Welcome to Karl Johanson's personal webpage
Welcome to the homepage of Karl Johanson
I am a former student at Knightsbridge University in Denmark. I am now a Sales representative in a clothing firm.
On this page you can read about my research and essays.
I just learned that this Academy was hit by a lawsuit. Apparently they noticed an employee acting improper and violating the personal space of the students. He was warned against his actions.
And that was it.
The management of the school did nothing to prevent that it happened again and now a girl sent to the academy feel violated. The parents have launced the lawsuit. I hope that the lawsuit will mean that there will be proper inspections of treatment facilities in Utah. It has been lacking for many years. The interest of workplaces are regarded as better compared with the safety of the children.
This time no teenager died but in the past two students have lost their lives at Diamond Ranch Academy.
There are also a teacher who was arrested for illegal material involving children on his computer. He was put away for more than 30 years.
Why has Diamond Ranch Academy been allowed to operate as they have done since they were raided in Idaho and forced to re-locate in Utah?
Are local jobs so important compared with the welfare of children?
My RSS feeder on my mail program send me the news from a human rights organization named "Domestic Prisoners of Conscience" where they speak about the boarding school on Fyen named
An amount of alcohol and tobacco was found on the property of the boarding school. The employees then detained the students for hours without access to legal aid or even the right to phone their legal guardians - their parents.
In Denmark the police can detain you but you have right to legal counsel. This right was denied to the students. We are talking of basic human rights.
More than 40 students were suspended and more than 10 were expelled in the end.
I have to say that no child of mine will ever go to one of those boarding schools before they are regulated properly. I am ashamed that my tax-money partly support those schools.
The department of education in Denmark fails to supervise. Not only do we see that some schools restrict the students access to phones and social media during the first weeks of the school year. We have also seen teachers forcing students to go out on the ocean on icy waters resulting in life-long injuries when the boat capsized.
But denying students access to legal counseling when the risk of being expelled are on the table is simply too much.
Working in the night entertainment industry we always honor the rule that what happens in my bar, stays in my bar regardless of who asks the questions. What other students do cannot be anything the individual students should concern themselves with. It is not the responsability for the individual student to inform the school administration about the conduct of other students.
The schools actions are wrong on so many parameters. I hope they close.
There is a lot of info going on the Internet about a boarding school named "Wings of Faith Academy". It is a girl-only boarding school which previous was run under the name "Refruge of Grace Academy".
There is a petition going on against them and there are some of the comments. I am shocked:
I was a student at AGAPE about 4 months ago and it has affected tremendously in a negative way beyond words can explain.
Arsam Mofidi, San Diego, CA 3 years ago
This Place is extremely hateful twords LGBT. The amount of hate crimes against LGBT that go on here unbelievable! The staff are the biggest part of the problem. They preach hate services and what they do is wrong and should be stopped! I could understand if it was coming from the students but all the staff are strongly against that and there was no support! I know a lot of people don't care about LGBT as students but you shouldn't be forced to stay. Agape literally ruined my life. When I turned 18 I had no money, driver license, hair and self esteem.
I attended Refuge of Grace academy formerly known as wings of faith. I had a traumatic experience there as well and want to prevent other young girls from going there and being hurt.
Julia Kim, South Pasadena, CA 2 years ago
Because I attended the Refuge of Grace Academy when they were located in NC, MI and WV. They physically and mentally abused me during the 3 years I was there and they are continuing to do it to others today.
Deanna Livera, Bainbrigge, GA 2 years ago
To end the ongoing abuse that I endured for 22 months at this horrible so called school that haunts me everyday. I want to see that these schools that damage young girls are shut down for good and justice will be served.
traci heck, Yorktown, VA 2 years ago
Agape Boarding School perpetuates child maltreatment! The Missouri Department of Social Services, Children’s Division should investigate allegations of physical and emotional abuse perpetrated by the staff at Agape. This abuse, and the trauma associated with it, has had far-reaching negative impacts for the young men who endured this “school.” No more children should be subjected this abuse! Investigate Agape!
