Tag: classism

Birds of a Feather – The Exclusionary Clause

follow site Exploitation Capitalism takes more forms than you can imagine. In writing “Clueless Class” I began to brush the surface of just how deep, just how ingrained our thinking is, so much so, that some on the “Left” went ballistic defending their well-to-do Investment Class Liberalism.

http://maientertainmentlaw.com/?search=generic-brand-of-propecia Skimming the quagmire that is all things I/P on dKos, and a few other putrid places I loathe to admit being an occasional voyeur to, I ran headlong into one of the biggest mental fortresses that both the left and right share.

source In essence? It is the idea that “we” should be able to live where ever “we” want to, and look how much “better off” this place is because of us! It is about “enclaves” and “neighborhoods” and walls, both concrete and economic. It’s about cultural appropriation and cultural segregation. It’s about tourism and settlements, and the exceptionalism so ingrained in our psyches we cannot possibly objectively view the impact of our thinking. Its about gentrification by “cheap living” and ultimately about the colonialist mindset that we damn in history, but refuse to admit is still alive and thriving within our Western Mindset.

comprare vardenafil Umbria It’s mostly about melanin and birds of a feather and cages both illusory and real.



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Movin’ On Up

http://maientertainmentlaw.com/?search=lasix-versus-hydrochlorothiazide The past several days I’ve been musing on the chosen strategies employed by the privileged and the well-educated to solve societal problems.  In particular, I’ve been contemplating the idea of poverty.  As is typical for me, I’ve been seeking to find intersections and similarities between seemingly divergent topics, all in the hopes of eliminating confusion among everyone.  Sometimes we disagree because we inadvertently work at cross-purposes to each other.  The anecdote to follow illustrates how social class muddies the waters quite considerably, and how in the process we often find ourselves talking past one another.  I’ve found this exercise personally helpful in many instances, and I tell it now in the hopes that readers might feel the same.

Student Sexual Assault Safety Depends Partially on Privilege

For years, student activists have fought to combat the disturbing numbers of rapes and sexual assaults which routinely occur on college campuses.  Actual statistics are tough to come by because many victims are too intimidated and scared to report them, which is often compounded by apathetic university administrators who grant only cursory attention to the matter or try to sweep things under the rug.  Colleges and Universities are unfortunately run like businesses these days, and none of them wants to entertain even the faintest hint of scandal.  Fighting for tuition money, grants, and endowments trump keeping female students safe and protected. The amount of administrative staff in higher education is staggering, and no one wants to stop piling on layer after layer of middle management, even when most of it is entirely unnecessary.

In any case, props to the students at American University in Washington, DC, who have recently fought back against an offensive column (or two) in their campus paper by mobilizing to stand united against rape apologists.

Much of the protest centers around this particular passage, written by columnist Alex Knepper in the AU student newspaper, The Eagle.

   Let’s get this straight: any woman who heads to an EI party as an anonymous onlooker, drinks five cups of the jungle juice, and walks back to a boy’s room with him is indicating that she wants sex, OK? To cry “date rape” after you sober up the next morning and regret the incident is the equivalent of pulling a gun to someone’s head and then later claiming that you didn’t ever actually intend to pull the trigger.

“Date rape” is an incoherent concept. There’s rape and there’s not-rape, and we need a line of demarcation. It’s not clear enough to merely speak of consent, because the lines of consent in sex – especially anonymous sex – can become very blurry. If that bothers you, then stick with Pat Robertson and his brigade of anti-sex cavemen! Don’t jump into the sexual arena if you can’t handle the volatility of its practice!

A previous passage noted, as well, that

Feminist religious dogma, long ago disposed of by neuroscientists and psychologists, states that men are essentially born as eunuchs, only to have wicked masculinity imposed on them by an evil society. This is usually presented as “social construction theory”.

