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Archive for the ‘Racism’ Category

Our Principles Must Trump Our Symbols – IMRAN™

Posted by imrananwar on October 13, 2016

There are a lot of news items about people expressing their protests in different ways, from kneeling at the time of the national anthem to flag burning Americans.

I have no sympathy for racial groups that have a sense of entitlement because some white man enslaved some black man 400 years ago. Many of us immigrants come from former colonies or enslaved countries. Some still live in places like that in Kashmir and Palestine.

The groups that celebrate gangster culture in their music and commit crimes but get off easy for playing the race card. I cannot stand them. But I am deeply & literally physically sickened when I see, again and again, unarmed black men being killed by out of control cops, none of whom go to jail.

So, I can understand the silent, peaceful, protest of some professional players to call attention to the matter.

If anything, I am dismayed that a supreme court justice, whom I respect, first foolishly expressed political opinions against Donald Trump. Though I cannot stand him, I would expect a Supreme Court justice to keep their personal opinions to themselves in case the election leads to a Supreme Court case. I would expect even a despicable person like him to get a fair hearing.

(Sidebar: I despise both candidates. Donald Trump being the worst Presidential candidate in recent history is the only reason the second worst candidate Hillary Clinton is likely to become President. Even worse, as I have been warning my Republican friends for months, he could cost them Senate and even Congress if things keep going as they are. Then they will be wishing they had accepted President Obama‘s moderate nominee).

The lady Justice then called the silent peaceful protesting players stupid for kneeling in protest at the anthem. Maybe she is ready to retire and wants to go out making some statements like that to be in the news, but she is wrong on that. 

The fact of the matter is, saying Black Lives Matter when an unarmed man is murdered by cops just because he was Black, does not mean one is saying it is OK to kill cops or that other lives do not matter. I do not see a stream of videos of cops shooting white people for even more egregious actions.

Therefore, silent peaceful protest it to be respected not demonized. Would we rather have the violent gangs burning up cities as happened in Ferguson?

No group is perfect. Speak up for injustices against blacks or any group. But throw criminals in jail hard regardless of their color. Stand by the police. But call out and prosecute the killers among them.

That brings us to another controversy people are fed to take their attention off real issues, Burning of the American Flag.

I dislike people who disrespect the flag of their own country. BUT, remember, the Flag is symbolic, the Constitution is what makes us the greatest country in the world.

Symbols represent us. Principles make us who we are. We could change the American flag to all pink and purple or any color and still be the same great nation if we live by our constitution.

So do not get caught up in the furor of someone burning the flag. Sure, discourage them, ignore them, but do not threaten or attack them. They are doing what our constitution gives them the right to do as also decided in a Supreme Court decision.

Only a freedom guaranteeing constitution like ours gives people the right to burn the flag or do other stupid things under free speech.

Our principles must always trump even our own symbols. Symbols can change but not change who we are. But if we abandon our principles, it won’t matter what color or how fancy or pretty or fireproof our flags are.

What do you think?

Imran Anwar

IMRAN.TV

Posted in America, Clinton, Congress, Constitution, Crime, Criminals, Crooked Cops, culture, Danger, Death, Death Penalty, Democracy, Democrats, Elections, Freedom, Hilary Clinton, History, Justice, Obama, Palestine, Police, Politics, President, Prisoners, Race, Racism, Republicans, Shootings, Society, USA | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Dealing With Nasty Criminals Like The LA Arsonist German & His Disgusting Mother

Posted by imrananwar on January 4, 2012

There was an LA Times news story about a German arsonist living in Los Angeles who started about 50 fires, causing untold damage, and endangered countless lives, because his ugly, criminal, possibly-a-prostitute, mother was being deported to Germany. I would love to have your thoughts on the interesting discussion which ensued, after I posted saying:

Imran Anwar · CEO and Founder at ICloud.PK

If she knew he was mentally ill, why did the stupid criminal b&^ch not have him committed?

Reply ·  4 · Unlike · Unfollow Post · about an hour ago

  • Janet Margrave ·  Top Commenter

    not that simple any more. the streets are filled with people who have mental illnesses. the states aren’t interested in providing care. budget cuts affect the old, poor and mentally ill.

    Reply ·  7 · Like · about an hour ago

  • Imran Anwar · CEO and Founder at ICloud.PK

    Janet Margrave I understand. But, then people who later claim mental illness for serious crime perpetrators should be able to show proof they tried to have the person committed as a danger to society. Then, the state, or whoever set them free, should be liable for the damage they do.

    Reply ·  4 · Unlike · about an hour ago

  • Paul Birmele ·  Top Commenter · Santa Monica College

    Imran Anwar And who is supposed to pay for that? The state is broke. The feds are broke. And guess what gets cut FIRST: Mental health support. The justice system is FULL of people who should have been put in a mental institution long before they committed a crime, but there aren’t any. Talk to any sheriffs deputy or jail guard. They will agree.

    Reply · Like · 45 minutes ago

  • Imran Anwar · CEO and Founder at ICloud.PK

    Paul Birmele , and who pays for THAT? The cops, the courts, the jails, the food, the upkeep, etc? We all end up paying that, ON TOP of the cost of the damage criminals do to lives and property. Almost all of whom claim some sort of insanity when that is the only way out of prison time. My proposal, seriously, is to outsource prisons…. abroad. Mexico, Pakistan, India…. then see how many people want to go to jail.

    Reply · 1 · Unlike · 41 minutes ago

  • Paul Birmele ·  Top Commenter · Santa Monica College

    Imran Anwar Imran Anwar They already outsource prisons. They already privatized. 264 of them in the US are private. Has it made it cheaper? no. Scarier.

    I think its nice that you suggest he not have any civil rights. I assume you are a native american and have lived here for thousands of years, but the rest of us and our ancestors came to America to live a free life, with civil liberties. Saying he should lose his is stupid.

    Case in point: Some people believe in profiling at airports. This is something YOU should know about. That would mean any time YOU were in a public place the cops would search your whole body. Why? Because you aren’t blonde and blue eyed. But they aren’t supposed to. Why? Because in America we have civil liberties.

    I SURE AS HELL DON’T WANT TO LIVE IN AN AMERICA WITHOUT CIVIL LIBERTIES.

    Reply · Like · 29 minutes ago

  • Barbara Stevens ·  Top Commenter · San Diego, California

    Janet Margrave Neither of these two people should be here. WHY aren’t they sent back to Germany? why are they allowed to stay here?

    Reply · 1 · Unlike · 29 minutes ago

  • Dick Brandlon ·  Top Commenter · Teacher/ Student Teacher Supervisor at Retired Teacher

    Imran Anwar Can you envision people paying taxes for this?

    Reply · 1 · Unlike · 28 minutes ago

  • Imran Anwar · CEO and Founder at ICloud.PK

    Paul Birmele , I have news for you. I AM profiled when I am at the airport. But, no one strips me down… maybe if the TSA officer was a pretty blue eyed blonde I would not complain. LOL. But, seriously, in addition to that profiling, the dirtbag Mayor Bloomberg of NY was working closely with the CIA or others to spy on MULIMS (not some suspicious individuals). Did you do something about that to complain? NY Daily News, the rag from NYC, wrote editorials defending profiling Muslims… wonder if they’d write the same if cops used profiling to catch expensive car thieves in certain uptown parts of NYC. Bigots like LOWE’S management can express their hate for Muslims and get away with it without any of my fellow Americans stopping shopping there.

    BUT, hate is not against the law, crime is. This dirtbag’s fat ugly b*&ch mother was illegally here, committed crimes in her own country, apparently ran a sensual massage service (with her son? who knows), and he hated America, committed serious crimes, and should be thrown in the slammer forever (or maximum sentence possible if that is not possible) after a trial. Sorry, but what part of that is taking away his civil rights?

    The only good news in all this was this scumbag was not a Muslim. LOL. In that case, he’d be charged with terrorism. Sad, but true. LOL

    Reply · Like · 17 minutes ago

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Posted in America, Democracy, Freedom, Germany, Imran, Imran Anwar, Justice, Muslims, Political_Correctness, Racism, Sex, Terrorism | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

New Day, New Dawn, New Era, A Renewed Nation

Posted by imrananwar on November 5, 2008

There are dark clouds on the horizon, as the damp chill of an early November rain looms over Washington DC. It is unlikely that anyone awake at this dawn hour will see even a single ray of light of sunshine. Yet, Washington, DC, as well as all the United States of America are bathed in a warm glow and bright light. It is the sunshine of a new day, a new dawn, a new era, and a new chapter in the history of a great nation renewed.

