Archive for 'Civil Rights'
President Obama addressed the anti-Mohammed hate video yesterday in his speech to the United Nations. I feel that he got the balance just about right.
In defending the right to make a film insulting Mohammed, are Americans merely sticking up for our principles? Or are we picking and choosing?
The argument about the special legitimacy of kings is one often heard in Morocco, when explaining why Morocco has known comparatively little unrest since the Arab awakening began. However, the recent controversy over the bay’a, or ceremony of allegiance to the king, might be saying something different.
The Romney campaign knows it can’t win without firing up white racial resentment on the one hand, and suppressing the turnout of poor and minority voters on the other. Their policies don’t have the support of the majority of the American people, so they have to tweak that majority. This makes me wonder: if nothing is at stake in this election, then why this willingness to win dirty?
All change is bound to hurt someone, and this in itself is a limit on the type of candidates we get, who are sponsored by two large political parties that aspire to represent the broad majority of American public opinion. But it does raise the question of whether elections serve any purpose at all.
Morocco shows a modernizing face to the world, with its high-speed trains and five-star hotels, but urban shantytowns and rural poverty are a stubborn reality behind the façade.
“Let’s invent our cultural revolution right now, without waiting, as a matter of urgency…. The great work of thought, reflection and culture must get started as soon as possible.”
The excluded class at the bottom is frustrated and angry, but they are the victim of years of social engineering designed to teach them passivity and resignation. February 20 activists will have their work cut out for them if they want to connect with this group, but it represents the only potential for February 20 to expand its base and become a majority movement.
In light of the constitutional reform proposal of King Mohammed VI, perhaps it would be useful to take a look at this recent article about Jordan, which calls it a “liberalizing autocracy” gifted at creating the illusion of change.
The Arab Spring with its revolutions and uprisings opened a window in Morocco, for a frank and open exchange of views on all the essential questions. With a proposed new constitution in which things change only to remain the same, I fear that window is closing.