The civilization of China may seem eternal, but your chance to see some wonderful works of art produced there over the millennia at Queens College is ephemeral.
There are only two weeks left to view the ceramics, porcelain, stoneware and earthenware that make up the Daghlian Collection, now on display in the college’s Godwin Ternbach Museum. And since the museum is closed when the college is, there are actually only seven days left in which you can see the exhibit.
A group of Orthodox Jews flying El Al to Israel caused an 11-hour nightmare by claiming they couldn’t sit next to women due to their religious beliefs. They demanded the women get out of their seats! Of course, none did due to the fact that this is the 21st century and not everyone believes in fairy tales.
Did these devout gentleman reflect and apologize? Did they sit quietly in their assigned seats and ponder the mysteries of our existence? Perhaps they marveled at the vastness of space? Or do they still believe the sun revolves around the Earth?
No, they stood in the aisles, prayed loudly and made it impossible for others to use the bathrooms. And this behavior pleases their “god” how? Isn’t religion wonderful?
Stella Mateo (wife of the president of the NYS Federation of Taxi Drivers) wants to start a car service linking female drivers with female passengers, due to religious beliefs that require them to avoid ordinary day-to-day interactions with men. Ahhh, religion, continuing to poison everything it touches.
Will Rastafarians be able to start a car service requiring a smoke-filled car to pick them up — for “religious reasons”? Will Mormons demand a female cabby become one of their next wives for “religious reasons”? And why should religions get special consideration? What about a dwarf whose “religion” requires the driver to be a one-legged Amazon with a nose piercing? Can atheists demand a taxi controlled remotely? Society is going backwards.
(BPT) - When serving domestically and overseas, Sailors are away from home, family, familiar settings and traditions. Many use their beliefs and faith to help them understand and manage the unfamiliar surroundings they’re experiencing. Guidance, moral support and worship opportunities are critical services provided by the Navy to help Sailors through the challenges of the job while maintaining relationships with family and fellow military members.
Since 1975, over 300 children have died because medical care was denied due to religious beliefs. In 2008, 11-year-old Madeline Kara Neumann died of undiagnosed diabetes. She grew weak, became too sick to speak, eat, drink or walk. Her parents, Dale and Leilani Neumann, believed visiting a doctor was like worshipping an idol.
As her condition got worse, her grandmother begged them to take her to a doctor. Her grandfather tried to give her Pedialyte, but her mom said that would take the “glory” away from God.
After Kara died, on Easter Sunday her still delusional mom told police that God would raise Kara from the dead. (The parents need psychiatric help — in prison!)
Doctors said Kara might have survived if she had gotten medical care before she stopped breathing. Or if her parents weren’t religious imbeciles!
Young Forest Hills artist and scholar Alexander Inagamov has done it again, winning another art contest — this one sponsored by the Anti-Defamation League.
Alexander, 10, known as Sasha, entered the above work, “Mount Peacemore” in the ADL’s “Imagine a World Without Hate” contest. Sasha envisioned a takeoff on Mount Rushmore featuring various famous martyrs to the causes of peace and equality, all but one of whom were killed either for their beliefs or simply because of who they were.
I am a middle-school social studies teacher writing in response to the letter about immigration and American culture from reader Robert Miler in the Feb. 14 edition (“Immigrants must adapt”). Mr. Miller is certainly entitled to his opinion but simply wrong about the facts that he cites.
Mr. Miller states that multiculturalism dilutes the national sovereignty and national identity of America. He states that immigrants should adapt to “our language” and “our Christian religion” and “our culture.” He admonishes immigrants to “accept the country you chose or go back to your own.”
Mr. Miller’s ill-conceived ideas could come straight out of the anti-immigrant political party of the 1850s called the “Know Nothings.” First of all, he should not assume that every American born here shares his idea of what “our” country is or isn’t. What is more American than a hot dog? Maybe pizza or a taco? All three entered American culture as foods from different immigrant groups but are now enjoyed by millions of Americans of different ancestral backgrounds.
While many nations have official languages, America chose not to, precisely because we are a nation of immigrants. Whether it is an immigrant from Germany in 1840, China in 1880, Italy in 1910 or Korea in 1990, the pattern of language assimilation is remarkably similar. While the first generation may have varying levels of trouble learning English, succeeding generations always do learn.
As far as religion is concerned I would like to remind Mr. Miller that the Pilgrims came to America as a Christian group that was persecuted by other Christian groups. In fact, as Europe suffered from Christian-on-Christian violence, many of those victims came to America to practice their own religion without fear. Religious freedom is so ingrained in our national beliefs that it is enshrined in the First Amendment, which states the U.S. does not and will not have an official religion and people may worship according to their beliefs.
One of the central threads of our shared history is that we are all immigrants. Even native Americans, the original human inhabitants, emigrated from other continents. And all immigrant groups have made contributions to American culture. African Americans, many of whom today are the descendants of unwilling immigrants, have helped make our nation a more vibrant and better society. Each immigrant group adds to American culture and assimilates into American culture and thus retains the cultural heritage of their past and embraces America as their future.
