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What’s the Real Cause of Diabetes?

These 6 Breakfast Options Will Keep You Blurring the Lines Between Happy and Healthy – The Lifestyle of Alex

One of my earliest memories is of myself pushing a chair around my grandmother’s kitchen to make a sandwich. I know that I’m probably four years old from the tile on my grandma’s floor and the chair I’m standing on. The loaf of bread is on top of the fridge, and the mustard is high in the cabinet. Once I’ve gathered all the ingredients, I’d make a sandwich with meat, cheese, mustard, mayo, and a napkin. This isn’t about my earliest memories. This is about food. The kinds of food that cause diabetes and the consequences of where you get food. Diabetes is a big problem in the US. As the government goes through its unrelenting cycles of waxing and waning to decide if the health of individuals is worth cutting the profits of a large corporation after large corporation.

What is Diabetes?

Diabetes mellitus is a disease where the body has trouble responding to blood glucose and insulin. Type 1 Diabetes usually appears when the patient is still a minor and the pancreas does not produce enough insulin because of the loss of beta cells in the pancreas. Type 2 Diabetes is characterized by the body not responding to insulin correctly and is insulin resistant. Other symptoms include frequent urination, chronic fatigue, weight loss, and high amounts of thirst/ hunger for all types of diabetes. Diabetes was first described by Aretaeus of Cappadocia as a “‘wasting illness’ where the patient’s limbs turn to urine.” Jumping to the postmodern times and diabetes is very common, with nearly half a billion people affected by the illness worldwide. It is hard to ignore that the price of insulin is high enough to put into question the ethics behind a deadly business model.

Diabetes GIFs | Tenor

 

Inventing Personal Responsibility

Although many people are affected by a life-threatening disease, there’s minimal outcry for a cure. Diabetes is a manageable illness when a patient has the right tools. The number one treatment for diabetes is diet and exercise. This creates the illusion that individuals with diabetes do not prioritize their health and have diabetes because they are irresponsible. This is especially true for those who are type two diabetic because type two develops gradually with “lifestyle choices.”  Programs like the Biggest Loser,

The Biggest Loser' is back, and for goodness' sake, why?

Revenge Body

Watch Revenge Body With Khloe Kardashian, Season 2 | Prime Videoand even Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move campaign reinforces the idea of personal responsibility for physical health. Individuals simply need to choose healthy choices and not unhealthy choices to keep their diabetes under control. 

Let's Move! Cities, Towns and Counties | Healthy Communities for a Healthy Future

 

Sugar, Meat, and High Processed Foods

In an article by the New York Times, they list the most addictive foods, and the list is mostly sugar or meat. 

They list the following: 

  1. pizza
  2. chocolate 
  3. chips 
  4. cookies
  5. ice cream 
  6. french fries 
  7. cheeseburgers
  8. soda (not diet) 
  9. cake 
  10. cheese 
  11. bacon 
  12. fried chicken 
  13. rolls (plain) 
  14. popcorn (buttered) 
  15. breakfast cereal 
  16. gummy candy 
  17. steak 
  18. muffins 

Cheesy Pizza - Cheese GIF - Cheese Pepperoni Pizza - Discover & Share GIFs

Food high in fat, sugar, and highly processed foods have the most addictive traits. According to the article, highly processed food is designed to be extremely palatable, and healthy food can only compete marginally because processed food interacts with a different portion of the brain. This food triggers extreme rewards in the brain. We know from research that meat is more harmful to the health of diabetics because it clogs the arteries that then build up with what can be thought of as a backlog of sugar that the pancreas simply cannot keep up with the high production needs of insulin. 

These types of highly processed food frequent the underserved communities with less healthy food options. 

Food deserts are incredibly complex problems

For instance, in California, West LA has half the population of South LA and twice the amount of grocery stores. South La is known as a food desert because there are fewer healthy options in the community. Convenience stores, Fast Food Restaurants, and Gas Stations feed this community. A grocery store’s profit is only pennies on the dollar, so businesses must be incentivized to invest in communities with more risk. Locations with no other investors, high business insurance rates, and more possibility of theft become rife with Diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and obesity. A grocery store owner will rationally flock to a location without the additional challenge, a city like West LA. 

 I want to clarify that grocery store owners are practicing smart business by avoiding neighborhoods where they would have the most loss. However, crime is not a problem in society but a reaction to a problem in society. People who are well-fed and don’t have food insecurity don’t steal food, baby formula, etc. 

Fiscal Determinants of Health

Infographic: American Insulin Prices Are Off The Charts | Statista

Diabetes costs individuals an estimated additional 20,000 dollars a year. The median household income can be as low as 50,000 a year in food deserts. This places a huge financial burden on individuals who need to pay for insulin, doctor co-pays, and prescription refills. It would be easier to cope with diabetes when you have the additional resources. But this forces people to choose between paying for bills and paying for insulin which is integral to their health. The public health care system is bare-bones and shifts the burden back onto patients when it comes to caring. Individuals who work full time or often full time and half have to carve out time for appointments while possibly having families to care for and monitoring their blood sugar 24 hours a day. Then when it’s the end of the night, and it is time to eat something, driving the other side of town to the grocery store to then cook a balanced meal that’ll take another hour before everyone eat, Taco Bell is the more viable option even if it’s not the ideal option. 

These challenges gridlock individuals with diabetes into a position where the healthy choice is not much of choice. 

Lack of access to Health insurance stacked on food deserts constantly feeds back into each other until the damage is irreversible for a completely manageable illness with modern science. This doesn’t only affect individuals with diabetes. People with high cholesterol and blood pressure are caught in the same system, with people telling them that if they merely keep up a healthy lifestyle, they could get their illnesses under control. A healthy lifestyle comes at a huge effort for people already putting a huge effort into trying to make a living wage. It’ll be no surprise that those struggling with diabetes come from black and brown communities. 

Big Business Interest In Diabetes

Diabetes Product Review: Abbott FreeStyle Libre

Obesity is one of the biggest factors in the development of diabetes, followed by aging and an unhealthy lifestyle. As the number of diabetic individuals grows each year. The size of potential consumers does as well. Diabetes is a global epidemic, with China leading the numbers in death, with 20% of the deaths from diabetes coming from its population. This creates a higher demand for glucose monitoring devices and high-end insulin pumps. The diabetic market size is 25.3 billion dollars as of 2020, and it is expected to grow at a rate of 6.6% every year. Big players like Apple and Google are in an arms race to disrupt the health care industry. Diabetes is a growing and fertile market opportunity. There is no better way to get people to empty their pockets than to remind them their life depends on a device or medication. Abbotts Freestyle Libre presents an affordable glucose monitor with a more straightforward design. The second glucose monitor is the Dexacom is super high-end with the ability to connect to smartphones and Apple watches.

Abbotts FreeStyle Libre and Dexacom have over one hundred patents combined.

Here’s a quick lesson on Patents:

With that in mind. The legacy of bad actors like Elizabeth Holmes (former CEO of Theranos, a blood-testing company that was a complete fraud) and Martin Shkreli (a Medical Hedge fund manager who raised the price of Daraprim from $13.50 a tablet to $750) puts consumers in a complicated place of trusting medical companies. Because even when they knowingly act in the interest of profit to the detriment of people, our government only charges them with crimes related to the finances of it all.

Elizabeth Holmes trial: live updates as ex-Theranos employee testifiesShkreli's infamous price-gouging scheme finally shut down in $40M settlement | Ars Technica

Conclusion

The overall negligence of diabetic patients is reinforced by systems designed to protect profit and corporate interest over humanity. But furthermore, it’s…

Upsetting Me GIF - Upsetting Me And - Discover & Share GIFs

…that people continue the myth that people who have diabetes are at fault. This is a series of negligence from multiple entities. From the FDA, limited access to health care, limited access to healthy food, working two and three jobs to get by, and then PAY 200 dollars for Humalog. Diabetic individuals are alone when they try to navigate their illness to make a better life for themselves in the face of many systemic challenges. Diabetes can be a very aggressive illness when you don’t have resources. Often leading individuals to be blind, with gastroparesis, have their extremities amputated, have heart disease, and ultimately die prematurely. By blaming diabetic people for their illness, you help these faceless institutions deflect the blame for harming countless people, NOT EXCLUDING YOURSELF. While you have the chance invest in your health because nothing in the American health care system exists to help you. Start putting your money where your mouth is because it cost so much more to be diabetic.

Resources 

  1. https://www.nytimes.com/2022/01/14/business/martin-shkreli-barred.html#:~:text=In%202015%2C%20Mr.,%24750%20a%20tablet%2C%20from%20%2413.50.
  2. https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Awad-Ahmed-2/publication/291274449_history_of_diabetes_mellitus/links/569f37b808aee4d26ad06c05/history-of-diabetes-mellitus.pdf
  3. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E5bacxqobwY&list=WL&index=17&ab_channel=CNBC
  4. https://www.annualreviews.org/doi/pdf/10.1146/annurev-publhealth-040617-014615
  5. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/18-most-addictive-foods#most-addictive-foods
  6. https://www.nytimes.com/2021/02/18/well/eat/food-addiction-fat.html
  7. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lb7TMaip21E&list=PLFkhU4zQnGMmwyPS1vSPfHYVK6XqlWbU4&index=3&ab_channel=Cheddar
  8. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HOE5QDDKDlY&list=PLFkhU4zQnGMmwyPS1vSPfHYVK6XqlWbU4&index=4&ab_channel=Vox
  9. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l3TC2BipYyQ&list=PLFkhU4zQnGMmwyPS1vSPfHYVK6XqlWbU4&index=3&ab_channel=warwickeconomics
  10. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MTJ6OjLa8UY&list=PLFkhU4zQnGMmwyPS1vSPfHYVK6XqlWbU4&index=6&ab_channel=NationalInstitutesofHealth%28NIH%29
  11. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3942738/#:~:text=Those%20who%20reported%20long%2Dterm,meat%20at%20both%20time%20points.
  12. https://diabetesjournals.org/care/article/41/5/963/36522/Global-Economic-Burden-of-Diabetes-in-Adults
  13. https://www.grandviewresearch.com/industry-analysis/diabetes-devices-market
  14. https://youtu.be/k6aDamBizws
  15. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hqnUohxXV0I&ab_channel=UnreportedWorld
  16. https://dexcom.gcs-web.com/news-releases/news-release-details/dexcom-receives-new-us-patent#:~:text=DexCom%2C%20and%20its%20predecessor%2C%20have,and%2061%20pending%20U.S.%20applications.
  17. https://www.waldenu.edu/programs/health/resource/is-patent-protection-hindering-healthcare-management#:~:text=Only%20when%20a%20patent%20expires,by%2038%25%20to%2048%25.&text=The%20higher%20costs%20incurred%20during,protection%20can%20also%20pose%20problems.
  18. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-z_W3yRA9I8&ab_channel=DWDocumentary
  19. https://www.statista.com/chart/23127/average-price-per-standard-unit-of-insulin/

 

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4 Reasons Why Humor is Our Greatest Tool of Language

 

 

I hate any movie with Adam Sandler in it. Uncut Gems is the exception because I’m guilty of being a film snob. But please spare me his other films Water Boy, Just Go With It, Bedtimes Stories, Click, Grown-ups 1 and 2. The reason I don’t like movies with Adam Sandler in them is not that I dont have a sense of humor. I don’t have that sense of humor. To laugh at something, you have to understand it first. None of the other devices that come with language are quite compare with humor when used to accomplish the same things. Everything people say is heavily policed by academia and the PC police of social media. Humor is one of the last instruments of language that people are allowed to use as we enter into sticky topics that need to be discussed. The person telling the joke only has to meet one standard and make you laugh.

