The Cherokee Word For Water

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Wilma Mankiller, the first female chief in the modern Cherokee Nation, died four years ago, but her legacy still lives on. “The Cherokee Word For Water” is a feature-length film narrative that expound upon work Mankiller was completing and recounts the work that led her to become the first modern female chief. The plot line of the story follows and Cherokee community that uses tradition Cherokee values of loyalty and connection with one another that leads to interdependence. The film is directed by Charlie Soap, Mankiller’s husband.

check out the trailer

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Andrea Gibson’s Poem: “Privilege is Not Having to Think About It.”

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Here is one of my favorite feminist poets Andrea Gibson. In “Privilege is Not Having to Think About It” she addresses the harsh reality of the continual while male privilege through recounting her experience of working with a black poet.

Privilege is Never Having to Think About it
Touring with a Black Poet-for Sonya Renee

She steps out of the hotel bathroom dressed to the nines, stilettos sharp in her glossy glossy
elegant tailored boom glittering a bold burgundy neckline
Locks her shining eyes in the worn Tshirt I haven’t changed in days and says “are you going to wear that on stage?”
I smile, gloating in the cool of my gritty apathy, the oh so thrift store of my dirty grunge
She says ‘honey, do you have any idea how much privilege it takes to think it is cool to dress poor? You wear that dirty shirt; you are a radical saving the world. I wear that dirty shirt and I am a broke junkie thief getting followed around every store

That conversation happened years ago
On the same tour where Sonya watched me pay 75 bucks to have my haircut in a way that would make me look like quote “I couldn’t afford a haircut”

The same tour that began the day after I was the feature performer at a university’s women of color symposium
No. I did not ask whether or not they should feature a woman of color instead.
Yes. I got paid.
I’m pretty sure it was a good paycheck.

Just like I’m pretty sure someone licked the paycheck when Trayvon Martin’s gun range targets got sold out in two days
I know those things are not exactly the same

I know I wanted to burn every noose white seam of our cotton flag when Trayvon Martin’s mother was on the witness stand trying to convince a jury of mostly white mothers that she could actually recognize the sound of her own son’s scream

I know I wanted to split the fucking sky when I heard the whip of the verdict and Sonya had posted online
“How many different ways can this country tell me I am worthless”

I know it was right then that I walked upstairs and started counting the hoodies in my closet
I have fourteen
hoodies that tell me I will never be forced to dress a wound as deep as my mothers heart
She will never be woken in her sleep to peel my body off gated grass
To beg God to sow the hole in my chest

I know my family will never have to hear justice say it wasn’t until I was lying in my casket that I was wearing the right clothes

I know a woman who once knew a woman who collected the metal collars they used to lock around the necks of black children to chain them to the auction block
I was told she hung them on the walls of her home for decoration
I remember when I used to believe that was the entire definition of racism

Believed there was no one hanging in my wardrobe
Believed my style had nothing in common with king Leopold’s
Thought I am not outfitting the Congo in spilled blood
I am just buttoning up my shirt here
I am just rolling up my sleeves
I am not unstitching the face of Emmett Till
I am not unzippering the wail of his mothers grief
The laces of my shoes are just the laces of my shoes
They could not tie a body to a tree.
I am not fashioning a noose here.
Sonya, do you hear me?
My compassion is not a costume
My passivity is not hate
My privilege is not genocide
This is just how I cut my hair
That was just how they cut the cheque
This is just how I dress
Your wound
I don’t even think about
what I wear

— Andrea Gibson “Privilege is Never Having to Think About it: Touring with a Black Poet for Sonya Renee”

Male Privilege is “I Have a Boyfriend”

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got-privilege

A clear and also common example of male privilege that you may not think about could present itself in the following scenario.

guy: *hits on girl

girl: “Sorry, not interested”

guy: *continues to hit on girl

girl: “Seriously dude, not interested”

guy: *..still trying

girl: “I have a boyfriend”

guy: *stops relentless flirtation efforts.

While not ever guy will simply stop unwanted advances towards a woman because she has a boyfriend, that is exactly what many do. Thankfully the unwanted advances may stop, but what bothers me is the reason they stop. It is not out of respect for the female’s lack of sexual/romantic interest in the guy, but rather the male to male respect that would create boundary lines.

My First Podcast!

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Hey guys,

I’ve been curious about people’s general perception of feminism, so I decided to talk to a few people and get their thoughts, hope you all enjoy.
http://groner98781.podomatic.com/embed/frame/multi/0?json_url=http%3A%2F%2Fgroner98781.podomatic.com%2Fembed%2Fmulti%2F0%3Fcolor%3D43bee7%26autoPlay%3Dfalse%26facebook%3Dfalse%26height%3D360%26objembed%3D0%26width%3D480

New Constitutional Argument For Marriage Equality

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As the issue of same-sex marriage has come before the U.S. Supreme Court again, a newer argument in support of same-sex marriage is beginning to surface. The argument is based on the constitutional principle that as a matter of law children cannot be punished in an attempt to control the behavior of adults…thus rendering bans on same-sex marriages unconstitutional. 

An article on Slate.com titled “The Smartest Constitutional Argument For Marriage Equality That No One Is Making” , goes into detail with the many ways that children can be harmed by banning same-sex marriages. 

http://www.slate.com/blogs/outward/2014/09/29/children_of_gay_couples_make_marriage_equality_a_constitutional_necessity.html

“What Guys Look For In Girls”

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Savannah Brown, a 17-year-old poet, published this incredible video of her reading of her work entitled “What Guys Look For In Girls”.

I love the way that she encompasses the many struggles women have with their appearance and self worth no matter that their size, shape or age. She also shares her journey of how she came to love not only her body, but also herself as a person,

You Did Not “Rape” That Test

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According to RAINN, (Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network), 1 out of 6 women and 1 out of 33 men have been the victim of an attempted or completed rape. The site gives these facts on their page on rape victim statistics

3 times more likely to suffer from depression.

6 times more likely to suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder.

13 times more likely to abuse alcohol.

26 times more likely to abuse drugs.

4 times more likely to contemplate suicide.

https://www.rainn.org/get-information/statistics/sexual-assault-victims

I wanted to put some statistics on rape up before I addressed the issue I have with rape jokes. The fact that there is even a category of jokes classified as “rape jokes” is sickening to me. Besides the fact that they’re not even funny, they can be very detrimental, even traumatic, for victims. I think that often times people make this jokes without even thinking about what they are saying. Most of the people I’ve heard make them certainly wouldn’t advocate in favor of rape.

Regardless of their intentions, these comments are still highly offensive. It’s the same principle as people saying “that’s so gay” when referring to something in a derogatory manner. In both circumstances words are being twisted to have a completely inaccurate meaning.

I do find it interesting that often times “rape jokes” are used to imply that the “rape” was an act of power over something. For example: “I just raped that test”. That statement actually reinforces that rape is about power and control, not gender or appearance. I mean how do you respond to a “rape joke”? Should I come up with an equally offensive and misogynistic response such as “What was the test wearing?”

There is nothing even remotely funny about rape. There’s plenty of other ways to express what you are trying to say that are much less distasteful.