Harpers Letters Section – letter and rebuttal, and comments about the signatories which I’ll finish later

July 7, 2020
The below letter will be appearing in the Letters section of the magazine’s October issue. We welcome responses at letters@harpers.org

Our cultural institutions are facing a moment of trial.

which…. the fuck … institutions are you referencing???

from Wikipedia

cultural institution or cultural organization is an organization within a culture/subculture that works for the preservation or promotion of culture. The term is especially used of public and charitable organizations, but its range of meaning can be very broad. Examples of cultural institutions in modern society are museumslibraries and archiveschurchesart galleries.

Powerful protests for racial and social justice are leading to overdue demands for police reform, along with wider calls for greater equality and inclusion across our society, not least in higher education, journalism, philanthropy, and the arts.

So the cultural institution you’re actually referencing in the first line is really…. the cops? Are you fucking kidding me? or no, cultural institutions in this case are academia, a racist cesspit of sheltered and overgrown egos, journalism WHICH HAS BEEN BUTCHERED by right wing billionaires buying up every independent newsroom and news provider they can get their mitts on, philanthropy, the method by which billionaires deflect opprobrium, and the arts, which, fuck, I’m a creator and I know ‘zackly how bad shit is.

But this needed reckoning has also intensified a new set of moral attitudes and political commitments that tend to weaken our norms of open debate and toleration of differences in favor of ideological conformity.

This is the FUCKING TONE ARGUMENT once again are you shitting me Cthulhu. And by cracky if you think the leftists I hang with on twitter are ideologically conforming to any gatdam thing – at all – BESIDES the notion that none of us have read enough – literally the only thing any of us agree on – you’re obviously someone grand and stupid enough to have signed this limewater screed.

As we applaud the first development, we also raise our voices against the second.

So marginalized voices pointing out exactly how, and by whom, they are being marginalized get to run their ideas past you now? IN WHAT FASHION IS THAT NOT CENSORSHIP.

The forces of illiberalism are gaining strength throughout the world and have a powerful ally in Donald Trump, who represents a real threat to democracy.

Okay, thissssss is the point at which the cheese and the cracker separate, to the peril of the cheese. Because instead of calling what Trump and his supporters enact ‘fascism’, which it fucking well is, look it up, they call it illiberalism, which is what you say WHEN YOU ARE TOO MUCH OF A FUCKIN’ COWARD TO CALL FASCISM BY ITS NAME.

But resistance must not be allowed to harden into its own brand of dogma or coercion—which right-wing demagogues are already exploiting.

YEAH, why don’t you give an example for the folks in the back rather than doing the academic equivalent of the noted folk saying, “Everybody knows –––”

The democratic inclusion we want can be achieved only if we speak out against the intolerant climate that has set in on all sides.

Now just a corn-poned second there, Sparky, there’s a BIG DIFFERENCE between the ‘intolerant climate’ for white Christians and Black Muslims; white Trump artistes and Indigenous moms, anybody who voted for Steven Harper and me. For a couple of examples. The lived experience of marginalized peoples is herein magically made equivalent to that of gun totin’, mask scoffin’ fuckwits of all races and genders. IT IS NOT. The discourse of American Black men, who have a 1 in 1000 chance of being shot to death by police over the course of their lives (and even higher odds of dying in custody, should they survive arrest) is not the same as the discourse of a young white rapist caught in the act and protected by a judge who says his whole life is in front of him. The intolerant climate has set in on ONE SIDE. That’s fascism, pushing the middle to the right and people who long for justice to the left WHETHER WE WANT THE SHOVE OR NOT.

The free exchange of information and ideas, the lifeblood of a liberal society, is daily becoming more constricted.

Well, it’s a good fucking thing I’m not listening to people like this, because the free exchange of information and ideas is expanding in my universe; if it isn’t in yours it’s because you aren’t humbly seeking the wisdom of people who aren’t, uh, white. Perhaps you think your moral universe is sufficiently large. I have my doubts.

While we have come to expect this on the radical right, censoriousness is also spreading more widely in our culture: an intolerance of opposing views, a vogue for public shaming and ostracism, and the tendency to dissolve complex policy issues in a blinding moral certainty.

I do not show intolerance to opposing views. I show hatred, scorn, contumely and my entire ass in all its jellied glory to any ratfucker who tells me that it’s an acceptable viewpoint to detest and wish to end, stop the existence of or kill trans women. That the Indigenous ‘got beat fair and square and it’s white land now LOL’. That Coulten Boushie asked to be shot by that asshole SK farmer. That Cindy Gladue asked to have her private parts paraded through court after she’d been murdered. That slavery was two hundred years ago, get over it. That cultural artefacts 40000 years old should be destroyed in international mining operations because who gives a shit what a bunch of blackfellas and their mob want.

What kind of blinding moral certainty are you talking about?

We uphold the value of robust and even caustic counter-speech from all quarters. But it is now all too common to hear calls for swift and severe retribution in response to perceived transgressions of speech and thought.

Let’s just pause for a moment and look at the signatories. Given that Steven Pinker is caught up in the whole Epstein-Maxwell-pedophile-Rape_Island mess, don’t you think it’s telling as hell how he raced to sign anything that tries to position THE LEGIT QUESTIONS OF PEOPLE WHO SURVIVED RAPE AND TRAUMA AT EPSTEIN’S HANDS AS ‘severe retribution in response to perceived transgressions’? ‘Perceived’ because they haven’t had their day in court I suppose. I prefer to believe survivors, which in this case means that I’m part of the retribution for perceived transgressions squad, la me.

More troubling still, institutional leaders, in a spirit of panicked damage control, are delivering hasty and disproportionate punishments instead of considered reforms.

Oh how sad for those being punished. They figured the good times would roll forever and then some 18 year old ‘bitch’ goes to the press about being repeatedly fondled by a prof at Uni. Can’t she take a joke? Can’t he get his day in court?

Editors are fired for running controversial pieces;

RACISM ISN’T CONTROVERSIAL. It’s a fact of life. Running a piece that says that Black people have it good in Amerikkka and they should quite whining and start working is racist, and you should get your ass fired.

books are withdrawn for alleged inauthenticity;

Cultural appropriation DOESN’T EVEN GET NAMED. So if you steal something but you’re soft and kind in your words to the people that you stole from that somehow makes it better. Every Indigenous person reading the above words is likely getting sour sour stomach.

journalists are barred from writing on certain topics;

Isn’t it funny that what really happens is that marginalized people ask TO BE CONSULTED when an article on, say, #CripTheVote or #BlackLivesMatter or #MMIW is commissioned and when they weren’t, they drop a twitterbomb on the writer and editor and given that they’re marginalized WHAT DID YOU EXPECT. They’re going to go for cheap and available.

professors are investigated for quoting works of literature in class;

Yeah, he said the n-word seven times during a single lecture with such relish that even the white people in the class felt queasy, and do you really have to do that while teaching Twain.

a researcher is fired for circulating a peer-reviewed academic study;

which has since been retracted because right wing assholes keep quoting it and misconstruing the conclusions and the data;

and the heads of organizations are ousted for what are sometimes just clumsy mistakes.

