How My Parents Met
I have spent a lifetime confused about this—about how a person could feel drawn to someone, desire their otherness, yet still find genuine love and devotion buried within the fascination.
Poverty and homelessness are political creations. Their amelioration is within our grasp and budget. But those of us most likely to vote and contribute to political campaigns are least likely to support MID reform — either because it wouldn’t affect our lives or because it would, by asking us to take less so that millions of Americans could be given the opportunity to climb out of poverty. It’s just that we usually don’t dial our elected officials when our less-fortunate neighbors are hurting, because we are not.
Damore’s own attempt at this classic maneuver is shot through with a number of fallacies, the biggest of which is the structural fallacy of ignoring history while assuming that the burden of proof rests with diversity advocates to show that inequality is the result of discrimination rather than the inevitable consequence of biology. Women in the US have had the right to vote for less than a hundred years. There are some pretty good reasons why inequality persists in 2017 — big structural issues that are real and clearly linked with education, opportunity, and advancement. Why turn to bad biology when you can look at history?
Over the past several years, there have been many times I wished I’d stuck with that childhood dream. A 2012 market-research study estimated that 67 percent of American women wore a size 14-plus. The number has only grown, and the market for plus-size clothing is valued at $20.4 billion. Revenue in the category increased by 17 percent between 2013 and 2016 (compared with growth of just 7 percent in apparel overall). There is, to put it crudely, an insane amount of money just sitting on the table, and it seems, finally, that there are some savvy entrepreneurs out there ready to shrug off fashion’s inherent snobbery and claim a piece of it.
Asians are the loneliest Americans. The collective political consciousness of the ’80s has been replaced by the quiet, unaddressed isolation that comes with knowing that you can be born in this country, excel in its schools and find a comfortable place in its economy and still feel no stake in the national conversation. The current vision of solidarity among Asian-Americans is cartoonish and blurry and relegated to conversations at family picnics, in drunken exchanges over food that reminds everyone at the table of how their mom used to make it. Everything else is the confusion of never knowing what side to choose because choosing our own side has so rarely been an option. Asian pride is a laughable concept to most Americans. Racist incidents pass without prompting any real outcry, and claims of racism are quickly dismissed. A common past can be accessed only through dusty, dug-up things: the murder of Vincent Chin, Korematsu v. United States, the Bataan Death March and the illusion that we are going through all these things together. The Asian-American fraternity is not much more than a clumsy step toward finding an identity in a country where there are no more reference points for how we should act, how we should think about ourselves.
Jia Tolentino referencing Clickhole's garbage sons quiz is my favorite thing
The large-adult-son meme takes wing from the idea that men overcompensate when they are humiliated, and that a primary source of this humiliation is interdependence—sons act out when they are defined by their fathers, and fathers are disgraced by the oafish flailing of their sons.
There’s no prescriptive or proscriptive step-by-step rulebook to follow, nobody’s coming to take GIFs away. But no digital behavior exists in a deracialized vacuum. We all need to be cognizant of what we share, how we share, and to what extent that sharing dramatizes preexisting racial formulas inherited from “real life.” The Internet isn’t a fantasy — it’s real life.
Immigrants are expected, over an undefined period, to become like other Americans, a process metaphorically described as a melting pot. But what this means, in practice, remains unsettled. After all, Americans have always been a heterogeneous population — racially, religiously, regionally. By what criteria is an outsider judged to fit into such a diverse nation?
If you had been watching closely, you could see that the change had come slowly. ‘‘Dieting’’ was now considered tacky. It was anti-feminist. It was arcane. In the new millennium, all bodies should be accepted, and any inclination to change a body was proof of a lack of acceptance of it. ‘‘Weight loss’’ was a pursuit that had, somehow, landed on the wrong side of political correctness. People wanted nothing to do with it. Except that many of them did: They wanted to be thinner. They wanted to be not quite so fat. Not that there was anything wrong with being fat! They just wanted to call dieting something else entirely.
There are so many different types of inheritances; one I still hope my children can somehow sidestep is the void, the frustration of desperately searching for yourself, or people like you, in a cultural landscape that does not seem to be for you. And what does it say about you, about your worth and your importance and the possibilities open to you, if you can’t find yourself at all?
And since we can’t crack up, lose it, giggle, guffaw, snort, break into hysterics, snicker, chuckle or simply nod and smile on text, we’ve had to come up with a host of different ways to get across what we mean.
One document trains content reviewers on how to apply the company’s global hate speech algorithm. The slide identifies three groups: female drivers, black children and white men. It asks: Which group is protected from hate speech? The correct answer: white men.
