Tag: humanity

We will speak up!

Do you feel better now, having spent the better part of half an hour trying to convince me of your hateful racist opinions being true? Would you feel better if you succeeded?

And why the need? Why does it matter to you how I feel? It doesn’t change you when I say I believe every person is the same, that I don’t look to color or religion when I judge. 

You get so busy; googling statistics, raising your voice, cheeks red with excitement, not the good kind, though. They are less intelligent, you state. You read that article once. Because they haven’t been educated for generations, these people. But of course, you’re not a racist. It’s just a question about what culture you’re raised in. This makes it okay, you obviously think. 

These statistics, the articles, you’re exchanging religion with culture makes it okay for you to think less of other people, to judge them, to view yourself as superior. This matters to you, obviously, the feeling superior. It matters a lot.

Your words and arguments start feeling physical, suffocating me with their hatred. The room feels smaller and smaller. I feel like screaming.
In this moment, you’re everything that’s wrong with this world.

The right wing hate, the bigotry and the wars. The self-righteous self-serving bullshit …

And you call me blind to the facts. You call us blind to the facts. 

Us. The ones who want peace, the ones who don’t judge people by the color of their skin, the aim of their prayers or the land they came from. I’m blind, you scream, waving around your statistics.

I have long since shut up. You won’t let me talk in anyway, and if you did, you wouldn’t listen. You will never be able to hear me.

You scream so loud trying to convince me with your hate, I believe you’re trying to drown out how much your voice resonates with the memories of Holocaust. How it all began once before … 
I will speak up, but not to you. I will speak up to the world. To us. Those like me. I know you’re out there. We will speak up.

The hate will never win. 

Cheetos and lost souls/Osterejer og fortabte sjæle

(scroll ned for den danske version)

This is my favorite picture of Leonard Cohen.


I don’t know where I got, when or how. I don’t remember that anymore. I don’t even know if I’m allowed to have it or put it on here. If no, please tell me, and I’ll delete it.

It’s on my screensaver, and ever so often, it pops up on my screen among old family pictures, cute animals, clever quotes and pictures of books (yeah, yeah) and it never fails to make me smile. He’s buying  cheetos! Come on! He’s The Most Amazing Singer and Poet, he is perfection, and he is buying cheetos … If you don’t see it now, you never will.

What’s so special about it, besides it being a picture of the legendary Leonard Cohen buying cheetos? Well, off the top of my head: because it’s a picture of him being anyone and everyone. Do you know what I mean?

It reminds me that at the end of the day, after the show, when the movie is over, we’re the same. We clock out from the office, we switch off the mic, we take off the costume – and we head home. We turn off the lights, and in that dark room, all alone, there is no difference between us: we are all souls. Alone with our thoughts, nothing is hidden anymore.

These days it can be hard to remember that we’re all the same – and that we are all humans with souls. No difference between us – none better than the other.

The breaking news flashing red on my phone screen ever so often makes it even harder to remember. Waking up yesterday morning with a screen full of screaming death and terror – followed up by angst, by fear, by threats, hate and lynch mobs, by that little girl’s face, forever frozen in time for her parents to remember like that and never any older, please All That’s Good, let them remember her like that and not in the last moments – all of them, little kids, teenagers, parents waiting. Just people, just people like you and me, anyone and everyone, people who like cheetos, people going home to switch off the lights and be no different, falling asleep, dreaming.

The randomness. The insanity behind it. And please, for the sake of there ever being a chance of peace on this blue planet – please all of you STOP BLAMING RELIGION. This has NOTHING TO DO WITH RELIGION. Please, once and for all, get this into your heads! No religion on this planet condones killing! NONE! These insane souls, lost in hate, know nothing about religion, and Islam would never ever condone them. So please stop now before the people behind these attacks win.

Because this is what they want. They want the fear, the hate, the war between religions. Nothing will help them to power as much as this.

If we are to snub them out and win this we have to stand by each other across countries, cultures and religions. Shoulder by shoulder, soul by soul, hand in hand against evil.

I saw this happening in Manchester, in London, in Stockholm, in Berlin … In the midst of chaos, in the dark of terror, it happened – tick, tick – word for word – thought for thought: I am here. I can help. Take my hand. Twitter. Facebook – all those yelled-at platforms, accused of separating people and  making them cold and non-caring – it all happened here: Come to my place. I have coffee. I have food. I have a phone. I have a heart.

This is it! This is what holds up against terror. This is it exactly. It is right there: The selflessness, the empathy, the love that strings us together as human beings.

