Politics

On Activism and Cynicism: An Hour Waiting for Russell Brand in Zuccotti Park

I walked down to Zuccotti Park yesterday afternoon. I haven’t been there since Occupy Wall Street was forcibly removed from the park in November 2011. And, look, I’ll admit it — I never went to the park during Occupy, either. Like many people, I suspect, I’ve always had an uneasy relationship with activism — or, perhaps more accurately, with activists. Insofar as Occupy had defined goals (and one of the smartest and most interesting things about the movement was its inclusivity), I supported them — anyone who reads Flavorwire regularly will be unsurprised to know that we often lean left of center. But when it comes to direct action or marches or such things, I have always had a problem, and that problem has a name: drum circles. … Read More

  • 0

‘Obvious Child’ for the Web: New Online Course Combats “Abortion Stigma”

Americans love to argue about abortion, in the moral-philosophical sense. Is it right or wrong? In what circumstances is it OK, or allowable? The debate goes back and forth, and so do the laws. Just last night, the Supreme Court reversed a circuit court’s decision (which had reversed a still lower court’s decision) to close a number of Texas abortion clinics — roughly accomplishing what Wendy Davis was initially trying to do with her filibuster. The shuttered clinics will now be able to re-open, until they’re targeted yet again. There’s no doubt they will be. … Read More

  • 1

Why We Should Applaud Ferguson Protesters for Interrupting Last Night’s NFL Game

Last night, St. Louis Rams fans were engrossed in the second half of their team’s game against the San Francisco 49ers, when a giant banner dropped over a scoreboard, reading: “Rams fans know on and off the field black lives matter.” This marked a new tactic amid the weeks and months of protests that have continued virtually uninterrupted since the death of unarmed teenager Mike Brown at the hands of police officer Darren Wilson, who still hasn’t been charged (a grand jury is hearing the case). … Read More

  • 0

Carl Sagan: “War On Drugs, Suck My Cock”

OK, he didn’t actually say that, but c’mon, who could pass up that headline? Vox has got its hands… Read More

  • 0

Why Bill Maher Is Wrong About Islam

As you’ve probably seen in the news of late, Ben Affleck and Bill Maher had something of a tête-à-tête on the latter’s TV show this week. The discussion came in the context of Waking Up, a book written by another of Maher’s guests, one Sam Harris, and specifically Harris’ view that liberalism has failed in its approach to Islam, and how “every criticism of the doctrine of Islam gets conflated into bigotry against Muslims as people.” We don’t often write about international geopolitics here on Flavorwire, but it’s worth looking at how the discussion unfolded, both because it took place between two prominent cultural figures on an HBO talk show and because the whole incident illustrates a fundamental problem with the way we discuss these issues. … Read More

  • 0

EMA’s “False Flag”: Well, Here’s the 21st-Century Protest Song You’ve Been Asking For

One of the constant complaints you hear about the music of Kids These Days is that there are no ’60s-style protest songs written in the 21st century. It’s not true, although in general, 21st-century political songs are not so much impassioned declarations of intent as they are evocations of the uncertainty and ennui that characterize this century. But shit, if you’ve been wanting a visceral indictment of, well, everything, look no further than EMA’s incendiary “False Flag,” which she released yesterday via her page on DIY multimedia publishing platform New Hive. (And no, before you ask, it’s not some wacky conspiracy theory about 9/11 being a “false flag” attack — she’s repurposing the term, not getting all truther on us.) … Read More

  • 0

Here’s the Trailer for Jon Stewart’s Directorial Debut, ‘Rosewater’

Jon Stewart’s directorial debut, Rosewater – while allegedly a straightforward adaptation of a memoir by Maziar Bahari (a journalist/human rights activist… Read More

  • 0

Gavin McInnes, Thought Catalog, and Our Gross Misunderstanding of “Freedom of Speech”

Poor Gavin McInnes, out of a job again for being an asshole. The Vice co-founder has only himself to blame — he was fired from Rooster, the agency he helped found, for publishing his already notorious “Transphobia Is Perfectly Natural” column on Thought Catalog last week. McInnes has long been insufferable, and it’s a measure of how far his standing has fallen that he’s been reduced to publishing his rants on a website whose entire premise for existence is that it’ll publish any old shit. Oh, yes, and on Thought Catalog, too! Anyway, predictably enough, McInnes’ defenders have wheeled out arguments about free speech, as if it’s poor old Gav who’s being oppressed here. … Read More

  • 0

The Crisis in Ferguson and Why a “Free” Press Needs Social Media

Watching live streams of what’s been happening in Ferguson, Missouri, this week might make you question the worth of pretty much everything — not least writing about art and culture. Seeing a town of 20,000 people devolve into something that looks like a war zone is terrifying, as are the visions of the city’s police force pointing weapons at unarmed men and harassing journalists. Meanwhile, the rest of the country is dumping ice water on its head and playing the Kim Kardashian game. But if there’s anything remotely positive to come out of Ferguson, it’s this: the ubiquity of social media, and of cameras in the hands of citizens, means that events like this can no longer happen in a void. … Read More

  • 0
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 7,930 other followers