Hey, I didn’t find out until the last possible second that my leading light academic was a multiply accused rapist. Despite the mountain of complaints. Too busy drinkin’ at the Faculty Club, fuck all y’all.

Whatever the arguments around each particular incident, the result has been to steadily narrow the boundaries of what can be said without the threat of reprisal.

If you’re going to be a public figure and support racism, misogyny, transphobia, Islamophobia, the right of white men to run Canadian academia in perpetuity because they are naturally better at it, ‘if you’re not doing anything wrong you don’t need to fear the police’ constructions of public safety, and other little lapses in judgement, reprisal is coming, sorry chuckles.

We are already paying the price in greater risk aversion among writers, artists, and journalists who fear for their livelihoods if they depart from the consensus, or even lack sufficient zeal in agreement.

YOU NEEDN’T BE RISK AVERSE IF YOU CONSULT THE PEOPLE YOU’RE WRITING ABOUT AND TAKE CRITICISM WITHOUT BEING A WHINY ASS CLOWNBAG.

This stifling atmosphere will ultimately harm the most vital causes of our time.

RIGHT, because Climate Justice really needs to take the feelings of the rich into consideration. and because justice for descendants of enslaved Africans really needs to take the needs of racists into consideration, and trans women need to take the feelings of JK Rowling into consideration, and Indigenous women need to take the feelings of serving RCMP officers into consideration. Because if they are stifled then ALL OF DISCOURSE OH MY GOD will be destroyed and ‘the most vital causes of our time’ will fail because angry, disenfranchised people aren’t being nice enough to the people oppressing them WHILE CLAIMING that that isn’t what is happening, nope, not at all.

an extension of the tone argument is still the fucking tone argument

The restriction of debate, whether by a repressive government or an intolerant society,

So when Tucker Carlson or Rex Murphy does it it’s okay, since he’s neither the government nor society? I AM SO CONFUZZLED.

invariably hurts those who lack power and makes everyone less capable of democratic participation.

You are too stupid to protest, let us do it. We can’t be trusted either, but at least we’ll sound prettier while we meep from our academic publications, twitter platforms and walled garden journals and newspapers.

The way to defeat bad ideas is by exposure, argument, and persuasion, not by trying to silence or wish them away.

I’m not wishing anything away. I’m pointing out that it’s bullshit, and not even bullshit fit to dress flowerbeds with.

We refuse any false choice between justice and freedom, which cannot exist without each other.

I refuse to believe that a long list of famous rich people signing what is essentially a ‘white tears apologia redux’ (even though BIPOC signed) can make any real contribution to either justice or freedom. The false choice they’re asking me to make is to be a bad and mistaken and unjust and unfree person or agree with them, and they can **** ** ***** * ****.

As writers we need a culture that leaves us room for experimentation, risk taking, and even mistakes.

But when you signatories make mistakes, YOU DON’T OWN THEM! I’m looking at you Bari Weiss and JK Rowling but Noam Chomsky and Greil Marcus are also getting SIDEEYE

We need to preserve the possibility of good-faith disagreement without dire professional consequences. If we won’t defend the very thing on which our work depends, we shouldn’t expect the public or the state to defend it for us.

It’s not good faith disagreement they are wanting to preserve. It’s freedom from consequences when they say something that limits the freedom of others and that, my chums, I will not abide.

a few notes about the signatories. They aren’t all white, they aren’t all men, they aren’t all conservatives. Some of them appear to have been pressured socially into signing. Some of them shouldn’t have done that since it doesn’t reflect their beliefs.

These are people who have money, respect, awards, positions, titles, and WIKIPEDIA PAGES. This is the ‘liberal establishment’ talking. And they are shootin’ poo.

Elliot Ackerman

Noted, decorated US Veteran and supporter of the draft dob April 12, 1980

Saladin Ambar, Rutgers University

Professional academic and Mario Cuomo biographer Married to the President of Oberlin College  —-dob 60s-ish

Martin Amis

Noted Islamophobe dob 25 aug 1949

Anne Applebaum

Journo & Editor, possibly one of the least self absorbed of the signatories dob  July 25 1964

Marie Arana, author

Noted self-hating Latinx editor and author of historical works

September 15 1949 (exactly same age as Paul)

Margaret Atwood

Ah, Pegster, your treatment of Indigenous writers and your complete inability to take any criticism of your public utterances and work at all is legendary in its pettiness and cruelty

dob Nov 18 1939

John Banville

I have no idea why an otherwise relatively blameless Irish writer got dragged into this bullshit

dob 8 Dec 1945

Mia Bay, historian

Black woman historian @ UPenn

dob in the 70s

Louis Begley, writer

dob Oct 6 1933. Avoided dying in the holocaust as a child with forged papers. So this Jew escaped fascism but wants you to mind your tone.  Fuck …

Roger Berkowitz, Bard College

Director Hannah Arendt Centre. Into Heidegger. DOB not available
Paul Berman, writer

I have nothing to accuse this person of, except sheer folly in signing this. Was once sued by Michael Moore, who used the money to make Roger & Me, and I guess we all know how that turned out dob 1949

Sheri Berman, Barnard College

Classic small l liberal academician, refuses to give her dob

Reginald Dwayne Betts, poet

November 5 1980. Black, award winning poet. A talented gent, he will likely regret until his corpsification that he signed this screed

Neil Blair, agent

dob late 60s early 70s

heavily invested in supporting Rowling seeing as how she was responsible for most of his wealth

David W. Blight, Yale University

dob March 1949

Historian of Black lives including Douglass, multi award winning and whiter than I am
Jennifer Finney Boylan, author

dob June 22 1958 She is a trans woman… I don’t know how the trans community is going to deal with her being a cosignatory with Rowling, but hoooooo lassie I just checked on twitter and SCORCH AI YI

David Bromwich

dob December 15 1951 He wants to be loved by conservatives but he mostly trends left in his public announcements, so this is hot garbage for his rep
David Brooks, columnist

out as a conservative commentator, he was born in Toronto but makes his bones in US media

dob August 11 1961
Ian Buruma, Bard College

dob december 28 1951

He’s the ratfondler who published Jian Ghomeshi’s sad little self defense in the NYRB (the one I got published in for yelling as hard as I could type about it) and as far as I’m concerned his meeping about how he was censored and fired for it is the reason this letter was published.  WAH WAH WHITE TEARS
Lea Carpenter

Epitome of well-connected well born white liberal woman who refuses to give her dob
Noam Chomsky, MIT (emeritus)

NOAM YOU ASSHOLE dob? God’s younger than he is
Nicholas A. Christakis, Yale University

dob may 7 1962

a mensch, how he got dragged into this bullshit is like ????