HJ Crume, n/a, CA 2years ago
I attended Agape and can confirm the needless abuse. I once saw a 6'5" former marine pick up a 12 year old, 120lb kid over his shoulder and slam him to the ground. I saw kids pushed down a flight of stairs. I saw someone who talked about running and as punishment was only allowed to wear underwear, a robe, and shoes with no shoe laces IN THE WINTER.
Joseph Barnett, Wichita, KS 2 years ago
I just saw the tragic story about poor Hannah Mclaughlin who died way too young of an overdose.
I know many addicts. I know many former or should I say recovering addicts and I know functional addicts who can maintain a good life while drinking too much or overmedicating themselves so they can accomplish meeting deadlines in high pressure job positions.
Some of them choose to go to rehab and I support them of all my heart. But sometimes I hear of people who have been pressured into rehab. That is never a good idea.
Then we are talking Stalin time where people can be treated into believing a thing they don't believe in the first place.
You can only stop being an active addict with large success once you have reach rock bottom. The drive to remain sober must come from inside. It cannot be pushed upon a person.
The parents of Hannah Mclaughlin sent her to a wilderness program which most likely was SUWS. Later they sent her to a residential boarding school which based on the photos I found most likely was the now closed Aspen Ranch near Loa in Utah.
At SUWS she must have experienced a near death experience. Not so many years ago a boy died there from some kind of fever. When you are out in the woods the doctors office and hospital is not 5 minutes away.
Aspen Ranch with their use of orange jumpsuits. Detention like cells in the basement made many of the teenagers who were sent there believe that they very well could do the crime once they were released because they had done their time at the ranch.
So when poor Hannah Mclaughlin returned home it didn't take long before she was hooked on various drugs and went to jail for some time when she was arrested.
She was released but beside risking falling back into addiction she also had to fight post-traumatic stress disorder as result of her placement in the programs.
In the end her body could no longer take the stress of being an addict and she returned to God.
May she find peace where she is now.
Drugs and alcohol don't kill. What kills is the burden of the things people try to quit their addiction.
Heroin’s tragic story touches UMC (Church website)
Banished Teens is the name of a website with news of boarding school and wilderness program but the webpage does also contain news about teenagers who have died while they had to live outside their family's home:
Here is the link: Banished Teens
So when I opened my mailbox this morning, I saw a post about a girl who is missed by her friends.
It seems that the parents disapprove of her boyfriend so they had her removed to some kind of boot camp styled ranch most likely in Arizona.
I have to ask. Where do you find parents who approve of the boyfriend their daughter will date? It is very seldom.
It is hard to let a teenager go. I had a relative living at my place when his father was stationed abroad and we had our conflicts.
While I disapproved of many of his actions they were not severe enough for me to put him in some kind of private detention or even worse put him on a plane to his father so he would lose out important years in the Denmark in our superior youth culture.
I have to say. I cannot understand this father. The girl named Ellie Parker from Corvallis in Oregon might have made a better choice for a boyfriend but it is her life and if the parents had just a little trust in the manners and teaching they had provided her, they would also had kept her home.
I learned that a girl I have went to school with has died.
People die all the time. Normally it is a tragedy for the family involved. However the interesting thing about her death is not that she has died but how she died.
She was killed down in Syria. Years back when she was a teenager and one of my classmates her parents came to think that she had become too Danish. You know in Denmark it is legal to drink alcohol with the child-safe percentage below 16.5 when you are 16 years of age and of course she just did what every other student in her class did.
So she ended up in Syria. The social services removed her siblings to put the parents under pressure because in Denmark it is illegal to make use of exile as a parenting tool.
Unfortunately she did not come back and while the actions of the social services did save the lives of her siblings the war in Syria claimed her life - A life which in reality ended 7 years ago when she was exiled from the civilization.
May she rest in peace. I will not write her name due to her siblings. There is no need for them to be pushed into the media, if someone from the media reads this post.
