June rambling: It goes on

zhuzh

Belief in God in the U.S. Dips to 81%, a New Low

Life: It goes on

In 6-3 rulings, SCOTUS strikes down New York’s concealed-carry law

Also, SCOTUS overturns Roe v. Wade; I wrote about it here and hereNow whatKelly is not happy either.  And Clarence Thomas believes SCOTUS should reconsider contraception and same-sex marriage rulings. Plus, can we trust tech companies to protect privacy?

Will the Great Salt Lake stay great?

The detectives hunting for underwater volcanoes

Trump administration embraced herd immunity via mass infection — The strategy likely contributed to many preventable deaths

Feds Aim to Slash Nicotine

How are autism and Alzheimer’s related?

John Green: On Disease

The Healing Power of ‘I Don’t Know’ 

Hank Green: Are You Eating a Credit Card Every Week?

Tech Monopolies: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver

Why the US military is listening to shrimp

The Texas Republican Party goes off the deep end

US travelers now need a visa to enter Japan

The surprise hiatus of the band BTS is sending ripples throughout the South Korean economy

The Monkeys and Parrots Caught Up in the California Gold Rush

Orphan Trains: A Brief History and Research How-to

Creative with your catchphrases

Pride parade.TU

June 12, 2022, Pride Parade, Lark St between State and Lancaster Sts, Albany, NY. The car that was the basis of the First Presbyterian Church Albany float stalled out; this was the improvisation. Photo by Jay Zhang, first used by the [Albany] Times Union. Used with permission.

Lessons from Fictional Fathers

PBS NewsHour commentator Mark Shields dies at age 85

James Rado, Co-Creator of Groundbreaking ‘Hair’ Musical, Dies at 90

Jon Stewart: acceptance speech for the Mark Twain Award

Anna “Brizzy” Brisbin -History of Voiceover

Amy Schumer, Selena Gomez, Tracee Ellis Ross, and THR’s Comedy Actress Roundtable

50 years of The Price Is Right 

William Henry Cosby Jr. lost a civil trial

The Insane Plan to Lift NYC’s Palace Theatre

The smile: a history

The Ultimate Guide to Dream Interpretation

A surprise response from Professor O’Neill

 How to ‘Zhuzh’ Up Your Vocabulary; zhuzh is NOT a word I want to see in Wordle

How to prepare for hurricane season 2022 and avoid storm-related scams

8 Ways to Spot Counterfeit Money

Now I Know: The Fired Employee Who Got The Last Laugh and  When Shouting “Cr*p!” is a Wish Come True and Capture the Flag, updated and A Fishy Train Line That Goes Nowhere

About Me (kinda sorta)

Mark Evanier answers my question about mandated representation in cartoon animation in the 1980s. “Doing the right thing for the wrong reason”

Kelly did linkage and wrote about Judy Garland, mentioning moi

I’ve been doing that Sunday Stealing, which fillyjonk also did here and here and here and here. Kelly did the same here and here

MUSIC

Purple Haze – Joy Oladokun 

Rapsodie Espagnol by Maurice Ravel

This Must Be The Place – Ondara 

Espana by Emmanuel Chabrier

Where Grace Abounds – Julius Rodriguez 

NPR Tiny Desk concert with the current off-Broadway production of Little Shop Of Horrors

Freedom – Jon Batiste

 Reclamation – Brandee Younger 

God Bless The Child – Melanie Charles

Hustle (Live) – Sons Of Kemet 

Communion In My Cup  Tank And The Bangas ft. The Ton3s

June rambling: Until Proven Otherwise

green sneakers

Back In My Day
From https://wronghands1.com/2022/06/03/back-in-my-day-millennial-edition/

Assume Every Child Has PTSD These Days Until Proven Otherwise

Chaos in John Roberts’s Court

Dobbs Decision Punctures the Supreme Court’s Sacred Mythology

The 1883 Civil Rights Cases, the 14th Amendment, and Jim Crow New York?

Gov. Ron DeSantis begins recruiting for his own Florida army

How Diversity Became a Bad Word at One State’s Public Colleges

How Milton Friedman Fought Segregation through the American Economic Association

I miss our old futurists

New York’s Redistricting Chaos Is Part of Andrew Cuomo’s Legacy

Insinuendo

New York Passes Nation’s First Electronics Right-To-Repair Law cf  malicious compliance

Rocks: John Oliver

It’s Time to Bring Back the AIM Away Message

Measure Twice, Cut Once by Norm Abram

City Lights was the greatest film ever made

Samuel L. Jackson, Michael Keaton, Oscar Isaac, and the THR Drama Actor  Roundtable

THR Tony Nominees Roundtable: Hugh Jackman, Ruth Negga, Jesse Williams, Mary-Louise Parker, and Sam Rockwell on Broadway in the Time of COVID

Now I Know: The Town That Keeps Tooting Its Own Horn and Here’s Something About Gary and I Guess You Could Say He Was Too Sharp and When North Dakota (Briefly) Tried to Secede From the United States and
How to Turn Donuts into Dough?

Four days in the Finger Lakes

The Crooked Forest: A Mystery Worth Exploring

A backyard train layout

GUNS

America’s guns have changed in my lifetime. “Comparing the United States to other countries is one of the most powerful arguments for gun control. Recurring mass shootings are a problem unique to the US, requiring an equally unique explanation. Other industrialized countries also have… all the other factors NRA-sponsored politicians and pundits raise to divert attention from guns. “

Cruz’s suggestion of one door entrance to schools for safety is problematic. But having one EXIT to a building is a fire hazard. (See any number of factory and nightclub infernos.)

Cruz says, if we limit guns, it wouldn’t have changed the outcome in Uvalde or Buffalo and that we need to do more about mental health. What if we raised the age to 21 to buy these AK-15-type weapons? 18 y.o.’s brains are not developed. The shooters in Uvalde, Buffalo, Newtown, and too many others were under 21. New York State just passed such a law.

If banning them outright seems like too extreme a solution to be politically palatable – and the US even banned at least some assault weapons for ten years, from 1994 to 2004 – here’s another option: Reclassify semi-automatic rifles as Class 3 firearms. Still, The AR-15 Has No Business Being in the Hands of Civilians.

These weapons exist for exactly one reason — to kill multiple people as quickly and violently as possible. 60 Minutes reran a story about high-velocity guns such as the AR-15. Its use in the Uvalde, TX school massacre is why families needed to offer up their DNA and why one girl was identified only by her green sneakers.

Hit the fan

Yet the Congressional talks appear to be unserious, as though mass shootings are just “Something We Have to Accept”

Do we need an Emmett Till moment, or more likely, a variation on it?

What drives mass shooters? Grievance, despair, and anger are more likely triggers than mental health, experts say.

“Mass shooters’ desire for death and destruction, experts have found, stems from a variety of circumstances and is rooted in an entrenched grievance, despair, and anger, regardless of whether they experience symptoms of mental illness.”

School Police: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver. NOT the end-all

MUSIC

Kate Bush’s 1985 classic Running Up That Hill has re-entered the chart at No. 8. The revival of the track is from the new fourth season of Netflix’s Stranger Things.

Returning Waves by Mieczysław Karłowicz.

Subterranean Homesick Blues – Bob Dylan (2022 Remake)

Le boeuf sur le toi by French composer Darius Milhaud.

Oye Como Va ft. Carlos Santana, Cindy Blackman Santana, and Becky G

Beethoven-Liszt Symphony No. 9, Op. 125 (Sheet Music) (Piano Reduction)

The Kids Are Alright – MonaLisa Twins

Coverville 1402: Cover Stories for Oasis, Fine Young Cannibals and Siouxsie and the Banshees and 1403: The Three Dog Night Cover Story II

Jungle Boogie – Muppets

Forty years of Come On Eileen – Dexys Midnight Runners

Themes from the Flintstones TV show with Lego stop motion animation

A Chinese reed instrument called the Sheng 

Pink Glasses – Randy Rainbow

Love theme Splash by Lee Holdridge

May rambling: Uvalde, TX

1400th episode of Coverville

 

health_data_2x
From https://xkcd.com/2620/

Fourteen children and one adult are dead. The assault at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, TX was the deadliest shooting at a U.S. school since a gunman killed fourteen students and three staff members at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida in February 2018. Wait, now it’s 19 children and two adults murdered. The assault at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, TX was the deadliest shooting at a U.S. school since a gunman killed 20 children and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut, in December 2012.

