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I got this great idea for a diary topic while sitting in church last Sunday morning. Even made a cryptic single sentence note about it (yes, I used my smartphone in church during the sermon. It's ok :-)). I forgot, however, that I wasn't writing on Tuesday and should have given myself more of a prompt! However, I reconstructed enough of the gist of it to make for what (I hope) is an interesting read. Follow me below the dingledoodle squigglie dKosagnocchi dividerthingie fold after a word from our sponsor...


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It was during the minister's sermon,, and he asked us to think about what came to mind when he said the following words (I don't have the exhaustive list, it was about 20 or so; this is all my aged brain remembers):

Hotel worker
Undocumented worker

What my minister was trying for was to have us see what our stereotypes look like; ie for many people "Muslim" = faceless veiled woman, "undocumented worker =  Hispanic gardener, etc. Even in a generally open-minded Unitarian Universalist congregation, I'm sure that's what came to mind for lots of people.

What surprised me, personally, was that I didn't see stereotypical groups. I saw individuals, for every single category listed. OK, for some I didn't have a name to go with it, but I knew I'd seen an individual speak at Netroots Nation or I'd been introduced to someone specific via dKos diary. For most, though, it was a specific person or people I know in my life.

What I hope is that having an actual face to place with each of the myriad groups we assemble ourselves into makes it that much more difficult to stereotype that group. I cringe any time someone characterizes a group of people with a "definitive" adjective.

From 10 weeks old until she went to kindergarten, K1 attended a very ethnically, economically and racially diverse daycare close to where Mr. Brillig worked. Instead of the predominantly white Catholic demographic of our town, she had caregivers who spoke to her in english, spanish and creole, and friends whose families reflected the rainbow that is modern-day America. To this day, she's never been phased by people who don't look, sound or live like her. The prejudices many of her schoolmates had didn't make sense to her, because she'd known poor and rich and black and white and gay and straight people her whole life. They were just people.

The fear-mongerers infesting our airwaves and internets attempt to control by sowing fear of those different from ourselves. Don't let that happen. Make sure you've got a face to go with each group they try to tell you are Not Like You.

By the way... that includes one that we here often have the most trouble with: Republicans. Yes, I know half of you just moved very far away from me and are checking my comment history to see if I'm a sleeper troll. And if I need to expand on this further, then you need to consider just how immune to stereotyping you are.

Floor's open... talk to me about stereotypes, or whatever else has you thinking tonight.

Brillig's ObDisclaimer: The decision to publish each nomination lies with the evening's Diarist and/or Comment Formatter. My evenings at the helm, I try reeeeallllyy hard to publish everything without regard to content. I really do, even when I disagree personally with any given nomination. "TopCommentness" lies in the eyes of the nominator and of you, the reader - I leave the decision to you. I do not publish self-nominations (ie your own comments) and if I ruled the world, we'd all build community, supporting and uplifting instead of tearing our fellow Kossacks down.
From Puddytat:
In ericlewis0's never to be missed Animal Nuz, Ortelius starts what turns into a funny thread about the "Christ" in Chris Christie and then Cali Scribe and Lily O Lady bring it in for a landing.
From Tara the Antisocial Social Worker:
In tmservo433's diary Iowa Republicans figure out how to identify racists, JeffW has a painful (but funny) observation about Republican rebranding.
From Dragon5616:
gustynpip sums up the sexism inherent in the attacks in JDWolverton's diary Swiftboating Wendy Davis.
Flagged comments (but remember, submitting them is always safer than hoping we (in this case Dragon) will see 'em!):
In Laura Clawson's This week in the War on Workers, karmsy flagged this comment by Elizaveta about why individual success may not be transferable to others.

Radiowalla noted this "brilliant" comment by LakeSuperior about messaging in Michigan from Progressive Majority: How to deliver an effective message by mole333.

From BeninSC:
Flagged by gchaucer2, this comment by paulitics features three future Kossacks in a 1980's band!
From Yours Truly, brillig:
In Richard Lyon's Hospital Considering Appeal of Ruling on Dead Pregnant Woman, ontheleftcoast defines Republican Small Government.

plan9pub gets my mood on the latest shooting, as told in Laura Clawson's Three dead in Maryland mall shooting

Top Mojo for yesterday, January 24th, first comments and tip jars excluded. Thank you mik for the mojo magic! For those of you interested in How Top Mojo Works, please see his diary FAQing Top Mojo.
  1) God bless Marlise Muñoz by FromRedtoBlue — 161
  2) The "smogging gun", so to speak. by ontheleftcoast — 143
  3) Living well is the best revenge by Annie B — 130
  4) Sadly I think it is more likely that it is over   by stellaluna — 129
  5) His Incentive To Keep Quiet Just Evaporated..... by snapples — 114
  6) It couldn't happen by Richard Lyon — 112
  7) Can't see, at work by Paleo — 110
  8) Excellent!! by Tunk — 108
  9) Yup. by lunachickie — 90
10) I did some filmwork down in the City a few months by k9disc — 89
11) The National Enquirer by TomP — 83
12) They Are Very Reliable by NCTim — 83
13) Exactly right.  AIPAC are the original by TomP — 82
14) Many years ago, Lakota elder Joe Flying Bye by Hillbilly Dem — 78
15) Great responses by ichibon — 72
16) I watched "Mitt" so you didn't have to. by Walt starr — 70
17) "Uncle Sugar" by raptavio — 70
18) And I'll add: by Tuffie — 70
19) Part of the problem there by Richard Lyon — 67
20) Sanity has prevailed by Puddytat — 67
21) Andrea Mitchel is by angry hopeful liberal — 66
22) If they had a ready answer that involved equipment by nailbender — 65
23) "to turn Texas into California": Cons' dog whistle by freeportguy1 — 65
24) I think this line might be significant: by elwior — 64
25) But it insufficiently punishes women by tampaedski — 63
26) NY State Dept of Environmental Conservation by political junquie — 61
27) Here by Lava20 — 61
28) nah... won't change one publican mind by dougymi — 61
29) I just keep thinking of the Terry Schaivo case by ontheleftcoast — 60
30) Sometimes you find yourself in a crowd of people by pat bunny — 60
31) This is what happens when cans of worms by elwior — 60

Top Pictures for yesterday, January 24th.  Click any image to be taken to the full comment. Thank you jotter for the image magic!
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