This MetaFilter post is today’s required reading. I like to think of myself as having become desensitized to almost all international news about death and suffering, but i find this story to be very disturbing – maybe because it not only involves innocent bystanders, but also journalists.
I’m too tired to go into full-on-rant mode, but there is obviously something very wrong with the American Military system. I don’t think it can be blamed on a single official or administration. A systematic change needs to occur, and i don’t think it’s coming our way anytime soon.
On a note that would only seem related if you were me, i have never been happier to not own a television than during yesterday’s Eagle’s game. Having been close to 100% teeveefree for over two months, for every second of my viewing i was aghast at the utter nonsense and stupidity communicated by almost every aspect of the televised medium. Aside from a handful of cerebral commercials, i felt every aspect of my viewing experience prodding me to lower my perceptions to that of the lowest common denominator of the viewing public.
I am vaguely aware of a “turn off your televisions” week that’s sponsored by some organization at some point of the year. I always found that to be somewhat misguided, both in design and purpose. Does anyone even do it? Do those that do even get the point, or notice the difference? Try turning it off for a month. Try throwing it out.
Television is the ultimate indulgence of utter passivity, the apex of wasted time. Stop watching MTV and write a song. Stop watching soap operas, and dream your own life. I fully recognize that some television can be art (Angels In America), and that apropos wittiness can sometimes make an indulgence worthwhile (Buffy), but most of the time it’s just an excuse not to be doing something else.
Finally, a reminder via my good friend Lindsay. October 3 is the deadline for voter registration for the November Election. If you aren’t registered, have recently moved, or need an absentee ballot, you still have a few weeks to straighten out the details. Specifically, for registration concerns, try Vote For Change, and for issues with locating a polling place try Election Impact.
Most importantly, just vote, goddamnit. Vote for an independent. Write in your mom. I don’t care. The point is not just about choosing but about being a part of the process. I understand that you can’t make it to the polls for every primary or local election; neither can i. This one, however, is a must. If you can’t find the time to vote, or to use the internet to register for an absentee ballot so you don’t have to find the time, I don’t think you need to bother to find the time to read this page. Or speak to me ever again.
Please take today as your opportunity to do something. About anything. Be tangible; effect change.