rights in Australia officially yet.

With the Sudan, that has been going on for a long time.

Broken Matyrs

http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=J1W6yZP_tIU

Oil Wars

http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=rgZ1aal478s&feature=user

With saying "Sorry" from "us" to "them" it gets very foggy as to where the line in the sand is. Some of us are part Aboriginal. I don't identify as such. So a part of me has to say sorry to the other part of me.

The way Rudd words this has to be really careful. Just by putting attention to "us" and "them" is isolating for some.

Then the economist will have anxiety about what legal and financial implications this carries. I know that the Aboriginal people have non of these intentions after "sorry" is spoken. It can be good medicine and bring us all together. It really is a test of a balance on a razor's edge.
Posted by saintfletcher, Saturday, 1 December 2007 3:06:34 AM
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