The Right to Protest

Posted in History, Politics, Writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 10, 2016 by urbannight
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Time to demand change!

I’m getting a little tired of all the people saying that the football player who will not stand during the anthem is disrespectful and he should stand up for the anthem no matter what.

I totally disagree.  Requiring anyone to stand and display support and favor for anything political is something I would expect of Nazi Germany, Communist China, or North Korea.  Where people can see and take note of anyone who is not displaying the appropriate behavior so the government can come after them.

It makes me think they really don’t understand everything about the America Revolution.  One of the key items was the right to be able to say that you disagree with the government stance on something or some government action.  You couldn’t do that in public in England without running the risk of getting arrested for sedition or attempt to incite a riot.  Even if there was no riot and no intent to start one.  Because there had been riots, the government was passing stricter and more oppressive laws thinking that would prevent riots.

To say people have to conform to public displays of patriotism is completely un-American.  In fact, the right to protest in order to effect change is perhaps the MOST American action one can take.  Peacefully refusing to stand for the national anthem because local and federal government is doing nothing to hold the police accountable for their actions and for doing nothing to stem the tide of increasing acts of police brutality against civilians of all races is a valid form of political protest that does not harm anyone but still makes a point.

I rather hope the Seattle Seahawks remain seated, en mass, is support of this other player and in support of all the people, both innocent and guilty, who have been killed, brutalized, raped, permanently injured by excessive use of force.

Reading people’s comments on various articles on-line, you see a growing situation where people are saying it is okay for policy to kill people for simply asking WHY.  Why was I stopped?  What did I do?  Or for people to think it is okay for police to kill people who were guilty of a crime even thought the person was NOT resisting, or was already subdued and under police control BEFORE the police brutality began.  People are supporting officer, police or correctional, who refuse to provide treatment to people already in custody because they think the suspect/inmate is faking and then that person dies in the next couple of hours.

This nation is turning into a fascist police state because people are not demanding accountability from the police force.  People who investigate these events almost always side with the police.  Even in cases where there is clear video evidence that should indicate otherwise.  Until people demand an unbiased investigation into these events and demand accountability and demand a police force that is trained in de-escalation tactics rather than shot first and don’t worry about getting in trouble then things will actually continue to get worse and worse.

I was taught to go to the police when in trouble, but the police are so often attacking and injuring people who ask for help that I’m as afraid of the police as I am of criminals and don’t see any sign of improvement anywhere in the near future.

People might argue with my use of “fascist” in this contect because they usually associate it with dictatorships.  But it is a form of radical nationalism.  And when I listen to people who say that ALL people should publically support the President’s actions, even if they disagree, in order to provide a united front against the rest of the world makes me feel that ‘fascist’ and ‘fascism’ are completely appropriate.  Of course, I find it interesting that as soon as we ended up with a black president most of the people demanding that level of patriotism were the ones who suddenly decided that they would do anything in their power to prevent anything he wanted to accomplish from happening.

But now a lot of people are applying this attitude toward the police.  Oh, the police are in a dangerous job so they should be forgive if they shoot as soon as they give instructions, not letting the person have time to comply, then blaiming it on the person for noncompliance.  Those in authority over the police are constantly deciding these acts of police brutality and murder were within the scope of their authority under the situation.  Fear for their safety has become an escape clause, a get out of jail free card, and is being considered appropriate even if the person was already in compliance or even already in custody and hasn’t done anything.

Body cams are catching officers threatening to shoot people before anything else and threatening to shoot people after they are in custody and saying entirely unapproratiate and unprofessional things.  While they are on the job, and when they have people in custody, they should be trained to maintain a certain level of professionalism and be expected to behave appropriately.  But they are not.  This feeds into their mentality that they can do anything, say anything, and be as brutal as they want to.

Something has to stop.  We as the public have got to start demanding better behavior and accountablity from the police force.

 

 

Trying to come back.

Posted in Activities, Apartments, Writing with tags , , , , on September 9, 2016 by urbannight
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How I feel now.

I realize that my halt in writing coincided with three key events.  Getting a roommate, diagnosis of Diabetes, and a dramatic uptick in the workflow at work.  I used to fill in my down time with writing because it kept me busy at my desk and it looked like I was working.  In a way I was.  I was keeping my typing up.  Sounds good to me anyway.

The Diabetes still isn’t really under control.  Although the doctor things it isn’t necessarily because I am doing things wrong, but it looks like the natural progression of the disease.  It does get worse as you get older and have it longer.  She said the only people who ever have drastic improvement and ‘reverse’ the progression of it are the people who are able to make drastic changes rather than the people who just make the recommended changes.  But that most people can’t do such drastic changes that would be needed.  My new place is a mile from work. Once I’m settled in, I plan to start walking to work.

