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Bi-Weekly Sexual Freedom Newsletter
Wednesday, May 26, 2021

Top Stories This Week

1. #SFS21 Vicki Awards & Leather and Kink History 
2. Transitioning during a pandemic;
3. Sex education and social change;
4. Chronic illness and a post-pandemic world;
5. ICE detention of minors
6. Sex workers’ needs;
7. Punishing abortion patients; and
8. Supporting young parents.


Two Programs This Week! 

Earlier this week, we celebrated our Vicki Sexual Freedom Recipients online. It's not too late for you to enjoy the festivities. Watch the recording here!

On Thursday this week, Race Bannon and Hardy Haberman lead a discussion on what they know best, history and insight into the leather and kink communities. Get registered here!

Colorful outline of a body

(Ohni Lisle)

The Joys and Fears of Transitioning During a Pandemic (them.) 

Serena Daniari writes about transitioning during a pandemic: “Able to escape the usual pressures associated with transition, like public ridicule and invasive questioning from the outside world, many trans people were able to make progress in their journeys during quarantine that may have otherwise been impossible and unrealistic. Now, forced inside for over a year and counting, they are excited to present themselves publicly, but not quite sure when they will be able to do so safely.” Read more.



(Getty Images)

How Sex Ed Has the Power to Make Social Change (Rewire News Group) 

Alison Macklin and Dan Rice detail how inclusive sex education has the power to create social change: “If every young person in the United States received sex education according to the National Sex Education Standards, we would raise a community of individuals empowered to change social systems: a population of people who are tolerant and caring, who are actively working to dismantle racist systems, who are in charge of their own bodies, who know how to advocate for their sexual health and sexual pleasure, and who know how to hear and respect a ‘no.’” Read more.



(Anthony Tran/Unsplash)

Outside Blues: Chronically Ill People Face an Old New Post-Pandemic World (Bitch Media) 

Woodhull recognizes that without care, community, and comfort, people with disabilities cannot enjoy their fundamental human right to sexual freedom. Fortesa Latifi shares her experience with chronic illness during the pandemic: “Now the end of the pandemic is near in the United States and friends will ask me to meet in crowded, loud buildings again. People are getting vaccinated, businesses are reopening, and classes are resuming. I know how many people have been depressed beyond measure after living inside for a year. I’m glad life is resuming, but I’m also painfully aware that I’m about to start disappointing people again. For the past year, I didn’t have to.” Read more.



(Getty Images)

The ‘ICE Kids’ (The Nation) 

Sexual freedom includes the human right to family. Through the violence of incarceration and surveillance, ICE threatens that right. Ashoka Mukpo investigates ICE’s detention of teenagers: “On a cold, rainy night last November, Bastian Rodriguez spent the first hours of his 18th birthday inside an Immigration and Customs Enforcement van. Rodriguez was aging out of the Cowlitz County Youth Services Center, a juvenile jail in Longview, Wash., and was on his way to the Northwest ICE Processing Center, a privately run immigration detention facility for adults in Tacoma. He had already spent more than two years in ICE custody. [...] Until recently, Rodriguez’s long detention under ICE control had been rare for someone his age.” Read more.



(Scott Heins/Getty Images)

Sex Workers Want More Than Just the Right to Work (Slate) 

Mary Harris interviews Melissa Gira Grant about sex workers’ needs: “A few weeks ago, Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance announced that his office had decided to stop prosecuting prostitution. This was widely reported as a victory for sex workers, and indeed it is a shift, considering how past initiatives that were ‘doing something good for sex workers’ often just led to further crackdowns. But Melissa Gira Grant, a New Republic staff writer who has covered sex work activism for more than 15 years, saw the new rule a little differently. She says it won’t do anything to change aggressive police behavior toward sex workers and that the city’s continued prosecution of people who buy sex will only perpetuate harmful stereotypes.” Read more.


(Pool/Getty Images)

Texas Has Found a Creative New Way to Punish Abortion Patients (Slate) 

Mark Joseph Stern explains Texas “heartbeat bill,” Senate Bill 8: “...Texas cannot actually enforce the ban under Roe, which prohibits state officials from banning abortion before viability. But lawmakers believe they have devised a workaround to Roe’s roadblock: Rather than empower state officials to implement the ban, they have granted virtually every private citizen the right to sue anyone who ‘aids or abets’ an abortion after six weeks of pregnancy. The goal is not simply to outlaw abortions, but to terrify and punish patients by bankrupting those who support them.” Read more


(Getty Images)

Support, not Stigma (Woodhull’s Sex & Politics Blog)

Tess Joseph comments on young parents and the fight for sexual freedom: “As members of the sexual freedom movement, we are committed to working toward a world where people of all ages have access to sex education, contraception, quality healthcare, childcare, and more. We know that all parents need resources, and teen parents often need more than most. We also know that while many parents face judgment, from how they raise their children to the structure of their families, teen parents face judgment simply for being parents.” Read more.


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