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April 9th, 2005
03:01 pm
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This is your War on Terror
"I remember telling her the government doesn't go after 16-year-old girls," Ms. Lane said. "And in the last few days, I'm wrestling with the fact that, yes, it does."

(via daily Kos)

Current Mood: infuriatedinfuriated
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From:gchpaco
Date:April 10th, 2005 07:40 pm (UTC)
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Shit...
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From:roaminrob
Date:April 19th, 2005 07:44 pm (UTC)

So.

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So, what's going to be done about it?

The original writer cried about it. You're infuriated. Yet ... ultimately, all of these reactions will add up to a momentary, minor flash in the public spotlight, and then it will be forgotten.

(Didn't you hear? Britney Spears is pregnant.)

Somehow, a lot of people are still able to keep doing really stupid, evil, immoral acts that a whole bunch of other people claim to be angered about, but nothing changes.
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From:baxil
Date:April 21st, 2005 01:27 am (UTC)

Re: So.

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I realize where you're going with this - you believe that the measure of a person's strength is in their ability to act, to change the world around them. Broadly speaking, I have no quarrel with that.

But let me turn this around. What do you think should be done about this?

The actions of this administration have slammed me uncomfortably into the Democratic camp. In the 2004 elections, I donated as much money as I could spare to political groups opposing Bush. It didn't work, but I put my money where my mouth was.

I continue to be a card-carrying ACLU member and send them some extra cash above the dues once in a while. At least some tiny fraction of that money was used in the case I posted about.

I joined an anti-war protest back when it was relevant. I don't think taking to the streets in Grass Valley over an incident in New York would do any good.

So what's the appropriate response here, in your opinion? What am I not doing that you feel I should be?

(There was a second reply in here somewhere about how the power of outrage, momentary though it be, can be a catalyst in itself, but I dropped it in favor of the larger issue.)
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From:roaminrob
Date:April 21st, 2005 02:45 am (UTC)

Re: So.

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Good points.

I realize where you're going with this - you believe that the measure of a person's strength is in their ability to act, to change the world around them.

Well, yeah. Or, rather, that a person's power is in such. That's part of my philosophy, as it continues to develop. I think I've mentioned it before.

In this case, though, I'm measuring actions, not people. Your examples were perfect; in fact, you've demonstrated much more commitment to your chosen causes than I have. I'm not in any position to criticize your actions, nor was I able to think of anything that could be done by you, or me, or anyone else I know personally, about the incident in New York.

What I am doing is standing back and saying, "Well, this doesn't work." Everything that's been done so far hasn't been enough.

So what's the appropriate response here, in your opinion?

Honestly, I don't know. I thought about that for a long time before and after replying. I'm not smart enough to come up with the right solution to this one.

What am I not doing that you feel I should be?

Sorry, I wasn't trying to imply you should do anything. Rather, I was looking at your response, and at the original article writer's response, and saying that getting worked up about it isn't going to accomplish anything. I realize that's a coldly, unemotionally, rational reaction, and I'm not in any way saying that I wished you hadn't posted it, or that I hadn't read it.

Actually, on second thought, you know what it is?

I'm sick of the drama. I see political activists on both sides of any issue -- tree sitters, bloggers, politicians, journalists -- all expending incalculable amounts of energy towards their causes, and so much of it is totally ineffective. People are spewing emotion everywhere, most of it negative, and it isn't getting us very far.

I may not know yet how to be a more effective force for change, but at least I'll save my energy until I am.
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