Tag Archives: justice

Wondering Wednesdays, Baby Acres, and Human Rights as Justice

This post  goes on to begin the rough draft of my current non-fiction WiP, Baby Acres: A possible Vision for Making Society Suck Less, in 60 Years.   (Thanks, once again, to JYP and Tammy for the title ideas!!)  The overall goal has been to lay out a roadmap for a fully inclusive society for all of us, so, I am turning, this week, to the introductory chapter, Chapter 0, of the book, in the hope that All HumanKind  will eventually have each person’s basic needs  met.  This book lays out one possible path for getting to that point.

Introduction part II: Peace and Justice

 

   Peaceful change revolves around various types of justice.  Social justice is perhaps the first type of justice that comes to mind, but economic justice, both of outcome and of opportunity, and also climate and other sorts of justice count heavily when considering the factors involved in building a just society.

 

  Social justice is one of the more obvious types of justice, or more visible, in terms of how we human beings treat one another.  The basic human rights to dignity, equal treatment under the law, and equal access to resources as seen in the right to due process, competent legal representation, etc, have been the focus of civil rights activism and litigation, most prominently in the 1960s, but reaching much farther back than that, in the United States (Jones, Stayed on Freedom’s Call, P. 20). Cooperation between many oppressed groups over time has led to a variety of policies aimed at addressing mistreatment of vulnerable people in public venues, often based on visible characteristics such as race, gender, etc.  The right to associate and travel, live in safe areas, access social venues, etc, has often been addressed, however, without actively acknowledging the fact that the realistic exercise of these rights is dependent upon the actual ability to pay for access to these rights, as most of our venues in the US require some form of entrance fee, or payment.  What often goes unaddressed, and ignored, is the right to economic justice that forms the bedrock of one’s ability to gain access to nearly all of these rights, in practical usage.  Yet, this lack of acknowledgment and action is not due to lack of warning.  Many have pointed out over the years that providing social justice, without providing economic justice, is paying mere lip service to the ideal of a just society.

 

   The calls for economic justice as part of social equity in the United States go back far, but a convenient start might be the most well known of those calls, from the 1960s.  In 1963,The March on Washington was a march for “jobs and freedom” as part of the long struggle to end Jim Crow, implemented both as social segregation, and also as economic segregation.  The economic part of Jim Crow, preventing most Negroes from working in most professional job positions, was the true motor of inequality, leading to both the formation and enforced permanence of a deliberately poverty-stricken underclass constantly obligated to accept any jobs offered by the dominant members of society.  The codification of this system based on skin color meant that even after the end, de Jure, of social Jim Crow, the majority of the members of that underclass remained stuck in the position of living in substandard housing and having to accept the lowest paying of jobs because the dominant culture had not changed, even when the laws did.  Thus, the legal ability to attend the same cinemas, the same schools, and the same concerts did not grant the financial ability do take advantage of these new rights.  Jim Crow was still, economically speaking, alive and well despite new social justice laws.  Many observers, from Dr. King himself, who called for a Citizen’s Income just a few years after that famous march (King, Where Do We Go From Here, 1967), to Joseph Stiglitz, to Steve Pressman, to Thomas Piketty, have continued to point out that economic inequality both hampers all forms of justice for vulnerable groups.  They also argue that economic inequality exerts increasing pressure toward injustice on all groups, from the dominant down to the most vulnerable, in that society.  Thus, social justice and economic justice must really be considered one: two sides of the same coin.

 

A society which would like to consider itself just toward all of its members, and indeed attempts to provide social and economic justice for all groups, would still be missing something crucial, if social and economic justice were the only types of justice to be considered.  While public goods such as libraries, health care, transportation, and education may be considered part of the social or economic spheres, these systems are also part of a set of pieces of social infrastructure which work in our society both as common touch stones, and as common points of concern.  Each person needs access to information, and to community level places for gatherings and  entertainment, provided by local libraries.  Each person needs health care, and the health of every resident in a society affects every other resident, from the hospital system right down to the sewage and water treatment systems.  Transportation is a concern that touches every resident as well, whether driving in a private car, or riding on a trolley, and the culture and education of every resident of a society inform how those modes of transportation will be used, or abused.  Yet, information and communication systems, sanitation, transportation, and even schools all impact the local environment, and also pull resources from the local environment.  And, as many Native American Tribal councils, like that of the Black Hills, in South Dakota, can confirm, not all lands are treated with equal care.  Thus, climate and land or commons based justice must also be considered, as part of the foundation of any just society.  Hence, social, economic, and commons based justice must all form part of any discussion or offering of a potential vision for a just society.  Those three fundamental forms of justice must also then be made tangible by codifying specific examples of what that might look like.  One offering of an example was given to us by a president who saw the need to end both segregation and to list necessary freedoms.

 

That is the rough draft of the first part of my introductory chapter. 

Last week was the third installment of this series…

Action Items:

1.) Search for two different sources related to visions for a better world.

2.) Share them with us in the comments, here, please.

3.) Share your thoughts on how Commons Justice (or bad) can affect a society that might be built, in 50-100 years.

4.) Write a story, post or tweet that uses those sources and your thoughts.

