Friday, October 30, 2009

Halloween is my favoritest

I can not explain how happy I am that this week is over. I was bogged down by school work like nobody’s business. Knowing its Halloween tomorrow feels like a reward for all work I’ve been doing and it makes me just that much more excited.

Have I rambled on about how much I love Halloween yet? I don’t think I have which is a bit shocking considering Halloween is by far my favoritest holiday of the bunch. It’s like the one day a year where the world is how I’d want it to be if I were in charge.

This year I’ve decided to dress up as a ventriloquist dummy (after I saw this tutorial I just knew I had to). I’m still putting the finishing touches on a tutu I made, but so far everything is looking good.

So, in the spirit of Halloween I thought I’d share a few projects that I’ve bookmarked for future projects.

First is this pumpkin I saw in the Food Network magazine:


Isn't it the greatest? We're gonna carve pumpkins tonight with Holden for the first time and I'm looking forward to it (though he'll probably just paint his).

Then there are these crafts I just love:


First off, I think I'm addicted to glitter. I've just been obsessed with it since I discovered it in middle school (I'm talking about cosmetic glitter here). My friends and I would just pour it in our hand and blow it all over each other. And even though I've moved past that, I still get excited whenever I see something sparkly.

So naturally I loved this centerpiece tutorial by Eddie Ross. (There's just something about glitter covered skulls that makes my heart pitter patter.)

I was also really inspired by these eyeball cupcakes by megpi. Instead of cupcakes I'm gonna make cake balls, but I just love the creepy awesomeness of the cupcakes.

Then there is this tutorial for a Michael Jackson jacket. I was so excited to see this because I've been wanting a jacket like this hard core. I just knew there had to be a way to make one myself, but I wasn't too sure how to go about it. This tutorial is so easy though that I'm glad I put off buying one of these jackets (seriously, all you need is a jacket, metallic frogs, and metallic braind). I plan on making mine black on black, but the options are pretty much endless.

I also wanted to include this tutorial for a Halloween brooch based on a Marquis & Camus pin (pictured). I love the idea and I think this would make a kick ass necklace as well.

So that's it. I hope everyone has a great Halloween! If you're interested in any other Halloween crafts you can find tons here.

-Oh and if you're interested in making your own tutu you can find excellent directions here. It's so easy there is no reason not to (plus tulle is cheap). Even if you're not the tutu wearing type, you could use it as a petticoat and wear it under a plain dress to jazz it up.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Can women and men really be equal as long as women have to fear being raped?

I don’t know how other people feel when they read or hear stories about rape, but I seem to find myself constantly shocked at the cruelty of people. The things that we’re capable of as humans are just astounding to me and I don’t understand how people can believe in an all loving god in the face of so much hurt and depravity.

(It wasn’t my intention to bring religion into this, but that’s just where my mind went.)

What’s got me thinking about all this is the horrific gang rape of a 15 year old girl in California last weekend. Rape is always ugly, but I have a hard time even imagining the awfulness this rape must have been. For people to stand by and watch just makes me sick (and I’d be lying if I didn’t admit it makes me want to hurt these people very badly).

The fact rape has been used as a tool in war and a way to keep women in line for…well forever it seems, makes me realize the enormity that sex inequality is.

Not that I’m saying the business manager that pays his female employees a lower wage than his male employees is equivalent to a rapist. My point is that when I hear about a woman being raped, for me it’s like all women have been raped. When I read this poor girls story it makes me feel a bit unsure about my own place in society. It makes me wonder if a dozen people would stand by and watch a group of men rape me. That may sound overly anxious or paranoid, but that’s really how a part of me feels.

Most men will never have to fear being raped in their whole lives and because of that they will never be able to truly understand what that fear feels like.

And the fact they'll never understand makes me wonder how equal our places can ever be.

-I want to clear that I'm dismissing men who have been raped. I'm just saying the fear of being raped isn't something most men will experience.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Closer

I love this movie. I need to buy it. (Clive Owen is just ridiculously scrumptious.)


Favorite quote: "Where is this love? I can't see it, I can't touch it. I can't feel it. I can hear it. I can hear some words, but I can't do anything with your easy words."

Monday, October 26, 2009

Changing Last Names

I just read an interesting post by Jill over at feministe about women changing their last names when they get married.

The post centered on a poll that found 70 percent of Americans believe that a woman should change her name when she marries, and 50 percent believe it should be required by law.

Shocking isn’t it?

I mean, I know most people don’t even think to question when a woman changes her name to her husbands, but 50 percent is a pretty high number. I was also really struck by the reason many participants thought a woman should change her name:
When the respondents were asked why they felt women should change their name after the wedding, Hamilton says, “They told us that women should lose their own identity when they marry and become a part of the man and his family. This was a reason given by many.”
This quote really highlights my problem with this sort of thing. It’s not the name change in and of itself that I have a problem with – it’s the fact some people look at the name change as proof that women are giving up part of their identity. And that’s just not cool to me.

The poll also found that only "5 to 10 percent of women keep the name they were born with when they marry." It just seems like that number should be higher for some reason. I have no intentions of getting married, but I also have no intentions of changing my name. I like my last name and its part of who I am. It just seems wrong to me that I have to let that go while no one expects Ryan to.

