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Words Don’t Do It Justice: Breaking News

Just a reminder where we started.

Just a reminder where we started.

Over the weekend we were very close to an amazing achievement.

On Monday it was so tantalizingly close I was thinking of dropping a post just to help push it over after the Holidays Don’t Do It Justice post.

But Tuesday Night after Posts from Ruminated Thoughts and of course from THE Ruthless Wonder reacting to the decision by the Darren Wilson Grand Jury, we hit a milestone that if I’m honest I didn’t expect until 2015.

SO

On Behalf of the Weekends Don’t Do It Justice Writers Reason, Kudo, Xion, and Lucremo.

On Behalf of the Words Don’t Do It Justice Guest Bloggers, The Justice League.

On Behalf of the Words Don’t Do It Justice Alumni writers

On Behalf of the Keith Labell and Smooth Phuzion who provide music for The WDDIJcast and The WRATH of Ruthless.

On Behalf of Reign, The Revanchist, Ruminated thoughts, and Ronin

And on Behalf of 314 Publishing, Imperial Dreams Productions, and WORDS DON’T DO IT JUSTICE

THE Ruthless Wonder is proud to announce that as of November 25th, 2014 Words Don’t Do It Justice has reached 9,200 views!

ALL Because of YOU!

ALL Because of YOU! Photo edit credit: JohnHenry Balsa

And we have you to thank.

Every one of you who shares us with you friends on facebook and your followers on twitter.

Every one of you who comes back even on days when no one has posted just to see if something is dropping.

Every one of you who has stuck by us since my very first post to this very day.

Thank you for being our superfans.

Thank you for believing in us.

Words do no do you justice.

 

I could say it a thousand times and it wouldn’t be enough. But I’ll say it one more time.

We love you all.

Thank you!

THANK YOU!

THANK YOU! Photo Edit Credit: Steven Cockrell

– YOUR Ruthless Wonder

The Absurdity Racist America

The Absurdity Racist America – How was this acceptable?

Some people would say that racism is dead today in America. They would say that the civil rights movement won, that racism obviously isn’t a problem anymore and that the majority of the country realizes that being a racist is just unacceptable, right? Wrong. Not only are African-American’s incarcerated with stiffer penalties and more frequently than Caucasian individuals, but they remain to this date discriminated on all the way up to the highest levels of government — hell, even with an African-American POTUS, those who would serve and die for our country were dealt a massive insult by these United States

image

This is a copy of the Army Regulations that were published on the 22nd of October in 2014 in which the United States Army deemed it acceptable to refer to our African-American soldiers as “Negroes” and “Haitians” as an alternative to “Black” and “African-American”. Did I suddenly fall asleep and wake up in the 1950s? How did this racist policy become acceptable, exactly? Not only is it very racially charged to have a bunch of White soldiers referring to their African-American comrades as “Negroes” but it adds in the double whammy of allowing you to refer to all individuals of color as Haitians? Why is this a big deal? Because these men put their lives on the line for our country and our freedom and deserve better, they do not deserve to have racially charged language viewed as ‘acceptable’ regardless of who uses it. Slang not withstanding, there isn’t any way this is remotely acceptable. Yet, it was a thing. This was reviewed by the pentagon and actually published as policy.

Now, according to CNN, the Army is uncertain as to when this regulation was first added, but it continued to be publish until at least the 22nd of October 2014. How long did it take it for this regulation to be removed? It took until roughly November 7th, about 24 hours after the news report from CNN first broke revealing that it was Army Regulation. It took God only knows how long for somebody to realize that the Army was periodically releasing regulations that made it acceptable to refer to African-American servicemen as Negroes. That in and of itself is a problem — did nobody bother to read the document? Was it just vast ignorance? Or was it a quiet, complacent acceptance?

Frankly, the answer could go either way. It is likely that it is just good old laziness on behalf of the United States Army, who clearly failed to read through the regulation before setting it out for publishing — but it is equally likely that this wording lived on within the Army Regulations as a bleak reminder to the not-so-distant racist past of the United States Army. It was only just World War II, afterall, that African-American soldiers were discriminated upon and considered  inferior and while to you or I that moment might seem like so, so long ago the but in reality it wasn’t that long ago. The truth is that the United States Marine Corp was full integrated by 1960, but racial tensions continued to exist.

