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This Is Offensive

thedoctorboy:

Ok, so my University put this edition of the newspaper out today.  This editorial was immediately pointed out to me.  At the bottom of the article, taking up 2/3 of the page, was the photo I have uploaded below.  There are so many things wrong with this article I can’t even find words.  Everyone I have shown this article to today has been outraged and concerned by it.  I have encouraged all of them to write to the newspaper.  I would like to put this out there for Tumblr, as well.  This paper is supposed to have editors and has faculty that oversees it, as well.  The fact that this paper is supposed to be representative of a university that is ranked within the top 25 in the US is appalling and embarrassing.  

This Is Offensive

By Gustavo Palomino

"On many occasions at school and at the workplace we are forced to be dishonest or keep quiet when a difficult situation comes up because offending people is seen as a serious crime.  The biggest problem with this is that it makes life boring.  The second biggest problem is that this prevents us from truly understanding each other and solving, sensitive issues since we can’t openly talk about them.  I am not suggesting that you should deliberately offend people, but that the possibility of offending somebody should not prevent you from expressing what you need to express.

The fear of offending others is perhaps most prominent when it comes to talking about race – or rather – not talking about it.  Other than a few openly racist lunatics, we largely don’t talk about this topic although it is clear that it is still an issue.  We never really got to the bottom of why some of us still feel uncomfortable around people who have a significantly different skin color.  I’ve been lucky to have had a really honest relationship with a couple of people, and we talked about this not too long ago.

They, both white and they admitted that they do not hate black people in any way, but they do feel somewhat uncomfortable around them.  They weren’t sure where this feeling came from, and they never tried to find the answer since admitting to that is offensive and people would be outraged.  I am sure there are many others who also share this sentiment to varying degrees.  It would be nice to explore this problem in the classroom, or with people at large, but we can’t since we have to pretend that it isn’t true because it is offensive.

In fear of offending people we also sometimes lie to them when they ask us how they look.  This is most noticeable when the person we are judging is going to an important event and has decided to look her/him best.  In these situations we often lie because we feel that telling them the truth is not worth them being offended.  Unfortunately, we are wrong when we think this.  Now, you may think, “what am I supposed to do?”  “Should I tell her she is fat and ugly?”  In principle, yes.

In practice, you can be nice about it.  Say something like, “the truth is that I do not find you attractive.”  If she asks why, then you can elaborate.  So, you may say something like, “to be honest, you are overweight and unfortunately, I am not attracted to that body type.”  Of course, this will offend her.  The point is that it is worth her being offended.  Now she knows how you feel about her, which lets both of you know where you stand.  Being open about where we stand with each other prevents us from investing into relationships andprojects that will only end in disappointment.  She will get over being offended.

I’ve been offended countless times, and I feel that it is always worth experiencing.  Anything that offends me, or anyone else has some strong reason for doing so.  If someone does or says something that hurts our feelings, it is because we are very sensitive to that something.  It is important to explore that something to find out who we really are, and why we really are that way.  Things we are sensitive to are very meaningful to us and dictate a lot of our actions.  Being openly honest seems to be the only way to figure out who we are, and what our place in the world really is.  It isn’t the end of the world if you get offended.  The sky doesn’t fall, the ground doesn’t open up and eat you and life simply goes on.”

Email: observercopy@gmail.com

Letters to the Editors and Opinions: observeropinions@gmail.com

Facebook.com/rnobserver

Filed under offensive politics rutgers article

263 notes

KRUGMAN / NY TIMES: The Twinkie Manifesto

"There are, let’s face it, some people in our political life who pine for the days when minorities and women knew their place, gays stayed firmly in the closet and congressmen asked, “Are you now or have you ever been?” The rest of us, however, are very glad those days are gone. We are, morally, a much better nation than we were. Oh, and the food has improved a lot, too.  Along the way, however, we’ve forgotten something important — namely, that economic justice and economic growth aren’t incompatible. America in the 1950s made the rich pay their fair share; it gave workers the power to bargain for decent wages and benefits; yet contrary to right-wing propaganda then and now, it prospered. And we can do that again."

(Source: inothernews, via maibeitsmayberlline)

Filed under politics article NY Times

36,308 notes

Amethyst Dahlia: puggbutt: Update: 11 year old trans girl lost appealtransawareness:...

thebouncingbird:

puggbutt:

Update: 11 year old trans girl lost appeal

transawareness:

The above article is an update. Her mother went to appeal to keep her out of the psychiatric ward and lost. She will be institutionalized because of her expression of her gender. She will be held until she…

The HELL, Germany?!

