Mickey Malta

Notes from the zone where 'normal' things don't happen very often

Posts Tagged ‘Abortion

Arabs with shoes on

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National sport: a Rocker looking down on an Arab from his high horse

I really think that it’s ironic how Rockers tend to look down from their high horse on the Arab and Muslim world. Many Rockers regard both Arabs and Muslims as a bunch of people stuck in a time warp thousands of years away from  us. And they are right.

Now, for the record, I’m being generous here. Some Rockers can’t fathom the reality that there are many different cultures within the Arab world: that it’s not just one big country called Arabia. Worse still, many more don’t even regard them as humans at all.

The irony is that they fail to see the reality that our European cousins look at us in the same way we look at the Muslim/Arab world. The absence of divorce and our Quaker approach to abortion project a Neanderthal image in our cousins’ eyes. So the moral of the story is: before you start berating your cousins down south, keep in mind that we are to our cousins up north what the Muslims/Arabs are to us. An English friend of mine defines the Rockers as “Arabs with shoes on.”

These last few days I couldn’t help myself pointing out to those who were shocked and expressing their dismay at the Dubai incident that that this is a classical case of the pot calling the kettle black. It’s true that this incident an extreme case, but let’s not forget that the absence of civil rights and liberties here is equally shocking to countries that are more secular – and by consequence – more advanced: both economically and intellectually.

The common denominator between the two realities (us and them Arabs) is . . . . . surprise, surprise: Religion. I’m not going to go into how religions keep people backwards. I think that I made my case during lent, l and I don’t want to sound like a broken record.

Ironically, many Rockers jump at every opportunity to tell the Arabs how backwards they are whenever they interact with them. Yet, at the same time, these same people get all worked up and defensive whenever they are – rightly so – told that this Rock is still stuck in the 17th century. They retaliate by invoking foreign interference and by telling the foreigners to mind their own business.

I guess that some people are in a dire need of a reality check.


Written by mickeymalta

07/04/2010 at 16:46

Just give us concrete proposals . . . . not fluffy titles

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I'm progressive . . . . even my t-shirt says it

Joseph Muscat is constantly harping about this new movement for progressives and moderates, but to me it seems to be millions of light years away what is considered as being normal in the developed world.

A cursory look at the co-pilot is enough. Anglu Farrugia is the embodiment of anything that is diametrically opposed to progressive AND moderate. He’s an ex long serving cop (can cops ever strike anyone as being moderate or progressive?) and, worse still, he was on the forefront in the Force during the dreadful Mintoff / KMB years. And how can we forget his shenanigans immediately after the electoral was announced in the last election? His reaction was puerile for want of a better word.

The same applies to Alex Sceberras Trigona. His long flirtations with totalitarian regimes in the dreadful ’80s don’t exactly make him an eligible candidate for Mr Progressive or the Nobel Prize for Moderate people.

So if he really wants to gain credibility, Muscat has no other option but to produce a Jason Micallef sequel and replace Farrugia with a decent and truly moderate chap like Gavin Gulia. Ditto for  Sceberras Trigona who has to be replaced by someone who is truly moderate and has no skeletons in the closet.

But the buck doesn’t stop there. That’s just the beginning. Political parties and movements are all about policy. I is the movement’s policy that dictates whether it is truly progressive, not slogans  and self flattery.  Unless Joe Muscat comes up with concrete proposals to be implemented when in government, then this movement is as virtual as my avatar in Second Life.

If Muscat really wants to lead the progressives to the promised land, it is fair to expect that the electoral manifesto in a few years’ time would include the following proposals:

  • the introduction of divorce (a concrete proposal instead of his current gimmick )
  • a legislation in favour of same gender marriages – the formation of a LGBT group is not enough to eradicate discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation; it’s yet another empyu gimmick
  • the total abolition of censorship on any form of art
  • the total abolition of archaic laws regulating political and religious satire, and carnival attire
  • a legislation that regulates prostitution so as to protect the prostitutes from their pimps, and their clients from an increased risk of STDs
  • the total removal of censorship on media on the basis that whoever wants to broadcast  and/or distribute pornographic material can do so through dedicated channels with the necessary parental control and anti-paedophile procedures in place
  • a law that allows private establishments to apply for special licenses that will make it possible for them to operate as strip clubs – at the moment we have a typical Rocker watered down version of these clubs and it is absolutely ridiculous
  • the decriminalisation of possession of soft drugs for personal use
  • a law that allows for abortion to take place in the following cases: rape; where there is strong scientific evidence that the baby will be born in a vegetative state; where complications caused by the pregnancy endanger the mother’s life
  • the removal of any restrictions on shop opening hours; if the owner of the grocer shop  down the road wants to operate his business on a 24 x 7 basis, then he should be allowed to do so

By the standards of our European cousins, most of the above points are not progressive at all. If anything, they’re moderately progressive. They’re akin to our big achievement of freedom of speech in 1987 when the whole of the developed world had been enjoying this right for decades.

I can write reams about each and every point mentioned above to explain and justify how it is high time to give the inhabitants of this rock a push towards normality. The claim that EU membership is not a la carte should not only be applied to economic principles. There’s a social dimension to it, as it has a direct impact on the way we lead our lives.

It is so easy to come up with slogans and to give yourself fancy titles. I can call myself superman, but that won’t give me the faculty to fly at the speed of light. The essence lies in actions not words.

Written by mickeymalta

23/02/2010 at 14:22

I’m against “No to Abortion”. Does that make me a pro-abortionist then?

