i want to talk about the characterizations of ben wyatt and jake peralta. arguably jim halpert could be included in this conversation, but i want to focus on ben and jake because they’re such clear subversions of well-known tropes

firstly, you have ben wyatt. the nerd. he’s established as a hard-ass and a geek early on, and it would have been so easy for the writers to fall into that trope of presenting him as below leslie, as her eventual agreement to date him has a victory for all male nerds, because he had successfully tricked a woman into being interested in him. 

instead, we get ben wyatt, a dork and a feminist. he’s nationally ranked in settlers of catan and he likes to sit around in a batman costume and he loves game of thrones. he also loves his girlfriend enough to lose his job for her, and it’s never even addressed whether he minds that leslie will probably end up with a higher status job than him - because why would he? he loves and supports her, and his nerdiness is presented not as a flaw, but as a complement to her single-minded determination - they’re both total nerds with an overlapping ven diagram of interests.

secondly, jake peralta. the character we’re introduced to in the first episode is cocky and a smartass, and while he’s loveable, we completely understand why he would drive amy up a wall. jake and amy are less alike than ben and leslie are; arguably they’re opposites. again, there’s a trope that the show could have fallen into: “endearing idiot eventually wears down woman who is too good for him, and she realizes she was too uptight all along”.

but again, we get something completely different. jake peralta, known for being Too Much, consistently respects amy’s boundaries and tries as hard as he can to be honest about his feelings, while understanding that amy is her own person. she buys orange soda for him and he gets a new mattress for her. there are so many examples of the respect in that relationship - they’re both so stubborn, but they love each other so much. he’s always known that she was going to be his boss. they’re different, but they love it about each other.

all i’m saying is, this purposeful subversion of gross male stereotypes is so important - and so much easier (and so much funnier!) than people think

So our village hasn’t had water for over 14 days now. Israel usually turns on our water lines every ten days, but have skipped the last scheduled water opening.

As a result, many people’s wells are running out while we’re in the middle of a massive heat wave.

Homes her are built with large water reserves, either in the form of big plastic tubs on top of the house, or underwater wells. These reserves are filled on the days Israel allows us water (although it’s limited and these reserves aren’t always filled all the way) and when they run out…. You’re completely out of water. No toilets, no showers, no drinking water, etc.

To compound the issue, on the hottest days Israeli settlers turn their ACs up creating a massive spike in electricity demand. To compensate, our electricity is shut off.

So we’re in the middle of a heat wave with no water, little electricity, and severely limited movement, facing intimidation campaigns by Israeli soldiers and settlers, and yet we continue to be “in the wrong” for fighting to change this half-life.

If anyone ever tries to tell you that slavery never existed in Canada, they’re lying to your face and are perpetuating myths of Canadian benevolence and US-Canada contrasts. They’re ignoring over 200 years of enslavement, and the recorded 2,683 Indigenous slaves, mainly from the Pawnee Nation, and the recorded 1,443 Black slaves that occupied New France ALONE before the Conquest by the British. By the way, the entire population of New France back then was apx. 60,000, and the enslaved population made up 4,200 of those.

(So if French Canadians tell you that slavery appeared with the British Conquest, in actuality the British took steps to make it easier for people to own slaves through Article XLVII of the Articles of Capitulation, that many French settlers at that time took advantage of.)

Slaves were held by fur trading post officers, colonial officials, members of the military, Jesuits, Roman Catholic Churches, Baptist Churches, 50% of the later Quebec Parliament, and the common people who often went into debt to have the status symbol of owning a slave.

In 1781, the island of St. John (now P.E.I) passed a law that legalized slavery and paid a 40 shilling bonus for every Black slave brought into the province. In 1790, the Imperial Statute allowed British Loyalists from the states to bring in slaves to the whole country without tax. The same went for the cutlery, furniture, and farm tools they brought with them.

People will try to tell you that Indigenous people owned slaves as well. They kept prisoners of war and exchanged people to pay off debts and replace war-dead, but they were never dehumanized like slaves under European slavery. The two systems are not the same and aren’t even remotely interchangeable.

Slaves weren’t treated like members of the family or like well-loved butlers. They were subject to the same treatment endured by slaves in the 13 colonies. Ownership was justified in similar ways as well: using the Labour Supply argument, where white workers were “too costly” to hire and Black slaves were sometimes said to be “too expensive to import from the French Caribbean.” (They were sold here anyways.) This explains the higher amount of Indigenous slaves.

It also means that Black people have been in Canada for as long as whites; the first recorded slave in Canada showed up in 1629. He was from either Madagascar or Guinea.

