27 7 / 2014

"

SEE THE THING IS, he said, BIG GIRLS LEAVE MORE SPACE FOR ME TO GRAB AHOLD OF
but
i’m not your handlebars

SEE THE THING IS, she said, BIG GIRLS ARE BETTER THAN SKINNY ONES BECAUSE MEN DON’T LIKE BONES
but
other girls are not graveyards

SEE THE THING IS
a baby girl isn’t beautiful because somebody is gonna hold her
i mean we all wanna be loved but i want her to
love herself
first

a baby girl isn’t beautiful because a man’s fingertips can dig
bruises into her hips, she’s beautiful because
she just is

in nature we don’t say a flower is beautiful
when somebody wants to pick it

in fact we say that nature’s beauty is at the height of purity
when it would destroy you to even touch it

SEE THE THING IS
i would rather be an ocean of danger and deep black and
thick mermaid thighs rather than
a body you want to cruise across
i would rather be the night sky and crush ribs with a suffocating sense that we are all small and purposeless
rather than a landscape of freckles someone happens to think
are akin to constellations
i would rather be storms and lightning and a bright sun rising, i
would rather make you quake in your boots than get your heart
pounding,

i would rather be beautiful like a cold spring stream:
not beautiful because you said so
but beautiful because
i am me.

"

Don’t really wanna be your girl? Just wanna belong to me? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ /// r.i.d (via inkskinned)

27 7 / 2014

hobbitkaiju:

realsocialskills:

People who struggle interpersonally, who seem unhappy, or who get into a lot of conflicts are often advised to adopt the approach of Nonviolent Communication. 

This is often not a good idea. Nonviolent Communication is an approach based on refraining from seeming to judge others, and instead expressing everything in terms of your own feelings. For instance, instead of “Don’t be such an inconsiderate jerk about leaving your clothes around”, you’d say “When you leave your clothing around, I feel disrespected.”. That approach is useful in situations in which people basically want to treat each other well but have trouble doing so because they don’t understand one another’s needs and feelings. In every other type of situation, the ideology and methodology of Nonviolent Communication can make things much worse.

Nonviolent Communication can be particularly harmful to marginalized people or abuse survivors. It can also teach powerful people to abuse their power more than they had previously, and to feel good about doing so. Non-Violent Communication has strategies that can be helpful in some situations, but it also teaches a lot of anti-skills that can undermine the ability to survive and fight injustice and abuse.

For marginalized or abused people, being judgmental is a necessary survival skill. Sometimes it’s not enough to say “when you call me slurs, I feel humiliated” - particularly if the other person doesn’t care about hurting you or actually wants to hurt you. Sometimes you have to say “The word you called me is a slur. It’s not ok to call me slurs. Stop.” Or “If you call me that again, I’m leaving.” Sometimes you have to say to yourself “I’m ok, they’re mean.” All of those things are judgments, and it’s important to be judgmental in those ways.

You can’t protect yourself from people who mean you harm without judging them. Nonviolent Communication works when people are hurting each other by accident; it only works when everyone means well. It doesn’t have responses that work when people are hurting others on purpose or without caring about damage they do. Which, if you’re marginalized or abused, happens several times a day. NVC does not have a framework for acknowledging this or responding to it.

In order to protect yourself from people who mean you harm, you have to see yourself as having the right to judge that someone is hurting you. You also have to be able to unilaterally set boundaries, even when your boundaries are upsetting to other people. Nonviolent Communication culture can teach you that whenever others are upset with you, you’re doing something wrong and should change what you do in order to meet the needs of others better. That’s a major anti-skill. People need to be able to decide things for themselves even when others are upset.

Further, NVC places a dangerous degree of emphasis on using a very specific kind of language and tone. NVC culture often judges people less on the content of what they’re saying than how they are saying it. Abusers and cluelessly powerful people are usually much better at using NVC language than people who are actively being hurt. When you’re just messing with someone’s head or protecting your own right to mess with their head, it’s easy to phrase things correctly. When someone is abusing you and you’re trying to explain what’s wrong, and you’re actively terrified, it’s much, much harder to phrase things in I-statements that take an acceptable tone.

