How homonationalism works:
1) The Inclusion Argument: Sexual minorities should call for inclusion in the state through liberal rights of the individual (e.g. gay marriage). The struggle for individual rights replaces the struggle for collective rights, collective resistance, or the transformation of asymmetrical power formations.
2) Good vs. Bad Queers: The call for inclusion is predicated on making the distinction between good queers and bad queers. These appeals argue that most sexual minorities are no different than members of dominant society, and thus that these queers deserve to be recognized as part of the mainstream. Here, bad queers are offered as the undesirable other to help sell the good queers to Canadian society, since bad queers are dangers to society or drains on state resources. They include racialized queers, people who are HIV-positive, poor and homeless queers, drug users, non-status queer migrants, etc.
3) Reinforcing the Social Order: Once the right kind of queers are welcomed into the state, these institutions can use the newly admitted ‘good queers’ as evidence that symmetry has been achieved, effectively dismissing larger concerns over the rights of those who remain marginalized and subjugated. Further, the inclusion of sexual minorities under the terms of individual rights is then used in propaganda by the state to demonstrate how civilized, modern, liberal, and democratic the West is, particularly in opposition to backward, pre-modern, and non-democratic states (such as in the Middle East) – a tactic rooted in Orientalism.
Margaret Atwood, The Robber Bride (via helplesslyamazed)
Again Atwood just gets it.
(So, we’ve gotten a few requests on a brief history and outline of the term Mujerista, so I’ve compiled this together. If anyone has anything to add, please do! And mind, this is in no way a complete description, but something that can get your gears turning. - Jennifer)
The term Mujerista was first coined by Ada Maria Isasi-Díaz. Isasi-Díaz was born and raised to a Catholic family in Havana, Cuba, and went to the United States as a political refugee in 1960. Once there, she became a nun, and did missionary work in Lima, Peru. It was there that Isasi-Díaz first began to think about the sexism, racism, and patronization of the Catholic Church in Latin@ communities (particularly, in poor Latin@ communities). Although many (not all!) Latin@s are Catholic, there is a complicated relationship there because of its history as a colonizing force. The Church has continued this legacy and ignores the “religion of the people,” by use of androcentric Eurocentrism, but that’s a whole other paper. Anyway. Isasi-Díaz gave up being a nun and came back to the United States, where she got her masters and PhD in Divinity. It is around these times that she began to create the concept of Mujerista, and more specifically, Mujerista Theology. She explains that this was vital because of the racism she faced within the feminist movements, and the sexism within Liberation Theology. She would have definitely been influences by early Womanist scholars, Black feminists, and by Chicana feminists. Although Mujerism is focused in Latin@ communities in the United States, it also applies to anywhere that Latin@s are!
So while the term Mujerista began within a theological (Roman Catholic) context, it is not only a religious identity, (much like Womanism). The key aspect of Mujerista Theology is that we, as Latinas, needed to have a theology and feminist movement where we are at the center, and not the Other. As a part of Liberation Theology, Mujerista Theology (and Mujerism in general) has a Liberative Praxis, wherein justice and liberation is the most important move for all marginalized groups. Although this Liberative Praxis is centered in the Latin@ community, it is important that no liberation can be attained if it isn’t intersectional. This means that we have to stand in solidarity with all marginalized identities, and make a new society wherein no one is subjugated to oppression. We, as Latin@s (and other marginalized communities) need to recognize the oppressive structures in our lives, and we need to work to change these systems and learn about how we’ve internalized our own oppression. We must work towards a proyecto histórico in which we are free of these oppressive structures but still have a strong sense of history.
So how can this be achieved? Isasi-Díaz really focuses on the fact that we have to work within the subjective frameworks of all Latinas, which is a huge project because each Latina individual and community works within their own narrative. So this means we have to work to affirm the everyday life of Latinas. Even though struggle is key to our communities, it shouldn’t be exalted. When we say, la vida es lucha, it’s something that we need to recognize as we try to overcome it. Isasi-Díaz really focuses on three characteristics of Latinidad that will help us achieve liberation: comunidad, lo cotidiano, and justicia.
