For greater understanding about the context of the protests
Here are some English-language articles:
The Kingpins - Lengthy but pretty comprehensive article that lays out the relationship between the PRI, Enrique Pena Nieto, and the narcowar, as well as the influence drug violence has had upon Mexican voters.
Mexico’s Election: A Vote For Peace, A Plan For War - Offers some background regarding the origin of #yosoy132 and American interference in the elections.
Mexico’s Youth Uprising - Written just before the elections, capturing the mood at that time.
Raped, Beaten, Never Forgotten - Information about the widespread sexual assault of women in San Salvador Atenco, which occurred under Ernesto Pena Nieto’s watch, and is one of the biggest contributors to outrage against him.
Reports of gift card payments… - Concerning the gift cards to Mexican supermarket chain Soriana, which were used to buy votes for the PRI, and the origin of the the numerous Soriana references in the protests.
(I do not claim that the information in these articles is 100% accurate or free from contention, but they should give a sufficient understanding of the factors at play here.)
I had been looking for something like this, thank you.
I Know This Tumblr is Supposed to be for Jokes, but…
Today, two Michigan, female lawmakers were silenced after saying the word “Vagina” on the grounds that their actions “failed to maintain the decorum of the House of Representatives.”
Not too long ago, Congressman Don Young pulled out an eighteen-inch walrus penis and waved it around on the House floor as he argued with Mollie Beattie (the first female head of the Fish and Wildlife Committee).
Don Young was not silenced for this.
Michigan, land of riches.
This has really just gone way too far. At an Ohio campaign stop last week Obama gave a speech with a background of American flags which is quite common. However, if you look closely some of the flags are not American flags. The blue field has been changed to show an Obama seal. Yes, there are also stars but have no pattern and they do not add up to 50. Look at that disgusting thing flying with Old Glory.
EDIT: ALSO GOD DAMMIT THE SOURCE IS A SATIRICAL SITE
YOU GOT ME THIS TIME, PAX AMERICANA.
SHAKING MY FIST AT YOU RIGHT NOW
lbr tho ohio’s flag is p ugly, everyone should be ashamed just bc of that
also this reminds me of the time politico earnestly thought the wi state flag was a union flag
just popping in to remind everyone that this was actually a thing in 2008, to the point that Michelle Malkin wrote a blog post explaining to her audience what Ohio’s flag looks like
Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum and the “troubled teen” industry
So remember that company that Mitt Romney owned (and is still a large shareholder in), Bain Capital? One of their holdings is the Aspen Education Group, a conglomeration of “teen residential programs”. These are places entirely unregulated by the government, frequently religious in nature, that use “aversion therapy” and “behavior modification” (they literally use physical and emotional abuse as “therapy”).Teens are transported to these places by force (literally dragged out of their beds in the middle of the night) and imprisoned in these places, frequently until they age out at eighteen. While there they have no legal recourse and frequently no communication outside at all; most of these programs explicitly tell parents that any allegations of abuse are an attempts at manipulation and lies.
Children have died in these places (warning link does play audio, but read this fucking shit, it links to the relevant news reports for each death). They are beaten and sexually assaulted by staff and frequently denied any sort of medical attention (one boy died after suffering from internal injuries for weeks while staff claimed he was faking). Aside from this general brutality, the “therapists” (and facilitators, and staff in general all the way up) are frequently grossly unqualified and use confrontational group therapy (they humiliated kids in front of their peers) and so-called “tough love” methods that have been disowned by most counseling organizations and have been shown repeatedly in studies to be detrimental to overall mental health. Kids are leaving these places with PTSD and other psychological issues as a result of their therapy.
The specific abuse of rape survivors warrants special attention. From an experience with the “rape and molest” group at WWASP, “We were constantly asked to look at the fundamental decisions that had led to our situations. Drugs, alcohol, inappropriate clothing, inappropriate flirtation, being alone with a boy, not telling someone about a molestation – all of these were choices that we had made that were important to acknowledge before we could “choose” to move on and make “working decisions” in the future. There were a lot of girls who had been molested by their parents or step-parents and of those, most were sent to the program by the very people who had molested them. I never saw or overheard legal action encouraged. Rather, the goal was often to encourage girls to forgive their molesters and choose to have “appropriate” relationships with their caretakers in the future. Our pain and sadness was looked at as unnecessary, as though we were just acting out.” This is a common thread, rape survivors are disbelieved and humiliated. This is not therapy, this is the re-victimization and deliberate triggering of survivors.