I know there are many reasons why a woman would change her name, but I think it’s strange when people use the excuse that their last name is their father’s anyways. I don’t understand this. When I think of my name I don’t think of my father. It is part of who I am and I think this is a flat excuse.

Jill said it best:
What confuses me (and gets under my skin) is the justification — or at least, the justification based on things other than the very real, tangible sexist reactions that married women face when they keep their own names. Things like, “Well, it was my father’s name.” Well, sure, but what does that mean? That no woman ever has her own name, unless she was born into a culture where naming is matrilineal? Or, “I like his name better.” Ok, but do men regularly change their names just because their partner as a “better” name? I’ve come across maybe one man in my whole life who has done that — I somehow doubt that it just so happens that 99 percent of people with the “better” name are male. Or, “I want our whole family to have the same name.” Again, understandable, but how come he didn’t change his name? Or you can both change your names.
Jill’s post made me think it might be cool if both partners changed their names. In fact, I’m really digging this idea. (Alana and Ryan Jingleheimer Schmidt has a certain ring to it no?)

I do have to admit that I gave Holden Ryan’s last name. I didn’t even really think about it to be honest and now I’m thinking that was kind of weird. I pushed that giant headed baby out of my vagina and he doesn’t even have my last name. How weird is that? (I did pick his whole name though to be fair.)

It's also worth pointing out that the study also found that when, "Asked if they thought of a lesbian couple as a family, those who believe that women should take their husband’s name are less likely to say yes."

-You can find more information regarding the poll here.

It's been a whole year

I can't believe it's been a full year since I started this blog (October 21st to be exact).

photo by ananyah.COM

Sometimes a year can feel like an eternity when you look back at it, but for some reason I don't feel that way about blogging. (It's odd but I feel like I'm still finding my footing.)

I never thought I would enjoy blogging so much though. It's hard to explain, but I feel like blogging makes me more connected to the world. Even though it take up more time than it probably should, I enjoy having a place to speak to the world through.

So, here's to another year. Hopefully it will be just as interesting as this one.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Senate Finally Approves Expansion Of Hate Crimes Law

Just want to give a thumbs up to the senate for voting to extend federal protection to people who are victimized because of their sexual orientation, gender, or gender identity.

The measure would also allocate $5 million a year to the Justice Department to help local communities investigate hate crimes which has also been an important part of hates crime legislation since many communities just don't have the funding or man power to deal with hate crimes.

So woohoo! This has been a long time coming.

Here is a list of the 29 votes against (from senate.gov):

Alexander (R-Tenn.)
Barrasso (R-Wyo.)
Bennett (R-Utah)
Brownback (R-Kan.)

Bunning (R-Ky.)
Burr (R-N.C.)
Chambliss (R-Ga.)
Coburn (R-Okla.)

Cochran (R-Miss.)
Corker (R-Tenn.)
Crapo (R-Idaho)
DeMint (R-S.C.)

Enzi (R-Wyo.)
Feingold (D-Wis.)
Graham (R-S.C.)
Grassley (R-Iowa)

Inhofe (R-Okla.)
Isakson (R-Ga.)
Johanns (R-Neb.)
Kyl (R-Ariz.)

LeMieux (R-Fla.)
McConnell (R-Ky.)
Risch (R-Idaho)
Roberts (R-Kan.)

Sessions (R-Ala.)
Shelby (R-Ala.)
Thune (R-S.D.)
Vitter (R-La.)
Wicker (R-Miss.)

Three senators did not vote:

Byrd (D-W.Va.)
Hatch (R-Utah)
Murkowski (R-Alaska)

- Feingold said he supported the hate crimes extension but opposed the defense bill because it allows too open-ended of a commitment to keeping U.S. forces in Afghanistan.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

I'm hearting Senator Franken

Watch out Senator Franken, I just might have to add you to my crush list if you keep being so awesome.



First backing rape victims and now this blatant regard for facts and information? I'm swooning here.

"Meaty Vagina"

That's the top search that has brought readers to my blog.


Nice.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

42% of Americans want to Bomb Bomb Bomb Iran

I was just reading an article by Glenn Greenwald over at Salon and I'm kind of shocked to find out that that 42% of Americans favor bombing Iran's "nuclear development sites" and 33% of Americans favor "invading with U.S. forces to remove the Iranian government from power."

Here is the poll released by The Washington Post:




I'm kind of flabergasted so many people are for bombing Iran. I mean, I know I probably shouldn't be but I can't help it. 42% of Americans? Craziness.

The whole article is good, but I especially loves Greenwald's last paragraph:
In the last ten years, the U.S. and Israel collectively have bombed at least six Muslim countries (including Gaza). Despite that, 40% of Americans want to attack yet another one, and 1/3 want to invade. Those are the same people who, if there is another terrorist attack on U.S. soil, will be walking around, eyebrows earnestly raised, innocent, self-righteous and confused, and asking: "why do they hate us??" And their friends and neighbors and leaders will assure them: "they hate us for our freedoms."
Check it out.

Arguments about Afghanistan

If you’re anything like me, you’re probably sick to death of all this war business. I know this is something I should be very interested in and keep myself informed about, but I just hate the whole situation.

And though I hate when people put their heads in the sand, I find myself doing just that (don’t they say you hate in other people what you hate in yourself?).