Comunidad is the idea that there can be no change without the support of our communities. Liberation is not individual, even though it is subjective. Isasi-Díaz speaks about how we need to embrace diversity within our communities, and reject racism and ethnic prejudice. This is especially important because Latinidad is not homogenous. Although the focus is on racial identity (we have Afro-Latinas, white Latinas, Indigenous Latinas, mestizaje Latinas, mulatez Latinas, all the Latinas!) this is also important in terms of sexuality, gender identity, ability, class, and other intersectional identities. We have to actively work in solidarity with one another and know that we don’t all face the same oppressions. But we need to support one another and talk about the problems within our community. Liberation has to be for us all.
Isasi-Díaz roughly translates lo cotidiano into “the stuff of our reality,” basically saying that our stories, narratives, histories, and lives as Latinas are the frameworks through which we live our lives. There is an emphasis on all the values, ideals, and dreams that help us in our struggles and in our everyday lives. So this includes all of the actions, discourses, and norms that are established within our communities and within ourselves. This is key because liberation can’t come out of the academy. If your liberative praxis is something that your mother, your grandmother, your aunts, cannot understand because it’s full of technical jargon, then it is bullshit. Being a Mujerista is about our lived lives and practices. If you’re not centering your work in your community, then why are you doing it?
Finally, justicia has to be vital and an active aspect of our lives. Since the ultimate goal of Mujerism is liberation, we have to work and participate in making our world a place where we are not marginalized. Isasi-Díaz names five main forms of injustice that Latin@s face, and that we need to work to overcome. These are exploitation (of our work and our bodies), marginalization (the way we are forced to be the Other within society and our own lives), powerlessness (the lack of authority that we have, and the amount of authority that is pushed onto us by dominant narratives), cultural imperialism (the rejection of our own cultural values, traditions, etc. which leads to internalized racism), and systematic violence (within our communities and against our communities). Again, we also have to work to make sure these injustices are no longer activated against any marginalized community, and we need to be mindful of intersections. This is why Mujeristas want liberation, and not equality; we do not squash our brothers and sisters in struggles in order to be made “equal” with dominant groups.
But why does Isasi-Díaz coin Mujerista over “Latina Feminist”? In short, it is because there is power in naming. To call oneself a “Latina Feminist” shows that we are still the Other, still not the center of our praxis. Some Latina Feminists argue that this is erasing the history of feminism in Latin American countries, and that the term Mujerista really has not political or historical backing, which is equally valid. But many WoC, including myself, have never felt comfortable with the term “feminist” because feminism has never been for us. So I like Mujerista because it is a name that I have chosen, that has been made by a Latina like me, and that gives me comfort. And it makes me feel like I have a space for me, where I’m not, in the words of Isasi-Díaz, “an unimportant adjective.” This is not to say it’s perfect - a lot of work needs to be done and continue to be done for it to be more intersectional and to make sure we aren’t squashing people within our communities and other marginalized groups. But I have hopes for it. High, high, hopes.
And in case this was all too long, and you didn’t read:
A Mujerista is someone who makes a preferential option for Latina women, for their struggle for liberation.
Some introductory texts to check out for further information on Mujerism/Mujerista Theologyand critiques of it:
- "My Name is Mujerista,” Ada Maria Isasi-Díaz
- Mujerista Theology: A Theology for the 21st Century, Ada Maria Isasi-Díaz (Orbis Books, 1996)
En la Lucha/In the Struggle: Elaborating a Mujerista Theology, Ada Maria Isasi-Díaz (Fortress Press, 2003)
- A Reader in Latina Feminist Theology, eds. María Pilar Aquino, Daisy Machado, and Jeanette Rodríguez (University of Texas Press, 2002)
- "Rethinking Latina Feminist Theologian," Michelle A. González, in Rethinking Latino(a) Religion and Identity (The Pilgrim Press, 2006)
It’s the kind of story that you wouldn’t believe unless you saw it with your own eyes. Thankfully, this story was caught on surveillance video, so we can do just that.
Charda Gregory, a 22 year-old hairdresser, had allegedly trashed a hotel room. She was taken into custody by Michigan police, then pepper sprayed in jail, slammed against a wall and strapped down to a chair.
