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Mar 23
2008

Feminism has gone too far

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Tatsumaki

 

Oct 15
2007

Spirit of 76

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Tatsumaki

Spirit of ‘76

Aug 23
2007

Demotivation Days

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Tatsumaki
This week is National Pride Week, and here at Rhodes, it has been celebrated widely.

Or so I'd like to think.

Its at times like this that I realise how tragically crippled by religion Rhodes can be. Gone are the days of the free, happy liberal. With the heavy emphasis on Commerce, the endorsement of Christian Mission Week AT THE SAME TIME AS PRIDE WEEK , and the number of homophobic attacks on campus, I sometimes wonder why I wanted to be at university at all. Sure, there are many awesome things about Rhodes, but this week has been nothing short of depressing.

In the library quad, there is a closet, covered in white paper for people to write messages on. And while there are a good many supportive ones, there are some disturbing quips from the stupidly conservative religious freaks that prance around campus calling the rest of us open-minded people everything from filth to damned. Quotes from this cupboard:

"God HATES you"

"Keep things simple, go straight"

"Anal sex is disgusting and faggots make me sick"

And so it goes on. The embarrassing part is the cowardice behind this. These people don't put their student numbers down, and probably write these things when there are fewer eyes around to catch them at their nauseating hate-speech. Because, honestly, I would pick a fight with someone if I caught them at their revolting little habit.

While I don't doubt that there are good Christians out there, I am in full support of the dismantlement of religion. Maybe it has good elements. But its used as a tool for violence and war, for hate and discrimination. Even Buddhists have cults. Judaism, Islam, Christianity, regardless of religious text and dogma, I am unashamedly against the idea of organised religion. Looking at the situation in Israel/Palestine, Kashmir and the war in Iraq (yes, religion is involved. Who are George's biggest supporters? The Evangelical Right, duh), and never mind the exceptionally bloody past of Crusades, Inquestions and witch hunts, I become further and further convinced that the world would be far better off if people weren't fighting over who has the better imaginary friend.

Down with hate speech!  And viva Pride Week!
Aug 17
2007

Adventures in Checkers and slavery

Posted by Tatsumaki in Untagged 

Tatsumaki
Needs as must when the Devil vomits in your kettle, so I ventured into Checkers in order to replenish my stock of washing powder.

Needless to say, my little liberal heart sank into my shoes as I struggled to find a product that hadn't been tested on animals, or was part of the TRIPS trio. Unilever is the Devil (which means no Lipton ice tea either) and there was nothing there that stated proudly that no animals had been harmed.

And it goes on further. When shopping for shampoo, deodorant, face wash or even body cream, its damn nigh impossible to buy anything that hasn't been shoved into some poor rabbit's eye or monkey's mouth. And what isn't tested on animals is made by sweatshops. When buying Adidas deodorant, it comes down to saving the animals but enslaving ten-year olds for 10c an hour. Besides which, the deodorant itself is too damn expensive, and Innoxa is in very short supply.

After a while, I start to wonder what I can buy that is fair. UNICEF estimates that over 200,000 children are sold into slavery in Africa on coffee and cocoa plantations EVERY year. Slavery, supposedly abolished in 1838, is still thriving. Children as young as five pick beans for giants such as Nestle, Cadbury's and Mars. Half the world's chocolate comes from Ivory Coast, and most of these farms are staffed by children whose parents sold them for 10 pounds sterling. The parents are told that their child will be educated and employed, and that their earnings will come back to the family. Needless to say, these children never see their parents again, and are completely removed from familiar surroundings. When they are traveling by boat to new ports, many are thrown overboard when there is a threat of search from coastal policing.

I could go on and on. But the point of this is, we should be encourage fair trade. Coffee picked by people in decent conditions on a living wage. Unnecessary animal testing should be banned. (How many damn shades of lipstick do we need?!) Why is it that in Pick and Pay and Checkers, there is no Ugandan fair trade coffee?

But we can make a difference. It is up to consumers to make informed choices, to not buy Nestle or Cadbury, to ask where a particular coffee came from. To join in when these things hit headlines, instead of shelving it as "Poor Africa". Its our continent, and its time we told the multi-nationals that we do not agree with their methods of extortion.

Visit these sites for more details:

www.antislavery.org
www.nosweat.org.uk
www.unicef.org
Aug 10
2007

Disgusting Discrepancies

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Tatsumaki

Disgusting Discrepancies

Jul 23
2007

The Joy of Cinemas

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Tatsumaki

Back at university, I am able to luxuriate in the warmth of intellectual pursuit, to be surrounded by (sometimes) like-minded people in the search for truth and a good cup of tea.

However, at home during holidays, I am able to have my eyeballs pounded by wonderfully over the top movies.

My first major favourite of the year was 300. Superlatives failed. Then there was Pirates of the
Caribbean 3. Not much plot, but still awesome fun. Now, Transformers, Harry Potter 5 and Pan's Labyrinth have come to fight for space on my top ten list.

Yes, I suppose I could watch some art movie and be thoughtful and aware. But, dammit, I do the whole thinking and discussing thing all term at varsity, so its wonderful to watch something a little mindless.

And there used to be a time when that was okay. I mean, we watch supposed reality tv, and there is nothing real about it. Soapies have the depth of a canteen teaspoon, but they've been going on for years.

So what if a movie is shallow? Transformers was full of win and awesome, just on the graphics front alone. Besides that, it was just fun and triumphant.  Isn't that the reason we all go to the cinema? To escape? To have fun? When did cinema become as complicated and pretentious as everything else?

I don't care. I have Simpsons to look forward to and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles comes out at the end of September. Sometimes it feels like the world is falling down around our ears. Crime, poverty and 80s fashion, sometimes it all seems like too much. So, lets just enjoy movies for what they are, and when we come out the theatre refreshed and inspired, we're in a much better mental position to negotiate the world's worries...and ours.

Jul 11
2007

The Frightening Plasticity

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Tatsumaki

The Frightening Plasticity

Jul 11
2007

NAF: Standard Bank's Dying Pet

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Tatsumaki

NAF: Standard Bank’s Dying Pet

Jul 11
2007

Death Penalty: It is NOT the answer

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Tatsumaki

Death is not the Answer

Jul 11
2007

Writing: Birth defect or talent?

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Tatsumaki

And so we fawn

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