Category Archives: Uncategorized

On…

That moment you’re going to be writing about cultural sensitivity and Christians for a class and you realise that what you really, really want to write about is that one way we’re making big asses of ourselves… that’s actually pretty personal. Should I, shouldn’t I?

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The Troll Who Became King

I’ve stayed far away from most news coverage, especially of Amercan politics, because I believe the rules of the internet also apply irl: don’t feed the troll. It thrives on all attention, on all opposition. We’ve had and have several populist (closest I come to a category for him) leaders. They serve well as a voice of protest, to shake up a staid establishment. They are the Voice of the People, not the rational voice, but “onderbuikgevoelens”, what lives in people’s guts, in their ids. Often ugliness and discontent that shouldn’t be followed blindly, but should be known, and taken into account.

They make destructive leaders. People ruled by their complaints and selfish desires aren’t happy people.

But dammit, now one took the US by storm, and he’s a, no, the world leader, the most powerful man in the Western world, which has a stranglehold on the whole globe, so. And, what is often forgotten, the president affects the world as much as he does the country he rules.

I thought I had it bad, being powerless to prevent it, hating it. Turns out I had it easy, as an observer rather than a participant. Being just a few steps removed.

Still. The Troll is king, and his sheer presence will turn our communities toxic if we don’t moderate them. After all, we’ve lived in the age of the internet. And it doesn’t matter if you’re American or not. He’s too powerful for that.

So let’s make some predictions and see how we can work to counter them.

1. He’ll start a war, likely in the Middle East. It’d make it easier to control people, critics, media, and give him more power and opportunities to push through whatever he wants.

2. He’ll make scapegoats, working with existing prejudice and racism. Which group he’ll target first is anybody’s guess. Muslims and/or Hispanics seem likely, to be profiled as either the cause of violence, war or poverty.

3. He’ll create distractions, i.e.make a lot of pomp and circumstance about championing fast and easy laws that are conservative crowd-pleasers. Think tax cuts and anti-abortion laws. This is likely where the most danger for women’s rights and people with a non-het sexuality lies.

4. He’ll appeal to Christians, so silencing those who would oppose him. Already seen in the fact that most will not comment beyond “Whoever is president, God is King.”

Potential avenues of opposition:

1. Local and state level government. I may be wrong, but it seems like most laws and productive government actually happens at state level these days? Might be enough to prevent some discrimination where you live.

2. Humanitarian organisations and ministry. He’s going to make some people, somewhere, suffer. Let’s prevent what we can and help the rest. And c’mon fellow Christians, even if you believe this is a dark time or even end times, are you really gonna let God catch you sitting on your hands? Let’s get cracking.

3. Trolling the troll. Since he’s out in the open and supposed to be legit now, this is totally the time for a counteroffensive, i.e. attention on social media, poking holes in bullshit arguments for wars. Who knows. Trying to govern a country eventually wrecked the coalition that included the most prominent Dutch populist. It’s just gonna be a long game.

And yeah, none of these are new, I know, but my point is: we’re not powerless. Nor can we get much done alone. These are group efforts, so. 

Now to actually see what I can do.

P.S. and…. like I almost did, do not forget to account for the  danger and hate he represents. I am white, I am  Christian, and I feel distinctly unsafe every time I see his face. I can’t begin to understand the impact his presence has on most, either as a trigger for fear or an accellarent to hate. Several teachers I’ve spoken to describe how many children they needed to comfort, either because “the bully won, why?” or real fears of having family and friends taken away in the near future.

So step 1. Get me some friggin humility and real information.

Ideals

I want to write about a better future. I love the theme of this month’s Carnival.

But what to write? Representation is a work in progress I don’t have much to say about. Can’t really write about activism with what little I know. Writing a sensible followup to the library idea post isn’t really panning out.

So that leads me back to something more personal… and I can’t really say much about where I want to be going without taking stock of where I am. Which is a messy work in progress.

…maybe that’s the point though.

Edit: Okay, I think I know what I want: be able to explain my sexuality to a five year old, and be understood. That’d be an awesome first step.

Unstraightening My Facts: mono- and poly-, -amory, -gamy, -andry and -gyny

[Ctrl+A+delete]

See comments for good reading suggestions.

You want Asexual Visibility?!

I’ll give you visibility: TED’s put out a call for new speakers, you can apply until September 20th and you get to go to Vancouver in 2016 and your talk gets recorded and watched all over the planet. And they’re really good, and actively look for impassioned people who challenge the status quo. ESPECIALLY UNUSUAL PEOPLE WITH UNUSUAL STORIES.

Please let’s apply with as many as possible and maybe one of us will get to go up there and get to do a slam-dunk victory of an inspirational awareness speech on asexuality, demisexuality, having a complex sexual identity no one’s heard of or whatever story you’ve been wanting to tell that fits no one’s neat little box.

