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The Women’s March on Washington

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Woke up to the most exciting news about the marches across America and the world. The Women’s March on Washington (specifically the one in DC) is so big, they couldn’t formally march to the White House. The march in LA expected 80k people, but got 750,000. This is so historic. Make sure you understand why these marches are happening before choosing to sneer at it, or stay neutral. When women first started marching 100+ year ago, it lead to (white woman’s) first rights to become CITIZENS so never underestimate the power of an organised peaceful protest.
Images from marches across America. Via: NYTimes.com

I’ve taken a break from my hiatus, otherwise I would have missed the most exciting day for women and minorities in the current state of affairs! Who would have guessed how BIG this was and how far spread it was?  What a day to be alive!

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Women’s Marches across the globe: including Antarctica!

As I began this blog in August last year, I was aware of the unrest and underlying anger of feminists, humanists and civil rights activists and so forth across the world. I had no idea what was to come, but I felt a huge urge to do and SAY something myself. I knew it was time to get on board. Having received so much flack for my views, it’s empowering to know I wasn’t alone in this, and that so many people feel what I feel. It seems the election of Trump was just the ignition needed to blow up the ticking time bomb. I am so incredibly proud to have witnessed humanity rise up – across the world – to say “NO” to the system, the flaunting of ignorance and indecent human behaviour, and people who don’t believe in equality for all.

The fact that the Women’s March on Washington (which is effectively a march for equality, climate change, anti-greed and so on, not just for women) has dominated the news scene and dwarfed the crowd turn out for the Inauguration is so exciting. It says something. Everyone from career activists to celebrities to first time activists and introverts have joined up – oh, how I’d love to have been in the States this day! The Official Women’s March on Washington in DC was SO BIG it couldn’t march to the White House for safety and coordination reasons. The LA crowd was expected to be 80,000 but got an estimated 175,000! There were marches in London, Sydney, Vienna and about 20 other countries, and even in 4 cities in little old New Zealand! All organised in less than 2 months! This sort of outcome is not to be sneezed at. If you haven’t taken thought to why this is happening, I suggest you get informed — after all, I believe this will become a notable piece in the history books, and you’ll want to be able to proudly tell your grandchildren how you played a part.

“Once or twice in every generation a line is crossed so egregiously that where you stood on the issue will forever define you.” – Kara Vallow

Hilarious and clever signs from various marches. Please contact me for crediting!

For those who understand why these marches are happening, I need not explain. For those who don’t understand why these marches are happening, let me explain.

In a nutshell, the last four thousand years have seen women persecuted, cast as secondary human beings, not been seen as capable or intelligent as men, and often having to struggle in abusive conditions and lifestyles across many different cultures and laws. We don’t know a lot about Women’s History because it’s simply never discussed or taught in our schools. Black Civil Rights has been covered a little better – simply because the condition for Black people was so much worse. But for many minority groups, their stories have not been told.

But without delving too much into the history that brought us here, it is important to know that laws for equality that came around only over the last century didn’t happen because white men in power suddenly felt guilty and decided to be nice, they happened because the minorities in every culture stood up and protested. I didn’t get my education and freedom to work as a woman without the activism of the Suffragettes pre-1920. I’m super grateful to these women who had the strength to stand up and risk persecution, job loss, jail time, ridicule and even torture so that my future as a woman wouldn’t have to be a choice between becoming a spinster in a limited career path or the property of a husband. Likewise, those who activated for Black Civil Rights in the 60s and Gay Rights in the 80s-onwards have all risked EVERYTHING in order for the particular minorities to have less social stigma today. Our future children will thank those today who stood up against a corrupt US Government for equality, climate change and reproductive rights for women, among the other rights that are being trampled on by the Trump administration and the extremists of corrupted nations and religions across the world.

Some might think this is a waste of time! But even if today was completely ignored by Trump, the whole world has taken notice. People are getting inspired and jumping on board. People are questioning what they value. Mindsets are being changed. The fight has only just begun.

