osaraba: (sara)
Some blog posts/articles regarding sexism/racism/privilege that made me feel good rather than depressed:

1. Regarding the sexual assault on Lisa Logan in Egypt, Journalist Nir Rosen's offensive jokes/remarks on twitter. And his subsequent apology: THIS, btw, is how public apologies for rape jokes/apologia should go.

2. Have I mentioned how much I love Clarisse Thorn? In the follow-up to her post last week about entrenched societal sexism, is a post with some very valid, relevant, not-so-rhetorical questions:
But … how many times do dudes get to be “trying to be friendly and not really jerks” when they shut women down, before there’s more to it than that? At what point does it stop being “that one asshole dude” (or “those two asshole dudes”, or “okay it was three”) … or even “that one nice guy who just said one sexist thing that one time” (or “two nice guys” or “three nice guys” or “one nice guy who, okay, yes he says it a lot, but ….”) I noted that I’ve experienced other similar situations, and plenty of commenters backed me up; at what point does it stop being “that one guy”, “that one time”, and become a pattern? And at what point does an example become good enough to represent the pattern?

She also addresses what I think to be one aspect of the mental hurdles it's difficult to overcome when you're privileged. That is, the knee-jerk denial/defensiveness that you experience. I know it; I've felt it myself. It's not the responsibility of others, of course, to patiently explain to you why you're wrong -- and you'd have to be willing to admit you're wrong to begin with -- but honestly, a kind explanation can help in getting past that feeling.
There’s something else worth adding, too, about this particular example. Admittedly, there were points in that post where I was pretty snarky about this dude, but one of the things I really like about feminism is that it gives me a great framework to think about people who act in oppressive patterns without thinking that they are Incontrovertibly Bad People. What I am saying here is that I don’t think, and never did think, that he’s an evil guy; in fact, I thought he was pretty nice, really, overall.

Individuals bear responsibility, but culture affects these things too. Feminism has taught me that culture often encourages people to fall into oppressive patterns, which we should watch out for. This means, unavoidably, that individuals sometimes have to be called out or used as examples. But it means that they’re, you know, people. Who can be understood as people.

Personally, I really identify when people talk about themselves; it illustrates your willingness to own your own mistakes and prejudices -- and we all make/have them. In a stereotypical way, I suppose, I feel like-- "if you did/thought this dumb thing and are opening/improving your mind/perspective, then I don't see why I can't do the same."
And given how privilege and oppression and violence replicate themselves, it may be especially problematic for me to have the kind of privilege that I have, and simultaneously come from a feminist background that has educated me about the way women have consistently been shut down … unless I resolve to watch myself and never feel entitled to shut others down, or ignore their perspectives, in the same way.

“I know you’re smarter than me, so let’s not get into it”: this isn’t only a kind of subtle shutdown that I can feel frustrated about and condescended to if someone says it to me; it’s also something I should be careful about with in terms of shutting down other people. If I do that, then perhaps I should be called out or used as an example. I’d hope that I’d also be seen and understood as a person.

ETA: Sorry, I didn't want to put any of this behind an lj-cut, in case something caught someone's eye, since the message is an important one.
osaraba: (dS fv um.what?)
So, I'm super busy at work right now and don't have a moment to write up my thoughts and squee about the Toronto trip (yet) or the recs post I've been compiling links for (yet). I WILL get to these things, eventually, I promise!

BUT, a link to this New Yorker article arrived in my inbox today and whoa-- I didn't even know that Paul Haggis (creator of due South, Crash and Million Dollar Baby, among other shows/movies) was a Scientologist! After maintaining active membership in the Church of Scientology for over 35 years, he wrote a resignation letter in reaction to statements made by the San Diego branch in support of Proposition 8, the move to ban gay marriage in California. (source)

It kind of baffles me that it took this for him to, I dunno, wake up and smell the coffee change his awareness/perspective? But it's an interesting thing, nonetheless.

