Messing Up on Anthony Joshua

first_imgAnthony Joshua By Tayo BalogunI have always held the view that most people around our President Muhammadu Buhari are self seekers. Out mainly to fester their nests while they perpetually ingratiate his ego . They tell him he is the best our country ever had. That our nation under him never had it better. That he has successfully wiped out corruption and has won the war on terror. That the only people hungry are the lazy ones. They create imaginary foes for him to make him see them as loyal apostles of his Change mantra. They lie to him on almost every issue and create a world distanced from reality for him.Two years ago his Agriculture Minister told him most of the rice factories in Thailand are foreclosed because of the rice we produce in our country! I got to pity our President when the Vice President Yemi Osinbajo during the Presidential Debate on national television said that his principal does not know about most things happening in the country. ‘ He doesn’t know. He is not aware’ was how he put it. I feel a pity for our President because he does appear to be shortchanged by those around him who keep preying on his perceived weaknesses of ever wanting to be adulated and a tendency to criminally delegate authority to those who are not necessarily competent.While I was rooting for Buhari in 2015, I knew he could only function properly as a Board Chairman who would assemble the best there are to help him rule. More like a Ronald Reagan. But instead, he chose mostly incompetent cronies . That is why we now have abundant evidence of a government on AWOL! The culminating result is that now everything is at sixes and sevens. We are properly speaking in a state of anomie.The latest illustration of this is the preventable travel ban placed on our country by a nation that has been most helpful to us in all aspects of our development as a country. People around our President are not going to do their jobs but will seek to do others’ badly.Let me illustrate with the wrongly handled Anthony Joshua presentation to the President in London recently. Most readers of this column would know that Joshua fought and reclaimed the WBO,WBA, IBF and IBO world heavyweight titles from Andy Ruiz late last year after the Mexican American had unexpectedly earlier defeated him. Despite fighting as a British boxer, Anthony Oluwafemi Olaseni Joshua has never shied away from identifying with our country. In a recent television commercial, he proudly claimed he has been able to draw strenght from his Nigerianness which has made it possible for him to benefit from our never say die spirit of turning adverse situations around to get victories. He has not exactly become a folk hero but he surely has a huge drawing power in our country.When he won the rematch against Ruiz, it was akin to Nigeria winning a major sporting event. Most people wanted our country to honor him and use his victory to motivate our youths. To make them believe they can possitively turn their adversity around. The expectation was that a reception would be organized for him . He would come to the country, visit a few places, get to address youths and generally have his day in our sun. Ànd in the process, give hope to millions who have little expectations for a better tomorrow.Anthony Joshua’s anticipated official visit would have helped this administration to no end. Everyone would have benefitted – the street urchins, young Nigerians who look forward unendingly to having something to celebrate, our government looking for anything to calm and placate a restive populace. But some officials perhaps wanting to find something for the President to do, since they can not justify why Buhari would spend eight days in the UK to attend a two day so-called summit, felt squeezing the ‘Joshua Dobale’ visit to the President would be a bright idea. In the process they shortchanged our country and denied Buhari another opportunity to move this country forward.Sports can do a lot for this country and our President must open his eyes to the numerous advantages inherent in it.May the LORD bless our country.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegramlast_img read more

When God Gave Israelites the Torah

first_imgWOODLAND HILLS – Revelations and eyebrow-raising stories from the Torah will be featured Tuesday during a Shavuot study session at Temple Aliyah. The five-hour session – dubbed “Bible Stories My Rabbi Never Taught Me (and My Mother Doesn’t Want Me to Know)” – will feature six rabbis presented by Temple Aliyah, Congregation Shir Ami and Temple Kol Tikvah. Shavuot, which is Hebrew for “weeks,” is the Jewish celebration of God’s giving of the Torah – including the Ten Commandments – at Mount Sinai. Verses in Exodus 19 tell of thunder, lightning, resounding horn blasts, a cloud of smoke and the trembling of the Israelites as God spoke. But the two-day festival marking the event is most associated with eating dairy delicacies including kugels, blintzes and cheesecake; it doesn’t command the same high-profile fanfare of Passover or the High Holy Days. “Shavuot is the most overlooked Jewish holiday. And it’s huge!” exclaimed Rabbi Stewart Vogel from Temple Aliyah. “In truth, it should be the most compelling Jewish holiday. “God, Torah and the Jewish people – that’s the essence of Judaism, and on Shavuot those three come together.” Unlike Passover’s ritual-laden Seder, Vogel said, Shavuot doesn’t have a significant home ritual. “It’s also not like the synagogue holidays of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur that speak to the individual about change and self-reflection,” said Vogel. “Shavuot is the Jewish communal experience – a powerful moment as a people. “Shavuot is the process by which we relive and experience that moment of receiving Torah, and it should be a fresh and compelling relationship.” But Shavuot does have a tradition underlain with mysticism. Tikkun Leyl Shavuot – “repairing the night” – is a communal study that in some congregations is held literally all night until dawn. The concept is designed to re-create the excitement and edginess Israelites might have felt as they stayed up all night in anticipation of hearing God. At Tuesday’s event, Rabbi Jennifer Flam from Temple Aliyah will discuss “Song of Songs: Holy or Blasphemous?” While the “Song of Songs” is controversial, Flam said it appears to be a love poem. “We will uncover the holiness and look at the nuances. We will understand that it is a love story between God and Israel,” she said. The one-hour session will present Rabbinic thought and contemporary understandings of the poem, as well as a look at modern Israeli poems. “We study all night (on Shavuot) to merit to receive the Torah,” Flam said. “I would like (the study session participants) to increase their relationship to the tradition and feel that they are part of a larger community. I’m hoping that they will feel a real closeness to Torah and be engaged by its teachings in a new way.” On Shavuot, observant Jews will refrain from work and Jewish day schools are closed. It also is customary on the first day to read the Ten Commandments during morning services, as well as the Book of Ruth. Vogel said Shavuot is a reminder that learning should be a lifelong pursuit. “Torah literally means teaching. The important role of study, learning and applying those in our life becomes the message of Shavuot. For me, I like that,” he said. “We’re showing that we’re not afraid of these stories (at the study session). “People don’t really know these stories. We’re going to tackle the most controversial to help to understand them. If the Torah is the most sacred work, why did God put these stories in? We’re going to find out what should Torah mean in our lives.” Tikkun Leyl Shavuot, 7:30 p.m. Tuesday to 12:15 a.m. Wednesday, Temple Aliyah, 6025 Valley Circle Blvd., Woodland Hills. Minyan, 7:30-7:45 p.m. Reservations requested. Call (818) 346-3545. “What Did She Really Uncover? A Closer Look at Ruth and Boaz on the Threshing Room Floor,” led by Rabbi Janet Offel and “David, King of Israel?” led by Rabbi Adam Schaffer, from 7:50-8:50 p.m.; “What’s Up With Lot? The Troubled Stories of a Father and His Daughters,” led by Rabbi Stewart Vogel and “What’s Really Behind the Veil? Exploring the Tale of Tamar and Yehudah,” led by Rabbinic Intern Gary Oren, from 8:55-9:55 p.m.; “Song of Songs: Holy or Blasphemous?” led by Rabbi Jennifer Flam and “The Rebellious Son: What to Do When We Feel Like Killing Our Children,” led by Rabbi David Vorspan, from 10-11 p.m. “Censoring the Torah and Haftarah: What Were the Rabbis Thinking?” led by scholar Joel Gereboff, from 11:15 p.m.-12:15 a.m. holly.andres@dailynews.com (818) 713-3708160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more