Read more here, and fill out the online form. PLEASE. Even if it will only ever be a private act of courage, please do. All of you all’s stories and ideas are hella worth spreading.

http://www.ted.com/participate/ted-fellows-program/apply-to-be-a-ted-fellow

TED2016 Fellowship application

After “Archiving” on World Watch is Adjusted, Still Asking Why

As a less newsworthy content creator, I’ve been reading about the dust-up between bloggers and AVEN from the sidelines.

Then I wrote a three-page email to AVEN, and didn’t send it.

Then I wrote a deeply sarcastic post for my blog, maybe the forums, and didn’t post it.

Both hid the questions I have and unease I feel. I can’t not speak, though. But… those questions have been partially answered to, so I just leave you with the following thought:

You want to preserve good content about asexuality?

  • Create an appropriate platform
  • Give creators free access or good communication channels
  • Edit content properly
  • State clearly what your criteria are, so people can submit as well.

At the time of writing, the tip-of-the-iceberg problem has been resolved, namely, blog posts are linked, not copied and several have been removed upon request. I’m still wondering about the rest of it…

Further Reading

  1. Asexy Zine Archive
  2. Asexuality Media Archive
  3. Organisation for Transformative Works
  4. What Price Visibility, by Ace-muslim in the Asexual Agenda
  5. Not Cool, AVEN, by Prismatic Entanglements
  6. Archival Controversy by Cake at the Fortress
  7. Redbeardace’s good explanation of why readers are a blogger’s lifeblood
  8. AVEN Thread discussing the policy.

LGBT, Q, I, X, A, +? ?????

Okay, I’m really confused… what’s the proper acronym these days? I know the basics is LGBT, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, but then? And am I getting these right: Q for queer, I for intersex(ual?), X for ???, A for Asexual or Allies, depending on the person you ask being aware of the existence of asexuality? And the + is basically to cover your ass if you’re not sure?

The Creative Demisexual: God, Why Sexualities?

God, Why Sexualities?

Called diseases, mistakes, abberations
What use could be these variations?

When God is proclaimed infallible
And church, institution, impregnable

Unwelcome for those that don’t fit
Dismissed and condemned to the pit

If any sinner can make heaven home
But for a sexuality should be left in the cold

That leads down a well-travelled road
And not one that offers much hope

Suppose, then, that God’s will is good
Why the differences, what could be the use?

If love should come in countless forms
Desire and gender blur lines even more

As undefinable as life and death*
When proper labeling eludes us yet

Makes us delve deeper, seeking wisdom
Discovering more until Kingdom come

The use of multiple sexualities could be
That we continue to seek what it means –

*) http://www.ted.com/talks/martin_hanczyc_the_line_between_life_and_not_life

Demisexuality and Mental Health, an urgent discovery.

15. Have you ever called in to a hotline, warm line, text or chat support network, etc.? What was your experience like? Can you think of any specific ways it could have been better? Would you recommend the service to other aces?

I haven’t ever called a hotline. When I first discovered the concept demisexuality, I did start googling it almost compulsively, returned to do so again every few days, and in the end created this blog and wrote several blog posts in a single day. It was cathartic.

I would recommend other demisexual or asexual newbies at least talk to like-minded people a couple of times or lurk on blogs and forums to get a sense of what it’s like to be ace or demi or grey or -romantic.

That first moment of recognition, identification, as well as subsequent issues, they are moments of such urgent discovery of self, of the world. Especially because asexuality isn’t all that well-known, and how to deal with issues arising from it, in relationships and all, even less. It’s good to share.

Here endeth the series Demisexuality and Mental Health.

Demisexuality and Mental Health, shutting up bullshitters.

14. When people tell you something like “you need therapy” or “get help!”—how do you respond? Have you found any particular method that works well for getting people to stop telling you that?

Be odd, but not aggressively. Make an off-colour joke, stare them down, resort to sarcasm, whatever suits your style, really. I’m not a person gifted with good social skills, much confidence or charisma. I’ve learned that putting people off balance, just a bit, provides a moment to push them in another direction.

Here’s an example: I went to buy something in a market and had to negotiate for the price. The guy opposite me named one that was too high. I didn’t know what to say, so an awkward silence fell. As I stared at him, he seemed to hesitate, repeated the price once more. I finally gave up and turned to go. He yelled a much lower price. Heartened, I turned back to stare at him, now holding back a grin. He lowered the price again. I walked away with the item and a big grin on my face.

I had discovered my negotiating strategy, by accident. Act clueless and socially awkward, on purpose.

It’s a power game, if such demands are made or “suggestions” shouted, so the question is, really, how do you take back power, in your personal life or in the work place? Same strategies apply.

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