Em-URGE-ing Voices

Posts Tagged: LGBTQ

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 »

Police Violence Against Women, Girls, Queer People of Color

During this outpouring of demonstration and activism against the racist American system that does not indict killer cops, and media release of accounts of police brutality, let’s not forget that black girls and women are also murdered by the police. In the recent weeks we have seen many stories that highlight injustices of police brutality, and many of these have prominently featured the killing of black men. It is important to think about how the deaths of unarmed, innocent people at the hands of the police are not isolated incidents. Black men are uniquely impacted by this violence, but the brutality is also not just against men. Children, women, and queer folk of color are also facing death and abuse by the system. Perhaps, it is simpler for the media to… Read more »

A Glossary In Honor of Transgender Awareness Week

Transgender Awareness Week (Nov. 14th – Nov. 20th) celebrates the lives of transgender and gender-non-conforming people. This week honors those who have died as a result of violence and discrimination against transgender people. In light of Transgender Awareness Week, I  wanted to post some terminology to assist allies and all others in being respectful towards the transgender and gender-non-conforming communities by using appropriate terms. Also, I posted these terms to give people the agency to be both inquisitive and respectful to others. For accuracy, I have pulled the terms below from the GLAAD Media Reference Guide-Transgender Issues Gender Non-Conforming: A term used to describe some people whose gender expression is different from conventional expectations of masculinity and femininity. Please note that not all gender non-conforming people identify as transgender; nor are… 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 »

What Kansans Can Expect in 2015

We all know how devastating the midterm elections were for certain parts of the country, especially on certain issues. Since I live in Kansas, I am as aware of that as anyone. For reproductive rights, the landscape for the next few years certainly does look bleak here, as it does in many other states. With supportive legislators at an all-time low, and an administration that has abortion restrictions high on its priority list, we can expect many new restrictions to be introduced, and possibly passed, in 2015. Meanwhile, even as anti-choice politicians were overwhelmingly elected nationwide, ballot initiatives and exit polls show that our nation still has a majority in favor of reproductive rights. Knowing this, it is important that we prepare ourselves for the continued rise of restrictions on… Read more »

RJ Tech Talk: Egg Freezing

As new technology is being developed for reproductive health, many questions come up as to how each product can fit into the framework justice. Technology’s impact on gender, sexuality, and reproductive choices has vastly expanded over the past fifty years. I’ve chosen to explain oocyte cryopreservation, or egg freezing, one tech product I’ve been seeing in the media a lot and provide links to other sources that talk about its use within reproductive justice, controversial or not. Oocyte cryopreservation, also known as egg freezing, is a procedure where a woman’s oocytes (eggs) are extracted, frozen, and the preserved. The eggs can be thawed later on when the person wants to become pregnant, transferred after fertilization to the uterus as embryos. Recently, egg freezing has been in the news because Facebook… 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 »

The Sad State of Bisexuality on Television

[Warning: Spoilers about How to Get Away With Murder are ahead] My heart sank as I watched last week’s episode of How to Get Away with Murder (HTGAWM), primetime’s newest television show that has me rushing home on Thursday evenings, as Michaela Pratt yelled at her boyfriend Aiden for not telling her about a high school romance with her fellow law student Connor Walsh. In the Facebook chat with two of my other friends, we did our best to give Michaela the benefit of the doubt. Was she mad that Aiden hid something from her, making her anger a matter of (broken) trust? Was Michaela upset that he’d had a teenage fling with Connor, so that her frustration was about “sharing” her fiancé with her rival? Alas, it was not… Read more »

Still Here, Still Queer

The past week has brought us great news for marriage equality in the form of the Supreme Court rejecting appeals against marriage equality from five states, a decision that in turn affects anti-marriage equality laws in six other ones. While marriage equality remains on unstable ground in Idaho and Nevada, the LGBTQ community continues to see decades of struggle for the right to marry come into fruition. In the meantime, queer young adults on campus still struggle. While marriage equality undeniably helps couples and their families, for other members of the LGBTQ community it’s often irrelevant. What’s more, the disproportional attention that marriage equality receives as an LGBTQ issue over other concerns the community has underscores much of the frustration its younger members have about their place and value in… Read more »

We Still Have a Long Way to go for True Equality in Kansas

Many of you have probably read about the recent Supreme Court decision not to hear cases from the 4th, 7th, and 10th Circuit courts striking down same-sex marriage bans. This move by the Court paved the way for marriage equality in many states, with the possibility of 30 states having freedom to marry by the end of the year. This is a huge victory for activists and advocates that have been pushing for decisions like this for a long time. We should take the time and celebrate this accomplishment and remember the long road it took to get to this point. But here in Kansas, as well as in many other states across the nation, this fight for marriage equality is far from over. Although Kansas is in the 10th… Read more »