The Women’s March, or the March against Trump, isn’t a march against Democracy. It isn’t even a march against the fundamentally flawed Electoral system that helped seal Trump’s victory. The Russian scandal, his lying and breaking of the constitution on day 1 hasn’t really been mentioned. This March is focused on protesting the values of the Trump Government, which is working to eradicate all that is fair in America. The rights of and opportunities for all citizens, including immigrants and the LBGQT community. The Arts. Science. The fight for the Climate. And bringing in Greed, Religious Fundamentalism, Discrimination and Sexism. Normalizing casual misogyny, racism, homophobia and xenophobia. Working backwards to make America Hate Again. If anyone is comfortable with this sort of value system, they really need to check their heart. This isn’t about standard republican policy, this is about basic human dignity and decency.

If you see only one presentation from the March, I urge you to watch Ashley Judd’s hugely powerful and emotional rally speech here. Also, the NY Times has a rundown of the events that have/are taking place. Stay informed, and get on the right side of history. To those who are following, or taking part, I am SO PROUD of you. Let’s stick together and fight for what is right. If you took part, I want to know! Share your thoughts down below.

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Words from my hero ❤

“Women’s Rights are Human Rights” – HRC

www.womensmarch.com/

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Uncategorised

Love WILL Trump Hate

I was raised to behave with dignity and grace in the face of a loss. I was taught to congratulate the winner, and while it’s ok to be disappointed, under no circumstances should I ever behave like a sore loser.

But this circumstance is different. This circumstance is not okay.

Everyone has the capacity to do good and the capacity to do bad. What matters is which they choose to act upon. This is not a political issue. This is far bigger than that. Remember this day folks. This is the day that people chose hate, bigotry, ignorance, corruption, arrogance, double standards, narcissism, misogyny and discrimination.

Hillary represents the everyday woman who has been held back, told she isn’t good enough, labeled and criticised, unfairly condemned. Despite everything, she has persevered and demonstrated intelligence and calmness and compassion. For this, I respect her more than ever. For her, I am more determined to fight for gender equality. This election has shown how rampant bigotry is.

You may think that I am overreacting, but understand that every value I stand for has been crushed. A hurdle for women and people who are different has become, ironically, a wall.

Putting political affiliations and preferences aside, America has voted (overwhelmingly, despite the popular vote for Clinton) for a man who spews a rhetoric that targets the fear and hatred in the people. He never had the slightest clue about policy for the people, he just made a show and entertained the masses. But let’s get real here.  This isn’t just a man who behaves like a bullying school child. It’s much darker:

  • This is a man who is due in court for child rape charges
  • This is a man who boasts about sexually assaulting women.
  • This is a man endorsed by the KKK.
  • This is a man who scorns veterans, POWs, and Gold Star families.
  • This is a man who mocks the disabled – among so many other groups.
  • This is a man who denies climate change.

But what is the use of speaking the truth? Many people have not listened.

I can’t believe I’m even here writing this. America has failed…The system has failed.  I feel like Harry Potter has died, and Voldemort has won the outcome of the prophecy. In the story books, the good guy always wins. Reality has proven much different.

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Like my American friend, I take this very personally. I campaign and battle for gender equality and the ending of a misogynistic culture. I’m sure many other people have also lost their faith in humanity’s capacity to believe in good.

When did humanity get so unkind? When did people have more faith in a reality TV conman who verbally spews ideas with no substance or value than a woman who has publicly given her life to help others? You don’t have to LIKE the candidate, but the values that underlie their policies should be the key drive in your vote. I’m sick of people comparing them and saying Hillary was just as bad. She wasn’t. She never was. And history is going to tell a whole other story that will make our generation look more appalling than we are proving to be. Don’t also tell me he will have “brains” working for him behind the scenes, to manage his antics. That is what people thought about Hitler! This is a man who has largely worked alone, a demagogue who has insulted a LARGE majority of people, – not just people who oppose his ideology. A man who has torn apart the GOP, never mind the Democrats. This is a man has dictator tendencies. I wish I was exaggerating. His supporters enjoy trolling the opposition, they live off bullying behaviour and ignorance. These people are a disease to prosperity, growth, and basic human decency.

