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

14 7 / 2014

cctjevo:

black-culture:

Emotion and expressing emotion are human traits. Don’t rob boys of their humanity. @zellieimani

Be human.

(via paper--fox)

14 7 / 2014

12 7 / 2014

lastrealindians:

HELP A NATIVE AMERICAN FAMILY THAT IS BEING SUED BY THEIR CHILD’S SCHOOL FOR QUESTIONING CULTURALLY OFFENSIVE THANKSGIVING CURRICULUM

The Eagle Bull- Oxendine family is being sued by their child’s school for defamation, because they asked the school to permanently change their offensive and culturally insensitive Thanksgiving curriculum and to honor a two-year scholarship taken from their daughter after they voiced their concern over Native appropriation there. The school was having children make feathered headbands and literally play Indian. When the Native parents expressed disapproval over it, rather than address this racially sensitive issue, the school told them to keep their children home from class.

This case is moving forward and they need to raise funds to defray mounting legal expenses. Please share this link and donate what you can. If they lose, we all lose. This case has the potential to set dangerous precedent where Natives are effectively gagged from speaking out against redface, appropriation and the abuse of our culture and sacred ways by mainstream society. This is legal conquest. We can’t allow them to play Indian and hide behind judicial robes to do it. Thank you.

Contribute here: http://www.gofundme.com/8f3z30

12 7 / 2014

jcatgrl:

mermaidofspace:

karmapoliceofficer:

everyone you’ve ever loved has said some problematic shit: a novel 

you have also said some problematic shit: the sequel

having said problematic shit does not necessarily make you or anyone else a bad person, just be aware of it, don’t say it again, and don’t make fucking excuses for people who continue to say problematic shit: the thrilling conclusion

(via peonyprincex)

10 7 / 2014

"Instead of trying to fictionalize gender, let’s talk about the moments in life when gender feels all too real. Because gender doesn’t feel like drag when you’re a young trans child begging your parents not to cut your hair or not to force you to wear that dress. And gender doesn’t feel like a performance when, for the first time in your life, you feel safe and empowered enough to express yourself in ways that resonate with you, rather than remaining closeted for the benefit of others. And gender doesn’t feel like a construct when you finally find that special person whose body, personality, identity, and energy feels like a perfect fit with yours. Let’s stop trying to deconstruct gender into nonexistence, and instead start celebrating it as inexplicable, varied, profound, and intricate."