The Shocking Truth! (most controversial post about history)

Hmm, I just found out something pretty shocking…

You know how I’m taking a history class right now?

Well, this anti-European history class covered slavery in America last month, and no mention was made of this very strange fact:

(I mentioned it to my professor who denied any knowledge of it. But I remembered it being in a movie that came out 5 or 6 years ago I think, about America.)

Did you know that there were black slave owners in the U. S.?

It’s true. It’s documented on census’es taken from the 1800s, in fact, a black man was one of the first people to legally win ownership of another black man in court

“It depends on how you parse the timeline. Anthony Johnson, the black ex–indentured servant whose bio opened the first episode of our podcast, did sue to hold John Casor for life in 1653, and the resulting civil court decision remanding Casor to Johnson’s ownership was (as historian R. Halliburton Jr. writes) “one of the first known legal sanctions of slavery” in the colonies.” (Slavery Myths, click link for full article https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2015/09/slavery-myths-seven-lies-half-truths-and-irrelevancies-people-trot-out-about-slavery-debunked.html)

There’s a book about it actually, called “Black Slaveowners Free Black Slave Masters in South Carolina, 1790-1860” See link below:

(https://www.worldcat.org/title/black-slaveowners-free-black-slave-masters-in-south-carolina-1790-1860/oclc/1124410642)

So, now you know I’m not making this up, but why am I bringing it up?

Because in a college history class, this is not mentioned. I have never seen it mentioned in any history book I’ve ever read, especially not ones about slavery. They grudgingly mention that slavery existed in Africa, taking great pains to tell us that it was “different from Western Slavery” and “Europeans made it worse” and oh, we had slaves at a time when slavery was a social norm and no one would have thought much of it.

It wasn’t, from the accounts we have of the slaves who came from Africa, the idea of slavery that they objected to, it was the nature of slavery of Europe was different, and they didn’t like it. That’s fair, but is it fair to make it seem like it was mostly the Europeans fault?

Usually, in politics, we blame the preexisting system for the fact that outside forces can take advantage of it. Like, do we blame China for the fact that we outsource our businesses to them because its cheaper that way for us, even though it’s an inefficient system that hurts the people actually making the products?

Is it China’s fault? Or ours, for building our economy on that?

No one is going to say China, here, guys.

Yet, it was somehow Europe’s fault for doing the same thing, when slavery preexisted in Africa and we could only take advantage of it because of that, in Europe, after the Empires died away, slavery was not a thing.

But, they will say, Slavery is a clear evil, and Europeans should have known better.

Well, firstly, slavery is not denounced as evil in almost every major world religion, though it is given parameters, at least in the Bible, for fair treatment, and the ability of slaves to be freed after a certain length of time.

Slavery is a historically acceptable thing, up until the last 200 years, in fact.

So, why should the Europeans have known better? Do human beings innately question things like that? We’re told it’s wrong now from preschool to adulthood, to the point where no one can have an intelligent conversation about why it happened at all, just that it was wrong.

I am no fan of it myself, I live in free country, I like freedom. I am not interested in enslaving anyone.

But I am also not interested in presenting a view of history that is completely skewed one direction, not by logic, not by virtue, but by the wish to inflate the crimes of 1/3 of the world, and ignore the crimes of the other 2/3.

I call it facing facts. The fact is, everyone sucks. No matter what country you’re from, unless its Greenland, because they never do anything that I’ve heard of (but if you go back far enough, who knows? Vikings right?)

Does it not strike anyone else as irresponsible to leave out of history books about the Slavery movement, that black people owned slaves?

I mean, doesn’t it suggest a certain… bias?

Even that one of them maybe was part of normalizing it to begin with?

That’s not something anyone wants to hear, is it?

There’s a lot of white people who get a kick out of shaming their ancestors over slavery, and it’s fair enough to say it was evil… but it’s not fair to say white people are to blame.

The terms “White Supremacist” “White Misogynist” get thrown around a lot.

And if a white person has the audacity to stand up for this country, or any aspect of European history, well, prepare for battle (I should know, I get this in my history class if I ever try to bring up counterpoints.)

Now, I am not blaming black people. (Which is a blanket term anyway, because if I said African, I’d actually exclude a lot of the countries slaves were taken from.) I think all of use are responsible. There were other races involved too. Eastern peoples.

Slavery was a Global problem, it looked different in different nations, but it was Global.

History books now slide a certain way, against White people.

Never mind that Irish, Scottish, and any number of other ethnicity in Europe could be almost as oppressed as slaves, and rarely if ever owned enough property to own slaves. And I am more those ethnicities than I am any that would have had slaves. So, as someone with a very small claim to fame in that part of history, I feel even more annoyed at the marginalization.

Profiling is only profiling if you’re not white.

I wish I was kidding, but I just watched a movie last week, a good movie, that has a couple of lines in it that are just… so, so hypocritical.

The worst is a black woman in the movie makes this joking comment “I never get tired of watching white people fight.”

It’s laughed off, and truthfully, I am not really offended by the idea of it being funny to see white people fight. I think it’s funny too. BUT

Can you imagine the same line, spoken by white person, of a black couple?

Picture it “I never get tired of watching (insert any other race) people fight”

I am pretty sure the Racist Comment Police would be all over this in two minutes.

And this movie is not supposed to be social commentary, it didn’t see any problem with saying that.