 And… Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) blames CRT?  The time for politics – the politics of actually doing something – is now. Not, as Lee Goldberg points out: “The GOP’s answer is to have a third-grade teacher, armed w/a handgun, take [on a shooter]. Are they insane!?” Evil Stalks the Hall at the NRA. How the Uvalde police kept changing their story. The Weekly Sift guy repeats himself. 

Jacinda Ardern talks about gun control on The Late Show and gives the 2022 Harvard Commencement Address. (Should we move to New Zealand?)

Also

The Rising Tide Of Color, a 1920 book, “is sometimes cited as the origin of Replacement Theory. It’s available for free at Project Gutenberg, but you need a strong stomach to read it because it’s unapologetically racist in a way you seldom see today.”

D’Souza’s ‘Big Lie’ Movie Is So Bad Fox Won’t Promote It

Subway franchises and Utilities: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver

USPSTF Guidance Misses the Mark on Youth Suicide Risk Screening

How many lives could have been saved with COVID vaccinations in each state

He Donated His Kidney and Received a $13,064 Bill in Return

Rod Serling sitting around talking about writing

Big ‘Saturday Night Live’ Departures Will Test the Show’s Depth

Before Pixar’s ‘Turning Red,’ ‘Braceface’ and a 1946 Disney Short Tackled the “Taboo” of Menstruation

Now I Know: The Eye Shield That Keeps the Grumps Away and And He Couldn’t Use the Discount Anyway and The €222 Million Nap and The Mystery of the 175-Year-Old Battery-Powered Bell

Undamming the Hudson River

RIP

Roger Angell, Revered Baseball Essayist, Dies at 101

Into The Storm: Alan White, YES drummer 

Ray Liotta Dies: ‘Goodfellas’ Star & ‘Field Of Dreams’ Actor Was 67

Fred Carter, the little-known Black artist behind Chick tracts of evangelism cartoons, Died. Those Chick tracks could be theologically… challenging.

R.I.P. Neal Adams, 1941-2022

MUSIC

Thoughts and Prayers – Drive-By Truckers

Beethoven Symphony No. 7, recast as a piano virtuoso work by Franz Liszt

Mr. Blue Sky and Kodachrome – Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem

Field Of Dreams – The Place Where Dreams Come True/End Titles (James Horner)

You Don’t Know Where Your Interest Lie – Dana Valery 

Finale from Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones by John Williams

Broken/Head Over Heels – Tears For Fears 

Avatar suite by James Horner

Lida Rose/Will I Ever Tell You – Randy Rainbow

Coverville 1400: The Subject of this Cover Story is Talking Heads and  1401: Covers of 50-Year-Olds

I’m Alright – Jo Dee Messina

MARVEL Uptown Funk

The Untold Story of the White House’s Weirdly Hip Record Collection

The Buffalo mass shooting

great replacement theory

This is actually a photo of flowers after a Colorado shooting, which tells you all you need to know.

If I were to mention every example of gun violence involving multiple victims in America, this blog would not only be really depressing but also quite monotonous. It’d be, as blogger buddy Chuck Miller mentioned, The Vicious Cycle.

Heck, before I could even write about the Buffalo mass shooting, one was killed and four critically wounded at a Presbyterian church in Laguna Woods, CA, likely motivated by political hatred of the Taiwanese community.

Though I heartily support it, I’m unenthused about calls for gun control. If America isn’t going to respond to 20 six and seven-year-olds murdered at school almost a decade ago, I can’t see it happening in this circumstance, I’m afraid.

It IS peculiar that a teenager who threatened a school graduation shooting last year and was given psychiatric treatment, could still purchase three guns legally.

Broome County, NY

So the Buffalo incident compelled me to note it. Certainly, the fact that the shooter* came from my home county, Broome County, NY in Conklin, just a few miles southeast of my hometown of Binghamton, is a huge factor. There’s just a smidgen of irrational personal mortification.

And the other thing is that the shooter drove 200 miles (322 km), three and a half hours, to find a bunch of Black people** to shoot. He, or someone in his circle, did a demographic dive to ascertain that the ZIP Code where that TOPS grocery store had the highest concentration of Black folks within a reasonable driving distance.

