Saturday Supplement

As most of you know, I've been trying to stick to a Lenten discipline of "thinking on what is good" which isn't always easy when reading the news or picking up stuff on the internet. However, the a series of photographs and quotes on Steve McCurry's blog, put a definite smile on my face... especially the photo of the guy in Afghanistan carrying the 2 icecreams... Certainly a different image of that land than we usually get... including the devastating loss of 6 British soldiers this week. Thanks to Fred Vincent for posting it via facebook in the first place.
Carrying on a theme from last week's "supplement", Richard Dawkins' crusade against Christianity (lets face it, that could be a theme every week), Zoomtard wrote an excellent piece on the engagement between Dawkins and Rowan Williams last weekend.
This next story also emanates from Oxford and concerns an ill-conceived election campaign by one female student to become Union Librarian, whose role, from what I can see in the article, has very little to do with administering dusty tomes. It and this other story about the sexist labelling of clothing (also from the Daily Telegraph, a bad habit I'll have to break) both concern the thorny issue of sex, sexism and humour... Given that Thursday was "International Women's Day" (is there an International Men's Day?) I thought both are worth a look.
If sexism and humour is a thorny subject so is the issue of forgiveness, repentance and reconciliation in a community riven by conflict such as ours... Much has been written about it, but this piece by Gladys Ganiel is a brief if useful addition to the corpus... not least because it draws on the reflections of my late friend David Stevens, a man whose wisdom I still miss. But Gladys herself says:
"I am not advocating moral equivalence between people who participated in violent acts, and people who did not... But I do think there is a tendency to scapegoat groups, which in turn makes it easier for people to overlook ways in which the underlying causes of violence remain unaddressed.
We blame violence on a few ‘bad apples,’ but fail to notice that the tree is rotting from the inside out."
Another area that has known more than its fair share of violence (indeed a conflict that makes our local "Troubles" seem like a playground brawl) is Uganda and its near neighbours, and this week has seen the launch of a viral campaign by and organisation called Invisible Children to bring Joseph Kony, of the appallingly named Lord's Resistance Army, to justice for the kidnapping of children and turning boys into soldiers and girls into sex-workers. Whilst I think that the LRA need to be stopped and its leaders brought to justice, I hesitated sharing the initial video, for various reasons, not least a nagging suspicion that some of the facts and figures quoted were wrong... Then in the days following it's release there was a bit of a backlash against "Invisible Children" and its modus operandi... The ever helpful Rachel Held Evans offers an excellent one-stop-shop to get across all the issues in this dreadful story, while metamorphosism has written a piece that reflects some of my own angst.
Finally, as we look ahead to Holy week and Easter, and colleagues are scrambling around for resources, you could do no better than take a look at 12 Baskets, a resource sharing website... this month's headline resources are by my friend Micky Youngson.


Mark said…
Should point out that I only linked to the piece on the Kony thing, although I am flattered that it could be thought that something Mig wrote came from me!
Oops. danger of reading and editing things on smart phones... didn't read the top-line... The link has now been re-attributed... But thanks for the heads-up to it (and pointing out my error)

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