Further, there is *always* a way to take issue with the way someone phrased something. It’s really easy to make something that’s really about shutting someone up look like a concern about the way they’re using language, or advice on how to communicate better. Every group I’ve seen that valued this type of language highly ended up nitpicking the language of the least popular person in the group as a way of shutting them up. 

tl;dr Be careful with Nonviolent Communication. It has some merits, but it is not the complete solution to conflict or communication that it presents itself as. If you have certain common problems, NVC is dangerous.

hobbitkaiju said:

Thank you so much for writing this. NVC was really helpful for me in learning to communicate better with my darling partners and most trusted friends, with whom I did sometimes need help in phrasing so that we wouldn’t hurt each other accidentally. I do still suggest NVC for that to people who are interested. But all these critiques are so valid and are issues I’ve been thinking about without being able to frame/verbalize/find words for until now. I really appreciate this. 

(via fuckyeahlgbtqblackpeople)

26 7 / 2014

ghostqunk:

How about, instead of just repeating”it gets better” 3 million times, you fucking make things better for LGBT kids

(via enby-rainbow-flame)

24 7 / 2014

gradientlair:

The term misogynoir (which articulates the way misogyny and anti-Blackness simultaneously impact Black women, specifically) was added to Wikipedia. The term was coined by Moya Bailey, who in the past explained her epistemological process in creating this term.
I’ve written a lot on the topic. However, my blog Gradient Lair is not considered a “valid source” as a “reference.” I briefly discussed this with Moya (she didn’t add the term now; she can’t as the person who coined it) on how this functions as epistemic violence, where Whiteness is the authority on what is “valid” scholarship and where it can appear.
My blog is often not considered “valid” as those who occupy “valid” spaces troll my content and plagiarize simultaneously. Daily. Nothing about this surprises me. This isn’t solely about Wikipedia’s rules so I won’t need Whitesplaining or mansplaining of them; this is about epistemic violence as an institutional factor.
Anyway though, for a more thorough understanding on misogynoir, see my essay: Explanation of Misogynoir.

gradientlair:

The term misogynoir (which articulates the way misogyny and anti-Blackness simultaneously impact Black women, specifically) was added to Wikipedia. The term was coined by Moya Bailey, who in the past explained her epistemological process in creating this term.

I’ve written a lot on the topic. However, my blog Gradient Lair is not considered a “valid source” as a “reference.” I briefly discussed this with Moya (she didn’t add the term now; she can’t as the person who coined it) on how this functions as epistemic violence, where Whiteness is the authority on what is “valid” scholarship and where it can appear.

My blog is often not considered “valid” as those who occupy “valid” spaces troll my content and plagiarize simultaneously. Daily. Nothing about this surprises me. This isn’t solely about Wikipedia’s rules so I won’t need Whitesplaining or mansplaining of them; this is about epistemic violence as an institutional factor.

Anyway though, for a more thorough understanding on misogynoir, see my essay: Explanation of Misogynoir.

24 7 / 2014

crusherccme:

found this gem in the 1996 Cornell Women’s Handbook. it’s what to say when a guy tries to get out of using a condom

crusherccme:

found this gem in the 1996 Cornell Women’s Handbook. it’s what to say when a guy tries to get out of using a condom

19 7 / 2014

mediamattersforamerica:

The CDC just endorsed this “miracle drug” that’s been decades in the making. So where’s the media on this? 
From Equality Matters: 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) ringing endorsement last week of Truvada, the “miracle drug” that blocks HIV infection, presents news outlets with a prime opportunity to cover an historic development in the three-decade struggle against HIV/AIDS. So far, however, media organizations have largely ignored the story.
Truvada is a 10-year-old pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) treatment combining two different antiviral drugs. Taken daily, it prevents infection of HIV. Even though the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the drug back in July 2012, it hasn’t exactly caught on; a September 2013 report by Gilead Sciences found that only 1,774 people had filled Truvada prescriptions from January 2011 through March 2013. Nearly half of users were women, even though gay men are the demographic group most at risk for HIV/AIDS.
Part of the reason Truvada has been slow to gain steam is, undoubtedly, the stigma attached to those who use it. Gay men who use the drug have been derided as “Truvada Whores,” a term many users have sought to reclaim. 