Holy fucking shit!!!!

Quote from the article: The lawyer for the Kaminski called the decision “appalling”: “The view that could be a transsexual ‘induced’ over the years and without contradiction is nowhere represented in the literature. This is an invention of the nurse, “This would have talked only once for an hour with the child -. Whose views they have ignored.

(via tbb-old)

Filed under lgbt article transgender Germany APPALLING IS RIGHT

6,001 notes

Whoa, guys, they just shut down Megaupload and arrested a bunch of people.

shortformblog:

The Federal Bureau of Investigation moved against a group of suspected online pirates Thursday, targeting the popular file-sharing website megaupload.com a day after Washington lawmakers were besieged by complaints about legislation designed to crack down on the online sharing of pirated copies of music, movies and other material, people familiar with the matter said.

Investigators said there was no connection between arrests in their two-year investigation and the political firestorm that erupted this week over a pending vote on the Stop Online Piracy Act.

This is a big deal, and even if it’s not related to SOPA, the timing certainly does a lot to put it on the minds of those worried about the law.

(Source: shortformblog, via almostgaby)

Filed under article politics link

481 notes

LGBTQ Practices in Pre-Colonial Africa

fyeahafrica:

The myth of exclusive heterosexuality in indigenous black/sub-Saharan Africa was widely diffused by the 94th chapter of Edward Gibbon’s Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire (1781). Referring to homosexual behavior, Gibbon wrote, “I believe and hope that the negroes in their own country were exempt from this moral pestilence.” Gibbon’s fond hope was based on neither travel to Africa nor on inquiry of any kind.

A century later, Sir Richard Burton, who unlike Gibbon did know something of Africa, reinforced the myth of African sexual exceptionalism by drawing the boundaries of his “sotadic Zone,” where homosexuality was supposedly widely practiced and accepted, in such a way as to exclude sub-Saharan Africa.

Especially where Western influences (notably Christian and Marxist) have been pervasive, there is now a belief that homosexuality is a decadent, bourgeois Western innovation forced upon colonial Africa by white men, or, alternately, by Islamic slave-traders. The belief of many Africans that homosexuality is exogenous to the history of their people is a belief with real social consequences—in particular, the stigmatization of those of their people who engage in homosexual behavior or who are grappling with glbtq identities. These beliefs are not, however, based on serious inquiry, historical or otherwise.

There are no analyses of the social structures of African societies written by indigenous people prior to alien contact. What is inscribed of “traditional” African cultures was written by some of the Northerners who disrupted African cultures, first travelers, then missionaries, colonial officials, and anthropologists. In many cases the observers inscribing “traditional” African culture did not understand that their presence as observers was itself a product of history and domination.

Nevertheless, the observing Europeans are the only source of data on homosexuality in Africa until the most recent few decades. Most of what can be learned about traditional African societies was inscribed in the last decade of the nineteenth century or later, when the continent had been colonized by European states. To keep down the costs of colonial government, European (and especially English) colonial regimes used “indirect rule,” endeavoring to maintain customary laws, though attempting to ban some customary practices, particularly sexual ones.

The travel, colonial, and anthropological literature include reports of native conceptions and native practices of male homosexuality in many societies across every region of the continent. Documentation of female homosexuality is less abundant, but exists for many cultures. The contact and colonial era reports are critically reviewed in Murray and Roscoe’s Boy-Wives and Female Husbands. Here, only a few examples of each of the main social organizations of homosexuality will be mentioned.

“Boy Wives”: Age-differentiated Homosexuality

In the central African Zande culture, before European conquest, it was regarded “as very sensible for a man to sleep with boys when women are not available or are taboo.” English anthropologist E. E. Evans-Pritchard was told that in addition to times when women were not available for sex, some Azande men had sex with boys “just because they like them.”

The adult males paid the families of boy wives, just as they paid for female brides. The two slept together at night, “the husband satisfying his desires between the boy’s thighs. When the boy grew up he joined the company and took a boy-wife in his turn. It was the duty of the husband to give his boy-wife a spear and a shield when he became a warrior. He then took a new boy-wife.”

One commander, Ganga, told Evans-Pritchard that there were some men who, although they had female wives, still married boys. “When a war broke out, they took their boys with them… . If another man had relations with his boy, the husband could sue the interloper in court for adultery.”

The South African Thonga provide another particularly well-documented instance of a boy-wife role. A number of southern and western African societies also had female husbands, though whether these husbands had sexual relations with their wives is unclear in what has been written. (It seems that anthropologists studying the phenomenon did not ask that question.)

