December 19, 2016

What Indeed is Time?

I have always tried to hold a simple explanation of quantum mechanics in my head just to keep it from exploding. To wit, time doesn't really exist at the particle level, but emerges when you progress to the atomic level and continue outward. This is what allows particles to be 'two different places at the same time.' I hope this new concept doesn't blow my simplification out of the water, because I hate having to treat science like 'magic happens here.'

Quantum Gravity Research Could Unearth the True Nature of Time Natalie Wolchover | Wired

December 17, 2016

White Liberals are Only Human

"And likewise, white people who truly want to be allies can find their path to ally-ship without black validation and without us having to take time out of our days to educate them. They can find their own curriculum and figure out for themselves how they can do their part in fighting the good fight. And, again, they can do so without the promise of black praise. I’m no longer asking decent white people to “get their cousins”, I’m only expecting them to “get” themselves. And, I’m not even about to keep checking to see if they’re doing that much. Because it’s not my goddamn job – and it’s not yours either."

I get the exhaustion. But African-Americans constitute only about 13% of the US population. Without allies, progress against racism will be slow if at all. Contemptuous attitudes like this toward allies is going to demoralize them and make them less likely to speak out against racism. After all, people are only human.
Why It’s Time Black People Simply Disengage With White People In Discussing Race
We need to stop arguing with them because, in the end, they aren’t invested like we are.
Zacklinly - Thought for Food

The Obligation to be Reasonable

"...the demand to be reasonable is a disingenuous demand. Black folks have been reasoning with white people forever. Racism is unreasonable, and that means reason has limited currency in the fight against it. Black folks understand, just like white folks do, that reason should be wielded as a tactic, not adhered to as a rule." I think the final statement in this article from 2.5 years ago sums up where we are in our conversation about diversity in America today. I could not disagree with it more, as I believe that being reasonable is one of the fundamentals of society and is almost as important an aspect of our social contract as the rejection of violence. If everyone in America decided today that being reasonable is just an option, to be used when it is beneficial to our own goals, we would collapse -- and that is not an exaggeration. (Really, just imagine people behaving absolutely unreasonably in almost every situation and what living in a world like that would be.) I want to be enlightened about the challenges and injustices endured by people in different life situations and adjust my own behavior accordingly. But, if your approach is insulting, condemnatory, dismissive, hysterical... i.e. unreasonable, I will tune you out and you will have defeated your purpose.

It’s not about you, white liberals: Why attacks on radical people of color are so misguided
With anti-racism politics flaring up on the left, too many are making it personal -- when it's really about policy
Brittney Cooper - Salon