Oklahoma Hates Women: Important links for those upset about Personhood bill in Oklahoma ⇢


After the OK state senate’s ruling regarding SB 1433 The Personhood Act a lot started happening across social media sites. Let’s do a quick rundown of some of those groups/pages/organizations etc. that will be important to know about when it comes to turning online disapproval of this bill into…

Chickens 4 Colonel Sanders: Personhood Passes OK State Senate


For those of you who haven’t heard, Senate Bill 1433, otherwise known as the Personhood Act, passed the Oklahoma Senate on Wednesday, 34-8.  The Personhood Act seeks to define life at conception and extend the same rights to the “unborn” child as a… bornchild, I guess?

Apparently the rights extended to children don’t add up to much in Oklahoma, according to Democratic Senator Jim Wilson of Tahlequah, who pointed out that if a woman needed to take her uninsured child to an emergency room for an ear ache, she would need to shell out $600. 

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I wrote this for OK4RJ after SB 1433 passed the OK Senate on Wednesday.  The lolz are the one of the only things getting me through this legislative session!




Here’s a thing I noticed.

ha! marxist swag. 

holy shit




Here’s a thing I noticed.

ha! marxist swag. 

holy shit

Source: fields-of-matt


Arundhati Roy

What kind of resistance is effective?

“Non-violent resistance movements are given a lot of air time, a lot of publicity, a lot of space. But it’s also because it makes the state comfortable. It makes the comfortable, comfortable.”

Source: socialuprooting

Everyone Gets Abortions: The Maturity Myth


As I’m slowly transitioning into my late twenties, I’m getting invited to more weddings, buying more baby shower gifts, and hearing more “I think he’s the one!” convos. Hooray! This really just means  more cake and champagne for me! But there’s one other thing I hear…”Even though I’ve always been pro-choice, I’m glad I won’t ever need to think about abortion again.”

Hold. Up. One. Second.

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Etagere: So... what do you do? ⇢


Inspired by my good best Judy, Sandra’s recent post on the ever-awesome OK4RJ blog, I’d like to spend a moment and address what has become one of the biggest thorns in my ass: answering the seemingly innocent “What do you do?” cocktail party question. I was just victim of such an incident this…

My baby g Rachel’s take on the “what do you do?” question: political arena style!

So You Want To Be An Activist: Cocktail Party Edition


Sometimes I’ll be at a party and someone will inevitably ask the small talk question to end all small talk questions: what do you do?  I hate this question for many reasons (I kind of want to troll and respond with “Y SO EXISTENTIAL?”), the most important of which being that my answer is NSFST (Not Safe For Small Talk).   I’m not an accountant or a teacher or an engineer.  My answer has to change depending on the situation.

Sometimes I’m evasive and tell people I do non-profit work.  Other times, I’ll get more specific (in a really vague, inaccurate way) and say “women’s rights stuff.”  If I’m feeling a little saucy, I might say “abortion shit.”  I always end up feeling somewhat disingenuous; these are all things I do, I suppose, but they are merely aspects of a much larger project.  Perhaps I should start carrying around hard copies of Jen’s Reproductive Justice 101: Oklahoma Edition to save myself some time and anxiety.

Here’s the thing I have to remind myself: I’m at a party, where allegedly I’m supposed to be having fun.  If ranting and raving about reproductive justice isn’t doing it for me on that night (this is rare, but it does happen!), then it’s okay to be evasive.  I don’t have to represent the cause everywhere I go.

When I came up with the idea for this post, I was hoping to give some constructive advice about what to do if you’re in this situation, but then I realized that I really don’t have any hard and fast rules for maneuvering the “what do you do?” conversation.  But I do have some really fun coping mechanisms!

