The Wellington Young Feminists' Collective

A social group of like-minded people who share information and hold events relevant to gender equity in New Zealand. You can also find us on Facebook and Twitter.

Open to all self-identified Wellington feminists (and supporters from elsewhere) who are interested in a feminist social club. Come and play, we're a fun bunch!

Dec 5

themilitantbaker:

Fat politics are near and dear to my heart, not only because I’m quite the fatty myself, but also because all body inequality has a lasting effect on every single person involved. 
 
When we hate one type of body, we start to hate them all. We compare and critique, hating our failures and then hating others who appear to be more successful. Then we start to hate those who are failing more than us so that we don’t feel so bad about those guys that we hate because they’re succeeding! Hate. Hate. Hate. It’s a lot of hate, and it’s vicious. VICIOUS I tell you!
 
And it goes oh so much deeper than that. Body hate is internalized at a very young age; killing our sense of self-esteem and teaching us that we must change in order to be okay. 
 
Guess what?81% of 10 year olds are afraid of being fat. And they’re more afraid of fat than they are of cancer, war, or losing both of their parents. 
Because of this, a survey of girls 9-10 years old showed that 40% of them have already tried to lose weight. Body image is closely linked to self-esteem and low self-esteem in adolescents can lead to eating disorders, early unsafe sexual activity, substance use, and suicidal thoughts. 
95% of people with eating disorders are between the ages of 12 and 25. Certain eating disorders have a 6x higher mortality rate. Low self-esteem is closely linked to depression and over 60 Americans commit suicide everyday due to this diagnosis. Approximately 91% of women are unhappy with their bodies, and only 4% would openly call themselves beautiful.
 
And it’s all for naught.
 
It’s all for nothing, y’all. There is no truth in the lie that certain bodies are good and certain bodies are bad. All bodies just are and whatever that looks like is okay. Not only okay, but perfect, I would say!
The reality is that everything we believe about body worth is wrong. We’ve learned to hate certain shapes and sizes because of American history and the economic story hidden within. In “Why We’ve Learned to Hate Ourselves”, I talk about the organization of class systems, the creation of Patriarchy, Tuberculosis, WWII, and newly independent housewives. ALL of these things have been building blocks for the best business scheme in history. We have been given an idyllic body that is presented as gospel; one that 95% of women in this country are not born with, and then we are told that we must somehow achieve this impossible physique. Preferably by attempting to purchase perfection through creams, diet pills, surgeries, laser treatments, special cereals, and expensive meal replacements.
 
We buy all of these things so that we can somehow, mayyyyyybe someway become something that, yeah… we will never be. I will never become the worlds definition of perfection. Most of my friends around me won’t either. In fact, the large majority of women will never achieve the ideal female figure that we’re taught to worship. Ever. And so, with failure hanging heavily around our necks, we stunt our opportunities, relationships and quality of life. 
Though this is need not be, it currently it is and affects us all.
While body hate leaves no person unscathed, there is a group that it sure does like to hang out with an awful lot… The Fatties.


Those Fatties, I’ll tell you what. They exist solely to flaunt themselves as a repulsive and diabolic mockery of what bodies are supposed to be. HOW DARE THEY TAKE UP SPACE ON THIS PLANET.

Are ya still with me?

I say this facetiously of course, but know that those few sentences above resonate for more people than you care to count. And this is why we’re here today.
I loved the Feminist autocompletion series, and I am well versed in what the internet has to offer when you type in things like feminism, sluts, gender equality and other supposedly controversial words. I personally spend a lot of time researching body image related subjects and so I’m also aware of what gems pop up when you type in something like, say, “fat people”.
I may be used to reading this kinda junk by now, but that doesn’t make it any less alarming when the top searches for fat people include things like: fat people are disgusting, don’t have feelings, deserve to be bullied, and should die. This immense hatred baffles me; a persons body shape is so benign that it only affects those who inhabit it. Yet, it is socially acceptable to hate, loathe, harass, antagonize, persecute and bully a person based on a clothing size.
If you’re needing a reminder of what bullying is, here’s a quick gist:
 
image
 
So, real talk.
 
The reality is that fat shame, hate, and oppression is THE most encouraged form of bullying that we face today. It is not only highly prevalent, but it is cheered on by the majority that believes that larger bodies are inherently wrong. This is aided and abetted by all media; both in entertainment material and advertising. In fact, it’s quite UN-popular to stand in favor of fat acceptance, and god forbid you preach of fat love.


