[P]eople only make decisions based on what they know. You can have everyone in the country vote freely and democratically and still come up with the wrong answer - if the information they base that decision on is wrong. People don't want the truth [when] it is complicated. They don't want to spend years debating an issue. They want it homogenized, sanitized, and above all, simplified into terms they can understand...Governments are often criticized for moving slowly, but that deliberateness, it turns out, is their strength. They take time to think through complex problems before they act. People, however, are different. People react first from the gut and then from the head...give that knee-jerk reflex real power to make its overwhelming will known as a national mandate instantly and you can cause a political riot. Combine these sins - simplification of information and instant, visceral democratic mandates - and you lose the ability to cool down. There is no longer deliberation time between events that may or may not be true and our reaction to them. Policy becomes instinct rather than thought.
Conservatives, who have presumed that the key to preventing AIDS is abstinence-only education, and liberals, who have focused on distribution of condoms, should both note that the intervention that has tested most cost-effective in Africa is neither... Secular bleeding hearts and religious bleeding hearts will have to forge a common cause.
What you need is a chick from Camden,' Van Patten says, after recovering from McDermott's statement.Oh great,' I say. 'Some chick who thinks it's okay to fuck her brother.'Yeah, but they think AIDS is a new band from England,' Price points out.Where's dinner?' Van Patten asks, absently studying the question scrawled on his napkin. 'Where the fuck are we going?'It's really funny that girls think guys are concerned with that, with diseases and stuff,' Van Patten says, shaking his head.I'm not gonna wear a fucking condom,' McDermott announces.I have read this article I've Xeroxed,' Van Patten says, 'and it says our chances of catching that are like zero zero zero zero point half a decimal percentage or something, and this no matter what kind of scumbag, slutbucket, horndog chick we end up boffing.'Guys just cannot get it.'Well, not white guys.
To engage in activism that envisions alternatives ways of organizing society and alternative ways of being is to risk membership in society, a sense of belonging, however partial it may be. Activism can make us vulnerable because it is so obviously about wanting something beyond what is, and to have a political desire often is construed as wanting too much.