We have made large strides of progress but we have also taken steps back, and it is documents like this that serve as a stark reminder to the history of this country and how willing we were to degrade men and women whom volunteered to serve our country. This regulation should have never been passed and worse than that this regulation should have been noticed sooner — it should have taken more than a news report pointing out the flaw for the Army to realize that this was a problem and that it needed to be fixed. I am a supporter of the United States Armed Forces, and in that regard I do not view our African-American soldiers any differently than I do the whites. They deserve the same respect and dignity afforded to all service members, and to have allowed this regulation to linger so long and so heavily upon the regulations of the United States Army is an insult to the countless African-American soldiers who willingly gave their lives for this country, a country which spent over half of its existence dedicated to hating and dehumanizing them.

You have to take pause and reflect upon the irony of it all — we had African-American soldiers serving in Europe, fighting against the Nazi regime, to ensure the freedom of other people that they themselves were not afforded in their own country. Segregation was still in full swing, and right up until just before the beginning of World War II, the American government was actively practicing Eugenics experiments. Likewise, we were conducting human experiments on African-American’s without even letting them know about it. Here were individuals willing to lay their lives on the line so that other people might know the freedom that their own country had deprived them of.

The question I get so often in my hometown is “why do we need a Black History month?” “Why isn’t there a White History month”?  To which I frequently have to sit down and actually educate people as to the reality of the plight which African-American’s suffered at the hands of a racist government that did everything in its power to keep them down. It is a struggle I will never have to know, but it is a struggle which I recognize as a reality. The atrocities afflicted upon African-American’s by the United States for the majority of this nations existence are innumerable and have caused irrevocable damage. People refer to this as Post-Racial America, but I don’t see it. I see a country which is still struggling to push past its racist nature, and moments like this only remind me that I still have a part to play in this battle, that as a future educator it is my duty to strive diligently to broaden the minds of otherwise narrow minded fools.

To that end, I would like to apologize on behalf of America that we ever allowed such a travesty as this Army regulation to carry on as long as it did — no citizen of the United States, let alone one of our brave soldiers, should endure such an asinine insult. It may have remained in the regulations due to negligence, but it was not negligence that put it there in the first place and for that, I am sorry.

Sometimes being right sucks.

Sometimes being right sucks.

That isn’t something you’ll hear many people say, but it’s true. Sometimes you look at things and you know how it’s going to play out, so you make a prediction. Sometimes it’s good to be right, other times it sucks. This is one of the times when being right sucks. See, nobody wins over me being right on this issue and it has done nothing but proven just how utterly screwed we all must be. I know what you must be saying “But Revanchist, what were you right about?”.

Well, to be simple, everything I talked about last week. You see, not only is the war in the Ukraine revving up once more with reports that Russia is moving heavy weapons and troops into Eastern Ukraine again but a report from the Pentagon came out that says the U.S Mission to combat Iraq would most likely require boots on the ground in Iraq again.

Sure, Obama said he wouldn’t put troops on the ground but I’m sure we all knew that was going to fly out the window sooner or later. We pushed ISIS but no matter how hard we pushed them with the air campaign, it wasn’t enough to stem the rising tide. Can we ever stem this tide? I don’t think so, I think we made a mistake in 2003 when we first invaded Iraq. I was right in that regard, as well. Without the Tyranny of Saddam holding the country together the only thing our foray into Iraq has given us is a new breed of jihadists. How did it happen? Well, alot of the people that joined ISIS were just children when the United States invaded Iraq. Right or wrong, those Children grew up in the worst possible of environments and they had a clear name to point fingers at for why their world sucked so bad.

Was eliminating Saddam necessary? Probably,  but I do not think it was the right course of action to take. We eliminated the lesser of two evils, it seems. Sometimes the devil you know is better than the one you don’t, I’m not sure how we thought this would somehow be different, that after we toppled Saddam the entire country would forget about centuries old grudges and ethnic ties. You cannot impose a western mentality on a country like Iraq, where loyalty lies more to ones tribe than it does to a unified concept of a country. How could we expect them to see that we were the right ones when all those young children saw was the devastation brought by American bombs and American soldiers?

