I can’t find the words to say how upsetting I find the American election.
I’ve yet to read anything that explains better the cognitive dissonance about this election. What appears to be the absence of reason. An explanation for how we got here, when a reality-TV Emmy-loser can calmly state in a presidential debate that he might not accept the results of the election (side note – why then is he running?!). The article below, written after the RNC, is possibly the most powerful indictment of how a cultural shift made this possible.
In the humid dark of the plaza outside the event, a dozen young activists covered in sweat and glitter have got together an impromptu protest. Shell-shocked members of the press stumble out into the street. One journalist from a major mainstream outlet breaks down in tears.
“It’s just — there’s so much hate,” she says, as a couple of glitterpunks move in to comfort her. “What is happening to this country?”
What’s happening to this country has happened before, in other nations, in other anxious, violent times when all the old certainties peeled away and maniacs took the wheel. It’s what happens when weaponised insincerity is applied to structured ignorance. Donald Trump is the Gordon Gekko of the attention economy, but even he is no longer in control. This culture war is being run in bad faith by bad actors who are running way off-script, and it’s barely begun, and there are going to be a lot of refugees. – Laurie Penny, I’m With the Banned
This video unpacking why the “lockeroom talk” spin is deeply upsetting. Silver lining: Trevor Noah is finally coming into his own on the Daily Show.
Can we take a second to remember what sexual assault really is? Let’s revisit Brock Turner’s victim’s impact statement.
I was not only told that I was assaulted, I was told that because I couldn’t remember, I technically could not prove it was unwanted. And that distorted me, damaged me, almost broke me. It is the saddest type of confusion to be told I was assaulted and nearly raped, blatantly out in the open, but we don’t know if it counts as assault yet. I had to fight for an entire year to make it clear that there was something wrong with this situation.
If you are hoping that one of my organs will implode from anger and I will die, I’m almost there. You are very close. This is not a story of another drunk college hookup with poor decision making. Assault is not an accident. Somehow, you still don’t get it. Somehow, you still sound confused.
A life, one life, yours, you forgot about mine. Let me rephrase for you, I want to show people that one night of drinking can ruin two lives. You and me. You are the cause, I am the effect. You have dragged me through this hell with you, dipped me back into that night again and again. You knocked down both our towers, I collapsed at the same time you did. If you think I was spared, came out unscathed, that today I ride off into sunset, while you suffer the greatest blow, you are mistaken. Nobody wins. We have all been devastated, we have all been trying to find some meaning in all of this suffering. Your damage was concrete; stripped of titles, degrees, enrollment. My damage was internal, unseen, I carry it with me. You took away my worth, my privacy, my energy, my time, my safety, my intimacy, my confidence, my own voice, until today.
Yes. Yes, sexual assault and lockeroom talk.
I was at a 5a7 recently with a bunch of my girlfriends, most of whom have been practicing combat sports (kickboxing, muay thai, boxing) for years. All beautiful, professional, fierce women. The eldest surprised us by recounting how she had been assaulted by a male stranger the night before, on her way home from the gym. She’d sprained her thumb when he tackled her to the ground, lost her shoe during the struggle, and was banged up and bruised. She talked him out of his stated wish to rape and kill her. This triggered a group discussion amongst my friends, where one by one, we each traded our stories of the time we were assaulted by men. 5 of us. We all had stories. We all knew of other stories that the women in our lives, friends and family, had experienced.
I want to weep. As a woman, it is my burden that I instinctively recognize hatred directed towards my gender. My white privilege allowed me to be comfortably outraged until now, try laugh about the Wall, shaking my head at all those Mexican rapists and terrorizing Muslims. I was uncomfortably outraged when the Khan fiasco happened. But now? I feel personally attacked by Trump and all he represents.
And I am Canadian.