Philadelphia: Lest We Forget

Philadelphia: Lest We Forget

Philadelphia stands as a landmark film in the portrayal of gays, AIDS and homophobia; the film battled long-established social barriers and helped put a heroically human face to the long-suffering gay community. Tom Hanks won a deserved Academy Award for his portrayal of a previously energetic lawyer who wastes away into a gaunt, diseased AIDS victim. Bruce Springsteen also received an Academy Award for Streets of Philadelphia, his first-ever song written for a movie.

Bruce Springsteen: Streets of Philadelphia

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Barack Obama: This is My Patriotism, These are My Values

N. C. Jefferson-Jackson Speech: This is My Patriotism, These are My Values

At the North Carolina State Democratic Party’s Jefferson-Jackson dinner in Raleigh (NC) on Friday evening, the immense room exploded with energy when Barack Obama walked onto the stage after Hillary Clinton, who had received what observers have described as a far more tepid reception.

This election is not about rich versus poor, or young versus old or black versus white,” he said, as supporters waved thousands of blue Obama campaign signs.  “It’s about the past versus the future, and in four days, you can choose to turn the page.”

My story is not possible except in the United States of America.  I would not be here were it not for the fact that somebody, somewhere stood up for me.  And because one person stood up, a few more stood up, and then a thousand stood up, and then a million stood up.  That’s why Hillary Clinton can run for President.  That’s why I can run for President…because somebody stood up.  And the question now is: Will the Democratic Party stand up for the next generation?  That’s my Patriotism.  Those are my Values.  Those are your Values.  That’s what we’re fighting for in this election.”

N. C. Jefferson Jackson Dinner, May 2, 2008

Barack Obama: This is My Patriotism, These are My Values

Time Magazine’s Mark Halperin reported late Saturday that Hollywood superstar Tom Hanks is endorsing Barack Obama for President.  The acclaimed actor and activist, who previously had given money to both the Obama and Clinton presidential campaigns, posted a compelling video on his MySpace page explaining his choice.  The video is presented for you below:

Acclaimed Actor Tom Hanks Endorses Senator Barack Obama

For a second time last week, Obama played basketball in front of the television cameras, but this time it was with the big boys.  Despite having held a late night campaign rally, Obama was up bright and early before 7:00 a.m., arriving at one of the hallowed grounds of college basketball, the home of the University of North Carolina Tar Heels.  Obama headed to the court for a quick morning game, a five-on-five warm-up with the University of North Carolina basketball team.

Shooting Hoops: Basketball with the UNC Basketball Team

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Living Painfully Lonely Lives

Living Painfully Lonely Lives

Solitude and Isolation

In the 2000 film Cast Away, Tom Hanks plays an obsessive, clock-watching businessman, Chuck Noland, who by an unexpected misfortune finds himself stranded on an isolated Pacific island. Noland copes with his four years of social disconnection and loneliness in part by befriending a volleyball, which he names Wilson. He jokes with Wilson and confides in Wilson and mistreats Wilson, and at one point he even kicks his companion out of their cave like an angry spouse. When he finally and irretrievably loses his volleyball to the ocean currents, he cries, “I’m sorry, Wilson!

Many of us might have had daydreams of fantasys about living alone, far from the commotion and pressure of modern life. But we should watch what we wish for, because in fact most of us would not fare well in such isolated conditions. This has been shown time and again: people who live lonely and disconnected lives, even smack in the middle of a modern metropolis, are more depressed, more suicidal and have more physical illnesses than the rest of us. Such longing is especially poignant at holiday time. The lonely are in effect emotional throwaways.

And how do emotional castaways cope? What cognitive tools do we have to salve the pain of loneliness? We might well do precisely what Chuck Noland knew intuitively to do. We “invent” people to keep us company, humanizing anything we can humanize, pets, supernatural beings, possibly even something as unlikely as avolleyball.

There is a more unsettling possibility, as well. If the human mind is wired to make lonely people hunger for connection, as these studies show, then the inverse is probably also true. That is, people who are not lonely, who are secure in their circle of friends and family, may be more likely to dehumanize strangers; they have no motivation to make further connections. So perhaps it’s not entirely fanciful for an emotional castaway to befriend a volleyball, but for most of us the greater risk may be treating real flesh-and-blood humans as playthings.

Nicholas Epley, Adam Waytz, and John T. Cacioppo at The University of Chicago have conducted interesting empirical research about loneliness, which you can read here: Link.

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Articles from Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Quoted: Photo of the Day: Roman Performance Trash Photography by: Susan Sanders Technorati: Photo of the Day, Photograph of the Day, Roman Performance Trash, Performance Trash, Rome, Italy, performance art, art, image, picture, photo, photograph, photography, photographer, Susan Sanders, culture, cultural, social, society, blog, blogger, blogging, photo-blog

[tags: blogs]

“Bruce Springsteen: The Streets of Philadelphia.” Lest We Forget: Will We Leave Each Other Alone Like This?

This posting includes classic photographs of Bruce Springsteen by Annie Leibovitz, as well as the official Springsteen music video of “The Streets of Philadelphia.”

[tags: Bruce Springsteen, The Streets of Philadelphia, movies, Annie Leibovitz, photographs, music video, YouTube, gay]

See the Rest of My Articles at Blue Dot

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Bruce Springsteen: The Streets of Philadelphia

Lest We Forget: Will We Leave Each Other Alone Like This?

Photography by: Annie Leibovitz

Bruce Springsteen: The Streets of Philadelphia

The Streets of Philadelphia:  Tom Hanks Montage and Springsteen Music

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