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Archive for the ‘Full Inclusion’ Category

From my other blog, because once my DISability was established as an acceptable target and my (and yes, and yet she persisted) persistence held against me, the abuse didn’t stop. Once a target, you’ll be blamed for the abuse: the classic “She asked for it.”

Resurrecting Assassinated Characters
https://inbedwithfridakahlo.wordpress.com/2017/03/04/resurrecting-assassinated-characters/

And this important article by a young Palestinian activist, because the attacks on me are not personal. It’s part of an over all pattern, because if they can target you personally, they don’t have to actually address the issues you’re raising.

Character Assassination as a Tool to Silence a Palestinian Woman
https://medium.com/@MalakaMohammed/character-assassination-as-a-tool-to-silence-a-palestinian-woman-8a8da38740b6#.2cavbkh3x

And a reminder that women are often the targets of cyber abuse:

Dangerous Neighborhoods: Cyber abuse, harassment and threats: Women online.
https://inbedwithfridakahlo.wordpress.com/2016/10/11/dangerous-neighborhoods-cyber-abuse-harassment-and-threats-women-online/

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YOUR PUT DOWNS OF SAFETY PINS ARE NOT ENOUGH!
& YOUR PETTY CALL OUT ACTIVISM
IS AN EMBARRASSMENT!

There have been a few articles and several social media posts mocking the proposal that people wear safety pins to proclaim, in this new UhMurikan landscape, that “I am a safe space.” It’s a way for those of us in an unfamiliar place or under attack to identify an ally who will defend us or accompany us if we encounter violence, hate speech, threats or intimidation because of our real or assumed membership in a targeted group. One article appeared, written by a white presenting cis het presenting man, in the Huffington Post, that bastion of social responsibility and grassroots mobilization. (Snark!)

 Of course the safety pins are NOT ENOUGH.They’re a symbol, a statement, a promise and a commitment.

Are these publish worthy leftists also for the abolishment of: buttons and t-shirts (which must be manufactured, marketed and sold), banners, signs. How are these any different? Are we against any symbolism? What about ribbons? arm bands?

This petty self promotion  and put down of other activist efforts is tiresome. After all not EVERYONE gets Huffington Post press access.

The safety pin solidarity started in England after the passage of Brexit with the targeting of immigrants.  In England there may have been an issue with the pins, that it was a white thing: an insufficient badge of respectability, guilt, remorse, penance. But in the U.S., Occupied Amerikkka the targets are MOST OF US. And there are still people totally complicit from all demographics, so the symbol is important, easy, accessible, inexpensive, UNFUCKINGMARKETABLE, so we can let people know we are ready to take action; (and then we need to come through; that we are here for each other). After all with the increased rhetoric and the emboldened extreme right, white supremacist (rebranded, normalized, alt-right),  only white Christian cis het, ENabled, body normative men aren’t targeted. The vast majority, the rest of us are!

For way too long activism has moved from the grassroots, to self promotion, individualism,  survival of the fittest, scarcity resources and competition. Allies who aren’t movement stars (there’s a clear double standard here!)  are told they should just not show up, not take up space, sit down, shut up, listen, read more, go shopping.  There has been very little engagement in what real allyship might be, what solidarity looks like, how we check each other and check ourselves, from a position of responsibility, accountability and transparency, and not from a place of obedience, acquiescence and silence.  Hopefully the broad targeting of so many of us is a wake up call, that we need all our bodies on the line, and that we can’t do this in separate groups (which fuels the alt right’s rebranding, as it appropriates that language with claims that it is simply a civil rights movement for white people and that we all have our place in our separate nations.)

Maybe the movement stars who are so used to making it all about themselves:  the self promoters, the individualist who have for too long used “activism” as their own personal starting line in that great competition for speaking engagements, publicity and  non-profit managerial positions can show some solidarity instead of crapping on this very basic grassroots organizing effort. Maybe we can move the dialogue from whose voices matter to how we can assure our movement is as large and inclusive as possible (day care, DISability access, language translation, financial accessibility). Maybe we can start to have the difficult discussions around transparency and accountability around unlearning racism, sexism, ableism,  ageism, classism and all the other ways marginalization keeps us down and apart.

