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Escalating Tensions in Ferguson, Missouri

We are now entering day 10 of protests in Ferguson, MO, protesting the murder of unarmed teenager Michael Brown by local law enforcement officer Darren Wilson on August 9th.
posted by Phire to MetaFilter on Aug 18 at 11:45 PM
256 users marked this as a favorite

"That wasn't any act of God. That was an act of pure human fuckery."

Things That Don't Suck, Some Notes on The Stand
I recently reread The Stand for no particular reason other than I felt like it. I'm honestly not sure how many time[s] I've read it at this point, more than three, less than a half dozen (though I can clearly remember my first visit to that horrifyingly stripped bare world as I can remember the first reading of all the truly great King stories). It's not my favorite of King's work, but it is arguably his most richly and completely imagined. It truly is the American Lord of The Rings, with the concerns of England (Pastorialism vs. Industrialism, Germany's tendency to try and blow it up every thirty years or so) replaced by those of America (Religion, the omnipresent struggle between our liberal and libertarian ideals, our fear of and dependence on the military, racial and gender tension) and given harrowing size.

I'm happy to say that The Stand holds up well past the bounds of nostalgia and revisiting the world and these characters was as pleasurable as ever. But you can't step in the same river twice, even when you're revisiting a favorite book. Even if the river hasn't changed you have. This isn't meant as any kind of comprehensive essay on The Stand. Just a couple of things I noticed upon dipping my toes in the river this time.

[Spoiler alert: assume everything, from the link above to those below, contains SPOILERS.]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome to MetaFilter on Aug 19 at 1:31 PM
168 users marked this as a favorite

Ice Cream without the screaming


What are the best cities in the world for walking, arting, and eating?

My husband and I have realized that our ideal form of travel is to get an apartment in another city for a week or two and spend the entire time walking around the city, eating, and visiting museums. What are the best cities in the world we can do this in where we can also get around speaking English, Spanish, or German?
posted by EmilyFlew to Ask MetaFilter on Aug 19 at 10:31 AM
120 users marked this as a favorite

Oh, quinoa, how I love thee

Help me find more one-pot quinoa dinners!
posted by peanut_mcgillicuty to Ask MetaFilter on Aug 16 at 11:18 AM
100 users marked this as a favorite

Our Microbiome May Be Looking Out for Itself

Your body is home to about 100 trillion bacteria and other microbes, collectively known as your microbiome. Naturalists first became aware of our invisible lodgers in the 1600s, but it wasn’t until the past few years that we’ve become really familiar with them. This recent research has given the microbiome a cuddly kind of fame. We’ve come to appreciate how beneficial our microbes are — breaking down our food, fighting off infections and nurturing our immune system. It’s a lovely, invisible garden we should be tending for our own well-being. But in the journal Bioessays, a team of scientists has raised a creepier possibility. Perhaps our menagerie of germs is also influencing our behavior in order to advance its own evolutionary success — giving us cravings for certain foods, for example.
Maybe the microbiome is our puppet master.

posted by Blasdelb to MetaFilter on Aug 18 at 4:48 AM
94 users marked this as a favorite

This is Mr Fine Wine, playing old soul 45s for the next two hours...

Downtown Soulville, WFMU's weekly show for classic soul 45s, hit its 20th anniversary on Friday. The learned, laidback cratedigger Mr Fine Wine has played an estimated 20,000 old soul 45s since the show's launch. The full shows from the last six years are available on the WFMU website. Expect two-hour bursts of soul vinyl, early RnB and Detroit funk from Matt Weingarden.
posted by garlicsmack to MetaFilter on Aug 16 at 4:17 PM
89 users marked this as a favorite

"My Sex Is Magic"

Brenna Twohy, representing Portland, OR, performs her poem "Fantastic Breasts and Where To Find Them," about Harry Potter, pornography, and non-consent, at the 2014 National Poetry Slam.
posted by ocherdraco to MetaFilter on Aug 19 at 9:28 PM
89 users marked this as a favorite

What's your holy grail beauty product that makes you smell incredible?

What's your holy grail beauty product that makes you smell incredible?
posted by moons in june to Ask MetaFilter on Aug 15 at 8:47 PM
87 users marked this as a favorite

girls and technology!

WYNC's Manoush Zomorodi investigates the gender gap in tech and computer science, and finds a number of people working towards bridging that gap, from childhood to university: completely restructuring a required computer science course to make it more welcoming to female university students, celebrating women in computing history (and recognizing that computer science wasn't so male-dominated, and making children's books and toys (even dollhouses!) for kids to explore programming concepts on their own. She also noticed that the majority of female computer science students in the US had grown up overseas - possibly because computer science isn't a common subject in American high schools. This is slated to change: a new AP Computer Science subject is in the works, with efforts to get 10,000 highly-trained computer science teachers in 10,000 high schools across the US. If you want to join Mindy Kaling in supporting young girls entering computer science, tech, and coding, there's a lot
posted by divabat to MetaFilter on Aug 16 at 12:45 AM
85 users marked this as a favorite

why we care about what we wear


A look back at the funky, psychedelic, soulful 70s in Nigeria

According to the Daptone Gold compilation liner notes (auto-playing music, click on "Biography"to read the notes), written by Pitchfork contributor Douglas Wolk, "the world capital of soul" has moved from the US ("between Memphis and Detroit, with occasional stopovers in New Orleans, Cincinnati and elsewhere") in the 1960, to Lagos in the 1970s, then it went into hiding, finally reappearing in Brooklyn, with Daptone Records. Let's go back - why Lagos in the 1970s?
posted by filthy light thief to MetaFilter on Aug 18 at 9:00 PM
71 users marked this as a favorite

