Often, humor was the antidote to loss. The more I listened, the more I learned. Sometimes the lessons cost me my pride.
–White Birch, Red Hawthorn: A Memoir by Nora Murphy
Quotes From: The Commonwealth Criminal Code – Criminal Code Act 1995 (‘the Criminal Code’)
Division 270 — Slavery and slavery-like conditions
270.1 Definition of slavery
For the purposes of this Division, slavery is the condition of a person over whom any or all of the powers attaching to the right of ownership are exercised, including where such a condition results from a debt or contract made by the person.
270.2 Slavery is unlawful
Slavery remains unlawful and its abolition is maintained, despite the repeal by the Criminal Code Amendment (Slavery and Sexual Servitude) Act 1999 of Imperial Acts relating to slavery.
270.3 Slavery offences
(1) A person who, whether within or outside Australia, intentionally:
(aa) reduces a person to slavery; or
(a) possesses a slave or exercises over a slave any of the other powers attaching to the right of ownership; or
(b) engages in slave trading; or
(c) enters into any commercial transaction involving a slave; or
(d) exercises control or direction over, or provides finance for:
(i) any act of slave trading; or
(ii) any commercial transaction involving a slave;
Commonwealth Consolidated Acts, CRIMINAL CODE ACT 1995 – SCHEDULE The Criminal Code
Australian Legal Framework, Anti-Slavery Australia
Gylfie’s directness shocked Soren. He stopped blinking and looked straight at the Elf Owl. “Look. What did I just tell you? Everything here at St. Aggie’s is upside down and inside out. It’s our job not to get moon blinked and to stand right side up in an upsidedown world. If we don’t do that we’ll never be able to escape. We’ll never be able to think. And thinking is the only way we’ll be able to plan an escape.”
Monica Lewinsky is someone most people would not include on an admiration list because of her connection to President Clinton and the scandal that brought the White House under investigation and significant political fire.
She was 22 when her affair with President Clinton was revealed and exploited by both the Republican party and the news media (read: ratings, revenue, non-stop-sensationalist ‘news’ stories about every possible sexually graphic detail…you get the idea).
I was also in my twenties at the time and, as details about the investigation hit the news media, all I could think about was how this women was a victim. She was seduced by the most powerful man in the world. He was her boss, a career politician and a well known serial-seducer. By all accounts, she was neither his first, nor his last, conquest. This was predatory manipulation of a naive young women and, possibly, harassment.
Unfortunately, the scandal occurred during the 1990s, which was also when the details of the Anita Hill vs Clarence Thomas trial were frequently challenged as ‘not really harassment’ by most of the adults I knew. That trial outlined a situation that could be defined as workplace rape, yet people continued to justify it. As for Monica Lewinsky – presenting her as a potential victim was incomprehensible.
Not surprisingly, Monica Lewinsky faced a level of public humiliation, shame and ostracism that is hard to comprehend. She was publicly cast as a home wrecker, a whore and a litany of other things; while Clinton was…you know….a powerful man. You can’t blame him, it was that woman.
Fast forward many years and Ms. Lewinsky has resurfaced as a strong, confident woman. She is an anti-bullying activist, putting her own experiences with public humiliation to good use as she works to prevent suicide and fight cyber-bullying, face-to-face bullying and mobbing.
I admire all people who have faced incredibly difficult experiences and, somehow, managed to reach the other side. I have great admiration for people who use those experiences to become stronger and more determined to help others who have also been through the proverbial fire. Monica Lewinsky has done that.
Ms. Lewinsky has been added to my admiration list because, frankly, she deserves it.
Jennifer Brea has been suffering from an un-treatable and not-yet-properly-identified neurological disease. She has been given diagnosis (e.g.: chronic fatigue syndrome) that basically mean nothing and was told it was ‘all in her head.’ This woman has been through the proverbial fire.
Yet, despite extremely difficult physical and social barriers, she has persevered, created a film about her experiences and pursued a life of activism, acting as a voice for all people suffering from invisible and un-diagnosed illnesses.
