For the last couple of days, everybody has been talking about #alternativefacts. In this medial uproar, many (at least in my own echo chambers and filter bubbles) talk and write as if there were “facts” on the one hand, and “lies” on the other, with (of course) the “other side” being cast as the intentional producers of lies. As all simplified generalisations, this one, too, is problematic – to say the least.
Friday, January 20th, 2017, will be remembered as the day on which Donald J. Trump was sworn in as the 45th president of the United States. Just like his predecessors, he used the occasion to give an inauguration speech (the full text of which can be found in many places, for example here, provided by The Washington Post [retrieved Jan 21, 2017]). Over the coming days, weeks, months, and years, much will be talked and written about the contents of this speech and its consequences for life in America and beyond.
We all carry stuff around with us. Some of it is material, tangible, and more or less heavy, bulky, or cumbersome. Some of it is immaterial – which doesn’t necessarily make it any lighter. Most of the time, I write about the latter. This time, however, I’ll write about what’s actually in my bag when I take off for work.