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Love Wins

Check out this video:

https://www.facebook.com/theipaper/videos/1890465267680759/

This is so cool! No matter what our family or loved ones may go through, being supportive through ALL aspects of their lives is the best gift you can give them. #loveislove

Pride Month!

HAPPY PRIDE MONTH EVERYONE!!!!!! this month is all about accepting people for who they are and spreading the love. Demonstrate your love for humanity this month. Reach out and represent your pride for yourself and your community!!!! Is anyone attending the pride parade or any pride celebration? Share your pride month stories below!!!! Be kind and spread the love!!! Love is love!

Daily Thoughts

I just got a new job at MIlkcraft, an ice cream shop. My parents have been forcing me to get a job for months now. I applied to several places and never heard back from any. I was hopeless at this point. I thought no one was going to hire me. All the college ids were coming back and going to get their old jobs, leaving me with no available positions. However I got a call one night and was told I got a job! I am really happy but nervous. I am the newbie so the other employees are bossing me around a bit but I am having fun!

What’s your dream job?

What is your dream job? Remember in elementary school when someone asked what you wanted to be and nothing held you back? Lawyer, astronaut, president, doctor, princess, firefighter; anything seemed possible at that time in our lives.
All throughout middle school and the beginning of high school, I used to dream about being a pediatric oncologist. Then, I slowly but surely stopped believing in myself. I convinced myself that that was not possible. I told myself I wasn’t smart enough, didn’t have enough time or money for school, wasn’t good at school, etc.
So, what is you REAL dream job? Is it still your goal? If not, why?
What’s holding you back from reaching your dreams?

Petite, But Mighty

I’ve been thinking a lot about the way I am perceived by others, as any 23-year-old woman would.
My brain wonders a lot of the time which sides of me people see. I wonder if they are the sides of me that I also see, or if the rest of the world has their own preconceived notion of who I am. I wonder if people see me as the woman I see myself.

Last week, we had a conversation in the office regarding our experiences as young adult women. These thoughts have been on my mind for the last few days, and I’ve come here to share them with you.

Society has taught women for ages to accept the way we are treated, to look pretty, to be gentle and soft-spoken. We are expected to behave a certain way. We are expected to dress, act, live in a way that must be conducive to the gender stereotypes that society has created for us. Women are expected to comply.

I won’t let society’s expectations of me determine who I am and who I am meant to be.

Reigning at an inch above five feet, I am small. I am small, but I have so much to say. So much that you need to hear.
I am compelled to tell other women (that I love and care for) how much they mean to the world. I need you to know that you do not have to conform to the standards that the world has set for us. You do not need to keep quiet. Speak your mind. Dream the biggest dreams possible. Be brave. Be kind.
As a woman, you have the world at your fingertips. You have the ability to make the world a wonderful and gracious place.

Take a look at these incredible women (and men, too!) breaking the stereotype, fighting for their rights and for the rights of women, and people, everywhere.

It’s easy for me to sit here and tell you to go out there and change the world. It’s easy to want to change the world.
However, it’s hard to actually do it. It’s hard to be a world-changer as a 23 year-old woman from a uniform town, not knowing what the whole world outside of your bubble looks like. I am trying to learn what I can about the world outside of my bubble. My inquisitive side is asking questions. I am taking steps to educate myself and others about things the rest of the world doesn’t want to talk about.

So take a minute right now- breathe in and breathe out. Think of the ways you will be able to make this world a better place. Think before you react. Let a little bit of that fiery spirit into your life and be the world-changing woman that I know you are.

Disclaimer: the idea for this post did not emerge out of the resent that fuels my opinion that men’s deodorant is being developed better than women’s deodorant.
Probably.

Life

Life- This poem celebrates life. Life without doctrines, or man’s perception of what a worldly life is. It talks about the blank slate as life starts. it is what the great philosopher, John Locke calls the Tabula Rasa.

 

–Kevin

Is This Living In Vain?

