Monday, March 31, 2008

Her writing seems full of typos...but you know I don't fucken care...

We're moving out of International Wimmin's Month, tick tock tick tock tick tock...

As I count 'er down, I recommit to complicating conversations about what it means to be woman, queer woman, Black woman, poly woman, birthing woman, loud woman, political woman, fat fleshy woman, exile woman, fierce woman, deviant woman, sexually perverse woman, emotional woman, adult body containing child and teenager personalities woman, powerFULL woman...brave woman...often bad by herself woman. :)

I thought about the different posts I had written this month about sex work, attempting to do my part to complicate, broaden, problematize some really simple conversations I'd seen happen in blogland dating back to before the spitzer idiot scenario and continuing on right through to present day.

Hmmm...
Does my insisting on participating in conversations among rad fem political wimmin about sex work, wimmin's sexual exploitation, rape, patriarchal relations, sexual abuse, the erotic, embracing our erotic, capitalist systems where every interaction, not just sex work is perverted into a transaction...
Does my insisting on utilizing this as context in which to discuss a radical intelligent grounded full exploration of sex work mean that I condone the exploitation of wimmin in any way shape or form?
No.
What it does mean is that I don't want to be ruled by knee jerk, ill thought out, emotionally infused, flat, limited, exclusionary, iconic responses to any feminist issue.
I don't want to be ruled by my ill thought out reactions or by those of other feminist wimmin.
This is a revolution we're trying to build on, not a vigilante mob ruling posse.

Deep breath in...
Even deeper thoughts.
Substantially deeper conversations...please dear goddess...please give me some tough, creative, fearless, irreverent, insightful, bungee jumping conversations where I can break out in a sweat as I assist other wimmin in getting all hot and bothered in the brain, wracked and moved by the implications of what it means for us all to bring everything, every last blasted thing we've got to the pot, stirring it and seasoning it and accepting each other's dares to down massive spoon fulls of it as we are completely and utterly transformed by the coming together, no longer recognizable even to ourselves, walking with bits and pieces of each other absorbed and morphed, embodying passionate movement toward change in the flesh.

That is my wish, my fervent desire...

I don't know how many times I've posted parts of this woman's fucking amazing writing. Every time I read it I get goose bumps and headaches and wanna pee myself and burst out laughing and clapping and dancing and flailing appendages everywhere. Wonderfully sweet...in a jagged rusty edge sort of way. :)

Don't step back. Step in.

Slut manifesto

We think that we,re free, like free will, freedom, independence, but when we fuck somebody we,re really giving "ourselves" away for free. Women deal with this in a lot of different ways but essentially i think there are two responses. One is to try to work within this sexual market sysytem and another is to try and remove yourself from this system.

IN THE SYSTEM

Women that get married, women who have boyfriends and serial monogamy relationships, women who directly sell their pussy for money, are all acting to get the most value from their status as a commodity. These are all good ways of managing the value of your pussy, although being a profesional pussy seller is the most risky because it ismore likely that men will be hostile to you. Because uou directly acknowledge your commodity status you are "cheapened" and more likely to be raped, and your rapists or even murders will get away with it. This is so disgusting and so complicated that i could rant about it for pages and pages. I,ll save it for later. Sooooo..lets go on to..
Women who promise a man that they won,t fuck anybody but him are exchanging the ownership of their pussy for relationship security( a sense of being loved and having someone to love, a promary attachtment for most of their intense emotions) and heterosexual privelege. They must convince everyone that their pussy is not "cheap"; it,s not for everyone. They bestow its valueableness on the (one man at a time)man of their choice like queens conferring a favor. In fact, even without getting a relationship contract, women with a "good reputation " can easily get a man to fuck them(because it,s assumed that men will want to fuck any available pussy) and then expect the man to treat them AS IF THERE WERE SUCH A CONTRACT. After they have fucked, then the good reputation, high pussy value can assume thta the man will treat her with respect, he will not fuck anyone else, and he,ll maintain the highest standard of truthfulnes - and also share his privileged status with her, i.e. she gets to be introduced into his public and private social kinship circles as His Girlfriend, or to share his material wealth or goods. If he doesn,t do thse things, then the high value women can be outraged and tell everyone possibel that the man has treated her badly. She is now justified in most people,s eyes, in wreaking havoc upon the man in any way available to her. She can hit him, try to kill him in some melodramatic public way, slash his stores, destroy his possesions, and slander his character. Usually the high status pussy woman can do all this, but she still runs the risk of being completly dismissed as being a Crazy Bitch. But anyway most women do,t do anything so active - they turn all hostilty in towards themselves and so threaten suicide, get self-destructive or depressed and blame this man for all their troubles. Being self destructive shows everyone your,re a good girl who has been destroyed by this evil bastard person who fucked you! of course, this implied Relationship Contract works both ways - once they,ve fucked, if the man supects that the woman has goven her pussy away to someone else he can do all of the above things, he can beat her up, and do a lot of the these things to imtimidate her, convince her that she is now a Low Status Cheap Pussy Woman, and he can easily gain even more ownership and control over her now. Or, he can do it all as revenge and refuse to have anyhtign to do with her and evreyone will feel he,s perfectly justified. He can do all the evil shit i mentioned above up to murder, and GET AWAY WITH IT. Men are almost always assumed to be justified in their jealousy, while jealous women even if they are 100% pure high status Pussy, can be easily dismissed as Crazy Bitches.

OUT OF THE SYSTEM

Women who declare themselves lesbians and women who never fuck anybody are trying to remove themselves from the sexual market sytem. By " becoming a lesbian" a woman is declaring that she's not available to men anymore as a pussy. She only gives her pussy to women. Everything is supposed to be differnet from that instant where it is decided to not fuck men ever again. This is the crucial deiffernece between women who call themselves Bi and woemen who call themselves Dykes or Lesbians. If you say your,re bi, all men still treat you like pussy, i.e., you are still available to them. If you say your,re lesbian then a significant percentage of men will just leave you alone becaus they consider you out of the market, unavailable. They might might think of you as competiton even, a fellow consumer of pussy.
it is asuemed that all women of equal status - equal " oppressed" satatus, all supposed to be loving healing wemoon sisiaters ad nauseum. This assumption is obviously untrue as women may all be Pussy but they certainaly come from deifferent economic backgrounds and racial/ethnic backgrounds, one woman might have a great job and be very employable while another woman has been bankrupt and never finished school and is raising 3 kids by herself.
There is another big essentializing trip which says that, because your,re a lesbian and outside the system, you aren,t going to be an asshole to your lover like men and women are to each other. Since ostensibly neither of you own the other there is supposedly no "power relationship" and so no jealous rages bout pussy ownership. You,re outside the system forever, since you,re lesbians, there is no danger you will act "like a man "and fuck around, since women are supposed to be more naturally monogamous, and ther,s no danger you,ll fuck a man,since then you,d be "a bisexual" and Not a lesbian.
Unfortuantely this just doesn,t work. In practice either it,s assumed that one woman ina couple relationship will act "more masculine", or both women are making the same assumptions about each other. Very butch dykes act like they,re Not Pussy, start to act like men and compete for the femme dyke pussy, they commodify thier sisters by pretending they aren,t a commidty themselves. They have to guard their non-pussy status by not letting anyone know they get fucked or that they are attracted to other butches. Androgynous or "cult of natural wimminhood" lesbians are just as bad if not worse. These relationships have the WORST "dyke drama" relationship problems because the validity, the meaning, the surival of the relationship completly revolves around both women faithfully pledging their pussies to each other. The least suspicion of one women acting femme or butch or flirtious or holding back information about private thoughts, is grounds for a jealous fight over exactly what she is doing or thinking of doing or might someday do with her pussy!
And to top this off, no matter how much a lesbian might be firmly committed to Not being Pussy within her own lesbian community, in the eyes of many men, she will ALWAYS be Pussy. We,ve all heard men who are convinced that lesbians woudln,t be lesbians if they,s been fucked by HIS awesome rod of power. They just haven,t had the right one yet, heheheh..says Dickhead Bubba. Men that rape sure don,t stop to check if your,re a lesbian first. And lots of more law-abiding men completly infuriate lesbians by not respecting their declarations in other ways - repeatley trying to seduce then for example. Because of their inaccesibilty lesbians are precieved as High Status Pussy - what man wouldn,t brag about fucking a lesbian? What better proof of his manliness( & for countercultures what better proof that your a "good man" or "feminist" if a lesbian accepted your evil penis? its,s likea fucking trip to meccs or being blessed by the pope!)
There is also the fact that no matter how lesbian you are you can always change your mind. You can say till your blue in the face that your born lesbian and that it is hormonal brain chemistry or genetic thing determining your sexual orientation. But you,ve still got the pussy and you can still decide to fuck a man.
Now personally i call myself a dyke or a lesbian, I flaunt my dykehood to the world, and accept the lowered status that i get from it in this culture. I fuck men and have emotional attachtments to lots of men as well as wome and so by amybody,s defintion i;m bi. I,m not trying to hide that and i get lots of shit form lesbians and get kicked out of lesbian communties because of it. But by declaring myself lesbian, at least some men and women will think of me as unavailable pussy. Men are forced by their own sterotypes to think of me difeerently. Women that are vaguely dissatidfied with being nominally "bi" or "bi curious" yet are ina monog relationship with a man, will hopefully be inspired by me or will at least have me as a visible queer to talk to.Saying that i,m queer or dyke, just carries a hell of a lot more social meaning to people right away, than saying that i,m bi and then expalning my whole philosphy of life gender and the universe. Saying that i am a slut, on top of that, is usally very challenging to people who think of "slut "as a very negative term. They just can,t figure it out. They either decide right away that i,m stupid or naive or they ask me lots of questions and their world view is shaken somewhat which is generally a good thing! That�s why i would rather expalain why I am a proud slut to somone, than expalain how I,m a bi-dyke, it,s just more usefull propaganda.

