*Breaking News* Reclaim The Night London 2014

22 Nov


Truth hurts huh dudes?

Originally posted on GenderTrender:

UK Reclaim the Night flyer. Front and Back. Click to Enlarge.

UK Reclaim the Night flyer. Front and Back. Click to Enlarge.


reclaim the night uclu


women's association reclaim the night


reclaim the night transphobia2


HAPPENING NOW. Updates will be posted here as they emerge.


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Apology, Agenda and Promise

20 Nov

Apology, Agenda and Promise

How to deal with fuckups. 

First, work out what you did wrong and how your reaction was toxic. Passive aggressive? Irresponsible? Involving out of control anger?

Okay. What triggered that anger? What happened that left you feeling that the consequences of your actions could now be hopelessly random, or at least sort of random, because despair and hopelessness?

What was the hurt? What were you trying to protect?

Sort that out some and then think about how you could have managed this better if you’d backed off some first and slowed down. 

Maybe someone pissed you off. Maybe someone pissed *her* off. This shit is endless.

But you can stop it. You can stop it by ending the conversation and backing off. You do not have to win conversations.

After you think about conflicts, you may realize that you engaged in boundary transgressions. Maybe you said cruel things, maybe you shared inappropriately with other parties. There are many ways to transgress boundaries.

Apologies may be needed. First, explain and admit how you fucked up. 

It’s important to acknowledge how it was wrong. Were you avoidant, passive aggressive? Did you deflect anger towards one person and drag other parties into it?

Agenda and promise: Explain what you plan to do in order to attempt to rectify the damage you have done, and also how you are committed to not furthering any more of it.

And, hardest of all, perhaps: be open to feedback from the offended party.

And no, this was not easy to write. Done though.

It’s Up To You Not To Heed The Call-up

20 Nov

Internecine rage is driving me off the Internet. Everybody is angry at somebody else and they all have very good reasons and expect me to follow them in their outrage. 

Alas, I am neither follower no leader. I am sorry that you are all so angry at each other. I know people can be unkind. I know women especially could do with more choices and freedom. I know we get hurt a lot.

And I know there is usually not a lot we can do to help each other, other than to try to listen. Maybe kick in a few bucks to a crowdfunding campaign. Buy a t-shirt when we get paid. If we get paid.

And if we are fortunate, we can use the Internet to write, to talk to each other. We can also work to use the Internet to silence each other. 

I know the arguments. I know about abusers. I know about handmaidens. I know about how women can be so terrible that they cannot be forgiven. 

And I know how we work to silence each other, when it comes to each other. 

I keep wanting to be silent. I keep thinking I am part of the problem. Except I keep running into other women who also seem to be part of the problem. This is endemic.

And I’m bad at being silent.

“Forgive women for doing what they were conditioned to, and above all, love them.” Kind and wise sentiments, but not always easy. 

Monster Me

19 Nov

Monster me

They always find me when they want something done

The final bloody deed

With the fine jazz song riffing in the background

They know I want it

They know I can easily make the bloody kill

To call out the culprit and say

“You fucked up bad, You hurt someone.”

And stop it, stop it right this moment

Or else.

Or else I will fuck you up and you won’t know how

It will just magically happen.

You’ll get stopped.

Maybe you will collapse in some alley

Or in your dinner or in your bedroom

But one way or the other

You’re over.

In loving memory of Leslie Feinberg

18 Nov


This is good.

Originally posted on Going Radical:

I’ve been wanting to do a review of Stone Butch Blues ever since I had a blog, but the words wouldn’t come to me. It’s such a significant book that I think it would take someone with far better writing skills than I have to really review it. But since Leslie Feinberg passed away recently I want to write something. This will not be a professional book review, but it will be some words of love for an author and a person who I admire and appreciate deeply.

The novel reads like a memoir and it seems as if every last detail is true. In the afterword to the 2003 reprinting, Feinberg writes:

“Is it fiction?” I am frequently asked. Is it true? Is it real? Oh, it’s real all right. So real it bleeds. And yet it is a remembrance: Never underestimate the power of fiction to tell the…

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Hey Grocery Store, You Did Something Right

18 Nov

I was looking at frozen vegetables today at the Albertson’s I shop at, and they weren’t where they were supposed to be. The whole chain, or the part of it this store belongs to, is under new management and many things are different. The whole store has been reset to some extent and the frozen vegetables weren’t under the vegetables sign anymore.

I looked around and found them. The organic frozen vegetables are gone, in fact the organic frozen everything is gone. There is now, however, a tiny section of organic fresh produce in the produce case. There used to be odds and ends here and there, now it’s all in its own little ghetto.

I don’t really blame them. If something doesn’t sell, you devote the space to something that does.This is how grocery stores work. They can’t work differently inside a culture that insists this is how commerce must work.

But to dig a little deeper, what is the point of buying organic frozen dinners and vegetables? What exactly are people paying for, there? If we are really concerned about life, why are we subsidizing all this driving around and storing of frozen goods? If we are really concerned about buying organic, why do we passively accept commercial labels from corporations we will never meet? Who is really getting served here?

I got to talking to one of the cashiers, who has been working there as long as I have lived here, and shopped there, about sixteen years. She told me the new management was concerned about providing more healthy food. Hah! you may say, what hypocrites. But actually, there have been some great produce deals since they took over. I haven’t seen these prices there in years. Oranges and apples for 75 cents a pound, little avocados two for a dollar. Potatoes. Green beans. Big price cuts. 

Sure, it’s just good management. Loss leaders pull people in, good produce deals brings people in, and overpriced produce mostly winds up in the trash, being fought over by trashpickers. Or else there is the endless hassle about what to do with it if you don’t want it trashpicked, and that is complicated, as is everything grocery, involving expired perishables.

So what we got here is cheaper fresh produce, which will bring in anyone who think fresh produce is a good thing to have, and a few people who will have more limited options as to buying organic anything. What matters most? Who is getting hurt here? 

I have been wondering lately about the whole organic food labeling act and whether the whole thing wasn’t a bad idea. Why put the onus of labeling on those who do not poison the food? Why turn it into an elitist enterprise? Whenever there is money to be made, guess who takes over?

Why create your own overpriced little ghetto, why enable this creation? We thought this would be a solution, twenty-five years ago. We were wrong. The solution lies in outlawing toxic chemicals.

I have no sophisticated answers here, just some questions. But I do think it’s a good thing that people here can buy a lot of kinds of fresh produce for less money at friggin’ Albertson’s. That’s a step in the right direction.

QotD: “I was branded like cattle”

16 Nov


Feminism, so passé! Why do we even need that word anyway?

Originally posted on Anti-Porn Feminists:

“I was branded like cattle,” she says, standing outside the Among the Living tattoo shop in Lancaster, Ohio – the place where she says she freed herself from a life of violence and slavery. “But coming here that first time, knowing that when I walked out the door I’d have replaced that sign of evil with something that was beautiful and full of life and hope: I knew I was going to set myself free, and man, that was a great feeling.”

Jennifer’s journey into the darkness of human trafficking started, like many of the women she worked alongside on the streets of downtown Columbus, with a chaotic and abusive childhood, a history of violent and destructive relationships and a downwards spiral into street prostitution and drug addiction.

A year and a half ago she was, in her own words, exhausted, starved, addicted and barely alive. Amid the horror of…

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