The Sunday Post for October 30, 2016

Undercover with a border militia

A long, intense, and detailed look at the types of people who join militias, and the sorts of things they do inside. More investigative reporting like this, please.

Becoming a militia member began with opening a new Facebook account. I used my real name, but the only personal information I divulged on my profile was that I was married and that I had held jobs as a welder and a prison guard for the Corrections Corporation of America. A "Don't Tread on Me" flag was my avatar. I found and "liked" militia pages: Three Percenter Nation, Patriotic Warriors, Arizona State Militia. Then Facebook generated endless suggestions of other militia pages, and I "liked" those too. To keep my page active, I shared other people's posts: blogs about President Barack Obama trying to declare martial law, and threats of Syrians crossing the border. I posted memes about American flags and police lives mattering. Then I sent dozens of friend requests to people who belonged to militia-related Facebook groups. Some were suspicious of me: "Kinda have a veg profile, so I got to ask why you want to be my friend????" one messaged. Many, however, accepted my friend requests automatically. Within a couple of days, I had more than 100 friends, and virtually any militia member who looked at my page would likely find that we had at least one friend in common.
Caminata Nocturna: The Border Crossing Experience

Meanwhile, on the other side of the border, Mexicans and tourists can pay a modest fee to find out just what it is like for people attempting to cross the border going North. This long comic is great storytelling, and how fascinating and unreal that you can just pay to find out how badly poor and desperate people are treated.

Scientists Just Proved That “Patient Zero” Did Not Bring HIV To The US

Amazing that the term "Patient Zero" was actually "Patient [letter] O", and due to internal CDC miscommunication, a meme and term was made.

The paper is a technical feat, but also has a powerful human side: It definitively clears the name of “Patient Zero,” a gay French-Canadian flight attendant named Gaëtan Dugas who for decades has been accused of bringing the virus to North America.

Dugas was hired by Air Canada in 1974, and his job took him to dozens of cities across North America. In 1980, he was diagnosed with skin cancer, just a year before the Centers for Disease Control flagged a mysterious cluster of infectious diseases in five young and previously healthy gay men in Los Angeles.

Dugas, known simply as Patient “O” (for “Outside of California”) in the CDC papers, was near the center of the cluster. A mistake in CDC communications, however, labeled him as Patient “0.”

Milk Chocolate Is Better Than Dark, the End

I will always stand proud next to those of you who stand proud for milk chocolate.

I generally enjoy milk chocolate, for basic reasons of flavor and texture. For roughly the same reasons, I generally do not enjoy dark chocolate.

Those are just my boring preferences, but preferences, really, won’t do: This is an age in which even the simplest element of taste will become a matter of partisanship and identity and social-Darwinian hierarchy; in which all things must be argued and then ranked; in which even the word “basic” has come to suggest searing moral judgment. So IPAs are not just extra-hoppy beers, but also declarations of masculinity and “palatal machismo.” The colors you see in the dress are not the result of light playing upon the human eye, but rather of deep epistemological divides among the world’s many eye-owners. Cake versus pie, boxers versus briefs, Democrat versus Republican, pea guac versus actual guac, are hot dogs sandwiches … It is the best of times, it is the RAGING DUMPSTER FIRE of times.