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October 2018

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What I’m Reading – October 28, 2018

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Back in London, where Fall has already maybe turned into Winter?

Right-Wing Domestic Terrorism

“Wednesday, a white man with a history of violence shot and killed two African-Americans, seemingly at random, at a Kentucky Kroger store following a failed attempt to barge into a black church. After mail bombs were being sent to people who’d been criticized by the President, a suspect was arrested Friday — a man who had railed against Democrats and minorities with hate-filled messages online. And Saturday morning, a man shouting anti-Semitic slurs opened fire at a Pittsburgh synagogue, killing 11 people attending Jewish services.” 72 hours in America: Three hate-filled crimes. Three hate-filled suspects. (by Ray Sanchez and Melissa Gray for CNN)

Disenfranchisement

“Lawyers for two voting rights advocacy groups asked a federal judge on Tuesday to force Georgia election officials to stop rejecting absentee ballots without giving voters any advance notice that their ballot has been rejected, and without giving voters an opportunity to appeal the rejection. Today, that federal judge will hear arguments from those election officials about just why they think certain people—namely, Black and Asian people—are especially worthy of suspicion when it comes to sending in their vote by mail.” Untrained Georgia Election Officials Are Stripping People of Their Right to Vote Based on Their Signatures (Updated) (by Imani Gandy for Rewire)

“What Uncle Bob fails to understand is that a lot of people don’t have a photo ID because they don’t need it. There are people who don’t drive. People who don’t have bank accounts and simply get their checks cashed by the dude who runs the local market down the street. People who live in small towns where everybody knows their name and they’ve never had a reason to get a photo ID. People who used to have a driver’s license, but it expired and they don’t have the money or time to get a new one. Homeless people who have nowhere to lay their head, much less the ability to make it to a government office to get a photo ID, and even if they got one, the police would probably just confiscate all of their shit anyway because they think homeless people should be neither seen nor heard.” Well Actually, It’s Pretty Hard for Some People to Get a Photo ID So They Can Vote (by Imani Gandi for Rewire)

Racism

“He also shouts at her: “Don’t talk to me in a foreign language, you stupid ugly cow.” After a flight attendant intervenes, the woman says she wants to sit with her daughter and tells the man he “stinks”. She says of the passenger: “Kick him out”. Her daughter has told The Huffington Post the row started because her mother, 77, has arthritis and it took some time for her to move out of the way for the man to get into his seat.” Ryanair flight: ‘Racial abuse passenger’ referred to police (BBC) [Side note: Ryanair continues to be a trash airline)

Reproductive Justice

“The new rules threaten the contraceptive care of more than 55 million cisgender women and an uncertain number of trans and non-binary people who depend on birth control with no co-pay through the ACA. While the birth control benefit already allowed for religious exemptions, the Trump administration has sought to further meet the demands of the religious right, which believes the exemption isn’t broad enough.” Trump Administration Moves to Finalize Rules Upending Birth Control Benefit (by Katelyn Burns for Rewire)

Tenants

“Today, VICE can exclusively reveal that these government funds to crack down on bad landlords were used to pay for dawn raids by police and border officials on vulnerable tenants. Hundreds of them were then evicted, arrested or deported.” Exclusive: Government Money to Tackle Rogue Landlords Is Being Used to Arrest Tenants (by Dan Hancox for Vice)

Misogyny

“Committee chairwoman Maria Miller said: “Women feel the onus is put on them to avoid ‘risky’ situations – all of this keeps women and girls unequal.” The report concluded that social attitudes underpinned sexual harassment, and the normalisation of it contributed to a “wider negative cultural effect on society”. And while the government has pledged to eliminate sexual harassment of women and girls by 2030, the committee said there was “no evidence of any programme to achieve this”.” Street harassment ‘relentless’ for women and girls (BBC)

Brexit

“The People’s Vote campaign said stewards on the route estimated 700,000 were taking part. The Metropolitan Police said it was not able to estimate the size of the crowd. Mayor of London Sadiq Khan – who started the march – was among those who addressed Parliament Square, along with representatives from the main political parties. Celebrity speakers included Steve Coogan, Delia Smith and Deborah Meaden.” People’s Vote march: Hundreds of thousands attend London protest (BBC)

Gender Identity

“For these reasons and more, we intend to work with our public health partners to strenuously oppose the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) considering an interpretation of Title IX, the federal civil rights law that bans sex discrimination in federally funded schools, that “would define sex as either male or female, unchangeable, and determined by the genitals that a person is born with.” This proposal goes against biological and medical science and harms individual and public health.” A Message to the Transgender Members of Our Families, Our Communities and Our Workforce (by Dr. Jeff Duchin for Public Health Insider)

“Several recent studies suggest that trans people’s brain patterns match their gender identities, regardless of genitalia. The most recent study was presented at the European Society of Endocrinology’s annual meeting in May. According to the press release, Dr. Julie Bakker of the University of Liège, Belgium, and her colleagues used MRIs to scan the brains of several transgender adolescents, specifically looking at reactions to “a pheromone known to produce gender-specific activity.” The researchers found that the brain patterns in the trans youth closely resembled their cisgender counterparts’. In other words, the research found that both cis and trans boys have some similar brain patterns, despite being born with different genitalia, and the same goes for both cis and trans girls. “Although more research is needed, we now have evidence that sexual differentiation of the brain differs in young people with [gender dysphoria],” says Dr. Bakker, “as they show functional brain characteristics that are typical of their desired gender.”” Why ‘Genetic Testing’ for Gender Is Dangerous Pseudoscience (by Tris Mamone for Rewire)

Silicon Valley Hypocrisy

“The fear of screens has reached the level of panic in Silicon Valley. Vigilantes now post photos to parenting message boards of possible nannies using cellphones near children. Which is to say, the very people building these glowing hyper-stimulating portals have become increasingly terrified of them. And it has put their nannies in a strange position. “In the last year everything has changed,” said Shannon Zimmerman, a nanny in San Jose who works for families that ban screen time. “Parents are now much more aware of the tech they’re giving their kids. Now it’s like, ‘Oh no, reel it back, reel it back.’ Now the parents will say ‘No screen time at all.’”” Silicon Valley Nannies Are Phone Police for Kids (by Nellie Bowles for the New York Times)

Criminal Punishment System

“On Tuesday, the Los Angeles Board of Supervisors approved a motion that will end this practice in Los Angeles County, effectively erasing nearly $90 million worth of debt held by juvenile offenders, their parents and their guardians across 52,000 accounts. The motion, authored by Supervisors Hilda Solis and Janice Hahn, is aimed at helping Californians who have been involved in the juvenile justice system get back on their feet.” Los Angeles will wipe out nearly $90 million worth of debt incurred by juvenile offenders (by Abigail Hess for CNBC)

Something Good

“”These are shows that I would watch,” she says. “To me, these are the funniest shows on TV. And it’s insane, and I feel so incredibly lucky that I get to be a part of them. As an actor, I just want to work. I would have been happy in many places. But this is sort of the ultimate happy because it’s something that I’m such a fan of.”” New Gay Icon: D’Arcy Carden Talks Janet, Sexual Fluidity, and Queer Eye (by Glenn Garner for Out)

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