current events

“En cuanto a la sociedad, iba arraigándose la idea de la desprotección, el oscuro temor de que cualquiera, por inocente que fuese, pudiese caer en aquella infinita caza de brujas, apoderándose de unos el miedo sobrecogedor y de otros una tendencia consciente o inconsciente a justificar el horror: «Por algo será» , se murmuraba en voz baja, como queriendo así propiciar a los terribles e inescrutables dioses, mirando como apestados a los hijos o padres del desaparecido.”– del prólogo del informe de la CONADEP.

Nunca Más

Rough translation, for my English speaking readers:

“In terms of the society, the idea of defenselessness began to take root, the dark fear that anyone, innocent as they may be, might fall into that infinite witch hunt, seizing some people with overpowering fear and other people with a tendency – conscious or unconscious – to justify the horror. “It must be for a reason,” justifiers murmured in low voices, as if through these words they might avert those terrible and inscrutable gods, and meanwhile looking on the sons and fathers of the disappeared as on lepers.”– from the prologue of the CONADEP‘s report, Nunca Más.

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Dear Colin Powell-

I forgive you for standing in front of the United Nations, before a shamefully covered “Guernica”, and lying about WMD and advocating a badwrong war. You spent pretty much all your capital of integrity on that move. I was disheartened by it and lost faith in you.

I forgive you even though we’re still being battered by the consequences of that action, and none more than the military men and women of this country.

But see, now you get to go back into my “good guys” pile. Because you said what needed saying (that the face of America includes Muslims, and we’re a better nation for it), exactly when it needed saying. Thank you, from a Christian who happens not to believe Muslim is code for terrorism, evil, or the destruction of America. Long live our country. May it ever promote religious freedom, including the right to pursue no religion.

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13 Oct 2008, by

Lame Duck

Lately, every time I hear the president say something, instead of getting all angry and tense like I used to, I react with surprise, almost laughter: this guy is still president? He still says stuff? People stop to listen and broadcast what he says? Really? It seems like a peculiar throwback and I feel indulgently amused, as if my dog just performed a trick without my asking him to and is waiting hopefully for his treat.

I can’t be the only one who reacts this way.

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  • I like that he voted in favor of the land mine ban treaty (some longtime readers will remember that opposition to the land mine ban has been a particular sticking point of mine with numerous recent democratic candidates). Read what the GYWO guy says about it, and know that I mostly agree with him.
  • I like that his words and delivery are so pitch perfect that they practically make a song, and that someone thought of putting his words to music, and that the song is not half bad, and that it’s hopeful, and that it’s available on youtube. (Yeah, I like it on a lot of levels).
  • I like that no matter whether we get Hillary or Obama as a democratic candidate, that either one will be history making and ground breaking in their own ways. I like standing on the cusp of history, and not due to war or to unrest, but due to human progress. As slacktivist so eloquently phrased it: “For myself, I’d be more than satisfied with either Obama or Clinton as my party’s nominee. I understand that Magic Johnson is supporting Hillary Clinton. Kareem Abdul Jabaar, meanwhile, is supporting Barack Obama. That’s the choice: Magic or Kareem. It’s an understandably tough call, but I’m not complaining about the options.” Ever since reading this, I go around with a little smile, muttering “Magic or Kareem”. It’s not my party, but it’s making me smile anyway. It’s making me hopeful.

As an aside, if you are interested in helping take care of our war detritus (and by that I mean the land mines we leave everywhere we send our armed forces), my charity of choice is Adopt-A-Minefield.

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The assassination of Benazir Bhutto today is bad news for all of us, but it is especially bad news for Pakistan. Violence follows like night after the sun sets.

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Dear Blackwater: You are not helping. Please go home now. Thanks. Kisses, Anarkey.

Dear Madeleine L’Engle: I am not going to be able to write you one of those greatly moving eulogies or remembrances that I’ve read all over the internet in the wake of your passing. I can only say one thing: I’m sad that the woman who taught me the word tesseract is gone from the world. Love, Anarkey.

Dear Jena, Louisiana: Please feel free to join us in this century. Your behavior is appalling. I’ve never been to your town, but I’ve been to Olla, and it makes me think of rustling sun-dried grass and train tracks and cicadas and chewing tobacco. I’ll extend these associations to your town, but only if you cut it out. Seriously, Anarkey.

Dear They Might Be Giants: I adore the new video to your song “I’m Impressed”. Sorry I missed your show a couple of weeks ago. Singing along, Anarkey.

Dear Buddhist monks in Myanmar: I love you for your courage. Fight the good non-violent fight, brothers. Praying for you, Anarkey.

Dear Atheists and Christians: You should read this. No, really. Notice that last entry there? “You’ll never harass the other side out of existence?” Thanks, Anarkey

Dear Belgium: Cheer up. I think you’re a real country. You make great chocolate! Sincerely, Anarkey.

Dear Elissa Wall: I honor your courage. By your example, you make the need for social justice real, and ours. Thank you, Anarkey.

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