US Politics of Fear

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Europe Sowing the Seeds of Hunger

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

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Sex-selective abortions on the rise in India

From Feministing: http://feministing.com/2011/05/25/sex-selective-abortions-on-the-rise-in-india/#more-33971

By Chloe
Published: May 25, 2011

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.

Continue reading at:  http://feministing.com/2011/05/25/sex-selective-abortions-on-the-rise-in-india/#more-33971

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When You Say “Drug Rehab,” We Say “Ex-Gay Therapy”

From Lezgetreal: http://lezgetreal.com/2011/05/when-you-say-drug-rehab-we-say-ex-gay-therapy/

by Cynthia S. Wright
05/28/2011

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/

Rick Scott, the Republican Governor of Florida Removes “Liberal Looking” Seniors from Townhall

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Autumn Sandeen Has Gone Too Far

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:

Ode To The People Of Walmart

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…

Transgender? Trannsexual? The power of words in self determination

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

Tammye Nash
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.

Continue reading at:  http://www.dallasvoice.com/transgender-trannsexual-power-words-determination-1078193.html