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Valar Qringaomis

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Thursday, October 30, 2014

Links - 30th October 2014

Talking white: Black people’s disdain for proper English and academic achievement is a myth. - "Racialized stigma against high achievement exists. But it requires specific circumstances, namely, predominantly white schools where few blacks attend advanced classes. There, black and white students hold racialized perceptions of educational achievement, and black students are often isolated by stigma from both groups... By contrast, “acting white” accusations were least common at the most segregated schools, a finding echoed by a 2006 study from Harvard economist Roland Fryer, who found “no evidence at all that getting good grades adversely affects students’ popularity” in predominantly black schools."
Increased integration isn't always a good thing

Social media schadenfreude is real, say researchers. - "when people aren’t feeling their best, they tend to be more interested in social media profiles of those they consider less attractive, successful, or just generally well-off."

Why the rise of cosplay is a bad sign for the U.S. economy - "When you're disillusioned with the reality of your early adult life, dressing up like Doctor Who starts looking better and better. It's not to say that all or even most cosplay aficionados are struggling to find work. It's only to say that any rise in people fleeing reality for fantasy suggests problems with our reality."

You Should Probably Stop Using A Loofah In The Shower. Sorry. - "Every time the loofah gets wet and does not dry properly, the organisms grow and grow. "You spread the bacteria that you washed off your body the last time,"Dr. Michele Green, M.D., New York-based board-certified dermatologist, tells HuffPost. "The loofah is spreading yesterday's dirt back on your body." When you're sloshing that lavender-scented body wash all over yourself to get clean, you're really scrubbing with lavender-scented bacteria."

#NotYourShield Hashtag Shows Multi-Cultural Support For GamerGate - "#NotYourShield was a collective movement of minorities of all ages and types, stating that they were not oppressed by a straight, white male patriarchy; that they had their own voice and that they were not a shield to be silently used in order for gaming media – and those that gaming media represents – to push an agenda... those supporting the GamerGate movement within the gaming community are not all straight, nor are they white, and they aren't all male. However, all of us are gamers"

Today’s “No News” Item: Another supplement, glucosamine, bites the dust - "Our study found no evidence that drinking glucosamine supplement reduced knee cartilage damage, relieved pain or improved function in individuals with chronic knee pain"

Malala, survivor of Taliban, resented in Pakistan hometown - "She has won the European Union's prestigious human rights award and was one of the favorites to win the Nobel Peace Prize on Friday, but in her native Swat valley, friends and neighbors reacted with a mixture of resentment, fear and jealousy... In a nation thriving on conspiracy theories, some have even doubted the sincerity of her campaign, claiming it is part of her family's ploy to move to Britain or that she is just an attention seeker. Social media sites are brimming with insulting messages. "We hate Malala Yousafzai, a CIA agent," says one Facebook page... "Malala is a talented girl, no doubt," said Zahid Khan, head of the Swat Peace Jirga, an anti-Taliban body who has survived three attempts on his life for his work. "I have been attacked. Shot. Almost killed. But no one is honoring me. The state hasn't given me a cent in compensation.""

AK-47s at Peace Hero’s House Show Why Malala Prefers U.K. - "A rally two days ago for Yousafzai, who shared the award with Indian child rights activist Kailash Satyarthi, attracted only several dozen people... Yousafzai’s book was banned from being placed in school libraries by the All Pakistan Private Schools Federation in Lahore, which says it represents 152,000 schools nationwide. “The book is meant to damage the ideology of Pakistan and Malala was used as a tool,” Mirza Kashif Ali, the federation’s president, said by phone. “We’ve banned not only the book but also any activity related to Malala, and if any of the school’s administration tries to violate it, we can file a police report.”"

Does smoking increase sick leave? Evidence using register data on Swedish workers - "Smoking was found to increase the annual number of days of absence by 10.7 compared with never smoking. Controlling for risk factors at work, and thereby accounting for some of the selection of smokers into riskier jobs, reduced the effect to 9.7 days, corresponding to 38% of all annual absences due to sickness. Moreover, controlling for health status further reduced the effect of smoking to 7.7 days. The effect of smoking on sick leave was similar for men and women... The estimates should be viewed as upper bounds of the effect of smoking on sick leave, since smoking is potentially an endogenous variable."

When everyone shuts up, we will have reached the “safe space” - "The Petition is a thing to read. It focuses on the campus concept of “safe space,” which means control of speech so that others are not offended... I’m deeply offended by the attempt of those U. Chicago students to regulate speech to the extent that we can’t even mention the word we are analyzing and discussing. Because I know to a certainty it will not stop there. It never does. Think of all the words which are not on their face even slurs that we cannot say, like Black List, Baa Baa Black Sheep,Rejigger, Providence Plantations, Black Friday, Gobbledygook, Illegal Immigrant, Undocumented Immigrant, Master Bedroom, Chink in the Armor, and even the use of white copy paper. You better be careful how you pronounce “did you” and around whose neck you want to hang an Albatross... 'What happens wheen kids who demand to be 'safe' from scary words enter the work force? My prediction: Hilarity.'
I understand his point, but it’s optimistic. My prediction: Employers cowering under the threat of lawsuits, people accused of being insensitive losing jobs, and a reign of linguistic terror where every word is a potential career-ender. It will be the opposite of a safe space. Unless everyone shuts up."
I'm sure many fundamentalists are offended that they are called 'fundies'. This hate speech should be banned!

