Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Gif of the Day



Godfrey Goa covered in puppies.

The Science March in Seattle Was Racist

That's right I said it! Lol hold on unbunch your underwear and read on.

Like many communities, the science community overall as well as the skeptic community have has serious issues with privilege. They're dominated by cishet white men and tend to put out the message that the only things that matter are facts and evidence and numbers and such, ignoring lived experience and the importance of emotion (perhaps with the exception of the psychology community but still, lots of problems there). Anything that can't be quantified is looked on with suspicion and less importance is placed upon combating underlying prejudices within the community.

Don't get me wrong. I'm a fan of science. If I had to choose one issue that is the most important in the world, it would be climate change, because every year it becomes more disastrous. Climate change-related devastation is already here, it's just affecting poor people of color first so everyone who's not one or more of those things doesn't much care. Anyway.

There are multiple reasons I didn't go to the March for Science in Seattle. One was that a family member needed my help that day. Another was that I'd gotten pretty drunk the night before. Another was that I was generally tired from doing a lot of crap this month. Another was that the weekend before I'd been disappointed by the Tax March and didn't expect better from this march because I knew it was going to be run by privileged people. And I was not wrong.

According to the Block the Bunker Facebook group (who have now moved on to the new youth jail issue but the page is still operating), the people in charge of the Seattle March for Science refused to even meet with them, and when a representative attempted to speak at the rally about the new youth jail anyway, they got the police to remove said representative, literally carrying him off the stage by the arms and legs.

The statement put out by Block the Bunker says that it wasn't just them, but multiple grassroots organizations led by people of color were ignored "told they weren't welcome" by the March for Science leadership who "refused to allow grassroots social justice organizers into the room." That's fucked up.

If they thought that the March for Science had nothing to do with racial issues, that is a function of white supremacy. And they are pretty ignorant about science. Or at least any science that isn't all about us white people.

Don't take my word for it. Read the full statement by Block the Bunker here. If you're a part of the scientific community in any way and you're white, think about how you can work to deconstruct white supremacy within that community. Because it's a serious problem.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Gif of the Day



I miss the N64. Honestly it was the best video game system ever.

Recommended Reading

Other than the fact that I must prefer "exploited country" to "developing country," this article on the economic separation of classes in the U.S. is fantastic.

America is Regressing into a Developing Nation for Most People

This piece argues that the problem is going beyond a shrinking or death of the middle class, but that the U.S. is becoming like two different countries. In fact, it's looking more and more like those "developing" nations that have a huge gap between the wealthy and the poor and nothing in between. Hunger Games, anyone?

The two sectors, notes Temin, have entirely distinct financial systems, residential situations, and educational opportunities. Quite different things happen when they get sick, or when they interact with the law. They move independently of each other. Only one path exists by which the citizens of the low-wage country can enter the affluent one, and that path is fraught with obstacles. Most have no way out.

Peter Temin, the economist cited, draws on the model created by West Indian economist and Nobel Prize winner W. Arthur Lewis. It also does a nice job of citing the roles of racist and sexism in the creation and preservation of this massive gap in wealth that's creating a truly divided nation. This is referred to as a "dual economy," and the author of the article, Lynn Parramore, checks off the list created by Lewis.

In the Lewis model of a dual economy, much of the low-wage sector has little influence over public policy. Check. The high-income sector will keep wages down in the other sector to provide cheap labor for its businesses. Check. Social control is used to keep the low-wage sector from challenging the policies favored by the high-income sector. Mass incarceration - check. The primary goal of the richest members of the high-income sector is to lower taxes. Check. Social and economic mobility is low. Check.

After explaining how this bullshit happened (thanks a lot Nixon), Parramore ends by noting that this system leaves the nation vulnerable to massive social upheaval if the effects aren't reversed. And by the looks of things, they're not about to be reversed any time soon. Prepare for revolution.



Identity Politics

I don't know that I've actually addressed the term "identity politics" on this blog other than maybe to mention that a lot of racists use it as the new "political correctness." But it's not just your random Republicans or Libertarians or other conservative racists. I've seen people who are, or at least appear to be, on the left using the term or its acronym "IDPOL." Alarmingly, the acronym in particular is often used by neo-nazis. So it raises all two of my eyebrows to see antifa using it as well.

But the point I want to make here is that anyone using the term "identity politics" derisively is ridiculous. Just as much as politics is central to each and every person's life, so is identity.

People begin forming a sense of identity at a very young age, and it remains with us through our entire life. A sense of identity will change, often gradually, sometimes suddenly and radically. A sense of identity is closely linked to a sense of self, and in our society, maybe too closely. It is how we describe ourselves and think of ourselves. The support of one's identity is uplifting, and the denial or rejection of one's identity can be devastating. A threat to one's identity can feel like a threat to the very self.

That is why people freak out so hard over having their "faves" criticized. You identify yourself as a fan of a thing, and when someone calls that thing bad, or perhaps misogynistic or homophobic, it's like they're call you those things. This, of course, is a problem. People cling to these identities too tightly, and it makes them scared and fragile and inflexible.

But that doesn't make identity bad. It doesn't mean that people's identities aren't important. They make us human. They bring us together. And we can't help but have them.

When I accepted the identity as pansexual and came out, it was freeing. It wasn't easy, particularly because I came out late and there's a lot of people out there who want to deny that identity. I still have doubts about whether I actually am pansexual that are based on heteronormative and homophobic bullshit that's been put into my head by society. But when I think about being pansexual, I feel a sense of joy. It feels right and it feels wonderful. And being a part of a community that understands me and accepts my identity is wonderful.

My identity as a woman is important to me. My identity as a feminist is important to me. The identities that give me privilege matter. And yes, they're all political. That is perfectly normal and mocking that is like derisively scoffing about "skin politics" or "hormone cycle politics" or "breathing oxygen politics."




Whether you're just trying to get people to shut up about racism or you think the shit you're doing is so much more fucking important than people who care about the many everyday attacks on marginalized identities, you're ridiculous and you're an asshole. It all matters. It's a huge part of every person's life. No one is without identity and one's sense of identity is very closely linked to one's psychological health. Denial of identities, attacks on identities, whether big or small, kill people. Whether though stress or even suicide.

And honestly it just makes you look like a self-righteous, sanctimonious asshole. So stop.

Friday, April 21, 2017

Gif of the Day



FORM OF, A NAP CAPSULE!

How is This Helping

Spoiler alert: The thing I'm about to talk about is not helping.

Donald Trump has 'dangerous mental illness', say psychiatry experts at Yale conference

This again? Look. It didn't help before the man was elected, it didn't help before he was sworn in, and it's not going to help now. Lord Dampnut isn't going to be removed from office on the basis of his mental health. The Republicans are in power, and they don't even fucking believe in mental health. And even if they did, they don't give a fuck. All they care about is how they can manipulate the situation to get more money and power.