So, while I was right, I take no joy in it. American citizens are once again going to spill their blood in a foreign country. In retrospect, it is kind of absurd. Today, people who were just children when the Iraq war began are getting ready to pick up the fight. Over ten years have passed since we invaded Iraq in what was a conflict that was supposed to end in just a month — a fact that seems almost like a joke eleven years down the line, when an entirely new generation of Americans are going to be dying for a war that was started by their fathers.

When Herbert Hoover said “Older men declare war. But it is the youth that must fight and die.” I don’t think he ever predicted that it would come to a situation like this. On one side, we have the disillusioned youth of Iraq and Syria who watched their country torn to shreds by foreign interests who picked up the flag of rebellion and religious extremism versus the children of the conquerors. Much as the conflict in Palestine continues to breed new generations of religious zealots, I have no doubt that the continued conflict in Iraq will continue to create new generations of Jihadists.

As of this moment, the war against ISIS costs $300,000 an hour to fight and that is before we actually deploy any sort of real manpower. We all knew from the beginning that this war was going to be one we could not win with air power alone, and anyone else who thought otherwise I would call hopelessly optimistic. There is still hope, though. Write your congressmen, tell them you are opposed to another ground war in Iraq. It might work, but I doubt it — America has already made their vote when they elected warhawks, I only hope that they made the right one.

Speaking of voting, it isn’t even like a majority of American’s voted the Republicans in on principal. The truth of the matter is that the country only had a 36% voter turnout, the worst this country has had in nearly 72 years. That is the problem with our country, it isn’t that we cannot make the right decisions just that we no longer care enough to try. To those of you who believe your political apathy does not hurt the country, I can only shake my head at you and sigh. You do yourself and your country a great disservice when you do not vote — it is by majority that these people are supposed to be elected, not by 36%. So, maybe we won’t actually end up with another war in Iraq, because at this point I’m hoping that I’m wrong.

– The Revanchist

War

War

Si vis pacem, para bellum. An ancient saying which, for those of you unaware, translates to “If you want peace, prepare for war” and unfortunately, it seems that war is once again starting to rear its ugly head. To be frank, we’ve never really gotten a break from war. With the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq finally drawing to a close after so many years and so many deaths it seems that American’s are willing to once more send our troops unto the breach.

How so? Well, conflict in Iraq is revving up with the addition of a Syrian problem that President Obama had desired to end before it began (only to be shut down by popular opinion, Russia, and the Republicans) and now it is his fault that ISIS spawned out of it. To be fair, there wasn’t alot he could do though he did seem like he was ready and willing to pull the trigger at one point. Of course, Russia has proven to be a most hilarious and belligerent member of the world community with their recent foray into Ukrainian politics in a most uninvited manner.

So what changed? Well, you can probably start preparing for the inevitability of boots on the ground because the War Hawks are in power and their mouths are salivating with glee. I find it most humorous that when the POTUS was willing to act on Syria, the American public was almost entirely against it but now that ISIS has appeared as a direct result of the Syrian conflict and American’s have died because of it the public finds themselves upset that the POTUS did not do more to stop it. What did you want him to do? He wanted to intervene in Syria and you all sent him a clear message that you didn’t want it — he acted upon the will of the people at the time and because of that we now have the fustercluck of the century brewing on our hands. So, what is he to do now? Send troops in? Probably.

While I remain a firm moderate, something more happened this election day than just the republicans winning. No, American Exceptionalists saw a greater victory this election than anyone else. What are American Exceptionalists? Well, they are known by many names but primarily they are the War Hawk Neocons of the Republican Party such as good old John McCain. These are the same people with so much campaign money tied up in defense industry lobbyists that they can want nothing more than war. They will achieve their goals, hell, it’s almost inevitable at this point. John McCain who is expected to become the next chairman of the senate armed forces committee has already expressed his desire to send weapons to the embattled Ukrainian government as well as to look into broadening the war against ISIS.

