Black Girls Code: This Is What the Next Generation of Engineers Looks Like
by Laura Drell
In college and during her career, Kimberly Bryant often found herself the only black female scientist in the room. The biotech engineer founded the Bay Area non-profit Black Girls CODE in 2011 so that today’s young girls will never find themselves in that position. Bryant realized that it wasn’t a lack of interest in science that led to a dearth of diversity in her field; it was a lack of access. Black Girls CODE’s goal is to drive access and exposure, closing the digital divide.
Black Girls CODE introduces young girls of color to computer programming, mobile app development, robotics and other STEM fields, so the girls can learn how to build the tools they want to see in the world. [Continue reading article at Mashable.]
8:12 pm • 27 December 2013 • 467 notes
I’m an OBGYN and I practice at a jail, where I take care of incarcerated women.
People often ask me, how did you come to work with incarcerated women? I was in the middle of my first year residency, delivering a baby. Everything was very familiar about the delivery scene; the nervousness, wondering if everything was going to be okay, helping the woman to push. But the one thing that was different is that she was shackled to the bed; she was a prisoner. And that moment troubled me so deeply that I developed an interest in learning more about these women.
Women make up a much smaller proportion of the correctional population than men — about 9% of everyone who is incarcerated. And 62% of [those] women are mothers to children who are less than 18 years old. Because women comprise such a small proportion, their gender-specific needs have been neglected. That’s particularly salient when it comes to their healthcare.
In theory, women do have the choice to have an abortion if they learn they are pregnant when they are in prison. There are constitutional guarantees — the 8th and the 14th amendments — and a number of judicial precedents, so it’s very clear that incarcerated women should have access to abortion. However, in practice, the people who are making the decisions have incredible discretion and many women lack access to abortion if they choose it.
About 1400-2000 births occur every year to women who are behind bars, and what they get for prenatal care is highly variable. There are standards that require prisons to have prenatal care onsite, but on the ground, some women have to be transported offsite and some women don’t even get prenatal care.
In labor, they usually get transported to an outside hospital. They can’t have any family support members in the room, and only 15 states have laws restricting the shackling of women in labor and delivery. A woman in labor, shackled, is what inspired me to work with this population. It’s inhumane and unnecessary, and it poses a lot of medical risks to the mother and the fetus. It also interferes with our ability to do emergent interventions if necessary.
People think prisons and jails are far away and we forget about the people who get locked up inside; we think they have nothing to do with us. So I hope I’ve given you some things to consider about what it’s like to be a woman when you’re in the grip of the prison or jail system.
From Dr. Carolyn Sufrin’s talk on incarcerated women and reproductive healthcare. Filmed at TEDxInnerSunset.
Watch the full talk here »
10:41 am • 23 December 2013 • 6,192 notes
When the Nazi concentration camps were liberated by the Allies, it was a time of great jubilation for the tens of thousands of people incarcerated in them. But an often forgotten fact of this time is that prisoners who happened to be wearing the pink triangle (the Nazis’ way of marking and identifying homosexuals) were forced to serve out the rest of their sentence. This was due to a part of German law simply known as “Paragraph 175” which criminalized homosexuality. The law wasn’t repealed until 1969.
This should be required learning, internationally.
You need to know this. You need to remember this. This is not something to swept under the carpet nor be forgotten.
Never. Too many have died for the way they have loved. That needs stop now.
Make it stop?
I did a report on this in my World History class my sophomore year of high school. It was incredibly unsettling.
My teacher shown the class this. Mostly everyone in the class felt uncomfortable.
I have reblogged this in the past, but it is so ironic that it comes across my dash right now. I a currently working as a docent at my city’s Holocaust Education Center (( I say currently because I’ve also done research and translation for them )) and out current exhibit is one on loan from the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum ((USHMM)). This is a little known historical fact that Paragraph 175 was not repealed after the war and those convicted under Nazi laws as a danger to society because they were gay were not released because they had be convicted in a court of law. There was no liberation or justice for them as they weren’t considered criminals, or even victims for that matter. They were criminals who remained persecuted and ostracized and kept on the fringes of society for decades after the war had been won. Paragraph175 wasn’t actually repealed until 1994. And it was only in May 2002, that the German parliament completed legislation to pardon all homosexuals convicted under Paragraph175 during the Nazi era. History has forgotten about these men and women — please educate yourselves so this does not happen again. Remember this history. Remember them.