The lost souls out there, right now they make us feel helpless, targeted, unsafe. The attacks are random and apparently, they have no limits. Even kids …

And we cry because what else can we do. The horror is too great to bear, it breaks something inside of you and it feels as if it will never be light again, it will never be okay.

And I cry for all that is lost, for the dead and the hurt, for the mothers screaming out their grief. I cry for the people who had to see such a thing, those scarred for life, inside and out, the scared, the hurt, the grievers. And I cry for the people who just want to live their lives in peace, in happiness, who know nothing about this war and who want nothing to do with this. And I cry because I am so helpless in this. Because I don’t know what to do. I don’t know what can be done.

And I turn again to the messages of love and hope, the outstretched hands, those who stand up against the hate, the fear. Those who speak up and say: This is not us. This is not what we believe. And I see them lighting the stars one by one in the darkness. I see it happening and I count them, one for one, I count them and I pick up the pieces of my broken heart from the floor, telling myself that if these people can do it, so can I.

And I write this, and my screensaver pops up, and once again, Leonard is buying cheetos. We are all anyone and everyone. Even the greatest legends buy cheetos sometimes, even the evillest people have a soul. And it says it all.

Against this darkness; it is but a lost soul, an anyone and everyone who got lost out there, and we take each others hands, and we speak it, we tweet it, we post it, we stand together, we stand close to those who lost, those who grieve, and we know it, we believe it, we speak it even as we cry, knowing we must hold on, we must hold fast, we speak it:



Osterejer og fortabte sjæle

Dette er mit yndlingsbillede af Leonard Cohen

Jeg ved ikke, hvor jeg fik det fra, hvornår eller hvordan. Jeg kan ikke huske det mere. Jeg ved ikke engang, om jeg har lov til at have det eller putte det på her. Hvis ikke, så sig til, så sletter jeg det.

Det er på min pauseskærm, og engang imellem kommer det op på min skærm mellem gamle familiebilleder, nuttede dyr, kloge citater og billeder af bøger (ja, ja), og det får mig altid til at smile. Han køber osterejer! Hold nu op! Han er Den Mest Fantastiske Sanger og Digter, han er perfektion, og han køber osterejer … Hvis du ikke ser det nu, så ser du det aldrig.

Hvad er det, der er så specielt ved det, udover at det er et billede af den legendariske Leonard Cohen, der køber osterejer? Tja, det første, der falder mig ind, er, at det er fordi, det er et billede af ham som alle og enhver. Ved du, hvad jeg mener?

Det minder mig om, at når aftenen falder på, efter showet, når filmen er slut, så er vi ens. Vi stempler ud fra kontoret, vi slukker mikrofonen, vi tager kostumet af – og vi går hjemad. Vi slukker lyset, og i det mørke rum, helt alene, er der ingen forskel på os: vi er alle sjæle. Alene med vores tanker, intet er skjult mere.

I disse dage kan det være svært at huske, at vi alle er ens – og at vi alle er mennesker med sjæle. Ingen forskel på os – ingen bedre end den anden.

Breaking news, der blinker rødt på min telefonskærm nu og da, gør det endnu sværere at huske. At vågne i går morges med en skærm fuld af skrigende død og terror – efterfulgt af angst, af frygt, af trusler, had og lynchstemning, af den lille piges ansigt, for evigt frosset i tid så hendes forældre kan huske hende sådan og aldrig ældre, åh, Alt Der er Godt, lad dem huske hende sådan og ikke i de sidste øjeblikke – dem alle, små børn, teenagers, forældre der ventede. Bare mennesker, bare mennesker som dig og mig, alle og enhver, mennesker, der kan lide osterejer, mennesker på vej hjem for at slukke lyset og ikke være anderledes, falde i søvn, drømme.

Vilkårligheden. Vanviddet bag det. Og vær nu søde, hvis der nogen sinde skal være den mindste chance for fred på denne blå planet – vær nu søde alle sammen og STOP MED AT SKYDE SKYLDEN PÅ RELIGION. Dette har INTET MED RELIGION AT GØRE. Vær nu søde at få det ind i jeres hoveder! Ingen religion på denne planet støtter drab. INGEN! Disse vanvittige sjæle, fortabt i had, ved intet om religion, and Islam ville aldrig støtte den. Så vær nu søde at stoppe før folkene bag disse angreb vinder.

For dette er, hvad de ønsker. De ønsker angsten, hadet, krigen mellem religioner. Intet vil hjælpe dem til magten som dette.

Hvis vi skal udrydde dem og vinde dette må vi stå sammen på tværs af lande, kulturer og religioner. Skulder ved skulder, sjæl ved sjæl, hånd i hånd mod ondskab.