It is illegal for parents to exile their children in Denmark. However it seems to be allowed in the United States. I saw this piece in Washington Post about Sofia Roberts from Fairfax, Virginia who was shipped to Siberia. Her life will be over sometime in March 2014 if she is not back in the United States again because then she will not be allowed to enter the United States due to some kind of VISA problem.
It is very cruel parenting we see there. How the social services in Fairfax, Virginia can allow her half-siblings to remain in custody of those two parents is hard for me to believe.
- Chantilly mom ships teen daughter to Siberia. Two years later, she’s still there. Really. (The Washington Times)
- Bring Sofia Home (Support site)
Not only will Italy hit Amanda Knox once again. She was aquitted but because Italy needs the public to read about other things that the corrupt Politicians they elect, they have started the case up again so it steals the headlines.
But I have just learned that a Danish Exchange student aged about 17 was sent home from Gay Mills in Wisconsin. It seems that it was illegal to have sex at that age over there.
I am asking: What kind of firm would arrange for a minor to stay at a place where they cannot have legally sex. I know that some exchange students have been raped by members of the host families and there had been no charges because they want to money to continue to flow in the system while they don't care about the youth in the exchange students.
But to send a girl aged to a state where she cannot have legally sex should be against the law. I will write my local politician to make such traffic stop.
If you are a parent considering to allow your child to travel one year to the United States please avoid the firms Explorius in Denmark and CETUSA in the States.
Check the local laws and if they are just as crazy as in Wisconsin it is not a place for young Danes.
I am in loss over the many innocent lives. I can only hope that their president will allow the teachers to arm themselves to avoid similar tragic events like this in the future.
Many speak of tougher gun laws but living in a country like Denmark I will urge you to consider this. I believe that the only reason for Denmark to have such tough weapon regulation is based on the historical fact that we once were very close to be invaded in 1948 while there were many traitors armed and ready to put our government out of control and aid the invaders.
But the so-called safety provided by the weapon laws in Denmark is false. What the strict weapon control have given us is basically victim disarmament. People are still stabbed to death. Our prisons are overcrowded with youth gang members of non-Danish ethnic origins, some bikers and a lot of people from Eastern Europe coming up here armed with AK-47's now where Denmark has no border control due to our EU membership so they can commit home invasions.
An elderly woman was strangled to her death by two young men from Romania. A young man was stabbed to death by a man from Somalia. An only 12 year old boy was shot in crossfire between two youth gangs.
It sounds like a society where you should be allowed to lock your house and guard it with a sub-machine gun, but sadly it is not allowed here in Denmark. I have sold things of value and I rarely leave my house beside for job reasons. I work in a high risk area serving in bar and I have to live in insecurity. That is the effects of stricter gun control. The criminals will always have weapons.
To politicians in the state of Connecticut: Don't destroy the memory of these kids to aid your own political agenda. It is not a question whether the shooter had too easy access to weapons. The only thing we can concern us selves about is to pray and support the families in grief. There is only little over a week to Christmas which should have been a day of celebration. Now it is a nightmare for the families of those who perished.
I will pray for those who have lost their beloved familymembers.
Well it has been a while. I am still working in a bar. My education has been put on hold. Knightsbridge University has been forced to close due to bureaucrats over in Copenhagen who wants to keep higher education for the selected few.
I am kind of disappointed about the society I am a part of. It seems that only the kids from rich families are entitled to education in Denmark.
But I have my work and it is more than most people have right now in Denmark, so while I am disappointed I am also kind of relieved that I am not unemployed. We know who to blame for the hard times. It is those lazy people in the southern part of Europe who hasn’t known a full day of work in their lives.
They had responsible politician reaching out to them for the last four decades but they just don’t want to work and now their laziness is costing us because we are member of the European Union. I of course will vote “Yes” to having Denmark leaving the European Union right now, but I fear that the Danish politicians are afraid to ask us.
Well I will write much more later. Now I have to go to work.
2011 is over. What woud I wish for 2012.
First and foremost I wish more unhappiness to the outside world. For people like me there are no more early retirement because our parliament changed the age of retirement.
