Saturday, January 28, 2023

Musings about Pacifism and Just War

Comment I made during FB conversation:

During the Viet Nam war, I felt completely persuaded that we were wrongly preventing self-determination of another country, based on unreasonable fears and prejudices. We also visited horrors on the country of Viet Nam. If you look at St. Augustine's doctrine of "just war," the Viet Nam war clearly failed the test.

This was seems different.  There is a country that has been wrongly invaded by someone else who is trying to remove their power of self-determination.  With respect to this war, we are on the side that the Russians were on during the Viet Nam war -- helping a country that was wrongly attacked.

It's a challenge for me, as a Quaker, to my pacifism.  I'm still praying about that.


During the Viet Nam war, the US military did not accept as conscientious objectors those who said that the Viet Nam war was not a Just War under the St. Augustine test.  You had to object to all wars.   

The US military should not be an arbiter of my pacifism, tho.

Monday, January 23, 2023

On mis-gendering trans women

 I get so confused having 2 trans women in my family. 

It's called being mommy brained, you know. My ex's mother, when my ex was small (formerly he), called all of her 4 sons "Nor-Frank-Al-Bruce, whatever your name is." That was all 4 of their names. 

It's not so easy to correct conditioned reflexes that have passed into the subconscious. 

I find myself hesitating whenever I say the word "he," even when it's a cis male. I have to stop and think and say to myself "wait, it's ok to call him, 'he.' He doesn't mind. He might even prefer it." 

Personally, when asked what my preferred pronoun is, I refuse to commit. I espouse no 3rd person pronouns, so long as I'm addressed with respect. 3rd person pronouns are for other people.  Let them say whatever.

Similarly, I'm having trouble using the Maya software that I am trying to get comfortable with, because there's a lot of pinky work in the left hand. You have to use shift, control, alt, and sometimes shift plus control. Then, on Mac, it's sort of confusing whether command or option is going to be the alt key, because it's not always the same. Also, on Mac, normally control click is the same as right click; but not in Maya. Maya does not recognize control click as being the same as a right mouse button click. I'm constantly pressing the wrong thing with that uncooperative pinky and having uncontrolled things appear on the screen that I don't even know what they are. I find that my left pinky has a mind of its own. That's very similar to what happens when I use the wrong pronoun.

I had something similar happen when I was taking dancing classes a few years ago. I could hear what the instructor said. I understood what instructor said. I knew that I wasn't doing what the instructor said. But my body wasn't cooperating. It wasn't willing to do what I wanted to do.  Some of us have neurological limitations.

Wednesday, January 11, 2023

Comments about avatar

This is a stub of a review of Avatar II.  I posted these comments on someone's post on FB.  He said he wasn't able to sit through the movie and he thought it was too full of stereotypical sequences.  

Here was my response: 

I sat through the whole thing, with one bathroom visit. I did have to take the glasses off when walking around, because they interfered with my balance and made me woozy. 

Yeah, these things do usually have the same plot of someone trying to destroy the world, though here it was not quite the whole world. 

One thing that was unusual was that the people were the bad guys and the aliens were the good guys. 

I was somewhat disappointed in the 3D aspect. I walked out of the first one feeling like I had been flying and craving more. This time the 3D effect was much more subtle and subliminal. I wasn’t conscious of it most of the time. 

I want to see more of the story of the adopted daughter who was said to have epilepsy, but turned out to really have some kind of deep spiritual connection. She intrigued me. I feel like they might have been setting her up for her own sequel. 

The suspense was much more intense towards the end. Really, literally got me up on the edge of my seat. 

I don’t feel that that part was at all stereotypical. I don’t want to put in spoilers, tho.

Sunday, January 8, 2023

Protest of illegal "No Trespassing" sign, landscaping, and plantings

This is the text of an e-mail message that I have sent to Richard Slingerland, Village Administrator, Village of Tarrytown, NY

I hereby formally protest the placement of a "No Trespassing" sign and landscaping on the longstanding pedestrian pathway between Grove Street and Leroy Avenue adjacent the temple.

This is a longstanding pedestrian walkway. I have lived in this neighborhood for 33 years.  That walkway was already well-worn when I arrived here.  My family and at least one other family I know have been using the pathway for over 25 years.  

The New York State statue of limitations for adverse possession is 10 years (NY CPLR §212).  Many people have been openly and notoriously using this path for much longer than that.  Any right that the Temple might have had to block this public easement has long since expired.

The placement of this sign and of landscaping blocking and obscuring the path are illegal infringements on a public easement and right of way.

I hereby formally request that the village assist the public in forcing the removal of the illegal "No Trespassing" sign and illegal placement of landscaping and trees from the public right of way.

#Easement #PublicEasement #AdversePossession #BethAbraham #TempleBethAbraham #IllegalNoTrespassingSign #TarrytownNY