- It is my responsibility to know my boundaries. No one else can know my boundaries without me telling them.
- It is my responsibility to communicate my boundaries. No one else can stop treading upon my boundaries unless I tell them they are doing so.
- It is my responsibility to protect my boundaries. So that small incursions do not build up over time.
- When small incursions build up over time; I have a choice. I can fix the boundary issue so that it ceases to be a problem. Or I can speak with the person to address the small incursions. My responsibility to me is that I do which ever one will serve me best.
- Resistance to my boundaries is a serious red flag. But fear of it should not stop me from expressing my boundaries and needs.
- I can only trust other people to express their boundaries as they see fit and be grateful that they feel safe enough with me to express them.
- I cannot perceive another persons boundaries before they tell me.
“How many oppressive power structures would we have dismantled by now if marginalized people weren’t kept so fucking exhausted all the time?”
A friend of mine; Danni, asked this question.
And this is what we’re talking about. KEPT. Kept so exhausted all the time.
The very notion that you work hard for all that you have achieved. That it took things from you. Perhaps your role in your family became distant. Perhaps your job takes all your available energy and time… Perhaps. Like for doctors and nurses and many many other professions… It seems designed that way to the detriment of all.
Perhaps you never have the time to attend the protests you believe in. And because you can never go, caring in your limited downtime becomes a burden that never replenishes itself because you can never attend the meetings and comings together that so replenish rebel spirits.
Perhaps you aren’t even getting by. Perhaps … Like so many you are struggling day in and day out to move one step forward for every two steps back you are forced to take.
Perhaps you wish there was an advocate for you.
Perhaps you; like so many more, don’t see someone advocating for the lowest or the most victimized in our society is advocating for you.
Perhaps this is because you don’t see yourself as part of that group. Perhaps it is because you cannot see how a world where the weakest can get by is inherently a world you will have an easier time navigating.
Perhaps. Your exhaustion is a political issue.
I find it fucking hilarious that in a world where people talk about the representation of women and people of colour and trans people and yet no one knows how many of our politicians grew up in childhood poverty. Who have ACTUALLY experienced the very real effects of public policy choices on lives.
I can count the number on less than my hands I’d be unsurprised to find. Less than one wouldn’t surprise me. If I had to go to my feet to count them I’d be really surprised.
Why is this?
Is it that people raised in poverty aren’t successful in politics for some reason?
Why could that be?
I… I guess they just don’t want to. Clearly they want to be in jail and work as sex trade workers and die in the opioid epidemic.
Because that’s what’s statistically most likely for us.
It’s so fucking funny by this point. I’m seeing a lot of ‘here’s famous women in science’ memes. But all I see are dollar signs.
If these women had been born to poverty stricken parents you would not know their names because they would (in all likelihood) not have been able to make their contribution.
I’m not saying these aren’t amazing people. I’m not saying they aren’t important. But what does it mean that there’s only one of them that doesn’t state their parents were some level of professional or above?
Ada Lovelace: Countess. Overcame many things.
Marie Curie: child of teachers. Overcame many things.
Henrietta Swan Leavitt: Child of a congregational minister. Descendant of the original settlers in the states.Overcame many things.
Lise Meitner: Upper middle class background. Overcame many things.
Barbara McClintock: Child of a physician. Overcame many things.
Rachel Carson: Born on a farm. Doesn’t sound like the others until you consider her father was an insurance salesman that owned a farm. Overcame many things.
Chien-Shiung Wu: Received the beginning of her education at a school operated and founded by her father. Overcame many things.
Rosalind Franklin: Born into an ‘affluent’ and ‘influential’ family. Overcame many things.
Jane Goodall: Businessman and novellist mother. Overcame many things.
Katherine Johnson: Born to a teacher and a handyman. Oh my god she overcame so many things. But her parents were able to make sure their children were educated in the face of actual resistance.
Mae Jemison: Born to a mintenence supervisor and teacher. Oh my god. Overcame so many things in the face of actual resistance.
Emmanuellle Charpentier: Doesn’t say. She could be the one. She was 45 before she saw enough success to hire a technician… and has worked her way up from some unspecified place. But it doesn’t say. We don’t know. I’ll take it.
But for the rest? They weren’t overcoming poverty.
A recentish study (2018) found that Uber drivers can make an hourly wage as low as less than three fiddy when you consider the costs of insurance, mileage, maintenance, and the proportion of time you spend on the road that just increases your crash incidence likelihood.