We have a long way to go.

There are shelves of books dedicated to why this is (and we don’t have the space to explore that entire concept in one post) but lets be sure to remember this: we have been conditioned to loathe and fear a fat body. We are not born a body bigot, we learn it. We absorb lucrative lies and judge others (and ourselves) based on this made-up law of superficial worth.
 
Okay, but lets say that I’m wrong (I’m not) and that bigger bodies are bad (definitely not) because by having them you’ve somehow failed (you haven’t). Okay, say all those things have a grain of truth, and fat is indeed some sort of social failure. This is still not reason enough to hate, hurt, and bully another human being. Especially when the subject of contention is something that has nothing to do with you or anyone else. No excuse.
 
One of my favorite quotes is from Ragen Chastain who write at Dances with Fat and she says: 
"Fat people have the right to exist in fat bodies regardless of how we got fat, what being fat means, or if we could be thin through some means – however easy or difficult. 
 
There are no other valid opinions on this.
 
 We have the right to exist without shaming, bullying or stigmatization, period.” 
Can I get an AMEN?

All this fat hate has gotta stop.
 
As long as we continue to demonize and degrade one body type, we will never reach true body acceptance as a society. And until we reach true body acceptance as a society, we will continue to see low self-esteem, depression, eating disorders, sabotaged relationships, employment inequality, sky high suicide rates, and all sorts of other social infirmities. No more please. No more.
 
Every body is a perfect body. There ain’t no wrong or “more right” way to be, and that’s a fact.

SO, YOU’RE INVITED TO MAKE YOUR OWN POSTER AND SHARE IT WITH THE WORLD!
 
No need to include the Google autocomplete (unless you want to of course), but feel free to make a poster with your OWN slogan that challenges weight hate and size discrimination! Whatever speaks true to you, make it a poster and share it on The Militant Baker’s Facebook! I’ll be making a photo album to showcase them all and share with the entire world!

Hop to it! 
Social revolution awaits!

xo, 
Jes

More at The Militant Baker Blog

(via dorkgoddess)


Nov 30

fortunatelight:

laborreguitina:

garishvakarian:

coconutting-as-praxis:

dressyourselfwithbleedingmadres:

When Francine came out to her very strict mother, it seriously was one of the most inspiring touching things I’ve ever seen. For those of you who are struggling with coming out to your parents, there’s hope.

I hate these gross generalizations about PoC parents who, in white liberals’ eyes, are inherently “more homophobic” (because of their ~culture~) than culturally “enlightened” western parents. As if nonwhite parents of incapable of loving and supporting their children. Maybe its because society likes to focus on the narratives which make our parents out to be the backwards ones.

Why can’t we talk about beautiful things like this?

thisssss. if i hear one more white queer talk about, “especially in THOSE cultures,” i will flip.

omg this shit made me cry. so cute and so beautiful. 

;-; tears of joy

(via wocinsolidarity)


youarenotyou:

m4m-ethnic-culture:

Paris Is Burning is a 1990 American documentary film directed by Jennie Livingston. Filmed in the mid-to-late 1980s, it chronicles the ball culture of New York City and the African-AmericanLatinogay, and transgender communities involved in it. Many members of the ball culture community consider Paris Is Burning to be an invaluable documentary of the end of the “Golden Age” of New York City drag balls, as well as a thoughtful exploration of race, class, gender, and sexuality in America.

The film explores the elaborately-structured Ball competitions in which contestants, adhering to a very specific category or theme, must “walk” (much like a fashion model’s runway) and subsequently be judged on criteria including the “realness” of their drag, the beauty of their clothing and their dancing ability.

Most of the film alternates between footage of balls and interviews with prominent members of the scene, including Pepper LaBeijaDorian CoreyAngie Xtravaganza, and Willi Ninja. Many of the contestants vying for trophies are representatives of “Houses" (in the fashion sense, such as "House of Chanel") that serve as intentional families, social groups, and performance teams. Houses and ball contestants who consistently won in their walks eventually earned a “legendary” status.

The film depicts people with different gender identities or communities and their different forms of expression. It also explores how its subjects dealt with the adversity of racismhomophobiaAIDS and poverty. For example, some, likeVenus Xtravaganza became sex workers, some shoplift clothing, and some were thrown out of their homes by homophobic parents. One was saving money for sex reassignment surgery. Yet what makes this film significant is its approach. According to Livingston and according to the reviewers and movie-goers who viewed the film, this documentary is a multi-leveled exploration of a subculture in African American and Latino cultures that proves to be a microcosm of society, which was an underappreciated and arguably underground world that many Americans were unfamiliar with. hrough candid one-on-one interviews the film offers insight into the lives and struggles of its subjects and the strength, pride, and humor they maintain to survive in a “rich, white world.”