RuPaul: 'I Love the Word Tranny' - "RuPaul Charles has broken his silence regarding his current view on the use of the word "tranny." The world’s most famous drag queen defended his use and love of the word... “It’s not the transsexual community who’s saying that. These are fringe people who are looking for storylines to strengthen their identity as victims. That is what we are dealing with. It’s not the trans community. ’Cause most people who are trans have been through hell and high water. And they’ve looked behind the curtain at Oz and go, ‘Oh, this is all a fucking joke.’ But some people haven’t and they’ve used their victimhood to create a situation where, ‘No! You look at me! I want you to see me the way you’re supposed to see me!’” “If your idea of happiness has to do with someone else changing what they say, what they do, you are in for a fucking hard-ass road”... don’t you dare tell me what I can do or what I can’t — say or do. It’s just words, like, ‘Yeah, words hurt me!’ [Whiny inflection] Bitch, you need to get stronger. If you’re upset by something I said, you have bigger problems than you think.""

Sydney drag queens fight trans-gender warrior Indiana Kelly Edwards over right to use the word tranny - "“In Australia there are few negative connotations attached to the word ‘tranny’, unlike in America,” he says. “I think the campaign is being waged by people who are trying to involve American activists in an Australian debate. “We have events in the gay community called Poof Doof and Fag Tag. “There’s nothing wrong with that. Look, I was called ‘gay’ every single day at school and I’ll turn to the first person who yells it out to me in the street and say ‘I’m bloody gay and I’m proud of it’”... “We are transsexuals or transvestites and ‘tranny’ is our word to use if we choose to use it.” He claims the campaign is being led by a “small group of people who are making a lot of noise. But if you do the research there’s not a lot of support behind it”. He says the activists argue that when drag queens remove their costumes, they can easily blend into society. “Well, guess what, when we remove our wigs we become gay boys who have faced homophobia our whole lives,” insists Penny Tration. “It’s not a contest to see which group has been more picked on or put down.”"

Met Police ban the word 'blacklist' over claims it is racist - "Police chiefs have banned the word ‘blacklist’ over fears it is racist. They have also struck out its opposite – ‘whitelist’ – which is used by IT workers for a list of acceptable email contacts. Scotland Yard employees have been told to use ‘red’ and ‘green’ instead"

Congressman Mark Kirk comments, "jigger" secretly recorded, made public - "Lyle, a Democratic Committee member and an Alexi Giannoulias supporter, and others were offended by Kirk's use of the verb "jigger" when talking about regions heavily populated by black voters. The Merriam-Webster dictionary says "jigger" does mean "to alter, re-arrange, or manipulate" and has been used by many politicians to describe election fraud. "The problem I had is that it sounds so much like another word," Rev. Albert Tyson said. Kirk, who is in a tight race for the U.S. Senate with Democrat Alexi Giannoulias, says he is offended that anyone would think he would use a word that offends African-Americans. "I'm actually offended that they would say that. I think that every vote should be counted and that we need to make sure that it's a free and a election," Kirk said. "

Planting doubt about Rhode Island’s name - "Rhode Island may be tiny, but its official name is the longest in the country. However, an upcoming state referendum could strip away that quirky distinction. It’s been 30 years since scholars began excavating Rhode Island’s historical embroilment in the slave trade, and, since then, the term “Providence Plantations” has engendered controversy among some historians and African-Americans... “In the 17th century, the term ‘plantations’ was used to describe all of the colonies and settlements all over the place,” says Stan Lemons, a historian of Rhode Island and former professor of history at Rhode Island College. “So the term referred to, basically, towns. An agricultural town, by and large, but still referring to the town. It has nothing, absolutely nothing to do with slavery.”"

Meg Lanker-Simons, UW Student, Accused Of Threatening Herself With Rape In Facebook Hoax - "University of Wyoming student Meg Lanker-Simons was outraged earlier this month when an anonymous user on the Facebook page “UW Crushes,” described wanting to perform threatening sexual acts with her. Underneath the since-deleted post, she commented that the description was “disgusting, misogynistic, and apparently something the admins of this page think is a perfectly acceptable sentiment,” according to Buzzfeed. Now, police allege that she wrote the original post herself in a social media hoax. Lanker-Simons, 28, who is an award-winning liberal blogger, was issued a citation Monday for interference and is facing up to a year in prison and a fine of up to $1,000... The post led to a campus protest against “rape culture” and an investigation by university police"
"In 2005, after Lanker-Simons was fired from a radio station in the fall, she returned and pulled a Glock 22 .40 caliber handgun from her purse. She waved the semi-automatic pistol around. She pointed it at the man who sacked her. He testified that he was “in fear for his life.”
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