So let this be the start and not the end. Let the lists of other ways of showing solidarity, of putting our bodies, minds, reputations on the line for each other begin, but let us start with “AND” and not “BUT”.

Sure the safety pins are not enough, and your grandstanding is getting real tired, too.

 

 

 

 

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Emma Rosenthal, MacArthur Park, Rampart Division-LAPD, Los Angeles

I am grateful for the opportunity to speak to you today at this October 22 demonstration against police brutality on the theme, Resistance Matters,  focusing on a segment of EVERY community– people with dis-abilites.

People with dis-abilities are specifically targeted by police for abuse and brutality.

People who are deaf, unable to heed orders they do not hear, unable to communicate with authority, often are killed or battered by a system that doesn’t take their communication needs into consideration.

People with visible dis-abilities attract the attention of bullies, including the bullies in blue who know that there are no consequences for our ostracism or victimization.

People who appear, walk, talk differently are often singled out, accused of being drunk, and often have trouble with law enforcement because of both misunderstandings and the outright hostility toward us, by the police.

People with mental health conditions come in contact with police on the street, when our behavior doesn’t conform to society’s expectations, or when police are called to respond to medical emergencies.

Homelessness and prisons ARE our society’s mental health care system.

Police often respond to medical psychiatric emergencies with brutal and often deadly force, claiming they felt that they were in imminent danger.

Imagine if health care providers said they had to kill a patient because the patient’s condition threatened the lives of health care professionals.

It is the job of health care providers to treat people who are ill. We must demand no less of emergency personnel, including police, when answering a call for medical emergencies.

___________________

There is a nexus of gender, class and race with dis-ability, compounding our experience with authorities. We are part of every community, not a separate group, or geographic. There is no organization or outreach that can fully succeed without our full inclusion. You cannot address the issue of police brutality without also addressing the role of people with dis-abilities in the struggle for social justice.

Yet many social justice organizations don’t include people with dis-abilities fully, in addressing many social justice issues, and often perpetuate attitudes and policies that contribute to our marginalization.

You can’t defend our rights without our participation, our full participation. Nothing about us, without us. Working on our behalf without us, simply appropriates our exploitation in the service of rhetoric.

A movement that isn’t informed by the victims perpetuates the abuse. Planning that does not take our specific needs and issues into consideration often puts us in significant danger. Too often event security responds to us in much the same way that the state does.  I have been at demonstrations where the event coordinators did as much to endanger us, as the police do. This must be changed, this must be challenged.

We cannot fight a system by replicating its attitudes & practices. We cannot demand from society what we cannot also create among ourselves.

Expectations of people with dis-abilities merge with issues of race/gender and class to increase marginalization via expectations of behavior.

Thinking of people with dis-abilities as aberrant, undesirable, non-contributing and a burden have no place in the movement, these are capitalist attitudes.

Dis-ability rights isn’t charity. nothing short of full inclusion is justice. It is not your place to “help” us, but rather to work with us, to include us in ways that inform praxis.

It is NOT our job to make you comfortable with out conditions.

It is NOT our job to find our own way into your organizations.

It is NOT our job to say what you want to hear, and to leave our particular needs and experience out of the discussion.

Dis-ability inclusion is the collective responsibility of the entire community. 

________________

Additionally, agents of repression know to use dis-ability to divide the movement, like they use gender & race; by relying on our own prejudice & bigotry.

Infiltrators use ridicule of people with dis-abilities. Police have been known to “street: us into demonstrations to provoke an angry crowd that knows we are acceptable targets.

These divisive tactics don’t work when we check ourselves, our own entitlements that mask as privileges that defeat us all. We cannot build a sincere movement w/o including the most marginalized sectors, and we cannot address police brutality by ignoring its specific nexus with dis-abilty .

_______________

It must also be  recognized that police not only target people with dis-abilities for abuse, but also, in their brutality, create dis-ability, leaving those who survive, injured and traumatized. Let us honor those comrades wounded in the struggle, injured by capitalism, with ramps, sign language & voice, as well as make room for all activists into the future, as any one of us can become a person with a dis-ability, at any time.

No more excuses. These are matters of resistance because resistance matters.

