Saturday, 29 December 2012

London Vigil for the Indian Gang Rape Victim

Around 30 people showed up for the Vigil in London for the Delhi gang rape victim today. We chanted, said prayers and stood in silence to remember Nirbhaya (the victim of the gang rape). Here are some pictures from the Vigil. I am still sickened by how something so brutal could happen in this world and I pray that it will never happen again.
Thank you to everybody who showed up and Kirsten Bayes who helped me organise it. Thank you to Holly Rae who led the chanting and now has a sore throat, and to the members of  St Johns's Mar Thoma Edavaka church in Hounslow, London who came and to Father Eapen Abraham.
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Friday, 28 December 2012

Vigil For Delhi Gang Rape Victim

On Saturday the 29th December at 5.30pm I will be holding a vigil for the Delhi gang rape victim outside the Indian High Commission in Central London.

The reason I am doing this is first and foremost to remember a poor young woman who spent a Saturday evening watching a movie with a friend, caught a bus home and then was gang raped on the bus. She died in the last few hours. As far as I know her identity has not been released. I don't know her name. But I don't need to know her name because the violence she suffered is a severe and evil violation of every woman's right to personal security. Rape has become so common place all over the world. Small girls and boys and grown men and women are raped everyday. This needs to stop. RAPE CANNOT BE NORMALISED.

Please join me if you can and bring candles and a belief in women's rights.


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Thursday, 27 December 2012

Is Christmas about Rampant Capitalism or Baby Jesus?


When you first think of Christmas what pops into your head? Is it Father Christmas, presents, a Christmas tree or food? All of these things  involve spending excessive amounts of money. This isn't the real message of Christmas, in fact if the three wise men hadn't come bearing gifts for baby Jesus Christmas wouldn't be about consumerism and  corporations wouldn't make a business out of the birth of a religious figure.

I saw an example today of how Christmas has been ruled by  rampant capitalism and consumerism. I was in Covent Garden, with my parents, when a man who was selling 'The Big Issue' approached us and told us how nobody was paying attention to him and instead they were shoving past him to get to the sales. I could not understand how people can rush by a homeless man to spend hundreds of pounds and not even spend  a second or spare £3 to help him. What have we become?

Shoppers have spent £2.9bn in one day and Selfridges gained £1.5 million in one hour alone and police had to be called in to reign back the crowds in Oxford St. I am not saying that you should immediately stop spending  money and give it all to charity but I think that we need to the rethink message of Christmas and if you are an atheist or you don't celebrate Christmas try to remember that this is the season of goodwill towards those less fortunate than you.

Capitalism doesn't bother me but rampant capitalism does. By this I mean that people are worshipping shops whilst the number of food banks are increasing and there is evermore  need for donations. Rampant capitalism has created a culture where charity is out ruled by consumerism and the poor are blamed for their misfortune and the rich are praised and supported. 
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Tuesday, 25 December 2012

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas everybody. 

I hope that you all have a lovely Christmas. 

Here is a quick Christmas prayer for all of you;

God our Father,
whose Word has come among us
in the Holy Child of Bethlehem:
May the light of faith illumine our hearts
and shine in our words and deeds;
through him who is Christ the Lord. 


If you are able to donate to the homeless or any charity this Christmas please do so because this is what the birth of Christ is all about. 
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Sunday, 16 December 2012

Condolences to Newtown from a British Child

Child victims of the Newton shootings 
Sometimes something so big happens that it does not matter whether you know the people involved or not, nor whether you have any connection with the area it happened in. I have never been to America. I had never heard of Newtown. My closest involvement with Connecticut was over the recent Presidential election but it was with absolute sadness that I watched BBC News 24 as the news came in about the deaths of children. The picture that affected me the most was a picture doing the rounds on Twitter of a mother receiving a phone call about the shooting and you could see she was screaming. The visual picture of pain showed the raw shock and horror of a mass killing. People expect schools to be a safe place to send children to. It wasn't in this case. Their expectations were betrayed by a man with a gun. The teachers did their best to protect the children and some died while doing this. I don't know how the parents and families of those who died are going to cope. I offer my deepest condolences to Newtown and pray for their strength to cope with all the funerals to come. I am sorry Newtown that this has happened to you and that you face such sorrow. I mourn greatly for these children and will be thinking about them through the whole of Christmas. 
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Sunday, 9 December 2012

Saturday, 8 December 2012

How Funny Are Prank Calls?


Not funny at all, is the answer, unless it is done to family and friends who are able to understand the 'in joke'. When it is done to a stranger, it is just cruel because they are unsuspecting 'victims' who are not in on the humour that is being enjoyed by the perpetrators. Also, the balance of power is in favour of the person carrying out the joke. The 'victim' is powerless. What is funny about this? Prank calling is what children do for fun till they grow out of it. Grown up adults doing it as part of their job is shockingly immoral and juvenile.

There is a huge amount of anger and hate being displayed against the Australian radio presenters who carried out the prank call that caused the death of the nurse. Some will say it didn't 'cause' her death but, given the timing, it must have been a cause. I can only assume as many others do that Jacintha was embarrassed that she had let the prank callers talk to the Duchess of Cambridge's nurse.

It is absolutely wrong that people would find a prank call to a hospital funny when the Duchess had a serious condition. The fact that the presenters endangered two people's jobs should have showed them that what they were doing was completely immoral. Jacintha Saldanha allegedly took her life over something very petty that should not have happened. I pray that she is resting and happy. 
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Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Germs with your Latte?

Employees of Starbucks will lose paid sick leave for their first day of illness. All of us know that the first day of illness is when a person is at their most contagious (colds, flus, viruses). People who work at chain coffee stores aren't paid a lot anyway and I can imagine that the fear of losing a day's pay will force them into work. It will be germs with your latte? This is the typical neoliberalistic actions of big corporations. Starbucks will lose money because they have to stop their tax avoidance but they will make up for their loss by cutting and undermining staff.  Starbucks need to consider their workers rights because people want a germ free latte!
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Monday, 3 December 2012

Osborne Set to Cut the Poor, Again!

George Osborne is allegedly going to cut welfare for pensioners and the unemployed with a below inflation rise. This is the worst possible and most cruel thing to do to those in need around Christmas time. This means that the poorest will have to suffer at "the time of giving". Instead of the chancellor putting more of a strain on   the rich he may decide to cut from the most vulnerable members of society instead. The poor may not be able to even afford the bare essentials because of rising prices and less money in their pockets.

Time for the Lib Dem leadership, which is long overdue, to start distancing ourselves from these punishing welfare cuts which is causing genuine hardship. Come on Clegg, enough is enough. We need to intervene and stop the poor from suffering. Where are our values?


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