Roger Cohen, writer

dob 2 Aug 1955

supported the invasion of Iraq, enough said

Ambassador Frances D. Cook, ret

dob sept 7 1945

a trailblazer among women in the foreign service of the US she currently runs a merchant bank with evvvvvverything that implies

.
Drucilla Cornell, Founder, uBuntu Project

June 15 1950

she’s worked to undo the damage of apartheid and is a noted feminist scholar

Kamel Daoud

June 17 1970 once had a fatwa out against him but the Algerian courts but the imam in jail for it How he feels about cosigning with Martin Amis? Mighst all Critey

Meghan Daum, writer

dob 1970 Essayist & Guggenheim ‘fellow’
Gerald Early, Washington University-St. Louis

april 21 1952 Black essayist, academic and culture critic

Jeffrey Eugenides, writer

Dexter Filkins
Federico Finchelstein, The New School
Caitlin Flanagan
Richard T. Ford, Stanford Law School
Kmele Foster
David Frum, journalist
Francis Fukuyama, Stanford University
Atul Gawande, Harvard University
Todd Gitlin, Columbia University
Kim Ghattas
Malcolm Gladwell
Michelle Goldberg, columnist
Rebecca Goldstein, writer
Anthony Grafton, Princeton University
David Greenberg, Rutgers University
Linda Greenhouse
Kerri Greenidge, historian
Rinne B. Groff, playwright
Sarah Haider, activist
Jonathan Haidt, NYU-Stern
Roya Hakakian, writer
Shadi Hamid, Brookings Institution
Jeet Heer, The Nation
Katie Herzog, podcast host
Susannah Heschel, Dartmouth College
Adam Hochschild, author
Arlie Russell Hochschild, author
Eva Hoffman, writer
Coleman Hughes, writer/Manhattan Institute
Hussein Ibish, Arab Gulf States Institute
Michael Ignatieff
Zaid Jilani, journalist
Bill T. Jones, New York Live Arts
Wendy Kaminer, writer
Matthew Karp, Princeton University
Garry Kasparov, Renew Democracy Initiative
Daniel Kehlmann, writer
Randall Kennedy
Khaled Khalifa, writer
Parag Khanna, author
Laura Kipnis, Northwestern University
Frances Kissling, Center for Health, Ethics, Social Policy
Enrique Krauze, historian
Anthony Kronman, Yale University
Joy Ladin, Yeshiva University
Nicholas Lemann, Columbia University
Mark Lilla, Columbia University
Susie Linfield, New York University
Damon Linker, writer
Dahlia Lithwick, Slate
Steven Lukes, New York University
John R. MacArthur
, publisher, writer

Susan Madrak, writer
Phoebe Maltz Bovy
, writer
Greil Marcus
Wynton Marsalis, Jazz at Lincoln Center
Kati Marton, author
Debra Maschek, scholar
Deirdre McCloskey, University of Illinois at Chicago
John McWhorter, Columbia University
Uday Mehta, City University of New York
Andrew Moravcsik, Princeton University
Yascha Mounk, Persuasion
Samuel Moyn, Yale University
Meera Nanda, writer and teacher
Cary Nelson, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Olivia Nuzzi, New York Magazine
Mark Oppenheimer, Yale University
Dael Orlandersmith, writer/performer
George Packer
Nell Irvin Painter, Princeton University (emerita)
Greg Pardlo, Rutgers University – Camden
Orlando Patterson, Harvard University
Steven Pinker, Harvard University
Letty Cottin Pogrebin
Katha Pollitt
, writer
Claire Bond Potter, The New School
Taufiq Rahim, New America Foundation
Zia Haider Rahman, writer
Jennifer Ratner-Rosenhagen, University of Wisconsin
Jonathan Rauch, Brookings Institution/The Atlantic
Neil Roberts, political theorist
Melvin Rogers, Brown University
Kat Rosenfield, writer
Loretta J. Ross, Smith College
J.K. Rowling
Salman Rushdie, New York University
Karim Sadjadpour, Carnegie Endowment
Daryl Michael Scott, Howard University
Diana Senechal, teacher and writer
Jennifer Senior, columnist
Judith Shulevitz, writer
Jesse Singal, journalist
Anne-Marie Slaughter
Andrew Solomon, writer
Deborah Solomon, critic and biographer
Allison Stanger, Middlebury College
Paul Starr, American Prospect/Princeton University
Wendell Steavenson, writer
Gloria Steinem, writer and activist

Older than my mother. nuff said

second wave feminist whose ongoing issues with racism need a more settled mind than mine to review and who only apologized for her bullshit views on trans women in 2013. Any modern feminist should be on guard against her, she’s always a day late and dollar short in 2020.
Nadine Strossen, New York Law School
Ronald S. Sullivan Jr., Harvard Law School
Kian Tajbakhsh, Columbia University

Jan 25 1962

Spent years in jail in Iran so he knows from fascism…. and yet
Zephyr Teachout, Fordham University

Lawyer actor politician academic dob October 1971
Cynthia Tucker, University of South Alabama

March 13 1955
Adaner Usmani, Harvard University
Chloe Valdary
Lucía Martínez Valdivia, Reed College
Helen Vendler, Harvard University
Judy B. Walzer
Michael Walzer
Eric K. Washington, historian
Caroline Weber, historian
Randi Weingarten, American Federation of Teachers
Bari Weiss
Sean Wilentz, Princeton University
Garry Wills
Thomas Chatterton Williams, writer
Robert F. Worth, journalist and author
Molly Worthen, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Matthew Yglesias
Emily Yoffe, journalist
Cathy Young, journalist
Fareed Zakaria

a letter

26 June 2020

Provincial Agricultural Land Commission

 

&

Hon. Lana Popham

Minister of Agriculture

 

 

Hi! I hope you and your loved ones are staying safe or recovering well.

 

My name is Allegra Sloman and I’m a science fiction writer, musician and blogger/essayist, living on Coast Salish land in Burnaby. I believe that fertile, well-watered land that is put aside by the Province of B.C. for agricultural purposes should stay that way.

 

Earlier this month I learned from Cedar Isle Farms that a small chunk of land in Agassiz, (the ‘Teacup Properties’,) which has been earmarked for residential growth for almost twenty years, may be removed from the ALR, since there is tremendous housing pressure on the entire lower mainland. This is in part thanks to the naïve / corrupt succession of provincial governments, which, ably assisted by the Harper Government and the absence of any credible federal investigative oversight, enabled a multi-billion dollar property bubble to develop hereabouts.  Of course there are many, less provocative, reasons why building-lot land is scarce and expensive in Agassiz and why the city government would want more of it. 

