Diversity of Beauty

It’s nice to see that some people understand that there’s more to beauty than a rigid, near unattainable ideal.

Meet Katie Meade, the beauty industry's newest diverse face. Photo: Beauty And Pinups

Meet Katie Meade, the beauty industry’s newest diverse face. Photo: Beauty And Pinups

Former Special Olympics athlete Katie Meade is the new face of Beauty and Pinups, making her the first woman with Down syndrome to win a beauty campaign.

[…]

She went on, “People see me for who I am and they see me not as someone with a disability, but that I have ability. And I like to try new different things and I inspire women to do that. Beauty belongs to everybody.”

Yes, it does. I’m definitely with Katie on that one.

Time for a National Pee-in

Shutterstock

Shutterstock

An excellent commentary from Mischa Haider and Bruce Hay.

[…]

Collectively and openly, in their rainbow of appearances, they should enter gendered spaces in defiance of the segregationists. The movement needs a ground campaign, a peaceful series of “pee-ins” across the nation that will bring a face and an image to this struggle. Americans need to know that trans people exist and use facilities like any other person, and should not be intimidated or threatened for the way they look. The nation needs to see the diversity of transgender identities safely and peacefully using gendered facilities and standing up to threats to their humanity. They should understand that existence and acceptance of people born with nonconforming bodies is not what threatens the peace and safety of our society, but the violent threats and actions of those who cannot tolerate human difference.

Without such a public campaign that will raise awareness, even laws granting legal protections to trans individuals will do little to change the daily intimidation and violence that trans people face in gendered facilities. Organizations fighting to stem the tide of transphobic legislation should also work to inform the public about the rights of and the risks facing gender-nonconforming people using gendered facilities. Everyone would be well served if signs were posted explicitly stating that intimidation, violence, or threats will not be tolerated against any person in those facilities, regardless of how they look, and that anyone who experiences or witnesses such aggression should report it. Additionally, men who make murderous threats against trans individuals for entering bathrooms with their “wives and daughters” need to be held accountable.

Of course, we must all fight transphobic laws in the legislatures and in courts, tooth and nail. However, we will gain most by pushing hard for acceptance and equality at the same time as fighting off oppression. States like North Carolina are a lightning rod, for their blatant and outrageous legal segregation, but let us remember that even in Massachusetts, a bill granting trans individuals protections in public accommodations is languishing on the governor’s desk. Trans activists and advocates need to show our politicians that the cause for justice will not wait, and that we mean it when we say that the incitements to murder, assault, and suicide must stop now. A broad grassroots ground campaign bringing transgender Americans from across the spectrum openly and peacefully into the gendered spaces where they are comfortable, in front of the nation and the world, will show just that.

Let us resolve to be more visible. All of us, transgender and cisgender, in every shade and stripe of presentation. Transgender and gender-nonconforming people should determine for themselves who they are and which facility they use, and not be governed by the bigotries of the segregationist who, like the Walrus, conceals his violence with nonsense syllables.

[…]

I’m all for pee-ins. Everywhere. People having to pee while they are out an about should not be an issue, and it’s beyond absurd that it’s become such an issue here in uStates.

Mississippi Goddam

Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant

Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant

Miss. Gov. Signs Sweeping Anti-LGBT ‘Religious Liberty’ Law

 

Mississippi now boasts the nation’s most aggressive anti-LGBT law, after Gov. Phil Bryant signed House Bill 1523 into law this morning.

The first-of-its-kind law will take effect in July, and allow businesses, individuals, and religiously affiliated organizations to deny service to LGBT people, single mothers, and others who somehow offend an individual’s “sincerely held religious belief.” It also directly targets transgender residents, effectively claiming that one’s sex assigned at birth is immutable, and will be the only gender recognized by the state.

The Republican governor announced that he had signed the bill in a tweet on Tuesday morning. It was accompanied by a statement contending that he signed HB 1523 “into law to protect sincerely held religious beliefs and moral convictions.”

“This bill merely reinforces the rights which currently exist to the exercise of religious freedom,” the governor’s statement continued. “This bill does not limit any constitutionally protected rights or actions of any citizen of this state under federal or state laws.”

[…]

“Gov. Phil Bryant’s decision to sign HB 1523 into law is unconscionable,” said Jody E. Owens, managing attorney in Mississippi at the progressive Southern Poverty Law Center in a statement. “This newly enacted law — like the draconian anti-LGBT laws in other states — uses the guise of ‘religious freedom’ to justify discrimination, mistreatment and bigotry. It’s the same sort of rationale used by white supremacists in earlier eras to justify slavery and Jim Crow. The estimated 60,000 LGBT people in Mississippi deserve better. We need to stand up for the rights of all people.”

