Jul. 8th, 2016

Deja Vu

Jul. 8th, 2016 09:21 am
stoutfellow: My summer look (Summer)
At this point, I do not know who the assassins who struck at a peaceful BLM protest in Dallas were, nor do I know their motives; but a wiser man than I, speaking in a similar situation, had this to say.
Whenever any American’s life is taken by another American unnecessarily – whether it is done in the name of the law or in the defiance of law, by one man or a gang, in cold blood or in passion, in an attack of violence or in response to violence – whenever we tear at the fabric of life which another man has painfully and clumsily woven for himself and his children, the whole nation is degraded…
When you teach a man to hate and fear his brother, when you teach that he is a lesser man because of his color or his beliefs or the policies he pursues, when you teach that those who differ from you threaten your freedom or your job or your family, then you also learn to confront others not as fellow citizens but as enemies – to be met not with cooperation but with conquest, to be subjugated and mastered.
We learn, at the last, to look at our brothers as aliens, men with whom we share a city, but not a community, men bound to us in common dwelling, but not in common effort. We learn to share only a common fear – only a common desire to retreat from each other – only a common impulse to meet disagreement with force…
Our lives on this planet are too short and the work to be done too great to let this spirit flourish any longer in our land. Of course we cannot vanish it with a program, nor with a resolution. But we can perhaps remember – even if only for a time – that those who live with us are our brothers, that they share with us the same short movement of life, that they seek – as we do – nothing but the chance to live out their lives in purpose and happiness, winning what satisfaction and fulfillment they can.
Surely this bond of common faith, this bond of common goal, can begin to teach us something. Surely we can learn, at least, to look at those around us as fellow men and surely we can begin to work a little harder to bind up the wounds among us and to become in our hearts brothers and countrymen once again.
- Robert Francis Kennedy, April 5, 1968

Booking It

Jul. 8th, 2016 05:44 pm
stoutfellow: Joker (Joker)
Yesterday, being for some reason bored, I took a trip up the Great River and ordered some books.

In electronic form: Martha Wells, The Wizard Hunters (one of her Ile-Rien books; I read and enjoyed The Death of the Necromancer, so decided to dig further into the milieu); Harry Connolly, The Way into Chaos; and Ada Palmer, Too Like the Lightning. (The latter two have been recommended on File 770 and/or Making Light. F770 has been entirely too enthusiastic about getting books onto my to-get list lately....)

In paper: Bill Willingham, Wolves (the eighth book of "Fables"; I mostly buy F/SF in bit form lately, but graphic novels need more space); Eric Cline, 1177 B.C.: The Year Civilization Collapsed (I've gotten bits and snatches of info about that particular Dark Age, but this book's been recommended for pulling it all together); Alfred Crosby, Ecological Imperialism: The Biological Expansion of Europe 900-1900 AD (which just sounded interesting when I heard of it); and Viveka Velupillai, Pidgins, Creoles and Mixed Languages (creoles have been an interest of mine since a clash with Paula Sanch on the LMB list some years back; this is a more recent study than anything I already have).

The e-books are on my Kindle, though they'll have to wait their turn; the paper are scheduled to arrive next weekend or so. We shall see.

(This burst of activity is just about the only thing I've done in the last few days. Much lethargy; I don't even feel like playing Skyrim.)

(I have, however, come up with a single equation which partially answers a geometric question I'd been fussed about for a couple of months. So there's that, at least.)

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