Tag Archives: bookreviews

Review of Mindhunter, and Thinking on Abolition

         I  would like to hear your thoughts, Thoughtful Readers, on the idea of Project Do Better as what Professor Ruth Wilson Gilmore said of some striking teachers, that “this is also abolition work.”  I’ve been thinking of her partly because I think that our goals are nearly identical, but fear being identified as a radical.  The other reason I’ve been thinking of prisons is that someone recently thanked me for my service, at the US Naval Academy (though I served more usefully imho, as a cadet in the CAP and Jr. ROTC, by rendering first aid after a Metro bus accident!!).  That reminded me of an overheard conversation in my senior year of high school.   As I was nearing graduation, contemplating Annapolis, two guys in my class were also discussing their options.  One said “three hots and a cot.” The other said “hospital, prison, military.”  Then they both agreed -they had to enlist.  So, when someone thanks me for my service, I think of the many reasons, especially health care benefits, that Americans “volunteer” to serve in the military.  And then I think, can’t we do any better?  So, between a Soylent Green world, and where we are today, is there any third way?   I think there is, and I think that Prof. Gilmore is on to something.   It’s not so different, in it’s end goal, as that of Project Do Better.

     I’m quite drawn to her assertions that society must become just, equitable, and sustainable for all of us, which requires support for social and caring infrastructure.  That is the basis of my backward engineering from a vision of a secure world for all of us, to where we are now via 4 phases.  She, on the other hand, starts with a world in which there is no need for prisons.  Come to think of it, a world where no child lacks food, shelter, etc, would pretty much be, it seems, a world where there is no need for prisons, right?  In fact, I actually suggest a similar idea, as part of Phase IV, in chapter 5, P. 105/6

   I was reading a NYT (which I am apparently able to access only one time) article in which Prof. Gilmore is interviewed about her activism to abolish the prison system:

    “The path that abolitionists called for to achieve these goals seemed strikingly similar to the original (if ultimately failed) goals of the Great Society and “war on crime” laid out by Lyndon B. Johnson in the mid to late 1960s: to generate millions of new jobs, combat employment discrimination, desegregate schools, broaden the social safety net and build new housing.”

   Instead, we got “new and harsh forms of criminalization”  and even worse:

   “… prisons can access funds that traditionally went elsewhere — for example, money goes to county jails and state prisons for “mental health services” rather than into public health generally. “If you follow the money, you don’t have to find the company that’s profiting,” Gilmore explained to me later. “You can find all the people who are dependent on wages paid out by the Department of Corrections. The most powerful lobby group in California are the guards. It’s a single trade, with one employer, and it couldn’t be easier for them to organize. They can elect everyone from D.A.s up to the governor. They gave Gray Davis a couple million dollars, and he gave them a prison.””

 

     These are issues directly touching the work of Project Do Better, and for the same reasons:  to build a world in which all of us have all of our basic needs met, which by extension means that there is little to  no need for prisons, we need to trace the flows of money and find out who benefits from various types of expenditures.  Those resources could be going to Head Start, health services, etc, where a huge difference would be made well before the age most are sent to prison.   And again, avoiding unneeded suffering for all of us.

 

   “Her fundamental point is that prison was not inevitable — not for individuals and not for California. But the more prisons the state built, the better the state became at filling them, even despite falling crime rates.”

 

   And in spite of falling crime rates.  While the numbers may be in dispute, the fact that this:

   “Project Head Start, one of the most effective long-term, anticrime programs in history.”

   could be stated by a rather conservative person like John E. Douglas is impressive. 

         Here’s my review:

   ”  

Mindhunter: Inside the FBI’s Elite Serial Crime Unit

First of all, on the last page he says:
“I truly believe that along with more money.. what we most need more of is love. This is not being simplistic, it’s at the very heart of the issue.”

 

He is absolutely right. This is a world, particularly American society, that has put down true connection as secondary to a lot of things. And it’s costing us our lives. The lack of open emotional connection, the lack of friendship, the lack of love in society, and especially the lack of early childhood education and high quality child care, is creating a nightmare for people of all ages in this country that won’t be solved until we have a few generations of kids who’ve grown up being cared for by every single adult. Nothing more true was ever said than to point out as he did, or as one of his colleagues did , that the Head Start program is the most effective anti-crime program invented.
Secondly, a pox upon people who write in library books. Especially when they scratch out words so that you don’t know what the author said about someone. Back to our review:

We need to put our money where our mouths are and begin investing in those Early child Care programs for everything from childcare itself and paying our babysitters not only a living wage but to make sure that they’re giving even the very youngest of children educational and loving experiences, and of course early childhood education. These are the most important things that any society can do and we have neglected it to our detriment. It’s only now taking the toll on society that will take another 40 years to reverse.
We’d better get started.

 
 
page 25
 

5.58%“Interesting. It took quite a while before the dots left by Poe and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle were finally connected and institutionalized by the FBI.”

 
October 20, 2021 –

 

page 75
 

16.74%“There’s even more paranoid self importance today…”

 
October 21, 2021 –

 

page 119
 

26.56%“A prostituted 16-year-old or 15-year-old actually, does not have lovers. She cannot pawn off her child nor is the child illegitimate, because the child was a product of rape so illegitimacy or legitimacy is not involved here: she is a victim, not a criminal.”

