A Rare Sighting of Links in the Wild

Well, I haven’t done this in ages, have I?

… yes, I know, I haven’t done blogging period in ages. I’m sorry! My thesis and various dead philosophers and art theorists are eating my life. But I’m still here, in fits and starts.

Tiger Beatdown takes on neoliberal feminism of the “Lean In” variety:

In instances of cultural hegemony a ruling class imposes their beliefs, explanations, perceptions, values, etc so that these values and beliefs become the cultural norm. In this cultural hegemony that has become neoliberal feminism, there is no place for diversity of representation, diversity of models of organization or acceptance of difference. In order to belong, we should be in the business of maximizing our own value instead of “bullying for inclusion”. After all, if we just re-brand ourselves, the market should take care of the rest. This is what Lean and Mean feminism looks like.

Cori Mattli does an utterly fantastic job of depicting the revolutions in thought and consciousness that happen along many of our journeys as feminists:

And then one night, there is a dinner and discussion at your house–a class project about immigration and the media. You arrange copies of magazine covers, like place mats, on the dining room table for discussion–they show Latino people, the shadows of their eyes dark. The illustrated faces squished into hard stares and grimaces. Their creators, through ink and gloss, try to communicate to you (you young white American woman you) that these faces wish you harm. You think that this sort of media does not affect you.

At dinner, you stumble and you choke over words. Institutional racism isn’t something you’ve been asked to talk about before. This is your house, but you feel not at home. These are not my stories, you think. A smart, eloquent Latina student takes hold of the conversation. Her voice booms. She talks about her family. She talks about her studies in unfair, racist immigration policies. You are happy just to listen. You realize there is much to learn from just listening. But, you also notice the white people in the room–they are looking at their shoes and in unison, they breathe a deep grateful sigh.

Jon Huntsman is not the role model the GOP is looking for, says Paul Fidalgo:

I understand realpolitick. I understand that a shot at the presidency is the rarest of opportunities, and as Obama himself shows, you have to move with speed and blind determination if you ever hope to seize that opportunity. I think it’s pretty clear Huntsman won’t have another realistic shot. He perceived (correctly) that 2012 would be it for him, and he acted on it. I get it.

But then, you don’t take the job of being the embodiment of a president’s policy in a foreign country when you’re simultaneously plotting to politically undermine him. Erickson is right: Huntsman should have satisfied his ambition at the expense of something other than his commitment to the United States.

James Croft writes on the exclusion of atheists and humanists from the Boston bombing services, and makes a great argument for why we would want to be included:

Like the dogmatic religious communities we define ourselves against we, I am sad to say, have our little idols, our shibboleths which cannot be questioned. At the moment, our commitment to secularism and our obsession with not being religious has become something of an idol: all other ethical considerations must bow to the questions “How does this affect separation of church and state?” and “If we do this (sing together, light a candle, express our values passionately, encourage other people to be Humanists, speak at an interfaith event) will anyone think we are religious?”

Finally, Olivia says something I’ve been trying to talk about for ages, but does it infinitely better than I:

Truth often can contribute to our happiness. It is hard to be happy if we are basing our happiness on a lie or on delusion, because those things can fall apart and leave us incredibly unhappy. However this does not mean that we need to ruthlessly pursue truth. It means that in the important aspects of our lives, we should try to base our values and actions on truth. Truth can also make us incredibly unhappy, as can the search for truth. I know many people, myself included, who are almost haunted by the need for certainty and truth, and who are truly disturbed by the lack of purpose in our lives. If I look at all the facts, that is the most true conclusion that I find: that there is no purpose in my life. This has led to some serious emotional and mental problems for me. The idea that it’s more important for me to be close to that truth and hold that truth than it is for me to deal with my depression or recover from my eating disorder is ridiculous to me. Whether I have a certain purpose or not doesn’t truly affect how I should act and the efficacy of my actions in the here and now. It is pursuing truth too far, to the point where it becomes removed from my life and simply becomes an intellectual exercise that is causing me misery. So for now, I choose to ignore that truth and focus on different truths.

These Links Kill Fascists

We start off in the title’s vein with this piece, an excellent takedown of Thomas Friedman, that makes the case excellently for why liberalism’s time has passed.

[Video] Dave Zirin of The Nation breaks down the decision of the Baseball Hall of Fame to not induct any players this year, because steroids.

A surprisingly decent article from the New York Times on students who are trying to break the gender binary.

Stephanie Zvan responds to Ron Lindsay.

I’m not exactly one for celebrity gossip, but Janet Mock writes an awesome piece on Azealia Banks, gay cis male privilege, and the routine degrading of trans* women.

In his usual brilliant way, Glenn Greenwald analyzes the faulty and downright ridiculous logic of the Obama administration’s criteria for prosecuting Bradley Manning.

#overlyhonestmethods is a thing. And it’s amazing.

Finally, if you’re going to read anything here, read this: the Crunk Feminists take on violent masculinity, particularly in the cases of CeCe McDonald and Savita. Includes bonus awful first comment by that most awful of trolls, Cathy Brennan.

Hot Links Here!

Alex Gabriel of Heresy Club writes a brilliant, brilliant piece on why marriage is not the end-all be-all of queer issues.

In the theme of my piece from yesterday, the Institute for Public Accuracy  takes issue with Nick Kristof’s factchecking.

American Atheists, champion designers of vulgar billboards, put their newest one in one of the most vulgar places on Earth. Surprisingly, it’s not terrible. The billboard, not Times Square. As a New Yorker, I find that place more offensive than Chicago deep dish.

My bff Ashley Miller tells of how her father disowned her for dating a black man. I talk a lot about unconscious racism, but the blatant type still exists, too.

Chana writes about steelmanning. It’s a good idea, but I think my derision for most of my enemies may prevent me following the practice.

The Crunk Feminists remind us to remember the victims of domestic violence, like Kasandra Perkins.

Michigan is trying to do a Wisconsin.

Natalie Reed asks us to consider more carefully how we discuss trans* people and their narratives.

Paul Fidalgo writes on his recovery from a horrible attack, and how “curing” mental health issues is not really a thing.

Finally, courtesy of the Citizen Radio podcast, the best Photoshop mashup ever:

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Links For Your Delectation

I’m traveling tomorrow and then going to be in the hospital having my brain checked out most of the day on Wednesday, so until I get back, here’s some reading!

Miriam, newly crowned #FTBully, talks about how cheating is something we should think more about.

Chana, who really should blog more, writes about how not to respond to survivors of sexual assault who choose to share their stories.

David Hoelscher writes an extremely important piece on how the atheist movement has failed to properly take into account class issues; expect more from me on this next week.

Again on the class front, Walker Bristol of Foundation Beyond Belief comments.

The new movie about Abraham Lincoln isn’t groundbreaking; it’s the same old racism, with some anti-progressivism thrown in for good measure.

The latest Israeli campaign in Gaza is over, but for Palestinians, it is hard to move on.

Sikivu Hutchinson writes fabulously, as ever, on women of color and their struggles related to religion and nonbelief.

Cassy writes a fantastic piece on street harassment.

Following some comments on that piece, the lovely Kate discusses how not to respond to such narratives.

Watch Tony Pinn’s talk on diversity from Skepticon 5!

Laurie Penny has a fantastic interview with author Terry Pratchett.

Finally, in addition to doing fantastic work helping New York recover from Sandy, Occupy has been standing with striking Wal-Mart workers.

See you all on Wednesday, when a piece I am very proud of will go up on a very big atheist blog in the daylight hours. That same piece will be up here Thursday.