Sunday, August 28, 2016

*Blub!* Dept. - Triggered!

I've just about finished reading an excellent book about oxycodone and Mexican black tar heroin, and it also touches on something I've noted from being involved in the 'zine world', especially these last few years - the glorification of infantilism known as "Trigger Warnings": "Keeping kids cooped up seems to me connected to the idea that we can avoid pain, avoid danger. It doesn't surprise me to hear that in universities, students, raised indoors on screens, apparently lived in some crystalline terror of any kind of emotional anguish. A 2015 story in the Atlantic called "The Coddling of the American Mind" reported on the phenomenon of college students - kids who grew up in the era of hyper-protection from physical pain - demanding to be protected as well from painful ideas. They were demanding professors provide "trigger warnings" in advance of ideas that might provoke a strong emotional content - for example, a novel that describes racial violence. This new campus ethos, the authors wrote, "presumes an extraordinary fragility of the collegiate psyche, and therefore elevates the goal of protecting students from psychological harm. The ultimate aim, it seems, is to turn campuses into 'safe spaces' where young adults are shielded from words and ideas that make some uncomfortable." - from the Author's Afterword in the 2016 edition of 'Dreamland: The True Tale of America's Opiate Epidemic' by Sam Quinones [2016]
More on "Trigger Warnings"... But wait! Even the word "trigger" might trigger somebody! Like it does for the 99% fat-free milksops over at Everyday Feminism [If I didn't know better, I would swear it's a parody!]: "Editor’s Note: ...Everyday Feminism definitely believes in giving people a heads up about material that might provoke our reader’s trauma. However, we use the phrase “content warning” instead of “trigger warning,” as the word “trigger” relies on and evokes violent weaponry imagery. This could be re-traumatizing for folks who have suffered military, police, and other forms of violence. So, while warnings are so necessary and the points in this article are right on, we strongly encourage the term “content warning” instead of “trigger warning.”"

Friday, February 05, 2016

The Zine Explorer's Notebook #6 [Winter/Spring 2015]

22 pages, 11" x 8.5", $2.00/Trade/Stamps/Letter >>> Doug Harrison, PO Box 5291, Richmond VA 23220, USA "Letters, reviews, editorials, real mailing addresses, typographical refinements, art & illustrations, esoteric notions" it says in a box next to the title on the cover. We're in the Zine Zone of No Computers here - a world also populated by Fred Woodworth's The Match!; Anthony Walent's Communicating Vessels; and Jason Rodgers's Media Junky. The format, size, and level of 'slickness' of these zines may differ, but one thing they all share is a passionate opposition to modern technology, especially the internet. These guys may actually even use the internet sometimes, but it sure doesn't take centre stage in their life. To put it another way, don't hold your breath for them to switch to a blog format; or a downloadable PDF. The Zine Explorer's Notebook has come a long way since I last reviewed it [tZEN #3] - doubling in size, for one thing. The letter column is also a treat, and one letter in here especially - the one from a prisoner who admits to beating an 'alleged' pedophile and leaving him for dead, and being proud of it. In his response, Doug objects to this guy's self-righteous braggadocio. Another fascinating letter is from Al Fry, who seems to be some kind of militant gardener, with his vigorous writings on weeds, Monsanto, and fluoridated water ["rat poison"]. I really appreciated the zine reviews too. Every zine really should contain reviews of other zines. You've probably heard that before, but for those who make a zine and don't include zine reviews in their zine, they need to hear it a few more times, at least until they wake the fuck up and start putting zine reviews in their own zine. Wake up! Grab a brush and put on a little make-up!