ASK Musings

No matter where you go, there you are.



February 2017



What I’m Reading – February 26, 2017

Written by , Posted in What I'm Reading

Today is the five year anniversary of Trayvon Martin’s murder. Please consider reading the book his parents have written: Rest in Power.

Fight Back

  • “Why had a man spent two days on a mission to tell the entire world that I was a journalism-destroying fascist? Because I deleted his comment on my personal Facebook page.
    If this shocks you, you are likely not a semi-prominent woman on the internet, because this happens, to greater or lesser severity, about once a week.” When A Woman Deletes A Man’s Comment Online (by Ijeoma Oluo for The Establishment)
  • “Speaking out in support of the trans, non-binary, and genderqueer community is comedian Rhea Butcher, who currently co-stars with her real-life wife Cameron Esposito in the Seeso series Take My Wife. Last night, Butcher took to Twitter to share some of her experiences, as a genderqueer-butch lesbian whose gender expression may not read as traditionally feminine.” In Support Of Trans Youth, Rhea Butcher Shares Story Of Her Bathroom Assault (by Kristy Puchko for Pajiba)
  • “When his comments about pedophilia/pederasty came to light, Simon & Schuster realized it would cost them more money to do business with Milo than he could earn for them. They did not finally “do the right thing” and now we know where their threshold, pun intended, lies. They were fine with his racist and xenophobic and sexist ideologies. They were fine with his transphobia, anti-Semitism and Islamophobia. They were fine with how he encourages his followers to harass women and people of color and transgender people online.” All I really need to say (by Roxane Gay)

Horrific Executive and Legislative Actions

  • “As the State Senate fact sheet on the bill states, the RICO statutes allow prosecutors to take options like forfeitures when people are convicted. The bill stipulates that an “overt act is not required as proof of a riot offense.” That means the planners of the protest could be charged because someone else committed an “overt act” that caused a riot. The bill also expands the definition of riot to include people causing damage to someone else’s property.” Plan a Protest, Lose Your House: Arizona Senate Passes SB 1142 Charging ‘Provocateurs’ With Racketeering (by Ray Stern for Phoenix New Times)
  • “Alcohol and tobacco, both legal drugs, have high annual death tolls. Pot has zero. Pot being a “gateway drug” is a catchphrase, not a fact. “Most people who try marijuana, don’t even continue smoking marijuana.” The reason the government made pot illegal had nothing to do with health risks. Instead, it was because of a budget-hungry bureaucrat, Federal Bureau of Narcotics commissioner Harry Anslinger, who ruthlessly created anti-weed propaganda that exploited a growing anti-Mexican sentiment.” Trump Has Found A New/Old Way To Target Minorities (by Kristy Puchko for Pajiba)
  • “Trump doesn’t have a clue about what goes on in Black communities. In his view, we are all utterly jobless; going to schools that are ill-equipped to educate us; and walking down so-called inner-city streets dodging bullets, risking a gunshot to the chest with every step that we take. As the self-announced “least racist person,” Donald Trump finds this state of affairs unacceptable. But Trump doesn’t appear to understand what an “inner city” even constitutes, aside from a place where all Black Americans live in abject poverty. He has no idea of the terror overpolicing can inflict in Black communities—yet he continuously propagates myths about crime to justify that overpolicing.” There is Much for Black People to Fear from Trump’s ‘Law and Order’ Presidency (by Imani Gandi for Rewire)
  • “But even before the memos were revealed, Trump’s orders began to take shape when Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) carried out a series of nationwide sweeps, detaining nearly 700 undocumented immigrants. Fact sheets prepared by ICE characterized all who were detained as “criminal aliens,” “illegal re-entrants,” and “immigration fugitives.” Daniel Ramirez Medina doesn’t meet any of these criteria, yet he has been in a prison-like detention center since February 10.” Trump’s ‘Smart and Strategic’ Immigration Approach: Everyone Is Deportable (by Tina Vasquez for Rewire)
  • “The White House budget office has drafted a “hit list” of programs, according to The New York Times, all of which cost under $500 million a year to run. In fact, they total approximately $2.5 billion – just 0.0625% of the projected $4 trillion budget. “It’s sad in a way because those programs aren’t causing the deficit,” Steve Bell of the Bipartisan Policy Center told the Times. “These programs don’t amount to a hill of beans.”” Eliminating arts funding programs will save Donald Trump just 0.0625% of budget (by Christopher Hooton for The Independent)

