Thursday, May 14, 2015

Conservatives Still Fear "Agitators" of Positive Change

Story: Ted Cruz blames Obama — saying the first black president has ‘inflamed racial tensions’

I don't think many people realize it, but this kind of rhetoric is just a reworded sentiment from the people fighting the abolition of Jim Crow laws when they cried about "outside agitators." This kind of language is based on the awful idea that people who are oppressed should just accept it and stop complaining, and others looking to help should also quit attacking the status quo. Change, even if it results in an improvement, is to be shunned for people who assert these positions.

I find it deeply saddening that we still have to put up with such nonsense.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

The Dimming of America

Story: US cited for police violence, racism in scathing UN review on human rights

It is not likely that major U.S. news outlets will pick this up, but this continuing deterioration of the country's behavior toward its own people and its standing in the world are things that aren't going away.

In addition to what's in this new report, the country's press freedom ranking continues to drop, now ranked 49th out of 180 countries (; many countries outrank us when it comes to education (; income inequality is atrocious (; and our health care system is ranked as the worst in the developed world (

With all these issues (and many more), we actually have large numbers of people who see as more important things like yet another war, nutty conspiracy theories like a federal invasion of Texas, denying climate change (and science in general), and putting more outdated religious ideas on the law books.

Our future doesn't look particularly bright.

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Confusing Founders With Fortune Tellers

I've written in the past about a dangerous phenomenon I called founderism where we give past declarations power over us now. The most prominent examples are collections of laws and religious texts.

I recently saw a reference to something similar called "Founder's syndrome," a "difficulty faced by many organizations where one or more founders maintain disproportionate power and influence following the effective initial establishment of the project, leading to a wide range of problems for both the organization and those involved in it."

This situation is one that exists while a founder is still alive and in power, but the phenomenon I have previously mentioned is similar with the difference being proxies that take over for the founder(s) to cause the same problems. We can see this problem playing out every day with the people who see things like the U.S. Constitution and the Bible as somehow perfect, attempting to enforce it as they declare "the founders" would want.

We need to get rid of this idea that something that is declared or created at any point in time is somehow untouchable. Not only should everything be open to change, it should be a requirement. Nothing any human declares can include an accurate prediction of the future. It's just not possible. Thinking it is possible is the worst kind of thinking and does us a tremendous amount of harm.