People will cite Canada’s lack of a Code Noir as proof of a lack of slavery. Just because we didn’t have a specific document to regulate it doesn’t mean it didn’t exist. It did. There are newspaper advertisements in such papers as the Montreal Gazette for runaway slaves and slaves that were up for sale.

The life expectancy of a slave in Canada was 17 years old. The 1790 Act to Limit Slavery pushed by John Simcoe said that slaves born after 1790 would be freed at age 25. See how that doesn’t work?

But most importantly, people will try to tell you that slaves didn’t resist. They did. They launched legal protests and challenges, but were opposed by Judicial members who owned slaves themselves.

Well-known Canadian figures who owned slaves include but aren’t limited to:

James McGill of McGill University fame, Joseph Brant, Sir John Johnson, and William Jarvis.

Modern historians and scholars have tried to deny this. A historian who tried to tell the true story was Professor Marcel Trudel, who wrote “Canada’s Forgotten Slaves: 200 Years of Bondage” in the 1960’s. He was shunned by the academic community, relocated to Ottawa University from his previous chair, and was personally asked by Quebec politicians to stay quiet about the matter because he revealed that slavery existed in New France before the British - destroying the idea of French Canadian moral superiority in that regard. He died in 2011, and his book which so many tried to discredit but so many never could, was only translated into English in 2013.

Slavery existed in Canada. Don’t let anyone tell you differently.

btw for the people still worried about andromeda being a “colonialism simulator” (spoilers):

- the planets chosen were believed to be uninhabited 600 years ago (but there was extensive first contact protocol written in the extreme unlikelihood they’d meet another sapient species)

- you cannot colonise the angaran homeworld (havarl) or any sovereign angaran planet (aya, voeld). you can be invited to leave a small contingent of scientists (to study the vault’s effects on havarl to help make it viable for the angara again) or set up a base that works alongside the angara (running ice on voeld for both initiative and angaran settlements).

- the angara are also invited to the nexus and appear in colonies on shared planets such as kadara.

- there are no other sapient species in the system, aside from the kett who are invaders, not natives or settlers. you cannot displace anyone, invade anyone, make yourself at home anywhere you are not welcome.

- you can even give a random civilian who suggests settling on aya uninvited a dressing down for being disrespectful

just so you can avoid alarmism and false info. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

If you’re not actively working with Indigenous people in your organizing, and centering Indigenous people in leadership roles, esp the people whose lands ur on, Indigenous people with disabilities, and Two-Spirit/Indigenx/Muxe/LGBTQIA+ Indigenous people, then ur activism is staying at the level of active collusion with settler-colonial rhetoric and violence.

Many people misunderstand the nature of the struggle for Palestine. They consider Palestine to be contested land between Israelis and Palestinians. The facts about the struggle are simple: 
1. There was no entity called Israel before 1948 
2. There was no Israelis before 1948 
3. There is no meaningful verifiable connection between modern Israeli and the Israelites of the Bible. Modern Israelis are not Semitic and came to Judaism through conversions.Also, the Hebrew Bible, the only source of the mythology about Israel and the Israelites, is unreliable. 
4. European colonial settlers transported mainly from Europe settled and colonized historic Palestine by force and without the consent of the indigenous population, the Palestinians. 
5. The settler colonists established Israel in Palestine in 1948 by Jews of Jews for Jews with the active support of western colonial powers after ethnically cleansing the majority of the Palestinians, destroying more than 530 Palestinian towns and city sections, and committing scores of heinous crimes against Palestinian civilians to bring about their expulsion. 
6. Since 1948 Israel created an elaborate apartheid system that favors Jews, discriminates against the Palestinians, and is designed to maintain control and dominance of Israeli Jews over Palestinians by using genocidal methods and preventing their return, equality and normal living conditions. 
Palestine is not a contested territory. Palestine has its rightful owners, the Palestinians.Palestine is settled, colonized, and occupied by a foreign population..!

If you ever feel bad about your job performance remember that for all 8 years of his presidency George Washington had to write his constitutional responsibilities on the palm of his hand and frequently checked it during cabinet meetings.

Before you go sporting Redskins gear, think about the young native woman who was murdered and scalped not too long ago. Here, present day America.

Before you go prancing around in Pocahottie costumes, think about the thousands of missing and murdered indigenous women (including Pocahontas herself, who was kidnapped, raped and forced into marriage to a white dude).