These places are big business. They have contributed hundreds of thousands of dollars to political campaigns and have used their clout to stall legislation that would allow regulation of their activities. Both Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum (Santorum ran UHS, a for-profit hospital chain that has bought up these troubled teen facilities as they have closed due to litigation and has a history of death and abuse, UHS is now a primary contributor to Santorum’s campaign). Frankly, I can’t think of anything terrible enough for profiteers on the back of institutional abuse, but these men need to publicly answer for this shit.
There is more about these places than I care to detail here, but I’ll leave links (more links than you can shake a stick at)
r/troubledteens yeah it’s reddit, don’t let that prejudice you
I’ll try to explain all of this to the best of my understanding, if you want a more thorough take from someone actually effected by these places read this.
[img = image one: front cover of zine. picture of a person sitting on a chair with a bag over their head. text reads: “shit ‘progressives’ don’t want to hear: a journal of unpopular opinions. #1 -own yr shit! by rachel & jamie. image two: torso of an tattooed emo-styled male-bodied person. text reads: “yr not the victim though you’d like to make it that way & i am so sorry that i’m nice to you (concept by stephanie <3)”]
Here’s a brief description:
Despite both having a vested interest in DIY culture and the punk brand of feminism, we have a lot of issues with it as well. We wrote this zine because as feminist activists, zinesters, and thinkers who are committed to doing positive things for what we hope is the common good, we are disillusioned and angered by what we perceive as the development of an empty, lazy, counterproductive ‘call out culture.’ Both in social justice and feminist blogospheres, in the DIY feminist and punk communities, and in our daily lives, we have seen and felt the quality of continuing ‘dialogues’ on social justice and leftist politics decline and devolve into an endless game of name-calling, judgement, and condescension. Capitalist bullshit — particularly hierarchy and anti-intellectualism (or at least a seeming aversion to critical thought) — has been seeping into our subculture. We wrote this zine in an attempt to challenge all this, because this medium feels safe and appropriate to us. Issue #1 - Own Yr Shit covers three unpopular opinions we both share:
1) Self-awareness is key.
2) Kindness is always valuable.
3) You need a community to learn.
Plus, collages & a postscript!
cut & paste, 1 / 4 size, 32 pages, b&w
You can order this zine directly through etsy by clicking here. Due to upcoming zinefests, the first twenty (20) orders will be mailed out by approximately March 2nd, all others will be mailed out by appropriately March 15th. You can also pick up an issue in person at both the NYC Feminist Zinefest and Chicago Zinefest.
We encourage anybody who has any questions / inquiries or would like to trade to email both of us directly at soundoftheatlantic (at) gmail (dot) com AND rachelzines (at) gmail (dot) com
[PS - please excuse the low quality promo photos! this looks much better printed, we swear!]
so pete hoekstra continues to prove he’s a peice of shit with some racism.
edit: reminder that this is the guy who, in 2006, claimed “weapons of mass destruction” had been found in Iraq, contrary to what pentagon officials, the Duelfer Report, and the intelligence community reported.
okay basically today, north carolina is making it legal to kill a dog of a certain breed
after it has stayed in the shelter for 72 hours
the dogs that fall under this “breed ban” it won’t even get the chance to be adopted
if the owner brings in the dog it will immediately be killed
the breeds in the “ban” are “bullies” ie: Dobermans, Rottweilers, Chow Chows, German Shepherds, Great Danes, Pitbulls, Mastiffs, Akitas and Huskies
and reblog the shit out of this.
as someone with ties to animal sheltering, there is some misinformation in this post and it replies to it that should be addressed.
first: this was not a statewide proposal. it was for Cumberland County, North Carolina’s county animal shelter only.
second: the plan has now been dropped. there is no immediate danger.
third, and most importantly: an adoption ban is, despite the name, a death sentence for dogs who enter shelters who employ the bans. these dogs are very unlikely to be transferred to another shelter, or sent to breed rescue. not all county shelters are the same, but many of them are strapped for money and time. there is not a lot of incentive for them to go above and beyond their outlined duties.