It was then that officer Bernadette Najor took out a pair of scissors and started hacking away at Gregory’s hair.
According to Charda’s lawyer, her hair hair was torn with such force that she suffered some permanent hair loss.
The officer tried to justify her actions in the police report, saying that the hair was a “suicide risk.” Thankfully, this resulted in charges against Gregory being dropped, and Najor being fired. But had this not been caught on video, who knows what would have happened.
Other officers involved are now under investigation.
Watch the video and SPREAD THE WORD! These sorts of abusive cops can only get away with as much as we allow them to.
During the SuperBowl, the Coca-Cola Company aired a commercial to promote their brand as every other mega corporation who has a few million dollars to blow on a 30 to 60 seconds of television airtime. It was a nice commercial titled “It’s Beautiful” in which American people did American things while the song “America the Beautiful” was sung in the background.
You can watch the commercial here:
If you’re a human being you might say to yourself “that was a decent commercial, what’s the big deal?” But if you’re a vile monster void of emotion and compassion you might have realized that America the Beautiful was sung in MULTIPLE LANGUAGES. DEAR GOD, NO. Some people were pissed it was not sung in ENGLISH.
Coca-Cola, the soda pop (YOU NEVER SPECIFIED WHICH ENGLISH I HAVE TO SPEAK) company, tweeted after the commercial aired:
@CocaCola: The Only thing more beautiful than this country are the people who live here.
Coke is probably now realizing how that is not quite true.
Totally not racist.
Damn, Coke. You know shit is messed up when you’ve lost DIABETES BOY…
Yes, speaking foreign languages = terrorists.
Maybe the memo was written in something other than English?
"I’m going to attempt to sound smart and fail miserably."
lmao @ #fuckcoke
'turndaddy' doesn't want “all this foreign shit.”
Which American patriot said that?
Yeah, you “asswholes.”
"foreign decent" lmao.
(psssttt…they already have your money.)
"I’m not racist but I am."
"We (meaning myself and my very small sample of friends/family) speak English…"
"I have no control over myself and will continue to give you money for your sugary, addictive beverage, but know I am unhappy with you."
And here are a few fantastic “your in America” tweets showing how just because you say you can speak English, doesn’t mean you know how to write it:
Poor Brett in the tweet below seems to think people are trying to physically force him to stop speaking English by way of soda commercial…
shit, we were all having so much fun until non-white America came in.
Olivia has no fucking clue that it was “America the Beautiful” in the Coke commercial, not God Bless America. But who cares? REAL AMERICANS don’t need to know the difference between the songs as long as they’re sung in ENGLISH!!
And, she’s not the only one. Apparently, the Star-Spangled Banner is no longer the United States’ national anthem…
The commercial was made by the private corporation, the Coca-Cola Company, so if you don’t like it sir, take it up with the *** free market ***.
This is all just a extremely tiny sample of what’s being said over on Twitter and, shit…
…I didn’t even…
…get a chance…
…to take a look at…
…Coca-Cola’s Facebook page.
And don’t you dare tell Conservative pundits this is going on, they don’t believe you (even when their fellow Conservative pundits are taking part in it themselves)…
Last but not least, however, we have Kasey Knowles. Now, first she tweets out this…
…then, she tweets the classic “non-apology apology” where she actually DOUBLES DOWN meaning even the “non-apology apology” is actually a “non-apology non-apology apology”…
…but why would this random girl feel the need to apologize? It’s not like she represents her good ole’ state of Kansas…
"MISS KANSAS 2013"
Now HE is a role-model
A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: we did it ourselves.
they criticize him because they aren’t brave enough to emulate him.
Wow, this is awesome!
So, you know, you mention the Tupamaros as a “robin hood organization” and don’t mention that they were a Marxist group, because that word is scary to liberals.
And the post kinda glosses over that the country was at the time, under a military Junta.
Jose Mujica is so much better than this photoset
Re-reblogging for the above.
Real leadership, comrades.
