Items filtered by date: Thursday, 01 June 2017

Indonesian Muslim women engage with feminism

Many Muslim women and men have fought for liberation, justice and freedom, but some still question if feminism and Islam are aligned.

 
By Dina Afrianty, The Conversation

Can a Muslim be a feminist? Many Muslim women and men have fought for liberation, justice and freedom, but some still question if feminism and Islam are aligned.

The practice of Muslim women wearing headscarves is often taken as a sign that they are objectified through religious practices. Genital mutilation, child marriage, domestic violence and polygamy in Muslim majority societies are practices said to be based on Islamic teachings.

This leads to the argument that being a Muslim means one lacks “agency” as one must submit to certain teachings.

Western feminism understands agency as a self-realisation and freedom for everyone to exercise their free will. Therefore, they should not be subject to tradition, culture or social coercion.

Indonesia’s first feminist

Indonesia’s first feminist and national hero, Kartini. Photo from Tropenmuseum, part of the National Museum of World Cultures via Wikimedia Commons

Indonesia’s first feminist and national hero, Kartini. Photo from Tropenmuseum, part of the National Museum of World Cultures via Wikimedia Commons

Stories of Indonesia’s early feminist, Kartini, and the recent world-first female Muslim clerics congressin Indonesia both offer insights in this discussion. They highlight the struggle of Muslim women for equality, justice and freedom.

A national hero, Kartini was a young woman fighting against feudalistic and patriarchal Javanese culture founded on diverse foreign values, including Hinduism, Islam and Western colonialism. In her time (she was born in 1879), education was not for girls. Society’s expectation was only for girls to become a wife, give birth and look after children.

Her story, which has recently been made into a feature film in Indonesia, suggests her ideas about equality were influenced by her Dutch friends. But it was also Kartini’s encounter with Islamic teachings that allowed her to learn that the Quran guaranteed equality for men and women.

Tragically, although she campaigned against polygamy, her ailing father’s request forced Kartini to accept marriage to a man who already had three wives.

Female clerics taking over

As if in the steps of Kartini, the gathering of almost 500 female religious scholars in Cirebon, West Java, is a milestone in Muslim women’s fight for equality.

The well-versed clerics are leaders of Islamic boarding schools and preachers. They believe gender equality is guaranteed in Islam and that the Quran, the source of Islamic teachings, is not misogynistic. The subjugation of women has instead been influenced by the male domination of Quranic interpretation.

Since the time of the Prophet, the authority to read and interpret the Quran has always been in the hands of men. In the congress, female religious scholars from the Middle East and the region passionately discussed strategies to take over this space and gain authority.

Malaysian Zainah Anwar, the founder of Sisters in Islam, delivered a passionate speech about fighting male domination in Quranic interpretation.

She told congress participants Islam gives women the right to define what Islam is. It is important for women to initiate reform and participate in public policy within the framework of Islam, the Indonesian constitution and universal human rights and women’s rights, she said.

The clerics believed complex issues like child marriage, domestic violence, polygamy and women’s role in combating the rise of radicalism could only be challenged if women took the lead in the interpretation of Islamic teachings.

Polygamy was one of the prominent themes in the congress. Ruhaini Dzuhayatin, a former human rights official at the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, told the audience she always had to argue against her male colleagues in various meetings on women’s rights, and on polygamy in particular.

She said: “I told them it [polygamy] is not the teaching of Islam and I use verses in the Quran to support my argument.”

The audience responded with a big round of applause.

Nur Rofiah, a professor in Quranic studies, explored how men have exploited particular verses to justify taking additional wives. According to Nur, Islam says every human being has to elevate the status of humankind, and polygamy does not.

At the congress, the female clerics released a fatwa to lift the minimum age for girls to marry to 18. The Indonesian Marriage Law stipulates 16 as the minimum marrying age for girls.

Although a fatwa does not have legal force in Indonesia, by issuing it the female clerics have taken a bold stand. Fatwa-making is traditionally a male-dominated field.

