This week, once again, has been hard. The type of change that I, personally, believe in – the slow, careful, loving and not-linear work of creating systems other than the oppressive ones that we’ve been using for so long – feels like it could be swept aside like eraser dust. I am afraid for people, and I am afraid for the rest of the earth. Yesterday in K’jipuktuk/Halifax, I was lucky to be able to stand and sing and cry and listen with people of all genders who want to stand together and keep muddling through. The work won’t be swept aside, it will continue, and I am grateful to the million + people who came out yesterday across the world to demonstrate that.
I was grateful to hear El Jones read this poem,
We are a living wage and basic allowance
And we are waving signs and fists not drowning
We are singing songs of peace and shouting
We are generations of resistance that cannot be put down
We extend beyond elections and who’s in the White House
We have been to the top of the mountain
We have survived from genocides to witch trials
And they could not burn us out or wipe us out
Or push us aside
We are femmes, butches, trans, lesbians, women and women identified
We are standing here with pride
And still we rise, still we rise, still we rise.
I got to hear Ardath Whynacht speak about the need for community care, and Masuma Khan speak about the world she dreams of, and is working to make possible. I got to hear Erin Wunker read the Alice Walker poem below and speak about the need for poetry now and always. I got to see many photos of marches across the world and read thoughts from folks on why they didn’t attend, or couldn’t attend, or why they did so with reluctance. This morning I’m feeling grateful to all of you, and to the work that continues.
We alone can devalue gold
by not caring
if it falls or rises
in the marketplace.
Wherever there is gold
there is a chain, you know,
and if your chain
so much the worse
and sea-shaped stones
are all as rare.
This could be our revolution:
to love what is plentiful
as much as
Thanks to the persistent work of activists over many years, abortion access and other reproductive health care will be available on Prince Edward Island by the end of this month.
Room is going to be hosting its first feminist literary festival on March 11th-12th in Vancouver, and the lineup looks incredible!
Two children in Wapeka First Nation committed suicide this month, after the community’s request for support for mental health services was denied by the federal government.
Some Canadians travelling to the Washington Women’s March were turned away at the border, after being asked “Are you pro- or anti- Trump?”.
“In order to find purpose and affirmation, a Black artist must undermine time and space as we know it to find a place for his or herself.” In Search of Black Atlantis
“It’s time to learn that disability can intersect with every identity. Every. Single. One.”
Children in northern Saskatchewan are missing school because they don’t have the money to buy menstrual supplies.
— CLGA (@CLGArchives) January 17, 2017
“I’ve been a sex work activist for 12 years now and I can’t believe I didn’t insist that we include fair working conditions and fair wages as an intrinsic part of feminism. That is sex work feminism 101. In fact, it’s working class feminism 101—pay women well for work that is feminized, undervalued and often precarious, like sex work.” The founder of the Feminist Porn Awards reflects on founding the event 10 years ago, and what she missed.
On the life of Secwepemc leader, activist, organizer and author Art Manuel, who died last week.
“I’m an eternal optimist and yet, find myself struggling to find even a pewter lining these days. But I remain ever vigilant about the power and importance of Internet culture in serving as our most important form of political and social commentary, for promoting the most inventive creators and highlighting Black creativity. I honestly don’t know if I’d still be upright without Black Twitter.” An interview with Jenna Wortham.
“Sometimes you read fiction just because you want to be someplace else.” Obama on reading
Activists in Halifax are calling for an investigation into the Halifax Regional Police’s use of street checks, which disproportionately target Black people.
“The two richest Canadians have the same amount of wealth as the poorest 30 per cent of the country combined, according to a new report from a group of international aid organizations. The Oxfam report says the wealth of billionaire businessmen David Thomson and Galen Weston Sr. equals that of about 11 million Canadians.” Sure, ok.
— Divest Dal (@DivestDal) January 17, 2017
45 queer and feminist books coming out in early 2017. Something to look forward to!
“In what I am calling the weather, anti-blackness is pervasive as climate. The weather necessitates changeability and improvisation; it is the atmospheric condition of time and place; it produces new ecologies.” Christina Sharpe on the weather.