I wish my motivation for a non-writing-related post were more cheerful.
Came across two things today. The more recent is this post about a murder that took place not too far from where I live. A couple of guys spent literally hours beating a man to death, dragging him out into the middle of nowhere, leaving him to die, then coming back to find and shoot him, and so far their defense for this has been “he was gay.” Which he wasn’t. But his actual orientation is in a sense irrelevant; what’s relevant is that it’s being claimed as a justification, that Indiana has not passed any anti-hate-crime legislation, and that this story has been buried. Almost nobody reported on it when it happened. Not nationally; not locally. Just a couple of smaller, more independent papers. But when a ten-year-old girl was killed, it made news everywhere.
Turning to gender, I’m sure many of you read Joss Whedon’s . . . I don’t want to call it a rant, or a diatribe, because those words invite you to dismiss his words as undirected anger. Nor was it a manifesto, per say. His post — a bland word — about Dua Khalil, a young Iraqi woman who was beaten to death in a so-called “honor killing,” and about how spectators stood around and filmed her death on their cellphones, doing nothing to try and stop it. (Those videos are online. I have not gone looking for them. I’m sure you can find them if you try.) Skyla Dawn Cameron and others are putting together a charity anthology of essays, short stories, poetry, artwork — anything relevant to the issues Whedon raised, regarding misogyny and violence against women. I don’t think they’ve specified yet which charity the proceeds will go to, but it’s not for profit.
I figure both of these are issues near and dear to the hearts of some of my readership here. Both links contain information on how you can take action. If you’re an Indiana resident, you can particularly help out with the Hall case. Either way, I hope these efforts can do at least a little bit of good.