Lebanese Blogger Gets Assaulted In Beirut’s Downtown… For Taking A Picture

Habib Batah, a professor at LAU and blogger at The Beirut Report, got physically assaulted today by a bunch of henchmen at Downtown’s soon-to-be-constructed District S… because he dared take a picture of the ancient ruin inside the property which they were busy dismantling.

After being forced to delete the pictures off his phone, Habib tried to complain to Lebanon’s police who dismissed him with their typical “nothing to see here.” Again, we’re only paying our police so they can have Malek el Tawou2 for lunch or dinner. Protecting us or trying to keep our rights, the simplest of which is us being able to take a damn picture at a construction site of our heritage, is just too mainstream to be included under their umbrella of duties.

You can read the full story here (link).

In this occasion, I believe a series of thank yous are in order.

  • Thank you Solidere for your beautiful work in Downtown Beirut. It’s perfectly understandable that ancient ruins aren’t business-centric. The Khalijis sure don’t like them. 
  • Thank you Lebanon’s Ministry of Culture. Your continuous efforts in making sure there’s nothing about this country’s history that  isn’t history are much appreciated.
  • Thank you Lebanon’s Ministry of Interior. You’re just too busy not looking at those self-enforced anti-Syrian curfews and not working on elections for you to get your police to do their job.
  • Thank you Lebanon’s police. I feel safer every single day you tell me to “forget it.”
  • Thank you to every single entity in this God-forsaken country that makes me hopeful and happy and content into what I’m being offered every single freaking day.

How much more shit are we supposed to take before someone out there decides to do their bloody job? How many more people need to be assaulted because they tried to stand up to their constitutionally-given rights? How many more of our rights are we supposed to forsake because of well-connected people everywhere? How many people need to become victims before someone out there wakes up and realizes that this – all of it – is downright unacceptable?


La Wloo!!… How To Be a Lebanese Journalist/Blogger Know-It-All

This is a reply to the La Wlooo!!! column at BeirutNightLife.

It starts when you go to college and get a degree. This degree is the key to everything. Just because you have a degree in biology doesn’t mean you can’t discuss psychology and just because you have a BA in psychology doesn’t mean histology is out of reach. It’s all under the umbrella of knowledge.

And what better way to make yourself known that to express your all knowing self?

So it begins: the process of becoming a Lebanese journalist, blogger, writer, what have you, know-it-all.

1 – Find a platform:

You can start your own platform and express your exquisite level of knowledge all you want. What’s better would be to go around and search for a website that desperately needs your knowledge in order to generate debate and thus, website hits. That way, you won’t have to start from scratch and you can propagate your expertise regarding everything to a wide range of audience. They, as in the masses, are gullible. They will eat up anything you write about and help spread it around like there’s no tomorrow.

2 – Talk about anything:

Men and Facebook? How they’re gay for saying “looool?” – what an exquisite idea. You can write an op-ed about that. Women wearing strapless bras? That’s internet gold right there. Mini-skirts, showing cleavage? You betcha! A SEO-friendly title would help. How about you bring in the Arab hits as well? Let’s see… you can write: LEBANESE GIRLS HAVING SEX. That’s sure to get their attention, now wouldn’t it?

3 – Your opinion is fact:

Don’t let people tell you otherwise. After all, you know it all. Anything you know, they simply do not and they simply cannot *insert appropriate meme because they are hip these days* be correct while you are wrong. Therefore, you need a high-horse to climb. Then on top of that high-horse, add a pedestal. Because you’re that in these days. You’re also very high off the attention. Why not take it literally? The people are commenting en masse. Most of them agree with your all-knowing self. You are on cloud 9. You are on top of the world.

4 – Don’t Let Anyone Bring You Down:

Some other fake know-it-all come around and try to tell you off? Just shrug them off as haters. Write a sarcastic article about how they got you to crawl on your bathroom floor and weep. Then tell them off because that is exactly what a true-bred Lebanese know-it-all like you should do. While bashing their heads off, you can also blast Kelly Clarkson’s Mr. Know It All to get you in the mood of it. “Baby, you don’t know a THING!” you will sing to the screen while your fingers bang on your keyboard.

5 – Use Vulgar Language:

An article is never complete without dropping terms here and there that will get heads rolling. You know it all so there’s no way that such terms can be considered offensive. When you talk about hoes, you’re doing so because they are hoes – no way around telling it like it is. Those that don’t understand that are simply not enlightened enough. Vulgar language is here to serve your all-knowing self. And it will definitely make your article more appealing to the reader. There’s nothing more than a read filled with your grotesque depictions of people. You must shock people in order to get your point across. To talk about mini-skirts, you must use the language of those mini-skirts.

6 – Point Out Your Wittiness and Sarcasm:

Many of those miserable non-know it all readers will feel your article degrading and demeaning. After all, they cannot but be dimwitted lovers of those whom you’re talking about. So you must conclude with an italicized disclaimer that your article was sarcastic. People are just not on your level of intellectual capacity to know that your articles are reeking of social sarcasm at a situation you find peculiar. Besides, you don’t want to let people feel you’re attacking them personally now, you know, just in case.

“This is how it feels to be schooled in the art of writing a respectable satirical article”