Make You Laugh GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY

1.) Use of Comedy as a Threshold to Uncomfortable Topics

Comedy is the tool people use when it is time to have a conversation that can put people at odds with each other and make them uncomfortable. 

 It would be uncomfortable for the audience to hear me say without humor that the grief of losing my mom is also making me less open to taking creative risks. Plainly saying something is not as effective when you want the audience to engage with you because if they want to understand my point of view, it forces them to feel my discomfort first. But by joking about it invites the other person in without any cost to them, they gain the joy of laughter.

Bo Burnham Inside GIF - Bo Burnham Inside Comedy - Discover & Share GIFs

In Bo Burbumans Inside standup special, he uses humor and original songs as a way to emotionally process his more uncomfortable feelings during the pandemic. He’s self-reflecting in that time, making observations about norms we see online, and processing his existential dread all through a comedy. But if you take his socko joke, for instance, the sock is a metaphor for oppressed groups that he silences and makes a point of patting himself on the back for being a “Changed white man” who recognizes his privilege now. He is not only criticizing himself in the song but also illustrating that even woke white men use their privilege to abuse others while being aware of the consequences. Goat shit.

indira 𓆈 on Twitter: "yeah cool the new bo burnham special https://t.co/Dl3aIj5fI1" / Twitter

 

2.) Use of Comedy for Education

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver GIFs - Find & Share on GIPHY

The famous statistic that “54% of adults in the United States have a prose literacy below the 6th-grade level and 21% of Americans fall into a category called, ‘low-level English literacy'”. A huge portion of the American population is not less intelligent but less literate. This gap places a huge burden on regular people with too many adult responsibilities to make informed decisions on recent civil injustices without reliable access to trustworthy information. Once again, humor comes rushing out with its cape on.

 

Stand-up comedians like Trevor Noah, John Oliver, Samantha Bee, and Hasan Minhaj have popularized combining their standup experience with reporting on topics that everyday people would otherwise be left in the dark on if they relied on cable news outlets, dying print media. Humor is the important link because if you laugh at something, you, at a minimum, understand it, and while John Oliver is talking about the layered and complicated issue of “Wrongful Convictions.” Most people may assume a conversation about something like that would be out of their depth. But by using humor, you bring everyone into the fold of political issues, social hierarchies, and a good laugh. Humor has been carrying the burden of informing the masses for a while when we look back at exaggerated political cartoons of the past.

The Political Cartoon That Explains the Battle Over Reconstruction | History| Smithsonian Magazine

Cartoons and Cartoonists - Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia

3.) Use of Humor as a way to Mock Others

 People regularly argue what I argue that humor is the final outlet for truth when everything is censored. But my idea of truth excludes bigotry and hateful ideologies. Humor, as we all remember too well from grade school, is used to tease others. More recently, memes online are used to cancel people on social media. Canceling is when the entire internet erupts into the hateful commentary of a single celebrity. They attack everything from their looks, actions, style choices, and inexcusable behavior.

I could talk about the low-hanging fruit like comedians who are racist, bigots, xenophobic, homophobic, transphobic, and so forth, but that’s not related because it’s not a comedy. It’s not funny.

Scumbag Joey Salads' Racist “Social Experiment” Exposed As Fake GIF | Gfycat

 Instead, Zoe Kravitz was a somewhat obscure figure in Hollywood, mostly known for being the daughter of Lisa Bonet and Lenny Kravitz. But since her casting as the Catwoman in the 2022 film Batman, she has been widely praised for her looks. Then she threw shade at Will Smith, and the internet very quickly switched on her and brought up her inappropriate crush on a 14-year-old Jaden Smith( the son of Will Smith). Zoe Kravitz’s rise and fall happened in three hours. But the most interesting thing about this is that humor was side by side with the attempted takedown of the actress. 

The Good...

using humor to mock Chris Rock by complimenting Zoe Kravitz.

the shady

Zoe Kravitz uses sarcasm to criticize Will Smith for slapping Chris Rock

The Eyebrow Raising

The internet responded by dragging Zoe Kravitz for having a crush on an underaged Jaden Smith.

 The internet’s habit of aggressive praise followed by aggressive bullying under the guise of humor makes it impossible to have a fair criticism of someone. Which should more often be:  Yes, what they did was wrong. But does that mean that the entire body of work they created needs to be locked away?… no not exactly. However, the individuals who have compilation after compilation coming out of them using a racial slur and few professional consequences for their inappropriate actions.  Maybe holding their feet to the fire a little longer would be fair. 

4.) Humor as an Extension of Charm and Likability

Humor is an important factor in dating (and we already know dating can be hard from this post). According to a research study by the University of Kansas, “Men use humor to gauge if women are interested in them.” Laughing with someone is a good indicator of the type of interaction you can expect in the future, a fun one.

Emilia Clarke Laughing GIF - Emilia Clarke Laughing Happy - Discover & Share GIFs

Humor is an extension of charm and likability. Humor increases the attractiveness of the individual because they are more fun to be around and less serious. Think about the popularity of the class clown. Everyone wants them to sit at their table because they liven up the mood. Humor gives presidents like Barack Obama and Donald Trump unmistakable styles of charisma as politicians even though they have opposing styles of humor and politics. Obama is the king of the fake-out and deadpan humor, and Donald Trump is known for aggressive teasing styles. Their use of humor is what makes them each more likable to their respective audiences. 

Obama out president obama GIF on GIFER - by Shalilen

Trump Mocks Disabled GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY

Why aren’t other instruments of Language as Good as Humor?

There are a lot of linguistic instruments out there that aren’t nearly as palatable as a comedy. When people take on the challenge of connecting with others.

There is

Irony

Metaphor

Sarcasm

Statistics

and

Poetry. 

While all of these examples can be effective, they have their limits. Irony falls short because irony does not translate the same way to different versions of English. This is why British comedy series are usually redone for American audiences. (While we’re on the subject of irony, isn’t it ironic in a post about humor I couldn’t think of a single funny thing to say, embarrassing.)

 

Metaphor is good to help illustrate an idea; however, you can hardly strengthen an argument with metaphor; only help bring details to life. Like this Jordan Peterson Word Generator. 

r/enoughpetersonspam - This Peterson word salad generator is almost too perfect.

While sarcasm is not the greatest example of wittiness, it is often used to hide one’s contempt for another individual. Even when its Niles Crain and their contempt is blaintly obvious.  Frasier Crane GIFs | Tenor

 

Statistics are supposed to present the facts and data. However, numbers do a poor job presenting the full picture. Numbers without context are often used to support an agenda. This is done with the famous black-on-black crime stats that illustrate an inherently RACIST NARRATIVE. Black people committing crimes against other black people is not a consequence of their race but a consequence of being HUMAN.

Look At My African American Over Here GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY

 

Poetry can be amazing at illustrating the complex emotional working of individuals. Poetry, however, simply cannot solve all our complex issues between several Nuclear Powers…

Sorcha Ní Nia on Twitter: "the fact that AnnaLynne McCord hasn't deleted that video yet either means she has the fiercest 'DGAF mate' energy I've ever come across, or she's currently trapped

Conclusion

Humor can get you the girl, drag you on the internet, keep you informed on why America exports its plastic waste to other countries, get you a job, help you process dark emotions, and a million other things. This post is just a big love letter to comedy because she really said:

Im Every Woman GIF - Woman Women Every Woman - Discover & Share GIFs

So don’t forget to laugh at the fact that this post was supposed to come out on April Fools, and I played myself, lol.

Resources

  1. https://youtu.be/YZRxX1XYgoQ
  2. https://www.forbes.com/sites/michaeltnietzel/2020/09/09/low-literacy-levels-among-us-adults-could-be-costing-the-economy-22-trillion-a-year/?sh=3ce81c634c90
  3. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QumeDEv3DyM
  4. https://www.cs.princeton.edu/~chazelle/politics/humor08.html
  5. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HP8tna5s9CY
  6. https://nces.ed.gov/pubs2019/2019179.pdf
  7. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mE_2ZXOhhAY
  8. https://news.ku.edu/2015/08/27/first-comes-laughter-then-love-study-finds-out-why-humor-important-romantic-attraction
  9. https://news.ku.edu/2015/08/27/first-comes-laughter-then-love-study-finds-out-why-humor-important-romantic-attraction

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5 Rules Every GOOD Tarot Card Reader Should Follow

Trisha Trisha Paytas GIF - Trisha Trisha Paytas H3 - Descubre & Comparte GIFs

Idiots can be a dime a dozen when it comes to spiritual influencers and tarot card readers. Even in the shadows adjacent to the spiritual community are some bad actors. There are AMAZING tarot card readers who are well educated, those who have amazing products, who are genuinely driven by healing others and protecting the interests of their clients. If you’re entering the world of spiritual freelancer and entrepreneurship. These are some rules to set you up for success as you build a rewarding career, in a field of work that inherently comes with a lot of skepticism. Whether your building a platform or looking for a platform that you can trust, these are some signs to look for that will be worth the investment.

Rule Number One: Humility 

No more excuses! Even studying underwater is possible.

 

It’s okay to not know something as a tarot card reader. There’s a lot of pressure on readers to be clairvoyant, clairaudient, and all that. That does not give tarot card readers license to speak too broadly outside of their expertise. Instead, it’s ideal to help clients find additional support.

You might say something like,

“ Hey, I know you’ve got your reservations with western medicine. I know a nature pathetic doctor in your area I can get you in touch with them, let me know if you’re interested. “

Boom you’re not going to say have some aspirin or manifest a painless back (Click here to learn how to Manifest). By providing them access to real resources you professionally trust to take care of your client, You don’t have the opportunity to lead them astray.

Another way to embrace humility is to continue your own spiritual journey and education. Tarot card readers that fail to challenge themselves with exercise, self-compassion, and learning about other cultures are easy to spot. Their messaging can be extremely shallow and then they start regurgitating the same things. Challenging yourself spiritually, physically, and intellectually is so important for your own growth and the growth of your clients.

 

Rule Number 2: Dont Abuse Your Power

Dont belittle others. Do not be the tarot card reader that reports tough love as a veneer for bullying. Do not say harmful things about an entire zodiac sign because your ex was an awful example of Sagittarius sun.

Most people discover tarot as a way to interpret their own spiritual relationship with God, Allah, the universe, whomever. Clients typically are in a vulnerable state looking for answers. The role of the tarot card reader is guidance, be a professional if they dont take your advice it’s not your personal problem.

Why men never admit they're wrong | Why men are stubborn

Dont say dismissive things like “if you’ve ascended enough my message would resonate.” While that may be the case, maybe your message also sucked.  The tarot card reader should do their best to interpret the cards and go home. Learn to keep your ego in check because people will make you feel like you can never be wrong when messages do resonate. But that couldn’t be further from the truth. Dont be another person belittling your client’s ability to change their life.