 
October 21, 2021 –

 

page 157
 

35.04%“It just takes a wide enough experience and enough reading of other cases with that experience and the needed details to get to the “How could you know that Holmes? 100 years ago they had burned you for a witch!” moment.”

 
October 21, 2021 –

 

page 201
 

44.87% “Why did someone scribble out the adjective on both pages:

P. 200: “situation with this …girl and realized…
P. 201: “… where some other…girl would be in danger.””

 
October 21, 2021 –

 

page 389
 

86.83% “Exactly: early childhood education

“Project Head Start, one of the most effective long-term, anticrime programs in history.””

 
October 22, 2021 – Finished Reading

    So, there are a couple of points of intersection here: resources can go into early-age social services and we reap a seven-fold benefit,  dollar for dollar, and then also the fact that even an FBI official can admit that prison is not inevitable, as Prof. Gilmore said.  So, in other words, we really can change the way we do things, with not terribly radical methods.

 

   We can definitely  Do Better.

Shira

Action Prompts:

1.)  Share your thoughts on how we might start to build a world where all have at least enough.

2.)   What is your favorite hobby, and how could you see it fitting in with building empathy, or creating new tools for teaching adaptable thinking?

    Thoughtful Readers, do you have any ideas on learning, especially multiple #LanguageLearning, on-going education and empathy-building, to #EndPoverty, #EndHomelessness,  #EndMoneyBail & achieve freedom for All HumanKind?

Support our key #PublicDomainInfrastructure  & #StopSmoking for COVID-19:
1. #PublicLibraries,
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare, and
4. good #publictransport

Read, Write

-we can learn from the past via Stayed on Freedom’s Call ,

        by Teaching and Learning (Lesson Plan list) in the present, to

                                                                     help build a kinder future: Project Do Better

( 5 month GED lesson 29 of 67 plans),

   and  Babylon 5 review posts, from a Minbari Ranger’s perspective: story, especially historical women’s stories, can inspire courage and learning…

In Service,

Shira Destinie A. Jones, MPhil, MAT, BSCS

the year, 2022 CE = year 12022 HE

Stayed on Freedom’s Call
(free: https://archive.org/details/StayedOnF…)
includes two ‘imagination-rich’ walking tours, with songs, of Washington, DC. New interviews and research are woven into stories of old struggles shared by both the Jewish and African-American communities in the capital city.

Shared histories are explored from a new perspective of cultural parallels and parallel institution-building which brought the two communities together culturally and historically.

Please let us know, if you have a moment, how you liked it.

Shira Destinie Jones’ work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.


Continue reading Review of Mindhunter, and Thinking on Abolition

Book: L’Île sur l’océan Nuit, & let writers write, please!

        Ok,  I have to whine here, instead of working on my revision of Do Better:   Right after my review for a book that really needs more love!

  (updated title, too bad I didn’t think of this title when I posted it!!)

     Book: 

L’Île sur l’océan Nuit

     This is one YA heroic quest, by Michel Grimaud, that is a step above others -set mostly in a dystopian colony of earth, the STRESS (I love this acronym) – Société Terrienne D’EXPLOITATION du Système Solaire – keeps colonies ignorant and enslaved. Mar (our young protag.) must grow both courage and knowledge as he builds networks to change the system, and save his loved ones. 

    The story also shows the ideas in “It Takes a Village: And Other Lessons Children Teach Us” and General MacArthur’s Long Gray Line speech: that those around us impart the values and dreams of our society, and that is how children frame the context of their actions.  So it is really important to keep that in mind, and also to pay attention to them when they come back after traveling somewhere: they may have things to teach us!

   Hopefully this is not a spoiler, but I love the last line (that I remember):

“The Debt Does Not Exist!”

Ok, mild rant, or whine, maybe:

   Why is it so hard to find a specific book when no one else seems to like it, and why are there not some sort of mechanisms for fairly and freely publicising all books in a particular genre, rather than making readers search ten different sites, while the authors spend half their time marketing instead of writing? 

  (and I guess it’s time to actually find and read that book again, if I can get a library to ILL it from France…)

 

   OK, no rant, I guess.  Sorry, back to editing.

We can definitely  Do Better.

Shira

Action Prompts:

1.)  Share your thoughts on how we might make some way of finding and sorting all of the books out there in a way that really does help the well-written books find readers, without exhausting the writers!

 

    Thoughtful Readers, do you have any ideas on learning, especially multiple #LanguageLearning, on-going education and empathy-building, to #EndPoverty, #EndHomelessness,  #EndMoneyBail & achieve freedom for All HumanKind?

Support our key #PublicDomainInfrastructure  & #StopSmoking for COVID-19:
1. #PublicLibraries,
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare, and
4. good #publictransport

Read, Write

-we can learn from the past via Stayed on Freedom’s Call ,

        by Teaching and Learning (Lesson Plan list) in the present, to

                                                                     help build a kinder future: Project Do Better

( 5 month GED lesson 29 of 67 plans),

   and  Babylon 5 review posts, from a Minbari Ranger’s perspective: story, especially historical women’s stories, can inspire courage and learning…

Nih sakh sh’lekk, sleem wa.