So, let us build the strongest resistance to police brutality and state hegemony by ever increasing the circle, by standing, sitting, signing, rolling arm in arm in solidarity, a strong movement that cannot afford to leave anyone behind, a movement that needs everyone’s voice, everyone’s story.

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for more information go to:
http://inbedwithfridakahlo.wordpress.com/2010/06/25/kathy-running-horse-wells-1957-2010/

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With 70 people reported injured in the attack on the flotilla, surely some of them will acquire permanent dis-abilities. will they be part of an inclusive movement, or will they be sidelined for the consequences of their bravery and sacrifice?Too often, activists with dis-abilities, are discarded or dismissed within the movement, EVEN when their dis-abilities were the result of their courage and resistance to repression.

Dis-ability rights, isn’t a separate issue. No community is fully organized, if members of that community are excluded. We are everyone. We are everywhere. We aren’t cute stories to provide inspiration, or freak show entertainment. We are YOU!

Who do we exclude when we fail to include?

For guidelines for full inclusion: (cut and paste link if it doesn’t work!)

http://inbedwithfridakahlo.wordpress.com/2009/09/30/guide-to-accessible%20event-planning/

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(human rights as a menu, a cause du jour, something to think of when they get around to it.  and  they’ll throw in some non-seqitur race baiting to justify it all! but it’s not all bad.  scroll down for the way it should be done!–posted to the sister blog- in bed with frida kahlo.)

I CAN’T BE PART OF A MOVEMENT IF I CAN’T GET MY WHEEL IN THE DOOR

http://inbedwithfridakahlo.wordpress.com/2010/06/05/i-cant-be-part-of-a-movement-if-i-cant-get-my-wheel-in-the-door/

A tale of two inquiries (this is how we do it!)

http://inbedwithfridakahlo.wordpress.com/2010/06/06/a-tale-of-two-inquiries/

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By Emma Rosenthal
 
AREN’T THERE BETTER, MORE DESERVING, MORE QUALIFIED WRITERS, WE CAN PROMOTE, TO DECONSTRUCT THE ASSUMPTIONS, ARROGANCE AND HUBRIS OF AMERICAN EMPIRE, ISRAELI SETTLER COLONIALISM AND GENOCIDE?