In the short time I have been actively studying the politics in America I find an almost amusing trend in how people vote, assuming they even vote. They often yell and scream about how they want change before ultimately reverting to the same style of government they had before they fought so hard to change it, but beyond that, when America wants to go to war it seems that we always elect Republican. For instance, October saw a rise in the willingness of American’s to send troops on the ground in Iraq in Syria, up to 45% vs the 38% of September. Likewise, 71% of American’s polled believe that we should send ground troops in if ISIS attacks any America facilities in Baghdad.

As we see the public consciousness drift more toward accepting of a future war, we also saw them vote in surprising numbers for Republican candidates who had war hawk tendencies. I am no psychic, so I cannot predict what the future holds but the incoming Hawks have already pledged to ramp up that good ol’ Nationalism we all used to know and love from the days of yore. Indeed, McCain has not only spoken about sending American weapons to the Ukrainian Government and broadening the efforts to combat ISIS but there has also been talk about China and its incursions into the South China Sea. While I am a moderate, I am deeply worried that the effort we expended over the past six years to repair the image of our country is going to be flushed down the drain. The sending of weapons to Ukraine will escalate tension between the United States and Russia, and sending ground forces into Iraq and Syria once more will only reignite a war we had finally closed the books on. Infact, I can go so far as to wager that sending American troops into Iraq and Syria would only bolster the ranks of ISIS because Iraqi tribal leaders have, for the most part, made it clear that they do not want American’s to be fighting in Iraq again.

I am not sure what it is with the American fascination of returning to the same things we fought so hard to change, like a battered spouse that returns to their abuser we seem willing to repeat the same mistakes in the hope that the outcome will somehow be different. Call me a sensationalist, but the ramp-up of propaganda lately has been quite noticeable. No longer do the United States Marines encourage you to ‘run to the sounds of chaos’, but rather to essentially run to help those who cannot help themselves, a clear change in tone given the ongoing conflict against ISIS as well a justification that any combat we do is precipitated by the need to defend innocent lives. I wasn’t kidding when I said you could expect American soldiers to be deployed back into Iraq in the next 10 years. I have already heard reports from individuals within the military that I am friends with who have stated essentially that their units are being prepared to possibly deploy to Iraq.

So, that is my rambling for the day. I cannot predict the future, but I know the signs of a country revving up to go to war and with the public’s opinion gradually shifting more toward accepting it you can pretty much bet your bright stars that the war hawks we’ve recently elected to power will be more than happy to capitalize on it.

So yeah, I am the Revanchist. Same bat place, different bat time. Sorry if you’ve missed me, I had a bunch of bullshit going on in life that we’re just not even going to talk about. Until next week.

Sic luceat lux.

The World Today

A Return

It feels like it’s been forever, doesn’t it? Some of you might be wondering where I had been, but that’s a complicated answer. Life got pretty busy for awhile and with everything I had going on there just wasn’t any way I could meet all of my deadlines on time and working toward my degree simply takes priority. But, that was then and this is now — I’m back, as you might have been able to guess and today we are going to be talking about a subject near and dear to the heart of all of us; the world we live in today. I warn you now, this  post is likely to jump tracks alot but it is an analysis of the sum of all that we have become in the year 2014, and you’ll probably stop and wonder how it even got this far.

Homeland Security

If I had told you in 1999 that by 2014 we would be living in a world where the police looked more like an invading army and going through the airport meant having a machine pervasively blast you with radiation to see beneath your clothing, would you believe me? Probably not, because the idea would have seemed absurd. That is the reality of the world we have come to live in today. People say that everything changed because of 9/11, and that is only true because we allowed it to change everything. We played those images over and over again and allowed them to become ingrained in our memory.

Two wars later, and the terrorists have won. I know, shocking, right? But look at it realistically, the entire point of a terrorist is to create fear. That is literally its one and only job, and that is why terrorists target civilians or perform heinous crimes like the ISIL have been committing in Iraq, because fear is their weapon. If I had told you in 1999 that there was going to be a super computer hub in Utah where the government stored tons of information on our citizens and that people were mostly fine with it, would you have believed me? That is the power of fear, it is like a weed that chokes at the roots of the tree of liberty. We signed out rights away and gave it to the government on a silver platter and because why? Because we were afraid, but who wouldn’t have been…It was a perfectly natural reaction to what had happened.