Only one major broadcast network (ABC) and two major newspapers (The New York Times and The Washington Post) have reported on the CDC’s endorsement of this groundbreaking medical development. 

mediamattersforamerica:

The CDC just endorsed this “miracle drug” that’s been decades in the making. So where’s the media on this? 

From Equality Matters: 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) ringing endorsement last week of Truvada, the “miracle drug” that blocks HIV infection, presents news outlets with a prime opportunity to cover an historic development in the three-decade struggle against HIV/AIDS. So far, however, media organizations have largely ignored the story.

Truvada is a 10-year-old pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) treatment combining two different antiviral drugs. Taken daily, it prevents infection of HIV. Even though the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the drug back in July 2012, it hasn’t exactly caught on; a September 2013 report by Gilead Sciences found that only 1,774 people had filled Truvada prescriptions from January 2011 through March 2013. Nearly half of users were women, even though gay men are the demographic group most at risk for HIV/AIDS.

Part of the reason Truvada has been slow to gain steam is, undoubtedly, the stigma attached to those who use it. Gay men who use the drug have been derided as “Truvada Whores,” a term many users have sought to reclaim

Only one major broadcast network (ABC) and two major newspapers (The New York Times and The Washington Post) have reported on the CDC’s endorsement of this groundbreaking medical development. 

19 7 / 2014

transitiontransmission:

Science, the academic journal of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, put an image of transgender women sex workers on their cover this week, to accompany an extensive special section about HIV/AIDS prevention approaches. However, on the cover, the women’s heads were cut out of the frame, leaving only their bodies.

Prosanta Chakrabarty, an evolutionary biologist at Louisiana University, pointed out the problem.

This prompted many on Twitter, including Scientific American blogger Janet Stemwedel, to note that depicting women in tight clothing without their heads is dehumanizing and objectifying.

However, Jim Austin, the Careers editor at Science, didn’t see the problem. He suggested that the fact that the women pictured were transgender “colors things” differently.

Jacquelyn Gill, an Ice Age ecologist and assistant professor at the University of Maine, reminded Austin that transgender women are in fact still women, so it does not. The male gaze, she writes, is still objectifying the women in the photo.

Austin responded that it was “interesting” to consider how those same men would feel when they “found out” the women were transgender.

The cover showing transgender sex workers in Jarkarta was selected after much discussion by a large group and was not intended to offend anyone, but rather to highlight the fact that there are solutions for the AIDS crisis for this forgotten but at-risk group. A few have indicated to me that the cover did exactly that, but more have indicated the opposite reaction: that the cover was offensive because they did not have the context of the story prior to viewing it, an important piece of information that was available to those choosing the cover.

I am truly sorry for any discomfort that this cover may have caused anyone, and promise that we will strive to do much better in the future to be sensitive to all groups and not assume that context and intent will speak for themselves.

Jim Austin, however, still doesn’t see the problem.

18 7 / 2014

Anonymous said: So I've been reading a lot about asexuality recently, and from other people's account and my own experiences, I think I'm asexual. However, I don't really have anything to base it on, and I'm having trouble telling what I'm feeling in comparison to others... I was wondering if you knew where I could find allosexual accounts of sexual attraction?

asexualsanonymous:

Actually, yes!  It’s amazing, all the stuff that crosses my dash that I save away on the off-chance that it might be useful some day.

I have a few options for you, Anon.

First, from my very favorite sex-ed website, Scarleteen, there is this article on understanding desire. One of the types of desire that they talk about is what I would label sexual attraction, but they also touch on a lot of other different ways that desire can work.