 

In 1948, Agassiz, indeed the very part of Agassiz which concerns us today, was underwater for a month, during what is referred to as a ‘century’ flood of the Fraser River.

 

If residential land is flooded, especially for that period of time, all the houses must be razed or remediated at extortionate cost. If farmland is flooded, next spring you plant again. Farming is the appropriate use for this land, if we’re using a risk/reward model.

 

Given the climate instability staring us all in the face, is it possible that anyone charged with making the decision to build on this land may be subject to legal action for knowingly allowing residential or business construction? We can expect that ‘century flood’ any year now. It is a reasonable thing to both foresee and wish to mitigate.

 

Was the permission of the local Sts’ailes people to change the use of the land from reserved to development asked? 

 

Until these and other questions around food scarcity and sovereignty are answered, I believe that changing the land use is unwise.

 

Best regards,

second season of Trapped

Was so sad and violent, but also very watchable. After sleeping until 2:30 am I went back to bed around 9:30 and woke up again around 1:30 pm. I watched some TV and now I’m back in bed crying. I’m overdue. I very very rarely cry, rarely cry for more than a couple of minutes because it does horrible things to me, but even so I can only go so long without emotional crying. It’s a fine balance.

I’m a lot more fucked up about yesterday than I can publicly speak of, and of course it’s coming out in my body. The random stabbing pains are not much fun and my feet hurt a lot; my orthotics are giving up and I have to buy new ones, these can’t be reconditioned a second time. It’s four hundred dollars though, so now I have to communicate with my dwindling finances man and tell him to loosen more money.

I’m very glad I took taxis most of the way rather than transit (I took the Skytrain to Edmonds, since Chambar is rather providentially next to a station).

The taxi driver from Edmonds accepted the Capshield as his fare. He was desi, more than that I couldn’t tell you. I told him exactly what I paid for it and it was within 50 cents of the fare. Twice I offered payment, because I want cab drivers to be safe, given how much they ferry little old ladies around. He wouldn’t accept, deflecting me most politely. Contemplate the stubborn hospitality of poor people, their ability not to count cost.

 

It’s 8:30 in the evening and I’m feeling a little better. This too shall pass.

not a good day and it’s only just gone 7

(Clarification… my day got better, managed to come back from being a newt)

Yesterday wasn’t great but I got some stuff done, and today just feels like it’s started off on the wrong foot. Also the night before I got confused about whether I’d taken my bp meds or not. I think I probably did but worrying about it didn’t help.

I want to go to the library. That’s what set me off crying this morning. I want to go to the library and I can’t. I should probably be crying about not being able to hug Alex, or really anybody, but I’m pretty numb from being touch starved. I’m really happy that at least my kids are living with people who can hug them if they ask for it.

I am going to have some coffee and try to connect with people today…. I don’t feel lonely, but I do feel kind of shaky and needy.

healthcare workers in Harrisburg PA – CAN’T FIND CREDIT NOTICE

Image

 

later…..

AAAAAND we left the house and got social distancing timmy ho’s and I had coffee and cream here already so we saved the money and we’re about to go blow our brains on ep 4 of the new Bosch season WHICH AS ALWAYS is fantastic. I ADORE TITUS WELLIVER, to me as Bosch he embodies much that is admirable in a contemporary man. (Great episode, AND I CALLED IT FIRST JEFFnose what I’m talm’bout)

and someone found a wind blowing at 200000 times the speed of an earthly hurricane, so whoosh to you too

 

and

in two months and a week we may have peas. I have finally planted something. Moar later (day sign card ACE OF PENTACLES literally the planting things card)

for the following link… content warning, plenty of references to shit but this made me howl. The fact that he has an accent MAKES IT FUNNIER

EVEN WHEN YOU SEE IT COMING.

 

Get enough sleep and it’s amazing

I am well rested, and in an hour or so will be off to the brekky place with Katie and possibly brO.

Mike’s at Trent’s ManCave™ finishing off the Mustang so he can get it back on the road. I was hoping to see him tomorrow but scuffed knuckles come first. He told me he bought a looper and now I’m mad chuffed to see it. His forearms were so sore they were in spasm the last time I saw him, poor guy.

Started watching the UK show Coroner, really liking it! the coroner/cop investigative team is very well done.

Some woman on reddit wants to know Am I The Asshole for breaking up with a man who admitted he had sex with sheep. My comment : How do you explain to a man with that kind of interior landscape that the real issue is not that he 3x interfered w/ sheep, (although “pick a gif for squick”), but that he doesn’t seem to understand the concept of informed consent, which would make any real life they had a mess.

If he was serious about never doing it again he shoulda kept his muttonhole shut.

I will try to work on Cuffs some more today but I need some kind of narrative hook that doesn’t involved 7 point fucking three billion dollars in money laundering. The fact that my novel has now collided with reality is fucking me up.

Was looking for a weapon from my Scythian heritage (the first blue eyed red heads!!!) and found this tasty store.

long stupid rant, please ignore

A couple of days ago, Misha Collins, Jensen Ackles and Jared Padalecki got on social media to announce that the TV show Supernatural is ending next season (season 15, over 320 episodes) and the finale of all finales will thus be next season – their choice, most likely. A couple of them had been crying, which doesn’t bother me, I’d be crying too if I moved along from the best job I’d ever had even if it was my choice.

Inside the fandom, for the show, there is a substantial chonk of LGBT and straight cisgirl fans who absolutely love on the idea of a romance between Castiel the angel, who appeared season 4, and Dean the Hunter, who, along with his brother Sam the Hunter, carries the show week to week.

There are also Supernatural fans who write fanfic in the A/B/O universe (don’t look, it’s a concourse of poorly realized paraphilias and it’s even worse when you realize that (never mind, just more fandom bs) and I have read precisely one decently written A/B/O fic so I know it’s possible but Jesus it’s GROSS) and write explicitly incestuous fic (it’s called Wincest, and I haven’t even let my eyes roam over one of them, thanks).

Neither of these two things are supported by the show; Destiel, which is the mashup of the names of Dean and Castiel, while not supported word for word in script canon, is teased at, at least once a season, all through the show. I won’t go into the list of specific callouts as to there being romance in the air, just go to the Dean/Castiel page on Superwiki, where it’s all laid out in prim detail.

It’s my belief that the show would rather kill one of the characters than let any of them wander off into the sunset, encoupled. From a strictly ‘whose body is this’ standpoint, there’s no longer any squick about who Castiel’s vessel is, which removed a lot of the hassles about a canonical romance. But

 

it doesn’t fit the show. And Castiel, although he can be briefly physically affectionate, has not been represented as a sexual being, at least not successfully.