Back to value and the market system. The women who doesn,t fuck anybody, who is a virgin or celibate, is not going to have her boundaries respected any more than the lesbian. As the Ultimate High Value Pussy she will be hotly pursued by more men than anyone. In fact this is so true that many people asume that a celibate is not sencerely committed to being celibate. They are preceived as "holding out" for the best man around, treying to make the competiton more intense. Worse, the longer they insist on remaining celibate the more they will be accused of being deliberately cruel, or unfelling. or unnatural, or unwomanly, to the men who declare their love and promise anything and work terribly hard to get to the woman,s prized unavailable Pussy. She might eve turn into a Ice Queen or a Bitch Who Thinks Her Pussy,s Made of Gold. In which case the man is practically justified in raping her. It,s not even just men who keep all these shitty ideas going, women,s romance novels are fucking full of them, thses celibate virgin women who are so fiery and powerful and determined and of course beautiful, and finally the man pretty much forces them, and they discover they like it, and they become so happy and fullfilled and filled with the penis of the man they used to hate, that the novel ends.

My point is, there,s not really any way out of the market system. So, we,re back to where we were stuck in the last part of the Slut Manifesto. If all this is even partly true, things look hopeless. What can we do? Is there any way to be a Free Pussy in the best sense of the word? Can we have a Pussy Revolution? The Revolting Pussies?! The RPA, Revolting Pussy Army? Labia Liberation? at least we could get some good puns and acronyms out of this...
And again, I get to pretty much the same place. The only thing to do is talk about these ideas a lot and be as conscious as possible about them, and try to build communities where you,re speaking the same language about sex and gender and fucking and releationships, or at least, one where all thses things are flexible and problematic. Because no matter what one person theoretically proves or decides or believes all this stuff is controlled by what meaning people give it in a community or larger society and I think you have to start with small communities of shared meaning and spread from there. Unless you have a fuckload of people and machine guns and stuff, to take over a small country and be its tyrant.

A rant by Lizzard Amazon <
Goddess bless her. She's messy and wordy and brave and, and, and...really messy. :)






if what you're reading here grips you, holds you, fascinates you, provokes you, emboldens you, pushes you, galvanizes you, discomfits you, tickles you, enrages you so much that you find yourself returning again and again...then link me.

Friday, March 28, 2008

I really appreciate the bravery with which this writer discusses...

Conflicts and oppressive dynamics brought on by the pitting of (those constructed as) coloured South African people/(who we might want to construct as)people of colour against (those who have consciously decided to call themselves) Black...Black South Africans.

It adds dimensions to apartheid and to the "post" apartheid era that many people are not willing to tackle. If we were to tackle how light skinned people of colour were/are pitted against dark skinned Black Africans over there, holy, we might have to take another look at what happens over here in our own backyards, especially in the area of wimmin of colour (meaning all wimmin who experience any form of race based oppression) organizing in real time or in blogland against racism and white domination.

We'd have to recognize that there are definitely parallels and that something fundamental about how we literally see our leaders, who we recognize as leaders and why, who's voices we will listen to and whose we won't, needs to radically shift if we actually want to concretely address racism as a pervasive influence in our communities, our families, our relationships, our friendships, our alliances and our movements.

We'd have to realize that racist relations don't just center on people of colour and our interactions with white domination or with individual people who have white privilege. It's also about how we interact.

I just love it when I'm defined as big bad Black girl for choosing to ask questions of women of colour, non Black wimmin of colour who come close.

I really do appreciate the ways that I am questioned about my commitment to various causes because I choose to not be in denial about the ways that light or non Black is always considered more attractive and enticing and intelligent than Black.

I really am completely down with the fact that racism has an economic component that purposefully rewards people of colour when the make examples out of Black people, when they cry out in fear of Black wimmin, when they decide that it is Black people like me not people of colour not women of colour like them who are a detriment to our movements for change, who keep our movements in the shallows, who make sure that the changes our movements embrace never go too deep.

Sweet.

Shallow change! Up with limited change! Power to some people. :)

I'm all about it. Really, I am. (unh...dear intrepid reader...don't worrry about commenting. don't worry about feeling uncomfortable about my subject matter or unsure what you could possibly say that won't get you in trouble with...other people. i'm working at locating race folks who can have rational complex conversations with me about this stuff that allow space for us to believe in struggles against racism without falling prey to denial about who we and/or our allies in struggle actually are in all their glorious imperfection...human and as fucked up as anyone else including me...but don't worry. i know that you prefer your illustrious leaders and comrades up on pedestals where they must lie and cheat and manipulate in order to make sure they are never completely seen for who they are. sweet. i guess they give me space to just be me...even if me being me, makes you piss and shit your pants...cheerio!)

So, like...yeah...
I found this on Z.

Struggle for housing in Cape Town

By Mandisi Majavu at Mar 21, 2008

In her speech on March 6, 2008, Helen Zille (Mayor of Cape Town) argues that the Democratic Alliance (White opposition party) has resolved to challenge the “unfair 70:30 housing allocations ratio between shack dwellers and backyarders respectively that is causing so much grievance and division in the N2 Gateway Project and replace it with an allocation of 50% shack dwellers and 50% backyarders in the current phase of the N2 Gateway.”

The shack dwellers consist mainly of black Africans, while the majority of backyarders are coloured people. The black Africans who reside in shacks are there because during the apartheid regime, racist policies made it impossible for black Africans to access housing in the Cape. And although the Western Cape had a coloured preference policy, the apartheid regime failed to provide housing for every coloured person.

It was in 1945, at the behest of the Coloured Advisory Council (CAC), that the apartheid government implemented the 'Coloured Labour Preference Policy', writes Lewis (1987). Goldin (1987) argues that the policy was only one element of a wider system of preference for coloureds. He points out that while the policy sought to secure employment preference for coloureds, the National Party also tried to improve the political and social position of coloureds relative to black Africans.

The South African Bureau of Racial Affairs (SABRA) regarded the Western Cape as the 'natural homeland' of the coloureds, according to Goldin. Western (1996) writes that Cape Town is as much, if not more, the 'the 'Mother City' for Cape coloureds, as it is for South African whites.

During the apartheid regime, the benefits of being coloured in the Western Cape were plenty. For example, coloureds were not compelled to carry passes and were not governed by influx-control legislation (Goldin, 1987). On the other hand, from 1956 to 1961, over 20 000 Africans were deported from the Western Cape, according to Goldin. And, between 1978 and 1981, 4 000 African women and 11 000 African men were, on average, arrested each year for pass law offences, writes Goldin. He adds that in 1981, the number of Africans arrested in the Cape Peninsula for contravening the influx control regulations exceeded 13 694, more than 10 percent of the total de facto African population of the Peninsula. "From December 1981, when the Ciskei gained 'independence', virtually every African in the Western Cape became technically a foreigner (p. 195)."

