The reports look at the impact of technology on society. They're piecse extend beyond the gee whiz to always consider technology's political impacts as well as social justice concerns.
What initially caught my eye is their sensible assistive tech reporting. No inspirational nonsense, no "this one gadget will change everyone's life!"
( two samples that spoke to me )
I find their weekly newsletter handy, as it's got has just the right amount of teaser text plus links to the full stories.
My image of the late unpleasantness at Charlottesville is the swastika next to the Confederate battle flag. They always belonged together: symbols of nations that were brutal to a subset of their own population, fought against America because of it, and lost. These people have pledged their allegiance to the Nazi flag, and I hope that enough of our fellow citizens still have enough justified loathing for that particular symbol to judge them by it. Which reminds me…
There is of course no alt-left, no group on the other side anywhere near as hydrophobically hate-ridden as the rabble at Charlottesville. But even if there were, remember: The last time we fought Nazis, we teamed up with the Communists.
"As I hear all the tawdry details of Jenner's story, I am also re-reading 'How Sex Changed' by Joanne Meyerowitz. [...] In it, Meyerowitz discusses the reactions to Christine Jorgensen's coming out in the 1950s, and how both her tale and many others who came out shortly thereafter, were steeped in the same sort of salaciousness as the promotions for Jenner's autobiography.
"Upon reflection, I realize, too, that every transgender person - and not just the Jorgensens and Jenners - face this same sort of thing. When you are trans, the standards of privacy are thrown out the window. We are expected to share our most intimate details to anyone we come across.
"Without exception, any time I was interviewed in any depth, I found myself asked about my name prior to my transition, or for photos of myself from my youth, or for details of any surgeries I may have undertaken. It really didn't matter if any of that would be relevant to the story: my disclosure was simply expected.
"The same standard is not expected of non-transgender people. Maiden names and other such things are considered private enough to be used as security features with banks and other institutions. Non-transgender strangers don't expect details of another's hysterectomies or vasectomies unless they happen to be medical professionals. So many things are naturally considered one's own private business.
"The minute one divulges one is transgender, however, all bets are off. What's more, to make an issue about such questions is to risk being panned as deceptive."
-- Gwendolyn Ann Smith, 2017-04-27
I'm watching Underground season 2, episode 1, “Contraband,” and I just got to a scene in which one of the main white characters, Elizabeth, meets a group of abolitionist women (of various races). (There aren't any significant spoilers in this post.) And the following discussion ensues:
Anne: The humiliation suffered by those in bondage is real. It's raw. No one is talking about it honestly.
Emily: We all just read a narrative about a man so badly beaten, he can no longer lift his arms.
Georgia: Have you come across it, Elizabeth?
Elizabeth: I can't say that I have.
Georgia: Well, it's a harrowing read, but a necessary tool for the cause.
Elizabeth: How so?
Georgia: Do you know what struck the final blow against the British slave trade? It was an article, “Description of a slave ship.” The intolerable image it conjured in the mind is what turned the tide overseas.
Sally: Well, the best literature has a way of forcing yourself into a stranger's skin. It demands empathy.
Elizabeth: Most people don't read.
Georgia: That's true. They don't.
Elizabeth: And to be honest, even those who do, given the choice, might be reticent to steep themselves in the horrors of slavery.
Georgia: You make a good point. It may be time to move past just the catalog of violence that most narratives portray. But the fact remains, the silence around slavery is an extension of its brutality. And we aim to put the issue into every Northern home that refuses to see what's really happening.
Elizabeth: Well, then, narratives raise awareness.
Georgia: And the rallies, and the bake sales to raise funds, and abolitionist prints like The Liberator—all forms of disruption. I have to believe that a true understanding of what the Southern Negroes are enduring will incite good people to action.
I found that scene delightful. A few of the lines are a little stilted, but it's such a great metacommentary that I didn't mind. I half expected one of them to say “Maybe we should try making a TV show.”
Oh, and during the whole scene, the women are engaged in target practice with their guns.
This explains SO MUCH.
I think I might cry now.
The HIV Crisis In The Deaf Community
This excellent article highlights big troubles.
Just one story:
A gay Deaf man new to DC attempts to set up an interpreted appoint at a queer friendly clinic; after waiting for 45 minutes he's escorted to a room with a video relay interpreter:
Some context: Since Washington DC is home to Gallaudet University, they have a very large and skilled interpreter workforce. ( Two videos with ASL, captions, and audio )
All I wanted to do was to set up an appointment at a later date with the doctor and a live ASL interpreter. That’s all I want.
She looked at the note, smiled, and wrote, “We don’t do that here. ASL interpreters are expensive. This is a cheaper alternative.”
I looked at the note, shook my head, “No.” I got the feeling that this was not going to be a “Deaf-friendly” nor “Deaf accessible” and got up and started to leave when she grabbed my arm. I looked at her quizzically with her writing furiously on the note. She wrote, “You do qualify for our services but you have to understand, we can’t afford it.”
I looked at her disappointedly and wrote: “I find it ironic that the HIV-positive community is knowledgeable with the ADA law and uses it to the betterment for the community and yet can’t provide for their own.”quote ends
- You may ask any dev-related question you have in a comment. (It doesn't even need to be about Dreamwidth, although if it involves a language/library/framework/database Dreamwidth doesn't use, you will probably get answers pointing that out and suggesting a better place to ask.)
- You may also answer any question, using the guidelines given in To Answer, Or Not To Answer and in this comment thread.
A not-so-gentle reminder: white women, this moment is not about your brand.
After failing to condemn violent white nationalists, Trump is ‘seriously considering’ a pardon for Sheriff Joe Arpaio.
California’s AB 638 would criminalize immigration consultants who provide accessible immigration services for people filing their immigration papers. Learn more here.
CeCe McDonald and BCRW put together a video on Ky Peterson, “Survived and Punished.” Ky is asking people to join in a letter-writing campaign to Georgia Governor Nathan Deal. Sign Ky’s petition, get information about the letter-writing campaign, and follow Ky’s case at freeingky.com.
Everything you need to know about Taylor Swift’s day in court: “Swift’s argument was that by countersuing Mueller, she was making it easier for other, less powerful women to punish the men who think they have a right to their bodies.”