By taking this approach, the female clerics are attempting to open Muslim women’s minds to the idea that they should not only listen to male clerics on questions affecting their identity as Muslim women.

Muslim women’s agency

The idea that Muslim women lack agency is hard to reconcile with this vibrant new network of intellectual women. They no longer accept becoming victims of male domination and they use Islamic teachings to challenge patriarchal practices. They take advantage of any available public avenue to express their need for independence, to be seen and heard.

Dina Afrianty, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Australian Catholic University

This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article.

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Duterte rejects second-hand boats, military equipment from US

By Argyll Cyrus Geducos /http://news.mb.com.ph

President Duterte said he will no longer acquire second-hand military equipment from the United States (US) for the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).

Addressing troops of the army’s 102nd Infantry Brigade in Barangay Igsoon, Ipil, Zamboanga Sibugay Friday afternoon, Duterte said government forces will win over terror groups in Marawi City using the best military equipment.

He said that he is willing to spend more money than just settle for the surplus of the United States including firearms and boats.

“During my time, wala na akong secondhand mga barko-barko. It has to be brand new,” Duterte said.

“Hindi na ako tatanggap ng mga equipment ng military na secondhand. Iyong ibinibigay ng Amerikano, ayaw ko na ‘yan. Even if I have to spend double the money,” he added.

In a bit of pep talk, Duterte assured the soldiers they would triumph over terror groups.

“Dito naman sa extremism, mananalo tayo. But we will have losses, ganon lang talaga ang buhay. Pero sabihin mo matalo tayo, imposible ‘yan,” Duterte said.

“Kumpleto na ‘yung jets natin. Kung buhayin pa ako ng Panginoon, you will have about 24 jet planes. Mag-acquire pa ako ng 12. Subukan ko,” he added.

He revealed that the country has two sources of firearms, but stopped short of mentioning which nations these were.

 

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38 dead due to suffocation inside casino

An injured man is carried on a stretcher after explosions rang out early Friday, June 2, 2017, at the Resorts World Manila complex near Manila’s international airport in the Philippine capital, sparking a security alarm amid an ongoing Muslim militant siege in the country’s south. (Tikos Low via AP) Manila Bulletin

 

By MB Online

Thirty-eight bodies of victims who supposedly died of suffocation and smoke inhalation were recovered from the gaming room of Resorts World Manila, according to police authorities.

A lone gunman stormed a casino in Pasay City shortly after midnight armed with a baby armalite, fired at the stock room of chips, carted away with P113 million worth of it, and was later found dead inside one of the hotel’s rooms on Friday morning.

Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa said they are not considering terrorism as the motive behind the shooting that happened at Resorts World Manila (RW) since the gunman, whom he described as Caucasian and tall, did not fire at people but only at the chips stockroom.

Video link: https://youtu.be/s9tTUtR8uDohttps://youtu.be/s9tTUtR8uDo

The suspect also started a fire inside the RW which as of press time was still razing at the 2nd and 3rd floors.

At least 54 individuals were hurt when they jumped for safety after the gunman started firing at the chips stockroom and brought to hospitals in the area for immediate treatment. Some 18 of those brought to the hospitals needed to be confined.

Police operatives were clearing the hotel floors from the 1st level to the 9th when they spotted the gunman who dashed from the 5th floor down to the 2nd floor. The gunman then ran back to the 5th floor, holed himself up inside room No. 510 and set the room on fire. He was found dead by operatives, burned beyond recognition.

“This is not an act of terror. There was no element of violence or threat,” De la Rosa said.

The PNP Chief said it is possible that the suspect needed money badly and could have lost a lot in the casino. The suspect reportedly placed millions worth of chips inside his backpack.

The gunman, described as six-foot tall, foreign-looking with a mustache, had managed to elude police forces for nearly six hours before he locked himself inside Room 510.

Dela Rosa said the suspect covered himself with blanket, used gasoline to torch himself.