 

Rule number 3: Add a Personal Touchtibetan singing bowls | Explore Tumblr Posts and Blogs | Tumgir

Add your own razzle-dazzle to tarot. Incorporate worksheets, illustrations on the fly, sing, make jokes. You are speaking for tarot so don’t forget your personality and other skills.

The client comes for tarot but they stay because of YOU.

Incorporate teachings you’ve learned from all walks of life whether it be religion, philosophy, meditation, your physical trainer, another tarot card reader. Use life as your inspiration for analogies to help your clients make connections to their own world.

It can be a great experience to go off the beaten path of tarot and incorporate additional methods because it lends you credibility and offers them diverse support. One of my favorite tarot card readers does sound baths at the end of every reading. I’ve never heard of this before working with them but it’s something I now look forward to at the end of all their readings.

Rule Number Four: Promote Self Empowerment

Im Going To Miss You GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY

Ideally, your regular clients would naturally phase out of your services as things improve in their life. This is a beautiful thing. They may even ask for your help to read the tarot for themselves. Encourage your clients to practice radical self-love independently. Tarot card readers should be there to help in a season of need, pop in when a little maintenance is needed but not forever.

A client should not be co-dependent and hang on to every word you say. At that point, the Tarot card reader gains more from the client’s consistent cash flow rather than the client gaining control over their life. Your client should get to a point where they transition into less frequent sessions with you. Encourage them to take that leap!

 

Rule Number Five: Good Business Practices

The oldest rule in the book is to make a good first impression. Let’s say you post 7-minute readings to youtube for monthly general readings. It could put a bad taste in the client’s mouth if out of that 7 minutes the first 3 minutes were you cross-promoting all your other services, and you close the video with “we’ll continue in the extended version”. It’s totally fine to promote yourself, I do it all the time, and before I forget… (Click here to Book a Tarot Card Reading) . It should be appropriate though, I did it as satire, don’t sue me. 

Rihanna Wears A Shirt Of Herself Wearing A Hillary Clinton Shirt | HuffPost Canada

Another good business practice is not to make wild claims about your services or merchandise. It’s not fair to your audience. For example, it would be bad to give someone false hope when they need medical attention. It makes you a PIECE OF SHIT if you know what you’re doing or it makes you irresponsible. Chose your other services and products wisely when you sell to people because you would be responsible. 

I Said What I Said GIFs | Tenor

The last one is to be reliable. Show up to readings on time. You build trust with your clients when you are consistent. Pay attention to the details. Dont over-commit and then under-deliver. It’s perfectly fine to communicate with your client when you are spread a little thin, but still, show up. Taking proper self-care of yourself ensures that you have the means to extend a helping hand through your tarot readings. 

Bottomline 

tarot cards GIF by Polyvinyl Records

Bad actors are everywhere on the tarot card/spiritual side of the internet. Whether you’re getting a tarot card reading for yourself or already a tarot card reader for others, it’s important to enter into this environment with integrity. Tons of people in the tarot community enter with criticisms of organized religion and transform into the very people they criticize. Be someone people can trust. If you made mistakes along in the past that’s fine and expected. Learning from your own mistakes and mistakes is how to continue this very satisfying journey of spirituality and tarot.

 

Resources

  1. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tf-vjFG6ihw
  2. https://youtu.be/UL84gUahNfo
  3. ngtonpost.com/religion/2021/12/10/tarot-cards-pandemic-trend/
  4. http://dspace.library.uvic.ca/bitstream/handle/1828/1553/Tarot%20Cards.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y

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Profiting on the Radicalization of Male Insecurity

Kim Kardashian Breaks Down Crying During Tense Visit with Kanye West in Wyoming

The never-ending saga of Kim Kardashian and Kanye West’s divorce is at the moment the most annoying piece of media in your face right now. They are everywhere. Both of them have started openly dating other people to the public. Kanye is true to form by being an emotional terrorist to Kim Kardashian and his own family. But in combination with his love-bombing Kim and making direct threats to her new boyfriend Pete Davidson through his “art”. Kanye is creating a very fertile environment that can quickly escalate to violence. The worst part of all this is that Kanye actions are not unique. Women go through this situation all the time walking on eggshells, turned to hot coals out of unhappy relationships. Men absolutely lose their shit when women practice autonomy. Why don’t men see that when a woman makes a decision its more about her than their value as a man? Could it be because they make the mistake of equating women with property? Let’s think on that…

 

The Media’s Apathetic Messaging to Boys

Kim Kardashian, Kanye West Dance at Met Gala 2019 Party: Details

Kanye West is one of the most powerful individuals in the world and even he can’t stay in the room and listen to his wife say shes going to wear the dress she likes and he can get over it. I’m paraphrasing but the point is that a woman making choices about what to do with her body and life should not cost men their self-esteem or their sense of security. Feminism is obviously the elephant in the room a woman should be able to choose what she does with her life at no consequence to men because we are advocating for EQUALITY here.

Women are in their fourth wave of feminism. Unlike other waves of feminism in the past, everyone on the internet is watching this wave unfold in real-time. Feminists have mobilized their movements digitally using social media to gain traction overnight. Movements like #Metoo, Body positivity, and advocating for the rights of Transwomen. All over the globe women are sharing their grievances with patriarchal society online and it’s resulting in real changes in the real world. 

There is one important difference to note between men’s and women’s reactions to fourth-wave feminism.

Girls members of Genz and Millenials were marketed girl power like no tomorrow by the media in the 2000s and 2010s. Grooming them at every opportunity to be strong women. When girls watch a female hero they learn that they’re special and they struggle, while the media marketed towards young boys teach them that they struggle because their special. The media only mildly informs young male audiences all that girl power stuff is kicking into high gear. This distinction in media for boys encourages boys to feel sorry for themselves in the face of adversity. The role models they look up to demonstrate to young men that any struggle they have is because they’re SPECIAL.

Each of the girls in the image above has a problem to solve not directly related too or at the result of their special talent.

 

The men in each image overcome obstacles throughout the story solely because they’re special, most conflicts arise because of their special traits.

Perhaps the media expected another semi-passive wave of feminism if any. Third-wave feminism is hard to characterize as anything other than before smartphones and after the 80s. In retrospective to fourth-wave feminism makes the media’s message to young men appear apathetic. Now, those same men and women are in the dating pool together with completely different worldviews on the most basic things, and more consequential the place of the women. Although in some instances women are closer to the traditional ideas of masculinity. Women are more educated, better groomed, starting businesses, and encouraging others to take control of their bodies. Men are left to consider a choice are they going to embrace some gender fluidity or are they going to be hyper-masculine to outdo other men and the growing number of women who are less traditionally feminine? 

Lil Nas X Reveals Tracklist for New Album Montero, Featuring Megan Thee Stallion, Elton John, Miley Cyrus, and More | Pitchfork8 Ways to be an Alpha Male by Tomorrow | Muscle & Fitness

Radicalizing Masculinity

The question mark and mutable nature of masculinity in today’s discord creates the opportunity for certain personalities online to turn male insecurities into profit. Some of these individuals’ tactics are transparent and harmless if you have a pulse and decent eyesight. However, platforms like youtube, Facebook, and TikTok work by showing you what you may want to see, to keep you on the platform like a lab rat with a button for sugar water, and therefore consume more advertising. This has the potential to groom a young man into an extremely hateful person before they even realize that HE was taken advantage of. Because the influencer/commentators only wanted to sell you something by building a parasocial relationship. At the end of all of it is a grift. It’s about their mugs, ebook, online course, music career, twitch streams, the list is endless.

Welcome to Outrage Marketing 101:

 

The Consequences of Hyper Gender Roles

Hypermasculinity does harm to the individual by making it impossible for men to have shortcomings. The traditional man has to be emotionally stoic, financially provide for a family of four, perform all physically demanding tasks, be well educated. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to be a good man. The problem with this model of what a man should be is that it excludes a lot of already good men and makes them feel like they are only seen for their shortcomings. Everything in moderation is a popular cliche because it’s true. There are even dangerous outcomes that pair with hyper-femininity. Humor me for sec, even if you don’t watch the HBO smash hit series Euphoria, does this woman look well to you?

Skin Care Cassie Howard GIF - Skin Care Cassie Howard Sydney Sweeney - Discover & Share GIFscassie euphoria | Explore Tumblr Posts and Blogs | Tumgir

No fucking way Cassie is okay, bless her heart though.

Man taking advantage of male insecurity creates dangerous outcomes that exist in the 3D world.

See the source image

This is Elliot Rodgers he stabbed 6 people in southern California back in 2014, posted a 141-page manifesto to the internet, and he shot himself in the head.

Westgate Entertainment District - Where Fun Happens

In 2020 Armando Hernandez Jr. went to the Westgate Entertainment District in Glendale Az and shot three people. He is a self-identified incel and it was reported that he was targeting romantic couples in particular.

 

Solve YouTube's “Spacebar Problem” with These Keyboard ShortcutsIn February 2021 Malik Sanchez the self-proclaimed incel and youtube streamer played a bomb hoax on restaurant-goers in Manhattan New York.

In April of 2018 in Toronto Canada, another self-identified Incel drove his rented van into pedestrians killing 10 and injuring 16 others.

While these events prove that the incel community can be a threat to others. They are more accurately the biggest threat to themselves. The incel community has a culture around suicide, members regularly joke about suicide and take their own lives. There are self-reports that the community is cathartic and allows men the chance to vent their frustrations with women not wanting them and the ideal alpha men who “gets all the girls”.

Suicide rates in the U.S. reported by the CDC for 2021 state that “Rates for males in age groups 10-14 and 25-34 increased by 13% and 5%…”.

It’s sad.

The Real Villian to Masculinity

Masculinity can be defined as traits connected to manliness including but not limited to strength, authority, leadership, bravery, strategic reasoning, and so on. Men report that women and feminism have ruined everything.

How can men be strong when they live in food deserts, and only eat fast food?

How can men be strategically reasonable when the cost of higher education has risen out of reach for even the upper-middle class?

How can men be brave when they refuse to take the radical step and get mental health treatment when needed?

How can men be leaders when they don’t have the access to capital to buy a house, apply for a business loan, or if they are kept out of the workforce?

Society places these demands on the men and shut its mouth to the fact that the system has taken countless opportunities away from EVERYONE. Men’s anger and frustration with women are misguided. The conservative commentators I brought up before are more than happy to keep feminism as a conservative battleground because it distracts from the fact that the insecurity all men feel is at the heart of a capitalist system failing them.

reactions on Twitter:

Leave women alone! All this effort to understand why women aren’t having sex with insecure men. Because women don’t fucking have to, if they don’t want to. It’s that simple. The girl that doesn’t want to talk to you at the gas station, stood you up after a tinder match, stopped answering your texts after you poured your heart out to her, so fucking what. She does not owe you anything because you were nice to her. Basic kindness isn’t something you should use to get you into the pants of a woman.

elodie-yung - The Social Network (2010) dir. David Fincher

elodie-yung - The Social Network (2010) dir. David Fincher

The biggest irony is that if men weren’t so concerned with making women the villains and themselves the victim then they might get some. Women don’t care about any of the things that men think they do men are viewing the values of women through a male gaze. But from a female gaze most women care that a man is self-sufficient, and not an emotional tyrant. The bar is fucking low. Your niche hobby isn’t going to scare girls away, your beer belly isn’t going to, hair loss, none of it will.

