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Tag Archive: communication

Jul 20 2014

Mocking Versus Understanding Religion

Today a friend* posted this on Facebook: I’m here at the Detroit airport waiting for my flight back to New Jersey. There’s a Jewish fellow here who was just doing his morning prayers, complete with the little boxes strapped to his head and arm, and the strap coiled around his arm, bobbing back and forth …

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May 09 2014

“But a feminist was mean to me!”

Every so often a man publishes some screed about how he’s no longer a feminist because feminists have been mean to him. Every very often, some white person opines that they’d be totally on board with this whole anti-racism thing except that people of color are just so damn rude to them all the time. Or a religious …

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Apr 26 2014

On Demanding Solutions To Social Problems

One of the most frustrating and most understandable responses I encounter in the course of activism goes something like this: “Okay I get that this is a problem but what am I supposed to do about it? Should I decline a job that I supposedly got because of my privilege? What are your policy prescriptions? …

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Mar 18 2014

Surprise Weddings are Nonconsensual and Icky

Okay, I promise I’ll actually write something for this blog soon, but for now I have another Daily Dot piece, this time about “surprise weddings.” (It’s as icky as it sounds.) Here’s an excerpt: It’s incredibly ironic that an event meant to celebrate the joining of two people in marriage would be so one-sided, and …

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Feb 17 2014

I Don’t Demand Respect Because I’m Upset; I Demand Respect Because I Deserve It

At some point in my life, probably in college, I decided that I was going to (mostly; when I’m not too scared to speak up; when I can think of the words to say, etc.) stop taking shit from people. So, online, I often say things like, “Actually, I wasn’t asking for advice, thanks!” and …

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Feb 15 2014

Shifting The Blame For Sexual Harassment (Or, Damn Those Mysterious Women And Their Weird Mystery Feelings)

I’ve written before about how it’s actually not very difficult to tell the difference between flirting and sexual harassment. I’d like to get at this issue from a slightly different perspective by talking about the purposeful obfuscation of women’s* desires and boundaries that I often hear as a defense of those accused of sexual harassment. …

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Jan 23 2014

I Check My Phone While Out With People and If You Don’t Like That Please Don’t Hang Out With Me

I recently made a Facebook status/Tumblr post that read as follows: Since APPARENTLY this has become a huge contentious debate all over Facebook, let me make my position on it clear: 1. If we’re hanging out in person and you want to check your phone, go for it. If you need to take care of …

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Nov 01 2013

(How) Should We Call Out Online Bigotry? On “Somebody Said Something Stupid Syndrome”

Anti-racist Doge to the rescue!

Over at The Chronicle of Higher Education, Ben Yagoda has a post called, “Must Attention Be Paid?” In it, he describes what he called “Somebody Said Something Stupid Syndrome,” or “SSSSS”: SSSSS (as I abbreviate it) begins when an individual writes or is recorded as saying something strikingly venal, inhumane, and/or dumb. The quote is …

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Oct 29 2013

In Defense of Having Big/Serious/Difficult Conversations in Writing

This post grew out of a conversation I had with Chana Messinger and was also influenced by this great old Wired piece that has resurfaced on my social networks lately. You may not think that, in this day and age, the value of digital communication still needs to be defended. Maybe it doesn’t. But the …

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Oct 15 2013

Intent: Just How Magic Is It?

There’s a saying in the progressive community that intent isn’t fucking magic. It comes from this fabulously snarky post about how not intending to hurt someone doesn’t magically keep them from being hurt. “Intent is not magic” is one of those simple, catchy phrases we use to get a point across, kind of like “consent …

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