Dear Readers, ideas on learning, especially multiple #LanguageLearning, on-going education and empathy-building, to #EndPoverty, #EndHomelessness,  #EndMoneyBail & achieve freedom for All HumanKind?

Support our key #PublicDomainInfrastructure  & #StopSmoking for CCOVID-19:
1. #PublicLibraries,
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare, and
4. good #publictransport
Read, Write -one can add Stayed on Freedom’s Call via this GoodReads button:

Nih sakh sh’lekk, sleem wa.   Yassas,   γεια σας!    Salût !  Nos vemos!  Görüşürüz!     ! שָׁלוֹם

ShiraDest

March, 2021 CE = March 12021 HE

(The previous lesson 51/67 , and the most recent lesson 52/67…)

Stayed on Freedom’s Call
(free: https://archive.org/details/StayedOnF…)
includes two ‘imagination-rich’ walking tours, with songs, of Washington, DC. New interviews and research are woven into stories of old struggles shared by both the Jewish and African-American communities in the capital city.

Shared histories are explored from a new perspective of cultural parallels and parallel institution-building which brought the two communities together culturally and historically.

Free copies are available at https://archive.org/details/StayedOnF…

Creative Commons License
Shira Destinie Jones by ShiraDest is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Minbari Mondays, Parliament of Dreams, and empathy for religions?

This is the continuation of our fictional letter (reviewing each film and episode of Babylon 5) that I receive each week from Ranger Mayann.

Here is her seventh report:

Nih sakh sh’lekk, sleem wa, Greetings from Tuzanor:

This seventh report, is still in your Earth year 2258, the second year of operation of this station.  This report looks at an incident during the time of G’kar as ambassador, and several celebrations of near death.

     This first celebration of near death teaches much about how much potential Ambassador G’kar already had for making new starts, as he did with his still new attaché Na’toth. As the danger unfolds around this one, the other ambassadors present two other celebrations of death couched in new life. The Centauri celebrate the near death of their own species, and the actual deaths of all the members of the other sentient species with whom they once shared their planet, Centauri Prime. Though they insist that it was for their own survival, this genocide saddens us, even today. All life is sacred. Perhaps now, they may begin to learn this.

Miss Sakai helped Commander Sinclair begin to see more of his own new life, as she explained how our Rebirth ceremony brings new life couched in the taste of your own death, and that it can also double as a marriage ceremony.

  The primary incident in this report, that of a Narn sent to assassinate Ambassador G’kar, ends in a celebration of his life, with the help of his newly proven attaché, Na’toth. The time taken to unravel his mystery also ends with the death, happily, of an idea. Your Earth government had an idea to show each “dominant belief system.”  Sinclair, in his wisdom, killed that idea, by showing a way to give birth to a more lively idea: the idea that you Humans have a great long line of varying beliefs and traditions, represented by your many different peoples.

 

From the city of  Tuzanor, on Minbar

Earth year 2278,

Anla’Shok Mayann

  Addendum to Ranger Mayann’s report, by Shira:  This episode is one of my favorite episodes, and I cry tears of wonder and hope every time I see that very last scene. This scene turns “the Long grey line” into a long named line of all our human ancestors, and all human belief systems. Each of us has such a line of those who came before us saying “remember.”

This episode introduces us to Lenier, Natoth, and Catharine Sakai. I love how the Narn assassin’s guild guy wears reading glasses, by the way!  I also love that hint at foreshadowing by Sinclair of the relationship between Londo and G’kar!!

and

The mystery deepens, as we see Delenn insist that Lenier not use her title “Satai,” and the the first time, we see the Minbari idea that Understanding is not required, only obedience…”

 

That was part 7 of Ranger Mayann’s letter on the history of the Babylon Project.  It can be seen from another point of view by watching the Babylon 5 Season 1, Episode 5: Parliament of Dreams, which I certainly recommend.

See Ranger Mayann’s sixth report, from last week.

-Shira

Action Items:

1.)  Share your thoughts on religion and cultural dominance, if you will.

2.) Share your thoughts on how we Human Beings might start to build a more fully inclusive society for all of us, and how this episode of Babylon 5 could help that process.

4.) Write a story, post or tweet that uses these thoughts.

Dear Readers, ideas on learning, especially multiple #LanguageLearning, on-going education and empathy-building, to #EndPoverty, #EndHomelessness,  #EndMoneyBail & achieve freedom for All HumanKind?

Support our key #PublicDomainInfrastructure  & #StopSmoking for CCOVID-19:
1. #PublicLibraries,
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare, and
4. good #publictransport
ReadWrite -one can add Stayed on Freedom’s Call via this GoodReads button:

, Vote, Teach and Learn (Lesson Plans)

Nih sakh sh’lekk, sleem wa.

ShiraDest

March, 2021 CE = March 12021 HE

(The previous lesson 67/67 , and the most recent lesson 1/67…)

Stayed on Freedom’s Call
(free: https://archive.org/details/StayedOnF…)
includes two ‘imagination-rich’ walking tours, with songs, of Washington, DC. New interviews and research are woven into stories of old struggles shared by both the Jewish and African-American communities in the capital city.

Shared histories are explored from a new perspective of cultural parallels and parallel institution-building which brought the two communities together culturally and historically.

