Well, a couple people said they liked it, so here's another brief section from that manifesto I was playing with… Most of it is pretty incendiary, so I've been trying to tune it into something easier to read for the average person (although maybe that's exactly what I shouldn't be doing, I don't know):
On the subject of societal norms
Fleeting changes in the whims of the lowest common denominator, grains of sand barely understood by the hundredth monkey that blindly follows, represent our collective “statistically normal” deaths. We declare those who adhere to norms for the sake of conformity to be traitors to everything that makes humanity beautiful. We, the people full of daring creativity and energy, declare them vile creatures devoid of life and a scourge upon our planet.
The entire concept of a “societal norm” as far as aesthetic definitions go is a flawed concept. It suggests that somehow there are blanket laws that apply to all of us. The very fact that these laws change radically from region to region and time to time points out their fallacies — are we expected to believe that humans are different in 2002 than they were in 1802? Or that humans are different in Britain than they are in India?
Following these norms is an easy way out that surrenders much of what we should value in ourselves. Any free person knows that “societal norm” is just another term for “prison”.
Anyway, just a couple things in the news I wanted to mention before I get to work… I'm sure many of you have seen Apple's ousting of a young coder (15 years old). Because he's underage, the fact that he's a solid contributor is irrelevant to them since he can't legally sign their contracts. I was less experienced at 15, but my mind was a lot sharper than it is now, and I know I was an asset to the companies I programmed for… I really think Apple made a big mistake on this one.
And did you know that it's illegal to protest the KKK in Alabama? The KKK were protesting that school children were being asked to do a report for black history month (although a 30 page report seems a little strange for 6th grade, doesn't it), and a motorist driving by their protest yelled out his window, “y'all need to grow up“. He was arrested and charged with two counts of inciting a riot and resisting arrest.
Finally, I see that Yahoo! is going to start charging for its email service. Thank god this is finally happening. It's about time — now maybe people will clue in to the fact that it's expensive to publish online and start being more willing to contribute. Next I expect we'll start seeing radical changes and maybe even the death of things like msn communities. Microsoft is perfectly aware that a significant percentage of those communities exist for minors to trade stolen porn, and eventually they'll get sick of footing the bill…