Yeah, it’s a really big deal that NBA player Jason Collins came out as gay this week. But we have to be careful not to call him the “first gay athlete.” Openly lesbian and bisexual women have been loud and proud athletes for decades. (Click for a bigger version via Buzzfeed)
oh here’s this to back up the angsty facebook status i just posted!
HUGE day for love. After months of hard work and protest, marriage equality has passed in France — 331 to 225.
Peggielene Bartels, A.K.A. King Peggy, is currently the King of Otuam, Ghana. She was chosen to be one of only three female kings in Ghana, and when she discovered that male chauvinists wanted her to only be a figurehead, she said: “They were treating me like I am a second-class citizen because I am a woman. I said, ‘Hell no, you’re not going to do this to a woman!’” When she encountered corruption and the threat of embezzlement to the royal funds, she declared “I’m going to squeeze their balls so hard their eyes pop!”
King Peggy has maintained her work in Ghana’s embassy in Washington, D.C. while making education affordable in Otuam, installing borehead wells to produce clean drinking water, enforcing incarceration laws to deal with domestic violence, replenishing the royal coffers by taxing Otuam’s fishing industry to improve life in the village, and appointing three women to her council.
“Nobody should tell you, ‘You’re a woman, you can’t do it,’” she insists. “You can do it. Be ready to accept it when the calling comes.”
Quoted from the Spring/Summer 2012 issue of Ms. Magazine.
What a beautiful badass woman.
King Peggy has been on my blog before but this is my goddamn blog and I will have King Peggy on here twice if I want.
MORE FEMALE KINGS.
Always reblog King Peggy, who is on my dash far less than she should be. Did you know she has written a book about her life? It is great, and you should all get right on that if you haven’t already.
“I’m going to squeeze their balls so hard their eyes pop!”
“I’m going to squeeze their balls so hard their eyes pop!”
“I’m going to squeeze their balls so hard their eyes pop!”
What you SHOULD say to people dealing with any of these
- Anxiety: This too shall pass, even if that sounds corny and cliche. Your anxiety will subside, you are not dying, you will not die from this, everything is going to be fine. Keep taking deep breaths, try and stay focused.
- Depression: You are valid and your emotions are valid. You are a good, strong person, even if you don't feel like you are right now. Things DO get better, and I know you can get through this.
- Sexual Orientation: Your body, your life, your bedroom. You choose what you do with it, and I get no say in the matter, because I am not you. I'll respect you no matter what.
- Bipolar: The sun also rises. For all your bad days, weeks, or longer-- you also have good ones just beyond the horizon. You know better than anyone what it means to finally hit those "highs" in your life, and I hope that you just keep growing and strengthening yourself through your treatment to extend those happy moments.
- Self harm: This is your body and I'll never pass judgement over you for the things you choose to do with it. However, you should really consider speaking with a counselor about this. Not because you're "bad", but because I just want you to be safe.
- Eating disorders: It's okay to eat, you have permission. Eating will not make you fat, ugly, or worthless. Eating will make you strong, healthy, and lively. You deserve to eat, you deserve happiness.
- Abuse: What they did was wrong, and you had no consenting part in it. You have no need to feel guilty or shamed, although I understand that may be exactly how you are feeling right now. They're the ones at fault here, and the ball is entirely in your court if you choose to report them for that, which you are rightfully entitled to do.
- Suicide: Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem. You are valuable and your existence is valuable. There are billions of people on this planet, and even if you think everyone hates you and no one cares, they do and they will. You can find so many friends and loved ones if you just allow yourself the time to look for them. The world turns out to be a beautiful place and you deserve to be alive to see that.
- Sexual assault: What they did was vile and disgusting. Yes, you're now left with this horrible, traumatic event to move on from, but your life is not entirely lost. Recovery is possible, and an unfortunately large number of people have to go through that-- but they make it to the other side. So can you, you can do this. You're not dirty, you're not a "slut" or a "whore", you are a human being whose rights were violated. But you are strong, and I know you can move past this in due time.
- Multiple Personality Disorder: I'll always love you no matter who you are. I only hope the absolute best for you during your recovery and treatment, and maybe one day I'll be so privileged as to love you as one whole.
- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder: The pain of suddenly reliving horrific events is almost unimaginable for me. Please try and remember that although it feels like it's real and it's happening right now, that it's not. You are okay, you are fine, and you are safe. You are in the present here and now, and that past can't manifest itself again to come and physically hurt you. Everything is just fine, these feelings will pass and you're going to be okay.
- Schizophrenia: I am real and I can promise you that. I care. Try and find something grounding for you, an object that you can cling to to help you distinguish between whether or not you're hallucinating. You are not a freak, you are not a monster. You're a human being with rights and emotions who happens to be ill right now.
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Personally, our interests and needs for andro-accessible clothing will help give depth and understanding to the collections we intend to curate.
Check out their kickstarter campaign here and help spread the word.
This sounds exciting.
Happy Black History Month!
