If you want to argue that a specific law is necessitated by some kind of universal principle, you cannot then change basic principles to match the perceived needs of the moment without admitting, pretty clearly, that principles are irrelevant, window dressing, the lipstick you put on the pig when it’s not being slaughtered.

This is about rape, and what it means, and what we think it means. As a culture, we still refuse collectively to accept that most rapes are committed by ordinary men, men who have friends and families, men who may even have done great or admirable things with their lives. We refuse to accept that nice guys rape, and they do it often. Part of the reason we haven’t accepted it is that it’s a fucking painful thing to contemplate – far easier to keep on believing that only evil men rape, only violent, psychotic men lurking in alleyways with pantomime-villain moustaches and knives, than to consider that rape might be something that ordinary men do. Men who might be our friends or colleagues or people we look up to. We don’t want that to be the case. Hell, I don’t want that to be the case. So, we all pretend it isn’t. Justice, see?

Trigger Warning Week — Laurie Penny, guest-posting on Zunguzungu

They say that discretion is the better part of valour. But the Deparatment for International Development, or at least its boss, has decided otherwise. It was announced last month that “Aid from Britain will now be badged with a Union Flag when it is sent overseas, as a clear symbol that it comes from the United Kingdom.” In these times of urgently, relentlessly celebrating Britishness in all possible ways, this little ‘tweak’ to development policy may have slipped under the radar.

Zunguzungu — A guest post from Meera Sabaratnam, from the excellent blog The Disorder of Things, who disorder things oh so nicely — "Flag-waving and Drowning: On the New Policy of UKAid"


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Go inside. Close All windows and doors. Turn off all heaters. Air conditioners and fans. If not using the fireplace. Close fireplace dampers and vents. And cover cracks around doors and windows with tape or damped towels. Media news networks will continue to carry updated emergency information. Stay Off the telephone unless you have a life threatening emergency.

Aaron Bady, “It has been fully contained, but it is not yet extinguished”

To say that memory can deceive us is to perpetrate a dull cliche, however, and this is not the point. Instead, I would put it to you that the point is this: forgetfulness is what saves us, what gives us a second chance. Those who forget the past are not condemned to repeat it, but the reverse is true. Only those who forget the past will ever free themselves from it.