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Collimator's Journal
Collimator's Journal
June 20, 2020

Black Father Gives Son The Talk About Holding Literally Any Object

An oldie re-featured by The Onion because it is so f^cking timely.
Years ago, reading about the unique "Talk" that black parents have to give their sons as they start driving really drove home some points for me.

My brothers got in trouble a lot. In a couple of instances, it could even be argued that the police had it out for them. But they were never brutalized and they made it through their "troubled teens" alive.

My parents did a pretty poor job in many ways, but serious, long-lasting consequences never derailed their sons' futures. I mention this not to knock my parents (They had their own issues and I now accept that they did the best that they could.) but to refute all those arm-chair sociologists who intone the platitude "If black parents just did their jobs. . ."

I remember reading coded versions of that in articles praising certain black people who had accomplished remarkable things. The idea is that if the parent of [insert name of famous black athlete, entertainer, professional] could keep their kid out of trouble and help them to achieve some special goal, why are there so many young black people doing poorly in school, stuck in poverty or in jail?

Nobody ever asks why more white parents' kids aren't excelling to a remarkable degree. Tolerance for mediocrity is one of the unchallenged realities of white privilege.

June 20, 2020

This is either an expensive toy or. . .

. . . a very cheap kitchen.

Thought that I would post it here for those who are into the trend of "Fairy Houses". This is a way to step up the game. Perhaps one could find an out of the way corner of one's own kitchen to hang this unit of the wall so that the fairies could enjoy modern conveniences.

From miniatures.com- 1/24 " scale.

June 13, 2020

"You can only be one of two things ― a credit to the race or a disgrace to the race.'"

This is a quote from an article posted over at Huff Post. I am including the link address here for those who wish to reference it.

Full disclosure: I haven't even read it yet. And here I am critiquing it based on that one quote. . .Actually, what I am critiquing is the reality behind the idea expressed in that one quote.

Definitions and explanations of white privilege abound these days and mine goes like this. How often are white people and their actions examined as to whether they are a credit or disgrace to "the race"?"

White people are treated like human beings and individuals--in most situations. I am not going to pretend that I don't believe that there are specific instances where other people of different backgrounds haven't done "a lump job" and ascribed an attitude or action to a white person just because they were white. People--and I do mean all people-- are often not very observant and quick to judge. There is a growing collection of studies on the diminishing value of "eyewitness accounts" in legal cases and other areas of life. (Thank goodness for cell phone cameras.)

It has been my experience that people in general--and some angry, narrow-minded white people that I know in particular--cannot take the broad or liberal view when it comes to anyone outside their core group.

A few years ago, the video clip of beheading by some extremists of the Muslim variety was the big news of the day. A family member who watched a lot of Fox news but never went to church and happened to be "living in sin" declared loudly to me that "Christianity is under attack in this country."

I sighed and told him that was not so. His comeback--after a few other heated statements on both sides--was that I wouldn't be saying that when some Muslim took my head off with a sword. (This comment was enriched with the addition of a broad swinging arm movement with an imaginary sword in hand.)

This family member has probably never had any real conversation with an actual Muslim. This family member was also ignoring the latest news stories about the recent mass shooting by a white guy at a random public location. I wanted to point out that I was more likely to be killed at the Walmart up the road than a robe-swathed Muslim carrying a scimitar, but this family member had stronger lungs and the ability to throw my virtually penniless self out on the streets at the time, so I didn't.

Whoops, this is beginning to be about me, but I can turn this thing around. This family member person is obviously a member of the same race and I am and yet we are very different people. Depending on whether you agree with my point of view or not, I could be either a credit or a disgrace to my race. But nobody talks about me like that.

Black people should be able to be as stupid and obstinate and uninformed and a host of other traits that I would attribute to TFM, (aka "This Family Member), without creating a major problem for the black people who are not stupid or obstinate or uninformed.

Nobody should have to go around feeling as though the moment they are anything less than perfect then they are letting down everyone else who looks like them. And they definitely shouldn't have to worry about the police being called on them and possibly being killed by those police when they are out and about doing ordinary things.

