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Microchips Are For Fido Not For You; It’s Not Hip, Cool, Cutting Edge Science And Is In Fact Dangerous—Fundamentalist Religious Connotations Aside

Current Trends by Natasha Sapp

Maybe an interesting way to keep track of socks, locate lost possessions, car keys, tools, go into so called wearable technology but not in you, and certainly not for want of never losing your keys, finding a place to put your wallet/credit card, room key at the beach, medical records available at a swipe, thrill you get at doors opening by the wave of your hand… It isn’t a real life substitute for the force and it’s not supposed to be; as great as technology and the world is today this isn’t Star Wars. Oh how quickly we forget that universe too had its problems; great to read about, see movies about, absolutely horrible to LIVE in, remembering exactly where Darth Vader’s force sensitivity led him, hmm….While the Ohio surveillance company ‘implantation’ was completely voluntary and clearly testing the waters 11 years ago and the BuzzFeed author was delving into the future of money, how he chose to go about it represents choice, exploration, curiosity; Sweden’s moves are a little more insidious and compelling. First, as the BuzzFeed author noted, they have migrated farther away from cards or the nearly obsolete cash payment forms opting for mobile payment systems and chip readers not to mention professionals to implant them; next workers at the company featured by BBC all apparently agreed to chip implantation as a condition of their employment, we don’t need a crystal ball to see where this is going do we? How long before, in Sweden at least, it isn’t voluntary if you want a job, need medical care, wish to buy standard, basic personal hygiene items, food, rent an apartment; the UK and other small European countries the next to likely follow suit. Sold to the public as ultimate security, identity protection, removes the need for carrying cards or documents, eliminates what can happen in fire, natural disaster— loss of important personal data. Here is what older, slightly religious to absolutely fundamentalist religious persons, those simply reasonably cautious talk about when they shout mark of the beast, start correlating RFID technology to eternal damnation laid out in the bible for all who take the mark in their hand or forehead, without which they will be forbidden to buy or sell goods. Current technology, its pushed for direction begging the question, if the bible is the hoax, merely moral guideline book filled with endless inaccuracies, implausibilities, then why does RFID, its potential future offshoot technologies include a creepy picture of a man wearing an adhesive circuit board on his forehead? Thankfully the U.S. and most of the world has a long way to go before RFID could be remotely commonplace….People familiar with my work know my continued chronicling of this technology and repeated cautioning against it; in addition to the litany of possible negative bodily effects always seeming to get the last 2 lines maximum in any article, no true in depth thought given to what could physically, medically go wrong, are the vastly underplayed societal ramifications equally needing to be combatted, as is public apathy to something that has the potential to exert more control over a person than any object, government entity has a right to. Those who dispute biblical references to the mark of the beast, the eternal damnation comeuppance purportedly visited upon non-Christians to be doled out at a still undetermined date in our distant, not so distant future featured so prominently in the Left Behind book series/movies should ponder the following question left as yet unanswered; if not spiritual consequences, are we in for continuing to use said technology fostering a one world government where, ‘the man,’ apply called ‘big brother’ is in every aspect of your life to far greater degrees than we now constantly must resist, keeping in mind reactions to warrantless wiretapping, NSA surveillance, Edward Snowden anyone, government mass data collection. Worried about the vast number of cameras snapping photos of us throughout any given day; data breaches not only representing disconcerting flaws in our ever dependent technology but anxiety producing hyper vigilance around privacy; who has our data, what they plan to do with it, what technology will let them do with it before laws are crafted to protect us. Said laws being continuously undermined by the current presidential administration just putting forth a bill that would allow internet service providers to sell your browsing history to third parties, surely under the pretense of giving you a better browsing experience, ads only tailored to products interesting you and your family; opposing lawmaker summing it up beautifully, “Give me one good reason why Comcast should know what my mother’s medical problems are,” said congressman Mike Capuano during the hearing before the vote, explaining how he had researched her condition after a trip to the doctor. “Just last week I bought underwear on the internet. Why should you know what size I take? Or the color?” [Sic] All due respect to the congressman’s undergarments and the tinge of silliness housed in the example versus say political searches, employment searches, he is absolutely right on 2 distinct fronts; first, it is none of their business understanding existing law doesn’t say they can’t sell user information only that they must obtain your permission before doing so, respect your decision to opt out, say no to selling the information. Secondly, arguably more important to their financially driven ends, if you flood the person with ads for item X, Y type of underwear in specific brand, color Z it will be futile because you’ve already bought the underwear you need; sidestepping if they were a gift for someone, you’re researching something for the purpose of expanding your knowledge not exclusively for personal use, then sellers of your browsing history have given a false impression to the end recipient of that information meaning they won’t sell to you as successfully as they planned…. Now picture a world where there is no expectation of privacy, it’s all right there in/on your chip and with a simple scan everyone can know everything about you; don’t like it, find it unnecessarily invasive, then you can figure out how to get a job, rent an apartment, buy foods, see a doctor sans a chip when everywhere requires one. Sounds pretty close to the descriptions depicting the mark of the beast to me, unable to buy or sell goods, easily extrapolated own a business, absent a mark, chip, barcode on your hand or forehead, and to a plethora of others; digressing from the spiritual once more, whose response to reports about chip technology to be put inside persons as identification, medical record storage or the cool factor of opening doors at the wave of your hand is to say they would rather starve naked in the woods, live totally off any grid than be subject to that kind of control. Hardly difficult to see why when thinking a short time about it; compounding the perceived invasions of privacy, intrusions on free will we contend with today, try being confronted by your employer because you were tracked to a bar after work by your chip, ‘caught’ with a different girl every night of the week at which point they fired you despite being single. Have credit card debt, student loan debt you’re blocked out of buying that morning latte, any fast food, that outfit or dress never mind if it’s for a major event say a wedding, new clothing for work, cable or internet services, throwing out completely you may use one, perhaps both to get a job, seek a better, higher paying job, you