It is against this historical backdrop that there is a situation of shack dwellers and backyarders. And my suspicion is that what led to the “70:30 housing allocation ratio between the shack dwellers and the backyarders respectively” is the fact that the city wants to get rid of shacks bordering on the N2 between the Cape Town International Airport and the city centre before the 2010 Soccer World Cup.

It is estimated that 200 000 black African people live around this area. People are poor and live in overcrowded conditions, and all of this is visible to the tourists and other people who visit Cape Town. And the fact that this is visible to the tourists is unbearable to the City and white capital. According to the Government Communication and Information System (GCIS), “this project is... prioritised by the City of Cape Town and other spheres in light of its high visibility on the gateway corridor linking Cape Town International Airport with the City.”

The ANC government and the Democratic Alliance (DA) are in absolute agreement regarding this issue. DA’s Helen Zille is simply playing politics when she argues that the DA aims to challenge the 70:30 housing allocations ratio between shack dwellers and backyarders respectively. To challenge the housing allocations ratio would undermine the City’s stated goal of wanting to get rid of informal settlements bordering on the N2 between the Cape Town International Airport and the city centre.

Zille is posturing because she wants the DA to win the support of the coloured community in Cape Town.

I noted in my previous post on this subject that writers such as Goldin (1987) and du Pre (1994) argue that the historical differentiation between coloureds and black Africans occurred along economic, political and social dimensions, “with the social perception being created that all 'coloureds' enjoyed a better quality of life than 'Africans' during the apartheid era.”

In post-apartheid South Africa, many coloured people tend to believe that the social positions have been reversed. And what Zille is doing is to encourage the coloured community’s fears.

Also, in my previous post on this subject I elaborated on those fears. For example, I argued that in his study, Stevens (1998) found that one of the most prominent themes emerging from the coloured participants' discourse was their perception of black Africans as economically threatening, particularly with regard to employment opportunities in the context of affirmative action. Boonzaier’s study (1999) also shows that black Africans are viewed by coloured participants as exclusively advantaged by affirmative action. “African people were described as overly demanding and expressing sentiments of entitlement (p. 18).” Maggot findings (2003) show that in this post-Apartheid era, because society constructs coloured people as distinct from blacks and whites, many coloured people may believe that “they are not able to share in the benefits of the development and status which is perceived as being enjoyed by blacks, and was previously enjoyed by whites.”

The issue here is not the housing allocations ratio between shack dwellers and backyarders, rather the problem are neo-liberal policies that make it impossible for poor people to have access to housing. That’s what people who are serious about social change ought to focus their energies toward.








if what you're reading here grips you, holds you, fascinates you, provokes you, emboldens you, pushes you, galvanizes you, discomfits you, tickles you, enrages you so much that you find yourself returning again and again...then link me.

Now you have touched the children...you have touched the wimmin...

CJ has left a new comment on your post "Truly Wordless on a Wednesday...":
Darkdaughta -

Those photos are horrific. Nightmarish. The last thing a parent ever wants to see.

It sort of hit me as I was looking how, for those of us privileged to never have to experience such consequences of conquest, such casualties of greed and hate, for those of us causing the consequences and casualties by our *own* greed and hate...it struck me that the pictures themselves, all by themselves may be what bothers us most, why we look away.

"No one should have to see such things," we may think to ourselves, "I don't ever want to see anything like this again, so I'm going to organize a black-tie event or a telethon or a dinner party or something...no one (re: no one like me, who has far too delicate a constitution and sensibilities to handle such a raw view of my own selfishness and cruelty) should ever have to see things like this!"

Instead of being outraged and heartbroken that babies are dying, that babies are being blown up and withered from the inside out, we get all up in arms over what *we* don't want to see, instead of what *we* are causing to happen.

Which is the pinnacle of shittiness and totally fucking horrible.

Random thought. Thanks for making me see this, and really see...not just with my eyes, but with my heart. The mothers of these children, the fathers and aunts and uncles and sisters and brothers and friends...their lives must explode into billions of tiny pieces...even as their own bodies and lives suffer the effects of the poisons of patriarchal, capitalistic, colonial, racist erasure.

Fuck this world. Fuck all of us who sit back on our sofas and armchairs and throw up our hands while stuff like this happens. May we all choke on our Cheetos.

Much love,

CJ.
Choke on our Cheetos is so right. Everything we have here is predicated on so much suffering. Even as someone who experiences some forms of oppression, I realize that my location in north amerikkka affords me massive amounts of food, fuel, consumerist opportunities, education, water...

If amerikkkan government officials were worried about terrorist attacks after 9/11, which I'm convinced they engineered to justify the war, anyways...
Now, they need to be really fucken worried cuz there are a few million screaming mothers who are going to open a can of whup ass on all our asses and feel absolutely nothing about it...
Their children are fucking dying!
I know that it would completely fuck me up and send me on a rampage if this happened to Stinkapee or to Shmolee. There would be absolutely no reason to maintain the trappings of denial that we call civilized society.

I'm thinking about the ways that the experiences of these Iraqi mothers ends up being so externalized by us.

It's constructed as something that is happening to them, not to us over here. I know that there is a way I have them and their children compartmentalized off..."if this happened to Stinkapee or to Shmolee..." But it is happening to the child nation of my children. These are Stinkapee and Shmolee's peers! These are other human children! These are our children. The children of human sisters, linked to us! Linked to us!

Can you please post something and ask the other mothers you know to post something?

The warlords and their minions fighting on all our behalfs trying to steal and control the sticky black oil, greedy, hungry for oil and imperialist dominance had to harm the children, didn't they? And in so doing they have fucked with the mothers, fucked with the wimmin who birthed these babies.

I don't want to erase the gaps between myself and Iraqi wimmin, Islamic wimmin, Middle Eastern wimmin...heterosexual wimmin...other wimmin located on gender role continuums in ways that mean our existences can sometimes be at odds...

I don't want to pretend like me and them would be best friends if we met.

I don't want to erase shadeism, racism and racialism.

I don't want to erase anything that might cause me to do that thing feminists are so famous for, pretending we're all the same.

We're not fucking the same.

But we are all dominated in ways that impact our lives in different ways, though.

And this? Messing with people's children? War crimes committed against children? This is unacceptable. FUCKing unacceptable.

Now you have touched the women
You have struck a rock
You have dislodged a boulder!
You will be crushed!






if what you're reading here grips you, holds you, fascinates you, provokes you, emboldens you, pushes you, galvanizes you, discomfits you, tickles you, enrages you so much that you find yourself returning again and again...then link me.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Thirteen Images of Innocent Iraqi Babies and Children...

Looking at Shmolian and Stinkapee just drags me back to thinking about these children. These are the beloved children of other mothers.

I'm stuck.

Don't try to help me move away from it. Just look and remember that these are the children of mothers who carried them and birthed them and have cried for them.

Mindful of the sorts of ableist language many will want to use to describe these children born in a time of vicious,unnecessary, illegal war..."deformed" is one I've seen quite a bit...I realize that I will need to track down blog posts or other writings that locate what is happening firmly inside a critique of ableism that does not allow space for oppression to be heaped on top of oppression without consciousness of how an interplay functions. I suspect that any writings I find written by critical thinkers who are living with disabilities will be challenging, layered and difficult to process...which will be mind expanding and completely worthwhile.

I wanted to write about crying for these children. But I realize that these children and their mothers would probably spit on my tears. Most likely they don't want my tears. They don't want my pity. If I was in their shoes, I wouldn't want my tears or my pity.

Depleted Uranium (DU)

Silent Genocide

ROBERT C. KOEHLER / Tribune Media Services 25mar04

"After the Americans destroyed our village and killed many of us, we also lost our houses and have nothing to eat. However, we would have endured these miseries and even accepted them, if the Americans had not sentenced us all to death."

This will not be easy to read, especially if you've projected evil out of your own heart, into some cave in Afghanistan or a spider hole in Iraq, and reduced the age-old question it inspires to this one: How can we bomb it off the face of the earth?

Before the damage we inflict grows greater, before history's judgment gets worse, before we contaminate the whole world - even before we vote in the next election - we must stop what we're doing. We must stop now. It's time to listen for a moment not to defense analysts, briefing officers, pols or pundits, but to people like Jooma Khan, a grandfather who lives in a village in Laghman Province, in northeastern Afghanistan, who is quoted above.

Surely he deserves 30 seconds of our undivided attention. "When I saw my deformed grandson," he told an interviewer in March of 2003, "I realized that my hopes of the future have vanished for good. (This is) different from the hopelessness of the Russian barbarism, even though at that time I lost my older son Shafiqullah. This time, however, I know we are part of the invisible genocide brought on us by America, a silent death from which I know we will not escape."