11:10 am • 19 December 2013 • 167,073 notes
Bound to Struggle: Where Kink and Radical Politics Meet
A lucid collection of essays from people who are both politically involved in dismantling the power structure and erotically inclined towards power play in the bedroom (or the woods, or the abandoned house). How does that work? Read this excellent collection of beautiful essays and poems and find out more. Bound to Struggle blends the personal and political deftly, drawing upon contradiction and the undefined realities of those on the political and sexual fringes as a source of strength and passion.
“Playing dress-up with the trappings of a violent world is a form of transgression, too, a game that reveals the fragility of the existing order by dragging secret, uncomfortable desires into the light. I know what I’m doing when I play with savagery, helplessness, suffering, possession, as if they were tools in the sandbox. SM is a rewrite of the power-infested reality we’ve been handed…” -Nemo Brinker, Bound to Struggle Vol. 1
$2 at The Alchemist’s Closet
8:51 am • 19 December 2013 • 67 notes
Mississippi school forces lesbian woman to use the men's bathroom
Okay so basically
The school sees this lesbian woman as a woman
Yet they force her to use the men’s room
We can assume they view trans men as women
And they would probably force trans men to use the women’s bathroom.
But they force lesbian women to use the men’s room
But then other people they see as women (trans men)
Who want to use the men’s room
They won’t let them
Please shoot my face I don’t understand anything
6:20 pm • 18 December 2013 • 74 notes
TABLE WITH POCZP AT 2014 L.A. ZINE FEST (OPPORTUNITY FOR POC)
We will be at the 2014 L.A. Zine Fest & have reserved a full table. If you are a local person of color interested in tabling for free with us, we will have space for three additional folks. This opportunity is open to anyone who has never tabled with us before.
11:38 am • 18 December 2013 • 18 notes
Nice to see a journalist pointing out the true cause of child prostitution: economic disparity and colonialism. From 4 News:
The social price of gold: child prostitution
Since the price of gold nearly doubled five years ago, thousands of illegal miners have flocked to a remote corner of the Peruvian jungle to take advantage of a once untouched ‘El Dorado’. In a few short years they have not only created a huge environmental problem, but also a tragic social problem: child prostitution.
While gold mining takes place all year around, the most productive months are in the dry season from March to December. During that time hundreds of young Peruvian women arrive in Puerto Maldonado, in Southeastern Peru and its surrounding areas. These are often women dispatched by their families and lured on the false promises of well paid jobs as waitresses, they end up working in one of the regions hundreds of so-called prostibars.
The average prostitute is around 16 years old, but many are as young as 12.
2:44 pm • 17 December 2013 • 8 notes
Anonymous asked: kelsey its me im the anon, i just wanted to explain that i post mean things because i am so in love with u. i am so attracted to people who look like muppets and who have a worse attitude and social skills than an autistic adolf hitler. im just mad u wont date me bcuz im not pretending to be a girl despite my massive intimidating peen which for some reason dont make u a str8 for wanting in ur mouth.
Ohhhh it’s you. I honestly forgot about you!
Hello, Anders Ohman, known MRA creepbag. I love the way you have turned me calling you on your terrible verbal cyber harassment as me ~slandering you~.
I am not ashamed to say that you aggrivated my mental health issues, so calling me a “crazy cunt” doesn’t get to me.
You should know better, as an IT person, than to message me from work. IP address 184.108.40.206 led me to Brigham and Women’s, where you work. I’m going to call your job and see how they feel about you using your work time this way.
I’m the crazy cunt, sure, and you’re the troll who needs to send transphobic anons from your job over the fact that someone you met once doesn’t like you.
I was going to leave this one private, but you picked on my ex girlfriends, who are trans women. And you as someone whose close friends with transgender people! You know what I do to people who are assholes to trans women?I let everyone know what they look like:
Since this was originally posted, the situation has escalated, including a fake twitter account publishing Kelsey’s home address. This isn’t just drama, this stalking, it’s fucking wrong, and it needs attention. Signal boost, please.
11:30 am • 16 December 2013 • 195 notes
Chicago Zine Fest
Registration for CZF 2014 is open! Go now!
we’ve just registered! will we see you in march?
1:20 pm • 15 December 2013 • 37 notes
Beyond Eve Ensler: What Should Organizing Against Gender Violence Look Like?
by Andrea Smith There has been much discussion of late about the racist, imperialist, and just generally atrocious writings of Eve Ensler and the 1 Billion Rising campaign.
