“I do think there was something a little bit off-key about the president slow jamming and appearing to make light of the fact that students are struggling. I don’t think it’s something to slow jam about or to make light of it. If that skit was brought to the governor, he would have declined.”—Romney campaign adviser Eric Fehrnstrom • Criticizing President Obama’s role on a recent episode of Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, which you may have seen. Basically, President Obama “slow jammed” (really just deliberately spoke, more than anything else) about student loan interest rates, an issue he’s pushing hard at the beginning of his 2012 reelection campaign. We get why Fehrnstrom (and the Romney campaign) might be frustrated by this — it was an extremely crafty political message, and delivered in a particular way that is completely inaccessible to Romney himself. His conclusion, however, that President Obama was making light of a serious situation for students, is countered by the very real political effect of his pushing the issue; just yesterday the GOP-led House voted to extend the fixed, lowered interest rates that Obama has been harping on. source (via • follow)
“Let’s move forward, not backward. I believe in young people and I’m going to fight for you.”—President Obama on why you should vote for him instead of Mitt Romney in 140 characters or less. (via kileyrae)
“Essentially, the idea of a “slut” is a myth told to women to keep them in their place. Just as Santa will not actually bring you coal on Christmas if you break a few of the house rules, you will not actually turn into an intrinsically tainted, unpalatable creature if you break one of society’s rules and have sex with one too many men. The word “slut” isn’t a criticism for having too much sex necessarily, but for being a woman: a real, living, breathing woman with quirks, foibles, normal sexual feelings, and personality; and failing to live up to the societal ideal for a woman: the passive, pliable, perpetually innocent, and sexually available Barbie doll.”—The Slut Myth (via ceedling)
Richard Grenell, a former Bush official, removed hundreds of Tweets and comments from his online profile this weekend after reporters zeroed in on his penchant for snarky comments about women in politics.
“Hillary is starting to look liek (sic) Madeline Albright,” Grenell wrote on his Twitter page, comparing current Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to the the first female secretary of state, who served under Bill Clinton.
Grenell was tapped Thursday as a foreign policy spokesman for presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney.
His knowledge of foreign affairs became irrelevant as reporters immediately began going through his Twitter comments and flagged some of his less chivalrous jibes.
In a swipe at First Lady Michelle Obama, an exercise buff who has led a national campaign against childhood obesity, he claimed she was “sweating on the East Room carpet” after working out.
Grenell also zeroed in on GOP nominee Newt Gingrich’s wife Callista, wondering whether her “hair snaps on.”
…“I didn’t mean them that way and will remove them from twitter. I apologize for any hurt they caused,” Grenell wrote.
Some 800 tweets were then scrubbed from Grenell’s accounts between Friday and Sunday, noted Huffington Post media reporter Michael Calderone.
MSNBC host Rachel Maddow, who Grenell said was a “dead ringer” for teenage heartthrob Justin Bieber, was not amused by the comments, nor appeased by his apology.
On Friday’s show, she asked if Team Romney showed “any sign that they understand that a long string of really nasty, sexist tweets about Callista Gingrich’s appearance might be alienating to people who might otherwise consider voting for Mr. Romney,” the Huffington Post reported.
The flap over the tweets followed some conservative backlash on his selection since Grenell is openly gay.
1) No one is surprised that Romney picked a woman-hating dicksmack to be an official spokesman; 2) No one is surprised that conservatives have a problem with Romney picking a spokesman who is openly gay; 3) Welcome to the Republican Party, y’all.
“There are the occasions that men—intellectual men, clever men, engaged men—insist on playing devil’s advocate, desirous of a debate on some aspect of feminist theory or reproductive rights or some other subject generally filed under the heading: Women’s Issues. These intellectual, clever, engaged men want to endlessly probe my argument for weaknesses, want to wrestle over details, want to argue just for fun—and they wonder, these intellectual, clever, engaged men, why my voice keeps raising and why my face is flushed and why, after an hour of fighting my corner, hot tears burn the corners of my eyes. Why do you have to take this stuff so personally? ask the intellectual, clever, and engaged men, who have never considered that the content of the abstract exercise that’s so much fun for them is the stuff of my life.”—Melissa McEwan, of course, on the terrible bargain. (via albinwonderland)
“Online schools have also made it easier for the older individuals who did not feel comfortable with the idea of mingling with the younger students in the same classroom. With the recent increase in the number of schools offering such courses, it is not hard to find an online course but what about the right one for you? Let’s look at five tips that will help you in choosing the right online school.”
What settler colonialism does is that it sets a ceiling on what the future can be such that we cannot even imagine a future without genocide. This tendency then leaves us to develop critical visions only within the constraints of the possible and then infects all the work that we do.