We're waging war-plus in Afghanistan and Iraq - in effect, nuclear war, with our widespread use of depleted-uranium-tipped shells and missiles. This is no secret. DU, with its extraordinary penetrating power and explode-on-impact capability, helps assure our military dominance everywhere we go. But people like Jooma Khan and his grandson reap its toxic legacy.

So, of course, do our own troops. Kahn's words are only a sliver of the damning testimony contained in the documents of the International Criminal Tribunal for Afghanistan, a Japanese citizens' initiative that recently concluded its two-year inquiry into the first phase of the Bush Administration's war on terror. But they say everything that we cannot hear.

If we could hear Jooma Khan, and others who are sounding the alarm about DU, such as former Livermore Labs geologist Leuren Moret, [More Leuren Moret on Mindfully.org] who testified at the tribunal, there would not be mere thousands of people in the streets of American cities demanding that we stop the war, but hundreds of thousands, or millions - the sort of numbers that turn out in other parts of the world.

The use of DU weaponry is not the extent of our criminal irresponsibility in Afghanistan and Iraq, which led to the tribunal's guilty verdict against George Bush on charges of war crimes, but it's the most chilling.

You can check out the full report at, among other places, www.mindfully.org/Reform/2004/Afghanistan-Criminal-Tribunal10mar04.htm

As Moret testified, depleted uranium turns into an infinitesimally fine dust after it explodes; individual particles are smaller than a virus or bacteria. And, "It is estimated that one millionth of a gram accumulating in a person's body would be fatal. There are no known methods of treatment."

And DU dust is everywhere. A minimum of 500 or 600 tons now litter Afghanistan, and several times that amount are spread across Iraq. In terms of global atmospheric pollution, we've already released the equivalent of 400,000 Nagasaki bombs, Moret said.

The numbers are overwhelming, but the potential horrors only get worse. DU dust does more than wreak havoc on the immune systems of those who breathe or touch it; the substance also alters one's genetic code. Thus, birth defects are way up in Afghanistan since the invasion:

children "born with no eyes, no limbs, tumors protruding from their mouths ... deformed genitalia," according to the tribunal report. This ghastly toll on the unborn - on the future - has led investigators to coin the term "silent genocide" to describe the effects of this horrific weapon.

The Pentagon's response to such charges is denial, denial, denial. And the American media is its moral co-conspirator.

But blame is beside the point. Surely even those who still await "conclusive proof" that DU is the cause, or a factor, in the mystery illnesses and birth defects emanating from the war zones, can see the logic in halting its use now.

Global terrorism? Listen to Jooma Khan. Then look in the mirror.



Thirteen Photographs Of Iraqi Babies and Children
That Clearly Illustrate Exactly What US Troops
And Their Weapons Of Mass Destruction
Are Doing To The People Of Iraq

one.
























two.
























three.

[an Iraqi child born in 1997]

four.

duimage009.jpg

five.
du-baby15.jpg

six.
du-baby18.jpg

seven.


eight.


nine.
duimage026.jpg

ten.
duimage024.jpg
Child with previously unknown renal disease, first diagnosed in Iraq by Dr. Gunther. The speculation is that the child had played with DU ammunition casings.

eleven.

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twelve.

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thirteen.

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if what you're reading here grips you, holds you, fascinates you, provokes you, emboldens you, pushes you, galvanizes you, discomfits you, tickles you, enrages you so much that you find yourself returning again and again...then link me.

"Papi", I should really explain the whys of the name...

I've been thinking over time that people might be taking offense to me, a descendant of Africans who were enslaved, calling my partner "Papi".

I wondered if people thought it was some sort of hip-hopian reference, perhaps a quote from a song where most of the lyrics are something like: "OOOooooo....Aaahhhhhh....Yeaaaahhhh....Do it to meeeee.....Papiiiiii..."

Hee, hee...not.

Ophelia, who is older and more grounded in West Indian culture gets the name completely.

The West Indies, the english speaking parts that were, I think colonized by the spanish, too, where spanish is the second language usually taught to students...

Elders in my family...
A hazy memory...
Elder wimmin were often called Mammy...not like the wet nursing caretakers, but like spanish for "Mother" as in Mamí.

fathers and grandfathers, elder men were often called Pappy like spanish for "Father" as in Pap
í.

When I was thinking of a suitable parental name for Stinkapee's primary male biological relation, one that didn't make the feminist in me gag, my mind went back to what I'd heard men who were seen as parental figures be called by those in their families - pah-PY. Pappy. Spoken with correct emphasis on the last syllable, the last letter - the í - dominating the pronunciation of the word as it would if spoken by a spanish speaking person.

No less patriarchal, no less masculine, just less part of a dominant english culture that indoctrinates school aged children, serving as the vehicle for all kinds of future domination in ways I wanted to resist while still grounding in who I am/have been/came from...
Papi...
It sounds the same when spoken by a barbadian, by a bajan, because emphasis falls on the last syllable quite often, most often(?) when our english dialect is spoken by native speakers...which I am not...but I can fake it and do so very nicely when Paps and I are just fooling around and trading jokes at home.

As always, completely fascinated with language and with word etymology, I understood exactly where the name had come from and about what it means to have dual linguistic sites of colonization - english and spanish - with english obviously being the dominant of the two dominating colonizing tongues, but with vestiges of the spanish still present nonetheless.

When I started blogging and was faced with the problem of how to spell Pappy Pap
í I opted for a bastardized spelling of the original spanish word - Papi - which allows me to use the title I remember from "home" and pay homage to the roots/routes of the word.

Papí.

Pappy.

Papi.






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Tourist Boycott of Australia - Support the Rights of Indigenous Australians...

Get the banner here


----- Original Message ----
From: Tom Autopref
To: darkdaughta
Sent: Thursday, March 27, 2008 10:03:15 AM
Subject: Hey, darkdaughta
Hey, darkdaughta,

Hope it's ok to write--I got this email address from your blog profile, there didn't seem to be a good post to leave a comment on at your place.

I just wanted to say thanks for putting up the Tourist Boycott of Australia banner. Not many people seem to be interested in "smaller" causes lately.

Take care

Tom
(from http://automaticpreference.wordpress.com)

darkdaughta responded:
Hey Tom,
Oh there are plenty of good and insightful, risk taking places where I would have welcomed a comment. But no problem writing me off blog instead. :)

I think causes for most bloggers are about what's hype and in the news. Most of us have been trained to be quite surface in most arenas even when it comes to what is understood as the political. So, I'm not surprised you've had problems getting your banner up. For a good portion of bloggers Australian Aboriginal people and their struggles probably is not considered current enough to be seen as "sexy".

I had an exchange with another blogger who has a very large group site specifically about Black issues who said that he wouldn't write a post about the Newark Black lesbians who have been unjustly incarcerated after refusing to bow to the advances of a Black heterosexual man who refused to take "No" for an answer. The blogger told me that their story wasn't current enough to warrant attention and that if Mumia wasn't released due to any campaigns, it would be futile to even write a post about these wimmin because it wouldn't do any good. Now, this is a blogger who has info about the Jena 6 posted. I was silent and silenced.

I get what you're saying although my examples of struggles about Black low level settlers living on occupied lands isn't the same thing at all as people who have been forgotten or deprioritized by political types even as their struggles to have autonomy on their own lands continues.

So, not a problem at all. I guess, you can add me to the list of supporters, if you so choose. I'm glad to have put the banner up, in any case.

Take care,
darkdaughta




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Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Nervous, excited, expectant, unsure, resolved...


Today I posted at the Out of Iraq Bloggers Caucus for the first time. This is one of the group blogs I've been invited to join in recent days.

I'm happy and fearful.

Happy because it's somewhere that I can do some good.

Fearful because I know that in a world where people operate according to scarcity models, there are some who will covet unnecessarily, who may try to find ways to sully the experience for me or destroy it utterly.

Brave, now. Let them come and do their worst. I will hold and remain for as long as possible. Onwards and outwards, as always.

Greetings from darkdaughta...

Hi,
I'm darkdaughta. My other blog is here.

I'm new here. I was invited over the weekend but I waited. I wanted to bring something useful to the conversation. I wanted to bring something that locates me not just as a war resister, but also as a mama, as a flesh being who is attempting to deal with her lived reality as someone who benefits from the war in Iraq.