All indications point to robbery and not terrorism, according to Dela Rosa.

Dela Rosa said the suspect did not hurt anyone after forcing his way into the hotel, clutching a rifle and a hand gun.

The gunman shot television screens, torched the gambling tables and went into the storage room to get P113 million worth of casino chips, according to the police chief.

Rescue personnel wait outside a hotel at the Resorts World Manila complex, early Friday, June 2, 2017, in Manila, Philippines.  (AP Photo/Aaron Favila) Manila Bulletin

A security guard also suffered a gunshot wound after accidentally shooting himself, according to Dela Rosa.

The suspect has yet to be identified, but Dela Rosa believes he may have lost a lot of money and has gone crazy.

He managed to evade capture despite the clearing operation that led police operatives up to the ninth floor.

Dela Rosa said the suspect was finally found with the help of closed circuit television (CCTV) cameras.

The gunman climbed from the second floor and entered the room.

“He would have shot all the people gambling there” if it had been terrorism, said Dela Rosa. “But he did not hurt anyone.”

Dela Rosa said CCTV footage showed the gunman ignoring a security guard who tried to question him at the entrance to the complex. He did not hurt the guard but went straight to the gambling area, dela Rosa said.

Ronald Romualdo, a maintenance worker at Resorts World, said he and his colleagues heard gunshots and saw people smashing the windows on the second floor and third floor to escape.

“We took out a ladder to save them. We were able to save many of them,” he said. “But one woman I was trying to save fell from the second floor. … I could not carry her. She was not moving and was probably dead.

“I got her bag so her family will know what happened to her,” he said. “I don’t know if she is still there.”

US President Donald Trump was quick to react to the RW shooting incident.

“I would like to begin by addressing the terrorist attack in Manila. We are closely monitoring the situation. I will continue to give updates. It is really sad with what’s going on throughout the world with terror. Our prayers go to all of those affected,” US President Donald Trump told a White House press briefing. (With reports from AP and Martin Sadongdong)

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Moro youth group calls to end Marawi airstrike

'The fact that the military made a mistake is enough reason to stop the airstrike,' says former human rights chair Etta Rosales 

Lian Buan

MANILA, Philippines – A youth Moro group called for the immediate termination of airstrikes over Marawi City on top of their pleas to lift martial law in Mindanao.

"Nananawagan kami ng 'no to airstrike' dahil nakikita naming pati kaming sibilyan ay kalaban na rin ng gobyerno, gusto naming ipaalala na ang tinutugis nila ay Maute lamang ngunit dahil sa airstrike ay sunud-sunod, nafi-feel naming mga sibilyan, pati kami kalaban na rin," said Sittie Janine Gamao of the Lanao-based Coalition of Moro Youth Movement.

(We are calling for an end to airstikes because we are seeing that even civilians are being regarded as enemies of the government, we want to remind them that they are hunting down the Maute Group only but because of the continuing airstikes, the civilians feel they're also the enemy.)

Gamao studied in Marawi and works as a government employee in Cotabato City. She goes home to Marawi City every weekend to her relatives. She has not been able to return since the declaration of martial law, but her relatives have managed to evacuate.

Gamao and fellow Maranaos, some of them displaced by the Marawi crisis, were in the capital to join several dialogues, including the martial law forum on Friday, June 2, led by civic groups, lawyers groups and representatives from the Commission on Human Rights.

"'Yung bahay ng mga kapatid ko doon sa mismong unang barangay ay 'yun ang inatake ng airstrike," said Norkaya Mohammad, an educator at the Mindanao State University (MSU) in Marawi. (My sibling's home is in the first village hit by the aistrike.)

Defense Secretary and martial law administrator Delfin Lorenzana said they are looking into suspending airstrikes due to the deaths of soldiers.

On Thursday, June 1, the military's airstrike killed 10 of their own because they missed their target.

The first plane hit its target accurately, while the second one missed its target by around 100 meters and instead hit the soldiers, said Lorenzana.

