In the wake of the tragedies in Boston, we must challenge ourselves to reflect on our reactions to loss of life, violence, and tragedy. Why don’t Americans express the same outrage when similar — and far greater — tragedies occur abroad, or even in our own urban neighborhoods? Perhaps the barometer to our reactions is grounded in racism and xenophobia.
Humanism and feminism are not mutually exclusive and can coexist. A vested interest in general human welfare is an implicit goal of feminism. If you’re helping women, you’re helping people. Some might prefer to call this humanitarianism, humanism, or being-a-decent-human-being-ism, but many of us are content to call it feminism. And there’s nothing exclusionary about that.
I’ve had this experience a million times. It’s one of the complicated realities that come along with being a progressive-minded person. The jokes just aren’t as funny anymore. When we can see the humanity behind the people who these jokes target, and when we understand the implications of the privileged laughing at the marginalized, we lose our ability to laugh at their expense.
In my work, I’m regularly asked, “What can I do? I know that injustice exists, but I feel so powerless. I want to help!” Many folks of privilege struggle to figure out how to act for justice. More often than not, those who are denied access, voice, privilege, and justice in dominant culture know exactly what they need to do. So to that point, my answer to their question is always the same: “Listen.”
Our social movements have failed to reach a transformational level of change. In part, this is due to how we don’t address our own privilege or prioritize supporting and lifting up marginalized voices to the social change table. And until we do, our work will not achieve lasting structural changes – where those being impacted are leading the fight for their own communities, supported by allies.
The social stigmatization that blames women and tells women they should remain quiet and be ashamed of their assaults is rooted in the same view that says abortion should remain unnamed and unspoken about in public. I offer my story to help make the case for positive and unrestricted abortion rights and hopefully challenge pro-life people to view my choice in the context of my humanity.
Homophobia and transphobia can combine to make queer and trans* immigrants bear the brunt of the U.S.’s already racist and xenophobic immigration laws. Learn how US immigration law impacts the most vulnerable members of our community and how queer and trans* rights activists can be involved in coalition building with immigrant rights’ groups to pass comprehensive immigration reform.
With Obama’s proposals only a hazy shade more inclusive than the Senate’s plan is there any room for everyday people who aren’t lobbyists and professional activists to insert themselves? Is there political space for the policy framework that’s been proposed to be improved upon? Does your lone voice matter? The answer is yes, yes, yes! Read on to find out just how you can help as an average citizen.
While there are many glaring examples of rape culture, there’s also a covert nature to rape culture that often goes unnoticed. We must also look beyond the overt ways in which rape apologia exists and recognize exactly how it sneaks into our everyday life. So let’s look at some pervasive and normalized parts of society that contribute to it and what you can do about it in your life.
Meaningful and real access to abortion will only come full circle when every woman has insurance coverage for abortion care if she needs it and can make decisions about her reproductive health, free from political interference. With today being the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, it is crucial we recognize and address the barriers that so many women continue to face all these years later.