Free copies are available at https://archive.org/details/StayedOnF…

Shira Destinie Jones by ShiraDest is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Wondering Wednesdays, Baby Acres, and Public Domain (Social) Infrastructure

This post begins to expand on my current non-fiction WiP, Baby Acres: A possible Vision for Making Society Suck Less, in 60 Years.   (Thanks to JYP and Tammy for the title ideas!!)  The goal is to lay out a roadmap for a fully inclusive society for all of us.  I’d love to see other such roadmaps toward a Kinder World, but thus far, I don’t see any fully drawn up plans, so I figured I’d put my ever-evolving roadmap out there for scrutiny.  Part of that map includes posts that I have written before, as I piece ideas I’ve had over the last 10 to 15 years together into one coherent framework.  I hope to offer that framework as one possible vision of what a society might look like that could eventually pass the Rawlsian Veil of Ignorance Test.

This framework started as The Four Freedoms for All HumanKind Movement idea, but then I realized that a movement needs more than one person, so I thought I’d better try to explain it and get some other folks to help me tracing this path, or possible path, forward for our society.

Back around 2011 or so, I had the idea that if we had a modern inclusive rite of passage adapted to our current society, we could build a better definition of what it means to be an adult, and how we figure out at what point that time has arrived, for any given person.  Some sort of definition, and then test of passage, made universal, could be a more satisfactory criterion, or set of criteria, than mere age, whether 18, 21, or 25, as has been in different times and places in American society.  That led me to imagine the Adulthood Challenge, with its various prerequisites and the final test.  That led me to wonder how on earth we could bring such a new ritual into general acceptance as a means-test for adulthood, and what that could mean for those who pass, or don’t.  What sort of society would we have in which some number of 40 or 50 year old persons are not considered legal adults, and what would that mean for such a society?  How do you determine who is reasonably able to conduct the responsibilities of adulthood, and what exactly are those responsibilities, since the state of being an “adult” comes with duties, but also grants rights and privileges denied to children.  And you cannot have a functioning society with absolutely no bar, or you then have to grant driving, governing, and other privileges and other decision-making functions to anyone and everyone at any time, which clearly will not work.  So, the need for some way to decide on the maturity and preparation level of each person in society led me to wonder what levels of preparation, and in what areas, an adult in our society is expected to have, and how one could fairly test that across the entire society.   This, of course, reminded me of the woeful state of our public education system in the US, not to mention other parts of our social infrastructure which are in the public domain, such as library systems, and health care.

That brought me to another problem:  when one has not had access to basic necessities, like health care, information, education, and transportation, as a child, one reaches (assuming one survives long enough) the age of juridic adulthood lacking much of what kids who grew up in less traumatizing or negligent or abusive or poverty-stricken homes generally have.  So, backing up from adulthood, I wondered how we can build, or rather, what would be needed, to build a society that ensured access to those tools for each and every child.  Starting with food, clothing, shelter and health care for kids whose parents either die young and had no other family, or kids who never had adequate parents to begin with.  Clearly, state Child Protective Service systems are not good enough, judging by foster care-to-prison pipeline” statistics(I’ll come back to further ideas about this in future posts as part of Phases III and IV…)

If you follow my blog regularly, you might have noticed that those four basic necessities,  health care, information, education, and transportation, are something I rotate into my posts on a regular basic, under the name of a hash tag #publicdomaininfrastructure.  That is because a couple of years ago, I realized that those four basics had the potential to solve a lot of problems for a lot of people, if our social infrastructure systems like Public Libraries, Public Health Care, Public Education (for both kids and adults), and Public Transportation were upgraded.  A lot.  With those systems adequately funded and utilized by the middle classes as well as the poor, you could also get a situation going where people meet and greet and get to know each other more, as well as more attention to the needs of those public goods than merely as a hand-out for those who cannot or wish not to use the privatized version of all of these public goods.    Then I realized that without empathy, you cannot have any of those things.  So, then I began to wonder what a society could look like that met all of our needs, while keeping our freedoms intact, and still allowing each individual person to go as far as that person’s potential would allow, creatively, athletically, intellectually, etc.  Without having to dig out of a childhood hellhole just to get to the starting line.   What various shapes could such a society (indeed, societies) take, and how could you ensure that any and all of those various shapes remained just?

Obviously, you don’t go from where we are now, to a just and safe world for all of us, including women in Africa, in a day.  So, I divided the various parts of ideas I’ve had over the years into four sets, thinking that a movement can surely be built in 15 years or so, and then gave somewhat arbitrary names to each of those sets of ideas, to phase in one after another as part of a path to one possible offering of a vision for a better world.  And the path, or paths, will certainly not be simple, but “another world is possible,” clearly, because we have 6000 years of recorded human history to show us that nearly every possible form of governance has existed, and ceased to exist, on our planet among human beings.  So, I wondered, how we could conceive and plan a set of possible visions for a society that would be just, safe, free, and fair, for each and every human being on this planet.  I wondered why I’ve not seen someone write a book about such an idea, or set of ideas.   Then, I wondered if I should write one, myself.

“And so, it begins.”

Action Items:

1.) Search for two different sources related to social infrastructure.

2.) Share them with us in the comments, here, please.

3.) Share your thoughts on how a society might be built, in 50-100 years, that is more just.