Before you go spouting off settler colloquialisms (“off the reservation”, “low on the totem pole”, “lets pow wow”), think about how it was American LEGAL policy Which displaced entire communities from their homelands, into territories that the government deemed useless.

Before you go around wearing moccasins, “native makeup”, war bonnets, smudging….think of the hundreds of American laws that banned Indigenous people from practicing their traditions for generations.

Before you go around slapping your mouth and making “war cries”, just take a moment to appreciate the hundreds of tribal languages that were beaten and raped out of tribes from missionary/boarding schools.

Walk a mile in someone’s shoes.

Bet your fragile ass wouldn’t last a day.

Reminder to every Non-Indigenous Australian.

I’m a young Gumbayngirr woman. I want to say ‘We’ but I’m going to point out who exactly each time.

You live on a tribe’s Country*. It always has been and always will be Indigenous Country.
(Country: to Indigenous people are their ancestral, spiritual homeland where they belong to the Land and share a deep bond that is really hard to explain)
You live in a nation built on colonial racism. Which is still apparent in everything.
Indigenous Australians owe the British nothing. 
Indigenous Australians are still being oppressed by the government through law restrictions, refusing Indigenous sovereignty, not acknowledging the past, willful amnesia, the entire education system, making loopholes in policies making it hard for Indigenous people to get jobs, negative representation, not stopping racism when they witness it, unwillingness to make a treaty, making Indigenous people move off their land for mining. 
Indigenous people aren’t always black. That’s the stereotype you support when you don’t believe someone’s Indigenous just because they’re pale.
Every Indigenous person you meet has a Letter of Aboriginality because we have to prove we’re from our ethnic background because Non-Indigenous people can’t be trusted to stake a claim and makes it harder for any families who were removed, thus supporting assimilation.
The government has in the past successfully scared Non-Indigenous people into thinking Indigenous sovereignty was a bad thing because it will take away western value system of property (meaning stolen land in Australia).
For Native Title, Indigenous people must prove lineage and connection to land before settlement. Which is very difficult especially if you were removed off land, 
Indigenous people are 3% of the population. Minority. 
Indigenous people are individuals. Hobbies, cultures, interests, religion, beliefs all varying.
Indigenous people want a treaty.
Multiculturalism in Australia is complete bullshit. It’s goes along the value of ‘we are all the same, therefore no one is different’ completely destroying the idea of Indigenous sovereignty and is the governments move to look more appealing in the eyes of the globe and not impacting white Australians.
Indigenous Australians did not name ourselves ‘Aboriginal/Indigenous’ etc. Indigenous people still don’t have our own collaborative name so every time that term is used, it’s reinforcing western domination of classification.
Life is hard. It was hard for immigrant families to settle. It was hard for convicts to survive. It was difficult for Indigenous people to last through massacres, the stealing of children and forced assimilation and inter generational trauma.
Indigenous people have their own internal problems and are trying to change it.
Australian Indigenous academics, artists, novelists are a thing.
Flora and Fauna Act never actually existed, it was a mindset many White Australians possessed. Hell some still do.
Mission reserves still exist. They’re usually strong communities these days.
There is an Aboriginal Tent Embassy. Because a handful of activists went to Parliament to claim land rights and fight for sovereignty, because Indigenous people are alienated on their own Country.
Indigenous people still face racism, because it is the foundation of Indigenous presence in Australian society.
Australia has had many frontier wars which aren’t discussed in classrooms.
The term ‘Aborigine’ is taken to offence these days. Don’t use it.
Indigenous Australian’s were making bread 15,000 years before it was first done in Egypt.
If you’re of convict descent. You’re a Settler. It’s flexible and debated. Who’s a Settler?
Indigenous people as a whole do not hate white people. It’s the white patriarchy of western values.
To all stupid white people, reverse racism doesn’t exist. If you understood what racism was, you would never say that.

Indigenous people can literally blame all their problems on white privilege. 

If you don’t believe me or want to argue, you lack education about Australia. And is honestly the reason we’re like this. I don’t want to point this out to just White Australians, because we get racism off every one. I didn’t put sources because I want people to do their own research. People need to educate themselves and stop depending on others to do it for them. You can start by googling what is ‘Imperalism’ and ‘Colonisation’ and comparing the two and how that relates to ‘Nationalism’ then search Aborigine Protection Board 1869 (Vic) and try to find out why this happened in the first place. And if you’re feeling lucky try Bruce Pascoe’s Dark Emu.