have basic cable because over the air TV no longer works where you live and you still need news and weather, use that to write freelance materials, putting lines on your résumé toward paid work. Also you can forget that car loan, so much as funds to repair your old one being released to you, though its your money you worked hard for, independent your need for a car, vehicle to get to work, earn money to continue making payments on your debt. Welcome to wage garnishment to the nth degree in the 21st century and beyond; shouldn’t we all be proud? Sick, have a chronic medical condition say diabetes no more cake, ice cream, junk food, red meat, soda available for you, dido if you are obese; we are in the midst of an obesity epidemic, to that end no Easter, Halloween, valentines candy. Cake and ice-cream for your kid’s birthday, you still can’t have it; planning a summer barbecue, family reunion or other event with food, where you, yourself plan to eat almost none of the unhealthy things precisely because of your health status, condition, those realities don’t matter. Under this system no need to outlaw foods, vastly regulate the food industry, oh no, just regulate who gets access to what food generating a whole different type of class warfare. Struggle with alcohol addiction, suspected an alcoholic, forgo expensive, repetitively, ‘ineffective’ drug treatment, taxpayer dime funded rehab, merely block them from buying alcohol, history with pills: red flag their medical file to cut off pain medication, gambler prevent them from participating by locking funds, dispatching social, morality police to remove a gambler from an establishment specializing in same, restrict their internet access based on personal history with gambling sites, or the other popular ‘addiction’, porn viewing. Notice operative words in the previous list were suspected and addictions; reasonable proof not required to trigger government imposed freedom restrictions when 99% of the time the singular person hurt is one’s self…. Juxtaposed against the strictly social RFID negatives are technological realities conveniently ignored; we’ve seen the hacking of POS (point of sale) machines where you swipe your credit, debit or store card when making a purchase effecting all the major retailers Home Depot to Target and back again, hacks of major banks JP Morgan Chase to name one, Yahoo’s data breach effecting up to a billion accounts worldwide. Devastating exactly what was affected user names, passwords, security questions meant to add safety, phone numbers, addresses, e-mail addresses, dates of birth happening just under 6 months ago, loudest in the growing white noise of hacks heard about becoming our new normal; previous breaches occurring at the CIA, pentagon pilfering workers, service members social security cards. We’ve seen the vulnerability, drawbacks of smart homes where the internet of things is alive and well, thieves can hack your internet router, home Wi-Fi/internet network and open doors/windows, turn lights on and off, change security codes subsequently robbing you blind without ever having to set one toe into your home, next to impossible to track. And just weeks ago we saw the ‘wannacry’ cyber-attack exploiting a known weakness in Microsoft operating systems software that went global putting at a standstill hospitals and surgeries in the UK, reaching as far away as Mongolia; worse Microsoft was aware of the vulnerability, had created a patch for it but many had not updated their computers. In fact we owe lessened effects in the US to 2 white hat (good guy) hackers who found an uncomplicated way to thwart the attack; over the course of this article’s creation are developing concerns popular Russian made anti-virus software Kaspersky running on a good section of US personal computers, business computer networks, sounding greater alarms government utilized PCs at the US bureau of prisons, select defense department agencies, could be a hidden national security threat requiring whole computer access to achieve the software’s touted protection, a would be tool for enhanced meddling, espionage above and beyond what has been authenticated pertaining to the 2016 election, business spying, intellectual property theft carried out by powers like China…. Domestically substantiating long held fears regarding a cyber-attack on the computers, computer systems that control major networks like city, country electrical grids, water purification and supply facilities, 9-1-1 emergency centers, utility plants, any local nuclear operations, in addition to the foreign threats there’s the hacker who hacked into Dallas Texas tornado sirens and set them off in the middle of the night merely to prove he could do it, to alert officials to the ease with which he pulled it off, a hackers standard way of imploring city, state leaders to fix glaring problems. Giving us a sad glimpse into the future of smart cities, their crippling, possible epidemic starting, national shutdown vulnerabilities that can and will ultimately jeopardize lives if we don’t get smarter in both creating but maintaining technology running them, slated to run them when we discard traditional systems…. Right up there with those headaches we’ve seen when purportedly smart, next generation technology fails spectacularly; the smart dumb fridge that reboots in demo mode after a power outage with the cooling compressor off, result a fridge full of spoiled food, firmware updates to Blu-ray players and you can no longer access your Netflix, Hulu or YouTube accounts through it, Samsung who got into public hot water post stopping produced updates for one player after a measly 3 years. Microsoft made headlines and elicited collective American groans when they announced discontinuance of updates to popular system windows XP, terribly short sighted forgetting its global usage and said usages implications; outer reaches of Mongolia probably are still using it, developing world advancement and cheap software needed on the scale for whole city utilities, emergency services will undoubtedly mean being a couple generations behind the latest Microsoft, wide spread global office, business, record keeping product. Exponentially troubling too tech expert attitudes at home that, if we are running so called out of date tech hacks like ‘wannacy’ are our fault, we are contributing to a growingly devastating problem; oblivious to the reality lesser developed countries can’t upgrade major city systems, medical institutions, critical institution record keeping to windows 10, whatever’s next on a dime and shouldn’t have to….fast forward a few short years and imagine a time, with the gung ho attitude toward RFID, when they aren’t hacking sales devices at stores, hacking hospitals and businesses with so called ransomware, but are actually hacking individuals’ RFID chips, forced to mass reconfigure hundreds to thousands of individual persons chips to get those flights finally moving. Because, contrary to their major current selling point, that imbedding it in several layers of skin makes it harder to hack, RFID is some of the easiest technology to either hack or clone, a system on the whole that is in no way secure, furthest from it actually. Utterly idiosyncratic to the CBS This Morning segment featuring a Swedish tech aficionado doing a presentation, he billed as educating the public on how RFID can help you as well as ways it can be used against you, holding parties where interested citizens can get chipped together, he frankly admitted the chips were insecure, advised not putting your life’s secrets on them. Except held up alongside listed wonders, being able to open everything from your car door to your formerly key-carded office with your hand, your life secrets are your credit cards, your