Five Star's 289th Great Blog Roundup Is Brought to You By Jeanette Winterson
This week's Five Star roundup is brought to us by government-sanctioned human rights violations, an ambivalent student of means, exhaustion from having to repeatedly defend black people as humans with rights, combating invalid arguments that repeatedly end up killing people, the difference between poverty tourism and marketing trips, a commitment to acceptance and love in the face of death, and Jeanette Winterson:
— Jeanette Winterson —
It's a deep and heavy collection this week, so take a few deep breaths, grab some tissues, and load up on the comfort food. And, despite the weight of all that you're about to read, happy Tuesday!
So let’s talk about the truth. The truth is: Our government [the Australian government] has fooled a nation with deceitful scare tactics for their own political gain. Our government breaks international law and their own laws every day. Our government has no accountability, abuses human rights, commits psychological harm, and incarcerates children. There is no doubt this is one of the gravest chapters in our nation’s history.
Him: Okay. How much money do you make coming here. The classes are noisy, di pickney dem dunce, you have to get up before day. How much do you get for pay?
Me: Okay, since I started this let me finish it. I get $____.
Him: And you have to work 30 days to get that?
Him: Hmmm, I can get that tonight. One job. 45 minutes.
I used to think that maybe I’d let my anger serve as an engine. But I’ve since discovered that my anger over each new racist incident is now rivaled and augmented by the anger I feel when asked to explain, once more, why black people shouldn’t be brutalized, insulted, and killed. If you’re a person of color, the racism beat is also a professional commitment to defending your right and the right of people like you to be treated with consideration to an audience filled with readers champing at the bit to call you nothing but a nigger playing the race card.
You have the right to own a gun. Maybe owning a gun makes you feel safer, even though statistics show this is an illusion. Are you really not willing to give up that right if there’s a chance that doing so would save the lives of real human beings? It’s not an easy thing to do and it’s far from ideal, but neither is being shot in the face for the crime of wanting to see The Dark Knight Rises opening night.
With the growing popularity of such trips, there has also been a growing criticism. I think that is natural, as they’ve become more common. Some of the questions about blogger trips are valid and important, as I think that best practice as it relates to helping developing countries is something that should always be at the forefront. I wanted to flesh out some of the questions I’m hearing…
So acceptance, and sadness--well, I believe they can coexist. Sadness is inevitable--I'm only human, and trying too hard to rise above it only hurts more. But I do accept. I accept that life is finite, and I accept that my time will come soon. I accept that my life had been and still is a gift, and I accept the likely possibility that I won't see my kids grow older.
Please come back and share good writing with us over the coming week to be featured on the next Five Star. Submit it by Tuesday at midnight CST to nominate it for inclusion in the next roundup.
And because you are a fan of finding good, new writing on the internet: