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Blog to America


Content for Blog to America is completely generated by the readers. This site brings together individuals from around the world to post their opinions on the United States in the form of letters and comments. Our site aims to encourage global communication and create an international dialogue between America and the world. The most interesting of these letters and comments will be included in a future publication.


Letters from Americans are kept on the American Perspectives page.


Laonick from Australia - Burma: Why does the USA Give a Stuff?

Dear America,

You have been asleep for more than 40 years. Your human rights in Vietnam and all the way through the years to Guantanamo Bay Prison Camp is pitiful and now nothing more than a protected chicken pen. The rights of the prisoners are non existent and they are subject to great humility.

I want to get this across because of the human rights issues the USA continuously accuses ASIAN countries of breeching. There seems to be double standards in many areas however the ASIAN countries are far more open, especially compared to secret flights by the CIA into and out of Europe with suspected terrorists who hadn't been charged and other prisoners in Guantanamo who haven't been charged after years of being there and held captive.

Please explain this to the world. We are ready to listen to your 'Human Rights excuse' if you have one.

The world seems to be focusing on Burma now. Why? Maybe to give Iraq a rest.

It would be nice to watch the news for 1 night and not hear a story from Iraq and how many soldiers died, then how many more civilians died in the latest suicide bombing but, if it wasn't for this splatter of blood on the cogwheel of fortune, then why the hell would any them be there?
How many tons of oil were exported today to the USA or Europe compared to 2004?

Give the people some figures and then we might check them out too. Just to keep you Government Departments on the right track. Or tell us where we can find this information.

Thanks.

Nick


About the Author:

Name: Laonick
Age: 43
Country: Australia
Gender: Male

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Jacquie from Canada - Why are U.S. women deprived of help?

Dear America,

I'll limit my letter to you to one tiny topic - the availability of nitrous oxide gas to labouring women in the U.S. You might think this is an odd topic on which to focus...but it's indicative of the insanity of the U.S. health care system.

From up here in Canada, it is shocking to discover that hardly any U.S. women have access to something that we take for granted. It's simple, cost-effective, and makes sense.

So, here's the stats:

In 2004, there were 4,115,590 births in the U.S.

The epidural rate in most U.S. hospitals range between 60 and 90%.

Each epidural, including the anethesiologist, costs between $700 and $1200.

If you calculate the cost, using the lowest rate and cost...that’s $1,728,547,800 spent on epidurals in the U.S.

Why? Because certain people (doctors, insurance companies, hospital administrators - take your pick...) made sure there was no alternative.

In Canada, and many other countries, nitrous oxide gas is available for pain relief in labour. No doctors orders are required for its use. No anesthesiologist is required for its use. There is no waiting period necessary. Its effects start immediately. It is cheap and simple.

With a portable system, a woman can remain mobile, even in the shower, and use the nitrous oxide gas, thus making her labour faster and easier.

In Canada, 70% of my own clients use nitrous oxide gas in labour and require no other pain relief. We save the medical system a lot of money this way. It just makes sense.

Now, tell me...why does the United States only have nitrous oxide available to labouring women in ONLY 2 birthing centres? That's maybe a few hundred, or even a few thousand women, who are given this alternative.

Why do the women in the U.S. get epidurals...or nothing? I think that's easy to answer.

It’s just one tiny example of a health system gone wrong.

Sorry, I can’t admire a country that places greed before logic.


Name: Jacquie
Age: 47
Country: Canada
Gender: Female
Income: Medium
Occupation: Birth Consultant
Experience With US: Visited the United States

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Leza from South Africa on Religion