social security number, computer passwords, online account passwords, e-mail to shopping, not just your hush, hush porn habit, kink fetish or diaper obsession, adult baby group membership, your purchases at an adult store. By the numbers, as it stands, identity theft is one of the most expensive threats to handle for the average person spawning security agencies like Life Lock pledging to spend up to a million dollars to resolve your case; holding that thought, put yourself in the position of trying to explain to officials at social security, your bank, the DMV, your doctor’s office your personal chip, residing inside you, has been hacked. The first few hundred cases would be scoffed at, laughed out of institutions, businesses and chalked up to people who didn’t understand how the new tech worked and therefore thought they could escape their bills, pull a fast one claiming to be hacked. To do this, not so incredible hacking, criminals, tech enthusiasts simply create a better skimmer identical to those used to skillfully scan/skim credit card data as you bump into unsuspecting marks in a store, restaurant, skillful skimmers very adept at slapping their own realistic device over ones at the grocery store while keeping you and the cashier dutifully distracted, attached to ATM’s again looking like the real thing so as you enter PIN information it can take you for all you’re worth. Almost guaranteed is they won’t have a mechanism, even with en-masse use, for when early version chips suddenly stop reading or otherwise malfunction locking you out of the ability to perform bank transactions, buy groceries, if technology protagonists and employers a-la Sweden have their way, report to work, be functional, productive once you get there…. Neither, as quickly referenced above, is literally microchipping people medically sound; beyond car accidents, extreme sports causing chip migration that sets off a cascade of possible related health problems extrapolating short or long term into the future, i.e. considering wide spread usage, implantation a matter mandated by law. It is especially disconcerting trying to answer pertinent burning questions: at what age do they implant such a personal data chip, when a child’s hand is big enough to safely tolerate a chip, who determines that safety parameter? Are we looking at a situation where we can no longer practically educate our children on how the world works, how to go through a checkout, teach them money sense, financial literacy by simply letting them use allowance money, birthday dollars to pay for an item due to being too young for chips, chips not allotted to young people until they are 16 and old enough to work? More insidiously if they did microchip babies, toddlers the moment their hands were big enough to tolerate it, hold their chip in its proper place it would doubtlessly increase rates of chip failure and persons having to have more than one input in their lifetime; multiply the chances of chip migration to other parts of the body skyrocketing their potential for heart attacks, strokes, brain bleeds, blood clots, embolisms and aneurisms, serious and often times fatal, amputations when it catches in a major artery and fat or blood collects around it, person oblivious until it’s too late. Would a chip in an infant, toddler, child pre-puberty, the electrical impulses emanating from it interfere with natural development, regular brain electrical impulses, trigger early, so called precocious puberty being bombarded by electrical reading when out in public, prolonged exposure to electrical pulses could it stunt, alter brain growth? Once there is proof of chip migration, for whatever reason, how do you safely remove then replace it remembering it’s mandated by law; what are the risks of said removal procedure, since you are dealing with things roughly the size of a grain of rice is one of the potentially deadly medical complications a bubble in your vein also possible when injecting medicine, illegal drugs intravenously, nicking an artery or vein during attempted removal, suction used to try and extract an errant chip doing identical damage to said arteries, veins? Seems a pretty dire set of choices, near instantaneous death contrasted beside being a health ticking time bomb; less drastically contrary to the idea RFID can be engineered to supplant the Fitbit and Apple watch’s fitness health data collection, concepts behind it as next generation medical monitoring tracking blood pressure, heartrate, signs of everything for irregular heartbeats to stroke, heart attack or onset of diabetes, the soon to be circulated if not already internet meme ‘Fitbit saved my life,’ what happens when your chip inevitably malfunctions sending you scrambling to your doctor, an ER, erroneously dispatching ambulance services, for which you’ll doubtlessly be billed, oh….Which brings us to exactly how many times do we have to see failures of medical devices placed in the body, vaginal mesh lawsuits, hernia mesh recalls to stint apparatuses supposed to prevent blood clots in the lungs that were horribly designed, patently unsafe and the testing corrupted, poorly formed hip replacements, heard about when there’s a class action level lawsuit, major law firm is on TV seeking plaintiffs, before we reduce their number, never mind stop advocating putting foreign objects inside you that have no medical purpose?… common sense says people who are diagnosed with the above, epilepsy, have a pace maker probably shouldn’t add in another electric device to their existing one, certainly not in the name of cool factor, convenience, ultimate government bureaucracy laziness, underlying mentioned control. Epileptics routinely triggered by bright lights, flickering strobe type lights staples during music concerts, stage shows; video game consoles reaching back 20 odd years or more, accompanied by specific games, categories of games have carried the potential for seizure warning. Speaking of people with disabilities, society appears growingly determined to exclude them, make their lives harder, oblivious to the rigors they face daily doing normal activities most take for granted; how difficult it is to bank, buy things, travel through an airport when you can’t wave your arm well in front of a scanner or hold your head up well for a forehead barcode scanner due to advanced Parkinson’s MS, cerebral palsy or muscular dystrophy, results of an accident rendering you quadriplegic. Forced to sacrifice what little independence, dignity they possess, shouldering a financial burden utilizing a care attendant to bag their groceries at the store because electronic check outs and a fully chipped society have removed actual people from said venues cutting down on business operating costs. Often too readily dismissed gaps between cutting edge medical marvels helping children with cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy, those newly diagnosed with degenerative, progressive diseases, chronic ailments and individuals who were born with their condition and have dealt with the effects 20, 30 years, people who, according to studied medical data on treatment X, will receive little or no benefit due to the stage of their disease, underlying wear and tear, secondary problems of say cerebral palsy on muscle and bone, prior surgeries to correct deformities, aid in walking, limb function. People who will thus still require, continue using assistive services, adaptive technologies evolving and continuing to be made; a plethora of reaching grabbing tools for people with varied physical disabilities, automatic door openers on public places, specialized easy open door handles for home, transfer apparatuses for showers, the computer generated voice computer set up used by Steven Hawking, those afflicted