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AvatarComments by atomickristin in reply to Vikram Bath*

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In a way this is a good thing, too, though. A lot of my breastfeeding misinformation came from my "village" and it helped to have the experiences of others via books and articles to rely on.

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Jaybird - yes that's it exactly but now it's like you can't even do that any more. People jump to the conclusion that you're a breastfeeding snob or a bully and so you end up sitting on info that could very easily help another person because you don't want to give offense.

It's like taking a lot of experience and tossing it in the trash, which is unfortunate and feels like a big waste.

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Something I found rather hilarious with my 5th baby was that my baby friendly hospital insisted vehemently on "kangaroo care". This is a new idea where they want you to put the naked baby on your bare skin. It's a fine idea but they were just sooo in my face about it...every time they walked into the room they wanted me to strip the baby down and plop her on my bare chest and scolded me for not doing it. Eventually I was like "you realize I've successfully kept 4 previous children alive without doing this constantly?"

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My goal was to describe the reality of the debate, not advocate for a position. And I do think at least some of the participants in this particular debate are too quick to take offense over things that are innocent and well-meant.

On “Sixty-Five Million Cracks

Not everything was Clinton's fault #2:

1)The smugness of the media and celebs was huge and should not be underrated. Freddie DeBoer was begging John Oliver and Lena Dunham to STFU just before the election, and this mattered to people more than many realize.

2)Cultural liberalism, bordering on licentiousness, has gone too far too fast for quite a few people. It's at least in part why some minorities voted Trump and others simply stayed home and didn't vote at all. Quite a lot of voters actually do care about things like family, hard work, and religion and are personally socially conservative even if they have always voted Democrat. This includes quite a few people in cities, it is not a rural/urban divide. People see self-professed liberals glorifying things they find kind of icky and are responding to that, because the Democrats have seemed to move SO far to the left there is no place for those who are more old fashioned.

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Honest question - why do you assume that minorities are, by their very nature, and forever more shall be Democratic voters?

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Again, additionally we can't know what would have happened if the media would not have been SO emphatic that she had it buttoned up, and also if the vote was popular and not EC. Everything would have changed. People who didn't bother to vote would have come out of the woodwork (and many of them very well may have been Hillary voters) and others who live in blue states would have voted or voted differently.

There is absolutely no way to know and I think the assumption that Hillary would have still won the popular vote is not proven.

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I'd also like to point out that in California (just like my home state of Washington) a LOT of conservative voters don't even bother. You know your vote will not matter, so it's easy to stay home because you know your state's electoral votes will always go blue. I don't think we can know what might have happened had the vote been popular instead of electoral. There are a lot of voters in California and not all of them live in San Francisco.

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A lot of potential Trump voters stayed home or cast protest votes because they had had it drummed into their heads that she was winning in a landslide. If your vote doesn't matter, why not vote for Evan McMullin or Jill Stein? If Hillary has it locked up, why even bother to vote for HER?

I think the media coverage may have hurt her badly, but it also may have helped her greatly. We'll never know.

On “Fist Bump

Even weirder, this seems to come pre-packed with this assumption that everything "white" is ok for anyone to do. Which of course it is, but it has this icky undertone where "white people stuff" is the dominant culture we all share and then there's these fringe things that are inherently different and NOT a part of mainstream culture, nor can they ever be. It is almost at times like a deliberate attempt to create a dominant, white culture that minimizes other cultures and directly prevents them from spreading.

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I just watched a show called "Into the Badlands" that was fun and had an Asian lead. I'm sure it was bad in any number of ways but it was different and I recommend it.

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I actually don't forget that at all. I fully get the whole larger cultural debate and why it's happening. I'm just not convinced that the solution is this damned if they do, damned if they don't approach where our options are Ghostbusters reboots or Scarlett Johannssen whitewashing. I just fear that if companies perceive that shows that are anything other than suitably, generically multicultural, we will then completely lose the ability to tell authentic stories about the Asian experience because they're too scared to step outside their comfort zones and take a chance on a non-stereotypical plotline.

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Ooo, that would have been awesome. Missed opportunity.

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Great post! Enjoyed reading your take very much DJ!

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I have tried to watch Gotham like 5 times and couldn't do it!!

On “Kmart’s Death Without Dignity

Thanks for the essay, Dennis! I really enjoyed it.

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Oh gosh you're so right about that!! I forgot that but it's a big reason why we gave up even bothering with KMart. They do that to every customer and the lines are FOREVER.

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Saul, I suspect that all has a lot to do with as you put it once, your priors. I find that you assume a lot about where people are coming from that is not always warranted. I despise gentrification and I think it's equally tragic that the inner cities and downtowns, once so vibrant, have decayed. If not more so, because while this is a matter of personal taste, in terms of culture and architecture alone there's a hell of a lot more of worth in an old theater or ballroom than in a JC Penney store. And this decline is not only true in New York City but in smaller cities and large towns across America. I suspect that many of the reasons why are very similar to the reasons why the old department store models are going out of business, we're just a bit farther down the road now than we were a few decades ago.

But you know what, I don't personally write about the decline of the inner city, because it is not what I know. I know, like Dennis does it seems, KMart and JC Penney and thus that is what I tend write about. Writers are supposed to write what they know. We are talking about our little slice of life for those who are interested in that (if anyone). We're capturing a piece of our experience that was shared by millions of people and while some may not find it particularly poetic, it's what we lived. And it's ok to write about that. You view that through your own lens as you are, of course, entitled to, but I'm not playing along with this pretense where we are biased because "nostalgia", and you are somehow immune from bias and some sort of neutral observer.

Entire books are written on subjects like these and this expectation that people are able to write these all-encompassing treatises on exceedingly complex subjects including every viewpoint and every human life experience ever - that's not what POV essays are supposed to be. Just because Dennis didn't happen to cover every square inch of territory in a brief essay doesn't mean he doesn't care about those things or that he thinks his way is superior or more worthy of salvation or political consideration.

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I'm a birthday party parasite. I won't do it just on general principle but my kids go to other people's parties and enjoy them. The shame!!

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And the hot tea in cans!! I still miss that almost 30 years later. I can't understand why a clever entrepreneur has not started marketing the Japanese hot tea in a can in the US since the iced tea boom.

On “The Tomiknockers

That was when I first started to really think about it, when I had my first. I realized that my opinion privately was actually very different than the public face I put on (I was adamantly pro-choice then) and it really gave me a lot to consider.

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Thank you, pillsy, Jaybird.

As for the rest of all that, not sure any of it is worthy of response. In fact, pretty sure it's not.

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Yeah, I been saying that since the Clinton administration.

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Thanks JR.

I actually think I did list a few ways in the piece, tangible things that Republican legislators could do to possibly reduce the number of abortions as it sits here and now.

Increasing funding to WIC - which if you've ever been on it, is awful, awful, awful - is not one of them.

*Comment archive for non-registered commenters assembled by email address as provided.