ChoiceWords Blog

Caitlin

Age: 20 (21 Oct 31)
School: Texas State University
Major: Journalism, minor in Sociology
Hometown: El Paso, TX
Favorite writer: Chuck Palahniuk and Jodi Picoult
Favorite sex scene from a movie/TV/book: My favorite sex scene would have to be from the film Blue Valentine when Ryan Gosling performs cunnilangus on Michelle Williams. It was the first film I saw where a male character willingly and happily pleasured a woman like that.
Hidden talent: Always having tacos and lipstick in my bag.

Posts By: Caitlin

The battle for accurate history textbooks in Texas

View image | gettyimages.com Texas is often known for its political conservativeness; if you take a look at the bills that have been proposed during the 84th session of the Texas Legislature that began January 13 you see many examples of that. These bills include many attacks on reproductive justice. It is often forgotten though, just how important the power of testimony is when it comes to preventing some issues from making this far in legislation. In September of 2014 the State Board of Education (SBOE) held a public hearing to discuss possible changes that wanted to be made to Texas high school social studies textbooks. On the surface this doesn’t seem like that large of an issue, after all shouldn’t textbooks be updated with the most current and accurate… Read more »

5 Tips for Navigating Social Justice Discussions

View image | gettyimages.com I’m part of a group at my university called Feminists United and every week we hold discussion based meetings that focus on different social justice topics ie. ableism, rape culture, classism, race, gender, etc.  Having our meetings be mostly discussion based is really important because it provides a safe for people to speak on topics they are passionate about as well as learn about the unfamiliar through the help of their peers. I’ve attended these meetings and been a part of this group for a couple of semesters now, but this is the first semester where I’m going to be in the position of a group facilitator. Usually during our meetings because we have such a large group (between 30 and 40 people) we like to… Read more »

Young boys saying “no” doesn’t end domestic violence

An Italian viral video entitled “From a Slap” has been continuously showing up on my newsfeed this week with comments like “This gives me faith in humanity!” and “This is the cutest thing!” I wish I could say I agree, but I can’t. If you aren’t familiar with the video I’m referring to “Dalle uno Schiaffo” which roughly translates to “From a Slap” is the work of Italian news website Fanpage.it  and creator Luca Iavarone. The video, shot in a participatory documentary style, focuses on five young boys between the ages of 7 and 11 and their interactions with a young girl named Martina. The film begins with an off-screen voice asking the boys their names, ages and what they want to be when they grow up, but once Martina… Read more »

Change Starts Small: LGBTQ Progress in Texas

I am so proud to go to Texas State University with its over 35,000 students and to live in San Marcos Texas, one of the fastest growing cities in the country. Often times I get asked if living in Texas and being queer is difficult since Texas is, unfortunately, a state where marriage equality has not yet been achieved (but we’re getting there) and you can be fired in Texas just based on your sexuality or gender expression. It’s definitely difficult to live in Texas as a queer person, but I am so thankful to be in an environment at Texas State where progress is being made. Earlier this semester the city of San Marcos hosted their first pride parade, which was incredible to be a part of. Over 300… Read more »

Five Feminist Films to Get You Through Finals

With finals just around the corner for many college students, as Paul said, it’s a time of high stress and lots of studying. But everyone deserves a break once in a while and when that break does come I know that I love watching movies. So I thought I’d give y’all a list of my top 5 feminist movies that I’ve enjoyed in my spare time (more like enjoyed when I should be studying). These aren’t going to be in any particular order because that would be impossible. 1.) A League of Their Own This was one of my favorite movies to watch growing up. Although it is fiction, it tells the tale of women who were a part of the All American Girls Professional Baseball League during World War… Read more »

Challenging beauty expectations can start but not end with a new Barbie

This past March, a man by the name of Nicholay Lamm decided to launch a crowdfunding campaign to help him raise money to create a new kind of Barbie doll. 8 months later, thanks to nearly 14,000 supporters, Lamm is now able to ship 19,000 new dolls to people. what makes his dolls so different? The whole premise of his design was to make a “normal” presenting Barbie doll with the physical proportions of an average 19-year old girl. He succeeded and named his creation, “Lammily”. She has made news once again because this week Lamm debuted a new accessory for the doll in the form of stickers. There is now the option to purchase stickers for the doll that represent normal physicalities, including freckles, acne, scars, stretch marks, and… Read more »

The Importance of Being an Ally (even if you already think you are)

Self-identifying as queer sometimes makes me feel like I immediately have the title of ally as well. The definition of an ally is a person, group, or nation that is associated with another or others for some common cause or purpose. So of course I’d be an ally to the LGBTQ community, why wouldn’t I want to help further the cause of equality within a group that I identify within? So when my university  was offering an ally training specifically geared to learning more about the LGBTQ community I was reluctant to attend, I figured I already knew everything I needed to. Even so however, I registered and attended the 3 hour seminar. Although they did focus a lot on vocabulary and the history of the gay movement and how to… Read more »

Can one street harassment experience speak for us all?

Earlier this week a video entitled 10 Hours of Walking in NYC as a Woman was released and immediately went viral on the Internet. The almost two minute PSA was produced by a non-profit organization called Hollaback! whose mission is to end street harassment. The film features Shoshana B. Roberts in a black t-shirt and jeans walking silently through New York City for a total of ten hours as she receives over 108 harassing comments. The comments ranged from catcalls and whistles to men following Roberts for minutes at a time. The intent of the video was to start a conversation about street harassment and have people realize that Roberts experience is not unique when according to the website, between 70 and 99 percent of women are harassed while walking down the street at some… Read more »

Bridging Identities In The Newsroom

Being a journalism major at Texas State University, I look forward to the third week in October because every year it is designated as Mass Communication Week. Throughout the week mass comm professionals from all concentrations including journalism, advertising, public relations, and multimedia gather at my university to tell stories and share advice from within the professional world. I attended many presentations, but the one that I was most excited to attend was titled, “LGBT and media coverage/ Diversity in the newsroom.” Having attended two mass comm weeks prior to this one it was the first time that I remember there being a specific space given to queer journalists. The discussion was led by two people, Austin-American Statesman columnist Michael Barnes, and Texas State journalism student and University Star writer, Ernest… Read more »

Let’s talk about Abortion Access in Texas and Obvious Child

[Warning” The following article will contain spoilers from the film Obvious Child] I apologize for being a couple of months late to the game, but this past week I finally got the opportunity to watch the film Obvious Child, starring Jenny Slate. The film received a lot of attention when it premiered this past June because the topic of abortion was at its forefront. Dubbed the “abortion rom-com” by many a reviewer, it received praise for handling a serious and complex topic with such normalcy. The premise of the fim is that the main character played by Slate, Donna Stern, gets broken up with, has a one night stand as a way to cope, and then finds herself pregnant as a result. The film’s director, Gillian Robespierre, said that she never… Read more »