Being a self-loathing asshole is what fulfills the incel’s deepest fear of dying alone and unloved.

Feminine Autonomy Isnt Going Anywhere

Human beings are complicated and nuanced. Women(try not to lose your mind when I say this) are human beings. Humans do things that offer momentary relief from an otherwise pointlessly excruciating existence. Now that women are the most autonomous they’ve ever been in history. That means there are more opportunities for half the population to have a life they enjoy. Men who embrace gender fluidity are having the most enjoyable experience. Just for reference Pete Davidson is not the male gaze’s idea of who should have dated Kim Kardashian, Ariana Grande, Kaia Gerber, etc.

Pete Davidson Took Kim Kardashian's Love of Branding Very Literally | Vanity Fair Men have an opportunity to be emotionally available, get dangly earrings, a pedicure, be a stay-at-home dad and not less of a man in the eyes of women. Women do not exist to service men.

The reason girls wear bold makeup,

Makeup Artist Goes Viral for Matching Lashes to Colorful Lipstick | Allure

dance “provocatively” on the internet,

Black Girls Dancing Dance GIF - Black Girls Dancing Dance Drop It Like Its Hot - Discover & Share GIFs

Choosing their careers instead of having children is for personal fulfillment.

Full-length portrait of Queen Elizabeth in her early 40s. She has red hair, fair skin, and wears a crown and a pearl necklace.Stop making it about men. The self-actualization of women has nothing to do with men or sex, it only has to do with HER.(Freud just rolled in his grave). As any regular Alpha male podcasting grifter will tell you men and women are wired differently. Because even when a man tries to put in me in my proverbial place my wired default goes like this:

Resources

  1. https://afsp.org/suicide-statistics/
  2. https://scholar.harvard.edu/files/nunn/files/plough_web_appendix.pdf
  3. https://www.imdb.com/title/tt2650940/
  4. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d9wWR531-18
  5. https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-43892189#:~:text=Elliot%20Rodger%20killed%20six%20people,two%20dozen%20people%20he%20knew.
  6. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JP9ucyoJraQ
  7. https://www.newsweek.com/westgate-gunman-identified-incel-intended-shoot-couples-prosecutor-says-1505837
  8. https://www.justice.gov/usao-sdny/pr/new-york-city-man-arrested-carrying-out-hoax-bomb-threat-manhattan-restaurant
  9. https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/vsrr/VSRR016.pdf
  10. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pJcTiNgP4To
  11. https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2016/07/01/racial-gender-wage-gaps-persist-in-u-s-despite-some-progress/
  12. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mvY1nYsK0fE
  13. https://www.britannica.com/topic/feminism/The-third-wave-of-feminism#ref1228639
  14. https://www.britannica.com/topic/feminism/The-fourth-wave-of-feminism

 

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A Review of Amazon’s Road to Monopolizing Books

Must Read: Jeff Bezos Steps Down as Amazon CEO, Rebag Launches Image Recognition Technology - Fashionista

Everyone wants to pick a fight with one man. Jeff Bezos, former Ceo of Amazon, and at the time of writing this has an estimated net worth of 201 Billion dollars. The company Amazon has an estimated value of 1.65 Trillion dollars.

1,000,000,000,000

More than that…

Safe to say, Amazon has been busy building an empire. Honestly, their company is a human event, along with the other tech giants, Facebook, Apple, or Google. Amazon has interrupted a lot of traditional markets, but one is on its last fighting leg before Amazon completely monopolizes the whole shebang.

Dreams worth more than money libro book GIF - Find on GIFERThe story of Amazon’s colossal scale started with books. But what does that mean for the future of books? And what books offer humanity as Amazon closes in on completely absorbing the

Origins of Amazon.com

The story goes, Jeff Bezos in the early nineties was the vice president of an investment firm on Wall Street D.E Shaw & Co., Bezos’ read a report stating the e-commerce sales grow at an estimated 2300% each year. Bezos fixates on this magic number and makes a list of 20 items that would sell well on the internet. He zeroes in on five, then narrows his list down to one, books. He rationalizes that books would sell well online because:

  • There is an existing huge global market and demand for books
  • Books are cheaply produced per unit
  • There were already thousands of books in print that sell well, and more entering the market every day

Amazon: The Next Big Thing Is a Bookstore? | FortuneThe company in its humble beginnings operates out of his parent’s garage, and their seed money of about a quarter of a million dollars. After its first two months, Amazon is making 20,000 dollars weekly, and quickly adopts the tagline “Earth’s Biggest Bookstore”.Talking Shit GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY Two years later, in 1997 Barnes and Noble sues Amazon for this tagline because they were booty tickled is the short version. While that’s not what they publically said, executives at the time said ” They’re not a bookstore they’re a book broker”. The two settled out of court in October of 1997 and Amazon kept talking that shit. At the time the only other web entity with a larger catalog of books is  gutenburg.org est. 1971. (Check them out for free books) Amazon had more than 1 million books titles in their online catalog. Today that number has grown to 33 million books, ready to ship. In 1998 Amazon announced it would be expanding its merchandise beyond books. But books remained a big part of the company’s bottom line until the company turns its first profit in 2001. This was a big deal for the company because they were already being publically traded and this proved that they would be able to survive the dot.com bubble.

Dangers of Monopolizing

 

Juan de Miranda Carreno 002.jpg

Amazon is a long way from its humble beginnings, they are incredibly close to having a monopoly on books. But first, what makes monopolies so bad? While researching for this post, I found a great comparison of monopolies to incest. But naturally, the source’s source was a dead link (I was wildly irritated by this thank you for your concern.) However, let’s break this down. This is Charles II of Spain, he was the king of Spain from 1665- 1700. The Spanish royals of his time took keeping things in the family to a different level. Marriage back then had nothing to do with love. It was a political affair, very much intended to be advantageous for the families that would be connected because of this union. His father and mother are uncle and niece and the looping in his family tree march all the way up. This was really sad for him because he fought off disease his entire life, was impotent, and the doctor that performed his autopsy reported that his head was full of water, the list goes on.

The diversity between parents means that the pair’s offspring are more protected from illness. Lack of diversity leads children like Charles II and a lot of other royal offspring to suffer the effects of poor immune health, mania, and more commonly hemophilia (a condition where the blood doesn’t clot, deadass dubbed the “royal illness”). His ancestor’s obsession with political gain and the lack of royals who weren’t your cousin somehow is a debt Charles II paid for with his life.

The same problem exists with rising monopolies in the American marketplace because…

  1. Consumers are forced to navigate bugs in corporations without guidance or protection
  2. Innovation is limited because when a competitor rises up they are bought out.
  3. Smaller businesses cannot keep up with monopolies ability to offer heavily discounted prices because of their larger scale of merchandise
  4. Consumers aren’t able to evaluate what product best fits their needs

Amazon’s Hold on the Book Market

People have been trying to call a spade a spade when it comes to Amazon for the better piece of two decades. In 2020 book publishers wrote a letter to congress begging them to see how strong Amazon was in the market citing that they cannot afford to publish a book without making it available on their platform. Book publishers’ listings were buried if they did not also pay for ads on Amazon. Amazon is so powerful, that a huge portion of the industry is completely privatized new competitors from any angle publishers, online retailers, and brick and motors cannot enter the market because a huge chunk of it is Amazon.

Amazon’s publishing power has a daunting reach. In 2019 Margret Atwood’s sequel Testaments to her hugely successful first novel, The Handmaid’s Tale was released early on Amazon. Book publishers were hot because they all signed an agreement on what day the novel would be released. Amazon faced no penalties for this early release, citing a glitch in their system. Even if they were penalized that would have taken the book off of its platform hurting the Author worse than its hurts them.

Buenos Aires Times | Margaret Atwood unveils sequel to 'The Handmaid's Tale'

For all the places that Amazon occupies in the market, even its absence is harmful. In an article by the Washington Post (owned by Jeff Bezos) they discuss how Amazon’s self-published titles aren’t available at your public library. Some public libraries have adopted a Libby app to lend ebooks to readers. All of Amazon’s titles aren’t there. Amazon does not sell its huge archive of titles to your public library. This is the same company that didn’t turn a profit for nearly of decade of its existence, snatching resources away from those that need it most. All those people trying to utilize resources available to them without emptying their pockets. People looking for job skills, students, or simply someone with less financial resources in need of an escape from reality, in the comfort of a good novel. They are harmful to Amazon’s business model.

According to an executive at Amazon publishing  “It’s not clear to us that current digital library lending models fairly balance the interests of authors and library patrons,” said Mikyla Bruder, the publisher at Amazon Publishing, in an emailed statement. “We see this as an opportunity to invent a new approach to help expand readership and serve library patrons, while at the same time safeguarding author interests, including income and royalties.”– From The Washington Post.

Quirks and all... — There you go again. Do you kiss your mother with...

These absolute innovators of technology launched, Kindle unlimited in 2014 at only  10 smackeroos a month for “unlimited reading”.  Chile, suffice it to say they do not understand the assignment.

This is About Social Mobility

The real thing that books offer everybody is social mobility. While books alone will not save us what they offer in seeds in all of us is immeasurable. A child’s ability to advance in society is strongly linked to the kinds of language they are able to interpret and replicate.

Think Of The Children GIFs | Tenor

From coding languages to academic jargon, or even knowing that they should file their taxes as an S-Corp instead of a sole proprietor as they embark on their journey to being self-employed. All of it comes full circle if one entity controls how and when one of the last real equalizers is available in society. Amazons hold over a resource that should be accessible to all our kiddos, catalyzes the way Society continues to lose many great problem solvers because they simply don’t have access to the same kinds of resources. The chance that books can be completely privatized, is just another element to add to the challenges young people face as the wealth gap grows wider and wider every year.

This is not Amazon’s fault. Amazon is operating in an under-regulated system of capitalism. Our Government is failing to keep up with all this fast-paced innovation with systems to protect its citizens. The government has a responsibility to act before it is too late or something awful happens. 

79 White House Aerial Stock Photos, Pictures & Royalty-Free Images - iStock

I’m blaming these MFs. People have been screaming this is a PROBLEM for a long time, and it falls on deaf ears. I think I’m going to be sick.

Tony Soprano GIFs | Tenor

 

Time for Lethal Conjecture

Books and all that they offer us should never be completely privatized. It may have something to do with me reading Fahrenheit 451 in the tenth grade. But even if you’ve read George Orwell’s 1984 like I did in the eleventh grade (I never did the homework, just enjoyed the book reqs lmao)  you’d see that this is a big censorship issue. Amazon could sabotage the distribution of a book that was written with the intention of waking us up. Perhaps, that is exactly what happened with George Eggers Book “The Every” which is a novel about the merger between a large social platform and an online retailer called the “Jungle”. The book is a cautionary tale about the risk the public pays when trading their privacy for convenience. When the book was released the author prevented the sale of the hardcover version on Amazon. He also released the book 6 days early to brick and mortar shops before allowing the book to sell on Amazon. The Novel has a 3.88/5 rating on Goodreads the book aggregator we learned earlier is owned by Amazon. Amazon is the same company with an enormous amount of bots reviewing faulty merchandise on their platform, or platforms every day. Not to mention that this book was thrashed in the Washington Post (owned by Jeff Bezos) by writer Ron Charles. I haven’t read the novel yet, so I’m not here to critique it. I’m critiquing the lack of blatantly compromised, and unbiased media outlets available to even critique novels without Amazon nearby in some direct or indirect proximity.

