Notice sent to Senator Hatch (and a slightly modified one to Senator Lee):
As a psychologist who often works with survivors of rape and sexual abuse, I am very concerned at your overt bias toward believing Judge Kavanaugh rather than Dr. Blasey Ford. I recognize your frustration with being unable to get your radically conservative nominee onto the Supreme Court before the midterm elections. I understand Speaker McConnell’s wish to leave as his legacy a judiciary that will be conservative for decades – and that it is even more important to him (and possibly to you) than alienating survivors and the women and men who believe them and support them. Please do not underestimate our anger and determination. We will remember you, and your legacy, and not in a good way. Kavanaugh is a flawed candidate for the highest court in the land. Please reconsider your decision to push this man onto the Supreme Court.
I recently came across this clear explanation of the accurate use of “reverse racism.”
Posted in Humor
The APA continually publishes articles of general interest, including the following advice for dealing with our phones and computers:
- Don’t use phones behind the wheel. Thousands of Americans are killed each year by distracted driving. When you’re in the car, turn off notifications and place your phone out of reach.
- Defend your sleep. A variety of studies have shown that smartphone use at night can interfere with the quality of your sleep.1 Researchers believe that’s partly due to the fact that phones and other tech devices emit “blue light,” which affects the production of the sleep-related hormone melatonin. But another problem is that the content itself is often stimulating. A text or tweet at bedtime can make your mind start spinning at a time it should be winding down. Try to avoid late-night use of mobile devices. Also resist using your phone as an alarm clock — for many people, it can be too tempting to have it on the bedside table.
- Turn off notifications. Most of us have our phones set to beep or buzz whenever a new email, text or social media notification comes in. The Stress in America survey found that only 19 percent of Americans turn off notifications for social media apps. Yet constant notifications can have a negative effect on well-being. In a recent study, psychologists at the University of British Columbia found that when smartphone users turned off smartphone notifications, they reported lower levels of inattention and hyperactivity than they did during weeks when their notifications were turned on.2 What’s more, frequent notifications were also associated with lower levels of productivity, social connectedness and psychological well-being. In a similar study, the same research team found that people who checked email continuously reported more stress than those who checked email only three times per day.3 To help manage your own stress and improve focus, try to make some realistic decisions about what notifications you truly need. You might need to see each incoming email during the workday, but perhaps Facebook updates aren’t as important.
- Manage expectations. If you don’t plan to check text messages during your workday, or won’t be checking email regularly on vacation, make sure you let other people know. Tell your mom you’ll reply to any messages in the evening. Make sure your boss is onboard before you disappear for the weekend. You won’t be able to enjoy the benefits of disconnecting if you’re dealing with frustrated family members and co-workers.
- Use social media wisely. Many people have had the experience of feeling like their life is less glamorous or exciting than the lives their friends showcase on social media. In fact, some research has suggested a link between social media and feelings of sadness or depression.4 But you can change your relationship with social media for the better. Research shows that when people use social media passively (such as consuming information and scrolling through other people’s posts), they report lower levels of well-being. However, social media use may not negatively affect the well-being of people who use it more actively (such as by posting content, sharing ideas or commenting on other people’s conversations).5 To get the most from your social networks, get engaged. (And keep in mind that people’s lives are rarely as perfect as they make them seem on social media).
- Be present. Digital technology and social media make it easy to stay in touch, but they can distract you from connecting with the people you’re with in real life. And face-to-face interactions are important for emotional well-being. The Stress in America survey found 44 percent of people who check email, texts and social media often or constantly report feeling disconnected from their family, even when they’re together. When you’re with friends and family, make an effort to unplug. To avoid temptation, silence your phone and put it out of reach at dinnertime or during family outings.
- Take time to recharge. Quiet time to think is important for relaxing, reflecting and even for boosting creativity. If you’re grabbing your phone every time you have a spare moment to fill, you’re missing out on those opportunities to recharge. Try to set aside some time each day to disconnect. It might be difficult at first, but over time you’ll probably reach for your phone less and less — and grow to value those moments of peace.
An interview with immigration attorney and director of the Free Migration Project (and my son) about the family separation and family detention problems.
The ongoing separation of children and parents at the US border requires all of our attention and energy, particularly yours, as our representatives in the federal government. We must make sure that this immoral and inhuman practice has actually stopped, and then we must do everything possible to reunite these parents and their children. Please find your courage and demand that children be reunited with their parents. This is literally every parent’s nightmare. Use your position as a Republican in our government – spend your credit as a member of the party in power. Your power is useless if you make no effort to reverse the tide of evil. Be brave!
from Warsan Shire, British poet
no one leaves home unless
home is the mouth of a shark
you only run for the border
when you see the whole city running as well
your neighbors running faster than you
breath bloody in their throats
the boy you went to school with
who kissed you dizzy behind the old tin factory
is holding a gun bigger than his body
you only leave home
when home won’t let you stay.
no one leaves home unless home chases you
fire under feet
hot blood in your belly
it’s not something you ever thought of doing
until the blade burnt threats into
and even then you carried the anthem under
only tearing up your passport in an airport toilets
sobbing as each mouthful of paper
made it clear that you wouldn’t be going back.
you have to understand,
that no one puts their children in a boat
unless the water is safer than the land
no one burns their palms
no one spends days and nights in the stomach of a truck
feeding on newspaper unless the miles travelled
means something more than journey.
no one crawls under fences
no one wants to be beaten
no one chooses refugee camps
or strip searches where your
body is left aching
because prison is safer
than a city of fire
and one prison guard
in the night
is better than a truckload
of men who look like your father
no one could take it
no one could stomach it
no one skin would be tough enough
go home blacks
sucking our country dry
niggers with their hands out
they smell strange
messed up their country and now they want
to mess ours up
how do the words
the dirty looks
roll off your backs
maybe because the blow is softer
than a limb torn off
or the words are more tender
than fourteen men between
or the insults are easier
than your child body
i want to go home,
but home is the mouth of a shark
home is the barrel of the gun
and no one would leave home
unless home chased you to the shore
unless home told you
to quicken your legs
leave your clothes behind
crawl through the desert
wade through the oceans
your survival is more important
no one leaves home until home is a sweaty voice in your ear
run away from me now
i dont know what i’ve become
but i know that anywhere
is safer than here