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Earth Hour 2009

Posted by: Jennifer Scarlott on

My daughter Julia and I, and friends and family across New York City and the northeastern U.S., are about to turn our lights out for 60 minutes of Earth Hour 2009... it is 8:18 pm and counting... last light to go out will be the one by the front door... we will arrange candles in the shape of 3-5-0 and take a photo of them to

O-Ba-Ma

Posted by: Jennifer Scarlott on

Restless crowds grow calmer when they chant the name. The name, and the man, represent so much, to so many people. It's a remarkable time to be American, to feel, what, pride in country? So many of us, for so long, have felt alienated by, disassociated from, our own country, preferring to think of ourselves as global citizens,

Nature Nurtures

Posted by: Jennifer Scarlott on

The days are short here in New York. The pale winter sunlight fades by 4:30 in the afternoon, giving way to interminably long, pitch-black nights. Icicles lengthen, new snow falls upon old. Giant lily pads of ice form on the river, making me wonder when I will spot my first ice frog, hopping from pad to pad. Across the river,

Tigers and Terrorism

Posted by: Bittu Sahgal on

I have been making calls across the country to establish whether or not the forest authorities are aware of the way in which insurgents, separatists and insurrectionists of all descriptions are using unprotected forest wealth to finance their anti-national activities. I was alarmed to discover that forest officers in most


In just a little more than a month, the world will see the end of George W. Bush (one would hope that eight years into his presidency, most Americans would not chuckle at shoe-hurling Iraqis, but be humbled by their fury and pain), though not his poisonous legacy, which we'll have to work long and hard to uproot. Things are


Development Fundamentalists

Posted by: Bittu Sahgal on

What is it in the make up of humans that prevents them from appreciating the gift of life? I was in Colaba in Mumbai when bombs, grenades and bullets were unleashed on innocents. It took me seven hours to get my family home and safe. There was no anger in me while the ugly saga was playing itself out, just sadness and amazement


Sunlight and Shadow

Posted by: Jennifer Scarlott on

Today, Mumbai reaches one week since terrorists committed unspeakable acts there. What must it be like to be in Mumbai, feeling the strength and fragility of the city and the people? Life is so full of contradictions and contrasts, of sunlight and shadow. F.W. Champion's The Jungle in Sunlight and Shadow sits on


The forgotten prophet

Posted by: Bittu Sahgal on

I have a few letters describing some of the dishonest means Congressmen are resorting to in order to further their selfish interest... I do not want to live to see all this. But if they go on deceiving us, there will be such a tremendous upheaval that the golden history of our cherished freedom, won without shedding a drop of


Tears for Mumbai

Posted by: Jennifer Scarlott on

The Death Eaters have come to Mumbai, and broken the hearts, but not the spirits, of Mumbaikars and every person around the world who loves that city and the many beautiful ideas it embodies. I am speechless at the gross cruelty and inhumanity of which some people are capable. I am sickened when I think of the mortal danger


Yes, We Can!

Posted by: Bittu on

In Barack Obama, the country of my birth has, at long last, elected an African-American. In fact, a person of mixed race – a self-described “mutt” – a person who is comfortable with intellectual complexity, and who is deeply drawn to lifting people up through hope, rather than keeping them down, in fear. I’m no