Conjecture Heavy Duty GIF - Conjecture Heavy Duty Chris Evans - Discover & Share GIFs

Books Dont Save Us, We Save Us

My friends, books are always at the start of a revolution. Books are not the revolution, you are. How you spend your money, the politicians you support, the investments you make, the ways you give back. Those actions little as they seem have grand impacts even on small incremental scales. It’s doing nothing, that harbors the worst kind of harm, which is neglect. Do your actions match your principles? Keep in my mind that knowledge alone is not power. Actions reinforced with knowledge is what becomes power. Hey its Shey on Youtube does an amazing job breaking down this issue in her video titled “BOOK CAN’T SAVE US…”. watch by clicking the link here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r5edtDud-ZI&list=PLFkhU4zQnGMmb0A-V1DCvh7xdwYQ1hAUc&index=9

Here are some ACTIONS you can take :

  • Start tutoring a youth, cousin, niece, niblet for better literary comprehension it makes all the difference in their ADULT LIFE.
  • Buying books from your local independent book store
  • Pushing these politiciansssss with a deafening roar
  • Stop buying books from Amazon, listening to Audible, Reviewing them on Good Reads, and subscribing to the Washington Post. ( This is an extremist solution that I do not think everyone can commit to adopting because it puts an enormous responsibility on the consumer)
  • You could run for Office or Open your own publishing company, online platform, or brick and mortar which would no doubt be a huge effort
  • Including other retailers in how you shop for books
  • Sign the petition that wants the government to incentivize independent booksellers sorta simply for existing https://chng.it/7kzjg7yFW5

Resources

  1. http://www.bellevuelinux.org/monopoly.html
  2. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rWRbTnE1PEM&list=PLFkhU4zQnGMmb0A-V1DCvh7xdwYQ1hAUc&index=1
  3. https://publishingperspectives.com/2020/08/us-publishers-authors-booksellers-call-out-amazons-concentrated-power-in-the-book-market/
  4. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GltlJO56S1g&list=PLFkhU4zQnGMmb0A-V1DCvh7xdwYQ1hAUc&index=3
  5. https://gigaom.com/2013/01/17/why-online-book-discovery-is-broken-and-how-to-fix-it/
  6. https://www.cnbc.com/2021/10/12/jeff-bezos-shared-a-22-year-old-article-predicting-amazons-failure.html
  7. https://smallbusiness.chron.com/become-book-dealer-17655.html
  8. https://ilsr.org/amazon-stranglehold/
  9. https://www.zippia.com/advice/largest-bookstores/
  10. https://www.vice.com/en/article/wxqkx5/book-publishers-warn-congress-amazon-is-too-powerful
  11. https://booksliced.com/books/the-exact-ebook-market-shares-of-the-major-players-in-the-industry-are-rather-difficult-to-come-by-but-here-are-some-esitmates/
  12. https://genetics.thetech.org/ask-a-geneticist/genetics-inbreeding
  13. https://goodereader.com/blog/audiobooks/amazon-controls-41-of-the-us-audiobook-market#:~:text=Amazon%20controls%20over%2041%25%20of,according%20to%20Codex%20Group%20Research.
  14. https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2021/03/10/amazon-library-ebook-monopoly/
  15. https://justpublishingadvice.com/why-do-amazon-sell-more-ebooks-than-other-retailers/
  16. https://www.npr.org/2019/09/06/758426753/amazon-critics-angry-over-accidental-early-release-of-margaret-atwood-novel 
  17. https://www.washingtonpost.com/entertainment/books/dave-eggers-every-book/2021/10/18/fc023ba4-300d-11ec-9241-aad8e48f01ff_story.html
  18. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QfP–AGK-tc&list=PLFkhU4zQnGMmb0A-V1DCvh7xdwYQ1hAUc&index=7&t=11s
  19. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T1FdIvLg6i4&list=PLFkhU4zQnGMmb0A-V1DCvh7xdwYQ1hAUc&index=11
  20. https://money.cnn.com/1997/10/21/technology/amazon/

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Covid and the Complications of Believing in God

Do you believe in god? Is a question that defines a person’s character in a way almost completely lateral to liking pineapple on pizza. While it’s no one business what you believe and what you practice. What you believe strongly influences your quality of life and how you behave, then in turn that behavior will affect the people around you. While Americans are okay with believing all sorts of things that are not based in reality or even evidenced-based reasoning. I started to look at my belief in God and wonder, Am I too hurting people by believing in something I ultimately have no proof for simply because it offers me comfort?

The Bois Have Entered the Chat

Before we continue let’s get familiar with three rationalizations for the existence and or belief in god. 

The first gentleman is Blaise Pascal. Pascal was a 16th-century polymath and after he passed away his unpublished notes were published in a book titled Pensées whichBlaise Pascal Versailles.JPG translates in English as simply thoughts. Pascal’s wager in short was: Maybe god isnt real but betting on the existence of a god is always the better deal because living in an eternal hell would fucking suck. It doesn’t matter to god if you only believe in him to save your own ass. God just wants your praise. This is the first time that someone basically said if the probability of god is small, but the value of what you’d be rewarded with is so large that it makes betting on god rational.

 

Next, William Paley gives the analogy of the watchmaker in his book Natural Theology or Evidence of the Existence and Attributes of the Deity Collected from the Appearances of Nature. I’m not even kidding. That’s the entire title.William Paley by George Romney.jpg It goes like this …POV: You see a pocket watch lying around. Did nature make it, or was it a watchmaker? wink wink. I noticed this justification for god going around on TikTok recently. This observation asks you to consider how cyclical all the processes on the earth are without any need for intervention or help from humans (thank god). Water evaporates in the clouds till they fill with water and rain into streams filtered by mountains in freshwater springs and so on. This analogy is also referred to as Intelligent design. Could all of that impressive shit, all these systems be an accident?

 

St-thomas-aquinas.jpg

 

The last to enter the ring is Thomas Aquinas, and he wrote the famous five proofs for god in his Summa Theologiae

The first goes like this, We live in a moving universe, and things that are moving move things, there cannot be infinite regress therefore something had to start the first motion. That thing is god. The next three arguments follow that same sort of trek. The fifth one however points to the idea that how is it that everything in nature has a goal and understands it so perfectly ( Except the person writing this apparently). Plants, bugs, dogs, gas molecules, everything in the universe seeks homeostasis. Those seeking instincts are god. They cannot seek these things unless something designed them to do so. This is called the Teleological Argument. 

Why bring these men up? Because these are all really good arguments to support the existence of God, but they aren’t perfect, and they do not make god a fact.

The Point of Religion According to Science

Nobody can say for sure that God exists, so how is religion still so powerful?

Over the course of humanity, spirituality has always been a part of the human desire to understand why things happen. Originally this archaic form of spirituality is referred to as the cult of mother earth people worship a personified version of nature, creation, and fertility itself. Then, as humans master agriculture and there are surpluses of food available. This results in population growth beyond the small groups of our hunter and gather ancestors. This is the first time someone can be socially anonymous. That means someone can potentially stir up a lot of shit and if no one sees and even if they do they may not know who they are in order to be punished.

Ima Find Out GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY

The institution of religion swoops in to speak to the masses and say that God is always watching. Your sins in this life will be punished in the afterlife and this one for any transgressions. The 2011 research by Azim Shariff explores how a mean god creates good people. It uncovers that whether or not people believe in a punitive god can predict their likelihood to cheat.

Then as humans start to trade with other less familiar groups in places far from home, religion is a good indicator of the values of an individual. ” I can trust this guy he believes God will punish him if he rips me off for no good reason.”

Truth V. Reality

What’s true in this world and what the reality is can be very different. For instance, we live in a racialized society. That’s the reality, but the truth is all our differences are skin deep. I always rationalized my belief in God as a way of coping with the unknowns in this world. It is how I cope with tragedy, the force that reminds me to have gratitude. Something I can surrender to and release my burdens to the divine. God in my world is a reality, and I always reasoned that if God actually existed is irrelevant because my reality was a lot better than the version where I believed in nothing.

But the trouble arises when I’m confronted with seemingly benevolent practices in spiritual circles online that are just shady or for lack of a better word, irresponsible. The way that people are preyed on by all these manifestation gurus and yes even tarot card readers, who are doing exploitative things to people truly searching for help. The way that big tarot readers and tarot card makers are preyed on online by impersonators who prey on the followings of the tarot card readers. Fearmongering is the most irresponsible thing that I’ve seen, Online prophets and their endless warnings. It’s flat-out DANGEROUS for someone to get on their platform of thousands of followers and say something that further spreads the angst over the vaccine. 

The easiest way to see what is legit in this world is to ask yourself a single question. Is an American billionaire trying to hoard it for themselves? Has a white American billionaire denied the shipment of vaccines to a country of brown people being absolutely berated by the virus because more Americans needed to be vaccinated before giving resources away? Because the reality is in our racialized society brown people are not deserving of resources until white people have them first.

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Believing in God was becoming inconvenient to believe in privately. Because I felt epistemically responsible for what I was seeing.

Epistemic Disillusion

My private world was yet again being shaken up by this stupid pandemic. This time my faith was shaken.

I was deeply invested in believing in God for the sake of my own selfish reward because I’m more of a pascals wager kind of girl. The reality was that I was a better person when I brainwashed myself into behaving because karma was going come wag its finger in my face and make life awful. But the absolute divorce between science and my sage was scary.

The reason I felt conflicted about this is that, although I’m vaccinated and still identify as a deist. Is because people could potentially get sick by following the teachings of people who weren’t thinking of long-term repercussions for the seeds of distrust they plant in people about this vaccine. Was I contributing to that by following, liking, sharing online spiritual platforms as people entered into the maddening fringe world of CBD oil can reduce signs of Demetria in dogs? CBD oil cannot do that just to be clear.

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As someone who believes God is a punitive force via karma. I definitely was not sitting well with this guilt that I was complicit in the harm of people whether they believed in the virus or the vaccine.

Coexistence

Everything is constantly at odds.

Science V. Spirituality

Right-wing V. Left-Wing.

My complete lack of motor skills V. my own feet when I have to walk more than a few yards.

I was disappointed that there wasn’t room for nuance in a community that was born from a gray area. That spiritual platforms were very boldly against the vaccine or said nothing in fear of losing followers. Neither of these approaches allows the space for nuance. Is not about half-ass compromises where both parties are dissatisfied and ultimately no progress is made. But simply coexisting with the fact that sometimes you need both science and god. To bring balance to a very challenging situation. It may sound a little utopian. But it is so possible to have both when individuals continue to engage in dialogue beyond their own echo chambers. Please get vaccinated!

ying yang symbol spinning animated gif | Ying yang, Ying yang symbol, Yin yang

 

Resources

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html

https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/10508619.2011.556990

https://cbddoghealth.com/can-cbd-oil-help-dogs-with-dementia-or-ccd/

https://research-repository.st-andrews.ac.uk/bitstream/handle/10023/5083/classics_of_science_Studies_revised.pdf;jsessionid=4E410EAA7FA9A4C5FB8688C447F0FED5?sequence=1

https://www.wired.com/story/opinion-the-world-loses-under-bill-gates-vaccine-colonialism/

https://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/18269

https://iep.utm.edu/aq-ph-th/#SH2b

Referral links

 

 

 

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A Causionary Tale about Glowing Up

There’s this theory in writing that there are only seven types of stories that humans tell out of all the stories. Thousands of stories and all of them are either an amalgamation of a few types or one story. I want to focus on one kind of story. The rags to riches trope. A character against all odds pulls themselves out of misfortune into a life of prosperity

The Great Gatsby (2013) GIFs | Gifrific

On social media, a trend reappears every year or so and people show their glow up from middle to high school or high school to college.  A glow-up is a physical transformation where a person goes from a below passing level of attractiveness to above average. Experiencing a glow-up can be emotionally challenging when you get treated like a swan by people who previously wrote you off as the ugly duck. Even though in every early 2000s movie makeover montage the person who undergoes a makeover deals with romantic challenges at the forefront. Absolutely those issues appear but somehow money remained at the center at the mangled circus of being beautiful that I inherited.

