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11 January 2011

Jon Stewart Laments the Arizona Shooting

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Arizona Shootings Reaction
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Last night on the Daily Show, Jon Stewart gave an talk on the Arizona shooting, which left Congresswoman Giffords severely injured.  He refused to blame either political party or even the media, saying that we live in a complex political climate, and that no straight line of causality could be drawn.  However he did say that reducing the violence of the current political rhetoric would be a noble goal "if for no other reason than to draw a better distinction between the manifestos of political madmen and what passes for acceptable political and pundit speak." He continues "It would be really nice if the ramblings of crazy people didn't resemble how we actually talk to each other on TV.  Let's at least make troubled individuals easier to spot."
Finally, he calls on us to find the good in this story - to look at the lives of the people who were killed or injured to see how much goodness they have done, and to see that we haven't lost the capacity to be horrified at the reality of the rhetoric.  Ending with this inspiration: "Wouldn't it be a shame if we didn't take that moment to make sure that the world that we are creating now - that will ultimately be shattered again by a moment of lunacy - wouldn't it be a shame if that world wasn't better than the one we'd previously lost."
Unfortunately, I'm having trouble embedding the video.  I'll keep trying, but, in the meantime, you can watch it here.

10 January 2011

State of the Re:Unioin: Appalachia Rising

Yesterday I caught bits of the NPR show State of the Re:Union while driving to work.  This week's episode focused on Appalachia and the mountain-top removal (MTR) coal mining that has devastated the environment and the communities in the region.  They start with a segment on the history of resistance in Appalachia including the Civil Rights movement, the Women's Suffrage movement, and the Labor movement, and then go on to talk about more recent efforts to halt MTR.  They interview several activists and community members who are fighting the practice, and look at its effects on the area.  The show ends with a nice segment on how a radio show has helped to make life a bit better for a prison community in rural Kentucky by helping to bring prisoners closer to their families and offering them a place to express themselves.

01 January 2011

2011: The Year of the Handshake!

I went to see Gogol Bordello last night and had a great time dancing and singing along.  I was surprised that I could keep moving that long!  It was very cathartic.  I also decided that 2011 is the year of the handshake, so I shook hands with a whole lot of people last night.  It was great - they all smiled and shook my hand and sometimes even talked for a minute. People are wonderful!  So spread the word - 2011: The Year of the Handshake!
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