Review of “I’m Black So You Don’t Have to Be” by Colin Grant

Kadish Morris in The Guardian:

At first glance there is something forcibly piteous about the title of Colin Grant’s book, I’m Black So You Don’t Have to Be. It reads as though there is something inherently burdensome about being Black. It isn’t until you read the full quote – “I’m black so you can do all of those white things. I’m black so you don’t have to be” – which comes from his sometime mentor and “ribald philosopher” Uncle Castus, that you understand it is not meant as a display of martyrdom, but rather an insult. It’s a jab at the privileges of the children of the Windrush generation who, hell-bent on being accepted by British society, have left the labour of Blackness to their parents.

More here.

Humans and wild apes share common language

Victoria Gill at the BBC:

Humans share elements of a common language with other apes, understanding many gestures that wild chimps and bonobos use to communicate.

That is the conclusion of a video-based study in which volunteers translated ape gestures.

It was carried out by researchers at St Andrews University.

It suggests the last common ancestor we shared with chimps used similar gestures, and that these may have been a “starting point” for our language.

The findings are published in the scientific journal PLOS Biology.

More here.

Meet Hamilton 68, the New King of Media Fraud

Matt Taibbi in Racket:

Former FBI counterintelligence agent and “disinformation” expert Clint Watts, the spokesman for Hamilton

Ambitious media frauds Stephen Glass and Jayson Blair crippled the reputations of the New Republic and New York Times, respectively, by slipping years of invented news stories into their pages. Thanks to the Twitter Files, we can welcome a new member to their infamous club: Hamilton 68.

If one goes by volume alone, this oft-cited neoliberal think-tank that spawned hundreds of fraudulent headlines and TV news segments may go down as the single greatest case of media fabulism in American history. Virtually every major news organization in America is implicated, including NBC, CBS, ABC, PBS, CNN, MSNBC, The New York Times and the Washington PostMother Jones alone did at least 14 stories pegged to the group’s “research.” Even fact-checking sites like Politifact and Snopes cited Hamilton 68 as a source.

More here.

Wednesday Poem

After Love

Afterwards, the compromise.
Bodies resume their boundaries.

These legs, for instance, mine.
Your arms take you back in.

Spoons of our fingers, lips
admit their ownership.

The bedding yawns, a door
blows aimlessly ajar

and overhead, a plane
singsongs coming down.

Nothing is changed, except
there was a moment when

the wolf, the mongering wolf
who stands outside the self

lay lightly down and slept.

by Maxine Kumin
No More Masks! An Anthology of Poems by Women
Anchor Books, 1973