Link of the Day: Frederick Douglass

On July 5, 1852, Frederick Douglass stood before the 600-odd members of the Rochester Ladies’ Anti-Slavery Society in Central New York and delivered what would become one of his most famous speeches, best known today as “What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?”

Lithub.com, July 4 – July 10

New Challenge: Photographing Public Art

Thanks to Cee Neuner and Marsha Ingrao for co-hosting a new challenge, Photographing Public Art (PPAC).

How it works:

  • We will take turns, one of us hosting every week exploring art in public places. We invite you to join in the fun of exposing public art where you find it – at home or in your travels.

For self’s first post for this challenge, self is happy to share this sculpture, standing right next to the San Luis Obispo Train Station, which she stumbled on last week:

Artist: Elizabeth MacQueen

Stay cool, dear blog readers. Stay cool.

Three So Far 2021

Finished reading Oak Flat: The Fight for Sacred Land in the American West, by Lauren Redniss, early this morning. Wow. Blown away by the polyphonic voices. And by the simple yet so-moving illustrations (by the author herself).

It joins two other books as self’s five-star reads of the 2021 reading year:

  • Ice Walker: A Polar Bear’s Journey Through the Frozen Arctic, by James Raffan (nonfiction)
  • The Relentless Moon, by Mary Robinette Kowal (science fiction)

Mary Robinette Kowal is one of the authors participating in this year’s SiliCon, which will be happening this August at the San Jose Convention Center. Self rushed out and got her tickets. She can’t waaaaait for August.

Have a great summer, dear blog readers.

The Dakota Pipeline and the Standing Rock Sioux

In 2016, protests against the Dakota Access Pipeline attracted worldwide attention. The oil pipeline was designed to run from North to South Dakota, across Iowa, and into Illinois. The Standing Rock Sioux objected to the pipeline’s path on the grounds that it violated treaty rights and threatened the tribe’s water supply, grave sites and sacred land. Thousands camped out at Standing Rock to try and stop the project . . . In December 2016, the Obama administration blocked construction of the pipeline’s most contested section.

A month later, newly inaugurated president Donald Trump reversed the decision. By June 2017, oil was flowing. In the tumultuous first year of the Trump administration, the media moved on. In September 2017, Standing Rock Sioux tribal chairman David Archambault II, a hero while the spotlight was trained on the controversy, was voted out of office.

— Chapter 10, Oak Flat: the Fight for Sacred Land in the American West

This is a fascinating book, as self keeps saying. She hopes she can finish it tonight and return it to the library tomorrow, because it’s way overdue and someone’s put a hold on it.

Stay safe, dear blog readers. Stay safe.

Quote of the Day: General Nelson Miles, Who Tricked Geronimo

“I had it in my mind to utilize for our benefit and their discomfiture, the very elements that had been the greatest obstacles in that whole country to their subjugation, namely, the high mountain ranges, the glaring, burning sunlight, and an atmosphere void of moisture.” — Oak Flat: The Fight for Sacred Land in the American West, p. 121

Under General Miles, the U.S. Signal Corps established 14 heliograph stations in Arizona: “a network of points of observation and communication . . . on the high mountain peaks of this region,” including on Mount Graham. “It was remarkable what advantage (the stations) gave us in observing the movements of the Indians or of the troops in the valleys below,” wrote Miles in his memoir. A nineteenth-century heliostat was essentially a mirror mounted on a tripod. An operator could send a message to another station using a system of short and long flashes of light beamed off the mirror in a kind of visual Morse code. The larger the mirror and clearer the atmosphere, the farther the light signal could travel.

On Sept. 3, 1886, “on the western edge of Arizona’s Skeleton Canyon, Geronimo surrendered. Shortly after, Naiche, the last hereditary chief of the Chiricahua Apache, surrendered, too.”

This is a fascinating book.

A Photo a Week Challenge: Celebration, COVID-Style

From Nancy Merrill, host of the Photo a Week Challenge:

Last year, when Covid-19 first struck the United States, my friend’s daughter got married. It wasn’t the wedding she had started planning when she got engaged in November, but it was a beautiful celebration of love and joy. I was one of twenty-five people who were able to attend the sweet backyard ceremony. It was fun to not only take photos but to help with the decorations and food and just overall doing what we could to make the bride and groom happy.

IN A NEW POST CREATED FOR THIS CHALLENGE, SHARE A PHOTO OR TWO (OR THREE…) OF HOW YOU HAVE CELEBRATED DURING THE PANDEMIC.

Along with the rest of America, self watched the inauguration of #46, Joseph R. Biden, on live TV.

The marchers (except for one) are wearing masks! Funny, she never stopped to think about that until she started looking at pictures for this week’s Photo a Week Challenge.

Also a first: that she watched the events unfold on Fox News!

Stay safe, dear blog readers. Stay safe.

The Birth of the Birther Conspiracy

44 remembers the exact date.

It was Feb. 10, 2011, during Trump’s speech at the CPAC convention that year.

p. 675, Trump at CPAC:

  • “our current President came out of nowhere . . . The people that went to school with him, they never saw him, they don’t know who it is. It’s crazy.”

It’s not like 44 goes around dropping exact dates of when this or that person said something negative about him. And the book ends at 705 pages. Yes, Obama did indeed serve up this nugget, a mere 30 pages from the end.

You don’t think 44 has a score to settle? Self thinks he has a score to settle.

Stay safe, dear blog readers. Stay safe.

How to Throw Shade

  • “In front of me, at least, McChrystal and the other generals dutifully . . . “A Promised Land, p. 438

Only 260 pages more, dear blog readers!

Sentence of the Day, p. 406

Self only has 300 pages to go!

Sentence of the Day shows 44 at his most charming and self-deprecating:

One thing felt certain: A pretty big chunk of the American people, including some of the very folks I was trying to help, didn’t trust a word I said.

A Promised Land, p. 406

On p. 274, 44 Explains It All for You

Such arguments had nothing to do with facts. They were impervious to analysis. They went deeper, into the realm of myth, redefining what was fair, reassigning victimhood . . .

A Promised Land, p. 274

Keep reading: p. 276 says this became the “template for Fox News and conservative radio . . . “

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