Because no one would have a problem with it, on any given TV show, because it’s okay for black people to make fun of white people because we can’t dance, can’t rap, and fight differently  (supposedly) but it’s not okay for white people to say even a good thing about black people, if we say it’s because they are black. At least not without feeling like we’re taking our interracial social life into our hands.

I know some people at my church who don’t care if I say “black” because they know I am not trying to be disrespectful, it’s just easier than trying to remember where they are from. Cause guess what? My church has had black people from the UK there, so I can’t very well just assume everyone is African American, can I? (See why that term is so stupid as a blanket term? It’s more exclusive than black is because it makes it sound like there are only African Americans, and my French Professor was black too, she was form France.)

To be fair, usually it’s other white or Hispanic people who make the jokes that we can’t say “black” no black person has ever told me they don’t like it. (If you don’t, sorry, no offense intended).

Anyway, Political Correctness is dependent upon being technically incorrect, a lot of the time, as I think the above examples illustrate.

If I suggested that black people were partially responsible for slavery on any social media platform, I would get flame warred to death.

Even if, I could historically prove I was right. It wouldn’t matter.

The reason I think I have to talk about this is because my blog is literally about finding truth, protecting the truth, and understanding the value of it.

If the truth doesn’t fit any political agenda, that’s a shame, but it doesn’t make it not true.

Well, I think this is the most controversial post I’ve written all year, I wonder if it’ll get comments.

Though, why it is so bad to just give historical facts and suggest that they should be in history books, I’ll never know. 😐😤

Until next time, stay honest and stay healthy–Natasha

Why Miraculous Ladybug is actually brilliant (unironically).

Well, when in Quarantine, start binging new shows.

One more episode, please?: Why we can't stop binge-watching on ...

Why We LOVE Binge Watching And What It Does To Your BRAIN - YouTube

I’m always behind the latest fads, either because I don’t really care what everyone is watching, or because I don’t have NetFlix (isn’t that really the same thing?)

So, though I’ve heard about Miraculous Ladybug for quite a while, I never though it was worth checking out, but my sister finally convinced me it was kind of interesting, and we started watching, and it was way better than either of us thought.

The show has a genius concept, it allows for all the plot convinces you could want to keep anything from having consequences, and the only time it breaks the suspension of disbelief is when you can’t understand why no one knows the true identity of the heroes and villains.

I am only on season 2, so I don’t know all of what happens, but I thought I’d talk about what makes the show intriguing for a 21 year old like me to watch.

I am not venturing to say how it will end, so this is just about the hook of it, not where I think they are gong, I can’t really predict it.

But the show’s hook lies in two very interesting and rarely used concepts that render it almost impossible not to find intriguing.

The first is the villains:

MIRACULOUS | 🦋 HAWK MOTH - Transformation 🦋 | Tales of Ladybug ...

Miraculous Ladybug villains are mostly innocent people being controlled by the real villain in the shadow. HawkMoth (weird name I know, get used to it) possesses something called a Quami (or Kwami?) It’s like a genie that can only grant a specific kind of wish, but his allows him to grant people superpowers, but at the price of controlling them through their negative emotions.

The person never remembers what they did afterward, indicating that brain function is hindered by the process, but they are still left with enough willpower to purse their own twisted desires, but they also have to do what HawkMoth wants. It’s kind of weird.

But what makes it genius is the writers neatly escape any need for the audience to feel conflicted about the villains. We both pity them and know that they are doing what is wrong, but their wrong doing does not stop us from rooting for them to get better, because the whole point is they need to be rescued from themselves.

You skip all the debate over if they redeemable or not, because the whole point is that they have to be. Yet the emotions they show are ugly and ones we recognize in ourselves, just blown way out of proportion.

It’s so perfectly simple that it feels like the writers are cheating, but it’s hard to really complain because it would be awful to have so many people really just be evil on purpose. (Kind of MHA’s problem, but MHA solves it by equating super villains to regular criminals int he world, so it’s not that special to run into them).

Also the show gives Ladybug the power to undo any an all damage, from evilized (their word not mine) victims to broken buildings and time rifts, which is also genius, because they get to have death defying, surprisingly well animated fight scenes that can destroy a lot, put a whole city underwater, and break priceless objects, and none of it has lasting consequences because the in universe rule expressly is that Ladybug’s power is to restore it all. The characters themselves even comment on it, and save time worrying about property damage.

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But there remain stakes, because we are never told that people cannot die, one of the main issues of the plot is that someone wants to be able to control life and death, which suggests even Ladybug’s power is limited, in a sense.

This is really just me complimenting the authors on how genius it is to write this way, it’s like getting all the pros and none of the cons. I’m just impressed, because as an author, dodging these bullets often makes me jump through a lot of hoops and make internal logic in my stories, which I try to keep child friendly because those are my favorite books anyway.

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Aside from how the action and opposition is written in general, there is HawkMoth, who is also a rather uniquely written villain, basically Mr. Freeze from Batman and Robin, but with more of heart, and a son…yeah…well, later.

The other brilliant but annoying thing is the Shipping.

There’s the most bizarre love square between the main heroes and their secret identities. It’s hard to follow, and messes with your head, but it’s cure enough that you still enjoy it.

Marionette (I hope I spelled that right) and Adrian have some good moments as friends, despite her weird stalker-ish tenancies (at 14, I doubt I would have been that much more mature though) and his insecurities.