So, I thought every day since the first invitation about what would do this space justice and about what I could come bearing that would help to expose what our warlords have brought to the people of Iraq.

Before I begin, I just want to say that I'm thankful for the invitation. I haven't been invited to join a group of bloggers before. So this is a treat...no, that's too surface...this was something I couldn't have hoped for having ruffled the amount of feathers I've ruffled over the two years I've been in the blogosphere. My chest hurts with the terrible happiness I feel.

The rest of what I wrote is here...





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When my former guest and my current guest sat down with us to eat...

There was tension. I'm not japanese, obviously. :) So I couldn't figure out what it could be about. I wondered about the marked differences in their facial types. They look like night and day. Ignorant as I am I had never imagined that on such a small grouping of islands there with everyone being Asian, there could be so much difference in facial type. Culturally, even to me, it's clear that these two wimmin are massively different. Instead of bothering them with my lack of consciousness, I went digging. There are things I already knew a bit about like Japan being a colonizing power in Asia. I also realize that there is a relationship, a colonizing, power based one between Japan and Korea where Koreans are considered lesser. I had read about The Ainu before. I hadn't read about The Burakumin.

Hmmm...
It's interesting after years of encountering feminist wimmin of colour from all over the world who understand my Black womanness, Black feminism, Black foremothers as an open book, as something they can mine, vicariously, voyeuristically experience without having to really ante up, without having to share or show much of what they've got.

I've often experienced interactions as one sided, where there was so much information already available about Black African experiences to draw from that my experience ended up being the vulnerable field on which we related. I've often felt blamed for the fact that there was such precious little conversation or focus on the issue of other people of colour, other wimmin of colour.

There is a way that I am invited to relate to people of colour, especially wimmin of colour that allows space for them to not fully excavate, speak to, write about their experiences with hierarchies close to home. This is not something that is often incorporated into the mix when we come together.

There is a way that it becomes easier, and I keep saying this and saying this and saying this...easier to focus on white people, to focus on their racism, to focus on white wimmin's racism, to focus on white feminist's racism rather than on who we are, on who we have been taught to be, on the peoples we come from and on how this influences our engagements with each other.

I cannot fucking stand it when we get together to talk race but all of a sudden people get vague and obscure and not quite so powerfully challenging...of themselves...when issues like shade or class or caste come up.

It's about avoiding how we organize ourselves. It's about who is allowed to lead. It is about who is expected to follow. It's about how all of this has been predetermined by shade, class, caste, age, geographical location and a whole bunch of other deciding factors that will continue to buffet and derail our struggles for radical change until we can just own up to the shite, until we can just claim the shite, until we can just speak the shite and move clear of it rather than allow it to own us and rule us.

Until I find radical feminist sistren who can claim the shite they carry closer to home, I fear I will continue to walk the borderlands of the borderlands calling few friend, ally or sister. Sad. Horribly sad.

So, I found this information about Japan's Buraku "Problem" which is about caste and class in Japan.

I wondered why I had never heard about this in real time venues or read about this in the writings of Japanese feminists or people discussing racism in kkkanada and amerikkka?

But then again, I fully understood why I had never heard tell of this pesky little "problem".
What is Buraku Problem?

The Buraku problem is a social problem that originated with discrimination against the “eta” (extreme filth) and “hinin” (non-human) outcaste groups during the feudal Edo period. While this form of discrimination was legally abolished after the Meiji Restoration by the promulgation of the Emancipation Edict in 1871, along with the creation of other State policies, this legal prohibition did not translate into its actual elimination. In reality, the discrimination against these groups was simply restructured and reinforced as Japan rapidly modernized. The Meiji Government presented an apparently liberal slogan in order to gather national support and loyalty, but in practice it reinstituted modernization policies that were bound up with the obsolete feudal system and its ideology. The Government also exhibited increasing prejudice against minority groups in its assimilation policies concerning the Ainu and Okinawan people and oppressive colonialism policies in neighboring countries. With the introduction of the civil code, it established the patriarchal “family system” that reinforced the institutionalization of oppression against women. Through the implementation of these policies, the Meiji Government sustained its discriminatory attitude against Buraku people, who were now called “new ordinary people” or “special Buraku-min” and faced discrimination in marriage, hiring, employment, education and their social lives.

Japan underwent drastic change after its World War II defeat in 1945. While international society was renewed in the spirit of eternal peace and respect for human rights with the United Nations at its center, Japan enacted the Japanese Constitution, which stipulates that sovereign power is to rest with the people, that the Emperor is to be the symbol of the State, that fundamental human rights are to be respected and that the Japanese people forever renounce war as a sovereign right of the nation. For 20 post-war years, the Government failed to take any serious measures to eliminate Buraku discrimination.

The report prepared by the Dowa Measures Council in 1965 stated: “The Dowa problem is Japan’s most serious social problem since it constitutes discrimination against a specific group of the nation’s people based on the historically-developed social class structure. The people concerned are forced into an economically, socially and culturally inferior position, and face both grave violations of their basic human rights and complete ignorance of their civil rights and liberties, which are to be fully guaranteed to all Japan’s people as a principle mechanism of modern society.”

The 1996 proposals made by the Consultative Council on Regional Improvement Measures stipulate: “As a human rights problem that is specific to Japan, the Dowa problem is a serious and grave issue involving the violation of the fundamental human rights guaranteed under the Constitution. Fifty years after the end of the war and a quarter of a century since the implementation of improvement measures, the Dowa problem is finally progressing towards resolution thanks to the efforts and dedication of many people. However, it still regrettably remains as a significant challenge for our country. Furthermore, from the standpoint of Japan’s membership of the international community, it is our responsibility to resolve the Buraku problem and Japan’s other human rights problems without further delay.”

Buraku discrimination, partially due to the continuing poor performance of the economy, is still deeply-rooted in Japanese society. Since it is a serious social problem concerning fundamental human rights, a comprehensive solution is strongly required.
The website for The Baraku Liberation and Human Rights Research Institute was last updated on March 14th of this year. So, their resistance work is recent and ongoing.





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As a middle passage daughta, descendant of enslaved peoples...

This is information about at least some of my relatives I should have already been carrying with me as I attempted to reconnect with "home" on lost shores. According to what I'm reading here, it doesn't matter whether I locate myself as descended from ancestors born somewhere(s) in the motherland(s) (snicker if you will continental purists. I don't need to pin point a tribe or geographic location in order to claim who I am. I just am.) I am and shall for all times remain the daughter of the low born.

My thoughts and emotions are stumbling over each other here as I make a leap of a few centuries which separate my bloodline and personal experience from this exploration of caste and domination.

Bungee jumping with me, anyone?

Basically I'm forced to admit that not all the preoccupation with hierarchical relations after or perhaps even before "emancipation" was a by-product of our colonization. I'm suspecting that some of it we brought with us and perhaps mixed with what we learned here, reinforcing hierarchy in tiny communities and on islands after we were "freed".

Why is this so crucial?

Well, I'm still trying to understand how an extended, scattered peopling so violently opposed to racial domination, can still make space for class domination, heterosexual domination, patriarchal domination, sexual domination, settler domination, gender domination, all fucking kinds of domination while, at the exact same moment, crying out to high heavens about wanting to be "free".

That's just plain fucked up. We're really fucked up. I'm so fucked up and just generally damned...no laughter...just damned...over centuries and across experiences, maintaining links that are not spoken about when middle passage children gather, that nonetheless continue to be powerful influences right up until present day which we normalize and present as cultural, as evidence of our Blackness to people who don't know any better, to people blinded by white privileged guilt, by people who want easy answers, hegemonic answers...

The links are t/here. It's just that these links are tough and complex and perhaps not even fully excavatable or extricable from who we have been taught to be.

These links aren't the ones I would have wanted to recognize or highlight...if things were better between me and "mine" in this our "freedom" time.

Understand that this is just one example from just one original peopling. It's not the whole story.
The Osu Caste System
Leo Igwe

The Osu caste system is an obnoxious practice among the Igbos -in Nigeria-which has refused to go away despite the impact of Christianity (darkdaughta inserts: the racist, patriarchal and abusive practices brought to Africa by Christian clergy and their families...oh, wait, of course the hierarchy was left undisturbed! They could use it to help them divide and conquer the "savage" Nigerians...), modern education and civilization, and the human rights culture. In this piece, I will argue that the Osu discrimination is an outdated tradition with no basis for its continued practice and observance in the contemporary Igbo society.

