Welcome to another Weekly Reader post, where I share things that I find interesting with you. Feel free to share the love; if you’ve got a link or two you’d like to share, drop them off in the comments!
I’m Crying for the detained 10-Year-Old with Down Syndrome (from Without a Crystal Ball): “People are livid, people are disgusted, I get it. I’m angry, livid and unhappy too. However, I want to put a pause button on this misdirection of anger and put back into focus that little girl that is sitting in that camp.”
God Has Nothing to Do With Trump Being President (from John Pavlovitz): “So Trump’s multiple marriages, his porn star affairs, his mountain of sexual assault claims, his verbal obscenities, his disregard for rule of law, his compulsive lying, his clear racism, his unrelenting attacks on marginalized communities (things these Christians would have figuratively and almost literally crucified Obama for) are now unmistakable signs that God is using this President.”
In America, Naturalized Citizens No Longer Have an Assumption of Permanence (from the New Yorker): “Historically, denaturalization has been an exceedingly rare occurrence, for good reason: by the time a person is naturalized, she has lived in this country for a number of years and has passed the hurdles of obtaining entry, legal permanent residency, and, finally, citizenship. The conceit of naturalization is that it makes an immigrant not only equal to natural-born citizens but indistinguishable from them. So denaturalization, much like the process of stripping a natural-born American of citizenship, has been an extraordinary procedure reserved for very serious cases, mostly those of war criminals.”
When Children Say They’re Trans (from the Atlantic): “The current era of gender-identity awareness has undoubtedly made life easier for many young people who feel constricted by the sometimes-oppressive nature of gender expectations. A rich new language has taken root, granting kids who might have felt alone or excluded the words they need to describe their experiences. And the advent of the internet has allowed teenagers, even ones in parts of the country where acceptance of gender nonconformity continues to come far too slowly, to find others like them.”
Cleanse and Refresh (from Slate): “According to the Times, My Detox should be exempt from evaluation on the basis of scientific validity. “ ‘My Detox’ is a column that is not essentially about science,” Jordan Cohen, a Times spokesman, wrote in an email. “It’s a subjective column meant to introduce T readers to interesting people and the personal stories of their own routines. As the tagline reads, T is simply putting a spotlight on the homemade recipes they count on. ‘My Detox’ pieces are not meant to serve as instructional stories.” (Though, if these “personal stories” are “not intended as instructional stories,” why include recipes?) Cohen added: “The Times’ science and health editors regularly offer guidance on relevant subject matter for sections when necessary.””
Doctors Concerned About ‘Irreparable Harm’ To Separated Migrant Children (from NPR): “The number of migrant children in U.S. government custody is soaring — partly the result of a policy decision by the Trump administration to separate children from their parents who are being prosecuted for unlawful entry. Hundreds of the children being held in shelters are under age 13.”
I Wish I Had Learned LGBTQ History In School (from the Huffington Post): “LGBTQ people have existed throughout history and made tremendous contributions to American culture, yet no one talked about them in school, and there were hardly any books available highlighting the brave queer and trans people who paved the way for the rest of us. If I had known about them, I might not have suffered through years of alienation, confusion and self-hatred. I would have learned to love and embrace my true self sooner.”
The Demise of Toys ‘R’ Us Is a Warning (from the Atlantic): “Less attention was paid to the albatross that Bain, KKR, and Vornado had placed around the company’s neck. Toys “R” Us had a debt load of $1.86 billion before it was bought out. Immediately after the deal, it shouldered more than $5 billion in debt. And though sales had slumped before the deal, they held relatively steady after it, even when the Great Recession hit. The company generated $11.2 billion in sales in the 12 months before the deal; in the 12 months before November 2017, it generated $11.1 billion.”
Japanese-Americans Imprisoned at Texas Internment Camp in 1940s Watch Border Crisis Unfold with Heavy Hearts (from the El Paso Herald-Post): “Like some of today’s detained children, Ina was separated from her father who was sent to a camp in North Dakota while she was held in Texas with her mother and brother from 1944 to 1946. Her reaction to her father’s return two years later was indicative of the trauma she had already suffered.
“I cried whenever he came close to me. I had no idea who he was,” Ina said. “Here was somebody who was a total stranger, and I was supposed to call him father.””
Retreat’s Risky Lessons (from the San Francisco Chronicle): “Over four long days and nights, Valenzuela, aided by teachers with just 90 minutes of training for the camp, will lead the unsuspecting youth through a series of such painful exercises. Latino students will be ordered to clean up after whites and ushered into restrooms labeled “No Mexicans or Dogs Allowed.” Jewish students will be pinned with yellow stars and taunted about the Holocaust. Some teens will be called “retards” and slapped on the back of the head. And more than once, students will be encouraged to reveal whether they have contemplated suicide.”
Escape from Jesus Land: On Recognizing Evangelical Abuse and Finding the Strength to Reject the Faith of Our Fathers (from Not Your Mission Field): “Just as corporal punishment was used in school, my sister and I were subjected to spanking, including with a wooden spoon, at home. Evangelicalism, as a variety of fundamentalist Christianity, teaches that children’s wills must be broken in order to instill obedience to authority. In Jesus Land, a “strong-willed child” (a term that was often applied to my sister) is regarded as a particularly serious problem. This ideology is closely associated with Dr. James Dobson, the twisted evangelical answer to Dr. Benjamin Spock and the founder of the virulently anti-gay organization Focus on the Family, which moved to Colorado Springs, Colorado, in 1993.”
That’s all for this time around. Stop by again next week when I share more information gleaned from various parts of the internet. Until then, happy reading!