by debilitating degenerative conditions. Developmentally delayed Americans, frightening rises in rates of neurological disorders on par with autism and its spectrum of disorders, behavioral manifestations need a whole different set of assistance tools, long term care well into adulthood; here are people who may need to hold a paper bus pass, bus pass punch card to understand it, apps like Autismate facilitating communication among the non-verbal garner such success with featured case Joe because they use video of the actual person performing the desired task, doing the selected activity compensating for spectrum disorder persons’ lacking imagination, easing frustrations decoding symbols for tasks, activities they don’t comprehend. Understanding, comprehension an advocacy point pushing past a quark board, set of refrigerator magnets has never been hacked for keeping intact the United States postal service, paper bill statements, mortgage and insurance policy statements sent to senior citizens, remaining an option for older Americans who don’t possess computer skills or good ones, who can’t afford internet, computer and printer, combat age related limited mobility to frequent the local library, senior center to conduct such business, print paper copies of bills, banking statements…Some may be quick to point out lines in the introduction about hardly believed in spiritual consequences, only speculated government control a speck on a still distant horizon of maybe, referencing common knowledge medical techniques, devices and call out hypocrite; highlighting no one is screaming mark of the beast about them ready to chalk that portion up to lunatic religious fanatics. While concurrently giving a short history of modern medicine resistance to new techniques Jehovah’s witnesses that think, to this day, a blood transfusion is the same as occult blood drinking mentioned in the bible, people who shuddered at the concept of organ transplants believing they desecrated the dead to finding it plain grotesque to have another person’s organs inside you, pro-life advocates who believe life begins at conception and wish those lives prior to reaching medically/scientifically determined fetus stage, zygote, gamete level be granted personhood, full rights of any citizen under the law, one must realize that pace makers, cochlear implants for the deaf, hearing impaired and hard of hearing, even the new technology implanted into a paralyzed man’s brain to use in conjunction with a standard computer is meant to restore functions. Pacemakers regulate the heart to beat normally allowing a person to live and not die, correct suffering arrhythmia that can stop the heart completely; cochlear implants bypass the damaged portion of the ear transmitting sound impulses to the brain allowing a form of hearing. Subcutaneous insulin pumps are primarily outside the body except for the tube dispensing insulin at select times, wearable glucose monitors routinely worn by type 1 diabetic kids, are adhered the skin again on the outside of the body preventing dangerous highs and lows especially while sleeping producing happy side effects of saving young lives still outdone by diabetic alert dogs increasingly common place and slated to take over, if we haven’t found a cure, better treatment in coming decades. Think pancreas islet cell replacement via stem cells stimulating the body to make its own insulin, the failure causing type 1diabetes. Remember the height of the embryonic stem cell research debate, science surpassed it by finding different places for essentially blank stem cells that could be converted to any cell, tissue, organ in the body, cord blood and resulting cord blood banks storing umbilical cord blood to name one; cancer treatment progressed to using chemo therapy, radiation to eradicate the cancer then take either bone marrow or stem cells for the persons own body, re-implanting them cancer free; lifesaving methods when transplants weren’t available, rare matches couldn’t be found. The circuit board-esque system the young man featured had attached to his brain A- was intended to bypass his damaged spinal cord allowing limited limb movement for basic tasks i.e. holding/grasping a spoon, swiping a credit card similar to advances in prosthetics; futuristic medical machinery to stop epilepsy or curb obesity are correcting malfunctions and dysfunctions all, not necessarily using computer chips or omni-trackable. B-none are engineered capable of self-awareness evolving into a Skynet like hell scape, are in no way sophisticated enough to supplant or override human thought, impulses, basic will; key too is it uses a person’s own thoughts, recognition of brain impulses to control the artificial limb, sent though the device rigging as opposed to the spinal column to achieve movement. A leg up from deep brain stimulation used to control Parkinson’s tremors, Tourette’s ticks, balance mood in major depressive patients who’ve tried everything else, offered in extreme cases for weight control of morbidly obese persons to staunch cravings, but absent any chance to influence a person’s cognitive ability, will, desire. Finally, C- represent stop gap technology until we can either generate an artificial spine, already in the research works, or totally organically progress stem cell treatment to completely repairing devastating spinal injury….RFID, most importantly is a complex, prone to malfunction redundancy piled onto redundancy; jumping well past fear inducing scenarios generated from contemplations on should our futuristic one system for everything suddenly crash is ever expanding proof once and for all we don’t need it, it solely invents new problems without solving the old ones…Countering chicken little ism thought we must eventually do this or else there will be no privacy, security, reasonable means to protect ourselves, buy good, services, merchandise independent being robbed blind, new forms of protecting and verifying identity crop up daily including Pulse Wallet that works by scanning the veins in your forearm, ideal for someone who has been in an accident whose face is prominently disfigured, who may have also lost finger prints, one or both hands. Smart home alternatives to traditional locks feature a key pad to enter codes of authorized persons than when entered will unlock the door; thumb print scanning home door locks are a little lesser known but widely available. Easily adaptable to disability accessible needs; voice recognition doors placement of thump, retinal scanner into a wheelchair, mobility device likely coming quicker than accessibility parameters to mass use devices predictably looking identical to airport body scanners. Key fobs are todays keyless entry people, you don’t even need your key to start the vehicle with the starter buttons hello; inclined to think waving your hand and having your car unlock is still the height of cool, hackers are well on their way to stealing cars via hacking, giving up good old fashioned grand theft auto for pilfering the information from your car’s very own key fob, all the more proof and reason we don’t want them hacking us, our RFID chip to abscond with our wheels. Simplistic safeguard for key fob code theft, when you lock your doors upon getting out go ahead and press that lock button 2-3 extra times resetting the codes and rendering any code taken useless; almost guaranteed is they won’t have that uncomplicated a fix for a first, second even 3rd generation hacked chip. Car dealers already have means to disable your vehicle if you miss a payment much to the chagrin and danger of a women trying to juggle her chronic kidney disease, constant need for dialysis and an eventual kidney transplant plus her car payment, stories of parents trying to get their child to an emergency room, parent having stopped somewhere and the child is left stranded at a school; further alerts about such devices were about how they were used, lack of regulation, dangers if the dealer isn’t paying attention when the shut off the vehicle, only failsafe is the car can’t be moving. But there you go a tool for both non-payers and something to activate should the car be stolen, comparable the i-phone kill switch installed after people were literally being attacked and killed for their next generation i-product before being able to use it; switch rendering it useless if stolen removing the incentive for violence over a piece of entertainment technology…. Read More

