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Invisible Children’s video ends with a call for a mass protest on April 20, “Cover The Night,” with the goal of putting up posters – available for sale on its’ website as part of an “action kit” – in major cities around the world with the goal of expanding the campaign’s reach as far as possible. But the way the campaign is presented – led by a white man’s voice, with groups of predominantly white American activists juxtaposed with survivors/victims who are African – paints a picture of neo-colonialism, and justifiably so, according to Ugandan journalist Angelo Izama:
This is because these campaigns are disempowering of their own voices. After all the conflict and suffering is affecting them directly regardless of if they hit the re-tweet button or not. At the end of the day the Kony2012 campaign will not make Joseph Kony more famous but it will make Invisible Children famous. It will also make many, including P.Diddy, feel like they have contributed some good to his capture- assuming Kony is even alive. For many in the conflict prevention community including those who worry about the militarization of it in Central Africa this campaign is just another nightmare that will end soon. Hopefully.
—Arturo García summarizes the controversy (and rightfully so, due to its neo-colonialism) around the Stop Kony campaign at the R today.
“Give the person or people behind the OSU Haters Tumblr some credit: the campaign has actually spurred their school, Ohio State, to confront the racist attitudes of some of its students. Tonight, members of various student groups will hold a special town hall meeting to discuss the ugliness the page uncovered. The page was founded months ago, but has gained more attention online over the past week or so, including the curious gaze of local media in Columbus, OH. “The motivation to create these accounts came from the multiple sightings of hate speech online,” OSU Haters told The Columbus Dispatch via email. “Particularly the fact that these posts continued not only without consequence, but were sometimes promoted and shared by their peers.” It’s a testament to what social media can do to force attention to an issue that the school’s president, E. Gordon Gee, has weighed in--and thankfully, not to pooh-pooh OSUHater’s cause. “It’s just clearly unacceptable behavior,” he said to the Dispatch regarding the racism. “We have a very clear policy, and I have very strong personal feelings about how wrong it is.”—Arturo García reports on how a university community—including the school’s president—(finally) does the right thing in curtailing racism. (TW: anti-Asian racism, anti-Black racism, islamophobia, transphobia)
“Dichosa tu sonrisa que se moja con tus labios, dichosas tus manos al tocar tus pechos tibios bajo el agua dulce de la ducha que también es dichosa. Dichosos tus ojos que miran en el espejo y ven el cielo, campos, senderos caminos de agua dulce, arcos de fuego, puentes de cristal rama, hoja de árbol, capullo, nubes artificiosas que se te tocan vueltas agua, que no mueren hasta rozar tus alas. Dichosos tus pies que siguen tu camino incierto, tus uñas que adornan como coronas esos tus dedos infinitos. Dichosos tus oídos, pues oyen tu voz y tus pisadas, dichoso tu presentimiento, pues al despertar sigues estando contigo. Dichoso tu pelo en octubre, cuando se pone las alas del otoño y sale a jugar con las hojas que se revelan a la vida. Dichosos los ojos que te ven pasar, los sitios por donde dejas tu estela, los árboles que recogen tu resello. Dichosas la ciudades que en su nostalgia nocturna saben que duermes en algún rincón que reposas tu cansancio bajo algún techo. Dichosa la luna en descampado, porque sabe que su luz es tocada por tu sombra. Dichosa la luciérnaga que alumbra tu sendero. Dichosos el mar que se empapa de ti, la ola, la caracola, la espuma que se petrifica bajo tus pies. Dichoso el día que naciste, la hora que llegaste, las manos que te recibieron, la luz que compartió tu luz. Dichosos el corazón que te arrulla, tus parpados: cortinas, velos nocturnos dichos tus secretos tus sitios ocultos, la humedad de tu cuerpo, el suspiro infinito que te envuelve cuando te arrojas a los placeres de la vida.”—Arturo García - Poema “Dicha” (Fragmento)
"Death penalty removed from Ugandan ‘Kill the Gays’ bill" (Garcia 2012)
Ugandan lawmakers removed the death penalty from an anti-LGBT bill set to be debated by the country’s parliament next week, the BBC reported Saturday.
The proposal, called the “Kill The Gays” bill when first introduced three years ago, has undergone other unspecified “revisions,” said MP Medard Segona, who was part of the country’s Legal and Parliamentary committee. The committee reviewed the bill this week and endorsed it, paving the way for parliamentary debate.
Homosexuality is already illegal in Uganda; according to CNN, the latest version of the bill substitutes life in prison as a penalty for offering shelter to a gay person, refusing to notify police if they suspect someone is gay, and “touching another person with intent of committing homosexuality.”
The new version of the bill also punishes “aggravated homosexuality” — which, the bill says, occurs when one of the participants is disabled, underage, HIV-positive or a “serial offender” — with life in prison, and calls for harsher penalties overall against LGBT individuals or supporters.
Maher on conservatives spurning Chris Christie: ‘Do they have a death wish?’Arturo Garcia
During a discussion on his show Friday, HBO host Bill Maher and his guests raked the organizers of the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) over the coals for not inviting New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) to appear.
“Do they have a death wish?” Maher asked GOP strategist Steve Schmidt. “Do they want to win?”
According to Politico, Christie was not asked to participate because he publicly criticized House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) and other Republicans for opposing a relief package for New Jersey and New York in the wake of Hurricane Sandy last year.
But the list of speakers who did get an invitation seemingly got chuckles out of Maher.
“The name of their theme this year is ‘America’s Future: The Next Generation of Conservatives,’” he told Schmidt, who has called the event “the Star Wars bar” in the past. “And they invite Newt Gingrich, Sarah Palin, Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum, Rick Perry. That’s the next generation? That must curl your hair, if you had any.”
“On the inside,” Schmidt replied. “What I said was, the only thing this is missing is a couple of wookies walking around.”
The event, Schmidt said, is run by “the part of the Republican Party that explains why we’re at a 26 percent approval rating, nationally.” Without mentioning the organizers, the American Conservative Union (ACU), by name, Schmidt pointed out that they also excluded both black Republicans and gay Republicans from taking part.
“If Chris Christie’s the nominee of the Republican party in 2016, he totally changes the electoral map,” Schmidt said. “We haven’t won a state, with the exception of New Hampshire, since 1988 north of the Mason-Dixon line.”
The ACU’s dismissal of Christie, said California Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom (D), was also surprising because otherwise, he tends to follow the party line.
“He’s not pro gay marriage, he’s pro-life, he’s been a very aggressive anti-labor person, he’s been very aggressive in his budget cuts and deficit reduction,” Newsom said. “He’s been perfect on all of these conservative issues.”
“He’s a conservative,” Maher interjected. “Just like Chuck Hagel is a giant conservative. What is good enough for these people?”
Watch Maher and his panel discuss the rift between Christie and other conservatives, posted by Mediaite on Friday, below.
via The Raw Story http://bit.ly/YFkARZ