Archive for January, 2016

Now, the Unseen!  No intro required!

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Prison Bars

Short one today, because Flint’s crisis has exhausted every last bit of my brainpower.

In general, prison should have five goals, as described by criminologist Bob Cameron: retribution, incapacitation, deterrence, restoration, and rehabilitation.

We look at prison as punishment here.  We treat this as revenge.

We just sentenced rapist Daniel Holtzclaw to 263 years in prison.  My first thought is “TAKE THAT, STUPID RAPIST.”

Who lives for 200 years?

Revenge is not an appropriate way to run a country.  Revenge is why we have more of our population incarcerated than any other nation.  Revenge is why we perpetuate racist, classist systems and wonder why we have a racist, classist society.  Revenge is why children become adults behind bars.  Revenge is why sexual assault is so prevalent in prison that it is treated as a joke and becomes part of the punishment.

Revenge is why people come out of prison traumatized; more trauma = less ability to cope with negative life events = recidivism.

And we wonder why our country is so messed up.  We’re destroying our mental health and our society in the process.

There’s got to be another way.

#TBT Song’O’The Week

Posted: January 21, 2016 in Uncategorized

In the same vein as last week, this is a GREAT song by Ben Folds, “Army”, which I think he actually did when still part of Ben Folds Five.  My college best friend and I were both at his concert (before we knew each other) and used to put this on whenever we took a road trip (Hey, Xine!).

Enjoy!

scale

The issues closest to our hearts are often the most difficult to discuss with our loved ones.  We don’t want to get up on the soapbox, or make people feel attacked.

I was thinking about dieting as I re-read a favorite article of mine from Dances With Fat, a great body-positive/fat-activism blog, about how to deal with family and friends who decide to act as the food police.

After I read the piece, I immediately thought of my aunt, someone I love dearly and who has been present at all big turning points in my life.  I don’t know if she had ever been on a diet before the beginning of November.  I heard about her diet at a pre-Thanksgiving dinner, where she proudly discussed her 500 calorie a day diet “and if I get hungry, I just drink water!”

I was disturbed…worried, concerned.  500 calories is not enough for a grown woman (or man).  That’s less than many anorexic folks take in.

She was thrilled – she had lost 20 pounds in 28 days.

Again…I was legitimately concerned.  Most doctors agree a safe rate of weight loss is about 1-3 pounds a week (though most doctors don’t have enough training in nutrition or a good enough understanding of health at every size to talk diets with patients).

I was so proud, at the end of the night, when my mom talked about how she had ruined her metabolism by constant dieting since her teens, and how much space and energy dieting had taken up in her life.

But neither my mother or myself said anything to my aunt, and it wasn’t because we didn’t have the information; I’ve been looking at HAES literature for years and am in recovery from an eating disorder, so by default, my entire family is well versed in the harmful effects of dieting and image focus.

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I’ve been in a rut lately, and listening to all my old favorites, and up popped Ben Kweller!  I had the pleasure of meeting him back in the day doing concerts; he travelled to the great white north, and was super nice and gracious.  He told us that rock and roll is a really tough business, and if you can do anything else, you should.  ❤

Anyway, this is still one of my favorite love songs of all time.  Enjoy it on this beautiful January Thursday!  🙂

I have been revisiting a lot of the music I liked in high school and college, and I was an unabashed emo kid FOR SURE, even though I never would have admitted it at the time.  Too sensitive and too focused to be a punk, emo was my shit.

Thursday was my all time favorite band for at least 5-6 years, and this song, off their (in my opinion) best album, Full Collapse, is my all time favorite song of theirs.  It’s not as catchy as others, it’s a bit more on the metal/hardcore side (foreshadowing) but it’s SO GOOD, especially the very last breakdown.  Yell along and be transported back to those sweet, sweet days in 2004 when Thursday ruled the roost.

 

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It’s that time again, the time that we’re bombarded with people talking about making new years’ resolutions, by those beautiful, misguided, semi-well-intentioned people, who think a simple date is going to be enough to effect behavioral change.

I love goals and lists, and resolutions are no exception.  Each year, I read article after article about how to keep your resolution, or better resolutions, or better things to focus on.  A few kick ass body positive feminists made a point of changing “resolutions” to “revolutions,” which was very appealing, but I don’t know if it fully captures the spirit and means to make these goals stick.

In yoga practice, the concept of intention is fairly central; the idea that instead of a goal, you set an intention, which allows you to be present in the moment of practice.  Goals are great, but they’re finite, and set you up for always being dissatisfied; you’re not enjoying the present, because you’re waiting to feel good at some point in the future, or kicking yourself for messing up in the past.

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