"Mizu" (water)

SHOW ME YOUR LIFE: Michio is a 12-year-old boy from Japan. We have recently been talking a lot about the idea of struggle and the idea of survival. Michio has been working with Joseph (peer mentor @ Cinematheque), and they have put together this video Michio calls “Mizu.”


"fewer people want to become Yakuza, those who do will be very logical, very scary -- and much, much more dangerous."


Japan and Russia are the only members of the Group of Eight (G-8) that do not criminalize possession of child pornography.

Japan is a country of destination and transit for boys trafficked for the purposes of commercial sexual exploitation. Boys trafficked to Japan for commercial sexual exploitation come from the People’s Republic of China, South Korea, Southeast Asia, Eastern Europe, Russia, and, to a lesser extent, Latin America. Japanese men continue to be a significant source of demand for child sex tourism in Southeast Asia. Japan is a transit country for boys trafficked from East Asia to North America.

Traffickers also target Japanese boys for exploitation in pornography or prostitution. Many of the boys, both foreign and Japanese, are reluctant to seek help from authorities for fear of reprisals by their traffickers, who are often members or associates of Japanese organized crime syndicates (the Yakuza). The Yakuza’s tribal marks and signs included stuff like full-body tattoos, missing digits and a pseudo-family structure. 

Although Japan has outlawed child pornography — reluctantly, after international pressure left officials no choice. The ban, criminalizes producing and selling child pornography, but not owning it.  This pornography is still part of the Yakuza’s base income (many including publishers, are raking in millions).

Manabu Miyazaki, a writer whose father was a Yakuza, feels although "fewer people want to become Yakuza, those who do will be very logical, very scary -- and much, much more dangerous."

Police say although full-fledged membership in Yakuza groups have fallen due to tighter laws against organized crime, the number of Yakuza hangers-on, including thugs and members of motorcycle gangs, who are willing to do their dirty work, has risen.

If Japanese law enforcement knows so much about the Yakuza, why don’t the police just take them down. “We don’t have a RICO Act,” senior police officer explains. “We don’t have plea-bargaining, a witness-protection program or witness-relocation program. So what we end up doing most of the time is just clipping the branches. . . . If the government would give us the tools, we’d shut them down, but we don’t have ‘em.”


Japan has ratified the following conventions:

·      the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child 1989 (CRC);

·      the Optional Protocol to the CRC on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography;

·      the Optional Protocol to the CRC on Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict;

·      the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights;

·      the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights;

·      the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination against Women;

·      the Convention concerning the Prohibition and Immediate Action for the Elimination of the Worst Forms of Child Labour; and

·      the Convention concerning Minimum Age for Admission to Employment.


Japan has not signed the following conventions:

·      the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction;

·      the Hague Convention on the Protection of Children in Intercountry Adoption;

·      the Hague Convention on Jurisdiction, Applicable Law and Recognition of Decrees Relating to Adoptions; or

·      the Hague Convention on Jurisdiction, Applicable Law, Recognition, Enforcement and Co-operation in Respect of Parental Responsibility and Measures for the Protection of Children.


Japanese people have a tendency to keep their suffering quiet, to hide it. They believe society does not want to know their problems, that it will perceive sufferers as weak (Makiba Yamano, World Vision).



OCT 10 2013, NYC: BRAVO to the Guerilla Artist Banksy for Breaking the Cultural Dam with his tiny little BEAVER art installation! Getting people with voices/education/cameras/ and spare time to take a Metro/Bus ride, money to pay for the ticket and safe place to sleep (people who probably also have enough to eat and have access to medical care & prescription pain relief), onto the New York streets to FEEL/IMAGINE what life must be like for the thousands of homeless & neglected kids being forced to survive in New York. Every night 3800 homeless kids in New York need an emergency shelter bed (ie safer place to sleep). But there are only 240 beds available. Poverty/Violence/Neglect. SEQUESTRATION is placing the kids at risk for premature death. Get out there everyone with your cameras and cellphones and CALL for a humanitarian response for the kids. HUMANITARIAN RESPONSE does not mean round up the kids, chuck them into juvenile or immigration detention systems. There are simply NOT ENOUGH foster care families in the USA. Even fewer families who would welcome into their homes, lives, a kid who has been forced to endure such breathtaking neglect & abuse. Surely the kids have been punished ENOUGH in the heart of our communities.