We are even not allowed to save money for our retirement because if we do they will reduce the retirement money with the amount you have saved. It is not something with characterize a welfare state.
The amount of suffering we Danes are exposed to is not fair. People in other countries have it too easy. They need some suffering. Some kind of disaster so we would have something to laugh off so we can forget all the suffering our government have put os through.
We need to protect our jobs. 2011 was the year where I had to reconsider my future. I have studied for years in order to work with information technoligies and now that path is no longer possible because CSC imported poor people from India to work in Denmark for a cup of rice. Education doesn't pay in that business so I dropped out and is now working in a bar.
I have wasted some years on my education where I could have worked full time. I blame the labor unions for not protecting the interest of the members and the Danish government for having sold their departments of to CSC.
The only way I can be comforted is to watch suffering abroad, so that's why I hope that 2012 will give us something like that.
Happy New Year
I just learned that Lindsay Lohan was jailed in violation for her probation. In fact the only thing she did wrong was that the probation department reassigned her to another charity.
It seems that certain charities have a special status by the judges. If I remember the Kids-for-Cash scandal correctly it was certain treatment programs and certain jails which paid the judges a lot of money to get clients to their business.
If I was a politician in the L.A. area, I would demand an audit of this women center. Something is wrong when one charity is more popular than another charity by the courts.
As for now I would ask of all readers that they stop putting time into women centers until this case has been completely solved.
Maybe it is unfair that all women centers pay for the actions of the L.A. downtown women center, but we must all stop any kind of corruption worldwide, so I have no problem punishing a women center in another country.
When I took my cousin in one of the options beside the impossible one - to let him study abroad was to ship him to a boarding school where he only could be home during the weekends.
The entire family hesitated to use this option as the boarding schools lately has changed their student body from at-risk children to children in need to be shelthered from the general youth culture in Denmark.
Families with non-Danish originals used to force their children abroad so they could be beaten into abandon the Danish way of living and married before they could come back. A law prevented this traffic, but their parents wanted to shelter them to some degree. Often the compromise is extremist Christian boarding schools instead.
"An idol is better than no God" seems to be the motto.
But there is another dark side to the Danish boarding schools known as "Efterskoler" in Danish. They isolate the students the first months. The can only use cellphones or speak with their parents in the weekends. Some weekends they even force the students to remain at the school.
The goal by using this exercise is to let the students buy into the program and adjust to not only the sheltered environment but also the spartan environment where the students cannot socialize or party as they do outside the boarding schools.
It is as they create a kind of subculture in the boarding schools where their values are so different than the one outside in the normal society that it becomes risky for the healths of the students.
Some weeks ago a boat carrying 13 students and 2 teachers capsized in the ocean. 5 or 6 students ended up in coma and one teacher died. It is the second known deaths in the boarding schools connected to boating on the ocean. The parents didn't know about what they were doing on the almost frozen ocean because it was normal to take chances with wilderness expeditions during the year.
My cousin could have been living at such a boarding school instead of living here where he can drink a beer and talk about what is bothering or what did take place at the school. I can stop whatever they do at the school, which is not an option for parents who have their children at a boarding school. It could turn out to be the difference between life and death.
That's why I think that I saved the life of my cousin.
So now I am a parent - sort as. My cousin Søren is living at my place renting a room.
It's a long story but his parents had to work in the United States and school abroad - especially the rural parts - is not even near the standard we are used to in Denmark, so he had to find another option.
He could have been sent to a boarding school but it could have made him wierd so we had to join forces as a family and aid something to his future. I had to the room so he is living at my place.
When you live so close and has the responsibility as the oldest person, it will end up in conflicts.
Søren has just started in the Gymnasium - our high schools. In his head it is all about hanging out and getting drunk. I know different because I had been there just a few years ago. To his frustation I know all his tricks and excuses.
Sometime it wears me down. I have been that close to throw him out, but I am no coward and I know the alterntative. I just have to stick with my job towards him and in due time I also think that he would thank me.
I volunteer for a human rights organization. One of the cases is about a 15 year old girl from Hillsboro in Oregon, who is risking to be sent to a correctional boarding school named "Academy at Sisters" by her parents.
