The internet was wild this week but also not…? Rihanna is the world’s richest female musician, lesbians cruises are apparently GOAT, and Italy really doesn’t like vaccinations—GET VACCINATED AND VACCINATE YOUR CHILDREN, PEOPLE!!!!
Highlights: what happened to Malaysia’s missing airplane, Judge Judy is judging you, US immigration centers are called Concentration Camps, Lil Nas X combines rap and country, Roxane Gay and Debbie Millman are in love, Joy Harjo is the first Native American US Poet Laureate, Harvard did the right thing, the memory of summer is better than the reality, the weirdness duality of zoos, and the oral history of Serious Eats.
1. The Atlantic: What Really Happened to Malaysia’s Missing Airplane
There is no way to summarize this deep dive into what happened to the Boeing 777-200ER operated by Malaysia Airlines that went missing in 2014. This story is long, detailed, and political, explaining what went wrong, and why we may never fully know what happened aboard the flight.
2. New York Times Magazine: Judge Judy is Still Judging You
I don’t really know what I think of Judge Judy after reading this. I never really loved her, but her show was certainly a hallmark of sick days growing up, and it is impossible not to respect the TV empire she has made—her show “has aired consistently since 1996, and it has been the highest-rated program in first-run syndication for the last 10 years.”
Judge Judy’s avid support of personal responsibility is seductive but her inability to acknowledge systematic oppression is troubling, and when asked about it she simply stated “I don’t know how you deal with systemic irresponsibility,” absolving herself from personal responsibility. I guess that is what you get from a “former crime-and-crack-era New York judge.”
3. The New Yorker: The Unimaginable Reality of American Concentration Camps
On Monday, Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez called the immigration detainment centers concentration camps. It was not the first time the facilities have been called that or likened to the Holocaust, but notably the most public. Within an hour twitter was embroiled in a debate with other politicians weighing in. AOC later tweeted a link to an article by Andrea Pitzer, a Holocaust historian, where she also calls the immigration centers concentration camps.
I agree with the use of the term concentration camp to describe what is happening in the facilities, but the debate is necessarily about facts but imagination. It is about “how we perceive history, ourselves, and ourselves in history.”
I constantly think about why I’ve never posted about Lil Nas X and I’m at a loss for a reason— especially because I follow him on Twitter and love his account.
Anyway, The Old Town Road rapper released his first EP and it is literally the love child of country music and rap. Personally, I’m not that into it, but it is good, and if you like rap and country you’ll probably love it.
5. Autostraddle: Roxane Gay and Debbie Millman Are Girlfriends, Invite Us to Consider Love Might Not Be a Lie???
For the longest time, I didn’t know who Roxane Gay’s girlfriend was. I wasn’t interested enough to do the research to figure out, but this honestly makes a lot sense as Gay has plugged Debbie Millman’s podcast, Design Matters, multiple times on twitter.
The couple served as keynote speakers at A-Camp, a retreat for LGBT women, non-binary folks, and trans men. Apparently, they are GOAT and super cute and I’m here for it.
6. NPR: Joy Harjo Becomes The First Native American U.S. Poet Laureate
I always find it interesting the number of people that don’t know how the poet laureate is. It is a government appointment in the arts, although it is funded by a private endowment and not taxpayers. Joy Harjo was just appointed to succeed Tracy K. Smith making her the first Native American to hold the position.
7. The Harvard Crimson: Harvard Rescinds Parkland Student’s Admissions Offer Over Racist Comments in 2017
This story was hardcore blowing up twitter earlier this week. Basically, texts and other documentation of Kyle Kashuv, a survivor of the Parkland shooting, surfaced of him calling some of his classmates “n*gger jocks.”
Kashuv was set to attend Harvard in the fall but the university has since rescinded his admittance. Naturally, the dude and his white entitlement are pissed off. DONT BE A FUCKING RACIST ASSHOLE AND EXPECT NO ONE TO NOTICE.
8. The Paris Review: Summer is Made of the Memory of Summer
I don’t always know how to exist during the summer. I was born in December, a week before the winter solstice, in Michigan. I was born into short days, longs nights, winter storms, and air so cold it hurt to breathe. The lightness of summer has always escaped me. I’ve never quite figured out how to dress, I’ve never really learned how to relax on a long vacation, and I always long for the snow of winter.
The only place I’ve ever enjoyed summer is where I am now, an arts camp in northwest Michigan. “Summer is made of the memory of summer,” and the warm haze of the Great Lakes, sand dunes, and summer concerts is all that I seem to ever remember.
The summer solstice was on Friday and I spent it with my friend and her family doing the only thing I ever seem to remember of summer: sitting on the shores of a lake grilling, drinking, eating, and laughing.
9. Lit Hub: The Weirdness, Wonder, and Terror of the Contemporary Zoo
I can’t remember the last time I went to a zoo but I always feel conflicted about seeing the animals on display. I know that some zoos do important conservation work, but being at one makes me think of Sarah Baartman and the long history of displaying human bodies that once weren’t seen as such.
Zoo animals exist in a multitude of thresholds, and the “animals we’ve decided to collect and display, and the way we’ve decided to do this, can logically also provide us some insight into our current cultural moment. The wonder we experience at the zoo—faced with the fungal smoosh of the Brazilian Porcupine’s nose, the crabby bewildered face of the Angolan Colobus Monkey with its meringue wisps of white hair, the long fat furry spotted tail of the snow leopard—surfaces as a result of and at the price of the animals’ containment. Though they’re fully alive, they’re displayed, sectioned off, half-wild and half-domesticated. Existing and not existing, believed and not believed.”
10. GrubStreet: How a Cash-Strapped Start-up Became the Internet’s Food-Nerd Utopia
I almost never read Serious Eats which I find kind of interesting because I spend a lot of time reading about food, and have watched most of Bon Appetit’s YouTube channel.
This story in and of itself isn’t that interesting, and pretty typical of a mid-2000s internet startup, but I love reading about the internet culture of the 2000s. While Food & Wine magazine was covering chefs, Serious Eats became “the ‘food blogger’ trope made manifest” during the beginning of the ubiquity of the internet.
*All images taken from reference articles*
Have a suggestion for next week? Email firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line “The Internet is Exploding.”