rhoda_rants: (Default)
The House is voting on Thursday. And again, it's terrifying and weird and upsetting and super-important. And *AGAIN* because my representatives are chill and awesome for the most part, I kinda don't know what to do except say 'Thanks for doing the right thing!' and telling them I appreciate them. I mean, this is the guy who represents my district:

https://twitter.com/CoverVaToday/status/844275175122198529

He also showed up to the local Women's March and helped organize a separate rally in support of Planned Parenthood. This guy! Also, one of my senators is Tim Kaine--Hillary's running mate. It feels weird to try to affect change when your leaders are already On It. One district East or West and that might be a different story. (The lines are drawn really weirdly.) But I guess checking in to say, "Hi! I live here and I feel represented! Keep up the good work!" isn't a bad thing, really.

One thing I did want to mention that I saw pointed out elseweb. I can't remember where elseweb, but I've been trying to keep it in mind: the reason it feels like we're on a slow haul towards doomsday, especially for those of us (and yes, I count myself here) who are new to protest marches, or writing/calling senators, or donating to various causes, is that being on the "losing" side is also somewhat new to us. I mean, I'm old enough to remember the Dubya years, but not old enough to have actually voted during that first election. I voted in the second (and found out how absentee ballots work, as I was in London at the time), but wasn't nearly as involved in politics as I am now. (I'm still only marginally involved now, but doing as much as I can given a lot of personal crap that I'm not going to get into again right now.)

It feels weird and defeating to vote, voice your opinion, call/email your representatives, know that they voted the way you asked them to, and STILL watch the country sliding in a direction you very much don't want it to go. The urge to throw up your hands and give up is strong. I guess it was never going to be easy. Expecting otherwise was naive on my part. And really, it's only been two months.

And yet--GUYS, IT'S ONLY BEEN TWO MONTHS, WHAT THE EFF?!?!?

That's all I got right now. I guess what I'm trying to say, especially if you're in a district that leans redder than mine, is: don't give up. Keep bugging them. Make them sick of your email address and/or voice. And then bug them some more. If not for your own sake, then for the sake of the people who have been in this fight way longer and know how much harder it can get. I hate this and I have to take a lot of breaks from it; I imagine that's not unusual right now. The world will still be on fire when we get back.
rhoda_rants: (stoker)
My fellow Millennials. There are dark times ahead. I guess you can tell by now I've been rewatching / rereading Harry Potter. It is alarming how true some of this story is ringing right now. Our collective Auntie Jo is not perfect, but she raised us right. She gave me something to talk about with the other college freshmen who had never been away from home before. She gave me a sense of identity and belonging even if I didn't wind up in the "Heroes" House. (Ravenclaw Represent!) She reminded me that your true friends are the ones who show up when you ask for help, and they will be there all the way to the end.

There's a lot of pressure around to be all things to all people right now. We all have limits. Remember, the kids who joined Dumbledore's Army didn't all show up to the Department of Mysteries. But the ones who did made a difference. No one person has to do everything. But any one person can do something, and they all matter. We all matter.

So be like Neville. Stand up to your friends when they fall short, and stand up in their places when they fail.

Be like Luna. Befriend the one person brave enough to tell the truth, and let them know you believe them.

Be like Hermione. Know all the rules and regulations backwards, so you can call out the authorities when you see them shifting the goal posts on you. And then break them when they become inescapably corrupt.

Be like Seamus. Swallow your pride and own your mistakes, and face the person you wronged to let them know you messed up.

Be like Fred and George. Give people something to laugh about when everything seems dark and hopeless.

Be like Harry. Trust your memory and your eyes, and stick to that truth even when people try to convince you it's wrong.

I have a couple of senators to write to in the morning. I trust my city and state to do the right thing. I don't have it in me to do another march. Not for a while anyway. I hate phones and I don't trust myself not to stammer over my own tongue when I'm upset--not without practice. But dammit, I can write.

Here's what else I'm gonna try to do, and I'm sticking a new tag to it: Weekly Morale Booster. We all need a reminder of what's worth saving in this bizarre Twilight Zone universe we're suddenly living in. I'll do what I can to keep that going.
rhoda_rants: (Default)
Hiya!

I haven't been able to keep up with the shiny new f'list as much as I'd like, but I'll figure it out eventually. I'm popping in to say the same thing I said on Twitter earlier today: I'm pulling back from political stuff and focusing exclusively on fandom and fluff for a while. Because I am not mentally equipped to do anything else. Not forever, but for a while.

That means I've been pulling back from talking to anyone online who posts a lot of political stuff, even if I agree with them, because I can't with the firestorm of negativity right now. I was struggling for a bit, telling myself, "But this is important, you need to be aware of what's happening to your country, especially if it's shitty," but then the depression and anxiety kicks in, and then it gets...bad. There was one particular incident that tipped me over into, "GET OFF TWITTER IT IS LITERALLY MAKING YOU SICK" but I'm not going to get into it here.

I'm still recapping, but that's it. I'm still posting meta-theory here, but I'm taking a break from the other fans. Again, not forever, but for a while.

Let's watch some Troll Hunter.
rhoda_rants: (freddie lounds)
(To my existing f'list--just trying to tidy up here, bear with me.)

Welcome to my journal!

