merrycaepa: (r&i - teh internetz)
yWhoa! Lotsa snow!

> Okay, if you don't look at any of the links I have here today, look at this one. Sady Doyle on Joan of Arc ("Running Toward the Gunshots: A Few Words on Joan of Arc"), and it is brilliant. In seventh grade, I read George Bernard Shaw's play St. Joan for a theatre project, a play, it turns out, that [personal profile] georginasand also read (Mutual admiration of the play was another C.S. Lewis moment - "Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another, 'What! You too? I thought I was the only one.'"). This post is about being female, being queer, being more than you're supposed to be, and owning yourself. It's one of the best things I've read in a very long time.

> Although it is important to keep in mind the direct and indirect effects and implications of the assassination attempt on Congresswoman Giffords, 27 people were killed in Acapulco within twenty-four hours this weekend.

> In the aftermath of said assassination attempt, Jezebel notes Sarah Palin's backpedalpalooza.

> Delightfully blistering Russian political humor in 140 characters.

> Foreign Policy asks: "How can a gun-crazed society lead the world?" (In the words of Rachel Maddow, "We're no longer officially a superpower. Please turn in your badges.") (The rhetorical answer, of course, is that when one group has guns and another group doesn't, the group with guns tends to decide what both parties do. This is often interpreted as 'leading,' although it might be more correctly characterized as 'herding with bullets.')

> Fascinating interview with Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akhbar Salehi.

> This Spiegel article on the problems with blaming Sarah Palin for the assassination attempt on Gabriel Giffords raises some interesting points, especially towards the end, but I find its basic premise to be fallacious. I for one don't believe that the liberal media zeitgeist as a whole directly draws an line from Palin's Facebook page to the shooting so much as indicts Palin for being one of the most vociferous proponents of increasingly violent rhetoric, and for her refusal to acknowledge that encouraging people to reload rather than retreat during a heated political campaign is going to contribute to an atmosphere where someone could take her advice literally. She did not place a gun in the shooter's hand. She did however, suggest that it would be pretty cool if he did.  TBD's piece is well worth a read.

> Aside from the fact that my uni offered a seminar on porn last spring that I really wish I'd done...porn is illegal in Turkey? You're shitting me.

> Turkey appears to have created its own version of The Tudors, centering on the life, times, and hedonism of Suleyman the Magnificent. I kind of love this part: "'This is not a documentary for schoolchildren,' Okay said, adding that the Ottoman sultans had a harem and families. 'They did not reproduce through pollination.'" (But wouldn't it make for even more interesting TV if they had?) (I sense a Doctor Who episode.)

> A study finds that women are often portrayed negatively in Egyptian cartoons. Quelle surprise? Find me a medium where women aren't  often portrayed negatively. The article states that "Women often appear in the cartoons as irrational and superficial, according to the study. The study showed that 21 negative traits were attributed to women in cartoons, compared to only nine positive traits, and stated that 62 percent of cartoons deride women’s physical appearance." (Conclusion: Egyptian newspapers are more progressive than my campus's frat houses.)

> McDonald's wifi in New Zealand allegedly blocks gay lifestyle websites.

> Argh The Guardian ("The extraordinary life and death of David Burgess"). Look, I know next to nothing about Sonia Burgess, a transwoman human rights lawyer in the UK, so forgive me if I'm missing information. But I know that referring to her as David Burgess in the opening hook and describing her as "living a double life" is a gross misrepresentation of the trans experience. Being transgendered is not living "a double life." Being transgendered is living a life; she was a lawyer, not a Mossad agent. And shouldn't the point of the article be that a brilliant human rights lawyer was murdered, not that said human rights lawyer happened to - horrors! - have a penis? Also, describing how friends of Sonia were upset to see the male pronoun used it press reports and then using said pronoun is flagerantly disrespectful. And stop saying she 'fell.' This is not a Victorian novel. She was fucking pushed. She didn't slip on ice; she didn't jump. She was not tragically doomed for living that oh-so-pointedly-phrased "double life." She was murdered. One would frankly think that would be more sensational than her genitalia.

> The Pope says sex ed is an attack on religious freedoms. That pesky science always interfering with religious doctrine! Somewhere, Galileo is weeping.

> The Advocate's January cover story: "Yes She Did." In one of those groundbreaking moments that should not be groundbreaking, Hillary Clinton announces that gay rights are human rights. Unfortunately, as an article, it's too gushy to be terribly useful; I vaguely know that Clinton's record on Acronym Rights isn't as spotless as the article would indicate.

> Your Daily "Reach for the Flask Taped to the Underside of Your Desk" Moment: Westboro Baptist Church claims that the nine year-old child murdered during the Gabriel Giffords assassination attempt is "better off dead, so the cup of her iniquity will not overflow!" (Because "That's how God the Avenger Rolls!") I know trying to dig any reason out of WBC polemic is futile, but this is the same group that adamantly opposes abortion? A little consistency is all I ask...

> In one of those bizarre moments confusing to everyone involved, including moi, I kind of want to see Skins USA now?

> The first ever GLBT history museum in the US opens in San Fran this week.

> Via Food Network Humor: Ina Garten's Summer Squash Soup Imbued with Unicorn Magic ("In a large diamond/titanium stockpot, cook shallots in oil over medium heat until they’re supposed to be nice and tender, but you’ve burned them because you’re using bad olive oil and have to just press onward, hoping for the best.")

> Twenty-five hour marathon reading of Moby Dick. The best part of this article is actually a comment: "The only valuable thing I learned from Moby Dick is how to make an apron from a whale dork. I am certain this will come in handy post-2012."

> Snowdogs over Sweden.

> My favorite poem, ever: Larry Levis's "There Are Two Worlds."

> Hot damn, Rachel McAdams.

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