Okay, fellow white people. We need to talk.
Let me tell you a story: I was an angry punk teenager. Not violent, but I did a shitton of trespassing, and I got into a lot of screaming matches with cops.
I have never been arrested.
I have never been violently attacked by police. Hell, I have never been seriously threatened by police.
I am fully aware that I’ve survived to adulthood largely on the benefits of my race.
When you are white in America, you get away with all sorts of shit. Have you read this account from a white dude who actively tried to get himself arrested? You should. It’s telling.
So, if that’s your main frame of reference for dealing with law enforcement, it is really easy to assume that when someone else gets targeted by the police, they must have done something really bad. After all, you know the police aren’t that petty, right? They’re there to help: That’s what TV tells you, what your teachers told you, what your parents told you. “If you’re in trouble, find a police officer. They’ll help.” And, y’know, if you’re white, most of the time, that’s probably true.
When you’re white in America, it is awfully easy to pretend that you don’t live in a country where the nonviolent physical presence of black people, especially black men, is considered sufficient threat to justify use of lethal force. It’s really easy to pretend that laws are enforced equally; that arrest rate has any demographic resemblance to actual crime rates; that the police are there to protect us from the bad guys.
And, I mean, I get that. It’s a lot more comfortable to pretend that safety correlates to virtue than to confront the ugly truth that a system that benefits you very directly does so at the cost of other people’s lives; that what you were taught was the just reward for being a good person is, in fact, the privilege of your skin. That’s a big part of why we work so hard to retcon narratives about how the black people our police murder must have been dangerous, highlight every casual infraction like it’s a killing spree. We are so desperate to believe that the system that feeds us is just.
It doesn’t feel good to acknowledge that stuff. It feels gross. A system we trusted—one we should be able to trust, that should work for the benefit and protection of everyone has made us accomplice to some deeply horrifying shit.
But here’s the thing:
This happened. This is happening. Not recognizing it; stonewalling and insulating ourselves in our little bubbles does not make it go away.
And not acknowledging it, not having asked for it, does not make us any less complicit, or any less responsible for owning and fixing this. We are actively benefitting from a fucked, corrupt, murderous system. That is on us. As it should be.
So educate yourself, get the tools, and start dismantling this fucker. You have the time: after all, no one’s shooting at your kids.
Privilege is the bandwidth to speak up and dismantle because you’re not in fear for your life. And there is no conscionable excuse for failing to use it.
My friend Rachel says smart things.
cat cat cat cat cat cat cat cat cat
this cat lives in a show horse barn which is why it walks and runs that way
THIS CAT THINKS ITS A HORSE
BLOOD FOR THE BLOOD GOD
SKULLS FOR THE SKULL THRONE
this is the most intense photo i’ve ever seen
"birth control violates religious beliefs" yea ok but remember that thing called the separation of church and state
The Black Power Mixtape 1967-1975 (2011), Göran Hugo Olsson
You heard it right folks, the FBI considered free breakfasts for poor children to be the most dangerous internal threat to the country. Literally the kind of thing Jesus would do was the most dangerous threat to the country.
If whats happening in Ferguson was happening to an all white community, it would be called a dystopian novel
#and all actions against the police would be heroic and daring#and the plucky white protags would be encouraged to use violence to stop the injustice
Suddenly strong language and cuddling are ‘controversial.’
Movie ratings are often ridiculous, but this year the MPAA might have gone too far. Love Is Strange, a quiet story about an elderly gay couple who face homelessness, received an R rating. Understandable, if clothed cuddling, conversations between family members and Cheyenne Jackson count as controversial movie content.
The sad reality is that the rating reeks of a reluctance to consider homosexuality as an uncontroversial, everyday fact.
In Love Is Strange, nobody is naked and nobody has sex on camera. There is no blood or physical violence. There is swearing, yes; maybe half a dozen instances and nothing particularly strong. The great-nephew of John Lithgow’s character tells him to “fuck off,” and other curses are interspersed in the dialogue once or twice. That’s it. In comparison, the weekend’s other movie that drew an R rating was Sin City 2: A Dame to Kill For — a film filled with bloodlust, nudity and shlocky misogyny. The real question: How are both of these films rated R?
The official answer to that question can be found on the MPAA website, which classifies an R-rated film as one that:
Contains some adult material. Parents are urged to learn more about the film before taking their young children with them.
Note that the action movie The Expendables 3, bloody and destructive as it is, only warranted a PG-13 rating. The Hunger Games, full of bloody child-on-child murders, is a PG-13. Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy, full of dour cityscapes, rampant crime and psychopathic terrorists, was also only a PG-13. Apparently rampant violence is not enough for parental accompaniment. One has to wonder if the MPAA found something other than a rogue F-word objectionable for young people about Love Is Strange. The quick answer, and the conclusion to which many people are jumping, is the presence of homosexual couples as main characters.
Many other movies that have featured gay couples have also been rated R. The Kids Are All Right, a pretty tame, charming movie with one sex scene, was rated R. The Birdcage, starring Nathan Lane and Robin Williams as an older gay couple, was also rated R. Velvet Goldmine, My Beautiful Laundrette, Brokeback Mountain, My Summer Of Love and Milk, all movies with gay relationships, also all received R ratings. While some of them may have deserved the rating for other content, there seems to be a consistent theme across gay-centric movies the MPAA rates. Something about them seems to merit an R rating, which usually accompanies far more violent, racy pictures than Love Is Strange.
J. Bryan Lowder points out in a recent Slate piece that Love Is Strange shows a beautiful, happy marriage and a hopeful future for young gay men: “It offers a vision of a gay romantic future that, while beset with a specific struggle, is also full of love, as well as a sense of community and history — older, happy gay people exist! […]for the straight kids, the film can reinforce the dignity of gays and their relationships in a way that abstract lectures never could.”
The Wrap compared this outrage to previous examples of nervous ratings for gay movies. Last year director Darren Stein posted to Facebook that his gay-centric movie G.B.F. had received an R rating which he couldn’t understand: “Perhaps the ratings box should more accurately read ‘For Homosexual References’ or ‘Too Many Scenes of Gay Teens Kissing.’ I look forward to a world where queer teens can express their humor and desire in a sweet, fun teen film that doesn’t get tagged with a cautionary R.”
“Love Is Strange” Rated R for language. #LoveIsStrange— FilmRatings.com (@FilmRatings) August 19, 2014
A spokesman for the MPAA asserted that profane language was the sole reason for the R rating. But according to a Huffington Post piece on the proliferation of F-bombs in modern cinema, usages of the word that are contextually appropriate or inconspicuous are allowed under MPAA rulings. Having seen the film, I can barely remember where the profanity was anything more than that.
Great examples of LGBT characters in family-friendly projects have already made their way onto screens: Mitch in ParaNorman, who admits to having a boyfriend; the gay parents who appeared on Disney TV show Good Luck Charlie; the married lesbian couple Madame Vastra and Jenny in Doctor Who. Shows like Girls and Looking on HBO also provide teen audiences with gay male characters who show how multifaceted and varied gay men can be. But there is always more to be done, and a rating like this is a step backwards.
By including LGBT characters in the wider media landscape of the world, children and teenagers are exposed to a version of the world that contains a wide variety of sexual orientations. There’s no reason for parental accompaniment to a quiet film about an older couple.
Source: David Levesley for Mic