Afternoon Links – 10/5/2015.

George Miller has penned two sequels to Mad Max: Fury Road, although there’s no telling whether either of those stories will be greenlit any time soon. Meanwhile, Hasbro has four more Transformers sequels lined up, and there’s probably no escaping them.

I’m not sure why people keep asking Steven Spielberg to weigh in on the future of superheroes movies, but they do. Here are his latest comments on the genre.

The Oregon shooter’s mother was an avid gun-enthusiast who was convinced that she needed to acquire as many guns as she could before they were outlawed but apparently not convinced that she needed to exercise any control over who had access to them.

I think now is probably a good time to remind everyone of this excellent essay by Jim Wright, which argues that—rather than attempting any kind of ban (that will not work)—we should make the NRA rules for responsible gun ownership law and enforce them with strict penalties. Under Wright’s proposal, the Oregon shooter’s mother would now be facing negligent homicide charges. As well she should.

On the subject of gun control, Ryan Cooper argues that despite the fact that America’s “constitutional structure is ludicrously outdated, [making it] all but impossible to pass legislation,” there is still hope for a grassroots movement for gun control to yield results. Eventually.

The state of Maine has come up with a particularly backward approach to Welfare recipient screening, instituting a cap on personal assets that all but assures that poor people will stay poor.

Over in Alabama, the closure of DMV offices in predominantly black counties (combined with the Voter ID laws that deftly undo the ground gained by the 1965 Voting Rights Act) represents an act of voter disenfranchisement that some argue is destined to draw a civil rights lawsuit. I think it’s safe to say that the Supreme Court made a huge mistake when they struck down parts of the VRA on the grounds that they were no longer reflective of the cultural climate. Post-racial, my motherfucking ass.

Buffy as academic subject matter; how (genre) television shows have become the 20th-and-21st-century equivalent of the 19th-century serialized novel.

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