From Common Dreams: http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2011/05/26-3
by Stephen Leahy
Published on Thursday, May 26, 2011 by Inter Press Service
LEIPZIG, Germany – Europe is facing a hungry future unless it changes agricultural policies and makes farmers the main participants in agriculture research, a new report has found. And there is little hope of meeting Europe’s recently announced goal of reducing the loss of biodiversity in ten years without making those changes.
France is suffering a severe drought but Europe’s seed laws prevent farmers from using a wider variety of seeds that could help them cope, says Michel Pimbert of the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED), non-profit research institute based in London.
“Our seed laws enforce uniformity. France can only plant approved seeds and those new varieties need a lot of water,” Pimbert, the author of the report told IPS.
“Farmers’ freedom to choose the seeds they plant and to use them to develop improved crop varieties and biodiversity-rich farming will be key to Europe’s response to climate change,” says Pimbert.
“Europe’s agriculture policies are preventing us from adapting to climate change. They are also bad for biodiversity since they force farmers to use an increasingly narrow range of seeds and animal breeds,” he says.
Continue reading at: http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2011/05/26-3
According to new study published this week in the medical journal The Lancet, the number of sex-selective abortions being performed in India has been rising and continues to rise. The researchers estimate that between 4 million and 12 million sex-selective abortions have been performed in India in the last three decades. And in the past decade, the study found, the problem has worsened.
Despite legal restrictions making it illegal to use ultrasounds to determine the sex of a fetus, the practice has continued; it seems that these laws are rarely enforced and that private medical practices are largely unregulated. The result is that there are now 914 girls for every 1000 boys under the age of six. In 1961, the ratio was 976:1000. The New York Times reports:
Dr. Prabhat Jha, a lead author of the study, noted that the use of sex-selective abortions expanded throughout the country as the use of ultrasound equipment became more widespread. Typically, women from wealthier, better-educated families are more likely to undergo an ultrasound, Mr. Jha said, and researchers found that these families are far more likely to abort a girl if the firstborn is a daughter.
This is a story about abortion, of course, but it’s also about a much larger problem: the worth of a woman’s life. In a culture where, as the Times notes, sons inherit property and carry on the family name but daughters do not, girls are also more vulnerable to infanticide, abuse and neglect. In this context, it is understandable why some families would prefer female babies over male ones. This preference results not just in the abortion of female fetuses, but in the brutal mistreatment of women who fail to give birth to baby boys.
by Cynthia S. Wright
Leave it to the ole state of Georgia to use drug addiction as the perfect time to take someone to “ex-gay therapy.” Nice to see that our tax dollars are being used for the proper, effective channels of restoring someone’s perceived sexual malfunction, instead of treating a horrible illness, such as drug addiction.
A lesbian in Bartow County is suing the local Sheriff’s department, due to being taken to an “ex-gay therapy” center located in an evangelical’s couple’s home, instead of being taken to drug rehabilitation – which she was originally led to believe.
Sometime in April 2010, Amanda Booker’s family called the Bartow Sheriff’s department to arrest Booker for her drug addiction. Instead of taking Booker to the local psychiatric hospital, the deputies ignored the judges’ ruling and took her to another place, when they started harassing Booker about her sexuality after she began convulsing in the police car. Booker was later taken to the “evangelist” home of Chris and Donna McDowell, where they were given $600 in county funds to convert Booker back to a heterosexual (her drug addiction was not an issue, apparently).
In the lawsuit, Amanda Booker lists off Bartow County, but Commissioner Clarence Brown, Sheriff Clark Milsap and department employees, Mary Mayton, Nathan Gibbs, Pam Ploof and Amanda Pedifer and three other defendants.
The GA Voice reported that the lawsuit alleges that “At all times relevant to action, it was normal procedure, practice and custom of defendants Bartow County, Brown, and Milsap to punish homosexuals and persons holding different religious beliefs.”
Continue reading at: http://lezgetreal.com/2011/05/when-you-say-drug-rehab-we-say-ex-gay-therapy/
Tonight I unfriended Autumn Sandeen on Facebook.
Enough is enough.
The four part trashing of Ashley Love.
The Column Left Hall of Shame
The censorship and constant trashing of post-transsexual women who do not want to be part of the Transgender Borg Cult.
But this weekend has been the final straw.
First the post where Autumn displayed the temerity to tell Janet Mock how she should live her life.
Fuck you Autumn. Janet Mock is young, pretty and successful. Things you will never be.
You are acting like a misogynistic dick telling a woman how she should behave, because you of course are such an authority on living post-SRS in the real world beyond the ghetto gates of Pink Transgender Transfantasia Land.
But you know Autumn, I might well have shrugged that one off as par for the course coming from a member of the Transgender Borg Cult.
But then you put up:
I am working class. I shop at Walmart and have worked in another big box store.
Your classist bullshit is every bit as disgusting as the racism one finds on Skinhead sites.
Truly you have jumped the shark and earned a going away salute from The Fonz…
Looks like the fight over the abusive nature of the relationship that post-transsexual people have with the Transgender Borg Cult is going public.
The comments section of this post on the Dallas Voice Site could use some out-spoken post-transsexual/transgender cult negative folks to make some points loudly regarding the treatment we receive at the hands of the Transgender Borg Cult.