WIVB-TV reports that the name of the gunman matches the one “given in a 180-page manifesto that surfaced online shortly after the attack and took credit for the violence in the name of white supremacy… The excruciating detail provided leaves little doubt of its authenticity.”

Yahoo News and other sources note that the manifesto “repeatedly cited the ‘great replacement’ theory, the false idea that a cabal is attempting to replace white Americans with nonwhite people through immigration, interracial marriage, and, eventually, violence…

“In the manifesto, [he] claims that he was radicalized on 4chan while he was ‘bored’ at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic in early 2020. The document also claims ‘critical race theory,’ a recent right-wing talking point that has come to generally encompass teaching about race in school, is part of a Jewish plot, and a reason to justify mass killings of Jews…”

Crazy?

I came across this frustrating conversation about whether the shooter is “crazy.” “Someone must be crazy to do something like that, right?” “If he’s crazy, he’ll use that as his defense.”

The Weekly Sift guy actually addressed this back in 2019 when another shooter targeted Hispanics at a Walmart in El Paso. “His actions made perfect sense if you took seriously what Trump had been saying over and over: Mexicans are invading our country. If your country is being invaded, isn’t the most obvious response to take military gear to the border and kill the invaders? What’s mentally ill about that?”

The same thing [in Buffalo. The shooter] “has been told time and again that there’s a plot to take America away from the white race, and that this plot will eventually result in racial extinction. If he believes that, what’s the logical response?”

Recognizing the dog whistle

“High-profile people like Trump, Tucker Carlson, and Elise Stefanik may not explicitly tell people to go out and kill Blacks or Hispanics or Jews, but how does anything less deal with the problem they describe?” WS describes the replacement theory much more fully here.

Carlson’s defenders point out that the shooter’s manifesto included no mentions of the FOX commentator, as though that takes him off the hook. Also, the document attacked 21st Century Fox for hiring Jewish people. Whatever.  It’s standard Vulpine gaslighting.

Stefanik is the Congressperson in a distinct adjacent to my own, and the third-ranked Republican in the House of Representatives. My
local newspaper notes that she and “other prominent Republicans made statements critics say align with theory.” She denies it, of course.

Congressman Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) warns that the Replacement Theory is ‘Getting People Killed.’ “Kinzinger, a staunch critic of former President Donald Trump, has repeatedly slammed [House minority leader Kevin] McCarthy (R-CA), Stefanik, [Marjorie Taylor] Greene (R-GA), and [Madison] Cawthorn (R-NC) in recent months.”

Liz Cheney (R-WY) has said the GOP leadership has “enabled white supremacy.” As Rolling Stone noted, The Buffalo Shooter Isn’t a ‘Lone Wolf.’ He’s a Mainstream Republican.

Ahistoric Americans

Just as some people celebrate “representation” and “diversity”, others see a zero-sum game where white people lose out. The targeting of Asian-Americans and Jews and LGBTQ folk – do I need to document those recent mass shootings? – breaks my heart over and over. This is even though, as Carolyn Gallaher wrote in The Hill after the Walmart shootings, The alternate history behind the ‘great replacement’ theory is simply wrong.

This is one of the reasons I fear Kelly, who is a Buffalo-area blogger, may be right. “It’s an entire community of human beings, specifically targeted again. Reminded that they will always be targeted, again. Reminded of this country’s long ghastly history of this stuff, again. Confronted by our nation’s abject refusal to admit its past and atone, again…

“No horror, no injustice, no violent outcome is ever enough for us to collectively say, ‘No more.’ ‘We will be back about our business by, oh, I don’t know. Dinner time today, I guess…

“We are the country we have chosen to be, and I see no reason to believe we are going to choose to be anything other than this.

“And that is how America will fade into history.” America, prove him wrong if you can. Give us more than “thoughts and prayers.” Show that love actually DOES conquer hate.

*or the alleged shooter, if you prefer
** I capitalize Black people here, which I don’t always do, because of some scold in the comments to this post

May rambling: Don’t Mourn for Me, Organize!