In the meantime, shit like this only hurts mentally ill people. How much do you think it hurts people who actually deal with paranoia and delusions to be compared to this nuclear disaster of a human being? I know a lot of mentally ill people and they are generally nicer and better people than those who have not been diagnosed with a mental illness, and certainly better than the people who don't even believe in psychology who are also currently running the country.

Here's the thing. The world of psychology is still quite messy and full of privilege and abuse. These psychiatry experts are extremely likely to be a group of well-off white dudes who have never been mentally ill themselves. The people who get to make decisions on what mental illness even is/looks like have a lot of privilege, and their decisions invariably have a negative affect on those without much privilege.

I'm not saying that Dampnut isn't dangerous. Of course he's dangerous. But you don't need to be mentally ill to be dangerous. And I'll admit to myself wondering whether he is actually mentally ill or if he's just intentionally gaslighting all of us, confusing and pissing off and throwing off his detractors with his constant, blatant lies because he knows it's going to make us run around in circles screaming rather than doing anything very useful. But at this point it doesn't matter which it is. What does matter is that he's hurting people, and this kind of speculation is hurting people. STOP FUCKING HURTING PEOPLE.

This is about more than armchair diagnosing. There's a whole lot more wrong with our current system of mental illness diagnostics than just psychiatrists diagnosing people without actually having them sit down in a chair in a room and listening to them talk in that setting rather than in front of lots of people at a podium. This is about the fact that people with mental illness are constantly being stigmatized by assholes going "look at this person who is hurting people! They must be mentally ill!"

My mental illness has made me significantly less likely to cause people harm. My anxiety makes me afraid to even stand up to people face-to-face. My mental illness harms me, it doesn't make me harm other people. I have harmed other people before, but that was usually do to some form of ignorance. I don't know what's the excuse of these psychiatrists, because they should not be ignorant about this. Yet there they are, the supposed experts on mental illness and how not to be mentally ill, hurting potentially millions of mentally ill people. Fuck you guys.

Resistance

This is a prime candidate for headline of the month but I made the mistake of designating one on the 3rd but here:

Republican senator's 'private' town hall meeting gets crashed by mariachi band

Three organizations – including two focusing on Latino issues – were behind the musical interruption. Tuesday night, they paid $250 to register as Chamber members and brought six members of a mariachi band from Mexico City to play a “love song” and demand Gardner hold a public forum, said Hilda Nucete, a program director of Denver-based Conservation Colorado. 
“It was a gift,” Nucete said, referring to the Spanish song “Where Are You, My Heart?” The song, she said, is about “when the guy really messes up and you’re trying to get back the girl, so we’re trying to get (Gardner) to fall in love with us again.”

There are different ways to fight the power. Some people march. Some people organize. Some people write. Some people show up at your sneaky ass accountability-avoiding non-town hall meetings and go MI CORAZÓN ESTA ENCLAVADO EN EL MISMO OESTE, DEJAR MI CORAZÓN POR EL OESTE Y SU FUTURO ES LO QUE QUIERO.




Well done, Hilda Nucete.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Gif of the Day



I've been finding a lot of very strange gifs lately, without context.

The Continuing Ridiculousness of US Pot Policy

In honor of 4/20, because why not, I want to talk about a bit of news that came out last month that enraged me, but not as much as much as all the fuckery going on in D.C., so, you know.

But it is worth a blog post. If you're the kind of person who reads my blog, you're probably aware of the basic reasons why cannabis being illegal is completely ridiculous. But that only really scratches the surface of the ridiculousness that is the U.S. policy on cannabis. The fact that it's classified as a Schedule I substance by the DEA puts it on par with heroin in terms of potential for addiction, potential for overdose, and means it's supposed to have zero potential medical use. Recently, the DEA finally reviewed this, and decided to keep cannabis at Schedule I, despite it being not physically addictive, having zero potential for overdose, and currently being legally used in half the states in the country for medical purposes.

WHY?????? You might ask. Money.

But don't just take my word for it.

DEA OKs synthetic marijuana for pharma company that spent $500,000 to keep pot illegal

There could not be better evidence than this that the pharmaceutical industry is fighting to keep cannabis illegal because it threatens their bottom line. Cannabis is relatively cheap to grow and people can easily do it themselves - it's a fucking weed. Hence the name. And it helps with so many medical conditions that pharmaceutical companies make billions off of by prescribing increasingly expensive medications, all of which cause side effects and may damage the body in ways that cannabis could never.

But making synthetic cannabis, which has been classified as a Schedule II substance (meaning it's "safer" than real cannabis) and approving it for use to treat illness is a whole new level of fucked up. Want to know why?

Because synthetic weed will fucking kill you. Syndros will kill you. People have been dying from overdosing on synthetic cannabis for years already because people think it's like real weed and assume you can't overdose on it. But you can, and you will die horribly.

So the DEA maintains that cannabis is so dangerous that it's illegal to use it for any purpose and then approves the use of an actual dangerous drug to "treat" illness. And now more people will die. The DEA and pharmaceutical companies are murderers who should all be set adrift on the Pacific Ocean.

Oh, and this bullshit is brought to you by InSys Therapeutics, the company responsible for fentanyl, the most potent opioid on the planet, which is currently causing mass deaths due to it being added to batches of heroin and leading to huge spikes in overdose cases. Well fucking done, America.

Maybe Don't Arrest Autistic 10-Year-Olds for Resisting Abuse

[TRIGGER WARNING: CHILD ABUSE, ABLEISM, POLICE BRUTALITY]

At what point in the U.S. are we finally going to collectively say "the police are out of control and maybe we should not have a profession available that attracted power-hungry abusers and gives them guns and authority"?

‘I don’t like to be touched’: Video shows 10-year-old autistic boy getting arrested at school

A school resource officer at Okeechobee Achievement Academy in Florida stood over the 10-year-old boy as his mother asked: “Does he have the same rights as an adult?” Then, the officer reached for the young boy’s wrists. 
“I don’t want to be touched,” John Benjamin said, throwing his hands in the air. “I don’t like to be touched.” 
His mother, Luanne Haygood, who was filming the emotional scene, said she and her son had been called into the school for state standardizing testing April 12; while they were there, she said, officers arrested her son for an incident that occurred in October. 
He spent the night behind bars at a juvenile facility, Haygood said. 
Haygood said John Benjamin, who has been diagnosed with autism, had kicked and scratched his paraprofessional educator (also known as an educational assistant) and, unknown to his own family, had an outstanding warrant for battery on a school board employee, a third-degree felony.

A THIRD-DEGREE FELONY.

