From the podcast 99% Invisible (NOT WRITTEN BY ME)
On the border of Virginia and North Carolina stretches a great, dismal swamp. The Great Dismal Swamp, actually — that’s the name British colonists gave it centuries ago. The swamp covers about 190 square miles today, but at its peak, before parts of it were drained and developed, it was around ten times bigger, spanning roughly 2,000 square miles of Virginia and North Carolina.
And it’s understandable why people called the swamp “dismal.” Temperatures can reach over 100 degrees. It’s humid and soggy, filled with thorns and thickets, teeming with all sorts of dangerous and unpleasant wildlife. The panthers that used to live there are now gone, but even today there are black bears, poisonous snakes, and swarms of yellow flies and mosquitoes.
But hundreds of years ago, before the Civil War, the dangers of the swamp and its seeming impenetrability actually attracted people to it. The land was so untamed that horses and boats couldn’t enter, and the colonists who were filing into the region detested it. William Byrd II, a Virginia planter, called it “a miserable morass where nothing can inhabit.” But people did inhabit the swamp, including thousands of enslaved Africans and African Americans who escaped their captors and formed communities in the swamp. This “dismal” landscape was the site of one of the most remarkable and least told stories of resistance to slavery in American history.
via The Great Dismal Swamp – 99% Invisible
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Cleophas Adderley has gone. He has left us with exquisite, difficult music that is hard for ordinary mortals to perform but, which when mastered, sounds like the voice of heaven. We are blessed that he was allowed to walk with us, to talk with us, to be as human as he was with us.
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For those people who wonder what I think about the consultancy, who would like me to comment on the consultancy, or believe that by being awarded the consultancy, Ian Poitier has somehow disadvantaged me or mine or all of us, let me say this: I am absolutely convinced that Poitier’s contract offers value for money. I’ve read just one of the policy documents that Poitier produced as part of the terms of his consultancy, and as an author of policy documents myself, I can say unequivocally:
It’s worth every penny.
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We live in a democracy. It’s not perfect, but we adhere to certain fundamental principles. Like this one: individuals are entitled, even encouraged, to hold widely divergent views. The vigourous debate of those views extends and enriches democratic life. Unfortunately, we tend to avoid that kind of debate. Rather than engaging with opposing ideas, fighting […]
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Bahamian democracy is too narrow in scope. 1) We have one vote which must be cast for one of a slate of candidates that most ordinary citizens had no hand in selecting, vetting, or ratifying. 2) Once that vote has been cast, the citizens have no means to recall the “representative”. No matter what the […]
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