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tv   Religion Ethics Newsweekly  PBS  September 25, 2011 10:00am-10:30am PDT

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>> the governor is trying to tell us what we can or can't do in terms of work for charity. the fundamentals. >> in israel, an interfaith village where israelis and palestinians live together in peace. >> major funding for religion and ethics news weekly is provided by the lily endowment, an indianapolis-based private family foundation dedicated to founders in christian religion, community development and education. additional funding provided by mutual of america. designing customized individual and group retiremt products. that's why we are your retirement company. the estate of william j. carter, the jane henson foundation and corporation for public broadcasting. >> welcome. i'm kim lawton for bob aber
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nethy. thank you for joining us. there is intense debate at the united nations general assembly in new york over the palestinians's controversial request for full recognition as a state. the u.s. is promised to veto in a security council that must approve the request. religious groups are on both sides of the issue. evangelical christians rallied in support of israel while jewish groups released a petition opposing a palestinian bid for stood hood right now. some christian and muslim groups said the time has come for palestinians to have their own state. religious leaders urged renewed moment um for peace negotiations. in his address to the assembly, president obama said there should be no shortcuts to the hard work of negotiating peace. >> peace will not come through statements and resolutions at the united nations. if it were that easy, it would have been accomplished by now.
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>> mahmoud ahmadinejad had a fiery anti-american speech that railed against zionism and accused of u.s. and european nations for being slave masters for greed, arrogance and violence. diplomats from the u.s. and several others walked out during the speech. prior to the meeting. the freedom activists urged the community to take a stce against iran's repression of the christians, muslims and other religious minorities. iran released two american hiker who is were held for two year on accusations of spying. a delegation of religious leaders visiting iran were among those advocating for their release. the delegation included theodore mckerik from washington. bishop john chain from washington and head of the council on american islamic relations. the u.s. leaders med with
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ahmadinejad and discussed efforts to promote more dialogue and promised to urge the u.s. government to release iranian prisoners in i sh s is in a sho compassion. pope benedict xvi has been on a visit to germany. in an address to the german parliament, he urged the country not to ignore religion. his trip included meetings with some of germany's leaders and a trip to the monetary where martin luther, leader once studied. at several stops, protesters demonstrated against the sex abuse crisis and the way the church handled it. some 70,000 attended the olympic stadium. the first phase of park 51, the controversial islamic community center near ground zero opened to the public this week. the opening ceremony featured an exhibit of photographs from children who now live in new
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york city. the space where the portrait fell is a small part of what developers say will be a 15-story building with a pool, auditorium and restaurant. there is also a mosque where prayers are already taking place. the plan for the center set off a nationwide controversy last summer. opponents objected to the presence near ground zero. a national christian organization that provided discounted groceries for the poor ceased operation. angel food ministries served up to 500,000 people a month through the large network of programs. the group blamed the poor economy and rising food prices for the demise. it also had been surrounded by controversy. in 2009, angel feed's finances were investigated by the fbi and raised concerns about the high salaries. no charges were filed. a federal judge is expected to rule this week and have legal
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challenges to alabama's tough new legal challenges. they filed suit, alleging that the law is unconstitutional. they would require law enforcement to check the status of anyone they find suspicious. it would prohibit people from harboring or helping undocumented immigrants. many state religious leaders say this could hinder the ministries. >> like many church leaders, father tom ackermann of birmingham was caught off guard by the toughness of the state's new immigration bill. >> there was some surprise about how extreme it was and how really sort of vicious it was, particularly the vicious rhetoric. we want to affect every aspect of their lives short of shooting them. these are senators saying these things. >> here's what lindsay li lyons had to say about the critics. >> they are cruel or heartless
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or however they want to word it. we have rights to protect our citizens and what is wrong with coming up with solutions to protect our citizens and protect our jobs and our quality of life. >> the solution the legislature came up with caused a promotion. a judge temporarily blocked house bill 56 because of several lawsuits filed by four bishops of different denominations, the justice department, aclu, civil rights groups and county sheriffs and 16 foreign governments. some of the loudest protests came from church leaders like pastor angie wright of the community united church of christ. >> if i have 10 undocumented persons in my church for english as a second language class or worship or vacation bible school and i know they are undocumented, i can go to prison for 10 years and pay a $15,000
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fine. >> in a nut shell, the bill as it stands now criminalizes working, renting, having false papers, shielding, harboring, hiring, and transporting undocumented immigrants. it also deprives them of most local public benefits. as it was intended, it punishes just about every aspect of illegal immigration. >> the reason why we filed the suit is to keep the government out of our business. the government is trying to tell us what we can or can't do in terms of works of mercyy and charity which are fundamental to the faith. >> coming up on the lay up is where most of the hispanics work here in town. this was a processing plant. >> represeative dan williams was the mayor for 18 years until he ran for the legislature three years ago. he supports house bill 56. >> the vast majority of people when i was running for this office, the number one or two
