The Rose Is Your Conscience

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“We will not be silent. We are your bad conscience. The White Rose will not leave you in peace!”
—from the fourth White Rose leaflet

On February 22, 1943, Sophie Scholl, her brother Hans, and Christoph Probst were executed just hours following their trial. There would be more arrests, imprisonments, and executions of those who had been involved, but as of that sad day the work of the White Rose, as it had been, was no more.

Women Heroes of World War II: 26 Stories of Espionage, Sabotage, Resistance, and Rescue (Women of Action) by Kathryn J. Atwood

Book Review: Fight Spiders Fight!

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It is rare that I read a book that is both powerful enough to make me want to recommend it to everyone with even a passing interest while, at the same time, causing me to cringe from the mere thought of watching the movie.

This book describes the lives of human clones, created for the sole purpose of providing internal organs to ‘normal’ people. It is told from the perspective of a small group of clones who grow up together in the same ‘school.’

(Spoiler Alert – A bit of the ending is described)

It is simultaneously moving, touching and disturbing. When the novel ended I found myself wondering whether the most disturbing element was the ‘donations program’ or the universal and often unthinking acceptance of fate on the part of those chosen to die. I kept waiting for them to fight back while somehow knowing they never would.

They didn’t fight. They accepted the life prescribed to them and focused their thoughts and efforts on making the best of it – it was very very sad.

Quotes:

Madame was afraid of us. But she was afraid of us in the same way someone might be afraid of spiders. We hadn’t been ready for that. It had never occurred to us to wonder how we would feel, being seen like that, being the spiders”

“...there are people out there, like Madame, who don’t hate you or wish you any harm, but who nevertheless shudder at the very thought of you—of how you were brought into this world and why—and who dread the idea of your hand brushing against theirs. The first time you glimpse yourself through the eyes of a person like that, it’s a cold moment. It’s like walking past a mirror you’ve walked past every day of your life, and suddenly it shows you something else, something troubling and strange.

However uncomfortable people were about your existence, their overwhelming concern was that their own children, their spouses, their parents, their friends, did not die from cancer, motor neurone disease, heart disease. So for a long time you were kept in the shadows, and people did their best not to think about you. And if they did, they tried to convince themselves you weren’t really like us. That you were less than human, so it didn’t matter….While that remained the case, there would always be a barrier against seeing you as properly human.”

“…that night, it seemed to me these dark byways of the country existed just for the likes of us, while the big glittering motorways with their huge signs and super cafés were for everyone else.

Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro

Horton hears a Heil

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“These cartoons rail against isolationism, racism, and antisemitism with a conviction and fervor lacking in most other American editorial pages of the period. These are virtually the only editorial cartoons outside the communist and black press that decried the military’s Jim Crow policies and Charles Lindbergh’s antisemitism. Dr. Seuss said that he “had no great causes or interest in social issues until Hitler,” and explained that “PM was against people who pushed other people around. I liked that.””

“…rescued from the newsprint where they moldered unseen for over half a century, the cartoons let us know what happens when Horton Hears a Heil.”

-Dr. Seuss Goes to War: The World War II Editorial Cartoons of Theodor Seuss Geisel by Richard H. Minear, Dr. Seuss

 

You’ve Got To Want It

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“…if you want to be a winner, you have to want it really bad.

Politicians may rest a little on the seventh day, but they never really quit. … You’ve got to outwork the competition.”

While you’re pursuing your dream, you’ll be working alone. A lot. But sticking with it is the only way to get there.

Never doubt your right to have the dream in the first place.

(emphasis mine)

Every Day Is Election Day: A Woman’s Guide to Winning Any Office, from the PTA to the White House by  Rebecca Sive

Should Not Have To

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I usually don’t post from my cellphone, but these quotes stood out:

“We shouldn’t have to explain that the punishment for even the most heinous crimes in our country is not a public execution without a trial.”

“We shouldn’t have to explain why we fight back when we are attacked.”

This Is Why We’re Mad About the Shooting of Mike Brown , Jezebel.com, written by Kara Brown

Repairing Gardens, Communities, Environments

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Indigenous communities, people of color and low income neighborhoods are all too often sites targeted for heavy industry, military bases, waste dumps and higher levels of pollution. People in these communities suffer more health and environmental impacts than their affluent, predominantly white neighbors.

When it comes to recovering from environmental disasters and industrial accidents, these communities often receive little notification, support or effective cleanup, if any at all.

In these realities, environmental destruction, tragic health impacts, oppression and social justice all collide, which is why some folks do the work of earth repair for the love of the planet, some for the love of their loved ones and community and many for both.

Earth Repair: A Grassroots Guide to Healing Toxic and Damaged Landscapes by Leila Darwish