You are single, and you’re given a trial membership for a dating site, whose members are organized into several categories, including race.
You are allowed to select your target sex and age range, but unless you upgrade for a fee, which you don’t intend to pay for the time being, you are restricted to browsing and contacting members of one ethnicity only:
I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.”
Scanning the headlines on the latest developments in the wake of the grand jury’s failure to indict officer Wilson for the killing of Michael Brown, I came across one that asked why it was so difficult for white people to understand Ferguson.
I didn’t read the article, so I haven’t prepped myself as to what those reasons are according to that piece, but … Read More →
The other day, CNN’s early morning weatherman explained that a particular meteorological metric (some wind speed or precipitation amount or whatever, I forget the context) “may not seem that much to you or I, but …”
I submit that he never would have said “may not seem that much to I or you,” not only to avoid coming across as an ill-mannered born-in-a-barn churl that likes to put himself first, but primarily because his linguistic sensibilities would … Read More →
Not a day goes by that we aren’t flooded with tidings of lives having ended for one reason or another, many untimely. Scores killed in a suicide blast over here, a jetliner blown out of the sky over there, a bus full of children that plowed through a guardrail somewhere, school shootings, famines, Ebola, celebrity deaths, and on and on.
Too many to contemplate each one individually.
Add to the list the Grim Reaper’s ever-growing toll from within our own circle of relatives, friends, and … Read More →
Some years ago, a distant in-law relative of mine, having just been informed by his physician that his cancer had recurred and briefed on the various treatment modalities available at this stage, declared that he didn’t wish to go on living “under these circumstances,” drew one final breath, and … Read More →
A very good measure of how democratic a society is is to ask about the attitude towards taxes. I mean, if you had a free functioning democratic society, April 15th, when you pay your taxes, that would be a day of celebration: Here we are, getting together, to fund the policies that we decided on. That’s great. That’s what we wanna do. [But h]ere it’s a day of mourning. It’s not a government of, by, and for the people. You know, that itself is a sign of the serious decline of the functioning of the democratic system.”
Compelling and attractive as the above argument may sound at first blush, it appears to rest on a fanciful notion of “we” and “the people” as a monolithic entity, whose … Read More →
Pounding the New York City pavement while tailing her undercover DP for ten hours, a callipygian young lady named Shoshana, garbed in formfitting black T&Jeans, reportedly scored a total of 108 catcalls (“This doesn’t include the countless winks, whistles, etc.”) from male strangers she encountered during her marathon stroll.
In general, catcalls are perceived as an unwelcome annoyance, but in this particular case they obviously were desired, the more the merrier, for the purpose of producing … Read More →
American literature connoisseurs, whale aficionados, and those unable to disremember random factoids they picked up in high school or on Jeopardy!, will recognize the above request to be addressed in a certain manner as the opening line of a famous work of fiction.
That’s how the novel begins, and that’s how any book that says “Moby Dick” and “Herman Melville” on its front cover ought to begin.
Immediately following the obligatory front matter (publisher’s name and logo, copyright notice, if-you-purchased-this-book-without-a-cover disclaimer, etc.) the reader should encounter, without further ado, the first line of the material advertised on the cover, be it of the first chapter, or of some preface or … Read More →