The article is 26 (short) pages in length, and I'm just on page two now (and have to wait til lunch to continue), but I thought I'd post for anyone who's interested. Dunno if this would be appropriate on [livejournal.com profile] c6d_universe, but feel free to repost/etc.
The Apostate: Paul Haggis vs. the Church of Scientology by Lawrence Wright

On August 19, 2009, Tommy Davis, the chief spokesperson for the Church of Scientology International, received a letter from the film director and screenwriter Paul Haggis. “For ten months now I have been writing to ask you to make a public statement denouncing the actions of the Church of Scientology of San Diego,” Haggis wrote. Before the 2008 elections, a staff member at Scientology’s San Diego church had signed its name to an online petition supporting Proposition 8, which asserted that the State of California should sanction marriage only “between a man and a woman.” The proposition passed. As Haggis saw it, the San Diego church’s “public sponsorship of Proposition 8, which succeeded in taking away the civil rights of gay and lesbian citizens of California—rights that were granted them by the Supreme Court of our state—is a stain on the integrity of our organization and a stain on us personally. Our public association with that hate-filled legislation shames us.” Haggis wrote, “Silence is consent, Tommy. I refuse to consent.” He concluded, “I hereby resign my membership in the Church of Scientology.
osaraba: (sara)
As good as I sometimes think I am with words, there's so much more that I hold back, hold in, that never falls on anyone's ears, whether they be listening ones or not. And normally -- in the way that I have of making it easier to talk about an issue by talking about something (somewhat loosely) related -- I'd babble about how amazing it is that we have computers and internets and "newfangled" contraptions that most of us couldn't even imagine utilizing 15 years ago. Things like Google Translate. So that we're able to read the affecting and meaningful words of Swedish bloggers.

#prataomdet
#talkaboutit
Sofia Mirjamsdotter

prataomdet.se (in English)
osaraba: (laby jareth magicdance)
A mom blogs about her 5-year old son dressing up as Daphne (from Scooby Doo) for Halloween

Transgender George Washington player a fascinating, inspiring story

Please don't take the fanfiction survey. (This is from August 2009 and links are obsolete but the comm's response was lovely. ...and I don't even know how I actually got to this page in the first place.)

***

ETA: ...but then there was this gender fail by deviantART. If you've deleted your dA account and are now looking for elsewhere to go, artician has been recommended for its third option of "not telling".
osaraba: (duo)
So. I started to do a search for some pictures of Duo with a scythe, and possibly bat wings... my search term was "duo scythe"... and this was the second result:

Duo jailed for scythe attack on ex-partner
A couple who were both high on drugs subjected a visitor to a terrifying ordeal, a court heard. Victim Adam Graves was asked to hand over prescription...
http://www.thisislincolnshire.co.uk/news/Duo-bars-terrifying-attack-ex-partner-scythe/article-1724591-detail/article.html


So I read the headline and was like, "Oh, this must be a fic..." but then I saw "Victim Adam Graves", and I was like, "WHAT?! Crossover GW fic with hockey?!" TOO WEIRD. LOL, but no, it's an actual article!
osaraba: (divine punishment)
A friend sent this article to me. It's great. You should read it: America the Illiterate.

Completely unrelated, and yet in keeping with this theme of pessimism, I had a conversation last night that made me kind of depressed unsure; insecure; vaguely embarrassed. Basically kind of crappy.

Sometimes I think I'm my own worst enemy.

I want to curl up, hide under the covers, and not talk to anyone ever again.

</emo!Sara>
osaraba: (tng data & wes)
stupidity )

But in other news, Majel Barrett Roddenberry died yesterday.

How sad. As a coworker said, it's the end of an era...
osaraba: (angelina wtf)
Bill Mahr's Religulous. Trailer here. I didn't hear about this til today, and didn't know that it would be coming out this Friday. I'd go see it Friday, but rock band party at my house is happening, so that's a no-go. But I will see it this weekend instead. It's actually perfect timing -- finally, a movie I can go see with my mom because I know we'll both enjoy it.

I came across this randomly in Youtube's Screening Room; The Pity Card is pretty darn funny.

A Tale of Two Cities is now a musical on Broadway. I absolutely love AToTC! The only Dickens I was actually able to get through. Haha. The Times has some clips up of an interview with the costume director (which isn't so interesting), but you get to see some costume designs. Broadway.com says individual tickets are available thru March 1, 2009, so I'd like to buy tickets to see it at some point... or maybe try the TKTS booth.

