Saturday, February 24, 2018

Saturday roundup

What an AR-15 does.

Twitter has many examples of why arming teachers is a terrible idea. Here's a couple of threads.

This article perfectly and comprehensively sums up every angle of the 'perpetual foreigner' issue I talked about last week. Pair with this piece about who gets to be an immigrant. Model-minoritying isn't good, even if it's better than this:

See also: my thread.

I also made a thread about the myth of the endearing man-child.

Monday, February 19, 2018

Monday roundup

Poland isn't fooling anyone with its attempts at revisionist history.

The students who survived the Parkland school massacre are mad as hell and aren't going to take it anymore. They give me hope for the future of our country.

Aly Raisman takes back her body, leading to mass confusion among idiots.

The latest in the ruthenium mystery. Meanwhile, we have a new uranium mystery.

I'm not going to link to that horrid thinkpiece in the Times about yoga pants being bad for women, even though I agree with what the author was maybe trying to say: there's no need to spend on high-end workout clothes; go to the gym for you. But she ended up conveying the opposite message: yoga pants are unflattering, so don't wear them. So now our workout appearance is up for scrutiny? We are at the gym for other people's consumption? Here's a much better perspective on that whole issue, from a few weeks back when we were having the same debate over skin care. If it makes you feel better, do it; if it's a drag, don't.

Here are a few good pieces on meditation. What these two have in common is the idea that it's about practice, and it's about managing your emotional response (not quashing it). And that it's to fight our naturally-selected penchant for anxiety.

I love Adam Rippon.

Look at this little animal whisperer.

Saturday, February 3, 2018

Saturday roundup

Mayanmar's regime is still awful.

What we say (and don't say) about human rights, matters.

Evo Morales brought many out of extreme poverty but shouldn't be president-for-life.

Can technology reduce deforestation?

Why are we horrified at the mistreatment of only some animals?
The law says that when an animal is in serious problems, you should help the animals, but in the factory farming there are about six million pigs dying every year without veterinarian support,” said Hans Baaij, the director of Dier en Recht, a small nongovernmental organization that aims to use the court system to get the government to precisely define what constitutes animal abuse.
On sexual harassment in agriculture.

Before you read the next few excerpts (or linked articles), read this whole thread.
What in the unholy hell is "unwanted conduct of a sexual nature"? This is an abomination. We can start talking about Me Too going too far (see below) when victims aren't the ones made to transfer schools and perpetrators aren't slapped on the wrist.

Laurie Penny on the Me-Too backlash.
Alright, ladies, you’ve had your fun, and you’ve given us all a fright — but that’s enough now. If we relegate this all-out revolt against male sexual entitlement to the kitchen shelf where it belongs, everyone would be a lot more comfortable — at least, the men in the room would be, and we all know that’s what really matters.
And Lili Loofbourow on the price of 'bad sex' and socializing women to be the nice girl.
Women are constantly and specifically trained out of noticing or responding to their bodily discomfort, particularly if they want to be sexually "viable." Have you looked at how women are "supposed" to present themselves as sexually attractive? High heels? Trainers? Spanx? These are things designed to wrench bodies. Men can be appealing in comfy clothes. They walk in shoes that don't shorten their Achilles tendons. They don't need to get the hair ripped off their genitals or take needles to the face to be perceived as "conventionally" attractive. They can — just as women can — opt out of all this, but the baseline expectations are simply different, and it's ludicrous to pretend they aren't.
The old implied social bargain between women and men (which Andrew Sullivan calls "natural") is that one side will endure a great deal of discomfort and pain for the other's pleasure and delight. And we've all agreed to act like that's normal, and just how the world works. 
Pair with Mona Eltahawy's piece on (instead) teaching girls to honor their rage.

And here we transition from phenomenal women slamming men who mansplain sexual assault, to phenomenal women slamming men who mansplain abortion.

See also Jia Tolentino's interview with someone who went through it.

This breaks my heart.