Drag is presented as a complex performance of gender, class, and race, in which one can express one’s identity, desires and aspirations along many dimensions. The African-American and Latino community depicted in the film includes a diverse range of identities and gender presentations, from gay men to butch queens to transgender women.

The film also documents the origins of “voguing”, a dance style in which competing ball-walkers freeze and “pose” in glamorous positions (as if being photographed for the cover of Vogue). Pop star Malcolm McLaren (with Mark Moore of S’Express and William Orbit) would, two years before Paris Is Burning was completed, bring the phenomenon to the mainstream with his song “Deep in Vogue”, which sampled the movie and directly referenced many of the stars of Paris Is Burning including Pepper LaBeija and featured dancers from the film, including Willi Ninja.  The single went to #1 in the US Billboard Dance Chart.  One year after this, Madonnareleased her number one song “Vogue”, bringing further attention to the dancing style.

and it’s on netflix!

(via dilemmagoldman)


Oct 6
dollygrrrl:

brodieroset:

THIS EXACTLY THIS.

YES

dollygrrrl:

brodieroset:

THIS EXACTLY THIS.

YES

(via 7schools7states)


Sep 20

angryasiangirlsunited:

ucsb-sasa:

UCSB South Asian Students Association’s “Fighting Islamaphobia” Photo Campiagn

“Not a terrorist. Maybe a threat”. Perfect. 

(via sexxxisbeautiful)


Sep 11

sad-queer:

Building an Abolitionist Trans & Queer Movement with Everything We’ve Got

from Captive Genders (eds. Stanley and Smith) (2011) by Morgan Bassichis, Alex Lee, and Dean Spade. 

(via miaowlit)



Sep 4

If you are queer, or trans, or have mental illness, or all of the above, you probably know something about the perils of presenting yourself as you really are. Dan-Savage-style coming-out narratives notwithstanding, many of us who are placed socially in these ways find that we cannot be completely authentic in all aspects of our lives. I definitely want to express myself, but I have to balance that against other needs, like being able to make a living in a capitalist society. If I dressed the way I’d prefer to, if I talked more openly about the times when my depression and anxiety prevent me from getting work done, I might find it harder to fit in, to stay attached to a professional group, to stay employed, than I already do. So instead, I wear T-shirts and cargo pants, and I let people think (at times) that I’m merely disorganized or not that committed to what I do.


In my opinion, it takes a lot of privilege to assume either that greater authenticity leads to greater happiness, or that the only reason you would leave who you are at the door when you step or roll into work is the formal, organizational structure of the place where you work.

Structure and Justice | Geek Feminism Blog (via brute-reason)

GODDAMN WOULD YOU LOOK, SOMEONE DESCRIBED MY LIFE. (via theprophetlilith)

I’m looking at a career in which I may have to try my hardest to pass as cis because my gender identity may “harm the therapeutic frame”. 

(via hobbitdragon)

Damn, I keep trying to explain this to people and have never been able to do it this well. ‘Be yourself’ isn’t a reality for most people. If it was, I’d be able to hide under my desk and wail and sob when my brain can’t handle day to day life. 

(via rainwen)

I always wonder how much my mental health has suffered because I have to present myself as a very different person. I used to struggle with it a lot (and still have odd days). The concept that in order to be happy and a genuine/good person, I must also be ”authentic”, “honest”, and out (everywhere) made me feel guilty, anxious, and less worthy as a person… even though I knew it was what was best/safest for me!

