Quickies: MST3K, Ghost Testimony, and Women’s Healthcare Under Trump

  • Mystery Science Theater 3000: our 15 favorite moments – “This year’s offerings will be hosted by Hodgson and Jonah Ray, host of the upcoming season 11, with the film selections decided by popular vote. But as any MST3K fan knows, many of the best parts of the series weren’t just the terrible movies themselves, but the skits, the songs, and the individual riffs that made us love the MST3K crew.”
  • Opening a Shaken Coke Can Underwater – “Today’s science question: Let’s say you’re living in a pressurized habitat beneath the sea, you shake up a Coke can, and then you open it. What happens? In this brief video, Chris Hadfield (then aboard the Aquarius lab near the Florida Keys) shows us.”
  • Women Could Pay More Than Men For Health Care Under Trump – “Before Obamacare, women were also generally charged higher rates for health insurance than men on the individual market. According to the law center’s analysis, 60 percent of best-selling individual plans in 2009 charged a 40-year-old nonsmoking woman more than a 40-year-old man who smoked, even in plans that didn’t include any type of maternity coverage.”
  • Needle exchanges, once met with fierce resistance, are working – “A ban on federal funding for needle exchanges was lifted earlier this year. States including Ohio, Kentucky, and West Virginia have made it easier, or in some cases possible for the first time, for programs to operate. Even Vice President-elect Mike Pence, who resisted needle exchanges on moral grounds, repealed a ban on syringe exchanges as governor of Indiana when confronted with an HIV outbreak (albeit too slowly for many experts).”
  • The Only Case Where the Testimony of a Ghost Was Used to Convict a Murderer – “A graphic history of an unsettling 1897 murder case in West Virginia.”
  • How to Tell the Difference Between Real Solidarity and ‘Ally Theater’ – “A couple of months ago, BGD columnist and editor Princess Harmony Rodriguez coined the term “ally theater” in a piece criticizing the way that so-called “allies” perform on social media. What Harmony highlights in that piece is but a fraction of the theatrics we see so-called “allies” performing every day.”

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Mary Brock works as an Immunology scientist by day and takes care of a pink-loving princess child by night. She likes cloudy days, crafting, cooking, and Fall weather in New England.

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    1. I feel like there is some baby in this bathwater. Why are we so consistently hostile to people who want to help, but maybe aren’t good at it yet?
      Between this and other articles and personal involvement the messages I’ve gotten:
      1. Dont’ just read. silence is complicity
      2. But sharing on facebook isn’t real activitsm. You should be out the protesting.
      3. But that’s just because you enjoy the “fun” bit of activism. You should really be donating to X,Y,Z
      4. Which you are only doing to make yourself feel better, why aren’t you doing anything
      5. Why are you trying to appropriate our space by starting your own march/organization/etc.? You should support existing organizations.
      6. Why are you trying to contribute here? Don’t you get to contribute everywhere else. You should be listening and doing what you’re told to do, not talking.
      7. You concerns about our supporting marxist dictators, constantly insulting everyone trying to help in contradictory ways,having speakers talking about attacking the police, or lack of organization is your privilege making you uncomfortable and obviously not that those things are problematic.

      Just for kicks. When is any of this, if ever, overly hostile and counterproductive and when is it privilege and is anyone seriously trying to answer that question?

      1. There is no one way to support “the cause” but clicking a link to repost a story, especially if you make it about yourself in the process, is one of the least helpful. Plus, all help isn’t equally helpful.

        After a large earthquake, for example, everybody likes to help out but you are much better off donating money to a proven charity that is listening to the locals than organizing a group outing to help on cite. Unless you have special skills that are specifically being called for you are more than likely to just be in the way.

        Oh, and did you happen to notice the source of my link?

        *whispers* It’s satirical.

        1. The target of the satire is the men, not the general hostility I am critiquing. So yes, I know it’s satire I don’t think that changes my response.
          Also I asked that question at the end for a reason. I know the stock answers to those concerns and I even agree with them to an extent, but I also see a lot of negativity directed at people and not a lot of acknowledgement that it’s even theoretically a problem.
          I really want to know at what point all the negativity pointed at people trying to get involved enough to take it seriously instead of writing it off.

          1. The Mary Sue comment section had a pretty good discussion here: http://www.themarysue.com/idgaf-about-your-safety-pin/ . I don’t know if they really came up with solid solutions. Some vague things like don’t tear people down for doing the right thing, even if you don’t think it’s enough.

            I’m someone who probably doesn’t do enough, but I also don’t care what people think about how much I do, because I do what I physically and mentally can. Just as the article seems to write off “fake allies,” so too, should we write off those who criticize us without knowing our situation.

            Assholes will be assholes. Work on the fence sitters, the ones who will listen and do want to change. Fuck fake allies, don’t waste time or energy thinking about them or bothering to critique them. We have more important work to do than worry about them.

          2. Thank you, BlackCat! Are you reading sites, or part of groups you feel like are doing a better job of being positive and supportive?
            I was waiting to see what everyone was going to do to organize post-Trump that I could recommend to people and get involved in myself. This really seemed like a moment for the sites I’ve read and the organizations I’ve been trying to support.
            So far I’ve just seen/experienced a lot of this stuff.

          3. I wish I had more answers. I’m still fumbling around myself, trying to figure out what to do. The Mary Sue can be a great place for discussion at times, such as with that article I posted. It’s pretty rare, though. :( I haven’t really found any great supportive places, unfortunately. I might recommend Friends of Captain Awkward, they are a heavily moderated forum that is ultra-liberal. They’re really kind and supportive over there, but I haven’t found a whole lot of politics discussion other than people who need support and love or those who are venting. No action, I guess, is what I mean.

            I’m kind of in a wait-and-see holding pattern myself. I haven’t seen a whole lot going on, mostly just talk. One suggestion that you could try is volunteering locally. It’s a good way to be involved on the ground level and get to know your community. http://www.volunteermatch.org seems like a nifty way to pair your talents with groups that need them.

            A good article I found has a nice rundown of things you can do. It’s about being a silent Trumpster fire protester, but by no means do you have to be silent, it’s just for those who are in unsafe areas. https://medium.com/@patti.mulligan/5-ways-to-be-a-silent-trump-protestor-71a549113119

            For me, myself, I’ve been reading a lot. Mostly about how we got here. This essay seemed like a really in-depth lesson: https://www.facebook.com/notes/bruce-bacon/americas-conservative-road-to-destruction-our-last-chance/10154091982593017 . It’s very well-researched and meticulous. I really hope it goes viral, it needs to. In that link, there are tons of other links to other things to read up on. I know knowing the past doesn’t help with the future much, but I figure if I can understand how they think, it will help when fighting them.

            Hope this helps a little!

  1. I will say, a lot of white kids are treating Standing Rock as another Burning Man. Though the article did forget the “I’m from a deplorable country or a deplorable faction in another country and I’m only doing this to support my fearless leader’s agenda.” variant.

    But I should warn that the “me first shut up shut up shut up lalalalala” mentality leads to ahem. Don’t let the map fool you: In practical terms, it’s worse than 1972 or 1984.

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