- American Gods Author Neil Gaiman on Why Casting The 100’s Ricky Whittle as Shadow Is So Vital – I love this casting so much (although I am slightly worried for Lincoln’s safety on The 100 now…).
Important takeaway: if the “pro-life” moment really wanted to reduce abortions, they would advocate policies that have demonstrably reduced abortion numbers instead of opposing them. Based on their actions, these organizations are actually carrying out a “politicized attack on sex” (that’s a phrase from the video).
- Related: Texas Grand Jury Investigating Planned Parenthood Decides To Indict Anti-Abortion Activists Instead – If you find yourself saying “it’s okay for us to lie or commit fraud because we know we’re right,” maybe you should stop and think about whether you’re actually right. (If you were, maybe the evidence wouldn’t be against you.)
- Related again: Avoiding the TRAP: Defending Legal Abortion, with David A. Grimes, M.D. – Trying to eliminate abortion by claiming to “protect women’s health” isn’t just deceitful, it’s doomed to fail. Prohibition didn’t stop the consumption of alcohol, it brought the mafia to power. Abortion itself was illegal at one point, and this didn’t prevent abortion – women went to unsafe providers, and wound up in life-threatening situations (or dead).
If you want to lower the abortion rate, improve sex education. Improve access to contraception (even if you’re a closely-held corporation). Don’t make abortion more dangerous and lie about your goals.
- After Overpayment Of Benefits, VA Wanted $38,000 Back
- A Few Doctors Account For Outsize Share Of Malpractice Claims
- A ‘Scorcher’: 2015 Shatters Record As Warmest Year, NASA And NOAA Say
- Donald Trump Is Really Unpopular With General Election Voters – Starting to wonder whether a potential consequence of Trump’s campaign will be giving moderates the impression that the other Republican candidates aren’t as reactionary and disturbing as they might normally seem.
- Ken Ham calls Newsweek anti-Christian for further exposing his Ark Encounter discrimination – I wanted to link to the referenced Newsweek article but it’s behind a paywall. tl;dr – Ken Ham thinks it’s anti-Christian to point out that his hiring practices don’t comply with the tax incentives he feels entitled to wants you to belive that tax incentives don’t come from tax payer money.
- Catholic Church’s Hold on Schools at Issue in Changing Ireland
- Muslim woman is kicked out of a Trump rally for being a Muslim – (tw: racism/religious bigotry) This one has me pissed off. At a Trump rally woman did NOTHING other than stand silently, wearing a shirt with the words “Salam / I come in peace” and a “Muslim” button. When assholes in the crowd starting screaming at her and getting aggressive, *she* was the one asked to leave and escorted out by police. AND THEN as she was escorted out, more bigoted assholes jumped in her face to scream and make violent motions (while the policeman escorting her stood by) and then celebrated with their buddies when they returned to their seats. At the same time, on stage Trump blamed *her* and all other Muslims for hating him and his white supporters. Despite the events happening in that very rally at that very moment, he boasted that “it’s their hatred, it’s not our hatred.”
If you are still a Trump supporter, after everything he’s said and done, the evidence indicates that you’re a hateful bigot. If that’s not how you think of yourself, please do some serious self-evaluation and then step away from the assholes, loudly and explicitly. #whitesagainsttrump
- The Force Awakens, Mary Sue & Female Wish Fulfillment Tropes
- Thanks to Ammon Bundy, 2016 Is Already a Banner Year for White Supremacy & Who Will Blink First? Armed Occupation In Oregon Drags On – From the first link: “Listen, I’ve read the articles about how law enforcement has learned from the sieges at Ruby Ridge and Waco that going in guns blazing is not the best way to resolve tense situations. Maybe that’s true. But it seems like law enforcement has applied those learned lessons only to white people.”
It’s not that riot police and FBI assault teams should be crashing into Malheur National Wildlife Refuge and killing everyone. It’s that non-white protesters & suspected criminals deserve a less violent response from police, and white terrorists shouldn’t be given free rein to do as they please (and for goodness’ sake, CUT THE POWER AND WATER. THAT’S STEP ONE).
- 5 Ways Elite-College Admissions Shut Out Poor Kids
- Young infants have perceptual superpowers – This week’s contribution to evidence against “there’s no way such a young child could know ___”
- Google says its futuristic self-driving cars needed some old-fashioned human intervention to avoid 11 crashes during testing on California roads – This throws some cold water on my enthusiasm for self-driving cars last week, but I’m still very excited about the potential here. The big challenge won’t be making the software safer, it will be convincing society to trust self-driving cars once they are statistically safer than human drivers.
- Antiabortion chart is most misleading chart of 2015
- David Bowie, The Internet Visionary
- YouTube Will Save Civilization with Reality Education
- As Technology Marches On, Reservoir Caretakers Stay At Their Posts – In light of certain parties in Oregon claiming to be patriots, I liked this article highlighting actual community servants.
- The Counterfeit High School Diploma – What is a high school diploma, and what should it be? A statement of the graduates’ skills & knowledge, or just that they didn’t drop out of school for 13 years? (If it’s the latter, why is getting a GE diploma so much harder?) What should the role of standardized testing be? I don’t have ultimate solutions, but I think a big step would be decoupling graduation rates & standardized testing (assessments of student abilities) from teacher evaluations and funding allocation. Administrators and government fund allocators shouldn’t be testing apples to rate orange farming practices.
- Pop vs Soda map – More lighthearted, a county-by-county map of what people call coke (yup).
- What to do when you’re not the hero any more – Advice for white men complaining about having main characters who don’t look like them (a group that’s pretty loud on the Internet).
- Related: #WhereIsRey? She’s On Her Way, Says Hasbro – Sexism in toy production.
- Lyft, GM Teaming Up To Create Fleet Of Driverless Cars – Seems like you either love or hate the idea of self-driving cars. Personally, I can’t wait (and even more I love the idea that they could reduce the need to own a car in the U.S. – think about the percent of time your car isn’t being used, compared to your mattress or couch).
- Remember when people were screaming that the ACA was going to kill full-time jobs? Not so much.
And related: The Armed Oregon Ranchers Who Want Free Land Are Already Getting A 93 Percent Discount
- Um … about that American Libraries article we wrote
- No increased risk of autism, ADHD with prenatal antidepressant exposure, study indicates – This time with a larger sample size than the headline grabbing study from a few weeks ago. Scientific communication is like that – multiple experiments and studies and reports over time establishing a consensus, and revising accepted hypotheses as new data becomes available. Not definite headlines based on a single paper.
- James Deen Accuser Ashley Fires Calls For A Safer Work Environment In Porn – Sex workers deserve safe working environments, too.
As I’m putting this together, some proud/arrogant Oregonians are doing their best to prove that it’s not terrorism if you’re white, and demonstrating the vast differences between how American police and media respond to black and white protesters. So, yeah.
- More on Police in the United States: Big Picture
- Oscar Isaac and The Case Against Colorblind Casting & Gene Demby’s response on NPR’s Code Switch Making The Case Against ‘Colorblind Casting’
- Challenging what it means to ‘dress like a boy’
- Obama’s ‘job-killing agenda’ continues to impress
- Study Confirms “Gender Tax,” Women Often Pay More Than Men for Similar Products
- The Linguistics of ‘YouTube Voice’
- Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee featuring President Obama – Made me smile this week.
- How Han Solo Transformed a Misogynist Trope in The Force Awakens – Major plot spoilers for The Force Awakens.
- Busybodies Among the Young