I don’t know what can be said here. I don’t know how to express the grief I feel. I don’t understand how people can be so filled with hatred and fear, yet think they are good people.

https://youtu.be/fVQjGGJVSXc

UPDATE: ‘#1 in bigotry’: Twitter unleashes its wrath.

CIPX and Going Platinum

Nakotah LaRance is a citizen of the Hopi Nation, six-time World Champion Hoop Dancer, and member of Dancing Earth Indigenous Contemporary Dance Creations. He is equipped with a game console, earphones, a Japanese graphic novel, and a dance hoop, to signal that he is both a traditional dancer and a fan of popular culture; he resists easy categorization. Photograph by Will Wilson (Diné/Bilagáana), b. 1969

Nakotah LaRance is a citizen of the Hopi Nation, six-time World Champion Hoop Dancer, and member of Dancing Earth Indigenous Contemporary Dance Creations. He is equipped with a game console, earphones, a Japanese graphic novel, and a dance hoop, to signal that he is both a traditional dancer and a fan of popular culture; he resists easy categorization.
Photograph by Will Wilson (Diné/Bilagáana), b. 1969

 

1992, from the Feather series “1992 represents a future denied us in 1492. A kind of reminder that indigenous people have a future that they can make their own.” Photograph by Larry McNeil (Tlingit/Nisga’a), b. 1955

1992, from the Feather series
“1992 represents a future denied us in 1492. A kind of reminder that indigenous people have a future that they can make their own.”
Photograph by Larry McNeil (Tlingit/Nisga’a), b. 1955

 

Will Wilson is a Diné/Bilagáana photographer who has gone platinum (the platinum photographic process) with CIPX, The Critical Indigenous Photographic Exchange. Another photographer doing the same is Larry McNeil (Tlingit/Nisga’a). You can read more about these artists at http://nmai.si.edu/indelible/.

A major exhibition featuring contemporary photographs by Native American photographers Zig Jackson, Wendy Red Star, and Will Wilson in dialogue with photographs from Edward Sheriff Curtis’ renowned body of work The North American Indian will be at the Portland Art Museum through May 8th. There’s more about the exhibit and the artists here: http://portlandartmuseum.org/exhibitions/contemporary-native-photographers/

Punishing Planned Parenthood

Supporters of Planned Parenthood (EPG_EuroPhotoGraphics / Shutterstock.com)

Supporters of Planned Parenthood (EPG_EuroPhotoGraphics / Shutterstock.com)

Missouri, again. Anyone surprised? I am so sick of these sanctimonious idiots insisting on sticking their nose into every uterus on the planet, looking to punish women people for having the nerve to think they are full, autonomous human beings. Sanctity of life my arse.

Senators in Missouri are moving to hold the president of a St Louis-area Planned Parenthood affiliate in contempt of court – under threat of jail time – for refusing to submit private medical documents.

The move comes after the state general assembly’s committee on the sanctity of life subpoenaed documents from Mary Kogut, the president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of the St Louis Region and Southwest Missouri, in an investigation into her organization.

[…]

A lawyer responded on behalf of Planned Parenthood that the committee did not have the authority to subpoena these documents, and that handing them over would violate federal privacy law.

Despite these legal objections, the Missouri senate will begin a hearing Tuesday to introduce a bill determining whether Kogut should be found in contempt.

Kogut now faces a potential indictment on contempt charges. If charged, she faces up to 10 days of jail time as well as a fine of $300 for, as the subpoena itself states, is the right of the general assembly to “punish”.

Full Story Here.

Chase Iron Eyes to run for congress

YES!

Chase Iron Eyes, courtesy of Last Real Indians.

Chase Iron Eyes, courtesy of Last Real Indians.

TRAHANT REPORTS – Chase Iron Eyes will officially announce his candidacy for Congress today at the North Dakota Democratic Convention.

“I’m running for Congress out of necessity,” he told Prairie Public Radio Thursday night. “I take a look around and I see that our government is broken, and I feel responsible to do my part to try and fix this on behalf of North Dakota.”

Iron Eyes is a member of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, a founder of Last Real Indians, and an attorney for the Lakota People’s Law Project.

Iron Eyes, 38, is challenging U.S. Rep. Kevin Cramer, a Republican.

Cramer made news by opposing provisions in the Violence Against Women Act that recognized tribal jurisdiction over non-Indians. In a 2013 post published on Last Real Indians, Melissa Merrick, a Spirit Lake tribal advocate for victims, told about an encounter with the congressman. “Cramer began what turned out to be roughly 20 minutes verbal attacks directed at me and meant for all Native people,” she wrote “Cramer stated that indeed he did vote yes on the Violence Against Women Act, but he did not agree with the tribal provisions and that he was sure they would be overturned in the Supreme Court.”