As Ladybug and Chat Noir they have a reversed dynamic, but that’s what makes it interesting.

One feels that if they ever blended their two lives together, they would end up realizing they both liked each other the whole time.

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i have to say, and this is of shows in general, that kids shows tend to portray a “crush” as much more like real love.

A crush is obsessive, but it’s rarely as mature as what shows do with it. The kids just want to hang out and talk, and flirt, and kiss, maybe, but when it comes to understanding each other deeply, they haven’t learned that yet, unless maybe they were old friends who developed feelings for each other.

Most 12-14 year old’s idea of depth is talking like a Romance Novel, and fahm, that’s not what real people sound like when they share their feelings.

I’ve had a crush on a guy for almost 4 years now, but we’re also friends, and if he talked to me like that, I’d laugh, I could never take it seriously, nor would I talk like that… I’d laugh at myself.

By contrast, kids shows depict the kids are far more mature than kids their age are, I get why, it’s a better example, but it’s impossible for kids to live up to it, you haven’t had enough experience at 10 to know what it’s like to be mature in your romantic interests (at leas I hope not).

And yes, I’ve never dated, but my idea of what men are like, what relationships re like, had changed a lot over time, and I’m glad it had. I’ll never be fully prepared for marriage, but I’d like to at least not be totally delusional about it. (Is that possible?)

So, I am not criticizing ML for this, because I think it’s the best they can do, showing kids actual crushes does not make for good romance writing. Honestly, adult shows are way worse about relationships.

While kids shows have been somewhat honest, in my experience, that people have issues and that is what causes fights, and you have to forgive them and be more considerate, the average adult show just makes it about sex and flirting and high action scenes, if you’re into that kind. It has very little to do with the real part of relationships that requires learning to get along.

It’s sad when we’r e more honest to kids than to adults, but there it is. I hope the kids learn from it.

That’s also why I believe young adults like me are drawn to the good kids shows, we want to hear more than just sex get talked about, we want to see people really trying to understand each other, because we’re old enough now to see how rare that is, while the target audience often isn’t.

But then, children’s stories have always been the way adults choose to express to each other the things they really want to say, without having to dress it up in adult language and situations that usually only serve to cloud the truth.

Per example:

You can portray someone’s damage from their past and their insecurity by having them drink a lot, or sleep around, in an adult’s show. But then you have to talk also about if alcohol is a bad or acceptable way to deal with, is sleeping around wrong, or is it normal? Ect.

Contrast that to a kids show, which can make the same point, but use something much more obvious, like the kids yelling at each other, or trying about not having friends, or in this case, getting turned evil and taking it out on other people in destructive ways that are literally destructive, and you show it, and skip the debate about whether those ways were acceptable or not, of course they weren’t.

What’s clear in the kids show is that the reason behind it was bad, even if what thy were dong wasn’t bad to being with, it becomes bad when done for that reason.

Like when the artist stops trying to use their heart to praise people, an uses it to hurt them instead.

When giving people ice cream to celebrate love becomes punishing them by freezing them if they aren’t showing enough love.

That’s some in depth stuff that adults can appreciate, but it’s also clear enough for kids to follow.

No debate, the message is made apparent.

That, to me, is the reason kids shows are better. Adult shows often don’t make any real point at all, and you wonder why they bothered writing the story int he first place. Do you ever tell someone something without a reason for it, even if it was only to be funny?

So, that the genius of Miraculous Ladybug, it creates a vehicle for it’s plot that evade a lot of the roadblocks most shows have to deal with.

It’s flaw is often not exploring its own great ideas in depth, even at  a level kids would understand. It’s getting a little better with time, but a lot of creativity goes to waste.

However, the fans can do that part themselves if they wish, maybe I will in a futre post, for now, I just tip my hat to their creativity.

Until next time–Natasha

And if you want to check our some of my other writing, I have stuff on both WattPad and Amazon Kindle under Natasha Queen. I am also working on a longer book in a different genre, so I’ll be updating you on that too.

https://www.wattpad.com/user/worldwalkerdj (cover art by my sister)

Arrival at UA by worldwalkerdj

Say “I Love You” ?

Today, I want to talk a little more about a show I mentioned in my last post about anime in general.

“Say I Love You.”

This story is about two people, Mei and Yamato, who run into each other at highschool and somehow end up kissing and starting a relationship (it makes more sense in context).

It was a cute first few episodes.

Then the show does what anime does, and adds drama. Drama, drama, drama. Cue the AJR song.

Yamato is one of the better male anime leads I’ve seen, in that, he comes off as a real person, not one of those bland, too perfect anime boys who has a harem for some reason.

Often anime boys, for the sake of plot, are spineless and pathetically uncolorful. They just aren’t human.

Or you get your Naruto’s, bright, sunny, very human, but selfish and self absorbed to the point where they can never learn from their mistakes.

Yamato is just the right mix of traits to where he was painfully believable as a character. I’m sure some of the girls watching the show knew guys like this, I am sure I’ve met them but never been close enough to know that about them.

Yamato is insecure, easily jealous, and a push over to the point where he sleeps with a girl out of pity because she manipulates his need to be needed. (Which is something often that girls do for guys, but it was odd to see it on the other side, yet I’m sure it happens more than people acknowledge.)

Yamato has a classic White Knight complex, not the Nice Guy Syndrome one, or the cute chivalrous one, but the “he can’t say no if anyone starts acting needy and he just had to be the hero” one.

Mei, on the other hand, is the kind of girl who is afraid to trust anyone. She got used by people as a scapegoat in her past, and she is now very defensive, but also shy and quiet. She has a caring heart, she loves helping wounded animals, and later she learned to like helping people too, but she pulls back from intimacy a lot. She is also so realistic, it hurts to watch.

Mei and Yamato seem like a good match in a way. Mei never tries to use him and exploit his weakness to manipulation. Yamato tries to take care of her and make himself trustworthy, not blaming her for anything, and appreciating her softer side. They even like some of the same things, like cats, it’s pretty cute.

But…

The anime took an interesting approach to their issues, because time and time again, the real problem wasn’t actually ticking each other off, but that the other people in their lives kept getting in the way, and Yamato could never say no, and Mei would not stand up for herself.

They learn a little eventually, but like many anime, the ending is not that good at showing that they truly learned why they are the way they are.

They apologize for their mistakes, but it never occurs to Yamato what his real problem is. It never occurs to Mei why she needs to confront him on that. Even though her friends tell her she should, she chickens out of really telling him all of it.

While the anime did convince me their relationship was not a terrible idea, it didn’t convince me it would ever end up very strong, because they just couldn’t say what was really wrong.

The point of the title is that Mei needs to learn to trust enough to “say ‘I love you'” to Yamato. And she does, at the very end, sort of (it was a little hard to tell if she was thinking it or saying it.)

The hard thing is that, what they really need to say is the truth.

Mei and Yamato are an all too real depiction of how people get into a relationship, and some of them, with the best of intentions, think they will be able to heal the other person.

Yamato thinks that, but we find out, he thinks that about everyone. He feels it’s his job to make all the pain better, we do learn that this is because he had a habit of not helping people in the past, and he feels guilty about that.

It’s beautiful when your significant other really wants to help you heal, instead of just wanting you to heal them, I hope I can have that attitude with my husband.

But it’s never enough.

Mei and Yamato hit that roadblock and the show ends because, it just doesn’t have anywhere else to go. I heard the Manga went further, but I doubt it really changed a lot, it was too much of a pattern. I learned from Naruto the hard way that if something starts off not finishing it’s character development, it tends to end that way too.

I’ve been rereading John and Stasi Eldredge’s “Love and War” book about marriage (’cause if you ain’t got it, you read about it, as Family Matters put it) and it describes the problem with fictional relationships to a tee.

In fact, I notice that the best fictional relationships are often ones that ignore something.

I love the ones where the two people understand each other so well that they aren’t bothered by the other person’s temper, because they know exactly what they mean by it, they never get offended by something that’s said because they’ve come to understand them so well, and they know just what to say to make them feel better — #goals.

Yeah… but, it’s not real.

Even friendship is portrayed that way on anime and kids shows a lot, and while I think it’s okay to aspire to be that kind of friend, you really can’t expect people to never get offended.

In a perfect world, we would understand each other that well. We’d never need to worry about offending anyone because everyone would be whole and confident, and impossible to offend.

I’m  not too easy to offend with just words, I like kids, so I have to have a sense of humor about what people say to me, it’s easier with kids, because we don’t see them as the verdict on us, so if they insult us, we don’t take it seriously. At least, good childcare workers don’t.

But people are broken, they are a hot mess, and we can’t help but get hurt by what others say and do, it’s infuriating when we know better, we know this person would not try to hurt us, yet we get hurt anyway, and get mad at them. We can’t seem to help it.

I had the story of living with someone who actually did want to hurt me on purpose, which has given me a sense of insecurity about really being sure that other people never want to hurt me on purpose. I feel that they could become spiteful at any moment if I push them far enough.

Add to that that I am a naturally bold person who likes to start conflict if it’s for a good reason, and I end up creating situations for myself that would bring out people’s spiteful/defensive side if they had one.

I’d rather just know the truth.

The reason for that is, the person I lived with who spitefully hurt me on purpose, would lie about loving me, say it was out of love, and say they would not do it again, anthing to get out of the hot seat.

I developed a real hatred for bullcrap (real or imagined), and now I like to make people reveal their “true” colors, and prove they are only being fake with me.

I’m catching onto this habit more and more lately, and trying to control it, but I know perfectly well that I will not be able to every time. I will get triggered. I will react poorly.

I want to get healed enough so that that will be a rare occurrence, and I’ll realize it quickly and repent when it does happen,

but it turns out my biggest obstacle is no realizing I’m wrong, but accepting that I need help, and I need love, despite being wrong.

My dad put me on a very destructive cycle. He set me up to fail (and if I gave you details, you’d see just how very openly he did it) and then blamed me for failing when I could never have won. Giving me both self worth issues, and issues with giving people a fair chance, issues that feed into each other in such a perfectly evil way, that it is only by God’s grace that I am not swallowed by them.

The thing is, I am not my issues. I have them, and the trip me up, but it’s popular now to let them define you.

They don’t have to.

You can know you have a problem with Self Pity, but not live your life defined by self pity parties. You can actually be a sympathetic person, and still know self pity is a weakness of yours, it may have just turned into you strength.

You can know you have a temper, but let that make you more self controlled and slow to anger so that it doesn’t dominate your life.