Why Black Hair Matters—Head Scarves, Turbans And Coverings Too

Current Trends by Natasha Sapp

Everyone remembers the adage don’t judge a book by its cover, larger meaning don’t judge people simply on how they look; we know it was an idealistic, unattainable dream but we were always supposed to try, that trying making us better people… And in the era of Donald Trump, where his election seems to signal to his voters, his supporters, those non-confrontational individuals just going along to get along permission to hate, disparage, harass or attack people, fellow citizens, fellow human beings they don’t like it surfaces all the more important we refresh our memories about that old adage and its intrinsic value in our lives… Happenings in America representing a confusing duality when we’ve had a black president and first lady, both exuding class, grace, fortitude and no shortage of exemplary parenting under the withering scrutiny of the public eye only for there to be constant references to their race, repeated comparisons to gorillas, apes, negative references to exotic native rainforest women in grass skirts, political operatives are in hot water for telling her to go live in Africa with said apes, someone holding a job as important as teacher’s aide has to be fired for calling our just departed the Whitehouse first lady a gorilla. When Sikhs were just granted the ability to wear turbans in the military and NYC police forces have implemented similar policies regarding head scarves and turbans for Sikh and Muslim officers. But still the select few in ever dwindling numbers cling to immigrants, people wearing different types of dress, legal U.S. citizens, born U.S. citizens whose heritage is from elsewhere across the globe being a bad, dangerous other to be avoided, demand total assimilation and unique cultural annulation because we can? In 2017 blacks still don’t get a chance because even fewer portions of the population can’t leave their 1750, 1850’s and 1950’s mentalities behind?… Routine readers of my work know my repeated articles on education in multiple facets, none more so than on the patently ridiculous bans, restrictions and codes surrounding otherwise benign, everyday activities, clothing, jewelry, footwear hardly anyone would say anything about except it’s in a school, worn by a student. Know my personal mantra schools should adopt immediately to the betterment of educational institutions everywhere; are they wearing clothes, then they can come to class. Logical distain for backwards priorities filtering out into small towns, tightknit communities nationwide who seek to ban flip flops on tourists to important monuments, not as a safety concern but a class issue; how dare you show up here wearing those, kind of thing. Outlaw see-through clothing worn over not see through clothing rendering indecent exposure null and void; outlaw the wearing thong underwear, underwear implying it won‘t be seen. Quite literally foaming at the mouth they might see the top band of said underwear when a woman bends over to get things off low shelves at the store wearing low rise jeans, a little hard not to buy when you need new outerwear and that’s what’s in the store available. Pajamas worn in public, many times indistinguishable from yoga pants, exercise, workout gear, jogger wear, no more and a host of other personal preferences slated for the chopping block wholesome America wide; seeming to be the hallmarks of wasting time, paper and legislation often earning us lower and lower rankings on freedom scales evaluating westernized, emerging westernized nations…. Policies overly, purposefully targeting multiple ethnicities dress, accessory, hair stylings versus standard Caucasian trends. Notable the headline making Kentucky school drawing unwanted attention to itself even misspelling one, known for decades, predominately African American style, calling it corn rolls instead of corn rows. Further barring ‘afros,’ poof-ed hair longer than 2 inches, two toned hair and on, and on, and on; adding to the national debate on natural hair public figures, celebrities embracing it, not hiding, changing it, to fit 50 plus years of previous cultural norms. Another Chicago parent was incensed by a letter sent home with their child asking them not to put so much oil in their female child’s hair alleging it stunk wanting to prevent teasing from other students; anyone who has dealt with African American hair knows it must be regularly moisturized, usually using oil because that heritage has no oil in their scalp as Caucasian and other peoples’ do, the longer it is the more treatment it requires, coconut oil, their preferred method having no discernable smell, forget an obnoxious one. Her daughter being the only black child in class, with a probable white teacher, raises secondary issues regarding display of complete and utter cultural ignorance; come to find out there was no bullying of the child, conversations with administrators revealed the teacher is known as a complainer, foreign themselves, from Russia, resulting in unspecified discipline for her, again not firing, not review of her fit, alignment with the values of the learning center. Similar to the African American high schooler abruptly facing expulsion over her natural hair when she reported bullying because of it; the school’s principal, as opposed to addressing the bullying going on told the student to change her, suddenly concluded against policy, hair….How about a 9 year old suddenly told by her soccer coach to remove her hair beads citing safety, previously playing for years, same beads no mentioned problem; several parent commenters and child sports league players agreeing on the potential hazard posed. More than total unawareness it takes an hour to put in and take out said beads and braids accompanying them eliminating perception she could take 5, remove them, then play, the arbitrary nature of said enforcement undercutting any argument presented on player wellbeing. Reasoning they could smack fellow players in the face, put out an eye, injure the player themselves doing a head strike on the ball, if hit with a fast moving ball beads are essentially trapped between persons head and the ball creating an abrasion, possibly embedding beads(s) into skin; except tell me, readers, not when the last time that happened was because you instituted a rule about no hair jewelry, adornments, earrings, in professional soccer apparently these rules are standard, but when was the first time this happened necessitating ‘the rule’? And of course because it’s designated a rule it must be followed without question, though both American Youth Soccer Organization and FIFA had nothing on their websites until this incident… Employment, fitness for a job should be based on credentials, experience, aptitude, positive attitude, interview performance, overall appearance in terms of appropriate attire for position sought, not stereotypes about ethnic hair, not nagging a tech jockey to remove his lip/nose, ear ring(s) and goth metal t-shirts, black Tripp NYC shorts/jeans, negative about his tattoos