Archive for November, 2016
Our final days at Standing Rock, Nov. 20-21
State warfare intensifies — solidarity builds
By Gina Petry
Our final days representing Radical Women and Freedom Socialist Party at Standing Rock were action-packed and compelling.
Varied voices of water protectors
Members of the International Indigenous Youth Council and Gina Perry
Patrick Burns and I spent time with the International Indigenous Youth Council and attended a council meeting. The youth are very organized and serious about their role as the “Seventh Generation” – those who will protect the earth and resources for the future. Video – Standing Rock Youth: “It’s war here.” The Youth Council is a main leadership voice and has been organizing and on the frontline of the actions that many refer to as “ceremonies.” Youth Council members were thrilled to receive the beautiful hand-painted Radical Women and Freedom Socialist Party banner we brought from Seattle. They especially appreciated the message “Solidarity with Warrior Women.”
I interviewed women coordinating an on-site Midwifery Collective and others who have formed the Two Spirit Camp. Two Spirit is an umbrella term used by some indigenous people to describe gay, lesbian, bisexual and gender-variant individuals. Both groups are fulfilling needs at the encampment, and also bringing visibility to often-overlooked issues in Native communities at large.
Patrick continued to build winter housing structures and set up a kitchen supply tent for the Union Camp. He connected with labor activists, including members of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW). They strategized on getting more rank-and-file workers and unions involved and agreed on the importance of working-class united fronts to oppose environmental destruction.
Vicious onslaught on unarmed activists
On Sunday night, a call went through camp to come to the bridge because an attack was coming down. The bridge is an access point to pipeline construction and is blocked by razor wire, armored vehicles and cop cars. Water protectors have been battling to reach the construction site by way of the bridge. Hundreds of people responded to the call and swarmed onto the bridge. Others of us provided support and witnessed police dousing the crowd with water cannons in the frigid cold, and bombarding them with tear gas and rubber bullets. (more…)
From Pink News
Every single Trump cabinet member so far opposes LGBT rights
By Nick Duffy
29th November 2016
Every single cabinet member appointed by Donald Trump so far opposes LGBT rights.
The Republican President-elect has begun appointing his top team ahead of his inauguration in January.
So far the billionaire – who claimed he would “protect our L-G-B-T-Q citizens” while running for election – has appointed a string of politicians who oppose LGBT rights.
With many spots still up for grabs, here’s a run-down of Trump’s cabinet so far:
Attorney General Jeff Sessions
Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions is known as one of the most conservative and anti-LGBT members of Congress, holding a 0 percent rating on the Human Rights Campaign’s Congressional Scorecard on LGBT rights.
Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos
Betsy DeVos is a prominent donor to the anti-gay marriage lobby. She previously donated $200,000 in a successful bid to add an anti-gay marriage amendment to the Michigan ballot.
DeVos family organisations have also made large donations to anti-gay marriage causes – $500,000 to the National Organization for Marriage, and $100,000 to Florida4Marriage.
Secretary of Health and Human Services Tom Price
Another opponent of LGBT rights in Congress, Price is a co-sponsor of the First Amendment Defence Act, which would legalise discrimination against LGBT people on the grounds of religion.
Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao
Secretary Chao served in George W Bush’s Cabinet as Labor Secretary, overseeing a Department of Labor which was opposed to LGBT anti-discrimination protections.
White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus
The current Chairman of the Republican National Committee, Priebus has steered the GOP into its most anti-LGBT position in decades, helping pass its most homophobic policy platform in decades.
National Security Advisor Michael Flynn
The retired US Army Lieutenant has a history of opposing LGBT rights, recently attacking Obama administration for lifting the ban on transgender people serving in the military.
After the Pentagon lifted the ban, he fumed: “Too often, way too often, our troops are instead are distracted by trivial matters, trivial matters about what words to use, what terminology is politically correct and what bathroom door to open up.
Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley
The Governor of South Carolina initially vowed to defend her state’s ban on same-sex weddings amid a lawsuit. (more…)
The Sand Creek Massacre (also known as the Chivington Massacre, the Battle of Sand Creek or the Massacre of Cheyenne Indians) was an atrocity in the Indian Wars that occurred on November 29, 1864, when a 700-man force of Colorado Territory militia attacked and destroyed a peaceful village of Cheyenne and Arapaho encamped in southeastern Colorado Territory, killing and mutilating an estimated 70–163 Indians, about two-thirds of whom were women and children.
Many thanks to Sissy Dude for turning us on to this film.
On May 20th Oregon became the third state to ban the practice of “conversion therapy.” Radical Inconvenient Love focuses on one man’s experience with the exempted Portland Fellowship, his involvement in the effort to ban the practice, and perspective on how he lives with its deleterious repercussions.
Here we go again. Forgetting that the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer Community Is Very Much A Part of The Struggle and the Fight Against Such Nonsense.Posted: November 27, 2016 in Call to Action, for your reflection, Real Food For Thought, Solidarity, We fight on
You know we have always respected Al Marder and our friends at the Communist Party USA New Haven so it saddens me to receive this letter from the US Peace Council. I have worked with them over the years, gone to their events and participated in many a demo and rally with them. I sent them a letter, hope they get it asking if my community the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer community couldn’t or can’t be a part of their united front. Some how for some reason they forgot us. I learned many years ago from one of my mentors that we must never allow anyone to omit, deny, suppress, erase us that we must stand up and try like hell to educate them and damn well correct them. Now I am not saying that we have to build bridges to the political and religious right or to Trump and his fellow travelers but now I am wondering how about folks in groups like the US Peace Council? How about folks in the many other groups? Will they remain silent when we are attacked? Will they repeat history? Do they know us? Do they care about us?
Build a bridge some would say, what they really need is a slap upside their heads. They know full well that we in our community are targets of the right and targets of the new regime that is taking over in January. Whats their fucking problem? They know about our fight for our rights over the years but still they come up with this type of call out. Don’t we struggle for Peace and Justice? I know that I have struggled since 1965 when I attended my first anti-war demonstration. These folks complain about the the distortions of the ruling class but then distort themselves. Maria who also received this letter told me, “I guess we just have to be bigger.” When they call a demo, rally, or picket go with all of our queer glory, flying the rainbow flag, bring our queer signs and make damn sure that Mr. Marder and folks at the US Peace Council know we are not going anywhere. Remind them that we are indeed here, there and everywhere our community is very much a part of all communities. Remind them that we are very much a part of this attempt to bring down this malevolent regime of Trump and his fellow travelers and the whole damn system with them. Dust your self off folks, please dust yourself off, your queerphobia is showing and you have slipped up with this one.
Letter from US Peace Council President Alfred Marder