  1. Have another drink! A cocktail!  A mocktail!  An energy drink!  Anything to distract you from the awkwardness!
  2. Make up a fake, preferably obscure profession: Cartographer! Snail Trailblazer!  Party Favor Connoisseur!
  3. Have two more drinks!
  4. Start an “ABORTION ON DEMAND!” chant! This actually works really, really well, though it did get me kicked out of a place once.  Just once, though.
  5. Don’t go to parties.
  6. Yell at them and then cry. (Note: from personal experience, this is actually not particularly helpful)
  7. Have a calm, collected discussion about the kind of work you do. Steer clear from shots or anything that requires chugging.  Remember, you can opt out of this conversation at any point.  Or just say, “JK, I’m a cartographer!” and have another martini.
  8. Uh oh, someone doesn’t get the cartographer joke and is belligerently insisting on talking to you about it?  A nice diffuser is “Can we not talk about this right now?  I’d like to enjoy this party and you’re harshing my buzz,” or something in that vein.  Also, you can continue to insist that you are a cartographer.

All facetiousness aside, I think the point that I’m trying to express here is: relax! Do what makes you feel comfortable and what you think is the most fun.  If that includes any combination of my list, knock yourself out (that might literally happen if you’re a fan of #1 or #3; I think I should warn you, those often result in #6).

This is the first installment of Sandra’s “So You Want To Be An Activist” series, which is an actually a thinly-veiled attempt at processing her activist emotional baggage under the guise of giving advice.  For more bizarre emotional processing, you can follow her on Twitter.

I wrote this for OK4RJ!  Oh, what weird fruits the tree of writer’s block creates.

So You Made A Rape Joke


So you made a rape joke and now people are, like, really, really mad at you.  I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt; maybe you were at a party and the booze made your common sense slip away from you or maybe you were making what you viewed as a flippantly humorous remark on Facebook.  Either way, you probably didn’t mean any harm, right?  So what’s the big deal?

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I wrote this for OK4RJ!  You should check it out.

Why I won’t buy your “Save the Tatas” Shirt now or ever. | OK4RJ: Oklahomans for Reproductive Justice ⇢


If you’re anything like me, you dread the month of October. It’s not the cooler weather (we didn’t even have that in Oklahoma this year), the problematic halloween costumes (though those are always icing on the cake of my October-hate), it’s not even the start of the exhausting holiday season. No, my October-hate can be summed up in four simple, seemingly harmless words: breast cancer awareness month.

Talking about breast cancer, of course, is important. It is a disease that effects over 200,000 lives every year, and that’s just counting the ones that are diagnosed with it. All cancers and serious diseases effect not only the patient, but their care communities, families, workplaces and really, any other social grouping they are capable of being a part of. Cancer and its diagnosis effect entire communities, so it would make sense that there are community events, organizations and campaigns to bring breast cancer to the forefront of community discourse for a month. These happenings are more than well-meaning; they attempt to bring light to the struggles of patients and survivors and provide them a public venue to talk about their stigmatized experiences while raising funds that, hopefully, aid them in the economic crises that almost always accompany any serious medical diagnosis.

The intent of these programs does not give them free reign to say whatever they want for the sake of the cause. I hate Breast Cancer Awareness Month because it is offensive. It is sexist, belittling, hurtful to myself and survivors, family members, patients and countless other people who have been effected by the illness. I’m talking primarily about the “Save the Tatas” and “Save Second Base” campaigns, but that doesn’t mean that Susan G. Komen’s Walk for a Cure or any of the other feel-good October events are in the clear. These boob-centric campaigns are simply the worst offenders. Let’s turn our critical thinking brain-parts on and dissect the messages of these campaigns, shall we?