They are properly as frustrated as I am with Søren, but I will never understand how they just can give up. Søren is my family. Everything else will have to be given up before I give up a member of my family.
A months ago a 16 year old girl wrote into the Fornits message board and asked for help.
Due to poor grades her parents had decided to banish her to a kind of correctional boarding school, so she could sit in front of a computer all day without teacher and take her high school degree very fast.
It is reading a text and then being quizzed by the computer. Once the score is above the limit, the student can read the next text and then start the on-line quiz again.
Normally you have to have something very bad before you are locked up for a entire school year, but this extreme punishment seems to be about poor grades only.
Due to the nature of the Fornits posters she didn't get the help she needed and in fact the so-called help set her back.
Now a group on Facebook is about her only and her banishment which start next week.
Let us pray that she get released very soon. The school which is called The Academy at Sisters seems to be a tough place where the girls are sent out in the woods once they arrive to work on trails until they have no defense left and will behave like the robots people need to be in order to take their high school in that way.
It is odd that family still are ready to pay for residential treatment which is quiet dangerous to minors. The victim list had two new names on it.
I learned that the Danish people party will ask that the government increases the agelimit for marrying a foreign wife to 28 instead of 24.
It may be the answer Denmark has been looking for. This proposal can save us from bankrupty on the long term, because some of the moochers wil properly travel back to their native country to marry there instead.,
Onve againt it was the politicians from the Danish People party, who took repensibility for situation we are facing right now and saw a solution.
Students complain about that it is difficult to study abroad due to the Bologna Process. They state that the difficulties relating acreditation of the education taken abroad makes them choose not to study abroad at all.
However they forget something. They forget what country they are living in. Denmark has an education system second to none. We cannot afford if anyone takes a shortcut by choosing to leave for months of holiday.
We have to make sure if education provided abroad is close to the level of education we can provide here. Of course it can never be the same but it just need to close enough so the time spent abroad is not wasted.
I had a little accident today. I was going down the stairs at at my appartment when I slipped because they had just washed the stairs.
First I didn't believe that something was wrong but then it started to hurt like hell.
Down to the hospital and they discovered that I had broken some bones in my foot. I am now resting for 6 weeks before I can go out again.
It's a downer.
There was some months where I was concerned with my future. As you have been reading in previous blogs I study at a small university because a high number of foreign students, who have the advantage that they get better grades than Danish students can get the good places in our schools, while we Danes have to endure unbelievable torment by attending schools out in the countryside.
The reason that foreign students are getting better grades is that you according to the old grade scale in Denmark had to make an outstanding and never seen before achievement in order to get an A. Still today teachers forget that Denmark has changed their grade system so it is more alike the grade scale in other countries, so the grade A is handed out twice as often abroad than in Denmark. The old Danish A was something like the American A+++ grade. How often is this one handed out?
This candy store abroad means that Danish employers are hesitant by hiring foreigners because their schooling are not as tough as the Danish schools are.
What is wrong with going to school out in the countryside? In Denmark we have a term for areas outside the major cities. It is called the rotten Banana. It is places in Denmark where there are no night clubs or breakfast restraurants students can attend on weekly basis, so they can socialize without alcohol.
Faced with such an wickedness some Danish students like me decide that we rather would pay for unaccredited education than leaving your family and friends to study in a misanthropic environment.
The previous minister for research and development Helge Sander want to stop my university because it is not accredited. Lucky for me our prime minister Lars Lykke Rasmussen decided to change his employees and we have a new person in charge.
So maybe I am lucky for the second time while attending the Danish education system. I also managed to graduate in time so I avoided doing community service, which is another new harsh enslavement act the politicians have decided to torment high schoolers with.
Community service is an act which should be reserved to the penal system only but unfortunately our politicians wants to label the entire youth generation as criminals by forcing them to do the time before they have committed the crime.
Sometime I have doubts in our system regardless of the fact that I have been lucky so far.
Today the court finally ruled that she was exonerated of all charges so she can return home to her daughter.