I am a proud resident of Queens, which has the most diverse population in the nation. I teach the history of the United States and of immigration to students at the Joseph Pulitzer Intermediate School. The students are immigrants themselves or the sons and daughters of immigrants. I am the grandson of immigrants. There is no such thing as an illegal person.
Maybe not all Americans share the sentiments of Emma Lazarus, but I know that millions of my fellow Americans will join me in echoing those words engraved into the Statue of Liberty and say welcome to the new immigrants of America:
“Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”
A rabbi from Queens gets nabbed by cops for practicing her belief in plurality and equality abroad. There’s no punch line here. It really did happen.
A prayer session at Israel’s sacred Western Wall ended with a Flushing rabbi and nine other women detained for crossing a literal and religious line, part of an ongoing effort to raise awareness of the inequalities present at Judaism’s most sacred site.
In at least two recent cases, public affairs have clashed with a belief of the ultra-Orthodox Jewish religion, prohibiting followers from attending a public hearing and almost stopping them from voting.
The issue is that entering the sanctuary space of a church is prohibited for them.
SculptureCenter, 44-19 Purves St., Long Island City, presents the group exhibition A Disagreeable Object on Sunday, Sept. 16-Nov. 26. This exhibition brings together a group of international artists who similarly posit the object in relation to capitalist culture and technology, as well as the gendered oppositions between interior and exterior space. Exhibition hours: Thursday-Monday, 11a.m.-6 p.m. There is a $5 suggested donation for entry, $3 for students.
Beginning this weekend pastel-clad Greco-Roman gods and goddesses will descend on — where else? — Athens Square Park, in Astoria, with “The Minervae.”
The play, though comical at times, focuses on the heavy topic of religion. In the dying days of the Roman Empire, Minerva is trying to keep her followers, who are no longer as willing to believe in the gods, while Zebulon questions whether he should believe in the new religion — Christianity — or stick to the gods of the past.
Assemblywoman Grace Meng of Flushing handily defeated three Democratic opponents Tuesday in the 6th Congressional District primary.
The unofficial count was 51 percent for Meng, 28 percent for Assemblyman Rory Lancman of Fresh Meadows, 16 percent for City Councilwoman Liz Crowley of Middle Village and 5 percent for Dr. Robert Mittman of Bayside.
In a four-person Democratic race, Assemblywoman Grace Meng had no trouble winning her party’s nomination Tuesday for the newly created 6th Congressional District seat.
About 50 protesters turned out at noon Friday outside the Bayside office of Congressman Gary Ackerman to peacefully protest the federal mandate requiring employers to provide free contraception, sterilization and abortion-inducing drugs.
They did not yell or scream, nor did they meet with the congressman. Instead, they held up signs to passing motorists and paraded around the sidewalk. “This is just a peaceful procession,” said organizer Ray Mooney of Flushing. “We want people driving by to see what we’re behind.”
With Mitt Romney the first Mormon to run on a party’s ticket for the presidency, the Queens Chronicle spoke with Joanna Brooks, author of “The Book of Mormon Girl: Stories from an American Faith.”
She is also a professor of American literature at San Diego State University, has appeared on National Public Radio and the British Broadcasting Company, and is a source on Mormonism for the New York Times, Reuters and others.
I fail to understand the brouhaha over the candidacy of Mr. Jeff Gottlieb in the Sixth Congressional District, with the claim it is a ploy to deprive candidate Rory Lancman of the “Jewish vote” (“Angry reaction to Gottlieb candidacy,” April 12).
The criteria for one seeking public office is intelligence, honesty and a commitment to seek and support legislation that serves the needs and the interests of all the people and not just the few with political and financial connections. Excluded are a person’s religion and candidates who wear their religion on their sleeves, pander to a specific religious group and violate the constitutional requirement of separation of church and state by seeking legislation that infuses their religious beliefs.
A claim that Jews will only vote for a Jewish candidate is demeaning and an insult to the many Jews who support a candidate based upon his or her merits and not religious persuasion. In his quest for elective office, I wish Mr. Lancman luck but suggest he focus on important issues he will face and not on a dubious and irrelevant question of religion.
As to Mr. Gottlieb, it should be noted in passing, he has spent decades toiling for the Queens Democratic Party without ever being nominated for elective office by the party bosses. The Queens Democratic Party leadership, far from being anywhere within the realm of a democracy — and I say this as a lifelong registered Democrat — is known, together with boss politics in the other boroughs, as the nepotism capital. In heavily entrenched one-party districts, primaries are expensive and rare and the boss’ selection gets the nod. The nod is often the wife or the son of an official retiring or seeking other office. Mr. Gottlieb was never genealogically qualified as a member of the nepotism club.
If he wishes to seek office, as does Mr. Lancman, they should be judged on their merits, not their religion.