i call the tricks tricks because they are full of them/ all of them designed to put the trick back in charge/ for them sex is inherently about power as much as it is about getting feeding an insatiable appetite for young boys/ power/ humiliation/ money/ i could list in detail the names of all the tuscan hawks/ but for what purpose/ the unwritten record of us a rosetta stone/

KIDS WHO KNOW THEIR HUMAN RIGHTS, how to advocate for themselves, who to turn to for protection, how to articulate what they need, DO NOT MAKE GOOD TARGETS FOR ABUSE, EXPLOITATION, TRAFFICKERS or PIMPS. Armed with their empirical knowledge, creativity and intelligence, kids become terrific peer-mentors and guides within, and across, social and cultural landscapes in which their peers are embedded, and enduring chronic social & cultural neglect, every day, and every night. 



"Art is a guarantee of sanity.

That is the most important thing I have said."

(Louise Bourgeois)

rubber inflatables: inflates like a bicycle tire; deflates, too/ vulnerable to nails and glass/ broken glass/ you thought you were a person/ i guess that means you had developed something of an identity, perhaps, you were even a person of your own creation/ but they only understand metaphors they have seen before/ it's like being raped all over again, and raped, and raped, and every time you were raped the life would be sucked from you until you thought that that was what life was/ being raped and raped until finally you were indifferent and just accepted it as if it was no more important than the evening news/ it was all happening to someone else/ 

Tim Barrus #HIV/AIDS

Turning tricks means a lot of men, a lot of them are married men, will fuck you in the ass. Money is quid pro quo. Either the trick will fuck you in the ass — and in lieu of tricks — the government will fuck you in the ass. If you think that their eagerness to get you tested while at the same time creating a lot of hoops for you to jump in and out of even if it simply looks like they are going to have to pay for your antiretrovirals because there is no such thing as a free antiretroviral, wait until you are in the position of trying to get those drugs every month. I am told that turning tricks in rest areas is easier. I believe it. Buba, I will guarantee you that the day will eventually arrive where it will be winter, and the mountain roads are almost impassable. You need those drugs and the nearest public health clinic pharmacy is 300 miles away on mountain roads that are probably closed anyway. But you set out on this great adventure eagerly, so as to leave a good impression with people who already think you are mad. And when you arrive at the public health HIV/AIDS pharmacy, you are told to come back next month because they ran out of your drugs, they just don’t have it, they’ll have to order more, and an armed security guard has to escort you out because you were rude. Momentary lapse.

the boxes open to the snow of secrets/ old coats we once shuffled around in/ we were our shells/ empty hallways and clinging/ women do this more than men/ our little boxes hold our sleepwalking, our graves, our vultures from the past; they say we are our memories, and i never questioned this view of dementia/ i question it now/ in fact, i spit on it/ i piss on this sentiment/ they say such and such a disease robs of us who we used to be/ why the fuck can’t i be the person i am now/ in this very moment/ and why am i boxed up like some barbed wire from the past, and/or a mirror/ why is it assumed the moment cannot be enjoyed for what it is but it must be chewed on, digested, vomited up, shit out, to be understood/ understanding takes place within a context/ the weakness with that stupid theory is that you can shift your eyes to another part of the context, and then what was the focus becomes the context of the context, make up your fucking mind/ unwind it from your shallow cultural understanding of the universe/ it’s not what you believe, it’s what you’ve been told to believe/ or to disbelieve/ my contexts are my ravens/ dark and flying apart, to land on some dead mammal’s corpse/ to steal an existence and pecking away and a pulling of the dead meat that never was/ how can you claim to be from a culture that does not, in fact, exist, but only exists in our understanding of the 19th Century’s idea of the painting and the photograph; it’s more the unculture than the culture, dead cultures exist for a reason like dead mammals get torn apart or eaten; and the fact remains that the very definition of what is tribal is up for fucking grabs, and if you don’t like that how does it matter what you like or do not like, you are irrelevant/ our little boxes hold our sacred trinkets/ your ideas are your trinkets and about as worthless as asylum/

