I had reached a point in my own life and in my own journey where measuring against other people’s expectations or judgments wasn’t of any interest to me anymore.
A new report from Pew Research Center indicates that while most Americans anticipate great technological changes in the next few decades, many have doubts that new inventions and advances will help humanity in the long run.
In general, 59% of the 1,000 participants interviewed said technological changes would lead to a better future, while 30% said things would get worse. Many said they expected revolutionary advances in the next 50 years, such as lab-grown organ transplants.
A friend and I were out with our kids when another family’s two-year-old came up. She began hugging my friend’s 18-month-old, following her around and smiling at her. My friend’s little girl looked like she wasn’t so sure she liked this, and at that moment the other little girl’s mom came up and got down on her little girl’s level to talk to her.
“Honey, can you listen to me for a moment? I’m glad you’ve found a new friend, but you need to make sure to look at her face to see if she likes it when you hug her. And if she doesn’t like it, you need to give her space. Okay?”
Two years old, and already her mother was teaching her about consent.
My daughter Sally likes to color on herself with markers. I tell her it’s her body, so it’s her choice. Sometimes she writes her name, sometimes she draws flowers or patterns. The other day I heard her talking to her brother, a marker in her hand.
“Bobby, do you mind if I color on your leg?”
Bobby smiled and moved himself closer to his sister. She began drawing a pattern on his leg with a marker while he watched, fascinated. Later, she began coloring on the sole of his foot. After each stoke, he pulled his foot back, laughing. I looked over to see what was causing the commotion, and Sally turned to me.
“He doesn’t mind if I do this,” she explained, “he is only moving his foot because it tickles. He thinks its funny.” And she was right. Already Bobby had extended his foot to her again, smiling as he did so.
What I find really fascinating about these two anecdotes is that they both deal with the consent of children not yet old enough to communicate verbally. In both stories, the older child must read the consent of the younger child through nonverbal cues. And even then, consent is not this ambiguous thing that is difficult to understand.
Teaching consent is ongoing, but it starts when children are very young. It involves both teaching children to pay attention to and respect others’ consent (or lack thereof) and teaching children that they should expect their own bodies and their own space to be respected—even by their parents and other relatives.
And if children of two or four can be expected to read the nonverbal cues and expressions of children not yet old enough to talk in order to assess whether there is consent, what excuse do full grown adults have?
Why are some animals so ugly?
We reveal why some animals are considered ugly!
The NYPD tried to start a hashtag outpouring of positive memories with their police force.
If this were ever a bad idea, it was probably the worst idea for arguably the most corrupt police force in America.
What the person running the Twitter account probably failed to realize is that most people’s interactions with the cops fall into a few categories:
1. You are talking to them to get help after you or someone you knew was robbed, beaten, murdered, or sexually assaulted.
2. You are getting arrested.
3. You are getting beaten by the police.
In category 1, you are probably not going to be like, “Oh, let me take a selfie with you fine officers so I can remember this moment,” and the other two categories are not things that the NYPD would like people on social media talking about. Additionally, the people who use Twitter a lot (and who aren’t Sonic the Hedgehog roleplayers) are the type who love fucking with authority figures. In any case, #myNYPD quickly became a trending topic in the United States, largely because people were tweeting and retweeting horrific images of police brutality perpetrated by New York City cops.
Probably the worst idea…
he looked old for 14
“It took me four years to paint like Raphael, but a lifetime to paint like a child.”
― Pablo Picasso