freedom of speech means that the government is not allowed to tell you to shut the fuck up. it doesn’t mean that i am not allowed to tell you to shut the fuck up.
Indeed. Freedom from speech is not freedom from criticism. Also, the US tradition of an absolute right to free speech isn’t really a thing in other parts of the world.
Feel free to contact me about recent events. I am willing to hear out your concerns or clarify my perspective. This is true even if you have no context whatsoever, I’ll post more info when I have had more time to process and to collect a more complete picture.
Yeah!!! Here’s to the next 38 states getting in line with equality!
Minnesota. FUCK YEAH
Is 51… Can we get a golf clap? A you tried star?
I assume they’re also counting Washington, DC as it’s own entity.
I saw this tweet on my feed yesterday, and I just have to get a few things off my chest.
Now, before I start, I would like to state for the record that I really admire Dr. Tyson, and I think that he is a great public advocate for the role of science in policy making and an influential teacher who has inspired many young people to explore science. He is also not the first, nor will he be the last, person to espouse such “follow your passion!” career advice. It’s a perfectly understandable impulse to try to guide students in that way, especially when you yourself are working in your field of choice and have had great success.
It is also, in my opinion, completely misguided.
The first reaction I had to this tweet was what is at this point the fairly standard response from anyone born after about 1977 to such pithy career advice: Are you fucking kidding me? The idea of finding a job at all in our chosen field of study, let alone one that pays enough to cover both rent and our student loan payments and that we actually enjoy, is a pipe dream for I would say 90% of the people under 35 I know. There’s this idea that if we each just try hard enough as individuals that we can all overcome the realities of our current job market, statistics be damned. And advice like this also assumes that each of us even has an interest or a passion or a focus that translates easily into a career path. Not all of us want to be scientists, and a lot of us who did always want to spend our lives in the lab get partway through grad school and discover that it’s not all rainbows and kittens pursuing your dream.
If I sound bitter, I don’t actually mean to. I’ve been far less broken down by what the job market looks like for people under 35 than many of my friends. I just get really tired of hearing this same old piece of advice, because it also ignores something really important: not everyone in the world can get to have a job that’s their life passion.
This part is just simple math. There are a lot of jobs out there, jobs that are important and necessary to making our society work, that are in no way sexy or interesting or fun, for most people. It’s lovely to imagine a world in which every waitress or car mechanic or lawyer or customer service representative wakes up each morning and can’t wait to go to work, but it’s not at all realistic, and that is okay. It is OKAY to have a job that is not your life passion, that hopefully pays your bills and gives you benefits and enough time off so that you can do something cool once or twice a year, without fulfilling some greater need or desire. For some people, work is called that because that’s all it is, an agreement you make with an employer that in exchange for X number of hours of work every week, they’ll pay you Y number of dollars so you can provide for the rest of your life.
I’m not advocating that people go into careers that they know will make them unhappy, or that they settle for whatever first job they can get. I think that every person is better suited for some occupations than others, and exploring the options available to find a good match is absolutely a good idea. One job does not fit all. But not every person needs to adore their occupation. While I like my job just fine 90% of the time, I also cherish every minute of time off I am granted by my employer, and that doesn’t mean I’m wasting my life.
That’s the last thing I have a problem with in this statement. The idea that everyone’s goal for their employment should be to do something that they never want to take a break from is both ridiculous and fits in dangerously well with the U.S.’s already negative opinion of people who want “too much” time off. I am not claiming that Tyson doesn’t think employees should be granted vacation time. But this idea that work should be so all-consuming that we never want to stop to do something else for a short time is not romantic to me, or appealing. People deserve to have a good life balance between their jobs and the rest of their lives, even if that job actually is something that makes their heart sing when they wake up in the morning. Wanting to have enough time off every year so that you can travel or see family or just sit around in your home in your underwear and not do anything is not an unworthy goal. Wanting to be able to take sick time when you’re sick and not have your employer think less of you, or dock your pay, is not unreasonable.
On a societal level, this sort of advice supports the idea that every individual, rather than the labor system as a whole, is solely responsible for their own work happiness, and fuck the unfortunate souls who aren’t privileged enough, or smart enough, or lucky enough, to get a job that actually values them because they’re doing something few other people can do. There are a lot of jobs out there that I would never want to do, but that I recognize as being vital to our society functioning well, and I want those employees to be able to provide for their families and take time off. This idea that we should all follow our dreams doesn’t just fail on a personal level, but it fails society as a whole.
I also have to add: I have a relative who is doing a kind of job that she considers her calling, and it’s rather important work. Especially if you’re working for a non-profit, especially if you’re clever enough to self-supervise, and especially if you really love your job, it’s easy to fall into the hole I think she’s in. My relative hasn’t really talked to most of her extended family in quite a while, and to my knowledge doesn’t seem to have social relationships or waking hours that aren’t connected to her work. I…don’t think that’s healthy. Even if you love doing a thing and the thing you’re doing is saving lives and you feel obligated to keep doing it, if you don’t do anything else you’ll eventually burn out. Also, you’ll miss interacting with all the world outside the thing, and that’s a shame.
excuse me tumblr I just want to be a STEM nerd for a moment
there is a post going around about the world’s first math field trip and it is to hell hahahahahaha math suxxx with close to 70K notes
but if you have half an hour (slightly less) pls watch donald duck in mathmagic land ok it is mostly about geometry and shapes and artistic things that appear in math and it’s very pretty and also silly and a fairly good representation of what a field trip in math would look like ok thank you
I understand that there are a lot of issues with the way math is taught and socialized and that dyscalculia and other disorders exist and make math really difficult and if you don’t want to watch donald duck being taught about ratios that is cool but it is a pretty fun 27 minutes if you wanna
(“[Jews] changed their names, and gave their children English names, in order to assimilate, partly for class mobility, partly just for survival. It worked for some of them, in some ways. It did not prevent them from experiencing antisemitism. Probably it mitigated the severity. Probably it continues to do that for me.
In my generation, I know lots of young adult Jews who have obviously Jewish names. [….] Almost all of these folks who reclaim Jewish names catch flack from their non-Jewish peers. At the very least they are considered weird.
In short, some Jews in the U.S. go through a lot to have Jewish names. I resent the non-Jewish FtMs who choose, as adults, to take on names that, if they were Jews, would mark them as outsiders, but since they are not, only mark them as trendy/interesting/exotic. It’s cultural appropriation. It’s oppressive. It kinda sucks.”)
An interesting article about intersectionality and appropriation of Jewish names from a neat LGBTQ blogger.
And on that note - friendlyangryfeminist had a post recently about not understanding the difference between kinky sex and all other sex, and not understanding why sometimes people were very defensive about kink and criticism of kink. Yes, kinkiness is a spectrum that includes a lot of people, and the line between “kinky” and “not kinky” is blurry enough to be minimally existent in some places.
But not in all places. There’s a tradition of people who called themselves feminists being very critical of particular kinds of sexual expression - sexual expression they weren’t engaging in, believed to be intrinsically immoral, and considered degrading. Those feminists’ actions and rhetoric were, and to this day are, utterly indistinguishable from the same stuff coming out of the Religious Right.
This is extra true of a lot of the ‘porn wars’ arguments, which are yet ongoing and may never be over. I make no distinction between a douchebag calling every sex worker a dupe and an obstacle to the liberation of women and a douchebag calling every sex worker a sinner and an obstacle to the salvation of women. The arguments that get made about pornographers also get made about kinky people, queer people, trans* people, and poly people, depending on whom one’s reading on a given day. Quite frankly, the now-defunct blog Renegade Evolution did a lot for me understanding my sexuality, and RenEv was a woman in sex work who burned out on engaging with sex-negative/sex-moralist feminists, so. I am perhaps biased.
I am on board with being critical of sex, with opposing compulsory sexuality as well as opposing sex moralism, but it’s a tricky line to walk. I am very reluctant to demand or repost critical examination of sexual expression I have not engaged in and have not observed closely.
One hallmark of the porn wars was/is a demand for you to examine your desires. I think EYD is frequently a super toxic meme where some (bad) girls get told, over and over, to examine their desires. Often, this is under the assumption that if you examine hard enough you’ll realize you’ve been deluded by Patriarchy. Then, you will engage in Virtuous Sexuality which, not coincidentally, strongly resembles my own. (Occasionally Virtuous Sexuality is lesbian separatism/political lesbianism, but usually it’s monogamous, heterosexual, and non-kinky.)
I think you should examine your desires, if your culture has not demanded, over and over, that you affirm for sure that your desires are real. If you have come out to yourself as atypically sexual, I suspect that you have examined your desires, even if you did not call it that at the time. If your surrounding culture is intensely supportive of your desires, I am less sure that you have sufficiently examined your desires. Questioning one’s assumptions is useful. Insisting that the assumptions of people whose cultural backgrounds and experiences are other than your own must be bullshit is not so useful.
If, in practice, EYD exclusively got leveled at people who hadn’t thought things through and were mindlessly doing socially-expected things, it would be useful. But in my experience it almost always got leveled at people who have and weren’t, and in those cases it wasn’t.
Whoops, it turns out I have a third part, in which this all becomes obnoxious hippie secular Jewish feels. I warned you I was having a lot of feelings.
- Repairing the world involves doing a lot of stuff. Like, a lot a lot.
- If you are angry and upset about not having done enough to solve problems and end injustice, you are probably going to be angry and upset one hundred percent of the time for years to come. That sounds exhausting, and also kind of miserable. Maintaing that passion without letting it consume you is a difficult thing.
- One of the things that helps is recognizing that you are working on a huge, difficult project with a huge number of people. One of the things that helps is, actually, that horrible, horrible earworm song that I’m only going to name in the tags.
- We are told, in some versions of the Haggadah, that really none of the things mentioned in the verses would have been enough to end the oppression of the Jews. Indeed, all of those things happened and did not prevent some terrible stuff from happening afterwards, and there is still terrible stuff happening. But it is important to celebrate each victory as though it is enough (even though actually nothing will be enough short of the Messianic Age), and to sing each verse as though it is the last.
- Which, I guess, is arguably the point of Pride as well as Passover, and may be why those are my two favorite holidays? Sodomy was still illegal, after Stonewall. Jews were still oppressed, after escaping from Egypt. One riot - one series of miracles - one book is not actually enough. But it’s worth celebrating as though it is, because every little victory is enough reason for joy and drinking and parades, while no victory is enough reason to stop.
- And now it’s in my head. Fuck.