Traditionally, there are two classes of people in Igboland – the Nwadiala and the Osu. The Nwadiala literally meaning ‘sons of the soil’ are the freeborn. They are the masters. While the Osu are the slaves, the strangers, the outcasts and the untouchables.

Chinua Achebe in his well-known book, No Longer At Ease asks: What is this thing called Osu? He answers: "Our fathers in their darkness and ignorance called an innocent man Osu, a thing given to the idols, and thereafter he became an outcast, and his children, and his children’s children forever."

The Osu are treated as inferior human beings in a state of permanent and irreversible disability. They are subjected to various forms of abuse and discrimination. The Osu are made to live separately from the freeborn. In most cases they reside very close to shrines and marketplaces. The Osu are not allowed to dance, drink, hold hands, associate or have sexual relations with Nwadiala. They are not allowed to break kola nuts at meetings. No Osu can pour libation or pray to God on behalf of a freeborn at any community gathering. It is believed that such prayers will bring calamity and misfortune.

A human rights group outlined the atrocities meted out against the Osu in Igboland. They include: "parents administering poison to their children, disinheritance, ostracism, organized attack, heaping harvest offering separately in churches, denial membership in social clubs, violent disruption of marriage ceremonies, denial of chieftaincy titles, deprivation of property and expulsion of wives etc."

The Osu caste discrimination is very pronounced in the area of marriage. An Osu cannot marry a freeborn. The belief is that any freeborn that marries an Osu defiles the family. So freeborn families are always up in arms against any of their members who wants to marry an Osu. They go to any length to scuttle the plan. Because of the Osu factor, marriages in Igboland are preceded by investigations-elders on both sides travel to native villages to find out the social status of the other party. And if it is found that one of them is an Osu, the plan would be automatically abandoned. Many marriage plans have been aborted, and in fact some married couples have been forced to divorce because of the Osu factor. Chinua Achebe also noted this in his book. When Okonkwo learns that his son wants to marry Clara, an Osu. Okonkwo says: "Osu is like a leprosy in the minds of my people. I beg of you my son not to bring the mark of shame and leprosy into your family. If you do, your children and your children's children will curse you and your memory...You will bring sorrow on your head and on the heads of your children."
The rest is here...






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This is way out of my league, but...

I thought I'd share the information, sort of a how to guide, for those who don't have an intimate experience of oppression on various levels inside and outside community who aren't socially isolated with children. If this is you, a manual of this sort might be very useful...in truth, the bits about not being followed or detected or tracked may end up being useful for me and mine in terms of safety and freedom of movement in the years or decades to come.
This page is obviously for educational purposes only :)

I've never gardened at night, but it does seem to have it's advantages, with the ozone depletion, you would be far less likely to get skin cancer for one!!

The Nighttime Gardener

-A guide for the shy gardener in North Amerika-


Greetings. The following guide was put together for the WTO gathering in the hopes that people from all over the continent would find this informational useful and inspiring. The corporate biotechnology onslaught embodies the New World Order perhaps better than any other issue. Johnna Appleseed of Reclaim the Seeds, one of several nighttime gardening groups, describes it well: "If you care about wildlife and think the natural world is fine without mutant genes, you should resist genetic engineering. If you care about social justice and don't want to poison farm workers with pesticides and herbicides, you should resist genetic engineering. If you care about biological and cultural diversity as opposed to a global corporate monoculture, you should resist genetic engineering. If you care about laboratory animals and don't want researchers creating hybrid genetic monsters, you should resist genetic engineering. If you eat food, you should resist genetic engineering. If not you, then who? If not now, when? Resistance to genetic engineering is as transnational as capital."
the rest is here...






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Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Because I understand that things may very well get worse on these shores before they get better...much worse...

I proceed eyes wide open...

Lee Rials has left a new comment on your post "Lee, there's more...":
OK, I won't bother you after this comment--I wouldn't want facts to disturb your comfort zone. Two things are a bit remarkable to me. One, for a self-professed courageous woman, how do you let yourself be intimidated by an old, gray-headed, overweight grandpa? I didn't ask your name, but I gave you mine, and I made the same offer to you that I do to everyone I talk with--to come see for yourself what this institute is all about. SOAW doesn't have a clue what we teach, and doesn't have a clue what was taught at the SOA. As I said before, they have never shown even one person who used what he learned at the school to commit a crime. That's a pretty good record for any place. The second item is your willingness to accept anything RickB or SOAW says without question. You obviously don't trust anything associated with government, even if you can personally confirm it. Why not the same skepticism for SOAW? I will leave you with one last question. Which countries in this hemisphere have military dictatorships? Have a nice life, and you are still welcome to visit any time you like.
Lee,
Just so I can be clear...
Your country has a military dictatorship that intimidates and controls its own people.

And you're right. I don't know Rick. I don't know anyone in the blogosphere, really.

I do, however, know myself. I know my politics. I know my intuitions. I also know that it makes sense to look on any operation spearheaded by the amerikkkan government with a severely jaundiced eye. Since your school is part of the amerikkkan miliatary, I look on it with extreme prejudice.

And Lee, last time I checked, the amerikkkan government was almost completely run by old, grey-headed, overweight grandpas with money, access to guns, nukes and obedient minions.

Cheers. Thanks for stopping by...unh...yeah...and Lee? I'm still shitting my pants that you came to visit. But I'm a mama. So, I've got diapers, aplenty. :)
September 1995

POLITICS OF ASSASSINATION:
The Bloody Legacy of the US Army School of the Americas

By W. E. Gutman

Getting rid of someone is easy. Destroying popular aspirations takes more effort but you can always count on a volunteer or two to do the dirty work. For money; favors; influence; power--mostly power. When conventional methods-- elections, plebiscites, national referenda--fail, or when the results threaten the oligarchy, the US Army's School of the Americas, a shadowy but formidable war factory billeted at Fort Benning, Georgia, can help. There are not petty bureaucrats here, taking up space and stealing time until retirement. The SOA is a model institution. Its instructors and students are recruited from the cream of Latin America's military establishment. The curriculum includes: counterinsurgency, military intelligence, interrogation techniques, sniper fire, infantry and commando tactics, "irregular" and psychological warfare, jungle operations, among the most bellicose specialties. But Latin American soldiers at the SOA are not always trained to defend their borders from foreign invasion. They are taught--at US taxpayers' expense--to make war against their own people, to subvert the truth, silence poets, domesticate unruly visionaries, muzzle activist clergy, hinder trade unionism, hush the voices of dissidence and discontent, neutralize the poor, the hungry, the dispossessed, extinguish common dreams, irrigate fields of plenty with the tears of a captive society, and transform paladins and protesters into submissive vassals. Even if it kills them.

For the past two years, a group of US legislators, led by Rep. Joseph P. Kennedy II (D-MA), have vowed to shut down the facility/ "SOA graduates include dictators and soldiers implicated in gross human rights violations in Latin America," says Kennedy. "[Continued operation of] this facility suggests that the US has blessed such excesses. The SOA costs [the US] millions of dollars a year and identifies us with tyranny and oppression." In 1993 Kennedy sponsored an amendment to the House Defense Appropriations Bill calling for an end to the training provided at the SOA. The measure was defeated. Reintroduced in 1994, the amendment was again rejected. This time the defeat was sustained by a sixfold increase in the number of abstentions from the preceding year.

Founded in Panama in 1946--and relocated in 1984 to Fort Benning when Panamanian President Jorge Illueca evicted it-- calling it "the biggest base for destabilization in Latin America"--the SOA has trained over 60,000 Latin American and Caribbean basin soldiers. It has also produced some of the region's most despicable tyrants. The SOA is expected to graduate about 750 students in 1995.

more here...






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Press release about jailed Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug First Nation's leaders....

This information I found in a post on Whenua, Fenua, Enua, Vanua.
March 21, 2008

On March 18, six members of the Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug (KI) First Nation were sentenced to six months in jail for contempt of court, for opposing mining company operations on their traditional lands in Northwestern Ontario. The imprisoned leaders include the majority of members of the KI Band Council.

This follows similar contempt of court sentences against activists from the Ardoch Algonquin First Nation, near Kingston Ontario, for blocking uranium mining operations on their land.

The following statement was issued on March 20 by the KI Council.


Kitchenuhmaykoosib, Ontario - We are saddened today that our leaders have been jailed for contempt and they’re there for what they strongly believe – to protect Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug (KI) Homelands!