In the March 8 Chronicle there was a letter by Christine Lotti, “The Catholic view,” finding fault with an earlier letter by David Fogel (“Church, state, sex,” March 1). In it she objects to his statements that the Catholic Church’s dogma is inflexible and denies that contraception could prevent abortions. She also feels that both points are irrelevant and hackneyed.
First off, when “in God’s name” did the Church ever stop being dogmatic? The Catholic Church is and always has been inflexible in its dogma, seen as hackneyed because the Church has made it hackneyed by forever reminding all of its inflexibility. As for contraceptives lessening abortions; of course they do, by lessening the need to abort for any reason unwanted births.
However, Ms. Lotti is right that “the Obama administration, which has done so much good for so many, must now stand up for freedom of religion and issue an across-the board exemption for the Catholic Church. The president has done exactly that by eliminating any requirement for religious insti
tutions to provide health services contrary to their beliefs. As Mr. Fogel stated, “No Catholic Church, school, hospital or diocese will be affected in any way. The government will not impose its will on such institutions.”
It is important that the government not impose its will on religious institutions — and it is equally important for religious institutions not to impose their beliefs on secular institutions ... so they’ll all live happily ever after.
Determining that allowing religious institutions to rent space in public schools for services does not violate the Constitution’s precept against the establishment of religion, a federal judge on Feb. 24 ordered the city to allow a Bronx church to continuing meeting in a school while a lawsuit over the issue continues.
District Court Judge Loretta Preska issued the order, a preliminary injunction barring the city from banning religious groups from renting schools on weekends, in response to a request from the Bronx Household of Faith, a community church that has been meeting in that borough’s PS 15 since 2002. The issue has been the subject of legal action before various judges since then at least.
Determining that allowing religious institutions to rent space in public schools for services does not violate the Constitution's precept against the establishment of religion, a federal judge on Friday ordered the city to allow a Bronx church to continuing meeting in a school while a lawsuit over the issue continues.
It appears that the Obama administration has a major problem with the concept of freedom of religion. First, it tried to stop a church from firing an employee with ministerial duties. Fortunately, the Supreme Court ruled 9-0 in the case Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church and School v. EEOC that under the First Amendment to the Constitution, the government does not have any say in the hiring and firing practices of employees with those duties.
Now, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has ruled that religious organizations could delay but not opt out of a requirement that all health plans must cover contraception (including the morning-after pill) and sterilization with no co-pay. This goes against the moral teachings of the Catholic Church and some other Christian denominations.
Should the government be allowed to dictate to religious organizations obligations that they vehemently oppose? I realize that many readers oppose the tenets of the Catholic Church but do they also believe that the Church should abandon its principles and conform to the wishes of the government?
Will Catholic schools and hospitals comply with this intrusion into moral beliefs? If push comes to shove, I believe that they will drop healthcare for all their employees rather than submit to government dictates. Is this the optimal result?
There is a solution. There is legislation in Congress exempting Catholic institutions from HHS requirements. I urge all of our legislators to support this bill.
I would like to ask the Chronicle to follow up on this issue and report on how our representatives plan on voting.
Congressman Bob Turner (R-Queens and Brooklyn) is cosponsoring a bill that would grant religious institutions exemptions from a new federal mandate that otherwise would require them to provide insurance coverage for contraceptive devices and drugs that are contrary to their beliefs.
In a statement issued by his office on Feb. 6, Turner blasted the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services over the mandate, which would force private employers, including nonprofit religious institutions, to provide coverage for “all FDA-approved prescription contraceptives.”
Parents and area residents got to glimpse the inner workings of St. Thomas the Apostle in Woodhaven in recent days, as the school joined institutions across the country to celebrate Catholic Schools Week —at which time the Queens pupils feted a 90-year-old school that has evolved to mirror the rapidly changing community around it.
Over the past nine decades, the pupils at the Woodhaven school have come to represent the diversity that makes up Queens and are not solely Catholic but hail from a variety of backgrounds, including Buddhist and Muslim.
Michael Mariano, left, Sister Maria Barbera, OP, and Amanda Capasso have fun in the religion class that includes discussions on a variety of beliefs, including Buddhism and Islam.
Recalling the spirit of the Flushing Remonstrance, the 1657 letter demanding religious freedom for Flushing's residents despite the ruling Dutch government's persecution of minority sects, a group of elected officials and area clergy on Friday signed a new "Pledge for Tolerance & Understanding" to reiterate Queens' commitment to diversity and freedom.
In the wake of anti-Semitic incidents in Queens and Brooklyn, Rabbi Joseph Potasnik sat in a Queens mosque on Sunday, flanked by two imams and a reverend. Potasnik grew animated.
“When a mosque is torched, how much more important is it for Jewish or Christian leaders to come forward and say, ‘Now you have attacked one of us?’” said Potasnik, the vice president of New York’s board of rabbis. “When it’s anti-anything, we have to all stand together in speaking out against hate of any kind.”