Welcome to Issue 41.3 of Digestable, your daily mouthful of real things happening in the world, minus alarmist pandemic news.
Today’s news, fermented:
Also known as, Black women saving this country from itself. What I wonder is—now that the people are on our way to delivering another victory for the centrist Democrat about to take office, will Biden follow through with appointments that don’t necessarily support the very people (young Black voters! among others) who turned out en masse to the polls?
For a more complete update on the electoral front, the Frontline, a coalition of The Working Families Party, The Movement for Black Lives, and United We Dream, is holding a mass call this evening to debrief what went down in Georgia and what’s on the horizon.
On the appointments front, Biden is considering a guy named David Frederick for Solicitor General. No, I didn’t know what that was before either, but apparently, like so many things nestled deep in bureaucracy, it’s a pretty important position. The SG is “the administration’s top legal advocate who argues cases before the U.S. Supreme Court;” basically, that person goes to bat to defend the United States when it sues or gets sued.
This is a big deal, particularly on the climate front. While Frederick has scored a few progressive wins, he also defended Royal Dutch Shell against climate liability lawsuits. Were he to hold the SG role, he could be in court against Shell and other fossil fuel giants, which got sued left and right, and naturally are fighting against those suits with all their legal and financial might. The Supreme Court will be hearing cases about whether cities and states can sue fossil fuel giants to pay for damages caused by knowingly driving the climate crisis in the coming weeks, so stay tuned for more on that.
In the meantime, you can hear more about climate liability in the second episode of Subvert, a podcast from Corporate Accountability and yours truly.
Lack of liability—and in turn, accountability—for harm done is at the root of most fights for justice. Climate liability is about shifting the consequences of bad behavior/business practice from people to the corporations that are responsible.
Similarly, when police murder Black people, it is those people and their families and communities that bear the burden, often while officers enjoy paid leave. Mourners at the funeral for Andre Hill, a 47-year old murdered by police in Ohio, demanded accountability for the police that killed him. This tragedy is on the heels of another police murder of Casey Goodson, who was only 23.
And with both the fossil fuel industry and the white supremacist police state, these individual cases pile up—thus building the call for sector-wide accountability like climate damages or defunding the police.
May we be like the Painted Bunting that strays from the path (although in our case, from destruction and injustice, not migration).
Brought to you by the superb Latifah Azlan.
I've been back at my desk for only three days now and already there's way too much ~*Hot Goss*~ to share! WildeStyles is going to have to wait yet another day given rumors of an imminent divorce between Kim Kardashian and Kanye West that broke last night while I was watching the premiere episode of The Bachelor (more on that in a minute). I don't think anyone is particularly surprised that Kim and Kanye are splitting up. It's been a rough couple of years for them and they haven't even been living together for the last few months -- Kim and their kids have been in California while Kanye has been with his team on his ranch in Wyoming, including over the recent holidays, which irritated the Kardashian Klan.
Nothing has been confirmed or filed yet but it does seem likely that the infamous Kimye pairing is all but over. I'm not surprised by this news, only by how early into the new year it was announced. I had thought that they'd wait until the spring but I guess things really have become so unbearable for the couple that they just can't keep up the facade anymore. I couldn't find any news on whether or not there was a prenup drawn up before the marriage happened but this article from Page Six says the biggest sticking point in their settlement talks would be the multimillion dollar mausoleum -- sorry, house -- that the couple bought and renovated together a few years back. It's where Kim and her kids primarily live but Kanye is the one who actually owns the place so things might get messy on that front. Also potentially messy would be decisions on custody of their four children together. I don't want to wade too deep into discussing this aspect because of the involvement of young kids and other people's mental health but it's no secret that Kanye has had some pretty intense struggles with his wellbeing in the last several years and he reportedly barely sees his kids. I'm sure someone will make the case somewhere that Kim should get primary custody given these factors and the fact that Kanye resides in Wyoming, but I also think other parties might push back so we'll see.
But where one romance ends, another blossoms -- and so it was this week with the premiere of the latest season of The Bachelor on Monday. This season has been receiving a lot of hype for the face that Matt James has broken one of entertainment's last remaining barriers by being cast as the first Black Bachelor since the show debuted in 2002. It also helps that Matt is ridonkulously gorgeous and the last few Bachelors have all kind of looked like the same variation of white bread.
Do you see him? Keep the man in the orange shirt in mind when you read this recap because when I tell you that the girls this season have lost their minds... the girls this season have truly lost their minds and truly, I do not blame them. Aside from his devastatingly good looks, Matt's also apparently an actual, literal perfect human being. He works with children on his days off. He WORKS OUT. He even prayed with the girls. But his entire life, he's been missing one thing: the opportunity or ability to be vulnerable with other people and because of that, he's never really been in love with anyone before. So that's why he came on The Bachelor -- to overcome his fears and, of course, find a wife.
This hot-but-emotionally-stunted man truly got the girls in a tizzy. One of the women introduced herself to Matt by handing him her vibrator and then, in the same night, interrupted his conversation with another contestant who was talking about her family surviving the earthquake in Puerto Rico by tapping the other woman on her shoulder with the vibrator and letting her know that she's stealing Matt for his time. Another contestant arrived in lingerie and asked Matt to pick out her outfit for her. And yet another came in on a chaise with a scepter and tiara, introducing herself as "Victoria... like the Queen" as if Victoria isn't one of the most common white girl names we have, and has now made it her personal schtick to consistently remind the other contestants that she's like royalty and Matt's going to be her king (get it?).
So yes, the women this year have completely forgotten how to behave and because of that, I think it's going to be a ruthless and high-drama season. I'll be watching to see how everything unfolds and may recap it from time to time. Despite the hype, I actually found Matt to be very bland after the episode -- really no charisma or any defining qualities, but that could also be due to his nerves. So i'm willing to keep sticking with it for a bit and see how this season pans out. Stay tuned!