And I’m sitting there reading this like: “whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa?!” NOOOOOOOOOOOO. You mean an industry designed to undercut ALREADY STRUGGLING industries might… not be able to offer cheaper services whilst being remotely sustainable for the owner operators who bear the risk of their short sightedness? What?! You mean letting drivers set their own rates based on their own desperation and not a functional accounting of the costs of their business because they don’t know about business because they’re just regular people might be in some way… predatory? It’s not the loch ness monster coming for your three fiddy. It’s an Uber driver. But in order to pay them that you’ll need to pay Uber 20$.
No. Surely it isn’t a revolving door of desperate people hoping to make an extra three fiddy who act as self aware carbon units that are consumed by an industry and spat out on the other side of their enterprise having tanked their personal vehicle in an personally unsustainable business venture that they were aBsoLUTEly encouraged to make by the people who have the BEST possiblity to make money off Uber; the shadowy owners behind it. Who NEED the driver operators to make the money.
But Uber’s done one good thing. You might know someone that offers DD services for hire. I not only know one; I see them at bars. Give those clever mofos a high five; from yourself… a presumably otherwise skilled and talented mofo. You might wonder “but they’re still undercutting cabs!”
It’s the difference between community building and shadowy corporations. Not all humans can afford cabs-thats WHY Uber is a thing. It’s not undercutting cabs, it’s people taking care of people versus that take 70-75% of the fare you pay and lewdly promise that with hard work and bootstraps for dinner you may someday make more… does this sound familiar?
Because it’s so consistent with every other part of our society. Human beings are the other other renewable resource; we are as inexaustible as the sun. Which is to say even the sun will end and if it experieneced massive scale changes to it’s overall chemistry it might well be sooner rather than later. But that’s another conversation. Human beings are a renewable resource that can be used usustainably and this is the stunning bottom line of human history: need a thing did? Throw humans at it until it’s done. When it feels like you’re running out of humans… just wait, theres MORE. Railroad? Humans. Mountain in the way of a railroad? Humans. Would SAFETY procedures increase the cost of your railroad? What? It doesn’t matter… there’s more humans.
Now before you get down on yourself for laughing about something that’s like… terrible. It’s not all bad. Very few things in life are all good or bad; siths deal in absolutes. Not jedi. And so the magic of humans is that we throw ourselves at the things that inspire us. This is what Marx said; regarding a society that provides the basic needs for it’s citizens… human beings are naturally productive. We’re not going to end up like the chair people on Wall-E. We’re not going to end up trapped in some seated position watching some dystopian tube of other people doing things we want to do….
Because if we don’t have to throw ourselves into what we don’t want to do so that we can just survive we can throw ourselves into the things we do want to do. The difference between science and railroads being that when the science gets done and they’ve made the big gun; most of the scientists are alive. (You have to imagine that last bit to the tune of the portal song).
Most of the scientists that have thrown themselves at the problems until solved and innovations until existing that our society boasts… did so by freedom of their own choice. And the ones that die in the process? Well I’m sure Marie Curie didn’t intend to kill herself with radiation; but I doubt she had a lot of major regrets about her very real contributions to the scientific process.
And this is the difference between sustainable and unsustainable behaviour towards humans; the other other renewable resource.
And it’s hilarious at this point.
A friend remarked to me recently that it doesn’t seem I identify as a human; but more as if I am masquerading as one of you.
“Greetings human,” is a common form of address for me.
It’s because I don’t… see myself as human. To understand this you have to understand me as an observer of humanity.
A humanoid; often enough mistaken for human, given advice for humans, that wonders why what they have seen afforded to humans… has only ever been given to them when mistaken for a human.
You must understand that I started reading about genocide when I was younger then ten. I have been reading about the depravities that other humans visit upon each other because I sought lives worse than mine to take comfort in… knowing that if they could make it… so too could I. For over two decades I spent a good portion of my reading; LEARNING about darkness, when I wasn’t reading about dog breeds, how to live in the desert, and shells.
You must understand that from the age of five to the age of eleven I wasn’t a person. I was an Amie. I was the thing that kids would write an X on their hand to inoculate themselves against my germs so that they could hit me. I was the thing that they banded together to stop from touching (and infecting) their favored (whatever I wanted to use really) playground equipment.
You must understand that they put me in the garbage can while my teacher was there.
You must understand that the bus driver continued driving while they shoved chewed up candy in my hair for sitting where I wanted instead of in the front of the bus.
You must understand that by the time I was eleven I was leaving my body by putting my head in the corner of the window and watching the telephone pole lines and just … not… hearing them. Not… noticing that they were passing around my backpack (again). Trying to stop them garnered a resistance I could not deal with. Nothing ever worked.
And I kind of think it’s because I’ve run out of available futures. I was supposed to die when I was eleven. I was supposed to not get pulled out of school by my mother who knew something was drastically wrong by then. They were supposed to kill me.
