Monday, February 8, 2016

Journal of a Refugee Ch. 7

Father Wenceslas Munyegeshaka:
I used to be a priest. That was until the genocide started. Though I am still a man of God in title, I am no longer a holy man. I used to have a thriving flock. Then the murderers took them away.

Some people question my moral ethics and me. Paul, of the Hotel de Mille Collines, sticks in my mind especially. He wondered why I let the killers in my church all the time. To tell the truth, it is to save my own skin. I don't want to die. I plan on surviving this genocide. I will not sacrifice my life for other people. When this whole thing started, I let myself believe that the killers weren't killing the Tutsis they took from me. I don't delude myself anymore. People in Rwanda are killing their neighbors for no reason other than prejudice. 

I can't lie to myself anymore. I've tried to distance myself from the murder and violence, but I can't disguise it anymore. I brought my mother, a Tutsi 'cockroach', to Paul. No matter how much I feign indifference, I still care greatly. I'm glad Paul understands. He didn't question me, he just accepted. I want to change what I can do, but I've already dug myself into a hole. All I can do is hope that nobody else comes to me for shelter. I have signed myself over to the killers by not resisting. I have resigned myself to indirectly working for the killers, by not stopping them. If I don't bend to their every whim, they will kill me. I can't escape the cycle. All I can do is hope the killings are over soon.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Journal of a Refugee Ch. 6

I've been hiding out in the streets of Kigali for a while now. I used to have a normal life, working in a supermarket. Back then, life had order. I would wake up, go to work, and socialize with normal, sane people. Now, I hid from the same people, who are lurking everywhere, waiting to kill me. I've heard stories of other survivors, who just barely escaped a massacre. He was sheltered with UN soldiers, until they were evacuated. The trucks had just barely disappeared when the Interahamwe started killing left and right. I've managed to avoid them thus far, and I don't plan to give up now. I've heard that Paul Rusesabagina, the manager of the Hotel de Mille Collines, has been taking refugees. I've slowly been making my way across town to get there.

I've finally made it to the Mille Collines. I'm worried. I feel like the mere illusion of safety here will be shattered very soon by the killers that lurk beyond the fence. Even in the face of chaos, Paul manages a hotel well. He's devised a genius way of dragging out the supply reserves. The water may be discolored, but it's water. Paul somehow makes the days seem normal, with common structure and function. I don't know how long this will last, but I enjoy the normality and flow of these days. Even with the genocide raging around us, we find a way to survive.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Current Events Weekly Blog

My first article was written by Frank Pallotta of CNNMoney. It is called "'Star Wars: Episode VIII' postponed seven months to December 2017." The article talks about the moving of the release date of Star Wars: Episode VIII to a later date. The movie "has been moved from its scheduled release date of May 26, 2017 to December 15, 2017." The article says that this may be an intentional move by Disney. "It may not be coincidence that after "The Force Awakens" went galactic in December that "Episode VIII" was moved to open in the same holiday month." The article goes on to point out that TFA did very well with its December release, making over $1.8 billion worldwide.

The second article about the same subject comes from Bryan Alexander of USA TODAY. Its title is "'Star Wars: Episode VIII' moved to December 2017." This article goes al title bit deeper, saying that "A memo from Disney publicity explained that the major calendar move was enacted to put the new Star Wars chapter in line with Star Wars: The Force Awakens, which smashed box office records after its December 2015 release." The article also gives the time and location of filming of the new movie, stating that "Star Wars: Episode VIII is currently in pre-production and will begin shooting in London next month." Unlike the CNN article, the USA TODAY article gives more information where the other article glosses over.

While one article gives a bit more information than the other, they are both consistent with the date of the coming movie. Either way, I am excited that the new movie is already making ripples two years ahead of its release date.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

State of the Union Address

Franklin Delano Roosevelt was the 32nd President of the United States of America. In the middle of his political career, he was diagnosed with polio. The disease caused him to become paralyzed from the waist down, and never regained full use of his legs. This didn't stop him, however, and was elected as the President for 4 terms. He is most well-known for his New Deal and guiding the U.S. out of the Great Depression and through WWII.

At the time of the 1941 State of the Union Address, the Axis powers were marching all over Europe. This worried and frightened the American people for their safety. At that time, the U.S. had officially stayed out of the war. The people were wondering how FDR would respond to the neutrality and safety issues.

The 1941 SOTUA has come to be known as the Four Freedoms speech. Those freedoms are the freedom of speech, of religion, freedom from want, and freedom from fear. FDR's main objective in this speech was to encourage and reaffirm the people's courage. By listing those four freedoms, FDR reminded the people that they were fighting for the universal freedoms listed in the Constitiution, the freedoms that all people should possess. FDR encouraged the continued support of and aid to Great Britain, and the stocking of war supplies at home. Overall, Roosevelt wanted to reassure the faith and determination of the American people in the midst of WWII.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Veterans Wounded Warriors Band.

The Wounded Warriors Band consists of men and women who have injuries from defending our country. The band is part of a project for recovery, to give them something to live for. Each band member has a story to tell about how their experiences have led them to where they are at today. The Wounded Warriors Band have performed at many famous venues and with many famous singers over the years.

Tim Donley, the lead vocalist, has two prosthetic legs and has lost use of his right arm. He obtained his injuries in Afghanistan from a roadside bomb. Juan Dominguez was in Afghanistan when he lost both legs and an arm. Before he joined the military, Juan played a guitar in a metal band. He was severely disappointed when he found out he wouldn't play the guitar again. Now, in the WWB, he plays the drums, with a special attachment for the second drumstick. Josh Cawthorn, who plays the guitar in the band, lost both his best friend and his right eye when in service. He has a Purple Heart, and proudly wears a fake eyeball to show people that he is different.

Music is the best medicine for the guys in this band. It gives them something to focus on, something to strive for. "It's everything," said Cawthorn. "Emotional therapy, physical, whatever you can think of. It's the best." And as multiple members of the band have said, they haven't looked back.

Friday, November 6, 2015

Nobel Peace Prize

Some notable winners of the Nobel Peace Prize are Mother Teresa and Theodore Roosevelt.
Mother Teresa won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979. She was awarded the prize for the various amounts of humanitarian work she had done over the years. Her birth-name was Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu. She is most well-known for being the leader of Missionaries of Charity, Calcutta.
Theodore Roosevelt won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1906. He is most well-known for being the 26th President of the United States. However, this not the reason why he won the award. He received the award in 1906 for negotiating a peace treat in the Russo-Japanese war in 1904-05. He also resolved a dispute with Mexico by resulting to arbitration. He also was the first statesman to receive the award, which caused some controversy.
Jimmy Carter was my chosen winner of the Nobel Peace Prize. He was born on October 1, 1924, in Plains, Georgia, U.S.A. After a military career, in 1953, he took over care of his parent's farm. Soon after that, he got into politics, and was elected Governor of Georgia. In, 1976, he won the election for the Democrats as the 39th President of the United States. He achieved the award for negotiating treaties between multiple countries several times. Even after his presidential term ended, he continued to be a voice of human rights.