People

Restoring Humanity: An Appeal to Kindness

by TamilSelvan Ramis on July 21, 2013

Preface from David: In an effort to support the voices of others who are similarly bothered, I am publishing a letter from a previous student with whom I had the pleasure to associate briefly at the University of British Columbia. Selvan was an outstanding student, and recognized as such by the university via multiple undergraduate awards of the highest caliber. Yet more importantly, he is a respectable global citizen, demonstrating a relentless passion for human rights and freedoms which I had the opportunity to witness firsthand. This letter is a plea – a plea to stand up for humanity, and to take a participatory role in its rescue. In this way, it is also a plea to get bothered, and to start thinking critically and seriously about the future of humanity. I implore everyone to get more active. Please Keep Reading Here

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Yesterday, the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) was ruled unconstitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court, putting an end to a ridiculous law that prevented the federal government from recognizing state-legalized same-sex marriages. Let me preface the rest of this article by saying that this is definitely a good thing, and it is a step in the right direction. Without a doubt, supporters of equality and human rights should be pleased.

Let’s take a closer look at the reality of the situation. The Defense of Marriage Act was approved by Congress in 1996, spearheaded by Georgia Republican Bob Barr in an effort to express the collective moral disapproval of homosexuality (literally). Although it was met with some resistance, it was nonetheless pushed through Congress quickly and easily, with votes of 85-14 in the Senate and 342-67 in the House of Representatives. … Keep Reading Here

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Get in the Grey…

by David King on June 13, 2013

I’m not fond of the night. The darkness is withholding, suffocating, and I get lost in it – lost in the emptiness, lost in the agony and apprehension over morning’s coup. I’m not fond of the day either. It’s too revealing and sensational. Over-illuminated, exposing what the night did well to conceal. I prefer the musings of dawn and dusk; the greyness and uncertainty of twilights and daybreaks. My mind thrives in the transitions. My heart beats in the potentials. It is a life lived in ideals and in-betweens, a life lived in conception.

All metaphors aside, a black-and-white thinker I am definitely not. I remain dedicated to the grey, and happily so. Yet I live in a world of black-and-white thinkers; dichromatic dreamers and the sort.

That’s not entirely true of course. By no means am I alone out … Keep Reading Here

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Hope Elusive: Getting Bothered over Bees & Bags

by David King on May 29, 2013

Since this blog’s conception, I have tried to focus on topics and issues of the less obvious sort. My goal was (and remains) to get people thinking about things like time and space and what it means to be human – what it means to live in this world. I wanted to tackle big issues, engage people on an existential level, and really challenge everyday thinking. To this end, I have decidedly ignored many issues that have seeped into mainstream media, no matter how bothersome. But my motivation for this has really been two-fold. In addition to avoiding redundancy and offering something new, I also made the assumption that my readers were already bothered by all of those things. I presumed the thoughts and feelings of an unseen audience, and implicit in this was the belief that intelligence was relatively … Keep Reading Here

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To Be Cool, or To Be Great

by David King on May 11, 2013

In case you missed it, the CEO of Abercrombie & Fitch, Michael Jeffries, is a jerk. He was recently quoted as saying, “A lot of people don’t belong in our clothes, and they can’t belong. Are we exclusionary? Absolutely. That’s why we hire good-looking people in our stores. Because good-looking people attract other good-looking people, and we want to market to cool, good-looking people. We don’t market to anyone other than that.”

Not surprisingly, this has left people outraged. And rightly so. It’s pretty shocking that we even need to have a conversation about such dated use of the phrase cool kids. Seriously, Mr. Jeffries, we live in a world that’s trying its damnedest to be accepting, and to expand its definition of cool to include such acceptance.

But all is not lost. This guy has revealed himself as … Keep Reading Here

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Gender Bent and Borrowed

by David King on February 19, 2013

Gender is an issue that has long been a bother – to me and to millions of people around the world. It’s a complicated subject, and it only seems to get more complicated. It’s the F in M/F, or it’s the M, depending on perspective; it’s the T in LGBT; it’s the pink and the blue, the doll and the truck; it’s both penis and vagina, both John and Jane; it’s who we are and yet not even close, a mere product of socialization; an evolutionary relic, forged in binary minds with eyes blind to all that lay outside the box.

When I was a kid, I struggled with my lack of conformity to the male gender role and all its macho stereotypes. Most of my friends were girls and while I enjoyed my fair share of action figures (and … Keep Reading Here

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Fill It Wisely, Fill It With Love Stories

by David King on February 14, 2013

Do we all want the same things?

I’m 31 years old, and I’m not sure of everything I want.

But I am sure of some things…

I want adventure. When I was young, I wanted to be a paleontologist, an astronomer, and a zoologist all in the span of five or six years. My nights were spent dreaming of space, and my days were spent sketching dinosaurs and building sewers out of cardboard for my Ninja Turtle action figures. Today, adventure is dreamed up a little differently, as something closer to seeing the world. Ideally, I would save it, if such an adventure were possible.

I want stability. The most stable time in my life was when my parents were together and I never knew of loss. I remember feeling this extreme sense of sadness and grief over the mere … Keep Reading Here

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Remnants Heard

by David King on January 30, 2013

In my time spent as an actual adult (which has really only been about a third of my life), my perspective on time has experienced a remarkable shift. Days are no longer only escapist opportunities for future wonderment and anticipation. While some distortion of this remains, days are also opportunities for deep reflection and reminiscence – the stuff born of more mature realities. The stuff that regrets are made of, if you have dared to digress.

I don’t know what to do with it all, really. After five big moves in five years, a lot of loss, and a few heartaches to wear on my sleeve, I feel surrounded by it. The residue is thick, and the remnants plentiful. I look around my place, and it’s right there, in everything I see. It’s in both new and old, both bought … Keep Reading Here

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Living in Change, and in Truth

by David King on December 6, 2012

Mahatma Gandhi was famously quoted as saying, “Be the change that you wish to see in the world.” But we have a love-hate relationship with change, us humans. We try our damnedest to embrace it, to go with the flow. Yet on a very fundamental level, perhaps evolutionary and definitely mechanistic and instinctual, we despise the thing. We try to avoid it at every turn (which is ironic in itself, since turning is an act which necessitates a change in perspective), especially when things are going well, or even (dreadfully) when things are just good enough.

Rationally, of course, I could imagine a world without change and it would be all too boring and horrible: No one would really learn, because there would be nothing new to learn from. People would never progress, or invent anything, or determine solutions to … Keep Reading Here

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Knowing Who You Are, Myth 4

by David King on October 3, 2012

In a previous post, Knowing Who You Are, Myths 1-3, I outlined 3 prevailing myths associated with modern identity formation. Very roughly, these myths ascribe the following conditions to knowing who you are: 1) this state requires consistent and predictable behaviour, as perceived by others; 2) this state is impossible without mainly logical and rational examination and exploration of life; and 3) this state is optimized by the commitment to a single life trajectory or career path, which, after all, typifies a strong sense of self.

As I previously indicated, these perspectives are bullshit, remnants of an immature and entirely uninsightful stage of human development. Things are never so black and white.

There is a fourth myth, but this one resides somewhere between identity formation and identity resolution. The fourth myth is simple, really. It is the idea … Keep Reading Here

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