I think all of our album titles have been an attempt to sum up the mood of the time within which the songs were written, like OK Computer and Kid A, and this was another attempt to do the same. It’s about whether you choose to confront and complain and deal with what’s upsetting you around you, or just kind of go home with your family and hide and wait for it to change, and wait for everything to be alright. Because both options are really tempting.
Let’s get one thing out of the way: Mexican immigration is an oxymoron. Mexicans are indigenous. So, in a strange way, I’m pleased that the racist folks of Arizona have officially declared, in banning me alongside Urrea, Baca, and Castillo, that their anti-immigration laws are also anti-Indian. I’m also strangely pleased that the folks of Arizona have officially announced their fear of an educated underclass. You give those brown kids some books about brown folks and what happens? Those brown kids change the world. In the effort to vanish our books, Arizona has actually given them enormous power. Arizona has made our books sacred documents now.
Sherman Alexie is a poet, short story writer, novelist, and filmmaker. His book “The Lone Ranger and Tonto’s Fist Fight in Heaven,” was on the banned curriculum of the Mexican American Studies Program.
I think you could fall in love with anyone if you saw the parts of them that no one else gets to see. Like if you followed them around invisibly for a day and you saw them crying in their bed at night or singing to themselves as they make a sandwich or even just walking along the street and even if they were really weird and had no friends at school, I think after seeing them at their most vulnerable you wouldn’t be able to help falling in love with them.
If your experience is that your water comes from the tap and that your food comes from the grocery store, then you are going to defend to the death the system that brings those to you because your life depends on them; if your experience is that your water comes from a river and that your food comes from a land base then you will defend those to the death because your life depends on them. So part of the problem is that we have become so dependent upon this system that is killing and exploiting us, it has become almost impossible for us to imagine living outside of it and it’s very difficult physically for us to live outside of it.
Modern schools and universities push students into habits of depersonalized learning, alienation from nature and sexuality, obedience to hierarchy, fear of authority, self-objectification, and chilling competitiveness. These character traits are the essence of the twisted personality-type of modern industrialism. They are precisely the character traits needed to maintain a social system that is utterly out of touch with nature, sexuality, and real human needs.
—Arthur Evans, quoted by Derrick Jensen in Walking on Water, p. 85 (via radioheadofficial)
[photocopy image of audre lorde with her hands up, and quote: “Without community there is no liberation… but community must not mean a shedding of our differences, nor the pathetic pretense that these differences do not exist. - Audre Lorde”]
Beware those who seek constant crowds; they are nothing alone.