An eventful week this was... elsewhere. Here, we've been having a sleepy little week with a bunch of indecisive clouds that hover around wanting to drop us some rain, but somehow can't seem to find a suitable landing place for their watery cargo.
The dominant news of the week is, of course, the presidential election in Iran... What do you know? Most of the news anchors are actually pronouncing the country's name right (short E-raan rather than Ai-raan). The weird thing, though, is that many of these same anchors are still going on mis-pronouncing Iraq (they say Ai-raak rather than the correct short E-raak)... And we've been stuck there since 2003... What's with that, ay?
Anyhow... There doesn't seem to be a large community of Iranians here in downtown. No demonstration so far (I think a group did show up to demonstrate a little by the Schwarz Federal Courthouse earlier in the week, but there hasn't been anything since). I'm quite impressed with the coolheadedness of Barack Obama... And I'm utterly exasperated by the republican talking heads and politicians who came out calling for a hard-line response to the Iranian government since the day after the election. These big-mouthed neo-con republicans didn't even have the decency (and brain) to wait a few days to allow time to process information properly before drawing their typically invalid conclusions.
This is most ridiculous considering all the lessons they should have learned just by reading the foreign news in the last year. Remember how Thailand had 2 major demonstrations that stemmed from discontent over their election results just last year and how that turned out to be an internal political war between their own intelligentsia class in the cities and the poorer folks in the countryside? Remember just how exactly we got duped into invading Iraq even though it didn't have anything to do with 9/11 and didn't have any stockpile of WMD? It doesn't pay to jump into other people's business before you've found out what the deal really is. If a riot had broken out in New York City after an election here, would we Americans have been happy to hear the Iranian leader mouthing off about it or offering to 'help'? or even a Brit PM? Of course not! We'd all likely just tell them to, you know, go be fruitful and multiply themselves (joke shamelessly stolen from Michael Shermer)! This battle is for the Iranians to win or lose. Not us.
So... a kudos to you, Mr. Obama... You suck when it comes to protecting basic rights for gay Americans, but on this foreign relation front, you're the man!
And just where the heck are the leaders of the Green Party and the Libertarians? We need a third party here! I'm too disgusted with the fanatic right-winger republicans and I don't want the democrats to have a monopoly. If you slow slugs don't step up to offer a valid and reasoned check to keep the democrats honest now, when the heck will another chance like this come up for you?
Anyway.... people are getting hurt in Tehran at the moment. Hang tough, Iranians. If any folks have the resilience necessary to deal with the current tumult, though, I'll bet on you Persians... You've been around for ages.
(The replica plaque of Cyrus' proclamation above is located in front of the House of Iran in Balboa Park, San Diego, CA, USA)