I just moved into my own place again.  I still have to unpack and get organized again, but maybe I’ll be able to think and breath again.  Writing was like cleaning.  I didn’t like doing it when other people were around and my roommate was always around.  He had even less of a life than I did.

Work has stabilized for the first time in YEARS.  I actually have moments when I have to hunt for things to fill my time.  So I’m going to try to get back into the mindset of writing again.

I need a new skull objet d’art to commemorate it.

 

 

 

Curtains; Drawn Back: By Seth Dombach

Posted in Writing on August 24, 2016 by urbannight

Reblog since it is lovely and more people need to read it.

Kloipy Speaks

In the ever present dying light

Of another evening come to pass

Under the last glow of the setting sun

We find ourselves in the wondrous vision

Of the grand scheme of it all

Watching as the clouds change

From white to pink to yellow to blue

And the hush falls

The sky opens up to the darkness

And one by one distant stars and planets appear

Reminding us yet again of the vast infinite

That we swirl around

The troubles of the day are dashed upon

Distant light that has travelled at times

As ancient as us

When the curtain has been drawn back

We are exposed to the majesty

Tiny vessels born up from vast womb of the universe

Placed upon this spot to bear witness

To ourselves in all our forms

And the eloquent poetry of life

Unfolds for us like a flower greeting the sun

When…

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Fannish Individual

Posted in Writing on July 8, 2016 by urbannight

I didn’t write this.  It was from a spoof done at a con many years ago.  I feel the need to share it every few years.

To the Tune of Model Major General, just in case you don’t figure it out.

I am the very model of a fannish individual.
I’ve knowledge literary, cinematic and political.
I know the names of all who’ve won the Hugo and the Nebula,
And I’ve attended every con they’ve held in Philadelphia.

I love Arthur C. Clarke, Terry Prachett, C.J. Cherryh, Frederik Pohl,
J.R.R. Tolkien, Andre Norton, Barbara Hambley, read ’em all.
Marion Zimmer Bradley, Robert Heinlein, Isaac Asimov,
Of reading science fiction I can never ever get enough.

(Of reading science fiction he can never ever get enough.
Of reading science fiction he can never ever get enough.
Of reading science fiction he can never ever ever get enough.)

I ‘ve read Niven, Foster, Silverberg, Zelazny, Card and Donaldson.
McCaffrey, Herbert, Chalker, Eddings, Dickson and Poul Anderson.
In matters literary, cinematic and political,
I am the very model of a fannish individual.

(In matters literary, cinematic and political,
He is the very model of a fannish individual.)

I ‘ve seen every science fiction story captured by a camera.
Metropolis, 2001, Forbidden Planet, Gamera.
Close Encounters, Things to Come and Bambi Meets Godzi-illa,
Alien III, Superman, The Fly and Barbare-ella.

I’ve taped every single episode of Twilight Zone and Dr. Who.
My anime collection is the envy of all fandom too.
I’m fluent in Minbari, Bocci, Klingon, Betazoid and Narn.
And I know every detail of the Federation Uniform.

(And he knows every detail of the Federation Uniform.
And he knows every detail of the Federation Uniform.
And he knows every detail of the Star Trek Federation Uniform.)

I ‘ve seen Will Robinson grow up and now I watch him as Lenier.
I’ve travelled thoughout time and space to galaxies both far and near.
In matters literary, cinematic and political,
I am the very model of a fannish individual.

(In matters literary, cinematic and political,
He is the very model of a fannish individual.)

I vote on every Worldcon site that’s ever been or’s yet to be.
I’ve gone to business meetings and had Robert Sacks defer to me.
I know the details of the Worldcon site selection voting zones.
And when I work on any con, I get a beeper and a phone.

I’ve been to Torcon, Chicon, Discon, Aussiecons both I and II.
Constellation, Confiction, Pacificon and Big MAC too.
Conspiracy, Denvention and the secret one in ’42.
I don’t know much ’bout how cons run, but I’m sure I know more than you.

(He doesn’t know just how cons run, but he’s sure he knows more than you.
He doesn’t know just how cons run, but he’s sure he knows more than you.
He doesn’t know just how cons run, but he’s sure he knows so much more than you.)

I’ve worked at every job from lowly gopher to division head.
And I’d have chaired a Worldcon too, but other big name fen all said,
“Your knowledge is impressive, but your business skills are pitiful,
You are the very model of a fannish individual.”

(His knowledge is impressive, but his business skills are pitiful,
He is the very model of a fannish individual.)

 

Independence Day 2. A Literary Sequel.

Posted in Writing on July 5, 2016 by urbannight

I have heard negative things about the second movie.  I wondered why.  I know people are all bothered about Brent Spinner’s character.  I guess I was in the minority about never thinking him dead. I remember that final shot of him in the first film.  I NEVER thought he was dead.  I always thought he was still alive.  So that was not an issue for me.

