Inter-caste and Inter-faith Couples On the Run in India

Most Indian families still prefer marriages arranged within their religion and caste. Marriages outside these rigid boundaries have often led to violent consequences, including “honour” killings. But some young Indians are still willing to defy their families and communities for love, reports the BBC’s Divya Arya.

Quentin C. Aanenson – Unsent Letter to Jackie: December 5, 1944

Dear Jackie,

For the past two hours, I’ve been sitting here alone in my tent, trying to figure out just what I should do and what I should say in this letter in response to your letters and some questions you have asked. I have purposely not told you much about my world over here, because I thought it might upset you. Perhaps that has been a mistake, so let me correct that right now. I still doubt if you will be able to comprehend it. I don’t think anyone can who has not been through it.

I live in a world of death. I have watched my friends die in a variety of violent ways…

Sometimes it’s just an engine failure on takeoff resulting in a violent explosion. There’s not enough left to bury. Other times, it’s the deadly flak that tears into a plane. If the pilot is lucky, the flak kills him. But usually he isn’t, and he burns to death as his plane spins in. Fire is the worst. In early September one of my good friends crashed on the edge of our field. As he was pulled from the burning plane, the skin came off his arms. His face was almost burned away. He was still conscious and trying to talk. You can’t imagine the horror. 

So far, I have done my duty in this war. I have never aborted a mission or failed to dive on a target no matter how intense the flak. I have lived for my dreams for the future. But like everything else around me, my dreams are dying, too. In spite of everything, I may live through this war and return to Baton Rouge. But I am not the same person you said goodbye to on May 3. No one can go through this and not change. We are all casualties. In the meantime, we just go on. Some way, somehow, this will all have an ending. Whatever it is, I am ready for it.

Quentin

Why Luke Perry’s death is so personal for many forgotten Gen Xers

My phone buzzed at 5:07 a.m. Monday morning with a text from a friend who was in India with his wife and son. The text read: “As Luke Perry goes, so does the world.”

I was too groggy from the sleeping pill I’d taken to respond, but I remember registering awareness that Luke Perry was sick. Then again, I could have been dreaming. It wouldn’t have been the first time Perry had visited me in my sleep.

Sam Cooke’s Murder, Alleged Cover-Up Gets Re-Examined by Netflix Series

Jon Blistein: Rolling Stone

Nefarious cover-ups, the Civil Rights movement and the music and activism of Sam Cooke converge in the trailer for the next episode of the Netflix docu-series, ReMastered, out February 8th.

Cooke was shot dead at the age of 33 by motel manager Bertha Franklin, who said the singer broke into her office and attacked her. Because of this, Cooke’s death was deemed a “justifiable homicide” and Franklin was never charged. However, the singer’s family has long claimed that Cooke’s death was part of a larger conspiracy due to his prominence in the Civil Rights movement.

The trailer for Cooke’s episode of ReMastered offers a fascinating look at the tensions that defined the singer’s career. Though record executives wanted him to be nothing more than an entertainer, Cooke invited controversy and threats for championing Civil Rights and refusing to play segregated venues. As one interviewee suggests, the bigger a star Cooke became, the more threatening many people thought him to be: “Sam Cooke might be the most dangerous to you because he’s already in white American living rooms.”

Glenn Miller’s Airplane Possibly Found Decades After Famed Bandleader Vanished During WWII

EXCERPT:

To date, not a single trace of the musician or the aircraft has ever been discovered. Alongside the disappearance of Amelia Earhart, it remains one of the greatest mysteries in aviation history.

However, the mystery may be solved thanks to a retired trawlerman from England who is “utterly convinced” he pulled up the wreck of Miller’s aircraft in his fishing nets 32 years ago.