Anyone who knows anything about autism can probably tell you that autistic people are often touch repulsed - they have strong negative emotional reactions to being touched. The problem with our society is that so few people actually have any actual knowledge about autism. Even, apparently special educators assigned to autistic kids within specialized programs for kids with disabilities/autism. Or maybe they do have knowledge, but are also abusive shits.

Haygood, from Okeechobee, Fla., said her son, who was diagnosed with autism two years ago, has had an individualized education plan (IEP) since he started school and was assigned a paraprofessional educator last year. But, Haygood said, he had been having issues with his aide, claiming he was hurting him, and the school would not assign a new one. 
On Oct. 27, the educator reported, John Benjamin was being disruptive in class, “throwing paper balls around the classroom and hitting other students,” according to a probable cause affidavit. 
“When John Benjamin was asked to go to timeout he refused,” according to the court records. The educator “attempted to remove the student and sent him back to the timeout place. At this point, John Benjamin started kicking and scratching and punching” him. 
The educator “had to restrain the student, he advised he came around the student and wrapped his arms around the upper chest as to not restrict child’s breathing,” according to the documents.

So you grab a touch-repulsed autistic kid, are surprised when be starts flailing, and you respond by touching him even more and then charge him with a fucking felony.

What the fuck happened to us as a society that we're charging any 10-year-old kids with felonies. Children throw tantrums. Like, you'd be pressed to find a kid who hasn't. But unless they're a danger to themselves or others, you don't need to restrain them like that. And if you're a paraeducator assigned to an autistic kid, you should know that attempting to do so only makes the situation worse.

And if the kid was acting out, maybe it's because he didn't like his paraeducator because they were hurting him. But we never believe kids, and certainly not autistic kids. We tell them to report abuse but when they do we ignore them. Awesome.

This was probably highly traumatizing for this child. I feel so terrible and angry for him. Okeechobee Achievement Academy needs to answer for this.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Gif of the Day



EPIC TAKEDOWN.

CEEEELEBRATE GOOD TIMES COME ON

I have been waiting for this day, I like 80% thought it would never come, not from anything other than death or retirement anyway, but:

Bill O’Reilly is officially out at Fox News

AAAAAAAAAAAAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

The conservative-leaning host’s downfall was swift and steep, set in motion less than three weeks ago by revelations of a string of harassment complaints against him. The questions about his conduct represented yet another black eye to Fox, which had dealt with a sexual harassment scandal involving its co-founder and then-chairman Roger Ailes, just last summer. 
“After a thorough and careful review of the allegations, the company and Bill O’Reilly have agreed that Bill O’Reilly will not be returning to the Fox News Channel,” 21st Century Fox, the news channel’s parent company, said in a statement Wednesday.








And finally:



I honestly did not believe that Bill O'Reilly would be fired no matter how many sexual harassment claims were reported against him. Even the news of advertisers dropping him like a just-microwaved Hot Pocket, even when I heard it had gotten so bad that they were unable to fill his entire time slot because they didn't have enough commercials left to show. Wonderful as that was, I remained pessimistic.

It's been a rough, stressful week, and it's only halfway over. I needed this.

I fucking hate Bill O'Reilly.

Recommended Reading

Here it is. The be-all and end-all of Rachel Dolezal, the white woman who calls herself a black woman and recently reappeared in the news for changing her name to Nkechi Amare Diallo. Of course, this was written by all around amazing human being Ijeoma Oluo, who spoke to Dolezal at length on various subjects and found, unsurprisingly, that she's a racist white woman.

The Heart of Whiteness: Ijeoma Oluo Interviews Rachel Dolezal, the White Woman Who Identifies as Black

All of it. Read all of it. Then let us put this to bed forever and let Rachel Dolezal fade away into obscurity over in Spokane forever.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Gif of the Day



I have no idea what's going on here but there is so much,

Cops Arresting Victims of Nazi Assault

This is something I would have preferred to see all over antifa Facebook pages rather than images and gifs and videos of a woman being punched in the face.

Recently, over in Jacksonville, a "Trump supporter" (read: white supremacist/nazi) assaulted speakers at an anti-war protest, starting a fight. Luckily police were there to tackle, beat, and arrest the protest organizer and one of the few black people on the scene, Connell Crooms.

Instead of helping, four police officers, tackled and brutalized Connell Crooms, one of the only Black protesters, and hit him so hard they knocked out his hearing aid. Bystander video footage shows officers beating him while he flailed helplessly and handcuffed on the ground. One officer punched Connell five times while other officers pinned him down.

Police assault a black man with a hearing aid instead of the white guy who started the fight. Of course. And it gets worse:

Connell was hospitalized and, along with other protesters, charged with inciting a riot and battery on a police officer. The Trump supporter who started the violent confrontation? He walked away scot free.

The antifa involved in the fight where the white woman was attacked by multiple white men have reported that somehow, police were nowhere to be seen during this brutal assault that could have easily killed her.

I know my surprise is a function of my white privilege, so I'm going to speak directly to my fellow white people here, many of whom are probably also surprised and horrified at this. We need to get it through our heads that the police are not on the side of justice here. The police are siding with the white supremacists, the police are siding with neo-nazis. They will not protect you and they WILL attack black people the moment a fight breaks out. If you're going to a protest, especially one in a conservative area or one where nazis are likely to show up, you must keep this in mind. Protect the more vulnerable members of your protest group and be ready to defend yourself.

In the meantime, just take a moment to let it sink in that the people you were told your entire life were there to protect you from bad people are actually not. The Fraternal Order of Police endorsed Donald Trump and have aligned themselves with neo-nazis.

The link above is to an online petition where you can add your name demanding that all the bogus charges against the anti-war protesters in Jacksonville be dropped and that they be released. The number for citizen complaints to the state attorney is (904) 255-2500.

We have to make sure that we're taking care of each other. We're all we have.

Afternoon Announcements

The Internet has been down all day until now lol.



Monday, April 17, 2017

Gif of the Day



This sweet boy fosters kittens I fucking love him.

Pig-Human Embryo

Alright enough with the callout posts. Enjoy this, the funniest comment on anything I've seen in a good long time.




Well played, Sami.

Um Could You Maybe Not

[TRIGGER WARNING: ASSAULT, MEN'S VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN, NAZIS, CULTURAL APPROPRIATION]

I follow a lot of antifa (anti-fascist) social media accounts these days, so I'm somewhat plugged in to what goes on in that community. I appreciate the work they do to fight against the current rise of fascism/nazism in the U.S. and abroad and generally enjoy their non-fuck-giving attitudes and messages when it comes to the feelings of fascists/nazis.

Lately, there have been seemingly regular fights between what the media calls "Trump supporters" but are actually nazis and what the media calls "Trump protesters" who are actually antifa. These fights have been all-out brawls, with people regularly getting hurt. Every time someone gets hurt, they're on the news, and every time it's a nazi, the nazis and their supporters spend the following week crying about how mean the antifas they attacked are.

