Good morning y'all. Ready for those links? Okay. First up, today's video. It's about Brixton and music in the 1970s which is sadly, still pertinent. Oh, and this is some context for you for the next time you hear The Clash's Guns of Brixton.
Next, here's this week's action items. Jen Hofmann's Activism Checklist.
Literary/Entertainment: “Stop turning superheros into social justice warriors.” They’ve always been sjw. An essay by Elsa Sjunneson-Henry Act Up, Rise Up. And hello hot mess: Marvel Releases Statement On Controversial X-Men Gold Art. (Skip the video. It's not relevant. Go straight to the text.) And gaming company Green Ronin is searching for a few great writers who identify as women. This naturally angered a certain sector of the internet. [eyeroll] I say, sock those assholes in the eye. APPLY. :) Kate Elliot talks about The narrative of women in fear and pain. For the record, her points are exactly why I didn't use Liam's abuse to titillate the reader. I told his suffering in terms of its psychological ramifications. I detailed his emotional state and the physical aftermath. That's why so many find that scene so difficult. It tells the truth about sexual abuse. Another article: Do Better: Sexual Violence in SFF. And MARVEL'S DIVERSITY PROBLEM says things I agree with and things that I don't. McSweeney's Gender Bias Riddles. Mr. Tingle strikes again. Or should I say Dr. Tingle? :)
General: And racism rears its ugly head big time with How Jeff Sessions wants to bring back the war on drugs. If you don't understand why the "war on drugs" is/was racist you need to do some homework. Read the whole article. Rhetoric/spin is nothing--particularly when the bullshit about higher murder and crime rates is a giant LIE. The results are telling, and when a majority of those in prison and a major of those serving long terms for first time offenses are persons of color: the policy is racist. Trump asked African Americans what they had to lose. For this rural Kentucky community, the answer is tangible. Applying to College as a Wheelchair User. Shonda Rhimes, creator of ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ and ‘Scandal’, joins Planned Parenthood board. And if you're an active Trump supporter, statistically YES YOU ARE A RACIST. If you're a quiet Trump supporter, you're still a racist. You're just not aware of it. MARINE CORPS UPDATE ON ADDRESSING GENDER BIAS, ONLINE MISCONDUCT. Advertisers flee ‘The O’Reilly Factor’ amid sexual-harassment claims against host.
And personal story about boat stuff under cut.
Last weekend was another a yacht race--the Governor's Regatta to be exact. The social dynamics on Sunday were different than that of my first trip out on the lake. First, the 70 year old wasn't there. So, the blatent sexism was right out. Second, my good friend's wife was there. So there were two women on the boat. That made me far more comfortable.
Now for some hard truth. Most of my life, I was the hot chick. I was thin and tall. I was flat-chested, however, which put me below any other good-looking woman with bigger breasts in the social pecking order. I never understood on a conscious level what was going on, but this was the reason why other women made me feel inferior. The betrayal I perceived (not that it was actually there necessarily) was because I was instantly ignored. I wanted to get along with the other woman. I did. But the dynamics of the situation and my own insecurity would always work against me. I didn't know what to do to circumvent the problems. I wasn't smart enough or wise enough. So, the whole situation became a two-fold competition. I faded into "one of the guys" to avoid competing in a contest I wasn't going to win, and she'd be the one the men vied against one another to win. Not a comfortable place. Why? Because being "one of the guys" meant they'd speak freely. The misogyny would pop to the forefront. In order to maintain my "disguise" I couldn't say anything or risk being victimized.
Over time, I've grown less and less tolerant of misogyny, racism, agism, ablism, homophobia, transphobia, classism and so on. (I'm still working on myself, mind you.) I'm older now. I'm married. I'm invisible. This makes being invisible/one of the guys problematic. As I discovered in my dojo, I had to remind them over and over that I was there until they either got it or other women showed up. (Mostly, other women showed up.) Now that I think about it, all of this explains a lot of what happened in my gaming group a couple years ago. [sigh]
So, boat. My friend's wife is there. She's a mother of two. She's younger (not invisible) and unavailable. The white dudes were outnumbered. The dynamics on the boat changed, utterly. All of the sudden, the crew were operating like a team. We were helping one another out. It was the best time I've ever had on the lake. I LOVED IT.
 This is Austin. It sounds way more hoity-toity than it is, frankly. No one dresses nice, for a start, and they served beer. BBQ, and burgers on paper plates for another.
 I was a tomboy for three reasons: First, I wasn't conventionally pretty and was consistently mistaken for a boy until I was 18. I had curly hair in an era when white women used to iron their hair. As stated before, I was flat-chested. I also had brown eyes, brown hair, and olive skin. Second, due to my home environment, identifying with the oppressor was a far superior means of surviving than being the victim. Since the environment was dangerous for females, the stakes were high. Third, I was taught that women didn't have their own personalities--they assumed the interests of the men they were with.
 That made identifying with men second nature, but it also made trying to relate to others of my gender extremely difficult. We simply didn't have anything in common but our oppression. Other tomboys were my only option. That worked fine when I was pre-pubescent and sometimes it worked later in life. However, once the hormones kicked in it resulted in isolation more often than not because as all the tropes demonstrate: THERE CAN BE ONLY ONE.
 The other woman at that time was attractive but married. She and I and the whole group ended up in a bad feedback loop for a while when she got a divorce. Her insecurities and internalized crap about men conflicted with my insecurities and the fact that my role in my family when I was growing up was The Mouth™.
 As the family therapist phrased it years before. I was the one who said the shit that no one wanted to hear when the family was under pressure of any kind. Thus, I got punished and blamed for everything because, you know, if we don't acknowledge there's a problem then it doesn't exist. [eyeroll]
is a Science Fiction and Fantasy author living in Texas.