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issue with them was illegal aliens. you need to do something about them. we want something done about them. >> he was elected with the sweep of both houses in the legislature and the governorship in alabama history. the new legislators hammered out an immigration law, that terrifies jeanette, an undocumented mother of two from mexico who has been in the u.s. for more than 10 years. she is a cashier in a store. her husband works in construction. >> [speaking foreign language] >> it's terrorizing ever since they passed this law. we don't go to out. we don't go to restaurants or to the park. [speaking foreign language] >> and it terrifies us to think they may stop. >> she and her husband are buying their home at a very high mortgage rate. the new bill allows the bank or
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anyone they have a contract with to cancel the contract and they would have no recourse. >> i came here because my family didn't have any way to eat. [speaking foreign language] to get this, we worked day and night, three jobs. if i have to leave here one day to the next, if this law goes into effect, i will have to leave my house and my car. [speaking foreign language] we are going to arrive back home in worse shape. >> why make criminals out of people who have been our neighbors and our brothers and sisters? really are not causing any problems for any of us. >> an alabama criminal justice survey found violent crime is down 10% over last year and below the national average. property crime is also down. the mayor said though statistics
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don't hold up in his town. >> you have people coming from other countries that never have driven a car before and they drive here with no insurance or driver's license, et cetera, causing multiple, many accidents. >> he said that wasn't the worst of it. >> you are going to have the underlying current of crime and criminals come in with an influx of the legal. that is based on prostitution and problems your drug activity and gangs that have been present here. just like it is in any community where you have the immigrant issue. >> he said hundreds of illegal immigrants moved in after the poultry companies advertised in mexico looking for cheap labor. >> we had probably with the large poultry plants, 2500 employment. >> they were all white and black
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american citizens. as the years went on and they were able to conduct business with the illegal alien population that, dwind emmed down and dwindled down. >> the hispanic center estimates between 85 and 120,000 immigrants in alabama comprising less than 24% of the workforce. the rate is above the national average at about 10%. >> we have high unemployment not because the hispanic immigrants are here. the housing market went bust and we had a credit crisis. the immigrants have nothing to do with the unemployment. >> it's primarily politicians preying on the fear of people. economic times get tough, people often look for scapegoats. >> i go back to the economy. that's what it always is. people can say what they want to, but when you have a job and you are making money and your
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family is doing all right, you don't have problems. when my children lose their jobs and i start having to help my children and my grandchildren and maybe if i lose my job, i'm concerned about a guy who is illegal coming here working and he's doing okay and i'm not. >> they authorize police to demand papers from people who they suspect are undocumented. something who some say will lead to racial profiling. >> one of the priests have been stopped several times, pulled over. then once they see he has a collar on, go ahead. >> religious leaders are concerned they will be breaking the law if they transport members they know are illegal to church. >> if we are transporting illegal immigrants, that's a violation of the law and those vehicles can be confiscated. >> williams thinks it's
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overblown. >> i don't think you will see a policeman stopping the church buss to see if there is somebody with brown skin riding t sunday school. >> if that wasn't going to happen, they should have written that into the law. i am talking about how the law is written and now how they expect it to be applied. >> th're have been called racist and that it's unfair. >> people look at alabama and they see those grainy films of the 1960s and the police dogs in birmingham. alabama is not like that anymore, but they are trying to bring this back. that's what we are. >> i myself overwhelmingly love thi country. >> victor was brought here by his parent when is he was a toddler. victor is undocumented and part of a group of high school kids calling themselves dreamers who have been very vocal against the law because they are the ones who will likely suffer the most if they or their parents are
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deported. this is jose. he is undocumented. he said his dream was to be a teacher or a doctor. >> i came here at the age of 3. in all honesty, mexico seems like a foreign world to me. with all the problems it has now, the thought of having to go back. >> eduardo has his papers unlike many of his friends. >> i am mostly sad because i got papers and then my friends, most of them have to go back to their country or whatever. i'm here lucky being able to have education and all the benefits they can't. >> we are all trying to get along and raise our children and grandchildren and everything. you have that illegal word. it makes a difference. >> the judge who stayed the enactment of the law said she will issue her decision by september 29th. regardless of the out come, it is likely to be appealed. for addition and ethics news
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weekly, birmingham, alabama. >> this week's debate at the un over state hood for the palestinians has once again highlighted the conflict that plagued the region for decades. during my trip to the holy land, i spoke with leaders about how the political stalemate affects efforts to promote dialogue. i visited an interfaith village where jews and israeli arabs lived together as a witness for peace. nestled in the hills between tel aviv and jerusalem is a village called the oasis of peace. in hebrew and arabic. while the mideast conflict churns all-around, here they create a different reality that said israelis and arabs can live de by side in peace.
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>> we need to learn how to make it possible. we d't take into consideration impossible. it's possible. let's do it now. >> he was founded more than 30 years ago by an egyptian-born monk who died in 1996. he wanted to create a place where jews, muslims and christians intentionally live together in mutual understanding and respect. >> it is toet rid of the conflict. why do we have a conflict. how can we influence the dynamics and change it for the peace-building. >> he is an arab muslim from the galilee region and part of the first group to move here 33 years ago. >> why did you want to be part of this? >> you are asking a difficult question. you assume they know the answer.