this is all a moot point, however, when you consider that across the U.S., pit bulls account for an average 29% of all dog intakes at shelters. that’s on the rise, by the way: in 2003 they were already at an average of 23% of surrendered dogs. they also make up an average of 60% of the dogs euthanised in shelters in 2010. the dogs in cumberland county were only the most visible victims of an overpopulation crisis in pit bulls.
if you are reading this and are concerned about the welfare of these dogs: are you helping provide low-cost spay and neuter to pet owners in need? are you supporting your local shelter? did you adopt your dog? are you breeding the dogs that will be put down in shelters in 2012? now that you’ve signed the petition or reblogged a post about it, what are you going to do?
what are you going to do to help the dogs and their owners when the cameras are off?
would you participate in the world’s largest drug-use survey?
hey y’all, I wanted to bring up something I think is pretty important- the Global Drug Survey. it’s an independent, non-judgemental online survey used to study real-life drug use, attitudes, and behavior in a wide variety of populations. you can read about the people behind the survey on this page. io9 has a good article here. the survey takes about 10-20 minutes.
I understand that many people might be reluctant to participate. I chose to because I believe that to end the “war on drugs”, policy makers, experts, and the public need access to unbiased information about drugs and drug use.
if you’d like to take the survey, you can find it here.
Brace yourselves! Because I am going to do away with this idea that Social Media is horizontal, democratic and a valid means to get your story out there. Moreover, I am about to show you how Social Media is just another White, kyriarchical, status-quo upholding, oppressive medium. You know, just like the rest of the world.
Let’s look at Tumblr as an example. According to figures released this week, this blogging platform is even bigger than WordPress, even though it’s only four years old. Tumblr currently hosts 85,000 blogs more than WordPress, even though WordPress had a four year headstart in this endeavor. With 20+ million blogs, Tumblr is being hailed by specialists as the next darling of Social Media.
Tumblr is also attempting something relatively novel: curating relevant, user generated content in specific areas. There are these “Tumblr endorsed topics” that are selected by a group of dedicated editors that highlight the issues that matter on a given day. Tumblr has supposedly selected these editors to represent a wide spectrum of opinions and backgrounds. So, let’s look at the Politics section to see how representative of a global and (supposedly) inclusive Social Media platform these editors are:
[Image Description: a screen capture of Tumblr’s curated political section. A blue background with a list of Editors that contains the names of: azspot, washingtonexaminer, thepoliticalpartygirl, peterfeld, alexholzbach, thenewrepublic, thepoliticalnotebook, shortformblog, laliberty, motherjones, jeffmiller and nationaljournal. This list is followed by another list, of Top Contributors, that contains the names of: robertreich, ilyagarner, zachvaughn, brooklynmutt, combattant-de-la-liberte, evilteabagger, pantslessprogressive, kohenari, producermatthew and politicalprof].
Oh, is that a gasp I hear from the crowd? That’s right! Out of 12 editors and 10 top contributors we only have two women and an abundance of White, male faces (and well established news organizations). Moreover, one of the top editors that Tumblr has handpicked to curate the political content of its platform is a known anti-abortion activist, a person whose hate speech against women would surely put him in a risky position if Tumblr wanted to at least give the appearance of inclusion and fairness. This person, who curates the content that 20+ million other users see on a daily basis, is also an activist against Affirmative Action (and who claims that Affirmative Action is a modern form of slavery) and regularly posts those fake scare abortion photos that anti choice activists are so keen on using against reproductive justice (Possible trigger warning, the photo is fake but gruesome). Perhaps Tumblr should do away with any pretense and just rename this section “American, White and Male! The way it’s always been and the way we would prefer to keep it!”. Because that’s another thing: the idea of Politics in Tumblr (a corporation that aims at a global presence and reach) is to curate only American political content. There is no area where issues from the rest of the world are highlighted (with the exception of circumstantial topics created to keep track of the ongoing conflicts in the Arab world which are curated mostly by, you guessed it, American people with no personal relation or ties with the area).
If you thought that Social Media was an opportunity to do away with the hegemony that perpetuates oppression against minorities, think again. Because right now the gatekeepers to the relevant content that could get your story out there, to a wider audience are the kind of people with the least interest in allowing your stories to be heard. Moreover, if you thought you could do any sort of far reaching grass roots organizing using Tumblr, I urge you to reconsider, because chances are that some of those who should highlight your efforts are actively working against you.