Hopefully I can use my poetry to inspire someone.

“Is This Living In Vain?” background: I wrote this poem about a year ago. Not long ago but I remember the thoughts I had so clearly. I remember walking in the rain, with thoughts rushing through my mind. The minute I got home, I grabbed a piece of paper and a pen and scribbled the words down. This is the result.

The theme focuses on depression and digs into the multiple symptoms (including racing thoughts) that I was experiencing through my journey.

 

-Kevin

Here, you can look at other forms of creativity and expression.

If you would like to see how the power of poetry can help mental health, go here.

Happy Martin Luther King Day!

Special shoutout to Martin Luther King Jr. on this national holiday! Today we celebrate and commemorate a king who made so much possible in this world for us as a people. He is a hero and we appreciate every single thing that you’ve done to make a difference. Your death was monumental. Let’s continue to celebrate a dream, triumph, and a man who led a movement. Hug your brother and sister, use the community restroom bc you can, talk to someone who is different from you… smile at ignorance, just bc you can! Educate and grow.

The Problem with Diversity – Walter Ben Michaels

Let’s take a look at Walter Benn Michaels’ point of view on economic and social inequality in the modern American society, which he talked about in, “The trouble with diversity”, an essay he wrote in the New York Times Magazine back in 2004. It seems like a long time ago but considering America is transitioning under a new regime, it’s only wise we acknowledge the ideologies, perspectives, the point of views that gave rise to populism and nationalism.

One such ideology is the idea that diversity is not helping us. It is a distraction from the real and actual problems in society, such as economic inequality.
Michael argued that focusing on diversity has kept our eyes off the real problem; economic inequality. He emphasized that liberals in America have masterfully distracted the concerned public from the economic inequality present throughout the country by promoting and celebrating diversity as a means to addressing discrimination towards minority groups.

Lets agree, first and foremost that Michael has made a very critical point.

America still has not done enough to address economic inequality, which is an ever growing problem that is negatively affecting the greater portion of the country’s population.

And even though we are discussing America, this is a problem globally, country-by-country. But Michael believes that it is predominant in America mainly because we are distracted.

Michael basically took a risky approach; though he made mention of it, he failed to acknowledge the seriousness of America’s problem with prejudice and discrimination. Prejudices pose serious challenges to the American public and unless you are affected or have an invested interest, you are probably not going to think too much about it. But to ignore these concerns, undermines the significance of these issues and is insensitive at most.

But we’ll look at both concerns: the economic and social problems we have to deal with.

Firstly, let’s look at some Michael’s strongest arguments to address economic inequality. He pointed out in his essay that race does not exist to start with. This has been a proven scientific fact but according to Michael, the very people who embrace this premise (liberals) are also quick to highlight that race exist, instead as a social entity. From this standpoint, many in society have included diversity of identity and especially race, in every aspect of social institutions, from schools to corporate enterprises. Michael hinted that we have taken a greater interest in the ideas of race, sexual orientation, religion, just to name a few, than we have in the ills of class division and economic inequality. We have become oblivious to the fact that a small portion of the population is getting richer and richer while the mass is descending into greater poverty. Michael also stated, “But class are not like races and cultures, and treating them as if they were- different but equal- is one of strategies for managing inequality rather than minimizing or eliminating it.” (Michael, 677). To build on this point, Michael stressed that we are urged to be respectable to the poor and to stop thinking of them as victims, since to treat them as victims is condescending – it denies them their “agency.” … and so we can focus our efforts of reform not on getting rid of classes but on getting rid of what we call classism. (Michael, 681) The trick, according to Michael, which is intertwined in our modern social culture, is to view poverty as a respectable entity rather than something that needs to be eradicated. And one final point brought forward by Michael, that justifies his perspective is based on his claim that we have become much of an identity conscious society to the point where we leave little or no room to recognize the cause of economic prosperity. He said that the closest thing that we have to a holiday that addresses economic inequality instead of identity is Labor Day. He further elaborated that even the very purpose of Labor Day, which was originally intended to figure out how to build a stronger labor movement and make the dream of economic prosperity a reality, has been suppressed to the point where it merely marks the end of summer. These socially acceptable attitudes, in Michael’s perspective, has allowed the phantasm of respect for difference to take the place of that commitment to economic prosperity.

