this & that
- A federal judge has ruled that victims of South Africa's apartheid system can sue corporations that are accused of having been directly involved in supporting the regime's suppression of the country's black majority. Those companies include IBM, Daimler, Ford, and General Motors. Perhaps you've heard of them?
- Nothing like a little latent racism to get blood pressures up over at the Texas Legislature. Bless her heart, Representative Betty Brown apparently thinks that Asian-Americans aren't like the rest of us, and she let a few words slip that were all but of the "your people" variety. Brown's spokesperson says it wasn't racism, that she was just dealing with the issue of transliterated names in voter ID issues. And I believe that Rep. Brown doesn't think she said anything inappropriate. Problem is, it's horribly insensitive to suggest that one group of Americans aren't "really" Americans and that they need to change something as basic as their names in order to make things easier for the rest of us.
- The best part of the whole thing? The guy testifying is somebody I know! Ramey Ko is a graduate of Yale and the University of Chicago law school. Check out how well he kept his composure while answering Brown's questions; Ramey is a super-smart guy and sees this as an opportunity to educate. Rep. Brown also apologized to him.
- Soft power is back, baby. Here's hoping that an increased military role in delivering humanitarian aid doesn't mean that aid workers will be confused for military personnel. I wouldn't hold my breath and will eventually get around to talking about a talk I heard on this very issue the other night.
- My friend Jonny has a very interesting proposal for what to do with Jerusalem in an Israel-Palestine settlement.
- I have a post up over at Inspired to Action on the Run for Compassion, coming up in Bryan/College Station on April 18.
- Julie has concrete evidence that the Georgians aren't such fans of the Russians. (NB, not for the easily offended.)