I am Rhoda and this is my collection of random musings, graphix, movie and book reviews, and general fandom tomfoolery. Also in this journal are a number of personal posts regarding my sexuality, family-related stuff, work-related stuff, and other things that I'd rather not share with the entire internet for one reason or another, which is why this journal is Friends Only.

A few things about me: )

If you're looking for my public journal (book reviews, progress reports on my adventures in the literary world, thoughts on trends in the horror and YA universes, reviews/retrospectives, etc.), that is here. All comments are welcome, including anonymous ones, but I reserve the right to screen them if you don't use common sense and decency. I also use this journal to talk about my adventures in trying to get published and share what I learn.

If you're looking for my horror movie community (reviews, director spotlights, discussion regarding current and upcoming films, Trailer Spams, and the 31 Days of Halloween Challenge), that is here. All LJ users can comment, only members can make new posts, and all posts are moderated.

If, however, you'd like to be added to this journal, comment below and let me know who you are, how I might know you, and why you want to be friends.

Things that will probably get you added:

-We've talked elsewhere in the blogosphere
-We have a mutual friend in the blogosphere
-You've commented before on one of my other journals
-We've interacted on a friending meme
-We've crossed paths in some other community either here or elsewhere on the internet.

Things that will get you ignored and/or banned:

-Your own journal is in a language I don't understand
-We've never interacted before, ever
-You attempt to 'add' me without telling me who you are or how you know me
-We have no 'interests' in common
-You do something that upsets/offends me and ignore when I tell you to stop

This is by no means an exhaustive list, but a few basic ground rules to start from.

*"Rhoda" is not my real name. I started calling myself "Rhoda Nightingale" sometime back in college, on some web forum or other, and decided to keep it. I may use it for a penname one day.
rhoda_rants: (gerard)
I am unlocking this entry because I want it to be seen. Many people have already blogged about this, but I'm adding my voice as well because the more, the better.

SOPA stands for "Stop Online Piracy Act."

Depending on how long you've known me, some of you already know how I feel about internet piracy. To be blunt, I hate it. As a writer, I don't think it's fair that some hacker out there in the ether could take it upon him or herself to steal my work and put it up for someone else to gank for free. I think it's disrespectful to not be supportive of an artist, downloading their material instead of buying them.

That is my opinion, which I came to after careful consideration, and I share it when the subject comes up. I made a choice not to illegally download, and I encourage others to make that choice as well--but it's still their decision.

SOPA wants to make those decisions for everyone now. Many writers (and possibly other artists, but I mostly check out writers' blogs) have already made it VERY clear that whatever SOPA thinks they're doing on behalf of artists is not okay. I am vehemently opposed to this act now that I know how it will actually function.

But first, let's talk about the history of the piracy war:

Remember Napster? That happened when I was in college, which means this war has been going on for my ENTIRE adult life. I am passionate about my stance on it, and can be quite vocal and obnoxious if I'm allowed to get going. (Some of you on my f'list may have experienced this personally, so sorry about that. I do get on a roll sometimes.)

At first, I, like many teenagers, didn't see what the problem was. And I still don't believe most people who download music, movies, and TV shows do so with malicious intent. In the beginning especially, the most that passed through our heads was, "Hey, free stuff! Awesome!" Then the crackdowns started, and many of us felt real smug about sticking it to The Man and getting away with it.

Then, the musicians piped up and said, "Hey, guys, seriously, that's not cool. Quit stealing our stuff." This isn't about money and never has been. If these artists wanted to make their work available for free, that's what they would have done in the first place. Someone went behind their backs, including fans, and that's what stung.

BUT.

Once we all had a better idea about how the people who actually created the work--as opposed to The Man--felt about it, some of us changed our minds. Me being one of them. What you ultimately decided is your choice, and I might disagree with you (sometimes loudly and obnoxiously), but the key thing is the choice itself.

I understand the desire to stop pirates in their tracks. But the recording industry tried slapping massive lawsuits on twelve-year-old music fans a while back, and did that stop the pirates? Hells no. Did it stop anyone downloading? Pfft.

SOPA will not stop them either. Internet pirates have always been smarter, faster and meaner than any of the people trying to stop them, and are probably figuring out a way to navigate around this massive potential firewall--or might have done by now already.

This piece of legislation is not targeting pirates. It's targeting EVERY website that could potentially contain copyrighted material not being used by its original owner.

What this means is:

All you people who make avatars, wallpapers and banners out of pictures that you didn't personally take yourself? Your blogs are history.

The social networking sites on which people use those avatars, such as the entirety of LiveJournal, Blogger and WordPress? Gone.

The image-hosting sites you went to to get those pictures in the first place, like Tumbler, DeviantArt, Photobucket? Outta here.

Search engines that may have brought you to those image-hosting sites, like Bing, Google, Yahoo? Forget it.

Text-based research and information wikis that use similar images on specific entries, like TV Tropes and WikiPedia? Not a chance.

Basically, this act will allow the US government to police, control and filter everything on the ENTIRE internet.

And?

They can do it without any hard evidence, and without giving you a court hearing first.

This is not justice. This is a witch hunt, and pirates will be the last people harmed or even mildly inconvenienced by it.

I think it speaks volumes that the very people SOPA claims it's trying to protect--writers and artists--are NOT OKAY with this.

I am not okay with this.

We wanted you to make the pirates walk the plank. We did NOT want you to build us our own Great Firewall.

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