Welcome to Issue 30.4 of Digestable, your daily mouthful of real things happening in the world, minus alarmist pandemic news.
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Today’s news, fermented:
I’m not even going to touch the rest of the debate—Latifah’s got it covered, as do you, and the rest of the internet.
There’s plenty of other stuff to write about. *inhales deeply*
To start, lest we forget there are other political races. Three reminders about that today are:
Maya Wiley is running for mayor of NYC, a crowded race if you count the number of people, but just a crowd if you listen to them all talk with your eyes closed.
Michelle Wu, who recently announced her run for mayor of Boston, released an unbelievably cute campaign ad that stars her two kids.
Mandy Patinkin and (his words) “glorious AF wife Kathryn” made a spectacular ad about voting. It is very worth your three minutes.
I think I’ve been so struck by campaign ads because most of the time, we’re just getting these fistfuls of information lobbed at our tender domes. When I saw a thumbnail of Michelle Wu’s kids, I was like, ‘stories! please someone tell a freaking story!’
One of the things that feels most exhausting to me about the news cycle is that we as readers (and also as makers) of the news receive information in scattered little pieces. If you’re to emerge from your morning scrolling with any sense of cohesion, movement to act, or at the very least, not a headache, you have to take those pieces and turn them into a coherent story or understanding of ‘the state of things.’ (Obviously, the state of things is horrifying too, but the first step is identifying the problem.)
So here are two (nasty) pieces I encountered this morning that, despite being very different shapes and having funny knobs, sit right next to each other in the puzzle.
The first is How Voter Intimidation Could Get Uglier, which describes the potential (bad) impacts of a recently revoked court order, which had prevented harassment at the polls.
The second is King of Cruelty, an assessment of recently revealed documents about the US Justice Department’s role in family separations at the border. All you need to know is that Jeff Sessions said “we need to take away children,” and Rod Rosenstein backed him up a week later. These two were a driving force behind this cruel and life-altering policy.
Where’s the overlap? Well, on the most basic level, Black and Latinx voters are most frequently targeted at polls, even before this new era of laissez-faire poll intimidation. People who hold these identities are also some of the least likely voters to cast their ballots for a white supremacist.
And what happens when young immigrants are allowed to grow up in the US, contributing to the culture, economy, and viability of this country? Well, the current administration (and so many more before it) are terrified of brown people, so doing any of those things is a threat similar to that of casting a vote as a Black or Latinx person.
The overlap is: white supremacists are gonna white supremacy. It looks a lot of ways. But it’s the same shit.
That’s all I’ve got for today. Cannot vouch for the viability of this tweet, but can vouch for the fluffiness of this friend.
Brought to you by the superb Latifah Azlan.
I feel a little tired this morning. I worked late last night, phonebanking for almost two hours and then covering the vice-presidential debate for another hour and a half. My eyes are a little strained from looking at a computer screen all day so I wasn't feeling up to task this morning of searching for ~*Hot Goss*~ to share. I won't recap the debate at length either because you either watched it and know how it went or you didn't because you deliberately chose not to. I will say that having never watched Mike Pence animated before, I first thought he looked like a wooden marionette come to life. Then, as the night dragged on, I realized that he actually resembles Christine Quinn of Selling Sunset without her weave in. I'm pretty sure the two of them share the same Botox guy. Also, you may have seen that the most exciting thing to happen last night was a fly that found its way onto Mike's head and stayed stuck there in his hairspray for a solid few minutes. I'll present the following observation without any added commentary: