arvan's picture

Calls for IRS to investigate FL Church for engaging in gay hate in political campaign

Fran over at BlueGal sent this to me.  Typical fundie horse-crap, pitching the message of hatred, intolerance & greed.  Read the letter yourself.  It's from Beth Corbin at Americans United.  Some (or should I say "yet another"?) church is telling people to vote for the "not a homo" candidate.  

I think they're right to contact the IRS.  The only thing a church will respond to quicker than a hand-out is the threat of paying taxes. 



Dove World Outreach Center’s ‘No Homo Mayor’ Sign Constitutes Illegal Intervention In Gainesville Election, Says Watchdog Group

Americans United for Separation of Church and State today asked the Internal Revenue Service to investigate a church in Gainesville, Fla., that posted a sign opposing a mayoral candidate.

Dove World Outreach Center erected a sign on its property reading, “No Homo Mayor.” The reference is to Craig Lowe, a mayoral candidate who is gay.

Contacted about the matter by the Gainesville Sun, a top church official admitted that the church had erected the sign.

“We don’t feel as though the city should be represented by a homosexual,” said Terry Jones, senior pastor at Dove World Outreach Center.

The Rev. Barry W. Lynn, Americans United executive director, called the church’s actions a blatant example of illegal politicking by a tax-exempt group.

“This is an open-and-shut case,” Lynn said. “The church freely admits that it intended to intervene in the election in violation of federal tax law. I urge the IRS to act promptly.”

Americans United sent a letter to IRS officials today, asking them to investigate the matter.

Jones told the Sun he believes the church is acting within its constitutional rights. But as Americans United pointed out in its letter to the IRS, groups accepting tax exemptions must meet certain conditions, including refraining from election interventions.

AU also noted that the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit rejected the free speech defense in a 2000 ruling in the case Branch Ministries v. Rosotti.

Americans United is a religious liberty watchdog group based in Washington, D.C. Founded in 1947, the organization educates Americans about the importance of church-state separation in safeguarding religious freedom.

Please feel free to distribute widely!!

March 26, 2010

Clarisse Thorn's picture

Defending my irresponsible, abusive, gender-stereotypical coming-out story

Defending my irresponsible, abusive, gender-stereotypical coming-out story

Note: this post is a bit feminist-theoretical.

I try to think seriously about about all comments on my work, but I usually just brush off the snide ones. Every once in a while, though, one arrows through and hits me where I'm vulnerable and shakes my confidence, and if it's nastily phrased, then it hurts all the more. Seeps into me like poison.

Yep, this is another post about my S&M coming-out story, published in February by "Time Out Chicago". (I've received some questions about when I'm going to start officially blogging for "Time Out" -- the answer is that we're still negotiating the terms of my blogging contract and I'm not sure when we'll be done. I think we both really want this professional blogging gig to happen, so I'm confident that we'll work it out, but it might take a while.)

Here's a brief one-paragraph synopsis: my coming-out story talks about how I got drunk with a man named Richard at a party when I was 20; he started hurting me intensely; and I really got into it. I'd known a little bit about the existence of BDSM for a while -- had experimented with light BDSM before, in fact -- but this experience was much more intense, and in particular led me to the realization that I needed very dark and tearful masochistic encounters. As an independent, rational feminist, it was difficult for me to come to terms with my desires. It didn't help that Richard and I weren't well-suited romantically, although we were well-suited on an S&M level. Adjusting took a long time; but after seeing a Kink Aware therapist, coming out to my parents, exploring BDSM on my own terms, and having BDSM relationships with non-Richard men who suited me better romantically, I feel pretty much at peace with my BDSM identity.

arvan's picture

Queering Yerevan Open Call for Proposals 2010

The Women Oriented Women’s collective is pleased to announce its Summer 2010 open call for proposals.  Individual and collaborating artists are welcome to submit proposals for work that engages with the theme of this year’s art intervention.

July 31 – August 1, 2010

Zarubyan 34, Yerevan

Contact: Arpi Adamyan

Translation looms large among the cultural practices that at once join and separate us.  We use intralingual translation to interpret verbal signs by means of other signs of the same language, we depend on interlingual translation to interpret the verbal signs of a foreign language, and we rely on intersemiotic translation to interpret verbal signs using signs of nonverbal sign systems.  And yet, while other reflexes of thought are interrogated and revealed as situated knowledge, the assumption that cultural differences are bridged easily and transparently remains undisturbed.  How can we critically engage with and pay more attention to the processes of such bridging?  How can we problematize conceptions that render translation as objective and value-free?  The effects of translation are felt both in the domestic and the foreign cultures, as, on the one hand, translation wields enormous power in the construction and representation of foreign entity, and on the other hand, translation enlists the foreign text in the development and revision of domestic values.
Because meaning is an effect of relations and differences among signifiers along a potentially endless chain in the Derridean sense, it is always differential and deferred, never present as an original unity.  As a result, a translated text (cultural artifact) is the site of many different semantic possibilities that are fixed only provisionally in a certain translation based on varying cultural assumptions and interpretive choices, in specific social situations, in different historical periods.
Situating our inquiry in the crossings of the dominant post-Soviet culture in Armenia, queer spaces, and translation as a mode of subversion, we propose an examination of “foreign” or “queer” texts and cultural objects that violate, disrupt and revise dominant conceptual paradigms, research methodologies, and cultural practices in the parameters of the familiar, at home.  Coming from a slightly different angle, translation as a method of defamiliarization can be compared to the Butlerian conception of drag, which in its performativity complicates, parodies, and denaturalizes “reality” and its norms that standardize gender and sexuality.  The purpose of such translation is to expose that what we come to understand to be “real,” “original,” or naturalized is, in fact, a changeable and revisable reality.
arvan's picture

Joy Nash's New Video on Fat & Self: Staircase Wit

I found Joy through Happy Bodies today.  Check out their blog, for sure.  I watched this video and think Joy is onto something here.  The first two-thirds of it are solid enough, with treatments of friends, families and strangers and the impact they have on our lives.  However, the last part of this video goes right to the heart of how we view ourselves and the impact we have on our future with the choices we make right now.

Check out her blog (now on our blogroll) and other site here:

arvan's picture

What's Wrong With Transhumanism

IEET Managing Director Mike Treder and CUNY Professor Massimo Pigliucci debate the pros and cons of the transhumanist agenda.


arvan's picture

Call for Submissions: FEMME 2010

Femme Collective presents
August 20th-22nd
Oakland, CA

Hello Fabulous Femmes and Allies!

The Femme Collective is proud to announce Femme2010: NO RESTRICTIONS.  Building off of Femme2006 and Femme2008, Femme2010: No Restrictions (August 20-22, 2010 in Oakland, CA) continues to explore, discuss, dissect, and support Queer Femme. 

The weekend will include workshops, panels, presentations, performances, film, and art.  We invite people of all genders who are interested in a deeper understanding of Femme, as well as all self-identified Femmes who want to learn, teach, connect, and build community geared towards social change.

In this newsletter meet our new steering committee members, check out our Call for Submissions, learn about our registration rates, check out our host hotel!

Join us this August in Oakland for this groundbreaking event.  Please forward to your personal networks and help us get the word out!

The Femme Collective

Serena Anderlini's picture

Serena's comment to Oregon Post's Review of Brent Leung's House of Numbers

Read review and comments to this brave documentary about the importance of dissidence in the production of scientific knowledge.

Brent's work is very important as it alerts an entire new generation to the scientific problems research on AIDS has not resolved yet, with the first voice admitting this the French scientist who discovered HIV back in the 1980s, Nobel Laureate Luc Montagnier.  I am a university professor and educator and I have researched and written extensively about the AIDS controversies, analyzing the cultural/political context in which official AIDS science was produced, and the likely effects that this context had on the results.  Science happens in culture and is affected by it, it is not neutral or universal, never has been, if we think of how hard it was for Galileo to affirm something simple like the concept that the Earth moves back then when the powers that be had an investment in the opposite theory.  The problem with AIDS science is that people get upset about it because it affects them intimately, having to do with what they do, or think they can do, in bed.  What about separating the two problems?  Asking the government to mandate that scientists officially run again the laboratory experiments said to prove that HIV causes AIDS, and in the meanwhile continuing to use condoms when doing something that would otherwise result in the exchange of deep fluids when unknown risk factors are involved?  This is what I propose in my latest book, Gaia and the New Politics of Love (2009). 

I plan to organize a screening of Leung's documentary on my campus, so students learn more about the importance of maintaining the space open for free speech and knowledge that represents dissenting viewpoints.

With much respect and admiration for Leung's brave work. 
Serena Anderlini-D'Onofrio, PhD
author of Gaia and the New Politics of Love: Notes for a Poly Planet (2009)
and of Eros: A Journey of Multiple Loves (2007)

arvan's picture

We are not only beautiful: Whore feminism in 15 points

I found this on STRASS and think it bears repeating.


Whore Feminism is :

1. Dictate terms to men in the sexual contract before talking, either about the length, practices, prevention and rules of consent.

2. To work with other women and queer people and thus reduce the risk of suffering sexist and homophobic jokes from colleagues.

3. Being economically independent of a father, a boss or a darling.

4. Occupy public and night spaces traditionally reserved for men.

5. Combat whore stigma that hinders freedoms of all women, by reclaiming the insult in pride in order to break the original meaning.

6. Knowing, loving, being comfortable with our body and our sexuality and take care of it.

7. Defending the free disposal of our body and not only for abortion rights.

8. Knowing that sexuality and gender are defined by power relationships and that identities are neither natural nor immutable but socially constructed and as such we perform them like actresses.

9. Educating men and to change their behaviour because we have access to their privacy.

10. The right to say yes as much as to say no. Fighting for the recognition of rape as a crime, including those committed against us and which our complaints are rarely recorded.

11. Awareness of the intersection between different forms of discrimination and being in solidarity with other minority women.

12. Respecting all women voices. Refusing paternalism that infantilises women and judge them unable to express their own will under the false pretext that we are manipulated, yesterday by the priests to deny us the right to vote, or now by pimps to ban soliciting.

13. Making visible as work all services rendered for free or extracted within the family and demanding financial compensation for this, unless to refuse them.

14. Fighting for the unionization of sex workers and change the sex industry, including being aware that gendered asymmetry between men as clients and women&queers as whores is the result of a long tradition of patriarchal sexual division of labour .

15. Refusing to be a victim.

Annabelle River's picture

When Sex Negativity Is Kinda Hot

I recently finished reading The Edge of the Bed: How Dirty Pictures Changed My Life by Lisa Palac, which I highly recommend, because I agree with almost everything she writes.  The part especially sticking with me has been Chapter 6, in which she analyzes her kinky desires that don't just deny, but appropriate her anti-sex Catholic upbringing:

At its core, my Daddy fantasy isn't about my father but about Our Father Who Art in Heaven.  I'd taken the dynamic of love and punishment, which terrorized me as a child and made me feel helpless -- kneeling down and sticking out my tongue to receive his body, whispering my most sinful transgressions in a dark confessional, doing penance to show my love -- and turned it into a powerful source of erotic pleasure.  It wasn't a conscious decision, but then, sexual fantasies rarely are.

...Despite my fear that all of my intellectual processing would ruin by best sexual fantasy, it didn't.  It's still a turn-on because I'm still struggling with the after-effects of Catholicism and I always will be.

Personally, unlike Palac, I was never raised with the idea of God as an old man who would send me to hell for sexual adventurousness.  Instead, the messages that my sexual desires were wrong came from pop-psychology and a specific strain of feminism.  Without God or hell, wanting men to dominate me sexually was a sin against Women's Liberation and a transgression against my Mental Health.  My sex-negative clergy got most of its ideas from Andrea Dworkin.  And I consciously rejected it years ago.

arvan's picture

Call For Submissions: Queering Sexual Violence

Queering Sexual Violence

An LGBTQ Anthology Call For Submissions


An anthology of LGBTQ writers, survivors and activists confronting heterosexual privilege and the gender binary system while creating a dialog about the limitations of the anti-sexual violence movement in hopes of creating change.

Edited by Jennifer Patterson.

Queering Sexual Violence seeks 20-25 LGBTQ writers who are interested in submitting pieces that confront the current state of our anti-sexual violence climate. Part memoir / part criticism / part call to action, this anthology seeks to address the limitations of a society that is not only unequipped to deal with rape culture but also unable to look at it without the lens of heterosexual privilege and through the interests of a gender binary system.  The anthology seeks to destroy the image of the "perfect survivor" and motivate the anti-sexual violence community to embrace a more radical perspective in order to foster sustainable change.

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