To paraphrase a recent advertisement, published by CNN in The New York Times and other reputed newspapers, the United States, as well as the rest of the world, were caught in a magical moment on the night of November 4, 2008, as the US elections came to a close.

The past was leaving, but still threatened to continue into our future. The future beckoned, the hope of a new day, but the dawn had not yet arrived and could still elude us. For a brief moment in time, you, I, the United States, as well as the whole world, were caught in a moment of curiosity, wonder, concern as well as sheer, innocent, daring hope.

Yesterday the nation stood at a crossroads, the brink of expanding disaster or a new beginning. As the election results came in, it became obvious that Hope had won the day. The past was going to be sent far into the past. In that brief period of time, between the end of polling in the United States, Senator McCain conceding defeat and President-elect Barack Hussein Obama giving his victory speech, many amazing things happened which many of us had not expected to see for a long time.

Americans themselves appeared to close the door on the jingoistic, brutal and bullying faux but failing empire that George W. Bush and his henchmen had tried to build over the last eight years. Americans of all colors, ages, races, religions, ethnicities and backgrounds came out in larger numbers to vote than at any time in the recent history. They also found that they had made a dream come true surprisingly quicker than they themselves had expected.

Dr. Martin Luther King, the black slain civil rights leader, was killed for his preaching equality for whites and blacks. His amazing "I Have A Dream" speech is known to all Americans, and I urge readers of this column to read, or even better, to hear it for themselves. (It is easily available on the Internet). Many Americans can even quote words from that speech. But few had believed it possible that they would see parts of Dr. King’s dream come true in such a real and shining manner.

Americans found their country once again beginning to be the bright beacon of light, hope, equality, justice, greatness and ideals that the rest of the world looks up to. Above all, Americans themselves woke up to realize that from being a good, yet imperfect, country overnight they had matured into a renewed nation, achieving greatness again, surprising themselves and the world in unison.

Let there be no delusions. We have not suddenly achieved some racial-nirvana, some miracle of overnight solutions to eons old human emotions. The results from various states, and parts of the country, including so-called redneck areas, show that despite the massive failure of George W. Bush, and his friends, voting for a black man was still too much for the Bush-supporting people to do.

No society in the world, at least in our lifetimes, can achieve the Utopian ideals of having no racism at all. However, with this vote Americans resoundingly proved that if there is any country in the world that can come close to living up to its own ideals, and the ideals of most human beings, it is the great nation of United States of America.

The country that had a history of slavery, abuse and even murder of black people today elected its president who is not only black, but is the son of a Kenyan immigrant, raised by a single mother, with an extended family of Africans, Christians and Muslims. And they did not install this man by some technical election, or by some narrow margin. They did so in such a resounding manner that there was no doubt left in anyone’s mind. It was clear. America had come back to its rightful place on the world stage – as a nation to be respected, admired, looked up to and – perhaps one day soon – loved again.

The irony is that this next to impossible election of Barack Obama was made possible by the disaster that was George W. Bush. It was hastened by the brink of disaster faced by the United States as well as rest of the world. Yet, the challenges that Barack Obama faces on taking the oath of office will make his getting elected seem like a walk in the park.

One of the interesting elements of United States elections is the significant time period between the results of elections and the new government taking over. In most circumstances it is a good thing – as it allows for a smoother transition from one administration to the next. However, in today’s serious geo-political and socio-economic meltdown situations, Barack Obama faces a new dilemma.

On the one hand he cannot be overly aggressive in pushing for his own policies while lame-duck George W. Bush is still in office. On the other hand, he cannot simply wait for 2 months for the situation to get worse, or the wrong policies or "solutions" from being applied or tested – by an administration already having seen itself rejected to the dustbin of history.

The major challenge that President-elect Barack Obama is sure to face is the issue of unrealistic expectations.

