But women can never be careful enough, can we? If we take naked pictures of ourselves, we’re asking for it. If someone can manage to hack into our accounts, we’re asking for it. If we’re not wearing anti-rape nail polish, we’re asking for it. If we don’t take self-defence classes, we’re asking for it. If we get drunk, we’re asking for it. If our skirts are too short, we’re asking for it. If we pass out at a party, we’re asking for it. If we are not hyper-vigilant every single fucking second of every single fucking day, we are asking for it. Even when we are hyper-vigilant, we’re still asking for it. The fact that we exist is asking for it.
I was a journalism major, I worked as a journalist in the past, and I am an advocate of honest, truthful reporting and the freedom to do so. I’ve always harbored a desire to be a foreign correspondent (I still do), and I love to live vicariously through memoirs of journalists who have been there and can tell their stories.
Breaking News: A Memoir by Martin Fletcher is an interesting read. Fletcher has decades of experience as a cameraman, producer, and eventually correspondent in the field reporting harrowing stories from front lines of war and more. I know, another book by an old white man reporting on wars happening in foreign lands. However, that’s the sad fact of journalism in general, and one of the aspects of the book I didn’t enjoy. Fletcher writes about his colleagues very often – all white men. When a women is mentioned, she is a secretary, at the assignment desk, a sexual conquest, or wife. His tales of being young, having money, and enjoying white privilege in Africa are not appealing, but they are the truth – at least he admits that.
That’s not to take away from the actual stories of war – they are harrowing. The battle between ethics and humanity and trying to “get the story” is also fascinating. Dealing with filming a woman dying to get the story across. He put his life on the line to bring these stories to the world.
I wish I could say that racism and prejudice were only distant memories. We must dissent from the indifference. We must dissent from the apathy. We must dissent from the fear, the hatred and the mistrust…We must dissent because America can do better, because America has no choice but to do better.”
I had heard of Gary Clark Jr. in the past but I never bothered to stop and listen to his music and I am sincerely sorry I hadn’t. I love the guitar. I grew up with Hendrix, Santana, and more on the radio and live when I would hang out with my Uncle. So Gary’s uptempo music is right up my alley.
However, for this post, I chose his smooth, soft, jazzy song instead. Things Are Changin’ is exactly what I love about soul and acoustic songs.
I do most of my reading during my commute on public transportation. Often times no one says a thing, but I noticed quite a few more looks when I was reading We Are All Suspects Now: Untold Stories from Immigrant Communities after 9/11 by Tram Nguyen. One man asked my opinion and I found the first thing I said when he said he would read it was, “warning: it will make you mad.”
The actual information in the stories is nothing new if you have followed immigration after 9/11, however, it does put names and personal stories to the injustices we’ve all heard about. It’s an exasperating read, in that these injustices and really, crimes against humanity, are happened and in many cases still happening in the so-called, “land of the free.”
If you are a social justice crusader, this is nothing new, but a good read in terms of personal stories. However, I really recommend this for people who don’t have a clue what thousands of immigrants went through in the days, months, and years following 9/11. For those people it can go one of two ways – shocked by the horrors, or agree with everything the government did. It really depends on your politics. However, if you believe all humans should be treated equally, and no one is “illegal,” then this is a very informative read. The forward by Edwidge Danticat is also great. Highly recommended.
There are still souls for whom love is the contact of two poetries, the fusion of two reveries… To tell a love, one must write… Love is never finished expressing itself, and it expresses itself better the more poetically it is dreamed.
Paolo Nutini is one of those artists who as soon as I heard one song by, I had to immediately consume every last song I could get my hands on. There is something so magnetic about his voice. It’s raspy, gritty quality is the perfect complement to his vintage soul sound. You can literally feel the passion in his voice.
As I said, I’ve listened to everything by Paolo that I could find so choosing just one song to showcase is hard. However, No Other Way is just too good not to write about. It has the 60s feel that harkens to the days of Ben E. King that I love. The ode to a long-distance love is nearly perfect. It’s one of those songs that I listen to and immediately hit repeat. I wouldn’t have it no other way. Bonus: he’s unreal live.
“Utopia lies at the horizon.
When I draw nearer by two steps,
it retreats two steps.
If I proceed ten steps forward, it
swiftly slips ten steps ahead.
No matter how far I go, I can never reach it.
What, then, is the purpose of utopia?
It is to cause us to advance.”
Flamenco is not everyone’s cup of tea. Sometimes it’s a little too much for me as well, but this gypsy music sound of Spain, full of emotions has some amazing highs. Camaron de la Isla is the highest of highs in flamenco. You can literally feel the emotions in his voice, regardless of whether you understand Spanish or not.
I specifically chose Vivire because of the guitar. I grew up listening to guitar greats like Santana, Cash, and Hendrix thanks to my guitar-playing uncle. So Vivire’s intense sounds immediately resonated with me. The lyrics, after reading about flamenco’s origins, are so intensely personal and you can hear that in his voice.
Sure flamenco is not for everyone, but if it is, this one is beautiful.