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Abortion is an ethical issue that is, most of the time, hijacked by hysterical guerrillas

Abortion is an ethical issue that is, most of the time, hijacked by hysterical guerrillas

Someone drew my attention about a Facebook group called “No to Abortion”. However, before I go any further, I want to put the record straight: I acknowledge that every single person is entitled to an opinion, and I respect that these opinions may be different to mine.

What I don’t understand, however, is people joining pointless groups with no common purpose or objective.

What does “no to abortion” mean? I thought that the group description will give some details about the reason why it was created, and what message it wants to convey. Essentially, the group description should tell us what this group stands for so that we will subscribe to it if we agree, and ignore it if we disagree.

To my jaw-dropping surprise, the description was dry. Desert sand dry. It reads: “Abortion is killing, it is evil. Why are some so proud to support the killing of the innocent?

Are you any wiser about this group’s raison d’etre? I may be super thick, and if so, please do help me understand. Please explain to me why I should join this group, and what message am I delivering by joining.

I have a compulsive revulsion towards sweeping and blanket statements. Tragically, this ‘description’ joins the two. That makes me want to smoke 5KGs of marijuana and drink 3 bottles of wine maybe – just maybe – I’ll be able to control my palpitations.

Let’s start by dissecting the statement: “Abortion is killing, it is evil.” Killing? Wouldn’t ‘murder’ be more appropriate, maybe? And who are we to judge people’s actions? For if they do an evil action voluntarily, they must have evil intentions, right? Wouldn’t that make the person (who does the evil act) an evil person? Essentially, what this group seems to be saying is that every single person who has an abortion is killing someone or something, and therefore is performing an evil action. So what’s the difference between murder and killing you may ask? Killing implies the termination of life; but this may include insects, plants, animals . . . . and humans. I kill hundreds of insects a month. Am I evil, then? Does that make me an abortionist? On the other hand, murder is the killing of . . . . humans – of whom I killed none.

Now for the second statement: “Why are some so proud to support the killing of the innocent?” Who are these ‘some’ and where are they? Is anyone putting any pressure on the authorities to introduce abortion? Is there anyone out there wearing “proud to be pro-abortion” t-shirts and badges? Or is this ANOTHER case of who doesn’t support our crusade is an infidel? Min mhux maghna, kontra taghna.

For the gran finale we are rewarded with the scream “STOP IT NOW”. Now it’s my turn to scream AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Was that loud enough? Who is this group asking to ‘stop it’? Is it addressed to all the countries that allow abortion? Is it addressed to the inhabitants of this rock? Who exactly needs to stop what? If you’re issuing instructions, next time please make sure that you’re crystal clear. Keep It Simple, Stupid.

Needless to say, this ‘message’ must rank high in the top 1,000 logical fallacies of all times. It puts all those women who performed an abortion in the same category. Let me give a parallel example, and you will be able to appreciate how ridiculous this group is. Since “abortion is murder”, I will just switch the two words: abortion and murder.

If I set up a group called “No to Murder”, I am sure that thousands of people will join. However, if I will ask each and every individual and challenge them about their beliefs on the subject, I can assure you that there will be a number of “maybes” and “nays”. For instance: what about killing someone else to defend yourself? Is this kind of murder ‘evil’? Is it an evil act performed by an evil person? Even the criminal codes in many countries make a distinction between voluntary murder, self defence, and crime of passion.

Therefore if we change once again the terms “abortion” and “murder”, and look at cases where a woman’s pregnancy is detrimental to her health, are we sure that abortion in this case will be evil? In any case, without medical intervention, someone is going to die. It’s either the baby, the mother, or both.

What about abortions in cases of absolute certainty that the baby will suffer from extensive brain damage? By severe brain damage, I mean lack of awareness and consciousness. It’s what is commonly referred to as ‘being in a vegetative state’. Is this evil? Wouldn’t it be better to help both the family (yes, when this person grows up to become a child and later an adult, the burden on the family is huge and yet the person is still totally unaware of the life s/he is living) and the child in this case? Isn’t this the same as switching off life support machines for grown-ups?

What about rape? Honestly speaking, I don’t feel qualified to talk about this as I’m not a woman. I am aware that as a man, I am not sensitive enough (and I can never be) to the effects – or even the mere threat – of rape. As a man, my mindset is completely different, and I can never understand how a woman who’s been impregnated by her rapist feels. So how can I pontificate about this matter?

Before we get all emotional about abortion, I think that there needs to be a natural evolution of ideas. Abortion is a very complicated issue, both moral and legal, as it brings together many different topics in ethics: from bioethics to moral ethics; from scientific data to religious beliefs.

We didn’t even ever have an academic discussion about this. If such a delicate discussion is not influenced by academic debate, we can and will never be able to hold have a balanced and informed debate.

The strange thing is that Gift of Life gave birth to the discussion about abortion. Before their hysterical antics, no one discussed the topic as it was regarded as a non issue. Now they have started the ball rolling, and their guerrilla tactics are scaring academics (not that locally it’s difficult to scare them) to take part in this delicate debate. There is a massive lack of awareness about the subject, and many people still equate abortion with the butchering of foetuses. Very few people seem to be aware of pills and medicine that induce miscarriage in the first months, for example.

The abortion issue here is akin to a genetic engineering experiment gone horribly wrong, and the unnecessary hysteria is stifling an interesting, intelligent debate.

Written by mickeymalta

15/04/2009 at 19:47