Slut Walk London 2011

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US corporate model causing depression

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Hundreds of thousands march for Pride in Rome, await Lady Gaga

From Raw Story:

By Agence France-Presse
Saturday, June 11th, 2011

ROME (AFP) – Hundreds of thousands of people paraded through central Rome in a gay pride parade on Saturday, with many criticising Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi’s government for failing to grant same-sex rights.

“I want to tell the world, Europe and above all Italy, which is a bit closed, that we have the right to be treated like human beings,” said 22-year-old Nikita, who wore a silver dress with high heels and feathers.

Slogans at the parade read “Different People, Same Rights” and “Equality and Human Rights for All!” as people waved rainbow flags in a festive atmosphere.

There were also more provocative displays including a man dressed as a bishop who had the words “paedophilia” and “sex abuse” scrawled on his costume.

“Italy is the only country that does not recognise LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transsexual) rights,” said Franco Grillini, a member of the opposition Italy of Values party and historic gay rights activist.

“Italy should adapt to the rest of the Western world,” he said.

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When liberal groups promote corporate mergers

From Salon:

GLAAD, the NAACP and others have taken big money from AT&T. Is it OK for them to endorse the AT&T-T-Mobile merger?

By Natasha Lennard
Friday, Jun 10, 2011

Politico reported Friday morning that a number of liberal advocacy groups lending support to AT&T’s acquisition of T-Mobile have “no obvious interest in telecom deals — except that they’ve received big piles of AT&T’s cash.”

“In recent weeks, the NAACP, the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation [GLAAD] and the National Education Association have each issued public statements in support of the deal,” Politico’s Eliza Krigman wrote, noting that all these groups had received considerable sums from AT&T (the NAACP, for example received $1 million from the telecom giant in 2009).

A few questions certainly need addressing here: First, why would the opinions of advocacy groups matter in a large corporate merger? And second, do these advocacy groups have any credibility when the merger involves a company that has provided them with financial support?

In terms of the first question, Politico suggests that AT&T wants the groups involved because the merger approval process is inherently political:

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When Parents Reject Their Transgender Child

From the Huffington Post:

Reposted with Permission

Posted: 06/11/11

In my last post, I highlighted an amazing dad who supports his transgender teen daughter. Sadly, parental support is not common. Few parents have heard about transgender issues, and some react so strongly to their child’s gender nonconformity that they force their child to leave home.

I’ve wanted to know more about what life is like for these rejected children, and so I finally cracked open my copy of Cris Beam’s Transparent: Love, Family, and Living the T with Transgender Teenagers. It’s an eye-opening peek at an experience quite different from my own.

Beam met over 50 transsexual kids during the five years she worked at a small high school for gay and transgender teenagers in Los Angeles. The kids “came from as far away as Alabama…and even Hawaii.” She says, “many had been kicked out when their parents caught (their sons) trying on a dress in the bathroom or stashing stilettos in a schoolbag.” Beam describes how one of the transsexual women she connected with, Christina, was treated by her mother:

Gloria was starting to notice her son’s femmy touches…and she wasn’t having it. She thought her son was probably gay, which, for her, was a black mark upon the family, an indictment of her already-questionable parenting. She told Christina she wished she (Christina) would just die of AIDS if she was going to act this way; she called her “whore,” “puta,” “slut,” and, in their nastier fights, would throw her out, once even changing the locks. Later I would learn that Christina attended five junior high schools in the span of two years as she shuttled between foster care and homelessness and her mother’s house.

Gender identity has nothing to do with sexual orientation, but parents often conflate the two. Beam tells another story — the one of Nina:

Nina’s mother cried and cried and said wasn’t there something they could work out? Maybe Nina could just dress up on weekends and leave late at night, when the neighbors wouldn’t see? Maybe they could work together to hide Nina’s girl things from the mother’s new live-in boyfriend, who wouldn’t tolerate girlie dress-up? This new boyfriend had a decent heart, her mother said, and he paid half the rent so, Dios mio, the boyfriend had to stay. The boyfriend helped Nina’s mother afford her youngest son’s good Catholic school. Everybody has to sacrifice something in this life, and wasn’t there a compromise, wasn’t there a way?Nina told her mother no and gently hung up the phone. For Nina, then 16, prostitution was easier.

Of course, not everyone Beam met had been thrown out by parents. Dominque’s mom had been a crack addict since her birth, leaving Dominque to forage for her siblings with little support. Lenora was abandoned by her mother at birth and raised by her loving grandparents in Mexico, but when they felt she could have a better life in the United States, they let her go into the foster care system in the U.S.