Tim Barrus: #HIV/AIDS and the American South


Every morning, I get up, I stretch, I look around, and every morning, what I see is stunning. I live in a sleepy little Southern town. The HIV infection rate is through the roof. Parents in the community are deeply disturbed. Not because the South has such high levels of HIV. But because states like North Carolina are now allowing sex educators to mention the word: condom. They want an abstinence only message to be taught. The word condom in the South has nothing to do with the term HIV/AIDS. The big threat down here is called birth control. To say that the American South is behind even much of the developing world is an understatement.

In Dixie, people are still dying. Dying quietly. Dying compliantly. Dying like they were never here.

You don’t make noise in the South. If you do, you are quickly shown your place. Ignorance is a tool that has been employed for centuries down here to keep the power structure solidly in place.

That power structure is inherently religious.

What people are told in the churches of my community is that AIDS is the wrath of god’s hated of homosexuality.

Many people with HIV in the community are not even gay. They’re migrants. You can’t separate work from status. In the South, your work is your status in that you are never allowed to move out of one kind of life for another. Migrants clean their Southern homes that have the wide verandas, the mint juleps are poured everywhere, and the sense of family pervades all forms of life and sanity. Migrants wash the dishes in the restaurants. Migrants pick the apples and tomatoes. Migrants collect the trash. Their place in the South is not limited to agriculture. Agriculture is just part of the social fabric. If you have AIDS in the South, discrimination and stigma is a way of life. If you think slavery has disappeared down here, then you have never lived down here.

I moved here because it’s fucking cheap. A home that will typically go for well over 100,000K up North, down here will go for 35K. You can still buy homes for under fifty grand. You can rent a three bedroom house with a yard for $500 a month. My grocery bill is over three times that. That cheap lifestyle is disappearing. But it hasn’t altogether vanished.

The biggest employer is still “the mill." You do not need a high school education to get a job if you call it a job. I call it slavery. Most employers do not pay minimum wage. They can and they do thumb their noses at laws passed in Washington, DC, which is seen as an occupying empire. The Civil War is still referred to as That Late Unpleasantness. Jesse Helms did not die. He rose and now runs the Jesse Helms Funeral Parlor for Dead Homosexuals.

He drives a stake into their heart and sets the corpses in the sun so they can burn up like vampires.

Have you ever seen the intro for True Blood. People swear that the sign at the side of the road in that clip says: God hates fags. Southerners see this because it’s what they want to see (and they are illiterate). Actually, the sign says: God hates fangs. Fags, fangs; it’s all the same in the South. The KKK still has its get-togethers at the VFW meeting hall. Only rich yankees have fancy air-conditioning. The Dukes of Hazzard was a nonfiction dramatic show that followed the escapades of Aunt Bee on Andy of Mayberry which is not a creature of Hollywood, it’s real.

I have seen Southerners shoot bald eagles at Jordan Lake because…

Just because.

I have seen the homes of gay men burned to the fucking ground.

I have seen hungry people arrested for stealing a candy bar.

My local library has a poetry section that goes all the way to 1935. Anything published after that is irrelevant.

The South is a separate nation, and they know it.

There are no AIDS orgs with a housing program. There are no houses for people struggling with AIDS. Help is family-based, and, again, deeply religious. Baptists have a casting of the demons out ceremony.

High school students know nothing about HIV or condoms.

If you want to find a boy for rent, you go to a rest area.

If you are a gay teacher, you have to have your head examined.

If you are an African-American male, chances that you will spend most of your life in prison are 65%.

They tell men that the New South has changed everything. Maybe in Atlanta. My neighbors are quite articulate about the fact that they have never been as far away as that city of sin, and they will never go there. If you say the words, New York City, they will wash your mouth out with soap.

