Montana elects first trans-non-binary representative and first trans woman representative to the House 👏

This is ground breaking! SJ Howell will now represent District 95 and Zooey Zephr will represent District 100 in Montana! I met SJ Howell a handful of times when I lived in Montana. SJ Howell has done amazing work: They’ve worked on a successful campaign expanding Medicaid and worked on increasing civic engagement for low income women. They always were badass and so kind. It means a lot to have someone like that elected to represent the people.

And Zooey Zephr: I can’t wait to see what she does!

SJ Howell, left. Zooey Zephr, right

Vote!!!

Tomorrow is a VERY important midterm. It’s Roevember. And people are on ballots across the country who are election deniers. This midterm is crucial to democracy. Vote vote vote vote vote vote vote vote vote vote vote vote vote vote vote vote vote

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This is perhaps the most important thing in the abortion debate

The misinformation that has spread about what a pregnancy looks like at the beginning weeks, is astounding. (The misinformation has been intentional by forced birthers.) it’s important to know what it really like. See below for what a pregnancy actually looks like before ten weeks. And, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: It’s a beautiful thing if you want to grow those cells into a life but it’s also perfectly fine to avoid the growth of those cells too.

Excerpt from the Guardian’s Instagram post from 10/21/22
Excerpt from The Guardian’s caption to their Instagram post 10/21/22

To read the Guardians full article, go to https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/oct/18/pregnancy-weeks-abortion-tissue

To learn more about the MYA Network, check out their site. https://myanetwork.org

Punk Show Raises Over $2,000 for National Network for Abortion Funds

This. Show. Was. Amazing. Female fronted music matters. Taking up space, speaking our truth, and creating a community of women and men, and all people, gathered together supporting a cause as basic and important as bodily autonomy, is profound and needed.

Flyer for the show

The show opened up with Spongecake, an all male-ally, high energy band. The singer lashed around the stage and into the crowd. After his first song or two he said a few meaningful words about how he was so glad to be a part of this important show raising money for the Abortion Network. He mentioned how f***ed up it is that this basic right has been corroded. Allies are so important.

The next band was an indie rock band called Waiting Room. Stunning harmonies between women vocalists and haunting, moving vibe. The guitarist utilized some rad pedals and the bassist was spot on.

The next band was a rockin’ twangy grunge-vibe band from Utah called Mowth. They. Were. Dope.

And last but not least was the Denver feminist band, Cheap Perfume with hits like “It’s OK to Punch Nazis” and “Burn it Down” and “Slut Game Strong” a song about being you, wearing what you want, and screw the patriarchy.

The show raised $2,000 dollars for the National Network for Abortion Funds https://abortionfunds.org

You can feel the vibe from these photos. We demand our basic rights. Enough is enough. Having music and community around that is powerful.

Lead vocalist of Cheap Perfume.
Photo by Victor Rollins
Guitarist and vocalist for Cheap Perfume.
Photo by Victor Rollins
Lead vocalist of Cheap Perfume.
Photo by Victor Rollins
Lead vocalist and bassist for Mowth.
Photo by Victor Rollins
Lead vocalist for Cheap Perfume and lead vocalist from Sponge Cake.
Photo by Victor Rollins
Vocalist/guitarist and lead guitarist with her rad pedals from Waiting Room. (This photo was not from the Abort the Court show, but I would be remiss if I didn’t include a photo of this band.) Photo by: Unclear

Why I use the phrase Climate Crisis, not Climate Change

It’s a crisis, not just a change of the weather. Language matters. People are more inclined to take something serious when it is described as a crisis.

And Climate Crisis is a more accurate depiction of what we face. Just think of the recent catastrophes taking place due to human impact, particularly fossil fuels, on the planet. And these catastrophes will only increase… particularly if we do nothing.

Climate scientists and many news outlets are changing their phrasing to climate crisis for this reason.

The Guardian changed their phrasing several years ago. Here’s why they made the switch:

“We want to ensure that we are being scientifically precise, while also communicating clearly with readers on this very important issue,” said the editor-in-chief, Katharine Viner. “The phrase ‘climate change’, for example, sounds rather passive and gentle when what scientists are talking about is a catastrophe for humanity.”

Quote source: https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/may/17/why-the-guardian-is-changing-the-language-it-uses-about-the-environment

The Climate Crisis as Seen in the New Mexico Fires…And a couple ideas about what to do about the Climate Crisis

My home state of New Mexico has been on fire. Evacuations took place. Some of the fires are getting contained but this should remind us how hard we need to fight the climate crisis.

Fires of this tremendous magnitude will become more and more common as the climate crisis rages on.

We’ve got to wake up to this reality and start fighting the climate crisis like our lives depend on it. And indeed they do.

One step I am working on to reduce my own carbon footprint is to divest from Wells Fargo bank. I’m planning on taking my money out of Wells Fargo because they continue to fund fossil fuel projects. I plan to instead put my money into a credit union that funds our community. I’ve opened up an account at one, now I just need to move my money into it. It’s a work in progress.

As mentioned in an article titled “The long-shot campaign to get big banks out of fossil fuels” by Vox written in April of 2022, “Big banks are indeed continuing to fund fossil fuel expansion: Last year alone, Citigroup, