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march on by Jerlene Ng
Via Flickr:
on a gloomy day at the tower of london

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The Muslim father of a slain soldier just challenged Trump, “Have you even read the United States Constitution?”

In one of the most thrilling moments of the convention so far, he offered to lend the Presidential candidate his own copy, challenging him to look for a few crucial clauses he seems to have missed. And watch how Chelsea spoke of her hopes for her mother’s Presidency.

Gifs: ABC15 Arizona

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This man, George Cay Styles joined the Army in January 1940, his wife was notified in February 1941 that he had died sometime between May and June 1940 whilst serving in France.

There are those pictures of him and his grave, let’s examine?
Besides the last name, George have an eerily similar appearance to Harry.
Some rumors say that Harry will do George in Dunkirk.
You know what strikes all this? That’s George’s grave, he wasn’t a navy soldier, but have an anchor and rope carved in his tombstone.
I will not give my opinion about the relationship between George and Harry, draw their conclusions.

Do you believe in reincarnation?

Some Thoughts on Bismuth (Part 2: The Crystal Gems)

Coming off my last post on Bismuth, I wanted now to discuss the differing ideologies Rose and Bismuth had during the war and why I feel they’re significant. So I’m just going to jump right in with the theme of: The context of war changes values.

1. Bismuth believed shattering the elites would remove the oppressive hierarchy

I think at the moment, there are very polar reactions towards the idea that Homeworld gems should be shattered in battle.

But we also need to approach Bismuth like a time capsule. She hasn’t seen anything since the middle of the war, when the CGs were probably losing, many of their friends were lost, and Homeworld was closing in. Since then she has had no catharsis, no healing, no closure. That anger is still as raw as the day she was bubbled.

I’m certain Bismuth wasn’t the only Crystal Gem to think that the only way to truly be free of Homeworld was to destroy it. I think this is why Bismuth even brought up the idea of the Breaking Point

People do desperate things in times of extreme. I brought up in the last post, why Rose didn’t want to make use of the Breaking Point. It’s not that the CGs wanted to lose, it’s that the CGs stood for choice, individuality, and change and ending the lives of their opponents spits in the face of that, because they’d be taking away their ability to change. A weapon like this would also lump together all Homeworld gems, no matter what their reasons for fighting, which from the Homeworld gems we’ve seen, is a smattering of widely different reasons.

Bismuth believed that Homeworld had to be stopped permanently. She saw each soldier as an agent of Homeworld’s regime. From her perspective, for as long as there were people who stuck with HW’s oppressive system, who were willing to be oppressed by the “upper crust” and “elites” she despised so much, no gem could be free. 

Her fight is directly against those at the top tiers of Homeworld’s hierarchy. She mentions them repeatedly in her pep talks and when she shows Steven the Breaking Point. And to an extent, there is credence to her views. By not joining the Crystal Gems, the other members of HW are implicitly granting the system more power, and a stronger foothold in their lives. The “upper crust” are in the position to begin changing the system but don’t.

In sociology, analysing a social group in terms of a dominant group controlling or fighting against another less dominant group is the conflict-theory perspective. It’s very effective in terms of riling people up and making them angry towards a particular group of people. Why are certain things happening? The elites do it to maintain their power and keeping us down.

This is what Bismuth sees. Given her role as a mason and then later a blacksmith, we can understand why. She’s always been at someone’s service. Even when she decided to be what she wanted to be, it seemed as though being a blacksmith was all she could be. War can do that. It compartmentalises jobs and roles because it’s sometimes necessary. War erases the individuals and their faces and labels them as “good versus bad,” “us versus them.” 

Sometimes, that’s the only way to justify why you’re fighting and killing people in the same boat as you, but on the other side of the river. Dehumanising the enemy has been a very effective way to rile people up for a long time now. The Ancient Greeks called everyone who didn’t speak Greek a Barbarian. In the World Wars, propaganda was used for this exact purpose.

It’s not a pretty picture, and I would definitely not say that Bismuth was plotting all of that charismatic talk for the express purpose of getting people to shatter Homeworld gems. I would say though that her thinking is a product of the time. Rose couldn’t and never wanted to police everyone’s thoughts. This was how Bismuth, and many Crystal Gems felt about the war: Frustrated, vulnerable, angry. 

I’m certain Bismuth didn’t want to use the Breaking Point after the war. She wanted it to be peaceful. But she’d introduced that weapon already. In the last post, I mention that HW would have been engaged in an arms race, and that’s something that could lead to even more loss of life.

When the Gems are watching Lonely Blade, it’s foreshadowing for how Bismuth thinks. Why is it wrong for Lonely Blade to accept limitless power in a fight? He needs it, right? Bismuth was upset with Rose because she brought up this idea to help the CGs, to make the battle tilt in their favour. But Rose, and now Steven at that point, made his own views clear. The answer is no. 

We don’t know exactly how the conversation went, but she was set off by the words Steven had used. This means Rose did try to reason with her but as I’ll explain later, it probably didn’t go as well as Steven’s. So Bismuth’s long time friend and trusted leader declined and pushed aside a solution that could help them all.

The circumstances are different, but it’s very similar to the exchange Peridot had with Yellow Diamond. Given the resource shortage on Homeworld, why should we just destroy Earth? Why can’t we just keep it as a colony with its organic life, which can also be utilised, intact?

In both these situations, we have one gem facing her leader with a solution she thinks is best for their struggling population. And the leader whom they’ve looked up to for the longest time, immediately shuts them down.

Peridot had logical research to back her up. Bismuth was witnessing the horrors of war firsthand. Of course they’d be angry about it. The difference here is that Bismuth was acting based on that frustration and she wasn’t thinking thing through. If she’d shattered the Diamonds as she intended, the system would still remain and someone would take their place and the cycle would perpetuate. In fact, it’s martyrdom to watch your leaders be shattered by someone they’ve been labelling the enemy for a long time now. It would only reaffirm what war propaganda Homeworld has been telling their people.

2. Rose understood that the system hurt everyone, but she didn’t believe Homeworld would change

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