The most horrifying part of this is the idea that Obama has to hand over the keys to a smug-faced man who will wipe out all those achievements he fought so hard, against a corrupt GOP senate and house, to gain. This is a government who still is run by fundamentalist religious values that are backwards and obsolete. It’s like the movie Idiocracy. This is not a world I want to raise my daughters in, let alone all my children. We have to do something.

I just feel so bad for Hillary. She’s a symbol for women right now. Despite her innate ability and potential, the media has crushed her image, man has lied and degraded her. She’s had people ripping into her based on her likability rather than her ability to do the job. Is this women’s lot in life? To face setback after setback for thousands of years to a patriarchy who values money-making machines and sexist entertainment over equality for all?

All over social media, people across the world have been pouring out their shock and sadness in what has happened. This man doesn’t define all Americans. This man is not a symbol or a figurehead for all Americans. To those Americans who voted for progression, we share in your pain. We know there is still some good left in the heart of America.

But while I mourn tonight for those minorities who will take this as a huge loss, I will wake in the morning more determined than ever to fight on. Dark times lie ahead, and it’s important to get involved, not stay passive. I will continue to fight Susan B Anthony’s battle to see the first female President of the United States. I will fight to make sure Obama’s legacy is sealed. And I’m sure many others will continue to fight the ideology that Trump stands for. American or not, we will unite, stronger together, to target this medieval mindset.

For those who need to know how to:

  1. Deal with this massive upset

  2. Educate themselves on what the hell just happened

  3. Find out how to protest and stop Trump’s ideology

Links to help can be found here.

We’ve hit a hurdle. But let’s not give up hope. Love will win. Equality will exist. We need the whole world to stand up against this.

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Let's Talk

Weighing in on the Historic US Election

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So how do you judge what a man is worth
By what he builds or buys?
You can never see with your eyes on earth
Look through heavens eyes

Through Heaven’s Eyes – Prince of Egypt

I think every man, woman and their dog has commented on this election, but considering the nature of my blog, it’s about time I’m spoken out. Hillary Clinton’s name has become synonymous with the term ‘Feminist’ – but not in the way you’re probably thinking. We know, or at least some of us know, that the messages behind both Hillary and Feminism are positive and progressive; but through negative press, propaganda and fear-mongering, people are reluctant to associate themselves with the name.

So how do you change mindsets when people aren’t open to change? Looking at this year’s Presidential campaign, the GOP targeted the darker side of people’s belief systems to promote their candidate, allowing them to think these dangerous and hateful mindsets are normal. It seems impossible to use reason with people who think this rhetoric is okay.

But then there comes a point when you have to say something. If people are going to just verbally spew any opinion without fact-checking or kindness, when is the right time to stand up and say – hey, this isn’t okay? I can say confidently that anyone who supports Trump, for political or personal reasons, is ultimately turning a blind eye to the endorsement of lies, racism, sexism, idiocy, sexual harassment, general harassment, arrogance, elitism and corruption, and is guilty by association. That is, they are allowing such archaic prejudices to thrive by disregarding them as important. In terms of Clinton, I question the way people portray her simply because her words and principles don’t reflect the ‘crookedness’ that the GOP publicise. Do I think she is faultless? No. Find me one Politician that is. But for leadership, I believe you need to have good values. This means that the ideology that underpins your policies needs to come from a mindset of open mindedness and growth. In terms of this, frankly, Hillary’s policies are miles ahead of Trump’s, and reflect a more forgiving, compassionate, and human value system.

I could say that there are people indirectly excusing Trump’s behaviour by saying that, although they despise the man, they are voting for his policies. To a degree, this is reasonable. In the case of say, Bill Clinton, his infidelities didn’t stop him from being a successful President. Even Winston Churchill and FDR had failures in their personal lives that didn’t extend to their professional ones. But each as LEADERS had progressive and compassionate world views and inspired hope in all their people. In the words of JK Rowling, “if you want to know what a man is really like, take a look at how he treats his inferiors, not his equals”. It doesn’t take the ‘liberal’ media to convince us that Trump has a questionable moral system. He clearly encourages a violent and racist rhetoric. The way Trump speaks about anyone who isn’t white, male, or doesn’t support him, shows that – in a world that is becoming increasingly more equality conscious – Trump is not a great spokesperson for all the people.

