The Green Blues Show
In this edition of the Green Blues Show: No Way to Treat a Child — holding Israel accountable for its abuse of Palestinian children. The second half of our last edition’s chat with ecological economist William Rees, and one of North America’s most energy efficient buildings, in the epicenter of North America, Winnipeg.
Listen to Edition 13 of the Green Blues Show. Click on this SoundCloud Link.
Imagine for a moment there’s an attack on a major city in the US or Europe. The attackers come from a Muslim country or region, or their names sound like they do. How do you suppose government officials and the media will react? They’ll call it a terrorist attack, write articles and make speeches about radical Islam, right?
Now, imagine that same attack, but the attacker is a white American or European with a Western-sounding name. How will officials and the media react to that? Most likely they’ll publicly wonder what the motive was, talk to his family and friends, try to find out if he was recently fired, or had some other grievance against his employer or community. There will be talk about mental health and slipping through the cracks and the importance of early intervention.
These are only hypotheticals, though. How well do they match real life? In July 2011, a white Norwegian murdered 77 people to make his fellow Norwegians aware, as he explained, of the existential threat posed by Muslims and multiculturalism. Commentators were quick to explain the inexplicable, but typically avoided the terms terrorism or terrorist attack.
When Stephen Paddock, a white American, slaughtered hundreds of country music fans at an outdoor event in Las Vegas in October 2017, commentators struggled to come up with a motive. Same thing when Devin Patrick Kelley shot up the entire congregation of a small rural church in Texas.
Contrast this with the coverage of the shooting attack on a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, that killed 50 people in June 2016, and the two attacks last year in New York City, both classified as terrorist attacks after being traced to ISIS.
It does seem as if political motives only spell terrorism if there are connections to ISIS or if the perpetrator is an immigrant. Next time there’s a mass deadly attack (as there shall be, sad to say), pay close attention to how the official label assigned to it correlates to motives and ethnicity.
Following up on our last edition’s sequence of voices from the Palestinian village of Nabi Saleh, here’s a conversation with Brad Parker, advocacy officer with Defense for Children International Palestine. Ill treatment of children in the Israeli military detention system is “widespread, systematic and institutionalized,” Parker says.
Climate change is on everyone’s lips. The big sleeper of a catastrophe — the subject of much public discussion and media attention, but that hasn’t stimulated national leaders to take much action – is the great planetary extinction event experts say we’re in the midst of.
The latest harbinger of the crisis: plummeting insect and bird populations. I spoke about this with William Rees, Professor Emeritus of the University of British Columbia’s School of Community and Regional Planning, and the originator and co-developer of ecological footprint analysis.
Thinking about tackling climate change, reducing our emission of greenhouse gases, being smarter in our energy use, think about buildings, big and small, in cities and towns across your country.
According to Architecture2030, buildings consume almost half of the energy produced in the US, and almost 75% of its electricity. Here and there, architects, engineers and building owners are putting their noses to the emission reduction grindstone.
In Winnipeg, Canada, the province’s energy utility is headquartered in one of the continent’s most energy efficient towers in the world. Here’s a story about that.
In this edition of the Green Blues Show, music from Lonnie Johnson, Billy Boy Arnold and Big Bill Broonzy.