Jeg så dette ske i Manchester, i London, i Stockholm, i Berlin … Midt i kaos, midt i terrorens mørke, skete det – tik, tik – ord for ord – tanke for tanke: Jeg er her. Jeg kan hjælpe. Tag min hånd. Twitter. Facebook – alle disse udskældte platforme, beskyldte for at separere mennesker og gøre dem kolde og ligeglade – det hele skete her: Kom over til mig. Jeg har kaffe. Jeg har mad. Jeg har en telefon. Jeg har et hjerte.

Det er det her! Det er det her, der holder stand mod terror. Det er præcist dette. Det er lige her: Det uselviske, empatien, kærligheden, der binder os sammen som mennesker.

De fortabte sjæle derude, de får os lige nu til at føle os hjælpeløse, udsatte, usikre. Angrebene er vilkårlige og åbenbart har de ingen grænser. Endda børn …

Og vi græder, for hvad andet kan vi gøre. Rædslen er for stor at bære, den ødelægger noget indeni dig, og det føles som om, det aldrig bliver lyst igen, det bliver aldrig okay.

Og jeg græder for alt det, der er tabt, for de døde og de sårede, for mødrene der skriger deres sorg ud. Jeg græder for dem, der måtte se sådan noget, dem, der er mærket for livet, indeni og udenpå, de bange, de sårede, de sørgende. Og jeg græder for dem, som bare ønsker at leve deres liv i fred, i glæde, som intet ved om denne krig og som ikke vil have noget med den at gøre. Og jeg græder, fordi jeg er hjælpeløs i dette. Fordi jeg ikke ved, hvad jeg skal gøre. Jeg ved ikke, hvad der kan gøres.

Og igen vender jeg mig mod beskederne om kærlighed og håb, de udstrakte hænder, de, som holder stand mod hadet, frygten. Dem, som taler og siger: Dette er ikke os. Dette er ikke, hvad vi tror på. Og jeg ser dem tænde stjernerne en efter en i mørket. Jeg ser det ske, og jeg tæller dem, en efter en, jeg tæller dem, og jeg samler stykkerne af mit knuste hjerte op fra gulvet, mens jeg fortæller mig selv, at hvis disse mennesker kan gøre det, så kan jeg også.

Og jeg skriver dette, og min pauseskærm kommer på, og igen køber Leonard Cohen osterejer. Vi er alle alle og enhver. Selv de største legender køber osterejer engang imellem, selv de ondeste mennesker har en sjæl. Og det siger alt.

Mod dette mørke; det er blot en fortabt sjæl, en alle og enhver, som blev væk derude, og vi tager hinandens hænder, og vi siger det, vi tweeter det, vi poster det, vi står sammen, vi står tæt omkring dem, som mistede, dem, som sørger, og vi ved det, vi tror på det, vi siger det selvom vi græder, velvidende at vi må holde ved, vi må holde fast, vi siger det:







Det falske skræmmebillede/The fake scare story

Et af de ord, der oftest bliver slynget rundt i tidens mest populære debat, er ordet: islam. Det er som om, islam står i lighedstegn med alle udlændinge, flygtninge, indvandrere og migranter, som om alle, der krydser den danske grænse uden at være født i Danmark, hører under islam. Det er så uhyggeligt unuanceret, men man må jo indse, at det er det, som gør det så utroligt nemt at male et skræmmebillede for alle, der ikke evner eller orker at skabe sit eget overblik.

Islam er en religion på linje med kristendom, jødedom og andre. En religion er ikke det samme som kultur, og man kan på ingen måde skære alle, der deler en religion, over en kam. Af samme grund kan det simpelthen ikke lade sig gøre at påstå, at alle, der tror på islam, er ens. Og på samme måde kan man ikke påstå, at en bestemt religion er bedre end en anden.

Vi ved alle, hvad der er blevet begået af mord, krig og forbrydelser i kristendommens navn. Og hvad der stadig begås i religionens navn i dens mere ekstreme grene. Hvis du løfter en finger mod en religion, må du løfte den mod alle, som bruger religionen som et våben i deres personlige vendetta.

Det er nemlig personligt. Det handler ikke om kultur eller religion. Det handler om personer. Jeg kender mange mennesker med forskellige religioner, kulturer og personligheder. Hverken kultur eller religion definerer dem som mennesker. Den kristne er ikke nødvendigvis medmenneskelig og forstående, ligesom muslimen ikke nødvendigvis er fjendsk og intolerant. Heller ikke omvendt. De er alle forskellige personer med forskellige holdninger. Nogle holdninger er givetvis præget af kultur, barndom, religion og omgivelser, men alle som en er de mennesker domineret af personlighed mere end noget andet.

