"I hope she’ll be an old sport — that’s the best thing an old sport can be in this old sport, a beautiful little old sport."
F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby (via eti1)
Well if I’d ever thought about reading this old dead white man book, that quote would have killed any desire to do so.
Irma (short film)
Irma Gonzalez is an old ‘luchadora’ (female wrestler) who bears the marks of a life spent battling in the ring, performing daredevil moves. Every day she goes to the gym to rehearse the moves that made her a star. Children watch her curiously. Somewhere in the distance, a song plays: Irma was once a singer, too. In her memory, grainy images of old television clips flicker. Shot in Mexico City, the film is a tender portrait of the multi-talented luchadora and an unusual meditation on athleticism and aging.
Interview with director of Irma, Charles Fairbanks.
Finally someone with muscley legs like mine. T.T
This scene pretty much summarizes why DS9 is, IMHO, the best Trek series. It took Roddenberry’s dream and flipped it on its head—which you may or may not like—but I adored it.
TNG presented a world where humanity had surpassed its ills. The Federation’s values made humans the good guys, compared to species like the Romulans and the Cardassians. Principles and ethics, are what set us apart. As Picard said, “The first duty of every Starfleet officer is to the truth… It is the guiding principle on which Starfleet is based. And if you can’t find it within yourself to stand up and tell the truth…you don’t deserve to wear that uniform!" It’s all very idealistic.
Honesty and ethics are what Starfleet is based on, yet Starfleet gives Sisko authorization to forge evidence in order to trick Romulus into joining the war. Because of our principles, humans always thought we were above our enemies — who had the Obsidian Order/Tal Shiar — only to find out we have our own version, Section 31. As Admiral Ross put it, "Inter Arma Enim Silent Leges." In other words, we can stay clean as long as things are going our way. If not, we’ll think nothing of getting our hands dirty.
The underlying message of DS9 was, although we like to think—maybe even deceive ourselves into thinking that we’ve evolved, when the chips are down, we are just as ruthless as the cultures we purport to have progressed beyond. And, if you stop and look at our own culture, you will see how absolutely true that is.
We all like to think of ourselves as good, moral people. That’s the easy part. DS9 challenged us to question how good we really are.
I’m sorry, but remind me why I need yet another show telling me how awful people are? I can just look at history, the Milligram experiment, the Stanford prison experiment, and thousands of other shows for that. That is not groundbreaking. There is nothing revolutionary about humans being shitty.
Star Trek was supposed to be a defense against that view, saying that even if we can be shitty, we can evolve and become better. If you truly believe that DS9 throws that belief out the window, then you’re saying that we’re just going back to the same old humanity that makes the same damn mistakes and never gets better, and that’s damn pessimistic and that’s not Star Trek.
And that’s not what DS9 is about in my opinion. Maybe I haven’t gotten through all of DS9 yet but from what I’ve seen so far and what I’ve heard from people who love it, it shows that even with flaws, humanity is still great and even if we have more to learn, we’re amazing creatures who intend to do well and will make good happen, and if we make a few mistakes along the way, we will learn. It helps show the growing process, not revert the entire idea that we can grow and become better.
Nope. I did not say DS9 was pessimistic. It’s not pessimistic at all. And DS9’s message is not that human beings are horrible creatures.
TNG is overly human-centric. Humans are the center of everything. Most of the cast is human. A non-human main character’s sole ambition in life is to become human. Other cultures are judged by human values.
Humans are the good guys. Other races are clearly the bad guys (the Cardassians, the Ferengi). Whether races are determined to be good or bad depends on how many values they have in common with humans. And although I appreciate Roddenberry’s effort to give us something to strive for by creating an ideal humanity, I believe that idealism crossed over into a almost delusional sense of hubris — causing other races to be depicted in a rather flat, one dimensional manner.
DS9 was not pessimistic or self-deprecating. However, unlike TNG, it was not optimistic about humanity. It was realistic. Moreover, DS9 does not have humans at the center of everything. Unlike TOS, TNG, or Voy, DS9 has majority human cast. It is set in a Cardassian space station that belongs to Bajorans. DS9 took the aliens that existing simply to make humans look evolved, and gave them lives in their own right. TNG made the Ferengi stupid, caricatures. DS9 made a Ferengi a complex main character, explored their culture, and made that society develop, without any intervention from humans. DS9 took TNG’s Cardassians and showed that they are not simply one dimensional villains but that they are people who can achieve great things, without striving to be like humans or even liking them.
