Weekly Reader: Vol 3 Issue 9

It’s time once again for news and views that you can peruse. It’s time once again for your regularly scheduled Weekly Reader! Got some hot links, blog posts, or articles from a local paper you’d like to share? Head over to the comments and let us know.

Facebook ad boycott organizers met with Zuckerberg. It didn’t go well (from CNN): “Free Press, a media activist group and one of the organizers of the #StopHateForProfit campaign to halt ad spending on the social network, said Facebook still has not taken the boycott’s calls to action seriously.

“Instead of committing to a timeline to root out hate and disinformation on Facebook, the company’s leaders delivered the same old talking points to try to placate us without meeting our demands,” said Free Press Co-CEO Jessica Gonzalez. “Facebook approached our meeting today like it was nothing more than a PR exercise.””

‘Covid Parties’ Are Not a Thing (from Wired): “The latest version of the tale, from Alabama, follows the same pattern as the others. It appears to be the product of a weird game of telephone mixed with loose talk from public officials and disgracefully sloppy journalism. On Tuesday, Tuscaloosa fire chief Randy Smith told the city council that his department had heard about parties “where students or kids would come in with known positives.” It sounded like just a rumor, Smith said, but “not only did the doctors’ offices help confirm it, but the state also confirmed they had the same information.””

Zuckerberg said to say of Facebook ad boycott: ‘All these advertisers will be back’ soon enough (from MarketWatch): “Experts told MarketWatch on Wednesday that companies joining the boycott may see a bigger boost to their brands than Facebook ads would have generated in the first place.”

Warning of serious brain disorders in people with mild coronavirus symptoms (from The Guardian): “A dozen patients had inflammation of the central nervous system, 10 had brain disease with delirium or psychosis, eight had strokes and a further eight had peripheral nerve problems, mostly diagnosed as Guillain-Barré syndrome, an immune reaction that attacks the nerves and causes paralysis. It is fatal in 5% of cases.”

John Roberts Just Bulldozed the Wall Separating Church and State (from Slate): “Perhaps Roberts can’t see it, but James Madison certainly could. As Justice Stephen Breyer wrote in dissent, Madison famously opposed a Virginia bill that would have taxed residents to support teachers of “the Christian Religion,” condemning it as “a signal of persecution” that violates religious liberty. Montana’s Christians-schools-only program illustrates how states that fund religion wind up funding the faith shared by a majority of residents. Breyer, quoting Madison, noted that state funding of a particular religion may “destroy that moderation and harmony” among different faiths that is a hallmark of America’s religious tolerance.”

Facebook Cracked Down On Extremism. It Only Took A Major Boycott And Multiple Killings. (from The Huffington Post): “YouTube de-platformed several far-right extremists from its service, and the streaming service Twitch temporarily suspended Trump’s account for “hateful conduct.”

But this isn’t a sea change in how these platforms address hateful content. Many experts instead see a slow, piecemeal approach by companies who have let extremism and political disinformation become pervasive ― and who are now facing strong backlash from advertisers and public criticism ahead of the 2020 election.”

Home Depot changes rope sales practice after nooses are found in store (from CNN): “But it wasn’t the first time Home Depot was alerted to nooses in its stores. As a result, the company has decided to sell shorter, pre-cut lengths of rope instead of rope wrapped on large spools.”

He Built a Privately Funded Border Wall. It’s Already at Risk of Falling Down if Not Fixed. (from ProPublica): “Fisher has leveraged his self-described “Lamborghini” of walls to win more than $1.7 billion worth of federal contracts in Arizona.

But his showcase piece is showing signs of runoff erosion and, if it’s not fixed, could be in danger of falling into the Rio Grande, according to engineers and hydrologists who reviewed photos of the wall for ProPublica and The Texas Tribune. It never should have been built so close to the river, they say.”

Women are getting harassed in bathrooms because of anti-transgender hysteria (from Vox–Article is from 2016 but definitely worth the read.): “That the current hysteria over bathrooms is leading to women, trans or not, getting harassed in bathrooms is, on top of plain awful, ironic. After all, harassment is one of the things those who oppose letting trans people use the bathroom for their gender identity supposedly want to prevent. They claim trans-friendly policies will allow men to disguise themselves as women, go into women’s bathrooms, and harass or assault women.”

How I Survived a Spanking Household (from The Body is Not an Apology): “Some might argue that my father’s violence was merely spanking gone wrong. But I contend that it was actually spanking gone “right.” Sure, my father’s temper led to gruesome excess, easy to condemn. Even my mother’s “businesslike” spankings, however, were violence, and that violence is a feature of spanking, not a bug. The entire point of such “discipline” was to use pain and fear to coerce behavior. Remember, as I was beaten by my brother, my mother watched and considered it a valuable teaching tool.”

That’s it for this round. But don’t fret; I’ll be back next week with more interesting reads for you to browse. So until then, have a great rest of your week, stay safe, and happy reading!

About Silverwynde

I'm a Transformers fan, Pokémon player, Brewers fan and all-out general nerd. I rescue abandoned Golett, collect as many Bumblebee decoys and figures as I can find and I've attended every BotCon--official and non--since 1999. I'm also happily married to a fellow Transfan named Prime and we were both owned by a very intelligent half-Siamese cat, who crossed the Rainbow Bridge on June 16, 2018. We still miss him. But we're now the acting staff of a Maine Coon kitty named Lulu, who pretty much rules the house. Not that we're complaining about that.
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