STACIANN CHIN

staceyannchinI can’t stop shaking. I can’t stop saying, “Stop killing us.” Muttering it from room to room. Stop making our death less visible than the death of others. Dead is dead. Gone is gone. Sorrow is sorrow. I can’t make sense of myself. Cannot access my own sense of self. All I see is this shaking. This rage. This unfathomable sorrow. Stop targeting Black bodies. Stop killing us. Please stop killing us. Stop muting our cry for justice. I am shaking. Listening to all these white news anchors. These entitled White men. Telling a story in which they are complicit. More and more and more white men. A sea of White men mouthing our tragedy. Where is Melissa Harris-Perry.? Where is Angela Davis? Where is Alice Walker. Mutabaruka? @Keorapetse Kgositsile? Get these white men off my fucking screen. White men. Talking about our sorrow. You cannot speak for us. You, who can barely speak in your sorrow for the slain police officers, but can speak at length with no empathy for the Black men killed by murderous cops. You cannot speak for those killed at the hands of police officers that run free. Without a lateral empathy, you cannot speak for people who look anything like me. I’m so angry. So sad. So sad. Sometimes anger and sadness is all you have. I am desperately trying to articulate it. Everything I write seems incoherent. Feels incomplete. The deaths of these two men whose murders we witnessed on video yesterday have completely disappeared from the conversation. It doesn’t have to be this way. There is room for all of it. Every time white people die, Black death is forgotten. Every time a police officer is killed, Black civilian deaths are erased. The very reason this young man, 25 years old, took up a gun is informed by this kind of one-sided coverage. This one-sided coverage is why we are so torn between mourning those men killed in the line of duty, and those who are killed by those duty bound to protect us. I cannot stop shaking/waffling between anger and a sadness I know it will take us decades to shake. The stories you tell are like bullets. Stop aiming them at us. Stop killing us. Stop killing what we have left of our already marginalized stories.

DONATE TO BETTY

betty soskin
On the night of Monday, June 30, an intruder attacked NPS Ranger Betty Soskin in her home in Richmond and stole many of her possessions. We are all deeply saddened by these events, but relieved to report that she is recovering well and resting.

Please consider making a contribution to Betty’s Fund, and directing others who want to help to https://donatenow.networkforgood.org/rangerbettysoskin. All funds raised beyond immediate needs will be used, as Betty has asked, to complete a film in progress that contains vital documentary information about Betty’s life and impact. This is the legacy that she wants to continue passing on to younger generations, and a remarkable testimonial to her strength of spirit.

Checks can be mailed to Rosie the Riveter Trust, PO Box 71126, Richmond CA 94807 and should be ear-marked Betty Fund.

Cards for Betty should be mailed to the Rosie the Riveter Visitor Center:

Rosie the Riveter/WWII Home Front National Historical Park Visitor Center
Attn: Betty Reid Soskin
1414 Harbour Way South, Suite 3000 (Oil House)
Richmond, CA 94804

UGH

Brexit, Lies and America,
by Andrew Tobias,
June 24, 2016

First of all: ugh.

You have to love this headline: The British Are Frantically Googling What The E.U. Is, Hours After Voting To Leave It.

So maybe, once they see what they’ve done, there will be another, better informed referendum, overturning the first.

But maybe not.

So . . . ugh.

As a 27-year-old British friend texted this morning (bleeped to protect your sensibilities):

“I’m livid. The vote was carried by a load of baby boomers who are secure in their pensions and it doesn’t really matter a flying f— to, other than they want to regain nostalgic feelings of 50-year-ago Briton viewed thru rose-tinted backwards looking spectacles.

“There were so little facts in this referendum, it’s invalid. Democracy only works if the electorate can make an informed decision on their best interests based on the facts. If they’re fed a load of crap and vote as a result, it’s not democracy, it’s fraud!

“Never again will I hold a slightly smug sense of superiority when we talk about American partisan politics. Turns out we’re all f –d. Led by the lowest common denominator and peddled to with misinformation and barefaced lies and controlled by an unaccountable media.

“I think I’ve aged a decade this morning and firmly arrived as a grumpy, cynical man.

“I watched a “leave” voter on the BBC this morning say she thought it was outrageous that Scotland were calling for another independence referendum and that this was a time for unity!!”

Turning to America, Texas Governor George W. Bush proclaimed, preposterously, that “by far the vast majority” of his proposed tax cuts would go to people “at the bottom of the economic ladder” and promised “a humble foreign policy” even as he was planning to invade Iraq. It’s hard to overstate how much harm his presidency did. But the second time, he even got a majority of the vote — with 70% of his voters believing, erroneously, that Iraq had played a role in the 9/11 attack.

And now Trump is promising ridiculous things — he’s going to bring millions of $1-an-hour jobs back from China? And somehow make their employers pay a good wage even though he opposes the minimum wage? And force consumers around the world to buy products made here with $20-an-hour labor instead of the same products made in China with $1-an-hour labor? Even though, as a businessman, he sources his own products from overseas? And this is all just going to magically happen because he’ll bring back torture and defeat ISIS in a matter of weeks and is the king of debt and will build a beautiful wall?

Trump’s main focus will be destroying his opponent. He will say anything that pops into his head — or even say outrageous things in prepared remarks. (E.g., she was “sleeping” during the Benghazi crisis. Challenged for proof, he explained to NBC News’ Lester Holt that she might have been sleeping — “how do you know she wasn’t?” — and that was, to his mind, basis enough for the charge.)

Andrew Tobias

middle fingers up

Sorry, I ain’t sorry
Sorry, I ain’t sorry
I ain’t sorry, nigga, nah
Sorry, I ain’t sorry
Sorry, I ain’t sorry
I ain’t sorry

He trying to roll me up, I ain’t picking up
Headed to the club, I ain’t thinking ’bout you
Me and my ladies sip my D’ussé cup
I don’t give a fuck, chucking my deuces up
Suck on my balls, pause, I had enough
I ain’t thinking ’bout you
I ain’t thinking ’bout

Middle fingers up, put them hands high
Wave it in his face, tell him, boy, bye
Tell him, boy, bye, middle fingers up
I ain’t thinking ’bout you

Sorry, I ain’t sorry
Sorry, I ain’t sorry
I ain’t sorry, nigga, nah
I ain’t thinking ’bout you
Sorry, I ain’t sorry
Sorry, I ain’t sorry
No no, hell nah

Now you want to say you’re sorry
Now you want to call me crying
Now you gotta see me wilding
Now I’m the one that’s lying
And I don’t feel bad about it
It’s exactly what you get
Stop interrupting my grinding
(You interrupting my grinding)
I ain’t thinking ’bout you

Sorry, I ain’t sorry
I ain’t thinking ’bout you
I ain’t thinking ’bout you
Sorry, I ain’t sorry
I ain’t thinking ’bout you
I ain’t thinking ’bout you

Middle fingers up, put them hands high
Wave it in his face, tell him, boy, bye
Tell him, boy, bye, boy, bye
Middle fingers up, I ain’t thinking ’bout you

Sorry, I ain’t sorry
Sorry, I ain’t sorry
I ain’t sorry, nigga, nah
Sorry, I ain’t sorry
Sorry, I ain’t sorry
I ain’t sorry
No no, hell nah

Looking at my watch, he shoulda been home
Today I regret the night I put that ring on
He always got them fucking excuses
I pray to the Lord you reveal what his truth is
I left a note in the hallway
By the time you read it, I’ll be far away
I’m far away
But I ain’t fucking with nobody
Let’s have a toast to the good life
Suicide before you see this tear fall down my eyes
Me and my baby, we gon’ be alright
We gon’ live a good life
Big homie better grow up
Me and my whoadies ’bout to stroll up
I see them boppers in the corner
They sneaking out the back door
He only want me when I’m not there
He better call Becky with the good hair
He better call Becky with the good hair

ken burns at STANFORD

For 216 years, our elections, though bitterly contested, have featured the philosophies and character of candidates who were clearly qualified. That is not the case this year. One is glaringly not qualified. So before you do anything with your well-earned degree, you must do everything you can to defeat the retrograde forces that have invaded our democratic process, divided our house, to fight against, no matter your political persuasion, the dictatorial tendencies of the candidate with zero experience in the much maligned but subtle art of governance; who is against lots of things, but doesn’t seem to be for anything, offering only bombastic and contradictory promises, and terrifying Orwellian statements; a person who easily lies, creating an environment where the truth doesn’t seem to matter; who has never demonstrated any interest in anyone or anything but himself and his own enrichment; who insults veterans, threatens a free press, mocks the handicapped, denigrates women, immigrants and all Muslims; a man who took more than a day to remember to disavow a supporter who advocates white supremacy and the Ku Klux Klan; an infantile, bullying man who, depending on his mood, is willing to discard old and established alliances, treaties and long-standing relationships. I feel genuine sorrow for the understandably scared and—they feel—powerless people who have flocked to his campaign in the mistaken belief that—as often happens on TV—a wand can be waved and every complicated problem can be solved with the simplest of solutions. They can’t. It is a political Ponzi scheme. And asking this man to assume the highest office in the land would be like asking a newly minted car driver to fly a 747.
As a student of history, I recognize this type. He emerges everywhere and in all eras. We see nurtured in his campaign an incipient Proto-fascism, a nativist anti-immigrant Know Nothing-ism, a disrespect for the judiciary, the prospect of women losing authority over their own bodies, African Americans again asked to go to the back of the line, voter suppression gleefully promoted, jingoistic saber rattling, a total lack of historical awareness, a political paranoia that, predictably, points fingers, always making the other wrong. These are all virulent strains that have at times infected us in the past. But they now loom in front of us again—all happening at once. We know from our history books that these are the diseases of ancient and now fallen empires. The sense of commonwealth, of shared sacrifice, of trust, so much a part of American life, is eroding fast, spurred along and amplified by an amoral Internet that permits a lie to circle the globe three times before the truth can get started.
We no longer have the luxury of neutrality or “balance,” or even of bemused disdain. Many of our media institutions have largely failed to expose this charlatan, torn between a nagging responsibility to good journalism and the big ratings a media circus always delivers. In fact, they have given him the abundant airtime he so desperately craves, so much so that it has actually worn down our natural human revulsion to this kind of behavior. Hey, he’s rich; he must be doing something right. He is not. Edward R. Murrow would have exposed this naked emperor months ago. He is an insult to our history. Do not be deceived by his momentary “good behavior.” It is only a spoiled, misbehaving child hoping somehow to still have dessert.
And do not think that the tragedy in Orlando underscores his points. It does not. We must “disenthrall ourselves,” as Abraham Lincoln said, from the culture of violence and guns. And then “we shall save our country.”
This is not a liberal or conservative issue, a red state, blue state divide. This is an American issue. Many honorable people, including the last two Republican presidents, members of the party of Abraham Lincoln, have declined to support him. And I implore those “Vichy Republicans” who have endorsed him to please, please reconsider. We must remain committed to the kindness and community that are the hallmarks of civilization and reject the troubling, unfiltered Tourettes of his tribalism.
The next few months of your “commencement,” that is to say, your future, will be critical to the survival of our Republic. “The occasion is piled high with difficulty.” Let us pledge here today that we will not let this happen to the exquisite, yet deeply flawed, land we all love and cherish—and hope to leave intact to our posterity. Let us “nobly save,” not “meanly lose, the last best hope of earth.”