When DS9 removed humans from the center of everything, it changed TNG’s message from, “Look how great we can be” to “Look how similar we are to these races we mistrusted. They don’t have to become like us in order to do good things.” This lesson is extremely important, particularly if your culture or group has power, privilege, or influence over other people. Similarly, by making the Federation corrupt, the message wasn’t that humanity is evil. It was that we cannot view other races as villains and ourselves as the heroes because we have those same problems too.
Although TNG can encourage humanity to strive to be more, the attitude behind it can be detrimental because we are already too ego-centric. We already judge people based on how similar they are to us. That’s how prejudices are formed. Believing that you are enlightened is very easy to do. Recognizing that you have the same flaws as the people you judge is not. This is why DS9’s message is important.
Understanding that you share the same flaws as groups you distrust is not pessimism. I believe that we cannot truly grow until we do.
These are my genuine feelings and views, that’s why I have a moose pen.
Opinion: Latina Stereotypes Still Rule TV and Films
Latina stereotypes - the hot mami, the sassy spitfire, the shy maid -have been around forever. It’s time to see some smart Latinas represented.
What Latina stereotypes do you see in the media?
"In reality, sex work isn’t stigmatised because it is dangerous. Sex work is dangerous because it is stigmatised."
Laurie Penny, on newstatesman.com
Perfectly put! I wish I were capable of being so succinct.
django django django
i am so sick of people essentially saying ‘get over it’ whenever someone has a negative comment about race dynamics in the media, especially when it comes to black representation.
people don’t make these criticisms just to ruin everyone else’s cinema experience, they do it because what they are seeing and hearing is damaging. why is it so hard to respect that to some people this film is highly offensive and that that opinion is as valid as your own; and just because you may be fine with watching it doesn’t mean that everyone is.
perhaps you don’t have an emotional connection with slavery and the expendable nature in which the media treats bodies of colour, maybe you do, either way empathy is key; even if you don’t feel the offence yourself, try to put yourself in another person’s shoes. it can be truly painful to be exposed to the careless nature in which our society treats people of colour, be it in film or otherwise. think about the amount of times you have seen images on the news of dead unnamed brown children here and exploited black bodies there and how people will look at this and think ‘oh how terrible’ and nothing more, whereas if white bodies were treated in the same manner, people would be aghast at the level of disrespect shown to even contemplate broadcasting these images.
the media is constantly dehumanising people of colour, portraying them as constantly birthing or constantly dying but never really living without so much as a bat of an eyelid. consider how django unchained does nothing to help this trend. i can tell you seeing the trailer alone triggered my anxiety and made me genuinely uncomfortable and the mere thought of catching even a wry smile on a white person’s face at a time i consider inappropriate in the cinema would be enough to make me want to leave.
you may say, ‘what’s the problem? tarantino is anti-slavery’ but i would say that that is not enough. he, like any other director has to be held responsible for the images and stories he produces, and i do not think he has been wholly responsible with django, and this is coming from someone who enjoyed some of his other films. he may think he’s being a Good Guy by making a feature length film of ‘hey didn’t slavery suck’ but as far as i’m concerned some of us don’t want his privileged voice in the dialogue, and given that it is our history, our ancestors who went through these atrocities, and that it is us who are still suffering the consequences, i think the very least we should be allowed to do is voice that opinion as many times as we damn well like.
I like the movie but I get your point.
- feminists: Women read certain behaviours as creepy and/or rapey; that's just how they come across to women because sexual assault.
- dudebro: But that's not why I do those things. I'm a special and unique individual.
- feminists: The woman doesn't care that you're special and unique individual. It is a matter of not getting assaulted for her. Rapists think of themselves as special too.
- dudebro: But I'd never assault her. If she knew me she wouldn't think that! I'm nice and polite and I rescue stray puppies.
- feminists: Are you being deliberately dense or are you seriously incapable of understanding that women want to avoid violence more than they want to get to know some random dude.
- dudebro: It's just not FAIR that my special unique eminent self should suffer because of what other guys do.
- feminists: Have you tried talking to your male relatives, friends, colleagues, and acquaintances about male violence?
- dudebro: No! Why should men need to change? Women just need to become less sensitive.
- feminists: OK, never mind, let's set them all on fire.