John is the new Jon

With a combination of humor and fearlessness, Last Week Tonight has done an unlikely thing: spurred action. John Oliver’s segment on net neutrality this past June perfectly summed up what his HBO show Last Week Tonight is so good at: transcending apathy. It’s an ingenious formula that’s making a difference in the real world. “Making a difference” isn’t hyperbole. The FCC’s website actually crashed from overwhelming web traffic the day after Oliver’s segment originally aired. The Atlantic looks at How John Oliver Beats Apathy.
  • Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, previously
  • John Oliver on net neutrality, previously
  • Last Week Tonight with John Oliver on FanFare

posted by Room 641-A to MetaFilter on Aug 16 at 3:11 PM
69 users marked this as a favorite

Pioneer Girl on the Prairie

This fall, the South Dakota Historical Society Press will publish Pioneer Girl: The Annotated Autobiography of Laura Ingalls Wilder - apparently full of "not-safe-for-children tales includ[ing] stark scenes of domestic abuse, love triangles gone awry and a man who lit himself on fire while drunk off whiskey" (or, more academically put, "full of the everyday sorts of things that we don't care to think about when we think about history"). They've been blogging the process of research, annotation, and publication at The Pioneer Girl Project, as well as stories about crabs, a new letter from Pa, really useful books, as well as photos and a series of interviews with the researchers involved via.
posted by ChuraChura to MetaFilter on Aug 20 at 8:52 AM
68 users marked this as a favorite

Okay, angry owls it is

One of the great things about medieval art and architecture is that people just went in and did things. They didn’t build models and scale them up. Building great cathedrals and abbeys was a learning process as much as anything else. This means many of these apparently perfect aspirations to the Heavenly Jerusalem have some often quite comical mistakes, corrections and bodge-jobs that once you see, you can’t unnotice. Great Mistakes in English Medieval Architecture.
posted by verstegan to MetaFilter on Aug 17 at 3:59 AM
64 users marked this as a favorite

human connection with & despite algorithmic curation


relative Pitch

Pitchfork recently released a list of what they consider the 200 best tracks of the decade so far (2010-14).
posted by threeants to MetaFilter on Aug 20 at 10:47 PM
63 users marked this as a favorite

How did peasants in the Middle Ages survive the winter?

What strategies were used by peasants of medieval Europe to prepare for and survive the harsh winter months?
posted by dontjumplarry to Ask MetaFilter on Aug 16 at 6:11 PM
61 users marked this as a favorite

You go!

The 2014 Hugo Award Winners were announced at the 72nd World Science Fiction Convention, Loncon3. The Hugo Awards are "the premier awards in the Science Fiction field, given annually for over 50 years in over a dozen categories."
posted by the man of twists and turns to MetaFilter on Aug 18 at 8:49 AM
60 users marked this as a favorite

Not A Tea Party, A Confederate Party


the admins also have a shoot first and ask questions later policy No one shot you, you utterly ridiculous person. You had comments deleted on a website. Stop pretending you are facing the same injustice as the subject of the FPP. [view]
posted by elizardbits to MetaTalk on Aug 19 at 2:03 PM
200 users marked this as a favorite

One thing I find relevant that isn't discussed much is that the use of tear gas against military targets is forbidden by the Geneva Convention. But it is both perfectly legal, and increasingly commonly, used against civilians. I also have to question the viewpoint that a lot of people, not here, seem to take for granted: that there is an... [more]
posted by sotonohito to MetaFilter on Aug 19 at 7:18 AM
196 users marked this as a favorite

There is a concept called body autonomy. Its generally considered a human right. Bodily autonomy means a person has control over who or what uses their body, for what, and for how long. Its why you can’t be forced to donate blood, tissue, or organs. Even if you are dead. Even if you’d save or improve 20 lives. It’s why someone can’t touch you,... [more]
posted by heathkit to MetaFilter on Aug 21 at 4:53 PM
178 users marked this as a favorite

Uh, is this where I throw in a quick "Mefi's own"? Thanks for posting this. I was really grateful to get to perform at NPS this year, and that my work was so well received. Slam is weird, and "slam voice" is weird, and it's definitely a crutch. I'mma chalk this one up to this being a 4 minute poem being smushed into 2:49,... [more]
posted by frizzle to MetaFilter on Aug 19 at 11:22 PM
146 users marked this as a favorite

My son had immunology this morning. As we waited, there was an old black couple sitting next to us, quietly talking about ferguson. Boy, 11, turned to this couple and said, "my mom told me about what is happening there. That is so messed up. I didn't know black people were treated so badly in our country, and I promise that I will never be ok... [more]
posted by dejah420 to MetaFilter on Aug 18 at 12:43 PM
123 users marked this as a favorite