In an effort not to be a complete imbecile, I have started making the effort to at least get a bearing on the Afghanistan situation. I just read a great article by Johann Hari that I think is a good place to jump in.
Obama has to decide now whether to side with the American people and the Afghan people calling for a rapid reduction in US force, or with a small military clique demanding a ramping-up of the conflict. The populations of both countries are in close agreement. The latest Washington Post poll shows that 51 per cent of Americans say the war is "not worth fighting" and that ending the foreign occupation will "reduce terrorism". Only 27 per cent disagree. At the other end of the gun-barrel, 77 per cent of Afghans in the latest BBC poll say the on-going US air strikes are "unacceptable", and the US troops should only remain if they are going to provide reconstruction assistance rather than bombs.

But there is another side: General Stanley McCrystal says that if he is given another 40,000 troops – on top of the current increase which has pushed military levels above anything in the Bush years – he will "finally win" by "breaking the back" of the Taliban and al-Qa'ida.

How should Obama – and us, the watching world – figure out who is right? We have to start from a hard-headed acknowledgement. Every option from here entails a risk – to Afghan civilians, and to Americans and Europeans. It is not possible to achieve absolute safety. We can only try to figure out what would bring the least risk, and pursue it.
His article goes on to question the three main arguments for escalating the war in Afghanistan – 1)We need to deprive al-Qa'ida of military bases in Afghanistan, or they will use them to plot attacks against us, and we will face 9/11 redux. 2) By staying, we are significantly improving Afghan human rights, especially for women. 3) If we withdraw, it will be a great victory for al-Qa'ida. Re-energised, they will surge out across the world.

His answers are pretty interesting and I definitely recommend checking out the whole article. There are some interesting facts I didn’t know that I think will come in handy (like US aerial attacks on the Afghan-Pakistan border have killed 14 al-Qa'ida leaders, at the expense of more than 700 civilian lives – that’s a hit rate of 2 per cent on 98 per cent collateral).

Ever since I've read the book The Haj I've wanted to learn more about the Middle East. Now I realize putting it off is just silly. (I’m definitely taking Middle Eastern Civilization next year.)

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Amazon drops the ball again

This isn't gonna surprise most people, but it turns out Amazon has screwed up again. This time Amazon has mixed the ratings for the Ray Comfort Origin of Species and the "real" 150th Anniversary Edition Origin of Species (with the Sir Jilian Huxley foreword).



For those who don't know, Ray Comfort (sometimes referred to as the "Banana Man") is a crazy Christian creationist and he uses the fifty page foreword essentially as a tool to spread Christian propaganda. As one rater commented, "This edition is an intentional Trojan horse published exclusively to serve as a vehicle for Ray Comfort's 50 page introduction."

The problem, besides being generally misleading, is whenever a person gives a low rating to Ray Comfort's version (as it deserves), it also gives the real version a low rating. And whenever someone gives the 150th Anniversary Edition Origin of Species a five star rating, it also gives it to the Ray Comort's version (so both books have the same exact ratings and reviews). Also, when you try to use the "look inside" feature of the Ray comfort version it brings up the original version with the proper foreword.

Did that make sense?

Here is a video that explains what's going on:



I know most people won't care, but it's actually important since the ratings of books like these are hard enough to keep up. People, who haven't even read the book, tend to bring down the ratings (out of spite) of any books that are about evolution or atheism. There is also a chance people will read the foreword without any knowledge of who Ray Comfort is and be colored by his opinion.

The main reason I'm posting this is to get the word out and hopefully get more people to email amazon about the problem.

If you do want to email amazon you can do so here. I just copied and pasted a response I found here.

The power of books

I LOVE this picture:

source unknown

Some books really do feel this way. The most recent for me was Why Evolution Is True.

Any books blow your mind lately?

Monday, October 19, 2009

A Poem for Polanski Supporters

Man I've been busy lately. Even though I love school, I can't help but feel bogged down by all the work. (I haven't even had time to finish The Handmaid's Tale which I started like 5 days ago. That's insane in my book devouring world.)

Anyhoo, I thought I'd share this poem by The Nation's Calvin Trillin about the celebrity defense of Polanski:

What Whoopi Goldberg ('Not a Rape-Rape'), Harvey Weinstein ('So-Called Crime') et al. Are Saying in Their Outrage Over the Arrest of Roman Polanski Humor

A youthful error? Yes, perhaps.
But he's been punished for this lapse--
For decades exiled from LA
He knows, as he wakes up each day,
He'll miss the movers and the shakers.
He'll never get to see the Lakers.
For just one old and small mischance,
He has to live in Paris, France.
He's suffered slurs and other stuff.
Has he not suffered quite enough?
How can these people get so riled?
He only raped a single child.

Why make him into some Darth Vader
For sodomizing one eighth grader?
This man is brilliant, that's for sure--
Authentically, a film auteur.
He gets awards that are his due.
He knows important people, too--
Important people just like us.
And we know how to make a fuss.
Celebrities would just be fools
To play by little people's rules.
So Roman's banner we unfurl.
He only raped one little girl.

Hopefully I will have a few more substantial posts up soon.

-via feministing

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Memorial Crosses are an example of Christian privilege

In my race, class, and gender psych class we’ve been talking about dominant and subordinate groups and how privilege manifests itself (its crazy interesting).