4.) Write a story, post or tweet that uses those sources and your thoughts.

Dear Readers, ideas on learning, especially multiple #LanguageLearning, on-going education and empathy-building, to #EndPoverty, #EndHomelessness,  #EndMoneyBail & achieve freedom for All HumanKind?

Support our key #PublicDomainInfrastructure  & #StopSmoking for CCOVID-19:
1. #PublicLibraries,
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare, and
4. good #publictransport
Read, Write -one can add Stayed on Freedom’s Call via this GoodReads button:

Nih sakh sh’lekk, sleem wa.   Yassas,   γεια σας!    Salût !  Nos vemos!  Görüşürüz!     ! שָׁלוֹם

ShiraDest

February, 2021 CE = February 12021 HE

(The previous lesson 67/67 , and the most recent lesson 1/67…)

Stayed on Freedom’s Call
(free: https://archive.org/details/StayedOnF…)
includes two ‘imagination-rich’ walking tours, with songs, of Washington, DC. New interviews and research are woven into stories of old struggles shared by both the Jewish and African-American communities in the capital city.

Shared histories are explored from a new perspective of cultural parallels and parallel institution-building which brought the two communities together culturally and historically.

Free copies are available at https://archive.org/details/StayedOnF…

Creative Commons License
Shira Destinie Jones by ShiraDest is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Day 38/67 of GED in Five Months, learn like the wind, and Rise vs. Run

 Adulting is about knowing how you learn most effectively, but also about understanding systems, similes, and relationships of change between varying quantities.  Like the price of a main staple, like rice, over time in hours, days, or weeks…

Middle of week 10/18
Day 38, Week 10, Lesson plan
Grammar: using a simile
Math:Slope as ratio of Y:X
Day 38 Exit Tix
 

Action Items:

1.) What do you think is one possible scenario where rice can (or has…) cause riots?

2.) Why might it be important that citizens in a republic understand these possible scenarios?

3.) Write a book, story, blog post or tweet that uses those thoughts, and then, please tell us about it! If you write a book, once it is published please consider donating a copy to your local public library.

4.)  Feel free to answer the exit ticket questions in the comments, or pose any other questions you may have about the lesson, if you wish.

Dear Readers, ideas on learning, especially multiple #LanguageLearning, on-going education and empathy-building, to #EndPoverty, #EndHomelessness,  #EndMoneyBail & achieve freedom for All HumanKind

Support our key #PublicDomainInfrastructure  & #StopSmoking for CCOVID-19:
1. #PublicLibraries,
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare, and
4. good #publictransport
Read, Write -one can add Stayed on Freedom’s Call via this GR button:

ShiraDest

January, 2021 CE = January 12021 HE

(Day 37Day 39)

Creative Commons License
Shira Destinie Jones by ShiraDest is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Los Domingos, Sueños, and TechoYComidaParaTodos

(This post in English)

Yo tenîa una idea, desde 2011, màs o menos, de cômo podrîamos dar techo y comida a todo el mundo.  Claro que he estado pensando en eso y cambiando las ideas, pero ahi està lo que pensé en 2013:

Un programa de Igualdad y Salud para Todos

Las Metas (para que todos pueden contribuir lo mejor):

1. Cada quien, de niño, debe aprender nadar
2. Que cada quien de niño aprende defenderse
3. Que cada bebe, al nacer, recibe .5 hectarios de terreno, que nunca se puede desprender. Se lo puede alquilar o prestar, pero siempre sigue esta persona como dueño o dueña del terreno. Que sea donde sea, será con un poso de agua y capaz de agricolar.
4. Agua potable para cada persona
5. Que cada familia tenga un libro en la biblioteca publica, con resumen del autobiografía de cada persona de la familia (eso quiere decir que cada quien tenga el tiempo libre y los recursos para escribir su autobiografia)

Queridos Lectores, esas ideas sobre el aprendizaje, sobre todo multiple #LanguageLearning, tienen por meta el apoyo de la igualdad para todos.

1. #PublicLibraries,
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare, and
4.  #PublicTransport

Nos vemos!

Spanish Sundays, dreamers, and FreeRoomAndRice for All…

@thegeneticsgal, this one is for you:

I have been dreaming up an idea since 2011, which I have been rehashing, renaming, and reorganizing into more viable alternatives.  This bit of the idea comes from around 2013 or so, but don’t forget, that even then I was trying to figure out what parts and pieces make up the common good.

The common good, or the general welfare, includes our Public Commons, like on-going legal & financial pro-bono education (aka Adulting Education).   Access to these public goods must become more fully inclusive for all of us.

the aim of Fully Inclusive Equality.

The Goals (allowing each person to contribute fully):

1. Each person, as a child, must learn to swim (or at least float).
2. Each child must learn emotional/psychological self-defense and physical self-defense to the greatest extent possible, in a Gandhian context.
(1 and 2 are part of the pre-Adulthood criteria…)

3. Each child, at birth, receives half a hectare of land, non-alienable. He or she may rent, lend or swap the land, but always remains the owner. Where ever the location, it should have a well and be arable.
4. Fresh water for ever person (free!)
5. Each family should have a book in the local public library, containing the autobiography of every adult in the family (which means that each person needs free time and the means to write his or her autobiography).