So yeah, I’ll write fanfic because it looks like love, romance and lifetime commitment to me. But anybody who thinks Destiel is gonna be canon is a fucking idiot, because the lead actor, the gold standard of a richly successful franchise, is happy with how things are.

The queer-baiting will continue until you make your own art, folx. (Definition of queer-baiting on the page linked to above.)

the baggage retrieval system at Brexit

This week has been researching billionaires so I can kill them in fiction, worrying about Brexit (the isotopes for cancer treatment in Britain aren’t made there and so I’m thinking about having cancer and learning that your politicians are TRYING TO KILL YOU after your own body had a go at you), trying to gird my mental loiny-woinies up to edit that fecking homily, having the shit scared out of me by a ‘worst anchor drops ever’ youtube video (Russians have the best ones), seeing Spiderman:Into the SpiderVerse and blowing my brains on ALL THE COLOURS, talking myself out of buying Jeff brekkie by making it instead (walnut and apricot bread make rilly nice French toast), worrying about Alex and his future on a stressed-out planet even though he’s doing fine and adapting well to the weighted blanket at the moment, avoiding buying a hurdy gurdy (it wasn’t tuned and the crank was not trued up with the playing surface on the wheel MOANING COWS rather than pirate music), more or less getting enough sleep and feeling like I’m not, and generally coming out of the funk I’ve been in. Also playing with this.

Shit’s still bogus, but I’m not.

Zahn

Zahn McLarnon was so incredible in last night’s Westworld S2 ep 8 that all I could think was “It’s too bad it’s so bloody MOM WOULD LOVE THIS”.  Plus the entire episode is subtitled — since it’s not in English.

ANYWAY he ran the gamut of human emotions, first with the dreamlike air of a man in wonderment that he could feel anything at all, and then with the purpose and clarity of a man vouchsafed an unshakeable, grounding, unifying vision. Unbelievably good, and everyone in the episode was good too.

The stuff happening in the background in a couple of scenes was incredible.

The last speech before roll credits. God. Rewatching this episode is going to be a highlight when we do the season 3 preparatory rewatch.

Narrative subversion and apotheosis. Unreal.

My heartfelt love as a creative person for almost everything about the episode and I release my joy and gratitude to the universe for something so fine.

 

Liana on twitter said

11 out of 12 doctors agree that screaming into the void is the only way to handle a Monday morning.

my response

twangy box aka Rowena

Oldfud version: Allegra’s not writing fiction so she’s playing music instead. It’s annoying, but ok.

 

I buy new instruments to encourage me to hear music differently and write songs.

It’s working.

The twangy box now has a number of tunes to go with it.

One is “Form a Line (a protest song)”

One is “Elder Funeral Song”

One is “Horseback Song” <—- newest as of last night

One is “At the Aerie” <—- oldest – started working on it as soon as I got Rowena

One is a new version of an old instrumental “Grieg”

One is “I’m too cheerful for my pants”

 

The damned thing is virtually impossible to tune and the frets are in the wrong places. I shall check with a luthier. But I don’t care. When it’s close to being in tune, it’s a remarkably plangent and docile instrument and it doesn’t hurt me to play it. Otto, unfortunately, is putting my shoulder out of kilter when I play, and guitars are approaching impossible.

 

IP yip yip

Look at me, all brave. Stealing the IP of Kenan Malik. Or is this the property of the New York Times? Gosh, it’s so hard to tell who owns what these days. Anyway, below is a defence of cultural appropriation typed by Kenan Malik. By the time I’m done, my blood pressure will be up twenty points and I’ll look like an idiot in public, but I suspect I’ll look less idiotic than Kenan Malik. For this witless motherfucker has done the classic, classic, classic bait and switch on the topic. He says we’re all richer for cultural mixing. He’s wrong. Having your cultural markers stolen for profit makes somebody richer, and wanting to prevent that is not gatekeeping, it’s survival. He says that all cultural practices are up for grabs because anything else may prevent the privileged from having compassion for the underprivileged, which is a narrow case of special pleading aka bullshit. And he skates by colonialism as if it isn’t the SINGLE BIGGEST ISSUE facing all content creators these days; it’s the issue that palimpsest-wise underlies his argument, and he avoids it the way a cab driver just doesn’t see you when he’s booking off shift.

LONDON — It is just as well that I’m a writer, not an editor. Were I editing a newspaper or magazine, I might soon be out of a job. For this is an essay in defense of cultural appropriation.

yeah, well fuck you. You start out from a position of privilege and you want more.

In Canada last month, three editors lost their jobs after making such a defense.

yeah, well fuck you. They were unprofessional, racist and FUCKING STUPID <<<<<<—– the way elites never get how fragile their blessed state is ——-> and gloriosky, they lost their jobs.

The controversy began when Hal Niedzviecki,

A man with a history of racism and stiffing writers, oh yes. …. gosh, is this a trend? A trans woman of colour told me he stiffed her for solicited writing. It wasn’t much money, but honey, when a first nations content creator thinks she’s selling me something I FUCKING PAY FOR IT. SO … right off the top, a racist asshole with holes in his pockets is represented as being ‘besieged’ ‘beleaguered’ and ‘besmirched’ for having a problematic opinion in public. Will Robinson is getting the danger page from his puckering butthole at this point, at least in the universe I inhabit.

editor of Write, the magazine of the Canadian Writers’ Union, penned an editorial defending the right of white authors to create characters from minority or indigenous backgrounds. Within days, a social media backlash forced him to resign. The Writers’ Union issued an apology for an article that its Equity Task Force claimed “re-entrenches the deeply racist assumptions” held about art.

OKAY LET’S JUST STOP RIGHT HERE. What Mr. Malik, administering his homeopathically weak smackdown of this ‘defence of racist writers for getting shit wrong’ aka ‘horrible censorship event’ fails to mention is ANYTHING LIKE CONTEXT. THE WRITE ISSUE WAS SPECIFICALLY AN ISSUE ABOUT INDIGENOUS WRITING. Okay, let’s go again. THE WRITE ISSUE WAS SPECIFICALLY AN ISSUE ABOUT INDIGENOUS WRITING. He could have put his feelings in his blog. He could have penned it for another publication. That would have been gruesome, but in the era of Doubledown Douchenozzledom, Racist Edition, he used a position of privilege to kick the living snot out of the people who were being represented in the mag. Gosh, folks, you should have seen my twitter feed when this all went down. Indigenous activists and writers were foaming, and justifiably so. Niedzviecki knew up front he was going to get shit, and for the first little while he laughed at the shit he got. Then he went OH SHIT, which is what you do when that college kid “just for a lark” smirk gets wiped off your face by real life.

