Post-election special edition.
Digest #19, November 8th 2020
Happy Sunday wonderful people,
It feels nice to breathe again, doesn't it? What an intense week this has been. An intense four years, actually. I didn't realize how heavily the darkness of this administration had been weighing on me personally, until finally it was lifted.
Last week, I wrote an entirely different Digest #19 for you, but it didn't feel right to send it with everything going on. I was distracted and you were distracted, as the fate of our democracy (and all the countries we have undue influence over) was in the balance. It also doesn't feel right to send it now, with all of the fantastic memes, articles, hope and catharsis currently circulating. So, this week's edition is instead a round up of the best post-election content I've seen so far. Next week, you'll be back to the usual Seven you know and (hopefully) love.
You may also notice throughout this edition that I apply Voldemort logic and avoid saying 'his' name at all costs. I've done this since his election. He gets his power from attention and I won't give it to him. I respond to policy, I participate and organize at a grassroots level, but I don't feed the circus animal. Not even now. I instead use '45' because he was the 45th President. I love using past tense there - my word it feels good.
I'm also pleased to announce the two winners of October's book giveaway, Bee Boileau and Ronda Zelezny-Green! I'll be in touch with both of you shortly to arrange shipping of your copies of Hood Feminism! A critical text, now more than ever, as we rebuild this country, and each shape the future of the West in particular. The struggle isn't over, and we can't let the well-intentioned folks think that it is. One symptom is gone, but the underlying condition is yet to be treated.
Happy reading, watching, crying and laughing. We've earned it.
Stacey Abrams deserves your time and attention. And your money, too (if you're American and can legally contribute to political fundraising). We Atlantans have known and loved her for a long time. She gained national prominence in 2018 when she ran for Governor for the state of Georgia, and was narrowly defeated by 45-fanboy Brian Kemp. Rather than be defeated, she used what she learned in the race to mobilize and help disenfranchised Georgians to overcome the systemic, deliberately racialized barriers to voter registration that had been gradually imposed by the GOP. 800,000 new voters were registered thanks to her efforts, and the results of this are obvious (bye 45). Black voters flipped Georgia and Pennsylvania. Native voters flipped Arizona. The same conservatives continually go out of their way to prevent marginalized groups from using our rights, but thanks to leadership from pioneers like Stacey, we always find a way. But the fight isn't over. We need to keep this same energy to flip the senate blue.
This British Vogue profile is simple and succinct for non-US audiences, so if you find our systems overwhelming it's a good place to start.
Maybe it's because I love Whoopi Goldberg, and I re-watched Sister Act 2 so many times on VHS during my childhood, but I think this is the best election process meme out. I think I also love it because it's full of optimism. That future-facing twist at the end made me break out with a big smile the first time I saw it. I've replayed it probably 20 times now. It's circulating all around the internet and I haven't been able to find out who actually made it. If you know, please tell me! This clip perfectly captures my joy, and if you haven't seen it yet, I'm so grateful to be the one to show it to you.
This video wins the internet this week.
One of my main reflections from the era of 45 is that a lot of political jokes stopped being funny, which was a true shame. I used to love comedy-news shows, but stopped watching them because you can't satirize someone who is already a walking parody of themselves. The truth is far stranger than any fiction we could concoct, straight from his reality-tv past, his ridiculous tweets and his orange face. What a fitting end to this ridiculous reign: a sad press conference in the car park of a landscaping company, next to a porn shop and a crematorium. Perfectly poetic. Too perfect. Makes me feel like reality isn't really-real and we're living in someone else's novel. I'll stop there, else I bore you with one of my philosophically existential mind melting freak outs (see Plato's Cave allegory, and the theory of forms).
I had to see it to believe it.
I've watched this video way more times than the 'Oh Happy Day' clip above, because it's so short it needs to be replayed to be fully appreciated. And replayed, and replayed, and replayed again. "Who is this masked, sunglassed hero" indeed (update: his identity is revealed). The reporter also doesn't get the 'omelette du fromage' joke from Dexter's Lab on Cartoon Network, and starts to talk in French about the guy's interest in breakfast foods. It's funny in both languages, on so many levels. But it's his shimmy at the end, his escalating "hon hon hon" French noises, and the reporters inability to contain himself that really caps it off. Thank you, internet.
Omelette du fromage! (It should actually be au fromage, but whatever).
This one hits deep. 45 isn't just a buffoon who does wild things, making a joke of himself and this country on television and on Twitter. He has caused real, irreparable material harm. Death, terrorism and destruction, on a massive scale, for so many people. This one woman's complete relief and tears after seeing that Biden has been elected is probably the most touching response I've seen, and I'm not ashamed to say I spilled tears all over my phone when I saw it.
“Thank God. I’m so happy. I get to keep my social security and medicare.”
The Navajo Nation turned out in record numbers to vote, and was absolutely crucial in flipping Arizona blue. Yet, they are extremely vulnerable to the impacts of COVID-19, and are about to go back into lockdown. Rather than just being grateful for their vital role in ousting 45, you can donate to one of the biggest fundraisers for Navajo Nation COVID-19 relief here.
"The Navajo Nation and Hopi Reservation are extreme food deserts with only 13 grocery stores on Navajo to serve some 180,000 people and only 3 small grocery marts on Hopi to serve some 3,000 people. These communities also have high numbers of elderly, diabetic, asthmatic, and cancer-afflicted (i.e., high risk) individuals. These communities could be devastated by coronavirus and COVID-19."
This is also a great option for overseas subscribers who want to meaningfully support marginalized communities in the US right now, but are banned from making political contributions.
Artwork from the fundraiser page, artist unknown.
This one's just for fun. BYE FELICIA.
"You about to lose yo job."
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