From her TED talk, you can see her strength, attitude and remarkable good will, as she expresses her hope that one day the medical community will learn how to face a disease like her own and speak the honest truth: I don’t know what is wrong with you.
I have to agree with her statement that this ability to be able to admit to not having an answer is a key step in eventually finding an answer.
Alaa Murabit has achieved some pretty amazing things. She’s championed the cause of women in countries where that sort of activism could get a person killed. She has lived through death threats and all sorts of challenges. She has also successfully improved the status of women, within Muslim countries, by leveraging the same tactics used by her opposition – quotes from the Koran.
Her resilient personality, positive attitude and ability to take all of the challenges in stride are evident in her TED talk. There are many things to admire.
Having said that, I must admit that none of those accomplishments are the reason why she is included here. The primary reason for my own, personal, admiration is the fact that I watched this video and kept thinking: How do I expand my social circle to include more women like her? I need more friends like that.
Technology can address the symptoms of poverty
Apps are basically high tech communication devices. They are really useful for gathering and distributing information. In that respect, they can help address the symptoms of poverty by providing poverty survivors access to:
These apps can also affect public perception by answering the questions and addressing the prejudices surrounding poverty. They can attempt to educate the masses about the realities of poverty and the truth about who poverty survivors really are, including those of us who have experienced homelessness.
The voices of poverty survivors
All of these things currently exist and all of them require access to the internet and the specific technology required to connect to the applications. While there are plenty of poverty survivors (homeless included) who have some form of smart phone (Tracfone offers several android phones for less than $100 and a SUPER cheap pay-as-you-go plan…it’s really easy to get one), for many people that is where the technology ends.
Being able to leverage these opportunities often requires access to more than a low grade android cell phone. Determined poverty survivors with access to a reasonably well funded public library will use the computer lab to access all of these things. Others just shrug their shoulders and assume they don’t apply to them.
The thing that is missing from all of these resources and opportunities is the voice of poverty survivors themselves. Please watch the following TED talk by Mia Birdsong. She says it far better than I ever could:
Can technology solve poverty?
No. Poverty is not caused by technology, so technology is not close enough to the source of the problem to have a profound effect on the problem.
Technology does not pay the bills or end human rights violations. It does not block human trafficking, slavery, violence, exploitation or stalking (cyber or face-to-face). It does not end racism, sexism, homophobia, ageism, slander or classicism. It does not prevent police brutality or government corruption. It does not put food on the table, a roof over your head or clothes on your back. It does not force your employer to pay a living wage – or provide the paycheck that is owed to you.
It doesn’t even get you a job. Access to long lists of jobs posted to websites like LinkedIn is helpful, but it is NOT a job. If one of those job postings happen to materialize into a job, there’s no guarantee it will pay a living wage.
Poverty can be positively affected by technology. I encourage those with this particular skill set to look for ways to use those skills to positively change the world in every possible way, including addressing the symptoms of poverty. But never forget that these are symptoms and not root cause. Until the root cause is addressed, poverty will remain epidemic in this country and around the world.
-Originally posted to Quora in response to the (frequently asked) question Can apps be used to tackle societal problems like hunger or homelessness or income insecurity?
Homeless To Participate In Photo Contest – http://wp.me/p5DwgX-1jP
I like the idea but they really need to pay participants more than just a $10 gift card and a backpack of toiletries. They are producing the photographs that will be the center of a huge fundraising campaign, standard freelancing rates…or at least minimum wage…should apply.
Photographers will have seven days to tell their story through photographs before returning the camera to a drop-off location. They will receive a t-shirt with ‘photographer’ emblazoned on the back, a $10 gift card for food and a backpack of toiletries for their participation in the project.
A team of community judges will then select the top 20 photos that will be displayed at the St. Peters Cultural Arts Centre from June 29-August 20. Visitors will have the opportunity to vote on their favorite photo with a donation.
The most common reasons for mass blindness are as follows:
-Originally posted on Quora in answer to the question: Do Americans care about their poor people?