Dear America,

We all want to be heard. Please bear with my ramblings, you'll be able to see my point in amongst the waffle.
Ah yes, about being heard.
Whether on a personal scale with the people around us or for the
rest of us with bigger mouths, in our community or dare I say it globally!
We now have many vehicles in which to explore and expand our level of communication
with one another and as this happens we all come to the realization that;
1. We are all the same.
2. We are all suffering.
As bleak as that sounds!
Some of us are suffering on a level that the rest of us would only experience in our darkest dreaming.
Some of us suffer physically, some mentally, some emotionally. But the bottom line is, we all suffer.
Some of our suffering seems so lubricious and trivial to others that had we the momentary ability to see ourselves from their eyes we would cease our histrionics immediately and feeling slightly silly, get our heads out of our arses. Or other peoples arses for that matter.
The Dalai Lama has the opinion that we all wish to be happy. When asked the question.
What is the purpose of life? He answers.
"I believe that the purpose of life is to be happy. From the moment of birth, every human being wants happiness and does not want suffering"
Now do we believe that Georgey Junior wants to suffer?
Is he maybe a bit of a masochist?
What makes him happy?
Did his childhood conditioning somehow warp his mind into believing that his past and current courses of action are morally sound?
Maybe being the worlds biggest wanker makes him happy?
Or maybe it is the unsettling fact that he is a born again christian which keeps his happiness topped up and buoyant.
Safe in the knowledge that which ever atrocities he commits, it will all be just hunky doray because he has god on his side!
The horror, the mind numbing, desperate horror of it all.
Now.
I believe religion is the cause of ALL OUR PROBLEMS.
It may seem like a sweeping statement but look around and you can see the evidence piling up.
I am reading Richard Dawkins The God Delusion and having had that sneaking suspicion that arrogant,
religious bigotry is the fundamental cause of war and strife on our planet,
I am glad that such a brilliant mind has actually compiled such book to get the truth out there.
And because I am not a good debater and my points tend to get side tracked too much anyway, I have personally willed
Richard Dawkins into my reality. Clever hey? And as a by-product he is now in other peoples realities too.
So hopefully we can all do what Rage against the machine suggested a few years back and WAKE UP!
All we have to do is speak up when challenged, change our own minds and wait for Rupert Sheldrake's Morphic resonance to do the rest.

But from my own very limited experience I have found that the greatest degree of inner tranquility
comes from the development of love and compassion for all sentient beings. As hard as that can be sometimes.
Now America, I know how it feels to feel fear. It has been part of my experience and still can be.
But I choose, remember that word? I choose not to indulge fear anymore. There is a higher path
available to all of us at all times. A history and culture of fear is undoubtedly hard to change, but not impossible.

Apparently Atheists are the least trusted people in America. My word. What does that mean?
Would someone who had formed that opinion, be chatting away to me quite happily about the business I run and pay taxes for,
the yoga classes I teach to bring a calmness into my part of the world, my family who I love and respect, the charity that I support ....., you get the picture.
Would they upon hearing that I do not believe in their god or any god for that matter, take a little step backwards? Their little shaking hands pressed
to their lips. Would they immediately gather up their children and leave my company?
Muttering as they fled that they felt something funny when they saw my three tattoos anyway.
I wonder which group of people Atheists would deem the least trustworthy? I'm not sure about anyone else but I try not
to put people into groups, it seems a recipe for disaster and quite stunningly lazy.

But clearly we need a new paradigm. and lets be fast about it please.
Religion is obviously not working. And luckily having free will, we can we look for a philosophy that is better suited.
I believe that philosophy could be Buddhism. Remembering that we all possess the Buddha nature, yes even George,
and at anytime we can tap into that nature and attain a higher level of understanding regarding the other people we share our planet with.
If you have never read anything about Buddhism please I encourage you to.
Be open minded, think beyond your conditioning, you're family history, your country's majority view point, your fears and hopefully your prejudices.
I've enclosed a prayer written by His Holiness in 1960.
I hope that this prayer can be read by those who dearly need to read it and that it is indeed quickly fulfilled.


Respect.
Leza McLeod
Yoga teacher + designer.
Johannesburg
South Africa.


About the Author:

Name: Leza McLeod
Age: 35
Country: South Africa
City: Johannesburg
State: Gauteng
Gender: Female
Income: Medium
Occupation: Goldsmith and Yoga Teacher
Experience With US: Visited the United States
Website: www.elementalstudio.co.za

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