Quickies

Quickies: Racism, Chronic Eye Pain, and Ashley Madison’s Bots

  • Can drinking tea turn you into a whore? – Surely it can, at least according to these alarmist eighteenth-century philosophers. (I think Kate Beaton needs to use this for her next comic. It reminds me of the inspiration she used for Velocipede.)
  • I Was Raised As A Racist: 6 Weird Things I Learned – “I think that very few people are so cartoonishly evil that they sit their kids down and give them long lectures on why other cultures are a threat to our glowing, angel-white way of life. I’m not saying that those people don’t exist, but for the most part becoming a racist is all about slightly more subtle conditioning.” From mrmisconception.
  • Privilege And Pressure: A Memoir Of Growing Up Black And Elite In ‘Negroland’ – “Growing up in the 1950s, Margo Jefferson was part of Chicago’s black upper class. The daughter of a prominent doctor and his socialite wife, Jefferson inhabited a world of ambition, education and sophistication — a place she calls ‘Negroland.’ That afforded her many opportunities, the Pulitzer Prize-winning cultural critic says. But life was also undercut by the fear that her errors and failures would reflect poorly on her family and, subsequently, her race.”
  • ‘Dry Eye’ Has Ruined People’s Lives — And Stumped The Medical Community – Sometimes, chronic pain does not have a clear-cut answer (or at least, not one that is yet understood) and patients feel ignored by their doctors. This is the story one one ophthalmologist who is researching chronic, excruciating eye pain.
  • A Recipe for Sexual Assault – “According to a recent national Inside Higher Ed survey of college and university presidents, nearly one-third agree that sexual assault is prevalent on college campuses nationwide. But only 6 percent believe it’s prevalent at their own institutions.”
  • How Ashley Madison Hid Its Fembot Con From Users and Investigators – “An analysis of company e-mails, coupled with evidence from Ashley Madison source code, reveals that company executives were in a constant battle to hide the truth. In emails to disgruntled members of the site, and even the California attorney general, they shaded the truth about how the bots fit into their business plan.”
  • 10 Years In, Tulsa’s Pre-K Investment Is Paying Off – Investing in children is an investment in the future.

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Mary

Mary

Mary Brock is a scientist who works on drugs you've hopefully never heard of. She enjoys cooking to Blue Grass music, messing with her cats, and hosting the Boston Skeptics' Book Club. She was born in the South but loves living in New England (despite the lack of chocolate chip pizza). Mary does not use Twitter and don't even try to follow her, because she is always looking over her shoulder.

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2 Comments

  1. September 11, 2015 at 11:17 am —

    That being raised a racist article made me think of a thought about generational divide. The younger generation grew up in the milieu of 9/11; people born just after 9/11 would now be 13 or 14, or, old enough to have a social media account without parental permission. (Not that there’s anyway to enforce it for those under 13, but still…) They grew up in a world where “You’re with us or you’re against us.” was considered an acceptable rhetorical tool. Or “Why do you hate Good Thing?” Or any number of other examples of black-and-white thinking.

    I think this explains some of the generational divide. They play with Bush’s toys, not knowing you should outgrow them around age 8.

    • September 11, 2015 at 4:27 pm —

      Probably a little older than 8, but there is hope for the world.

      2 or three years ago, when the boys upstairs were about 10 to 12, they had a party which mostly consisted of about a dozen 10-12 year olds chasing each other around the house, yard and basement shooting each other with nerf guns. I was in the basement doing my laundry when I overheard some of the moms talking. One said her son had just asked her how old you have to be to join the army. She got worried, gulped a bit, and said in her most discouraging voice “I think about 18.” He replied “That’s too bad. They shouldn’t let you join the army until you’re old enough to not think war is fun anymore.”

      On the down side, I don’t think most of America would agree, but maybe the post-911’s might.

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