ModernityBlog

“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.” Abraham Lincoln

Archive for April 24th, 2010

Grim But Necessary Reading.

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Thanks to Matt at Ignoblus for pointing this out, Autobiography of a Recovering Skinhead:

“As a teenager, Frank Meeink was one of the most well-known skinhead gang members in the country. He had his own public access talk show, called The Reich, he appeared on Nightline and other media outlets as a spokesman for neo-Nazi topics, and he regularly recruited members of his South Philadelphia neighborhood to join his skinhead gang.

At 18, Meeink spent several years in prison for kidnapping one man and beating another man senseless for several hours. While in prison, Meeink says, he was exposed to people from a variety of ethnic and racial backgrounds and started reevaluating his own racist beliefs. His transformation solidified, he tells Dave Davies, after the Oklahoma City bombing, when he saw the iconic photo of a firefighter cradling a lifeless girl in his arms.

“I felt so evil. Throughout my life, even when I was tattooed up and wanting to be a skinhead, I felt like maybe I was bad on the outside. But I felt good on the inside,” he says. “And that day it switched. I felt OK on the outside, but I felt so evil inside. I had no one to talk to. … So I went to the FBI and … I told them my story. I said ‘I don’t have any information on anybody, but I just need to let you know what it’s like.’ And of course they wanted to listen, because the Oklahoma City bombing had happened.”

The FBI recommended that Meeink contact the Anti-Defamation League — which he did. He now regularly lectures to students about racial diversity and acceptance on behalf of the ADL, and he has written a memoir about his past, called Autobiography of a Recovering Skinhead. “

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24/04/2010 at 20:20

Deportation Campaign Against Iranian Activists.

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I was alarmed to see the HMG is still deporting activists back to Iran and the clutches of the Ahmadinejad regime, Nadia Arzane and Bashir Foris are about to be sent back:

“The UK continues its deportation campaign against Iranian activists, this time a young pregnant couple whose deportation was scheduled for today. The woman, Nadia Arzane, became very distressed at time of boarding and due to stress on the unborn child, they did not fly today as planned. However, they are back in detention and still at very high risk fo deportation.

Any deportation of people to Iran, which detains, tortures, and executes political activists just like this couple, is unconscionable. But somehow the idea of sending a pregnant woman to her death is more revolting still. “

The background:

“Nadia Arzane and Bashir Foris are a married Iranian couple in their early 20s. They are currently detained in Yarl’s Wood IRC and due to be forcibly removed from the UK tomorrow, Friday 23rd April on Air Baltic BT652, from Gatwick airport to Riga, Latvia. Where it is likely they will be returned to Iran.

Nadia is an activist from Iran who supported the opposition party by making a stand against human right abuses. On a protest in July 2009, in the town of Bandar Abbas, she saw a person beaten to death by government agents. She handed out leaflets and CDs in her local area calling on people to vote against President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. A few days later, she returned home from work and witnessed her father being beaten and arrested because he would not hand over information about her. Her father spent two months in an Iranian prison where he was tortured. As a young Christian and human rights activist she has suffered prolonged persecution from the Iranian government and will be arrested and possibly executed if she is returned.

Nadia has shown immense courage and conviction in her Christian Faith and her belief in Human Rights. Her and her husband have been detained since their arrival in the UK and are currently being detained in Yarl’s Wood Immigration Removal Centre.

Nadia and Bashir are under immense stress. Nadia’s physical and mental health are a serious concern. Nadia she is terrified. She is 14 weeks pregnant and at the stage during which miscarriages are most common. She has not had a full psychological assessment as recommended by health professionals; She is showing signs of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and is unable to eat or sleep. Without a full psychological assessment there is no way of knowing the full state of Nadia’s mental health, and how the stress of the imminent removal will affect the health of her unborn child. She is not receiving any treatment.”

Written by modernityblog

24/04/2010 at 12:38