(via amewarashis)

(via hermione-ganja)


teamfreekickass:

dirk-brostrider-yaoiprovider:

ryancassata:

ryancassata:

In A Bind: YOUTH in NEED of Chest Binders
For transgender (affirmed male, female-to-male & genderqueer) youth having a proper chest binder can be a life-saver - both mentally and physically - I know for me it was. Many transgender youth (under 21) lack the support they need from their families and many are not hired for jobs because of gender identity-based discrimination - this makes it impossible for these youth to get the binder they need and deserve. Many trans* youth suffer from gender dysphoria - the intense hatred and discomfort towards their biological bodies - making a chest binder an absolute need and instant prevention from suicide (as many youth cannot afford chest surgery). Giving a binder will boost the confidence of transgender youth in need and allow these youth to better function in society.
This overwhelming urgency for chest binders is a crisis. Not having a chest binder can contribute to the severe depression experienced by many transgender people. The suicide rate for transgender people is estimated to be a shocking 41%. (Source Below)
In A Bind, a non-profit project under TransActive Education & Advocacy has 1,401 youth on their waiting list. Not enough donations are coming in and they were forced to close their waiting list. It’s time to raise the money we need and provide youth with chest binders. 
Our goal is to provide at least 100 youth with new binders from underworks. Each binder is about $30.00 including shipping. That is $3000.00 needed. Good news! The Frank Cassata Family Foundation will match whatever money is raised during this virtual campaign. If we raise $3,000 that means we have raised $6,000 - that is 200 new binders for youth in need! 
Ninety percent of donations received will go to buying binders for disadvantaged youth.  The remaining 10% will be used to cover the shipping cost.  All binders will be sent to youth on the In a Bind waiting list.  In a Bind accepts applicants age 21 and under from all over the United States.  There are no rules or qualifications around who applicants are or how they identify.  All we ask is that people only apply for a binder if they need one to curb dysphoria (ie, not just for cosplay or performance).  For more info, visit inabind.transactivonline.org
http://www.nbcnews.com/id/40279043/ns/health-health_care/t/transgender-americans-face-high-suicide-risk/#.UfggjpVNNuU
www.cassatafamilyfoundation.comwww.ftm.underworks.comwww.inabind.transactiveonline.orgwww.ryancassata.comDONATE NOW. 

PLEASE REBLOG AND SHARE ON YOUR OTHER SOCIAL NETWORKING SITES!!! 

Oh that is pretty neat!

Seriously this site has helped out more than one of my friends. This is a cause worth fighting for.

teamfreekickass:

dirk-brostrider-yaoiprovider:

ryancassata:

ryancassata:

In A Bind: YOUTH in NEED of Chest Binders

For transgender (affirmed male, female-to-male & genderqueer) youth having a proper chest binder can be a life-saver - both mentally and physically - I know for me it was. Many transgender youth (under 21) lack the support they need from their families and many are not hired for jobs because of gender identity-based discrimination - this makes it impossible for these youth to get the binder they need and deserve. Many trans* youth suffer from gender dysphoria - the intense hatred and discomfort towards their biological bodies - making a chest binder an absolute need and instant prevention from suicide (as many youth cannot afford chest surgery). Giving a binder will boost the confidence of transgender youth in need and allow these youth to better function in society.

This overwhelming urgency for chest binders is a crisis. Not having a chest binder can contribute to the severe depression experienced by many transgender people. The suicide rate for transgender people is estimated to be a shocking 41%. (Source Below)

In A Bind, a non-profit project under TransActive Education & Advocacy has 1,401 youth on their waiting list. Not enough donations are coming in and they were forced to close their waiting list. It’s time to raise the money we need and provide youth with chest binders. 

Our goal is to provide at least 100 youth with new binders from underworks. Each binder is about $30.00 including shipping. That is $3000.00 needed. Good news! The Frank Cassata Family Foundation will match whatever money is raised during this virtual campaign. If we raise $3,000 that means we have raised $6,000 - that is 200 new binders for youth in need! 

Ninety percent of donations received will go to buying binders for disadvantaged youth.  The remaining 10% will be used to cover the shipping cost.  All binders will be sent to youth on the In a Bind waiting list.  In a Bind accepts applicants age 21 and under from all over the United States.  There are no rules or qualifications around who applicants are or how they identify.  All we ask is that people only apply for a binder if they need one to curb dysphoria (ie, not just for cosplay or performance).  For more info, visit inabind.transactivonline.org

http://www.nbcnews.com/id/40279043/ns/health-health_care/t/transgender-americans-face-high-suicide-risk/#.UfggjpVNNuU

www.cassatafamilyfoundation.com
www.ftm.underworks.com
www.inabind.transactiveonline.org
www.ryancassata.com

DONATE NOW. 

PLEASE REBLOG AND SHARE ON YOUR OTHER SOCIAL NETWORKING SITES!!! 

Oh that is pretty neat!

Seriously this site has helped out more than one of my friends. This is a cause worth fighting for.

(via veggielezzyfemmie)


Page 1 of 156