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‘Has Any One of Us Wept?’ | by Francisco Cantú | The New York Review of Books
"The dehumanizing tactics and rhetoric of war have transformed the border into a permanent zone of exception, where some of the most vulnerable people on earth face death and disappearance on a daily basis, where children have been torn from their parents to send the message You are not safe here, you are not welcome. The true crisis at the border is not one of surging crossings or growing criminality, but of our own increasing disregard for human life. To describe what we are seeing as a “crisis,” however, is to imply that our current moment is somehow more horrifying than those that have recently set the stage for it—moments that, had we allowed ourselves to see them and be horrified by them, might have prevented our arrival here in the first place.

In an essay examining the omnipresence of modern borders and the immigration crisis in the Mediterranean, British journalist Frances Stonor Saunders argues that documents such as passports and visas are central components to how our society values and recognizes human life.2 “Identity is established by identification,” Saunders writes, “and identification is established by documenting and fixing the socially significant and codifiable information that confirms who you are.” Those who possess such documentation possess a verified self, “an identity, formed through and confirmed by identification, that is attested to be ‘true.’”"



"When the violence of our institutions is revealed, when their dehumanizing design is laid bare, it can be too daunting to imagine that we might change things. But what I have learned from giving myself over to a structure of power, from living within its grim vision and helping to harm the people and places from which I came, is that even the most basic act of decency can serve as the spark that will lead one back toward humanity, and even the most basic individual interaction has the power to upend the idea of the “other.” Heeding even these small impulses can serve as a means of extricating ourselves from systems of thought and policy that perpetuate detachment, even in spite of all the mechanisms that have been devised to make us believe in individual and nationalistic self-interest. As obvious as it might seem, to truly and completely reject a culture of violence, to banish it from our minds, we must first fully refuse to participate in it, and refuse to assist in its normalization. When we consider the border, we might think of our home; when we consider those who cross it, we might think of those we hold dear."
franciscocantú  border  borders  us  mexico  2019  borderpatrol  humanism  humanity  policy  politics  donaldtrump  migration  refugees  violence  vi:sarahpeeden  power  detachment  nationalism  individualism  self-interest  decency 
january 2019 by robertogreco
No-platforming works
Removing Nazis and other deplorables from Twitter affects their reach
nazis  twitter  platform  speech  culture  decency 
august 2018 by nelson
Stephen Colbert quotes the bible back to Jeff Sessions over child separation policy (VIDEO).
An estimated 1,358 children have been taken from their families so far, with some officials reportedly telling their parents that the children were being taken away for a bath, only to never return them. “Clearly, no decent human being could defend that,” said Colbert. “So Jeff Sessions did.”

Colbert, who is devoutly Catholic, especially took issue with Sessions quoting the bible—specifically, Romans 13, the same passage used to defend slavery in the 1840s—to justify the policy as morally acceptable. Colbert suggested that Sessions might want to go back and reread that bible, and quoted Romans 13:10 to him. “Love your neighbor as yourself. Love does no harm to a neighbor. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law,” he recited, before ripping into Sessions’s use of the bible as a smokescreen: “I’m not surprised Sessions didn’t read the whole thing. After all, Jesus said, ‘Suffer the children to come unto me’ but I’m pretty sure all Sessions saw was the words children and suffer and said ‘I’m on it.’”
humanrights  policy  politics  decency 
june 2018 by rmohns
Let’s Talk About Your Plan to Run A Consequence-Free Company
As with all debt, people sinking into decency debt often look heroic. They go fast. They don’t take no for an answer. Nothing slows them down. But being decent does slow you down. It takes effort to properly address reports of harassment. It hits productivity to fire the brilliant assholes in your organization. It messes with your recruiters to demand a diverse mix of candidates.
management  culture  decency  debt  leadership  uber 
february 2018 by spaceninja
News You Can Use or News That Moves?: Journalists’ rationales for coverage of distant suffering: Journalism Practice: Vol 0, No 0
This study investigates how journalists covering international humanitarian crises make decisions regarding what types of information to include in stories. Specifically, the inclusion/exclusion of solutions-oriented information is addressed, since crises represent a key time during which the potential for international engagement is discussed in the mainstream media. Interviews with journalists covering hunger crises in Africa reveal an internal tension between maintaining a neutral, unbiased position and writing in a way that supports engagement and action. Ironically, perhaps, journalists find that including solutions-oriented information amounts to unethical and biased coverage, despite the fact that inclusion of solutions to social problems is an accepted and institutionalized aspect of the US news media’s mandate to the public. Reasons for this seeming contradiction are discussed, and I argue that solutions-oriented information not only can be included without demonstrating bias, but that it ought to be included to support ethical coverage that properly informs citizens about potential paths for political engagement.
Research  ethics  crisis  decency  taste 
november 2017 by paulbradshaw
Our country's relay race: Now is not the time to drop that baton - Houston Chronicle
"Find what's wrong. Don't ignore it, don't look the other way," she said. "You make a point to look at it and say to yourself, 'What can I do to make a difference?' "
activism  Robin  Hood  foundation  Heyer  Susan  Bro  decency  change  justice 
september 2017 by pagecarr
Trump’s Indecent Proposal — Crooked Timber
"As emotionally, and perhaps politically, satisfying as these questions are, they are the wrong questions. Like so much of the commentary on the GOP presidential candidate, Klein’s focuses on the person—and the novelty—of Donald Trump rather than on the party and the movement that produced him.
Countering that amnesia doesn’t require any elaborate education in American history; simply recall three moments of recent memory. [...]"
politics  decency 
august 2016 by arsyed

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