The military has repeatedly given assurances about civilian safety from their aistrikes but the recent error was used as an example by former human rights chair Etta Rosales during the forum to bolster calls to end the airstrikes.

"'Yung nagkamali na 'yung militar, that is more than enough reason to stop airstrikes. Stop airstrikes, lift martial law, because it's not doing them any good," Rosales said. (The fact that the military made a mistake is enough reason to stop the airstrikes.)

As of the latest update, there are 2,000 civilians that remain trapped in Marawi City, most of them in areas controlled by terror group Maute.

Some of the civilians who have not managed to evacuate reported their homes being hit by the airstrikes.

Martial law triggers

Gamao said that martial law in Mindanao is now triggering animosity among Mindanaoans victimized by the martial rule of the late president Ferdinand Marcos.

"Nasa Mindanao ang halos lahat ng massacre na nangyari noong martial law, nariyan ang Palimbang massacre, Manili massacre, marami pong massacre," Gamao said. (It was in Mindanao where most of the massacres happened during martial law, there's the Palimbang massacre, the Manili massacre, so many massacres.) 

"Masyado rin naming tinututukan ang rape joke ni Pangulong Duterte dahil halos karamihan ng kababaihan na nagdaan sa martial law 'yun ang dinanas na karahasan," Gamao added.

(We're also focused on Duterte's rape joke because many women who experienced martial law experienced that kind of abuse.)

Gamao said that martial law may inadvertently lead young Muslims to join the radicalized groups.

These triggers, combined with what she said are "accumulated frustration" over the halted peace process on the Bangsamoro are being used as a pitch by recruiters.

Gamao said she encountered personal stories of this when they traveled to schools in rural areas in Lanao during the crafting of the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL).

"Dito po namin nakikita yung entry point ng extremism. Sinasabi nila na wala na kayong mapapala sa gobyerno. Inaactivate nila ang frustration, disappointment na dinadanas ng mga tao doon para makapag-recruit sila," Gamao said.

(Here is where we see the entry point of extremism. They tell them not to count on the government anymore. They are activating the frustration and disappointment of the people there so they could recruit.)

Rosales said she is talking with officials and civic workers on the ground to formally organize and send their representative to the crisis committee in Marawi, so they could officially enter their position to call for the end of airstrikes.

IDP Law

Mohammad is one of the 71,000 people who have been displaced by the crisis in Marawi City. (READ: How to help Marawi evacuees through DSWD)

"Ang sabi sa mga taga-Maynila huwag kayong maniniwala sa mga taga-doon dahil wala kayo doon. Ngayon nandito na kami, tulungan niyo kami manawagan. Apat na araw bago ko iwanan ang cottage namin, inaanticipate namin na 60 days nandiyan ang martial law iraratrat nila ang bahay namin dahil walang tao," Mohammad said.

(They tell those in Manila to not believe what we say because they don't live there. Here we are now, help us call for help. It took me 4 days to leave my cottage and still we anticipate that if martial law lasts for 60 days, our homes will be destroyed because there's nobody there.)

Addressing the concern, Major Eduardo Espinas, chief of monitoring inquiry of the military's human rights office, called on Congress to pass the Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) law.

Under the IDP bill, arbitrary displacement of people is penalized to protect the rights of IDPs.

"Dun po sa IDP bill makikita natin ang prohibited acts, ano po ang responsibilities ng different agencies at ano mga penalties, we ask for your support to call your congressmen para mapabilis ang proseso," Espinas said.

(In the IDP bill we'll know what the prohibited acts are, the responsibilities of different agencies and the penalties, we ask for your support to call your congressmen and expedite the process.) – Rappler.com

 
 
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'Wonder Woman' grosses P48.39M on PH opening day

The movie breaks 2017's non-holiday opening day record in the Philippines

By Rappler.com

MANILA, Philippines – Wonder Woman has broken the Philippines' 2017 box office record for highest earning non-holiday opening day, according to Francis Soliven, general manager of Warner Bros Philippines. (READ: Movie reviews: What critics are saying about 'Wonder Woman')

Patty Jenkins' movie, which stars Gal Gadot, earned P48.39 million on its first day in cinemas, June 1. 