Historian Richard Morris, in his study of Colonial-era labor, says of European indentured servants on the plantations: ’…but with the advent of Negro slavery they were gradually supplanted as field workers and were principally retained as overseers, foremen or herdsmen.’ In other words, even the very lowest layer of white society was lifted out of the proletariat by the privileges of belonging to the oppressor nation.

Once these poor whites were raised off the fields and given the chance to help boss and police captive Afrikans, their rebellious days were over. The importance of this experience is that it shows the material basis for the lack of class consciousness by early Euro-Amerikan workers, and how their political consciousness was directly related to how much they shared in the privileges of the larger settler society. Further, the capitalists proved to their satisfaction that dissent and rebelliousness within the settler ranks could be quelled by increasing the colonial exploitation of other nations and peoples.
—  J Sakai, Settlers: the mythology of the white proletariat

I don’t think Canada or the U.S. governments have changed at all — we have been stuck in this same battle since Wounded Knee, Oka, Elsipogtog and Standing Rock. When it comes to Indigenous rights — whether treaty rights or constitutional rights — they are rights in theory only. Our ‘rights’ are only legal arguments we get to make in court if we survive the on the ground attack and if we have enough money to fight the government in court for 25 years. They are certainly not 'rights’ if the government can use all force necessary to stop us from peacefully protecting those rights.“

Pam Palmater, Mi'kmaq, Mi'kma'ki, N.B.

I don’t think I’ve seen any posts that went over what the water system in Palestine was like for each house, so I’ll try to go over it as best I can without any pictures -

Israel controls all of our water resources, and has allocated the resources of the Jordan river in an 83%/17% split, meaning that Israelis get 83% of its water while Palestinians are only allowed the remaining 17%.

Israel also routinely shuts of Palestinian water in order to supply Israeli settlements, which feature lavish swimming pools and well-kept community gardens - something we as Palestinians cannot have due to our limited water allowance and uncertainty regarding water availability.

What this leads to is a situation in which farmers cannot expand their crops or grow their gardens, because to do so would require time, money, and most of all, water. Because water is only allocated to us in an infrequent basis, how is a farmer to know that he has the water security required in order to expand his crops without worrying about having his water shut off for two weeks as all his crops die?

Each house in Palestine generally contains either a beir [well], large plastic containers, or both, meant to hold water. These are automatically filled when Israel turns on our water, with the house itself using the Israeli water before tapping into the beir or the other water reserves.

Motors in the house pump the water into the wells when Israel turns the water on, and then another motor pumps the water of the well into the house.

What makes things even worse is that if there’s no electricity and your well is empty, then it’s not going to fill with water, and if the well is full and there’s no Israeli water or electricity, then the water is not going to make it from the well to your house.

Aside from cutting off our water and only supplying it to us on set days, Israel also frequently cuts out electricity, especially on the hottest days of the year when Israeli settlers are blasting their ACs and creating a huge spike in electricity demand. 

This is just one small aspect of life under Israeli occupation that I feel many don’t actually realize or consider. 

When we say that Israel controls every aspect of our lives, we mean it in the absolute most literal sense. We can’t shower unless they turn on our water, we can’t plant our crops unless they turn on our water, we can’t visit neighboring cities unless the soldiers at the checkpoint are feeling generous, we can’t pray at our holy sites in Jerusalem without special permits that they rarely hand out, We can’t build up our own infrastructure without them tearing it down and claiming it’s a “security concern”. We can’t build on our OWN land without getting approval from them first. We can’t use mobile data services because they continue to deny us the equipment and mobile spectrum required for it, so while Israelis and Israeli settlers enjoy all the 4G they want on their phones, Palestinians are still stuck with having text and the OCCASIONAL “Edge” signal on ours. 

And the list goes on, and on, and on.

  • Israeli settlers: *live in illegal settlements built on stolen Palestinian land*
  • Israeli settlers: *believe they are superior to everybody else*
  • Israeli settlers: *burn Palestinian olive trees which were hundreds of years old and the livelihood of many*
  • Israeli settlers: *responsible for many Palestinian homes that are demolished to make way for their settlements*
  • Israeli settlers: *have access to Jewish-only roads on stolen Palestinian land, which are more direct and have quicker routes than roads Palestinians can use*
  • Israeli settlers: *physically and verbally abuse Palestinians as Israeli soldiers stand and watch*
  • A few bored Palestinian kids: *throw rocks at Israeli settlers' cars*
  • Israeli settlers: OoHhHhHhhhhhhhhhhh MyyyyyyYYYYYY!!!!!! WHY ARE THEY DOING DIS WE D0N'T UNDERSTAND!!!!!!!!!!! WHY!

