Two tributes and a social commentary for good measure

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Two people who shaped my growing up and coming out died this week – Earl Scruggs, the famous banjo player, and Adrienne Rich – the famous lesbian poet. I’m sad about both for different reasons.

A Bluegrass Tribute to Earl Scruggs

  • Scruggs passed away Wednesday in Nashville at age 88;
  • He invented the three-finger style of banjo playing;
  • With that style he ushered in the “modern” era of Bluegrass.

Adrienne Rich: Send Something Back

  • Rich passed away Wednesday in Santa Cruz, Ca. at age 82;
  • The article is a remembrance of Rich’s life, work and challenge to us.

On a separate note, Marianne and I saw the Hunger Games Friday night. I hadn’t read the book so I was going into the movie with only a general understanding about the plot. I did, however, read this before I went:

I See White People: Hunger Games and a Brief History of Cultural Whitewashing

  • Commentary on some of the racist comments currently zooming around Twitter about the choice of actors and actresses portraying Hunger Games characters;
  • “Whitewashing” is everywhere in American television in movies – from black characters usually dying first to 2001’s HawthoRNe being the third primetime drama ever to feature a black female lead.

To finish, W. Kamau Bell: What is Happening to America? Or just press play below, ignoring the first 10 seconds or so of advertising.

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