Lisa Kemmerer in London 06.09. 7PM

lisa banner

We are happy to announce that Dr. Lisa Kemmerer will spend an evening with us in London, speaking on ‘Ecofeminism: Bitches and Bollox’.

Dr. Kemmerer, professor of philosophy and religions at Montana State University Billings, is the author/editor of nine books and a hands-on activist for the animals, the environment and social justice.

Dr. Kemmerer will address ‘Ecofeminist theory [that] connects animal advocacy with other social justice movements, highlighting the importance of a more expansive vision of liberation. In this view, anymal activism requires solidarity with other social justice causes such as [those against] racism, sexism, ableism, ageism, heterosexism, and classism’

We are inviting people of all genders to join us for this very special evening at the London Action Resource Centre (LARC).

Free Entry!

The pre-party will begin at 6PM where our allies from the LARC will kindly provide vegan snacks (Thank You!) and you will have the opportunity to meet and chat with our organisers. Books, zines and art work will also be for sale.

Dr. Kemmerer’s talk will begin at 7pm. The audience will have the opportunity to ask questions afterwards.

Please share this event widely!

Here are the details:

 

Address: 62 Fuelgate St., London, E1 1ES

Free Entry + All welcome

Doors open: 6pm

Talk begins: 7pm

Accessibility: The room is wheelchair accessible and there are also gender neutral toilets.

This event will operate under out Safer Space Agreement but please be aware that it is open to the general public. If there is anything specific we can do to ensure your safety beforehand, please let us know!

Music Monday with The Sulkies

~ aga

Today is Music Monday, which means we have another vegan musician featured here for you! Today you are in for some queercore DIY pop music with anarchist lyrics that will inspire you to be free in everything you do!

Check out the Sulkies:
http://bandcamp.com/EmbeddedPlayer/album=616336730/size=large/bgcol=ffffff/linkcol=0687f5/tracklist=false/transparent=true/


We are always happy to receive tips about vegan female or non-binary musicians. So if you heard someone good recently, let us know!

why I am so open about My Sex life

(For this article I will mainly be focusing on cis-gender expectations, this does not mean that if you identify as trans or non-binary you are invalid – you’re fucking awesome.)

From a young age, I was conditioned to believe that womxn have certain expectations to uphold when it comes to every part of their lives, however minuscule. Young girls shouldn’t scratch their crotch, but boys can. Girls should cross their legs to require as little room as possible, yet boys can dominate the space and take up as much room as they please. “Boys will be boys” yet girls need to do everything in their power to fulfill the patriarchy’s expectations.

Even now, as a non-binary person, I find many people expect so much from me. And that’s why I say ‘fuck it’ and do what makes me happy (without oppressing others). I’ve learnt to become much more open about everything in my life from my sexual experiences to my gender. I’ve learnt to not make myself smaller just to make others who are stuck in the kyriarchy’s way, happier. This does create a lot of tension between me and some family members especially because I often find I either call them out (leading to an argument because they are from a different generation & I’m from a cis-white middle class family so they haven’t experienced much oppression) or I have to be silent which I personally find really disgusting because it goes against everything I stand for. So now I’ve decided that uncomfortable arguments are much better in the long run than a lifetime of racist, ableist, xenophobic and other oppressive comments that I won’t personally endure.  I’m not friends with anyone anymore who is racist, sexist, transphobic etc. as I took it upon myself that I’d rather be alone than friends with oppressive people who didn’t want to learn. But now I have amazing friendships with so many awesome people, the best being ASC, my safe-haven.

I was first inspired to write this blog post from posting this photo on instagram (it is a picture of me with my eyes closed laying down in a white crop top and one arm up):

 

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“I haven’t been wearing a bra for months now and I cannot tell you just how amazing it feels (but also annoying because im a size D so get in the way sometimes lol – can’t wait until I have enough money actually have top surgery!) omg it felt soo good yesterday though to just dance and not even care about what people think, with my boobs jumping about lol! Also wishing my armpit hair was longer, but it’s getting there haha […]”

