"In reckoning with police militarization, the economic side of the phenomenon should be considered. The connection may not be obvious to those who’ve never had the gas or water or electricity in their homes shut off. But these forces operate in tandem—the tear gas and the tickets; the weaponry and the warrants—compromising a wide range of fundamental rights that seem, in Ferguson and beyond, to have gone up in smoke."
Jelani Cobb, writing for The New Yorker, is doing important work documenting and analyzing what’s going on in Ferguson. He writes, “There is a feedback loop of recrimination playing in the streets of Ferguson. With the thinnest of rationales, the police here responded to community anger in the self-justifying language of force, under circumstances that call for a more humane tongue.”
How we choose to see things dictates how we’ll experience them. Would you rather see everything as precious or pointless?
If we can choose the former, we can recognize that every loss provides opportunities for future gains—new relationships, experiences, and ways of being that may fulfill us in ways we can’t possibly predict."
A couple of years ago I read a McSweeney’s piece about the exclamation mark that changed my thinking forever. The writer, a woman by the name of Courtenay Hameister, quoted a study by Carol Waseleski titled, “Gender and the Use of Exclamation Points in Computer Mediated Communication,”
"… [the study] deciphered that women use exclamation points 45% more often than men in e-communication. But it’s not because we’re more excited than men. Women use exclamation points online as indicators of a “friendly interaction.” We’ve been socialized to try to make people feel comfortable and to keep the peace. Hence sentences like, “Bill, I can’t wait to see the 4th quarter EMBO Report on the new 12-gauge ball bearings!”
She’s not excited to see that report. No one is excited to see that report. She’s letting Bill know that she’s not angry that it’s late yet. When she’s angry, she’ll use a period.
After reading the piece and those unbelievable and really bummer statistics, I decided to stop using that punctuation mark unless I really meant it. Now I am often accused of writing ‘angry’ emails because they seem to lack all the exclamation marks and therefore friendly demeanor within everyone else’s. I can’t win and this New Republic piece helps explain why:
Now, however, technology has led us to use written language more like speech—that is, in a real-time, back-and-forth between two or more people. “[P]eople are communicating like they are talking, but encoding that talk in writing,” Clay Shirky recently told Slate. This might help explain the rise of the line break: It allows people to more accurately emulate in writing the rhythm of speech. It has also confronted people with the problem of tone in writing, and they’re trying to solve it with the familiar punctuation marks that the line break largely displaced.
Sick beat and so good even though I don’t know half of what is being said.
Me: What’s your blood type?
SO: The best type.
[Maniacal laughter from both of us.]
Me: No, I’m serious! What is it?
SO: Babe, I’m only 37. I don’t need to know that kind of stuff yet.
The video for the Anthony and the Johnsons song ‘Cut the World’ was directed by hotshot video director Nabil and it reminded me of an obscure 1982 Dutch feminist film directed by Marleen Gorris titled, A Question of Silence. I have to believe that Nabil has seen this film and is paying homage to it.
The song lyrics evoke the question that is the basis of the film:
For so long I’ve obeyed that feminine decree
I’ve always contained your desire to hurt me
But when will I turn and cut the world?
My eyes are coral, absorbing your dreams
My heart is a record of dangerous scenes
My skin is a surface to push to extremes
But when will I turn and cut the world?
Both the video and the film show seemingly random and psychotic acts of violence by women against men, but these acts are not unpacked or investigated. There seems to be no answer as to why a woman would want to murder an ‘innocent’ man.
But if you are a woman reading this right now, I imagine you know the answer to that question. And if you are not a woman, then the act likely seems inexplicable, unwarranted. In order to explain, I’d suggest you ask a woman about her life, what she has experienced living as a woman every day. Swap stories about commuting in subway cars or walking down the street or having a boss that calls you ‘sweetie’. Once you do a little digging, you might understand what Antony and Gorris are talking around, and you might even sympathize.
This was straight up the best super moon picture I could score. As condolence, it was taken shortly after a nice late night swim in the pool wherein one could marvel at the moon while floating on one’s back. #supermoon #abudhabi #uae #myweirdlife
“We absolutely support those who are deciding to stay and fight for their right to be Ugandan and queer. We understand the passion for that because it is so very important,” [the Friends New Underground Railroad] website reads. “And, our concern is for those living in such pain and fear that feel they must flee to build a life for themselves. We don’t think this is the complete answer by any means, but it is part of one.”
This is what activism looks like—sometimes it is messy and it is always evolving, but that doesn’t mean the work is less.