It beat the previous record holder, Bill Condon's Beauty and the Beast, which starred Emma Watson and Dan Stevens. Beauty and the Beast earned P47 million on its opening day in the Philippines.

Beauty and the Beast was released in the Philippines on March 16 and later became the country'shighest grossing film of all time, with cumulative gross earnings of P667.46 million at the box office. (READ: What critics are saying about the new 'Beauty and the Beast')

Wonder Woman has received good reviews abroad, with many critics saying it's the best of DC Comics' previous live-action movies.

It's also the first female-directed live-action movie with a $100-million budget, according to CinemaBlend

Wonder Woman has been banned in Lebanon, as part of their boycott of Israel. Lead actress Gadot is Israeli, served in the Israeli army for two years, and represented the country in the 2004 Miss Universe pageant. – Rappler.com

 
 
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PH tourism braces for impact of Resorts World Manila attack

The Philippine Travel Agencies Association says the incident resort will 'definitely impact' the country's tourism industry. Airlines report another round of delayed, cancelled flights.

By Chrisee Dela Paz

MANILA, Philippines – The country's travel and tourism industry is bracing itself for the negative impact of the attack of a lone gunman on Resorts World Manila, which killed over 30 people on Friday, June 2.

"What happened today in Resorts World Manila...is very much unfortunate and will definitely impact our tourism industry," Marlene Jante, president of the Philippine Travel Agencies Association (PTAA), said in a statement on Friday, June 2.

Jante noted that Resorts World is  "a tourism destination here in Metro Manila and just across Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal III," the primary gateway of foreign travelers to the Phiippines.

Past midnight, Friday, June 2,  a man fired gunshots and set ablaze gaming tables at the casino floor of the Resorts World Manila in Pasay City.

Authorities quickly donwplayed it as an "isolated incident" caused by a "mentally disturbed" person who had attempted to rob the casino, and not a terror attack.

The incident happened as government troops fought local terrorists in  Marawi City in Lanao del Sur, which prompted President Rodrigo Duterte to declare martial law in the island of Mindanao for 60 days.

The PTAA members and airlines expect their sales to be affected by both  incident. (READ: TIMELINE: Resorts World Manila attack)

Stirring 'terrorism rumors'

The PTAA urged the public to stand behind the government "as it addresses these situations," referring to both the Resort World incident and the Marawi clashes.

The contradictory accounts of what happened at Resorts World Manila caused panic among residents and tourists, fearing that it was a terrorist attack. The NCRPO then clarified that it was not an act of terrorism.

Resorts World Manila COO Stephen Reilly had denied "false reports" that there were two gunmen on the scene.

"What we urge, however, is for everyone to discern the facts from false news and report suspicious activities within their areas.  We do not want incidents like the one in Marawi City or what transpired in Resorts World this morning to disrupt our way of life. Filipinos should never live in fear at any given time," Jante said.

"We also urge the government to keep our countrymen informed at all times. They have to be transparent enough to let us know what is really happening around us," she added.

Airlines

Airlines began to feel the impact of the latest incident.

National flag carrier Philippine Airlines Incorporated (PAL) and the country's largest budget airline Cebu Pacific Air have reported cancellation of flights to Mindanao from other countries.

With the shooting incident at Resorts World Manila, local airlines are seen to hurt more.

At around 1:40 am on Friday, June 2, main gates of all 4 terminals of NAIA were briefly shut down, as part of the airport authorities' heightened security, the Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) said. MIAA reopened the main gates of NAIA terminals after two hours.

This security measure resulted in delayed and cancelled flights.

"Cebu Pacific Air is deeply saddened by the tragic events at Resorts World Manila earlier today," the Gokongwei-led carrier said in a statement.