For instance if we look at the Academic Industrial Complex. We whine and complain about how racist it is. As if the only problem is a few racist administrators who need to be fired. And if we just convince them how great Ethnic Studies is, they’d just give us more money. But if we were actually to imagine a liberatory educational system would this be it? Professors, do we say, “Tenure was the most fun thing I’ve ever done, I wish I could do it again”? Do students say, “You know, I love it when I work really hard for my finals and then get a bad grade anyway, how empowering was that”? We don’t even try to imagine building an alternative to the Academic Industrial Complex. We act as if the problem is that there is racism in the academy, not that the academy is structured by racism. And here’s where we can learn from the Prison Industrial Complex. Is not that the organizing against the Prison Industrial Complex puts forth a model of abolition that doesn’t just say that it’s about tearing down prison walls now but it’s about building alternatives that squeeze out the current system. Similarly, while we might have day jobs in the academic system, why can’t we start building alternatives to this system, build the educational system that we would actually like to see that could then squeeze out the current system as it develops. So, for instance, when Arizona says something like they’re going to ban Ethnic Studies, we think, “Oh no, there’s not going to be Ethnic Studies because the State says so!” We presume the state owns Ethnic Studies and it actually can ban it. We don’t say, “Uh, whatever, Arizona! Ethnic Studies is not a gift from the Academic Industrial Complex or from the state. It’s a product of social movements for social justice, and as long as they exist there will be Ethnic Studies wherever and whenever we go.” And did we ever really think Ethnic Studies was going to be legitimate in a white supremacist and settler colonialist academy? And if ever did become legitimate, we would know we had failed in our task.
”—Andrea Smith plenary talk at Critical Ethnic Studies and the Future of Genocide, Thursday, March 10, 2011 (via zombifuntime)
The title I used for this post is one of my favorite quotes from this article by Julianne Hing.
I recall a conversation a couple years back in which I heard, ‘everyone deserves the opportunity to an education.’ The conversation resonated with me greatly. While that conversation was about public K-12 schools, and the iniquities among school districts’ resources, the statement is true of any grade level - ‘everyone deserves the opportunity to an education.’
One of the arguments is that undocumented students take away spots from other Americans,” said Carlos Amador, who works with Dream Team Los Angeles, an undocumented immigrant youth organizing group.
“But we see undocumented students as part of the fabric, as part of the nation and the state, so we don’t see ourselves as different at all from other students. We grew up here, we went to school here, and we were raised with the rest of the population in California.”
Years before the killing of Trayvon Martin grabbed the nation’s attention, the teen’s father warned him that his race could make him a target of violence.
The advice Tracy Martin gave his black son, that people veiled by racism and prejudices might see him as suspicious or violent, is a common and continuous warning in many black families, parents and experts say. In the aftermath of Trayvon’s death, more families are having “the talk,” teaching sons to be aware of their race, avoid confrontations with authority figures, and to remain calm in situations even if their rights are violated.
“I’ve always let him know we as African Americans get stereotyped,” Tracy Martin, Trayvon’s father told USA TODAY three weeks after his son’s death. “I told him that society is cruel.”
Trayvon, 17, was shot and killed on Feb. 26 in Sanford, Fla., as he was returning to a gated community after buying candy at a nearby store. The gunman, George Zimmerman, whose father is white and mother is Hispanic, now faces a charge of second-degree murder.
Trayvon was “profiled” by Zimmerman, who “falsely assumed (Trayvon) was going to commit a crime” as the teen was trying to get back to the home of his father’s girlfriend, according to public filings by Florida special prosecutor Angela Corey. The documents portray Zimmerman as the aggressor throughout the incident, remarking to police at one point that people like Trayvon were “punks” causing trouble in his neighborhood.
Stephanie Schroeder joined the U.S. Marine Corps not long after 9/11. She was a 21-year-old with an associate’s degree when she reported for boot camp at Parris Island, South Carolina. “I felt like it was the right thing to do,” Schroeder recalls. A year and a half later, the Marines diagnosed her with a personality disorder and deemed her psychologically unfit for the Corps.
Anna Moore enlisted in the Army after 9/11 and planned to make a career of it. Moore was a Patriot missile battery operator in Germany when she was diagnosed with a personality disorder and dismissed from the Army.
Jenny McClendon was serving as a sonar operator on a Navy destroyer when she received her personality disorder diagnosis.
These women joined different branches of the military but they share a common experience: Each received the psychiatric diagnosis and military discharge after reporting a sexual assault.
Military records show the personality disorder diagnosis is being used disproportionately on women, according to military records obtained by Yale Law School’s Veterans Legal Services Clinic under a Freedom of Information Act request.
In the Army, 16% of all soldiers are women, but females constitute 24% of all personality disorder discharges.
Air Force: women make up 21% of the ranks and 35% of personality disorder discharges.
Navy: 17% of sailors are women and 26% of personality disorder discharges
Marines: 7% of the Corps and 14% of personality disorder discharges
The records don’t reflect how many of those women had reported sexual assault.
A Maine man says he lied when he accused former Syracuse assistant basketball coach Bernie Fine of molesting him.
Zachary Tomaselli of Lewiston said Friday that he fabricated the allegations and took pride in his ability to convince people his claims were true. He told The Associated Press he’s a “habitual liar and sociopath” who lacks feelings for others.
This kills me. It kills me because when people make up allegations for any reason, it makes it harder for authorities or anyone else to believe actual victims. It makes it harder for true victims to speak up out of fear that they will not be believed.