by Naden Martin
September 16, 2002
I'm so glad that I found your website. What a relief. I was feeling so alone, being that a lot of SGI members take a "blame America" first stance. Your position on Iraq is so clear and honest and doesn't need anything added to it. It's perplexing to me how so many members don't want to acknowledge that the real problems that poor countries have is that they lack the freedoms that we have. No freedom of speech, private property ownership, freedom of assembly, etc...And so many people under such systems are complicit. When I started chanting sixteen years ago, I was taught self-responsibility. If I wanted my karma to change, I had to chant about it and take action. Not my leaders. Me. Now, I get the impression that not only am I responsible for my karma, but I'm responsible for the karma of every person in a third-world country. I don't buy it. I know we're not perfect, but we're not tyrants either. I can't think of a country with a better track record.
I was a bit disturbed by Pres. Ikeda's 2002 Peace Proposal. There's quite a bit that I found disagreeable. He mentions that our war in Afghanistan was a one-sided war. Not so. We were attacked first. Those planes flying into buildings was an act of war. Not to mention that many people in that country are now enjoying freedoms that they couldn't under the Taliban. Another thing that disturbed me was the emphasis on world governance. I think it's dangerous to give up sovereignty. The U.N. is comprised of many nations that would love nothing more than to see us fall. I know folks don't want to admit it, but there's a lot of jealousy in this world. That's why you see the U.S. getting blamed for all the troubles in the world.
I disagree with Pres. Ikeda's stance that we need a worldwide Marshall Plan. This does nothing but create worldwide welfare (which we already have). Even people in poor countries need to take responsibility for their actions. Not to sound cold, but if you can't feed, clothe, and house yourself, how are you going to feed, clothe, and house other people? Answer: you're not. What happens is that poor countries tell rich countries that they are beholden to them simply because they have more. My response is," Practice delayed gratification".
Another problem that I have with this worldwide Marshall Plan is that the money the U.S. already gives to poor nations never gets to the intended recipient. Instead, it keeps these corrupt systems going. A good example is the last big U.N. meeting in South Africa. It didn't get mentioned in the press much, but the bigwigs that attended this meeting give a new meaning to "hypocrisy". The meeting was held in an exclusive, gated community, so that the "undesirables" couldn't get to the attendees. The food these people dined on was an outrage, considering that they're always bashing the U.S. The head chef said that many of these people don't know what they want to eat, so they had to have everything on hand. Tons of food. These attendees were in South Africa to talk about the poor and did nothing to help the very people right there in their midst. By the way, the luxuries they enjoyed were paid by the American and British taxpayer (the ones they spend so much time criticizing for being wealthy), for the most part. I read this on a British newspaper's website and will look it up so you can read it for yourself. This article also mentioned how these earth-friendly people had a bunch of trees chopped down to park their limousines.
Obviously, I have a few problems with the U.N. I think about the Human Rights Commission and wonder why countries like Nigeria (stoning a woman to death for having a baby out-of-wedlock) and the Sudan (slavery still exists there) are on it. This is a farce. Now the world wants us to negotiate with Saddam Hussein. It's as if the lessons of WWII haven't been learned and sadly, the rest of the world doesn't have a good track record when it comes to freedom and human rights.
I'll continue to chant, but I can no longer support the SGI with my money or my time until I see some change. I look forward to hearing your thoughts.
September 17, 2002
Your website has been a beacon in the dark for me. I read Pres. Ikeda's 2002 Peace Proposal and felt so alone. There were so many things I found disagreeable. He seems to advocate a world government, run by the United Nations. I believe strongly in the U.S. remaining a sovereign nation and I find it hard to believe that he isn't aware of the corrupt practices of the U.N. If he is aware, then how can he support it so strongly? The only conclusion I can make is that it's a case of "birds of a feather..."
I emailed my take on SGI to you (hope you received it) and mentioned the last big U.N. meeting in South Africa. The elitist attitude of the participants gave a new meaning to the word "hypocrisy". There's a British newspaper's website that told of the extravagance that these people enjoyed while castigating the U.S. and Britain (the ones who paid for the trip). And they were there because they "care about the poor people".
I like how you tell visitors to your
website to look for justice as the guide to faith and action. I know that
my views on this war and on the causes of poverty in the world are out
By the way, if you haven't already done so, please read Pres. Ikeda's 2002 Peace Proposal. Interestingly, he criticizes the U.S. and praises Japan and other countries as upholding freedom, rights, etc...Funny, Japan doesn't have a great track record when it comes to these things. I guess it's like you said, you have to watch out for those that would rewrite history.