One of the topics we’ve recently discussed is how dominant groups tend to make themselves seem neutral (and therefore invisible). Not only does this cement the dominant groups grip, since people then don’t think to question the validity of that dominance, but it also implies that the dominant group is without bias.

I can list to a thousand examples, but an easy one is all the accusations of racism that were flung towards Judge Sotomayor. People concluded that she must be racist because she stated her race and gender would give her insight in regards to certain situations. The problem wasn’t with the questioning (since the question in and of itself wasn’t invalid), but with the obvious lack of similar questioning towards the 98% of white judges on the Supreme Court. Their whiteness was never called into question as a measure of prejudice because to be white is to be without a race essentially.

Another example is how it’s commonly assumed that black people voted for Obama simply because he’s black, but no one even thinks to question if the white people who voted for McCain did so because he’s white.

My point in all this is that Christianity is a dominate group in America as surely as the white race is. A good example is how Christianity is rarely questioned. When a person isn’t Christian, they have to explain why in great detail and with solid facts (here is a good example) while the Christian is never required to do the same. Another is how people are outraged when anyone is bothered by the Ten Commandments being erected on government property or how people must be “fascist” for not teaching creationism alongside evolution.

Anyone who isn't Christian already knows this and the reason I bring it up (besides general interest) is because of a current court case I read about on Sociological Images.

It turns out the Supreme Court has recently weighed in on a case regarding a war memorial on the Mojave National Preserve. The problem isn’t just that the war memorial is a giant cross and the National Preserve is public land, but the Preserve has also refused to allow other religious symbols to be placed on the land (specifically a Buddhist memorial).

Now this post is not about the separation of church and state or the importance of historical monuments - it's about the privilege of Christianity.

Justice Scalia’s comments embody that privilege:
"It's erected as a war memorial. I assume it is erected in honor of all of the war dead," Scalia said of the cross that the Veterans of Foreign Wars built 75 years ago atop an outcropping in the Mojave National Preserve. "What would you have them erect? ...Some conglomerate of a cross, a Star of David, and you know, a Muslim half moon and star?"

…I don't think you can leap from that to the conclusion that the only war dead that that cross honors are the Christian war dead. I think that's an outrageous conclusion," Scalia said, clearly irritated by the exchange.

This kind of thinking highlights the neutrality Christianity is believed to have.

The idea that the cross is not a religious symbol is simply ridiculous. No way around it. People almost always bring up is the fact that the cross has been widely used for ages but, while it’s definitely true, the argument still fails to recognize that the cross was being used by Christians. Therefore, the cross's religious significance is further proved instead of the other way around.

As Peter Eliasburg – the lawyer arguing the case – said, "I have been in Jewish cemeteries; there is never a cross on a tombstone of a Jew."

Here is Colbert’s take on the situation:

The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
The Word - Symbol-Minded
www.colbertnation.com
Colbert Report Full EpisodesPolitical HumorMichael Moore


I personally don’t care about this particular cross, but I do think it’s disingenuous to claim the cross doesn’t have a religious connotation. Let’s at least call a spade a spade and be done with it.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Another Muslim Witch Hunt

Alternative title - "How the .6% of Muslims in America makes people crazy"

This is just depressing.

I can't even think of anything to add.

"Why do people hate you?"

I just thought this was adorable:

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Reconsidering Columbus Day

I know I'm behind on this (hey I'm busy brushing up on the Neolithic revolution), but I still think it's worth posting.



I think I've posted this video before, but it's too awesome not to post again (similar but much funnier):



I completely agree with idea that Columbus Day should become a holiday celebrating indigenous people. Why some people are so against the idea is beyond me.

If you do as well, you can sign the National Holiday for Native Americans petition here.

Fox makes a slip

I find this statement by Fox's senior vice president for news to be quite illuminating:
The fact that our numbers are up 30 plus in the news arena on basic cable I'd like to think is a sign that we are just putting what we believe to be the facts out on the table," said Michael Clemente, Fox's senior vice president for news, in an interview on Tuesday. "In terms of the relationship, I think we are doing our job. And they [the White House] are doing their job."
Doe that sound a bit odd to anyone else?

I though the news was suppose to put out facts, not simply what they believe to be facts.

Update: It looks like Fox has given Don Imus a new show on their Business Network. Way to stay classy Fox.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Descriptions of Heaven

When I was looking for the trailer for Angels in America I came across this scene between Belize and Roy.

It's one of my favs:



"Racial impuritiry and gender confusion..."

Love it.

In which our heroine bitches about her classmates

I’m posting this for completely selfish reasons. In my Film and Culture class we had to watch Angels in America for the last two classes (it’s six hours long). As with every movie, we then have to write a brief summary of how we felt about the movie and blah blah blah.



This is what one person wrote:
With as many viruses as there are in this movie (AIDS, Virus of Time, going blind being the Virus of Prophesy) I was surprised they didn’t take a page from The Matrix and talk about the Virus of Humanity. They sure hinted at it. Was that one of the metaphors?

