Bi-Weekly Sexual Freedom Newsletter
Wednesday, April 14, 2021
Top Stories This Week
1. Join us today for some self-care
2. Far-right attacks on porn and sex work;
3. Community-based emergency response programs;
4. Misconceptions about asylum;
5. Permanent support for families;
6. American inequality; and
7. Language used when talking about abortion.
We continue our SMYAL Series with Camilla Barillas as she discusses self-care’s radical history, navigating grief, and understanding how to not fall for corporate self-care (especially when navigating a pandemic).
Register here and we’ll send out a Zoom link!
The Atlanta Spa Shootings Are Fueling Far-Right Attacks on Porn and Sex Work (Rolling Stone)
EJ Dickson reflects on the recent Atlanta shootings and how they are fueling far-right attacks on porn and sex work: “In the wake of the Atlanta massage parlor shootings [March 16] in which eight people were murdered, there was much anguish and sober-minded discussion on social media placing the attack in the context of increasing rates of anti-Asian violence, the exploitation of Asian massage workers, and the historical fetishization of Asian women in general, who comprised a majority of the victims. This discussion was complicated by the fact that officials later revealed the shooter, 21-year-old Robert Long, was an evangelical Christian who reportedly claimed he targeted massage parlor workers because he blamed them for his self-professed ‘sexual addiction,’ sparking further discussion about the deep roots of sexual shame and anti-sex work stigma, or whorephobia.” Read more.
Community-Based Emergency First Responders: Explained (The Appeal)
Patrisse Cullors and Tim Black outline community-based emergency response programs: “At their core, these programs use community-based, trained teams to respond to issues like mental health crises, substance use, and homelessness in lieu of relying upon armed police officers. The teams include medics, crisis counselors, and social workers, and operate independently from law enforcement. Their use is growing around the country. And their existence shows us that we can address challenges that we face without resorting to violence, incarceration, and punishment.” Read more.
Asylum Is Not an Open Question (The Baffler)
Felipe De La Hoz writes about misconceptions of the crisis at the U.S./Mexico border and asylum: “Insofar as there’s any crisis at the border, it’s mainly one of poor advance planning, logistical failures, and bad policy that have created the situation forcing thousands of people to leave their countries of origin in the first place, leaving vulnerable children languishing in horrid conditions and anguished families in an extended limbo with no notion of when they’ll get to apply—merely apply—for humanitarian protections. Migrants are not themselves, nor have they ever been, the crisis.” Read more.
Support for Families Needs to Be Permanent (Common Dreams)
Sung Yeon Choimorrow urges us to fight for permanent support for families: “Almost 1 million mothers have left the workforce since the start of the pandemic to meet the unprecedented demands of caregiving and remote schooling. Meanwhile, other moms are forced to continue to work because their families depend on their paychecks to get food on the table and a roof over their heads. [...] Along with our frustration and despair, so many mothers unable to give their all to either their families or their jobs also blame themselves for their struggles. We have internalized messages from a culture that tells us we have to carry the load of caregiving while simultaneously devaluing our work. We haven’t failed. This country has failed us.” Read more.
American Inequality Was Massive Before the Pandemic. It’s Gotten Far, Far Worse During It. (Jacobin)
Luke Savage comments on American inequality pre- and post-pandemic: “In colloquial speech, ‘the economy’ is often described as a unitary thing. More than any other event in recent history, the coronavirus pandemic has exposed this as pure fallacy: the stock market quite literally soaring even as millions struggle with joblessness and financial insecurity. As of earlier this month, some eighteen million Americans remained on the unemployment rolls, and according to new research, roughly half of households have lost income over the past year.” Read more.
Dear Politicians, Put ‘Safe, Legal, and Rare’ in the Dustbin (Rewire News Group)
Renee Bracey Sherman writes about language used when talking about abortion: “One thing I love about reproductive justice and other radical movements is the ability to evolve. We’re humans—evolution is natural and how we’ve survived. As organizers and political leaders, we have to evolve, learn from our past, and recognize when our good intentions fell short. But in order to do so, we have to shift our perspective and let go of things that no longer serve us. Today, I am asking pro-choice politicians to evolve and let go of ‘safe, legal, and rare.’ It is no longer serving you, and it never served those of us who have abortions.”
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