How, in 2017, are we still in a world where presuming a black man innocent until proven guilty is the material of comic fantasy?
But in listening to Melodrama, I have come to think Lorde’s music provides just as vital a service for people older than her: It helps them reconnect with and draw from the emotional intensity of youth. It helps us get past 21, by reawakening the formative, operatic rush of all the nights that happened before it.
I’m always grappling with ‘done is better than perfect.’ But you have to get over yourself enough to make that first move. Everything else you can figure out along the way.
"I don't delude myself into thinking that if and when I reach [a certain] size, all my problems will be gone. Many of them would be different. At least I'd feel better in my body, better leaving my house," she says. "My dreams have really become sad at this point—human dignity dreams."
When we think about caring for our neighbors, we think about local churches, and charities—systems embedded in our communities. But I see these technological systems as one of the main ways that we take care of each other at scale. It’s how Americans care for all three hundred million of our neighbors, rich or poor, spread over four million square miles, embedded in global supply chains.
The divergent trends for mothers and babies highlight a theme that has emerged repeatedly in ProPublica’s and NPR’s reporting. In recent decades, under the assumption that it had conquered maternal mortality, the American medical system has focused more on fetal and infant safety and survival than on the mother’s health and well-being.
They're good dogs Brent
The effects may be subtle, but if we pour so much of ourselves into the stories we tell, the data we gather, the visuals we design, the webpages we build, then we should take responsibility for them. And that means not just accepting the limits of our own perspective, but actively seeking out people who can bring in new ones.
It is okay to feel guilty about things that you are guilty of. It will not kill you, but hiding from that guilt and responsibility can kill others. So feel the guilt, realize you are still alive and intact, figure out how to do better, try to make amends if possible, and move forward. You are not alone.
The stereotype, for example, does not explain why "girls don't play video games." It does not reveal who or what is responsible for it. It does not explain how an industry that started with games like Pong (1972) or the first computer version of Tic-Tac-Toe (1959) came to be responsible for a medium that, for most of its history, hasn't had even an aisle's worth of games for Maida.
"Before Kelly, “love” always looked like fixing myself the right way, so someone could bring themselves to love me. Being perfectly shaved, perfectly thin, and perfectly presentable. Now, I know real love makes room for you to love yourself the way you are, and the way you want to be."
Moreover, and luckily for democracy, none of us requires a guaranteed outcome in order to act. We all do plenty of things without knowing if or when or how or how much they will work: we say prayers, take multivitamins, give money to someone on Second Avenue who looks like she needs it. So, too, with calling and e-mailing and writing and showing up in congressional offices: it would be good to know that these actions will succeed, but it suffices to know that they could. And at this particular moment, when our First Amendment freedoms are existentially threatened—when the President himself has, among other things, sought to curb press access and to discredit dissent—we also act on them to insist that we can. The telephone might not be a superior medium for participatory democracy, but it is an excellent metaphor for it, and it reminds us of the rights we are promised as citizens. When we get disconnected, we can try to get through. When we get no answer, we can keep trying. When we have to, for as long as we need to, we can hold the line.
The startup industry, which has long prided itself on speed and agility, is primed for the accumulation of all kinds of debts to achieve its pace. We’ve learned to take technical debt seriously. Now it’s time that we confront the costs of diversity debt as well.
Fat women and girls are matrons, cronies, jokes. They’re never romantic leads, or heroes. They never get to just be. It’s like writers can’t imagine fat women having sex or agency or complex lives. They’re just bodies for thin people to bounce off of; funny and unserious as a whoopee cushion or unconsidered as a chair. If they’re even there at all.
The new Librarian of Congress, Dr. Carla Hayden, is highly motivated to make this library, and all libraries, a favorite object of the people. Hayden is the first person of color, and the first woman, to lead the Library of Congress; she is also the first actual librarian to lead it since 1974.
“She’s given us a wonderful model,” Saeed Jones says over the phone. “She could just be a great writer, that would be more than enough, but she’s gone beyond that,” he explains. “She’s showing us how to navigate difficult online spaces. She’s editing and championing people.”
There’s a certain segment of feminists who are like “pole dancing classes are so empowering” and “bikini waxes are so empowering blah blah blah.” No, it’s not. You’re trying to make yourself available. Just say that! Just say it! I don’t understand why people need to cloak certain things under a feminist label that are clearly not feminist. But they do it in order to not feel cognitive dissonance. You can have two conflicting ideas. You can want to be fuckable and you can want to destroy the patriarchy. I have this same conflict. Everyone does.