And you have other traits. I may have issues with self worth, but I do not treat myself like I have no worth.  I have tried hard to share my desires with people, to show I respect myself by how I dress, how I act, how I talk about myself. You won’t hear me use self deprecating humor too often. People may think I don’t talk bad about myself because my parents were super supportive, that would be a lie.

My mom had a rule about now saying negative things about yourself, but I know people who had a similar rule, but still lapsed into that whenever they weren’t around their parents.

My parents did not praise me that much, and often when they did, it was manipulation, which adds to the sense of worthlessness.

It’s been a choice not to fall into talking about myself like I’m worthless. Or thinking about myself that way, you know, that Inner Critic that gets all over your case.

I still have it, but I shut it down pretty quickly when it pipes up.

This is what I mean, I am not free from insecurities, but I am not nothing but insecurities. It’s a mistake to see yourself that way, but it’s encouraged by our culture, in some parts of the world, not being that way is seen as arrogant.

But the Bible would not say so. David said “I am fearfully and wonderfully made” and praised God for making him skilled in battle so that he could “bend a bow of bronze” (unless that was the other psalmist, but I think the point still stands).

The Bible is not into self deprecation.

In summary , we are messed up, we can’t fix each other, but that’s no reason to hate ourselves.

Until next time–Natasha.

And if you want to check out a different kind of my writing, I have an anime fanfic story on WattPad that has lots of relationships, and some adventure/sci-fi stuff too:

https://www.wattpad.com/user/worldwalkerdj

Arrival at UA by worldwalkerdj

Cutting off the Hand

I’ve been going through my history book’s Imperialism section. Otherwise known as the make-white-people-look-bad section.

Our companion book right now is called “King Leopold’s Ghost” it’s got its own movie, King Leopold is quite famous as it turns out, though I never remember hearing of him before now. People say this part of our history has been hushed up. Now that I’ve read of it, I think maybe it was better that way.

I’m not about suppressing the truth, but for as much good as rehashing it has done us, we might as well not.

Think about it, those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it. But do we learn from history?

Or does dwelling on the past lead us to repeat its mistakes?

It’s a sad fact of humanity that we tend to repeat our errors whenever we are most desperate not too.

In our age’s rush to eradicate racism and inequality, we’ve gone to the other end, making more racism and inequality.

Case in point:

In my history class we’ve had two separate discussions of European conquest over black people, some Aborigines and some African.

One week, my classmate and the textbooks ripped one British missionary to shreds for presuming to eradicate the culture of the Aborigines by teaching them European ways, and how to read, and plough, and raise crops.

My reaction?

“Oh he taught them how to grow their own food, and how to read, so shoot him! That’s just so despicable.”

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For real, Education, the thing people now say changes the most for oppressed people, and brings about the most Social Equality, is decried in this case because it destroyed their culture.

I’m sure it wasn’t the fact that the army was slaughtering them like sheep, this Missionary was trying to preserve them, in the end he failed to save most of them, and felt it badly, crying at their deaths, as his own account goes. But he felt they were better off dying there than in the bush.

My classmates and the textbooks called this an attitude of “Moral Superiority.”

I called it common decency, thinking someone is better off dying with some dignity, around people who care for them, then shot in the bush like a wild animal. Morally speaking, that sounds like the superior option, doesn’t it?

I wish I was exaggerating how unfair this was. But because he was a Christian, he must be wrong for assuming he was morally superior to these people. He must be justifying his part in this.

Robinson, was his name, if you want to look it up. Robinson seems to me to be more against his own people’s ruthless treatment, then to feel he is better than the Aborigines, but I suppose I’m just too white to understand.

The following week, we discussed the Congo, the subject of the book I mentioned above.

My teacher made the ironic statement, backed up by our textbooks, that the reason things finally changed in Africa after many decades, was because some of them were educated like Europeans, and learned to speak their language and reason with them in ways they could understand.

You catch that? One week, it’s bad to educate them and override their culture, the next week it’s the only path to their freedom. (My professor said it was complicated, which is another way of saying we don’t have an answer for if it was right or not.)

I would add that is why The Civil Rights movement succeeded here in America, slaves who got educated, freed people got educated. One can quibble all day about equal opportunity, but education was the only doorway to it for them.

And it was often White Masters who educated some of their slaves, though later it was made illegal, and white people started schools for them.

It was unfair still in many ways, prejudice is ugly, but it’s kind of funny that the very people (by race) who enacted it, also gave the oppressed the tools to break free.

If you think my Secular history class at my liberal college is going to acknowledge that with any sense of injustice toward the White people for ignoring it, then…you didn’t read the above carefully.

While my class begrudgingly admits there was good Europeans, they pass over the glaringly obvious truth, that Europeans were always part of toppling the Imperialism that they enacted. No nation is entirely unified in how it perceives what its leaders are doing.

They are even more anxious to ignore the other obvious truth: Christianity, which is blamed for aiding in the oppression, was the only reason it ever ended.

It’s like an inoculation. Christianity came into the other countries with the Oppressors, like a mild form of the disease, carrying some incorrect ideas of the times, but also the worldview that does the most universally for the dignity of human life, and the value of charity. Like a vaccination, Christianity helped the native peoples build up an understanding of European ways and religion that they later used to protest their rights to freedom and fair treatment. The Missionaries were also the only ones who usually educated the natives, which is what enabled them to integrate and rise above the culture.

