It’s a long-standing tradition for the sitting president of the United States to leave a parting letter in the Oval Office for the American elected to take his or her place. It’s a letter meant to share what we know, what we’ve learned, and what small wisdom may help our successor bear the great responsibility that comes with the highest office in our land, and the leadership of the free world.
But before I leave my note for our 45th president, I wanted to say one final thank you for the honor of serving as your 44th. Because all that I’ve learned in my time in office, I’ve learned from you. You made me a better President, and you made me a better man.
Throughout these eight years, you have been the source of goodness, resilience, and hope from which I’ve pulled strength. I’ve seen neighbors and communities take care of each other during the worst economic crisis of our lifetimes. I have mourned with grieving families searching for answers – and found grace in a Charleston church.
I’ve taken heart from the hope of young graduates and our newest military officers. I’ve seen our scientists help a paralyzed man regain his sense of touch, and wounded warriors once given up for dead walk again. I’ve seen Americans whose lives have been saved because they finally have access to medical care, and families whose lives have been changed because their marriages are recognized as equal to our own. I’ve seen the youngest of children remind us through their actions and through their generosity of our obligations to care for refugees, or work for peace, and, above all, to look out for each other.
I’ve seen you, the American people, in all your decency, determination, good humor, and kindness. And in your daily acts of citizenship, I’ve seen our future unfolding.
All of us, regardless of party, should throw ourselves into that work – the joyous work of citizenship. Not just when there’s an election, not just when our own narrow interest is at stake, but over the full span of a lifetime.
I’ll be right there with you every step of the way.
And when the arc of progress seems slow, remember: America is not the project of any one person. The single most powerful word in our democracy is the word ‘We.’ 'We the People.’ 'We shall overcome.’
Yes, we can.
And if you’d like to stay connected, you can sign up here to keeping getting updates from me.
If you look at say “Voltron”, as a random example, you’ll hear about notorious incidents and a lot of drama and some events that even made it to press, but - guess what - it gets it publicity and keeps it relevant. If I type in “Voltron” right now, I can go through pages and pages and pages of content, until I’d have to choose to stop, as I’d be there for hours upon hours.
Anne Rice refuses to have an editor (so the quality drastically declined, which is why I always say there’s only a trilogy of “The Vampire Chronicles”), and she also refuses to let the fandom exist … if you can’t exchange fan theories, or fanfiction, or fanart -? You’ll probably end up forgetting about the series. I can literally go through tags like “Lestat” or “Anne Rice” in less than twenty minutes per tag, as so little is said or known about them in this modern climate.
It’s probably why she’s needed to sell out and make a film.
Anne Rice has a huge core base of fans, but times move on … hardcore fans may buy new books, because of the cult-like status, but if you talk to someone under twenty then how likely are they to even know who ‘Lestat’ is or that ‘Louis’ isn’t just a French chef from a Disney film or a One Direction member? How many of us pick up the new books or even notice when they get released? How many good reviews does she get as of late by critics?
This new film will bring a whole new base of viewers, which will also bring a whole new base of readers, and this naive woman thinks she can still control those people and keep her works “hers” … it won’t happen. A work stops being “yours” the minute you put it in the public domain.
Oh, and this generation -? I barely recognise it.
They won’t be afraid like we are … they’ll post works to AO3, which has a legal team to back them up, and others will follow suit, then people like me will join in because we’ll finally feel the numbers are too large for her to hit, and then others will follow … they’ll be fanart sites, fanfiction sites, and Tumblr will be flooded with “are Louis/Lestate an item?” and “is Gabrielle a bitch or a hero?” and “which books do you consider canon?”
You can’t put the genie back in the bottle. The second this movie gets made, and a whole new generation grabs a hold of it, it will no longer be her work and she won’t be able to do jack-shit about it … changes in laws, like “fair use”, and changes in how social media operates, and a press very much against censorship with recent political changes, too …
THANK YOU TO THE PROTESTERS! THANK YOU for resisting this illegitimate “president” of the United States. THANK YOU to those of you from DC to Portland and all over the WORLD for speaking out and putting your bodies on the line. THANK YOU to #BLACKLIVESMATTER, #DISRUPTJ20 and ALL the groups blockading this repugnant sham of an “inauguration.” THANK YOU to everyone marching in the WOMEN’S MARCHES on January 21st and beyond. THANK YOU from all of us who wish we could be with you but cannot. We LOVE and SUPPORT you, and promise to RESIST and PROTEST the Trump regime in any way we can. KEEP FIGHTING, and know that there are MILLIONS of people who share your beliefs behind you.