(the same Goals in Spanish, in the post that follows:)
—-

So, it turns out that my ideas on this topic are still gurgling, if that makes sense, as I mull over how to organize and defend what seem to be ludicrous suggestions to some of my acquaintances:

Action Items:

1.) Search for two different sources related to the amount of arable land in the world, and to the number of babies born each year, world wide.

2.) Share them with us in the comments, here, please.

3.) Share your thoughts on how an acre of land for each person might help, or hinder, inclusive thinking,

4.) Write a book, blog post or tweet that uses an alternate calendar, tells a good story, and makes a difference. I’m working on that through my historical fantasy #WiP, #WhoByFireIWill. If you write a book, once published, please consider donating to your local public library.

Dear Readers, ideas on learning, especially multiple #LanguageLearning, on-going education and empathy-building, to #EndPoverty, #EndHomelessness,  #EndMoneyBail & achieve freedom for All HumanKind?

Support our key #PublicDomainInfrastructure  & #StopSmoking for CCOVID-19:
1. #PublicLibraries,
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare, and
4. good #PublicTransport
Read, Write -one can add Stayed on Freedom’s Call via this GR button:

Nos vemos!

ShiraDest

imagined back in December, 2020 CE = December 12020 HE

(The previous lesson 32/67 published since this post, and the most recent lesson 33/67…)

Creative Commons License
Shira Destinie Jones by ShiraDest is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Singing Hallel Saturday for Rosh Chodesh Nissan, and Levels of Health Care?

As an introvert (sorry, strong I in the INTJ, here…), I generally have to remind myself not to “separate … from the community,” but when it comes to a good spirited Hallel, I actually enjoy the morning (Shacharit) service, especially when there are kids around who actually understand the words I’m miming and signing!  I do admit that many of my fellow adults often look at me disappointingly when I stoop at “K’tanim” and pop up at “g’dolim” and skip a few steps at certain other points, but I think that services like this are a good and fun way to teach kids, and to remind us adults that words are not just hollow sounds, but have meaning, and also for those who are strongly Kinesthetic learners, it’s a refreshing change from lecture.

The pre-Passover cleaning of house, car, etc, from top to bottom, is surely part of community and household/personal level health care of some kind, isn’t it?

The common good, or the general welfare, full Public Health Care, and on-going legal & financial pro-bono education (aka Adulting Education), must become more fully inclusive for all of us.

Pesach cleaning!  Oh, no!!

So, it turns out that I still wonder whether this is where Spring Cleaning came from, in the general US/Western culture.

Action Items:

1.) Search for two different sources related to the Hebrew and the Holocene Calendars.

2.) Share them with us in the comments, here, please.

3.) Share your thoughts on how a calendar based on the Holocene Epoch might help, or hinder, inclusive thinking the the entire Human Race,

4.) Write a story, post or tweet that uses it.

Dear Readers, ideas on learning, especially multiple #LanguageLearning, on-going education and empathy-building, to #EndPoverty, #EndHomelessness,  #EndMoneyBail & achieve freedom for All HumanKind?

Support our key #PublicDomainInfrastructure  & #StopSmoking for CCOVID-19:
1. #PublicLibraries,
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare, and
4. good #publictransport
Read, Write -one can add Stayed on Freedom’s Call via this GoodReads button:

Nih sakh sh’lekk, sleem wa.   Yassas,   γεια σας!    Salût !  Nos vemos!  Görüşürüz!     ! שָׁלוֹם

ShiraDest

February, 2021 CE = February 12021 HE

(The previous lesson 67/67 , and the most recent lesson 1/67…)

Stayed on Freedom’s Call
(free: https://archive.org/details/StayedOnF…)
includes two ‘imagination-rich’ walking tours, with songs, of Washington, DC. New interviews and research are woven into stories of old struggles shared by both the Jewish and African-American communities in the capital city.

Shared histories are explored from a new perspective of cultural parallels and parallel institution-building which brought the two communities together culturally and historically.

Free copies are available at https://archive.org/details/StayedOnF…

Creative Commons License
Shira Destinie Jones by ShiraDest is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Soul Hunter Babylon 5

Minbari Mondays, Soul Hunter, and a new doctor on the station

This is the continuation of our fictional letter (reviewing each film and episode of Babylon 5) that I receive each week from Ranger Mayann.

Here is her fourth report:

Nih sakh sh’lekk, sleem wa, Greetings from Tuzanor:

In this fourth report, we move forward just a bit in the same Earth year 2258, the second year of operation of the station, in an incident that saw the arrival of two more new faces. One would leave, for good. The other would be a tremendous force for good, as he already had been, though he was punished for it.  Both new faces remain part of our collective memory, twenty years later. 

Shag toth: when they come, great death arrives with them.

Satai Delenn knew this, but in her capacity as ambassador, all she could do was try to explain.

This report concerns an incident that took place immediately after the Doctor, Steven Franklin, came aboard the famed last of the Babylon stations. As then Lieutenant Commander Ivanova showed the doctor the station, one of these thieves of that which is most precious, may they leave us forever, was being saved by Commander Sinclair.

While Mr. Garibaldi was making his characteristic jokes, Satai Delenn attempted to remedy the great danger in which this creature placed every soul, especially certain classes of Minbari souls. Once again, her situation as ambassador limited her ability to protect all from the danger, even herself.

