One frame of photography bleeds into another to create star trails over Old Faithful Geyser, Yellowstone National park. Steam plumes from the geyser migrate back and forth over the hour waiting for eruption.
This photo is going around on the internet right
now, like some cheap meme with the caption “Here’s a photo for all those upset
about the Muslim ban.“ I was compelled to write a response. I know this is a
tumblr for Pokemon GO and I’ve tried my best for these months to keep posting
fun things about this fandom but I cannot stay silent. I am sorry for the
deviation from the norm you have all come to expect from me, but this I cannot
abide. This is my message:
My father worked at the World Trade Centers from 1998-2001. He survived that day because he took me to school that morning when I was in my third or fourth day of 6th grade. This isn’t about my father, though, because he can tell his story in his own way when he feels it is appropriate. I will explain my own story.
I had been pulled out of class that morning.
They didn’t tell me what had happened, just assuring my 11 year old self that
my father was okay and that there was a fire at the World Trade Centers. I know
they were lying. They couldn’t put me in touch with my father. I knew something
was wrong. I knew about the 1993 bombings. I often wondered what would happen
in the towers fell on the city, looking down on it from above, if such an
attack were to happen again.
Sitting in the principals office I was filled with
anger, sadness, disgust, loneliness, despair, anxiety, depression and chaos. My
father might have been dead, killed by terrorist from a land I knew nothing
about. I sat in that office for 45 minutes thinking nothing but that.
Then my mom came to get me. She told me my father
was okay. Then I saw him. He was crying. We hugged. I told him that as long as
he was okay I was okay. That made everything okay.
I had every right to be upset and vindictive against the muslim community because of the acts of an element of radical extremists attempting to murder my father. In fact some of my peers actually encouraged me to fill my hear with hate and anger, to put aside my childish wonder of the world and build walls in my heart to separate me from the muslim faith as a whole. The propaganda on television and the fact we were entering into two wars as retribution for September Eleventh didn’t help.
But I couldn’t do it. Something inside of me wanted to answer the burning question of “why?”. So I did some research in the middle school computer lab and very quickly found my answer. There is a large contingent of radical terrorists, of every nation and faith, that are drawn to the cause because they have no other options. I read that a suicide bomber in Iraq was paid $20,000 to carry out his attack. This money was needed for his family to pay for shelter, electricity, food, water, security and heat. The basic essentials that allow us to be human and not think with hate and sadness but rather with compassion and understanding. The people in Afghanistan, in the mountainous regions, join extremist groups because they have no resources to sustain their life.
That was when I learned about the concept of ‘sustainability’. The Brundtland Report in 1987 defined sustainability loosely as any action that leaves the world in a better or same state as the way you came into it. I decided at that point, as a 12 year old, to not fight the extremists with a gun, but rather to help get the muslim community the essentials they need so they never have to feel like terrorism is the only way to support themselves, their family or have their message heard.
Islamic extremists tried to kill my family. I do not hate the muslim community. I am a vocal opponent of the muslim ban, registry or oppression. All people no matter what race, creed, nationality, faith, background, color, gender, sex, identification, whatever deserve to be treated as human beings. Because thats what we all are when you get down to it. We are humans, of many glorious and wonderful backgrounds and interests, that should work together rather than divide ourselves. We are one species no matter what you look like or sound like. The blood that runs through my veins runs through the veins of the man in Iraq, Afghanistan, Turkey, Somalia, France, Russia, China, North Korea, everywhere.
We are a nation that has a proud history of
accepting people of all backgrounds. I am German. If this ideology had been
pervasive in the 1930-40s then wouldn’t I have been held accountable for the
actions of the Nazi’s in the same way that people of the muslim faith are
persecuted for the actions of the extremists? I have muslim friends. If I can not hate them, can you try to exercise a little empathy for the
innocent people caught up in this?
I will leave you with a
couple of quotes for thought:
“In these days of difficulty, we Americans
everywhere must and shall choose the path of social justice…the path of faith,
the path of hope, and the path of love toward our fellow man.” - Franklin
“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-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the
golden door!” - Statue of Liberty
Love always. Reject hate. Be compassionate. Be
empathetic. Love thy neighbor. Protect the innocent. Fight for the oppressed.