HIV means public health. Public Health is an unmitigated nightmare.

Sharecroppers still exist. Dirt floors still exist. TB is a big problem. Everyone smokes. Smoking is seen as a measurement of loyalty. Big Tobacco still funds Duke University. Up North, they talk about an AIDS-free generation. Down here, they do not allow To Kill a Mockingbird into a public school. Down here, public school means African-Americans. White kids go to private school. When they say the word school, they do not mean public school. Public school gets the crumbs. Racism, discrimination, violence, no access to health care (the hospital might treat you in the ER, but there is not a single doctor here who will see anyone with HIV), rape, poverty, ignorance, fear, stigma, hatred-of-birth-control, alcoholism, addiction, sexually transmitted disease, and human trafficking are all thriving Southern institutions. Everyone owns a gun or fifty.

It is entirely possible that you can viably feel your back is up against the wall in the South because it is.

I can buy moonshine sold in Mason Jars at Food Lion. We call it gasoline. I never knew that moonshine looks like gin until I moved here. I thought it would be yellow or something, but what the fuck do I know. I know that most kids drop out of high school. I know that HIV is the wrath of god, it says so in the Bible, and Jesus will save you as long as you are white. Them black churches got holy rollers.


I know this: it cannot be fixed. The American South has not given up that confrontation called the War Against the North. Just like Jim Crow, the law down here is what they make it. It’s like a secret everyone knows. It’s camouflage. But only barely.

On your way to Florida, stop in and get to know us. Then, run for your life.

Cotton is still king. 

Why do I live and work here. Actually, I have no fucking idea. I loathe the South. It’s hot, and Southern Comfort makes me throw up.

Deliver me. 



2013: Why are we so impatient to secure stable safe shelter for the kids:

The boys we love are being poisoned and dying prematurely. Lifetime prescriptions of DNA chain-terminating and other anti-HIV drugs, and chemically distinct drugs (such as cocaine, heroin, nitrite inhalants, and amphetamines) employed for drug-mediated sexual contacts & pain-relief, ALL cause distinct AIDS-defining diseases and slow, traumatic death (weight loss, immunodeficiency, lymphoma, muscle atrophy, dementia, cancers, self-harming behaviours, suicide).


Tim Barrus (Creative Director): Once again, the blog rejects comments.

You click post and you get a notice about trouble-shooting and passwords. How typical. How many times has this happened with me. A thousand times. You people make announcements and proclamation from on-high. But you have no clue as to what reciprocity actually means.

You lock people out.

You lock AIDS activists out of the process because you place no importance to their voice.

Your blog never works because you don’t want it to work.

So we are forced to leave our responses on social media itself, which is what I will be doing now. Here’s what I am saying:

Every time I try to voice my concerns about these programs, the government locks me out of the process. You can’t really so much as post comments at because I will guarantee you that you will get notices that you don’t have the password. No kidding. They are forever “fixing” this problem that never gets fixed. It’s kind of like the programs they fund.

This is WHY there will never be (it’s rhetoric) an AIDS-free generation. Read the fine print.

On one hand, they’re trying to impress you with how focused and vigorous their efforts are that go to addressing substance abuse among hard to reach populations. And then, at the end of this gig they’re telling you that funding is limited to programs that have been funded before.

You have to watch their words because they’re slippery, and they’re not telling the truth.

If their substance abuse funding was actually working, then why is the current infection rate of these hard to reach populations so intransigent.

The infection rate is so high, and so intransigent is because their programs are NOT reaching the hard to reach. And they never will because innovation is suppressed by the very people they claim they reach.

I work with kids who have substance abuse problems, and they think this is a joke. It’s comedy. In fact, the CDC has banned these kids from participating in their webinars.

Even I found this incredulous.

How do you get away with banning the very people you lie about as to your innovating programs that reach them. Duh.

On one hand, they whine they need innovation. On the other hand, they are never going to fund innovation.

