GreenasSky A gambol in the goodies by Sloan Nota

Choice Rebecca Solnits

 

Rebecca Solnit: Whose Story (and Country) Is This?

I am again profoundly admiring, jealous, changed by the incisive writing of Rebecca Solnit. From the one essay (above) I quote only a few of her everting-of-the-mind observations.

  • …white Protestant men, some of whom are apparently dismayed to find out that there is going to be, as your mom might have put it, sharing.
  • _____
  • In New York City, the immigrant population alone exceeds the total population of Kansas (or Nebraska or Idaho or West Virginia, where all those coal miners are).
  • _____
  • The Onion nailed it years ago: “College Basketball Star Heroically Overcomes Tragic Rape He Committed.”
  • _____
  • And then when the bomber who had been terrorizing Austin, TX, last month was finally caught, journalists at the newspaper interviewed his family and friends and let their positive descriptions stand as though they were more valid than the fact he was an extremist and a terrorist who set out to kill and terrorize black people in a particularly vicious and cowardly way.
  • _____
  • We are as a culture moving on to a future with more people and more voices and more possibilities. Some people are being left behind, not because the future is intolerant of them but because they are intolerant of this future.
  • _____
  • …the follow-up story to the #MeToo upheaval has too often been: how do the consequences of men hideously mistreating women affect men’s comfort?

Rebecca Solnit is a hawk-eyed master living in our time.

Categories contemporary society, ethics, Women | Tagged | Leave a comment

Gunchildren

 

Gun child

Gunchild,. Text: http://dailycaller.com/2013/06/17/suspension-wont-be-removed-for-five-year-old-grilled-over-cap-gun-until-he-peed-his-pants/

 

 

Do you ever notice how few intellectuals visit gun mayhem on churches? Funny isn’t it? Even though their members score unusually high for atheism. Or how few scholars train assault rifles on strangers who have done them no bit of harm? Shooters — in their confused little dinosaur brains they may even believe themselves religious. As if you could pour a vial of ink on yourself to certify your rectitude. Red ink, Hey I’m holy! Gotta go kill someone!

What are these men attempting to prove to themselves? First, think up the very baddest act I could do. Then buy the gun and ammunition. I’m the baddest male in this whole damned world. So I’ll kill me after I’ve killed enough of not-me. Which proves — what?

Guns bring out the worst in idiots.

Categories contemporary society, ethics | Leave a comment

The White-Haired Grizzle of Patriarchy

I propose that in the 21st century patriarchy has run out of effectiveness. Half of humanity is capable of pretty much what the other half is, but law and custom do not iallow it. Think of the progress we could be making. Physics, medicine, soap-box derbies.

Yet instead of making the rational choice to get more out of human potential, we’re making the ego choice to keep half of humanity at half potential. Of course WE means the patriarchs. Who would be better served to plunge ahead with full and fulsome total participation.

What holds them back? Hardly a male on this planet lacks a cellphone to interact with but they’re still irrational luddites. They’re undereducated, they’re afraid of new things. Might bite.

Whereas women are bubbling and buoyed by what we felt at the Women’s March. All those people and they were all us. We didn’t need men. We made ourselves a force. Bonding, serious, giddy. Pussy hats, not tiki torches. Bonding. Not needing man sweat, the scent of men, the deep voice of men.

We made ourselves a force. We found we were a force.

Without them.

Categories Women | Leave a comment

The Pushbutton Smile of Perpetual Girlhood

 

Woman grinning

smiling female

I say women, I mean women as traditionally socialized. I say wimmin, I mean valkyries who’ve had it with patriarchy and its affectations. Wimmin are hungry for power, women say “Oh gosh, not me.’ And I don’t need all women to be wimmin. Lord what a mess! I just need wimmin to win elections and elbow the dickheads out of the way.

Violent? Not as violent as they’ve been to us.

Resentful? Like we never noticed your stolid dependence on inequality. Us notice?

Wimmin have storm in their chests. Women storm elsewhere. Maybe in pie crusts or crocheted coverlets, not in your face. Wimmin will get in your face.

Now our challenge is to find an ‘off’ button for The Smile. Ladies, just turn it off! Maybe the hardest thing you ever try to do. Can you decondition yourself from The Smile? The model’s smile, the johnny-on-the-spot smile, the grit your teeth but disarm him smile? The wife smile, the podium smile, the everything’s-just-rosy smile. The secretary smile, the tiara winner’s smile, the store clerk’s smile. “May I help you?”

We hide such chaotic fantasies behind those smiles. That smile placates when we’re damned if we’ll placate. That smile quickly slides into second place, it won’t compete. They beguile when we’re goddam done beguiling. Our pushbutton smiles are wired into our systems like the twitch in a cat’s tail is wired into the cat.

Wired in like braces on teeth.

 

The Smile is a girl’s useful tool with many gadgets to deploy. The Smile is also useful to men, to keep us smiling into their eyes. Proof that we don’t trust ourselves yet.

When will wimmin decide to trust ourselves?

 

 

 

Categories Women | Leave a comment
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