Things I’m Verbing: Opportunism, exposure and at least some cause for optimism

I can’t entirely fathom what I woke up to today. Two black men murdered by police on two subsequent days, plus this hideous thing that’s happened in Dallas  — I admit, I am beaten down by this, and I’m simply not able to react right now. Give me some time. Not right now.

However, I do have it in me to point out this steaming hot take:

As Rosenberg points out later in the thread, “Some blame racism and America’s checkered legacy on race relations for police shootings. Others blame the Jews.”


SJP, this is not the call for justice you think it is, and I hardly think you’re helping those who are heartsick, grieving and furious. But if you want to have a conversation, let me please point you to activist and organizer Carly Pildis’ recent piece for Tablet. I’m not going to quote it; just read it. True intersectionality can’t exclude by definition, and yet exclusion is what happens through statements like the above. That’s not conjecture, that’s observation. Activism that seeks demonization over dialogue — that demands absolute agreement before it will consider you human — isn’t any activism worth pursuing, if that demand functionally dismisses nuance, rather than affirms humanity.

Okay. Some other stuff.

  • Good news from the new Star Trek film, which has suffered so much lately: Sulu is gay! Original Sulu and gay Internet granddad George Takei wasn’t thrilled with it, but writer/Scotty Simon Pegg has a great, kind and optimistic response.
  • A few weeks ago, the New York Times Magazine published a fascinating feature on what a true archive of the internet could mean for history and humanity. The question is not remotely as simple as it might sound.
  • Facebook has made it clear that it doesn’t intend to be an arbiter or distributor of news. But given the events of this week and how they played out in real time for online audiences — given all kinds of horrors making their way onto livestreams — Facebook Live means that it actually has no choice in the matter. Is it ready for that?
  • Want something happy? How about two Hermione Grangers in one place, loving and supporting each other? Film originator Emma Watson and Harry Potter and the Cursed Child star Noma Dumezweni hit it off backstage, and the pictures and notes they shared are just really lovely.
  • I am the last person who knows much of anything about gaming, but I have heard friends raving about Undertale. Thank goodness for the Imaginary Worlds podcast; not only do I now know what the game is about, I know why it’s so revolutionary. This is how you challenge norms about violence and kindness through play. What a wonderful episode.