They ALWAYS fund what has been done before whether it works or not. The status quo is just fine with the government. The bureaucracy wins again.

I would argue that this conflict between what they say the need is, and what they are ready, willing, and able to do about it, is evidence they, in fact, do not CARE to reach exactly these people.

It is patently absurd to think that junkies read government blogs.

We need more blogs and social media to reach the folks who are not flowing with the mainstream.

It’s insidious, and it’s mean. Why not just burn the money in a bonfire. Such a strategy that utterly locks out innovation — while at the same time they’re clinging to their PR rhetoric that discrimination is bad — might look and sound good, but the reality remains that any program with new paradigms gets marginalized by what has NOT worked before. Same old, same old tired story. I wish them luck on their march forward to their AIDS-free generation.

They do not know anything about the lives of the hard to reach.

Their substance abuse programs are predicated on the science of morality. Where are the substance abuse programs for young boys doing survival sex that actually WORK. There are none.

Young boys doing sex work can be found on certain streets and corners in any urban American setting. Do you really think these people can reach kids who are essentially in flight, and often in flight from other repressive government programs like badly managed foster care programs. To call this effort “new funding opportunities” is a bald-faced lie. There are populations that are expendable. They have no intention of reaching them. But they will cry that they try so hard. If that is true, then where is the money.

Innovation is anathema to bureaucracy. What comes out of their hypocritical mouths is not what gets translated on the street. Wake up and smell the coffee.

They cannot reconcile the disconnect from that which the criminal justice has with public health. When push comes to shove, criminal justice, and the juvenile justice system get tended to. The bureaucracy understands the bureaucracy.

When they achieve their AIDS-free generation utilizing their status quo, please let me know so I can rub my eyes with disbelief about people in the government reaching citizens they essentially and fundamentally loathe.  

Tim Barrus: Lesson Plans

Conventional education still stresses a teacher’s lesson plans. But how do we teach innovation. I am not sure that innovation is an elusive animal that can be taught. It might be one of those things that you either have it, or you don’t. So, how do you teach innovation. You don’t. You can only make room for it.  The kid is curious or he’s not. Some of the curious ones can make a run for it. Most cannot. As an adolescent, I learned how to make it in the shadows. The cake and eating it, too. It was more than I could handle, but I was having sex with everyone in that high school. It was the sixties and jackrabbits littered the desert floor.

I make lesson plans. Then, I throw them away. They are mundane compared to what kids want to do.

I had today’s gig all mapped out. I could see a couple in maybe advertising. Take a martini glass and set it in the sun. You could do it in a million ways.

I got that rolling look their eyes do. Oh, please, Tim. Can you see any of us on Madison Avenue.


They wanted to play around with a bigger theme that a martini glass. Playing around is frowned upon when it comes to adolescent boys. By now, the paradigm has them playing around at being college prep material. I have nothing good or bad to say about that mainly because I do not have time. I will say that if you think you can stick anywhere near a contrived lesson plan, they will find ways to stick it to you.

There are just some kids, curiosity being a force unto itself, who aren’t going to do anything unless it’s their way. They threw convention out with the bathwater. You can make them stick to a script. They will seethe. Pout. But it can be done. It’s a lot of work. Usually, it isn’t worth the grief.

They know how to turn the paradigms of education around to the point where education is spinning on its head. I would make the argument that education changes when exactly such pressure is applied to it. Education wants definitive measuring instruments. But how do you measure a variety of overlapping relationships. How do you measure what the kid hiding in the back of the class knows. You don’t. You can only stand there like a traffic cop, and point here and there for most of them as to all the different directions their curiosity could take them.

They laugh at martini glasses, and they are very rude. Try synching your lightning rods to that.

#AIDS - Call for applicants for SAMHSA CSAP MAI and use of new media grant, 2013.

