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Widodo has pledged to bring reform to Indonesia

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United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has pleaded to Indonesia to stop the execution of prisoners on death row for drug crimes. AFP PHOTO

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The pope wrote that the principle of legitimate personal defense isn’t adequate justification to execute someone. Photograph: Zuma/Rex

Obama becomes first president to visit US prison (US Justice Systems / Human Rights)

Obama becomes first president to visit US prison   (US Justice Systems / Human Rights)
US President Barack Obama speaks as he tours the El Reno Federal Correctional Institution in El Reno, Oklahoma, July 16, 2015 (AFP Photo/Saul Loeb)

US Death Penalty (Justice Systems / Human Rights)

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Woman who spent 23 years on US death row cleared (Photo: dpa)


"The Recalibration of Awareness – Apr 20/21, 2012 (Kryon channeled by Lee Carroll) (Subjects: Old Energy, Recalibration Lectures, God / Creator, Religions/Spiritual systems (Catholic Church, Priests/Nun’s, Worship, John Paul Pope, Women in the Church otherwise church will go, Current Pope won’t do it), Middle East, Jews, Governments will change (Internet, Media, Democracies, Dictators, North Korea, Nations voted at once), Integrity (Businesses, Tobacco Companies, Bankers/ Financial Institutes, Pharmaceutical company to collapse), Illuminati (Started in Greece, with Shipping, Financial markets, Stock markets, Pharmaceutical money (fund to build Africa, to develop)), Shift of Human Consciousness, (Old) Souls, Women, Masters to/already come back, Global Unity.... etc.) - (Text version)

… The Shift in Human Nature

You're starting to see integrity change. Awareness recalibrates integrity, and the Human Being who would sit there and take advantage of another Human Being in an old energy would never do it in a new energy. The reason? It will become intuitive, so this is a shift in Human Nature as well, for in the past you have assumed that people take advantage of people first and integrity comes later. That's just ordinary Human nature.

In the past, Human nature expressed within governments worked like this: If you were stronger than the other one, you simply conquered them. If you were strong, it was an invitation to conquer. If you were weak, it was an invitation to be conquered. No one even thought about it. It was the way of things. The bigger you could have your armies, the better they would do when you sent them out to conquer. That's not how you think today. Did you notice?

Any country that thinks this way today will not survive, for humanity has discovered that the world goes far better by putting things together instead of tearing them apart. The new energy puts the weak and strong together in ways that make sense and that have integrity. Take a look at what happened to some of the businesses in this great land (USA). Up to 30 years ago, when you started realizing some of them didn't have integrity, you eliminated them. What happened to the tobacco companies when you realized they were knowingly addicting your children? Today, they still sell their products to less-aware countries, but that will also change.

What did you do a few years ago when you realized that your bankers were actually selling you homes that they knew you couldn't pay for later? They were walking away, smiling greedily, not thinking about the heartbreak that was to follow when a life's dream would be lost. Dear American, you are in a recession. However, this is like when you prune a tree and cut back the branches. When the tree grows back, you've got control and the branches will grow bigger and stronger than they were before, without the greed factor. Then, if you don't like the way it grows back, you'll prune it again! I tell you this because awareness is now in control of big money. It's right before your eyes, what you're doing. But fear often rules. …

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

'First' home for transgender elderly

Google – AFP, Kevin Ponniah (AFP), 20 February 2013 

Yulianus Rettoblaut, better known as Mami Yuli, holds a meeting in her
house on January 29, 2013 in the Jakarta suburbs (AFP, Romeo Gacad)

JAKARTA — A dozen elderly women are gathered inside the pink house, set on a narrow dirt road in a dusty suburb of Jakarta. Together they sew, bake and chat.

On first sight they look like a group of benevolent grandmothers, but the sunken cheeks and deep lines on some of their faces tell stories of hardship.

All of these women are "waria", a term used for Indonesian transgender people, and the house in the country's capital has been hailed by activists as the first old person's home for that gender community.

Yoti Oktosea, a 70-year-old Indonesian
 transgender and former sex worker,
 poses for a photograph on January 29, 
2013 (AFP, Romeo Gacad)
The word waria combines the Indonesian for woman (wanita) and the word for man (pria).

It is used to describe a range of gender identities, though it particularly refers to men who feel they are women and is applied regardless of whether they have undergone gender reassignment surgery or hormone therapy.

A home for elderly waria is an unexpected sight but perhaps also typical of the many contradictions in a nation where, until two years ago, the official government line on transgender people was that they were mentally ill.