Okay, this is an absolutely brilliant piece by Cherokee scholar and thinking-machine Andrea Smith. She’s not claiming to have invented any of this, she’s just putting it together in a clear and concise way. This is intersectional feminism writ large, writ obvious. I love that her Indigenous feminism is explicitly addressing anti-Black racism.
If you read this and don’t understand how white feminism fails us on pretty much every single level, then you aren’t even trying to get it.
12:16 pm • 13 December 2013 • 227 notes
Queers for Economic Justice is Closing- The Work Continues
It is with profound sadness that I write to tell you QEJ is closing.
Funding has always been a challenge for QEJ throughout our 12 years of existence, but this year the financial crisis has been relentless. We finally had to face the painful reality that we cannot keep going. The crisis cannot be resolved simply by a one-time burst of money. Had that been true, we would have turned to you, our community, and asked for help. I am sure of your response.
What the Board and I had to confront was that this financial crisis would remain an ongoing emergency because we had no certain guarantees of future long-term funding. We were looking down the barrel of the funding-world shotgun, and understood that we could not stay alive. We know that QEJ is not unique in this crisis. We see clearly how our radical vision of social change — including issues of poverty, incarceration, sexuality and racism too often did not align with more mainstream foundation priorities. And we know that this gap between our vision and the funding that enables it is a critical issue for our communities in the future.
We have never had a large number of major donors able to write big checks (though we thank the ones who have). What we have always had was a loyal and committed group of donors who believe in what QEJ does, and who gave—not huge sums—but all they could. Yet that wasn’t enough to keep us afloat. We needed to find another way to stay alive and, though we had a strategy, we did not have the time to implement it. Realizing this, we looked at each other and said what we had never said before: We have to close.
This has broken our hearts.
(click link to read the rest of the article)
9:32 pm • 12 December 2013 • 7 notes
ghettopunk by Elle Perez
This really amazing list of WOC and QTPOC bands is going around
and it reminded me of how i felt when I first saw this series years ago.
Elle is a dear friend/artist who makes space for ‘outsider’ identities in their work and everyday life. This series is doing exactly what the list is doing, which is why I wish to share this with ya’ll.
(dont hate me elle! <3 )
elle is a dear friend (to us as well) & an amazing human being & their work deserves to be noticed
2:56 pm • 12 December 2013 • 913 notes
“In Our Own Voices”: Making Partner Abuse Resources Work for Queer Survivors
Partner abuse is widely misunderstood and underreported in the queer community. In large part, this stems from a widespread misconception that partner abuse only affects straight couples where the male partner abuses the female partner. This is a myth — in fact, queer intimate partner violence is happening all the time — but it continues to be exclusively reflected in resources and mainstream responses to partner abuse across the United States. For instance, there was the judge in Ohio who didn’t believe abuse could occur between same-sex partners. And the specific challenges that queer people face when trying to get help about intimate partner violence are on top of the already challenging situation that ALL survivors face.
9:32 am • 11 December 2013 • 31 notes
20 pg. at 1/4 letter size
$4 or trade, contact the author to order
There are a lot of great zines out there where people share their experiences relating to mental health. However, there aren’t (yet) as many zines that talk about living with other health conditions, though When Language Runs Dry, about chronic pain, and Life, Death, Love, & ‘All of the Above’, which is about the author’s partner’s having leukemia.
Inspired by Dave Roche’s writings about his experiences with Crohn’s Disease, Stacy decided to write about her own history with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).
The zine’s layout is lovely: clean and highly readable, and, as Stacy assures readers in her introduction, she doesn’t go into graphic detail about any of the symptons of IBS. Instead, she focuses on practical tips for living with the condition, intended both to help other folks with IBS, and to help the rest of us understand better what it’s like living with IBS:
"One question [people with IBS] will always ask if we are going to a new place is if the place has a bathroom or where the bathrooms are. Fun stuff, huh?"
In addition to all of the other reasons it’s not awesome to have a medical condition, IBS sufferers have to deal with living with something that they might not generally feel comfortable talking about, and that many other people will misunderstand or feel awkward discussing. It takes a special kind of highly admirable boldness to write publically about the state of your bowels, and Stacy does so with aplomb and class, entertainingly and informatively. Check it out!
- Lily Pepper
4:00 pm • 9 December 2013 • 24 notes