Read more at http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2016/04/03/chase-iron-eyes-runs-north-dakota-out-necessity-164009

Donations to Lakota People’s Law Project would be greatly appreciated.

Sanders hires Nicole Willis

Nicole Willis, Confederated Tribes of Umatilla member

Nicole Willis, Confederated Tribes of Umatilla member

On March 21, the day after coordinating Bernie Sanders’ meeting with tribal leaders in Washington state, Nicole Willis, Confederated Tribes of Umatilla member, received the news she had been hired by his campaign as the National Tribal Outreach Director. She is the Sanders campaign’s first and only full-time Native American staff member.

“Senator Sanders and his campaign are deeply committed to elevating the issues of Native American communities,” Arturo Carmona, the National Deputy Political Director told ICTMN. “The hiring of Nicole as our National Tribal Outreach Director is just one more way for the campaign to seriously engage not only politically but also by elevating the strongest policy agenda of any presidential candidate. Nicole was one of the strategists who drove the Obama model of tribal outreach and we are now taking that to a whole new level with this campaign. Bernie 2016 is setting a new standard for campaigning in Indian country.”

Full Story Here.

Sanders has at least recognized there are indigenous people in this country. A few more stories:

vancouver_native_leaders_becky_archibald_and_roben_white_with_sen._bernie_sanders_march_20_2016_-_courtesy_roben_white

American Indian leaders in Vancouver meet with Sen. Bernie Sanders at the first stop of the Democratic presidential candidate’s push towards Friday’s Democratic caucus. Pictured from left are, Becky Archibald, Roben White and Sanders. White is gifting Sanders with a Pendleton blanket, ledger art, and a necklace for his wife, Jane Sanders.

Bernie Sanders Expands Native Inclusion.

Photo courtesy of Nicole Willis and the Bernie Sanders Campaign: Bernie Sanders meeting with Yakama Nation tribal members

Photo courtesy of Nicole Willis and the Bernie Sanders Campaign:
Bernie Sanders meeting with Yakama Nation tribal members

Full Story Here.

 Presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders, center, and Tara Houska, left, during a Keep It In The Ground Act press conference in Washington, D.C. on November 4, 2015. On Tuesday, Houska was appointed to the position of Read more at https://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2016/02/24/tara-houska-ojibwe-named-native-american-advisor-bernie-sanders-163531 Courtesy Jeff Malet, dailysignal.com

Presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders, center, and Tara Houska, left, during a Keep It In The Ground Act press conference in Washington, D.C. on November 4, 2015. On Tuesday, Houska was appointed to the position of Courtesy Jeff Malet, dailysignal.com.

Tara Houska, Ojibwe, Named Native American Advisor to Bernie Sanders.

14.

franklin-pierce-whitehouse

Courtesy Whitehouse.gov Franklin Pierce was a staunch believer in Manifest Destiny and the acquisition of land, he took office in 1853 with his eye on Alaska, Hawaii and Cuba.

Franklin Pierce: Fierce Protector of White Settlers in ‘Indian Territory’

Editor’s note: Voters this year will elect the 45th president of the United States. This is the 14th in a series of 44 stories exploring past presidents’ attitudes toward Native Americans, challenges and triumphs regarding tribes, and the federal laws and Indian policies enacted during their terms in office.

[…] Also in 1854, Pierce signed the Kansas-Nebraska Act, organizing the Kansas and Nebraska territories—comprising parts of present-day Colorado, Kansas, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wyoming—and opening them to white settlers. The bill paved the way for a transcontinental railroad joining Chicago with California.

The biggest obstacle to the railroad, however, was more than 10,000 members of the Kickapoo, Delaware, Sac and Fox, Shawnee, Potawatomi, Kansas, Ottawa, Wyandot and Osage tribes. These residents had rights to the land guaranteed by treaties, yet the federal government was already chipping away at them. […]

Full Story here. The President Series is here.

Sea and Light

Thanks to Ice Swimmer. I miss the sea something fierce, it’s always good to see photos. Click for full size.

Bladderwrack and reed debris. © Ice Swimmer

Bladderwrack and reed debris. © Ice Swimmer

 

Sailing in Xmas. © Ice Swimmer

Sailing in Xmas. © Ice Swimmer

 

Sun low over Toolonlahti. © Ice Swimmer

Sun low over Toolonlahti. © Ice Swimmer

 

Sunset from Merisatama. © Ice Swimmer

Sunset from Merisatama. © Ice Swimmer

 

Sunset from Siltasaari Hels. © Ice Swimmer

Sunset from Siltasaari Hels. © Ice Swimmer