Everyone Needs Examples, Including Bad Examples

When we wrote, where Where Did All This F*cking Evil Sh%t Come From? and recently, Right-wingnuts Bless Progressives, and in other posts, including practically everything we’ve written about the events in Ferguson, Missouri, it was to offer a rational explanation of why we are faced, constantly bombarded, with negativity, and why this provides an array of opportunities for good.

by Pranav Bhatt Flickr/creative commons

by Pranav Bhatt
Flickr/creative commons

I know this sounds rather counter-intuitive, and understand why when bad things happen to good people it can become a source of frustration and helplessness, but these reactions forget the underlying ecology of progress.

There is a time tension of reality that causes budding personalities to seek out sunshine and sustenance to thrive. The alternative is death. So we take stock of all threats to life and health and grow around them, in spite of them. We point out the bad shyte, deconstruct it to its rotten core, reveal its ultimate futility, and challenge ourselves and others to look beyond and work around.

Who can deny that the legacy of Michael Brown is that he and has family are now lightening rods bringing about real change, not just in Ferguson but in every American city?

Who can deny that the misanthropic Westboro Baptist Church exposes the bankruptcy of organized religion?

Who can deny that the actions of today’s theocratic oligarchies throughout the world, including in the United States, are producing a newly energized and organized progressive counterpunch?

No doubt there is pain and sacrifice along the way, we all feel it. But progress cannot be thwarted. Just as the bud is determined to flower, so too will good triumph over evil.

In this instant news world we now live in, I wake up most days feeling besieged from every direction: ISIS, the Supreme Court, congressional venality and its ignorance, climate change, crime, injustice, you name it. But I get up, wash my face, and do what is within my power, as limited as that may be, to bring sunshine and nourishment wherever and whenever I can. I am challenged by all the bad examples of humanity around me but comforted that the chemistry of negativity dictates its eventual obsolescence because it lacks the vital building blocks of progress.

The humane will always triumph over the inhumane if only we are willing to move forward and do something about it.


Rape Victim Faces Criminal Charges for Tweeting Names of Attackers

Creative Commons: Matthais M.

No matter how you look at it, there’s something wrong when a rape victim is threatened with fines and jail time for speaking out about her horrible experience. Not only had Savannah Dietrich  endured the hardship brought upon her by attackers, but she now faces a $500 fine and up to 6 months in jail. She showed great courage in breaking her silence but she violated a court order that demanded she not speak out.

A brave and defiant Savannah Dietrich explained her outrage, “So many of my rights have been taken away by these boys. I’m at the point, that if I have to go to jail for my rights, I will do it. If they really feel it’s necessary to throw me in jail for talking about what happened to me as opposed to throwing these boys in jail for what they did to me, then I don’t understand justice.” (

Not only is this indignation completely called for, but it also brings about a vital government responsibility to both Dietrich and all people who are victims of any crime: the justice system should be there to protect us. In this case, however, that is clearly not happening. Not only is Dietrich’s free speech being violated, the court order doesn’t help her recover by speaking out which further victimizes her, only helping her attackers by keeping their names out of the public view. Something is seriously wrong when our courts are helping those who perpetrate violent sex crimes to keep their names clear, even in a juvenile court.