The second description I have comes from a thread on AVEN about what sexual attraction feels like. A user who has experienced sexual attraction before chimed in here to describe what it felt like for him. (In case that permalink doesn’t work properly, I’m talking specifically about post #6, the rest is mostly asexual people speculating and/or very brief descriptions.)

There is also this thread on Reddit. Of the three, it is definitely the most crude, but if you can wade through that (gloss over any of the comments that are only one or two lines long, you won’t be missing much) there are a pretty good variety of descriptions there.

Last, but not least, a couple of ace-spectrum resources for you. This is a page that I’ve linked to as recently as yesterday, from Demi Gray, explaining sexual attraction and romantic attraction. While the mod of Demi Gray isn’t allosexual (she IDs as demisexual), she is still definitely more of an expert on what sexual attraction feels like than I am.  Also, the mods at Asexual Advice have an FAQ that includes some answers to the question “what is sexual attraction?” You can find that page here, and the second section is the one you’ll be looking for.

I hope that helps, Anon!

-Natalie

18 7 / 2014

unapproachableblackchicks:


On Gender Norms and Young Black Girls
JULY 7, 2014BYCIARA MYERS, EDITOR 1 COMMENT
By Riki WilchinsTrueChildhttp://www.truechild.org
Riki Wilchins is the Executive Director at TrueChild, an organization that aids donors, policy-makers and practitioners in reconnecting race, class and gender through “gender transformative” approaches challenging rigid gender norms and inequities. Wilchins has authored three books on gender theory and has appeared in a number of anthologies and publications on the subject. Her work has led her to be profiled by The New York Times, and she was once selected as one of Time Magazine’s “100 Civic Innovators for the 21st Century.” Here, Wilchins discusses what we can do to correct the effects of gender norms on young, black girls.
Decades of researchhas found that challenging harmful gender norms are a key to improving life outcomes for at-risk communities.
For instance, young women who internalize narrow feminine ideals that prioritize motherhood, dependence, vulnerability and appearance have lower life outcomes in reproductive health, education and economic empowerment.
Major international donor agencies like PEPFAR, USAID, UNAIDs, and WHO have all implemented “gender transformative” initiatives that challenge traditional gender norms, and found them effective (an introductory paper is here).
Gender impacts every issue funders address; yet donors and grantees are seldom challenged to do innovative work around gender.
As a senior program officer put it, “My staff and grantees get race and class, but where’s the gender analysis? What I want to know is—what happened to gender?”
Part of the answer to her question may lie in new report onyoung Black girlswe conducted for the Heinz Endowments.
We found that Black adolescent girls and young women face special barriers related to both race and gender which have immense effects on their health, achievement and life outcomes. And this was especially true for low-income Black girls, who also have challenges associated with poverty.
First, Black girls’ unique race and gendered experiences of discrimination result in multiple stresses that – over time – impair their immune systems.
Also, they must navigate social hostilities based on race as well as pressures to conform to traditional feminine ideals and those specific to Black communities.
Moreover, feminine norms in the Black community often prioritize caretaking and self-sacrifice. Black girls may be silently encouraged to focus on others’ health while ignoring signals of pain and illness until their own bodies are in crisis.
The additive impact of these stresses can produce a “weathering effect,” in which Black women’s bodies become physically and biologically vulnerable, resulting in high rates of chronic disorders, reproductive health problems, infant mortality and obesity.



Download the report here

unapproachableblackchicks:

On Gender Norms and Young Black Girls


By Riki Wilchins
TrueChild
http://www.truechild.org

Riki Wilchins is the Executive Director at TrueChild, an organization that aids donors, policy-makers and practitioners in reconnecting race, class and gender through “gender transformative” approaches challenging rigid gender norms and inequities. Wilchins has authored three books on gender theory and has appeared in a number of anthologies and publications on the subject. Her work has led her to be profiled by The New York Times, and she was once selected as one of Time Magazine’s “100 Civic Innovators for the 21st Century.” Here, Wilchins discusses what we can do to correct the effects of gender norms on young, black girls.