It inspired this blog post because I was thinking “do I say my bra size” “do I say about my boobs jumping around” and now I’m like hell yeah?! Why shouldn’t I say the truth of my experience, if people feel uncomfortable it’s their problem, not mine. For so long I’ve been ashamed to speak about my natural body, about the gritty and raw truth of my life. Now I love speaking the raw truth, none of this bullshit of having to be silenced again! This is why when at work (I work in a pub) when I hear some male colleagues talking of their sexual experiences, I join in with mine. I have an attitude about me now whenever I talk about my sex life to anyone and say how I’ve slept with over 10 people in the last year since my sexual debut (I hate saying “losing my virginity’ like wtf, I’ve gained something here you know? It all links back to the patriarchal idea that ‘womxn’ should be ‘pure’ and that we’ve ‘lost’ some kind of value.) Anyway, I have an attitude of no-shame, I am not ashamed of how many people I have slept with and how many more people I will continue to sleep with because as long as I get check-ups and stay safe all is well! I will continue to be open about my life, my sexual experiences, my bra size, whatever! Because it’s important these discussions need to become normalised so more non-binary people and womxn don’t feel ashamed too. However, it is also important to remember that not everyone is empowered by openness. Some may choose to keep some information private and that is completely valid, no one is less of a non-binary person or womxn if they choose to shave, wear a bra and not talk about their sex life.

So my solidarity is to those who are open, those who want to be but feel too scared, and those who choose to not be open. You are all inspiring, amazing, and together we will smash the kyriarchy!

~ Casey

 

Music Monday with Casey

by aga

 

We are launching Music Monday today!

Every Monday we will try to give a platform to a vegan non-binary or female musician. If you know anybody who falls under that category let us know!

We will start off with our very own Casey who sings and plays guitar about everything to do with liberation. They are an acoustic folky singer with a powerful voice and even more powerful messages. Their songs deal with animal exploitation and other kinds of oppression. They are fierce and speak their mind, so their songs might not always be safe for work but they will always give you that energy you need to face another day in world full of shitty people. In the end, Casey does always remind us that solidarity wins over hate, though!

Casey is about to record their first album, so stay tuned for more. If you want to hear what they have released so far or find out about gig dates and locations, keep in touch with Casey here:

Casey on Soundcloud          Casey on Bandcamp          Casey on Instagram

They are playing at Ely Festival and the totally vegan Kaos Skola Festival in Sweden (all Kaos Skola proceeds are going to two animal charities and a refugee organisation to buy tickets go to the festival website).

For much needed solidarity and love after Brexit we chose to share with you Casey’s brand new acoustic improv song about Xenophobia in the UK.

We hope you enjoy it and we are looking forward to your suggestions for future Music Monday features!

 

London Pride 2016

by aga

We hope you had a marvellous Pride weekend and took the time to celebrate your beautiful selves! We wish you a happy and safe year with nothing but love and happiness!

We want you to know that we are here for you and we are trying our best to fight this horribly violent system until we all feel that we can be ourselves everywhere we go.

At London Pride, our very own Lex marched with the Migrant and Anti-Racist Bloc organised by the Movement for Justice By Any Means Necessary & Lesbians and Gays Support the Migrants. They got interviewed by Paolo Zeriali, explaining why it is important to fight all oppression. Watch the video below to hear Lex speak or read the transcript below the youtube video.

TW: Lex briefly mentions hateful violence towards them.

 

[Interview Transcript:

Interviewer: We are in London pride with Lex right here with “destroy transphobia, fight kyriarchy and smash borders”. Let’s try to explain what do all these slogans mean.

Lex: So, as a trans individual I feel that there is so much transphobia and people, like, always misgender me, I was physically attacked last year just for being trans. So I want to destroy transphobia, so every person would be able to live as they are despite whatever gender they are or lack of gender. Kyriarchy is kinda like patriarchy just connecting all oppressions. So it is a fight against racism, transphobia, homophobia, patriarchy and all those. They go into kind of oppression kyriarchy all connected. And I’d like to smash borders so we would live in a place where people can move freely and that wouldn’t depend on if you have papers, what kind of country you are from, because no one choose where to be born, but you should be free to choose where to live.

Interviewer: So your struggle is dealing with multiple oppressions?

Lex: yeah as we don’t live in single issue world, meaning as a queer person I can face oppression as a queer person, but also I am an immigrant, so I face xenophobia and as trans individual I face transphobia. And I cannot separate which issue is affecting me the same like another person cannot say which oppression and how you… So you cannot fight just one oppression, you should realise that they all are connected. Also a disabled person I face ableism. So I think it is important to fight all oppressions and realise how they all are connected.]

~aga

Cameron During Resignation as Full of Shit as Always

by aga


During his resignation speech Cameron played the perfect Tory and the perfect politician. I took note of some of the most preposterous things that came out his mouth. If listening to him doesn’t make you throw up, you can watch the full speech in the video below or read the transcript in the Telegraph.