But regardless of background, these students were all experiencing the same life. Beam says all knew where to:

… find girls trading secrets about how to shoot-up black-market hormones purchased from the swap meets in East L.A.,…find out about ‘pumping parties’ where a former veterinarian or a “surgeon’s wife” from Florida will shoot free-floating industrial grade silicone into hips, butts, breast, knees — even cheeks and foreheads … and learn which dance clubs let in underage kids and have go-go boxes for dancing.

Beam’s insight into these lives helps explain one of the key findings of the National Transgender Discrimination Survey Report on Health and Health Care:

Respondents reported over four times the national average of HIV infection, 2.64 percent in our sample compared to 0.6 percent in the general population, with rates for transgender women at 3.76 percent, and with those who are unemployed (4.67 percent) or who have engaged in sex work (15.32 percent) even higher.

Unfortunately, resources remain scarce for loving parents who have chosen to take a new course and support their transgender child. One of my favorites is The Transgender Child: A Handbook for Families and Professionals by Stephanie Brill and Rachel Pepper.

But at 200 pages, it can be a lot for a newly understanding parent to digest. Fortunately there is a new option — Helping Your Transgender Teen — A Guide for Parents by Irwin Krieger, a clinical social worker with years of experience. Krieger’s style is gentle and accessible, yet it covers all of the basics. The best part is that, at 86 pages, it’s the perfect intro for parents wanting to go where few parents have gone before — support their transgender child.

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Don’t pray for me

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Why GLAAD Doesn’t Represent Me

Seems like a lot of people are saying that GLAAD doesn’t represent them…

Just like a lot are saying HRC doesn’t represent them.

Could it be that the black tie elites that make up organizations like GLAAD and HRC have become careerists more interested their fund raising and rubbing elbows with the A-List people, straight and gay that make up the elites in Washington DC, LA, SF, NYC etc…

Seems like the rarefied atmosphere of the hot house world of the elites has caused them to lose touch.

It isn’t just things like them cramming the liturgy of the Transgender Borg Collective down the throats of post-transsexual people.

It is more with pretending that all LGBT/T people are of the rich and privileged class/ desirable marketing demographic that organizations like HRC and GLAAD seem intent on selling us as being.

When some of us are homeless, under privileged, throw away kids doing survival sex.

When even some of the best of the legislative actions will do absolutely nothing for that lumpen LGBT/T class that the A-List gays like to pretend doesn’t exist.

All I can say is “Get Equal!” at least they haven’t gotten so big they have sold themselves out to the highest bidder…  Yet…

From The Center For Media Justice:

by Malkia Cyril  In CMJ Home
Posted June 11th, 2011

In the bizarre story of GLAAD’s forced support of AT&T’s takeover of Tmobile, GLAAD failed the queer community. There are three big reasons this makes me hopping mad.

As a black lesbian director of a national media strategy and organizing center, I consider it my fight to ensure that the civil rights groups of the DC beltway represent the needs and dreams of local under-represented communities when it comes to telecom issues. When the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) took it upon themselves to advocate for the AT&T takeover of tmobile, they advocated for the company, not the people they are sworn to represent. I had to ask myself why.

Big Media = Big Money. According to an article published in Politico last week, AT&T gave money to all the civil rights groups that currently back the merger. While AT&T claims their donations and grants to be the result of socially responsible partnership with non-profits, it seems pretty obvious that the ONLY groups that support the merger are ones that have received money from AT&T.

GLAAD isn’t the only group to suffer under the thumb of the expectations that come with receiving corporate money. Just last month, Comcast pulled a grant from Reel Grrls -a small video production organization serving young women- after they tweeted a critique of Comcast’s hire of FCC Commissioner Meredith Baker. These young women raised concerns about reports that FCC Commissioner Meredith Baker had gone from overseeing the approved merger of Comcast and NBC to working as a top official at Comcast. Instead of begging for their grant back, Reel Grrls raised a ruckus and alerted both their allies and the media. Under national scrutiny, Comcast apologized and offered to restore the grant, but Reel Grrls had raised enough money through donations. They set a precedent by saying no to the corporate money and the strings that come with it.

Accepting significant financial contributions from big industry to non-profits links the fate and survival of these organizations with the profit-bearing motives of these companies and the deregulation of corporate America.

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