Weekly Reader: Vol 3 Issue 30

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.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Said Something Genuine, So Of Course Men Reacted Poorly (from Rolling Stone): “To anyone who’s followed AOC’s career, none of this was particularly surprising. AOC has spent the majority of her political life coming under harsh scrutiny from (mostly male, mostly conservative) political commentators who are so enraged by her youth, her vigor, her eloquence, her social media fluency, and her preternatural political savvy that they’ve been forced to conclude that it’s all a load of bullshit. (The fact that a young woman of color has ascended to such heights in such a short period of time plays an unspoken yet obvious role in this criticism.) From her tearful encounter with children separated at the border from their parents to her taste in footwear, conservative pundits are constantly grasping at what they see as evidence that her Democratic Socialist leanings, her working-class background, and her political credentials are all a sham.

When applied to her account of her own sexual assault, however, those critiques take on added resonance, in that they echo the tactics that men frequently use to negate or downplay women’s experiences with sexual violence. When a sexual assault survivor comes forward, it is not uncommon for people (mostly, but not always, men) to refute the veracity of their account by in part blaming the victim for the attack.”

Bonus episode: Inside the craziest meeting of the Trump presidency (from Axios): “President Trump’s private schedule hadn’t included appointments for Powell or the others: former national security adviser Michael Flynn, former Overstock.com CEO Patrick Byrne, and a little-known former Trump administration official, Emily Newman. But they’d come to convince Trump that he had the power to take extreme measures to keep fighting.

As Powell and the others entered the Oval Office that evening, Herschmann — a wealthy business executive and former partner at Kasowitz Benson & Torres who’d been pulled out of quasi-retirement to advise Trump — quietly slipped in behind them.”

I Was Shackled to My Bed After Giving Birth. Then They Took My Baby Away. (from TruthOut): “Pregnant women in Illinois and a few other states are not allowed to be shackled, only handcuffed. I can’t imagine having to waddle in shackles eight or nine months pregnant. But so many of the guards in Illinois complain about not being able to use the shackles during pregnancy.

After birth, women can be shackled — regardless of any pain from stitches one may have, or the women with C-sections. Once the baby is born, all restraints are once again an option, per discretion of the officer.”

Sitting on billions, Catholic dioceses amassed taxpayer aid (from the Associated Press): “As the pandemic began to unfold, scores of Catholic dioceses across the U.S. received aid through the Paycheck Protection Program while sitting on well over $10 billion in cash, short-term investments or other available funds, an Associated Press investigation has found. And despite the broad economic downturn, these assets have grown in many dioceses.

Yet even with that financial safety net, the 112 dioceses that shared their financial statements, along with the churches and schools they oversee, collected at least $1.5 billion in taxpayer-backed aid. A majority of these dioceses reported enough money on hand to cover at least six months of operating expenses, even without any new income.”

This Is What It’s Like Getting An Abortion During A Pandemic (from the Huffington Post): “On Friday, March 20, I went to the clinic alone. I wasn’t allowed to bring my partner because of the social distancing rules in place. In order to limit the number of patients inside the clinic, they actually had us sign in and wait in our cars. I sat in my car for two hours before I was able to enter the building. Meanwhile, anti-abortion protesters stood nearby screaming at me. The clinic’s advice was to turn my music up loud enough that I couldn’t hear them. Later, I heard some nurses talking about how one woman got intimidated and drove off.”

This Close-Knit Island Near Seattle Has An Overlooked History Of Defying Hate (from the Huffington Post): “Filipino immigrant Felix Narte formed an especially close relationship with his Japanese American neighbors, the Kitamotos, working on their strawberry farm before the war. When the Kitamotos were suddenly forced to leave, Narte and other Filipino men took care of their abandoned properties.

Narte did even more than that, though. Lilly Kitamoto Kodama, 84, told HuffPost that he once drove all the way from Bainbridge Island to Idaho to visit her family in Minidoka, where they were imprisoned. “My youngest sister was only 9 months old and all the mothers in camp were washing diapers by hand, and Felix drove a washing machine to camp — my mother’s washing machine that was one of those electric ones,” she recalled.”

‘Like nothing seen in nature before’: strange dinosaur has scientists enthralled (from the Guardian): “On the inside, it was ordinary, with a skeleton similar to many small dinosaurs from the preceding Jurassic Period, scientists said on Tuesday. On the outside, it was anything but.

This dinosaur, called Ubirajara jubatus, possessed a mane of hair-like structures while also boasting two utterly unique, stiff, ribbon-like features probably made of keratin – the same substance that makes up hair and fingernails – protruding from its shoulders.”

Why Just ‘Adding Context’ to Controversial Monuments May Not Change Minds (from Smithsonian Magazine): “When Smith asked about the new displays, some people at each site told her “‘I didn’t even see it.’” They were so eager to pay homage to a former president that they could walk right through an entryway with an introductory display about his ownership of enslaved people without noticing it. But most visitors did notice such information. Yet, if it contradicts what they believe, Smith says that they “brush it off as irrelevant.””

Nazi Hippies: When the New Age and Far Right Overlap (from Medium): “This eco-bio-politics, in which humans are an animal like any other, led in the Nazis’ case to eugenics — as with any other animal, the weak and sick specimens should be killed, and superior breeds (that is, the Aryan race) should be protected against invasive species (Jews).

The Nazis were also huge fans of organic farming and of Rudolf Steiner’s biodynamic agriculture, which sees farming as a mystical communion with the land and its spirits/energies. Several leading Nazis supported this theory, and Himmler authorized experiments on it using slave labor in concentration camps.”

The Family Court Judge Who Threatened a Mother With Contempt of Court for Getting Her Child a COVID-19 Test (from ProPublica): “But Grendell hasn’t confined his views to the public square. A few weeks after he testified to lawmakers, he referred to the pandemic as a “panic-ademic” in the midst of a custody proceeding in his courtroom in Geauga County, outside Cleveland. And he has claimed that 15 mothers in his court have used the virus as an excuse in custody cases to “mess with” their exes’ parenting time.”

With that, we’ll stop for today. But drop by again next time for more articles you didn’t know that you wanted to read. Until then, have a great rest of your week 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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