As part of new moves towards acceptance, the government will in March begin supporting the home, which officially opened in November, with a basic nutrition programme while offering business seed money to 200 transgender residents in the city.

However, most of the funds needed to support the home will continue to come from its founder, Yulianus Rettoblaut, a waria and prominent activist better-known as Mami Yuli, who turned her own house into the shelter last year.

"We are focusing on elderly waria because NGOs usually focus on young ones," the 51-year-old told AFP.

She was inspired to take action after seeing many of her fellow ageing waria on the streets, ill, unemployed and forced to live in squalid conditions.

In this photograph taken January 29, 
2013, a group of Indonesian transgenders
 listen to a prominent activist (AFP,
Romeo Gacad)
While a few waria have found domestic celebrity as talk show hosts or emcees, most across Southeast Asia's biggest nation of 240 million people are cast out by relatives who would otherwise be responsible for the care of their elderly family members.

"Life for them is very difficult and many live under the poverty line. They often have no choice but to sleep under bridges," Mami Yuli said.

While the home is grossly underfunded, she tries to offer three daily meals to residents who learn sewing, baking and hairdressing if they are jobless.

Conditions are far from ideal -- the 12 waria who live there sleep on old mattresses crammed into one bedroom at the top of steep, narrow stairs.

When Mami Yuli fails to raise the 350,000 rupiah ($36) a day needed to run the house, she organises street performances where the residents of the home sing and dance. Despite their age they are expected to work to make a living if they can.

A devout Catholic, Mami Yuli says that 70 churches in Jakarta support the home, offering shelter during floods. Only four donate money.

Despite the huge challenges, she hopes to one day be able to accommodate all 800 of Jakarta's elderly waria and expand her home into the vacant lot next door, if she can raise enough money or secure state support.

An estimated 35,000 Indonesians are transgender, the Asia-Pacific Coalition on Male Sexual Health reports, but activists suspect the figure is much higher.

Despite being considered sacred by some Indonesian ethnic groups, waria largely remain a target of harassment and intimidation, although there are signs of increasing acceptance.

Discrimination forces many into sex work, fuelling an increase in HIV rates from six to 34 percent between 1997 and 2007 among transgenders in Jakarta, according to Health Ministry data.

Indonesian transgender prostitutes take 
their spots in a dimly lit section of a 
Jakarta street on January 29, 2013
(AFP, Romeo Gacad)
Prostitution is illegal in Indonesia and the country's Islamic clerics say it is "haram" (forbidden).
But the industry thrives in Indonesia's karaoke bars and darker street corners where waria can be found holding up dresses up to show off breasts grown with hormones from birth control pills or silicone injections.

Some also reveal their gender reassignment, though few waria can afford to go down this path. The surgery has been available since the 1970s but not under the public health system.

At 70 years old, Yoti Oktosea is a male-to-female transgender and one of Mami Yuli's current residents.

Dressed down in knee-length shorts and a baggy T-shirt, she's given up putting on make-up and curling her eyelashes, but proudly shows a photo of herself as a young woman.

In those days she was in demand as a sex worker, she says.

"But things are much saggier now!" she laughs.

Smartly-dressed Mami Yuli also worked as a prostitute for 17 years but managed to turn her life around, becoming the first "out" waria to get a law degree from an Islamic university, at the age of 46.

The hardline Islamic Defenders Front (FPI) are the waria's most vocal foe, using violence and intimidation to shut down several transgender events which they say "threaten Indonesia's Islamic values", including the Miss Waria pageant in December.

"We had the pageant shut down and we're willing to shut down other waria gatherings again," FPI Jakarta chief Habib Salim Alatas said.

But signs are growing that the future might be a little brighter for this marginalised community.

In 2008 the first Islamic school specifically for transgender people to pray and study the Koran opened in 2008 in Yogyakarta. The establishment of Mami Yuli's home for the elderly is seen as another victory.

Related Articles:

Nepal introduces transgender category on ID cards

"The Akashic System" – Jul 17, 2011 (Kryon channelled by Lee Carroll) - (Subjects: Religion, The Humanization of GodBenevolent Design, DNA, Akashic Circle, (Old) Souls, Gaia, Indigenous People, Talents, Reincarnation, Genders, Gender Switches, In “between” Gender Change, Gender Confusion, Shift of Human Consciousness, Global Unity,..... etc.)  - (Text version)

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