Sorry about Friday my babies! I was moving apartments. I’m now the proud renter of a bedroom in a townhome with one roommmate and a motherfuckin LOFT in my bedroom. That’s right. 12-year-old me is freaking the fuck out. It’s got a ladder and one purple wall and everything.
Hope your Easter was awesome. Mine was.
“Nevertheless, at the grass-roots level, Muslims in the United States, like other cultural and religious minorities, have had no problem acclimating to mainstream norms. In a detailed 2011 survey, the Pew Research Center found that Muslim Americans are “highly assimilated into American society and . . . largely content with their lives.” More than 80 percent of US Muslims expressed satisfaction with life in America, and 63 percent said they felt no conflict “between being a devout Muslim and living in a modern society.” The rates at which they participate in various everyday American activities — from following local sports teams to watching entertainment TV — are similar to those of the American public generally. Half of all Muslim immigrants display the US flag at home, in the office, or on their car.”
It’s so funny to read Why there are Muslim ghettos in Belgium, but not in the US today. Just yesterday I was talking to Feeney again, and he was explaining that in much of Europe immigrants aren’t able to become citizens. Even their children aren’t. Citizenry is very much a racial question. Full assimilation is impossible if no one thinks of immigrants as fellow countrymen no matter what they do. So I joked that America is a social justice paradise. But like, it kind of is. There are also rules keeping immigrants from working in much of Europe. How stupid is that? It’s not the whole answer for why there are violent Muslim extremists, but it’s something we can do something about.
New D.C. museum will celebrate Bill Cosby’s career, but fails to mention the numerous accusations of sexual assault, via @lainnafader. If a man rapes scores of women, he’ll be remembered for everything else he did. If a woman takes off her clothes for money, no matter what else she does, that’s what she’ll be remembered for.
But it’s cool. We don’t need sex-positive feminism.
In good news for feminism (and anti-racism): “Geography, age, and gender? We put that in the garbage heap,” VP of product Todd Yellin said. That’s right kids, technology is moving us toward a post-gender, post-race world. Netflix is monetizing the sociological insight that in general, the variation within any population group is much wider than the collective difference between any two groups.
“I welcome constructive criticism,” Dawson told me, “especially if I have veered off the mark or said something unintentionally problematic. But the design and structure of News Genius is not built with work like mine in mind—it seems intended to speak truth to power and thoughtfully interrogate high-profile publications.” She added, “It seems far more likely to intimidate marginalized voices who already face so much scrutiny and harassment when they share their stories.”
I have a lot of strong, but competing, feelings on this whole story. When I first heard about Genius, I signed up immediately. It’s a very, very cool idea. Much like Twitter, which I’m a very active on. (A little too active, tbqh.) The thing is, though, Twitter is often unusable because of abuse. Fewer than ten very active racist trolls hurling hundreds of anti-Semitic tweets makes the account useless until I’ve blocked them all. Twitter has handled abuse poorly. First they ignored it, which effectively silences sane people who want to talk about race but don’t because they want to be able to use their accounts. Then they started cracking down, but in an uneven (supposedly) and definitely un-transparent way.
I had no idea how many very active racist trolls there were on Twitter until I started tweeting about race. This is not a problem you can really understand until you experience it. It seems like whining from the outside. I get that. Don’t be a baby. Grow up. This is the internet. Blah blah. But, really, it’s a problem when good people can’t use a service. Yes, Twitter is silencing dissent sometimes by kicking off abusers. But abusers are also silencing dissent. This is a major problem that is not easy or clear-cut. And it’s only going to grow as platforms become more open and democratic.
“Gone is the language of morals, tradition, and order—the state now intervenes in our sex lives bearing the mantles of safety, exploitation, and sex discrimination,” writes ENB in her review of “Bureaucratic Sex Creep.” This is actually a related issue. Title IX has been interpreted to mean that schools have a legal responsibility to protect students from other students creating a “hostile environment.” Kind of like Twitter is trying to protect users from other users creating a “hostile environment.”
One problem is that people are hostile to people who they see as unlike them. I just don’t think that right now it’s realistic to expect you can have large amounts of diversity and freedom of expression at the same place at the same time and for it to be a useful, positive experience for everyone involved. Colleges were more chill when it was all white dudes and they expected to haze each other and be hazed. There were certainly fewer lawsuits. But when you have radically different people with radically different expectations on what behavior is okay forced into close proximity, not everyone is going to be happy. I don’t know. This just seems really obvious to me.
Twitter and colleges can’t be radically free and radically diverse and still be usable. It just doesn’t work. Something has to give. It’s gotta be the freedom or diversity.
On a different note, via one of my new fave Twitter accounts, @DCHomos, Transgender Woman Raped In Stonewall Inn Bathroom. JIC you were curious, there have been zero instances of a trans person committing an act of violence in a public bathroom. There have been thousands of transgender people who have been victims of violence in a public bathroom. Fuck your sex-negative laws.
And let’s end on a happy note. Via @lisabonos, Looking for friends on a dating app was awkward, @abbyagreen writes. But it worked.