This week, someone got up-close and brutal video of a white man punching a white antifa woman full in the face. It's a hard hit and she crumples from it.

This weekend and continuing on into the weekdays, images of this have been all over antifa social media pages and websites with the antifa organizations holding this up as a reason why the nazis/fascists/"alt right" is so terrible. They're very much focusing on the fact that the person who was hit is a woman.

This makes me uncomfortable for a few reasons.

  1. It feels exploitative. As a woman and a feminist, I understand that there is indeed something particularly reprehensible about men hitting women due to the history of men's violence against women. I have little doubt that the white fascist guy who hit her likely targeted her in part due to her daring to be a woman standing up to a group that is composed mostly of (very misogynistic) men. HOWEVER, many antifa organizations are also dominated by men. There is something gross about a bunch of men making a huge deal about a woman being hit at one of these fights when many antifa have been punched and otherwise attacked and injured at these brawls.
  2. It smacks of benevolent sexism. Again, in spite of the clear history of men's violence against women, how this is being presented makes me feel as though they're trying to guilt nazis or nazi sympathizers or draw the sympathy of people who may consider themselves "neutral" because "look this poor woman was attacked, we must protect the defenseless women!" 
  3. The woman in question is white. And the response to this assault also feels like it smacks of a gross habit of my fellow white people to hold up "protecting the white women" as a motivator to fight x. I do believe that most if not all the antifa organizations I follow would have been similarly outraged or perhaps (hopefully) more outraged if a white man attacked a woman of color, but I wonder if, even subconsciously, they're using this trope again to try and get more sympathy from more moderate white people.
  4. The white woman has dreadlocks. I've already pointed this out on a different platform and gotten the predictable "but x is more important than cultural appropriation!" and worse versions of that. You can easily fight fascism without having gross fake dreadlocks while white.

I may be wrong about some of this. I recognize that antifa groups are pretty notorious for not giving a fuck about wishy washy moderates more concerned with not rocking their boats than stopping the mass deaths caused by fascism. But what I've seen has made me uncomfortable and that is valid, and I trust my gut. I may need more time to mentally unpack this but for now I will say:

If you're antifa and you're a guy, please just do not. Leave it to the women to speak on this, okay? You're doing good work, but don't forget your privileges.



Seattle Disgraced Itself Last Saturday

And by Seattle, I mean the liberal, so-called progressive and largely white residents of the Seattle area who attended the city's Tax Day March on the 15th. The sea of white, middle-aged faces I saw upon arrival was my first hint that I should have saved my energy for the Black Lives Matter protest that was to take place later that day, but I was already there and there was a big inflatable chicken with Trump hair.

I hadn't seen an official schedule for the march but I'd assumed there would be speakers, as there usually are at things like this, and that said speakers would speak for about a half an hour to an hour at most. Well, things got started a little late, and as time went on it became clear that the organizers had invited too many speakers and/or had not vetted their speech lengths. As the speaker time approached an hour and a half, people began to get restless. They started chanting "march!" in small groups within the crowd, and I was with them when an incredible, moving speech by Pramila Jayapal was followed by the first male speaker of the rally.

But hell, I've never organized any kind of march or protest before, and I'm sure it's a ton of work. So I'm not gonna judge. The real problem came when, after a lengthy and meandering speech by someone who was promised to be the last speaker, the host came on stage and asked that people tolerate a few words by one last group of people representing the movement to block the new youth jail being built in Seattle. People began booing at this and my heart immediately sank. Then, as a group of young people of color walked up to the mic, hundreds of white protesters started walking away.

Firstly, I don't know what happened with the organizers and these final speakers. Had they been forgotten? Or did the organizers not reach out to them at all and so they had to approach them and demand space to speak? Either way, that is a bad fucking move on the organizer's part. Well done inviting so many women, many of them women of color, to speak. But failing to include or forgetting about such a diverse group that's fighting an issue that has such a deep impact on youth of color in the community is shameful.

But not as shameful as all of my fellow white individuals who decided that they couldn't wait another couple minutes to listen to the group of brown people coming up on stage about something that's killing them and destroying their futures, and instead turning their back on them and leaving in droves. I stood gaping at them, trying to find words, and failing, as they split off from the rest of us and started marching on their own.

And now they're on the Seattle Tax Day March Facebook page saying that these youths are the ones who were "divisive" at that rally. Fuck off.

And when a young woman of color from the anti-youth jail group got up to the mic and called out the white protesters walking away, saying "what are you doing," people booed her. And when another went up to the mic and started condemning the transphobic pussy hats, more booing from the cis white crowd.

I really shouldn't be surprised, but I am deeply disappointed and disgusted. It was another disgraceful display of the white, middle-class liberal racism, transphobia, and privileged refusal to listen and examine one's harmful behaviors and attitudes that is so common in Seattle. And another reason for me to be suspicious of anyone who self-identifies as liberal.

After that, I marched for a little bit, and then had to go run back to my car to feed the meter (because I didn't think the whole thing would take so long). But by the time I got that done I was so dejected by what had happened, I didn't want to march with them. I met up with some friends instead, and a migraine was the last signal that I should not have attended at all. I had to go home and missed the BLM rally entirely.

I'm terrible at face-to-face confrontation but I'm good at writing. And so I'm telling you now, Seattle. You made me feel sick to my stomach last Saturday, and I'm a white person. So I'm 100% certain that the people of color you literally turned your backs on that day feel 1,000% worse about what happened and about you. You are part of the problem. You are dividing what could be a huge progressive community with your privileged impatience, your defensiveness, and your refusal to listen to the people most impacted by the current administration.

Shame on you. Either pledge to be better or stay at home. Your divisiveness will kill us all.

Friday, April 14, 2017

Gif of the Day



Play your favorite Modest Mouse song to this.

What Happened to Judge Sheila Abdus-Salaam?

[TRIGGER WARNING: DEATH, DROWNING, POSSIBLE SUICIDE, RACISM, ISLAMOPHOBIA]

There's been a lot in the news lately, of course. If there wasn't horror in the headlines every day then maybe we'd all be demanding a better and independent investigation into the supposed to suicide of Judge Sheila Abdus-Salaam, the first African American woman and the first Muslim to serve on New York State's highest court.

The investigation is still pending, but police have suggested that this was a suicide due to the fact that her brother committed suicide a few years back around the same time of year and because her job was stressful. I do not buy it.

She was the first black American woman to serve on her court during a time of rising white nationalism, anti-blackness, and misogynoir. During a time when white supremacists are traveling into cities just to find black people to murder.

She was the first Muslim to serve on her court during a time when Islamophobia is at an extreme high, when the President of the country is trying to ban all Muslims from entering the country while he bombs the shit out of their's. When he dropped the biggest non-nuclear bomb ever used on Afghanistan, most likely just to make himself look tough. When mosques all across the country are being targeted for racist graffiti, bomb threats, and arson.