 

Calling out the Prime Minister

CW: mention of gaslighting (only in the first paragraph)

It seems like in his speech, Cameron is gaslighting the whole world, as he is recreating our present reality by reshaping our memories of the past and denying his own violence. Gaslighting is a serious form of abuse, where the abuser tries to convince the victim of a version of reality that suits the abuser by manipulating the victim through denying reality and convincing them of a different version of the past. The purpose is to make the victim fond of the abuser so as to still be able to benefit from the uneven power relationship.

Blaming the people for Brexit

Throughout the speech Cameron makes sure to allocate the blame to the people for the horror that’s to come (If you want to know why we are devastated by Brexit read yesterday’s post). The first four sentences he utters all stress the people’s role in this decision.

By throwing a big number at us (33,000, 000 people) and making sure to mention every single one of the many countries that had a vote (England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and Gibraltar) he makes sure to make it sound like everybody and their mom decided for this to happen. After all, as he says, they ‘all had their say’. He conveniently leaves out that the population of 16 and 17 year-olds was not allowed to vote, as the costs would have been too high, apparently. Two people I know  who aren’t in the UK at the moment registered a proxy to vote for them but neither of them ever got a polling cart. Obviously this is not some sort of conspiracy, it’s just a testament to bureaucratic democracy failing the people.

Taking credit for people’s achievements

cw: mention of suicide in the following paragraph.

‘I believe we’ve made great steps, with more people in work than ever before in our history, with reforms to welfare and education, increasing people’s life chances, building a bigger and stronger society, keeping our promises to the poorest people in the world and enabling those who love each other to get married whatever their sexuality, but above all restoring Britain’s economic strength’ – this is probably the part that angered me the most. More people are working, and what he doesn’t tell us is that most of them are working more hours for less money finding it increasingly hard to survive. Budget cuts to the NHS, which he is responsible for, are affecting already marginalised people to such an extent that suicide rates are rising so he is decreasing people’s life chances across the board.

Then the dirty Tory dares to take credit for ‘enabling those who love each other to get married, whatever their sexuality’, shitting all over the hard work the people put into this great achievement over decades (plus it is still hard for trans people to even get recognised by institutions, not to mention actually getting married).

Denying his own role

Cameron makes sure to distinguish the decision of the people very clearly from his own campaign for a Britain that’s better off in the EU. He tries to make us forget the horrendous Tory propaganda he has been responsible for, for at least the past six years. He makes us forget that it was him and his government that riled up everyone, from working class people to rich-as-fuck ‘liberals’, against immigration, against muslims, against Eastern Europeans and against the EU.

He tries to make us forget that it was his racist, ableist, classist and misogynist politics that sent the population into despair and made many feel powerless and hopeless. It is his politics that made people like Farage acceptable and even popular. And it is Cameron who is to blame for Brexit.

Playing the martyr

Cameron said: ‘The British people have voted to leave the European Union and their will must be respected’ and ‘The will of the British people is an instruction that must be delivered’ – all of a sudden he is playing the civil servant. A fine civil servant who is blaming the people for his resignation as their decision is so different from his ideology which is why ‘the country requires fresh leadership to take it in this direction’. Nice one, first he messes everything up and then he leaves it to even more conservative and right wing politicians to take it from here. And he is trying to sell this screw up as in the best interest for the people?

Some casual nationalism

‘Britain is a special country’ and ‘I love this country’ reproduce the imperialist narratives of Britain’s greatness and ability to conquer all no matter how hard times are. It feeds right into the ‘we can do it on our own if we stick together as a nation’ storyline that has recently been made popular again through romantic adaptations of the ‘Keep Calm and Carry on’ War time slogan, versions of which are decorating everything from pillows, to mugs and pet food bowls.

Cameron knows however, that the world has changed and Britain has changed so he scrupulously appropriates British diversity to advance a sense of nationalism by pretending that he too, like most of the British people, thinks the melting pot culture to be a good thing: ‘And while we are not perfect I do believe we can be a model for the multi-racial, multi-faith democracy’, he says, trying to make us forget that it was his government who put islamophobic and xenophobic anti-immigration laws into place and that under his government police brutality against people of colour has risen.

 

Film: Human Impacts

Noreen shared this beautiful piece with us, dealing with identity, speciesism, cruelty and love. You can also find Noreen’s poem, published in the second issue of our zine here.

The film is in German, but still worth watching for those who don’t understand the language.

Content warning: images of circus horses, a chicken farm and a meat aisle in the supermarket (not graphic/gory).

 

 

 

Liberate Your Language – Zine Contribution by Elecia

Here is Elecia’s contribution to the second issue of our zine (transcript below). Thank you Elecia ❤

Liberate Your Language

 

Content warning: discussion of disordered eating and homophobia.