Shira Destinie A. Jones, MPhil, MAT, BSCS

the year, 2022 CE = year 12022 HE

Stayed on Freedom’s Call
(free: https://archive.org/details/StayedOnF…)
includes two ‘imagination-rich’ walking tours, with songs, of Washington, DC. New interviews and research are woven into stories of old struggles shared by both the Jewish and African-American communities in the capital city.

Shared histories are explored from a new perspective of cultural parallels and parallel institution-building which brought the two communities together culturally and historically.

Please let us know, if you have a moment, how you liked it.

Shira Destinie Jones’ work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.


Continue reading Book: L’Île sur l’océan Nuit, & let writers write, please!

Book Review and Mild Rant

This might become more of a rant, but I doubt it.  This book needs more circulation, and Black History needs more attention.  See the book review first:

A Free Man of Color and His Hotel: Race, Reconstruction, and the Role of the Federal GovernmentA Free Man of Color and His Hotel: Race, Reconstruction, and the Role of the Federal Government by Carol Gelderman
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Here is another important book on Black History in DC that I read in 2013, but neglected to review, in the rush to finish editing Stayed on Freedom’s Call. This book details the success of a man who rose to importance and wealth in DC before the Civil War, and is generally not spoken about on the DC Tour circuit. That was part of what I tried to include in my walking tours of different parts of the city, and I hope is remembered in the new free walking tours of various neighborhoods of DC.

View all my reviews  and now, the rant:

I’m shocked by how little I can find of Black History, or of Black Historical Fiction,   in comparison to Regency, WWI, or other types of history on the blogosphere.  Am I just looking in the wrong places, or is the lack of attention to issues concerning BiPoC also here in blog land, too, and if so, how do we address this lack?

 

Action Prompt:

      Consider some ideas you may have on how our society can solve homelessness and child abuse, starting right now.  Share them with us in the comments, here, please, and write a story, post or tweet that uses those sources and your thoughts.

Dear Readers, ideas on learning, especially multiple #LanguageLearning, on-going education and empathy-building, to #EndPoverty, #EndHomelessness,  #EndMoneyBail & achieve freedom for All HumanKind?

Support our key #PublicDomainInfrastructure  & #StopSmoking at LEAST for CCOVID-19:
1. #PublicLibraries,
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare, and
4. good #publictransport

Read, Write

-we can learn from the past Stayed on Freedom’s Call for free,

         by Teaching and Learning (Lesson Plans offline) in the present, to

                      We can  Do Better: a Vision of a Better World to create a kinder future

 

( 5 month GED lesson 21 of 67 plans),

   and  Babylon 5 review posts, from a Minbari Ranger’s perspective: story inspires learning, and historical fiction can also inspire courage

Toward Peace,

Shira Destinie A. Jones, MPhil, MAT, BSCS

the year, 2021 CE = year 12021 HE

Stayed on Freedom’s Call
(free: https://archive.org/details/StayedOnF…)
includes two ‘imagination-rich’ walking tours, with songs, of Washington, DC. New interviews and research are woven into stories of old struggles shared by both the Jewish and African-American communities in the capital city.

Shared histories are explored from a new perspective of cultural parallels and parallel institution-building which brought the two communities together culturally and historically.

Please leave a review, if you can, on the GoodReads page, and please do let us know here that you’ve reviewed it there!  🙂

Creative Commons License
Shira Destinie Jones’ work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

 

for the sake of and in service to HumanKind…

Shira  

A book review I just have to post: Why is this not immediately obvious?

     Ok, Jill, you win: another rant, this time from some notes I just found while looking for some old poetry that I archived.  This book review is sadly still relevant, in terms of our society needing to talk to each other, and have empathy for one another:

 Poverty and Famines: An Essay on Entitlement and DeprivationPoverty and Famines: An Essay on Entitlement and Deprivation by Amartya Sen
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Once again, a book for which I was sure that I’d written a review, probably because I cited it so often during my PhD work which eventually became my MPhil thesis.

I found these notes from 2008, and am posting them with just a tiny bit of clean up:

As I look back over Senn’s 1981 ‘Poverty and Famines’ after yet another argument, back in 2008, with my nice Thai office mate on why America is not in fact the Land of Opportunity if you start off poor, I see again what hit me when I first arrived at the University of Bath.

Middle class people really don’t get it. My office mate keeps saying ‘just work hard and you’ll get a job’ but can’t fathom the lack of opportunities for people who have no connections and no home or family on which to fall back.

Senn likewise documents the lack of resources and opportunities that play in with the system of entitlements in famines to ensure that the wealthy and middle classes tend not to suffer much, but the poor suffer by falling further into destitution or even starving to death. This is something I found myself thinking as I read ‘well, duh’ -it’s obvious to someone who lives among poor people because it’s all around the poor and the working classes. But to someone living in a house the next block over, with an office or a shop to tend to daily, it may not be so obvious. Just like an academic presenting ‘findings’ showing that the poor in England (lone mothers in that seminar) were better off if they had both a job and child care support. Well, duh. Why is this not immediately obvious to begin with? Because people with connections can’t imagine not having them. Or something. I’m not sure. It looks clear to me that people who’ve never missed a meal (as my older Chinese former roommate pointed out about the younger students, saying “they can’t understand because they haven’t suffered”), like my office mate, can’t understand the difficulties of people who weren’t blessed with such luck.