And we're supposed to believe the police when they say that she decided to stop on her morning run and drown herself in a river?

I believe them like I believed the cops who said that Sandra Bland killed herself in custody. Which is to say I don't. And I fully believe that the cops would not want to pursue the case as a possible murder because the cops have always been a haven for white supremacists. In fact, some of the first police forces in this country were created specifically to keep black people in line.

It's important to keep in mind that black women do suffer from mental illness and suicidal ideation just like anyone else. And the stress of racism, whether overt or in the form of constant microaggressions, causes a high level of stress that absolutely affects their health and lowers their life expectancy. But unless her family says otherwise, I think we need to demand that real justice be done here. Don't just shrug this off. We need real answers. What happened to Judge Sheila Abdus-Salaam?

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Gif of the Day



Yeah you are.

Here Comes Fascism!

So this is what I've been dealing with today.

Only Mass Disruption From Below Can Stop Right-Wing Revolution and Trump's Absolute Power

I listened to this interview on Democracy Now yesterday because I love suffering and good god damn did it bring me down.

It’s not just the Trump presidency. It’s a right-wing revolution, which has captured control, up to this moment, of the presidency, the House, part of the Senate and now the Supreme Court. And if they abolish the legislative filibuster in the Senate, which they may, then they will have total, absolute control of all branches of government and will enter a radically new phase beyond anything that’s happened so far, because there will be absolutely no constraints on what they can do. The only constraints could be if they trip over themselves, as they have on some occasions up to now.

The guest, investigative journalist Allan Nairn, then went on to explain that it's basically a matter of Lord Dampnut deciding whether to hand the country over to white nationalist neo-Nazis who want to deport, imprison, or kill all the people of color/Muslims, or hand the country over to the oligarch corporate billionaires who want everybody either dead, enslaved, or licking their boots for crumbs.

Once that's done, what's to stop them from abolishing any kind of filibuster and just shaping the nation exactly as they want it? If we let them, they still have over three and a half years to change pretty much whatever rules they want, now that they control fucking everything. They could make rules that make it impossible for a Democrat to ever win again, let alone a third party candidate, just like they've tried to do in various red states. We could become a fascist one-party nation hell hole.

What else is in the news, Alternet?

How Jeff Sessions Is Laying the Groundwork for an Authoritarian State

Alright then good game everybody see you in prison.

What? What??? What??

^ That's me for the last hour or so, reading the trending headlines. So pretty much the usual for the past couple months.

But seriously, this particular headline had me clutching my head at my desk and whispering "whhhaaaaaaat" to myself for a solid minute.

CNN Commentator Jeffrey Lord Compares Donald Trump to Martin Luther King

No he did not.

Lord said Trump should be thought of as the “Martin Luther King of health care” during an appearance (via Skype) on Alisyn Camerota’s “New Day.” Fellow CNN commentator Symone Sanders, a Democratic activist, fired back immediately.

HE DID.

I think this should be grounds for immediate firing. I mean. What the actual fuck.




And that was just for a white guy speculating on what MLK would do/say.

Thankfully, there was a badass black lady, Symone Sanders, there to set him the fuck straight.

“Jeffrey, you do understand that Dr. King was marching for civil rights because people that looked like me were being beaten,” she said. “Dogs were being sicked on them. Basic human rights were being withheld from these people merely because the color of their skin.” 
“So let’s not equate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., a humanitarian and Nobel Peace Prize winner, to the vagina-grabbing President Donald Trump,” she concluded.

GET HIM.

If you can stomach it (I just barely could), you can watch the video on CNN and see Sanders' reaction to the words "Martin Luther King" coming out of that ugly white fuck's mouth and then him going on with a terrible and utterly inaccurate analogy.

What they're actually debating is the next thing that had me head-clutching and dying on the inside.

Trump Says He May Freeze Subsidies to the Poor Until Democrats Repeal Obamacare

On Wednesday, President Trump announced that he plans to use the powers of his office to jeopardize health-care access for millions of low-income people, while destabilizing America’s insurance markets — because he believes that voters will blame the ensuing chaos on the Democratic Party, leaving Chuck Schumer desperate to negotiate with the White House over Obamacare repeal.

For the record, this is the kind of thing Republicans used to do without saying it out loud because it's supposed to be the kind of thing you hide, because it's horrible.

So what Jeffrey Lord was saying was that because MLK asked his own people to put themselves in harm's way to march for their rights and they did so voluntarily, and because Lord Dampnut is putting people who he would never affiliate with or even look in the eye (the poors) in harm's way against their will in order to get what he wants (which is to fuck over the poors for the sake of the rich and himself), he's like the Martin Luther King of health care.




Make rich white men illegal, honestly.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Gif of the Day



Bye.

The Most Hilarious and Positive Exposure of Ableism

I can't believe I went for so long without knowing about Zach Anner, a young man with cerebral palsy who is also an author and comedian, and is generally the best.

He uses a motorized chair to get around, as he's unable to walk and has limited use of his arms and hands. And he makes epic videos about ableism in society, and how difficult simple things are for disabled people in a society that fails to be accessible. For example, he made a video called THE QUEST FOR THE RAINBOW BAGEL in which he takes nearly six hours to go from his hotel room to another part of New York city via public transportation to get to a specific bagel shop that makes rainbow bagels. Actually, it's more accurate to say that New York takes him six hours to get the bagel, because every step of the process is made difficult by the fact that there's such a lack of accessibility for disabled people - despite the fact that New York is one of the most accessible cities in the country.

And during his quest, he's fucking hilarious and mocks hipster douchebags.




Not every campaign for better treatment/an end to oppression needs to be upbeat and positive and funny, but if shit's getting you down and you're looking for a way to educate yourself without maybe wanting to just lay down and die, this helps!

Cerebral palsy itself is not an uncommon condition, and is considered to be the most common motor disability in children. It's also a spectrum disorder, with a wide severity range and different types of impairment. Some people with CP have mental impairments, and others only have physical issues. It's often caused by some sort of disruption or problem during fetal development or trauma at birth. Someone I love very much has cerebral palsy, and he is brilliant, hilarious, and fantastic.

You can follow Zach Anner on Facebook or check out his YouTube channel for more awesome videos.

Don't Support Autism Speaks

Last weekend, I took a trip over to TJ Maxx to look for some discount shampoo and conditioner and a new 9 x 11'' pan, having forgot that they are on the list of retailers which unfortunately support Autism Speaks every April. In the checkout line, I could hear clerks asking people if they wanted to donate to the organization. I probably should have gotten out of line and just left without buying my items, but I didn't. Instead when the clerk ringing me up asked if I wanted to make a "donation for autism," I said "not to Autism Speaks, no."

