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Articles by: Rachel Olivia O'Connor

Do Justice To Yourself

Do Justice To Yourself

  “No place, indeed, should murder sanctuarize. Revenge should have no bounds.” — Shakespeare compounding ignorance with ignorance in Act 4, Scene 7 of Hamlet Mildred, the middle-aged mother at the center of Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, is a one-woman Justice League out to avenge the murder of her teenage daughter. She’s got a spectacularly vulgar mouth, a fearless[Read More…]

 Cross Over To Where You Really Bear The Disappearing Bear On Your Back

 Cross Over To Where You Really Bear The Disappearing Bear On Your Back

  “We should be clear about what it costs to bare one’s soul and make an authentic difference.”  — one of the author’s home schooled youngsters I’ll be relocating to Lodi, California soon, the place that Credence Clearwater Revival “honored” back in the day when they made a fuss about getting stuck there… “again.” And — once again — I[Read More…]

Academic Rumblings For Native American History

Academic Rumblings For Native American History

“Be proud you’re an Indian, but be careful who you tell.” — from the documentary Rumble: The Indians Who Rocked the World Led Zeppelin’s Jimmy Page really got rocked the first time he heard Link Wray’s Rumble. A lot of people did, musicians and others. In fact, you could say it was what the monolith was to those primates in the “Dawn of Man” segment[Read More…]

by Comments are Disabled Life/Philosophy
Photo by gideon_wright

The Necessity of Personal Sacrifices

  “It became apparent to me that a people would never abandon their means of livelihood, good or bad, capitalistic or otherwise until other methods were developed which would promise advantages at least as good as those by which they were living.” —- Job Harriman (quoted in a Counterpunch article) I saw a notice in a local newspaper recently in[Read More…]

 We Are Bees

 We Are Bees

  It doesn’t matter whatsoever whether or not Einstein actually ever made that remark about how man would only have four years left if bees went south on the planet. People love to mouth off about issues when their stance can put them one-up on others. But what’s important about what anyone says about anything if the words are going[Read More…]

by Comments are Disabled Environmental Protection
The Language Of Scientists, Poets And Activists

The Language Of Scientists, Poets And Activists

  “A major challenge for activists is to acknowledge that they need to develop a sense of language, a feeling for words. One needs to become acquainted with their shape, their color, and their flavor. There are three easy ways to do this: extensive use of the dictionary, extensive reading and — of course — listening. Activists at the barricades[Read More…]

new life

To Honor All Life Incessantly

What to do? What’s necessary? Not a vow of poverty, but close to it. Not a vow of abstention from gratuitous violence in entertainment, but close to it. Not a vow to totally transform the ground of being of American education, but close to it. Not a vow of silence, but an opening up to listening much more than preaching[Read More…]

One Reason They’re Moved To Kill Muslims

One Reason They’re Moved To Kill Muslims

“Nowhere is a place in its own right: everywhere is a resource waiting to be exploited. No one is a person in their own right; everyone is a worker, consumer or debtor whose potential for profit generation has yet to be realised. Satiety, well-being, peace: these are antithetical to globalised growth, which demands constant erasure and replacement. If you are[Read More…]

 No, I Regret Nothing Except Education

 No, I Regret Nothing Except Education

  “Why aren’t they screaming?” — from Philip Larkin’s The Old Fools Belleville gets a bad name from people who’ve never been there or who feel threatened by diversity. Immigrants and refugees from all over — Vietnam, Cambodia, Japan, Algeria, Morocco, Senegal, Ivory Coast, Pakistan, Greece, Armenia, Poland, Russia, Auvergne and many French provinces — have settled there and worked side[Read More…]

Photo by Taymaz Valley

 Do You Think That This Is A Trumped-Up Survey?

  “In 1937, Winston Churchill said of the Palestinians, I quote, ‘I do not agree that the dog in a manger has the final right to the manger even though he may have lain there for a very long time. I do not admit that right. I do not admit for instance, that a great wrong has been done to[Read More…]

Photo by Lupuca

On the Role of “Pressure” In The Elementary School Realm of the U.S.

