The WikiLeaks Commotion
Shaping Cultural Experiences
Travel has been an integral part of my life since I was a young child. I grew up in a multicultural, bilingual home in the Netherlands with a Polish mother and a Dutch father. My
Update & BBC News Link
A brief update: One interview video will be uploaded tomorrow evening. I believe the BBC News One-Minute World News provides well-balanced reporting of news, hence why I wanted to share it. Top stories on May
From Nigeria to Boston
When you first meet Oluwagbeminiyi Osidipe, you encounter a very vibrant, friendly, and unique personality. Oluwagbeminiyi or Niyi – as she shortened her name for simplicity – was named by her mother, who had a “very personal experience” when she had her, Niyi explained. Niyi is a Yoruba Nigerian transplant who arrived in the U.S. in 2006. As one of the most densely populated (West) African countries, Nigeria derives its name from the river that spans its land. To the South, it borders the Gulf of Guinea to the Atlantic Ocean. Originally colonized by the British, Nigeria gained independence in 1960. Its main ethnic groups are the Hausa, Igbo and Yoruba, who speak English and their own respective languages, while major religions include Islam, Christianity and indigenous beliefs. Niyi shares her story, her views on politics, cultural differences she’s embraced with humor, and what we can learn from each other by expressing curiosity. Her message is simple: travel enriches us through its exposure to new cultures, and enables us to grow.
Mark Twain on Travel
“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one’s lifetime.” (American author Mark Twain, Innocents Abroad).
Have you had the opportunity to travel (extensively, within your country, or even once abroad)? Can you relate to Twain’s sentiments? How does travel enrich us?
Pleasing The Taste Palate
Food has the wonderful quality of uniting us no matter where we are. There is nothing partisan or narrow-minded about food. It simply invites us to indulge, create recipes, and share with others. Two of my favorite Polish dishes (included in collage) are pierogies and barszcz czerwony – a beetroot soup – served on Christmas Eve in Poland. How does food bring us together? What are some of your favorite dishes and why? Can food trigger memories?
Stereotypes: Truth or Fiction?
DEFINING STEREOTYPES: “An idea or statement about all of the members of a group or all the instances of a situation.” (Merriam-Webster). Stereotypes enable bias and preconceived notions to perpetuate, but can also reveal valid
Annual Human Rights Report
“The world changed immeasurably over the course of 2011. Across the Middle East, North Africa, and far beyond, citizens stood up to demand respect for human dignity, more promising economic opportunities, greater political liberties, and
Euro Crisis & Emerging Stereotypes
Brief Crisis Breakdown Since the onset of the global financial crisis, or Great Recession, in 2007, the Eurozone has feared impending growing global debt levels, as well as sovereign debt within European countries themselves. In
Today marks the 23rd anniversary of Tiananmen Square pro-democracy protests in Beijing, China. Inflation, a lack of career prospects, the fall of Eastern European communism, and political corruption, are all said to have fueled anger
Coffee's Uniting Power
A cup of coffee can bridge cultural gaps. At least, that’s what Gizem Salgicil White, founder of Turkayfe.org, believes. Her organization aims to create awareness of Turkish culture, particularly within America. Gizem is a Turkish native,
Nicolette17 Aug 2012
Hi Globetrotter! Thanks for commenting! I agree that transparency might be wishful thinking at the moment. But, I think people undermine the role they can play in the political process on a local, or micro-level. With elections coming up, it is not uncommon to hear, “Will my vote really make an impact? Does it matter?” With this kind of attitude or mentality, people isolate themselves and eliminate their chance to participate in social change. Not all politicians are in it for the right reasons, and governmental institutions – we hope – do what is best for citizens.
I also find it ironic that Assange – if innocent – acts very sly for someone so strongly concerned about exposing corruption and focused on truth.
Globetrotter201217 Aug 2012
We will never really know what goes on “behind the closed doors” of our governments or powerful organizations… Would we like to be included in this knowledge? Sure! But as all of us long for the full transparency it might remain within a realm of wishful thinking….
Some information gives the governments and their institutions a political, diplomatic and military leverage and it will be guarded as it had been guarded for millennia!
I agree that exposing the actions and policies violating the laws and rights of people should be subject to public scrutiny. Watergate and the role of the intrepid journalists played shook up the political reality and did lots of good! So I am all for the exposure that shows facts in context and triggers remedial action, without jeopardizing the greater national interests.
WikiLeaks therefore did not invent the concept, only changed the methods – relying on the information from any one – disgruntled, or idealistically motivated giving them equal platform and opportunity.
What bothers me in the “commotion” is the fact that Mr. Assange refuses to face the music! He might claim that the allegations against him are politically motivated and are part of a bigger conspiracy. Maybe I am naive and watch too much “Law and Order” television, but I think that if innocent he would give more credibility to WikiLeaks by proving these accusations false. Rape and assault charges bring convictions when backed by (solid) DNA evidence.
He is all about the truth? Isn’t he? Well, Mr. Assange don’t run and pose as a martyr! Let the truth speak for itself.