Another editor, Jonathan Kay, of The Walrus magazine,

A man who, ha ha, is well known as being a Joseph Boyden supporter (another riproaring case of mighty whitey, writing himself into native history with his very well reviewed (by whites) book “Orenda”). He only writes about native issues to talk about how racist natives are, let’s just skip all the decolonializing reasons Mohawk peoples might want to get white people off their land on Canada’s dime. Here’s the link. http://news.nationalpost.com/full-comment/jonathan-kay-the-one-place-in-canada-where-racism-is-still-tolerated-native-reserves. Now that’s not inflammatory at all. He could be talking about any kind of racism that happens in Canada. He could talk about how the city of Thunder Bay has more racially motivated hate crimes per capita than any other place in Canada; the hate crimes are overwhelmingly committed by white people on FN people. But the most racist place in Canada is a reserve. No hon, the most racist places in Canada are not reserves. They’re prisons. But I’ll stick the ‘and in conclusion, fuck you’ pin in that for the time being. WHY IN THE EVERLOVING FUCK would we want to take this asshole seriously about race issues, SPECIFICALLY about First Nations. The multiple appropriations of land, language, people, culture have no emotional content for him; FN are just getting upset because they’re special snowflakes. No hon, you’re the special snowflake, thinking Canada is 150 years old and that makes the First Nations 150 years old too. This kind of racism I call “Measuring the universe with a tapeline the same size and shape as you.” It’s another example of “I’m not racist but we should talk about how all injuns are alcoholic jailbirds,” but tidier… prettier… publishable by the Capitalist Choir of Discordant Twaddle responsible for the National Post.

was also compelled to step down after tweeting his support for Mr. Niedzviecki. Meanwhile, the broadcaster CBC moved Steve Ladurantaye, managing editor of its flagship news program The National, to a different post, similarly for an “unacceptable tweet” about the controversy.

I don’t suppose you’d care to guess what format this unacceptable tweetstorm took. A whole bunch of well-known, well-connected, mostly white writers and journalists, gathered ’round their beleaguered fellow lickspittle to mock the people who took offence and to pledge money for a “Cultural appropriation” writer’s prize. Steve was up for giving $500 but one thing I know about these folks is that they’re faster to pledge cash than cough it up, so I can well believe the fucker was kidding and I’ll give him my brightest and shiniest hall pass for that.

It’s not just editors who have to tread carefully. Last year, the novelist Lionel Shriver generated a worldwide storm after defending cultural appropriation in an address to the Brisbane Writers Festival.

Mr. Malik fails to provide the context, again. Shriver played the clueless and hectoring old white guy (surprise, she’s an American woman) in front of a group of people who mostly thought she was right on. Strangely, indigenous people and people of colour in the audience were horrified, oh puhleez. Them coloured folks and their identity politics, getting all mad about sombreros and such. They didn’t find her arguments about how white people should have unfettered access to all cultural traditions (so they can get the last word in, steer the narrative, drown out indigenous voices and get the fat stacks) convincing, mostly because saying that you mean well when you’re handing out the cultural equivalent of smallpox blankets just doesn’t go down as smoothly as it did two hundred years ago, who knew. Of course fiction is ‘fake’ Shriver but that doesn’t meant it isn’t real, and representation matters if the people being represented are being lied to and about

even more than when you get it right.

Earlier this year, controversy erupted when New York’s Whitney Museum picked for its Biennial Exhibition Dana Schutz’s painting of the mutilated corpse of Emmett Till, a 14-year-old African-American murdered by two white men in Mississippi in 1955. Many objected to a white painter like Ms. Schutz depicting such a traumatic moment in black history. The British artist Hannah Black organized a petition to have the work destroyed.

I would have been happy with the painting not being publicly displayed, but I’ve read Hannah’s letter and I understand where she’s coming from.

Other works of art have been destroyed. The sculptor Sam Durant’s piece “Scaffold,” honoring 38 Native Americans executed in 1862 in Minneapolis, was recently being assembled in the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden. But after protests from indigenous activists that Mr. Durant was appropriating their history, the artist dismantled his own work, and made its wood available to be burned in a Dakota Sioux ceremony.

Which is a fine response. Works of art are destroyed by their creators all the time. I’ve torched my own shit, and why not, it was shit and it was mine.

What is cultural appropriation, and why is it so controversial? Susan Scafidi, a law professor at Fordham University, defines it as “taking intellectual property, traditional knowledge, cultural expressions, or artifacts from someone else’s culture without permission.” This can include the “unauthorized use of another culture’s dance, dress, music, language, folklore, cuisine, traditional medicine, religious symbols, etc.”

It’s not just the permission. It’s the context. It’s the taking as if the act of taking ‘makes you native’ or ‘makes you black’ or ‘honours the traditions’ when it patently, replicably and reliably does not.

Appropriation suggests theft, and a process analogous to the seizure of land or artifacts. In the case of culture, however, what is called appropriation is not theft but messy interaction. Writers and artists necessarily engage with the experiences of others. Nobody owns a culture, but everyone inhabits one, and in inhabiting a culture, one finds the tools for reaching out to other cultures.

But the messy interaction is one-sided. Members of the dominant culture, with law, language, media and custom on their side, interact with the traditions of indigenous and creolized and ancient cultures from a mixture of fear, hatred, stark envy and jealousy, and call it art. Sure art’s theft; but it should also be thought made visible, and the thinking that’s made visible is DOMINANT CULTURE CAN STEAL ANYTHING IT LIKES AND IF YOU COMPLAIN you’re WHINY LITTLE BASTARDS WHO DON’T UNDERSTAND THE BROAD SWEEP OF 2500 YEARS OF COLONIAL HISTORY. Urk.

Critics of cultural appropriation insist that they are opposed not to cultural engagement, but to racism. They want to protect marginalized cultures and ensure that such cultures speak for themselves, not simply be seen through the eyes of more privileged groups.

The tone here is like Saruman chiding Gandalf in The Two Towers. To be chastised is one thing. To be told that your feelings are going to go in a big stew of rhetoric and come out normalized and standardized… part of the dominant culture, acceptable…. yeesh.

Certainly, cultural engagement does not take place on a level playing field. Racism and inequality shape the ways in which people imagine others. Yet it is difficult to see how creating gated cultures helps promote social justice.

Everything is mine to steal and my theft promotes social justice. Fucking breathtaking, isn’t it? Nobody creates a gated culture to start out with, but it may end up that way if anything you leave lying around gets stolen by white assholes – who tell you they’re doing you a favour by popularizing your cultural ideals, and then laugh in your face when you want to get paid. He wrote more, but since I don’t want to quote any more from this masterwork of spineless sucking up to thieves and monsters, I’ll just take my blood pressure off someplace else now. Okay, last questions. Why do members of the dominant culture have so little going on in their own minds that they must appropriate someone else’s marginalized culture in the first place? What failure of imagination is this, and why does Malik get so exercised in its defence?

today’s non-events

Got into a beatdown with a bunch of one of the most self-righteous pot activists (like there’s another fucking kind) on twitter today.

