On A Modest Proposal to Reduce the Likelihood of Unjustified Shootings by Police

@Wendy T @Thursty It's hard to make generalizations like this, one way or the other, but my sense is that most cops really do mean well (although surely there are a few drawn to the job for bad reasons), but that there is something inherent in the training, culture, and conditions of the work that creates a toxic atmosphere.

Posted on August 15, 2014 at 2:42 pm 0

On A Modest Proposal to Reduce the Likelihood of Unjustified Shootings by Police

@DebtOrAlive Of course you shouldn't bank your life on it! The terrible thing is that you have to bank your life on anything related to incentivizing basic humane behavior among police. Like I say, it's emphatically a band-aid solution because I don't know how to undo society-wide classism, racism, and fetishaztion of violence. Also, because the law is cruel and ironic, many jurisdictions make it a crime for civilians to own bullet-proof vests.

Posted on August 15, 2014 at 2:27 pm 0

On A Modest Proposal to Reduce the Likelihood of Unjustified Shootings by Police

@maxwelljd That is a good point. A real journalist would have asked a behavioralist her opinion on whether this kind of incentive would have any effect on what is a severe manifestation (shooting death) that occurs at the margins of a much broader problem (officers' disregard for civilians, esp. those who are people of color). Maybe the bigger question that should come from this proposal is this: given that police brutality stems from a pervasive perception in police departments that poor, non-white civilians are generally hostile and less deserving of respect, which probably stems from a broader racial and socioeconomic divide in society, what concrete, institutional steps can be taken to reform police behavior?

Posted on August 15, 2014 at 2:25 pm 0

On A Modest Proposal to Reduce the Likelihood of Unjustified Shootings by Police

@Ester Bloom Respectfully disagree.

Posted on August 15, 2014 at 1:37 pm 0

On The Cost of a Full-Page Ad in The New York Times

I have so many ideas about what I would do with a full page of the New York Times. Most of them involve subtle, absurd send-ups of the wedding announcements. Who's with me?

Posted on August 11, 2014 at 12:27 pm 1

On Friday Estimate

My girlfriend and I are going to Brooklyn for the weekend for a joint her-birthday and my-best-friend's-birthday celebration, and to meet Mike and Ester and Meaghan, and to go to the Brooklyn Museum. I should probably not worry about how much I'm going to spend because the whole existence of The Billfold is an elaborate ruse designed to get me to meet strangers in a distant city and be murdered by them. But just in case... Round trip train fare (Amtrak+Metro Northg): $54 Subway: $10 Drinks/food with Billfold editors/murderers: $40 Wine and beer for birthday party: $40 Museum admission: $12 Some random things like guava nectar and Hostess cupcakes that I will invariably buy to eat on the train: $10 Total: $166

Posted on August 8, 2014 at 4:02 pm 0

On Friday Estimate

@Heather F G That is a terrible/wonderful idea. There's a certain charm in the idea of me walking around New York playing polka basslines on an oversized brass intestine. Except if you're my girlfriend. Or anyone else in New York.

Posted on August 8, 2014 at 3:48 pm 0

On Job of the Day: Maker of Life-Size Sex Dolls

@pissy elliott I can't look at pinterest at work (because it's obviously dangerous!), but I bet that if those boring real dolls look, you know, like almost real, life-sized people, they would creep the hell out of me.

Posted on August 7, 2014 at 3:21 pm 0

On Job of the Day: Maker of Life-Size Sex Dolls

Holy Jesus H. Christ. Uncanny valley defined. No salary would be high enough for me to be in proximity to one of those things, let alone make them. I'll stick to defending adults accused of harming their own children, thankyouverymuch.

Posted on August 7, 2014 at 2:48 pm 0

On Happy To Help, Annoyed I Have To

I think the question is not strictly how big our government should be, but rather, toward what end should it harness and direct its bigness?

Posted on August 6, 2014 at 12:34 pm 5