In effect, Christianity was warped into something that would justify White Oppression, but it also preserved the idea of all human beings having value, which later was what put a stop to at least some of the oppression.

People fault Christianity for being used the wrong way,, but will barely give a mention to how it was used the right way, to help people.

And I have yet to hear anyone talk about how Christian based systems basically give power to anyone they oppress to eventually overthrow them, based on moral reasons. It’s like they give the knife to cut off their own arm, if they start to sin.

If your right eye causes you to sin, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to depart into hell. (Matthew 5:29-30)

The only thing that would satisfy these people is the notion that Europeans should have just stayed home to begin with, never changed anything, and contented ourselves with our eager resources…how unrealistic that option is is negligible, because it’s clearly morally wrong to take over another country…

Says who?

I mean, are we going to start saying it’s morally wrong to take over another business? Where does it end?

Despite what they try to paint it as, the Europeans were not solely violent. A lot happened with trade deals, also. Sometimes unfair ones, sometimes they started out as mutually beneficial and then devolved. Sometimes, it didn’t happen that way at all.

You won’t find it in too many religions that Conquest is actually Wrong, in the sight of God, or the gods. Some cultures glorify it to a divine calling.

Where does the notion that is is wrong even come from?

No country can really back this up. Even if it’s wrong, no one can hope to prevent it from happening in one way or another.

So, I fail to see the point of teaching us that it was wrong, and then leaving it there… well, what now? What’s the big conclusion, History?

The claim can be made that History class should not be giving us new ideas, but telling it like how it happened.

That’s ludicrous. Any narrative of history is going to present new ideas to a student who has not studied it before, and a clearly slanted narrative is going to lead them to blame one party more than another.

It used to be slanted in Europeans favor, it is not slanted against us, we must look bad at all costs.

Maybe it was bad, I think in the context of the time, it’s harder to tell.

But even so, it’s over now. We have real world problems. Oppression continues in new forms, and old forms, but not the forms of the Modern Era, as it’s called.

I don’t think we are being taught to recognize the signs of this any more in our everyday lives, or we’d realize how the modern devices every single student has in their pocket are products of a system very similar to the ones we read about.

And do we care? Can we give them up?

Maybe, it’s harder to judge, hmm?

There will always be oppression as long as people are sinful, and people are in charge, or their creations are in charge. Running things by computers has not improved them.

The question for us, is what can we do to make it better or worse? 

We are dependent on these businesses for our way of life, undoing that is not the work of  a day. It was the same in the Congo, the same everywhere. By the time people realize it’s a problem they’re stuck, just like with an addiction.

I choose to keep applying my faith to every situation, because I think G. K. Chesterton was right when he wrote that the charge that Christianity obscures progress and keeps us in the Dark Ages is ridiculous when “Christianity is the only thing that has ever gotten us out of it.” (Orthodoxy)

Which is not to say Religion has never been an obstacle to advancements, but it has also been the main drive behind them. It comes down to the individuals every time.

The Bible is also concerned more with men’s souls then their station, and Christians have often taken that attitude also, but in the process, have done more to elevate men’s station in their concern for his soul.

For Missionaries have worried that mistreatment will make men bitter against God.

This is how things come right in the end, that and the Grace of God. There’s ups and downs in history, I for one think we should be looking to see what they did right, and not forever listing what they did wrong, as if we are free from error and know so much better than our forebears.

That’s what they thought too.

Mistakes have to be remembered if anyone is tempted to think their nation is perfect (that has led to a lot of evil) but it’s better to feel there is nobility left to preserve than to feel your people have always been irredeemably bad.

That’s where I leave it, I’d rather be proud of my heritage than ashamed of it, until next time– Natasha.

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#1 vs the Greatest Hero.

So, Season 4 of MHA finished last week.

I’m not going to review it in detail because I know a lot of people still haven’t seen it, no spoilers here.

I just want to talk about the show’s themes a little bit. I generally prefer to focus on the character’s themselves, but the overall theme MHA has become pretty interesting.

It was my first anime, so the normal kids gets powers against all odds took me off guard. I had not seen Sky High yet, and it didn’t strike me as a Spiderman type of story, so I thought it would be more like the usually Western Underdog film. The Karate Kid type, if you will. Kid goes form useless to boss in a short time under a great mentor.

Which is the story, but with a superpower instead of great training, because if we’re honest, All Might’s training is acceptable at best until season 4, it got a little better there.

 

The theme of MHA started as “What does it mean to really be a hero?”

In season 1, that meant just acting to save people and being brave, that’s your usual anime fare I now know.

But in season 2 it started to diverge. Post Festival arc, we were introduced to Hero Killer Stain, and the news that many people are unhappy with hero society’s hero worship.

The hero worship of the world of MHA, which is slightly futuristic, but otherwise just like our world, only with superheros instead of pop stars and athletes, is accepted as either an annoyance or a perk by the pro heroes, from EraserHead to Mt Lady to the lesser known ones who aren’t named.

By the villains, it’s called out as disgusting, perverting the true meaning of heroism, though their standards are kind of arbitrary. One, Spinner, says “As soon as a hero accepts payment, they are not a real hero.” Another, Dabi, seems to feel heroes are irresponsible in their personal lives (there’s theories about him.) While Shigaraki just  hates All Might, and feels society is lazy and happy because heroes are always pretending everything is okay.

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Deku, our protagonist, is typically, unable to answer any of these criticisms with anything other than “try harder”.