Like many others, I am pissed off about Macklemore winning ALL the rap Grammy’s. Nothing embodies the fact that we live in a neoliberal society that believes that post-racialism is real and that homophobia is the last bastion of oppression quite like a straight white rapper winning all the rap awards at the Grammy’s, many of which were for a song he wrote about gay people that perpetuates the racist myth of black homophobia. And while there is nothing new about straight men being rewarded for appropriating and profiting off homophobic oppression, there is something befuddling to me about folks holding up ‘Same Love’ as some kind of liberatory anthem for queers. I don’t want feel-good, watered-down raps promoting the passive acceptance of gay people. I don’t want songs that try to convince straight people that my love is ‘the same’ as theirs so they’ll throw me some crumbs from their table that I don’t want to sit at. I want songs about radical, aggressive self-love in the face of oppression. I want songs about owning my sexuality, my power, and my love, all while telling haters to go fuck themselves, or better yet, to BOW DOWN. This is why Beyonce’s ‘***Flawless’ is my queer anthem.
‘***Flawless’ is a galvanizing feminist manifesta. In ‘***Flawless’, Beyonce exhorts women to take up space in the world, hails the power of female ambition, and implores women to own our sexuality. Macklemore’s ‘Same Love’ is a sanctimonious rap about how queers are ‘the same’ as straight people. Macklemore raps about homophobic oppression, an oppression he has never experienced. He caricatures hip hop as homophobic, when there are queer hip hop artists making better music that speaks to their own oppression. Macklemore’s lyrics imply that ‘gay is the new black!’ by conflating civil rights and gay rights throughout the song. Its racist and appropriative, not empathetic. Not to mention the benevolent homophobia inherent in the assertion that queer people only deserve rights because we’re ‘just like’ straight people, rather than by virtue of our humanity.
I don’t need straight boys to validate my existence. I woke up like this…FLAWLESS.
I admit, I teared up the first time i saw the videos for ‘Same Love’ and ‘***Flawless.’ But while ‘***Flawless’ just kept getting better with each listen, ‘Same Love‘ pissed me off when I listened with critical ears. Take a look at some of these lyrics:
“If I was gay, I would think hip hop hates me.” Macklemore denounces hip hop as categorically homophobic. This line not only flagrantly effaces queer hip hop artists, but also targets a musical genre created by and for people of color for critique rather than the entire culture of homophobia. Hip hop is no more homophobic than pop, country, rock, or any other musical genre, and to pretend that’s the case allows the onus of homophobia to fall on people of color, reinforces the racist myth that people of color are more homophobic than white people (a myth sustained by gay racism, ie. “POC are to blame for upholding prop 8!” rather than the white Christians who spent millions defending hetero marriage), and absolves white people of their homophobia.
“It’s the same fight that led people to walk outs and sit ins.” Macklemore conflates the civil rights and mainstream LGBT rights movement, which ignores queer people of color at the intersections of both identities, harms both movements by insinuating that black and gay are separate categories for comparison rather than people whose liberations are interdependent, and overlooks the unique historical struggles of people of color. He goes on to rap, “It’s human rights for everybody, there is no difference.” There are differences between racial and sexual oppression, conflating the two is ignorant and historically specious at best, white supremacist at worst.
“I might not be the same, but that’s not important.”NO. You are a straight man. Acknowledging straight privilege is INCREDIBLY important. If you want to be a straight ally, probably the first step is to NOT deny your enormous power and privilege over queer people!
“A certificate on paper isn’t gonna solve it all, but its a damn good place to start.” I don’t have the space here to go into all the queer critiques of gay marriage that explain why marriage is a terrible place to start and an egregious focus for a movement, but you can find all those critiques, that people smarter than me have written about ad nauseum, archived, here. When trans* women of color are dying on the streets daily, and queer people are disproportionately subjected to incarceration, homeless, rape, and murder, why the hell would we start with gay marriage? How is gay marriage going to help with the most pressing issues facing our community? Gay marriage is often cited as an example of trickle-down social justice, ie. social justice that starts with the privileged and ignores the issues facing the most vulnerable, marginalized people in a community.