  “The Declaration of Independence said governments are not sacred things. The laws are not sacred things. Governments are set up by people to defend rights, life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. And when governments become destructive of those ends, it’s the right of the people to alter or abolish those governments.” — Howard Zinn The obligation of the[Read More…]

A Litmus Test For Academia

A Litmus Test For Academia

Of the issues which are totally ignored, for all practical purposes, there’s one that we can spotlight here which — if not addressed post haste — stands to take us over the precipice. That is that if we want to protect our environment , we must talk about population size and growth and actually do something about it.

How Can You Eat At A Time Like This?

How Can You Eat At A Time Like This?

  “The horror in Syria is terrible, but much worse has been going on in the Congo — greater numbers sacrificed — for a much longer period of time… with our clear complicity.” — one of the author’s home schooled youngsters Comedian Mitch Hedberg used to tell a joke about the Dufresnes which is germane today. If you viewed the[Read More…]

Aligned With Faulkner’s Fault Line

Aligned With Faulkner’s Fault Line

“The glorification of one race and the consequent debasement of another — or others — always has been and always will be a recipe for murder.” — James Baldwin Religion is now one of the major fault lines of American politics. Here, though, I’d like to address something that impacts potentially on both religion and politics, a fault line of[Read More…]

What We Have Chosen Not To Look At To Date

What We Have Chosen Not To Look At To Date

Dedicated to my memory of Thich Quang Duc It’s relatively easy to get all fired up about the blatant abominations of a given administration. It’s quite another thing for concerned citizens to look in the mirror, and get down with a proper take of their own inappropriate behavior. Our habits that are fouling us up as much as Fukushima. The latest[Read More…]

Ornithological Ox Omen

Ornithological Ox Omen

In the realm of songbirds one never finds any creatures attempting to force others to embrace their singular song. Humans do exactly that with their wars abroad. And with their domestic political squabbling, expecting those with different points of view to sing the same tune.

Instructive Incarceration Inquiry

Instructive Incarceration Inquiry

“Gonna raise me an army, some tough sons of bitches I’ll recruit my army from the orphanages….” — from Bob Dylan’s Thunder on the Mountain In Madness and Civilization Michel Foucault makes the claim that the period of the Enlightenment in Europe effected a transformation in the way deviancy was managed. Whereas Medieval and Renaissance society allowed beggars, thieves, and lunatics to[Read More…]

The Life You Save

The Life You Save

In the opening of her 1953 short story “The Life You Save May Be Your Own”, the deplorable tramp Tom T. Shiftlet cannot keep his eyes off of “the square rusted back of an automobile.” He totally falls in love with a Ford that hasn’t run in fifteen years, which is sitting in a shed. His love-at-first-sight trembling is interrupted[Read More…]

The God Of Big Things

The God Of Big Things

And so the two of us highly recommend what Arundhati Roy — author of that 1997 Booker Prize for her debut novel, The God of Small Things — suggests is absolutely necessary. That is, that we find some new way of bonding as concerned citizens, so that our movement in solidarity isn’t undermined down the road quite as easily as it has been throughout the very long history of resistance in this troubled world. A huge, monumental undertaking, admittedly, this big bedeviling challenge.

Activists Must Do More Than Mobilize, Part I

Activists Must Do More Than Mobilize, Part I

Written by Rachel Olivia O’Connor (drawing upon C.S. Lewis) When concerned citizens mobilize, most often they assemble on the basis of morality. Yes, the issue of survival frequently comes to the fore, but there’s almost always — with that — a voicing or thinking of what’s right and wrong vis-a-vis what’s taking place. Tainted water in Flint? Intentionally exposing citizens[Read More…]

Helping Traumatized Youth

Helping Traumatized Youth

I recently applied for a position of Youth Counselor for traumatized youngsters living at a Residential Treatment Center in Sonoma County, California. I submitted a resume which I can’t but help feel puts me way at the head of the pack of candidates. But no one’s replied to date to my outreach. Don’t know, but the silence might have something[Read More…]

Laudato Si Supplement

Laudato Si Supplement

  At the time of Jesus’ birth, the earth’s entire population was just 300 million, smaller than the U.S. by itself today. About 45 million of those people, including Jesus himself, lived in the Roman Empire, whose borders stretched in Jesus’ time from modern-day Portugal in the west to Turkey in the east. It is estimated that the population of the world reached[Read More…]

Hiding head in sand

Ending Ostrich Syndrome

  “President Obama had tears in his eyes in January, 2016, calling for relief from record breaking shootings and killings in the U.S. Yet 2016 became a record breaking year for U.S. export of weapons to other countries.  The U.S. is responsible for nearly 33% of worldwide weapon exports—by far the top arms exporter on the planet.” — Kathy Kelly,[Read More…]

What Should Parents Do?