Crush evil. Be vigilant. Be strong. Be good.
Upper Geyer Basin - Old Faithful & Hot Spring Pools
An afternoon spent exploring this extraordinary landscape is like being
to an alien planet. It’s really hard to believe some of this scenery isn’t out of a sci-fi movie set, but rather it occurs naturally in all it’s glory around this world renowned park. It’s safe more me to say that the Yellowstone experience offers more “bang for your buck” then any other national park I’ve visited.
I arrived at 7:45pm and walked up to see Old Faithful starting to erupt; a perfect way to start the day. Then I proceed to walk the boardwalk and trail from the Upper Geyser Basin to the Biscuit Basin and back over the course of 5-6 miles. This area of the park contains the highest concentration of geysers on the entire planet. There’s an incredible variety of prismatic colored pools, deep blue hot springs and steaming geysers teasing the crowds with spouting, spewing and signs of eruption. Only a few geysers can be reliably predicted with eruption times and the rest can end up being quite random. I was lucky to see about 6 amazing eruptions over the course of 10 hours and two trips around the basin.
I can’t say enough great things about this amazing, colorful, volcanic landscape. If you only had one day in Yellowstone (that’d be a shame) then this would obviously be the place to explore. People from all over the world stand in awe at the surreal sites found here.
natgeotravel Video by @babaktafreshi Wait for the moment when the Old Faithful Geyser erupts in this timelapse. It was a summer night of Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming. I was imaging at the area for The World at Night project. Stars of the Big Dipper were shining right above the geyser. The repeating eruption every hour or so shoots 14000–32000 liters of boiling water to a height of 30–55 meters.
Based on people I know, stereotypes, and cognitive functions.
ENTP: A comic book store. The International Space Station. Old Faithful in Yellowstone National Park. INTP: A museum at night. The Space Needle in Seattle. A telescope on an apartment rooftop. ENTJ: A game of chess in the park. Pike’s Peak. The head of a long dining table at Thanksgiving. INTJ: Physics and chemistry laboratories. Secret passageways in old buildings. A sealed vault. ENFP: A poetry slam. Ancient Aztec ruins. A room full of decorative, metal-framed mirrors. INFP: A window seat in a library. A small countryside chapel with stained glass windows. A canopy bed in a cluttered bedroom. ENFJ: Making snow angels in a park. A birthday party with lots of balloons. A pay-per-view telescope at the beach. INFJ: The Notre Dame Cathedral. Cloud watching on a grassy knoll. Watching the roe deer in the Hallerbos forest in Belgium. ESTP: An arcade. Hang gliding over the Grand Canyon. Labeling arteries in a cadaver lab. ISTP: On a motorcycle in the city at night. Sheer cliffs with waterfalls. Jigsaw puzzles by the fireplace. ESTJ: The labyrinth of Versailles. Rehearsing in an empty auditorium. The top of the Statue of Liberty. ISTJ: A subway station early in the morning. The archives of the Library of Congress. A well-worn path through twisted woods. ESFP: Snorkeling at a coral reef. Fashion week in New York. A performance of Shakespeare at The Globe Theater. ISFP: Botanical gardens. A blanket fort in the attic. The Santa Maria Cathedral in Florence, Italy. ESFJ: A picnic in a park with kites. A bustling marketplace with fresh food and flowers. Feeding lorikeets at an aviary. ISFJ: A petting zoo with baby goats. A meadow of wildflowers as far as the eye can see. Studying at a familiar coffee shop with a house band.
At Old Faithful earlier this summer some of my students were surprised at how long the geyser builds up - peak height isn’t instant at the start of an eruption. This video does a good job of capturing the opening of an eruption at that geyser.
Sister Morgan Armstrong is the head of her order. She’s a soft spoken cold women, who is few of words and patience. She spends her days training female members of her clergy in the ways of battle, that is when she isn’t fighting for her church and country. After several campaigns she and her battle sisters have earned a fearsome reputation.
Ideal: Violence should only be used if words have truly failed.
Bond: Those who wish harm on my Faith and nation are many, I’ll do what I must to vanquish them.
Flaw: I have seen far too many atrocities of war, I can’t seemed to see the positive in situations.