As a result of our community assembly on March 18, 2008, the present Chief and Council notably, Chief Donny Morris, Deputy Chief Jack McKay, Head Councillor Cecilia Begg, Councillors Samuel McKay and Darryl Sainnawap are still our leaders and are deemed equivalent as leaders in exile as expressed by the people of Kitchenuhmaykoosib. One band member, Bruce Sakakeep is also in jail for contempt as well.

The remaining Council members Susan Nanokeesic, Kenny Martin and Angus McKay are still politically active at the community level with the assistance of a working group consisting of 18 community members.

With consultation between the exiled Council members and the Council in Kitchenuhmaykoosib, we take strong stand on the following:

1. No Parliamentarian, be it federal or provincial member, is allowed in the Homelands of Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug;

2. No more free entry to Kitchenuhamaykoosib lands by Platinex or any other mining entity including First Nation mining companies;

3. Ongoing blockade will be more protected and secured in order to protect our KI Homelands;

4. Assembly of First Nations must abandon the partnership agreements with the mining industry in Canada;

5. All First Nation political territorial organizations in Ontario do not speak directly for or on behalf of Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug, but their support on the issue is welcome;

6. Ontario must respond to our proposal made with our brothers and sisters of the Ardoch Algonquin First Nation, to establish a joint panel on mining on First Nations lands.

There is suspicion and fear on our part as a result of the court’s disposition on our leaders. There is no more sense of safety and well being for all Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug to rely on the Canadian government’s legal and statutory obligations on our people, especially the government of Ontario. The court document and its disposition gives us anxiety and terror for we are all distressed enough with our present social and economic situation.

The court ruling is a deliberate attack on the blood, bone and spirit of Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug. It referenced many cases and ancient views of “rule of law” that we don’t agree with it. The mention of “Magna Carta” is no exception. Ontario uses it to make a false disposition on our people. The remnants of Magna Carta did indeed killed off many Indigenous peoples in both South and North Americas. The principle of that no one is above the law is hypocritical as displayed by the government of Ontario!

The Ontario emissary, Mr. Michael Bryant came to our community and offered no formal agenda and plan for negotiations. There was no real substance for negotiations despite what he said in a press release dated March 17, 2008. Unfortunately, this is the day that our leaders were imprisoned. The Ontario emissary Mr. Bryant is indeed speaking fork-tongued, repeated once again as Treaty Commissioners did back in 1929. He is not formally talking to anyone at KI as he professes to be!

KI Council along with our brothers and sisters at Ardoch Algonquin First Nation who are facing similar situation jointly submitted a proposal to Ontario outlining moratorium on exploration and mining in the disputed areas; a joint panel to consist three-party membership to investigate exploration and mining issues; and to negotiate interim measures agreement. Mr. Bryant did not take our proposal seriously and he will not even mention any of the contents described.

We are very thankful for those that supported us from the beginning and we still need your support more than ever. With your ongoing support, KI will prevail.


For additional information see the websites of the Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug and Ardoch Algonquin First Nations.

KI is urging supporters of these political prisoners to contribute the Ardoch defense fund. Cheques payable to “Chris Reid In Trust for Ardoch Algonquin First Nation” should be mailed to:

Christopher M. Reid, Barrister & Solicitor,
154 Monarch Park Ave.,
Toronto, ON M4J 4R6
Canada

I also found more information on Intercontinental Cry:
"For more information, visit intercontinentalcry.org/tag/kifn/ and kitchenuhmaykoosib.com. Aswell, if anyone’s interested there’s several hundred photos from the community at http://www.flickr.com/photos/kitchenuhmaykoosib/. Finally, Marcel Mckay has a good collection of videos on his website, and Danny Sakakeep has some thoughts on his site aswell… KI UNITED WILL PREVAIL!"






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Monday, March 24, 2008

I don't know how podcasts work...

But I'm going to have to find out so I can tune into this...
Friends & Relatives of the Disappeared-Toronto has left a new comment on the post "TAKE BACK THE LAND OR DIE TRYIN'!":

Take Back the Land or Die Trying
Written by Dave Ron

A brand new podcast is now up. It’s a recording of a talk from January 31st, 2008, at the Native Friendship Center of Montréal, Mohawk territory. Speakers Kanahus Pellkey and Dustin Johnson, with the Native Youth Movement (NYM) Warriors Society, discuss ongoing resistance to the 2010 Olympics and the land grab underway in British Columbia.

http://citizen.nfb.ca/podcasts/063_citizen.mp3







if what you're reading here grips you, holds you, fascinates you, provokes you, emboldens you, pushes you, galvanizes you, discomfits you, tickles you, enrages you so much that you find yourself returning again and again...then link me.

I'm baaaack....

Morning.

Funny, for a non-christian who wasn't even raised christian, this past weekend was jam packed.

The vegan dinner party was a smashing success. All the things I made turned out well. Papi's friend and her new partner were wonderful company and got along well with both Stinkapee and Shmolee. We ate dinner with our new guest from Japan. Afterwards we had conversation interspersed with various journeys down memory lane via youtube.

Conversation flowed naturally. It went deep and skimmed the surface, played, worked, flitted, and plunged again without anyone attempting to ground it in the shallows and take it so deep it got the bends. There was a wonderful balance that I was able to appreciate

sigh...

Yesterday we went for dinner at Ophelia's and a big pimple finally popped years later...am I going to throw up? checking...checking...I feel tense, but I think I'll be okay....
Soooo, this is what happened.
Someone called while we were all eating and Papi's father got off the phone and nonchalantly mentioned that Papi's eldest brother mortal enemy mine, who, after being challenged years ago around his own heterocentrism, his classism, his patriarchal leanings and his sexually conservative oppressive tendencies...what's wrong with Black men(?) (insert: unh...that's a rhetorical question, for those of you who wanna get their undies in a hitch. I understand about the historic legacy of colonization both physical and mental that abused and infantilized wimmin and men in ways that have been maintained and passed down from then until now, canonized and protected through the ways our families and relationships are organized...so su-weet) decided that it would be prudent to launch a campaign to personally make sure that I would no longer be able to walk with comfort in Black artsy "intelligensia" caribbean circles...didn't I know who his mother was? hee, hee...I didn't know Ophelia at that time...didn't know anything about her, her work, her family, her sons...
The youngest one I met not much later...
Papi showed up in my kitchen with his woman partner, but without his last name to give me even the smallest clue about his familial connections and it was lust at first sight. :)

The story his eldest brother tells involves me, fatal attraction woman, feeling spurned by the eldest brother, purposefully tracking the youngest brother, coveting the family structure and relationship with his mother.

Yes, in this tale I am the stalker who tracks down Papi and like a Black widow spider utilizes him to spawn my young while ruining him and the family name.

This is the story one sorry soul has told anyone who would listen from Papi's white mechanic on up. This is the story he has utilized to make sure that my comfort level, my ability to walk with any feeling of safety, my ability to network in order to do paid work was even more limited than it already was...by people, ex lovers, ex friends, ex allies who I've had the gall to say "No" to or to question or to back away from. I think
Papi's eldest brother, let's just call him dimwitted moron (dm for short) is really where I draw my line after meeting so, so many unethical, small people in communities of resistance who have gotten away with doing variations of this kind of move both in real time and in blogland...
I'm just fucking tired of it. I understand that if this is how people move, if this is how the warriors of the left, on the side of all that is good move, we're so fucken screwed.

Well, in any case,
I realize that dm was right about at least one thing...I did "ruin" Papi...or rather I ruined his burgeoning career as a patriarchally oppressive, heterocentric, classist Black male. :)

When I got pregnant after a rutting where the condom decided to migrate from Papi's bizness to deep inside me, dm utilized this to shore up his gossip campaign against me in circles peopled by folks who see themselves as progressive, but who are really just as mired in old world sensibilities, values and beliefs as their parents and grans are.

As time went on and Papi and I built our relationship thus proving that gutter tramps with no family name do make good partners for middle class Black boys raised with a sense of entitlement, and as Ophelia and I got a feel for each other and developed readings of each other not based in fear or hearsay, I think dimwitted moron (Oh, using the short form "dm" isn't quite as satisfying as just typing the whole thing repeatedly...so let's just dispense with the acronym and repeatedly call dimwitted moron...who I'm hoping is reading this...dimwitted moron...cuz that's what he is) started to realize that his attempt to mount and school me was not going to bear any fruit. He should really check in with Lee Rials who would explain to him that at this point in my planetary tenure if I don't ramp when it comes to the possibility of dealing with trained killers, a gossiping, cowardly, terrified, stunted little boy walking around in the flesh covering of a mature adult human being, isn't going to wear me down. I'm hardwired to be fucking stubborn.