However, was it worth it? Probably not. Sure, we killed Osama, but at what price? We sacrificed the very freedoms that made America so unique in order to protect those same freedoms without even realizing or acknowledging the fact that we had already signed them over without so much as a whoopsadaisy. It seems to me counter intuitive that the argument most used for these egregious violations of our personal liberty is that it is necessary in order to protect our freedom. Is living in a state of perpetual fear really freedom? Are we truly free when we tacitly surrender our fundamental, constitutional rights in order for a specter of protection? By the way, those full body scanners at the airport? They don’t even work, they basically just exist to inconvenience travelers and give people the illusion of safety. Don’t get me wrong, the terrorists suck and we’ve kicked al-Qaeda’s ass, but did we have to give up so much in order to do it? Probably not.

So how is my local sheriff owning a vehicle designed to withstand mine attacks in Iraq protecting my freedom, exactly? I understand the Pentagon has a surplus of stuff lying around after the pullback from Iraq, but at one point in time did a school district need grenade launchers? I’m not going to question the semi-automatic M16 variants, because school shootings happen and some of the perpetrators have been fairly well armed, but I cannot recall in my mind an instance in the world where a school district police officer would require a grenade launcher. What contingency were they planning for with that one? An Iraqi invasion of California? Perhaps China? Russia? Hipsters, maybe? There is a lot to be said about the state of our world when we feel that school district police officers need grenade launchers. If the goal of terrorism is to instill fear, I have to say that the terrorists won that one.

 

ISIL

…Which sort of brings me into my next point. The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant — what a fucking bunch of guys these are. Just when it seems like the war against al-Qaeda is going well and that we could even possibly be rid of them for good, these group of schmucks step right on up. The funniest part to me about all of this is how in the past few months there has been an outcry that the POTUS hasn’t done enough to stop ISIL and that it’s his fault and that he left us unprepared for this…..and to that I must say, slow your roll folks. Did you forget in 2013 when Obama wanted to bomb Syria, and the same people complaining now were the same people screaming no? Because I remember that. ISIL would have never gained the ground it did if the people would have just allowed Obama to go through with his original plan of launching strikes on Syria.

The Assad regime would have been toppled and the mostly moderate rebels would have been able to sweep in and probably stabilize the country instead of leaving it wide open as a breeding ground for religious fanatics. Of course radicalization starts to look appealing when your own government is using nerve gas on you and all the international community does is shake their finger at them and call them a bad boy for doing it. It isn’t hard to see why they would turn toward an extremist movement that not only hates the Assad Regime but also the Western nations that did literally fuck all to help them. The fact that al-Qaeda has been on a steady decline resulted in a power vacuum that needed to be filled and ho boy did ISIL ever step up to that plate.

So, 13 years later and what do we have to show for our trouble? A brand new war on terror, except this time a War on ISIL, whereupon the POTUS used the same legislation he condemned  Bush for using to sanction his own little wartime excursion….But what does that tell us overall about the War on Terror? After 13 years of bloody fighting we managed to break al-Qaeda down to the point that it was so irrelevant….that a more fanatical and extreme group had to rise up in its place. Great. Now we have a brand new enemy that was birthed out of the United States invasion of Iraq. So now you have people ramping up the propaganda machines and telling us all about how ISIL is essentially al-Qaeda on steroids and we need to take them down,.

And then what? What comes next? It is starting to look to me like declaring War on Terror was a fundamentally flawed decision, because it’s like fighting a Hydra — you can cut its head off, but it just grows back more of them and becomes an even stronger beast. I’m not trying to say we don’t need to fight ISIL, or that we shouldn’t actively try and stop terrorism but is a war of eradication going to work? Not at all. We aren’t fighting an enemy country or something concrete, we are fighting an ideal, an entire belief system which they have corrupted to their purpose, but a belief system none the less. It is not a war we are used to fighting, it is a war which we cannot win because with every stray bomb and every stray bullet that takes the life of an innocent civilian in collateral damage, we simply create more enemies for ourselves.

