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Permanent link to archive for Wednesday, July 04, 2001. Wednesday, July 04, 2001

NY Times editorial quotes US Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor: "If statistics are any indication, the system may well be allowing some innocent defendants to be executed."

Salon: "O'Connor not only raised concerns over whether the innocent are being executed, she also acknowledged that there have been serious due process questions in at least some capital cases, noting that defendants with more money get better lawyers."

Yesterday on NPR I heard an interview with Alice Randall, the author of The Wind Done Gone, the flipped-around perspective on Gone With The Wind. Randall has a degree in literature from Harvard, she's a passionate intelligent writer and country music lyricist. Listening to her talk about her family and especially her father, there's no doubt that the book is literature, not a sequel as the heirs of Margaret Mitchell have claimed. Her father, who she described as a Malcolm X radical, wanted to meet with the president of Harvard, Derek Bok, on her graduation. To her surprise she was able to get the meeting, where her father told Bok that he had decided to forgive America because of the free education his daughter had received. She choked up as she told the story, me too. The interviewer asked how she dealt with racism in America, and she said she didn't have a problem because she was raised by a racist. The book sounds great, I'm adding it to my reading list.

And maybe in this story is a clue to how to celebrate our nation's birthday -- with forgiveness.

5/26/01: "A U.S. appeals panel overturned a publication ban Friday on a black writer's parody of the epic novel of the Old South Gone With The Wind, written from the point of view of black slaves instead of southern aristocrats."

Alice Randall: "Quiet as it's kept, there are people who hate Gone With the Wind. In his autobiography, Malcolm X has this to say: 'I remember one thing that marred this time for me: the movie Gone with the Wind. When it played in Mason, I was the only Negro in the theater, and when Butterfly McQueen went into her act, I felt like crawling under the rug.'"

My personal declaration of independence, I stopped watching TV on January 1, over six months have passed, and I totally don't miss it. TV wastes time. Without TV you get bored, from time to time. And that's OK.

Adbusters: Independence Day Flag Jam.

Sheila: "I absolutely cannot agree with the position that the American flag has 'been a corporate doormat for years'. That's not what it means to me. I say it's time for real personal responsibility. Quit crying about the big mean companies running your life and just stop letting them. It's not that hard. Just don't buy their stuff. And if you don't like what's happening in politics, figure out something real to do about it. Don't just show me an ugly defacement of a symbol that means alot to most Americans. Do something really revolutionary, not just something 'clever'. If the federal government seems too big and too much under the influence of corporations, try doing something to improve your local community. Try helping your neighbors, instead of just insulting them and then wondering why they won't listen to you. Anyway Happy Independence Day, I celebrate and am endlessly thankful for your right to be idiotic."

Why I love Sheila in three words: She's A Revolutionary.

5/7/97: "Anger is a very powerful force. If it's allowed to release naturally, it can be a thing of beauty. It can be safe. A source of movement. It makes things happen. I believe that anything that expresses our true nature is beautiful, so when anger comes from inside, it's a source of beauty."

Brent has a great list of American things and people that he admires.

Dylan Tweney: "It would be nice to think that conference organizers schedule their content without regard for sponsorships, but it just ain't so. Time and again speakers, panelists, and so forth are consistently chosen from among the ranks of silver, gold, and platinum sponsors."

It's nice, for once, to say Lance is full of it. (I usually agree with everything he says.) Yeah, the US totally sucks. We kill our own citizens, we abuse the environment, consume far too much, and we're complacent as hell. But the UK is pretty screwed up too. And we did win the war.

I owe this observation to Lucas Gonze. Some days it seems everything on the Net can be reduced down to this two word phrase: Neener neener!

And yes my dear, there is a NeenerNeener.Net.


Last update: Wednesday, July 04, 2001 at 10:29 PM Eastern.

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