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This was a very new experience. I’ve been in several conflict zones: I was in the civil war regions in Georgia, the Gaza strip, illegally visited the Kaliningrad region when travel to the Soviet Union was still strictly prohibited for westerners, I’ve been in Iraq, Vietnam and in China, I’ve met Cuba dissidents. But to be arrested and yelled at and be rudely treated by police? For that I had to travel to Ferguson and St. Louis in the United States of America.

German Journalist Ansgar Graw, arrested while covering unrest in Ferguson, Missouri  (via lowcarhighcarb)

This is not to say that white people are inherently prone to violence. Most whites, obviously, manage to get through life without murdering anyone. And there are many countries full of white people — Norway, Iceland, France, Denmark, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom — where white people murder each other at a much lower rate than you see here in the United States. On the other hand, although people often see criminal behavior as a symptom of poverty, the quantity of murder committed by white people specifically in the United States casts some doubt on this. Per capita GDP is considerably higher here than in France — and the white population in America is considerably richer than the national average — and yet we have more white murderers.

To understand the level of cultural pathology at work here, it’s important to understand that 36 percent of those killed by whites are women — a far higher share than you see with black murderers.



Slate highlights the financial dynamics that led to the insane police situation in Ferguson:

When you split a metro area into dozens of tiny local governments (St. Louis County, to be clear, doesn’t include the actual city of St. Louis, which spun off from it in the 19th century), they tend to duplicate each others’ services, which is of course extremely expensive. But raising taxes so that each tiny borough can afford its own police and fire department is a nonstarter, since wealthy residents can always just move one town over. End result: You have police departments that self-fund by handing out tickets. And thanks to the delightful racial dynamics of U.S. law enforcement, black residents are disproportionately stopped and accosted, even though police in Ferguson are less likely to find contraband when they search black drivers than when they search whites.

In other words, Ferguson’s police department financially buoys itself by treating its residents like crap.

Anyone who understands rational choice theory could explain why this was always a bad idea.

MJ: What was the impact of the NRA’s sponsorship of Second Amendment legal scholarship?

MW: They certainly supported a lot of it. The way it works in constitutional law is that legal scholarship plays a pretty big role. So there became a rather deafening roar of the pro-individual gun ownership model: They were publishing and reinforcing each other. Some of it was very useful, and I cite it in the book. And some of it, when you look at some of the claims, they are easily punctured. It reminded me of the people who write movie posters, in terms of pulling quotes out of context. Like this Thomas Jefferson quote—”One loves to possess arms.” It is in serious law review articles. It’s presented as proof of what the founders really meant. But what happened was Thomas Jefferson wrote a letter to George Washington, saying, “Remember I sent you a bunch of those letters from when I was Secretary of State? Could you send them back to me? I think I’m going to get attacked for this position I made. I want to be able to defend myself: ‘One loves to possess arms,’ even though one hopes not to use them.” It’s a metaphor! But it’s in these law review articles. It’s funny! When you go to the NRA website, it’s still there. You can buy a T-shirt that has the quote

How do I talk to white people about this!? How can I possibly explain the rage, fear, sadness, and every other emotion I don’t have a name for yet as I watch these events unfold?

My white friends are tagging me in posts and articles about the shootings and subsequent protests forcing me to look at more images of racial violence because I’m their politically conscious black friend.

Will my white friends understand that those images remind me of my younger brother? Will my white friends understand that I’ve been lying awake at night wondering if my younger brother, who is the same build as Mike Brown, will be stopped by the police? Have they ever sat in front of their younger brother at lunch and said “I’m worried that the police might hurt you”? Because I did that this week.

How does that conversation start?

…I don’t know how to tell people that I’d rather be let down by white society than be let down by white individuals.

I Don’t Know How to Talk to White People About Ferguson - Ali Barthwell

(via princessnijireiki)

First it means that there is no summer slump. Audiences will flock to theaters if the film debuting is something they all want to see. Second, it means that Marvel can do whatever it wants now. So if they choose not to make a female-centric or minority-centric superhero film, it’s because they just don’t want to.


America’s prisons are broken.  ~ John Oliver

To those who don’t understand the difference between DC and Marvel,







There is no safe place in Gaza right now. Bombs can land at any time, anywhere.

A small metal shack with no electricity or running water on a jetty in the blazing seaside sun does not seem like the kind of place frequented by Hamas militants, the Israel Defense Forces’ intended targets. Children, maybe four feet tall, dressed in summer clothes, running from an explosion, don’t fit the description of Hamas fighters, either.

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