I consider myself a moderate in my own country – I see the benefits and flaws of principles from both major parties – but in terms of America, I am a strong Democrat. Largely because – throughout Obama’s two terms and through this current election – the Republican party have proven themselves to be untrustworthy, deceptive, hateful and holding back of a progressive first world country. (What kind of democracy lets an opposition block every move the party in power makes?). Because of the Republican party, America has held their citizens back from receiving first-world quality health care rights, have accepted and encouraged a gun-reliance mentality (unlike any other first world country), and are responsible for fundamentalist Christianity having too much control in political policy. Religion is a philosophical practice to encourage good. But the Bible was written thousands of years ago and isn’t practical in, or reflective of modern governing.

But for those who are vocally against Hillary by using ‘evidence’ dug up from right-wing conspiracy groups, I’ve had enough. Hillary Clinton’s name has been dragged through the dirt through this entire election, and a lot of the lack of support is not generally through a disagreement in policy (which is a fair reason not to support a candidate), but because they believe Hillary is as corrupt as Trump seems to suggest – without actually fact checking. (Look at it this way: the Republicans have been trying to dig up dirt on the Clinton’s for 30 years. The FBI, a neutral entity that was responsible for the impeachment of Nixon, is currently headed by a Republican. If they had found any shred of evidence that Hillary was guilty of such crimes, you can bet my bottom dollar she would be in jail. But she is not.)

I will admit that I am somewhat attracted to the concept of a first Female President. No – I’m not somewhat attracted, I am VERY attracted. As a woman, these sorts of achievements to woman kind are incredible and historic – it’s an amazing time to be a woman when witnessing these triumphs. So maybe to a degree I am somewhat biased towards Hillary.

To me, if Barack Obama is the Harry Potter of the US Political World, Abraham Lincoln the Dumbledore and so on, then Hillary Clinton is the Hermione Granger. Ostracized and disliked for her intellect, lacking in popularity, and even considered an ‘Undesirable’ by Voldemort’s government (ha!), but let’s be honest – more capable and compassionate and strong than many like to admit.

But regardless of whether you like Clinton or not, we can all agree that it’s a very negative, nasty and personal election. One that is very addicting to watch, but also leaves you with a bitter feeling. As a Feminist, I really wish that the first nominated female President of the United States got a fair fight and the campaign focused more on policy for the people than personal spats. But the election has become a metaphor for the fight for Women’s right’s, where woman has been victimised or painted as evil and corrupt, and man has wielded his dominance by use of abusive tactics rather than reason or compassion. She has to convince everyone of her intellect and ability. He just has to turn up and NOT say that he wants to bang his daughter, and he gets applauded for good oratory skills. Such double standards is why we have such a mistrust of women in politics, and why so many women don’t recognise their own liberation.

“We are not seeking ‘equality’ with men. We are inherently equal. We are seeking liberation from male social, political, economic and other forms of oppression. Until this difference is recognised and prioritised among all feminists and feminist allies, the seeking of anything will be at men’s discretion, and that is anti-feminist” – Unknown

This is such a historic moment in history for womankind, and yet it’s hardly been central to the election race at all. Partly, I believe, because Hillary wants to earn her right to the Presidency without the focus of her gender, but mainly because the significance of the role has been downplayed by a male culture that – although on the surface monopolizes on the modern liberation of races, gender and sexuality – secretly misses the power it used to wield on others. Call me cynical, but yes, this election has been very metaphorical, representing the struggle women have faced for thousands of years against a patriarchal culture.

Let’s not look back on this election in the history books and cringe. Let’s not miss our chance to make history. C’mon America! You can do this!

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