Let’s make more luck for all of us, together.

View all my reviews  

   We now return you to your Sunday story of two, sorry, now three, very young women escaping bondage through Maryland:

…  Parts 13 (Interruptions)12 (Gifts)11 (Punishment),  10 (Warmth),   9 (Found)8 (Lost)7 (Rock)6 (Believe), 5 (Naming), 4 (Home), 3 (Trust), 2 (Hope), and 1 (Nightmares) have posted on previous Sundays…

Part 14: Words

     Anna looked back at me, shaking her head ever so slightly.  Now was not the time for questions.  Apparently the state of things was more delicate than I had surmised.

“Well, no decisions should be made on an empty stomach.  Young Tilly has helped me to prepare dinner, and there is to be pie afterward.  Then, and not a moment before, we will find some manner of resolving this situation.”

The doctor’s wife had spoken, and not an objection was there to be heard.  The doctor placed the sheaf of papers upon the writing desk by the bedside, nodded at both of us, and left the room, his wife having already gone down to see to dinner.  The smell of pie was now being joined by that of what seemed to be a collection of roasted vegetable smells, as though it were Sunday after church.

The three of us shared a basin to wash up and dress for dinner, only just sitting in a row on the bed by the time the doctor’s wife arrived carrying a larger tray than usual.  Anna and Tilly helped her arrange our place settings, while I made sure that all remained in equilibrium, seated as we were upon the bedside.

“I must return and dine downstairs with my husband, in case any curious neighbors look in, but I shall come back up shortly to collect the dishes.  I do wish you all a good meal.”

We each nodded our thanks, and she gave a gracious nod in return before closing the door behind her.  I looked at Anna, nodding toward little Tilly’s plate.  Anna turned to the child, encouraging her to eat, but the little girl shook her head.

“Grace.”

By all the heavens.  At last!  I was overjoyed to finally be able to say grace without seeming to be a troublesome patient.  Anna smiled, and all three of us bowed our heads.  Tilly looked up at me, and I decided to give some small thanks to the good Lord for getting us here safely.  Then, our hearts more at ease, we ate with less worry.  It was still plain that each of us feared this new development, but things suddenly seemed just a little bit better.

After clearing about half her plate, seeming to be absorbed in her thoughts as she ate, Anna looked up at me.

“Miss Willow?”

“Yes, Miss Anna?”

“How do you feel about your reading, now?”

My heart sank.  I had been sure that this question would come soon, and equally sure that I would not be up to the challenge which the question was meant to represent.

During the time I spent convalescing at the home of Dr. H., we were not idle.  The doctor’s wife spent every spare moment, it seemed, showing me a new eye chart, with diverse characters of the alphabet.

This served two purposes.  First, in checking my vision after each meal, we could all see the progress of my recovery.  Second, and most urgently, Anna and I were learning our letters.  We would need to know how to read if we were to make sure our escape, for many papers and postings made mention of our evasion, and according to a certain Mr. Bacon, knowledge was power.

Little did we know how soon the need for such power would arrive.

 

       This is the continuation scene in my historical fiction series  Ann&Anna.  I  hope that this series will move you to learn more ways to help use our history to build new tools.

  Part 13 was last Sunday, and Part 15 will be next Sunday.

I look forward to your thoughts.

Shira

Action Prompts:

1.) Share your thoughts on how this story may encourage empathy-building cooperation, and might help, or hinder, inclusive thinking.

2.) Write a story, post or tweet that uses those thoughts.

Dear Readers, ideas on learning, especially multiple #LanguageLearning, on-going education and empathy-building, to #EndPoverty, #EndHomelessness,  #EndMoneyBail & achieve freedom for All HumanKind? 

Support our key #PublicDomainInfrastructure  & #StopSmoking at least for CCOVID-19:
1. #PublicLibraries,
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare, and
4. good #publictransport
Read, Write

-we can learn from the past Stayed on Freedom’s Call for free,

        by Teaching and Learning (Lesson Plans offline) in the present, to

                     We can  Do Better:  Project Do Better proposes a path to create a kinder future

 

Peace    

Shira Destinie A. Jones, MPhil, MAT, BSCS

the year, 2021 CE = year 12021 HE

( 5 month GED lesson 22 of 67 plans…),

       and Ranger M.’s Babylon 5 review posts, because story inspires learning, and historical stories inspire tool-building, right?  “Of course right!”

Stayed on Freedom’s Call
(free: https://archive.org/details/StayedOnF…)
includes two ‘imagination-rich’ walking tours, with songs, of Washington, DC. New interviews and research are woven into stories of old struggles shared by both the Jewish and African-American communities in the capital city.

Shared histories are explored from a new perspective of cultural parallels and parallel institution-building which brought the two communities together culturally and historically.

Please leave a review, if you can, on the GoodReads page.