 

But the other heroes, the supporting or secondary MCs actually have some thoughts on these issues.

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Todoroki, personally and painfully aware of the lack of personal responsibility in a hero’s home life, is tempted to see the system as flawed. He also questions authority more than any of the other students.

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Bakugo, who went from being my least favorite to my top favorite male character in season 3, and onward (power of fan made stuff) calls out the idea that heroes can just be outwardly nice, and emphasizes that grit and determination are the key component between a hero and a weakling with good intentions, even if he does this in a very abrasive way. Bakugo demands that people be real with him, even if it means they are less nice that way, in his own way agreeing with Todoroki’s disgust with fake good PR. (Maybe that’s why they don’t hate each other even though they don’t get along.)

Practical Typing | My Hero Academia: Eijiro Kirishima (ESFP)

Kirishima declares he won’t even feel like  a man, let alone a hero, if he cannot take action himself. While one could argue the situation was beyond him, its notable that Bakugo would not have been rescued without his help, while the show doesn’t exactly say this, it does not wholly condemn the kids, as All Might commends Deku for his plan. Kirishima’s point that not just a hero, but any person, should want to help their friend is a good counter to the idea that only heroes are allowed to be brave in a society where you can be arrested for helping just because you are not a certified professional.

People will defend the idea that only professionals should step in, and it works fine if pros are around and functioning, but the hard truth is in Real Life, emergencies specifically tend to happen where there is no professional help, why else would they be emergencies. Many people’s lives have been saved by common sense, a little First Aid knowledge, or the guts to take a risk that was illogical. That is what heroics are made of. Professionals are just doing a job, an important job, but heroism implies it was unusual for the person to do what they did. Therefore it cannot really be a job, or else, it was an unforeseen element of the job, like risking a new medical procedure, that they would not have been prepared for.

Heroes traditionally are at odds with society, which is why t he problem of MHA’s world is really that society is attempting to control heroes, thereby rendering the term meaningless.

The world defines Heroes as people who save people, but the word has many more connotations than that.

It’s actually a problem not just in anime, but in the surplus of superheros we have now, in the MCU and DCU, there’s just too many. The idea that they are unusual, or different from the regular law, is hard to buy.

IF heroes are like anyone else, just with powers, then, as The Incredibles points out “no one will be (special).”

The point of the Incredibles is not that being exceptional because of DNA is inherently preferable, but that if you are exceptional, you should be able to use those gifts freely without conforming to the norm. That can apply to morality, one line in the movie’s opening newsreel goes “Average citizens, average heroes, quietly and anonymously, trying to make the world a better place.”

How can a hero be average? That’s the real point of the movie. Whether its because they do the right thing even if it gets them in trouble, or because they can break cars or run on water, you can’t expect a hero to be like everyone else, and if you try to make everyone a hero, you take any and all meaning from the word.

Like that stupid saying “Everyone is the hero of their own story.”

IT’s meant to hype people up, like, you can libe our life in a big way.

And you can, most certainly, you may well get to be a hero.

But you are not the hero of your own story, newsflash: Life is not about you. If your life is about you, it’s pretty pathetically small, because that’s just one person.

MHA does not go that far, and it makes a lot of good points, but there’s one question that’s haunting the fans right now (those who are interested in this theme that is.)

Deku is supposed to become the greatest hero, but Heroes, as a whole, are not all that great. They fit a mold. they are fine as people, but when we try to hold them up as examples, even All Might, the ex-number one, has plenty of short-sightedness that makes him a  good hero publically, but more of a trying-really-hard private one.

What makes a hero Great?

All Might says it’s both compassion and grit. That’s probably true.

But a third thing that makes the difference between a hero and a soldier is the ability to see things clearly.

We’ve seen many problems with the hero world, and it parallels our world in a lot of ways. We can sacrifice true excellence for just the show of it. True compassion for just outward altruism. We don’t want to know what’s behind it all.

As Todoroki and Momo both mention at one point, being able to judge a situation accurately is key to being a hero, something both Deku and Bakugo, the two halves of the same coin according to the show, lack in compared to those two.

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Wisdom is rarely the most popular thing in the culture, but to be a real hero, you have to have it, at least a little. One act of heroism, you might get by on guts and innovation, but to be the Greatest, you have to be able to see solutions to problems.

And you have to have the courage to tell people, even people in authority, that they are doing it wrong.

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Not to point fingers, but anime has a serious kissing-up to authority problem, even if the authority is clearly wrong, they can never be called out for it. (I’ve seen a few exceptions, but they were light.)

It’s creeping into American media too, much more than I like.

It used to be a given that a hero had to challenge the system, now the message is to work with it.

Well, if you can, but as CA: Civil War put it “Compromise where you can, and where you can’t…stand your ground, and tell them ‘no, you move.'” (Best part of the film.)

I guess I’m rebel at heart, I heard the line that I shouldn’t question authority too much growing up, and then I realized that that was just an excuse to keep allowing the same crap as before.

Of course, change is scary. It’s risky. What would everyone think?

People say, it doesn’t matter what others think of you. It’s true, in a way. But may I remind you, that you can lose your life in many places for being different, thinking different, or criticizing authority. You can lose your job, your reputation, your friends, and your family.

So, yes, it does matter. But we have a responsibility to dot he right thing regardless of that, and anyone who does not, most certainly can be labeled a coward.