PLEASE NOTE: 2013 Eligible applicants are restricted to past and present recipients of SAMHSA's CSAP MAI Prevention grants:

•   2005: Substance Abuse (SA), HIV, & Hepatitis Prevention for Minority Populations and Minority Reentry Populations in Communities of Color - SP-05-001;

•   2010: Substance Abuse and HIV Prevention Ready-To-Respond Initiative in Communities Highly Impacted by Substance Use and HIV Infection - SP-10-003 [SP-10-003. Eligibility is limited to grantees previously funded under SAMHSA/CSAP’s RFA No. SP-05-001Substance Abuse (SA), HIV, and Hepatitis Prevention for Minority Populations and Minority Reentry Populations in Communities of Color]SP-10-003. Substance Abuse and HIV Prevention: Ready to Respond Initiative—Up to $52.5 million for 
up to 5 years for 35 grants to provide integrated substance abuse and HIV/ AIDS prevention services to at-risk, traditionally underserved populations. Grantees will receive up to $300,000 per year. [SP-10-003]

•   2008: Prevention of Substance Abuse (SA) and HIV for At-Risk Racial/Ethnic Minority Subpopulations Cooperative Agreements - SP-08-001;

•   2010: Capacity Building Initiative for Substance Abuse (SA) and HIV Prevention Services for At-Risk Racial/Ethnic Minority Young Adults - SP-10-004. [SP-10-004: Capacity Building Initiative
 for Substance Abuse and HIV Prevention Services—Up to $40.4 million over 5 years to 27 community organizations to expand substance abuse and HIV prevention services for traditionally underserved and at-risk populations such as certain minority communities and young people. Grantees will receive up to $300,000 per year.]



Tim Barrus: The government’s #AIDS website — — proclaims in loud, ringing tones that it values innovation because clearly it will be innovation that brings about the AIDS-Free generation everyone is talking about.

But it’s just talk and talk is cheap.

The government claims it prizes innovation in AIDS. And then it makes policy that is set in the most decidedly uncreative context any bureaucrat could reconstruct. The operant term here is reconstruct.

Some of the most difficult to reach people in the universe of HIV are IV drug users.

But the government is only willing to fund programs that it has funded before.

If the government was doing such a great job at reducing HIV infection among IV drug users, then why are the infection rates so intransigent.

You prize innovation (or so you say), but you are only willing to fund what has been done before, and obviously doesn’t work.

It gets worse.

When the government articulates its plan in terms of reaching IV drug users, it goes for the most tired paradigm imaginable.

They will have a Facebook page, and they will build some more government public health websites.

Are you fucking kidding me. That is a PROGRAM. My dog could do that in her sleep.

The junkies I know are all sitting around right now as I am writing this, and they’re all reading public health websites laden with slogans and rah rahs.

Junkies live to read public health websites.

The junkies I know would sell the iPhone you could read them on.

The government is insane. It has no plan that could even approximate an AIDS-free generation.

All it has is more of the same old, same old.

Here’s what’s really going on, and it’s not unlike the rhetoric of Just Get Tested.

Testing doesn’t cut it. People need TREATMENT. Not just testing.

But treatment costs money. So they push testing, not treatment.

Treatment in the world of substance abuse also costs money. There simply aren’t enough treatment programs to go around, and they do not want you to enroll in one.

What they want is for the status quo to continue. Keep treatment right where it is. And make some flashing websites with bells and whistles.

I guess they will show us.

So on one hand, they claim they value innovation. But they don’t put their money where their mouths are.

They tolerate some needle exchange, but they do not directly fund it. Even though it’s needle exchange that has brought down infection rates to a level where they are now intransigent because the junkies we now need to reach are so hard core that the word “difficult” doesn’t do the situation justice.

So what does the government do to facilitate innovation.

It refunds programs that it funded in the first place. Why is this bad.

It’s bad because the truly innovative cannot even apply. The only people who can apply are the people who have gotten us exactly where we are.

Here’s the pattern: support the status quo, surround it with social media, fund what has been done before, throw tons of PR at it, and marginalize anyone with a new idea.

They keep the AIDS activists off their blog by simply blocking them from comments. They use these tactics time and time again.

I would argue that opiate addiction could be treated with cannabis-based products. People are going to self-medicate anyway. But let them medicate with something that does not addict them.

