ChoiceWords Blog

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guest-blogger

Posts By: Guest Blogger

Kansas’s New Concealed Carry Laws Don’t Belong On Our Campuses

Come July 1st, 2017, Kansas will become the first state that allows students to bring guns on campus without a permit. As a community psychologist and a doctoral student at Wichita State University, I have always held a unique perspective on campus carry; not like the negative rhetoric that you read about from the “alt-right perspective,” where gun safety advocates are perceived as “snowflakes.” You can’t imagine the backlash I have received about my nagging for “extra rights”; they would make anyone want to roll their eyes for an infinite amount of time. But the concerns of hundreds of students on Kansas campuses should not be taken lightly. July 1st will be the start of a new college experience — one where some students will be forced to have a… Read more »

Condoms Are Great. Prop 60 Is Not.

One of the measures on California’s massive ballot this election cycle is Proposition 60, an initiative that would mandate the use of condoms by performers in adult films. At first glance, the measure sounds great; condoms are an important harm reduction intervention within and outside of sex work and have been proven to reduce STI and HIV transmission. Prop. 60, however, would allow any California resident to sue producers of films that don’t visibly use condoms, something that a variety of prevalent players within sexual and reproductive healthcare systems don’t support including (and perhaps most especially) adult film actors themselves. The controversial president of the AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) Michael Weinstein proposed Prop. 60 as a measure to reduce transmission of STIs by putting into law the Safer Sex in… Read more »

This Intersex Awareness Day, Some Notes on the ‘I’ in LGBTQI

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As the acronym that we come to understand as our community expands, so must our awareness of all it means. In recent years, an I has come to dangle from the end of LGBTQI. Most of us know that L is for Lesbian, G for Gay, B for Bisexual, T is for Transgender, and––depending on the weather––Q is for Queer or Questioning. Yet the ‘I’ that dangles at the end may confuse some; what does it stand for, anyway? Innovative? Impressive? Inspirational? While all of these are applicable, in this particular game of alphabet soup, ‘I’ is for Intersex. Intersex is a term used to describe folks who are born with genetic, hormonal, genital, or other sex characteristics that do not align with the stereotypical definitions of male or female… Read more »

#RespectMyHustle: Trans Profiles in the Workplace

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Name: Lourdes Ashley Hunter Pronouns: Goddess Queen Sister Career: Academic, Orator, Creator, Producer, Consultant. Executive Director,  Trans Women of Color Collective; B.A. Social Theory, Structure and Change with concentrations in Race, Class and Gender Studies, Executive Masters of Public Administration. What journey did you take to obtaining the job position you have currently? I’m originally from Detroit, Michigan.  My mom worked at Chrysler for about 20 years, and was active in the United Auto Workers Union and the the Black Church.  I grew up in a household that honored ancestors, culture, liberation work, community service, healing and restorative justice.   I can remember going to Union rallies, meetings, marches and protests with my mom as a very small child.  I have actively engaged in grassroots community organizing all of my life.  For about 10… Read more »

#RespectMyHustle: Trans Profiles in the Workplace

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Across America we see LGBTQ folks tackling discrimination and expanding diversity in the workplace. Often times, that diversity only represents gays and lesbians, leaving out the trans community. It’s time to shine light on the varied careers of trans women and men who have made a way for themselves and their young counterparts. Public figures like Laverne Cox, Janet Mock, and Tiq Milan are an inspiration to trans folks, who have rarely seen themselves in the media. But we can’t be satisfied with spotlighting only a few successful people from the trans community. There are so many more brilliant trans professionals in everyday career fields who should be visible to trans youth, as well. Trans folks are actively showing resilience and success in business, and young people deserve to see… Read more »

Tackling LGBTQ Homelessness in America

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Imagine that being who you are, is the reason you are homeless. Living your truth out loud is your crime and the consequence leaves you abandoned from family and shelter. Well, that sad reality is exactly the case for 40 percent of LGBTQ youth in America. Too often, when LGBTQ youth disclose and announce their sexuality or gender identity to their family members, the next step is being kicked out and becoming homeless. Although the majority of LGBTQ homelessness is tied to family reactions and issues, not all LGBTQ youth become homeless that way; over 20 percent comes from aging out of foster care programs. Not only is this an issue of family abandonment or negligent foster care systems, but LGBTQ homelessness is an attack on human rights and justice…. Read more »

Out on the Steps: Lessons Learned While #WaitingForLyle

abby agnew piece on scotus

The Supreme Court has always been my favorite branch of government. They get to wear cool robes. They’re all really smart. Their work has always seemed quasi-secretive yet life-changingly important. When I was told that part of my URGE intern duties would include waiting for the Whole Women’s Health decision on the steps of SCOTUS, I was thrilled. I was less thrilled when I spent two days on the steps #waitingforlyle in typical Washington, DC summer weather. There were more people there than I’d thought there would be, the majority of whom were anti-choice protestors, and the part of me that hates confrontation demanded to know why I had placed myself in this situation. I stood for a few hours, feeling less anxious as the crowd grew larger. I don’t… Read more »

My Premature Birth and Pro-Choice Activism Are Not at Odds

lindsey ellefson guest

In my final semester of college, I had to make a film. With my degree in sight and 16 years of academic struggle and achievement behind me, I decided to make it about the people who made it all possible: my parents. I told the story of my parents’ decade-long struggle to have a child to the heads of the television and film department at my school, won a grant, and was on a flight home to surprise my parents in no time, camera in hand. After a few weeks’ work, I had this: I posted my little film online frequently, wanting my parents’ story to be seen, wanting to honor them, wanting to thank them. I imagine that pausing my usual stream of statuses and links about reproductive justice… Read more »

I Didn’t Love My Newborn

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I didn’t love my newborn. I had loved him before he was born. Through the pregnancy complications, the month of bed rest, I had loved him. Feeling him kick, seeing my huge stomach sway with his movements whenever my husband spoke. Knowing he was there brought me comfort when I was afraid. I even loved him when he had a foot wedged in my rib, as he often did. But here he was, my baby, finally in my arms, and I didn’t love him. “This is not how I’m supposed to feel.” Nothing about my son’s entrance to the world happened the way I’d hoped. I’d planned for an unmedicated labor, complete with yoga balls and a jacuzzi tub. What I got, thanks to a terrible case of pre-eclampsia, was… Read more »