Category Archives: immigration

Links for Friday 5-02-08

I was gonna write a whole thing for some of these but then decided to just but most of the links out there with a little explanation, unless I get caught up and start to rant.

-Okay, in stupid-ass-lawsuit news citizens of the Greek Island of Lesbos (who are called Lesbians) are suing the GLBT community of Greece to stop them from using the word lesbian because “they claim use of the word in its sexual context violates the human rights of the islanders and causes much embarrassment.” Okay on one hand it’s kind of laughable but yeah not really because what’s the primary assumption this whole thing is working from? The idea that being called a lesbian (in the queer sense) is something that one should be embarrassed about, that it’s something horrifying. It works on the assumption that lesbianism is wrong or unnatural and so being associated with it is something truly disgusting. So all this queerism plus the idea that you get to tell someone how to identify or not identify? Yeah, it’s really not so funny. If the Greek courts do grant this injunction they plaintiffs intend to take this lawsuit international.

– The 21st Carnival of Feminist SF/F Fans is up at Heroine Content. You should go check out all the genius links (and I’m not just saying that ’cause I’m linked to twice) because there are some truly amazing things linked. In fact it took me fifteen minutes to write that last sentence because I kept getting distracted by entries in the carnival. Isn’t that enough of an endorsement to get you to go over there and check it out?

– Yesterday was May Day! and there were protests all over and work stops at ports from San Diego to Seattle in support of immigrants, workers’ rights and against the occupation of Iraq. Couldn’t be at any of the rallies and want to see what it’s like? Well check out the video May Day Mashup a collection of highlights from the L.A. Rally over at Hot Potato Mash. It’s really amazing and powerful.

– Today is Blogging Against Disablism Day! Go check out all the super-cool blog posts and educate yourself on an -ism that’s rarely discussed.  

-Okay most of you know I am not a fan of Orson Scott Card (you’ll also know that’s a bit of an understatement) I find him extremely queerist and misogynistic. A lot of this probably has to do with his Mormonism, there’s also that book he wrote were it’s all about how close-minded and bad liberals are (now I don’t argue there are bad liberals but come on? really?)  Yonmei who back in October ’06 wrote a fantastic five part expose entitled “Dissecting Orson Scott Card” (link goes to first part, link to the next part at bottom) has come back to him with Orson Scott Card is a misogynistic homophobic wanker this time talking about his misogynistic rant against J.K. Rowling where he gets supremely hypocritical and really just…wankery. My favorite part of his crazy is when he takes on J.K. for Dumbledore being gay: What a pretentious, puffed-up coward. When I have a gay character in my fiction, I say so right in the book. I don’t wait until after it has had all its initial sales to mention it.  Not that I haven’t made a similar argument about this issue but coming from Card it’s supremely laughable because yeah they’re gay up front and then they’re horrible castrated or killed or some other supremely depressing circumstances, it’s really a case of pot and kettle. Personally out of the two bad choices I’d rather find out that a character was queer after the fact than know all along and read about horrific things happening to him.  Anyway, go read the post and the comments.


Blog Anti-Torture

Since I just posted yesterday about immigration I decided that I would tie this into the blogging for anti-torture. Because everyone should know that torture is not only a monstrous act that makes us monstrous as a country for condoning it, it’s also a false act. When you torture someone you’re not getting the truth, you’re getting someone in so much pain that they’ll admit to whatever you want them to admit to. It’s an act/tool for those more interested in closing the case and mollifying the public than those who actually want to catch someone whose done something wrong.

Now I’m talking about widening our definition of torture. Everytime we (as in the global community but the West in particular)  turn away a request for sanctuary because we don’t consider being female and hated persecution (America specifically) or being queer and hated persecution (the recent drama in the UK) or being Of Color and hated persecution I(America, again) we are condoning the acts of whatever nation they are trying to escape from, and we are torturers. We are forcing these human beings back to an environment where they are hated, treated horribly and everyday must deal with the fear that they will attract the wrong attention and be killed, that is torture. When we limit immigration from countries going through economic/political troubles but allow mostly white people from the affluent west as many entrants as they please we are a part of torture. Every time we see “ethnic cleansing” (a more sanitized term for the wholesale slaughter of a people) and do nothing, we are a part of torture.

Yes, the physical act of torture is horrendous and flatout evil (and we are committing it everyday in the West) but torture is more than a physical act it’s also an emotional one, it’s filling someone with fear. We in the West talk a good game but when it comes to actually sticking our necks out time and time again we show that we couldn’t care less about what is happening in any place besides our country and even here we only care for certain segments of the population. When we decide to consign someone to a horrible life somewhere else and then profit off how bad that life is (*cough*NAFTA*cough*) we are not just torturers of individual but global torturers profiting off the pain and fear in others and then blocking their attempt to escape that situation.

Realize that by actively doing this or passively accepting this that you are a part of a system that continues to profit off the suffering and pain of those we view as less than (women, People of Color, queer folks, differently abled folks, those of lower socio-economic status, etc.). Acknowledge your part in this and then do what you can to change the world. It can be something as small as writing a blog, writing a letter to your congressperson, taking a day off to participate in a local protest or the larger tasks of taking it upon yourself to organize a protest or create a group dedicated to improving conditions. Everything you do count but if you do nothing, then your just being willfully blind and at that point…well you know exactly what you are.

New Look!

Okay I went through the looks and I always want one with a customizable header so I found this one. Which I really kind of dig. Now the header will likely cycle and change every few months because I couldn’t find one that was just anti-oppression. They were all anti-racism, anti-sexism, etc. not a combination of them all which is what I want. Now I chose this particular header because:

#1 I’m very much in favor of rights for all immigrants, legal & illegal. I march when I can and speak out whenever I can because the arbitrary decisions that allow certain people immigrate legally to the U.S. are and always have been very racialized. Even now just look at the quotas of people enforced on some countries and the way certain countries have been disallowed from immigrating during periods in our shared history. Plus I am the child of an immigrant so it hits close to the bone.

#2 I am very anti- this diversionary tactic the current administration has used to get our mind off of Iraq by waving illegal immigration in our faces like a red cape. It’s even sadder that so many Americans feel for this smoke and mirrors gambit.

#3 After the racism that Larry Niven had the nerve to spout I felt it was important to show not only my support of immigrants but also that not all SF/F fans/writers want brown people gone/dead in the streets. If you’re unaware of his racist (that’s right I said racist, not un-PC, not inappropriate, racist as hell) comments, K. Tempest Bradford has the breakdown over at her journal.