So, why didn’t we attack Syria before? Well, there were the obvious complaints from the American people and the usual talking heads, but there was one more reason — Russia. Russia is one of the Assad Regime’s biggest supporters and we did not want to risk a confrontation with Russia by getting involved in the Syrian civil war, so why did that change? We have the situation in the Ukraine to thank for our sudden bravado in how to deal with Syria without concern about what Russia thinks. Misstep after misstep in the handling of Crimea and the Eastern Ukraine have shot Russia’s credibility so far down that it is nothing short of a joke when the Russian ambassador to the U.N demanded that the United States must respect Syria’s sovereignty. Sure, they can block us at the Security Council and stop America from getting the United Nations involved by that doesn’t matter.

Why doesn’t it matter? Because we got the dream team back together, baby. That’s right, the coalition of the willing has decided to come back together for a reunion tour, except this time they’re kicking the ass of ISIL instead of Iraq, though that still essentially boils down to more bombs being dropped on Iraq….Though this time in a surprising turn of events, we have Iran basically supporting us which is funny considering as Iran is one of those countries big on the ‘death to America’ agenda.

ISIL are pretty bad guys, don’t get me wrong…They need to be stopped. What bothers me, however, is the thought of what foul beast will arise out of the darkness to take its place once we wear ISIL down the same way we have worn al-Qaeda down. The only real way to stop the extremism is to stop leaving so many people feeling disenfranchised and marginalized. Stopping the oppression of the Palestinians would be a big step forward on that goal, but perhaps I’m just being a dreamer again.
Anyways, that’s my rant for the day — take it or leave it. I have had bronchitis for the past week, which has made my life a living hell and I didn’t even actually feel like writing much of anything, but I did promise the bossman that I would deliver something for him while he was on vacation.

Journalism Under Fire

Journalism Under Fire

It was just the other day when I watched a YouTube Video of a police officer in Ferguson Missouri leveling his weapon at a livestream journalist while screaming “I’m going to fucking kill you”, followed immediately by him being drug away by a female colleague while he responded to the question about his name by identifying himself as “Go fuck yourself”. Similarly, on the same day I read a news article where an Al-Jazeera America reporter was told by a police officer that he was going to bash their head in.

Prior to these incidents, six different journalists were arrested while covering the protests in Ferguson, and prior to that an Al-Jazeera Media Van was hit by tear gas, and Wesley Lowery of The Washington Post and Ryan Reilly of The Huffington Post were arrested while sitting inside of a McDonalds working. This is just part of a disturbing new trend in America, and in the world at large, where journalism seems to be becoming aggressively targeted. Now, in America the freedom of the press is intended to protect journalists from this sort of shit that we as a government and we as a people normally condemn.

These are the same activities that we usually decry in the main stream media when they happen in foreign countries where we are often shocked and dismayed that those other countries could have such disdain for such a fundamental thing as journalism. I’m not going to lie, in Ferguson it starts to look alot like the police were deliberately targeting members of the press in order to suppress the coverage of what was going on out there — images of police officers hitting peaceful protests with tear gas on the front pages doesn’t exactly garner one sympathy, afterall.

The attack on Journalism in Ferguson hasn’t ended, either, just this Tuesday a Canadian Television Journalist was arrested in Ferguson for having the audacity to ask why Captain Johnson of the Highway Patrol was ordering Journalists to leave the area before the last demonstrators had left. As has been the case in most of these detentions, the journalist were released the next morning with no charge or explanation — all he did was ask a question, and the police detained him and took him away.

This is really just an overarching problem we face today when the local police think themselves above the constitution, when we see images of police officers decked out in better gear than our soldiers used in the streets of Baghdad. My step-dad is currently deployed in Afghanistan, and he doesn’t even wear as much tactical equipment as the police in Ferguson Missouri were — of course journalism is going to be targeted, it is the first move of every tyrant to suppress the voice of the people and to obfuscate the situation from the public eye.