The doctor, also new to these creatures of nightmare, lost his first race with death as this thief gloated over the passing of one whose soul he did not feel was worthy of saving, as he put it. But removing those souls he claimed to have saved had diminished us all, until …

These thieves see us as jealous and selfish because we made a wall of bodies to stop them from stealing the soul of our great leader, Ducat, at the start of our war with you.

As Lieutenant Commander Ivanova committed the body of your slain ‘lurker’ as you called such people without a home, to the deep, she explained how she understood the ongoing mistakes your people make.  She told the newly arrived Dr. Franklin:

“I am Russian, doctor.  We understand these things.”

When Satai Delenn visited the thief to ask where his collection of souls was hidden, he showed his true nature.  Injuring one of your guards to escape, he followed Delenn, capturing her to start the process of stealing her soul just as one of his fellow thieves arrived at the station, hoping, no doubt, to steal the souls already stolen by the first thief.

In the final analysis, Commander Sinclair saved the soul, not to mention the life, of our great leader Delenn, who then freed the captive souls stolen by the first Soul Hunter, but at a cost.

The commander was brought one step closer to the perilous knowledge of what we made him forget, those ten years earlier, at The Battle of The Line.

The good in this incident was that Commander Sinclair learned another important set of facts that would be crucial to his later role in our society, and also that one more evil was seen and deterred, for your society.

From the city of  Tuzanor, on Minbar

Earth year 2278,

Anla’Shok Mayann

That was part of Ranger Mayann’s on-going letter: her report on this incident in the history of the Babylon Project  can be seen from another point of view by watching Babylon 5’s  Season 1, Episode 2:  Soul Hunter, which I recommend.

My personal view of this episode is that while it is an important introduction of Dr. Franklin, it is an even better introduction to an important part of the character of Lt. Cmdr Ivanova.  It is also the source of one of my favorite Ivanova quotes, and I am grateful to Ranger Mayann for citing her in this report. 

This has been her fourth report.

Ranger Mayann’s third report can be read here.

-Shira

Action Items:

1.) Share your thoughts on differences of opinion regarding death, and how they can affect the decisions we make, if you will.

2.) Write a story, post or tweet that uses these thoughts.

Dear Readers, ideas on learning, especially multiple #LanguageLearning, on-going education and empathy-building, to #EndPoverty, #EndHomelessness,  #EndMoneyBail & achieve freedom for All HumanKind?

Support our key #PublicDomainInfrastructure  & #StopSmoking for CCOVID-19:
1. #PublicLibraries,
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare, and
4. good #publictransport
Read, Write -one can add Stayed on Freedom’s Call via this GoodReads button:

Nih sakh sh’lekk, sleem wa.

ShiraDest

March, 2021 CE = March 12021 HE

(The previous lesson 67/67 , and the most recent lesson 1/67…)

Stayed on Freedom’s Call
(free: https://archive.org/details/StayedOnF…)
includes two ‘imagination-rich’ walking tours, with songs, of Washington, DC. New interviews and research are woven into stories of old struggles shared by both the Jewish and African-American communities in the capital city.

Shared histories are explored from a new perspective of cultural parallels and parallel institution-building which brought the two communities together culturally and historically.

Free copies are available at https://archive.org/details/StayedOnF…

Creative Commons License
Shira Destinie Jones by ShiraDest is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Minbari Mondays, Midnight on the Firing Line, and the 2nd Year of the 5th Station

This is the continuation of our fictional letter (reviewing each film and episode of Babylon 5) that I receive each week from Ranger Mayann.

Here is her third report:

Nih sakh sh’lekk, sleem wa, Greetings from Tuzanor:

In this third report, we move forward another year in the history of that “dream given form … ten years after the Earth-Minbari War.”  Commander Sinclair said, of the fabled place, that it held “… humans and aliens wrapped in two million, five hundred thousand tons of spinning metal, all alone in the night. ”  But this Babylon station did more than hold space for sentient beings to talk:   it held hope, against the darkness.

That Earth year 2258, the second year of operation of the station, saw the arrival of two new faces. One was the Lieutenant Commander Ivanova of whom you will hear much more later, as head of my order. The other was the second resident telepath, sent to replace the first telepath in residence on the station, on orders of your PsyCorps.  The name of this new telepath was Talia Winters.  Both new members of the station crew were forced to learn the ways of the station, and of one another, quite quickly. 

It did not help that Ambassador G’kar was still not very enlightened.

But, then, neither was Ambassador Mollari.

Satai Delenn, in her role as the ambassador from Minbar, tried to mediate negotiations in the aftermath of the Narn surprise attack on a small Centauri agricultural colony, and then to help both sides see through their anger.  But each of them, far from being ready to see reason, was holding on to a dream of death, rather than a dream of peace.

Both of them would learn that twenty years may not be as long as it seems.

Commander Sinclair, already beginning to grow toward his true self, reminded Mollari that the station existed to build peace, even as both sides, Narn and Centauri, nursed visions of war.

Kosh the Good, assigned to act as the Vorlon ambassador to Babylon 5, gave the commander some guidance which he needed, but could not yet understand, to deal with the warring factions.