While Michael’s standpoint is agreeable in many instances, his approach is quite frankly, insensitive.

But let’s explore why Michael’s claim is nonetheless valid. Economic inequality is undoubtedly a general problem that is affecting the entire demography of the American population. Moreover, many Americans who are living in poverty belong to minority groups. This premise does make a good argument for addressing the problem of economic inequality. So entirely disregarding Michael’s position would be a mere shortsighted response.

But it is fair to hold him accountable, and others who support his view, in areas where he ignores the deeply rooted hate and prejudice that scourges the outlook of American society. Gays and Lesbians can still be legally fired in 28 states in the United States of America because of their sexual orientation and African Americans face the highest level of unemployment of any racial group. These problems bring to question, the credibility of our fight for equality.

If much of our population still cannot access the basic entity to economic mobility – Jobs – then we still have not worked on our economic foundation.

Discrimination is a bigger concern for more American who continue to face prejudice than economic equality is and while private and public institutions are taking an interest in bringing these issues to the forefront – however they see fit – their attempt should not be seen as a matter of liberal identity politics. Economic and social inequality are equivalent problems that are affecting the American population and as such they require an equal amount of interest. Minorities stand to greatest to lose in any plan for economic prosperity because they are still battling to secure their basic human rights. Until justice is served to marginalized groups, America stands a meager chance of accessing economic advancement, through equality and prosperity on a large scale.

With that being said, much needs to be done in areas of social equality before we can fully address the issues of economic inequality. Understanding economic equality based on different sectors of America’s demography offers greater insight into the root causes of our economic downfall, rather than disregarding altogether the specific problems or identity based concerns that continues to affect certain groups. But as we know, we have a long road ahead before much of our social problems can be addressed, especially when we have a government that could careless about us. Somehow we have to start building those grass-root organizations that demands change (and practical change), or else, the next four years may just turn into another eight years in just the blink of an eye.

I Do What I Want

I Do What I Want -Art When I asked Hailey to name her art, she called it “I Do What I Want” because whenever we do a project, she does it however she wants. Creativity has no rules and she made this flawless piece of art by doing what she wanted.

Why I am a Feminist!

This former NFL player believes that sexism is the root cause of homophobia. Wade Davis is the executive Director of You Can Play (an organization that promotes equality in sports) and an ambassador for HeForShe.

Wade Davis came out as gay in 2012, several years after he retired from professional sports, in 2003.

Recently Davis touched on a topic that I have always been passionate about – the idea that sexism plays a role in the cultural and social perception of sexuality.

According to Davis, men do not hold each other accountable for their actions; we were conditioned to believe that there is a lesser gender class and as men, we were taught to believe that listening to women makes us inferior.

Like Davis, I strongly believe in gender equality; I strongly oppose to gender roles and stereotypes and I believe that once we begin to treat each other equally, regardless of gender, we will abandon the archaic ideology that gender and sexuality are binary and anything in between is a travesty.

We live in a very hyper-masculine society and the subject of gender and sexuality is often scorned; in some cases we either deny that there is a sexism issue or we condemn any anti-conservative/patriarchal view of the family.

Why am I a feminist?

For a start, I believe that we are all equal, there is no inferior or superior gender and we are therefore all entitled to social, political and economic equality.
In addition, I believe that gender-socialization is a code word for discrimination by gender and sexuality.

Once we begin to view each other differently, we create a divide and that ‘divide’ is used to subjugate certain groups of people that extensively ranks us by facets such as gender and sexuality.

Sexism is a menace to our humanity! Feminism is not about any one gender; and its not just about two genders, it is about all us being equals, wherever along the gender spectrum we belong.