when he isn’t regularly interacting with the public, does solid work behind the scenes in an industry regularly welcoming of less mainstream individuals. Why millennials especially insist on being judged for their work product not wardrobe, because no one should be told the rolled down waistband of nurse, dental student scrub pants is scandalous, next to be told by their employer while wearing the standard uniform, available scrub outfits to please dress in more adult, professional attire, then after complying told the colors you chose are too bright, forced into blacks and greys for a dental hygienist, assistant job. Millennials notorious for abandoning traditional jobs; above tech jockey treated like crap for his lip/nose, ear ring(s) and Goth metal t-shirts, black Tripp NYC shorts/jeans, tattoos began his own business to rousing, self-supporting success. Clothing debates that always end with the students winning either when they transfer out of the school bringing the issue, them, their parent enacts clever revenge wearing the objectionable outfit out among the public to positive compliments, no comment, when national attention alerts people nationwide to what localities, school officials are doing with their tax dollars, public pushback forces schools to drop/change policies, procedures, topics they never should have brought up in the first place…. .’ Lastly here the seriously dangerous implementations, ramifications of listed ordinances, rules; take Ervin Leon Edwards’ story, police called to a gas station to break up suspected domestic dispute, when they arrived whatever fight was already over, but because Louisiana passed a baggy pants ordinance banning the style he was taken into custody, later died in jail post being beaten. Adjacently Kevin Moore out of upstate New York who was savagely beaten by prison guards due to telling them he didn’t want to be housed in the jails mental health ward fearing being seen as a monster; one corrections officer was stealing his ripped out dreads to decorate his motorcycle. Moore subsequently hospitalized 17 days suffering 5 fractured ribs, a punctured lung, numinous facial fractures, multiple contusions to various body parts; cost of the officer’s ‘trophy.’ Why black hair is important, why head scarves, turbans and coverings are making the news, because no one should be arrested over their style of pants, injured anywhere because their hairstyle is an easy target, certainly not die for them… Interestingly enough we say we want African Americans to be and do better than gangs, becoming street thugs, public housing dwellers, ‘breading’ welfare recipients who keep popping out children for increased public assistance benefits, but consistently refuse to believe it when they achieve, live up to our best, not worst expectations. Most recent examples, a black OBGYN resident, Tamika Cross, who says a flight attendant requesting help from any doctors onboard to aide an ailing passenger told her when she stood up offering to respond, “Oh no, sweetie, put [your] hand down. We are looking for actual physicians or nurses or some type of medical personnel, we don’t have time to talk to you.”… Paralleling a black, again female, architect who had similar encounters at her bank double and triple checking her account information, grilling her about her work, googling her architecture firm to see if it was real, even calling her companies HR department to confirm her employment; ratcheting up the racial component is they first deposited her check, then after it cleared, they called her back in to answer questions, go through the verification process described. Funny, like rotten in the state of Denmark kind of funny we, society consistently say we want, particularly black people, to get off welfare, stop using food stamps, stop creating situations mandating the need for either, namely keep their legs closed, cease having children they can’t afford, prone to calling democrats the party of give me, give me, condoning irresponsible behavior only to discover the David Packman Moster.com job experiment story. Where an African American woman, Yolanda Spivey, had an uncomfortable hunch about why she wasn’t getting any job offers despite 10 years experience in insurance, applying for 300 open jobs, going back to college and finishing her degree causing her to compile results the alluded to during her employment site trial. For which she first changed her profile’s race to decline to identify (the sites only opt out option) nothing; next she created a mirror profile changing her name to the less distinctive Bianca White, changed her profile ethnicity to white, transferred the phone number to her cell versus home, input identical application materials as herself and offers poured in. Incongruent realities on social issues staring us in the face be it the skinny person versus the fat person and who offers help, the black person versus the white in a whole host of scenarios, male versus female, Mr. Packman’s co-host wondering what would happen if she changed her gender to male, if her job offers would multiply yet again; still we, society in general, continue mistaken beliefs blacks are fundamentally less qualified, wholly dependent on affirmative action to achieve and overly rewarded for markedly less success. Problem this isn’t new… . Many have daughters across America and what little girl, budding teen doesn’t love to dance; picture this, your child eats, sleeps breaths dance, she has 2 very competent dance instructors in the type of dance she loves and excels, who happen to be African American. Best place got her to learn more is out of town, out of state requiring a plane ride; well she’s kept up her grades, earned your trust, you feel confident they can take her to the dance tutorial no problem. World being what it is, you take the pains to draft a legal document stating unambiguously for the purpose of said trip they are her legal guardians; only to be stopped, adults handcuffed at the airport, because someone though it strange 2 black men were traveling with a teen white girl. Put aside alternative, same sex families where it might be 2 mommies or 2 daddies, adoptive families, people traveling with extended relatives, biracial families, relatives, even ignoring momentarily they had the legal document explaining what was going on, if the adults had been white and the teen black, Hispanic, middle eastern no one would have said anything, forget handcuffed them…. But we relentlessly blame black people when they can’t get jobs independent countless stories like those above, a lawsuit filed late 2016 alleging MVP, one of the largest job placement organizations nationwide, passed over black applicants in favor of Hispanics because most were undocumented, less likely to complain about working hours, wages or conditions. Agency countering they were just focused on meeting employer demands or anticipated demands; sadly there is too much truth to that statement. We double down scrutiny on black people’s lives, choices, accomplishments measured in money earned, street address, net worth, notable lack of it when attempting to get off welfare, better oneself, totally support oneself is treated the same way as a person getting out of jail/prison, on parole requiring a patient, forgiving, second chance minded employer; while we would applaud and offer a hand up to the white person in the form of an increased chance of getting a job. We talk an awful lot in this country about blacks and work, usually how hard we think they don’t work; not talked about is the harassment, fear, berating, assault they can face once getting a job, holding a job with any authority oversight. Case in point, woman hired to supervise hurricane Isaac rebuilding in Louisiana yelled at and threated