We already have that technology.

But no. We keep the addict in his place. Addicted. And in far too many cases, sick with HIV.

The government does not facilitate innovation. What it facilitates is death. It stands around doing nothing while the junkies take the brunt of the disease.

Genocide would be the wrong word. And the word indifference is too soft.

You could very definitely make the case that the government is taking out the people it considers morally inferior. The master race wins again.


JUNE 11, 2013: I leave my comment here as once again the website comments capability is experiencing technical difficulties, so it is not possible to leave a comment related to their announcement for SAMHSA's new media funding opportunity for past and present grantees.

What a shame this rare funding opportunity to raise the quality of life for the most at risk youth in the USA is only open to past & present SAMHSA CSAP MAI grantees. POVERTY is what competes with everything and anything that anyone may have to say to young people, whose lives have been smashed by violence, neglect, HIV/AIDS-defining infections and diseases, non-prescription pain-relief, homelessness and poverty. I look forward greatly to gov.grants & SAMHSA creating future funding opportunities that will be open to more of the remarkable survivor-led and peer-mentored programs employing new media in innovative ways that speak directly to and are followed by youth whose quality of life would be changed forever if they can access a safe place to grow up in and from which to visualize an adulthood lived away from violence and poverty.  I urge all my adult peers to take the time to log in and bear witness; this simple act of acknowledging the burden young people are carrying alone, makes a profound difference to young people who have grown to believe the only people who follow their initiatives are thousands of their peers who also have little access to safer places to grow up in. Thank you. Rachel Chapple, PhD (Founder, Real Stories Gallery Foundation 501c3) 

ANON TO TIM BARRUS (Creative Director of Cinematheque Films, Real Stories Gallery Foundation, Show Me Your Life, Smash Street)

Homeless Boys Are At Highest Risk For Being Sex-Trafficked & Dying Prematurely Than Any Other Social Group Of Youth (USA, 2013)

"The compassion the Show Me Your Life/Smash Street kids extend to their peers still left behind in appalling conditions is breathtaking to witness" Rachel Chapple, PhD (Social Anthropologist)



Your videos are lame and they suck. They lack any real substance. Why should we care about a bunch of losers screwing around with video cameras. Just because you call it art does not make it art. I hope all of you get AIDS and die. The world would have less faggot losers in it.


**Real Stories posts examples of THE DRONES OF HATE SPEECH that descend on SMASH STREET SAFE HOUSE (USA, 2013). They are ALL submitted by faceless-people who refer to themselves as ANON.  

Tim Barrus to Anon:

Whenever an adolescent who has never had any success at anything, takes advantage of the opportunity to make a video, or takes up photography, or painting, he’s courting the possibility of success. I would argue that you are the loser because what you have lost is the ability to put yourself in anyone else’s shoes. It’s called empathy. In fact, it’s the entire culture that loses when we discount and denigrate what people have who could be giving back. We marginalize them. We see to it that failure wins and punishes them for not fitting in quietly, complacently, and with humility as they bow their heads in shame with the — Yes, Master — attitude that defines people only by the work they do; the slavery, the good yankee hard scrabble, red knuckle scrubbing on their knees they do for you so they might survive and prove their worth. We push them off into the abyss of failure and the marginalized in mainstream special education programs where there is no hope that the kid can make it into a typical classroom, failure and the marginalized in foster homes, jails, prisons, psychiatric wards, and homeless shelters. If anything sucks it’s our propensity for meanness — us, the mainstream, the normals — and it’s exactly that fundamental cruelty that has become part and parcel of the American dream and character. Whenever anyone in our little group makes a video, even a video of a pair of shoes dancing, he’s bucking the failure we have assigned to him in our need to keep him in his place. He’s dealing with storyboards, planning, mathematics that measure the beginning, the middle, and the end of any project he takes on. He has to put it all into a time constraint.