Years ago, I read a comment by some white news personality about a young black woman whose accomplishments were in the news. "She's a credit to her race", he said, "the Human Race."

That is how it should be, of course, but it is not. White privilege is about being an insufferable asshole and being called--at worse--an insufferable asshole. The list of consequences for a black person acting the same way varies considerably. The consequences for black people doing pretty much anything are always more serious.

I had enough stress living in a house where I had to keep my mouth shut and was judged intensely for the smallest slip-up or miscalculation in behavior. I cannot imagine what it is like to live in a world where the power structure at large is ready to pounce on anything that you do or say and make your life miserable--or take it away entirely.

"Black Live Matter"doesn't mean that your life doesn't matter, TFM. It means that you survived your encounters with the police when you did dumb stuff as a kid because the cops already knew that your life mattered. But apparently, they have to be reminded of that fact when they encounter an equally stupid black kid, or even an innocuous black person of any kind doing pretty much any kind of anything.

Shit. I'm getting mad just thinking about it--and I'm not black. And if a black person expresses their anger, they shouldn't have to worry about frightening "the white folk" and making their whole group look scary.

June 10, 2020

Statue of Slave Trader Taken Down In England. Some Object.

This version of the story is from Bored Panda.

The street artist Banksy proposed an innovative solution to what could be done with the empty plinth formerly occupied by a statue of a slave trader known as Edward Colston.

Some people disagreed with his idea, as well as the actions of the crowd in removing the statue in the first place. Well, people will disagree, and everyone is entitled to an opinion, one supposes.

This comment included below the story took the cake, in my own opinion.

"anne.302 That makes you as bad!"

Sorry, anne.302*, but pulling down a statue isn't quite as bad a thing as making a profit off of selling thousands of human beings into bondage where they would regularly be beaten and raped. But hey, that's just me. You probably think that I'm as bad as the statue topplers and slave traders. Actually, I think of myself as more of a Genghis Khan type person.

*Are there actually 301 more like you? I may need to re-adjust some travel plans in the future.

June 9, 2020

People weigh in on statue's tumble into the water.

This is a fun offering from Bored Panda.

It seems a certain suspicious-looking fellow had to be dealt with for the sake of public safety.

June 4, 2020

Come, come, my conservative friend,

and wipe the dew off your spectacles, and see that the world is moving.

This is a great quote by Elizabeth Cady Stanton.

And yes, I know that Stanton said a heartbreakingly racist thing to one of her abolitionst allies.

The statement above is vague because I don't know for certain if it was Stanton or someone else in the suffragist movement, and I don't remember the name of the person to whom she spoke. I just remember hearing about it somewhere. If anyone wants to fact check me, I am open.

I still like the quote.

June 4, 2020

"You cannot love your fellow man if you don't love God."

So says Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick according to this Huff Post piece.

"You cannot love your fellow man if you don’t love God,” he said. “And we have a country where we’ve been working really hard, particularly on the left, to kick God out.”

As Mike Myers' character on "Coffee Talk" used to say: "Discuss among yourselves."

I am a little too upset to talk right now.

June 3, 2020

Amber Ruffin has been sharing stories. . .

about her encounters with police. Ruffin is a writer for Seth Meyers' show and the last two nights her personal accounts have sort of acted as the "openers" of Late Night.

Her story last night was about running afoul of a police officer for skipping down the alley behind a police station.

If you have never seen Amber Ruffin, I can tell you--she is flat out adorable. She has a smile a mile wide and and as bright as the sun. If a person like her can somehow infuriate a police officer just by skipping while black, then you know that some cops are just dangerous weapons stuffed into a blue shirt and pants.

I want to thank Amber for sharing some of her difficult experiences. And I want to thank her for being bright, charming and clever as hell. Every time she shows up on Late Night, my happiness increases.

June 2, 2020

Sort of wish that I could join them.

Like this guy's sense of humor:

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: 1,664

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.
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