"Prejudice against women, however, has deep and far-reaching consequences that do a lot more than make them feel bad, for it supports an entire system that privileges men at women’s expense. Sexist prejudice doesn’t just target individual women, for it is fundamentally about women and strikes at femaleness itself in every instance. Each expression of antifemale prejudice always amounts to more than what is said, for it reaffirms a cultural legacy of patriarchal privilege and oppression. When a particular woman is treated as less intelligent, less serious, and less important than the men she works with, for example, this specific view of her is easily linked to the patriarchal idea that women in general are inferior to men. When men ignore her ideas and suggestions or pay more attention to her looks than to her work, they do so with a cultural authority that damages her far more than similar treatment directed at a man.
Since patriarchal culture values maleness, the weight behind antimale prejudice is limited primarily to the individual woman who expresses it and is therefore easier to discount (“She must not like men”). And however hurt men might feel, they can always turn to the compensations of male privilege and a mainstream culture that sends continuing messages of inherent male value. In this sense, the issue isn’t whether prejudice hurts-it hurts everyone it touches. But prejudice against women wounds in deeper and more complex ways than does prejudice against men because the hurt is magnified by a patriarchal system that spreads it by association to all women and that systematically links it to male privilege.
Because prejudice affects women and men so differently, calling antimale prejudice “sexism” distorts the reality of how systems of privilege work. Prejudice against women not only harms individual women, but perpetuates an oppressive system based on gender that harms women more deeply than any isolated instance of hurtful speech or discrimination. Antimale prejudice may hurt individual men, but it isn’t connected to a system that devalues maleness and oppresses men as a result. The difference between the two is so great that we need to distinguish the one from the other, and that’s what words like “sexism” and “racism” are for. Sexism distinguishes simple gender prejudice-which can affect men and women both-from the much deeper and broader consequence of expressing and perpetuating privilege and oppression. Without this distinction, we treat all harm as equivalent without taking into account important differences on both the personal and the social levels in what causes it and what it does to people."
Allan G. Johnson, The Gender Knot (via wretchedoftheearth)
Racism 101: A Comprehensive Guide for 2013
After the success of the Racism 101: A comprehensive Guide for 2012 post, it seemed fitting that there be a follow up for 2013.
8 things every good racist/non-racist should know
1. Racism is not fun-If you find yourself wanting to be a part of the “I’ve experienced racism” conversation, you should really re-evaluate your own life choices. If your “Experience” with racism is a single item that you are able to pinpoint, you are living a life of luxury. Racism is not fashionable, easy or something any of us (Who have to live with it daily) want. If you find yourself WANTING to be able to say that you experience racism, you should question your own thinking. Starting now.
2. Human beings can hold two opposing view points-You can have a Black friend AND be racist against Black people. You can be married to a Latino AND be racist against Latin@s. Believing that your friend, family member or the person you are dating/married to is somehow “Different than” or “Not like” the others, is an absolutely racist thought to have. Equally, if you believe that having a friend, family member or significant other who is of the race you hold such ignorant feelings towards somehow makes you “Not racist,”see below…
3. Your “Friend” proves my point, not yours-When you’ve been accused of being a racist, announcing that you have a “Black Friend” proves that you are in fact, a racist. Non-racists would never use their friends to justify their racism. Non-racists also wouldn’t feel the need to catagorize their friends by race. Non-racists would not be capable of seeing their “Black Friend” as a “Get out of being called a racist” card. These actions are racist. Only a racist is capable of acting in this manner.
4. The internet is not racist-If you find yourself saying anything along the lines of “If you don’t like racism, get off the internet,” you are, quite frankly, not very bright. It is people who make racist comments and put them on the internet. In order for “Getting off the internet” to equal “Not having to deal with racism,” each and every racist person on the internet would have to magically disappear from Earth when a person logged off.
5. Comedy does not trump racism-Calling the racist thing you’ve just said, “A joke” doesn’t make it any less racist. Even if you and all of your friends think it’s the funniest thing you’ve ever heard. It doesn’t stop anyone from being hurt and it doesn’t eliminate your role in hurting people. Racism is wrong. Even when you label it “Comedy.” (Note: No one should ever have to remind you that racism is wrong)
6. Satire isn’t racist-The rule is, “Satire goes up.” The entire purpose of satire is to make fun of those at the top. Racist “Jokes” are the farthest thing from satire as anyone could get. Calling the racist thing you just said, “Satire” proves that A) You have no idea what satire is and B) you are living under the false notion that people laughing at something cruel, takes the cruelty away.
