Monthly Archives: January 2013

A Picture’s Worth a Thousand Words…

…so this post is going to be worth like…1923890 words.

Today I am going to take you on a journey of visual stimulation.

Okay, in all honesty I’m just linking you to a few slideshows. The majority of my posts are about 5 billion words, and I’m totally down with that, but this week I’m going to switch it up a little and let these pictures do the talking . ¬†I promise that I didn’t just pick a bunch of random pictures with brown people in them. I tried to pick slideshows that really were thought-provoking and meaningful. So take them in, reflect…introspect? Is that…does that fit here? Not sure…okay, shutting up now.

I hope you enjoy ūüôā

http://photoblog.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/02/21/10470925-afghanistan-slideshow-updated?lite

(LOVE a lot of those ^ but one of them, I think it’s number 118, of this little Afghan boy just breaks my heart.)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ja3AeEM0yP8

(This one ^ is actually someone’s compilation of footage shot in India, and it’s AWESOME.)

http://slideshow.nbcnews.com/slideshow/news/2012-34972092/

(Last one ^ This was actually my first time looking through this one, and I haven’t been able to get through the whole thing yet– my computer’s having issues– but I find it just as stirring as the other two already.)

Anyways, these just gave me some food for thought, so I thought I’d share them. I’ll be back next week all back to normal and stuff ūüôā

…Well…I can’t lie and say that there won’t be¬†something a little different about next week’s post…. ūüėČ

Until then,

-M

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Don’t waste your time reading this buckwass*.

Let’s take a second to talk about you.

How are you?

That’s good.

What was the highlight of your week?

Wow, nice.

Okay, good talk. I guess this is my way of saying that I have no idea what to write about right now. I was like, “I guess I can write my post in a few hours when I know what I want to write.” But then I was like, “No, I feel like writing it now!” And then I got here and it was just like this for a few minutes…

newpost

Aaaand now here we are.

Man. What’s something I can blog about? Hmmm….did you know that I’m related to Zayn Malik? Well, I am.

Not.

At all related to him.

I mean as far as I know. But you never really know–we totally could be. I started thinking ¬†about this when I learned that his middle name is Jawaad. And my last name is Jawa, so I was like, “lol, what if we’re related.” And it was all downhill from there.

So now I pretend like we’re related sometimes. It’s in an obviously jokey kind of way–like I don’t actually try to make people think we’re related–but somewhere deep inside I secretly wish it’s true. And Zayn, if you’re out there somewhere reading this right now….I—-what?–Zayn I can’t hear you!! I’m going through a tunnel! I’ll have to explain myself some other time! *muffled noises*

Whew, that was close.

Well, honestly I’m¬†surprised¬†you’re still reading this post. You’re a trooper.

Oh, okay, so there’s this one thing–the post I made about how there’s not a Punjabi rape festival got quite a few views. It was a story on a fake news site, but apparently a lot of people believed it. At first I didn’t think I should post about it, because (Oprah taught me this–) you shouldn’t give a voice to something that doesn’t deserve to be heard. But on the other hand, I figured it was important for people to know that this isn’t real, and that posting about it could prevent a big of misunderstanding about Punjabis. It’s now my most-viewed post, and I’m glad at least a few people who thought it was real now know otherwise. Always verify your news sites. That’s something I need to do more too. I mean when I blog about stuff, I definitely fact-check things I find out over the internet, but sometimes when I’m just looking at the news to look at it, I’ll read a headline and kind of assume it’s true. I’m definitely not like a screw-the-media type, but I think it’s important to remember that just because something has a “.com” or is on T.V, it’s not necessarily reliable. We trust news networks to deliver the right information, as we should, but it’s only to be expected that they’ll make a few mistakes every now and then. Like once, CNN showed an image of a turbaned Sikh in a totally wrong context. They later retracted the image and apologized, but the mistake had already made an impression on the viewers that saw it. But I guess the sites that had the Punjabi rape festival story didn’t make a mistake exactly, because they knew they were joking.

This post, guys. I’m sorry. I don’t know what happened. Well actually it’s just sort of dawning on me that this week was the week of final exams at my school, so that’s probably how I ended up not planning a post. I feel like poo when I don’t plan a post ūüė¶ Anyways, here, have a tissue.


Tissue Box In Basket

Because I’m sure I’ve bored you to tears.

I’ll definitely have a better, thought-out post next week, I promise!

And also,¬†I’m planning something kind of exciting that might be happening within the next couple of weeks RIGHT HERE ON THIS BLOG.

Stay tuned ūüėČ

-M

*Buckwass– Rubbish. Stupidity. Pointless garbage.

