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Attention, smart people: Over 100,000 have RSVP’d for tonight’s Bernie Sanders mega-event


 

“There are no coincidences, but sometimes the pattern is more obvious.”—Neil Innes

Attention, smart people! There is a MAJOR POLITICAL EVENT that’s happening—TODAY July 29th, 2015—across this nation that you might not have heard about for Bernie Sanders. Tonight Sanders will be speaking via the Internet to over 100,000 heavily-motivated people meeting for the first time at 3,520 Bernie-related house parties and get-togethers in bars and restaurants and union halls and church basements, etcetera, etcetera, all across the United States.
 

 
Yes, over 100,000 people have found other like-minded people in their area via this map and RSVP’d to get informed and to volunteer for Sanders’ increasingly astonishing campaign. I live in Los Angeles where there are well over 100 such gatherings. I’m married, but I would assume that a lot of smart, good-looking people would attend such events. Aren’t you even curious? Of course you are. Why not search for your zip code and see what happens?

Has there ever been a larger, more dynamic and more INSTANTANEOUS grassroots movement in American history? If there has been one, they must’ve kept it a secret. Even the Tea party movement didn’t grow nearly as fast as this. And after today’s event, what happens next?

I can’t wait to find out.

The sky’s the limit, but the goal is the White House. This can happen, people.

Bernie Sanders for President: It’s time to take it to the next level, America. He can’t do it without YOU.
 

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Someone gave KKK marchers the farty tuba accompaniment they deserved


 
Dangerous Minds reported on the KKK rally held at the South Carolina statehouse on Saturday. What was missing from that report was this video of the Klan’s march toward the statehouse. Genius South Carolina sousaphonist, Matt Buck, gave the members of the KKK and Nazi NSM the farty-sounding accompaniment they deserved. I nearly lost my shit when he busted into the damaged rendition of “Ride of the Valkyries.”

Absolutely perfect.
 

Posted by Christopher Bickel | Leave a comment
Hey Ya: Sign the petition to have Outkast carved onto Stone Mountain’s Confederate memorial!
07.16.2015
08:43 am

Topics:
Activism
Amusing

Tags:
Big Boi
Confederate flag
Outkast


Credit: Mack Williams
 
Just a few days after an NAACP call for banishing the Confederate symbols on Georgia’s Stone Mountain monument, artist Mack Williams created a moveon.org petition, addressed to Georgia’s state house, state senate and Governor Nathan Deal, offering a compromise.

Williams’ petition calls for adding Outkast’s Big Boi and Andre 3000, Atlanta’s most beloved hip-hop duo, alongside Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson. Williams believes the addition would improve an already “great monument.”

I believe it’s important to recognize the history and heritage of all Georgians. However, the carving of Davis, Lee, and Jackson on the side of Stone Mountain only represents a small, regrettable time in the history of the Peach State. It’s high time we added a bit more of our history and culture to this monument.

By no means do we wish to erase or destroy the current carving, which, regardless of its context, is an impressive and historic work of art. We simply wish to add new carvings, of Atlanta hip-hop duo Outkast, to the mountainside. There’s plenty of room.

I believe that Daddy Fat Sacks and Three Stacks should be carved riding in a Cadillac (as is their wont). This will help the new carving blend nicely with the Confederates who are on horseback.

Outkast are two of the greatest Georgians in the history of our state. It’s about time the Empire State of the South paid proper tribute to them, while also improving a great monument and tourist attraction.

As of this writing, the petition has nearly 4,000 signatures. One half of Outkast, Big Boi, has given his nod of approval to the idea. On Wednesday afternoon he retweeted a link to a story about the petition, with the addition of a “thumbs up” emoji.
 

 
H/T: AJC.com

Posted by Christopher Bickel | Leave a comment
Just (don’t) do it: Nike sneaker made from human flesh-like latex
07.14.2015
07:33 am

Topics:
Activism
Art

Tags:
Nike

Animatronic Flesh Shoe
Animatronic Flesh Shoe
 
In 2004, Canadian artist Adam Brandejs created a piece of art called the “Animatronic Flesh Shoe”. Brandejs even included bits of his roommates actual hair for realism. Yikes.
 