Commander Sinclair, Lieutenant Commander Ivanova, and Mr. Garibaldi, while working to unravel a seemingly unrelated problem with raiders, began to get to know the new resident telepath, Talia Winters, as a person, rather than just a telepath. While contemplating that raider problem, they also each contemplated their own votes in a planet-wide Earth presidential election which would have tragic consequences not much later.

They each began to build, sometimes reluctantly, new relationships, sometimes upon tenuous  foundations.  Those relationships would later rise or fall, with deep consequences for all of us, reverberating from that day to this one.

During this incident, we see how any sentient being, Centauri and Human in this particular case, can be tempted to misuse a subordinate, when placed in a position of power, even if that misuse came with the best of intentions.

Finally, through this incident, we also see how important it can be to both know and to understand what motivates another sentient being’s actions.

The spark was the invasion of Ragesh III by the Narns, which lit the flame of that smoldering anger, and burst into the conflagration of hatred, started a century before by the Centauri.  While the Narn habit of selling weapons turned out to be their undoing, in this case, the flame that was ignited began a much larger fire, which nearly consumed us all.  And all because of politics.

Those raiders turned out to be partially in the employ of Ambassador G’kar, having purchased the weapons they were using to wreak death and destruction near the station.  In selling those weapons, the Narns also gained a base from which to monitor communications between Ragesh III and the colony’s defenders. 

Ambassador Delenn pointed out, rightly, that this cycle of hatred could only result in an endless set of attacks that would eventually destroy both peoples.  Ambassador G’kar, however, sadly maneuvered the station’s Advisory Council into accepting the politically convenient response of a Centauri government seemingly tired of war.  Both at an individual or personal level, and at the wider community level, politics, it seems, have always been another common curse shared among sentient races.

From the city of  Tuzanor, on Minbar

Earth year 2278,

Anla’Shok Mayann

That was part 3 of Ranger Mayann’s letter: her third report on the history of the Babylon Project,  can be seen from another point of view by watching the Babylon 5 Season 1, Episode 1:  Midnight on the Firing Line, which I highly recommend.

Ranger Mayann’s second report can be read here.

-Shira

Action Items:

1.) Share your thoughts on cycles of destruction, if you will.

2.) Share your first imaginings about how to end such cycles, if you like.

3.) Share your thoughts on how we Human Beings might start to build a more fully inclusive society for all of us , and something like Babylon 5 could help

4.) Write a story, post or tweet that uses these thoughts.

Dear Readers, ideas on learning, especially multiple #LanguageLearning, on-going education and empathy-building, to #EndPoverty, #EndHomelessness,  #EndMoneyBail & achieve freedom for All HumanKind?

Support our key #PublicDomainInfrastructure  & #StopSmoking for CCOVID-19:
1. #PublicLibraries,
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare, and
4. good #publictransport
Read, Write -one can add Stayed on Freedom’s Call via this GoodReads button:

Nih sakh sh’lekk, sleem wa.

ShiraDest

February, 2021 CE = February 12021 HE

(The previous lesson 67/67 , and the most recent lesson 1/67…)

Stayed on Freedom’s Call
(free: https://archive.org/details/StayedOnF…)
includes two ‘imagination-rich’ walking tours, with songs, of Washington, DC. New interviews and research are woven into stories of old struggles shared by both the Jewish and African-American communities in the capital city.

Shared histories are explored from a new perspective of cultural parallels and parallel institution-building which brought the two communities together culturally and historically.

Free copies are available at https://archive.org/details/StayedOnF…

Creative Commons License
Shira Destinie Jones by ShiraDest is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

B5 pilot The Gathering

Minbari Mondays, The Gathering, and the 1st Year of the 5th Station

This is the continuation of our fictional letter (reviewing each film and episode of Babylon 5) that I receive each week from Ranger Mayann.

Here is her second report:

Nih sakh sh’lekk, sleem wa, Greetings from Tuzanor:

I said that I would explain two of our ancient institutions:  the Minbari caste system, and the Anla’Shok, or the order that you Humans call the Rangers,  in my next report.  You will now need to know something about the Warrior Caste, which you will see mentioned in the incident I  describe in this report.  So I will begin by telling you what you need to know about them, now that you need this information.

We Minbari have three castes: Warrior, Worker, and Religious.  Each of these castes has a different function, in our society, and dresses accordingly.

That is what you need to know, at this time, about the Minbari Caste system.  As for the Rangers, all you need know at this moment is that we carry messages in the darkest and most difficult of places, where no others will go.  You, on Earth, are in a difficult place, right now, and so I bring these messages to you, in the hope of adding to the light.

And now, for the incident in question, the reason for this, my second report.

During the first year of operation of the fabled space station Babylon 5, The One who was known as Commander Sinclair, was at the head of this, the last of The Babylon stations.  He had under his command a Lieutenant Commander named  Takashima, a young woman who had worked hard after she learned the value of order and discipline, to come to serve under Commander Sinclair when it went online.  That was during your Earth year 2257.

This report centers around an incident related to justice, but not only to the sort of judicial process of rendering justice, about which you will hear in the report.  My hope is that you will see what lies at the heart of the incident, and take this meaning to heart.

