When you sling mud, you get “dirty”, and sometimes the “cheap shots” taken are anything but dirt cheap when it comes to the toll on our collective consciousness. On this episode of The Axiom Amnesia Theory, Heit & Cheri discuss a variety of topics from social media studies and invasions of privacy to mud-slinging Texas politics.

Topics discussed include Jill Scott’s nude photo leak, controversy over USC’s Black Twiter study, Texas politics, Greg Abbott’s ad with him in a wheelchair, Abbott “wheelchair” truthers claiming he’s faking being a paraplegic, Wendy Davis’s brutal ads claiming that Abbott is wrong on everything from cancer to a woman being raped in her home, Dallas County Commissioner John Wylie Price, Dallas DA Craig Watkins controversy over how he settled a lawsuit resulting from an accident he had in a government vehicle, nasty political ads, and more!

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  • Discussion about Jill Scott being caught up in the nude celebrity scandal, but her treatment as a voluptuous Black woman was very different than the white women who were affected.

    While feminists rushed to Jennifer Lawrence’s defense after this week’s leak of naked celebrity photos, an African American singer and actress went undefended because of her race. So goes the charge being leveled against “white feminists” and “mainstream feminism” on Twitter after naked selfies allegedly taken by Jill Scott went into circulation.

    But as Scott took the high road, the despicable comments her appearance elicited from Internet trolls were hard to ignore. Scott, after all, doesn’t look much like Lawrence, Kirsten Dunst and Mary Elizabeth Winstead. Did her race and physique provoke a different reaction? “Unlike the seedy but flattering (if you can call perverse come-ons and sexual innuendo such) responses being tossed out in response to Jennifer Lawrence’s nude photos, Jill Scott’s photos were met with a barrage of cruel, body-shaming tweets,” Julie Sprankles wrote on She Knows. “Both women are talented. Both women are stunning. So what’s with the wildly dissimilar responses to these women’s photos? Is it due to their inherently different body types?

    Feminism’s racial divide is as old as the Combahee River Collective Statement — and perhaps dates back to Sojourner Truth. It’s a minefield.

    “Black feminism is championing a more nuanced understanding of how oppression and privilege operate,” Lola Okolosie wrote in the Guardian earlier this year. “We, all of us, must understand that at the level of the individual, we can at differing points occupy positions of privilege.”

    Whether one agrees with Okolosie or not, outrage over the purported lack of outrage on Scott’s behalf seems to have opened an old wound. “Although we as Black women have integrated into feminism, there does exist this fine invisible line made up of white privilege and the double-edged sword that still makes Black women somewhat of the secondary party,” Ariel Leconte wrote on Revolutionary in Pink Pumps. She added: “The Black woman’s body has never had any protection in society.”
    Source: Washington Post

  • Discussion about the weakness in Apple’s iCloud that allowed the hacks to take place.
  • Discussion about the objections over USC’s B”Black Twitter” study.

    Let’s discuss the phenomenon that is Black Twitter. Yes, I’ve capitalized the “b” in black, because it deserves the distinction as a proper noun, especially since there’s currently a study on it being conducted by the Annenberg Innovation Lab at the University of Southern California.

    According to the study, here’s what the researchers are doing:

    Developing a multi-method approach to studying public discourse on Twitter that explores both macro and micro-scale activity simultaneously in order to draw out particularly active, engaged “neighborhoods” within the larger population. Among the many different ways that audiences incorporate Twitter into their media ecologies, “live-tweeting” is one of the most promising for researchers. “Live-tweeting” refers to an open-ended discussion among casual viewers, producers, critics, fans, and anti-fans alike that unfolds in response to television programming, in connection with real-time viewing. From sports events to awards shows to original content, this sort of real-time activity offers a unique opportunity for researchers to listen in on live commentary from thousands of viewers at once.
    It’s no surprise that Black Twitter is a hot commodity when it comes to market research and advertising. According to recent Pew research, 18 percent of Twitter’s U.S. users are black, and it’s this number that has marketers striving to figure out how to make a profit out of it.