From The Dallas Voice: http://www.dallasvoice.com/transgender-trannsexual-power-words-determination-1078193.html
May 27, 2011
Early this week, we had a What’s Brewing post here on Instant Tea that included information about what was at the time a pending ruling from state District Judge Randy Clapp in Wharton on a lawsuit challenging Nikki Araguz’s right to the pension of her husband, a Wharton firefighter who had been killed in the line of duty.
In that first post, we used the term “transgender” to refer to Araguz, which is the general umbrella term that we use here at the Voice. We based that on conversations with advocates in the trans community who told us that “transgender” is an umbrella term that includes all those who are gender variant, while “transsexual” specifically refers to those who have fully transitioned or are in the process of transitioning.
So I was surprised to see comments to that first blog about Nikki Araguz taking us to task for describing her as “transgender” instead of using the term “transsexual,” and pointing out that Araguz had, in her personal blog, asked that the media refer to her as transsexual instead of transgender.
And then, Michi Eyre sent me an email explaining to me why my rationalization was offensive to her. We began an email conversation then that was quite enlightening for me, bringing home — once again and quite forcefully — the point that words have great power, and that all of us, in every situation, should choose our words most carefully.
Some people might see this as an unnecessary argument: Transgender, transsexual — isn’t just six of one, half dozen of another anyway? Well, no, it isn’t. Because we are talking about words that are more than words. These are words that encompass and describe and express individuals’ identities. Everyone has the right to identify themselves, instead of having someone else tell them who they are. So shouldn’t it follow then, that each of us should also have the right to choose how to express our identity, and how we want others to acknowledge that identity?
So, in hopes of maybe broadening some horizons — including mine, of course — and maybe even opening some minds by helping start and perpetuate and open, honest, respectful and productive dialog, I am, with her permission, reprinting here Michi Eyre’s explanation to me of the difference between “transgender” and “transsexual” and why it matters which one we use.
Wow gee. Who would have thunk it possible?
I mean after listening to various slurs directed at post-transsexual women for the last 15 years or so, I thought I had pretty well heard all of them.
I mean how many terms can you possibly come up with for people who believe women are adult people with vaginas?
I forgot about various adjectives one might add to “Essentialist”.
The Transgender Borg Cult uses essentialist along with separatist as a wink, wink,nudge, nudge smear for post-transsexual women who protest about being erased, used and abused by the cult.
Heaven forbid post-SRS women who actually have vaginas between their legs have the audacity to voice the heretical opinion that being post-SRS is an entirely different life experience from being pre-op. Or that if you haven’t had the experience then you do not know what that difference is really like nor is it possible for you to gain that experience vicariously.
There is a seriously misogynistic streak that runs through the ideology of the Transgender Borg Cult. One that says those who have penises get to make the rules and tell people with vaginas what it is permissible to think or say. One rule says, “No matter how many years a woman who is post-SRS, and maybe even post-transsexual is she can’t possibly know as much about really being a woman as a cross dresser or transgender does.”
No matter how much make-up or pretty clothes you dress that argument in it still comes off as a variation of Virginia Prince’s “How to be a Woman, though Male” or “The Transvestite and his Wife”. It is a misogynistic argument, pure and simple.
As I said last night the Transgender Borg Cult is a place that is infinitely harmful to post-transsexual women as it is a place where we are constantly subjected to verbal and emotional abuse, a place where we are denied a life outside the cult and are especially abused should we choose to leave it or even if we dare to publicly utter an unapproved independent thought.
Gwendolyn Smith chastised Chaz Bono for body essentialism because he, like Max Wolf Valerio had the audacity to talk about the effects of testosterone on his thinking and point of view. Talking about physical changes brought about by hormones and surgery is verboten because, according to Cult Theology it sets us apart and above transvestites and genderqueers who claim identity but do nothing to actually physically change the sex they were assigned at birth.
I was extremely outraged when Autumn Sandeen over at Pam’s House Blend launched a four part abusive verbal assault upon Ashley Love because Ashley Love dared speak her honest opinion regarding the Transgender Borg Cult. All because Ashley strayed from the rigid theology of Gender Über Alles by stating the obvious, transsexual is different from transgender.
Transsexual is about changing your body. It is about changing the sex you were assigned at birth.
It is not about some elaborate theology of gender or identity and presentation.
It is not about a theological word soup made up of post-modern jargon, pseudo new age psychobabble or a shit load of male privileged whining that sounds straight out of Virginia Prince’s book “The Transvestite and His Wife”. The book where Prince teaches CDs how to pick a “perfect wife” (which reads like a manual teaching an abuser how to pick a wife who will tolerate being abused), the whines to use, the victimology and psychological tricks to use.
When I hear the whines directed at post-transsexual women who are tired of being under the androcentric dictates of the Transgender Borg Cult I am forced to ask where I’ve heard these sorts of complaints before. The answer is from gay and lesbian people who were raised in Fundamentalist families and left the Cult. From ex-Scientologists. And from both women who have left abusive relationships and from adults who were physically and emotionally abused as children.
Any how I proclaimed a winner for the most creative invention of a new slur for the Transgender Borg Cult to use on whipping recalcitrant transsexual and post-transsexual heretics back in to line.
The award goes to Autumn Sandeen for the coining of “genitalia surgery essentialists“. I first saw this new term used by Autumn on May 27, 2011 in the comments section of the post regarding Janet Mock at: http://www.pamshouseblend.com/diary/19337/unsolicited-advice-for-janet-mock-the-newly-out-peoplecom-editor
So congratulations Autumn on the winning of this award for the creation of a new, and as far as I know original variation on a common slur used against independent post-transsexual women.