What I’ve Been Reading – 10/7/16
I completely get it. I have put on the rubber gloves and bagged the evidence, for days. I have bagged evidence against women I barely knew, barely cared about, wasn’t even competing with in any way. Sometimes I just want to state my case like some overeager law-school student who thinks her career will be just like Law & Order but with more breathless talk of justice. I am enraged by casual unfriendliness and sloppiness and even imprecise dipshittery, and I love making a detailed, bulletproof case against the smallest, stupidest things. I feel sure that I will burn with a terrible fire until I get my day in court. Until you let me speak, I am hauling a giant cart full of case files with me everywhere I go.
This is a fascinating profile of Michael Heizer and his land art.
Glenn Lowry, the director of the Museum of Modern Art, in New York, says, “ ‘City’ is one of the most important works of art to have been made in the past century. Its scale and ambition and resolution are simply astonishing.” Its unseen status has made the place almost mythic—it’s art-as-rumor, people say—and has turned the artist, who became known for chasing off unwanted visitors and yanking film out of cameras, into a legend, or a “Scooby Doo” villain. Heizer says that he simply does not want his sculpture judged before it’s finished.
I am not saying it is easy. I am working hard. But it IS another good alternative. One of many. I am not forced to make a living teaching English abroad or tap my meagre saving to bring my three dirty t-shirts in my backpack to the washing salon once a month. The constant life on the road is tough and nowhere as dreamy as those glossy pictures on Instagram might suggest.
This essay is great. And heartbreaking. And there are so many wonderful points.
So. Since you said, “We wouldn’t mind peaceful protests,” that’s what Colin Kaepernick did. You actually can’t get much more peaceful than that. He just sat. He didn’t yell. He didn’t hold up a sign. He didn’t throw punches or set fire to anything. He just sat.
America collectively lost its mind over this.
“We wouldn’t mind peaceful protests, just not like that. It was the wrong time and place. It was inappropriate. It was disrespectful. It was distracting.”
People are burning his jersey. Boycotting his team. Using his name as a swear word. He is vilified and called a disgrace. People are FURIOUS. But he did EXACTLY WHAT YOU SAID YOU WOULD BE TOTALLY FINE WITH.
People are pragmatic. In the absence of meaningful protection, their approach to privacy becomes “click OK and pray”. Every once in a while a spectacular hack shakes us up. But we have yet to see a coordinated, tragic abuse of personal information. That doesn’t mean it won’t happen. Remember that we live in a time when a spiritual successor to fascism is on the ascendant in a number of Western democracies. The stakes are high.
Large, unregulated collections of behavioral data are a public hazard.