Random Thoughts

Hip Hop as cultural resistance, rebuilding, and global solidarity

This past week, I’ve encountered three examples of hip hop being used as creative forms of cultural/social resistance and also rebuilding. Continue reading “Hip Hop as cultural resistance, rebuilding, and global solidarity”


Why the word “feminism” isn’t enough

How the word excludes men, non-binary, and transgender people from the movement, and can cause people to overlook how the situation has changed and new issues that have arisen. Continue reading “Why the word “feminism” isn’t enough”

On “Political Correctness” and “Truth”

I realized recently that “political correctness” is a complete misnomer. First, it has nothing to do with politics. It’s social. Continue reading “On “Political Correctness” and “Truth””

Over-teaching the Civil Rights Movement to prevent further change

I remember distinctly one day in a high school history class when we were about to start “learning” about the Civil Rights Movement…again. You could almost hear the collective unvoiced groan of the class. I had leaned over and said to a couple friends, “I think the Civil Rights Movement is the most over-taught thing in school. Yeah, MLK was a great person..we get it already.” They were all nods and yeahs.

While at the time we were just reveling in our (armchair) defiance of the education system, I realized today that this sentiment was actually an indication something deeper. The over-teaching of the Civil Rights Movement de-sensitized us to what had taken place. Continue reading “Over-teaching the Civil Rights Movement to prevent further change”

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Using Humor in Conflict + Why Phoenix Art Museum is better than Portland Art Museum

I’ve noticed that when talking to people about social issues, calling them out automatically makes them defensive and even less open to change.  A friend back in Phoenix introduced to me the idea “of using humor to discuss or at least open the space to discuss some of these heavy or confrontational issues.” Continue reading “Using Humor in Conflict + Why Phoenix Art Museum is better than Portland Art Museum”

A challenge to all Transhumanists

Before we all go around yelling “My creation will make me more than what I am!” I’d like to ask all transhumanists: what does it mean to be human? And what does it mean to transcend that? What are you? And what does it mean to be more than yourself? Continue reading “A challenge to all Transhumanists”

Legal ≠ Moral, Loss of Power ≠ Oppression: thoughts on Freedom of Speech

With the blow up of controversies like the Charlie Hebdo attack, the flogging of Raif Badawi, and Gamergate, I have been struggling to understand where I stand on the issue of free speech – mainly how to reconcile the need for free speech with my problems with hate speech. Tied up in this confusion is a personal (practically debilitating) fear of conflict – a fear of offending people and being offended – and I think resolving where I stand with free speech involves facing this fear of conflict. Continue reading “Legal ≠ Moral, Loss of Power ≠ Oppression: thoughts on Freedom of Speech”

Balancing Ideologies with Identity & Embracing Change: a reflection on the film “My Dinner with Andre”

My Dinner with Andre is one of those rare films that overtly questions the ideologies we have accepted as the norm, the truth, and the system to live by. Though it is an older film (and focuses on the experiences of two middle class Americans who live in New York City and work in the theater), I think there are some timeless questions and ideas that apply to any individual struggling with identity or discontent in their lives. Continue reading “Balancing Ideologies with Identity & Embracing Change: a reflection on the film “My Dinner with Andre””

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Running and Warping Woodgrain: experiencing motion aftereffect

The weirdest thing happened to me today. I had just gone for a run and after I went back inside and sat down, I noticed that the woodgrain on the end board of my bed frame looked as if it were moving, kind of warping toward the center. I looked up at the ceiling, which is slightly textured, and the same thing happened. It was really trippy and quite cool actually. After a bit of research, I found out that what I was experiencing is a visual illusion called “motion aftereffect” caused when you look at something that’s moving with your eyes still, for a while, and then look at something that is stationary. Here is an example:

Continue reading “Running and Warping Woodgrain: experiencing motion aftereffect”

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