If Belize is that unhappy living in America, as many are, maybe they should MOVE. That’s the beauty of a free country that so many people complain about. We are allowed to leave, even to revoke our own citizenship, without fear of being criminalized. I’ve had a number of people tell me that Canada is better, Norway and Sweden are better, anywhere in Europe is better. I tell them, Go! When I decided that Utah was a terrible place to live and that Tennessee, and later Nevada, was a much better place to live, I moved. I went to the better places. Trouble is, I found out that it had nothing to do with Utah, but with me. It sure seems like many people don’t understand that it’s not the place someone live that makes them happy or unhappy. It’s themselves. And I really wish more people would either figure that out or move to the place that will make them “happy.” At the very least, I wouldn’t have to hear them complain any more. And if Heaven is as Belize describes to Roy, San Francesco-like, I’ll take Hell.

The only real metaphor that I picked up on was the Republican beating up on the Gay Man. Of course, that one was crammed pretty hard throughout the movie.
Roy Cohn, the most EVIL man in America…
Ronald Reagan in the White House…
Ooh my God, He’s MORMON???...
Yeah, yeah, yeah, we get it. Republicans and conservative people are bad, Democrats and liberals are good. The whole thing gets tiring after a while. Especially when it’s so one sided. Sure, there are Republicans who bash Democrats, but the scale is so much smaller. We hear so much from the Democrats about “tolerance,” “diversity” and “charity,” and very little about that stuff from the Republicans. Yet most of the bashing comes from the Democrats. Preach tolerance, then bash the other guy? Do as I say, not as I do? That doesn’t work very well. Any parent will agree.

There’s no way to force these wonderful ideas either. Can we force tolerance by making it a Hate Crime to call someone a bad name while beating them up? Yeah, that works (eyeroll). Lawyers NEVER plea bargain with junk like that. Some states have Hate Crime laws and some don’t. So what? Assault is STILL a crime. What happens if I beat up a person and call them “fag” if their straight? Is that a hate crime? What happens if I beat up a gay person, but call them “jerk?” Is that a hate crime? What happens if I beat up a straight conservative white male with blond hair. Is that a hate crime? Maybe it is, as I have dark hair. Or do I have to call him “Blondie” as I’m beating him to qualify as a hate crime? Where does it stop? So many people want special treatment because they belong to some “special protected class,” that pretty soon EVERYONE will be a protected class of people. Then everyone will be back to being equal. Ooh, Crap! Everyone equal? We can’t have that!

How about forcing diversity? We talked about that during American History X. Is someone a racist if they have friends who are white, black, oriental, but not latino? Oh, man! I’m a racist. How about if they have friends who are Christian and Muslim, but not Jewish or Hindi? Wow, I’m in so much trouble. I wish we could do something cool like judge people based on the content of their character rather than on the color of their skin. Holy Cow! Someone better call the Thought Police on me! Lets not forget that within the great diversity movement, group identification – be it racial, gender based, or some other minority status – means more that the individual’s integrity, character or other qualifications.

Forced Charity? That one we can do! Take everyone’s paycheck, give them medical care, give them food and water, give them a house, and give what’s left over to someone who doesn’t get a paycheck! People who have a ton of kids get big houses, no matter how much money they make. People whose children have grown up and moved out get the small houses, no matter how much money they make. Take from each person what they are able to give and give to each person what they need. Yeah, I think that will work!

Here’s a thought. STOP FOCUSING ON THE DIFFERENCES! Don’t worry about it. Short, tall, black, white, ugly, pretty, fat, skinny, gay, straight, man, woman, bald, hairy, bikini, one-piece, pink, green, plaid, who cares?????? Try “Person.”

Roy Cohn said “My generation had clarity.” That’s pretty profound. There was clarity in the forties and fifties. People knew what right and wrong were all about. People were ashamed when they did something wrong. A teacher saying “I’m going to tell your parents” instilled fear in a student and generally got them to straighten out. Now that statement is a case of “Good luck.” And if that didn’t work, the principal with the two-by-four nearly always did. Funny how there were never any school shootings back then when children were “abused” for doing wrong. Strange coincidence.

The whole thing just seems to be one REALLY LONG “Me Good, You Bad.” I’m just glad it’s over.

Yes mister white man, please tell us about diversity and racial acceptance. However would we learn to love one another without your guidance? All crime is done out of hate? Haha you’re so funny. I wonder why no one ever thought of that before…

Seriously, when will white people figure out it’s not their place to tell people of color how to feel? This post is so full of this man’s privilege it’s coated my tongue and left the bitter taste of self righteousness in the back of my throat.

And wtf is up with him using the term “oriental?”

All crime is done out of hate? This is a common straw man argument against hate crime legislation and it says something deeply ignorant about a person in my opinion. Crime may not be done out of love, but that doesn’t mean it’s equal to the terrorization of an entire group of people based of their race, gender, sexual orientation, etc. Because that’s what a hate crime is.

This kind of nonchalant attitude about what Hate Crimes truly are and his insistence that all we need is to stop looking at the differences highlights this guy’s racial privilege. The 50s had clarity? Give me a break. Yes, beating children and segregation we’re brilliant ideas.

But who cares when you can buy a Ford?

I’m also tired of people always claiming you should move out of the country if you’re not happy here. You know what? Fuck you. We can bitch about any thing we want to. Complaining about things while doing nothing to change them is practically the American way.

Then again, maybe it’s all that crazy liberal propaganda I’ve been brainwashed into believing.