I am understandably pleased to observe such an outpouring of righteous indignation and with it a desire to push back and push back hard.  Still, I am also struck that it takes a college flush full of money, privilege, and students already inclined to activism to set up such an elaborate response in the first place.  Offensive as the passages are, I can at least follow the author’s “logic”, even though I disagree with it strongly.  As someone who is not a native of Planet Progressive, I reflect back on my own upbringing in a solidly conservative state, where, to refer back to Knepper’s column, no one talks about social construction theory, even in conversation with fellow students, nor does anyone acknowledge or have even the faintest notion of why it is offensive to use the term hermaphrodite in place of intersex.

As for me, when I was in college, I was not privy to these sorts of dialogues.  And, for that matter, most students now enrolled in schools across the country are not, either.  I attended a state school which gave perfunctory and short-lived attention to topics like educating men about precisely what constituted consent, and never spoke as any unified voice.  LGBT students were greeted usually with a shrug, and it took years of effort to even establish same-sex partner benefits for university employees.  I do recall that a scandal broke during my time there involving an early enrollment student who began her freshman year at age fifteen.  She was then later revealed to have been frequenting the beds of athletes.  Though the sexual contact was consensual, it was still statutory rape due to the female student nonetheless being under the age of consent.  As is typical, the matter was dealt with internally and invisibly until the parents filed suit.  Even then, once the matter became public, there were no protests, raised fists, or plans among the student body to go to the news media and raise hell.  Most people were ambivalent to the matter.  The lawsuit stalled and was eventually thrown out of court.  Among many it has been forgotten altogether.

But to draw a contrast, I would expect nothing less than this sort of coordinated protest from a place like American, but again, I can’t help but wish I’d see it in areas of the country not quite so blue and not quite so well off.  This is not to say that women in predominantly liberal, highly competitive, and affluent schools don’t face the chance of being date raped or assaulted on campus.  That risk, unfortunately, never goes away completely, but the odds do increase dramatically when the framework meant to counter sexual assault and rape simply does not exist or exists so weakly as to become ineffectual.  A program designed to accomplish this need not be as detailed and exacting as what American University is now doing, and indeed, a school with a much more modest budget could not begin to mimic that of a wealthier institution.

Being that I live in Washington, DC, and associate with several American students and employees, I know for a fact that the student who wrote the columns in the first place purely meant to provoke a response, not necessarily out of some inward conviction in his supposed cause.  Taken this way, he was little more than a troll, and we all know how trolls love to needle us just to see us roar in response.  Even though the writer might not have meant what he said in totality, I still think it’s important that the students have adopted an important cause and are fighting to advance it.  Again, I think it is imperative of them to spread the message to other schools across the country if they wish to fulfill their idealistic ambitions.  It honestly breaks my heart to see just how much of that which is proposed and adopted in blue circles stays there and never leaves.  Being that I grew up in a red state, I always feel somehow slighted when I see clear-cut evidence of all the things that money can provide with a snap of the fingers.  This is bold evidence of classism and one of the deepest ironies of all is that it is on full display even in efforts designed to improve conditions for marginalized people whose voices have been ignored or silenced.

Who Do We Trust with Our Tax Dollars? Who Should We Trust, Instead?

I thought I’d do something different today for comparison’s sake.  With everyone sufficiently indignant at our banking system, our government’s response, and at the abuses within the Bailout, I thought I might provide some needed contrast.  The details which follow first are the literal steps one has no choice but to follow to attain food stamps in Washington, DC.  I pulled certain phrases off of an advocacy website PDF here but the construction is largely mine.



enter How to Obtain Food Stamps in the District of Columbia

1.  Sit in line at the Food Stamp office nearest you and, while waiting, fill out a 12 page form.

OR

Print the form and fill out all 12 pages.

2.  To make sure you do not try to cheat the system, you will first be required to reveal your

a) Household income

b) Cash present on hand

c) Rent and utility costs

3.   You will then be asked to provide

a) where you work (if you are, in fact, employed)

b) your employer’s name and telephone number

c) when you started working for them

d) how much your paycheck is before taxes

e) and how often you get paid

4.  If you or anyone else in your household makes some degree of income, repeat step 3

5.  If you have a bank account, you are required to prove it by providing a bank statement

6.  If you own anything else besides your home, you are required to state that you do.

7.  If you have stocks and/or bonds, please respond in in the affirmative.

8.  Did you sell, trade, or give away anything more than $1,000 in the past three (3) years?  If so, please mark “yes” and attach a description to this form.