It is a good day for democracy and the Danish nation. There are tons of blog-entries and newspaper articles have created a conspiracy theory about some Danish and U.S. officials who wanted to test the Danish anti-terrorism law so they found an old case where a single Danish mother had turned some drug smugglers in when she discovered that the firm she worked for was a cover for the smugglers.
The U.S. officials went down to the prison and offered the smugglers plea bargains if they turned against her which they of course did and then the case started.
Whether all these conspiracy theories are correct or not, I don't know but something is wrong when a woman can endure 3 years of trials in two countries and jail for more than a year in two countries before a judge finds out that there was never a case.
I find it shameful and we as Danes must demand that all those persons involved in this case should loose their jobs. Only then we can trust our justice system again.
It is just beyond belief. There never was a crime. It was only a show-off for the laywers.
Our welfare state is challenged and the citizens who will pay is both the future tax payers and the present one once they retire.
The present taxpayers can see how they will suffer if their health decline as there are huge cut back being conducted right now. There are almost no employees back in our hospitals. The only one which remain are all the bureaucrats moving papers around. The doctors and nurses responsible for the hands-on care are fired.
The present taxpayers have learned that they will be asked to turn and reuse their diapers if their only have made number one as it has been seen in our nursing homes already.
The future taxpayers face the new enslavement act. They are asked to give some of their free time as community service because our health care system is close to failing apart. Many I have spoken with have to drop out of their high school because the pressure of education and community service leave them inadequate time to have a life and make it through the studies. As they are unable to graduate due to this new invention, dropping out is the only possible answer.
It doesn't add up. People in need have to settle with help from high school students instead of professionals.
Denmark had a perfect system but now it is destroyed. I am somehow happy that I am finished with the high school. I would also have to quit the studies if the demand of doing voluntary work or community service had been existing back then.
Over at the University I met this Italian guy who studies here in Aarhus. He was overjoyed.
I asked into why he was so happy.
"Finally we got revenge for Vanzetti".
He spoke of an American student - a certain Amanda Knox who has been kind of framed for a murder down in Italy based on the newspapers here in Denmark.
But who was Vanzetti?
I looked at Wikipedia and while it cannot be a source throughout all, I learned that he was a guy who was toasted in the electric chair after a trial where the evidence had the same standard as the case against Amanda Knox.
Based on the evidence we have today, he would have been exonerated, but like it was with another case involving a foreigner in a U.S. trial - Louise Woodward - it was first years later that the forensic evidence was good enough to their the accused of all the charges.
Maybe it is just me. Sentencing a person in a foreign prison system based on revenge for a case decades old seems to be odd.
But in Denmark we have the Camilla Broe case. It is a case against a former police agent where everybody denies responsibility. Both the DEA in the United States and our minister of jutice blame the other part for having started the extradition.
Nothing seems to surprise me anymore.
Yesterday December 10, 2009 the Danish parliament had planned a hearing in the Camilla Broe case.
This hearding was suddenly cancelled with no explanation.
Rumors state the reason was an extreme pressure from authorities in the United states. The Danish parliament had no other choice but to give up.
It is sad because there were a lot of evidence that perjury had been committed by an Agent from the DEA during the pretrial process against Camilla Broe.
A testimony stated that it was the Minister of Justice in Denmark who at the time was Lene Espersen, who ordered the DEA to seek extradition using the Danish court system. A system which works rather slow due to a reform process activated by the same Minister of Justice. That's why Camilla Broe could be risking a conviction for a alleged crime which is more than 10 years old.
But the problem with that testimony was that the statement of the DEA agent was denied by a spokesperson from the justice department in Denmark. This spokesperson stated that the testimony from the DEA agent was wrong. Because the statement was given under oath it must be considered to be an act of perjury.
So the Danish public is now wondering why this hearing was cancelled. However the reason is very clear. If the hearing confirmed that the statement of the Agent was in fact perjury, it could be interpreted as an act of Anti-Americanism and it is not what Denmark needs right now.
