The following is a letter I recently wrote to the editor of the local mass of advertisements OH I MEAN newspaper, regarding a really shoddy article covering another creepy school’s decision to force drug testing on their students and parents, despite some parents’ strong objections.
I just thought you might like to see it, and I feel there are some points here that aren’t mentioned nearly enough.
To the editor:
The woefully biased article covering the ‘Christian’ Academy’s decision to impose mandatory drug testing on its students managed to impart small amounts of information and virtually no concern or variance from a single viewpoint. Not only isn’t it a Christian thing to do — by default distrusting others and disrespecting students who pay highly to attend, as well as belittling their parents’ ability to, you know, parent — it’s a disgusting violation of privacy.
Something your writer neglected to point out, which is so rarely ever pointed out in these articles, is that these drug tests make it possible for anyone administering them to get far more information than just if someone is engaging in illegal drugs. Are people really so stupid as to imagine that they can’t find out other information? The tests can return anything from pot to medication for any condition, which means that these presumptuous schools’ administrations can now find out exactly what medical conditions your children suffer from and can discriminate against them accordingly. There are absolutely zero precautions taken to prevent this.
The question isn’t whether or not you trust your children, it’s whether you trust a school’s administration who clearly do not trust your children, or you, to make decisions about your own lives. They’ve claimed it ‘makes it easier to say no’; hogwash. It takes away any choice, plus invades the right to privacy that every person is supposedly guaranteed. It’s not their business what medication you are taking. And it’s not their place to question your parenting skills or your child’s life choices.
Not only our schools, but our entire society seems to be attempting to shift to being more prisonlike, and that is a concerning trend. If it does not bother you, then it should. Whether you have children or not, whether your children are in these schools or not, this supposedly ‘Christian’ school’s actions have repercussions far beyond their campus. If allowed to stand unopposed, and if allowed to spread, all we will have is de facto intrusions into all our privacy, undermining of our privilege to be parents, and a new generation who assume that they have no right to live their lives free of intrusion.
I encourage a boycott of this academy, and I hope that more parents will withdraw their children from it, and teachers walk away. If you simply handwave these reprehensible actions, you are not only a poor parent, but also certainly a poor Christian, whatever they may call their little schoolhouse.
And in terms of editorial: you need to have a better standard of journalism. This isn’t the only article I’ve seen of late where there’s been scarcely even unilateral perspective, lack of investigation, lack of questioning, and above all, and probably most egregiously, lack of information. That is intolerable in the field of journalism. Shape up.
Maybe you could get back to the fun and immersiveness of characters being independent adventurers instead of advertising ‘sandbox’ this and ‘freedom’ that yet still assuming that anyone who plays the game would really love for their character to be forced to join some idiot military and thus fill the first hours of gameplay with nothing but related quests.
It’s not a ‘sandbox’ if you’re shoehorned into horseshit instantly. ‘But oh,’ you say, ‘you could just ignore that and do whatever you want.’ Yeah, I could. I could do that with just about any game out there, and it would take me a ridiculous amount of time to accomplish anything.
'Sandbox' doesn't mean 'we didn't let you determine your own character, and we also couldn't be arsed to provide any real diversity of choice'. It's one thing to make your own fun with what you're given, it's another thing to have to ignore massive parts of something in order to enjoy it.
ArcheAge, I’m looking at you. And the other similarly uninspired drek that seems to be churned out every few months these days.
When LOTRO — a game based around a setting that literally has countless armies clashing — doesn’t even make that assumption, as well as gives the player dozens of choices of quests at any level, maybe — just maybe — you should do a little more work on your setting.
This is the reason why I only ever play two MMOs and spend most of my time on MUXes.
PS - All the attempts at trying to make Elves unpleasant, violent, death-obsessed, military-obsessed, addicted, ‘dark’, kind of totally comes off as what it is: you overcompensating for your insecurities at having a race with pretty male characters actually being a possibility.
Marvel continues to give female characters their own books. Captain Marvel, Ms. Marvel, She-Hulk, Black Widow, Elektra, Storm and now Jessica Drew, Spider-Woman/
Are you excited?
Check out these covers from Spider-Woman #1. First the regular cover by Greg Land. Oh, wait, you knew that Greg Land…
I’m not going to defend Greg Land, even though the picking at the cover is kind of reaching, to be frank.
However, I will say that if you aren’t familiar with Milo Manara, he is a legendary artist who, like me, built his work in erotic storytelling and art. His style and approach are different from the typical American approach, and here he’s shown beautiful technique and a superb grasp of anatomy. So she’s got a butt…and? Are we all six years old now?
One moment you’re criticising Land for anatomy, and I do agree, Silk needs to be a bit tightened up and not so wasp-waisted even when she’s turning her torso in place. But there’s absolutely nothing wrong with Manara’s cover. What exactly do you think a woman is going to look like who wears Spider-Woman’s costume? This is like that ‘controversy’ when one of Alex Ross’s painted covers was accused of having an erection, by people who clearly had never seen one before.
One gets the impression that if Manara had drawn her from the front, you’d be complaining about her breasts or the crotch or something else — she’s crouched and ready to strike, in a not uncommon pose for Spider-Woman. I’ve read Spider-Woman since her first series in the 70s. If I had a nickel for every time she was in that pose…or that Spider-Man were in that pose…!
It’s not like she’s got a cock flying at her face or that she’s licking her lips seductively. She’s an athletic woman crouched from crawling over the side of a building in a skintight costume.
This isn’t the first cover Manara has done for American comics either…
I don’t know, usually I am on the sidelines cheering ‘right on!’ for valid criticism of character portrayals and fighting against legitimate exploitation. But this? Yeah, I’d give any series a second thought if it had Greg Land doing the art, generally because I think it’s horseshit for an artist who literally traced his way through years of production to keep being used.
But please, leave Manara out of your vitriol. He’s a genuine artist. I understand if you don’t like erotic art or sensual figures, but he did what he was contracted to do and did it in his style. If you should want to blame anyone, blame Marvel editorial and management. Because as I noted in the other recent post, they’re being very exploitative in many other ways right now.