A Post-Orwellian World

A conservative Nevada group called the Nevada Family Alliance has proposed putting body cameras on teachers to stop them from teaching Critical Race Theory.

Critical Race Theory is a way of understanding how American racism has shaped public policy. At its core is the idea that racism is a social construct, and that it is not merely the product of individual bias or prejudice, but also something embedded in legal systems and policies.

The Washoe County (Nevada) School District has said that Critical Race Theory isn’t part of its curriculum. But they have proposed to incorporate equity, diversity, and racism into its K-5 curriculum.

“You guys have a serious problem with activist teachers pushing politics in the classroom, and there’s no place for it, especially for our fifth graders,” Nevada Family Alliance director Karen England told trustees.

England claims to have received reports of teachers “contradicting the lessons taught by parents at home,” particularly on race, and that bodycams would create “a record that could be viewed by appropriate parties.”

Bodycams on teachers to monitor what they are teaching their students? We are entering a post-Orwellian world.

The Aftermath

The six of us used to get together for a frittata breakfast at a local Italian bistro every Saturday morning. We’d leave the kiddos with our hubbies and enjoy the food, company, and the freedom. It had become a cherished ritual.

And then the darkness hit and everything shut down. Everyone was ordered to stay at home and to be safe. Our Saturday morning ritual ended and after a while, we lost touch with one another.

Sixteen months have passed since the quarantine began and things are starting to open up again after the vaccines were introduced. I recently read that the Italian bistro had reopened and I decided to reach out to my five dear friends to see if they were interested in meeting up for frittatas on an upcoming Saturday morning.

It didn’t exactly go as planned. Two of them had gotten divorced and getting away from their kids on a Saturday morning would be dicey. Another had left the state with her family to move into her parents’ home shortly after her husband lost his job when the company he worked for laid everyone off.

That left just two others and me and we finally arranged for a day to meet up for breakfast at the bistro. But in the aftermath of the pandemic, things were different.

Being together after all we’d been through felt more like an awkward performance, filled with glib, superficially conversation. Even the frittatas didn’t taste as good as they used to.

The pandemic destroyed many lives, including the closeness of six friends and the frittata breakfast ritual, with the food, company, and freedom, that each of us used to cherish.

Written for these daily prompts: Ragtag Daily Prompt (six), Word of the Day Challenge (frittata), The Daily Spur (darkness), Your Daily Word Prompt (dicey), MMA Storytime (performance), and Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (glib).

Fibbing Friday — Who, What, and When

Frank (aka PCGuy) and Di (aka Pensitivity101) alternate as hosts for Fibbing Friday, a silly little exercise where we are to write a post with our answers to the ten questions below. But as the title suggests, truth is not an option. The idea is to fib a little, a lot, tell whoppers, be inventive, silly, or even outrageous, in our responses. Today is Frank’s turn to host and here are his questions.

1. What was the big deal about Fibber McGee’s closet?

It was completely empty.

2. What’s the difference between a hoarder and a collector?

A hoarder accumulates trash and a collector accumulates treasures. See #4.

3. What was the intended initial purpose for the website, eBay?

It was a real estate website for listing homes for sale in the East Bay communities of the San Francisco Bay Area.

4. What is meant by the phrase, “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure”?

It’s how you explain the difference between a hoarder and a collector. See #2.

5. What is the significance of “file 13”?

It’s the file after file 12 but before file 14.

6. What does it mean to “86” something?

It’s like 69 but with a dyslexic who is bad at arithmetic.

7. What displays when you enter an invalid web address into a web browser?

A big middle finger emoji.

8. What does the “www” at the front of Internet addresses stand for?

Who, what, and when.

9. What does HTML do?

Confuses everyone.

10. What is the purpose of CSS?

To confuse people even more than HTML does.

Fandango’s Flashback Friday — June 25th

Wouldn’t you like to expose your newer readers to some of your earlier posts that they might never have seen? Or remind your long term followers of posts that they might not remember? Each Friday I will publish a post I wrote on this exact date in a previous year.

How about you? Why don’t you reach back into your own archives and highlight a post that you wrote on this very date in a previous year? You can repost your Friday Flashback post on your blog and pingback to this post. Or you can just write a comment below with a link to the post you selected.

If you’ve been blogging for less than a year, go ahead and choose a post that you previously published on this day (the 25th) of any month within the past year and link to that post in a comment.

This was originally posted on June 25, 2018.

Supreme Court — Racially-Motivated Gerrymandering is A-OK


In a 5-4, party-lines decision, The Supreme Court of the United States voted to approve racially-motivated gerrymandering, which is surprising because, in the past, SCOTUS has held that Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act (VRA) outlaws gerrymandering when it dilutes the votes of minority citizens.

The VRA was meant to enforce the 15th Amendment’s bar on racial voter suppression by blocking state voting laws suspected of racial discrimination. Section 2 forbids any “standard, practice, or procedure” that “results in the denial or abridgement” of the right to vote “on account of race or color.” But that is exactly what gerrymandering is intended to do.

In Abbott v. Perez, Trump’s only (so far) SCOTUS appointee, Neil Gorsuch — along with the Court’s conservative majority — has position himself as a fierce opponent of the Voting Rights Act. Gorsuch held that Texas’ maps for its congressional seats and statehouse districts do not prohibit racial gerrymandering, even though those who drew those voting district lines have privately confessed that that was their intent.

How in the hell will the United States ever recover from this kind of partisan bullshit? How can these Supreme Court justices, who allegedly possess such brilliant legal and constitutional minds, be so fucking dense?

June 25, 2021 update: Here we are three years later and the Republicans in the U.S. Senate — all 50 of them, just voted to blocked the For the People Act, the most ambitious voting rights legislation to come before Congress in a generation. What’s that old saying? The more things change, the more they remain the same.

FOWC with Fandango — Glib

FOWCWelcome to June 25, 2021 and to Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (aka, FOWC). It’s designed to fill the void after WordPress bailed on its daily one-word prompt.

I will be posting each day’s word just after midnight Pacific Time (US).

Today’s word is “glib.”

Write a post using that word. It can be prose, poetry, fiction, non-fiction. It can be any length. It can be just a picture or a drawing if you want. No holds barred, so to speak.

Once you are done, tag your post with #FOWC and create a pingback to this post if you are on WordPress. Please check to confirm that your pingback is there. If not, please manually add your link in the comments.

And be sure to read the posts of other bloggers who respond to this prompt. You will marvel at their creativity.