Cebu Pacific Air said passengers traveling to or from Manila on Friday, June 2, may rebook their flights for free within 30 days, get a full refund, or place the full ticket cost in a travel fund for future use.

Meanwhile, as of 9 am, PAL reported 7 delayed flights as a consequence of the temporary airport closure.

"It will certainly affect our operations because as early as now there are already some cancellations in terms of bookings, but we hope this is just temporary," PAL president Jaime Bautista had said about the Marawi crisis.

Latest data from the Department of Tourism showed 1.2 million foreign visitors arrived in the Philippines in the first two months of 2017. This was 10.88% higher than the same period in 2016, with Koreans accounting bulk of the total arrivals.

For the entire year, the departments targets to 6.5 million foreign visitor arrivals.

For PTAA, recent attacks in Marawi and Resorts World Manila might be a roadblock to the government’s 2017 tourist arrivals target. – Rappler.com

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Makina: This Filipino-Owned Watch Company is Truly World Class

Makina is upping our watch game.

  • Published in Tech
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Wakeboard Champion David O’Caoimh Opens Up About His Phenomenal Sport

  • David O’Caoimh (you say it like David O’ Queeve) just turned 23 late last year. He has already accomplished many things. A frequent winner in the World Cup Championships, he usually wakes up early in the morning.He devotes the rest of the day to his wakeboarding. This also involves him teaching enthusiastic first timers learning the tricks. It ends with him uploading the day’s events on his YouTube channel, thus inspiring thousands of youths all over the world.

    He loves interacting with his students and fans.

    “I love doing what I love, which is mostly wakeboarding!! But I also love having the craic with the lads, cars, and going for a bounce on the trampoline!”

    It is a great pleasure to have an interview with him. This was done when he was in Dubai and it’s just a spur- of -the -moment decision when I realised we have been chatting through social media that time. If you haven’t yet, do add him :

    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCbc8Ap_hqxOqSLweAPeRJvA

    http://instagram.com/davidocaoimh">http://instagram.com/davidocaoimh

    What got you into wakeboarding?

    My parents used to do a lot of windsurfing up on a lake in Cavan. I was young at the time so never really got into it. Then our neighbour got a speed boat and so I used to go waterskiing on weekends with him (this is when I was about 5 haha) and then I did that for about 5 years. Then when I was 10 I discovered wakeboarding…. and boom! I’ve been hooked since!

    Is it popular in Ireland?

    It’s growing massively here in Ireland! We have had an increase in parks and wakeboard clubs opening around the country, and this is awesome as it brings new people to the sport. It’s actually amazing to see all the fresh faces at the parks and also at the grassroots competitions! The awareness has gotten to a new level. Nobody used to know what Wakeboarding was in Ireland 5 years ago. Now most people do. Particularly the younger generations!

    What are the benefits of wakeboarding?

    The benefits are insane. Mentally and physically no matter what age, or level you’re at. After your first time wakeboarding, you’ll find muscles you never you knew had, and they will be sore! haha But good sore! It’s amazing fitness and it’s brilliant as you don’t notice yourself doing the exercise like you would in a gym. It’s very easy to motivate yourself.

    Mentally, like any sport it’s phenomenal. It really makes you focus, but the best thing it does, is it often gives you the sense of achievement from progress. Like when you land something new you really are buzzing with pride and joy, and I think that’s a good feeling to have for anyone and everyone!

    What’s your advice to someone who hasn’t done this but who is planning to get into the sport?

    I guess my biggest advice to someone who is thinking of getting into the sport is; ‘DO IT!!’. Like it really is amazing. Obviously I’m going to say that, but it’s funny, I’ve been teaching a few ‘first timers’ lately, and they are genuinely shocked at how much they enjoy it. I will personally guarantee you, no matter how old, young, small or tall you are, you will walk away with a big fat smile on your face! So my advice, is do it, and go from there!