Marsha P Johnson and why she rules
- She was an American transgender rights activist, Queen of Stonewall and Transgender Revolutionary.
- She was a co-founder, Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries (S.T.A.R.) in the early 1970s and became the “mother” of S.T.A.R. House along with Sylvia Rivera, getting together food and clothing to help support the young trans women living in the house on the lower East Side of New York.
Safe sex is hot sex! Get all your contraceptive and safe sex supplies at VIP!
Anonymous asked: I have seen lots of gifs from this gentleman (seen in your post/30544762399/consent-is-sexy). Who is he and what is he from? Do you know? :)
That’s the author John Green.
Trans prisoners fight abuse & unfair treatment behind bars
November 12, 2012
“Imagine being told, ‘You have no right to be who you are,’ ” says Faith Phillips, remarking on her first days in prison. The transition was even harder for Phillips than it is for most prisoners: Phillips, a transgender (trans) woman, was held in a men’s prison.
According to recent studies, 16-33 percent of trans people have spent time behind bars, compared with less than 4 percent of the general U.S. population. Another statistic provides a clue as to why: 26 percent of transgender people report being fired because of their gender identity. Forced into the underground economy, some enter prison for “survival crimes” such as sex work. Once inside, people who don’t conform to the gender regulations—both written and unwritten—face a form of punishment far harsher than their original sentences.
Growing up in California’s San Bernardino County, Phillips was abused by her transphobic father and was one of the few people of color in her community. When she landed in central California’s Avenal State Prison at 21, she witnessed the same ill treatment of trans people she’d experienced as a child. So, in March 2008, when a queer prisoner was threatened with a transfer to a ward where he knew he’d be unsafe, she staged a protest, refusing to leave the prison yard when the correctional officers (COs) announced that it was time.
“Might as well take me to the hole, because I’m not moving,” she remembers telling the COs. “Then the whole queer community said, ‘We’re going to the hole, too.’ ” Night fell. The temperature dropped. Prisoners who were inside managed to push blankets out to the protestors underneath a doorway. Eventually, the transfer of the at-risk prisoner was cancelled.
Phillips and her fellow prison-yard occupiers also came up with a list of demands that included HIV and sex education, the return of appropriately gendered clothes that had been taken from them, an end to harassment by staff, and a lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer and intersex support group. The prison’s warden agreed to their demands (apart from the clothing) after a sympathetic captain pled their case.
In retribution for her activism, Phillips says, she was put through a series of prison transfers, drugged and sent to solitary confinement. She claims prison administrators threatened, “If you ever think about doing this again, we’ll bury you.” But Phillips soon became an information collector for the San Francisco-based Transgender, Gender Variant, Intersex Justice Project(TGIJP), one of a handful of trans prisoner support organizations that documents abuses inside prisons.
While marriage and military enlistment have monopolized the mainstream gay rights agenda, a trans/queer prisoner justice movement has been quietly gaining momentum. But the movement’s critique of the prison system often brings it into conflict with LGBT rights groups that advocate for hate-crime legislation or other strategies that rely on police to secure justice for queer people. Currently, only 12 states include gender identity or expression in their hate crime laws. When New York State was considering legislation that would have extended hate crimes statutes to transgender people, groups representing queer people of color, such as theAudre Lorde Project, opposed the bill on the grounds that it gave “a deeply flawed, transphobic, and racist criminal legal system” the discretion to impose longer sentences.”
Wesley Ware, director of the New Orleans-based project BreakOUT!, which organizes queer youth around prison issues, says that his group is focused on changing the conversation from hate-crime legislation to how “the police are terrorizing black transgender women on the street, every single day.” This July, BreakOUT! helped to secure a landmark legal decree from the Department of Justice mandating trans-sensitive practices at the notoriously discriminatory New Orleans Police Department. If a federal judge approves the decree, the NOPD could not legally stop people based on sexual orientation or gender, would have to conduct same-gender searches according to the subject’s gender identity and would have to refer to trans people by their preferred names and gender pronouns.
Queer-rights groups also successfully lobbied for California’s Gender Non-Discrimination Act (AB 887), which went into effect in January and includes provisions that may translate into more livable conditions for trans prisoners. Among other things, the act’s clause regarding “public accommodations” has meant that more trans people are now held at more transfriendly prisons. But problems remain. Two trans women went on a hunger strike in September to protest their unfair treatment in a San Diego prison.
Though legislative reforms like AB 887 may bring material improvements, TGIJP remains focused on uniting queer prisoners and allies to support each other and challenge the prisonindustrial complex as a whole. Now out of prison, Phillips is pursuing a law degree and continues to organize with TGIJP in Los Angeles. She and other authors have put out the guidebook Surviving Prison in California: Advice by and for Transgender Women. Along with pointers on how to get HIV treatment, the authors stress that community power is one of the best ways to stay safe. “If [the police] can divide us into different groups … then we are unable, as a united community, to fight the real enemy… the corrupt system that defiles and oppresses us as human beings.”
Important things and mention of BreakOUT!