Shira 

Creative Commons License
Shira Destinie Jones’ work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Fun with Languages Fridays: Lupin, 1:1, aka P1e1

 

                 Fun with Languages Friday:   French Fridays with Lupin, Omar Sy style!

 

               I love how the first episode moves between excerpts from the Arsène Lupin book(s), and the present-day character played by Sy.  I had a very difficult time getting into the original work by Maurice Leblanc, at least as read on LibriVox.org.  It seemed to me that the first story was more of a cynical rip-off of Sherlock Holmes, and at the expense of a working class person, to boot, than anything I might eventually find uplifting.  I listened for a while, and decided that a story like that of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s “The Yellow Face” was beyond Mr. Leblanc.  Nevertheless, in the hands of a character played by Omar Sy, the Gentleman-Cambrioleur became a compelling one.  The modern story for why he turns his brilliant mind to crime provides the change of perspective necessary for me to pay attention, once more, to this apparently popular classic French series.

   I was going to comment only in English, but I did take a note or two in French, which I do more often as I get immersed in the series.   I hope you dear Readers do not mind:

Il semble que les costauds ne peuvent pas courir.

 
C’est parfait, avoir le livre comme cadeau de son père
 
10% par semaine !!
 
English:
 
So apparently, big guys can’t run and it’s perfect the way the book was presented as a gift from the father. 10% per week no wonder these guys are kneecappers!!
 
 
    I love Sy’s work, from Lupin, to the film Le Chant Du Loup, to his (I think) breakout film Intouchables.  I wonder where he stands, in the short line of Black actors who have made such a difference in western film?  He certainly makes a brilliant contribution.
 
 
   The review for Lupin Châpitre 2 will be the week after next…
 
Happy New Year, 12022 HE (Human/Holocene Era)!
Shira
 
 

     I also have a short historical fiction series called  Ann & Anna.  I  hope that this series will move you to learn more ways to help use our history to build new tools.  Part 12 was last Sunday.

I look forward to your thoughts.

Shira

Action Prompts:

1.) Share your thoughts on how language learning may encourage empathy-building cooperation, and might help, or hinder, inclusive thinking.

2.) Write a story, post or tweet that uses those thoughts.

Dear Readers, ideas on learning, especially multiple #LanguageLearning, on-going education and empathy-building, to #EndPoverty, #EndHomelessness,  #EndMoneyBail & achieve freedom for All HumanKind? 

Support our key #PublicDomainInfrastructure  & #StopSmoking at least for CCOVID-19:
1. #PublicLibraries,
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare, and
4. good #publictransport
Read, Write

-we can learn from the past via Stayed on Freedom’s Call,

         by Teaching and Learning (Lesson Plan list) in the present, to

                         We can  Do Better: a Vision of a Better World to create a kinder future

 

( 5 month GED lesson 22 of 67 plans),

   and  Babylon 5 review posts, from a Minbari Ranger’s perspective: story inspires learning…

Toward Peace,

Shira Destinie A. Jones, MPhil, MAT, BSCS

Shira

the year, 2021 CE = year 12021 HE

Stayed on Freedom’s Call
(free: https://archive.org/details/StayedOnF…)
includes two ‘imagination-rich’ walking tours, with songs, of Washington, DC. New interviews and research are woven into stories of old struggles shared by both the Jewish and African-American communities in the capital city.

Shared histories are explored from a new perspective of cultural parallels and parallel institution-building which brought the two communities together culturally and historically.

Please leave a review, if you can, on the GoodReads page, and please do let us know here that you’ve reviewed it there!  🙂

Still Separate and Unequal, and Adulting for all

This book should be read by every Adult, and our country must become more fully inclusive for all of us.  Gillon expains the importance of The Kerner Commission’s Report, which was apparently ignored, and then buried.

Following the Report’s recommendations, as Dr. King suggested, would have made, and still can make, a tremendous difference:

How sad that the contents and conclusions of this report are still relevant, and still ignored, today, 50 years after it was released in response to the riots in Newark and Detroit of the “long hot” summer of 1967. I found this book after seeing Dr. King’s response to the question, during the Memphis garbage workers’ strike, of what it would take to prevent or call off his Poor People’s March on Washington: the answer was to implement the recommendations in this report.

The report was commissioned to find out what caused the rioting, not how to prevent further riots. The clearest distinctions between those who actively participated in the rioting and their neighbors who did not, at least at the start of each riot, was the trigger of having witnessed or experienced police brutality. But what primed that trigger for action was the underlying anger, poverty, constant discrimination, and despair to which the Black community in particular was subjected over a very long period of time.