I had one of these dramatic glow-ups and very little of it felt like I was the princess of Genovia.

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Before we get into the nitty-gritty, I’m going to preface this by saying that I didn’t make any deliberate effort to “glow up”. I was aware that I wasn’t as attractive to my peers but I was content with what I was, or more accurately I was more content than I am today. But a few changes to my appearance and the response I got from the world around me was as intoxicating, as it was alarming. Everything in this post happened about three years ago, BTW.

How I changed

  • I lost 60 pounds or more
  • I cut all my hair off
  • I started wearing false lashes
  • I started wearing really simple clothes with fewer colors and patterns
  • Cutting my hair made me feel more confident (my demeanor was more self-assured)

Unequipped for a New kind of Scrutiny

This is no secret and probably easy to guess, I grew up very shy, anxious, and quirky. I had lots of hobbies, I liked reading books and never had many friends or a lot of attention. I was okay with that because I didn’t want to sacrifice what I was into, to be liked by my peers.

At this point, I’m 19 years old and no one is going to pay for my junior college classes, so I did what a lot of people do and got a retail job. After graduating high school I took a gap from school, which means that I didn’t have people reacting to my transformation incrementally. I was indoors, losing weight only interacting with my family. Then I had a job and started going to school. I was 1000xs more visible than before. I’m autistic as well, my mind is extremely sensitive to patterns. All the feedback I was getting from those around me meant something. But it couldn’t possibly mean I was pretty because I didn’t feel any different. I still liked reading books and writing poetry with awful rhyme schemes. I lived in a constant state of ” is there something on my shirt?”  People look at pretty people a lot and always want to be near them. I didn’t understand why someone would clock out of work and talk to me for half an hour, “Dont you want to go home?” Id say. Other times didn’t understand why someone would just be staring at me. I felt more alone than ever and like I was made of glass. Everyone was constantly looking right through me for something.

Whether it started from feelings of lust

envy

infatuation

or anything else. I was on a wanted list that I didn’t know how to handle. How do you deal with a grown man leaning back in his chair to peer through your thigh gap? I dealt with a lot of sexual harassment. On a particular night, I was followed by two men at work for four hours. They did this weird thing where they spoke to each other without talking to me or answering my questions.

I Know You See Me Standing Here GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY

Man A: She has a nice little body

Man B: Not her body look at her face

Man B: I’m just looking at her face those big eyes

Man A: she is pretty huh

They weren’t more than three feet in front of me having this conversation. I asked them questions if they were looking for something. I didn’t get any answers; they just spoke to each other like that. I ran away to the front of the store to be around other coworkers. I told a few of them about it but mostly nothing except my extreme scare happened.

This was just a really scary day and it isn’t the worst of it. My days at work were peppered with long stares from men, weird compliments, and outright catcalling. My record for how many times I was asked for my number in a single day is nine times. At that point, I couldn’t hide from the fact that yea I wasn’t imagining it, I was different. This may sound a little “oh poor me people think I’m pretty”. However, it’s scary to be constantly sought out and you have never dealt with this sort of interest from GROWN ASS MEN. My brain was constantly in survival mode, I was terrified sometimes that I would be kidnapped, r*ped, and killed. Society normalizes this sensation in women but living in extreme fear is not normal.

Juliana/Valentina - Juliantina - Page 776 -

Along with that, I dealt with jealousy from girls for the first time. Their behavior was passive-aggressive and it felt like I was being gaslighted. I never dealt with female cattiness(in this context) before because to most girls I was never any competition to them when they needed to capture the male gaze. Being nice wasn’t enough anymore, some girls just decided they didn’t like me. I’m so thankful I read Meditations by Marcus Aurelius before dealing with these exchanges because… I might have had very different responses to some of those girls. Even though outwardly these girls were very nice to me, a pigeon carrier would always tell me she said this or that. Which made me feel more alone because I wasn’t making genuine connections with men or women and there was more of both constantly around me. When I did feel a genuine connection to someone I got really clingy.

 

 

Social Capital

Finally, I piece two and two together and didn’t get five. I figured that even though I didn’t feel beautiful I probably was, Occams razor. At this point, all I cared about was experimenting with how much I can get from people. Pretty privilege is real. People treat you differently and with lots of preference. At times it felt like this huge juggling act, how much should lean on this privilege for my life’s upward mobility?

How much am I going to flirt to get the shift that I want?

How much am I going to pretend to laugh for this commission?

How early do I need to wake up to do my makeup?

How much money should I spend on my hair, clothes, and nails?

Get The Money Sis GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY

Because as the saying goes I had to spend money to make money. Not always literal money but there was always a time investment spent on my appearance. So that when I arrived at the workplace where I sold my time for money. My looks accomplished making people hyper-aware of what I was and wasn’t doing well. I made up for it by working very hard at my job until I was good at it and these combined values produced a higher likelihood that I would be remembered when overtime and promotions were available. That translated to more money for school, my family, and money to invest in the business of making me more attractive over time.

If you’re thinking “wow this cold-hearted little floozy using her looks to manipulate people for money.” First off, the reason that these ancient rudimentary tactics worked and continue to work for people all over the world. Is because yall are shallow in the first place? The true irony of this is I don’t think I’m that cute. I’m adorable in my mind on my best days. But if I could get over the way I did and I wasn’t even trying most days. Then I had to think that,

 

If someone is profiting off of a broken system, their profiting is merely a symptom of:

 

THE ENTIRE SYSTEM BEING BASED ON FUCKING INEQUALITY.

Sex-Symbol Stars Gifs list

The way I viewed my body and respective looks had shifted from a vehicle I used to get my brain around. To a resource, a fantasy, that I could use to persuade others and get what I needed. At some point, I think that all girls have this realization that sex is power. Just by being a reminder of sex you were granted nine lives by proxy. I could seldom do any wrong and walked around with plenty of slaps on the wrist with my family, at work, and at school.

For all the fun I was having with my seemingly benign superpowers. I bumped into a very scary realization. I’m a fairer skin black girl with curly textured hair, and I ” talk like a white girl.” So any sort of preferential treatment I was enjoying was upholding a larger racist system. I wasn’t just benefiting from pretty privilege I was benefiting from colorism simultaneously. Again I had to ask myself, how much will I play this game? I had one very simple goal. Get the Hell out of dodge. I was putting myself through school with a minimum wage check, Then I got a second job, helping my sister pay for things while she was away at school, my mom was in and out of the hospital, and for a slew of other reasons that made me the underdog. But had this one thing that could give me a leg up combined with my own willpower and wits. For a little while, I pushed aside how wrong it felt to be on the better side of colorism because I had to survive at a minimum.

That said, I had taken up the responsibility to firm and gentle corrections. I firmly corrected men who said the most asinine things about women. I gently corrected women who said the wrong things about themselves. In terms of social capital, this did not increase my social capital. I had to constantly bargain and trade off my own sense of morality for the sake of resources. I was fucking exhausted. I was angry. That I had to look into the eyes of a 30-something-year-old man and explain to him point by point that “good hair” doesn’t exist. I want to be clear that I wasn’t upset that my access to privilege was stunted because outspoken women are hated by society and therefore by men who were often gatekeepers to the money I wanted. I was upset because these people didn’t separate a biological trait that was entirely random and the inherent value of an individual, naturally in their minds.

Im Surrounded By Idiots GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY

Beauty Inflation

Were On A Slippery Slope GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHYToday we know that the cost of living is steady on the climb. Academic inflation is surging up in talk bubbles as a BA is no longer enough to make you aggressive in the job market. Beauty inflation is also a reality because social media has turned your face into a currency. For all the rapid change my body underwent physically my self-esteem suffered the most. Everyone is beautiful these days, even though I was no longer unattractive, I was also never enough. People always pointed out that I should get a weave, acrylic nails, just a little filler in my top lip, and then I would really be something. I actually believe that people should be able to enhance their beauty however they see fit. But enhancement and correction are very different mindsets. I was convinced that I needed something cosmetic and not that it was going to add to whatever I had naturally obtained. But that it was there to close a gap between me and physical perfection. That way I could continue to cash in on the social capital I finally had access to. I had to get prettier over time to increase my access to wealth. At a point, the only way I was going to be more attractive was to have more attractive things in my possession because Ultra feminity runs side by side with wealth.

The pretty girl was always a princess or financially well off. How society understands beauty in women literally coincides with her expensive clothes and luxury goods. I mean this to say that looking more expensive would make me prettier somehow. I don’t even perfectly understand it, but it goes all the way back to Helen of Troy and the Lucrezia Borgias of the world. I have a few theories about why though comrades.

Pinterest ; @Liddopiink ✨ | Black girl aesthetic, Lauren london, Ghetto fabulous

Mean Girls: 15 Years of High School Horrors – Screen Queens

Kylie Jenner LIED about being a billionaire and 'likely forged' tax returns, Forbes claims

What Are We Doing GIFs | TenorIn short yah girl was disillusioned. The whole point of me focusing on my outward appearance so much was so that I could start affording my basic needs and school instead, I was stuck keeping up with the Jones. The latest trends in fashion didn’t matter to me, shoes were just shoes. But even when I did conform and wore clothes or acrylic nails that didn’t make me feel like myself, I had to do it all over again. Every week new clothes, new hair, new nails. That’s the other thing I don’t resent women who enjoy shopping or luxury. This was my fragmented view of materialism getting in the way, not theirs. I resented how distorted beauty was being defined by society at large.  I was constantly watching my weight and diet, my hair had to be perfect, and all of this forced me to believe that nobody ever truly gave a fuck about personality.  Because of all the opportunities, I started to gain simply because of my looks. “What about the insideeeee lol?!” I naively wondered. First I needed to catch their eye with appearances and then a perfect personality needed to shine through after so that people could say “she’s so down to earth, she not like the other girls”. I had to play the game, convince everyone I wasn’t playing at all and that was how you win. Except I was the one that turned it into a game without fully understanding the risks.

If you’re dizzy imagine how I felt I still didn’t have the social skills to interpret all of this information.