The Highlander Research and Education Center is one of the unsung mileposts of the struggle for civil rights. People like Rosa Parks, John Lewis, and Ralph Abernathy refined their organizing skills at Highlander. It was there, in 1957, that a young Martin Luther King Jr. first heard Pete Seeger sing “We Shall Overcome.” On his way to the airport after the anniversary of what was then known as the Highlander Folk School, King proclaimed, “There’s something about that song that haunts you.” Highlander has since moved farther east, but its mission remains the same.
That’s why shortly after the 2016 election, on November 18, several dozen Black Lives Matter leaders selected it as the place to gather.
Top activists in the movement — like Alicia Garza, cofounder of the Black Lives Matter network of organizations (a namesake group), Charlene Carruthers of the Black Youth Project 100, and others — met to privately discuss how to move forward in Trump’s America. Protests had already dominated the news for days. This would be the time for decisive action, undergirded by a clear strategy. Here, in the hills of Tennessee, the activists would come together for a meeting of groups involved in the Movement for Black Lives, an umbrella group of organizations that want the same things, and devise a plan to address the new president, the shock of his election, the law and order he had promised during the campaign, and the devastating blow it all had delivered to generational movements about race and criminal justice policy in the United States. They would devise a plan — like the heroes of the civil rights movement once had decades before.
That good feeling didn’t last long. Few people want to talk about exactly what went wrong — how exactly the meeting devolved. But one problem, according to people who attended or were briefed on the meeting, was pretty simple: The ideas weren’t that good.
Some activists pitched things that had been pitched before. Someone pitched a plan that would require the recruitment of new groups into the fold, and leadership of the so-called resistance. And someone pitched a grand vision: the organization of 1 million black people. This last idea in particular infuriated people inside and outside the meeting. After years of organizing, local activists were cash-strapped, trying to keep their people motivated, and struggling to coordinate with other groups nationally while staying relevant at home. One million black people organized? Organized by whom? Organized for what? And this was the plan?
On top of that — people fumed over this — the meeting had done little to address the structural problems that had dragged down the movement since its meteoric rise from dispersed beginnings to national political influence. Many local activists felt they couldn’t get access to funding, and didn’t know who to take it up with. Organizers felt like they’d been lured in before by the promise of greater collaboration, the sharing of resources, and cultivation of a social community — only to feel left out, especially when it came to the Movement for Black Lives, an umbrella group of organizations that want the same things. Many chafed at the tenet, repeated by the press, that Black Lives Matter was free from hierarchy and instead began to question the existence of tight control exercised by a small group of activists. “The hierarchy was clearer than ever, even though folks are sure there isn’t one on the outside,” said one person briefed on the meeting. For months during the campaign last year, key progressives had watched Black Lives Matter and kept wondering two things many activists on the inside were starting to wonder themselves: What is the movement’s strategy? What is the end goal?
Nobody resolved the structural issues at Highlander. There was no one big plan.
As he stepped out of the pipe and jumped onto the grass, Mario wiped off the sh*t stains from the travel and noticed the calming breeze as he began his walk toward the Mushroom Kingdom. Like most days, he was forced to hammer down on some goombas, screw over a couple shyguys’ plans to dispose of him, and become intoxicated with pyrotechnics after ingesting some strange flowers he found inside a questionable box.
Once he got to the palace, Toad let him in as Mario wanted to see the pretty Princess Peach, but he was too late. She was nowhere to be found. It seems as though the dastardly Bowser already kidnapped her.
“What. The. F*ck?!”