    You’ve won many awards since 2011! You are quite famous. What’s the advantage of having your name up there among the top athletes of the world?

    Hahah, thank you! Yeah it’s been a crazy few years and I’m grateful for every single one of them. There’s a lot of great advantages, but theres one that really sticks out, and that is ‘Opportunity’. I was in school and then college until mid 2013, and then I guess I was in a position where I would just about be able to go full time into the sport that I love. I know if things hadn’t have gone well for the 2 years before hand that I would have never have had the opportunity to do this. So I guess that’s the biggest advantage! 

    You are in Dubai right? How do you prepare physically and mentally for your hectic schedules?

    Yes, I’m in Dubai right now, it’s an incredible place! haha it’s difficult to prepare! I mean it’s difficult and easy at the same time. Difficult because it’s hard to maintain a good diet when traveling, as well as it actually takes it’s toll on how often you can train. In July or August I could be going to 3 competition, in 3 different countries, in 3 weeks. Which by the time you travel doesn’t leave much time to train. So I just try and train as hard and as well as I can when I am home and have the time!

    It’s also easy though. Like travelling is really great, if I wasn’t doing what I’m doing, I’d probably be saving up all my money from my job to go on holidays. So it’s actually a good thing! haha.

    What are your memorable experiences being there?

    My most memorable experience in Dubai?! I’m going to have to go with the culture! It’s way different. Very similar to the ‘American Dream’, but at the same time very multi-cultured. It’s weird. But I’ve enjoyed taking it all in and meeting people from all over the world working here in various industries!

    That, and also, I think I’ve realised here that I actually enjoy coaching! haha. It sounds crazy but I never used to do much coaching, probably because I was a shy child, but I’m really enjoying it here and it’s made me want to do more of it!

    What’s next after Dubai?

    I come home from Dubai late Saturday (9th April). I’ll maybe chill a bit on Sunday with my friends and family, and then that week I’m going to just go back to normal, wakeboarding everyday at home and eating home cooked meals! hahah. I am also very very close to launching a new online coaching site (DOCWAKE) so I’ll be working hard to get that up by mid April! Then I have a few bits and bobs around the country before I head to Spain at the beginning of May!  

    Your message to enthusiasts/subscribers of your YouTube channel?

    My message to my subscribers and followers. I guess I’ve never thought of that…. I don’t really preach anything or have a direct message to them. I hope they see how I don’t take everything too seriously and just enjoy myself with my friends doing what I love. I hope that they take a bit of that and apply it to themselves and their own lives, as well as maybe just being fit, healthy and happy! Lately I try to do tutorial videos for wakeboarding so that they can feel that progression feeling because for me that’s the best feeling in the world!

Original link: http://expatspost.com/entertainment/wakeboard-champion-david-ocaoimh-opens-up-about-his-phenomenal-sport/

  • Published in Sports
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Subkulture: Save the Howling Dogs

After so much frustration, Gothic rockers Dominion, Experiment Perilous and Readership Hostile  decided to bond together and use their music to raise awareness regarding the Yulin dog and cat eating festival  in China.

What is it?

Last year, independent.co.uk published an article titled Yulin Dog Meat Festival 2016: 10,000 dogs to be killed and eaten at China’s annual food event. 

“An estimated 10,000 dogs and cats are expected to be used for meat during the 10 days of the festival, which takes place at Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region in the south-east of the country.

Campaigners say the practice is cruel and a petition has amassed 2.5 million signatures calling for it to be banned, but local government officials say it is organised by private businesses and they are unable to prevent it.

I think that once you dabble with ‘expressive art’ then you have a responsibility to the world. Because you have the VOICE and I think that people who go out of their way to raise awareness of any kind to make this world a kinder and safer place are part of my community. “

You can read more about it here: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/asia/yulin-dog-meat-festival-2016-10000-dogs-set-to-be-killed-and-eaten-at-chinese-food-event-a7093321.html

Just because we can’t prevent it right away doesn’t mean we should never do something. And this is exactly what “Save the Howling Dogs” is all about. To borrow the words of Martin Luther King, Jr. “He who passively accepts evil is as much involved in it as he who helps to perpetrate it. He who accepts evil without protesting against it is really cooperating with it.”