This, my second report, will describe what may have been the most important incident to occur during the first year of operation of the Babylon project, aboard your Earthforce station Babylon 5.  The incident brings together some old faces, and some new names.

Then Ambassador Mollari reported that he was there at the Dawn of your third age, in this first year of operation of your Earthforce station in 2257.  This last Babylon station was located in neutral space for travelers, diplomats, and business negotiators.  He called it a “dream given form” despite being a dangerous place where all accepted the risk, because it was our galaxy’s last, best hope for peace.    That dream of a galaxy without war, given the form of this space station, is the dream of many visionaries.   This last Babylon station was the only station to have operated during our time.  We will speak of another Babylon station which operates in a different time period later, when you need to know about it.

Leaving aside certain shocking cross species dating problems, there was also a problem involving technology, smuggling, and telepaths.  Commander Sinclair was required to meet the new resident telepath sent by what will,  for a time, be called your PsyCorps, and he had the first opportunity to show his metal on the station. He acquitted himself well, while Lieutenant Commander Takashima dealt with Ambassador G’kar who was, at that time, not yet very enlightened.

This incident revolves around the arrival of Ambassador Kosh, the final ambassador to arrive as part of Babylon 5’s Advisory Council which is like your current United Nations Security Council.  The commander, in his sympathy for a new arrival to the station, even took the time to explain to the telepath, Lyta Alexander, that this particular station is called Babylon “5” because the previous four Babylon stations each, apparently, met a bad end.  When asked by Satai Delenn, acting as the Minbari ambassador to the station, why you Humans insisted on rebuilding each lost station, he answered with the words of your Earth poet Tennyson, saying that:

“To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield,” are the point of human endeavor.

At that point no Human, and very few others, had ever seen a Vorlon.  Little was known about the Vorlons, even by us, the oldest of the space-faring races.  Our Satai Delenn, serving as ambassador on the Babylon 5 Advisory Council, did know more, however, and helped Commander Sinclair both with a nugget of self understanding, as well as with a file, containing information about the Vorlons. Unfortunately, in the sad events that followed this donation of information, our government didn’t act as well as Satai Delenn did in that moment.  While she was forced, in the course of these events, to teach G’kar a bit more respect, she disregarded his attempts to persuade the new telepath to donate genetic material to the Narns.  Satai Delenn, restricted by her role as ambassador, was unable to reign in many of G’kar’s unhealthy activities. In the later events, your resident telepath, Lyta Alexander, was misled, and manipulated, partly through the ongoing and shameful actions of G’kar in this matter.  Nevertheless, “the Universe knows what it is doing.”

As Ambassador Kosh lay between life and death, Ambassador G’kar acted as prosecution in the trial of Commander Sinclair.   He also managed to manipulate the Centauri vote on the jury as we Minbari stood by and watched.  To our deep shame.

As our Minbari Federation abstained, on the grounds that Ambassador, rather than Satai Delenn, was there strictly to observe Commander Sinclair, a great wrong was accomplished.  That wrong took years to correct.

This incident shows us how very much growing room each of the ambassadors had at that time.  And you will see later how much they did indeed grow, each of them.  As did Commander Sinclair.

In this incident, Commander Sinclair also learned something crucial that we Minbari had already known: the commander was missing memories because we left a hole in his mind.  By way of partial compensation however, Delenn did provide Commander Sinclair with a full record of our Warrior who caused this particular incident. Not quite restitution, but a beginning, since Satai Delenn would never tell her old friend Commander Sinclair anything that was not in his best interest…

From the city of  Tuzanor, on Minbar

Earth year 2278,

Anla’Shok Mayann

That was part 2 of Ranger Mayann’s letter: her second report on the history of the Babylon Project,  can be seen from another point of view by watching the Babylon 5 pilot  The Gathering, which I highly recommend.

Ranger Mayann’s first report can be read here.

-Shira

Action Items:

1.) Share your thoughts on the Minbari caste system, if you will.

2.) Share your first imaginings about the Rangers, if you like.

3.) Share your thoughts on how we Human Beings might start to build a more fully inclusive society for all of us , and whether we would need the Rangers after that

4.) Write a story, post or tweet that uses these thoughts.

Dear Readers, ideas on learning, especially multiple #LanguageLearning, on-going education and empathy-building, to #EndPoverty, #EndHomelessness,  #EndMoneyBail & achieve freedom for All HumanKind?

Support our key #PublicDomainInfrastructure  & #StopSmoking for CCOVID-19:
1. #PublicLibraries,
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare, and
4. good #publictransport
Read, Write -one can add Stayed on Freedom’s Call via this GoodReads button:

Nih sakh sh’lekk, sleem wa.

ShiraDest

February, 2021 CE = February 12021 HE

(The previous lesson 67/67 , and the most recent lesson 1/67…)

Stayed on Freedom’s Call
(free: https://archive.org/details/StayedOnF…)
includes two ‘imagination-rich’ walking tours, with songs, of Washington, DC. New interviews and research are woven into stories of old struggles shared by both the Jewish and African-American communities in the capital city.

Shared histories are explored from a new perspective of cultural parallels and parallel institution-building which brought the two communities together culturally and historically.

Free copies are available at https://archive.org/details/StayedOnF…

Creative Commons License
Shira Destinie Jones by ShiraDest is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.