Em-URGE-ing Voices

Posts Categorized: Sex and Culture

Why Kesha’s Single “Praying” Could Be a Message for the #MeToo Campaign

“Praying” was released on August 15, 2017, at the dawn of the #MeTooCampaign. The song comes from Kesha’s album, Rainbow, and is an emotional gospel to healing and recovery. In light of recent movements combating sexual assault such as #MeToo, Kesha’s song is arguably one of many anthems for the campaign. In my women’s studies class, my professor told us that, because of patterns in history surrounding controversial presidencies and social resistances, the Trump presidency would likely cause some unspeakable pain and violence, but would also spark an artistic revolution from the flames of destruction. It is safe to say that this artistic revolution is well on its way and many artists are seeking to express their social resistance through their artwork, using paintings, photography, spoken word and music. Music in protest of the… Read more »

Modern Girls are Redefining What “Strength” Means One Story at a Time

Over the last few months, the #TimesUp and #MeToo movements have continued to gain momentum. This week, Babe published a piece accusing Aziz Ansari of sexual misconduct. The reaction to the story was mixed. For many of us, this story started a new conversation about what rape culture means. The behavior seen in the Aziz Ansari story reminded us that rape culture thrives because male entitlement continues to be a norm. However, many critics overlook the nuance of the situation. Instead, they see the Ansari story as a “witch-hunt” gone too far. In a piece for The Atlantic, Caitlin Flanagan argues that modern girls are weak. The “weakness” Flanagan proposes comes from modern girls not being assertive, prepared, or vigilant enough to keep men from attacking them. Flanagan’s definition of… Read more »


This year has allowed a surge of sexual assault stories to surface and finally see the light of day, after years of silence. With not only the horrific actions of Harvey Weinstein, many other victims have shared their stories in confidence and solidarity with the public. The #MeToo hashtag has provided a breeding ground to showcase how often sexual assault actually happens and more importantly, how often it goes unnoticed.  Harvey Weinstein has further proved that sexual assault in Hollywood has been going on for years, with many people turning a blind eye or suffering in silence.  Yesterday, The New York Times released a heart-wrenching op-ed piece by Salma Hayek. Known for her incredible work in several films, in this piece Hayek focuses on Frida, carefully fleshing out a detailed… Read more »

Keep Your Head Warm While You Keep Your Feminism Trans Inclusive

It’s getting chilly out there, my dear feminist friends. While it might be tempting to throw on your “pussy hat” from the Women’s March earlier this year, I suggest that you, instead, stay warm by watching transphobia and gender essentialism go up in flames. I’ve done it too. We all love a good quote about “pussy power” or something about “ovaries before brovaries.” But, in the name of trying to be better, the feminist movement needs to stop focusing on genitals when we discuss women. And yes, as it gets cold, that means you pussy hat wearers. In the case of the ever famous “pussy hat,” I understand that this word is being reclaimed after its history of men’s derogatory use, particularly in the context of Trump. I understand that… Read more »

2018 Resolutions

Believe it or not, 2017 is drawing to a close! The New Year is a time for us to reflect on the year behind us and also think about our resolutions for 2018. A bright, shiny new year in which the government will fully fund abortion, stop shaming young people for their sexual health choices, and generally just be functional (ok maybe not, but we are speaking it into existence.) On that note, here is a list of URGE’s 2018 resolutions: 1. Mobilize young people to VOTE!               Listen, y’all: we know it’s been a tough year. You know how you can help next year suck less? By voting for people who you think best represent your interests. I mean, look at Virginia! Virginia… Read more »

They Broke The Silence–Now Show Us You’re Listening

Time‘s Person of the Year was recently announced: The Silence Breakers, a group of women who spoke out against sexual assault this year and helped start the #MeToo movement. Since Trump’s recent claims to have been asked to be the Person of the Year for 2017, the real choice felt like an even bigger victory. Until, I saw that Trump was actually the first runner up for Person of the Year. Here’s a passage from Time‘s article: “One thing is sure: love him or hate him, Trump has invaded our attention in ways previous Presidents never did. He commands more than just the levers of executive power; he has the nation, and the world, in the grip of his singular performance, and events have bent to his will. This has… Read more »

Hey Guys: I’m Working, Don’t Flirt With Me

Last semester, I worked as an usher in my university’s basketball stadium. Overall, it wasn’t a bad job; I was getting paid for watching basketball games. However, the job required me to stand at the top of an aisle for about eight hours. Patrons often said hello to me as they went to find their seats, sometimes asking for directions to the closest bathroom or their seating area. But, there was one time when a man tried to hit on me while I was working. He showed me his ticket and asked which side of the aisle his seat was on. To my memory, as I gestured to one side of the aisle, he saw a ring on my finger. “You’re already engaged? How old are you?” I told him… Read more »


After Billboard’s Women in Music Awards show made us remember how many powerful women there are in the music industry, I realized the business of music is still run by men.  From CEOs to executives and lawyers, music boasts some amazing female talents whose careers are puppeteered by their counterparts. The ‘assaultgate’ in Hollywood, and allegations surrounding actors, public figures and politicians is overwhelming but I can’t help wonder if it ever seeped into the music industry? The same industry where we sexualize and objectify women to ensure the sale of records has yet to have an explosion of victims come forward, and while I hope there isn’t corruption, pop star Ke$ha’s story tells a different tale. We all remember the civil suit Ke$ha filed against her producer Dr. Luke, the… Read more »

Sexual Assault Is Bad, But a Woman In Charge? Even Worse.

During the past week, national news has covered the Alabama senate race scheduled for December after sexual assault allegations were made against candidate Roy Moore. Post-Weinstein, many survivors of sexual assault have been encouraged to speak up, and Roy Moore has just been added to the list of the accused. Testimonies from multiple women, as well as evidence presented by those close to Moore, all corroborate these accusations, and I frankly can’t fathom why anyone would believe otherwise. Reports have stated recently that rival candidate Doug Jones has been gaining momentum in the polls since the revelations, and although there’s still a good chance of Moore’s victory, the backlash against him since the accusations has made a considerable difference for some voters and major figures at the White House. As a… Read more »

Birth Control Accessibility is Not Just about Insurance Coverage

Two weeks ago, I visited Planned Parenthood as a patient for the first time. I decided this year that it was time for me to explore the idea of getting on birth control. I figured it wouldn’t be too complicated, since I have spent a considerable amount of time talking, lobbying, organizing, and overall just living birth control. However, my experience getting birth control proved to me that birth control access was more than funding and sex education. Don’t get me wrong, funding and education are essential. But the process left me feeling like it would have been so much better had I been prepared on all avenues from a young age. Like most Texans, I did not get proper sex education at school. Texas is extremely anti-abortion, anti-sex education,… Read more »