The reason that people—in particular 20-something women—seem to take issue with Swift, it seems, is that they feel she merely whines about boys, which they then construe as being “weak” and “anti-feminist,” since she’s a romantic and falls hard. (Hell, wasn’t Adele’s 21 all about a miserable break-up?) Plus, she dresses conservatively and, with her tousled blond tresses, lipstick, and squinty blue eyes, resembles a grown-up American Girls doll. Oh, and she deals mostly in country music—a genre that’s much maligned by indie snobs.
Unlike her female solo artist contemporaries—the Katy Perrys and Adeles of the world—Swift doesn’t sing about kissing girls and doesn’t chain-smoke or curse. She appears to be, on the surface, a paragon of chastity and virtue. But that doesn’t mean she isn’t a feminist. It’s all really a matter of audience. Swift’s target audience is 10- to 18-year-old girls. She’s a hell of a good role model for that age group. I attended a recent Swift show at the Ed Sullivan Theater in Manhattan and, at her stellar live performance, chops aside, by the looks of things the audience was comprised almost entirely of young, wholesome girls—either in groups, or with a parent in tow. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with that.
Yo, you girls can smoke, girls can kiss other girls, but when girls make a career out of slut-shaming other girls and tearing down each other solely for male validation…I have a hard time calling that feminism. Sorry, Taylor.
Bonus! It’s Players Gonna Play: Lethal Weapon style! The Factor and Jones Zone play 1992’s Lethal Weapon for the SNES.
The NES and Game Boy editions have been described as “frustrating” and “extremely difficult” with “minimal music” and “sparse interesting scenery.”
Does the SNES version live up to the hype? You be the judge!
I’m so going to win this.
He took it across platforms.
The burden of debt has become the lens through which I see my workplace, and it is rapidly altering my view of my profession. I can no longer fulfill my classroom duties without wondering if the ultimate price, for many of my students, is a form of indenture.
—NYU professor Andrew Ross, who last November helped launch the Occupy Student Debt Campaign, in a piece that asks if it’s time you stop repaying your student loans. (via newsweek)
Don’t romanticise your ‘vocation’. You can either write good sentences or you can’t. There is no ‘writer’s lifestyle’. All that matters is what you leave on the page.
Or “day of remembrance,” rather.
Although 9/11 has been dubbed Patriot Day since 2002 (originally “Prayer and Remembrance for the Victims of the Terrorist Attacks on September 11, 2001”), I learned that this day is called Patriot Day just yesterday.
I was more surprised at my learning about it yesterday so I spent most of the afternoon just thinking of the process that goes into naming a day something and getting millions of people to go along with it.
This morning, I read this:
When Big Apple Pizza owner Scott Van Nuzer bear-hugged and hoisted President Obama off the ground during their brief meeting in Fort Pierce, Fla., Sunday, it wasn’t only the (startled) press corps that took notice.
Earlier today, users flooded the rate and review website Yelp, sending Big Apple Pizza’s overall rating in a tailspin.
This article is referring to this:
The pizza shop owner is more interesting for his political views than now being known as the dude who embraced President Barack Obama and lifted him chest-to-chest. Van Nuzer is a registered Republican who voted for Obama, and plans to again. I mean, obviously.
Since then, as the article linked above explains, Van Nuzer’s business’ Yelp page has been ground zero for a good ol’ Internet flame war over nothing more than this picture. To be clear, an overwhelming number of them are coming from people who have never sampled his products, many have also probably never been near his pizza shop.
This story and similar ones are certainly all over the Internet, so I’ll let you go search those out on this Patriot Day at your leisure, but my association between Patriot Day and this picture and its fallout/support point to the single most poisonous thing in America right now: “patriotism.”
I put it in quotes because there’s a difference between being a patriot, and showing “patriotism.” It’s the -ism that gives being patriotic a fuzzy meaning, one that several take it on themselves to define and live out.
And writing that 9/11 is to blame or glorify for increasing our patriotism isn’t accurate, nor is it fair. To talk about patriotism, we need to talk about divisiveness.
Since the George W. Bush administration, Americans have vocally disowned their leaders. I had yet to see bumper stickers blatantly distancing citizens from their elected leaders until Bush was up for re-election. Who could forget the classic hit, “Not My President!”?
Some recent favorites referring to the Obama administration: “Does This Ass Make My Car Look Big?” The ever clever, “NObama,” and a myriad of openly racist slogans that might make the older white crowd chuckle, but that make the younger crowd cringe in embarrassment of their older fellow Americans.
All this for a guy who, after 9/11, eventually found the mastermind behind its plot and arranged to kill him. Obama’s campaign is riding on that all the way to the polls. And who would blame him justifiably for that? Wouldn’t you spike your own football if you were responsible for killing one of the world’s most wanted men? Of course, they’re shying away from the policy that, as the Right essentializes, allows the president (or as many say, just Barack Obama) to “take care of” dangerous persons, even if they’re American citizens.
But there can only be so much crappiness or greatness we attribute to a country based on its leaders’ and military’s accomplishments. What a country’s resilience, longevity, and relevance come from are its citizens, its true patriots.
The political climate for well over the last two decades has always focused on taxes: who pays them and how much they pay. Joe Biden said sometime ago that it is patriotic to pay your taxes. I guess so, by default, yeah, it’s the least you could do.
But we find patriotism in bickering about who should pay more and trying to lower taxes for those who, through our hallowed Capitalist way of life, succeeded at being Americans by becoming wealthy and who, by a human principal (not even a strictly American one), should be helping those reach the point that they are at. This is not Communism. This is not Socialism. This is being a human being who cares about other human beings.
If we erase our ideologies about social organization, we are left with the initial situation I introduced earlier: this dude hugging his president.
I don’t think I am spinning that in any politically oriented way. Maybe you are one to say, “Not My President!” but, I hate to break it to you, he is. That dark skinned guy with a non-Anglo name, the majority of Americans elected him, so he’s your president. Deal with that. And maybe you can change that when the time comes soon, but if he’s elected again, he will STILL be your president, no matter how hard you try to make him out to be a non-American or a Muslim American.
And that’s my point: being black, not having a monosyllabic first or last name, not being born on the east coast or middle America, or voting for a guy who is none of those, does not make you un-American. What makes you un-American in 2012 is wearing that American flag on your lapel. That doesn’t mean anything. I’ll get really provocative and say that being in the military does not mean you are a de facto patriot, as evidenced by that small group of soldiers out of Ft. Bragg who planned to kill our president.
I have seen few things more genuinely patriotic than the look on that guy’s face when he showed affection toward the leader of his country. We have our heroes, no doubt, and ol’ pizza guy here is no hero for picking up his president. But on this Patriot Day, when I see Americans ripping other Americans apart for being overjoyed at being in the presence of a human who embodies America (and I’m saying that is what the office of the presidency embodies), I’m at a loss. I don’t understand patriots if 9/11 didn’t stop the disavowal of our elected officials, make us smarter as voters (if anything, 9/11 made us dumber by allowing fear to dictate our decisions), or bring us together as a people.
A white guy hugging a black guy, a guy hugging a guy, a person hugging his elected leader, that’s a lot of togetherness to me. There are Americans who hate that. That is un-American. And if today is about being patriotic, Americans have failed to meet their own expectations.