SARAH’S WOMB: a creative project of Black-Jewish solidarity

sarah’s womb is a collective, digital zine being curated by dia ( @blackamydunne ) and sefa ( @hintele ). we are looking for art, photography, poetry, short prose, personal stories, and any other forms of self-expression that can be published in a digital zine, and we’re looking for them from black people, jewish people, and black jewish people.

the histories and experiences of the black and jewish peoples often sing similar tunes, even if in different voices. we are resilient peoples who constantly fight for justice, who have experienced unspeakable hardships, and who have unique, beautiful stories to tell.

sarah’s womb will be a collective story told in several parts:

i. love (might include: romantic love, friendship, family, love for humanity, etc)

ii. loss (might include: loss of loved ones, loss of agency/opportunity, loss of knowledge, loss of home, etc)

iii. culture / traditions

iv. body / self (might include: work discussing how being black and/or jewish has shaped your view of yourself/your body)

v. diaspora

vi. justice (might include: work highlighting the historical coalitions between black people and jewish people, histories of standing up for what is right, current political commentary)

vii. solidarity and togetherness

these are intentionally broad, general topics so that your artwork isn’t restrained by parameters that would prevent you from telling your own personal story. the examples given above are just that – examples.

if you have any work that you would like to create or submit for sarah’s womb, please check that it fits the following guidelines and submit it to us!

-we are looking for content from any and all sorts of jewish people, but we are not interested in receiving, reading, or publishing work that is in defense of the illegitimate settler-colonial state of israel. additionally, we are not looking for content from Black Hebrew Israelites that denies the legitimacy of the judaism of any jewish people.

-submissions that include any manner of racism or antisemitism will be rejected immediately and without ceremony. this is not a platform for discourse, hostility, or arguments between black and jewish people.

-please do not submit work that includes graphic imagery. please refrain from using slurs or nazi imagery, for example. [if you feel that your work CANNOT exist without one of these things please discuss it with us privately and we will decide how to proceed]

-prose fiction submissions cannot exceed 3,000 words

-work that uses the work of others MUST include sources (and permission, if necessary)

-work must be submitted by August 10, 2017, as we want to publish the zine by the end of the summer

for more information about us and about the zine, check out our about page. to submit work, go to our submissions page.

if you have any questions, please send them to our ask box, or ask either of us personally! we are so excited to put this project together and to share with the world the experiences, artwork, writing, and other works from people who are black and/or jewish.

nonblack gentiles are strongly encouraged to reblog this post so that we can spread the word and receive content from as many black and/or jewish people as we can!

There is no justifiable reason to celebrate independence day.

To many of you, my words are treason. But to those who exist under the imperial juggernaut that is the united states government, to those who struggle with maintaining a manageable life in a society that exploits them dry to the bone, and to those who experienced first-hand the unforgiving wrath of this state’s domestic and international violence; my treasonous words speak only truth. 

While you run to your nearest window in excitement when you hear an explosion, families in Libya, Afghanistan, Somalia, Pakistan, and Yemen cower and panic from bombs bursting in air over their heads shot from our country.

While you wave your flag to express your patriotic spirit, Puerto Ricans, Cubans, Mexicans, Haitians, Dominicans, and other Caribbean, Central, and South american peoples feel resentment and loathing to the forced glorification of the flag responsible for their collective historical and contemporary destabilization and torment. 

While you deify commanders in chieves, either founding fathers or recent presidents, indigenous peoples across the north amerikan continent and its captured territories and its documented and undocumented immigrants see only the blind cult worship of murderous colonial settlers or those responsible for tearing apart families and livelihoods.

What is there to celebrate in a country founded by settler colonialism?
What is there to celebrate in a country built by genocide and slave labor?
What is there to celebrate in a country that favors the rich over the poor?
What is there to celebrate in a country that puts profits before people?
What is there to celebrate in a country responsible for capturing foreign land?
What is there to celebrate in a country that’s responsible for toppling foreign democratic governments for the sake of corporations?
What is there to celebrate in a country that needs constant crisis to survive and is responsible for creating both refugees and terrorists?
What is there to celebrate in a country that still uses slavery as punishment for prisoners?
What is there to celebrate in a country that harassed, murdered, and imprisoned marginalized groups since inception, and does little to actively protect them?
What is there to celebrate in a country whose leaders only care to listen to you when they want your vote, then shut you out whenever you have a problem?

If you truly do care about humanity, about mankind’s troubles: stop supporting the nation responsible for our collective international misery.

There is no justifiable reason to celebrate independence day.