Portraits of Wildflowers

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Archive for February 9th, 2022

The dripping

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One difficulty in taking pictures at Bull Creek District Park on February 5th was the rain of seepwater and meltwater coming down from parts of the overhang. Some places where I wanted to stand were therefore off limits, and even some places where I stood didn’t fully stop splashes from getting on the glass in front of my lens, which I had to wipe with a handkerchief from time to time.

If dripping caused problems, it also made for some good pictures.

 

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I think it was last year, though it could have been 2020, when I mentioned that incidents of ideologically motivated repression, canceling, firing, disparate treatment, intimidation, and the like have become so common that I could report a new one every single day. I haven’t done that—it’s a depressingly sad commentary on how far supposedly free countries have fallen—but I have reported some prominent cases. Here’s one from a few days ago.

Thousands of Canadian truck drivers—known as the Freedom Convoy—have been protesting Covid-19 restrictions. The truckers have repeatedly said they intend their protests to remain peaceful. Supporters started a fundraiser for the truckers on the website GoFundMe, which is probably the largest and best-known such site. On February 4, GoFundMe “froze the convoy’s official campaign, claiming law enforcement convinced the company that the convoy had become violent and unlawful. GoFundMe encouraged donors to submit a refund form….” Now, GoFundMe has the electronic trail of every donation, and the company could have issued an automatic refund to all the donors without forcing each one to apply separately to get their money back. What’s worse, GoFundMe also announced “that any funds not properly returned to donors” would be donated elsewhere. Some news sources said the redirecting of funds would be to “credible and established charities verified by GoFundMe,” while other sources said the redirecting would be ”to a charity chosen by the Freedom Convoy.” The first of those is worse than the second, but either way, GoFundMe would divert money to organizations the donors did not intend or authorize.

After donors objected, and after the state of Florida threatened to investigate GoFundMe for fraud, GoFundMe reversed itself and said it would issue refunds automatically—which of course it could have done from the outset, but questionably chose not to do.

And then there’s the hypocrisy. You’ll recall the riots, arson, looting, destruction (at least $2 billion worth), and even killings that came from Black Lives Matter “protests” month after month in 2020. In spite of the violence and death, GoFundMe allowed fundraisers for Black Lives Matter to continue. Talk about double standards.

After GoFundMe’s cancellation, supporters of the Freedom Convoy moved their fundraiser to the Christian site GiveSendGo, which soon reported what it believed to be denial-of-service and bot attacks. That’s the kind of world we’re living in.

And let me add that while protesting government policies is a right, I don’t think the truckers in Canada or anywhere else should block roads. There’s plenty of room to protest without impeding the flow of traffic and inconveniencing people.

© 2022 Steven Schwartzman

 

 

 

Written by Steve Schwartzman

February 9, 2022 at 4:32 AM

Posted in nature photography

Tagged with , , , , ,

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