7. It’s presentation over blood 100% of the time- Whether you are 1/16th brown, ½ brown or all the way brown, if you present as white, you are going to be treated as such. This isn’t about fault or blame. However, if you find yourself starting to claim that you don’t have white passing privilege because your Great, Great, Great, Great, Great Grandmother was brown, you have failed and fallen into a racist justification wormhole. Climb out. (Note: This may be USA specific. I don’t know how accurate this may be in other countries)
8. “My experiences are just as valid.”-This is an accurate statement. Your experiences are valid. The problem is not that they are “Invalid” it’s that when you use your experiences to either A) Say that you deal with things too so I should just stop whining or B) That it is okay to talk OVER my experience because you have also lived through something, you are acting in an inexcusable manner. Also, stop saying “Oppression Olympics.” The person suffering the most DOES matter. However, this also does not allow for over talking. (Seriously though, let’s get rid of the term “Oppression Olympics” altogether, mkay? You are using it incorrectly anyway.)
Black Panther Party (BPP) Confrontation with Eugene Police Department. In 1969, there were two major confrontations. The first was centered around three BPP members and two Eugene Police officers. It started when two EP tried to enter a Panther member’s house (Oliver Patterson) without a warrant. They were yelling insults and threatening to force their way in. BPP members Howard and Tommy Anderson met them. The BPP members were armed and ready to defend their rights as Americans. The BPP Captain asked the EP to produce a warrant and he would instruct the Panther inside to come out and surrender. The EP could not produce such a warrant. They had never experienced armed Black men defending their rights under the United States constitution. The EP ran to their car in shock and embarrassment.
The same day a warrant for Howard and Tommy Anderson was issued for assault on police with deadly weapons and interfering with the Eugene Police. All members of the BPP Eugene Chapter were called and showed up at BPP Headquarters. The BPP Eugene Chapter decided to not give up the Anderson brothers without a fight to the death. All members were ready to die. The EP was ready to kill all members that were willing to fight and die. Things had come to the major task of armed struggle. The Headquarters was very fortified and the Panthers had enough weapons to engage the EP in a relatively short firefight. The BPP had armed White support outside the Headquarters ready to die by sniping EP from strategic positions. There were other students from the U of O outside protesting this major conflict. The man that stopped this conflict was Ken Morrow who was a highly respected attorney in Eugene. He walked up to the door of the BPP Headquarters and said he was an attorney and could help. He called a judge and asked if he could bring the BPP members down to City Hall to be arraigned and bail set. The judge agreed to set bail at $10,000 per Panther. The money was raised within ten minutes.
Thereafter, Ken Morrow and Howard and Tommy Anderson went to City Hall, were arraigned, posted bail and were back at Headquarters within one hour. Ken Morrow had a good relationship with the Eugene Chapter of the BPP, despite pressure from anti-Panther members of the Eugene community.
The Eugene Police continued to harass and arrest Panthers for various reasons. Some police thought the Panthers should be stopped. Most of these incidents were not political but criminal.
By 1970, the show was over for the Eugene Chapter. The Captain moved to Oakland and became close to Huey Newton (Minister of Defense). Other members moved to other cities to work with other chapters. Some stayed as students of the U of O.
The purpose of this article is to record the legacy of the Eugene, Oregon Chapter of the Black Panther Party and to document its impact on this small college community. The writer trusts that this legacy is still being talked about in both academic and non-academic circles and that all former Eugene Chapter members continue to look back at this history with pride.
"Americans love to think of themselves as innocents. As a result, when they are victimized they are not just in a state of mourning, but one of total disbelief when finding themselves on the receiving end of barbarity. In the moment of bereavement and shock the well documented acts of barbarity that have been and still are committed by their country are conveniently forgotten. … Lanza was no worse than the drone operators and soldiers who act on government orders. The only difference is that they have permission from the state and approval of the populace to kill at will. There will be no end to senseless violence unless Americans affirm that they want it to stop and that there should no longer be any sacrosanct killers. The memorial to the victims in Newtown ought to be soul searching and a determination to change actions which have been considered not only acceptable but beneficial throughout most of this country’s history. If Americans really think that killing is wrong, they must change a lot more than gun control laws."