Oh yeah, about Girl, Interrupted – at the very beginning of the movie, Winona Ryder asks in a voiceover if you’ve ever stolen something when you have the cash. Weird.

So you know how in casual conversation you’re supposed to avoid two topics: politics and religion. And there’s a number of other hot-button topics you try to avoid because it brings out passion and fury in the people discussing it which isn’t amenable to friendly conversation.

Anyway, for no particular reason some of us at the potluck decided to do the opposite, and just talk about controversial topics. So we touched upon stuff like the death penalty, stem cell research, homosexuality: nature or nurture, women at Augusta, war in Iraq, spent a while talking about abortion, and other stuff. I dunno, in a way it was funny, deliberately talking about controversial topics that I normally avoid, one after the other. But the topics themselves are so serious that in another sense it wasn’t funny at all. Interesting conversation for sure.

I dunno where I stand on the Augusta thing but there were a couple columns that came out recently that said something similar that I found interesting. One my King Kaufman on Salon.com. The other came out earlier this week by Anna Quindlen, the liberal last page writer on Newsweek. (Newsweek alternates weekly between a conservative and liberal voice on the last page; George F. Will is the conservative voice.)

What they said though was this – it’s subtly racist to say that Tiger Woods has some obligation to speak out forcefully on this issue because he’s black. It seems to suggest that blacks in power have “to pay an additional toll for position in the white world” as Quindlen puts it. Just, expectations are placed on him that aren’t placed on white men. Who faulted Arnold Palmer in the past for not being a stronger voice? Anyway yeah, it’s an interesting point.

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