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If College Were Like The Mall Of America…

Hold the phone ya’ll. I wish I was artistic cause then I could draw a really BAD ASS rendering of the mall/college that I’ve dreamt about multiple times. Coupled with the fact that last night I dreamt more about my former school years, essentially taking a journey back in time from college to high school to junior high in different forms.

For example, my remembrances of college were based in the actual dorms and rooms. I clearly have some subconscious fascination with multiple-occupant dorm rooms and how exactly they are situated. Whether they are super cramped or vastly and illogically designed – like either three beds in a space the size of a hummer, or three beds in a space the size of a suburban household in Denver, CO, full square footage, as if the walls between the sitting room and the family room didn’t exist. Also, in the larger rooms, a distinct lack of privacy (aside from the bathroom – my subconscious hasn’t been compromised in that regard)…

I suppose my memories of high school were the least distinct of the three levels, but I would say in general, when I dreamt about my educational years, they tend to either take place in college or in a quasi version of my junior high. None of the characters are really form junior high, but the physical world is more like junior high than high school. And in this case, when my dreams devolved even further to elementary school, they were more of my teachers, and less about physically what my elementary school was like. And the idea that it’s been so long since I’ve been in elementary school that they have architecturally updated my elementary school. I guess it kind of goes through phases, but I can honestly say, my high school, in any recognizable form, has not appeared in my dreams for quite some time. I can’t really remember the last time it appeared.

I digress.

Ultimately I’m trying to manifest the idea of this college that takes place in a mall, and what all comes out of that. What’s the interesting kicker to that scenario?

Temptation?

Security & safety?

A future society in which consumerism via education is king?

This could possibly be the most original idea I’ve ever had.

NEWSFLASH: My Civil War Story is basically Cold Mountain.

But what about a society in which the most popular college education comes in conjunction with a mall? Literally, your college is in a MASSIVE mall, at least four times larger than the Mall of America. Like the MOA, the four corners of the complex are dormitories, and virtually everything in between is consumer temptation. As you walk to class you are bombarded with consumeristic information; information that is tied in with your college experience. Billboard outside every store that attempt to convince you that you NEED this item and item in order to have the proper college experience.

And the fact that this whole complex is contained, and you basically never have to leave the building except to visit your family… there’s definitely security in that. That idea definitely comes from the contained nature of my own college experience. There wasn’t much venturing outside of campus because mobility was restricted unless you had a car. In this case, the whole experience having a mall incorporated into your college is a given. It’s not like you come form some uber-agrarian community and this college world is completely foreign, but it is definitely a different kind of assault on your senses and personal identity.

Are there illegal connections going on relating to alcohol and drugs? Scamming on tests?

I guess I’m starting to physically imagine what this landscape would look like. What would the outside world look like? How big of a leap would it be to go to this kind of school and where would it subsequently take you in society? Would it take you to an even more consumeristic world? Would you actually gain influence or power? A government center that ALSO was incorporated with a shopping mall? What’s the end game? Is it brain washing? That seems too derivative to me. Too simple.

If the dormitories are the literal cornerstones, and the shopping mall the interior, where are the classroom’s? How fluid or in-discrepant is the school versus the mall? Is it all just brain-washing?

Escaltors? Stairs? Amphitheaters?

Seriously you guys, I think I could come up with a legitimate floor plan for this shiz. And that floor plan could potentially lead to very profound story telling. Or at least, I would hope so. In all likelihood probably not.

Sorry that this post doesn’t make much sense.

Stream of consciousness HOLLAAAA!!

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Lady Liberty Said It First… Or At Least She Would Have

The purpose of the law is to protect the rights of its people by preventing injustice. In the United States of American these rights are outlined in the Bill of Rights. At their most basic, the Bill of Rights is meant to protect, as described in The Declaration of Independence, one’s right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, (aside from that silly assertion that “all [people] are created equal) whatever form that might take for an individual – unless it impinges upon others rights to the same pursuits.

The Right to Life:

You might be like HBO’s Dexter and find happiness in murdering other people, but you are violating the Bill of Rights by denying those people that you killed their right to life. As such you are subject to the force of law; you have acted unlawfully. Your prosecution is not to ensure justice, but to prevent injustice. It is not just that you go to prison. Rather, it is unjust that you not be punished for violating another person’s rights.

The Right to Liberty:

The Bill of Rights protects its citizen’s liberty. Liberty is defined as the state of being free within a society from oppressive restrictions imposed by authority on one’s way of life, behavior, or political views. This includes religion. You are free to believe in whatever you want, as long as your actions, whether as a result of your religious beliefs or not, do not impinge upon other’s right to liberty. For one or many to prevent the liberty of others would be unjust, and would therefore merit punishment (see Dexter, above). It is both unjust to deny one’s liberty; it would be unjust to not protect one’s right to liberty.

Separation of Church & State:

The First Amendment of the United States Constitution states that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” Ba-da-bing ba-da-boom, secular government. Government shan’t be based on religion nor can it oppress the practice or belief in any claimed religion. One might say that Dexter believes that murder is his religion. But he’s not being persecuted for believing that murder is paramount, nor simply for killing another person. He is being persecuted because murdering another person is violating their right to life. Without the concept of one’s right to life, murder would not necessarily be considered bad.