Neal Adams, George Perez, Nate Hopper

Virginia bluebells – photo (c) 2022 by Wayne Harvey, used by permission

What One Million COVID Dead Mean for the U.S.’s Future

Mother Earth: “Don’t Mourn for Me, Organize!” and Earth Now Has a 50% Chance of Hitting 1.5°C of Warming by 2026

Environmental Racism: and the Philippine Elections: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver

Fact-checking “2000 Mules”, the movie alleging ballot fraud “uses a flawed analysis of cellphone location data and ballot drop box surveillance footage to cast doubt on the results of the 2020 presidential election nearly 18 months after it ended.”

John Green: My Religion and My Banned Books

The Real ID Deadline Is May 2023

Mexico to reroute trade railway connection from Texas to New Mexico due to Greg Abbott’s $4 billion stunt

Florida Taxpayers Sue Gov. Ron DeSantis For Eliminating Disney’s Special District. Also, Disney Copyrights Targeted in Bill Proposed by Sen. Josh Hawley. The librarian in me likes it. The fact that it’s meant to target the “woke” corporation, not so much.

Jon Stewart Warns “Authoritarianism” Is the Greatest Threat to Comedy as He Receives Mark Twain Humor Prize

 Concerns over ‘soft’ youth (1942)

The surprising afterlife of used hotel soap

How to build your poetry collection

The 23-game run of 23-year-old Mattea Roach on JEOPARDY!

Air Bud: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver

Now I Know: Why the  Michelin Man is White (and Maybe an Alcoholic) and Polly’s Neighbor Want a Walnut? and The Mystery of the Missing Internet, Rural Wales Edition, and The Moon Over the Rhine River

Voting

On May 17,  many entities in New York State are having their annual budget vote and school board election. Here’s the info for the Albany City School District

Additionally, the Albany Public Library Albany Public Library budget is on the ballot. “The total tax levy includes a 2.5% increase, which is under the NYS tax cap. The proposed increase would mean that the owner of a $150,000 home would pay approximately $5.98 more in library taxes next year. And there are 10 candidates for the four open trustee seats.

Note that the polling places may be different than the primary/general election sites. Check here. This is the first election for which a certain teenager I live with is eligible to vote.

Passing on

Nate Hopper was a member of our church choir. He was talented, friendly, funny, and generous of spirit in the too-brief time I knew him. The College of Saint Rose wrote on their Facebook page that the college senior had “been a member of the Saint Rose family since 2017. He once served as an RA, was beloved within our music community, and was the president of the Golden Notes, Saint Rose’s only co-ed a cappella group. “

Memorial for Alan Hahn, my old college buddy

Neal Adams, Comic Book Artist Who Revitalized Batman and Fought for Creators’ Rights, Dies at 80. Mark Evanier shares a few stories but especially here.

George Perez, Legendary Wonder Woman, Teen Titans Comic Book Artist, Dies at 67. He did a couple of pieces for FantaCo, my old stomping grounds, including the cover for our Avengers Chronicles.

Naomi Judd, of Grammy-Winning Duo The Judds, Dies at 76. Her daughters, Wynonna and Ashley, announced her death due to “mental illness”. Why can’t we say suicide

David Birney, Actor on ‘Bridget Loves Bernie’ and ‘St. Elsewhere,’ Dies at 83. Bridget Loves Bernie (1972-73, CBS), which I watched, was the highest-rated network show, #5, that was canceled after a single season.

Joanna Barnes, Actress in ‘The Parent Trap’ and ‘Auntie Mame,’ Dies at 87. She appears in both versions of The Parent Trap, which I saw during the pandemic.

A new database highlights African American burial grounds across NY state

MUSIC

Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night by Elliot Del Borgo

When The Battle Is Over  (LIVE) – The Sully Band Featuring Rebecca Jade

The Highwayman, written by Alfred Noyes, sung by Loreena McKennit

When I Rose This Morning – The Mississippi Mass Choir 

The Lark Ascending, music by Ralph Vaughn Williams, a poem by George Meredith

All By Myself – Eric Carmen

Ein Morgen, ein Mittag und ein Abend in Wien – Franz von Suppé

Show Biz Kids – Rickie Lee Jones

High Flight by John Gillespie Magee Jr.

Frank Sinatra’s ‘Watertown,’ a concept album set in Upstate NY, gets new life

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