The clerk looked quite taken aback and only was able to let out a little "awwww" noise of awkward disappointment. I wanted to explain myself, but I'd already made the situation very awkward and didn't really want to make a checkout clerk's workday worse, and also I am a walking talking bag of awkward bad decision making. Later I wrote on the TJ Maxx Facebook page about some of the issues with Autism Speaks and asked them to support a different organization that actually helps autistic people, and now I'm writing a blog post.

Now that you're caught up, if you didn't already know, many autistic people are highly critical of Autism Speaks and even call it a hate group masquerading as a charity. And with good reason. Autism Speaks treats autistic people like shit and sympathizes with people who have literally murdered their autistic children because raising them was hard.

But don't take it from me, an allistic (non-autistic) person. There are many people who are both autistic and great writers, and they've written time and time again about the issues with Autism Speaks. Unfortunately, the vast majority of us allistics just don't care to listen to the people actually being affected by this problem.

If you want to learn more, I encourage you to literally Google "don't support Autism Speaks." You'll find loads of articles listing all of the many reasons why this organization is garbage.

I like this one in particular, by Amy Sequenzia.

Is Autism Speaks a Hate Group?

The author takes the legal definitions of a hate group and goes point by point, sourcing her arguments, and ends in a heartbreaking explanation of why the organization is not officially considered to be a hate group. Read the whole thing.

For a list of companies that support Autism Speaks as well as a list of alternatives to Autism Speaks, check out The Caffeinated Autistic. And spread the word. Autistic people are not burdens. Autistic people do not need to be "cured" out of existence. Autistic people are people. Autism Speaks is a hate group.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Gif of the Day



I wish I were half as happy as this dog.

Today in Blatant, Unapologetic Liars

[TRIGGER WARNING: HOLOCAUST DENIAL, POLICE BRUTALITY, RACISM]

A combination of a lot of listening to Democracy Now and the whole homophobic death camps thing has led me to be very much not okay but I'm at work so pretty much:



Later, at the meeting:


And on the bus ride home:



Anyway, you know how I hate it when rich white dudes just stand up in front of everybody and blatantly lie to our faces even though we all have the ability to recall information that contradicts that lie because it happened a short time ago? Well.

“Democrats would filibuster Ruth Bader Ginsburg if President Trump nominated her,” the Republican majority leader said from the Senate floor on Wednesday. “We all know why. Democrats are bowing to hard-left special interests that can’t get over the results of the election.”

And:

On Thursday, Democrats mounted the first successful partisan filibuster of a Supreme Court nominee in U.S. history; in other words, a partisan Democratic minority tried to block the bipartisan majority that supported Gorsuch from even voting on his nomination. It was a direct attack on the traditions of the Senate and yet another extreme escalation in Democrats’ decades-long drive to transform judicial confirmations from constructive debates over qualifications into raw ideological struggles.



YOU JUST. DID THAT. LESS THAN A YEAR AGO. YOU REFUSED. TO EVEN. HOLD A COMMITTEE MEETING. TO CONSIDER. OBAMA'S NOMINEE. FOR SUPREME COURT JUSTICE. YOU FUCKING ASSHOLE. YOU PIECE OF SHIT. YOU TURTLE-FACED, GUTLESS, LYING, EVIL, SOULLESS HUSK OF A TURTLE MAN.

I understand that politicians lie. All of them. All the time. But what was even the point of standing up in front of congress and saying this when everyone you were speaking to knows that you were lying? What is the point of this charade? They all knew the filibuster wouldn't really be successful because you were going to remove filibusters as an option, and they all knew that Gorsuch was not a bipartisan nominee, and they all knew that it wasn't the first incident of its kind in history. The only way that even brushes up against the truth is that you blocked Merrick Garland so hard you didn't even have to officially filibuster. You dumpster fire. You moldy sponge.

But it's not just McConnell. With 2017 Republicans, it's all lies all the time.

Jeff Sessions lying about the effectiveness of "just say no" drug policy in a call to return to its disastrous failure..

Sean Spicer claiming that Hitler didn't use chemical weapons.

Republicans still can't stop lying about Obamacare and their "reform" efforts.

And this may not be directly from Republicans but what the fuck is this shit from United Airlines about the white cops assaulting and dragging a Chinese man off the airplane he paid to take home??? Every new story coming out of this bullshit contains another lie from this horrible company. The way they and the cops described looks nothing like the video that we can all see, with our own eyeballs.

If everyone could just stop insulting us by lying to our faces while the evidence of their lies sit right next to their feet, THAT WOULD BE GREAT.

Homophobic Death Camps in Russia

[TRIGGER WARNING: EXTREME HOMOPHOBIC VIOLENCE]

This is not an exaggeration. This is an emergency.

Reports are coming in from Chechnya about gay and bisexual men being abducted, taking to "unofficial prisons," tortured for information, and murdered. This is not a drill. These are death camps.

According to sources on the ground, over 100 people have been arbitrarily detained in unofficial prisons, where victims are being tortured and forced to disclose personal contacts of other gay or bi men in Chechnya. 
The Russian LGBT Network can confirm at least three murders so far – out of a reported 20 murders. 
This is a grave situation, and we join other LGBT and human rights organisations in calling for: 
  • an immediate halt to the violence against the LGBTI community and the release of those detained 
  • a proper investigation of the arbitrary detention, torture and extra judicial killing of (perceived) gay and bi men in Chechnya 
We’ve contacted the UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office to ask them to make representations to Russian authorities to end the reported human rights abuses immediately. 
We will continue to stay in touch with contacts on the ground in Russia, colleagues in the international LGBT movement (including ILGA-Europe) and other human rights organisations to monitor the situation, and offer any support we can.

This is from Stonewall.org.uk, an official LGBTQ+ rights organization in Europe. It's very likely that in addition to gay and bi men, everyone who isn't straight and cis in the area is at risk. You can also find a report on the situation from Amnesty International here.

If you're like me and you're horrified beyond belief and feel absolutely helpless, the Russian LGBT Network has published a statement on how people can help and a VERY IMPORTANT mention of things NOT to do. LGBTQ+ people in Chechnya are in extreme danger right now, particularly men and people who may be read as men. Doing anything that might out them should be avoided at all costs. Even if you know people in the area who are at risk, don't even message them asking if they're okay. Email and social media, even phone lines may be monitored.

Words cannot express how awful this is, how scared I feel for the people of Chechnya, and how sick I feel over the hatred in the world.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Gif of the Day



Pixel Pokemon!

Dissecting the Worst Infographic Ever

Over the weekend, during a scroll through Tumblr, I happened upon a post mocking what has to be the worst infographic I've ever seen. Not in terms of visual design (though that is also not great), but in terms of what the fuck are you even talking about. Now I have to tear it apart piece by piece. Just kidding, I'm happy too.