Journalism has always been a dangerous profession, but it has usually never been so dangerous to be a journalist in the streets of America. Sure, when journalists were arrested in Eastern Ukraine and held hostage, it was the kind of situation we expected as a possibility — journalism in Ferguson, Missouri should not, however, carry the same risks as journalism in the war torn Eastern Ukraine. The local police, no matter what situation they are overreacting to, are not above the constitution.

The sad truth is that since the protests over the death of Michael Brown have begun, journalists in Ferguson have been arrested, shot at, threatened, and even assaulted by Law Enforcement officers in Ferguson. But, again, this is just a growing trend in the danger of journalism. James Foley, for instance, traveled abroad to expose Americans to the suffering of Syrians. What did he get for his trouble? He was captured by the extremists group, ISIS, and later beheaded in responses to American airstrikes and refusal to pay a $100 Million ransom.

While we cannot do anything to make journalism safer in foreign countries, no American in good conscious should stand by unaffected by what is happening in our own streets. Reporters covering the Gazan Conflict face the real possibility of death, is that going to be the future of journalism in America? Are our reporters going to have to worry about the police killing them, next? I’m not going to pretend like I fully understand what is happening in Ferguson, though I have been keeping up with the news reports, but I know that this is not how things are supposed to happen in America. We have rights guaranteed to us by the constitution, and it is becoming harder and harder to keep those rights from being trampled on when our local police look more like they are occupying a foreign country than keeping our streets safe.

I have friends who have moved abroad and one of the things they always tell me is that the police where they live are different from the police in America, for instance a friend of mine from Japan (he is African-American, for the record) told me that in Japan you actually have a sense that you can trust the police and that they are actually there to help you, as opposed to in America where he always felt afraid of the police. His stories generally match those that I have heard from other individuals who have experienced interactions with law enforcement abroad.

So where did our police go so wrong? When did being an Officer of he Peace mean you needed to carry an assault rifle and threaten the press? I’m not sure where this country is going, but it doesn’t really seem like it is a good path to be taking. I tip my hat to anyone who goes into a field like journalism, because there doesn’t seem to be any real safety in it anymore — even in America, where you are supposed to be protected, you are putting yourself in harms way, and that is really just unacceptable.

Well, damn.

I’m sorry guys, I wasn’t able to put anything out today. My semester just started up, I hurt my back, and my order with the bookstore got completely fucked up. I haven’t really been around my computer and it donned on me just a little bit ago that I missed my deadline and hadn’t put anything out. For that, I apologize. Just had alot of unexpected crap to deal with today, such as the bookstore informing me they have no idea why my order is backordered because they have the books and that the only way I can get them is to cancel the order and then pick them up.

Tried to stop by the off campus bookstore that says WE SELL AND BUY BOOKS EVERYDAY in big green text in their window only to see a little piece of white paper on their door that said “Closed Friday-Sunday”. So yeah…Then I couldn’t even cancel my order at the on campus bookstore because I didn’t have the last 4 digits of the order number. Why the hell is being a student so freaking difficult? You would think that with the amount of money I am paying out to these people that they could get something as simple as whether or not a book was in stock right. It might be the most trivial thing I have ever bitched about on this little section of space, so this is basically just a grab bag of me bitching and moaning.

By the way, ladies? If you are ever attempting to learn ballroom dancing, make an effort to learn some goddamn etiquette. Don’t show up without deodorant on, and definitely do not show up and just stare at your feet the entire time. I cannot tell you how many times more the girls staring at their feet screwed up more than the ones staring at me. Seriously. I’ve never danced before and even I knew to stare right at the female while dancing. I only stepped on one girl’s foot, and that was because she missed a step because she was staring at her goddamn feet.  Another thing to remember? I do not care how strong and independent you are, when the instruction is “the male always leads” that isn’t your cue to take me in a deathgrip and drag me around the goddamn dance floor (which, incidentally, is how I hurt my back) so calm down on that shit.

So yeah, today has just been a goddamn mess, and I need a break to just chill out, but I’ll be back next week with my usual stuff.. My apologies.