Hvad skaber et menneskes personlighed? Det er en større afhandling, men jeg tør godt påstå, at flere millioner mennesker ikke har en ens personlighed, selvom de deler samme religion. Den gruppe indeholder diversitet i samme mål som enhver anden religiøs gruppe.

Er det så denne gruppes kultur, der er et problem? Nej, for kulturen er nøjagtigt som religionen, ligeså mangeartet og præget af alt mulig andet. Alle, der kommer fra Danmark er ens … Nej vel. Heller ikke alle fra Jylland, fra København eller fra Lille Olmstrup.

Det kan ikke lade sig gøre at påstå, at alle fra en gruppering er ens. Derfor kan det heller ikke lade sig gøre at danne en mening om et menneske baseret på det menneskes kultur eller religion. Ergo kan et menneske alene dømmes på dets person, m.a.o. det menneskes handlinger og meninger.

Og så er det svært at male et dominerende skræmmebillede over en befolkningsgruppe.

Hvordan vil jeg ses af andre mennesker? Som dansker? En del af en bestemt nationalitet og kultur? Er jeg som alle andre danskere? Så bestemt ikke. Som kristen så? Nej. Jeg er bestemt ikke religiøs på noget plan. Hvad så? Hvordan skal andre dømme og kategorisere mig? Som menneske, tak, som person. Kom ud og mød mig, se mig i øjnene, tal med mig og lær mig at kende. Derefter kan du dømme, hvis du finder dom nødvendigt.

Så drop nu brugen af islam i skræmmekampagner. Drop nu forsøget på at modstille religioner. Drop nu i det hele taget religionen som sagens kerne. Lad mennesket møde mennesket. Se udover alle de prædikater, fordomme og holdninger som alligevel ikke kan bære i det mellemmenneskelige møde.

Lad os nu tale om det, der er vigtigt.


One of the words most often used in the most popular debate at this time is the word: islam. It is as if islam equate with all foreigners, refugees, immigrants and migrants, as if all who cross the Danish border without being born in Denmark belong to islam. It’s so eerily undiscriminating, but you have to realize that this is what makes it so incredibly easy to create a scare story for all who haven’t the ability or the strength to create their own overview.

Islam is a religion just like christianity, judaism and others. A religion isn’t the same as culture, and you cannot in any way lump all together who share a religion. For the same reason you simply cannot claim that all who believe in islam are alike. And in the same way you cannot claim that one certain religion is better than the other.


We all know what has been done concerning murders, wars and crimes in the name of christianity. And what is still being done in the name of religion in the more extreme branches. If you raise a warning finger at a religion, you must raise it at all who use religion as a weapon in their personal vendetta.

Because it is personal. It has nothing to do with culture or religion. It is all about people. I know a lot of people with different religions, cultures and personalities. Neither culture nor religion define them as people. The christian isn’t necessarily humane and understanding and the muslim isn’t necessarily hostile and intolerant. Neither the other way around. They are all different persons with different agendas. Some agendas are certainly colored by culture, childhood, religion and surroundings, but all of them are people dominated by personality more than anything else.

What creates a personality? That would be a greater dissertation, but I dare claim that many millions of people haven’t the same personality even though they share a religion. That group contains diversity measuring up to that of any other religious group.

Is it then the culture of this group, which is a problem? No, culture is exactly like religion, just as varied and colored by many things. All who come from Denmark are alike … Nope. Not from Jutland either, from Copenhagen or Little Olmstrup.

You just cannot claim that everyone from a certain group are alike. Therefore you cannot have an opinion about a person based on that person’s culture or religion. Ergo a person can only be judged on its person, i.e. the actions and attitudes of that person.

And then it becomes hard to create a dominating scare story about a group of people.

How do I want to be viewed by other people? As a Dane? Part of a certain nationality and culture? Am I like all other Danes? Definitely not. As a christian then? No. I’m definitely not religious at all. What then? How are others to judge and categorize me? As a human being, thank you, as a person. Come out and meet me, look into my eyes, talk to me and get to know me. Then you can pass judgement on me, if you find it necessary.

So please, stop using islam for the scare stories. Stop trying to oppose religions. In every way just stop making religion the core of the matter. Let people meet the people. Look above all the labels, prejudices and attitudes that in cannot last in the inter-human meeting in anyway.

Let us now talk about that, which is important.