Opposition

Okay, well, I started out intending to write this post, but I wrote about wool instead. I also intended to do more research for the book this weekend, but I mostly spun wool instead.

Here’s what I’m avoiding thinking about: there is an organized, long-standing, ongoing, highly-influential, white separatist opposition movement in this country.

Racism isn’t just some bad habit of white people we can educate ourselves out of. It’s not just an accidental structural remnant left over from worse times. It’s not even just your embarrassing family member’s terrible beliefs. I wouldn’t even call it a conspiracy, because it’s not a secret, not hidden. We can’t just sit around and wait for it to die off, because it’s not a superstition. It’s an organized, self-replicating movement.

That most of us do not see, at least, not the full scope of it. We see parts of it, some people see a lot of it, but you can’t say the truth–that we, as a nation, are in an ongoing civil war that started in 1776 and continues to this day that regularly flares into violence and once flared into a military war–without sounding like a conspiracy theorist nut job.

It’s a stark question: do you believe that everyone here, in this country, is your equal and deserves the same consideration as you or do you believe that equality is for those fit for it? Because the people who believe the former are in a vicious fight where people get hurt and die with the latter.

But also, and a part that I find the biggest mindfuck about it, is that the carrot dangled in front of white people in order to get us to ignore that the civil war is ongoing is the privilege of forgetting. White people are allowed to have myths instead of history or to have nothing, no past at all, to be born afresh every day with no stain of history, no dirt from yesterday.

But it’s the same thing–some people have to have their pasts and the actions of their fellow community members and what happened three states over fifty years ago scrutinized and constantly judged and others start every moment an innocent lamb. And a lot of us are scrambling for innocent lamb designation.

And part of that innocence is playing The Fool. Even when people get caught being active agents of this white separatist movement, even if you can show their long history of it, their ties to other white separatists, etc., they just act like they misspoke or, worse, they don’t defend themselves at all, but other folks rush forward to explain it away as a misstatement or them just being ignorant.

I don’t know how to explain it, because I don’t know of an analogy from another country that loses the nuance of what was going on in that other country.

But it’s making me feel sick to my stomach, over and over, to see this evil in plain sight and to watch how easily it gets people to pretend it’s not as large or central to things as it is.

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Wool Review

Merino–not in love with it. Which, apparently, puts me at odds with 90% of the internet. I feel like I’ve finally gotten a feel for how to spin it, but I feel like, when you fuck up, it isn’t very forgiving. Like, if you don’t get enough twist in a length of fiber, the whole thing disintegrates into infinite pieces and I end up crying.

BFL–my fiber boyfriend. It’s got a nice, long staple. It’s soft enough for me. It spins pretty easily and, when you fuck up, it’s like “Fine, just stick me back together and make sure you get a decent twist in there this time.” I want to try dying it before I know if this is a long-term commitment, but so far, so good.

Peduncle silk–I got this in my Paradise Fibers monthly box. I mixed it and the other two fibers together and spun up a sample. It’s nice. It’s not wool, obviously, but I’m not changing the name of this post. Silk doesn’t have the same boing as wool, so it’s a little weird to spin it. What came in the box was a kind of silvery-gray. I overdyed mine with blue. It’s drying in the bathroom.

Manx Loaghtan–I guess you’re supposed to keep this naturally brown? But it’s kind of a cold-tone brown and I wanted something a little warmer, so I added some reds and oranges. It’s got a medium short fiber and, though that’s what I hate about Merino, for some reason, I guess because the Manx Loaghtan lacks pretension, I don’t mind it. Though we’ll see how I feel when I spin more of it. In dying it, though, it kind of reminded me of a friendly dog. It did just fine in the pot. I don’t see any felting issues. And it’s hanging in my bathroom urging me to do something nice and weird with it.

Kent Romney–They claim that this has a staple length, on average, of 3.15 inches. They also claim the Manx Loaghtan has a staple length of 3 inches. The Romney staple length is easily half again as long as the Loaghtan in real life. I’d believe something much more like 2.5 for the Loaghtan and 4 for the Romney, though I’m not getting up to measure anyone. I hippie dyed the Romney.

and I’ve spun up some of it.

It dyed up really beautifully, though I have to learn to keep my yellow under control, better. I feel like I had a mildly hard time spinning it, because it… I’m not sure how to explain it. On the one hand it’s not very grabby. It doesn’t just pull in loose fibers as it spins. You have to go grab them for it which lead me to some overly thin spots, which I’m worried are going to come apart on me when plying. But, on the other hand, when you put that yarn someplace, it sticks. Another weird thing about it is just how much fiber it wants for a single. Like, what I’m used to being able to draft out quite a bit with the BFL, that amount the Romney just wanted for a little bit.

I’m curious to see, after it rests and is plied, how much it’s going to expand, because there’s a lot of fiber.