texas state senator breaks glass table with gavel cutting off pro-choice testimony

On Wednesday, a trio of anti-abortion measures continued to wend their way through the Texas State Legislature, buoyed by Republicans’ expectations for a more conservative Supreme Court. A Senate Health and Human Services Committee hearing included testimony from NARAL Texas legislative intern Maggie Hennessy, whose speech decrying SB 415 ended abruptly when Committee Chairman Charles Schwertner (R-Georgetown) smashed his gavel quite hard on the glass table, which was later shown to have cracked. Seems like ridiculously bad optics for a guy trying to crack down on women’s reproductive rights, but what do I know?

Find the rest of the article here on Jezebel.

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Women’s March on Washington

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Official Facebook page

OFFICIAL STATEMENT, National Organizers

On January 21, 2017 we will unite in Washington, DC for the Women’s March on Washington. We stand together in solidarity with our partners and children for the protection of our rights, our safety, our health, and our families — recognizing that our vibrant and diverse communities are the strength of our country.

The rhetoric of the past election cycle has insulted, demonized, and threatened many of us–women, immigrants of all statuses, those with diverse religious faiths particularly Muslim, people who identify as LGBTQIA, Native and Indigenous people, Black and Brown people, people with disabilities, the economically impoverished and survivors of sexual assault. We are confronted with the question of how to move forward in the face of national and international concern and fear.

In the spirit of democracy and honoring the champions of human rights, dignity, and justice who have come before us, we join in diversity to show our presence in numbers too great to ignore. The Women’s March on Washington will send a bold message to our new administration on their first day in office, and to the world that women’s rights are human rights. We stand together, recognizing that defending the most marginalized among us is defending all of us.

We support the advocacy and resistance movements that reflect our multiple and intersecting identities. We call on all defenders of human rights to join us. This march is the first step towards unifying our communities, grounded in new relationships, to create change from the grassroots level up. We will not rest until women have parity and equity at all levels of leadership in society. We work peacefully while recognizing there is no true peace without justice and equity for all. HEAR OUR VOICE.

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This is an INCLUSIVE march, and EVERYONE who supports women’s rights are welcome.

PLEASE SHARE, we need to spread the word everywhere! And there are groups forming for EVERY STATE, so search for your local group as well!

We especially need HOSTS and ORGANIZERS from marginalized communities for this to be truly inclusive, please DM your state administrator to get involved!

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Ugly in Defeat and Ugly in Victory

this-is-what-yall-wanted-rightWhen I arrived at the office the morning after, one of my co-workers said promptly and cheerfully to me, “I saw you on TV last night.”

I was still relatively new to the office, and not yet at a place where I was privy to inside jokes or enough history to make anything more than polite conversation. So I replied, “Oh yeah?”

“Yeah, down at the protest at Trump Tower,” he laughed. “Did you have fun?”

I had not been at the protest surrounding our very own Trump tower, though I had seen the protesters on many of my social media outlets. I’d spent the entirety of the previous night sifting through the news – articles about the woman vote and Trump’s agenda for his first 100 days and tweets about violence directed at non-cis white individuals. And yes, I’d watched footage from the protests too, and been too tired to filter my mixed emotions.

godbless“I got a lot of good pictures,” I played along.

It wasn’t until later, when he made another joke about emails and meticulous record keeping that I realized – he hadn’t been good-naturedly poking at me for being in utter shock on 11/9. He hadn’t been trying to establish a light-hearted dialogue about freedom of speech and protest and the complete 180 our nation is about to be doing. He was mocking me. Continue reading

A Plumber or a President?

I don’t remember what segment of NPR it was, or who was being featured, but I remember one thing he said. It’s given me a lot to think about over the past few weeks. This particular guest was asked if he thought Trump’s overtly discriminatory attitudes disqualified him from being presidential material and his response was, “Look, I view the president, and really every member of the government, as someone who’s there to do a job. Like a plumber or a builder. They’re there to fix something. I don’t care what they’re doing or saying when they’re not on the clock. They’re there to do a job and that’s it.”

At first, I thought this was a unique way to look at it. Down to a point – yes, no bullshit, they’re there to fix something. But then I started really thinking about that sentiment, and I began to wonder if that was perhaps a too-narrow way to look at the most powerful offices in the land. They are indeed there to fix stuff, don’t get me wrong. But aren’t there moral responsibilities that also go with the job? Can you really look at the office of the president through the lens of a plumber or builder?

Rape and the porn industry

Feminist Philosophers

In the wake of the multiple rape allegations against porn star James Deen, former porn actress Aurora Snow has written a fascinating piece for The Daily Beast about pornography, the normalization of violence toward women, and the affect this has on performers:

Rape in an industry where sex—and even violent sex—is treated as just another day at the office can become a bit muddled for some.
From my experience, I’ve learned that certain professionals in porn have varying definitions of what rape is—yet the standard definition should still apply. On-set behaviors and attitudes that would be shocking to most and sometimes even criminal are normalized, and after years of performing, it can be hard to separate the work from reality.

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