The Lilac Pilgrim – Yet Another Blog

Archive for the ‘Political’ Category

United States President Barack Obama got a cute, cuddly young doggy a while ago. If you’ve been tuned into the world lately, you probably already know that. You probably also know then that PeTA, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, recently requested that Obama get Bo (a Portugese water dog) neutered, despite the fact that Bo was already neutered when the family received him.

Now, I have nothing against dogs being neutered. My shelter dog has been neutered. I do, however, have something against PeTA. They always criticise those who generally don’t talk back.

Remember Steve Irwin? Here’s what PeTA’s Dan Mathews had to say about his death:

“He made a career out of antagonising wild animals, which is a very dangerous message to send to kids. […] If you compare him with a responsible conservationist like Jacques Cousteau, he looks like a cheap reality TV star.”

No condolences, no well-wishes to a grieving family. Yes, I also think his death was most likely his own idiotic fault, but that doesn’t make it any less tragic.

And now they’re targeting Canada, widely stereotyped as a benign, peaceful place:

You can help end Canada’s annual war on seals by boycotting a product that is vital to the country’s economy: maple syrup. Canada produces approximately 85 percent of the world’s maple syrup, with the U.S. as its largest consumer, and by buying this Canadian product, you are supporting Canadian cruelty. By pledging to boycott Canadian maple syrup, you’ll be speaking up for baby seals in Canada, for whom life isn’t so sweet, and telling Canada that you won’t support its product until you can support its practices.

Um… You’ll be stopping their fur trade by not buying maple syrup? Something tells me that’s not going to work. It didn’t work the last time they pointed out the “ebilness” of the trade. I don’t like it either, but I’m still going to buy maple syrup.

But that’s not all. Ever noticed that they don’t criticise people like Vladimir Putin? Maybe it’s because he banned seal hunting in his own country, but I’m still amazed that when the Russian Prime Minister received a baby tiger for his birthday last year, they didn’t even bat an eyelid. Okay, he did say that he would have a good home found for her. As evil as many of us believe the guy is, it has to be said that he really loves his animals. But really, after Putin was reported to have shot a tiger (with a tranquiliser dart), possibly as a publicity stunt, I’m surprised they didn’t all grab their laptops and begin writing stupid threatening or demeaning letters to this guy. Not only that, but his country absolutely thrives in the fur trade. Look at all the cute silver foxes they make into adorable fur hats and coats.

And yet PeTA refuse to protest it. Maybe they understand how important the fur trade is to Russia and their bestest pal Putin. Or maybe they’re scared. You decide.

Since no man can possibly write about news AFTER his death (although, there was the rather dubious posthumous Alexander Litvinenko post in the papers not long after HIS death), I can only assume that Mr Nekrasov’s latest post on www.robertamsterdam.com means that the director is indeed alive and well.

In his post, Mr Nekrasov writes about Rebellion: The Litvinenko Case (which opened May 23rd in London… sadly I’m a Scottish student and was unable to attend) and of his beloved Russia.

I like reading Mr Nekrasov’s writing; it is obviously the writing of someone who dies a little inside as his country, his motherland, grows that bit more corrupt. Bear with me as I write this; it sounds like I’m being cruel.

But passionate people are those who make the world that little bit more bearable. Passionate people are those I can relate to and hold close to my heart. I am not passionate about my own country – I am proud of my heritage, of course. The reason I am not passionate about my own country or the United Kingdom in which it is situated is this; we are all corrupt. We have allowed ourselves to become increasingly American, not to mention greedy and ignorant. Religious holidays lose their meaning (of course, who doesn’t like a Christmas dinner where the meaning is “togetherness”?) and kids are more determined to destroy museums rather than appreciate them.

I am embarrassed to live in a country whose football fans cannot control themselves after a loss (you know who I’m talking about), even more so to live in a place in which the intelligent and passionate, the creative minds, are thought of as less than the sportsmen or the idiot with a gun.

I admit I look up to Mr Nekrasov. He deserves recognition for his outspokenness, a bravery which, ultimately, could spell his demise.

All of us who are outspoken could be killed for believing what we believe. From the extreme such as Alexander Litvinenko to the ordinary tragedy such as Sophie Lancaster, the Goth girl who was murdered for simply dressing differently.

The world we live in sucks, but people who stand up for what they believe in nonetheless make it better. (Of course, it tends to depends on what they believe in/are passionate about!)

Read Mr Nekrasov’s latest writing here: http://www.robertamsterdam.com/2008/05/andrei_nekrasov_a_letter_from.htm

I feel quite sad in only learning about this now. I’d hoped to be current in Mr Nekrasov’s activities and yet I seem to lag.

Since I didn’t hear of this, I’m guessing not a lot of people did. Basically, the story is that Andrei Nekrasov, friend of ex-

Andrei Nekrasov
Andrei Nekrasov

Russian defector Alexander Litvinenko and documentor of the latter’s life and death, went to his home in Finland to find the windows broken, books all over the place and the place in an awful mess just one day before a film about Litvinenko by himself and the dead man’s widow was to screen at Cannes. Nekrasov reported the incident, which was dismissed as common vandalism. According to one account, Nekrasov was left rather frightened, in his own words, “a bit scared”, as there may well have been a political motive behind the incident. Why is this? Upon reaching his bedroom, Nekrasov found lying upon the bed a picture of his friend as he was in hospital days before his death.

You never asked, but what’s my view on this? Well, it’s an interesting story.

I was interested greatly in Nekrasov’s movies and his friendship with Alexander Litvinenko. Naturally that led me to research him. There’s not a lot of information on Mr Nekrasov, sadly. However, what we do know about him is that he too is a defector. His movies are politically charged; and some (Lubov And Other Nightmares especially) deemed too racy. So it is completely plausible that those who wrecked his home were looking to kill him, or at least rough him up a bit.

The famous picture left on Nekrasov's bed
Litvinenko in 2006, before his death.
This is the picture that was left in
Mr Nekrasov’s bedroom.

However; it’s just as plausible that some annoying Finnish brats decided to play mind games with the director and wreck his house while they knew he was away. We’ll probably never know. I don’t know about the rest of you, but I certainly hope Mr Nekrasov is safe and well.



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  • HoistTheColours: Dear author, I full-heartedly and absolutely agree with your above statements. I just thought I would let you know, since I don't quite understand w
  • richclark: I covered this in my blog too. Found your post on one of Wordpress' random (associated posts). Has Ask really made the impact it needed to from
  • The Lilac Pilgrim: I couldn't go anywhere without someone mentioning it. It was incredibly obvious and yet people were still arguing about it. Absolutely ridiculous.