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Showing posts from May 23, 2010

FATHER'S DAY VERSUS INTERNATIONAL MEN'S DAY: DR. JEROME TEELUCKSINGH

In 2006, I attended an academic conference at the Universidad Pedag√≥gica Nacional in Mexico. After the conference I met a young man, in a taxi, and began explaining International Men’s Day. He was eager to observe the Day because he no longer cared for Father’s Day. Why? He was diagnosed with the dreaded AIDS and given one year to live. There were negative reactions from his family. His wife took their two children and moved to another neighbourhood. His father and mother felt ashamed of him. I told him about World AIDS Day on 1 December. He said he did not want to be reminded that he had the incurable ailment. I told him that International Men’s Day shares a similarity with World AIDS Day because both days seek to eliminate prejudices and stereotypes.

International Men’s Day should not be seen as competing with Father’s Day or any other special day. One of the reasons 19th November was chosen as International Men’s Day was to honour my father. This choice of date, my father’s birthd…

THE ENDANGERED SPECIES: PEACEFUL MEN AND WOMEN: DR. JEROME TEELUCKSINGH

My undergraduate European History course spans the 19th and 20th centuries. Some of the infamous leaders who were responsible for destruction and untold sadness in Europe during the 20th century were Adolf Hitler, Benito Mussolini and Joseph Stalin. Yes, all men. Last year I asked my students- Is it possible to create a world without violence? Could you imagine a world without guns and soldiers? Why is it that men should be associated with violence and destruction? The students could not offer a valid reason or logical answer and some simply replied ‘Violence will always exist’. This answer is a good method to avoid dealing with a problem. One student said I was a dreamer and envisioned a utopia which will never materialize. After class another student told me that I will be considered eccentric if I continue talking about a perfect society that will never be achieved. I told her that I would rather sacrifice my reputation and be eccentric than to ignore social problems or believe we…