“Save the Tatas”–but whose?
Did you know men can get breast cancer? All kinds of men–trans men, bio men, queer men, straight men, young men, old men, men who wear tuxedos and men who wear sweater vests. But most men don’t identify with the possession of “tatas” (some do, by the way, and that is awesome!). The language of these campaigns immediately gives the impression that breast cancer is a women’s only disease, which definitely contributes to the projected 450 men who have died or will die of breast cancer this year. Yes, women are significantly more diagnosed and more women die from breast cancer, but that’s still 450 people who died from a disease they probably had no idea they could even have until it was too late, and that’s 450 deaths that make me uncomfortable with the way we talk about breast cancer. Young and old women can get it too! But most pre-pubescent (and even post-pubescent) young girls don’t identify with the possession of “tatas” (heck, I’m 19, and I definitely don’t think that word describes anything that I am in possession of). This language is similarly exclusionary of older women, whose breasts don’t fit into the world’s ideas of what we “want” tatas to look like.

More than that, when we talk about “saving the tatas” and breast cancer awareness in general, we’re talking about an extremely whitewashed movement. When you google image search “save the tatas” (note: doing that is probably enough to put you in a rage all day), the people present are almost all young, white women, when breast cancer disproportionately effects women of color. More than that, women of color, in particular black women, are more likely to be diagnosed late and die from breast cancer than their white counterparts. You would think that would make “awareness” campaigns more likely to address women of color, but it’s clear that their representation in these programs is marginal at best. How can you even have an awareness campaign that doesn’t address the most effected individuals?

“Save the tatas”–but at what cost?
This idea that breast cancer prevention and treatment will “save the tatas” is, to me, the most insulting, sexist and belittling part of the whole campaign. Not only are these programs sexist and subtley racist, but they sexualize and trivialize the experiences of breast cancer patients and survivors. This phrase signifies that the most important part of a woman is her breasts and that those are the most important thing to save when they are put into life-threatening situations. I mean, really, in what other situation where a woman’s life is at stake do we find it appropriate to say to her and the world, “please, dear god, have mercy and SAVE HER BREASTS.” None. And it should be even less acceptable to say it to women whose treatment plans can and do include masectomies. Are those survivors no longer worth saving once their breasts are gone? I’d like to think that’s not what the general consensus is, but judging from these atrocious slogans, it just might be the case.

Which “tatas” are we saving–and why?
The money raised by these campaigns is generally thought to go to research or more awareness campaigns, and occasionally funding support or possibly some specific people’s medical costs. However, they never discuss the economic burden of being diagnosed and treated with breast cancer. It’s clear that these campaigns are committed to saving almost exclusively white, bio and self-identified “women”, but it seems to me that they are also only concerned with, frankly, rich boobs. The “save the tatas” campaign is kinda racist, pretty sexist, extremely cis-sexist and almost definitely classist as well.

There’s so much more to talk about here. The commodification of breast cancer(sometimes with products that are known to contain carcinogens), the price we put on cures, the overwhelming statistics offered with little to no actual information (for all of the events and programs I’ve been a part of, I personally still have no idea what a tumor in my breast could even feel like) and the godawful gender essentialism tied into the fact that everything having anything to do with breast cancer awareness must be coated in a layer of cotton candy pink. The breast cancer awareness movement is so wrong, for so many reasons, so why do we keep giving its machine our money? It’s time to stop. The means here do not and cannot justify the ends, especially when these ends have little to nothing to do with finding an actual cure or helping actual survivors. It’s time for us to put down the pink, put down the t-shirts and bracelets and pink celophane-wrapped nonsense and start caring for the survivors in our own lives. The fact is, if we really care about breast cancer, we need to start doing just that–caring, caring for survivors and caring about how the way we frame and commodify their disease effects their lives. These campaigns are supposed to be about them, and it’s time to make that the reality, rather than encouraging the opposite.

Elly is really tired of saying the word tatas and will probably get breast cancer in her lifetime. She may or may not have flipped off someone trying to sell her a “save second base” shirt during the horrible, horrible month of October.


“To all the women who quietly made history.”

Damn straight.

Source: singithigh

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Sex & the Ivory Tower

Food. Food. Probably more food. TV. FOOD. Oklahoma City. Food. Reproductive Justice sometimes. Innovation. I'm hungry y'all.

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