What Should Parents Do?

There’s an illusion of choice in the U.S., when it comes to securing information about current events. Specifically, there are approximately 1,500 newspapers, 1,100 magazines, 9000 radio stations, 1,500 TV stations, and over 2,400 publishers, BUT… they are owned by only six corporations! Furthermore, a mere 272 executives (calling the shots for those corporations) control 90% of what something like[Read More…]

Laughing On Behalf Of The Giraffe And The Calf

Laughing On Behalf Of The Giraffe And The Calf

  “Unless we address overpopulation and development anew, neither gorillas nor giraffes will be able to co-exist with humans. And life will not be worth living for human beings.” — Spokesperson for the Giraffe Conservation Foundation, December 10, 2016 Just learned from Sky News that the world’s tallest animal might be on the way out. That’s got to be a[Read More…]

One Astronomical Step For Activists And Humankind

One Astronomical Step For Activists And Humankind

Co-Written by Rachel Olivia O’Connor and Richard Martin Oxman “Cleopatra’s nose, had it been shorter, the whole face of the world would have been changed.” — Pascal One year before meeting with Tycho Brahe in 1600, Johannes Kepler had determined to make use of the Danish nobleman’s highly valuable astronomical instruments. He revealed his game plan in a letter to his mentor: “Any single[Read More…]

Singular Sentiments On The Standing Rock Victory

Singular Sentiments On The Standing Rock Victory

Co-Written by Rachel Olivia O’Connor and Richard Martin Oxman We won’t state the obvious points about what was accomplished, or anything concerning who should be praised. Rather, below, I give you sentiments not being discussed much, if at all, related to the work to be done now that a monumental victory as been won in North Dakota at Standing Rock.[Read More…]

Standing Rock Stand From A Distance

Standing Rock Stand From A Distance

At the very end of an interview on RT News focused on the two thousand military vets who are slated to act as human shields for the protesters at Standing Rock this coming week, Erick Lizandro Marroquin, organizer of the vets’ movement in solidarity, responds to the interviewer’s question about whether the vets have a Plan B in case the militarized police[Read More…]

by Comments are Disabled Environmental Protection
Trustworthiness

Trustworthiness

“Direct action is necessary for democracy to work, bold moves walking a fine edge, going over the line at times. But talk about ‘revolution’ in the U.S. is premature, to say the least. The thing is, if one wants democracy to function, there must be leadership which is trustworthy. People are either too cynical to embrace that notion, or they[Read More…]

The Very Positive Sides To Trump’s Victory: A Baker’s Dozen

The Very Positive Sides To Trump’s Victory: A Baker’s Dozen

That’s my first entry here in my list of a baker’s dozen. The other “sides” to my personal joy are listed below (in no special order). Keep in mind, if you will, that I’m one of the most radical souls on earth, with many decades of having my head bashed in at the barricades (in the name of leftist causes) under my belt. I belt out what’s below now because of the highly unproductive commentary coming out of alternative media outlets and from mainstream sources freaking out about Trump’s downsides. I’m fully aware of his horrid downsides.

Jefferson, Newton, Your New President And You

Jefferson, Newton, Your New President And You

“It is the weight, not numbers of experience that is to be regarded.” — Isaac Newton In the opening paragraphs of the Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson derived the right to revolution from the God-given or inalienable rights of the social atom, man, and his derivation seems to parallel the one in which Isaac Newton, a century earlier, had derived the[Read More…]

Kindness

Kindness

IN ACTIVISM — acting out as a concerned citizen seeking movement in solidarity (to make this a better world, to encourage a sense of family among all the creatures on this earth) — kindness must now rear its beautiful head. Treating one and all as kin.

McDonald’s, McDonnell Douglas, 3M And Me

McDonald’s, McDonnell Douglas, 3M And Me

“The hidden hand of the market will never work without a hidden fist. McDonald’s cannot flourish without McDonnell Douglas…. And the hidden fist that keeps the world safe for Silicon Valley’s technologies to flourish is called the U.S. Army, Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps.” — from The Lexus and the Olive Tree At the bottom of Public Servants or Corporate Security? An[Read More…]