The report called for various measures to be taken which would have improved the lives not only of members of the Black community, but also everyone else in the nation. Measures like the elimination of sub-standard housing in inner-cities, building new schools, health centers, and community facilities, and introducing a guaranteed minimum income would help all citizens, not only those bereft of resources and hope when they were freed with only the clothing on their backs, unable to melt into White American society. From the disrespect by police, to the lack of garbage collection in inner-city neighborhoods, Black Americans were fed up with White America’s deliberate disregard for “the realities of life for many poor blacks” in the United States. This anger, combined with the criminalization of poverty (which was just beginning to kick off the era of Mass Incarceration), the lack of Black faces in [the media, police, highly paid professions and other areas of potential] power, led to a sense of hopelessness and fear that non-violent resistance would never break down a system which was inherently designed to break down the Black community. Ideas like the War on Drugs, brought back by Reagan after the Carter years, and Law and Order, parroted by both right and left, muddied the discourse around solving the problems that led to the riots, instead creating a cloud of convenient reasons to blame inner-city Black communities for their problems while ignoring the structural issues that had created and perpetuated the problems since the slavery era.

The conclusion drawn by the report, above all, was that the entire nation needed education and “a richer portrait of life in urban areas” and to hire many many more Black police officers.

I think that many of the issues of perspective mentioned in the book by the author in his analysis of the report and its time are now beginning to be looked at again, as the discussion around White Privilege becomes louder and more mainstream. That discussion is a necessary but insufficient part of the solution to our current problems, which go back to pre-existing problems pointed out by the report. Please read this book on the Commission report (and also see Hellhound on His Trail: The Stalking of Martin Luther King, Jr. and the International Hunt for His Assassin), and then, write your reps!

Pages I found especially relevant included:

P. 6: 1966 result of creation of ghettos by the 1930s-50s urban renewal aka Negro Removal all across the USA
** P. 12: What a contrast: only 1/100 white people thought that blacks were poorly treated in the USA…
***Ribicoff P. 37: recos…
P. 100: “in the ghetto” last garbage collection (if at all), police disrespectful, school & housing dilapidated
P. 228 (and the answer to that boot-straps baloney:) discrimination and segregation prevented many blacks from following the same patterns which had been followed by immigrant groups, and limited blacks to all but the lowest … jobs

Let’s #EndPoverty & #EndMoneyBail by improving these four parts of our good #PublicDomainInfrastructure 4:
1. #libraries,
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare , and
4. good #publictransport

So, it turns out that most, if not all, of these problems are still with us, today.

We could change that.

Action Items:

1.) Read this book, preferably getting the first copy from your local public library,

2.) Share them with us in the comments, here, please.

3.) Share your thoughts on how a calendar based on the Holocene Epoch might help, or hinder, inclusive thinking,

4.) Write a book, blog post or tweet that uses an alternate calendar, tells a good story, and makes a difference. I’m working on that through my historical fantasy #WiP, #WhoByFireIWill. If you write a book, once published, please consider donating to your local public library.

Dear Readers, ideas on learning, especially multiple #LanguageLearning, on-going education and empathy-building, to #EndPoverty, #EndHomelessness,  #EndMoneyBail & achieve freedom for All HumanKind?

Support our key #PublicDomainInfrastructure  & #StopSmoking for CCOVID-19:
1. #PublicLibraries,
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare, and
4. good #publictransport
Read, Write

January, 2021 CE = January 12021 HE

(The previous lesson…)

Creative Commons License
Shira Destinie Jones is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Day 5 of GED in 5 months, libraries, and La Convivencia during Sukkot (aka Tabernacles)!

During this holiday of Sukkot, aka the Feast of Tabernacles, or Booths, the verse proclaiming this holiday as one of inclusion for all nations, and that inclusion which happened 1000 years ago in Islamic Spain, seems especially important to remember, today. 

Remember, if we did it before, we can do it again!  We go farthest fastest by working together, right? 

“Of course, right!”

Libraries are one of the greatest legacies of the Convivencia (remember that cooperation, in Muslim Spain, of Jewish, Christian and Islamic scholars, that gave Europe books again?), and one of the key parts of Phase I of the Four Freedoms movement.

 

Day 5 Lesson Plan

Khan Academy Indefinite Pronouns
Interactive Indefinite Pronouns Worksheet Online
IndefPronouns Prntable WrksheetWoutAns
IndefPronouns Printable WksheetAnswers
Khan Academy Basic Adding negative integers BasicNegativeIntegersJustPg1
Day5 ExitSlips

(Day 4Day 6)

Action Items:

1.) Search your local public library’s online catalogue for books on La Convivencia.

(here’s a good one to start with: Read more in M. Rosa Menocal’s book, available at most public libraries!)

2.) Share them with us in the comments, here, please.

3.) Share your thoughts on what La Convivencia was, and what it might have been like to live in Al Andalus at that time,

4.) Write a book, story, blog post or tweet that uses those thoughts, and please tell us about it! If you write a book, once it is published please consider donating a copy to your local public library.

Dear Readers, ideas on learning, especially multiple #LanguageLearning, on-going education and empathy-building, to #EndPoverty, #EndHomelessness,  #EndMoneyBail & achieve freedom for All HumanKind

Support our key #PublicDomainInfrastructure  & #StopSmoking for CCOVID-19:
1. #PublicLibraries,
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare, and
4. good #publictransport

ReadWrite, Vote, Teach and Learn (Lesson Plans offline) 

 

Nih sakh sh’lekk, sleem wa. 

my Babylon 5 review posts, if you like Science Fiction, and

a proposed Vision for a kinder world on Wondering Wednesdays…    

 

Shira Destinie A. Jones, BsC, MAT, MPhil

 

our year 2021 CE =  12021 HE

 

(GED lesson plans: Day 1)

 

Stayed on Freedom’s Call
(free copies at: https://archive.org/details/StayedOnF…)
includes two ‘imagination-rich’ walking tours, with songs, of Washington, DC. New interviews and research are woven into stories of old struggles shared by both the Jewish and African-American communities in the capital city.