Sorry if you didn’t get half of this, but I needed to rant. And if you haven’t seen Angels in America do so. It’s great.

Monday, October 12, 2009

One Nation Under God

There has been some interesting statements about this painting, "One Nation Under God," by Jon McNaughton.


No one is shocked at this kind of painting. It's pretty standard of egocentric Christians to believe that god blessed America above others and that our constitution was written by Jesus (not literally obviously). Even the way people use historic figures who aren't even christian as part of their platform is standard fare.

The "controversial" part is who the artist decided to put in the lower right hand corner with Satan:


There's a "liberal news reporter," a professor clutching Darwin's Origin Of Species, a judge weeping over Roe vs. Wade, a pregnant woman, a "Mr. Hollywood," a politician, and a lawyer all huddled next to Satan.

You can read an explanation as to why the artist chose these people here and what they're suppose to represent, but I do think it's interesting who the artist decided not to include.

Now, I don't think it needs to be said that I defend the artist's right to create whatever he decides and that we shouldn't ridicule his ideas - no matter how misguided they may be.

I just think it's interesting is all.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

National Coming Out Day

Hey peeps. Hope everyone had a good weekend. I'm crazy busy with homework, but I just wanted to wish everyone a good National Coming Out Day!




You can find more information about National Coming Out Day at the Human Rights Campaign's website here.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Woohoo for the one percent!

This is just silly:


And probably true among junior high and high school students actually.

Obama's Nobel Peace Prize Win

I don't really know what to say about all hoopla surrounding President Obama's Nobel Peace Prize win.

Well, besides congratulations to the president of course.



The part I don't understand is why people are taking such pleasure in siding with the Taliban. I agree that this award was a bit preemptive, but I don't see why it should be used as a means to piss all over our president.

And if you honestly think Obama has done nothing, then you're an idiot. There's just no other way to say it. (Obviously that doesn't mean I think all people who disagree with this decision are dumb. It's just that there is little doubt that Obama has changed the tide of our International relations. That in and of itself is pretty amazing.)
"Only very rarely has a person to the same extent as Obama captured the world's attention and given its people hope for a better future," the committee wrote. "His diplomacy is founded in the concept that those who are to lead the world must do so on the basis of values and attitudes that are shared by the majority of the world's population." - Nobel Prize committee statement
Ultimately the Nobel committee gets to choose who gets the award. It's their award to give and they can do what they want with it. You liking their decision is of no importance. (There's been quite a few controversial winners in the past as well.)

Favorite comment on the situation so far:
In other words, the prize seems to be "thank God you're not trying to be a big swinging dick of a unilateral superpower" -Farai Chideya at Huffington Post
It's just a sad day when the international community is more supportive of our president then our own citizens are.

I just want to make clear that I'm not equating people who disagree with Obama's win as terrorists. That's just stupid. My annoyance is at people who are happy he won because it gives them an excuse to throw insults. I'm always for having a genuine dialog.

Things that are being killed by the internet

The Telegraph recently compiled a list of 50 things that are being killed by the internet. Though most of them are quite silly, these four were my favorites:

27) Knowing telephone numbers off by heart
After typing the digits into your contacts book, you need never look at them again.

letter photo by england

12) Letter writing/pen pals
Email is quicker, cheaper and more convenient; receiving a handwritten letter from a friend has become a rare, even nostalgic, pleasure. As a result, formal valedictions like "Yours faithfully" are being replaced by "Best" and "Thanks".

47) Footnotes
Made superfluous by the link, although Wikipedia is fighting a brave rearguard action.

Fossil Watch photo by jorgeq

10) Watches
Scrabbling around in your pocket to dig out a phone may not be as elegant as glancing at a watch, but it saves splashing out on two gadgets.

I really would like to have a pen pal. You can catch the rest of the list here.

Actual Threat to Harm vs. Public Outrage

This is just awesome.

Artist Susannah Hertrich developed this graphic designed to bring to consciousness the difference between the likelihood of harm from certain threats and public outrage:

click to make larger

from Sociological Images:
I am unsure as to how she measured both “public outrage” and “actual hazard” but, giving her the benefit of the doubt and assuming that this information is based on some reasonable systematic measurement, the image nicely draws our attention to how some social problems can receive a disproportionate amount of outrage, contributing to their social construction as significant or insignificant social problems (or, alternatively, their social construction as public problems for which outrage is appropriate and useful, versus private problems that have no public policy dimensions).

The graphic speaks for itself.

Sociological Image post also linked to David McCandless' website Information is Beautiful. I think the above image must have been posted there, but I didn't see it when I checked the site out.

I did find all kinds of other goodness though.

Like this infograph about Twitter:

click to make larger

Isn't stuff like this neat? I think I love infographs. They combine two of my favorite things - random information and cool design.

If his book is anything like his website I just might have to rip it apart and frame some of it. (Yup, I love it enough to destroy it.)

Information is Beautiful has been added to my "Places I love" page.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

The 30 senators who voted against victims of workplace gang rape

I have to admit I was a bit shocked when I saw this video from the Young Turks:



wtf? This is a no brainer to me. I went looking for a list of the senators to see if either of Utah's Republican senators voted against it, but I'm happy to say they didn't.