Come ON I smoke, but I don’t smoke and blow smoke in the faces of the allergic and the elderly, and they’re announcing it’s their RIGHT, because this is VANCOUVER, home of TOLERANCE. Yeah I’ll believe that when Canada gives back the unceded lands, you unregenerate failure of logic. I’m like a homophobe for harshing their mellow. Srsly. Got accused of equivalency to homophobia for objecting to people dousing the entire west end in pot smoke for their stupid fucking 420 festival (which leaves heaps of trash mounded everywhere and they’re all cryface because they didn’t get a fucking permit.) F*ck me!

I realized that when you put asterisks in f*cking swearwords you’re putting a leedle asshole right in the meedle of the word and since when you’re swearing there’s usually an asshole involved, it’s mesmerizingly poifect.

I love Buster, he’s an amazing cat. And he loves me too, I know it. I don’t think Miss Margot cares if I live or die, but Buster does.

My latest piece of fanfic smut has more than five hundred likes (it’s cute and hot, so there)

I’ve written a BDSM scene in the same ‘verse but I’m not happy with it yet. I had to put in about 200 words about how the scene is ‘necessary but non-consensual’ which kinda blows (or not!) since scenes need consent if they’re to resonate with me writing, at all. So it’s like “We’ve talked about this – I hate it when you want me (and need me) to top you but I’m s’posed to read your mind – and topping when you’re angry at your partner is a bad bad bad idea” followed by “Do what ya gotta, man, just hit me really hard.” Oh, and there are minor children in the house while this sh*t’s going down, just to make it even more like real life, and our heroes must deal with the domestic consequences of Daddies fighting. I LOVE A CHALLENGE. After all, continuing to have interesting sex after kids *is* a continuing challenge in real life. People want carefree smut? they can look elsewhere; to me smut always has a cost. Who bears it depends on who’s being responsible, or not.

Not that anybody wants to know, but I’m really not into any of those behaviours in real life. Nagging at volume is sort of where I max out, ask any of my exes.

Continuing to have the poly life discussion with someone. It’s painful. Really painful. I feel like I have my nose up again a particularly interesting window. I can smell bread baking. But no. G*ddamned heteronormative uncommunicative bushwah (on their end, not mine.) But at the same time there’s NO F*CKING POINT to becoming an elder if you don’t understand that real life takes time, opportunities for growth don’t wait, and if you don’t consider who’s going to be impacted by your decisions, your years, your grey hairs and and your learning means squat. I am still 22 in some corner of my persona, for my enthusiasms still have all the joy of my youth; I just can’t write everyone affected by my behaviour out of the script any more. I do from time to time, but not all the time.

Fortunately, since I’m pushing 60 with a broom, I can contemplate my greed like the gorram caged bear that it is. Still here, but not running the show.

Katie is still having a rough time and she and Alex are both sick again.

I am not having a rough time. I feel pretty good, all things considered. I have another two weeks of full time work. If that changes, I’ll deal with it. I actually have a plan to deal with it that I think will make almost everyone happy, at least temporarily.

Rogue One is a fucking fantastic movie. Getting eaten by Disney was the best thing that ever happened to the franchise.

Now to check if my money transfer has come through.

I’ll have you know I cleaned the housekeeping office

I scraped dried coffee blerg, elderly scotch tape and who the hell knows what off many surfaces tonight.  Nobody will notice but me, and that makes me happy.

 

Hello, new bingo card, based on my writing….

 

Yesterday the whole fam damily, less Jeff, went to Edmonds pool and frolicked.  I only had two hours sleep at the time so I stayed in the hot tub – every time I got out I was chilled TO THE BONE.  Alex is a complete joy. Paul was still thinking about his happy family time at 10 pm and texted me to give him a lift.  I AM SO LUCKY AMONG MY FRIENDS AND FAMILY I feel set among stars.

I literally just slept 12 hours

Which is kind of inconvenient. But I’m fighting a bug again, I think, and my dry right eye is saying THANK YOU because it is experiencing no sensation of pain or abrasion and opened without being stuck shut, like most other mornings.

I also slept through every chance to make arrangements for the evening’s entertainment or the possibility of being sociable with my brother, which I’m not impressed with.

I must now be vewwy quiet, and go to my list of things I can accomplish by being quiet.

Okay: so yesterday I promised to, in a literary sense, and in a literary sense only, kick Konrad Yakabuski, a crypto-racist hack working for a variety of mangy sheets but currently the Groan and Wail (aka Mop and Pail, Goad and Flail) in his equally crypto goolies.

The first paragraph is the establishing shot.  “I’ve been away so my vision’s clearer.” That’s the premise, the tone, the “I’ve seen things you’d never understand” crap.

No, your vision hasn’t cleared, Mr. Oblivious Child of White Settlers.  (And with that name, he’s *likely* counting among his ancestors the first Polish migrants to Canada, although I can’t prove it.) All you’re describing is how you couldn’t truly see where you were when you left, and centre your dislocation as somehow important, upon your return.

Mentioning the barren British homeliness of downtown Toronto is supposed to carry some freight of humour, but alas it does not. All it tells me is that he doesn’t know that it was ANOTHER colonized people, the Scots masons who fucking built downtown Toronto, who built that ugliness, under the watchful direction of (mostly) Brits. SO IN THE FIRST FUCKING PARAGRAPH…. drum roll please!

He’s clueless about the colonial history of Toronto after the FN were pushed off.  But does he wisely see his ignorance and make with the hard pass?

No he does not. He continues to draw a fine paycheque for his purulent emissions.

As a journalist, belonging has never been my main aspiration in life.

Putting aside that every great journalist who ever lived, of whatever stripe, puts themselves squarely among the human family. Perhaps that means never having a settled home but that’s not the same as not feeling like you belong to the human family. He doesn’t actually say what his main aspiration is, which is funny. It certainly isn’t the discovery and sharing of truth….

Then he says, and what complete and utter bullshit,

Real journalists typically take pride in shunning all labels, attachments, causes and collectivisms.

Just in case you think I’m being a little harsh by calling this bullshit, let me walk you down memory lane with a list of Canadian journalists, and I ask you to frame them against this remarkable statement and see how well they fit in his stunted neoliberal construction.

Pierre Berton.

Stevie Cameron

Barbara Frum

Victor Malarek

Well shit bag, they don’t.  They were all supremely opinionated and attached themselves TO PLENTY of causes and collectivisms, to wrassle Yak’s fucking red-baiting bullshit phrase into some kind of context. And those are the WHITE journalists I pulled out of my ass. What award winning FN journos like the ones at Windspeaker might have to say on the subject makes for bitterly amused speculation on my part.

Then, the classic line:

We are chroniclers of, rather than participants in, the society around us.

RILLY?

He doesn’t vote? have a cell phone with awesome apps on it? he doesn’t drive?  He has a twitter account, f’Chrissakes. Maybe he has a mortgage, or lives in a rental, rather than a tent under a highway.  He eats in restaurants and consequently uses the sewer system… one hopes.  IT’S EXACTLY THIS ATTITUDE, that he can separate himself from the herd with words (by talking about his calling as if he was pulled aside by the Jesus of Journalism on the Highway to Better Circulation) that allows him to believe the things he does. He calls himself a chronicler rather than a participant because he’s calling out what he perceives as his superiority.

waaaaal. All it does for me is tell me that he doesn’t see where his words are pointing.

Let’s pause for a moment. How does Allegra separate herself from the herd with words? Am I not guilty of the same white wordy masturbatory bs?

Sure. But I am a member of the human family, all of it. And I am a student of history. All of it. And I love my country. Not all of it, because some of it is structurally sexist, racist, colonial and a teensy bit fascist. But I’ve had to ask myself if I would take up arms for the conception I have of Canada, which is not a flag or a collection of laws but of a group of people who share a home, and the answer is, yes. This is a hard thing for me to say in public given how anti-colonial I can be, but it’s true, and I won’t linger over the dissonance I feel about it.

I am separate from other people because I occupy a frail, non-neurotypical body which preselects many of the things I like and hate for me.  But I’m just like everyone else, EXCEPT in how I think and speak and act. I breathe, I came from two parents, I’m going to die, I try to find love and acceptance and avoid pain and loneliness, I eat & excrete, I consume goods and services, I make things, I destroy things, I try to communicate.

In my separation from others I wish to maintain an egalitarian world view; a compassionate world view; a self-inclusive world view; and a world view as passionately committed to the destruction of capitalism as firmly as I am currently entangled in its fractal tentacles.

So yeah, I was a bit pissed at the use of the word collectivism. It’s a goddamned dog whistle – “I am anti-communist.”  Fuck yeah, you’re by extraction Polish and living in Canada, go figure. But more subtly, he’s saying that he’s clueless about how he participates in the Collective that is the Capitalist Posse, protecting everything that the Globe and Mail’s owners, subscribers and advertisers hold dear. Less subtly he’s saying that journalists who are overt about their causes AREN’T AS GOOD AS HIM. So he wants a fucking medal for being racist in public in the service of capitalism, but he doesn’t want to draw too much attention to that.  The fellation takes place in private, I guess.

Okay full marks to him, now I think of it. Most Canadians wouldn’t get the freight of the word collectivism.

Then he makes his concession.

Still, not even journalists can escape their genes, childhoods, experiences or environments – everything that determines who we are.

Oh boy.  He’s just plain folks, folks.

Our identities are never fixed, but subject to constant redefinition. In 2013, the Canadian part of my identity needed some refreshment and refinement. I found both in Joseph Boyden’s novel The Orenda, a haunting story of blood and belonging set amid the 17th-century Iroquois Wars.

HARD STOP. Joseph Boyden, who won awards for the above noted novel, has discovered a native ancestor and wishes to be Métis.

He isn’t.  Didn’t hear me? HE ISN’T.

There are shitpiles of settler whites with native ancestry in this country. I’m related to them on both sides of the family.

My tribe is Scythian, just in case you were wondering; they liked warrior women, weed, deer, horses and travel, and that’s good enough for me. (Merely trying to point out how white people claiming tribal affiliations is clueless newage bs.)

I am not shameless, stupid, venal and greedy enough to want to claim any FN of Turtle Island as my own, and most important of all, I have no FN grannie, no aunties, no uncles, no nieces, no nephews; no land; no language; I also have no UNRECOGNIZED TOXIC RESERVOIR OF GUILT, SHAME AND DENIAL that makes me want to drain it by claiming an experience THAT IS NOT MINE. If you don’t have a First Nations family willing to claim you, you aren’t FN. It’s that fucking simple, folks.

Joseph Boyden doesn’t have a FN family. Therefore….

BUT HE WANTS TO BE. And because he’s white, we should let him. That is the underlying support for Yak’s contention that we should stop ‘lynching’ him.

Note that the link says lynch and the headline’s been changed.

NOTE IT. It’s important. It shows the Globe and Mail knows it fucked up, but not enough to change the URL too.

Meanwhile, in twitterland, the pixels are practically catching fire over in the fabulous network of indigeneity. Joseph Boyden is ONLY BEING SUPPORTED by FN people with a long, long history of toxic sexism, slur campaigns, greed for federal cash and faux reconciliation.  Not one credible First Nations spokesperson supports Boyden in his claims to be indigenous. He’s Grey Owl for the Trump Era.

Then Yak goes on to describe how the indigenous awakening was important for the Canadian identity.

Riiiight.

Nice indians are good for the Canadian identity.  Noisy, university trained, angry, pushy, sophisticated, technically savvy, passionate life livers and givers standing up for the 600 plus nations and languages that white people keep trying to develop off the face of the earth, not so good for Yak’s construction of the modern Canadian identity.

Native life must be interpreted by white people to be real.

I used to believe it too.

Sorry Yak. Once you make the connection, as I have, over the internet, with real native activists; hear their voices; have private conversations with them; get scolded (in my case repeatedly) by them for not hearing, not thinking, not listening, not ‘getting it’, you can’t use language the way Yak uses it.

The rest of the article is shite so I won’t quote from it.

He uses the two words identity politics a lot.

If, as I suspect he is, he came from the Polish enclave in northeastern Ontario, I’d like to ask him a question.

How would you feel if every other kind of white person who lives in that part of the world pushed you off your land because you were Polish? Would you indulge in identity politics then?

The First Nations are NATIONS.  They practice ‘identity politics’ which is a dog whistle for ‘coloured folks being uppity’ and ‘faggots being uppity’ and ‘trans being uppity’ and ‘anybody who doesn’t identify as a temporarily embarrassed millionaire being uppity’ because they have the THREE QUALIFYING FACTORS of NATIONHOOD. Land, people and language. Sure, their governance is screwed up in many places BUT WHOSE FAULT IS THAT? The Government of Canada, acting for all of us.

Yak wants to reduce the nations of Turtle Island to ‘Canadians’ and then bag at them for not being good Canadians. THEY AREN’T FUCKING CANADIANS. They have to live with the laws and the racism and the ‘can’t you deal with being a conquered people’ bs, but they aren’t Canadians. They can have a Canadian passport, but that’s because they don’t have an alternative if they want to, you know, live in the world, travel on business or to see rellies or for pleasure, like human people do.

So read the rest of the editorial with that in mind.

Yak, you are too clueless to live in this world you’re so far above.