The courage to be a good citizen is nonexistent, usually, but the courage to be a hero, that’s uncommon.

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There’s a difference between being Number One, i. e. most popular and most effective (in a way) and the Greatest, which reflects on your true character.

With that, I think this is over for now, until next time–Natasha.

 

 

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A little Health Tip

Welp, had my first therapy session today, I think it went well.

Not much to report on that. Just setting up stuff.

I hear quarantine might loosen up soon for some people, yay!👍⌛⏰⏳

My mom has been following this doctor who thinks there’s a link between COVID and a vitamin D deficiency.  As evidence, countries with more sunshine and more people outdoors, like Australia, do not seem to be hit as hard.👌

California, despite being a major airport stop, has seen less of a spread.

Also, African people absorb vitamin D less quickly than Europeans, and they have been hit more with the virus, supposedly.

It’s not proven, but I’ve been seeing people walk around my neighborhood everyday because they’re going stir crazy. My sisters and I have done the same thing, so has my mom.

There’s something to the theory, I think. Any disease is usually rooted in some kind of deficiency, only a few are just caused by toxins in something, like Cholera.

So, hey, here’s a tip, take Vitamin D supplements and get outside if you can. They say 20 minutes a day is sufficient.

I wonder too, they think COVID came from bats, creatures that live out of the sun, which is where Vitamin D primarily comes from.

We think these things are coincidence. But some people eat bats. What you eat becomes part of your biology for a certain length of time. WE get vitamins from plants, but also animals. Iron and Omega 3’s are easier to get in meat, actually. So, you do get a small portion of Vitamin D, or at lest the healthy benefits of it, when you eat animals and plants that absorb it.

It’s one reason animals that live off plants are healthier for us to eat, and animals that eat rotting stuff are dangerous to eat.

The Bible gives a whole list of things not to eat, that I’m sure seemed arbitrary to the Israelites at the time. No pigs. What’s wrong with pigs?

Well, back in the day, pig meat had a parasite, I believe, that was harmful for human beings. There’s a way to cure it, but there wasn’t at the time, especially for people wandering in the wilderness.

Carrion birds, also a  no-no, for obvious reasons. Some animals have digestive systems that destroy the harmful stuff in rotting meat, but humans are not one of them.

The Bible, fun fact, also says not to eat bats.

It’s in the Jonah Veggietales movie, if you’ve ever watched that show.

Along with flies, beetles, gnats, etc. Flies are full of germs, they eat waste. Beetles can also eat dung and dead stuff. Gnats…I can’t explain that one, maybe they carry stuff like mosquitoes?

None of this was known at the time, you’d almost think God knew what was in the animals and bugs when he gave these orders.

Cows are allowed. Cows eat, if they’re fed right, mainly grass, which is very clean. Their excrement actually isn’t as full of germs as ours is, because of how clean their food is. Fun, I know.

Also sheep, same thing. Goats, same thing. And a few birds. And locusts are edible, locusts also eat plants…in case you didn’t know. Like grasshoppers.

You may also not know ( not many people even in church do) that quarantine is an idea from the Bible, as far as I know, it’s the oldest record of the practice, if I’m wrong I guess I’ll fine out later.

It was for people, but also for clothing, and houses that got infected. Before we knew that clothing and house s can carry germs. Even fever germs can linger for ages at the same location. People burn items that were around a person while they were sick.

The quarantine in the Bible went by weeks, I forget if it was 1, 2, or 3 weeks. But about the time it can take for germs to die out, or for a disease to become obvious.

Washing as a cleaning practice is also in the Bible. Washing after touching anything dead, and being unclean for hours or even days after exposure to something harmful.

We don’t know what the Israelites thought these rules were for. Every theistic religion has forbidden animals, and certain rituals.

But not every one has had those practices verified by modern medicine. There’s been reasons found for all of these things.

People have long treated gods like they were fickle. Why they demanded certain things, why certain animals were sacred, there are myths behind it, but never any practical logic.

Why is the Cow sacred in India? No clue. I’m sure there’s a religious reason, but if it has any practical applications, I don’t know.

Not there needs to be practical reasons for all rites, but it’s interesting how the Bible touches all the areas of life with its commands.

God did not tell the Israelites what germs were. I doubt they would have understood. They were often simple. Every nation had gods, they had to obey. The Israelites often abused God’s forgiving nature by disobeying Him because He would be kinder than other gods. Some of the prophets developed a sense of humor about it, realizing that they cannot help but fall back on God, though they know they are sinners and He is right to punish them, they also know He will forgive because that is who HE is, and there is no changing hat, no matter how much we act ungrateful for it.

Does that mean we can do whatever we want? Of course not. But our sin will never make God unkind, we change, He does not.

That’s good to remember right now. I’m sure some people think this sickness is God’s judgment. I don’t know.

It could be, for some people, it comes as a judgment. The acts of God tend to mean different things for different people, depending on whether they are right with him or not.

A though to ponder is, if someone knows they are not right with God, they will see any bad event in their life or the world as a judgment, even ones they cause themselves. I’ve known people like that.

Someone who feels they are right with God accepts suffering as something we just have to endure because we live in a fallen world.

I, so far, am finding it a time of surprising blessings by way of getting better acquainted with my friends.

Hope that it has some pros for you too, even if you’ve been hit with the really hard part.

Until next time, stay healthy-Natasha.

 

 

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