Am I making any sense? I’m not going to pretend that my arguments above are bulletproof. Not in the slightest. And I realize that I am attempting to describe a delicately subtle difference that in most linguistic circles means exactly the same thing. But I swear, they are different. And here’s what I’m getting at – the government has no right to deny gay people from being recognized as married under United States of America law.

#1 – Gay and lesbian folk are people; human beings. Thusly they deserve the right to life. Ok, this isn’t so much an issue anymore. There is still homophobic violence out there, but I wouldn’t say that gay and lesbian people are actively being denied the right to life on a large scale basis. And I think that is because of human’s innate sense of one’s right to life. We don’t all ascribe to that belief because the Bill of Rights says so. There’s some innate belief in the sanctity of life.

#2 – Because gay and lesbian folk are human beings, and especially if they are citizens of the United States of America, they have the right to liberty. In laymen’s terms, they can do whatever they want (unless it violates the rights of others). I don’t see how allowing gay or lesbian people to get married would violate the basic rights of anyone else.

And don’t get me fucking started on what it says in the Constitution about marriage cause do you know who wrote those words? Yes, you should. If you don’t you really should go back to school. Do you know when that was written? Just like two hundred years ago when being same-sex inclined was basically not even an option. I feel pretty confident saying there have been gay and lesbian people for pretty much all of time, whether or not I have any proof. Over time it’s just been a matter of how acceptable or not the expression of that personal belief was in any given society.

Everyone is free to believe in whatever they want. People who believe gay and lesbians should not be allowed to marry have every right to believe that. They do not however, have the right to pass a law which explicitly denies the supposed liberty of gay and lesbian people to get married.  Every heterosexual person in the United States of America has the freedom to get married. They aren’t just allowed to get married, they are free to get married. Why aren’t gay and lesbian people free to get married? What right do the collective “we” have to decide whether or not to allow an entire group of people a liberty that most of us take for granted? Yes, not so long ago it was illegal for white and non-white people to get married, and frankly, that only further proves the outdatedness of the words in the Constitution regarding marriage, but come on people, let’s just let everyone be equal. Science can prove that homosexual people are just as human as heterosexual people. Why is that not enough proof that homosexual folk deserve the same inalienable rights as heterosexual folk?

#3 – Religion is not a legitimate reason to change the Constitution of the United States or the Bill of Rights to deny an entire group of people those rights. Remember that little ditty about separation of church & state? This is where it applies. You can’t propose a law that says gay and lesbian people can’t get married because it is ordained by God (even that is constantly up for debate). Ok, so you say the original Constitution said marriage is between a man and a woman. Need I remind you again of when this document was conceived and written? -> in a time when homosexuality was frowned upon. And really, the assertion in a supposedly secular document that marriage is between a man and a woman is proof that the Constitution is not immune from bias. And I don’t think it’s unreasonable for this bias to be changed to reflect the times we live in now.

Admittedly, when Thomas Jefferson wrote in the Declaration of Independence that “all [people] are created equal,” he wasn’t really taking into account the fact that slavery still existed; that there were thousands, even millions of people in the world who were not being treated equally. But we can’t blame him, the science to prove the humanity of black africans didn’t exist yet *eye roll*. However, if “all [people] are created equal” doesn’t outweigh every argument against gay marriage, I don’t know what does. I mean, it’s in the fucking first paragraph of the fucking first document ever composed asserting the existence of a new sovereign nation that shortly thereafter became the United States of America. Like, if Lady Liberty was a real person and could speak, that’s the first thing she would have said having been mystically and spontaneously manifested from the earth.

So don’t give me this shit about not letting gay and lesbian people get married. How exactly is allowing homosexual people the freedom to get married in the eyes of the law (which they should already have) impinging upon the rights of heterosexual people? Pass a “law” in your church or religion that gay people can’t get married, whatever. I’ll just choose not to follow your religion; I have the right not to; the right to choose. But in a government that explicitly states there be no weight given to religious beliefs in its law-making… couldn’t be more clear to me the un-Constitutionality of passing a law that not only denies a basic right but also is motivated, supported, and promoted by a religious institution.

It would probably be pertinent of me to note that I am not attempting to bash religion. On the whole I think religion can be a very profound tool in bringing people of the world together, no matter the technical differences. I also know that not all religious people out there believe homosexuality to be an abomination, and I obviously would align myself with those types of people.

As my high school hockey teammate once said in some Minnesota governing session, gay marriage is not a religious issue, it’s a human rights issue. I don’t think (hope) there aren’t any  political leaders in the United States today that believe homosexual people to somehow not quite human. So why aren’t they given the same rights and freedoms that everyone else is given? I could ask that question in so many different ways about a million times over, and I wouldn’t be the first, or the last.

Yvette Nicole Brown, of NBC’s Community, described God as love. God. Is. Love.

GOD IS LOVE

Can’t we all just love each other, ya’ll?

Whether or not you believe in God I sure as hell hope you believe in love, cause love is basically what’s at the heart of it all. Without love  we would be like Dexter and we wouldn’t have any kind of concept of the sanctity of life. Or the importance of community. I mean, seriously, what more can a girl say in a post that she’s not gonna spell check and nobody’s gonna read?

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