The only redeemable part of ‘Same Love’ for me, is Mary Lambert. That hook is beautiful. Mary Lambert is not insisting that her love is analogous to straight peoples’, or that her struggle as a white queer is analogous to a people of color’s, or that gay marriage is the solution to her oppression, she is simply and authentically singing from her heart about HER love.
When I started critiquing Macklemore on the GF’s Facebook, and posting articles likethis, this , this, and this, a lot of folks (tellingly, these were mostly straight white people) responded defensively. I get it. I really do. We live in a culture that praises ‘allies’, especially white men for acting with baseline human decency. You think you deserve medals/cookies/pats on the back for not hating gays. You think that I should be grateful to you because you tolerate my existence. You like to “feel all fuzzy and warm because there’s someone like you [Macklemore] spreading watered-down positivity rather than some Other suggesting that your passive acceptance isn’t really doing much to change a damn thing.” All I’m asking you to do is to listen. I compiled your most common defenses of Macklemore with my responses:
Macklemore is an ally! Acting like some kind of white savior pioneer who brought the issue of homophobia to hip hop is NOT allyship. Allyship would be checking and discussing your straight privilege, promoting queer hip hop artists, and acknowledging that homophobia and racism are the reasons for your mass appeal. Indeed, the success of same love is due to the white supremacist heteronormative patriarchy that will laud a straight white man for writing an anti-homophobic song, while ignoring, silencing, or further marginalizing queer people, people of color, and queer people of color who write anti-homophobia songs. It’s incredibly frustrating to suddenly see people care about homophobia, something queer people have been talking about FOREVER just because a straight man rapped about it.
But I have a queer/queer person of color friend who loves ‘Same Love!’ Knowing a queer/QPOC person who loves ‘Same Love’ does not render these critiques invalid, in the same way that having a black friend doesn’t mean that you’re not racist. People have conflicting views because marginalized groups are not homogenous, monolithic entities. That doesn’t mean you can ignore or talk over the queer people, people of color, and queer people of color who are critiquing Macklemore; it means you shut up and listen to become a stronger ally. To say that a critique launched by the very people Macklemore is rapping about or denouncing as categorically homophobic is unimportant is quite frankly racist and homophobic.
But Macklemore had good intentions! 1. How the hell could you possibly know this? Are you and Macklemore BFFs? Did he call and tell you that he’s really well-intended when he raps about gay people? 2. Intentions are not impact. Maybe he didn’t intend to be racist or win a bunch of Grammy’s, but that’s what happened.
I expect much resistance to this essay from Macklemore’s defenders, but I have Beyonce in my ears right now reminding me to ‘speak my mind’ and ‘love my haters.’
I don’t need straight boys rhapsodizing about how my love is falsely equivalent to heterosexual love.
I need them to BOW DOWN.
رامى عصام - محناش من دول ولا دول ولا دول
Ramy Essam- We do not belong to them or them or them
"Speak to the people before you speak FOR the people" In the Ethnic Studies Building at SFSU.
Just when you thought your one-sided relationship with her couldn’t get any better, Beyoncé wrote a feminist essay entitled, “Gender Equality is a Myth.” If this makes you want to go back to school and write about the movement that will ultimately be known as Beyoncism, “the interdisciplinary study of how to make feminism the coolest thing ever,” you are not alone.
20 años donde lá lucha de unos pocos es lá burla de unos tantos, una queja de querer ser indigenas y mexicanos y unos tantos malinchistas, un México que en el 2014 esta peor que hace 20 años, donde nadie vê al otro, donde no se desvela para ver un nuevo amanecer, donde nos tenemos que tapar el rostro despues de tanto, para que nos sigam viendo para que lá lucha de hoy, sea el mejor de mañana.!
#ezln #zapatistas #subcomandantemrcos desde las montaña del sureste mexicano #chiapas #mexico
"وجه رصاصك إلى ما شئت من جسدي ، أموت اليوم انا ، وتحيا غداً بلدي"
"Fire your bullets wherever you want in my body, I die today but tomorrow my homeland will live"
- The last status Amer Nassar posted on Facebook before he was shot and killed by israeli soldiers on Wednesday.
الله يرحمك Rest in peace