crucial response

Rewritten, Chapter 8: Father and Daughter

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“Let me ask you once more - when will you stop treating this as some childish game?”

Link grimaced, keeping his eyes focused on the ground, though there was a fire in them that he knew he could not let the King see.

“I’m doing everything I can. I’ll have you know, I just recently returned from the Spring of Courage where I offered every ounce of my prayers to the Goddess-”

“And now you are here, wasting your time!” the King snapped, “you need to be dedicating every moment you have to your training. You must be single-minded in unlocking the power that will seal Calamity Ganon away!”

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Space Mall

Sighing, Shiro stared at the new checklist for the quarter.  It was almost like clockwork, every time the general supervisor got into it with a vendor, his tasks would increase.  Instead of eighteen extra security checks, Shiro now had twenty four.  His was already going over his paid hours in order to keep his job!  With all the new “crucial responsibilities” the human had looming over him, Shiro was pretty sure things had crossed over into abusive.  The big guy upstairs knew he needed this job, and was taking advantage of him openly.  Some of the more shady shop owners had even begun to call him “Champion”, out of jealousy.  They assumed the general supervisor liked Shiro best and gave him the most power. Little did they know that Shirogane Takashi was actually the boss’s prisoner.

His new tasks took him all the way to the eastern corridor every other night.  Shiro inhaled the perfumy scent of citrusy fruits growing from the treeish décor.  He noticed the pet shop for the first time since they’d signed the Space Mall vendor contract.  As the security team manager, Shiro now had to enter the shops on this end and do a visual as well as golth particle check.  There was a plant shop, the exotic species boutique, a jewelry store, and .. what seemed like a beauty parlor of some kind.

@ellia-ithil

Thoughts on the Layne and AfterEllen Discourse

After reading the discourse between @laynemorgan and memoreejoelle I feel an obligation, as an international affairs student and as a transgender woman living in an Arab country that regularly conducts acts of bigotry in the name of “safety”, to say something and spread some awareness about this issue.

I am from and currently live in Lebanon. Before the civil war started in 1975, Lebanon was considered the Switzerland of the Middle East. There was no mention of religious sects and people from different walks of life lived in stability. The civil war happened, ended in 1990, and yet it was the very same warlords that participated in the war and played on our fears that are still in power today. One of them became president very recently.

The civil war dramatically changed communities and demographics. Christians, despite having been living in a certain district since its foundation, were forced to migrate to a safer predominantly Christian district because the tides of war changed their original one as Muslim. This happened all over the capital, and as a result, a demarcation line was formed to separate East and West Beirut, West being the Christian side and East being the Muslim side. These were not the only separations that occurred. Shiite and Sunni Muslims were separated as well, each forming their own districts.

The warlords saw this and took advantage of the demographic change, manipulating and playing on the fears of the public by creating more and more irrational and unrealistic fears and threats. This lead to the creation of “safe districts”, as in if you’re a Shiite and you live in a Shiite district, then you are safe and no one can touch you. The same occurred with Sunni, Christian, Druze and Alewite. The people accepted this, consequently trading open-mindedness, awareness and education for close-mindedness and “safety”. As a result the very same political sentiments that sparked the civil war are still being echoed, and no progress has been made. People are staying in their “safe spaces”, not learning about anything outside their bubble while being fuelled by their own prejudices and misconceptions.

Now back to the discourse. It’s so easy for anyone to denounce a certain group of people, whether it be by gender, sex, religion, nationality, ethnicity, sexual orientation, and even political ideology, for the sake of “safety”. James Alison once said, “Give people a common enemy, and you will give them a common identity. Deprive them of an enemy and you will deprive them of the crutch by which they know who they are.” Exclusionary tactics such as this one have always been used in conflict-ridden developing countries since colonies started gaining independence. Guess what? A significant portion of these countries have never advanced and the population are still mired in irrational fears and baseless crises that “threaten” their identity. Rarely has political conflict been justified because of ethnic cleansing and active oppression by other groups or even the government itself. We usually avoid comparing states to people in international affairs, but in this case we’re only focusing on the human elements and not the political ones.

memoreejoelle chose this path when excluding transgender individuals from safe spaces, disregarding the fact that transgender individuals are in no way cisnormative or heteronormative enough to pose any kind of threat to cisgender lesbian women. I would ask of memoreejoelle, that if her safe space is so perfect for cisgender lesbians, that she can give me 100% guarantee that racism, xenophobia, transphobia, toxic forms of Eurofeminism and Western feminism that erase Eastern feminism and the identities of Muslim women are non-existent in your “safe space”? Can you tell me with a straight face that “gold star lesbians” aren’t elevated higher than others and that bisexual erasure doesn’t happen? Can you ensure that your closed space is safe from harmful prejudices and preconceived misconceptions about anyone who isn’t cisgender and lesbian?

It is this brand of closed-mindedness and radicalism that always puts a certain group of people under the bus, without hesitation. Hate and bigotry is one colour, whether it be from the radical Left (radical feminism, Communism) or radical Right (ultranationalism, homonationalism, fascism). Your capacity to exclude can lead to the capacity to hate, and it won’t be limited to one demographic.