by what appears to be a construction worker, perhaps a business owner, who when he saw she was filming the altercation on her phone became physically aggressive charging the petite, African American woman, spitting in her face….Why black hair is worth normalizing, head scarves, turbans, coverings should be treated as no big deal, because even in Donald Trump’s America where it is now run of the mill to repeatedly shout n*gger at black persons in broad daylight with no shame, people think their support for Trump means they can resort to racial slurs against blacks simultaneously complaining about their coffee taking too long during a rush, can claim white discrimination after losing it in a craft store while bystanders dared film the crazy. When popular millennial created, millennial used services like Uber, Lyft and Airbnb succumb to the same continuing cycles of harassing women and denying patronage to minorities, African Americans, attracted to our exotic beauty or lusting after captive audience young, supple students and all specific drivers can do is hope to get, actively try to get in their pants, into their bed. Contrary to popular belief every black person you meet, walking the streets is not a thug, a drug addict, a gangbanger, a welfare recipient, a hood rat, an irresponsible woman popping out kids for benefits, a baby daddy unwilling to support his offspring; every minority isn’t looking to take, be handed something rather than give back…. It seems all we’ve heard during the campaign, the election cycle, even after is about solid, good, American staple manufacturing jobs going to either Mexico or China; rarely noticed by flocks of Trump voters cheering on election night, clapping, crying inauguration day is the invaluable service both legal and illegal immigrants provide to America. They, decade after decade, do the jobs Americans, decade after decade, by the same token, are unwilling or unable to do; they pick the vegetables and fruits lining our supermarkets, gracing our dinner tables due to expertise, willingness to work for wages cash strapped farmers can afford to get their crops picked, packaged and sold as opposed to rotting on the vine. Harsh truths learned post 2008 and state by state immigration crackdowns; Trump proposed immigration management only going to intensify difficulties exponentially, already struggling famers losing crop they can’t sell due to spoilage, out of pocket costs to bus legal workers to fields too afraid to drive themselves, consequences seen in very recent years past. Worse these vegetable/fruit picking migrants are willing to come here, do backbreaking work, get paid a pittance and go home, singularly returning when the picking season is back on; they don’t want to live here, consume resources here, buy bare necessities while here. Regularly use milk, yogurt, cheese thank an immigrant for keeping Wisconsin and other dairy farms nationwide running; immigrants the only ones willing to muck stalls, put milking machines on cows, short and sweet be surrounded by cow dung all day…. But immigrants, legal, illegal who do stay, generate lives here remain responsible for billions of dollars flow through the U.S. economy, immigration policies not immigrants themselves costing Americans money; so called papers please immigration laws also serve to frighten legal workers from their jobs, purchase of goods, can cause a mass exodus seen in rulings like the Missouri Valley decision, parts of Arizona vacated leaving behind largely empty classrooms, abandoned apartment complexes, vacant jobs across all sectors of local economies. Consensus thinking good, more for us hardworking, small town whites, except that’s not how this works; school funding a prime instance of just the opposite, based on students in the classroom when immigration changes force mass move outs schools lose that funding. Suddenly vacant apartments, homes mean renters are equally suddenly out money, may file bankruptcy rendering those properties vacant, vulnerable to squatters and vandals, drug addicts driving down property values and inviting crime; bitter lesson of the great recession persons in Trump country never fully learned unwaveringly supportive of ridding America of its immigrant populations all, ignorant the inherent consequences. State policies barring illegal immigrants from getting a driving license not only prevents them from getting employed, putting back into local and national economies when they buy goods, services, rent apartments, their children attend school, it drives up the cost of car insurance almost $20, figure circa 2009 assuredly gone up in 8 years. Adjacently it drives away foreign investment spelling more jobs for individual states, pocket local communities; reason E- verify, the widely used system meant to determine if the persons applying for jobs are U.S. citizens, possess the proper work visas, permits, legal resident status, green cards naturalization papers. Problem, not only is E-verify every expensive driving down employment, it has curious results on the labor market specifically white working class persons concerned about immigrants snatching their jobs; “E-Verify lowers wages for unauthorized male Mexican immigrants, raises wages for US-born Hispanic men, increases the labor force participation rate of undocumented Mexican female immigrants, raises employment for Mexican-born naturalized citizens, and has essentially no effect on whites’ earnings.” Further research shows they, immigrant workers independent status, complement current employment environment, legal or illegal, not detract, negatively take from it. Forgotten or willfully ignored, dismissed by people wedded to their anti-immigrant narrative like a husband, wife or recurring bad habit, politicians rooted to their convictions and decidedly low on actual information about immigrants; beyond our history as a nation of immigrants famous immigrants that made incalculable contributions to America’s standing as a global leader over the past 2 centuries of its existence, not all immigrants are Mexican, Latino, Hispanic, Latin American, not all immigrants are illegal, not all immigrants are low skilled. Think the co-founder of google Sergey Brin, who is described as a soviet born American, Elon Musk business magnate, engineer, inventor is a South African Canadian America, WhatsApp creator Jan Koum is Ukrainian-American, John Catsimatidis is a Greek-American billionaire owner of the largest grocery chain in Manhattan. People who haven’t just successfully assimilated into our culture, gotten a job, paid their taxes, obeyed the law, been the stereotypical expectation of a ‘model immigrant’ but who have created countless thousands of jobs, made other businesses possible, more productive, profitable and functional…. . Why the sound of your name, notions it conjures in readers, employers/landlords heads should be outweighed by credentials, because no one should be obstructed from employment on their speculated origins, skin color; José in the opening shouldn’t have had to drop a letter to get the job, there was no indication he was an immigrant, illegal. Hispanic populations growing exponentially from legal immigrants having families, born U.S. citizens producing offspring; never mind if there wasn’t a white American to fill the job he applied for, José had to lose his heritage to participate in the American dream, sad reality of Trump’s emerging new America…. American fears for refugee welcoming cities fueled by fake Syrian passports used in terror plots across Europe engendering speculation the same could happen here indicates Europe has a problem not necessarily us. No one stopping to compare notes on vetting processes used there versus here; political skewing, conservative news to say nothing