Universal Declaration of Human Rights 2048

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Will the future of human rights look like this? After a century of unimaginable suffering in which hundreds of millions of human beings lived in slave like conditions; wars killed millions; millions more fled – many condemned for generations to squalid “refugee” camps; millions starved; where national democracies collapsed under the weight of sectional interests and armed conflict and the…

Australia’s refugee intake at historic lows

asproppop

While the world is in crisis, Australia’s refugee intake stands at historic lows. In terms of per capita intake, and in terms of Australia’s overall migration program, Australia’s humanitarian program has declined systematically since the 1970’s.  In absolute terms, Australia’s current humanitarian program compares poorly with Australia’s response during other points of global crisis – for example during the Vietnam…

Racism – a daily reality

racism it stops with me

Racism is an almost daily news item. For many, its a terrible lived problem. But, many have trouble believing it exists, except perhaps at the the margins of society. If we don’t see the obvious symbols of racism: arm bands, hate flags, white hoods, we may think the problem is no longer there.  We have a curious situation where “racism”…

Patriotic Cosmopolitanism

patriotic cosmopolitanism - astronaut with international flag of planet earth designed by Oskar Pernefeldt

Can we, at the same time, love our family, our neighbours, our country, our people, humanity and the world we live in? Surely we can. And to love any of them, properly considered, is to love them all: for their welfare is intimately interwoven.  There is no contradiction in speaking of patriotic cosmopolitanism – understood in this sense.  The dichotomy…

Parliamentary Committee: Law to Strip Citizenship Lacks Proper Justification

Senate Chamber

The Human Rights Committee of the Australian Parliament has expressed serious concerns about human rights compatability of the proposed law to strip citizenship from dual nationals suspected of involvement in terrorism. (Australian Citizenship Amendment (Allegiance to Australia) Bill 2015) The Committee, which has the job of making sure Australian laws are human rights complaint, made its findings in its latest…

Pitch Perfect 2 – Feminist Storytelling

Pitch Perfect 2 promo

Warning, this one has some plot spoilers. Pitch Perfect 2, is a great dose of quirky, catchy and exuberant musical fun. And just for fun here are the Barden Bellas with their re-mix of Just the Way You Are from the first Pitch Perfect movie.   But this fun movie has a serious message, not far from the surface. The…

Upgrade Our Social Operating System

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“Exiters are leaving outdated systems and creating new ones”. These guys have some interesting ideas.  From their website at: http://voiceandexit.com “In this Voice & Exit 2013 talk, V&E co-founder Max Borders sets out his vision for social change. How can people “criticize by creating?” How can human beings flourish? Can we create new communities? Can we upgrade our democratic operating…

Frontera Movie Review

Frontera movie promo

The Frontera movie is a story about lives shattered by the US-Mexico border. The story unfolds around two families: one from the Mexican side, one from the U.S. side.  Miguel (Michael Peña) crosses the border to find work to support his family, including his pregnant wife Paulina (Eva Longoria).  On the other side lives a retired sheriff Roy (Ed Harris)…