Rebecca Solnit 👏
Hillary Clinton was all that stood between us and a reckless, unstable, ignorant, inane, infinitely vulgar, climate-change-denying white-nationalist misogynist with authoritarian ambitions and kleptocratic plans. A lot of people, particularly white men, could not bear her, and that is as good a reason as any for Trump’s victory. Over and over again, I heard men declare that she had failed to make them vote for her. They saw the loss as hers rather than ours, and they blamed her for it, as though election was a gift they withheld from her because she did not deserve it or did not attract them. They did not blame themselves or the electorate or the system for failing to stop Trump.
"For me, the ultimate act of self-care has been infusing my life with the people and materials that nourish and sustain me—and that don’t feel like unwelcome obligations."
t is men who should admire and emulate women’s example of listening and engaging within reason in professional contexts. When complaining of the indifference or callousness of male writers, I have often heard the defense, “He actually has a really good heart,” or, “Deep down, he’s a good guy.” But how good can someone’s goodness really be if it dwells only in their interiors, the realm of intentions rather than actions?
For many, Trump’s election is their first large-scale encounter with any semblance of badness, and our dominant culture does not really know what engaging with that looks like. In the short term, we seek to resolve this discomfort with ineffectual acts. But discomfort is our ruling body now. And any form of engagement will only be worthwhile if there’s also a recognition of the tensions — the good, the bad, and the in-between — that govern us.
Our system, to a large degree, relies on social sanction rather than laws to prevent powerful people from getting too far out of line. When our most powerful person is willing to ignore all of that, there is not much in place to stop him. The normalization process is well underway. The pomp and circumstance and deference will only increase after the inauguration. The press and the Congress are the only two institutions standing between a dangerous man and total power. They must both realize this is not the time to salute and grovel. This is not the time to fall into familiar patterns of default respect for someone who does not himself respect the responsibility to the public that he has been given. This is the time for them to rise to the occasion. And the occasion is a fight for civil society.
White people are able to establish outrageously successful careers for being experts and authorities on the stuff that racialized folks do every day simply by existing. But of course, people of colour will rarely, if ever, be called experts on how to simply be themselves. It’s as if racialized folks and their ways of life are objects to be observed—study material, of sorts—rather than entire countries, cultures, and individual complex lives.
What could be better than Beyonce interviewing Solange??
In shops like the Bike Kitchen and Our Community Bikes, women and queer nights, safer space shop policies and women-focused hiring practices have resulted in much better gender balances for staff. They have also acted as a catalyst for broader—often difficult—conversations about gender, sexism, oppression and privilege.
Media literacy asks people to raise questions and be wary of information that they’re receiving. People are. Unfortunately, that’s exactly why we’re talking past one another.
So much of “Moonlight” focuses on Chiron’s silence, his inability to speak about the things he is experiencing and feeling. And silence, for both Mr. Jenkins and Mr. McCraney, was the armor of their childhoods. Silence is how they protected their mothers. Silence is how they protect themselves still.
We are not free unless those who are most marginalized are free. So my dear angry ones, before you gather in your hipster park, or café, or on the National Mall, consider three things: 1) If the most marginalized people cannot access your action or your movement, then there is nothing radical or revolutionary about it. 2) There is no need to reinvent the wheel, there have been folks who have been fiercely organizing all along—join them. 3) This may be your time to follow—not lead. Women like Henriquez have been lobbying and knocking on doors in every local, state, and national election for decades. If you’re an angry one, this is your time to ask, What have we been doing thus far—and how can I help?
Being an extremely social, sociable, accessible person should not be the price of being a professional writer, but for women it almost inevitably is.
Then there’s the matter of self-consciousness: virtually every time management expert’s first piece of advice is to keep a detailed log of your time use, but doing so just heightens your awareness of the minutes ticking by, then lost for ever. As for focusing on your long-term goals: the more you do that, the more of your daily life you spend feeling vaguely despondent that you have not yet achieved them. Should you manage to achieve one, the satisfaction is strikingly brief – then it’s time to set a new long-term goal. The supposed cure just makes the problem worse.
It’s a shortcut that erases Black struggle while using their histories as a metaphor to advance an Asian American agenda. But using antiblackness as a metaphor for Asian American struggle also limits the ways we talk about our own histories and movements. When we fail to employ nuance and specificity in our discussions of Asian American experiences with racism, we risk misdirecting Asian American anger away from the structures of white supremacy and towards Black communities—hurting all of us in the process.