Decades of researchhas found that challenging harmful gender norms are a key to improving life outcomes for at-risk communities.

For instance, young women who internalize narrow feminine ideals that prioritize motherhood, dependence, vulnerability and appearance have lower life outcomes in reproductive health, education and economic empowerment.

Major international donor agencies like PEPFAR, USAID, UNAIDs, and WHO have all implemented “gender transformative” initiatives that challenge traditional gender norms, and found them effective (an introductory paper is here).

Gender impacts every issue funders address; yet donors and grantees are seldom challenged to do innovative work around gender.

As a senior program officer put it, “My staff and grantees get race and class, but where’s the gender analysis? What I want to know is—what happened to gender?”

Part of the answer to her question may lie in new report onyoung Black girlswe conducted for the Heinz Endowments.

We found that Black adolescent girls and young women face special barriers related to both race and gender which have immense effects on their health, achievement and life outcomes. And this was especially true for low-income Black girls, who also have challenges associated with poverty.

First, Black girls’ unique race and gendered experiences of discrimination result in multiple stresses that – over time – impair their immune systems.

Also, they must navigate social hostilities based on race as well as pressures to conform to traditional feminine ideals and those specific to Black communities.

Moreover, feminine norms in the Black community often prioritize caretaking and self-sacrifice. Black girls may be silently encouraged to focus on others’ health while ignoring signals of pain and illness until their own bodies are in crisis.

The additive impact of these stresses can produce a “weathering effect,” in which Black women’s bodies become physically and biologically vulnerable, resulting in high rates of chronic disorders, reproductive health problems, infant mortality and obesity.

Download the report here

(via queergiftedblack)

15 7 / 2014

transluminescence:

This is the same stuff I’ve said a lot in more posts than I can remember but I want to make a specific post about it since I get a lot of questions about these things and I want to add it to my resources page.

Prostitute is a Slur

Prostitute is a word that is used entirely to criminalize sex workers.
The word refers specifically to exchanging sex acts for money, which is a crime in most places, and is part of the reason other terms like ‘escort’ came along; escorting is selling one’s time which may or may not include sex, and is paid by an hourly rate, whereas prostitution is paid by the sex act. In many places, ‘escorting’ allows a loophole for full service sex work though it also has some classist implications. It remains though that prostitute is a word that strips full service sex workers of our humanity and reduces us to criminals; this is the history and intention of it. It is a slur, so don’t use it except to self refer if you’re a full service sex worker yourself.

Hooker is a Slur

Hooker is a disparaging term for a full service sex worker, often linked to street-based work, which again has class issues. It is used to demean and degrade full service sex workers. Don’t use it.

Whore is a Slur

This is an area where a lot of people fuck up, believing bullshit like “but whore is used to target all women!” No shit, guess why? Because it refers to full services sex workers. That’s the entire reason why it’s offensive. When you call someone a whore, you are literally calling them a full service sex worker. Don’t do it, and don’t use it for yourself if you’re not a sex worker (the word can be applied to sex workers who don’t do full service in some situations, but only to self refer). 

When you use any of the above words, you are contributing to whorephobia; the specific marginalization that sex workers, usually women, experience in every aspect of society from interpersonal relationships to the state. This stigma often results in discrimination, violence, rape, death and even murder. Language matters. Words are important. 

Whorephobia

Whorephobia is the term that sex workers coined in the 1970s to describe this oppression. This is the only instance where non sex workers can use the word whore. While there are problems raised with this word, it’s what we have, it’s been around for 40 years now so unless sex workers decide to change it (if that’s even possible) this is what we have whether we like it or not. The fact that this word contains a slur is no fucking excuse to attack people for using it, and the only people who complain about it are whorephobic fauxminists themselves who are trying to silence us by taking away our language to call them out on their bigotry while changing the subject, trying to paint US as misogynists. This is not a “new libfem term” and libfeminism has fucking nothing to do with sex worker rights anyway; sex workers have historically occupied the fringes of society, something which every brand of feminism likes to avoid. 
If you don’t feel comfortable using this word, feel free to write it as wh*rephobia instead.