 

Shared histories are explored from a new perspective of cultural parallels and parallel institution-building which brought the two communities together culturally and historically.

 

-one can add Stayed on Freedom’s Call via this GoodReads button: ,  Please leave a review, if you can make a bit of time, on the GoodReads page.

 

 

Shira Destinie Jones is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Thoughtful Thursdays, still Separate and Unequal, and Adulting for all

This book should be read by every Adult, and our country must become more fully inclusive for all of us.  Gillon expains the importance of The Kerner Commission’s Report, which was apparently ignored, and then buried.

Following the Report’s recommendations, as Dr. King suggested, would have made, and still can make, a tremendous difference:

How sad that the contents and conclusions of this report are still relevant, and still ignored, today, 50 years after it was released in response to the riots in Newark and Detroit of the “long hot” summer of 1967. I found this book after seeing Dr. King’s response to the question, during the Memphis garbage workers’ strike, of what it would take to prevent or call off his Poor People’s March on Washington: the answer was to implement the recommendations in this report.

The report was commissioned to find out what caused the rioting, not how to prevent further riots. The clearest distinctions between those who actively participated in the rioting and their neighbors who did not, at least at the start of each riot, was the trigger of having witnessed or experienced police brutality. But what primed that trigger for action was the underlying anger, poverty, constant discrimination, and despair to which the Black community in particular was subjected over a very long period of time.

The report called for various measures to be taken which would have improved the lives not only of members of the Black community, but also everyone else in the nation. Measures like the elimination of sub-standard housing in inner-cities, building new schools, health centers, and community facilities, and introducing a guaranteed minimum income would help all citizens, not only those bereft of resources and hope when they were freed with only the clothing on their backs, unable to melt into White American society. From the disrespect by police, to the lack of garbage collection in inner-city neighborhoods, Black Americans were fed up with White America’s deliberate disregard for “the realities of life for many poor blacks” in the United States. This anger, combined with the criminalization of poverty (which was just beginning to kick off the era of Mass Incarceration), the lack of Black faces in [the media, police, highly paid professions and other areas of potential] power, led to a sense of hopelessness and fear that non-violent resistance would never break down a system which was inherently designed to break down the Black community. Ideas like the War on Drugs, brought back by Reagan after the Carter years, and Law and Order, parroted by both right and left, muddied the discourse around solving the problems that led to the riots, instead creating a cloud of convenient reasons to blame inner-city Black communities for their problems while ignoring the structural issues that had created and perpetuated the problems since the slavery era.

The conclusion drawn by the report, above all, was that the entire nation needed education and “a richer portrait of life in urban areas” and to hire many many more Black police officers.

I think that many of the issues of perspective mentioned in the book by the author in his analysis of the report and its time are now beginning to be looked at again, as the discussion around White Privilege becomes louder and more mainstream. That discussion is a necessary but insufficient part of the solution to our current problems, which go back to pre-existing problems pointed out by the report. Please read this book on the Commission report (and also see Hellhound on His Trail: The Stalking of Martin Luther King, Jr. and the International Hunt for His Assassin), and then, write your reps!

Pages I found especially relevant included:

P. 6: 1966 result of creation of ghettos by the 1930s-50s urban renewal aka Negro Removal all across the USA
** P. 12: What a contrast: only 1/100 white people thought that blacks were poorly treated in the USA…
***Ribicoff P. 37: recos…
P. 100: “in the ghetto” last garbage collection (if at all), police disrespectful, school & housing dilapidated
P. 228 (and the answer to that boot-straps baloney:) discrimination and segregation prevented many blacks from following the same patterns which had been followed by immigrant groups, and limited blacks to all but the lowest … jobs

Let’s #EndPoverty & #EndMoneyBail by improving these four parts of our good #PublicDomainInfrastructure 4:
1. #libraries,
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare , and
4. good #publictransport

So, it turns out that most, if not all, of these problems are still with us, today.

We could change that.

Action Items:

1.) Read this book, preferably getting the first copy from your local public library,

2.) Share them with us in the comments, here, please.

3.) Share your thoughts on how a calendar based on the Holocene Epoch might help, or hinder, inclusive thinking,

4.) Write a book, blog post or tweet that uses an alternate calendar, tells a good story, and makes a difference. I’m working on that through my historical fantasy #WiP, #WhoByFireIWill. If you write a book, once published, please consider donating to your local public library.

Dear Readers, ideas on learning, especially multiple #LanguageLearning, on-going education and empathy-building, to #EndPoverty, #EndHomelessness,  #EndMoneyBail & achieve freedom for All HumanKind?