Being able to inspire people to believe that solutions are possible, being able to suggest that change is coming and getting people out to vote are far easier than solving the actual problems in some miraculously short timeframe. On top of that, as can be seen in any country where the party comes back into power after a long time, it’s supporters (jialas), power players and constituents expect to be rewarded for their support. The thing that can save Obama from this problem is the huge turnout in the elections and the very broad range of people who swept him into power. That makes it easier for him to resist the pressure or blackmail tactics of any particular constituent or support group.

An additional challenge that he and his Administration will face is that there are no easy solutions to the problems that are faced by the United States economy, as well as the global economy. Nor is it very easy to get out of the war in Iraq – if that is what people expect to be a short and easy fix to all problems.

Another thing to keep in mind is that one of Obama’s strengths is his ability to think coolly and rationally about issues, analyze the situation, make a decision and communicate his plan. The problem is that it can also lead to analysis paralysis, especially for a relatively young, inexperienced, new leader.

It is possible for Obama to also try to please as many people as he can and end up displeasing a lot more. Even worse, being someone who appears to want to be liked by everybody, it is possible that he may want to tiptoe around some of the tough decisions that need to be made. That, in my humble opinion, would be a disaster.

The biggest strength, the biggest advantage, the biggest opportunity that Obama can leverage is the huge mandate he was given in this landslide victory. It is for this reason that his first 100 days will be far more important in real terms than in the usual symbolic terms that they are looked at for new presidents.

If he’s smart, and a man of action, he will find a strategic way to have Congress, with its Democrat majority further strengthened in this election, influence and force George W. Bush’s outgoing administration to embark on the path that Obama would like to follow. This would enable him to get the ball rolling even before his inauguration, avoid the impression of imposing himself before he assumes office and also save him from any blame that can come about from George Bush and his team still screwing things up.

Another advantage I see is that this clear mandate, given to a visionary leader with the ability to inspire his nation, is just the right shot in the arm needed by the US consumer, business and stock markets.

As I have written in these pages before, there are serious threats to the United States and global economies, but the biggest threat is a crisis of confidence. Obama’s ascension to power is sure to help revive that confidence.

As I write these lines at 5 AM on November 5 in Washington DC, I am confident that, barring any external economic events, an economic resurgence, including a stock market rebound, shall start soon. More credit will start becoming available, thawing the economic freeze that had left Main Street shuddering and Wall Street with pneumonia. I even hope that a recovery and expansion may be on the horizon as happened when the last great American President Bill Clinton came into office replacing another weak economy under another weak Bush.

So, economic recovery will be of paramount importance to Americans and the whole world. The weak economy is what helped Obama get elected, but the biggest challenges before, during and even after an economic recovery will be foreign affairs and undoing the damage done by the Bush Administration.

My advice to President Barack Obama would be to therefore embark on aggressive efforts to resolve the Middle East and Palestinian, as well as the Kashmir issues. I would also encourage him to immediately start dialogue with Iran and other countries that George W. Bush was busy burning un-built bridges with.

But Obama has to do so in a friendly yet firm manner. It is time for America to assume its place as leader of the free world, willing, able and ready to use its power and influence to do good and effect real positive change around the world and achieving things that no past American President had the willingness or courage to do. That is the audacity of my hope for President Barack Obama.

Imran Anwar is a New York and Miami based Pakistani-American entrepreneur, Internet pioneer, inventor, writer and TV personality. He can be reached through his web site http://imran.com and imran@imran.com

Posted in America, Bill Clinton, Bush, Cabinet, CNN, Congress, Democrats, Elections, George Bush, Imran, Iran, Iraq, Kashmir, McCain, New York Times, Obama, Opportunity, President, Racism, Republicans | Leave a Comment »

Voter, Voter, In The Hall; Who’s The Brightest Star Of All?

Posted by imrananwar on November 1, 2008

I have always found it interesting the way politics and show business have mixed in recent years not just in Pakistan but also in America.

In the good old days, for example, when John F. Kennedy was President of the United States, the tendency was for politicians to have secret affairs with movie stars. Over the years the relationship between movie stars, TV actors, show business personalities and political leaders became more open.

It started with politicians getting married to show business personalities and eventually to movie actors entering politics and running for office.

One would have assumed that developing or so-called Third World countries like Pakistan were more likely to have movie stars, cashing in on their popularity and name recognition, become successful politicians. One would also have assumed that a supposedly more educated country, or society, like the United States would be less likely to allow such cashing in of fame and celebrity, especially at the national leadership level.

So it is interesting and ironic to see that in Pakistan, in general, movie stars, or even renowned celebrities (who also happened to be great people), like cricketer Imran Khan, were not truly able to make a successful transition to politics at the highest level and at the highest office.

Sure, respected and popular people like the late actor Muhammad Ali, did run for seats in parliament. Cricketer Sarfraz Nawaz, with his relationship to a movie star, also made a play for a seat in an Assembly seat.

Maybe there are a few other examples. But I do not recall anyone who was able to make a serious play for the highest office in the land, whether Prime Minister or President of Pakistan.

In the United States, on the other hand, the same forces of celebrity, fame, name and face recognition, as well as hero worship were at work – but surprisingly at a much higher level.

One does not have to see too far back into recent history to see how quickly American politics moved from having a president having an affair with a movie star (like JFK and Marilyn Monroe) to actually electing Ronald Reagan as president of the most powerful nation on earth.

On top of that, the same Ronald Reagan, that many people claimed to despise during his presidency, considering him nothing more than a talking head, all recognize that he ended up being one of the most powerful American presidents ever.

To this day almost every single American candidate for the presidency, especially from the Conservative or Republican side, has always gone above and beyond to prove how much like Ronald Reagan he or she is – even if they themselves had nothing in common with Ronald Reagan, or even having been closer to a movie studio than a visit to Universal Studios theme parks!

This hero worship was also apparent when Arnold Schwarzenegger, also known as The Terminator, was elected "governator" of California. The reason this is important to note is that California is more than just one of 50 states in the United States. Even as a stand-alone economy it would count as the 12th largest country/economy in the world. And Schwarzenegger is still running that state. So, quite clearly it is more than just a temporary bout of celebrity worship that puts and keeps people like him in office in America.

Of course, there are other cases of movie stars dabbling in a political activity, but more as activists than as candidates. Some of them do this even at great personal cost.

After all it is the public that gives them their wealth, fame and career, and the public can take it away. That is why I have such immense respect for showbiz personalities like George Clooney, Sean Penn, and others, like Oliver Stone. They have boldly spoken out against George W. Bush and his idiotic policies which have turned a global superpower like America almost into a Third World country, on the brink of economic ruin.

Who can forget the lovely, and talented, Dixie Chicks, a wonderful trio of singers from Texas, who apologized to the world for the idiotic Bush being from their state and country, USA. They lost Millions of Dollars in record sales for their bold action from the rednecks that used to buy their CDs.

One also has to acknowledge some of these movie stars and even their producers who not only speak their opinions boldly, they even put their money where their mouth is. Oliver Stone‘s latest movie, "W" is a clear attack on Bush and exposing his inner circle of crooks and cronies. I plan to watch that movie after the elections.

Most recent examples of such personal and business risk-taking in movies include the movie Syriana, in which George Clooney exposed the evil so-called foreign policy that the oil companies and Washington use to control regimes in the Middle East.

I am surprised that more Americans, more Pakistanis and more Muslims/Arabs have not seen that movie. If you haven’t I strongly urge you to rent it out on DVD. Your viewing it will not help the producer make his money back, but it will give you a great appreciation for such creative people who risked their personal, financial and career assets on the line for their beliefs and to speak the truth.

Coming back to the topic of politicians and their connection to movie stars or showbiz, by the time you read these lines a new president will already have been elected in the United States.

I wish I could predict right now the words I will be saying on November 4 while covering the US presidential elections for Geo TV and MAG. But one of the interesting things to see will be what role, if any, movie stars’ supporting presidential candidates will have had.

John McCain appears to be on the losing track. But, I do not trust the American masses to look beyond Barack Obama’s race and skin color, as well as Muslim sounding name, to elect him president.

To get more of that so-called redneck vote out in his own support, the Republican’s latest rally brought out Arnold Schwarzenegger to root for John McCain the white candidate.

On the other hand Barack Obama is no slouch in the celebrity endorsement department either. Not only does he have the support of movie stars like Mark Wahlberg, several of the above-mentioned celebrities, Oprah Winfrey, as well as having his own star power – he also has the charisma of Bill Clinton now apparently on his side. That does not even count the increasing number of renowned Republicans like non-movie star but multi-star General Colin Powell endorsing Obama. 