Reproductive Rights

  • “The AP reports that Judge Sam Sparks was particularly pointed in his decision against the state, noting that they had failed to provide “any evidence” to support their claims that Planned Parenthood was doing anything other than providing desperately-needed healthcare resources for the estimated 11,000 people who would’ve been affected by the decision.” Judge Blocks Texas from Cutting Planned Parenthood Funding from Medicaid (by Megan Reynols for Jezebel)


  • ““For me, being able to use Comic Sans is similar to a mobility aid, or a visual aid, or a hearing aid,” she tells me while we’re both visiting our family in Maryland. “I have other ways of writing and reading, but they’re not like they are for someone who’s not dyslexic.”” Hating Comic Sans Is Ableist (by Lauren Hudgins for The Establishment)


  • “Watson has taken popular paintings from Vincent van Gogh, Leonardo da Vinci, and Picasso’s Blue Period, and wiped them clean of the white figures so often portrayed. In their place, she’s added black faces, lots of them. She put a black woman with short curly hair into her take on Picasso’s paintings, and a dark-skinned black woman into her spin on Edvard Munch’s “The Scream.”” The Power Of Centering Blackness In Iconic Art (by Brittany King for The Establishment)
  • “The researchers found that suicide attempts by high school students decreased by 7 percent in states after they passed laws to legalize same-sex marriage, before the Supreme Court legalized it nationwide in 2015. Among LGB high school students, the decrease was especially concentrated, with suicide attempts falling by 14 percent. But in states that did not legalize same-sex marriage, there was no change.” Same-sex marriage laws linked to fewer youth suicide attempts, new study says (by Corinne Segal for PBS)


  • “It’s at least the fourth wave of bomb threats targeting American JCCs since January. Prior to Monday, roughly 48 Jewish centers in 26 states reported received unsettling phone calls this year—allegedly from a caller using a voice disguiser—in what is being described as “telephone terrorism.” Although none of the incidents have uncovered actual bombs or resulted in physical harm to the patrons of the centers, the fear-based attacks are rattling Jewish groups.” Fourth round of bomb threats hits Jewish Community Centers across the country (by Jack Jenkins for Think Progress)


  • “The hunters told police they suspected the shooters were undocumented immigrants they had seen on the ranch earlier in their trip. Their story soon jumped into online right-wing circles, thanks in part to Texas Commissioner of Agriculture and Donald Trump ally Sid Miller. But it was a lie, according to police and, now, a grand jury. Investigators determined that guides Walker Daughetry and Michael Bryant in fact shot at one another by accident, striking Daughetry and hunter Edwin Roberts in the process. Daughetry and Bryant were indicted for third-degree felonies last Wednesday.” Texas hunters who blamed immigrants actually shot each other, cops say (by Alan Pike for Think Progress)
  • “Theresa May introduced the rule change in 2012 as home secretary. It means British citizens must earn at least £18,600 a year to bring in a non-EU spouse. The Home Office has suspended applications from couples who do not meet the minimum income threshold while they consider the issues raised by the case. The Supreme Court acknowledged the impact of the policy on couples but said: “The fact that [the income rule] may cause hardship to many does not render it unlawful.”” The Supreme Court Has Ruled It’s Legal For The Government To Keep Couples Apart Because Of Their Income (by Emily Dugan for Buzzfeed News)
  • ““We’ve read many times in newspapers of some kind of shooting happening,” she said at a news conference at the headquarters of Garmin, where Kuchibhotla worked as an aviation systems engineer. “And we always wondered, how safe?” Of the two of them, she said, she was most concerned, asking her reassuring husband: “Are we doing the right thing of staying in the United States of America?” Dumala is returning to India for Kuchibhotla’s funeral. She said she wanted to come back to their home in south Olathe, fulfilling her husband’s wishes for an American life and “me being successful in any field I choose.”” Widow of Olathe shooting victim: ‘I need an answer’ on how U.S. stops hate crimes (by Rick Montgomery and Glenn E. Rice for The Kansas City Star)

Making Me Smile

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