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There is no such thing as the Punjabi Rape Festival. I promise.

Alright, so I had noticed a lot of people were searching “punjab rape festival” on WordPress, and I was like what is this. So I looked it up, and I found on a FAKE NEWS SITE an article detailing the made-up festival. As a joke. This is not real: it’s not a real news site and it’s not a real festival. It looks like two sites have the article. One of them has a disclaimer at the bottom explaining that the site maker is joking, and the other one…well, it’s called Central Bank of Jokes. Enough said, I think. The only reason this concerned me a bit is because a lot of people in the comments thought the festival was real. It’s not.

That is all.

-M

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Two Bruaaahs and a Fitteh Moo

Bruaaah: Noun. Vocalization typically made by people of the Punjab region of India during times of intense celebration and/or partying. If this is hard to picture with your ears, there’s quite a few bruaaahs in this video:

Fitteh moo: Darn.

This past week, Punjabis have seen two Bruaaahhs and a Fitteh Moo. Let’s start with the Bruaaahhs, shall we?

Bruaaahh #1-

It’s rumored that one of the Top 40 contestants in this coming season of American Idol is a Sikh. This is a video from his Youtube channel:

 

 

ADSFLKJADF’ EXCITEMENT EXCITEMENT!!!! His name is Gurpreet Sarin, and you can check out his Youtube channel HERE. Not only does he seem talented, but in a couple of his videos he addresses the hate comments he gets and other issues, and he seems to have a smart attitude and a positive outlook. I hope the rumors of him being on American Idol are true!

Bruaaahh #2-

As I mentioned in my last post, the Punjabi festival of Lohri was this past Sunday. It celebrates the coming of winter with a bon-fire, snacks, and I can only assume a LOT  of bhangra, which is a traditional dance of Punjab. In my last post I had a clip of a Lohri celebration in a movie. You can check out the post HERE, or click HERE for a direct link to the video on Youtube.

Now time for the fitteh moo ūüė¶

Also in Punjab this past week, a woman was raped…by seven men…and she was a bus passenger. This gang-rape is undeniably similar to the one that¬†occurred in¬†Delhi that had India protesting and calling for reform. One difference is the status of the victim in this most recent incident; thankfully, this victim is alive. Another positive is that six men have been arrested, which is progress that might have never have been made without the revolution caused by the rape in Delhi. This rape might not have even been reported if it weren’t for the outrage towards rape that has swept across India. It’s awesome that this woman had the will to press charges on her rapists, and that the police are taking it seriously.

But there’s another not so obvious problem here.

The ratio of men to women in Punjab is one of the worst in the world. Female fetuses are commonly aborted in India, especially in Punjab, solely for being female. This practice is called female foeticide. One reason for this is the dowry system. This is illegal in India, but it still takes place. When a woman gets married, her family is expected to pay ridiculous amounts of money and give¬†extravagant¬†gifts, such as cars, to the groom’s side. Often times, families abort female fetuses in order to avoid this burden in the long run. And so now, there are¬†significantly¬†more men than women in India, particularly in the state of Punjab. I think this uneven ratio could be partially blamed for the increasing crimes towards women in India, because it makes women more of a minority.

Again, the good thing about this is that at least we’re hearing about it. Before the gang-rape in Delhi, taboos against speaking of rape would let rapists go free, because they were not reported. At least this rape in Punjab is getting publicity, and at least arrests have been made. This is definitely progress, but that does not undermine the deep-rooted causes of rape in India, such as female foeticide.

Anyways folks, I hope you have an awesome week filled with ample bruaaahhs!

-M

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Crappy Post (But at least there’s a video clip?)

(Apologizing in advance for the lack of editing done for this post. I’m sure it’s an English teacher’s nightmare.)

Hey there good lookin.

So where I am, it’s finals week in school. I’ve been studying all weeke and I haven’t really had time to plan a post for today, which is a shame, because today is the annual Lohri festival of Punjab and I would have loved to do a post on it and all of it’s Punjabi-y, wintery, bon-firey, popcorny, Dullah Bhatti-y goodness:( But unfortunatly I’m on that American History grind for tonight. But…what’s the harm in giving a quick description of Lohri, right? I’m sharing my culture with others, okay? I’m sure G. Wash wouldn’t have a problem with this.