Calling @laynemorgan lesbophobic whenever she cornered you with logic is not a sign of intelligence, nor does it comprise of civilized and academic discussion. It is a 12 year-old that uses tactics like name-calling and opening up a dictionary (that is devoid of any academic and scientific context unless the word is a completely scientific term) to justify their weak arguments.

One last thing that has to be considered, is that memoreejoelle’s rhetoric is also harmful in a way that encourages transphobia in cisgender men who actually want to do harm when her words and the words of people like her reach them. Those with ill-intentions will look for anything to justify their hate and bigotry, thus feeling less guilty when they act out on it. More often than not, it ends up in the assault or murder of a transgender woman. Do you know who else has similar patterns of rhetoric? Trump. He said things no public figure should ever say when given a podium and access to millions of people, and as a result Neo-Nazis were empowered and encouraged to act upon their hatred and bigotry by his words, even if he didn’t mean to do so. Taking responsibility for your words is just as crucial as taking responsibility for your actions.

When you limit transgender individuals to their genitalia, you are dismissing their manhood and womanhood, their masculinity and femininity, and their own mind’s perception of gender separate from that of the genitalia. You are essentially dismissing them as human beings and passively advocating for their inferior treatment. These are not the words of educated people who approach issues in a rational and scientific manner. These are the words of fear-mongers who seek validation for their hatred and bigotry. The fact that AfterEllen didn’t dissociate themselves from memoreejoelle and her transphobia proves that this toxicity was and still is being practiced on their entire platform. I do not need to tell you the group of people who are employing the very same tactics in the current political climate in the United States. Good day.

It’s you who cares about that (or, of pride and insecurity)

It’s been a while since I’ve written anything of this sort (or anything, really!) but there’s a thought that came to me a few days back that kept growing in my head, so. I’m not sure if it’s much more than personal rambling at this point, but I might as well write it down – because even as the years pass, I find myself more and more able to relate to certain aspects of this stupid dynamic called Harurin, and it makes me appreciate it that much more.

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Bootleg HC imported from Germany: Brotherhood discography(screened cover), Heart Attack discography, Necros- Conquest for Death, Crucifix- Dehumanization, Infest- demo. Also ManLiftingBanner discography CD and Cause for Alarm and Negative Approach coffe mugs. A years supply of contacts is in the top left corner.

Just Because You’re Right Doesn’t Mean You’re In The Right

Unsolicited advice is the source of many a dramatic argument–in particular online–especially when the person offering that unsolicited advice is technically right. The person offering the advice feels bolstered by the fact that truth is on their side, and fails to understand that the person countering them isn’t so much disagreeing with the truth behind their argument, but rather with their unbelievable rudeness. 

I often liken unsolicited advice with door-to-door salesmen. If you have something you think someone needs, be it a product or your advice, it’s on you to sell it. No one is going to buy a vacuum cleaner from a mean-spirited and insulting salesman, and no one is going to accept advice from an arrogant and condescending jerk. 

Whether the salesman really is selling the better vacuum cleaner is irrelevant, and whether your advice really is superior is also irrelevant. You are barging in on someone’s day, unannounced, and it’s up to you to make it a pleasant experience. 

When it comes to pet ownership blogs, people often seem to misinterpret when the pet owner may simply be documenting a bump in the road that they already have a solution for, and when the pet owner is genuinely asking for input. So often I’ll see someone remark that, for example, the vet told them their dog needs to go on a diet, and that they just put together a meal and exercise plan, and the notes blow up with people telling them what to do to fix it, and reminding them how terribly dangerous it is for a dog to be overweight. 

They already know. They went to a vet about it, and the vet gave them a solution. They don’t need your advice; they have it under control. Also, the dog isn’t going to lose all that weight overnight. So when they post a photo a week later and you think the dog still looks fat, why don’t you hold off on sending a mean spirited anon message accusing them of not caring if their dog dies of diabetes? 

As an animal welfarist, I understand how frustrating it is to see an animal come across my dash who may be neglected. But if I barge in on their post and accuse them of all sorts of horrible things, I’ve already burned that bridge. They are never going to ask me for my advice, and no matter how many facts and articles I throw their way, they will never so much as glance at them. 

If you see a situation like that, the best you can hope for is to ask to be invited in. You can ask them if they mind a personal question about their pet, and if they say yes, they do mind, no matter how much you want to weigh in, you have to back off. You can write an article or blog post on the subject and hope they see it and take it to heart, but that’s about it. 

Unless you are witnessing undeniable and gross animal negligence, there is no reason for you to go to war against someone. If you believe neutering is crucial for responsible pet ownership, then write your own articles about it, and hope that you gain a platform that can spread the word for you. 

If your opinions are valid, and your advice is good, you can educate. You can spread the word. You can hope to change people’s perspective and help them understand why this is so important. But you can do that without barging through their front door. You can do that without being an uninvited guest. 

Unsolicited advice should always be offered with respect, genuine politeness, and a willingness to back off at their request, especially if you do not know the person personally, nor the history of their relationship with their pet. Someone posting pictures of an obese dog may have only just rescued him. Someone threatening that they are going to declaw their cat may just be blowing off steam. 

Before you attempt to educate someone on their personal blog post, you should always make it a point to educate yourself about them first. 

I can’t tell you how many times I saw a post that made me cringe, only to go to their blog and see it was just taken out of context, or that it was just extreme sarcasm that I was unable to detect without reading OP’s tags. 

Keep in mind that whatever moral high ground you have by having truth and knowledge on your side, is inversely affected by how conceited and rude you are in your delivery. 

Brain Degeneration In Huntington’s Disease Caused By Amino Acid Deficiency

Working with genetically engineered mice, Johns Hopkins neuroscientists report they have identified what they believe is the cause of the vast disintegration of a part of the brain called the corpus striatum in rodents and people with Huntington’s disease: loss of the ability to make the amino acid cysteine. They also found that disease progression slowed in mice that were fed a diet rich in cysteine, which is found in foods such as wheat germ and whey protein.

Their results suggest further investigation into cysteine supplementation as a candidate therapeutic in people with the disease.

Up to 90 percent of the human corpus striatum, a brain structure that moderates mood, movement and cognition, degenerates in people with Huntington’s disease, a condition marked by widespread motor and intellectual disability. And while the genetic mutation underlying Huntington’s disease has long been known, the precise cause of that degeneration has remained a mystery.

In a report on their discovery in the advanced online publication of Nature on March 26, the Johns Hopkins researchers, led by Solomon Snyder, M.D., tracked the degenerative process to the absence of an enzyme, cystathionine gamma lyase, or CSE.

“Usually it’s very hard, if not impossible, to develop straightforward mechanisms that explain what’s going on in a disease. What’s even harder is even if you can find a mechanism that causes a tissue to rot, usually there’s nothing you can do about it,” says Snyder, a professor of neuroscience at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. “In this case, there is.”

Huntington’s disease, an inherited disorder, does its damage because of abnormal DNA coding for the amino acid glutamine. Healthy individuals have some 15 to 20 DNA “repeats” in that part of their genetic code, while Huntington’s disease gene carriers have more than 36 — and often upward of 100. Children born to a parent carrier have a 50/50 chance of inheriting the disorder, and the greater the number of repeats, the earlier the age of onset of the incurable disorder.

Bindu Diana Paul, Ph.D., a molecular neuroscientist and faculty instructor in Snyder’s laboratory, was studying mice lacking CSE, which helps make the amino acid cysteine and hydrogen sulfide that moderate blood pressure and heart function. Paul, who had previous research experience with Huntington’s disease, says she was startled to observe that her mutant mice also behaved a lot like those with the disease.

When a normal mouse is dangled upside down from its tail, it will twist and turn and try to bite the offending hand, she explains. But her CSE-knockout mice stayed relatively still and clasped their paws together — the same behavior she’d observed in mice with the rodent equivalent of Huntington’s disease. “It looked like there was a neurological deficit,” Paul says. “But nobody had looked at CSE in the brain.”

Paul and Snyder began monitoring CSE in mouse and human brain tissues and found considerably less CSE in all diseased tissues. All people carry some normal huntingtin protein made by the Huntington’s disease gene, although the protein’s function remains elusive. But people with Huntington’s disease also carry mutant huntingtin proteins. Snyder and his team saw that the mutant proteins were attaching themselves to a crucial protein responsible for turning the CSE gene on or off, which ultimately led the diseased rodent and human brain tissues to be deprived of cysteine.

To see if loss of cysteine was directly responsible for the symptoms associated with Huntington’s disease, the Johns Hopkins team turned to readily available sources of the substance in everyday foods and fed mice a cysteine-rich diet.

The results, Paul says, were striking. When those mice were dangled from their tails, they resumed struggling, although with a bit less vigor than their healthy peers. They were able to grip an object with greater strength, and they took longer to fall off a balancing apparatus than CSE-knockout mice. Their life expectancies increased one to two weeks.

Snyder and Paul say they are cautiously optimistic about the results, noting that although they suggest a possible treatment for Huntington’s disease, it’s clear that a high cysteine diet merely slows rather than halts the progression of the disease. Moreover, the results in live mice may not occur in humans.

Okay, so @snogfairy, @mslead, and I were talking about Into the Ring (our newest AU collab if you haven’t heard) last night and we’re having trouble deciding on something because we’re impatient eheh. So I figured I’d ask you, our readers, for your opinions!!

Would you rather we start posting ITR within the next few days with an update once a week?

Or…

Would you prefer that we hold off on posting ITR for a month or two and then update every three days?

Your responses are crucial to our process so please let us know! Feel free to reblog this with your preference or message any one of us. We’d like to gather the votes quickly because we’re very excited about this new fic.

Thank you so much!

Originally posted by maxisawerewolf

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