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Want to Make a Terrible Argument? Consider Publishing this Instead

For the past few years, I have talked about the nature of policing and our relationship to it amongst my circle of friends. My friends, mostly progressive, ask me if there’s anything we can do to help solve some of the serious problems that exist in policing, even though only one of us is Black and has real-life lived experiences with police violence and racism.

▸ Read more. “Want to Make a Terrible Argument? Consider Publishing this Instead”

the wrong focus

In this New York Times article, the perspective of workers is absent. That’s a huge mistake.

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This post originally appeared on my email newsletter, Take Two.


(Which would be so much nicer if I actually had a dog.)

Social distancing is quite lonely but I’m reminding myself to see it’s pretty.

Troy didn’t know Clement was already in the bed when he jumped up. Now both of them are annoyed — with me. (Like it’s my fault.)

A photograph of Troy on his cat bed just as I woke him up.

He wants to know why I woke him up. (It was for this photo.)

Whiteness as default

I’m guessing that a two-minute video produced a student homecoming committee was not meant to appear in The New York Times in this way. And yet, in 2020, here we are again: Still discussing race as it exists in America, and grappling with the realities of our racial condition from one decade to the next.

▸ Read more. “Whiteness as default”

Troy, wondering if he gets treats. (He does not.)

Hong Kong, a poem

a convention was signed, forced upon unequal
and then there was the 99-year sequel
and so I was born, all alive and free
until Victoria granted letters patent to thee

and George — well, he got it wrong more than right
from harbors to railroads to cities walled by blight
and as the people suffered from poor sanitation
the answer was to establish a peak reservation

And when young men arrived, championing a new cause
he scampered off and left some maple to their claws
and they spoke in tongues even I didn’t understand
of a Greater Prosperity in and among this land

But a bomb was dropped, and then another
and she greeted me like a surrogate mother
“Elizabeth,” she said, her voice a command
that she would, once again, rule us by her foreign hand

Then one day he turned up, war-battered and torn
so Elizabeth let me go in the middle of a storm
saying goodbye forever, and I won’t forget you
your grandpa and I, we declared it as truth

Jin — well, he too got it wrong more than he got it right
but I didn’t believe he was doing it from spite
for he said that he would most certainly leave me alone
to heal the wounds left on my hip and jawbone
and, that day, to celebrate our reunification
he gave me a flower as the gift from a nation

I needed the time, I needed to think
but he’s here again, now dressed up in pink
and apparently he thinks he’s been waiting too long
for me to agree that I did so belong
so he came to encourage me to speed up the process
of healing, love, understanding and rest

I said “no way” and turned round to leave
so he grabbed my arm and tore off my sleeve
and I looked in his eye and I saw no love there
no more than Elizabeth had once laid out bare
and so he slapped me; across the face, three times
Article 23, election powers and breach of the peace crimes

And now I am here, bleeding out and in tears
crying out amongst gases and peppers and riot gear
and as I fight back, the one thing I’ve learned
who asked me if I consent to be governed?