Lean Wherever, Whenever: another stream of consciousness

April 1, 2014

I just read this article about how women need to get married and run a household – that this is how to make women happy.

I know this is a common belief, but, I mean…it’s April 1st. This is a pretty extreme point of view for an opinion column.

My biggest issue with this article – and most articles, magazines, and blogs for that matter – is that it defines feminism as one-sided.

Let me go back to an experience I had while studying International Human Rights law in Cairo. It was my favorite class in human rights studies I’ve taken because of the true diversity in the group. Don’t get me wrong – Peter Lucas was one of my favorite professors at NYU, and I’ve kept all of the books, handouts, and notes I took from his classes. The makeup, however, of the class was pretty much the same. Everyone agreed, for the most part, what innate human rights were, and what we are guaranteed as global citizens.

But while studying International Human Rights Law in Cairo as opposed to theory in an NYU classroom was completely different. There were a descent number of students from the US, but there was at least one student from every continent in the class. And when the topic of women’s rights came up, I remember one student saying he didn’t want to say his piece because he was afraid of the backlash. He truly believed that women and men have separate roles, and women do not need to be guaranteed certain rights.

This is extremely crucial to understanding the development and execution of international human rights policies.

Which brings me back to my issue with one-sided feminism: it’s not black and white. All kinds of people believe they fight for women’s rights, even though they don’t agree on what those rights are, or what it means. Some believe feminism is about fighting for equality. Some believe feminism is about fighting for the well-being of the greater good. Some believe feminism is for women. Some believe feminism is about moving forward. Some believe feminism is about preserving the past.

There will always be differing opinions of what feminism is; however, you shouldn’t hate on feminism as a whole because you don’t agree with one group of feminists. Just find your own brand.

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Wasted on Fixing All the Problems

November 7, 2011

I’ve been thinking recently (as it usually happens before I write a post) about Battlestar Galactica. I love BSG. I also love my manfriend (as you all already know). I also love the earth. I also love studying human rights. I also have mixed feelings about the army. So I’ve been wondering: can a true hippie really love Battlestar Galactica? (beware: spoiler alerts after the jump.)

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Set to Drain

July 8, 2011

Something else I’ve had on my mind lately is marriage. With all the gay marriage up in NYC and some of my friends getting married, it’s just been weird. I guess the main thing I think about is how conflicted I feel about potentially being married to the military. My manfriend can testify to how much it freaks me out – pretty much every time I get really drunk (due to tequila), I start crying about how I don’t want to be part of the military.

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We Are Taking Over (Get Used to It)

February 26, 2011

Yesterday I was really thinking about the immigrant population. The people who own the Package Store in Little 5 Points are Asian. (Chinese or Korean? Not sure.) Seeing them makes me think “Of course Asians would invest in a liquor store in this neighborhood. It’s a steady business.” And it finally hit me that, other than Mexicans, Asians make up a decent number of illegal immigrants in this country. Does this occur to everyone else? Have I just completely missed that these past few years?

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Sick Beats

January 25, 2011

I can’t help but watch this video and say “I know where that is! I’ve been there! I walked down that street! I fucking walked there!” It’s unreal to me that this is happening.

After 20 years of Mubarak’s “presidency,” I have to admit I’m happy to see this. I don’t know when or how this government will improve, but finally the Egyptian people are uniting. (At least, I hope there are Copts out there protesting as well.) After the food riots and the riots after the swine flu, this will hopefully be the beginning of the end. Solidarity, my friends.


ATLANTA SNOWPOCALYPSE

January 11, 2011

It is day 2 of the Atlanta Snowpocalypse. The grocery stores are low on food. The booze is diminishing. The streets are blanketed in ice and what was once snow. There is no sound but the dripping from icicles to the ground. The city is deadly still, and I will party on through the snow days.

Originally I was going to tell you more about experiencing snow in Atlanta, but I just got an email from a peer of mine regarding photographers’ rights. This story is just wrong and it needs to be heard:

A friend of mine who is a photographer was severely beaten by police officers.  He was taking photographs out in the street, in public, and cops arrested him and charged him with resisting arrest after they smashed his head into the pavement and beat him so badly that he still has a bone sticking out of his shoulder.  He needs an operation but can not afford to take off work for that long.

That said, he asked me if I knew of any groups who fight for photographer’s rights, or resources and laws that clearly explain photographers rights, specifically in regards to public domain and shooting in public on the streets.  He is facing some serious charges in which he could see jail time and heavy fines.  I am not really familiar with laws and what the exact rules and regulations are regarding making photographs in public.  If anyone out there is familiar with this, please pass on whatever information you have or even what direction I may be able to guide him in.  This incident occurred in New Jersey if that is significant in terms of varying state laws.

The current war on photography and the camera seen as some tool linked with terrorism really pisses me off and in the end I think we all should be aware of our rights and know the specific laws regarding photography and public domain.  Perhaps if people have information about this they can reply to this list serve instead of emailing me directly so we all can have this information on file if we ever need it.

When one of us goes down, we must all join together, extend a hand and pick up our brothers and sisters.


Everybody Hurts Sometimes

November 12, 2010

Whenever I talk about finances and education with people, I always bring up the allowance my parents gave me when I was younger. My allowance started at $6, and it was divided into three piggy banks: spending, savings, and giving. Each week I’d get $2 that I could spend on anything I wanted, whenever I wanted (which I could also save up if I wanted to). My savings piggy bank was for something big, like buying a Madame Alexander doll or a Gameboy pocket. And last but certainly not least, my giving piggy bank was for the holidays when we would buy toys or food to be donated to Viola Blythe, a local community service center.

The lesson I immediately grasped was that it was important to save, and I couldn’t buy anything if I didn’t have the money in my piggy banks. The lesson I just realized five minutes ago was that it’s also important to set aside money to donate, and not just around the holidays. I remember I used to volunteer at Viola Blythe at least once a month because, as my dad put it, people need food all year round. The workers there used to complain about the sudden surge of people wanting to help out around Thanksgiving and Christmas. As much as they appreciated the intentions, they would ask them “Why don’t you volunteer at other times during the year?”

So while I’m giving you this message at the beginning of the holiday season, just please keep in mind that this isn’t the only time you should donate food or blankets or toilet paper. Try to make an effort to donate something year-round, whether it be canned food, a warm coat, cold hard cash, or your time. There are always people out there who need help.