Welcome to DU! The truly grassroots left-of-center political community where regular people, not algorithms, drive the discussions and set the standards. Join the community: Create a free account Support DU (and get rid of ads!): Become a Star Member Latest Breaking News General Discussion The DU Lounge All Forums Issue Forums Culture Forums Alliance Forums Region Forums Support Forums Help & Search


Collimator's Journal
Collimator's Journal
August 31, 2022

Who all here has heard of Ammon Bundy?

I have only a peripheral knowledge of this guy and his antics, but this gem discusses his latest efforts in Right-Wing Religious Affrontery.

Ammon Bundy: Lying for Jesus, yet again.

August 26, 2022

A Little Girl Gets A Doll That Looks Like Her

Should be the simplest thing in the world, right?

Well, this child was filled with joy at receiving a doll with natural hair and her happiness warmed my heart. But it's also sad that this isn't just an everyday thing that parents and children of all colors can take for granted.

Excerpt from the article below, which ought to be re-printed in the "Journal of Duh", as in "duh,yes" we need toys that showcase ALL of us as as beautiful. Even growing up as a brown-eyed, brown-haired White child, I was vaguely confused by all the blond, blue-eyed baby dolls out there. Everybody talked about how much I looked like my family, so I knew that my baby dolls should look like me, but they didn't and it bothered me.

Of course, adoption is also a reality for many children and that conversation is worth having. I also don't think that it's a bad thing for a child to have a multicultural collection of dolls. But for a Black child growing up in this country, the value of having a doll that reflects herself back accurately is critical.

"After doing some research, I learned that toys influence how kids think, act and see themselves. When little girls can’t find dolls that look like them, it negatively impacts their self-esteem. So that’s why I created the Curlfriends (Zoe, Gaïana and Marisol): the first Healthy Roots Dolls and the first dolls with natural hair that you can wash and style. We call it their curl power."

August 21, 2022

Sharing a link that leads to some interesting reading.

You know how you sometimes click on something on the internet which leads you to content that includes more links and before you know it you've left the rabbit hole and discovered an entire rabbits' warren?

Well, this rabbit hole journey should lead to more sanity and clarity, not less.

OnlySky is a website devoted to secular conversations and values. I recommend it. It's a fairly recent resource, and they are still working out some bugs, but they have a lot to offer.

One recent article is this nice descriptive list of some important secular reading. 10 Eye-Opening Secular Books For a New Perspective.

Of course, by providing such links to these resources and reading, I run the danger of engaging in proselytizing. And as a non-believer, I certainly don't want to do that!

So, be forewarned, you may be exposed to ideas, concepts, viewpoints and information. Please gird your loins appropriately.

August 21, 2022

Fox News Reports That Biden is Getting a $500,000 Fence


I'm not even going to link to the story because they don't deserve the traffic. But I read the umbrage-heavy headline that Biden's Delaware home was going to be protected by a $500,000 fence constructed at tax payers expense, (Italics mine.) and my eyes rolled so far back into my head they were in danger of getting stuck in the off position.

Obviously, the hypocrisy of making a meal out of a mere half a million dollar expense to protect the current president when far more money went into the former president's protection AND the guy made a personal profit over it is epic to exponential levels. It is also worth pointing out that the current president may be in more dire need of protective measures because the former president's fan base keeps amping up its rhetoric in calling for political violence.

Fox News keeps firing up its viewership making them more unhinged and dangerous; then when efforts are made to protect the serving president from the danger that they continue to foster, they get outraged.

August 19, 2022

A Psychiatrist Warned Us About Trump and The Potential For Violence in His Name

An article by Joshua Kendall in the September-October 2022 issue of Mother Jones is worth the read. He discusses the work of Bandy Lee, who has spent much of her professional life treating violent offenders in prison.

Dr. Lee spoke of her concerns about Trump in The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump back in 2017 and was censured by the American Psychiatric Association for violating the Goldwater Rule which cautions against diagnosis of public figures that a given professional has not personally examined.

