Category: hierarchy

the devil made them do it

by Andrea Elizabeth

critique of Dateline last night with Matt Lauer about the woman who helped the two murderers escape from a NY prison last spring.

Yes the woman was minimizing her involvement. She thinks she was a victim of manipulation. And her transparent lapses about how she is especially nice and thus vulnerable to manipulation, and a redhead who gets her own way with her husband revealed she isn’t as sorry as she could be. She isn’t willing to face herself yet. She is still holding on to feeling special that such notorious murderers took an interest in her and involved her in their plans.

But Matt Lauer isn’t her authority figure. It isn’t up to him to make her admit to being a sneaky liar who deserves to be in jail. The truth is that going along with a power figure isn’t quite the same as leading criminal activity. I feel for people who get caught up in someone’s charismatic personality and don’t show proper judgment for their actions. Often they are vulnerable people who have had hard lives and felt on their own, so that a strong person who takes an interest in them is almost? impossible to resist. I’m not saying she doesn’t deserve to be in jail, but I think she should be treated more as mentally ill than a criminal.

Same with Eagle Scout Heath Stocks(I can’t find the 1hr documentary I watched on line) who at 20 was put in jail for life for killing his parents and sister, most likely at the instigation of his pedophile Scout Leader, Jack Walls. Stocks was Walls’ favorite scout for 10 years, capitalizing on Stocks’ problems with his angry father.

I guess the problem isn’t so much being in a bad place in life, but feeling entitled to be compensated for it, not that the weak and vulnerable can help it. I don’t know if everyone has a feeling of emptiness that some chosen compensation can presumably cure, but it seems that some especially have “addictive personalities” whose battle is especially painful. Lord have mercy.

I know why the caged bird sings

by Andrea Elizabeth

The last chapter in Echo and Narcissus analyzes the film, To Kill a Mockingbird. After the first section, “Father/Lawyer”, I still think she goes a little far in pushing her points, but the kernels are valid. White supremacy also includes the marginalization of women and, (I wonder if she’ll get to Boo Radley, who was a man, and who was silenced more than anyone) the odd. But Ms. Lawrence implies that Atticus is actually blaming Mayella for trying to attract a black man, but he’s actually blaming the system that would make that so taboo, and which is responsible for her childishness and ineptitude.

He is authoritarian though, and I think that works against him somewhat. It makes him come across as almost condescending. Should no one be in charge? Not ready to say that, but consideration could be taken for how much the underlings are being squelched and if that’s really the only way.

the devil is in the details, not the gender

by Andrea Elizabeth

I finished reading chapter 4 of Echo and Narcissus. In addition to The Spiral Staircase, it analyzes Blackmail, Notorious, and Sorry, Wrong Number from a feminist perspective with patriarchy as the culprit in silencing women. I thought that though there were valid observations, it forced them a bit strongly in the conclusions. Let’s say Ingrid Bergman does have a distracting voice and accent, which she either uses or is used by the filmakers for effect. Anyone distracted by that should stop and listen to the content and try to evaluate it on it’s own terms. But delivery is a big part of persuasion, and isn’t usually required to be pieced out. Awareness should be sought so that one doesn’t unwittingly manipulate or seduce others, or be unwittingly manipulated or seduced. Truth is a hard-won thing that comes with years and wisdom.

And why isn’t Leona’s controlling nature criticized as much as her husband’s? It’s put in terms of her controlling her own life, rather than her husbands’, who may or may not resent it and push back. What do you do when married people want to go different directions? Patriarchy says the man has the last word, period. Docile women will concede. I feel that my husband would need to convince me, maybe after the fact if it was an emergency. I would probably resent it if I felt pushed with a heavy hand. As should he. And resentment should be dealt with in more ways than just blaming people.


Say to this mountain

by Andrea Elizabeth

I voted. Don’t think I will in the one tomorrow. Romney’s got Texas, so I can passively resist the idea that salvation comes from the government.

About state vs. federal, hurricane disaster relief highlights this issue. It doesn’t seem like states can afford to clean up and rebuild, but I don’t know. If they can’t, should vulnerable coast lines be deemed too impractical to set up shop in? The locals would say they want to stay, but that’s because of their ties to the past, not that that’s not a good argument. There is also a national identity with those places. Since the Panama Canal, Americans have been determined to move heaven and earth to get and keep what they want. I’m curious about the existential experiment that lets nature win. But maybe that’s not fulfilling the mandate to “subdue the earth”. And I wonder if Sandy and Katrina, and maybe Andrew are worse than ever before (except for the flood), indicating end times (as did the flood), or just before recorded measurements.