Just a few things to note.
Across the street from me, the Macy’s is being renovated. The pace of change in the whole neighborhood is crazy, but the interior of the Macy’s is getting changed, they are tearing out and rebuilding the floors above the store, the parking garage catty-corner is getting torn down- it’s a lot.
And it’s loud. SO LOUD. The folks running the projects were doing demolition all through the night.
I’m on the board of our building so people asked me how to get this to stop. I had no clue. I just told them to call 311, report the noise repeatedly and lets see if our combined hectoring led to anything. Eventually, we posted a sample of text for folks to make it easier – they didn’t have to figure out what’s important to say, just read what we posted. Of course, I didn’t have much hope because who’s going to listen to some folks like us when there’s a big developer behind the renovation?
I was wrong. We got their night permit suspended. One of the reasons cited was the volume of calls from our building.
Our voices mattered.
Just like they did when we rejected the initial proposal for Ryan/TrumpCare. And they will keep mattering. This is good, but it is also a responsibility. I grew up with a lot of cynicism about participation in the political system – lots of folks in my generation figured the game is rigged. So why play?
The game might be rigged, but you’re definitely fucked if you don’t play. If you fight you get some wins. That matters.
So now I’m more committed to doing my bit. I can’t do it all, but I can make some calls each day at lunch with 5calls.org. I can join in and support groups like Tech Solidarity. I can donate cash to campaigns that need it. I can phone bank. I can text Resist Bot and send short messages to my government representatives. It’s NEVER been easier to have some effect.
And your voice and actions matter too, friend. It’s time to make yourself a schedule or an appointment of small sustainable things you can do every day. Please take 10 minutes today to think about what matters to you and come up with a small, easy to keep up with plan. Call me if you need any support. Please tell me about what you decided! Sharing your experience helps keep you energized! I will talk through it with you!
From his concert the night before the inauguration.
Who watches the watchmen?
The Justice Department and FBI have formally acknowledged that nearly every examiner in an elite FBI forensic unit gave flawed testimony in almost all trials in which they offered evidence against criminal defendants over more than a two-decade period before 2000.
The cases include those of 32 defendants sentenced to death. Of those, 14 have been executed or died in prison, the groups said under an agreement with the government to release results after the review of the first 200 convictions.
Source: FBI admits flaws in hair analysis over decades – The Washington Post
It happened before 2000. There was other evidence in those cases. But still – false testimony from these high levels over decades happened.
It should shake you.
What is preventing us from reading a similar headline in ten more years? How could we make sure this lab has an incentive to tell the truth rather than to ally with their colleagues?
Ten Things I Want My Children To Learn From 9/11 via Popehat.
The headings are good, but the explanations are better. Good to read or re-read on this day.
- Ordinary People Are Capable Of Extraordinary Things.
- Evil Exists.
- Good Exists.
- It’s Best To Define Yourself By Your Reaction To Events, Not By The Events Themselves.
- A Thing Is Not the Same As Our Reaction To A Thing.
- Beware of How People Use Great And Terrible Things And Events.
- Fear, Anger, and Apathy Are Perilous.
- Understanding Is Not The Same As Justifying.
- People Are Not Abstractions.“Each person who died on 9/11 represented an entire world ending.”
- There is Nothing New Under the Sun.
I read this story of a pot and a spoon that get impounded as evidence and a woman’s struggle with the state to get them back – and it was wonderful. I’m printing a copy for MAXIMUM LAZER.
Pot and Spoon, a true tale of Occupy Wall Street by Jerry Goralnick and illustrated by Ruthie Rosenfeld is available for free download on their site.
Pot and Spoon tells the tale of Madeline, a young woman who brought her pot and spoon to the OWS protests and had them confiscated by the Police. As Madeline tries to get them back we learn about flaws in the system, unhelpful public employees and police over reach. Pot and Spoon, locked up in an evidence holding warehouse, have a great conversation about social structure and the types of change the Occupy movement hopes to engender.
via Boing Boing .
I’m always proud of my SC to BK buddy Tracey, but she’s doing extra special work and it’s getting noticed.
“It’s hard to believe young girls like Tiana Parker and Vanessa Van Dyke are being sent home from school because their natural hair is deemed unkempt,” said Tracey Coleman who is a co-founder and the director of events for CGC.
via [BEAUTIFULLY BROWN OBSESSED] Curly Girl Collective Helps Black Girls Get “All Dolled Up” – EBONY.
I remember when Egypt elected the Muslim Brotherhood to power. Many Americans were very unhappy, they had been hoping for a more liberal government. Some advocated intervention to keep the Muslim Brotherhood out of power.
Right now, Egyptians are tossing Mosri out of power. If Americans had intervened, we would see a reaction against that. You have to respect the autonomy of a democratic process to let people find their own way.
A young woman conducted an unauthorized science experiment with an unfortunate result. At school early, before morning bell, she was in the lab and mixed some common household chemicals in a bottle. There was a small explosion that injured no one.
She has been expelled and is being charged with a felony.
I am Kiera Wilmot. I was enthusiastic and bored in high school. I did unauthorized experiments, some of them very very stupid. I was well known as a smart person who did very very stupid things in high school.
I was not expelled or arrested, I was given guidance and understanding and was often yelled at for doing stupid dangerous things. The authorities at my school did not screw up my life by putting a felony on my record or kicking me out of school. I stand with Kiera and other troublemakers.
As a former troublemaker and soon to be parent of a future troublemaker I am very worried about the zero tolerance policies at our schools. They are crazy and would leave me a drain on society instead of a productive taxpayer.