Friday, April 26, 2013

* Women Deceived ?

Boston medical student (and Craig's-list killer)
 and his fiancee

Boston Bomber Tamerlan Tsarnaev 
and his widow

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

* Follow the Male

   (Link to YDN article)   

Why do men "lead" in ballroom dancing? Why are they expected to "pop the question" ? Why must this "popping" be accompanied by a "ring," usually a diamond ring paid for by the male?
If your generation really wants a society of egalitarian gender roles, then these sexist shibboleths need to go. Their perpetuation guarantees a unsustainable cultural hypocrisy.
Best wishes with this project.
Congratulations on graduation too.

Monday, April 22, 2013

* Motherhood

"Mama, I love you."  
Tamerlan Tsarnaev

Let us assume that the Tsarnaevs' mother is the exception in her patriarch-ally structured world, and was a highly educated female.

Even so, one would expect motherhood to trump all, and despite the overwhelming evidence to the contrary, "framed" and "innocent" would be understandably natural words for her to use in defending her sons, accused of the Boston Marathon bombings.

The unbelievable idea, reported in this video, that the older brother called his mother in the middle of  the Thursday night  gun battle with police moments before he died, makes this scenario of motherhood trumping reality more of a stretch which requires a completely conspiratorial view of the world to sustain.

What role did the mother/son relationship play in all this, especially since there is the suggestion of  rigid religious convictions?

That is yet to be known.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

* Benediction : The Class of 2013

King Oedipus, perhaps the most famous male 
to choreograph his own downfall,
 who plucked out his eyes 
in despair at his undoing.

It used to be taboo to display photos of the dead. 
Today, nothing is taboo.

"I am  Oedipus . . . everyone knows my name . . ."

I have seen it so often in my lifetime, from Nixon to              Strauss-Kahn to Lance Armstrong: Males choreographing their own downfall, as if Oedipus Rex had never been written.

On MSNBC this morning the report (accurate?) was that  the now killed Boston Marathon bombing suspect, the elder brother named Tamerlan, had been a Golden Glove Boxing Champion who wanted a spot on the U.S. Olympic Team, but when denied American citizenship because he had been accused by a girlfriend of slapping her around(one report) or because Homeland Security was concerned about his trip to Russia last year (another report), he began to harbour a grudge, since he had to be a citizen to represent the country at the Olympics.

This seems simplistic and too neat to me.  So too does the Chechnyan radicalization hypothesis.

To me, his age, 26, and his gender, seem much more pertinent.

The uncle of the bombing suspects, in an angry interview at his Montgomery County Maryland, home,  called both of his nephews "losers" because they could not "settle" their lives and hated those who had been able to do so.

He inadvertently put his freudian finger on it.

My experience is that the years between 18 and 30 are very dangerous years, psychologically, for  males.  Not only is a male trying to settle his life , these are the years the personality  is integrating and organizing itself, establishing its boundaries clearly,  trying to separate and individuate from the father (and, symbolically, the family of origin)  ---  while simultaneously competing with, if not trying to outstrip, him ---- all this subconsciously.

We as a society need to pay much more attention to these mental health crisis years for a young male: 18 to 30.

(On April 19, 1995, how old was Timothy MacVey 1968 -2001?)

These sad words are a fitting benediction  to my four-year, intellectually demanding rite-of-passage with the Class of 2013, one of the sub-themes of which has been the role of gender in the  modern world.

Thank you and best wishes to you all.

Paul D. Keane

M.Div. '80

* Double A

Friday, April 19, 2013

* The Right to Publicity


If there is a right to privacy, there is also a right to publicity.  Big Brother used ethically can become Good Brother, as we have see in the use of thousands of photos taken both as surveillance and as a hobby at the end of the Boston Marathon which turned into the Boston Massacre.

The successful apprehension of the second suspect tonight after a 20 hour lock-down of the entire city of Boston, will cause all of us ---including this civil libertarian --- to reevaluate our  knee-jerk  rejection of the new world of ubiquitous photography and videography we have created in the last 20 years.

If---and it is a big IF ---- these technological eyes can be used ethically, as they were in the last 48 hours in Boston, we may be able to create a world of Good Brother rather than Big Brother.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

* . . . And A Head Exploding With Undyed Hair

(Link to YDN article)

PK on retirement day, outside his classroom,  age 67

Killing Chivalry Once and For All

theantiyale  7 hours ago
'[All I want is] Some guy to ask me out on a date to the frozen–yogurt place,’ she said. That’s it. A $3 date.”
I’m 21 now; to be honest, I’d prefer to be taken out for a drink. But I — along with most of the women I spend time with, and many men here too — am farther from getting asked out on that drink than I was four years ago, when it wouldn’t have even been legal.
I tried to read beyond these quotes and became more and more exasperated
Seriously women: you are still BUYING into the already dead and vestigial artifacts of a Chivalry you have systematically murdered over the last few decades.
This infuriates me. WHY does a guy have to ask a girl out. WHY can't a girl ask a guy out?
I'm being serious here: It has always irritated me that I was expected to give a woman a diamond ring. Why doesn't the WOMAN give ME a diamond ring. I'm a great catch----even at this ripe old age (no alimony, no dependents, non-abusive, fairly bright and a head exploding with undyed hair.).
Kill Chivalry once and for all and build the new world you want.
Or---do you want a new world at all? Be honest.

Friday, April 12, 2013

* Bulldogs Without Boundaries

  (link to YDN story)

  11 hours ago
·                              theantiyale
"And we work hard to push back against this narrative that it’s our fault — even as we take self-defense classes, watch our drinks and stick with our friends late at night"

I would be ashamed to raise a daughter in such a frightening world.
Courting was still a word when I was young. Dating replaced it. Katherine Hepburn could still sting a man's cheek and ego with her well placed slap.
Now there is a hook-up culture which is a euphemism for coitus-at-first-sight.
Once upon a time one had to win the favor of another's attention. Now one wins the favor of plundering another's body and hopes not to be further troubled by their attention after the mutual theft.
People don't socialize with alcohol, they drink to get drunk. No one even uses a word like "tipsy' anymore. There are no gradations, simply A and Z with nothing in between.
We are not doctors without borders, we are beings without boundaries; There are no gentlemen and no ladies. There aren't even genders.
So we take back the night instead of go out on the town.
We 'go to court' instead of court.
I worry for your generation.

Friday, April 5, 2013

* In Memoriam, Yale Class of 2013

When a Yale graduate student was murdered in September, 2009, I felt an immediate empathy with the students at Yale because I had gone through a murder on a college campus myself 39 years before, May 4, 1970 at Kent State.  Actually, it was four murders. And they were perpetrated not by a mad man, but by a mad society, in a way.

I was worried for Yale students  because they did not know what they were about to go through, just as those of us at Kent State did not know that many of us would suffer Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, a term not yet invented in 1970, but a disorder nonetheless.

I vowed privately to stick with the students (via theantiyale postings on the Yale Daily News board) for the full four years of their journey at Yale, and in a month or so, I will have kept that promise.

Along the way, that Yale class has been further wounded and shocked  by suicides and accidental deaths, as well as a tragic death  of a beloved classmate by illness.

  It almost seemed at times more than a class could endure.

As William Faulkner  said in Light in August:

"Too much happens...Man performs, engenders, so much more than he can or should have to bear. That's how he finds that he can bear anything...That's what's so terrible." 

It is almost 3000 posts later.

I wish the Yale class of 2013 well.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

* Ms. Raleigh Concurs