Let's start with the premise of this infographic. It's called "How You Can Build Wealth on the Minimum Wage." It was created by a white dude named Jeff who has titled himself a "Visual Capitalist." In other words, the alternate title for this article could be "Rich White Dude Tells the Poors How Not to Be Lazy Poors."

First, the inforgraphic starts by telling the audience what the federal minimum wage is. This should tell you something about who the intended audience for this piece really is.


Click to Englarge

Then it goes to to richsplain that being wealthy isn't about owning mansions or private jets, because you can own both of these and still be "broke"! Don't worry about the fact that mansions and jets are assets that can be sold for money and you, a poor, have nothing of value. We'll tell you what wealth is.

Also, does that guy have face tattoos? What kind of racist "lol black rappers are always going broke from buying jets" shit is this?

Hillary Clinton Would Have Bombed Syria

And furthermore, Obama did so for eight years. His administration engaged in warfare in Yemen, Somalia, Libya, Pakistan, etc. without approval from congress. An average of 72 bombs per day were dropped on the Middle East and African nations during Obama's two terms. He sent out ten times more drone strikes than George W. Bush. Hundreds, maybe thousands of civilians were killed as bombs dropped on homes, schools, and hospitals.

The point is that if you were quiet about this but are now outraged that Lord Dampnut dropped some bombs on a military base in Syria, you're a hypocrite. I know full well that Dampnut is flushing our entire nation down the toilet with incompetence and/or backdoor deals designed to fill his coffers as much as possible before he leaves/is impeached and that a millions things would be better right now if Hillary Clinton had become president instead of him, but a large part of the reason I refused to support her is that she is such a warhawk. She would have already dropped a lot more bombs on Syria and was looking to start a war with Iran, and many liberals would have been silent on that.

Hillary Clinton Called for Strikes on Syrian Airfields Shortly Before Trump's Announcement

In an interview with New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof at the Women in the World conference in Manhattan, Clinton responded to a deadly chemical attack in Syria earlier this week that intelligence agencies have blamed on the country’s President Bashar Assad. 
“Assad has an air force, and that air force is the cause of most of these civilian deaths,” Clinton said. “And I really believe that we should have and still should take out his air fields and prevent him from being able to use them to bomb innocent people and drop sarin gas on them.”

I'm not here to argue whether bombing those air fields with the goal of preventing a horrible man from gassing his own citizens was the right thing to do. I'm here to point out to hypocrites that they're hypocrites. And I'm seeing a lot of liberal hypocrites right now.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Gif of the Day



I missed my calling.

We're Kicking Ass Right Now

I'm sure this is all somehow what they really want or they're just distracting us from the REAL issues blah blah blah, but it certainly seems like the left is getting some serious victories lately.

Devin Nunes steps aside from Russia investigation

And he did so with a whole lot of petulant whining.

Several left-wing activist groups have filed accusations against me with the Office of Congressional Ethics. The charges are entirely false and politically motivated, and are being leveled just as the American people are beginning to learn the truth about the improper unmasking of U.S. citizens and other abuses of power. Despite the baselessness of the charges, I believe it is in the best interest of the House Intelligence Commitee and the Congress for me to have Representative Mike Conaway, with assistance from Representatives Trey Gowdy and Tom Rooney, temporarily take charge of the Committee’s Russia investigation while the House Ethics Committee looks into this matter.

Well, thanks for letting us know that our hard work is paying off and we should continue with what we're doing, that's very helpful. Also, I love how Republican politicians have taken to calling any challenge from opponents "politically motivated." Um, yes, you're in politics and everything you do and all the things done to you are politically motivated. Get used to it or be prepared to be ironically called a special snowflake.

Then Steve Bannon got kicked out of the National Security Council because, surprise surprise, all the people around him are just as conniving and power-hungry and back-stabby as he is.

Jared Kushner Helped Push Steve Bannon Out Of The NSC

The move was widely interpreted as a sign of Bannon’s diminishing influence in the Trump White House following a series of botched executive orders and the failure of health care reform. 
But Kushner was a driving force behind Bannon’s demotion, according to Politico, which cited anonymous sources.

So I mean, I guess we on the left can't take all the credit for this one, but still.




Plus there was the whole thing where the Democrats actually got it together and filibustered the confirmation of Neil "Poor Workers Should Just Die for Their Companies" Gorsuch. He's still going to get through because the Republicans finally went through with the "nuclear option," and thank god because they've been holding that over Democrats' heads while the Democrats were too gutless to do it for years. Now we can stop fucking around and in four years when the Democrats take back the senate and possibly every other branch of government, and then when god kills Alito, Republicans will be crying over it and trying to blame it on Democrats somehow.

Things are going well. We just need to keep up the momentum for three years and nine months more.

Donald Trump and the Fragilest Ego in All the Land

I make a lot of fun on this blog about the very fragile thing that is the male ego, but it is in fact a huge driving force behind the motivations of men. And the more privileged a man is, the more fragile his ego. It therefore makes a lot of sense that one of the most privileged men who clearly has an extra fragile ego was driven to become president. Actually, this explains a lot about many of our previous highly incompetent presidents and other incompetent politicians.

Lord Dampnut has proven time and time again that he cannot let anything go. The littlest slight gets his butthole all tightened up and he has to lash out just to keep his precious and razor-thin, rose-delicate ego from shattering. Check out what a Daily Kos user found on his response to the breaking of the "grab her by the pussy" story and the very reason he ran for president in the first place:

Close Trump comrade Roger Stone told PBS in September 2016 that his entire motivation to run for office was to exact revenge for Obama roasting him at the 2011 White House Correspondents’ Dinner: 
“I think that he is kind of motivated by it: ‘Maybe I’ll just run. Maybe I’ll show them all,’” Stone adds.
... 
But after the second presidential debate in October, when several CNN panelists criticized Trump for dismissing his comments about grabbing women by the genitals as “locker-room talk,” Zucker received an email from Trump, via his campaign spokeswoman, Hope Hicks: “Jeff — Too bad you (CNN) couldn’t be honest with how well I did in the debate. The dumbest thing I ever did was get you the job at CNN — you are the most disloyal person. Just remember, I always seem to find a way to get even. Best wishes, Donald J. Trump.”

Can we get a compilation going of all the petty and whiny notes that Dampnut has sent to people who slighted him by doing things like playing tapes of words he himself and other people said? My inbox is open, please send me all of these hilarious and humiliating emails of Dampnut crying about people being mean to him and bruising his ego. If we all work together, we can shatter it and reduce him to a crying puddle on the Oval Office floor.

The irony of the fact that so many people have called me and others on the left "thin-skinned" never ceases to amuse me.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Gif of the Day



They weren't kidding.