9.  Provide the exact dollar amount of that which you pay in rent.  Don’t forget to leave out utilities if not included in rent and whether or not you pay for air-conditioning and heating costs separate from your rent.

10.  Mail form.  Wait approximately three and a half weeks for a reply, only to be told after four separate phone calls spent futilely trying to speak to an actual person that, due to a severe backlog in unprocessed claims, it may be up to a month and a half before your paperwork is processed.

OR

Drop off form at Food Stamps office.  Speak to case worker after waiting for several hours.  Turn in form.  Wait approximately three and a half weeks for a reply, only to be after four separate phone calls futilely trying to speak to an actual person that, due to a severe backlog in unprocessed claims, it may be up to a month and a half before your paperwork is processed.

11.  Wait

12.  Keep waiting.

13.  Finally receive form in mail informing of date to meet with caseworker to determine whether Food Stamps will be granted.  Date is eight business days from when one received notice.

14.  Collect necessary documentation to prove identity.  This includes:

a) Photo ID/Drivers’ license

b) Recent rent receipt, copy of lease, mortgage payment, or landlord’s name and phone number.

c) Proof of income, last three pay stubs, VA benefits, educational scholarships, grants or loans, unemployment payments, or your employer’s name and phone number.

d)  Proof of Housing Expense:   Recent rent or mortgage payment receipts.  This includes receipts of all recent utility bill(s): phone, gas, electric, and water.  All of these documents must have your address printed on them.

e) Bank statements:  If one has an account at a bank or credit union, bring a  recent bank statement or bankbook. Also if you have any other type of financial account (for example, a CD) be sure to bring that, too.

f) Social Security Card

g) Proof of any Assets:  Bring proof of ownership for buildings, land, policies, burial arrangements or plots, and/or other property (not your home that you stay in) you reported in your application.

15.  After all hoops have been jumped through and forms brought to the attention and signed off by the appropriate party, wait for judgment about food stamps.

16.  Ten days later, judgment is granted.  Realize that $100.12 per month means approximately one week’s worth of groceries for one person.  Shrug and say to self that every little bit matters.

17.  Attend mandatory EBT Card (Food Stamp) card training before receiving.  Training lasts approximately 15 to 20 minutes.

18.  Proceed directly to grocery store.

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How to Obtain Bailout Money in the District of Columbia




1.  Be a CEO of a large financial institute.

2.  State that you are nearly bankrupt, but too big to fail.

3.  Collect emergency funds.

A Cast (e) of One

http://cinziamazzamakeup.com/?x=quanto-costa-viagra-generico-25-mg-online-a-Venezia (dark & ugly essay warning; these feelings are just my feelings at this moment, not judgmental commentary on any reader here or elsewhere)

The idea of Unity is a sham that will never happen. We are all divided by invisible, unbreachable barriers of social standing.

We were having an amazing discussion last night, when I asked my husband how many people we could have the level of discourse we were having there were in our real world. The answer came up fairly thin. Sure, there were some, many of which have ended up living far enough away that we only see them once a year at Mini-Woodstock, most of which are people we met and befriended years and years ago. I am wondering if moving to this area was not a HUGE mistake. It seems chock full of bubbas or McMansion wannabees.

Most of our immediate circle these days are… how to say it? Sweet, adorable, fun, lovable people who think in totally alien ways to our thinking. Its not only their lack of education, their very interests and ability to make the leaps are different. Its hard to say what really binds us to them, other than convenience, other than the commonality of our social standing as members of the midwest rust belt working class.

Here on the Tubes, it is somewhat easier to find kindreds out of the thousands, at least per subject matter. You can find allies and equals to carry on nearly any level of discourse you choose. Of course, those relationships would never carry over to the real world, unless your social position is similar.

The truth of the matter is I fit nowhere. People like me don’t.