I’m not sure the specifics about what people are not liking about the sequel.  Mostly, I’m hearing general comments.

I will tell you that I am a complete bookworm and this film views like a Book 2.  This is the logical progression.  After all, they only knocked out one ship.  The race knew that there was a planet with resources they wanted.  So it is logical that now that the secret is out, the best scientists in the world could access the alien tech and a whole new technological era is born.

It makes sense that the countries around the world, know that the aliens are still out there, would work together to try to create weapons and a plan for what to do if they come back.  This way they have a better chance for fighting back with weapons that use the alien’s own tech against them.

That makes it more logical that they have it occurring with the next generation.  The children are now in their mid to late twenties and they have had twenty years to implement new tech, build a moon base, and get prepared.  Two generations might have been better but for audience appeal, having the children from the first film be adults help the views still feel connected.  Books might have had a greater generational difference.

Twenty years ago, the other primary country might have have Japan and 30 years ago it might have been USSR.  But now, making it China makes the most sense based on the current economic standing.  At least that is how it seems to be as a total layman in things economic.

The inclusion of another alien race that is against the ‘hive’ aliens the part of this movie that is, perhaps, the corniest thing in this movie would be the most logical think in a book sequel.  The fact that this alien is the last of its kind and is running a refugee camp for other races it has managed to evacuate and save from the Hive aliens makes the rest of what follows seem natural.

As it does the set up for a third film if they ever do it.  You see, it sets the state for what would be the perfect situation for a final book in a trilogy.  But when it comes to movie making and science fiction movies in particular, what they are implicating comes next would probably jump the shark.  Even thought it is the most logical progression of this type of story-line, the most logical end to this story is not what a good movie is made of.

Oh, it would work, if the entire franchise was set in space, as in the future and space faring.   But a series that spans the transition period of thinking we are alone in the universe to intergalactic battle in one generation it seems far fetched.  I do not know if they can do this well on screen.  Still, I would like to see it.

 

Bad Math

Posted in Writing with tags , , , , , , , on June 2, 2016 by urbannight

At work we have these plastic sleeves on the inside of every bathroom stall door.  HR puts a one page informational sheet in every two weeks.  One of the last ones was all about working out.  How many people like to listen to music, what percentages listen to what music.  What people like to do when they work out.  Most of the info graphic was fine.  But one section rubbed me the wrong way.

It broke down workout to what kinds of things people like to do.  There were five things.

50% preferred walking.

54% preferred lifting weights.

34% preferred yoga.

50% preferred running.

36% preferred biking.

See my problem with this list?  I like my percentages to add up to 100%. This adds up to 224%.  When percentages add up to bizarre numbers then they become meaningless.  I always call this bad math.  But really may be bad statistic taking.

This week the signage changed and the info graphics are about the summer sun.  It says that the only animal that gets a sunburn, aside from humans, are pigs.  This is not true.  Hairless dogs and cats have the same problem.  So do dogs and cats with white or light fur.  They can get sunburned.  So it is best to keep an eye on them and limit their sun time too.

This is not the first time they have had incorrect information.  It does no good to sent the people who do up these bathroom fliers the correct information and citation.  The people who produce the flyer don’t seem to care if the info is incorrect.

I have to say that this does annoy me.   When these signs have interesting information, I never know if it is accurate

Missing stories

Posted in Writing on April 28, 2016 by urbannight

Years ago, I started work on a novel idea that I had half of it outlined and got a bit stuck on where to go next. So while I worked that out I started on actually writing the beginning. Now I can’t find it anywhere.

I suspect it is on the computer that I can’t access. When turning it on it wants to reformat. Something went very wrong when trying to trouble shoot a problem. I still tote the computer around hoping to one day be able to afford taking it to someone who can slave the drive to some other computer to

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Beautiful fabric needs no reason, it is just is.

try to find that and a few other things I must have and transfer it to an external storage drive.

In the mean time, I decided to start over on it and try to recreate it. Unfortunately, other story ideas and other things and life and unpleasant things happened where I totally stopped almost all things other than two hobbies.

I have been trying to pull myself and my life back together again for over a year to varying degrees of success and failure.

Back to starting over, I remember most of the characters personalities but not all their names. I’m better with faces than names in my life and I can easily imagine the characters faces in my head but can’t pull up names at all. Other than one character.

I still am stuck with where I want the story to go after I hit a certain point. But first I better recreate my outline to that point and my character list. After a 2 – 3 year upsurge at work, things seemed to peak and are going down again. So for the first time in a good 3 years, we are starting to have slow days again. Slow times at work allow writing ideas to stew in the back of my brain. At home I get very distracted by life and worry and things in general.

I am frustrated by having to reinvent the wheel because I think my old version was better than what I’m trying to put together now. That is how I remember it anyway.