I was supposed to be their lesson. Or I was supposed to never leave the codependent relationship that ‘saved’ me from my family.
Somehow… given advice for humans…. I thought there was a future that I couldn’t see waiting for me.
I lied to myself. There was never a future for me. Not my own. That’s why I feel like I’m navigating the ocean without a ship. It’s why people sail past me wondering about the audacity of the swimmer.
I often think that it’s because I have always tried to live outside my caste. Very few of the people I know that lead meaningful lives SHOULD know anyone like me. People like me live in trailer parks. People like me are on the street. People like me are in mental wards. People like me are in jail. People like me are living part time in weekly rate motels trying to find enough money to not have to move… which also costs money.
They aren’t thinking about the things I think about. They aren’t trying to talk to the people I do. They talk with the others. The ones like them. The ones that understand.
Because you must understand. I was raised by a person that learned to protect themselves by isolating themselves, a person who could not understand why I kept letting the others hurt me. Why I kept letting them know I wasn’t one of them. Why I kept talking… when silence would garner me safety…
Silence. A silence that comforts others and hurts me is all I can ever hope for.
Welcome to the new year;
I’ve been struggling, railing against a world where there weren’t a lot of futures laid out for me.
The one future that *was* well laid out is cleaning. I need a vehicle to do this. I can start on the bus but really I don’t think I’m going to make that 500 dollar a month goal to get a car by the beginning of next year.
What I need to do is ‘take a break’ from smoking… and I don’t know if I can.
What I need to do is start making around 800 dollars a month. And then I would have the car by about summer.
This is really problematic for me. I don’t know how to start this without a car and I don’t know how to get the car.
It’s fucking horrible.
Once I have the car I can start marketing my business. Not through my personal profile but through a page and posters/word of mouth? I don’t know.
Cleaning is the one skill I have and it could help me. I hate doing it. SO MUCH. But I am good at it and I can make enough money to save for school. I can work around my schedule at school. I hate this but I need to do it.
This morning I saw this image:
It isn’t like this and this simplistic image is so… wrong. This image was published by the factory owner up the river who wants to be able to keep putting their polluted run off into the stream. They made this image and published it to the residents beside the river because the government has told the factory if they want to keep operating they have to collect and treat their run off. That would be expensive and troublesome but would keep clean and healthy; the stream from which everyone gets their fish.
The government has hatcheries that deposit fish into various places in the stream ensuring that the people have fish to catch. They were elected to steward the stream and keep it full of fish. They take back some of the fish you catch if you catch over a certain number of fish because they know that there are some people with better rods and some people have nets, and other people can afford traps so that they can catch fish without being on the riverbank.
The factory owner placed his factory in the industrial part of the river where the only people down stream are the poor and has distributed the image to the people up stream who have traps and live near hatcheries. Those people are now voting for representatives that used to work for the factory.
The fish factories can and distribute canned fish to those that cannot catch their own fish. They have a government contract funded by the fish taken back from fish trappers and depend on the government giving them the contract.
The fish factory employs people who cannot afford their own rod; which in this economy is everyone, and they train them for specific jobs. Those people sometimes rise to the point where they are making enough fish that they feel they have ‘made it’. They believe in the factory and vote for representatives that will help the factory because they feel that helping the factory is helping them.
Small employers are able to give their employees rods but when so few people get real fishing training as part of their education (it’s your right to teach your child to fish however you see fit!) it can be hard to find employees that are able to best fit your small business model. They balk at the idea of increasing the amount of fish per hour they pay their employees because they aren’t netting the fish they used to since the factory moved in upstream. They will never get the government contract to get fish to the poor because they aren’t ‘large scale enough’ to deal with the poor fishless majority. They also vote for the representatives that will help the factory because they want to be a factory one day and want that help. Some factory representatives claim their policy regarding fish hatchery production and stream maintenance IS good for small fisher companies. They lied and are brazen about it because the factories have been influencing the government and cutting the fishing education system for over a decade.
They begin closing the fish hatcheries. Everyone suffers as fewer baby fish are released into the river as everyone removes their hands from this system that once worked for all and now works for few and they begin to point their fingers at random places screaming “YOU’RE TO BLAME!” when they return from a once peak fishing hour with only stunted, polluted fish in record low numbers….
The factory owners smile and produce another image claiming the government is ineffective at keeping fish in your basket but still wants to take your fish. They continue polluting the stream and using their advanced production means to rifle through the fish that are already there leaving fewer than ever before for the people.
People without fish and means to catch fish are blamed for being unproductive members of society because they have no fish to tax while the government already stopped taking fish from the ones who had the most fish and were ensuring the stream was polluted and is unhealthy for all to receive less fish from.
And the factory owners smile.