This event happens more often than it should. Time after time, Mario often rescues Princess alone, sometimes with Luigi and sometimes with Yoshi, but the Mushroom Kingdom never responds appropriately. The Kingdom’s Army is a joke. They’re all little underlings with mushroom hats and no real skills except for one. The technology is outdated so security systems are nonexistent, and nobody even notices she’s missing sometimes.
“I’m just a f*cking plumber too!”
At the same time, the gold always remains, and nobody else gets kidnapped. Bowser and his minions never seem to take anything else.
As he thought about this, he said to Toad, “I’m tired of this. I’ll just relax and wait until tomorrow to get her. Bowser doesn’t even do anything to her when he kidnaps her except keep her in a cage or something. I’m tired of cleaning up your kingdom’s mess. She needs to stop letting herself be a victim.”
Immediately after he said this, the Princess, who had simply decided to shower in a different bathroom on the other side of the palace, came up from behind.
“EXCUSE ME? DOESN’T DO ANYTHING TO ME? RESCUE ME LATER?”
After smashing Mario in the face with a radish, she went on a tearful diatribe, sharing stories of Bowser’s sexual assaults on her, that “cage” of fetishes, and the revoltingly bizarre way that he makes her call him “Mr. Bowser” as he dons a human mask.
With angry tears, she yelled, “YOU NEED SENSITIVITY TRAINING, MARIO.”
She then talked about how her role as Princess has been meaningless. Her father makes all the decisions, and because nothing valuable ever gets stolen, nobody finds it worthwhile to invest in new methods of protecting her except adding another Toad clone to her front door.
“Everyone thinks it’s a joke that ‘the cute wittle pwincess gets captured by the scawy gween beast’, but it’s frightening. I’ve been traumatized. Do you think I want you to always have to rescue me, huh? DO YOU?!”
“I’m sorry. I didn’t know…”
“It’s okay. I’ll never be anything more than a pretty face for this Kingdom.”
Have you seen the Boondocks episode about R. Kelly. The issue with Gal Gadot is a lot like that! There's a lot of racism in the world and the US is still plagued by that kind of shit everyday, but being Jewish doesn't make her support of genocidal and imperialistic institutions tolerable.
“Especially to all the boys and girls who are risking their lives protecting my country against the horrific acts conducted by Hamas […]”
Here’s her extra love to the IDF soldiers. But there’s a catch: she specifically says that she was sending “love and prayers” to the people protecting Israel against Hamas. Hamas, the terrorist organisation that wants to murder all Jews. (It says that, quite clearly, in their Covenant.) There’s no mention of Palestinians. No mention of the West Bank or Gaza Strip. No mention of “one people is better than another.” No demonisation of Palestinians. No claim that all Palestinians are evil or terrorists. All that she says is that Hamas are bad, nothing else.
“[…] who are hiding like cowards behind women and children […]”
Since this post has been about Hamas, she’s saying, essentially, that Israel shall overcome Hamas’ horrific acts.
The photo that she posted is clearly of her lighting the Shabbat candles with her daughter, as she’s Jewish.
She believes that Israel is in the right against Hamas, as Hamas is what she’s talking about.
This is more proof of context. This is all about how much she despises Hamas, not Palestinians in general, with no mention of the West Bank at all.
Surely, this is a good thing. Terrorism is always bad.
This is Gal Gadot’s only mention of general Palestinians in the quote above. “Coexistence” instead of terror. Again, a good thing. She doesn’t demonise Palestinians. She’s angry at Hamas.
This is her supporting the IDF in their duties. In context, it’s all about how she supports the IDF in their struggle against Hamas, and obviously how proud she is of their work against terrorism.
Broken down, it’s not an evil sentiment. It’s not a racist statement. It’s about supporting the IDF against Hamas – and everyone in their right mind, even the worst of antisemites, should be against Hamas for all of their evils. Pro-Palestinians should be against Hamas for what they’re doing to their own people.
The lie, as shown above, is then spun that because Gal Gadot was drafted, she must be a murderer.