of president Trump’s hastily thrown together Muslim ban, promises to overhaul vetting procedures, ban indefinitely refugees from Syria like little Halla (videos 2&3) giving off the mistaken impression the vetting process for people from these countries, where terrorists might try to slip though is lax, haphazard, totally untrue. Fear, once described by a prominent Christian pastor as false evidence appearing real, ignoring many of the displaced are children, children who’ve already been injured in war, seen friends, relatives die, not old enough to pronounce the word terrorist never mind embody it. Refugees represented by Halla, her sister and this group of older boys and their parents more than the Bowling Green insurgents who slipped through, the nonexistent ‘Bowling Green massacre’ Kelllyanne Conway misspoke about; those persons stopped via sting operation and vetting process adjusted to prevent future entries like theirs. Refugees seeking residence, visas to enter, live in the United States are first screened by the U.N., surprisingly have identification documents for adults 97% of the time, next subjected to relentless, repetitive interviews, then checked against UN complied terror watch lists, nationally compiled watch lists, homeland security making final decisions at times pulling families off their plane; a vetting process that can last up to 2 years. Refuges once settled here who, if you examine closely the links below, didn’t, according to a Salon article, rape a 5 year old in Idaho, didn’t hold her at knifepoint, didn’t urinate on her, fathers of the mythical Syrian rapists didn’t congratulate them when learning of what they’d done. In fact this properly identified right wing urban legend is based on people who literally don’t exist because the few Syrians living in the area did not come here through president Obama’s demonized refugee program, and instead is on par with related right wing stories, causes: transgender bathroom bills, vulnerable little girls in public bathrooms, fitting rooms, recreation center locker rooms surrounded by men pretending to be women to hurt our kids, rape/harass actual women ring a bell?… ban implemented so poorly it held students back from continuing their educations, had one sports star tweeting to his son he couldn’t come home and why, held a mother, legal resident, green card holder at the airport post visiting her other teenage child in Egypt, a doctor holding a job here, working in an American hospital holding a license to practice some form of medicine also detained. Another family caught in Trump’s travel ban confusion Syrians holding green cards, valid visas waiting for 6 relatives to come who had been in the immigration process 13 years, 13 years; Christians Trump prioritizes over Muslims in instituting the ban also turned away. Yet out of hundreds of thousands of immigrants, refugees, people seeking life away from war-torn homelands marked by regime change, ousting of dictators, who have come to American searching for stability a measly 1% have been tied to commit terror acts on U.S. soil; rather innocents continue to be the victims of crime far more than perpetrators of it….Who remembers the Muslim woman a deranged man tried to set on fire, fortunately he only used a lighter, no accelerant and succeeded in damaging her clothing not her skin; sounds an awful lot like the Trump supporter kicking a traditionally dressed Muslim woman in JFK airport shouting “president Trump will get rid of all of you.” Immigrants, an Uber driver, targeted by individuals who they have no idea how long they’ve been here, could have been in the country years, subjected to a profanity laced tirade as he drove his ride service vehicle, just for being Arab. Another white woman knocking over a baby stroller, containing among them a 15 month old toddler, of Muslim women; shooting of the New York Imam in the same category. Never mind that Imam (Islamic religious leader akin to Christian pastors or priests) shot and killed in New York City is dead for no other reason than he was an Imam, was Muslim, practiced Islam. Though he was not a radical, that mosque visited by practicing Muslims from Pakistan, Bangladesh, the former producing 1 terrorist the latter none; never once people, countries largely associated with terror. Crime against select minorities that spills over from ‘Muslim terrorists’ to other immigrant nationalities, ethnicities, religions having settled here doing nothing but living peaceful lives, holding jobs, raising families; easy targets because of their distinctive headwear, out of place here, traditional clothing… Hatred, violence, harassment, sadly far from reaching some born and bred American persons too; like the lupus patient who wears a scarf to keep the sun from her head, sunlight damaging to lupus suffers, mistaken for Muslim finding her car broken into while on a nature hike complete with nasty not stating in part the following: “Hijab wearing bitch this is our nation now get the f— out.” The Somali-American elected official who ran for office, won her election only to be called ISIS by her cabbie returning from a trip to the Whitehouse where he also threated to rip off her head covering; both instances highlighting profound prevailing ignorance since the scarves in question look like what numerous African Americans wear in every corner of the country easy, simple hair management, likewise seen throughout Africa to keep hair clean, keep sweat out of eyes, off your face, even removed from your head to carry items, what an older white lady might wear on a cold day, wear to church, not strictly associated with Muslims. American born Muslim persons who’ve rightfully earned positions of authority, chosen to be police officers, to protect and serve, attempting to show the positive side of Islam, that Muslims can be and are good people, harassed by a man for their headscarf…. Contrast this to actions taken to include Muslims, Sikhs and others, each allowed to wear their respective head coverings on New York City’s police force, Sikhs in the U.S. military, military colleges considering the hijab in applicants who want to come to their institutions; when a mother was suddenly shown hate in her neighborhood for being ‘obviously Muslim’, despite residing in the city 17 years, her community responded with love, children in one area put up posters, signs welcoming refugees. People across the country and the world donated to a go fund me page dedicated to rebuilding a Texas mosque vandalized by arson, including a Midwestern couple on vacation who hand delivered their donation personally, local entities pulling together to restore what was lost. An American boy reaching out to a little Syrian boy capturing the world and president Obama’s attention when he pleaded with him to let the little boy come live with him. Count the thousands who showed up at every major airport in the country changing let them go, holding signs saying refugees are welcome here, sentiments expressed long before president Trump’s actions; months before the ban, shortly after Trump’s election a Texas man stood outside of a mosque holding a sign not in protest, not it hate, fear or bigotry but expressing solidarity, telling Muslims you belong. Shattering every stereotype he is an older white man, gray beard, requisite cowboy hat, bringing us finally to something else, the Christians Trump says he’s prioritizing, doing this for, the values he claims he’s upholding in addition to our safety; they tellingly don’t like it, find it goes against their faith, the love they are meant to show to their fellow man, their fellow citizen, more than one harkening back to history, the Nazis what happened to Jews in the 1930’s—hmm….

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