The Hijabi on the Bus

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Yesterday morning I posted about atheism and Islam, and then went in to work for a few hours. After I finished I read the comments on that post, some of them critical. Then I got on the bus to head home---and in a moment that serendipitous, I found myself sitting next to an olive-skinned woman wearing hijab. I live in a university town, so this is a common sight. Coming right after reading comments arguing that Islam inherently oppresses women, it felt refreshing, somehow. She had a stroller w … [Read more...]

Progress, Slowly

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In light of WORLD Magazine's recent treatment of a women's college decision to accept trans* women---not surprisingly titled "Women's College Redefines 'Women'"---and other less-than-uplifting news on the transgender and gender fluidity front, I thought I'd post something encouraging I noticed during a visit to the health center at my own institution.I filled out the form as you can see for myself, but was surprised and pleasantly impressed by it---impressed enough that I felt the need … [Read more...]

What I Learned from Almost Being Arrested

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Almost three years ago I had a severely unpleasant experience with a police officer that left me completely shaken. Up until this point, I'd been given no reason to distrust cops. Ever since this moment, though, I've understood why many people have their reservations. If I could have an experience like this---and I'm white, educated, and middle class---I can't imagine how much worse it must be for those who are black, or poor, or in another marginalized group. As protests continue in Ferguson, … [Read more...]

Michelle Duggar Goes Full Anita Bryant

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Do you remember Anita Bryant? She became a household name in the late 1970s when she sought to repeal a recently-passed anti-discrimination ordinance in Miami. She founded an organization she called "Save Our Children," and capitalized on fear mongering about the fact that gay men and lesbian women would now be allowed to teach in public elementary schools. "As a mother, I know that homosexuals cannot biologically reproduce children; therefore, they must recruit our children," she said. (For m … [Read more...]

The Militarization of American Police

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I just came upon a rather startling article that may help introduce this whole "militarization of the police" thing to those new to the concept. The article is titled "'It's a warzone in the US': Indiana sheriff explains why he deployed heavy armor in his county." Here is an excerpt:From the streets of Fallujah to Franklin, Indiana, heavily armored military vehicles have been rolled out for one and the same reason: many police officers in the US believe there’s a war going on … [Read more...]

Some Readers’ Experiences with Race and Police

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When I posted last week about white privilege and the Mike Brown story, I was fascinated as readers relayed their own stories and experiences with racism in the comment section. I want to take a moment to share two of those stories with you. This is Trinity91's story:It isn't just the south though. It's all of american culture. The south is just more open about their bigotry. I moved from New Mexico (where things are bad, especially in regard to police brutality) to the suburbs of Seattle … [Read more...]

What’s a Death Sentence in the Grand Old USA?

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Some weeks ago I read an article about a man who shot a home invader in the back as she fled down an alley, having already left the house. In the comments, readers pointed out that the woman had chosen to break into the guy's home, and that when he returned and found her there she initially assaulted him, and that she therefore deserved what she got. These things were ostensibly true, but here's the thing---they had no bearing on whether or not the man had been correct to shoot and kill … [Read more...]


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