It is well-known that the actions of Italy in the Amanda Knox case rightfully was interpreted as such, but Denmark is not Italy. Denmark does not bribe Taliban in Afghanistan. We fight for democracy abroad.
So scared of the American reaction the Danish parliament decided not to go forward with the hearing.
It is fair to state that our fight for democracy abroad has resulted in a loss of democracy at home?
I saw how they had a kind of show trial where a student from the United States name Amanda Knox was convicted of murder of some English student.
In fact the police caught the real killer rather fact. An immigrant was arrested in Germany where they interviewed him and he gave a statement that he was alone with the victim in the house. The German police had no interest in the case. With other words they could afford to be objective.
A young woman was murdered. A young life was cut short but they had the murderer and the case should be closed.
A poor immigrant murdering innocent girls is hardly a headline worth. We see all kind of crime being committed by immigrants here in Denmark all the time. It would make it to page 37 if most.
So the prosecutor in Italy had to do more with the case. He couldn't use the testimony from the accused to the German police to anything. He had to find a motivate which could boost his own career.
So he opened a lot of dirty magazines and invented a motive based on a sex-game gone wrong. This opened the posibility of charging Amanda Knox with the crime and frankly when the jurors wear sashes in national colors when giving the verdict it smells that they are doing it as a kind of revenge over a woman, who happens to come from a country which had insulted Italy just months before because they deny to extradite 23 CIA employees who according to the Italian courts had abducted a man from the streets of Italy without reason.
Amanda Knox did not have a fair chance of getting aquitted from the very start off. It was a kind of show trial we should expect in a court in Europe in this millennium.
I stated in an early blog entry why I have chosen not to study abroad. This only confirms that my choice was right.
Oh lordy. What did Europe come to?
November 4, 2009 a few high school students participated in the Danish version of Operation Day's work.
What is their time used for?
Could they have done better remaining in school?
First of all we have to understand what kind of cause they collect money for. This year it is for schools in Rohdesia - presently called Zimbabwe. In Rohdesia the present ruler is Robert Mugabe which took over around 1980. While he promised to leave the farmers in peace and be a part of a government with participation of allies as part of the Lancaster House Agreement the history now show that he quickly made himself a dictator. Some 3,000 people were killed in the homeland of his former partner Joshua Nkomo. Later the mostly white farmers were expelled from their land and had to leave the country in order to survive.
As the author Georges Remi so clearly described in his book in 1930 about an Belgian journalist visiting central Africa, people like Mugabe lacks the skill to rule a country in a way which secure little things like food to the people. Today people are starving. Mugabe will have to find whatever success if any they can show in order to justify his rule.
Here the Danish High school students come into the picture with some aid to him. If they can secure funds to the schools in Zimbabwe his minister for education can show some results and claim that they are result of hard work from his people. Like any dictorship in the world he controls the press and it would be easy to sell this story to the population, which is poorly educated. Some to a point where they cannot even read. With other words: There are a huge risk that hard work done by Danish students will be abused by the marketing machine down in Zimbabwe.
I feel that that comittee responsible for selecting a country in Africa could have done better. In fact I feel that the concept by the whole Operation Day's work idea is wrong. Using your time for voluntary work as a Dane is wrong.
We have chosen to establish a society where any need is paid for by taxes. Is does have the benefit that people can concentrate on making the best out of their own life and the firm they work for which in return means that the productivity in the Danish firms are among the highest in the world.
Conscience makes people second-guess and doubt their descisions. I call for a ban on voluntary work among high school students. We have to preserve our welfare society. During the last 20 years Denmark has seen a burden so huge as never before. Housing thousand of so-called refugees as result of the war on terrorism has meant that we had to abandon core elements in our welfare nation like the early retirement ("Efterløn").
While a majority of the refugees have been exposed working full time abroad earning huge wages while they remain on welfare in denmark, we have been able to deport some back to their homeland, but the number of refugees are still to high. Just checking up on 11.200 people for cheating as it is the case this year demand huge ressources.