Animatronic Flesh Shoe with real hair
 
Brandejs used the logo for high-profile brand Nike on the piece that is actually made from latex that looks remarkably like human flesh. And that is because Brandjes made the rubber casts for the shoe out of molds made from his own skin. Brandejs then wired the shoe and connected it to electric motors that are run through a circuit to interpret signals sent out from an MP3 Player, enabling the shoe to move. Or more appropriately as you will see, “twitch” sporadically as if it was in the throes of death. Brandejs’ intention when he created “Animatronic Flesh Shoe” was to help enlighten consumers on the conditions in sweatshops that make our everyday products, as well as the labor practices employed by companies that make the things we all think we can’t live without. Here’s a part of Brandejs’ statement on his piece:
 

If the flesh disturbs you, then the reality behind the issue would disturb you far more if we opened our eyes long enough to see it. We live in a culture disconnected from what it is doing to itself and others, we choose to ignore rather than deal with the reality we have created for ourselves. This piece ultimately comments on this simple idea.

 
More photos and a video of the flesh shoe in motion follow. Your move, Buffalo Bill.
 
Animatronic Flesh Shoe
 
Flesh-like latex for the Flesh Shoe
The flesh-like latex that was used to make “Animatronic Flesh Shoe”
 

“Animatronic Flesh Shoe” twitching

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
Hidden camera shows what it’s like to be gay in Russia
07.13.2015
10:12 am

Topics:
Activism
Queer
The wrong side of history

Tags:
Russia


 
Americans became aware during the run-up to the Sochi Olympics last year that Russia was undergoing something like the opposite of the social revolution that has brought some approximation of equal rights to homosexuals within the United States. If anything, Russia was regressing, and the persistence of anti-gay hate was depressing to behold, just as Russia was the athletic center of the world, and just a few months before that country’s ominous annexation of parts of Ukraine.

ChebuRussiaTV are something akin to the Yes Men of Russia—they make political points and further social progress through the use of pranks. Just a few weeks ago they ruffled some feathers by mimicking oral sex on public park benches.

Their latest idea is incredibly simple and yet devastating in the virulence of the reaction it has elicited. All they did was have two young men walk through public places in Moscow holding hand—not kissing, not engaging in crazy PDA behavior, just holding hands—and documented the reactions of ordinary citizens, most of which are pretty nauseating.

In addition to the occasional resigned sentiment of “Where is this country going?” and various epithets of abuse, ChebuRussiaTV documented two cases of assault (arguably), taking the form of a rough shoulder hit—the second of which certainly threatened to get out of hand.

The Cyrillic headline of the video—”Избиение гомосексуалистов в России”—translates as “Beating homosexuals in Russia” according to Google Translate. The English title is “Reaction to gays in Russia social experiment,” which is a good deal more euphemistic.
 

 
via The Daily Dot

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
War is Hell: Morbid commercial parodies bluntly reveal the cold, hard reality of a military career
06.30.2015
06:55 am

Topics:
Activism
Advertising
Amusing

Tags:
action figures
war
Britain


 
Veterans For Peace, a UK organization of war veterans, has recently set up a website in opposition to child recruitment of soldiers. Their mission is to raise the minimum UK recruitment age from sixteen to eighteen. The site makes its point with a set of (VERY) darkly humorous parody action figures: “PTSD Action Man,” “Paralyzed Action Man,” and “Dead Action Man.”
 

 

 
The site also features a set of (brilliant) fake commercials detailing the realities of war casualty.

We’re not sure whether to laugh or cry:
 

 
Via Veterans For Peace UK

Posted by Christopher Bickel | Leave a comment
Brawl over the Confederate flag spills into the streets outside of South Carolina’s statehouse
06.30.2015
06:44 am

Topics:
Activism
Idiocracy
Race

Tags:
South Carolina
Confederate flag


Photo posted to Facebook of the scene outside the South Carolina statehouse during a brawl over the Confederate flag.
 
At approximately 7:15 PM on June 29th, a brawl broke out in front of the South Carolina statehouse between supporters of the Confederate flag and protesters seeking to have it removed from the statehouse grounds.

According to the Bureau of Protective Services, about 30 anti-flag protesters were on statehouse grounds when a group of fifteen vehicles carrying pro-flag supporters pulled up and stopped in the middle of Gervais Street, in front of the statehouse. Between eight and ten occupants exited their vehicles and began to engage in an altercation with the crowd.