Roberts is a right wing white supremacist who has written repeatedly anti-disability, anti-jewish, anti-gay, anti-immigrant anti- people of color, rants for years. (and while attempting to be “pro-Islam, pro-Arab”, his assertions are rife with orientalist assumptions of Amerikan/western superiority.) His critique of U.S./Israeli policy is not part of a human rights, social justice, anti-imperialist movement for self-determination or liberation, but rather is simply an extension of his white supremacist fear that white people and Amerika are losing ground. Roberts has written for years for VDARE (a racist publication, named for Virginia Dare, the first “white” baby to be born in the “New World”), but recently he has been published, without criticism or reference to his racist, ableist, sexist anti-gay, anti-immigrant, anti-Jewish, anti-Arab trajectory by Counterpunch, ifamericansknew, antiwar.com, Democracy Now, Information Clearing House, Alternet and other “progressive” media. In his article “Why Does Israel Want to Initiate War Between theU.S.  and Iran?” (1) Roberts repeats what we’ve been hearing for years: that the U.S. government is a puppet regime of Israel. immediately contradicting himself with the refrain we’ve heard for 10 years, that Israel is trying  to drag the U.S. into war with IRan, or that Israel will bomb Iran on its own. We’ve heard this from the left, the right, and from two U.S. Vice Presidents. (Cheney and Biden) and yet– no war. (Sanctions, defamations, pressure, but no war!) Does this mean that the tail doesn’t wag the dog, as has been suggested? After all, if Israel has really wanted the U.S. to go to war, or if Israel really wants to bomb Iran, if Israel really did run the show, wouldn’t this have happened years ago? On the other hand, is it possible that Israel is less influential than we’ve been led to believe and that the threat of an Israeli caused war, is part of the illusion the U.S.  and Israel have been manufacturing for some time– the idea that Israel is responsible for U.S. foreign policy– taking the focus off of the U.S. and its global empire, while simultaneously making Israel seem much more powerful than it really is. – a mutually beneficial illusion. In his article “The End of Free Speech? Criminalizing Criticism of Israel”, (2) Roberts attacks a hate crimes bill that extends violent hate crimes protection to LGBT people and people with dis-abilities. He asserts that this new bill would make any criticism of Israel and the Holocaust, illegal, contrary to ANY reading of the bill, which says absolutely nothing about Israel and has no impact at all on speech. In his article ” Muslims Are Their Own Worst Enemy” (3) he repeats tired orientalist stereotypes, blames the victims of U.S. (and British and Russian Imperialism) for their own condition “Muslim disunity has made it possible for Israel to dispossess the Palestinians, for the U.S. to invade Iraq, and for the U.S. to rule much of the region…” In his memoriam to Milton Friedman, (4) the architect of some of the most deadly economic policies of the Twentieth Century, he calls Friedman the “great economist of our times.” In his article “That Buchanan Book” (5) he repeats and embellishes Buchanon’s attacks on immigrants, multiculturalism, people of color people with dis-abilities and the left. “Buchanan has strong opinions, but his opinions are based in facts, unlike his equally opinionated opponents, who have bought into the multiculturalist dogma of the evils of western civilization or taken refuge in neoconservative wishful thinking.” He states, “Whites are shrinking into a minority even within their own countries. massive uncontrolled legal and illegal immigration, together with collapsing fertility rates of whites everywhere, foretell a vanishing race.” as if it’s a bad thing. (Seriously though,  the disappearance of any culture or group is NEVER  a good thing, but the construct of whiteness –including his unstated inference to race mixing as further diluting this vanishing breed– isn’t about the preservation of a culture, but the total assimilation of several distinct and disparate languages, heritages, histories and legacies which are swallowed up into a homogenized (White) identity in the interest of empire and domination–for those who qualify, whiteness is the price of losing who you are.) He goes on to assert that the situation may be worse than Buchanan would have us think: “In the U.S., native-born whites already are second-class citizens in their own country. Unconstitutional group privileges have arisen based on race, gender, and disability. White males no longer have equal rights. “ He concludes this article; “Demonization of whites is the weapon used by multiculturalists to breakup western civilization… Demonization has already demoralized some whites, making them ashamed and fearful of their skin color.” “By the time whites become political minorities, decades of demonization will have prepared the ground for legislation prohibiting their propagation and, perhaps, assigning them to the gulag as a final solution … none of this is ordained. faculties could replace multicultural propagandists with real scholars, and legislation could halt or reduce immigration to assimilable numbers. Is western civilization worth the effort? Does anyone any longer know what western civilization is? “ So how come roberts is getting so much play among progressives, including the progressive press, given his history of bigotry and intolerance, as well as having “served” on Reagan’s cabinet as Treasury Secretary (making his essay “The Rich Have Stolen the Economy”, a bit absurd)? Could it be that his white supremacist positions, including the assertion of a Zionist occupied Amerikan government, run by foreign Israeli interlopers, tricksters, puppeteers, as well as an entire ethnic group of U.S. citizens with suspicious national allegiance, absolve (Christian) white (and otherwise privileged) Amerikans of their (real and mis-afilliated) guilt, allowing them to address injustices without ever having to examine the root causes, raise their class consciousness, or challenge their own nationalism, Amerikan hubris, entitlement and arrogance. When I ask why “we” are promoting Roberts, I am told that he has important points to make, that no one is all good or all bad, that his position in the Reagan Administration lends credibility to those more legitimate assertions “we all agree on”. But even though a broken clock is right twice a day, and Mussolini  made the trains run on time, do we really want, in giving credence to his “good points” to legitimize his racist, sexist, ableist bigotry and promote Roberts at the expense of other writers who, though lesser known, might better articulate a vision of anti-imperialism, anti-colonialism, infused justice, inclusion, diversity and self-determination?

1. http://www.thecanadiancharger.com/page.php?id=5&a=133

2. https://cafeintifada.wordpress.com/2009/05/08/654/

3. http://www.vdare.com/articles/muslims-are-their-own-worst-enemy

4. http://www.vdare.com/articles/milton-friedman-in-memoriam

5. http://www.vdare.com/articles/that-buchanan-book

http://vdare.com/roberts/west_future.htm

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