We need Danish High School students to consentrate on the welfare of their fellow citizens instead of doing voluntary work which will be a favor for a dictator only. I know that it is far from the first time, the Danish comittee of Operation Day's work are under attack for their choice of beneficiary.
When they started their activities in Denmark they helped rebuilt schools damaged by attacks when Sandinista overthrew the peaceful government of Somoza in Nicaragua.
Today this activity would have been illegal and their fund would have been confiscated. Today we have the Interpol Terrorism Watch List. Had this list existed in 1985 the Danish comittee would have been shut down because the Sandinistas would have been on the Patriot Act Terrorist Exclusion List.
It is sad the this so-called charity continues to be operating today. Fortunately it is reported that the number of students participating is about 10 percent in some schools.
I saw a comment on my blog, which lead me to write a little about how many options Danish women have to avoid sexual harassment compared with women in other countries.
We all have heard about this poor girl who was stoned in Somalia when she was trying to report a rape.
Also it is easy to remember a case where a Danish woman on a Dutch plane believed that a flight attendant had his head down between her breasts and she slapped him. Slapping the offender is a natural thing to do, but the incident happened on a Dutch plane entering U.S. airspace, so defending herself against sexual harassment is not allowed.
So when 16 year old Amanda was exposed to sexual harassment during her stay as exchange student, she was left without any possible defense known from her culture.
It is easy to blame her parents for sending her to the United States in the first place. They should have able to recognize that the youth culture in this country is far from the same as youth in Denmark experience. Rather inhumane they cannot even drink a beer, but they cannot hang out in the cities half the night as high school students do either.
But I believed that they were fooled by an Agency during a poor research work of the host family combined with a host family who had a hidden agenda to get their son married. A lot of the host families are not what they claim to be. Even here in Denmark host families have been fired even after decades as host family when it is clear what is behind the curtain.
Could she have gone to local authorities? I doubt that it would have some consequences at all for the offender. If you research old cases the answer is that the offender will get a slap on his hand and the time used on the case could be better used on therapy back home so it is possible to overcome the ordeal in the long run.
However I believe that Amanda's case should not be a total lost. It is important to tell her story at so many places as possible. I will print the article and put it up at my work.
You go through life. You make a lot of choices. Some are smart. Some are poor.
But it is not always possible to see the result when you make the decision.
One decision I made and I am proud of is that I did choose not to travel to the United States to become a exchange student.
At the time we didn't have a political prisoner in Florida, so none could understand how such a period abroad can hunt you for the rest of your life.
Camilla Broe as her name is lived as exchange student in the states. Unlike most she went on living in Florida and worked ordinary jobs.
They she broke an unwritten law which exchange students have to follow. She befriended members of the local population. She even went into relationship with some of them.
If we can talk about her having done anything wrong, that is the only thing she did wrong, but that one mistake made it possible to charge her for conspiracy and followed by this main charge a lot of other things made up because they know that she is poor and cannot afford her defense.
Of course the Danish courts should have looked at the list of charges and ruled that she should stay put in Denmark until they could provide a valid list of charges.
Instead they changed the charges after the Danish courts had ruled in the extradition case and she was sent to Florida, where she is shown in restraints as a kind of triumf by the DEA.
I was not planning to break the law when I though of taking the offer my grandfather gave me. He would pay for the entire year. Something made me think about the risk such an adventure could include and I declined the offer to his surprise.
But as I said. Just imaging that I saw something as simple as a traffic accident where classmates from the school was involved. As a foreigner I would properly have declined to make a statement.
I am a Dane. I should involve myself with the welfare of foreigners. They should figure things out by themselves and of course just a little help to authorities in an alien country could have embarrased my fellow citizens when I returned.
But this approach which would be totally accepted in Denmark, would have brought me charges like obstruction of justice or conspiracy in the United States.
So after I had explained my case, my grandfather accepted that I didn't take his offer. No hard feelings there.
Then a year later the Camilla Broe case came and I my points of doubt were justified.
I don't know why I began to think about the consequences where most youth my age would have jumped into this arrangement, but maybe I was just more matured than my age indicated.