Instead, during an interview talking about whether she was “too slim” to play Wonder Woman, she said:
“My mom is a gymnastics teacher. So growing up I was never sitting watching TV in the afternoons. I always played ball outside in the backyard. I was a dancer for 12 years. I did tennis, basketball, volleyball, dodgeball, you name it.” […] “[In the IDF] I was a gym trainer on one of the bases in Israel. So my boot camp was longer than other boot camps. It was four months and all about sports, waking up at 6:30 a.m. and going for a run, doing push-ups…”
Ga Gadot never saw any action. She was stationed at a base, in Israel, as a “gym trainer.”
The reaction of hatred towards Gal Gadot is a perfect example of antisemitism that isn’t even thinly veiled as “anti-Zionism.”
From the facts, an Israeli woman drafted into her national army and ended up as a gym instructor, nothing else, then shows that she’s anti-Hamas, has been warped and manipulated into blatant lies and hatred.
But let’s get back to what you’ve actually said about Gadot’s “support of genocidal and imperialistic institutions.”
You mean like the “imperialism” of the Palestinian leadership that’s pushed to have the holiest sites in Judaism in Israel reclassed as “Islamic”? How it’s seen as an “act of aggression” for Jews to do nothing but pray at the Western Wall or visit the Temple Mount? The way that the Palestinian leadership celebrates every Jew murdered by terrorists and indoctrinates children towards terrorism and antisemitism?
How is it “imperialistic” for Jews to have self-determination in our own homeland, exactly?
I love how people like you come in, with absolutely no knowledge of what’s happened, to make snap judgements to hate us. Did you know, for example, that over half of Jews in Israel are Mizrahi? You know, Jews that were ethnically cleansed from Arab countries? Did you know that Israel houses about 43% of the world’s Jews, too? So, what, you want those Jews to… huh, live under Arab rule again, the same rule that has been massacring Jews for centuries and demonising us thanks to Islamic fundamentalism? Yeah? We’re just supposed to bow down to you and give in to actual oppression? Because no, thanks to actual oppression from pogroms, ethnic cleansing and the Holocaust, we’re not putting up with that any more. We’re not just going to lie down and die and then feel grateful when people like you can pretend to care when you cry over “dead Jew porn” like Schindler’s List and Holocaust-related films, then turn around and say, “Why can’t you just shut up and deal with antisemitism”?
I am going to get hate for this post. Here is the original Facebook post that got everyone up in arms that Gal Gadot should not be considered a feminist because of her support of the IDF. Look closer. Nothing Gal Gadot says here conflicts with feminism. She fought against Hamas terrorists and is teaching her daughter about love and prayer. We, as feminists, should support her. Always go back to the original source before you make broad claims.
Check your sources before you decide that the choice of an Israeli woman to portray a feminist icon is “ironic” or make blanket claims about Jews and Israel. In fact, do not make blanket claims about Jews and Israel.
“I am sending my love and prayers to my fellow Israeli citizens. Especially to all the boys and girls who are risking their lives protecting their country against the horrific acts conducted by Hamas, who are hiding like cowards behind women and children…We shall overcome! Shabbat Shalom! #weareright #freegazafromhamas #stopterror #coexistance #loveidf”
On Gal Gadot and Anti-Semitism AKA stop doing the thing internet
The new fun internet game of everybody suddenly gives a shit about anti-semitism until an Israeli woman is in a major Hollywood movie has been super fun for me. Like y’all care SO MUCH about Chris Evans playing an Israeli dude or Marvel’s shenanigans with Captain America and Magneto but jeez have an actual Israeli in a big movie and watch the shitheads crawl out of the wood work
(To some people who I discussed the matter with politely ur fine, this is not aimed at you I’m just getting pissed off)
So did you know Israel faces actual terrorist attacks kind of on the regular? I wish I had taken pictures of when I was last in Israel and you can be walking down a lovely little street and turn the corner and see literal fucking rubble? Like newsflash the IDF also fights actual terrorism because oh hey there are literal fucking terrorists in that region who attack them (Have you heard of ISIS or Hamas? Where do you think they live? And guess what they want to do with Jews?) I’m not saying every military action they are doing is good shit but there is a legit reason for their existence and for Israelis to support them. And btw every Israeli has to serve 2 years with the IDF in some fashion it’s a law there. She made some comments supporting actions against Hamas because oh hey they are literally terrorists.