He has to figure out what colors to use. What kind of background to create. He has to understand where the arch is and what it is he wants to say. He’s dealing with language, and his ability to collaborate with other people. I’m not saying we can integrate the kid back into the community that he has rejected and has rejected him. I don’t know if that is even remotely possible. I am saying that any human being has the right to actualize his potential, and make a stab at success. Not commercial success. But at making art, and I will tell you this: We get haters every day. It’s ordinary. It’s business as usual around here. I only post the hate every now and then. There’s a gay writer in Texas who makes big jokes about the way I speak, about how I sound so feminine. I have always hated my voice for that, but I try to put the shame of it away. I try to speak anyway. No one has a corner on the market of hate.

It could be that during some kid’s addicted, homeless life, that their time here is a time when they did not necessarily fail. I want him to hang on to that. I want him to remember how it felt. It’s a tragedy that we see so many people left in the sun to dry because we are so selfish, condemning, and mean. We are the losers. Not them. It’s art if I say it’s art, and whatever cruel thing you want to call it, whatever you want to insist it is, is irrelevant. How is it you care so much as to even read about whatever we are doing at any given point in time. How is it that the same group of haters clings to me like lice. They cannot tolerate anyone who is different. I seem to remember where in some video someone says: I’m different. When an entire culture is so threatened by difference that they have to beat it out of kids, burn it out of kids, cut it off in a surgical procedure where we are the ones who fail to recognize that diversity is what propels, not just creativity, but innovation, too, and they get what they want to get which is a status quo where nothing ever changes, no cures are found, we just goose-step to the great machine as we salute the thing with arms raised, extended, and subservience given to this time the suits who are the Nazi’s equivalent twins.

When a person who celebrates being gay in what they do, yet cannot tolerate the way in which another person speaks, and feels the need to slap a bitter sarcasm at what scares them most, and that person gets on the Internet — or Time magazine for that matter — for the sole purpose of stirring up his own demons, and goes trolling for the chance to shout someone down so he might elevate himself in his own internal eyes, I have to ask myself what the need to do that as if the thing existed like addiction to the gut’s deep hate, is all about, and I know in the end, we all lose. We lose when they kill themselves. We lose when sexuality becomes a vehicle of revenge. We lose when a pandemic singles out a class, a social hierarchy of rank and worth, and it infects just us bad people, us perverts, us thieves, us low lives, and where is our house, and where are our children, and where are our lawns to mow, and where are our credit cards, and food, and safe places to sleep, and where is our real, not over-burdened health care, and how is it we are supposed to assume some kind of fake dignity in the face of the onslaught of hatred that is pissed on us as if it were a drowning in the river of it which is exacvtly what it is.

How is it that such rude people as us are not supposed to fight back. Why do you think I use such terminology as faggot, suck my dick, and on-and-on-and-on-and-on. How do I model any perseverance for the kid in the face of shit that is thrown into my face on a moment to moment basis. For years.

This is the real culture war.

This is where the values differ. This is where people are erased. Your status quo doesn’t simply want to knock such expendable individuals down. It wants to devour us. It wants to kill us. It wants to see us kill ourselves. It wants its pound of flesh. They call us losers but we tend to be, in fact, survivors, and only we know the extent to which the hate is used to punish us.

I have lived with people like you my entire life. And I do hate you if not as much as you hate me, then probably more. Not less. I want you dead, too. So there’s your little war, your culture war, your religions, and your politics of indifference, intolerance, racisms, and inability to feel what the people around you feel like toward themselves. The hatred is so endemic to the culture now, I sincerely doubt any of us, and that includes you, are going to survive it.

We’re the hard to reach because we don’t want want to be reached. We want nothing to do with you. We hide in the shadows and at the edges which is exactly where you want us, and when any of us even approximates behaviors that would suggest we are not going to stay in our place, and we are going to invent new ways to collaborate that make it possible for us to survive, even in the face of great obstruction, we are quite aware of the fact that there will be groups of people out there who feel it is their responsibility to ridicule, and commit real acts of violence against really vulnerable people, it does draw me to conclude that you can suck my big, fat, white dick, bitch.   

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