Archives for the month of: December, 2010
A woman at a rally holds a sign that says "Support Higher Education"

Photo credit: Think Progress

I am somehow less interested in the weight and convolutions of Einstein’s brain than in the near certainty that people of equal talent have lived and died in cotton fields and sweatshops.

-Stephen Jay Gould

When I woke up on Saturday morning, I started streaming C-Span and made breakfast.  The Senate was talking about immigrants and gay people at the same time, something so unusual that it struck me as amazing – even if they didn’t exactly realize that sometimes immigrants are gay, that sometimes gay people are immigrants.

As I ate I watched  the Senate effectively repeal Don’t Ask Don’t Tell and kill the DREAM Act; and I was crushed.  I know DREAM wasn’t perfect – I am not a fan of the military, and I know that recruiters must have been salivating at the thought of newly-available low-income people of color to send off to die in our greedy wars.  But the Senate’s vote that we, immigrants, are not worthwhile, not equals…just puts a heavy weight on my chest.  And sure, it’s good that DADT isn’t around anymore, but making a totally fucked up institution slightly less so doesn’t quite feel like that much of a victory for me.  It makes me glad my queer friends who love military folk can rest a bit, but even as an indicator of how the country feels about gay people, the repeal of DADT hardly brings any relief for me because  I know that vote is a reflection of a certain kind of “acceptable” gay – not the immigrant queers, the radical homos of color, the queer weirdos who resist assimilation. Not my people.  My heart is heavy for them – for us – and for the young people who have put themselves at risk by being outspoken about being undocumented.

But they are wrong about us.  They are on the wrong side of history.  And after we cry, we pick up the pieces and keep moving.  Forward.  Always.

Red umbrella (symbol of sex workers' rights) with text underneath saying "International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers"

Today is the 7th annual International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers, and there are events around the country and the world to recognize this day.  If you are in New York City, join the Sex Workers Project and co-sponsoring organizations at a free event to hear some awesome speakers and participate in a community speak-out:

Friday, December 17 · 7:30pm – 9:30pm

Metropolitan Community Church of New York

446 West 36th Street, Second Floor Sanctuary

New York, NY

The first-ever International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers was in 2003, as a response to serial killer Gary Ridgway, who claimed to have killed prostitutes because he thought no one would notice:

“I also picked prostitutes as victims because they were easy to pick up without being noticed. I knew they would not be reported missing right away and might never be reported missing. I picked prostitutes because I thought I could kill as many of them as I wanted without getting caught.”

It’s important to remember, though, that violence against sex workers is not only perpetuated by violent clients, but also by the state through through the criminalization of sex work. Criminalization disproportionately affects women of color, immigrants, and gender non-conforming people, and is a reproductive justice issue.

I personally want to take this day to send my love to my dear friends and loved ones who are or have been sex workers – I appreciate you.  Big ups to the hos!

image shows doors that are closed: school, heatlh, housing, seniors, youth, libraries, etc.  a barred gate (prison) is open.

Since December 9th, thousands of prisoners in Georgia have been on strike, in what is apparently the largest prisoner protest in U.S. history:

Thousands of men, from Augusta, Baldwin, Hancock, Hays, Macon, Smith and Telfair State Prisons, among others, initiated this strike to press the Georgia Department of Corrections (“DOC”) to stop treating them like animals and slaves and institute programs that address their basic human rights. Read the rest of this entry »

I’m just going to pretend like it’s last summer in Brooklyn, a world in which it’s 87 degrees, this song is blasting out of every window, and the idea of extending the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy seems totally absurd.