What Jewish children learned from Charlottesville. Solar eclipse madness. Matwood and birds. There are no small fascisms. Growing up in the shadow of the Confederacy. "What we think about beautiful is so painfully limited." A camp where kids learn how to be Muslim in America. Remembering Kim Wall. Nicole Krauss, Israel, and violence. It rains diamonds on Neptune.
Around the Globe
Africa. Zimbabwe's fist lady was granted diplomatic immunity after attacking a young model. Sierra Leone is still facing fallout from a mudslide that killed over 500 people. Anti-government protests have plagued Togo.
Americas. Brazil is opening an Amazon reserve up to mining. Venezuela's chief prosecutor, now a wanted woman, heads to Brazil. Chilean families are working towards accepting transgender children. NAFTA talks are moving...quickly. The bodies of Navy soldiers were pulled from the Pacific Ocean following their ship's collision with an oil tanker. An execution was stayed in Missouri. Texas' voter ID law suffered a severe blow. Texas was hit with a massive hurricane, which played out as Trump issued a ban barring transgender military service members (and also pardoned Sheriff Joe Arpaio.)
Asia & Australia. China-India relations are still souring by the day. Triple talaq dies in India. The U.S. will now process all non-immigrant visas from Russia in Moscow only. Australia's same-sex marriage debate is STILL ongoing. Indian citizens have a right to privacy, the Supreme Court ruled. North Korea fired another missile. Thailand's former prime minister fled the country.
Europe. Swedish journalist Kim Wall's remains were recovered. Poland is working to boost its military. Russia's ambassador to Sudan is only the latest Russian diplomat to die suddenly. The British government mistakenly told a ton of E.U. citizens they needed to leave.
Spoken & Written
“Good luck to everybody. They’re going to be safe. Good luck to everybody. Good luck.” -- President Donald Trump upon being asked if he had any words for Texans facing down a hurricane
Journalism: Trump's plan in Afghanistan may have been prompted by a few other factors. Here's what happens when white supremacy goes viral. U.N. human rights experts slammed the U.S. over racism. I got to chat with Cameron Esposito and Rhea Butcher about Take My Wife. What is Jared Kushner doing in the Middle East? Hurricane Harvey slammed Texas while Trump pardoned Sheriff Joe Arpaio and banned transgender military members. The horrifying legacy of Arpaio.
We're away this weekend, back down South, which means I'm surrounded by things more familiar to my younger self than usual. Atlanta's hardly Austin, but there's a strange continuity I've found that exists below the Mason-Dixon Line and I can never put my finger on it. It's hotter, obviously, and the food is better, but there are other things, things I never think about until they're in my face. How the music is the same, for example, or how everyone seems kinder, friendlier, more interested in you, whoever you might be. There's a familiarity here, one I find natural, easy, and disconcerting.
Meanwhile, my actual home, the one permanently inked on my arm and forever on replay in my head and heart, is seeing one of the most powerful storms to hit the U.S. in recent history. Watching news coverage out of Texas reminds me of a summer years ago, when an oil spill crept along the Gulf Coast, ultimately making its way to that largest and looming of mainland states. I remember that slow creep of fear, and how it felt when the oil finally arrived. No such creep here -- the hurricane has hit and the devastation has been immediate. But that feeling is the same, that dread. Watching and waiting while far away is really the only option in these situations for me now but still. It isn't easier.
Sitting in Atlanta, away from D.C., and watching Texas, I keep thinking about home, space, and impact. How it is all relative and yet, not relative at all. Is space a social construct? I have questions.