    Earlier Wednesday, when word got around about the Black Twitter study, most people noticed that the people associated with the study on the site were three white men. That definitely didn’t sit well with those on social media. Many questioned why three white men were involved in a project solely focused on the interactions of black people on Twitter. Then the criticism, jokes and hashtags started rolling in, because, you know, that’s what Black Twitter does, and rightly so.
    Source: The Root

  • The fact that the researchers aren’t Black affects how they will interpret their results. If they cannot even understand the language, then how can we trust the assumptions they make during their study?
  • Discussion about Ebonics and Black English as a language–as opposed to being viewed as “improper English”.
  • Discussion about the “just one more” ad by Greg Abbott, running for Texas governor.
  • Discussion about the ad that claims Greg Abbott tried to keep a cancer cure from a man.
  • Discussion about the ad in which Abbott is accused of voting not to hold a company responsible for one of their employees that raped a woman in her home–they didn’t do a criminal background check.
  • Discussion about Dallas County District Attorney Craig Watkins scandal over a car wreck in a government vehicle.

    — It was an unprecedented moment when Democratic Dallas County District Attorney Craig Watkins took the witness stand last year.

    He was asked to answer questions about allegations that his office indicted an oil heir in order to benefit a friend and longtime political benefactor. When he refused, State District Judge Lena Levario held Watkins in criminal contempt.

    News 8 has now learned that Watkins used more than $18,000 in state asset forfeiture funds last year to pay his legal bills, and now the legality of that expenditure is being called into question.

    “At a minimum, it pushes the envelope,” said John Helms, a former federal prosecutor. “They should have gone to the attorney general and asked for an opinion. I think it’s close, but in my view, I don’t think it’s permissible. … I think it’s difficult to make the case that it’s solely for an official purpose if it’s benefiting him as well.”

    Recently, News 8 broke the story that Watkins had used the same pot of money for another questionable expenditure. Watkins took more than $50,000 to pay a secret settlement over a crash in a county-owned SUV that he caused on the Dallas North Tollway in February 2013.

    Watkins did not follow county accident reporting policy. The DA’s office also put a confidentially clause in the settlement that would have forced the man Watkins hit to pay more than $40,000 in damages to Watkins if he talked to the press about it. FBI agents have since interviewed the body shop owner who fixed the SUV.

    State Rep. Jason Villalba and others have also asked the state auditor to step in and review the expenditure.
    Source: KHOU

  • Discussion about Greg Abbott “wheelchair truthers”, who claim he’s faking being a paraplegic.

    Liberal-leaning “wheelchair truthers” are now suggesting that the Texas Republican gubernatorial candidate Greg Abbott is just pretending to be a paraplegic.

    Tweeters of the world discovered two commenters making the bizarre claim in well-respected Texas-based publications, reports Twitchy.

    Abbott is the current attorney general of the Lone Star State and has been a paraplegic for the last 30 years. According to the brief biography at his website, he became disabled in 1984 when an oak tree fell on him while he was jogging after a thunderstorm.

    His likely opponent is Democrat Wendy Davis, a Texas state senator who became famous last summer when she filibustered an anti-abortion bill.

    One disbelieving commenter, Robert Cuthbertson, expressed skepticism via Texas Tribune on Facebook that Abbott actually needs his wheelchair.

    “They mock Ms. Davis!!! Give us the medical records. Prove he is paraplegic. he had a kid after the incident…check to see what the odds are of that happening with SEVERE lower spinal cord injury!!”
    The totality of Cuthbertson’s personal Facebook page, which features leftist cant and a ton of cats, suggests that his post is sincere.
    Source: Daily Caller

  • Discussion about Dallas County Commissioner John Wylie Price. He’s always going off on people!
  • Discussion about how nasty Texas politics is.
  • Discussion about Dallas DA Craig Watkins controversy over how he settled a lawsuit resulting from an accident he had in a government vehicle.

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