Have you ever been in a social situation where something someone else has said has made you feel uncomfortable? Suddenly your heart starts beating faster. Your hands might shake a little (or a lot). You find it difficult to think of how to respond. Whether you should even bother to respond at all. Time slows down, and you want to escape the conversation on as quickly as possible.

This happens to me a lot. At first, I wondered if I was just an awkward person (this is probably somewhat true) or maybe incredibly sensitive. The first time I noticed was during a period of intense emotional difficulty and disordered eating – any mention of how my body looked had me wishing for the ground to open beneath my feet. After this, I struggled admitting my sexuality was definitely not heterosexual to people I didn’t know in case they were purposely (or even accidentally) homophobic. Now, as soon as anyone mentions any kind of animal exploitation, I look for the easiest exit.

I’m telling you this because people do not always consider the feelings or responses of those around them. We all have different experiences. I’m telling you this because it is so important to think about what you say before you say it. This is not about policing freedom of speech. It’s about not oppressing minorities.

Let me explain – comments about how my body looked were directly related to my gender identity and I felt under pressure to conform to societal standards. Placing value on women’s bodies is sexist objectification. It is so normalized that many people do this without even realizing.

Let’s move on. I experienced homophobia in different ways growing up –from people ‘innocently’ using the term ‘gay’ as an adjective to describe anything that bothers them, hearing others spread jokes about lgbtqia+ individuals and having slurs thrown my way. It’s no surprise that people find coming out difficult.

What I have been struggling with recently is correcting people that assume that I must be heterosexual. Will I get looks of reproach? What if they make my work place uncomfortable? Will I be unsafe? Why the fuck should I even have to consider these things?

And finally: it is unbelievably hard to listen to people discussing how much they enjoy to consume corpses and drink milk stolen from mothers. Admitting veganism to carnists usually results in either: silence, jokes ridiculing your choices, brushing your comments off, or concerns about your health (don’t fucking talk to me about my ‘diet’ after two years of disordered eating. Seriously). Most of this does not oppress me as a human, but affects all of the animals that are exploited by our species.

Basically, I’m trying to say that people often say things to me that oppress me as a bisexual woman and single out veganism as a negative difference (thereby oppressing animals). Sometimes it’s unintnional. Sometimes it isn’t.

The language we use helps us to create and shape our understanding of the world. Active campaigning and growing awareness means that many terms are now understood as oppressive to marginalized groups. Toxic words are no longer tolerated. It is up to us to ensure that we are not harming people because of the words we are using. Stop throwing around ableist terms like ‘stupid’. Don’t use the word ‘bitch’ to describe people you don’t like (it’s sexist and speciesist!) Don’t assume someone’s gender identity and sexuality. It’s hard to catch yourself at first, and you might feel embarrassed swallowing your pride to apologize, but creating an inclusive and supportive environment is crucial.

We need our language to reflect our politics. We take a stance against violence. Let’s not engage in microaggressions that harm others.

~elecia

Art: Human Impacts – Zine Contribution by Noreen

Noreen made a film about Human Impacts. Here are some stills from the film accompanying a poem written by Noreen with the transcript below. You can find the original German audio-visual work by clicking here.

Content Warning: Speciesism.

Thank you Noreen for your contribution! ❤

noreen film noreen film zine second issue 2

I look into the mirror.

I see a person.

Everybody likes this person.

Everybody except of me.

My mirror image is a stranger.

A girl with black hair.

A girl with rouged eyes.

A girl wit a painful

and longing look.

 

I have to be this person.

Everybody wants me to be this girl.

Everybody except of me.

 

I have the longing to be myself.

Be the person hiding behind the face.

Show everybody who I am

how I feel and what I feel.

 

You don’t understand me.

You can’t understand me.

You don’t even try.

I’m hated for being myself.

I’m not accepted for being different.

 

Where is your tolerance?

Your sympathy?

 

In our society we eat meat.

We eat animals.

Living beings.

 

That’s normal and normal is good.

Abuse them.

Kill them.

Eat them.

 

Humans destroy our environment.

The nature, our earth.

Humans hurt themselves.

They make war.

 

Humans behave intolerant.

Have no understanding for

different sentiments.

 

Why we do that?

Where is our compassion?

 

“I see a world, which is different.

A world giving love and not only take.

Where you can be how you are,

Without the fear to show who you are.

 

Understand – No you don’t have to.

And I don’t have to justify,

explain or defend myself somehow or other.

 

I don’t condemn you for ignorance.

So don’t condemn me, because my heart screams after a free world.”

I want Peace

Love for All.

A FREE WORLD.