Street-Walker is a Slur

This word specifically attacks street-based workers, who experience the worst marginalization of all sex workers with all other things being equal. Even in sex worker spaces, street-based workers are often looked down on by indoor sex workers such as escorts or brothel workers. This is called lateral whorephobia and it’s fucked up. No one gets to use this phrase except street-based workers. 

Pimp is another term that often comes up in these conversations. It has a complicated history and has strong anti-Black connotations. Pimping is a reality, it definitely does happen and there are situations where this word is appropriate. It’s also a concept used to attack sex workers by criminalizing anyone who assists us; legally, anyone who helps a sex worker organize their appointments or drives them to and from a client can be charged as a pimp. It’s a disparaging term that often targets friends and partners of sex workers. It’s also widely used by anti sex worker fauxminists to discredit peer-based organizations; SWERFs will baselessly claim that sex worker organizations are actually run by pimps. This virtually never happens as most organizations have strict policies regarding who can become a member; only sex workers can join peer-based organizations. 

John is a term used to refer to the clients of sex workers. We virtually never use it, we call them clients cos that’s what they are though some sex workers call their clients tricks. That’s really up to them, but non sex workers would be better off using clients, especially since not all clients are men anyway. 

Appropriate Language 

The catch-all term for anyone who sells their sexual energy is ‘sex worker’. This includes strippers, peep show performers, brothel workers, cam performers and many more. The key point is that they sell their sexual energy; there are people in the sex industry who don’t and therefore are not sex workers, such as security staff, DJs, drivers, managers etc. 

Since this is an umbrella term, you may need to refer to specific sex industry positions.

Full service sex worker is anyone who has sex with their clients. Sex can be a variety of things but usually involves genitals touching (some sex workers only do massage with hand relief, and they are not full service sex workers), though not necessarily every time. The term implies that some form of penetrative sex is an available activity. Porn performers aren’t usually referred to as full service sex workers even though they have sex because the people they’re having sex with are not their clients, though some porn performers do full service sex work in addition to performing in porn.

Indoor sex worker generally refers to any full service sex worker who works indoors. They may work for themselves privately in their own homes or from hotel/motel/rented rooms, for an escort agency, or in a brothel/parlor. Indoor sex workers generally experience lower risks of violence; from clients, strangers and police. 

Street-based sex worker generally refers to sex workers who work outdoors or in public/semi public places. Some people consider sex workers who meet clients via the internet/newspaper advertisements and see them in semi-public spaces (e.g. cars, public toilets) to be street-based but more commonly, street-based sex worker means the sex worker meets their clients in a public place; sometimes a bar or club but more often, a stroll (a stroll is a street where sex workers tend to work; clients know to go to that street in particular to find sex workers and vice versa). Sometimes strolls are decriminalized; in Sydney for example, it’s not a criminal act for sex workers to meet clients at Kings Cross, though it isn’t legal to meet them in public anywhere else. Public sex is always illegal. Sometimes ‘outdoor sex worker’ is used, but less commonly.

Brothel worker is pretty self explanatory, I’ve not heard of another term to refer to sex workers who are based in brothels. Some brothel workers also do escorting, either privately or via the brothel.

Escort is an acceptable word to use to refer to independent full service sex workers who work indoors, though some (like myself) dislike it because it has certain class connotations as above.

SWERF is an acronym that means ‘sex worker exclusionist radical feminist’ and illustrates the fact that despite their protests, anti sex worker fauxminists actually hate us, including those of us who are forced, coerced and/or trafficked. They hide this behind false statistics and pretending that anyone with a tumblr account is too privileged to have an opinion, but in truth, they just want to silence us and force us out of our jobs. 

I hope this covers all the language questions, if I’ve missed anything please let me know

(Source: lumpenspaceproletariat)