Support our key #PublicDomainInfrastructure  & #StopSmoking for CCOVID-19:
1. #PublicLibraries,
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare, and
4. good #publictransport
Read, Write -one can add Stayed on Freedom’s Call via this GR button:

Yassas,   γεια σας!    Salût !  Nos vemos!  Görüşürüz!     ! שָׁלוֹם

ShiraDest

January, 2021 CE = January 12021 HE

(The previous lesson 32/67 published since this post, and the most recent lesson 33/67…)

Creative Commons License
Shira Destinie Jones by ShiraDest is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

French Fridays, review/révu: Ne Lâche pas Ma Main -racism vs. Health Care

This is the review of a book I read in 2015, set on the French island (in the Indian Ocean) of la Réunion. The English is first, and then the French.

This book showed me how reading novels can build both empathy and understanding as part of new knowledge placed in context.

Ne lâche pas ma mainNe lâche pas ma main by Michel Bussi

Busssi shows us a world within another world ; that of people of color and the prejudices which the tourists do not see. He describes the island so well that you feel as if you were there, and finishes with a final word so moving it demands thought, and even an immediate re-read. (Also may go well with Black Feminist Thought: Knowledge, Consciousness, and the Politics of Empowerment, many thanks to Ruth for her review.

Shira HoloceneHuman Era Destinie
24 August, 12015 HE

BUSSI nous montre le monde dans un autre monde, celle de gens de couleur et les préjuges invisibles aux touristes. Il décrit l’île si bien qu’on se sent la-ba même, et fini la dernier mot si jaillissant qu’on ne peut pas s’arrêter de y penser, et même le relire tout de suite.

24,8,12 015 èH( ère Holocène ou ère Humaine)
ShiraDest

View all my reviews

 

I really hope that this book is available in English, for those who cannot read it in French.  Please read it, and share!

   Salût !  

Action Items in support of empathy that you can take right now:

1.) Search for two different sources to check out this book (the Open Library, for example),

2.) Share them with us in the comments, here, please.

3.) Share your thoughts on how you like this book, after reading, or while reading it,

4.) Write a blog post or tweet that uses those thoughts.

Dear Readers, any additional ideas toward learning, especially multiple #LanguageLearning as part of on-going education and empathy-building, to #EndPoverty, #EndHomelessness,  #EndMoneyBail & achieve freedom for All HumanKind

Support our key #PublicDomainInfrastructure  & #StopSmoking for CCOVID-19:
1. #PublicLibraries,
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare, and
4. good #publictransport
Read, Write

Stayed on Freedom's Call: Cooperation Between Jewish And African-American Communities In Washington, DC, Ranked Choice Voting and Housing for ALL!!, Teach and Learn (Lesson Plans)!

 

ShiraDest

NaNoWriMo 2020 CE

November, 2020 CE = 12020 HE

(The previous lesson plan since this post, and the most recent lesson plan…)

Creative Commons License
Shira Destinie Jones by ShiraDest is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

French Fridays, Review/Revu: Les Fourmis, and librarians

Libraries are where the librarians, who find obscure bits of local knowledge, and make great book recommendations live!  This book is among the best books I have read, but I must say that the rule of the first holds: the rest of the books in the series went downhill.  Werber’s other books, too, were interesting from a philosophical point of view, but increasingly irritating as metaphysical works.  This one, however, I am half considering reading again! 

-back in 2015:

Les Fourmis (La saga des fourmis, #1)Les Fourmis by Bernard Werber
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Don’t kill any more ants!!
This book is worth learning French to read. Honestly. It had me worrying for the fate of an ant by page 40! Fascinating swap of perspectives, and hair-raising cliff-hanger ending. I have the 3rd book in this trilogy, but am anxiously waiting to get the 2nd from the library!

Ne tuez plus de fourmis !
Ce livre vaut la peine d’apprendre le français pour le lire. Vraiment. Il m’a fait soucier pour le destin d’une fourmi avant la 40e page ! Changement impressionnant de points de vues et fin incroyable. J’ai déjà le 3e tome mais j’attends avec impatience le 2e de la bibliothèque !

ShiraDest
22 Decembre, 12015 HE

View all my GR reviews

So, maybe I was over-empathizing with the ants?

Action Items in support of literacy for All:

1.) Imagine two different ways to increase library funding.

2.) Share them with us in the comments, here, please.

3.) Share your thoughts on how you think you’d feel in a library if you were an ant,

4.) Write a story, book, blog post or tweet that uses Items 1-3 above, tells a good story, and makes a difference. I’m working on that through my historical fantasy #WiP, #WhoByFireIWill. Once published, donate one or more copies to your local public library, as I intend to do.  Please tell us about your plans and how they go!

Dear Readers, any additional ideas toward learning, especially multiple #LanguageLearning as part of on-going education and empathy-building, to #EndPoverty, #EndHomelessness,  #EndMoneyBail & achieve freedom for All HumanKind

Support our key #PublicDomainInfrastructure  & #StopSmoking for CCOVID-19:
1. #PublicLibraries,
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare, and
4. good #publictransport
Read, Write -one can add Stayed on Freedom’s Call via this GR button:

 Salût !  

ShiraDest

November, 2020 CE = 12020 HE

(The previous lesson plan since this post, and the most recent lesson plan…)

Creative Commons License
Shira Destinie Jones by ShiraDest is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.