One eyewitness claimed tensions escalated when a convoy of Confederate flag supporters began shouting “racist remarks” from their vehicles at anti-flag protesters.

According to another eyewitness, a Confederate flag was ripped from a passing car of hecklers. The car following behind stopped, and a passenger emerged, confronting the crowd, inciting the brawl.

Another eyewitness stated, “several people were fighting and it spilled into Gervais St, and some people started pulling over and getting out of their cars to join in. Police began separating the two groups and pushing them back onto the statehouse grounds, and then a small group charged the other group, a quick secondary scuffle broke out, and then the small group took off running with several dudes chasing them behind the capitol.”

One man was arrested at the scene and charged with disorderly conduct.

An anti-Confederate flag rally on June 20th attracted nearly 2000 protesters. A similar rally is scheduled for July 4th. The Ku Klux Klan has also scheduled a pro-Confederate flag rally for July 18. It looks like it’s going to be a long, hot summer.

Here is eyewitness footage of the fight:
 

Posted by Christopher Bickel | Leave a comment
Civil Rights icon Fannie Lou Hamer speaks about her childhood as a sharecropper
06.03.2015
05:46 am

Topics:
Activism
Feminism
History
Politics
Race

Tags:
Fannie Lou Hamer


 
I was at the Library of Congress last week, and while it was utterly grand to be there, I rolled my eyes so hard I nearly snapped a couple of cables when I spotted that pernicious Thomas Carlyle quotation high up on the wall: “THE HISTORY OF THE WORLD IS THE BIOGRAPHY OF GREAT MEN.” Look, I understand that it was put there over a century ago, and I wouldn’t expect simple values dissonance alone to be a sufficient reason to alter something so historical, but it was still a drag to see that in 2015 (the exhibit lionizing Columbus and Cortez’s New World explorations without mentioning the word “genocide” anywhere was also a disappointment—the USA still has a loooooong-ass way to go).

One of the deep faults of the “Great Man” theory of history is that it excludes the contributions of thousands, if not millions, of unheralded activists who, though they didn’t happen to be the marquee names who got to make speeches that were recorded for posterity, still committed much of their resources and lives to the causes and movements that shaped the world we live in. A more obvious flaw is the continually maddening omission of great women. For example, I hold it as a significant demerit (among many) of the public education system that I never knew the name of the amazing Shirley Chisholm, the first black congresswoman and the first major-party black candidate for President of the United States, until my late college years, when I was channel-surfing and I randomly caught a doc about her on PBS.

Another such figure I’m salty about never learning about in school, also from the US Civil Rights Movement, as it happens, is voting rights organizer Fannie Lou Hamer, a crucial activist and orator whose contributions to freedom in America are not, by my reckoning, sufficiently heralded—she not only endured being beaten and shot at, she underwent a non-consensual hysterectomy as part of a eugenics program. Justifiably furious at such shocking abuse at the hands of her doctor, she dove headlong into activism, helping found the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party and giving a powerful and pivotal speech to the 1964 Democratic National Convention Credentials Committee, challenging the legitimacy of Mississippi’s all-white delegation, and describing the horrors she endured for merely trying to register to vote. Presumptive nominee Lyndon Johnson, in a total asshole move, tried to keep the speech out of the news by calling a specious press conference. Hamer got crazy amounts of news coverage anyway.

Continues after the jump…

Posted by Ron Kretsch | Leave a comment
What if men had periods?
05.27.2015
06:13 am

Topics:
Activism
Feminism

Tags:
menstruation
wateraid

001manponstdxcy8.jpg
 
The international charity WaterAid has launched a series of spoof adverts imagining what the word would be like if men had periods.

The ads are part of WaterAid’s campaign for Menstrual Hygiene Day, on May 28th, to raise awareness of the 1.25 billion women who do not have access to a toilet during their period.

Periods. There it is, right there on the screen!

How does it make you feel? Awkward? Embarrassed? Like you’d want to run from the room screaming if someone started talking about their monthly bleed?

Now imagine how you’d be feeling if men had periods instead of women.

We think it would be pretty different. Maybe periods would make you think of virility and manliness – or of those manpon adverts you’d seen on TV, that would look a bit like this:

 

 
More on if men had periods, after the jump….

