Be feared my friend

2009, Flickr, Photography

Be feared my friend

Fear is the main source of superstition, and one of the main sources of cruelty. To conquer fear is the beginning of wisdom. – Bertrand Russell (1872 – 1970).

A Dutch politician introduced a plan to raise taxes for wearing islamic headscarves. Feared are those not being different, but those who spread fear among others.

21 thoughts on “Be feared my friend

  1. You are so not serious! Wait! Did I get this right? You’d have to pay a higher tax rate if you wore a scarf? Wow! You are kidding. That’s not only blatantly racist, it’s also absolutely insane AND inane. If someone like that got elected into office, dude, you’ve got problems. Then again, we had Bush for 8 years sooo I guess we’re more or less even when it comes to the inane part… 🙂

  2. Hi Wouter,
    I’ve been studying in Holand for 1 year. I really like the free atmosphere there, but sometimes I can also feel the unfriendliness surrounding me. I feel so sad to see this news and even sader to know this proposal is supported by the public. However, I am still willing to believe there are many people like you who are really open minded in Holand and in this world.


  3. Fantastic frame. She seems quite relaxed and mostly interested in her cellphone-just like many others of her generation.
    I am all for a pluralistic society. But what this picture shows me is, how similar people have become, how colorless the society actually is: because for the most part everyone’s life revolves around same mundane habits and objects.
    We are only left with symbols and flags such as headscarf to hold on to our differences: easily distinguishable, and also extremely superficial and convenient way to identify and differentiate ourselves from others. This creates a wonderful comfort zone for opposers as well as proponents of the headscarf. A good way to avoid the real questions! How “free” can you be -with or without a headscarf-with a cellphone in your hand? and of all places, in a shopping mall? Who is kidding who here?

    1. We are only kidding ourselves, thinking we are individuals, but all acting like groups though. And groups often don’t like bystanders. But fear is the fuel for this decade unfortunately, blaming someone’s situation the result of others.

  4. Well, i would be one of them that support him and this law.
    And he might be right. But people that don´t want tho open they´r eyes (and i mean not looking through VF) might be ignorant´s and also destroy the future of all our children. Think twice.

    1. Seriously, I hesitated to approve your comment. I am personally shocked and amazed and I had to read it twice. But I believe in the freedom of speech and equality for all, so let me say this.

      I don’t see discriminating proposals as an effort to protect the future of our children. How can I be protective and an example to my children when we limit the rights of others? It reminds me of my son who learned about Anne Frank today at school, maybe familiar to you? He couldn’t understand why some hated other people without even really knowing them. If only people would have thought twice in the past so many tragedies and bloodshed could have been avoided.

  5. I think it’s pretty funny that someone who writes three sentences with three spelling mistakes calls other people ignorant! Hilarious!!! Well, not so hilarious actually… Quite sad as a matter of fact.
    Fear mongering is alive and kicking in Europe!

    1. It is every where Nathalie, I think. Fear is the number one reason Bush stayed in power for 8 years. Fear is the reason we now have cameras installed everywhere at public places to give us the feeling of safety. Fear is the reason we now have less privacy than ever before. It is sad, very sad.

      If people would have thought twice, maybe they wouldn’t be so polarizing in their ideas.

  6. Hi Wouter – first let me say, I think this is a great photograph. I love the sign you captured in the background that says “women” which appears in the frame next to the woman 😉 – on another note – The context of the post is also great. These discussions need to take place. That is really the only way they get this issue out in the open and resolved (in my opinion). I had to sleep on it before I wrote anything here but I can sum up my last sentence by saying. I agree with your comment (16) that fear is the motivating factor behind a lot of limiting and racial ideas. That one concept hits it on the nail head so to speak as far as I am concerned. To point to specifically what I know is the one sentence about Bush being in power for 8 years. Yes fear is the reason why he was re-elected. See I am not in the hate Bush camp – I did not agree with his policies and I did not think he did everything right, BUT I believe if nothing ever happened his term as president probably would have been a different story. He was doing what he felt was best for the country, right or wrong. I guess it is easy to say he sucked as a president as many people do. But the truth is shortly after he took office he was faced with a circumstance that dictated his entire focus and fear played a huge role in that. It was not just him the American people were working with fear, hate, revenge – it still lingers today. So now we have a new president, and a new outlook with renewed focus. Dialog began in earnest about the fear, the cost and the direction we should go. But I think now we are finally taking a step back and looking at the situation. Trying to correct some misguided steps. It is a process and it takes dialog. Dialog much like the type you have here and for that sir I say thank you 😉
    Happy shooting this weekend Wouter. I hope you find some treasures to capture. – John

    1. Well Bush might say he did what he believed was the right thing to do, but opted for a path of destruction to protect the power and safety of America. I think much could have been avoided with common sense dialogs. Maybe he feared that America would loose more power under his presidency. I don’t know. He must have been in a difficult situation, but I was never in favor of him. Starting the war on terror and all.

      Unfortunately we still have to deal with those consequences, and probably have to do so for many years to come. Dialog is a starter, keeping promises another.

      Happy shooting too John.

    1. Thank you Sudeep. Just this night I saw a documentary about New York, but seen through the eyes of a possible Dutch heritage of the city (When the city of New York was founded, it was named New Amsterdam founded by the Dutch West India Company). In the documentary a preacher said to not look for the differences between people and cultures, but to look for the similarities.

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