According to Dominion lead vocalist Doi Porras, the audience can expect music with conscience.

“They can expect a great night of music . revelry and connecting with a community of like minded people who support the eradication of animal cruelty particularly the dog meat industry and its disgusting display known as the yearly yulin dog and cat eating festival  in China

.”

They have taken the spirit of strength in unity as they will be joined onstage two bands.

“We are honored to share the stage with these awesome bands(Experiment Perilous and Readership Hostile ), we’ve played with experiment perilous in the last Los Angeles Goth Festival by the cool gents in Klub Terminal just this year , will be a first with Readership Hostile , we all share same circle of friends.”

“Unfortunately since time in memorial human beings have a dark side that needs to be contained , a hundred years is not needed but just a few moments of even seconds to make a choice . those who engage and enjoy cruelty either need help , self analyzation , but perhaps they need to understand how it feels to be on the receiving end”

Also on the list are Whore Mouth  and the DJs of the show, DJ Xiola, DJ Malvada , DJ Vertigo and DJ Dimitri Slithers will all be there!

Save the Howling Dogs the anti dog meat event is happening on June 3, Saturday at All Star Lanes LA . gates at 8pm.

Original link: http://expatspost.com/creative/subkulture-save-the-howling-dogs/

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Survey shows outdoor athletes love listening to music but hate their earbuds

by Kraig Becker/ www.digitaltrends.com
 
 
 
 
WHY IT MATTERS TO YOU 

Looking for a pair of earbuds for use in action sports? A survey has found that many athletes have trouble finding adequate earbuds.

Do you like to listen to music or podcasts while taking part in your favorite outdoor activities? Do you find that your earbuds aren’t especially well-suited for those outings? If you said yes to that last question, it turns out you’re not alone. A recent survey of more than 400 “weekend warriors” who enjoy action sports like mountain biking, trail running, and skiing shows that most of us aren’t very happy with our options when it comes to earbuds built for use outdoors.

The survey was conducted by a company called Earshot and reveals some interesting insights into how action sports athletes view their headphones. For instance, 72 percent of those surveyed indicated that they prefer to listen to music while participating in their sport of choice, although nearly 20 percent who chose not to listen to music said it was because earbuds aren’t built for use in their favorite activity. Another 16 percent claimed that their existing headphones aren’t very good or are just downright awful. And while 40 percent indicated that they had spent $100 or more on a set of earbuds, nearly half (49 percent) said the would spend even more if they could find a set better suited for their needs.

The biggest complaints that outdoor athletes had with their existing headphones were that the cords often get in the way (33 percent), they are uncomfortable to wear (23 percent), and they don’t fit properly (17 percent). The athletes involved in the survey also indicated that fit and functionality are the most important aspect they look for in their earbuds, with comfort and sound quality coming in second and third. Twenty-five percent said that they felt that most earphone manufacturers simply didn’t understand their specific needs.

In a press release revealing the results of the survey, James Bell-Booth, Earshot co-founder, said: “To me, the most important finding from our research is that 35 percent of action sport athletes said they’re at least somewhat likely to abandon their activity if their headphones don’t work properly. As a community, we need to take more seriously the headphone requirements of action sport athletes, and get to work making products that meet their needs better.”

Of course, Earshot had ulterior motives in conducting this survey. The company has designed a line of earbuds that it expects to launch on Kickstarter later this month. With a magnetic locking system to hold them in place, long battery life, and completely wireless operation, they apparently have been designed with action sports in mind. They are also waterproof and rugged enough for use in demanding environments like those favored by outdoor athletes.

The new earbuds are expected to sell for $136 when they become available, although anyone interested in grabbing a pair can register now for a 40 percent discount.

  • Published in Tech
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