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
‘This is not Jacquie anymore’: Son documents mother’s heartbreaking descent into dementia

001dementiacoursenvurdfvbhv001.jpg
 
These moving photographs document one woman’s gradual deterioration into early onset dementia. They were taken by Jake Heath from Sydney, Australia, who photographed his mother Jacquie during the course of her illness.

The first photograph (above) was “taken in 2005 or so. At this point, Jacquie had Pick’s Disease, but it had been misdiagnosed as menopause. She would be about 48 here.”

Pick’s Disease is a type of Frontotemporal Dementia that causes progressive destruction of nerve cells in the brain. It is a rare disease and its symptoms include dementia and loss of language. Sufferers usually die within two to ten years.

Jake and his sister Zoe were living in Australia when they first heard the news about their mother. Their parents were living in Toronto, Canada, when his father Tim told Jake and Zoe the heartbreaking news that their mother Jacquie was going to die—as Jake told the Daily Mirror:

“At the time I didn’t believe it. Zoe cried, but mum reassured her that it was ok and ‘all part of God’s plan’. Since then it’s been entirely surreal.

“The thing with Pick’s disease is that it has some very obvious stages. It’s always the stages that get to me the hardest, whether it’s paranoia, or forgetting names, forgetting how to eat, etc. Her condition is now the worst it’s ever been. Six weeks ago she stopped walking, whereas previously she would spend all day hobbling around the living room. She also stopped being able to eat solid foods and is now on pureed. It’s like she has aged backwards.

“Life for the family now is surprisingly not that bad. Dad is a 24/7 carer for her, but he also has a lot of help from the government.

“I go down to Batemans Bay (where my parents live) to visit every six weeks or so. I think Zoe finds it harder, being a new mother and not having her own to guide her. Dad is a very strong and resilient man. His day-to-day is looking after her, but he has mentioned a few times to me that as long as he keeps his attitude in check he’s OK. And that attitude is one of doing what’s best, being easy on yourself, and just getting on with it.”

Jake’s father Tim explained what it has been like looking after his wife:

“The journey I’m on at the moment, it’s the long goodbye. It’s been happening since 2007, so for seven years she’s been slowly losing function and capability. I haven’t had a conversation with her in years where she’s actually said anything that’s made sense.

“When you’ve been doing it for this long you’d sort of rather it would have been something quick, like a car accident or something. At least it’s quick and you can move on.”

According to the World Health Organization, 47.7 million people globally are affected by dementia—there are 7.7 million new cases every year with just over half (58%) living in low to middle income households.  Around 10% of people develop the disease at some point in their lives. The estimated proportion of the general population aged 60 and over with dementia at a given time is between five to eight per 100 people.

The total number of people with dementia is projected to be 75.6 million in 2030. It is believed this figure will almost triple by 2050 to 135.5 million.

My father, who died last month, suffered Alzheimer’s and dementia. It is believed he had suffered from the disease for several years before diagnosis. During his last year—from February 2013 onwards—his deterioration became very rapid and his behavior and mood swings increasingly erratic, unpredictable and violent. During his last months, he was admitted to a care home as we were no longer able to give him the attention he required. Most of the time he slept at the care home, when awake he was often irate and confused. He eventually fell into a coma and died from pneumonia.

Jake posted his photographs on Imgur under the heading “This is what Early Onset Dementia looks like.” This is what dementia looks like—the slow, horrendous eating away of a loved one until just the husk is left.

Though heartbreaking, Jake believes there is one good thing to have come out of this terrible disease:

“The silver-lining of this illness is that it has brought us closer together as a family, and it has given us a chance to love Jacquie the way she loved us.”

 
002dementiacoursebsdfghc2.jpg
 

On the beach, around 2010. Lots of Jacquie around. She can’t remember too much though.

 
003dementaicoursezxtyuhb3.jpg
 

2010 again. Riding on the back of dad’s motorbike was one of her favourite things to do. She got quite terrified when the helmets were on, but once moving had a blast. This had to stop in 2011, when an on-bike paranoia attack nearly caused an accident.

 
004dementiacoursenbsrtyohgvcefg4.jpg
 

Beach-time walks. Weight is falling off. Conversation is non-existent.

 
More of Jake’s photos and his film ‘This is not Jacquie anymore,’ after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
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