The Shoat Statements

Random musings by the multiple voices inside my head.

At long last, Anton Balasingham is dead. And I can't say that I'm sorry about it. Moderate Tiger he may have been, but a Tiger nevertheless. He caused enough damage to Sri Lanka while living in luxury in London. I fail to understand how these so-called (sole)representatives of the Tamil people live in the lap of luxury, while extorting money from and restricting food supplies to the very people they claim to represent. One must feel a bit sorry for Anton, though. Not a word was mentioned about him in the Sun God's Heroes Day speech. I guess it's true what they say - they don't miss you till you're gone.

And then we come to next point. I heard on news this morning that the SL gov. is donating 5 million rupees to the widow of TNA MP N. Raviraj. Really now. What is this nonsense? Has the gov. suddenly realised that they have excess funds? How many widows of LTTE targets gets even half of that? What baloney is this? Appeasing the peaceniks and NGO-types and those Scandinavian morons is one thing, but this is ludicrous. I wonder if the families of Lakshman Kadiragamar, Parami Kulatunga or any one else who was assasined were so handsomely compensated (yes, we ARE leaving CBK out of it). We're all sorry for Mr. Raviraj's untimely death, but excactly what has he done for Sri Lanka to deserve this? He was just another MP, who stood out from others since for every 168th insult he threw at the SL gov., he chastised the LTTE leadership. Oh yeah, a real hero of Sri Lanka. By this logic, the gov. must've mortgaged the country to compensate Lakshman Kadiragamar's family.

This is why the present SL gov. is unable to move forward with bringing an end to this LTTE problem. They are so hell bent on appeasing every Tom, Dick and Erik that they probably can't find the time to do more important things. Just take a look at the APC. Same MO. The JVP will pull out then the JHU will follow, and then they'll have to change the committee name, which will cease to be 'all party' anymore. Then maybe we'll have another election. We haven't had one of those for a while, and Ranil may relish the chance to lower the UNP rankings even further.

You can't please everyone. Why is the gov. not able to leave emotions, PR and the next election at the door, and try and think?

This is written partly in response to what one (and my only) reader had commented on re: the AFI listing & Hollywood, and partly as a reaction to what seems to be a common sentiment.

What is a hero? Is a hero really just someone who fights against evil or an enemy? After all, an enemy is a rather subjective word. Han Solo and Darth Vader both fights against enemies. But Han Solo gains our admiration not for merely fighting against an enemy (an entire army does that). He gains our admiration for his courage, for his character and for what he achieves. Atticus Finch more than anyone else is number one on that list for being a person of character. He is not so much fighting an enemy as much as he is fighting a legion of prejudices. T. E Lawrence? Much the same story. Basically, a hero is someone who is admired for his or her strength, achievements and qualities.

Why is it that people still think that a female heroine should be a soft, maternal figure who comes to the rescue of her family first and foremost? AFI certainly didn’t think so – Clarice Starling, Ellen Ripley, Thelma & Louise - none of them had anything to do with home & hearth. Plus, they were successful heroines in successful movies.
To set the record straight, a good, heroic person is NOT a masculine character. Goodness & heroism are not gender-based or gender-sensitive words. They are words that describe any good creature; be it man, woman or dog. Thus, heroism is not a masculine quality. Women who portray (or indeed, are) heroes need not strive to be ‘more like men’. All they have to do is strive to be a good person.

At the end of the day, people who want to see women only in soft, homely, traditional roles falls into either of two categories – chauvinists or those who are terrified of change, be it good or bad. I mean – what exactly is this tradition or society that wants women to be ‘soft’? If you look into times gone by, women were just as strong as men. From Athena to Artemis to Kali & Durga to Joan-of-Arc, women were strong characters who stood for (so-called) ‘masculine’ ideals. Home & hearth were certainly far from their minds. And yet hundreds of people, men & women alike, followed them.

These traditional roles, ‘motherly’ and ‘soft’ feminine creatures of today are not roles that can be traced back to time immemorial. These are not the only avtaras that women are supposed to take. These are roles that men are comfortable to have women slotted in.
Society doesn’t need to learn to appreciate the motherly familial aspect of women. What it needs to do is to open its eyes and see that women are capable of doing a hell of a lot more than sacrificing all to keep the home-front happy. They can be strong & courageous for reasons wholly unrelated to their families.

And if for all the men out there who wants women to be the soft and familial creature, my words to you:
"Your ignorance is encyclopedic"
(with due respect & apologies to Abba Eban (1915-2002))

I just happened to be surfing the net & came upon the American Film Institute's 50 top heroes & 50 top villains. (The title links you to the original AFI site, which you can check out AFTER you read my musings.)

It makes for a pretty interesting list, and you end up with a good list of films that you should watch in your lifetime. It also makes for some very interesting gender questions.

A mere 7 female heroes (or heroines, if you please), make it to the top 50. It’s heartening to note that 2 are in the top 10. I’m not that good in math, but I think that comes up to a mere 14%. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I do believe that in most countries, women outnumber men. So on average, women make up about 50% – 54% of the population. And only a mere 14% makes it as heroes?

For all those who didn’t know, it’s illegal to only look for men to play certain (most) roles (or even to cast only WASPs). If the movie doesn’t specifically need a male actor, if it isn’t intrinsic to the plotline, the roles are supposed to be open to actors of all genders and ethnicities. So why isn’t it? How came in Hollywood movies, 50% of the world’s population is represented as 14%? Yes, yes, I know that we are only speaking of heroes, but that’s beside the point. This is supposed to be the 50 best heroes, where women are under-represented. Quite a few of these heroes could’ve easily been played by women. For all of Hollywood’s pretensions, I guess it’s basically part of the (gentle??) men-only club.

Now, to the next annoying thing on that list. 14 out of 50 villains are women. What fun. That’s like 28%, right? I guess it’s soooooooooooo much easier to cast a woman as the trampy, vampy, vixenish bitch than a hero. Twice as many women are villainous rather than heroic. Neither comes close to representing the actual population figures, though.

I don’t know which one is worse – less women as heroes, or more women as villains. And those villainous women – most of them are bitchy vixens. Even as villains, why can’t women play a normal bad person, without having to use their sexuality? How many of the villains that are male are on that list because they used their sexuality?

Hollywood is seriously beginning to annoy me.

Let's leave our emotions at the door, and only let the grey matter in.

Now, what's all this about the Holocaust conference hosted by Iran. It's on every news website, magazine, paper and any other political material you can think of. I have numerous issues with this.

a)Denying the holocaust happened is a crime in certain countries. Why? If you look at the question objectively, it goes like: Did the Holocaust happen, where Nazis killed 6 million Jews. The only possible answers are:
1)Yes, and yes : If this is the answer, why is anyone worried? Anyone who's been to Europe, studied world history or is merely better read than your average hermit crab, knows it happened. The respective European governments all have evidence of this. So who cares if people walk around denying it? Just rub their faces in the proof, and they'll shut up and hang their heads in shame. As for the numbers, they must've got 6 million from somewhere. If they (meaning the Western powers-that-be)are sticking by it, surely that's because they have good reason to. Just show the proof, and then everyone will shut up.
2)No, and therefore no : If this is the unlikely and highly improbable case, then all the more reasons why it should be discussed. Why on earth should generations of people be fed untruths?
3)Yes, but not 6 million : This, for me is the most interesting option. We know the Holocaust happened. Have the figures been fudged? If it's (again improbable) an under-estimate, by all means discuss it in public so that we know the real number. Why hide it, right? If it's an over-estimate......weeeeellllll, I wonder why anyone exaggerated the figures? Surely not to excuse the creation of a nation at the cost of another? Whichever it is, public debates are always welcome. In the name of truth and the freedom of speech.

Iran may have it's own agenda, but perhaps it's time we left the melodrama at the door and look at things objectively. If publishing cartoons of Prophet Mohammed falls under free speech (and it definitely does), then so does any discussion regarding the holocaust.

Well, since I'm new to blogging, and this is my first ever blog, I shall keep it short and sweet.

Generally, if anyone other than I end up looking at this, ignore it. It's just a test.

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