Another Newsflash: Israelis do not need to be held responsible for every action taken by a problematic government and holding them accountable makes you a piece of shit.
By that logic I guess we gotta hold Jackie Chan accountable for that shit with Taiwan or hold actors from Africa responsible for the that shit with Rwanda. And now all German actors are responsible for the fucking Holocaust while we’re at it. And now All Americans Are Responsible for Trump. If that sounds unreasonable to you than shut the fuck up about Gal Gadot. Also, unless you’re Jewish or Muslim I really don’t think you have a right to an opinion on this matter.
Oh and here’s what she actually said “I am sending my love and prayers to my fellow Israeli citizens. Especially to all the boys and girls who are risking their lives protecting my country against the horrific acts conducted by Hamas, who are hiding like cowards behind women and children…We shall overcome!!! Shabbat Shalom! #weareright #freegazafromhamas #stopterror #coexistance #loveidf”” I highlighted some of it just so you actually look at what she’s saying. If it offends you when Gal Gadot talks about overcoming a terrorist group I hope you get real mad everytime somebody says fuck ISIS
And btw if you want to hold soldiers accountable for the actions of their organizers hey have you heard about EVERY SHITTY THING AMERICA HAS DONE SINCE 2001? Or how about just recently when the US bombed the shit out of Syria? I hope next memorial day you get mad at everybody who says they love our troops because that is about what her sentiments amount to. If you are only hating Israel for shit that other countries have done and worse you’re a piece of shit and antisemitic to boot. Also Gal Gadot wasn’t a soldier she served as a combat trainer.
I will say again if you are Muslim, a lot of this doesn’t apply to you because you are the one group that gets to be mad pretty much no matter what. There is some deeply ingrained islamaphobia in religious Jewish communities the way there is a lot of antisemitism in Muslim communities and we gotta work on our shit but if you want to hate the IDF over Gaza or whatever, you’re entitled.
I’m not gonna say Israel is great all the time but how dare you criticize a woman for loving her country if you’re running around saying god bless America right now. That is her home and it might have a fucked up government but with our current rotted pumpkin president I really don’t feel we are in a place to judge her for loving her country or her troops. I believe in America we would call that ‘patriotism’ and if you have a problem with that than you can go to hell. In the age of Neo Nazis being A Thing again, JCC’s getting bomb threats, Jewish cemeteries being desecrated, and swastikas being painted on synagogues you bet your ass I’m going to support this Jewish Israeli woman in this big budget film. I’m going to see Wonder Woman 30 times, and I hope it makes a trillion dollars. Shalom motherfuckers.
i regret a million things and that’s only what i haven’t forgot but the past was a mine field and right now is a prison break i hope we make it alive when who we are doesn’t stop where the law begins then we’ll storm their courthouses to survive so i won’t but we shall overcome someday i can’t do it alone but we shall be free someday i don’t know how to live but i’m sick of learning how to die
I know the actress for ww isn't a good person but Im still very confused on what she did. I wanna know to be able up tell my friends and explain to them why ww needy to be boycotted. I was wondering if you could explain? Also your blog has helped me w the whole informing myself on what's going on and understanding things much better. Thank you.
“I am sending my love and prayers to my fellow Israeli citizens,” she wrote. “Especially to all the boys and girls who are risking their lives protecting my country against the horrific acts conducted by Hamas, who are hiding like cowards behind women and children…We shall overcome!!! Shabbat Shalom! #weareright #freegazafromhamas #stopterror #coexistance #loveidf”
Gadot has been open about serving and supporting the Israeli military, yet many self-proclaimed feminists choose to ignore that. They still see Gadot as an inspiring and empowering woman playing an equally empowering character. They have chosen to ignore the fact that Gadot supports the atrocious war crimes committed against innocent Palestinian civilians.
Do not accept brutality and cruelty as normal even if it is sanctioned. Protect the vulnerable and encourage the afraid. If you are brave, stand up for others. If you cannot be brave – and it is often hard to be brave – be kind.
But most of all, never lose sight of who you are and what you value.