And, in another illustration of how things can go full circle, Bill Clinton’s "boring" vice president, and democratic party candidate in 2000, Al Gore, has gone from being almost the President of the United States to almost being a "movie star" himself  – with his very popular documentary on global warming. As you can imagine, Al Gore is also rooting for Barack Obama.

We will wait and see which candidate’s ideas, personal magnetism, or movie star support wins this election. So we have to ask the "VOTER, VOTER, IN THE HALL; WHO’S THE BRIGHTEST STAR OF ALL?"

We’ll find out on November 4, but stay tuned and follow my coverage on GEO TV November 3-5, 2008, live from Washington, DC!

Imran Anwar is a New York and Miami based Pakistani-American entrepreneur, Internet pioneer, inventor, writer and TV personality. He can be reached through his web site http://imran.com and imran@imran.com

Posted in America, Bill Clinton, Bush, Democrats, Elections, George Bush, Imran, McCain, Movies, Obama, Pakistan, Powell, President, Racism, Republicans | Leave a Comment »

MADvertising: Old Stereotype Underlies Sports Authority Under Armor New Prototype

Posted by imrananwar on July 11, 2008

Generally, I am not a big fan of people or organizations that see, or cry, racism, or sexism, or something-ism or the other, in almost anything, even if none was implied.

However, I also strongly believe that, regardless of the (low) merits of political correctness, it is imperative for businesses, especially those in communications or consumer industries, to be cognizant of how their work(s) may be perceived. Sometimes, a racist, or bigoted, or sexist, person may deliberately create advertising, or TV characters, or movie situations that play up stereotypes. Other times it is sheer cluelessness that leads to the same results.

The latest example of such, most likely clueless, MADvertising came into my Inbox just now. It is a Sports Authority electronic promotion for Under Armor brand sportswear.

Madvertising_SportsAuthorityUnderArmor.jpg

What amazes me about this image is the deliberate or inadvertent combination of racism, sexism, stereotyping as a big, strong, and apparently determined Black male is seen running after (or behind) an obviously weaker (single?) white female. Even worse, look at the expression on her face. She is not out running in a determined manner of an athlete. There is almost an expression as if she is concerned and stressed, and looking for shadows on the ground to see if someone is coming after her.

Yes, I can be accused to seeing imagery that is not there and imagining these issues where none were implied. But, that is the whole reason I call it MADvertising. Smart communicators and marketers avoid such potential pitfalls to the best of their abilities. This particular ad surely could have been done a lot better.

What do you think?

===

PS. This comment generated a lot of comments, as you can see below. I am quite amazed, and amused, by some of them, but displaying them regardless of the personal attacks. As can be seen, everyone’s comments have been posted…. even the ones from the same ‘anonymous’ using the same computer a few minutes apart. 🙂

It is also interesting to see many people completely miss my referring to this as most likely an example of clueless advertising (the world is full of more examples than just this) or MADvertising.

I think people also miss that I am personally sick of political correctness (or of pandering to particular races that a lot advertising is now doing). I am also sick of having to squint my eyes to read English instructions on product packaging because half of the space has been given up to Spanish. I detest having to choose between English and Spanish when I call banks or other companies’ phone numbers. This is America. We speak English. I feel if an organization has so many customers of a particular language or ethnic group then they should set up a separate 800 number for them instead of making their (most likely) 90%+ of English speaking customers to have to select what language to speak in their own country.

But, that does not mean I can claim there is no racism here. (I will be accused of being racist for the above comment, while being accused below of seeing racism where it does not exist!)

I do raise eyebrows when I see particular ads where, for example, the likelihood of seeing Black models tends to be higher if the ad depicts some sort of stupid behavior. Again, it is not only Blacks shown doing stupid things. There are plenty of ads showing stupidity (in the name of humor) with models who are white males, females or even groups of people. (I will post something about those separately later).

But, everyone’s comments are appreciated and are being posted here…. including the moronic ones. 😉

Imran

Posted in Advertising, Bigotry, Communications, Danger, Madvertising, Marketing, Political_Correctness, Race, Racism, Sexism | Leave a Comment »

 
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