It's not "You have to get married, now that you bought a dress," it's "Why did you buy a dress, [and all the rest of it] if you never intended to get married?" See, here's the thing. I marry people for a living. Marriage is an industry in the U.S. It extends and insinuates itself into the pre-engagement... [more]
posted by Baby_Balrog to MetaFilter on Aug 18 at 6:56 AM
121 users marked this as a favorite

But they are not. Stewart has his thing going on, Oliver has his. They compliment each other, and it shows that there is probably room for several other such shows that would also find their own voice and purpose. Jon Stewart really deserves a lot of credit for surrounding himself with great talent, nurturing that talent,... [more]
posted by Room 641-A to MetaFilter on Aug 16 at 4:05 PM
120 users marked this as a favorite

The Onion should spend the next week just reporting the news straight and watching as Facebook autotags legitimate news as satire. What better commentary on the state of the world? [view]
posted by duffell to MetaFilter on Aug 17 at 6:56 PM
118 users marked this as a favorite

There's nothing I can say that hasn't already been said by wiser, more collected, more intelligent voices upthread, and nothing I can do except throw more money at the ACLU and the folks who are out there fighting the good fight -- but that WaPo link? Holy shit. I'm a nominally Buddhist, peace-and-love-oriented, perpetually hopeful, painfully... [more]
posted by divined by radio to MetaFilter on Aug 19 at 10:13 AM
117 users marked this as a favorite

Every other mother fucking country in the world takes their batshit crazy people alive. This isn't a UK is civilized thing. This is a "US local cops are fucking brutal" thing. No, it's a race thing. Some white dude lured firefighters and other rescue personnel into a fucking trap with a fake 911 call and opened fire on... [more]
posted by elizardbits to MetaFilter on Aug 19 at 12:47 PM
117 users marked this as a favorite

I love Ireland. I really do. But fuck this shit. This shit makes me so angry. So here's the thing. If you are a middle-class woman in Ireland, you can get an abortion without any problem. You tell everyone you're going to London for the weekend to do some shopping or whatever, you fly to Stansted, you have your abortion, and you fly back... [more]
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious to MetaFilter on Aug 21 at 4:55 PM
113 users marked this as a favorite

I think this is why a lot of white people (not you) downplay or disbelieve racism; if we were subject to the same injustices, we'd be furious. It's hard to understand why there isn't constant rioting, so the cognitive dissonance is resolved by saying "it must not be as bad as what they are claiming. White people would be, and have... [more]
posted by AceRock to MetaFilter on Aug 19 at 11:32 AM
100 users marked this as a favorite

The richest and most privileged country in the world should not be doing shit that requires Amnesty International to take time out of their day to watch over us. We should be better than this, and they have other important work to do. [view]
posted by Drinky Die to MetaFilter on Aug 19 at 12:00 AM
93 users marked this as a favorite

Do you remember physically having friends? It was awful. You couldn’t tap people’s faces to make them go away. No, you totally could! You just had to use a little more force than you do now. [view]
posted by escabeche to MetaFilter on Aug 18 at 8:10 AM
90 users marked this as a favorite

What the heck is Meta Slander? I saw Goody Rtha with the devil! [view]
posted by elizardbits to MetaTalk on Aug 19 at 2:08 PM
89 users marked this as a favorite

It is literally the most offensive thing I have read about policing. It's offensive, but I also think it's illuminating. The officer says: "Working the street, I can’t even count how many times I withstood curses, screaming tantrums, aggressive and menacing encroachments on my safety zone, and outright challenges to my authority.... [more]
posted by Bulgaroktonos to MetaFilter on Aug 19 at 10:08 AM
86 users marked this as a favorite

"The cops all took their name tags off in Toronto during the last G20 debacle. About 90 of them were docked a day's pay, and I'm sure all of them thought it was money well spent for a chance to beat people up all weekend long." Any cop without a nametag on shouldn't be protected by police immunity — he or she should be regarded... [more]
posted by klangklangston to MetaFilter on Aug 19 at 1:07 PM
85 users marked this as a favorite

The Organization for Black Struggle, in conjunction with the Hands Up, Don’t Shoot Coalition, has issued the following demands: Immediate Demands Local 1. Swift and impartial investigation by the Department of Justice into the Michael Brown shooting 2. Immediate arrest of Officer Darren Wilson 3. County Prosecutor Robert... [more]
posted by Artw to MetaFilter on Aug 20 at 9:24 AM
85 users marked this as a favorite

Well, that was certainly a Salon article. [view]
posted by ThatFuzzyBastard to MetaFilter on Aug 18 at 5:26 AM
82 users marked this as a favorite

He seemed sincere tonight. His voice was cracking and he was emotional. He described officers coming under gunfire, and I believe it from watching the Vice feed. He's saying that he doesn't want to see a single casualty and that he's taking steps to ensure that. But here's the thing we all know, those of us who have been watching things go down... [more]
posted by naju to MetaFilter on Aug 19 at 12:47 AM
79 users marked this as a favorite