President and Proud Misogynist

I think Lord Dampnut is trying to trumpet his hatred of women to the world. Or just rub it in our faces that he won despite being a rapist? I mean.

Trump Order Drops Pesky Regulations On Equal Pay, Sexual Harassment




This isn't just regular terrible. He did this on "Equal Pay Day," the day that marks how long white women have to work to make as much as the average white man made last year, and on Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month. And he did this suddenly with very little warning to anyone so that nobody had time to protest.

Why even do this? It's such a punch in the face to women all over the country and it's not even disguised at some kind of pro-business shit. It's just "let's repeal every good thing the black guy did for women." And it's yet another executive order by the guy who was all "Obama's use of executive orders is tyranny!" despite the fact that Obama used less executive orders than many of his Republican predecessors but once again we know that Dampnut is a relentless hypocrite!

Honestly, anything less than public tarring and feathering is too kind for this talking pile of shit from someone on a diet of nothing but Cheetos.

Pro-Feeding Hungry Children Masterpost

[TRIGGER WARNING: MENTIONS OF EATING DISORDERS]

AND I CANNOT BELIEVE THAT IS EVEN A STANCE ANYONE HAS TO TAKE OH MY GOD THEY'RE CHILDREN THEY NEED FOOD TO LIVE FUCKING FEED THEM.

So I posted something on Tumblr that has become rather popular and somehow drum up a good deal of controversy in certain circles of people who are so fucking horrible that they think the abstract idea of the "free market" and declaring that all taxation is theft is more important than feeding hungry kids. So that they don't die of starvation.

Honestly, what kind of Oliver Twist nightmare world are we living in?

Anyway, I decided to gather all the responses from people who actually have experience with hunger and poverty and/or are not fucking terrible and put them all here. That way I can just link to this post whenever some conservative libertarian fuck pops up in my Tumblr activity. You know, when I'm not just straight up telling them to go fuck themselves.

And if you're here because I linked you to this because you're arguing against feeding hungry children, go fuck yourself.

This is going to be quite long, so I'm gonna actually put in a "read more" thing as to not take up my entire homepage with these:


Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Gif of the Day



What.

Fat Hatred, Cont.

See, that headline is funny because fat hatred is always continuing. It never stops! Hahaha!

Anyway, my hero Ijeoma Oluo has been writing recently about fat hatred in our society and how difficult it makes things for those of us who are fat or generally deemed to have too much body fat to be healthy or attractive or whatever. She wrote about her own experience of going to extreme measures to become thin and how it changed the way people reacted to her.

In these past couple years, I've gotten fat. At 5'5" I'm over 200 pounds, or at least I was last time I went to the doctor. I won't allow a scale in my home unless it's very small and for the purpose of precisely weighing food ingredients. When I was in high school, I was nearly underweight at 115 pounds. I began to gain weight in college as many people do, but I was still within the range of what the bullshit "BMI" thing considers "normal." I was happier with my body during that time than I ever have been, because society told me I was beautiful for it. I could wear what I wanted without judgement. I could eat in public without worrying if people thought I was terrible for it.

That was also a time in my life when any kind of dieting "worked" for me, as in it caused me to lose weight. I started exercising and counting calories and keeping track of my weight to ensure I didn't get "too" heavy and it produced the results I was looking for. But as I got older, it got harder. After I graduated college, I'd have to eat very little and exercise daily to lose weight. Finally, it got to a point that the extent I was willing to go to lose weight no longer worked. Diet and exercise did not cause my weight to decrease even after months of trying.

So I finally decided to give up. During this time, I'd always wanted to just be okay with my body rather than wanting a different one, but I've never been able to shake that voice that says I'm not beautiful anymore. I'm not like those beautiful thin girls. The voice that says I can't wear certain things or makes me hesitate before getting any kind of food in public. That makes me sigh with disappointment at my expanding gut.

But I don't want to go back, and I won't. Looking back to where I was just after college, I'm surprised that it didn't occur to me that under-nourishment could have been a factor in my increasing anxiety and depression. I used to make the tiniest little wraps, first with sliced turkey, then with hummus, and have that plus carrot sticks and something a little sweet like teddy grahams for lunch. I'd have a granola bar for breakfast every day. This meant spending every day at work hungry. I'd be unhappy and preoccupied for hours every day waiting for lunch or waiting to go home so I could have an insufficient dinner.

It was miserable. Food is life. We need it to live. Yet we've made in into a vice and an addiction. And I have no doubt that I'm more than a little addicted to sugar and probably other strange things that massive corporations have put into our food, but I don't have the money to get everything organic and untouched. And you know what? I fucking love sugar. I love chocolate. I love food! It's something I can look forward to every day. I take delight in trying new recipes, whether it's something vegetable-heavy or the most ridiculous ultra-dynamo brownies you've ever seen. I love mushrooms and bell peppers and all kinds of fruit and I love burgers and fries and those nasty potato chips with the fake cheese dust on them.

And I get to love that. But unfortunately, I too can see the difference in how I'm treated as my body naturally (yes I said naturally) grows. People don't make eye contact and smile at me like they used to. Honestly, as the years have gone by, the world seems less friendly even though I continue to make an effort to be friendly to strangers, whether they're checkout clerks or people passing by on the street. This is corny as all hell, but I've always felt like a little friendliness or a smile helps make the world a little bit better each time, so I smile at strangers. As long as they're not young white men in a pack, because, you know.

But people don't smile back as much. They don't seem to want to look at me. And it makes my world a little more sad.

Why? Because I look different? People think that fat individuals must lack willpower or have some kind of fundamental flaw that makes us unworthy of kindness or humanity. Because our bodies are a certain way, we don't get to be visible or feel beautiful. We're disgusting.

It's really sad, especially since so many of us naturally get fat as we get older. It's normal and healthy. I eat so much more fruit and vegetables than I did when I was a teenager yet people would compare teen me and present me and think that she's healthier. News flash, she's depressed. And at the same time, healthy is not synonymous with good. Some of us have chronic health issues but that doesn't make us bad people. Some of us could be healthier but choose not to take that path, whatever it entails, for personal reasons that are nobody else's business. Me? I could eat less sugar, and as I approach my 30's I'm naturally doing so because my body can't process it as well as it used to, clearly. But I'm still going to drink a milkshake sometimes because it tastes good and I like it. Why is that disgusting?

And don't say it's because you have to "pay" for my "health problems" because that argument is bullshit for many different reasons and if you even try I'll dedicate a post to how ignorant and hateful you are while I hand you ass to you.

People talk a big talk about acceptance and loving each other, but fat people don't get that. And they can make up all the excuses they want but the fact is that if you think a fat person is disgusting for being fat then you're being judgmental and hateful and you are, in fact, the disgusting one.

I'm going to keep enjoying life and learning to love my body the way it is. Because that makes me far happier than dieting ever did.