So Lohri. It’s a festival that originated mainly in the state of Punjab that celebrates the coming of winter. Which is great, but apparently it’s also the celebration of the birth of male children. Which at this point that’s like the most awkward holiday for India to boast right now considering how people are starting to catch on to female infanticide. So I think these days, Lohri is a celebration of all children in general. It has a trick-or-treat sort of feel, but then at night there’s a bon-fire where all of the kids share their goodies around the fire and sings songs about Dullah Bhatti, who was this dude who would saved girls who had been kidnapped. Here’s a clip from Veer Zaara where they’re celebrating Lohri that makes me dance like¬†a cray fool:

Anyways, I must be off. Hopefully I’ll be able to write a nice, full-sized post tomorrow after school. Good luck to everyone taking exams this week! You gon do awesome mah brotha/sista.

-M

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“I wish I could have saved her.”

So hey! It’s 2013 now!!

Don’t worry though, crazy ish is continuing to go down around the world as usual.

Nirbhaya’s death has taken the world by storm. To read more about it, click HERE, or HERE if you want information on it.

The second victim of the attack in Delhi has spoken out, and what he says is shocking, as well as heartbreaking.

He says that him and Nirbhaya were left on the street for 20 minutes before police were called. Naked, he called out to onlookers–cars, rickshaws–asking for help. It didn’t come for twenty minutes, as Nirbhaya bled, also unclothed. And even when the police arrived, it took them two hours to decide which hospital to take the victims to. The male victim was the one who carried Nirbhaya to the¬†ambulance, ¬†not the police. He explained the details such as these, each more horrific than the last. You can read all of his comments HERE. But before he talks about what happened that night, the man expresses his grief. He remembers visiting Nirbhaya in the hospital, where she was smiling and staying positive.

“I wish I could have saved her,” he says now.

New Delhi police have actually filed a criminal case against the network that aired this interview, on the claim that by airing the interview, it will be easier for people to figure out the identity of the rape victim, which is illegal in India. However, I think interviewing the surviving victim has confirmed suspicions that police negligence played a major role in this case.

Something else that happened towards the end of 2012–in a New York subway station, a man was pushed to his death onto the tracks of an oncoming train. Sunando Sen was born in India and raised as a Hindu. The woman who pushed him, Erika Menendez, said this: ”¬†I pushed a Muslim off the train tracks because I hate Hindus and Muslims ever since 2001.” Menendez has a history of ill mental health, and she had been mumbling to herself before pushing Sen. Because of this, I think it’s unfair to judge her as we would someone who was mentally healthy. Obviously she has problems that go beyond ¬†a ¬†racist mindset. But still, the incident is rightfully being classified as a hate crime. And still, a man is dead because of it.

These kinds of incidents have been pretty common after 9/11. For a while, things seemed relatively calm, but last year brought life back into hate crimes targeting brown-skinned Americans. After the attack on the Sikh Gurdwara last year, the son of one of the victims spoke very sincerely in a testimony. (Check it out HERE.) At one point, in reference to what happened to his mother, Harpreet Singh Saini said, “This was not supposed to be our American story.” For immigrants like Saini’s mom, bringing the family to America was the best thing you could do for them . No one thinks that by coming to America, you’ll end up getting shot in your place of worship. But this has become the “American story,” for too many victims. And when I heard about this recent attack at the subway, I was reminded of Saini’s words, because one more person’s American story had gone awry. And so Saini’s quote and what Nirbhaya’s friend said about wishing he could have saved Nirbhaya have sort of combined in my head, and now I’m sitting here (hold on, kids, it’s about to get dramatic) ¬†wishing that I could have saved Sen in the subway–been there at that station and grabbed him and told him to leave, to run as fast as he could from the hate that was about to claim his life. I wish I could have been at the Gurdwara in Wisconsin, and in the Mosques that have burned down, with the families that have been shattered, with Bhai Seeta Singh, Bhai Parkash Singh, Bhai Ranjit Singh, Satwant Singh Kaleka, Subegh Singh, Parmjit Kaur Toor, Balbir Singh Sodhi, Surinder Singh, Rajinder Singh Khalsa, Iqbal Singh, Arjit Singh Cheema, Jasmir Singh, Sunando Sen, and the thousands of victims of hate crimes, and their families, ¬†and told them ¬†turn around and go back, because their American story would not be what they thought.

Well, this has been my first post in the New Year…I hope it had the cheery effect that was intended. Sorry :/ On a positive note, I’m seeing news about stronger action being taken in rape cases in India, which is a big victory for the protesters. Physically, Nirbhaya has gone, but she lives on in the impact she is already having on India. And as for hate crimes, they’re nothing new. Sometimes its hard to believe, but time will ease racism and prejudice in America. Despite some exceptions, it’s getting better everyday. So go out there and enjoy yourself without fear and without hate–2013 is waiting.

-M

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