So!
Dimwitted moron then started complaining to everyone who would listen that I wasn't letting him see HIS neice. Stunted people started clucking their tongues at me for not allowing my indirect stalker, abusive attacker person, near my daughter because of a dubitable biological relationship. I guess he figured that if I would not bow to public opinion around the issue of being too challenging of his privilege, then I would certainly bow to public and family opinion about children belonging to male patriarchs of their biological families. Hee, hee!

Dimwitted moron.

This dynamic is only topic for conversation between Ophelia and I, when I bring it up. It's been one of the sore points in an otherwise wonderful relationship...her inability to discuss her poor sons turned into dangerous men (at least two of them), all of them petulant, spoiled, overly entitled, egotistical, self centered, not above wielding power against those who don't have so much access and privilege...with only Papi willing to go to ongoing counseling in order to unpack what it meant to be raised in that family.

I don't talk to her concubine about it because...I don't actually talk to her concubine except to say hullo, thank you, good bye...notably long conversations have been about Stinkapee's education and about west indian parents, colonization, the abuse of slave masters passed down through time and love as something his parent coul beat into a child no matter how much that child wants to believe in this experience as evidence of love.
sigh...
Papi and I talk about our interactions with his eldest sibling on the regular. We hold the memory, remain clear about the experience, don't forget the experience of being harmed, denigrated, laughed at, undermined, ostracised, dominated, mounted...

So sad...
So annoying...

So, last night we were sitting with our japanese guest having dinner at Ophelia's. The phone rang. When Ophelia's husband got off the phone, it turned out that it had been dimwitted moron saying he was coming over. Mr Ophelia sat down and went back to eating as if what was about to happen was completely normal.

Papi and I looked at each other. Each of us looked at Ophelia who was visibly struggling with the information as she tried to have an unfamiliar always avoided conversation with her partner...who responded by asking if this hadn't worked itself out yet, if enough time hadn't passed, if I was sure that what I was describing actually happened because he didn't really remember anything.

Needless to say the conversation went on for what seemed like hours pausing only when dimwitted moron arrived, punctuated by my warning him away from interrogating our guest, who speaks little english, who he was smilingly pumping for information that threatened to become increasingly specific which I found menacing and completely predicated on a belief that I would be silent and allow him phallic entry and space to mount...which I did not.

He left. We stayed. Conversation difficult, uncomfortable, emotional continued.

Among other things I explained to Ophelia and to her partner that I am not looking for friendly conversation with dimwitted moron, to sit down at a dinner table with dimwitted moron, to glory in the sight of dimwitted moron touching or playing with my children.

I want reparations for the harm dimwitted moron attempted to cause.

I want work and sweat and pain.

I want him in counselling.

I don't want an apology.

I don't want him to get anything out of this more than he's already gotten.

I can't have my freedom of movement back. But I do want a cease and desist that involves the disgusting little bug of a dimwitted moronic turd discontinuing his gossip and indirect aggression.

Papi's father mostly attempted to avoid consciousness of what I was saying. I don't think Ophelia has ever hosted a dinner party like the one she had last night. I think she was stressed. I appreciated the veil being ripped off the little hidden nasties in Papi's house, though I explained that it was difficult to realize that this was not a conversation Ophelia or her partner would ever have instigated with or about their monstrously sad small minded son.

I think there is a way that Ophelia has compartmentalized off conversations about her other two sons that obscures the harm the physical, verbal and emotional abuse that Papi endured for years at the hands of the middle son and that leaves no space for conversations about the harmful actions of dimwitted moron, her eldest son who actually believes he can walk through the world without being held accountable for his actions or being called on them.

It seems that I'm the only person who has ever, ever, ever done this...and survived. Not even his parents dare say a word to him in challenge of his actions or ongoing syndrome of well known behaviours.

I marked a bit of conversation about me not having been "welcomed into the family" by dimwitted moron which I decided not to challenge....wanted to challenge, because as a woman, lover, partner ick wife (did I say ick?) of the youngest son in a traditional, heterosexual, patriarchal family, there is a position that would be alloted to me, one complete with silence, upholding of diseased family values, avoidance of uncomfortable issues, participation in a hierarchical familial structure.

I didn't and still don't agree to any of it. I do not agree to participate in their family dynamics without questioning what I experience openly, radically, politically, socially, personally, intimately as a daughta of the Diaspora who learned to be conscious and rebellious.

I only agreed to be in relationship with Papi, only agreed to be friends with and (as best as I can, given the decades of difference that inform and divide our existences as Black feminist wimmin one from the other) ally to Ophelia, only agreed to let Stinkapee and Shmolee meet their family so that they can identify them on sight (so as to better prepare themselves) and have an idea of the grouping they are biologically linked to.

I explained to Ophelia and her partner about their eldest son's reliance on diseased family dynamics in the moment when he entered their home, entered as eldest son, eldest male of the family, second only to father/teacher of dimwitted moron able to move with comfort even if his comfort is completely predicated on mounting and subtly dominating if not covertly aggressing all present.

I explained that after over six years of this shite, I was not excited about his attempts to smooth things over in a way that would allow him to access my energy, my affections, my children, my life. I was not thankful that he had exchanged a sullen, dangerous, aggressing demeanour for a smiling, humbled still oppressive and power based demeanour. I was not thankful at all.

Ophelia spoke about island cultures where everyone is literally trapped in these dynamics because there is no place to go, precious few resources and a limited amount of family, friends, allies, partners to choose from. (I thought about, but did not add that the english colonized geographically and socially contained dominated as in formerly enslaved never truly emancipated african cultures we were born into have made a neat transition from those islands to north amerikkka becoming
english colonized socially contained dominated as in formerly enslaved never truly emancipated island mentalities where, though some of us live in large cities, there is still a pervasive understanding that we are few, isolated, shut away, with few resources to draw on which necessitates us being forced to make certain choices, chosen from a narrow field of options, forced to be silent, compliant and in denial to lie and hide and contain and continue to willingly internalize and therefore to also perpetuate crushing systems of domination in ways that we would like to believe were left behind with those who remain "back home".)

Ophelia talked about wimmin (back home) who have experienced the indirect social stalking, shunning, ridicule I have described and about how, because they were literally trapped on a tiny island where word spread and everybody talked and treated them differently, they were most often forced to hang their heads low, to put up and shut up and hope that the men who had attempted to do them harm would lose interest and perhaps start treating them in more friendly covert rather than overt patriarchal ways. She said that these wimmin are thankful for being welcomed back into the fold. These wimmin then completely open, pliable, pleased, relieved and willing to occupy the spot in community and familial hierarchies that they may have resisted before which has been chosen for them by patriarchal men in their vicinities but also by bowed and bossed patriarchally colonized wimmin.

I reiterated that I was not thankful when I saw dimwitted moron's behaviour shift and that I am not interested in his willingness to slowly encroach for his purposes, for the sake of furthering his agendas. I explained that regardless of whether Ophelia and her partner were able or willing to actively deal with the creature they raised up and sent out into the world, I would never be thankful, relieved, pliable or willing to just play along.

I looked Ophelia's patriarchal, heterosexual, middle class Black male partner in the eye (when he wasn't fiddling with his cloth napkin or dusting bits of fluff off the table) and explained that his son would not be able to mount me and that I would indeed continue to remember that his son had harmed me and that I would continue to expect some form of adequate reparations and that I understood that this could not include making him a capon, but that reparations would have to include pain in exchange for the extensive harm dimwitted moron has caused.

Hmmmm...
A public flogging? Goose flesh accompanied by a wry, slightly down turned ghost of a smile.
Now, there's a thought..........I'm not really smiling or joking or even remotely interested in whether I will continue to be constructed as evil hateful destroyer of Black patriarchal mankind. I really don't care...though, I continue to care about Papi and Ophelia and my children intensely. Yes, intensely.

The conversation continued as our japanese guest smiled with us smiling/grimacing explaining that now she had witnessed a real live kkkanadian dinner disagreement. :)






if what you're reading here grips you, holds you, fascinates you, provokes you, emboldens you, pushes you, galvanizes you, discomfits you, tickles you, enrages you so much that you find yourself returning again and again...then link me.