 

 

Conclusion

What I learned is that beauty is not a renewable resource (education has that juice, however. ;] ) it is fleeting and constantly being redefined by society. I had to love myself through all the ebbs and flows of my life along with my physical appearance. Otherwise, I would be wasting my youth lost in a rat race when so many other meaningful experiences passed me by. It also reinforced my respect for sex workers and people whose physical appearance was their job. The stigma that beauty creates a life of ease is false false false. Everything in life comes with a set of challenges. Just because their problems aren’t like yours doesn’t mean they aren’t challenging. Above all I continued to see beauty in everyone I looked at, I even searched for it in them. I started extending the same courtesy to myself. I deserved it. If you do “glow up” learn from my mistakes, and only change on your own terms. It’s a bizarre transition that gets more hype than it’s worth. Proceed with caution.

Alfalfa The Little Rascals GIF - Tenor GIF Keyboard - Bring Personality To Your Conversation… | You are so beautiful to me, Little rascals quotes, You are beautiful

 

 

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Infrared Language Barriers

When Galileo peers through his telescope for the first time, we can imagine that he may have thought that everything that could be discovered with our eyes had been observed. Then, comes the Clarinet Player William Herschel, who creates an experiment that proves the existence of infrared light. The light that cannot be seen by human eyes. It makes you wonder how much we’re still not seeing. In English, there are marginal challenges to communicating, which hinder people academically, socially, and overall ability to be heard. This is an effort to shed light on the real consequences that people face when our institutions and society minimize lingual diversity as inferiority. 

 

TRIGGER WARNING: Mentions of suicide and eating disorders.

How Galileo Changed Your Life - Biography

Ebonics

Ebonics or African American English Vernacular(AAVE) is slowly becoming more largely recognized as a separate language from standard American English. When African Americans enter the school system and the workforce, their speech is quickly corrected. They are told that’s how you can speak on the street; it’s informal, uneducated. So often unaided by any external agency but themselves, black people learn to codeswitch to survive and navigate spaces where they would be deemed inferior if they didn’t speak at the standard. Former presidents like George W Bush would codeswitch when campaigning in his home state of texas, his Texan twain returns to his voice, and when he addresses the country as a whole, he returns to a more formal accent. However, there are black people who don’t learn to code-switch and are less successful at masking their native tongue. The effect of not learning to code switch on the fly; snowballs into black people not being able to advance academically; their access to better jobs and careers then affects their overall quality of life. Which is then inherited by their children, and the cycle perpetuates itself. 

George Bush GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY
should we unpack whats going on in this….. lol maybe next time

Starting in middle school I was repeatedly warned by teachers that my peers and I had a responsibility to strive for academic success. As I entered high school the conversation continued but this time charts and diagrams were frequently included. These graphics usually depicted a gap between black and brown students and our white counterparts. It was repeatedly presented that the demographic I belonged to was underperforming which quietly translated to the fact that as a group we were less intelligent. Not just a stereotype but a fact supported by scores and numbers. A research study performed by Claude Steele Ph.D., Steven Spencer, Ph.D., and Joshua Aronson, Ph.D. show how passing reminders of academic inferiority sabotage testing performance of equally cable students across all demographics. I’m going to be smug for a little who would’ve thought? Those teachers telling students they were probably going to underperform would affect their performance. They even found that just by checking the bubble that says their ethnicity worsens scores as well. Here’s a link to the findings from that study. apa.org/research/action/stereotype

Help Your Child Prepare for Standardized Tests | Scholastic | Parents

 

 

I Cant Even Look At Your Face GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY

Factoring in the variable of speaking ebonics and being actively reminded that you’re less than by the very people who have the best intentions. Students will not perform well on these tests despite being anything but caple. Students with the thicker accents in ebonics, won’t learn standardized English by failing it in high school. Learning a language requires failing it. Small children swallow new languages very quickly because they don’t have expectations to meet or the shame of failing. My younger cousin frequently said “I can’t want it Didi”  as a toddler and eventually he learned that the correct way to say it is “I don’t want it”. These mistakes are forgiven and are ironed out with practice(repetitive failure). Now how can you expect black children to identify differences in ebonics vs. standard English that they aren’t likely to notice unless directly called out like with my younger cousin? Let me demonstrate in Spanish V and B make the same sound think about the word “bueno” and “vestido” the first letter is different but not phonetically different in Spanish. Spanish natives will probably miss this distinction when they start speaking English and to English ears say something like “Bictor” over “Victor”.

 

As stated by John von Neumann, absolute genius writing hits back to back like the Drake of science says “You don’t understand math, you get used to it”. This is the nature of language as well so it’s unnecessary to belittle a Black student or coworker because they literally don’t hear the difference in “Ax”‘ vs. “Ask” or “wif’ vs. “with”. It’s not inferiority it’s ebonics. In fact, ebonics is beautiful. Ebonics is full of profoundness. Ebonics links African Americans to their motherland and will not be erased.

Yall just gon throw breh in the bushes like that :manny: daps/rep | Sports, Hip Hop & Piff - The Coli

Autism (in girls)

Leading the conversation online today about autism is believe or not a rising number of women. Most women discover they’re autistic later in life. The gender distribution in girls vs. boys is skewed toward males because Autism Spectrum Disorder Diagnostic tests are designed to test males. Women are great at a term called masking, which means they learn to hide their symptoms. Not only that young girls are more frequently corrected by mothers about manners and social expectations because they aren’t shielded by things like “boys will be boys”. Even some stereotypical feminine traits are overlooked by professionals, which could be a clue to helping these girls who fall through the cracks.

 

Perceived Feminine Traits Autistic Symptoms
Sensitivity  Can mask meltdowns and mercurial behavior 
Shyness Can mask nonverbal behavior and explain avoidance of eye contact
Fangirl Can mask hyper-fixations and restrictive interests
Spoiled brat/Narcissism Unaware of others’ emotions or inconsiderate behavior
Chewing gum, leg shaking, applying lip balm Stimming 

Crazy fangirl (@FutureFangirl) | TwitterMy ASD Child: Routines, Rituals and Obsessions in Kids on the Autism Spectrum

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Autism however exists on a spectrum and people are typically cordoned off into groups those who are the stereotyped version of autism and those how to have no intellectual disabilities. This means that everyone on the spectrum which means that women can lead successful lives without being confronted by an autism diagnosis. Women with autism are also frequently misdiagnosed with other things like Borderline Personality Disorder. For girls with untreated autism, it can manifest as extreme anxiety, depression, self-harm, and in extreme cases multiple suicide attempts.

When girls aren’t getting the proper diagnosis this causes the manifestation of comorbidities which then further hinders girls from reaching their true potentials. These girls don’t understand why they’re different and go on feeling ostracized from their peers even when they seemingly have no trouble making friends. They may not feel that if they were there the truest self they would deem as weird and rejected.

Work Stress GIFs | Tenor

Autism in women is an infrared language barrier because it’s being overlooked because girls communicate to hide their symptoms. Autistic girls can be masters of charm and wit simply by mimicking their peers. This is bad because it takes a lot of energy to mask in social settings as girls don’t realize they’ve been doing it for some time. So, when these cries for help bubble up as academic burnout, anorexia, social anxiety, and more in girls they don’t have the language to communicate their autism. Because their entire understanding of language is to hide it.

 

Call to Action

We can only aid these groups who aren’t being heard by becoming familiar with them, and then understanding will follow.  My biggest fear is that we continue to lose so many great minds in the 2020s because of prejudice or stigmas. Refusal to invest in these groups or asking critical questions about another is harmful to our society. We miss out on getting the greatest returns because we are not bold enough to believe in someone no matter their background. With growing numbers of children who don’t have access to quality healthcare and education. Our opportunities for advancement as a species narrows.

Biografia de Julio Tello

Julio C. Tello is the father of Peruvian archaeology without his family helping pay for his education and being taken under the wing of a friend’s father almost everything known about the ancient indigenous society of the could’ve been missed.

Marie Curie - Facts - NobelPrize.org

Marrie Currie the only person win a noble prize in two different sciences would not have without the educational investment of Poland’s Flying university and underground effort to educate Poland’s youth during a time of political instability.

 

American Sociologist W.E.B. Dubois revolutionized sociology with his race conflict theory which would never have happened without his church donations to get him in college at fisk university which then leads him to Havard University where he was the first African American to receive a Ph.D. from the institution.

 

These harmful stereotypes are affecting people’s lives in ways that unless they stop for a moment wouldn’t even notice. Closed mouths do not get fed, it’s important to advocate for groups who are speaking up but are being silenced. We have to rethink how we invest in our younger generations’ education. This means reading to them, encouraging them to ask questions and speak for themselves without the fear of being dismissed. I have no tolerance for folks to belittle others because they don’t understand their experience or because that person is having trouble connecting with their speech. Be quiet, listen to others and that’s the first way to make all the difference in a single life and the lives of us all. We all have our part and voice in this human theater. Everyone deserves a piece of the pie so speak up and make yourself heard.

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No Good Horror Movie is Made Without Empathy

The primary ingredients in a hamburger are beef, lettuce, onion, pickles, and tomato. Then there is cheese, not primary but optional. But cheese feels a lot more a part of the burger than it did at the beginning of the 20th century. Horror Movies and Hamburgers came into the world at around the same time. Yes, so while Edison was launching the lightbulb someone invented the hamburger, and the short film “The House of the Devil” became the first horror movie ever in 1896. But the cheese of horror films that make for an exceptionally decadent film is Empathy. 

Hungry Doja Cat GIF by Justin Gammon - Find & Share on GIPHY
Talk about turn-of-the-century hamburgers and horror movies? The world was indeed changing.
le manoir du diable | Tumblr
The film was silent, 17 minutes long, french, and bizarre… lol

 

 There are spoilers up ahead 🙂

 

Today’s world continues to remind us how connected we all are, how much access we have to information, and how regular people are capable of more visibility than history has ever seen. No doubt the rise of the internet and social media have muted empathy. Social media is one of the most divisive instruments on the planet. Propelling the polarized us v. them narrative into our identities, communities, and national politics. With the high potential for attention that an individual may be able to receive from their social media following. Most people try to put their best foot forward. Showcasing usually very picturesque and fictitious versions of their lives. This can make it seem like everyone is doing better than you when you are unhappy and dealing with hard times. Restoring empathy is key to the survival of Humanity. Being any sort of victim on social media is usually dismissed by peers. Further isolating people to suffer longer, more quietly, and all the while feigning an image of happiness. Social media has given birth to the oxymoron “toxic positivity”.

 

Instagram Scrolling GIF by Whiskey Boat - Find & Share on GIPHY
Honestly social media can be very challenging and annoying.

 

The Interesting Role Horror Movies are Playing in All This:

The horror movie genre adapting to a special role of putting empathy at the forefront of media because in times like these it needs the extra attention. You have to suffer yourself before you can realize that other people suffer. Horror movies are shedding the light on the real tragedies marginalized groups face by using horror movies to disguise their depth. This is the primary step to emotional maturity, and empathizing with marginalized groups, not sympathizing. If you’re a film buff or just a prenty snob like myself. You’ve heard the term ‘Social Thriller’ floating around the name of Jordan Peele since his 2017 release of “Get out” with Racial Tensions at a new high and the remaining shock of the 2016 election the film was adored by critics and audiences alike. Get Out is a horror film about benevolent racism. It's spine-chilling. - Vox

 

Empathy for Black People In America: 

 In 2017 racial tensions were going back to old extremes as they were in the 1960s. The Black Lives Matter movement was leading the conversation about gun violence in America. In 2020, these protests exploded across the nation following the murder of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd at the hands of law enforcement. Black people in America are being invalidated by the media with myths of “Black on Black Crime”, Donald Trump saying that kneeling during the National Anthem makes you an SOB, and the list goes on. This film could not have been timed better. Made people understand how alienated a black body can feel in white environments. Even when everything seems completely fine. You are still just a visitor. 