Gender-differentiated Homosexual Relations

Gender-crossing homosexuality has been discussed as common in the (Nigerian) Hausa bori cult (and in Afro-Brazilian offshoots of west African spirit-possession religion).

Among the Maale of southern Ethiopia, some males crossed over to feminine roles. Called ashtime, these (biological) males dressed as women, performed female tasks, cared for their own houses, and apparently had sexual relations with men, according to Donald Donham. One gave Donham a clear statement of the “third gender” conception: “The Divinity created me wobo, crooked. If I had been a man, I could have taken a wife and begotten children. If I had been a woman, I could have married and borne children. But I am wobo; I can do neither.”

[read more]

(Source: , via rarelyinhistory)

Filed under lgbtq africa pre colonial africa history article very interesting read

381 notes

deareje:

Just saw this on Marie Claire UK, 2012 January issue. Sherlock S2, Must See TV in January.  Can’t tell the pic is new or not though.
EDIT: alright I agree it’s new :D

See, I looked at this and I knew it was new instantly for hair reasons and clothes reasons. >_> I have brains of what!?

deareje:

Just saw this on Marie Claire UK, 2012 January issue. Sherlock S2, Must See TV in January.  Can’t tell the pic is new or not though.

EDIT: alright I agree it’s new :D

See, I looked at this and I knew it was new instantly for hair reasons and clothes reasons. >_> I have brains of what!?

(via anarmydoctor)

Filed under sherlock article WHAT IS MY BRAIN

21,089 notes

Nonsexual Intimacy

southpawscopic:

coolmoniker:

bibliovore:

greenchestnuts:

For Asexual Awareness Week, Elizabeth Barrette, aka ysabetwordsmith, posted a list of types of nonsexual intimacy that I found really interesting both as an asexual and as a writer:

Part One

Part Two

Part Three

Part Four

Part Five

I see this as being useful, in writing and possibly even drawing.

I’m just going to reblog this every time I see it.

Haven’t read these yet, but sounds interesting. :3

<3

(via asexualeducation)

Filed under asexuality asexual nonsexual intimacy writing article

168 notes

Over 100 Lawyers, Law Professors & Practitioners Come Out Against (Stop Online Piracy Act) SOPA | Techdirt

In sum, SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act) is a dangerous bill. It threatens the most vibrant sector of our economy — Internet commerce. It is directly at odds with the United States’ foreign policy of Internet openness, a fact that repressive regimes will seize upon to justify their censorship of the Internet. And it violates the First Amendment.

(Source: sarahlee310, via maibeitsmayberlline)

Filed under article SOPA READ THIS

711 notes

Choice quotes from douchenozzle Penn State students via the New York Times story on the riots following Joe Paterno's firing.

inothernews:

  • “I think the point people are trying to make is the media is responsible for JoePa going down.”  — Penn State freshman on why it was totally okay to overturn a news broadcast truck.  DOUCHENOZZLE POINTS (from 1-10):  9.
  • “We got rowdy, and we got maced.  But make no mistake, the board started this riot by firing our coach. They tarnished a legend.”  19-year-old Penn Stater, who apparently fails to realize that covering up criminal sexual activity is actually what tarnishes a legend.  DOUCHENOZZLE POINTS:  10.
  • “It’s not fair.  The board is an embarrassment to our school and a disservice to the student population.”  — 20-year-old Penn Stater, who is apparently not embarrassed that an assistant coach on his school’s football team raped young boys.  DOUCHENOZZLE POINTS:  11.
  • “This definitely looks bad for our school.  I’m sure JoePa wouldn’t want this, but this is just an uproar now, we’re finding a way to express our anger.”  — Freshman Penn Stater, who is good at stating the obvious and being contradictory all at once.  DOUCHENOZZLE POINTS:  12.
  • “Of course we’re going to riot.  What do they expect when they tell us at 10 o’clock that they fired our football coach?”  — 24-year-old Penn Stater, who probably didn’t riot when he found out Joe Paterno’s lieutenant raped little boys.  DOUCHENOZZLE POINTS:  15.
  • My friends were like, ‘I don’t want to get maced.’   I was like, ‘I don’t want to miss seeing this, so I guess that means I do kind of want to get maced.’”  — Freshman Penn Stater, who I hope was maced.  DOUCHENOZZLE POINTS: 8.

(via maibeitsmayberlline)

Filed under penn state JoePA article whaaaaaaaaaaat? And this is in my home state...