Independence and Freedom

안녕하세요, family and friends. Today, let’s educate ourselves on the happenings in the world. Do we have Independence and Freedom? To some extent, I guess? We have the freedom to learn.

Three weeks ago, on the 12th of June, Philippines’ celebrated their national Independence Day. Two weeks ago, on the 9th of June, the US celebrated their national Freedom Day or Juneteenth. Less than a week ago, the Yemen government and the separatist announced a cease fire. Yet, the pandemic is still affecting people and taking lives. The Arctic is on fire because of the Russian oil spill a couple of weeks ago. The war in Afghanistan is still on-going. So many people are displaced, in poverty, malnourished, injured, ill or dying around the world.

There is so much chaos right now and it’s difficult to know which way to turn. What do we prioritise? Who should we help? How can we help?

The Answer?

GOD.

EVERYONE

PRAYER

-AJ

This should be our first line of defence, in regards to everything. Our actions are useless if we don’t ask the Lord for his blessings. Our actions may not even be for the best without consulting with God first.

I can already hear what other people will say about this post, “But what can a little prayer do?

A short prayer before we continue on with donating, signing petitions, protesting, watching and reading information to educate ourselves… a short prayer or a pause before every action we take can go a long way.

A prayer could help an idea materialise. It may not happen the minute you ask for it, or in an hour, a day, a week, a month or years after. But a prayer with the right course of action is what can lead us from the middle of a warzone to a ceasefire.

So, in light of what I have shared with you, I want to first invite you to pray this short prayer with me, before we continue on.


Lord God, thank you for the blessings you have bestowed upon me today. Please guide me and watch over me, as well as everyone who is affected by the chaos of this world. O Lord, we need your help. Lead us to your kingdom and protect us from the wickedness of this world. Amen.



Anti-Terror Bill...

The Philippines is currently waiting for what would happen with the Anti-Terror Bill which have already passed through Congress. We are only waiting for the President’s vote now. Thus, all we can do is learn more on what it is and have faith in God. As it is said in the Bible:

It is good to trust in the Lord, rather than to trust in man. It is good to hope in the Lord, rather than to hope in leaders.

Psalm 117:8‭-‬9 CPDV https://bible.com/bible/42/psa.117.8-9.CPDV
Above is a PDF of the Bill as it was passed through Congress. It is the bill introduced by the ACT-CIS Partylist (Anti-Crime and Terrorism Community). By reading this 54-page PDF you can make your own conclusions out of what this bill can do to the Philippines and its people.

Other links you can check out to learn more about this bill, the implications it can have to the Filipino people and different views on the issue:

  • This Week in Asia – “The Philippines needs Duterte’s anti-terror bill, but addressing roots of extremism means going beyond its text
  • Aljazeera – “The Philippines’ anti-terror bill is poised to cause more terror
  • Writingsbyjm – “Speaking Up: Help Us Junk The Terror Bill!
  • ABS-CBN News – “Fear of abuse ‘not valid reason’ to junk terror bill: Lucy Torres-Gomez
  • The Asean Post – “Why The Philippines Needs An Anti-Terror Bill

Juneteenth… BLM…

This month was an important month to the Black Lives Matter Movement. Juneteenth commemorates the end of slavery in the United States. Although, very little is known or taught about this monumental holiday, it is vital. So, let us educate ourselves because all sides of history matter. How are we going to make a better place if we don’t know our history?

Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it

George Santayana

Here are links that can start our journey to history:

  • What matters, special guest, Bubba Wallace - For immediate release, statement by Kailee Scales, Managing Director of BLM Global Network
  • Menu from the Black Lives Matter movement, What Matters, Resources, Chapters, Donate - News, About
  • BLM's #WhatMatters2020 video, Black Lives Matter Boston #SayHerName March on July 4
  • CNET.com – “A month after George Floyd’s death, 8 ways to support Black Lives Matter today
  • Britannica.com – “Juneteenth, also called Emancipation Day, or Juneteenth Independence Day, holiday commemorating the end of slavery in the United States, observed annually on June 19.

Yemen Crisis…

An agreement of ceasefire last week has been made but this doesn’t end the crisis that Yemen is currently under. The largest humanitarian crisis in the world, according to UNICEF.

UNICEF

So, what actions can we take?

Donate through Rescue.org
  • UNICEF Campaign – “to save children’s lives, to help them cope with the impact of conflict, and to help them to recover and resume their childhoods”
  • YEMEN CRISIS – carrdfilled with links to know more, to donate, to sign petitions, fundraisers and other ways to help.

COVID-19…

This pandemic has been going around for at least three months and the number of deaths and the number of those affected are still rising.

I’m sure everyone is aware of what Coronavirus is. However, if you feel that your knowledge on it is still lacking, here are some links that could help:


Russian Oil Spill… Arctic on Fire…

This is one environmental issue that has happened within the month, but has not been addressed properly. It hasn’t even made much difference in the media, and not a lot of people are talking about it. So, here are some links to raise awareness.

  • The Moscow TimesActivist Allege Cover-Up as Toxic Siberian Fuel Spill Reaches Arctic Ocean
  • Bellona.org NewsOil Spill in Russian Arctic had many causes, environmentalists say
  • New York TimesMajor Fuel Spill in Russia’s North Spreads Toward Arctic Ocean

Do not pollute the land of your habitation, so as to stain it with the blood of the innocent; neither is it able to be expiated in any way other than by the blood of him who has shed the blood of another.

Numbers 35:33 CPDV – https://bible.com/bible/42/num.35.33.CPDV

Afghanistan war…

This has been going on for more than eighteen years. This war has brought about humanitarian crises much like in Yemen. I believe it’s something that we should also be aware of because it is not being covered as much now, in the media, unlike before.

Do not allow evil to prevail, instead prevail over evil by means of goodness.

Romans 12:21 CPDV – https://bible.com/bible/42/rom.12.21.CPDV

So here are links to raise awareness and help those caught in the middle of it all:

  • BBC News Why is there a war in Afghanistan? The short, medium and long story
  • CFR.orgGlobal Conflict Tracker, Afghanistan
  • UNICEFTake Action, Afghanistan
  • Islamic Relief USA – “to make the vision of better Afghanistan a reality for so many more of our sisters and brothers in need.”
Donate via SaveTheChildren.org

To conclude, I know that I have bombarded you all with a lot of information today. I’m sorry if this post may have overwhelmed you. It’s not something that I’m forcing anyone to know about or partake in. Nevertheless, I wanted to share all of these for people who do want to learn more about the world we live in, and the kind of issues that exists in it.

This may not be the whole story of Earth but it is a important chunk of it. I hope that I was able to raise awareness and encourage a lot of you to learn more about the issues that I’ve discussed. If you think there are some more stories around the world that I should know, let me know in the comments section.

Reference:
Featured Image
-Photo of Russian Oil Spill
-Photo of Anti Terrorism Bill
-Juneteenth Photo
-Coronavirus Photo
-Yemen Crisis Photo

What do you think? Let me know in the comments below.

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