Get Out Ending Explained: Let's Discuss Its Brilliance | Collider

Indian-American doctors outraged at Floyd's death, racial discrimination in the US - The Economic Times

Racist Americans, Not Trump, Are The Problem. There Might Be A Cure | Cognoscenti

Jordan Peele’s 2017 get out is about a young couple going on a trip to meet the woman’s family. The woman is white and the man is black(Chris). At the beginning of the movie, the white characters try to reassure Chris of his safety with comments like “If I could vote for Obama a third term I would”. Quickly, the movie reveals that Chris is being groomed to have his physical body sold to a blind white man who is paralyzed from the waist down. His girlfriend’s family has mastered planting the consciousness of one human into another. His girlfriend was in on it the whole time. He must escape his kidnappers. The film addressed the fear that Black people experience in any homogenous setting with their white counterparts. Themes like the “sunken place” In the film examine how racial identity is so integral to the human experience. How letting white people get inside of your head can be the very death of your identity as a whole and as a black person.  

Get Out and Scientific Racism | Horror Movie | Horror Homeroom

Racism is a societal construct, not a biological one
Phrenology – now a long debunk pseudo-science was used to argue that black people were primitive and less evolved than white people from apes
All the symbolism in the painting of Henrietta Lacks in the National Portrait Gallery — Quartz
Portrait of Henrietta Lacks the African American woman whose cancer cells were used unwittingly to become the first immortal line of human cells

 

Race gaps in SAT scores highlight inequality and hinder upward mobility

Stand and Deliver | Lincoln Theatre
Latinx people often face similar discrimination as black people with regard to their intellectual capacity.

Empathy for Abused Women:

 

Following the #METOO movement where women came out to tell their stories of sexual assault, there was an outpouring of no longer silent victims. Harvey Weinstein was tried for his sexual abuse against dozens of young girls, Bill Cosby, Jeffrey Epstein, and so many more have been dragged into the spotlight and then through the mud for their unacceptable behavior. 

Elisabeth Moss's Performance Powers 'The Invisible Man' - The Atlantic
Cecilia in the shower while her abuser watches
the invisible man 2020 | Tumblr
The invisible man suit

In the Film “The Invisible Man” Woman Cecilia leaves her abusive boyfriend Adrian. Adrian is an optics genius and leader in the field. After she leaves, Adrian seemingly attempts suicide, and Cecilia begins being attacked physically by an Invisible Force. She’s the only one who knows this force is there. She tries to expose it over and over. But it hurts her friend and kills her other friend at her expense. She eventually is placed in a mental hospital while awaiting trial for a murder she’s been framed for. But by the end, she gets out of the hospital, discovers she is pregnant, kills the invisible man, and her abusive ex-boyfriend. This movie is a perfect allegory for how women so often have to Prove that their abuser exists. They have to prove that they aren’t crazy, making things up and outsmart their own perpetrator along with the biases of society to get justice. In an ongoing argument. Rapper Meg The Stallion was a victim of a shooting incident with Rapper Tory Lanez, she had to prove that she was shot by him. The situation spread like wildfire on the internet… Although in helicopter footage you can see The superstar Meg leave bloody footprints while complying with Law enforcement, There are hospital records stating that she had a gunshot wound in her foot, and a witness. Meg The Stallion is still defending herself.  In The Invisible Man Cecilia kills her ex-boyfriend for revenge. This is important because society needs to see men and particularly men in power like Celia’s wealthy boyfriend, have consequences for their abuse towards women. 

megan thee stallion | Tumblr
Meg Thee Stallons SNL performance following the incident with Tory Lanez … She echos a much-needed message believe women, protect black women, defend black women
MeToo founder Tarana Burke has big plans for the movement in 2018
Founder Tarana Burke of the #METOO movement

Empathy for Poor People: 

Parasite' and the Curse of Closeness - The Atlantic
The poor Kim family
Bong Joon-Ho on Why All His Films are Monster Movies, Including 'Parasite'
The wealthy Park family

In 2019 South Korean film director Bong Joon Ho shook the world with his theatrical release of the movie Parasite. The film took home two Oscars and dazzled western audiences. The plot takes place in Seoul Korea where a poor Kim Family lives in a tiny sub-underground apartment. The family struggles to make ends meet and work folding pizza boxes. The son gets a job tutoring the wealthy park family’s daughter.  One by one each member of the Kim family works as a servant for a member of the Park family without revealing that they are all related. To do this, they lie, get the existing maid fired, and even get into physical fights to keep their status under the family. In the movie we see the Park family live in an elevated part of the city to signal their status in regards to money. Same for the Kim families with their half below the ground apartment.  Making their circumstances appear better than reality because they are not completely underground. When the Park family goes away for the weekend for camping the Kim family goes on vacation in the Park household. They revel in their ability to fool the Parks. Until the Parks return home early because of the Bad weather. The Park family is completely unscathed by the rain. However, for the Kim family, their apartment is completely flooded leaving the family displaced, most of their belongings are unsalvageable, and the family sleeps in a shelter for the night. Both families are detached from reality. The wealthy park family is completely unaware of the ways they have been and are presently being exploited by people every day. They are too insulated by their wealth to notice. While, the poor Kim family lives in the fantasy that they can escape their station in life, and rise to wealth.

 

 

This movie is a response to the division of social classes by wealth. Both groups live in their own perception of reality. Often neither one being more accurate or closer to the truth. Developed nations have been seeing a fast-disappearing middle class. There have been several shows on TV and film responding to this issue. 

Mr. Robot: Season 2 - YouTube
Mr. Robot on USA follows a computer hacker’s exploits to delete all the nation’s records of debt.
Jordan Peele Explains The 'We're Americans' Line In Us | Movies | Empire
Jordan Peele’s film “Us” has the same theme as Parasite Bong Joon even commented that he was taken aback by the similarity.

The movie Parasite did so well in the western market because it’s a very relevant story reflecting people’s attitudes towards money and status. Much like the desperation of Walter White in Breaking Bad which, aired while America was going through the 2008 recession. Moreover, Parasite shows us that these families are more alike than their indications of social status can ever suggest.

Conclusion:

There are monsters in this world. We can be told its in the past, it’s completely imagined, or we turn a blind eye to how we contribute to our own misfortune and our responsibility to help others. Invalidating and denying the experiences force the victims to heal too quickly, or never heal at all. The most fundamental theme in horror is empathy. You must know what they feel to be afraid. Opening our eyes to see that other people suffer the way that we do. Enjoy this Halloween. Remember somebody else has faced the same monsters as you.

Torture Crying GIF by A24 - Find & Share on GIPHY
Clip from Midsommer … one of the themes is fear of empathy…
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A Guide to Preapocalyptic Angst

About two years ago, I fell into a love affair with the western philosophy of stoicism. Stoicism is the philosophy of not caring about things that you have no control over. When I read Meditations by Marcus Aurelius, the Roman Emperor who reigned from 161 AD to 180 AD, it felt like… I had this cheat sheet to master my emotions, my desires. It goes like this, Everything outside of your physical being is none of your business, and be intentional about your being. For example, what someone thinks of you, your possessions, luxuries you can afford, the station you were born into; are all relative, you do not control these circumstances so the sooner you realize it’s a waste of time you can be cured of myopia that so many people fall victim to. Your thoughts, your actions, how you tend your body, those are the things you control, the things that bring your peace or your demise.

Marcus Aurelius | UNRV.com Roman History

A quote of his goes, “Death smiles at all of us and all men can do is smile back.” 

Our Planet

Our world is very quickly appearing to unravel at the seams. But, when you live side by side with a dying planet as your dying human flesh. It becomes more apparent that life has no meaning. So what do you do? Do you give up early? Do you give in to circumstance? 

Defiantly continue… Continue to eat things simply because they taste good, continue to pursue challenging obstacles for the joy of mastery, and above all else create things to be enjoyed by yourself and others. Defiantly seek out pleasure in the wake of your peril.

Person Z was born on January 1st, 1999 in the USA. Here’s a timeline of traumatizing events they can expect to see on television and in the media over the course of their childhood.

Four months Columbine High School Massacre
Age One September 11 Attacks
Age Two The United States declares war with Afghanistan
Age Six Hurricane Katrina
Age Nine  Housing Crisis and Financial Collapse of 2008
Age Ten  Swine Flu Outbreak
Age Eleven 7.0 Earthquake in Haiti
Deepwater Horizon Oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico
Age Thirteen Murder Of Travon Martin
Age Fourteen Edward Snowden wiki leaks
Boston Marathon Bombing
Age Fifteen  Ebola Outbreak
Flint Michigan Water Crisis (Ongoing to the present)
Age Seventeen 2016 Election, Donald Trump as the 45th President of the United States

 

To a member of an older generation, it can seem, bleak. Some of them remember the Moon Landing in 1969 on television. Older generations shared this human milestone. While present generation strives to “Occupy Mars” in an effort to escape our home planet. All that person Z knows is chaos, it’s easy to conflate chaos with existence. But things were simpler than this. Generation Z did not grow up only to be disillusioned that the world was far worse than what they were promised the way their predecessors, Millennials learned. Things were always chaos, Generation Z expected chaos, and has the attitude to tear down systems that are failing. 

It felt right to have this here. 🙂

It’s frustrating and philosophy’s only question is so poignant because of the mess that humans have made of things, Is this life worth living? 

More than ever humans have a responsibility to pursue personal development and satisfaction because that is all that humanity has left. Continue till it’s over until all of it is over and no point sooner. People who are aware of their death are happier because they offer themselves to great actions purposefully.

Consume: 

Eat great food. Listen to the music you love no matter what the critics say. Gaze at fine art and discover that most of it is just pomp, and overrated. Watch films in languages you don’t speak yet, and empathize with stories from different corners of the world. Read strange books, dense books, cliche books, Wattpad mini novels. Play video games, buy furniture. Health gurus take the fun out of everything; cheesecake is an experience in the mouth, savor it.

Conquer: 

Learn a new skill. Cook a new dish. Work hard to be a world-class musician. Or be a serial hobbyist looking for your next project. Get your degree or a few microcreditionals on Coursera/Udemy. Face your fear of heights, your fear of abandonment, and all the other little things. 

Create: 

Make art. Get your body tattooed and pierced in all the places you like. Write even when no one reads it. Sing in the shower, in the car, beneath your mask in the grocery store. Distress your jeans, make a video collage for your fan account.

Repeat…

While “It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society”. Our lives and deaths are so small humans don’t quite measure as anything. Everything you are will someday be smothered away in the oblivion of energy melding into perhaps nothing after this one life. You can sit around wallowing in the misery of your imminent death and the following apocalypse. The moment you stop living with intention you are living like an animal. To the fantastic monkeys who are self aware, and can communicate that with the other monkeys with their brilliant toy of language. Enjoy all that you can while it can be enjoyed. 

“We do not know where death awaits us. So let us wait for it everywhere.”- Montaigne

You are the sum of words, actions, and intentions. That is all.