Here's the list:

Alexander (R-TN)
Barrasso (R-WY)
Bond (R-MO)
Brownback (R-KS)
Bunning (R-KY)
Burr (R-NC)
Chambliss (R-GA)
Coburn (R-OK)
Cochran (R-MS)
Corker (R-TN)
Cornyn (R-TX)
Crapo (R-ID)
DeMint (R-SC)
Ensign (R-NV)
Enzi (R-WY)
Graham (R-SC)
Gregg (R-NH)
Inhofe (R-OK)
Isakson (R-GA)
Johanns (R-NE)
Kyl (R-AZ)
McCain (R-AZ)
McConnell (R-KY)
Risch (R-ID)
Roberts (R-KS)
Sessions (R-AL)
Shelby (R-AL)
Thune (R-SD)
Vitter (R-LA)
Wicker (R-MS)

It turns out, "the amendment was opposed by a host of business interests, including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and applies to a wide range of companies, including IBM and Boeing."

As Jason Linkins said, "I guess we must cover up crimes like rape in order to save capitalism."

-via Politico

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Jay Smooth on Roman Polanski

My love for Jay Smooth knows no bounds:



Yes.

Boob-a-thon

Britni just had a post about the Blogger Boobie-Thon since October is the National Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

Their mission is to "create a fun and lighthearted event that created awareness and raises money for breast cancer research."

It runs for one week at the beginning of October and hopes to raise $10,000 dollars this year. *Edit: I checked and they've just passed their goal!

Even though, like Britni, I'm not a fan of breast orientated cancer campaigns (because I think a woman's tits shouldn't be the first concern), I'm still happy whenever we can raise money for cancer research.

So go check it out if you'd like to donate. Or, if you're super poor like me, check out the gallery. It's not safe for work but it's all kinds of awesome.

You can find out more information about NBCAM here.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Requests to Remove Books Map

I found this screen shot of an interactive database that shows requests to have books removed from public and school libraries between 2007 and 2009 on Sociological Images.

I'm pretty shocked Utah's not on there at all:

click to make larger

Pretty awesome. In a crazy messed up sort of way.

You can find the interactive version where you can hover over each point and see what the book was, the basis of the challenge, and in many cases the result here.

Money can't buy me happiness, but I'm happiest when I can buy what I want

Anyone remember this song?



It was the jam for a quick minute there.

I don't why, but I thought about it today. Which then led me to think about this song.

And who could forget dancing bikers?



I'm in one of those moods today it seems.

You're welcome.

Craziness in the GOP Abounds

I almost couldn’t believe what I was hearing when I saw this on Rachel Maddow last night.

Almost.



wtf? I have no words for this kind of crazy.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Daily Obsession - Demonia Shoes

Have you guys seen Demonia shoes?

They are some of the most beautiful shoes I've ever seen in life. I want like every pair. And they're all less than $60 bucks.


Seriously, I think that glittery pink pair speaks to my soul.

Anyways, I'm bored and indulging in some shoe porn and I thought I'd share. You can find them at Infectious Threads' website here.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Folio submissions

My school sent out an email letting people know that they had until tomorrow to turn in submissions for the school's literary magazine Folio.



As usual I didn't read the email til the last minute and now I'm not sure if I should submit anything.

I'm posting two poems here and I feel a bit exposed so I'm giving the "read more" jump break a try. So follow the jump if you're interested.

continue reading...

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Rainbow Bloodbath

I love this so much. I wanna marry it. And have little psycho children who cry rainbow tears and shit little strawberry poops. It'll be magical.


So maybe not, but I still want one. Mom, if you ever loved me you'll get me this. And a pony. Made of cotton candy.

It was made by Jude Buffum and you can see more of work here. Just be warned that your brain might explode from all the awesomeness. Just saying.

-via Geekologie

Friday, October 2, 2009

GOP Revels in America’s Failure

I really don’t know what to say to the conservative hack jobs that are rejoicing that Chicago lost the Olympic bid. Seriously, I’m so disgusted in their behavior I’d rather go clean my house than listen to their pathetic rhetoric.

But I guess that’s what happens when your party has no substance.

I fucking hated President Bush. I hated everything about him and I hated the way he divided the country in a way I had never experienced (cause of my age obviously). I voted for Kerry with my first presidential vote and couldn’t believe that Bush was re-elected. As time goes on and some people seem to forget what a piece of shit president he was, I want to throw up every time a person tries to defend him.

But I never cheered for his mistakes. Why? Because his mistakes were our mistakes.

The GOP doesn’t understand that of course. Since they can’t actually make a difference, or change the overwhelming sense of irrelevancy, they seem to think that applauding the “failures” of the President is somehow akin to actually making public policy.

Well, it’s not. And though I hate calling a person “unpatriotic,” especially after years of suffering it myself, I have truly never seen such an unpatriotic group in my life.

84 percent of Americans wanted Chicago to win the bid. So when the GOP attacks the President, they’re also attacking that 84 percent of us. That’s over 255 million people.

And criticizing the President’s 24 hour trip to Copenhagen by saying he should be focusing on getting people jobs is the dumbest thing I’ve heard come out of Michael Steele’s mouth in a long time. He does realize that preparation for the Olympics does create jobs right? Considering the fact no one had shit to say when President Bush spent 30 percent of his total time in office on vacation makes the hypocrisy pretty freggin obvious.

So fuck you GOP.