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i don't know. it's a way that you can deal with the conflict. cooperation instead of confrontation. dialogue instead of fight. >> today 55 families live here and another 30 families are in the process of moving in. others are on a waiting list if space becomes available. the community screens applicants and chooses who will live here. >> we need a group that are capable to understand that differences between us and not trying to change others cowork on themselves and the transformation will start from skbn not transforming the others. >> there is a big emphasis on education and not just for those who live here, but the greater community as well. the bilingual arabic primary school has 200 schools and the vast majority from outside the village.
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>> the most important thing we are keeping to try to keep equality between arabic and jewish pupils and the stuff on jewish teachers. >> there is adult education as well. the zone and shine directs programsa the the school for peace that sponsors encounter groups and conflict resolution seminars. >> people have to learn history they didn't know and learn power and relations and how to share more equally and learn how to change the images that they have on the other sides. these are challenges that we have to deal all the time with. >> she is jewish and moved to the village. she raised her three children here. >> i don't see the other as the enemy. everywhere they go, they will
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try for equality and for justice. so it's something to experience not just as they heard about it, but lived this. >> the rabbi said it's one of several interfaith projects taking place despite the ongoing tensions in the region. >> these things don't make the news. i often joke because we don't kill anybody and we don't make the news. not page one anyway. i would like people to know there a lot of people in this country who are into dialogue, education, getting to know others and trying to live together. >> he lived in israel for 32 years and directs the interreligious coordinating council based in jerusalem. interfaith work has two tracks. one is promoting dialogue in israel proper between the majority of jewish population and the 20% who are arab muslims and christians. the other is promoting dialogue between people from israel and the palestinian territories that
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can be especially difficult given security concerns. he said the ongoing political stalemate does complicate all their work. >> when there is not a war and there is terror and counter terror, it's easy po bring people together. on the other hand, the lack of political hope and the lack of political progress keeps people from coming out in larger numbers. some say what for? >> sometimes there is something on the political arena and the conflict from let me say violence, terror, events, somewhere. the whole issues are very complicated. >> he works closely on the
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council, a palestinian muslim who lives outside jerusalem in the town which is named for his family. they believe building relationships between individuals lays the ground work for peace. >> we don't invite people to our dialogues to solve the problem. we invite them to get to know one another and do what you can. to mitigate violence and hatred. >> the lack of political progress can be discouraging, but he takes heart in his interfaith work with kids. >> mire hope is more in the younger generation to tell me the truth. less cynical and less tired. they don't have easy political solutions. we don't have those around here. who are reaching out to know each other and to encounter the other and to work with each other and do what's feasible. >> many say spirituality is also
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a key part of building the framework for peace. >> i believe and some others believe that peace education in the absence of the spiritual factor will be not complete. if we will use the spiritual factor, we will be more able, more encouraged to do this full action. >> here there many places where people of all faiths and no faiths can pray or meditate. one is called the space of silence. >> it's a shape, very beautiful. you can come inside. you can play and you can meditate and have muslim, christian, buddhist, anything. everything should be silent. >> here there no walls and no sharp edges. he said the founder, father
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bruno believed you can't talk to others until you talk to god and yourself. his vision was that by pursuing peace, people are doing god's work. whatever their belief system may be. >> the out come, the results. if the result is what god wants from us, we do it. everybody does it his own way. >> that's the work they intend to continue and expand no matter what happens in the political world outside. finally on the calendar, the holiest time on the jewish calendar begins with rosh hashanah and ends 10 days later with yom kippur, the day of atonement. in high holiday services, they hear the sounding of the horn. so far the rabbi says it's a kind of ke up call. >> it's a reminder and sends a shiver that we can be better than weeare.
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how do we approach god but with that strange cry in our ear and lip. they come before god and say who are we? who are we? remember what we could be and help us along. >> also this coming week, hindus celebrate their-night festival that honors their divine mother in various forms. among the most popular manifestation is the warrior and wealth and prosperity. this year amid rising concerns about the pollution in the river, they are making ecofriendly statues of the deities. they are made of colors that will decompose when the festival is over. that's our program for now. i'm kim lawton. follow us on twitter and facebook where i have a fan page too. find us on you tube and watch us any time, anywhere on smart phones and iphone. there is also much mer on our
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website. you can comment on all of our stories and share them. audio and video podcasts are also video. go as we leave you, music from verizon's how sweet the sound competition to find the best gospel choir in america. at the washington, d.c. regional competition, the winner was the james e. jordan jr. adult choir from river dale, maryland. ♪
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barry kibrick: today on "between the lines," how to change bad habits, end unhealthy thinking, and take control of your life with dr. rebecca gladding. welcome. i'm barry kibrick. dr. gladding is a clinical instructor and an attending psychiatrist at the ucla resnick neuropsychiatric hospital and


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