Below is an excerpt from Kendall's article:

'Since 1900, every time a Republican president has taken over, economic inequality has increased and the country has become more violent,' says Gilligan, now a professor of psychiatry at NYU. And as the government safety net has crumbled in recent decades, rates of murder, imprisonment, and poverty have been five to 10 times higher in the United States than in Western Europe, Canada, and Australasia. Lee and Gilligan had to circulate their data-driven paper on the political correlates of violent death rates for nearly seven years before they finally got it published in 2014 in a specialized journal, Aggression and Violent Behavior. 'My sense is that our study kept getting rejected not because it was lousy science but because editors wanted to avoid appearing too political,' she says."

The excerpt above includes a statement from another person who has worked with Dr. Lee's. The article in Mother Jones notes that the book, The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump, which is a compilation of papers written by numerous mental health professionals, was a best seller.
May 10, 2022

The mind of some Trumpers. . .

Saw this on a different site. The story wasn't even political but the first post in this little screen capture was, of course, appalling.

So, to this person's way of thinking, not voting for a sitting president, (or is it just her preferred president?) is, in itself, an act of treason? No wonder the January 6 storming of the Capital doesn't register as a criminal act.

I realize that I am preaching to the choir here, but if it is treason to vote for a candidate other than the one who is already in office, then why the fuck do we have elections anyway?

May 9, 2022

In the "Laugh Through the Pain (and Rage)" category. . .

This Onion headline captures not one, but two oppression tropes.

Police Officer Plants Aborted Fetus on Black Suspect

May 7, 2022

The Idea Of Leaving Abortion Rights "Up to the States". . .

. . . Isn't just gas lighting bullshit, it's the antitheist of the American identity.

It's one thing for a state to decide that undercoating has to be included in the features of a newly sold car in, say, Michigan, while California might pass a law requiring dealerships to let buyers opt out of that feature. Those states have different climates that impact people's lives and material goods in specific ways. Similarly, building codes and fireworks availability can vary from state-to-state because of differences in not only climate and terrain but also ease of access to public services like fire departments and the like.

There are times and circumstances when states should have the final say in the laws that serve their distinct populations. But not when it comes to the central rights afforded to the people. We already went through the insanity of thinking that human beings could be owned as property in some states across this country but not in others. We endured the stupidity of allowing some states to pretend that two people of the same sex could have a legal wedding somewhere else in the country but somehow not be married while in their particular state.

The notion that one state can not only ban abortions but somehow tell a person that they can't travel to another state to have a medical procedure that is legal in that other state is beyond ridiculous. Do Texas and Oklahoma et al OWN the women who live within their borders? Are they somehow allowed to tell people where and when they can move? Are they going to require pregnancy tests for breeding age women heading over the state line for job interviews?

Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness--which includes bodily autonomy--are the absolute bedrock of our founding principles as a nation. No state legislature can interfere with these rights and have any claim to be true to American principles. This is not a free country if people can have rights that disappear when traveling from one state to another.

May 5, 2022

When Amber speaks, I laugh. . . Or, I learn.

Obviously, posting this here at DU amounts to preaching to the choir. It is still worth watching, however, because it can help White allies to clarify their thinking on the subject and strengthen anyone's talking points when discussing this issue.

I had a former housemate, (not my choice), who responded to the BLM protests after George Floyd's death by declaring, "Seems to me, if you keep your mouth shut and do what you're told, you won't have any problems." Talk of politics is strongly discouraged by the homeowners here, which may have been for the best. I was sick with rage at his statement, and had to leave the room. And this was before I listened to Amber Ruffin's run of stories about her personal experiences with the police on Late Night with Seth Meyers.

One time, he was trying to make innocuous conversation and I couldn't hold it in any more when he asked if something was bothering me. "You know that I don't like you!" I blurted. Not my finest hour, but I was trying to give him credit for having enough intelligence to realize that his conversation attempts were pointless and couldn't we just nod to each other in passing? While trying to make that point, he went ahead and addressed me as a "Fucking Pig Cunt" several times, with a little addendum each time. "Fucking Pig Cunt, nobody likes you!" "Fucking Pig Cunt, you don't know anything!" Honestly, his lack of variation in expletives became boring.

