I have feelings about violence in media, and they have changed dramatically since I was a kid. Back then the only arguments I heard about it were from right-wing evangelicals, who opposed everything I believed in.

But I've come to understand media as part of what we consume, and see how it can water seeds in us. Fictional violence for entertainment stopped interesting me, and now I actively avoid it. There is more than enough real to attend to.

#torture 

@continuation I noticed in the 2000s, coincident with the American invasion of Iraq and use of torture, that American television and movies increased the use of torture scenes. And, specifically, torture scenes where the "good" guys gather critical information via torture from the "bad" guys. In recent years, there have been more generalized torture scenes - showing torture for the sake of depicting pain.

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#torture 

@Gtmlosangeles Yes! This is a fascinating interview with Thich Nhat Hanh about torture and how 9/11 changed the US, and how war and torture requires giving up part of our humanity, it's the first thing I thought of when you said this:

beliefnet.com/faiths/buddhism/

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#torture 

@continuation the desperate cruelty of a dying empire. That Abu Ghraib came to public attention in April of 2004 and then voters reelected Bush later that same year forever severed my sense of connection to the nation I inhabit.

#torture 

@continuation I don't even think that is right "desperate cruelty of a dying empire". This nation was cruel for the entire history of its existence. I didn't really understand that so well back in 2004, but I should know better now. The cruelty of an empire.

#torture 

@Gtmlosangeles Absolutely - everything you've said really resonates. I knew the history but didn't appreciate how deeply it was and still is shaping everything.

#torture 

@continuation I am often aware of a deep malaise or dis-ease. At other times, I feel grief and have tears pushing from burning eyes for no apparent reason. The second is happening to me now, which perhaps explains the first.

"As a torturer, you are the first to be a victim because you lose all your humanity. You do harm to yourself in the act of harming another."

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