Indonesia executes six drug convicts, five of them foreigners

Indonesia executes six drug convicts, five of them foreigners
Widodo has pledged to bring reform to Indonesia

Ban appeals to Indonesia to stop death row executions

Ban appeals to Indonesia to stop death row executions
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

Pope: 'Death penalty represents failure' – no 'humane' way to kill a person

Pope: 'Death penalty represents failure' – no 'humane' way to kill a person
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)

US Death Penalty (Justice Systems / Human Rights)
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. …

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Filipina maid captures dreams through photography

Yahoo - AFP, Aaron Tam, March 22, 2015

Filipino photographer Xyza Cruz Bacani poses with her work in Macau on
March 21, 2015 (AFP Photo/Aaron Tam)

Hong Kong (AFP) - From her poverty-stricken roots in a Philippine backwater, via domestic service in Hong Kong to acclaim in New York, Xyza Cruz Bacani's inspirational journey started with a camera bought with borrowed money.

The 28-year-old came to Hong Kong nine years ago to join 300,000 other women working as maids in the city, hoping to earn enough money to help fund her brother's education.

But photography has transformed her life, her images of everything from trips to the supermarket to scenes of abuse at a refuge for domestic workers earning laudatory spreads in international media and at exhibitions.

Bacani was recently named as one of the recipients of a fellowship by the Magnum Foundation, a prestigious scholarship that will allow her to study in New York for six weeks.

Filipino photographer Xyza Cruz Bacani
 poses with her work in Macau on March
21, 2015 (AFP Photo/Aaron Tam)
With that in mind, just a week ago, she quit domestic service to pursue her passion for photography. But when she first came to Hong Kong, survival was her first priority.

"The urge to survive is much bigger than the urge to do art," she told AFP in Macau where her photographs are on show as part of the city's Literary Festival.

A self-professed dreamer, she said she also saw the move to Hong Kong as an opportunity to leave her home village, nine hours' drive from the Philippine capital Manila.

"It was a big contrast when I arrived at the airport, I was very excited because everything is moving fast, and the lights are wonderful, it looks so alive compared to my village," she said.

Her passion for photography really took off four years ago, when her employer -- whom she describes as a "great lady" -- lent her the money to buy her first camera, a Nikon D90.

"When I had (the camera), I shot landscapes to flowers to (portraits of) my mom, and then I did street photography."

From that point on Bacani took photographs at every opportunity she had, whether out buying daily produce for her employer or ranging across Hong Kong on Sundays off work.

At first she only shared her pictures with friends on Facebook -- mostly shot in grainy black and white, capturing street moments in classic reportage style.

A Filipino photographer based in San Francisco saw them on Facebook and was intrigued by their originality and quality. From there she came to the attention of the New York Times Lens blog and then of acclaimed photographer Sebastiao Salgado, who praised her work at an exhibition in Hong Kong late last year.

Reflecting on her journey thus far, she marvels: "Right now it's changed my life 180 degrees, here I am having a show in Macau, going to places."

A voice for the unheard

With increasing concerns over the treatment of domestic helpers in Hong Kong and the region, Bacani is now turning to documentary photography to try to draw attention to abuses.

"That's what I want my photography to do, to be able to help people ... to me photography is a very powerful tool to change someone's perspective towards an issue," she said.

In the summer of 2014, Bacani documented migrant workers who had taken shelter at a refuge after suffering abuse at the hands of their employers, an experience she described as "life-changing".

"I was angry at first, it was a roller-coaster of emotion when I saw this kind of situation.

"I think I was there to be the voice of those domestic workers who remain unheard, whose voices have been muted."

Just last month a judge sentenced a Hong Kong woman to six years in jail for beating and starving her Indonesian maid in a case that made global headlines.

Bacani's own employer could not be more different, she says, offering support and encouragement to pursue her plans of becoming a photographer full-time.

"She said my domestic worker duties... are restricting me from growing up as a person, it's a chain that holds me," Bacani said, after stopping her domestic work last week.

Bacani's story has inspired many other helpers in the city, and she is urging them to pursue their dreams too.

"They keep on telling me... now that they've seen me, I made them realise that it's possible to do the things that you really want to do outside your job.

"I want people to see that your job, your work, it doesn't define who you are," she added.

"The dreams that I had when I was young, I'm having them now."

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