England-United States World Cup Preview—Both Nations Looking To Recover From Tough Iraq Match
This is the third Texas Liberal World Cup preview post. This post is on the match to be played between England and the United States in Rustenburg on Saturday, June 12 at 2 PM Eastern time.
(Above–Bristol, England. Here is information about visiting Bristol.)
As we assess this match, let’s see the basic facts for the two squads. ( It is England playing his match and not the United Kingdom. Scotland and Wales have their own teams. But for the text of this post we’ll look at the U.K. as a whole. The pictures are of England.)
Nationality: Noun–Briton(s). Adjective–British.
Population (2010 est.): 62.2 million.
Annual population growth rate (2010 est.): 0.7%.
Major ethnic groups: British, Irish, West Indian, South Asian.
Major religions: Church of England (Anglican), Roman Catholic, Church of Scotland (Presbyterian), Muslim.
Major languages: English, Welsh, Irish Gaelic, Scottish Gaelic.
Education: Years compulsory–12. Attendance–nearly 100%. Literacy–99%.
Health: Infant mortality rate (2009 est.)–4.85/1,000. Life expectancy (2009 est.)–males 76.5 yrs.; females 81.6 yrs.; total 79.0 years.
Work force (2009, 31.25 million): Services–80.4%; industry–18.2%; agriculture–1.4%.
(Of the 62 million people in the U.K., about 49 million English.)
(Above–Chicago. Maybe the best American city of them all. Here is information about visiting Chicago.)
- Full name: United States of America
- Population: 314.7 million (UN, 2009)
- Capital: Washington DC
- Largest city: New York City
- Area: 9.8 million sq km (3.8 million sq miles)
- Major language: English
- Major religion: Christianity
- Life expectancy: 77 years (men), 81 years (women) (UN)
- Monetary unit: 1 US dollar = 100 cents
- Main exports: Computers and electrical machinery, vehicles, chemical products, food and live animals, military equipment and aircraft
- GNI per capita: US $47,580 (World Bank, 2008)
(Above—English countryside in an area called Widecombe in the Moor. This picture was taken by a Dennis Redfield.)
Human Rights are an important aspect of any nation’s game. Let’s review how Amnesty International sees the U.K.—
“Amnesty International has released a new briefing outlining its call for a full, independent and impartial inquiry into UK involvement in human rights abuses post-11 September 2001. The briefing outlines ten key questions that an inquiry should seek to answer.”
You can read the full article here. The U.K. sure got itself into a mess when it went along with George W. Bush and the invasion of Iraq.
(Below—Badlands National Park in South Dakota. this picture was taken by Wing-chi Poon. Here is information about visiting this park.)
Here is what Amnesty has on the United States—
“Since June 2001, more than 334 individuals in the United States have died after being struck by police Tasers. AI is concerned that Tasers are being used as tools of routine force, rather than as weapons of last resort. Rigorous, independent, impartial study of their use and effects is urgently needed.”
Anyone who thinks the U.S. does not have a number of human rights issues is mistaken. We’ve made great progress since the days of Jim Crow, the second-class status of women, and the near-complete closeting of gay folks that existed 50 years ago. Yet one consequence of this progress is to illustrate how far we still must go. For example—Economic justice is denied to millions who work hard each day and still don’t earn a living wage and who can not afford health insurance for themselves and their families.
The bottom line is that even in countries that some in the world may associate with the advancement of human rights, that there is much more to be done.
(Above–The great warrior Tecumseh. Tecumseh lived 1768-1813. He fought to the last against the taking of his land. Here is a timeline of American history.)
Match Summary—In this battle of mother country against former colony, let’s all root for each of these global powers to meet the hopes of the world’s people in terms of human rights and global peace. The unlawful invasion of Iraq was an “own goal” of self-inflicted harm for both these nations. Hopefully the lessons learned from Iraq will force both America and the U.K. to choose diplomacy over war in the years ahead. One way the U.S. can learn from the U.K. playbook is to continue the drive towards universal health care. With some sense of decency and human concern returned to the White House in 2009 after 8 years of George W. Bush, progress has been made on this front. Yet there is still more to be done.
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