I watched the Couric interview of Palin this morning. OMG. I can't even say more than that. The VP debate is this Thursday -- I say we watch it at WR and play a drinking game. Any time Palin talks about "shoring up the economy", for example, might be a good prompt. ^_~ [edit: Judy informed me that the debate starts at 9pm, so we'll probably miss it, but I thought it was a good idea. I have to remember to set the DVR to record it.]



This 52nd Street branch of Go Sushi, a spot often-frequented by me, is now closed. =( I'm sad to see it go (no pun intended, I swear). I've noticed many a restaurant and store closing recently. ...I wonder if it has anything to do with the economy?

And to close, I love adore love AND adore Frankie Boyle and his accent too.
osaraba: (welcome to the reality)


I thought this set-up was quite interesting, and took the picture without really stopping to read the flyer (as I was already a few minutes late this morning). The flyer reads: "Stop the EXECUTION of Iran's Grave Human Rights Violations". It goes on to list that "140 Children, 137 Gay Men, and 133 Women" were executed.

The street blockading is worse this year than I've experienced previously. It certainly makes lunchtime interesting. And Dubya was here this morning. Whoever is elected in November, I'm just glad he's on his way out of office. I can't believe it's been 8 years.


So I think my recent interest in picture posts is partially because my camera phone totally rocks. And partially because I keep seeing interesting things!
osaraba: (dead inside)
...by way of [livejournal.com profile] qwantz, I bring you:

"The Breeding Properties of M&Ms"
http://rogerebert.suntimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080717/LETTERS/613186340




Otherwise... there's a whole lot going on in my head but nothing I know how to articulate here. I guess I'm just going through one of those moods. Still feeling pretty restless.
osaraba: (BT atsu tongue)
"Eric Clough isn't your typical architectural designer. Sure, he'll design you a fine den or kitchen, but he's clearly got a creative streak that goes much deeper than that. That's why, when given the opportunity, he secretly built an incredible scavenger hunt into a $8.5-million, 4,200-square-foot Park Avenue apartment that included ciphers, riddles, poems and a lot of hidden doors and compartments.

How amazing is that? It took the family months to discover the scavenger hunt and weeks after that to figure it all out. It's like [living] in a children's book of some kind."
Seriously, the description of this place is amazing. It would be a fucking dream come true to live in a place like this; my puzzle-phile mind was sent into paroxysms of pleasure at just the thought.

New York Times (full article)
gizmodo (pics + blurb)
osaraba: (naruto kakashi hmmm)
I try not to post "news" items too frequently, but this is pretty awesome:

http://consumerist.com/380745/judge-calories-to-be-posted-on-fast-food-menus-in-nyc

I cannot wait to see this take effect!
osaraba: (pink stare)
This was posted by a friend on facebook, and I thought it was relevant to... well, pretty much everyone, in some way or another, on my flist.

http://mag.awn.com/index.php?ltype=pageone&article_no=3605&page=1

If anyone has more information on this topic, please feel free to enlighten me further.

Otherwise, please spread the word.

[UPDATE: I have not had the chance yet to read through this, but I've been informed that the article above is based on a proposal from 2006, and that more (up-to-date) information on this topic is compiled here:

http://maradydd.livejournal.com/374886.html]
osaraba: (sara oni)
This is pretty cool.

From today's amNY:
The vodka manufacturer presents the work of artists it has deemed visionary and shows off their interactive creations in this exhibition. "Asbolut Quartet" (in NYC) is an installation that creates a musical composition based on input given over the internet at www.absolutmachines.com. FREE. 186 Orchard St, between Stanton and Houston (F,V to Lower East Side/2nd Ave) 646-935-4185
osaraba: (duo-eyes)
Researchers at the University of Copenhagen have discovered that "all blue-eyed individuals are linked to the same ancestor. They have all inherited the same switch at exactly the same spot in their DNA."

The rest of the article can be read here.

How cool is that?!

I've been vaguely interested in eye color since I did a cute little kiddie science project about it in 1st grade.
osaraba: (minako bored now)
Thompson says, "From where I sit, traditional "literary fiction" has dropped the ball. I studied literature in college, and throughout my twenties I voraciously read contemporary fiction. Then, eight or nine years ago, I found myself getting — well — bored."
Clive Thompson on Why Sci-Fi Is the Last Bastion of Philosophical Writing

Welcome to the club.

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