So Gosh Darn Cute

Wow, My posts a bit crazy today. Oh well...

I was watching Skins last night and I can not believe how freaking adorable Kathryn Prescott, who plays Emily Fitch, is. It's utterly ridiculous.

I just adore her girly but funky style.


I don't watch the show too regularly (to be honest I usually catch a marathon and just watch some of it then), but her story line about coming to terms with being a lesbian and her relationship with the character Naomi Campbell is really sweet.

That which makes our heroine gush uncontrollably

I know this is a bit ridiculous and totally random, but this mascara (L'Oreal Voluminous) is the most amazing mascara I've ever used.

Seriously.

You know how some mascaras that say "waterproof" aren't really all that waterproof? Well this stuff is. You might want to invest in a sandblaster to get this shit off - or some good makeup remover at the very least. (I don't even want to think how much soap it would take to get it all off.)

The good thing though, is that means it won't smudge. And no one likes smudging. Except maybe Courtney Love, but that's a whole other can of worms.

Anyways, if you have thin crappy lashes like me, this will be your life savior. Scouts honor.

Daily Obsession - That's Not What I Heard

It took five stores, but I was finally able to get my little paws on a Gossip album.

Of course they only had one in stock, but that's music stores for you. (Damn my refusal to go strickly digital.)

Anyways, it turned out pretty great since the album is all kinds of awesome. It has more of a garage type sound then the heavier pop sound in their newer music. (I hope that made sense.)

Here's a video of each so you get my drift:





Though I still want their new album something feirce, which has been made worse since I can't find it, I am still sitting pretty today.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

The White House vs. Glenn Beck

Great news - The White House blog has just called out Glenn Beck and the fact he seems to be deathly allegic to reality.

As the blog post says, "once again Fox News' Glenn Beck program has shown that nothing is worthy of respect if it can be used as part of a partisan attack to boost ratings."

Oh snap.

Crazy Potheads

This article is one of the dumbest things I've read in a long time.


What?! People are smoking pot Marie Claire? You mean, people who aren't overweight teenagers eating cheetos in their parent's basements? It's downright shocking! Shocking I tell you!!!

Jesus christ.

I will say that there is a chance that this article might be helpful, in the sense that it could bring this information to a different demographic of people who are unaware of all this because they were raised on Reefer Madness and don't actually smoke themselves (though it's questionable whether that demographic reads Marie Claire), but it also felt a bit like Marie Claire tried to validate smoking weed if you're young, thin, and have a good job.

Which doesn't make any sense.

Everyone has the same right to smoke weed regardless of their profession of how "hip" they may be. If you wear stilettos and work in advertising, great. If you chill in your parents basement eating Cheetos and playing video game, great. The rest is just semantics.

Perfect example:
Another myth debunked by pantsuit-clad pot lovers: that devotees hole up in their apartments in a thick cannabis stupor, blowing off friends and social commitments. "I almost never smoke alone," says 28-year-old Gina Bridges, a grants administrator for a Seattle-based nonprofit. Bridges sometimes hosts low-key dinner parties with her husband and friends, punctuated by dessert and bong hits. (She stopped smoking when she recently became pregnant.) "Alcohol makes you feel more social, but weed works in a different way. You're quieter, more contemplative. My friends and I get more in depth about specific issues," she says.
wtf? You mean people get high with their friends too? What is this world coming to?! (It's like these people have never seen an episode of That 70s Show.)

Today even did a whole segment on "Stiletto Stoners."



First off, Pineapple Express was fucking awesome. Second, if 8 million women have smoked pot in the last year, then why are people so surprised?

Oh, cause they're morons.

The person they highlight in their clip says she is more addicted to coffee than anything else, but I think pills are a better comparison. People pop pills like crazy and yet they equate marijuana as some kind of horrible drug. (At least with pot you know what chemicals are going into your body.) It doesn't make any sense to me.

And what is up with Holland claiming people feel like criminals and are racked with guilt? Just cause you smoked some bad schwag doctor doesn't mean people everywhere feel the same.



All this hoopla is just ridiculous. Almost everyone I know smokes pot. A lot of people try it when they're teenagers and tt only makes sense that if they found the experience enjoyable, they'd keep doing it (at least occasionally) when they grew up and got jobs. There is nothing shocking about this.

Just because people aren't talking about it doesn't mean they're not doing it. (Is this not true with everything?)

The only good point in the article was this:

What's more, Bridges says sex was much better when she was high, helping her to shed her inhibitions. "Sometimes I'd wonder, Am I doing the right thing? Am I getting him off? When I smoke, it's all about me. I'm not worried so much about what he's thinking. And it helps him enjoy it more, too, because I'm not psyching myself out," she says.

Yes. This is so true and I think couples who are having problems in the bedroom should really consider lighting up before giving it a go. It can really help in some situations.

And this bothered me the most out of the whole article (though for a whole other reason):
"I'll go to the gym for an hour, then come back home and smoke a joint while I listen to jazz and read a book—I just finished The Fountainhead. It's my moment for myself before I have to get up and do it all over again tomorrow. It's my bubble bath," Schwartz explains.

s anyone else tired of reading, especially Ayn Rand, always being equated with intellectualism? Don't try so hard people.

It's all just a bit ridiculous.

-via Jezebel (again)