Naturally, this exchange raised my blood pressure, but it honestly didn't make me as angry as his other statements on police treatment of Black people, illegal immigrants and rape. ( He told this joke three times: "I'm thinking of suing the Catholic Church. I was never molested--now I don't feel pretty." )

Happily, this person no longer lives in the house where I rent. Now, you may be wondering why I am writing out this lengthy essay in a post that begins with an excellent video discussing the critical issue of police brutality towards Blacks. Typical White woman--making it about her, would not be an unreasonable thought. Well, the video above forces me to think about awful things that happen in the world which deepens my depression. Sometimes I can cope by viewing other online content that is cute or funny.

Or, sometimes, I revisit things that upset me greatly and that I got through in some way. It's a method of processing ugly reality that makes me feel a little bit less powerless. There is so much sheer awfulness going on everywhere right now that threatens to send me down the rabbit hole of thought that has led me to be hospitalized twice. It may be the world's weirdest coping mechanism, but letting myself disappear down a slightly less dangerous rabbit hole seems to help.

Of course, I hope this video offers valuable food for thought. With any luck, my ramblings may also help someone to process some of their own pain.
April 26, 2022

Why ARE we still talking about Trump anyway?

I was reading the comments attached to a story about TFG over at Huffpost. Most were in acknowledgment of the many flaws and issues running through the man's psychology like marbling through an expensive cut of meat.

One bad-faith comment asked why we on the Left are still discussing the guy, suggesting that we are the ones with the problem and that got me to thinking-- in analogies and metaphors as I tend to do.

First, we are still thinking and studying the phenomenon that is the Trump himself because he is like an asteroid whose orbit could swing back around and create damage again. Second, that first pass of the asteroid left behind plenty of destruction and we are very much in repair mode.

Setting aside the analogy, Trump was a trauma that we are all still processing. So, we talk about it in order to heal, express our anger and figure out a strategy for moving forward.

Swinging back into analogy, during the Trump years, we were the unwilling subjects of a religious cult that forced us into an arranged marriage with a husband who sucked. We ended the marriage, but our ex is still hanging around on the periphery, and that cult still has a nearly controlling interest on many of the businesses and government services in the town where we still live. This complicates any forward-thinking strategies, frankly.

Stepping outside analogy again, that word, "trauma" really spoke to me--not just as someone who despises the Trump-mind set--but as someone who is bewildered by the people who continue to support the man. All kidding aside, I think many of his rank and file followers are also dealing with trauma in the lives. Trump is the drug-habit, the excessive alcohol use, the acting-out-with-flailing-fists that some people use to numb the pain of their existence without ever really having to feel the pain and face the bitter truth of their helplessness in the face of trauma.

Many will say that we don't owe the Trumpists any sympathy or understanding. I still insist that attempts at understanding are to our benefit, because they help us to process our own trauma. I am NOT saying that we should allow these people to dictate social mores or cause further damage to our democracy. But just writing them off as "evil" is counterproductive. Many of them are not evil, but they are damaged. . . Of course, a lot of them are neither evil or damaged but just painfully stupid, and my analogies (and alas, my compassion) just aren't up to the task of explaining any further.

But hey, writing this just helped me process a little of my own PTTS (Post Trump Traumatic Stress), so even if my analogies are imperfect and my metaphors are mixed and my compassion has limits, I'm still trying, and that's something.

Profile Information

Gender: Female
Hometown: Bawlmer, Murlind
Home country: United States
Current location: Trump Household
Member since: Wed Dec 6, 2017, 11:45 PM
Number of posts: 1,643

About Collimator

I love logic and respect feelings. My aspiration here is to engage in reasoned discourse. I believe that Truth Leaks. It may take the time span of a Grand Canyon to wear away at human deceit and denial, but truth always carves its own path.
Latest Discussions»Collimator's Journal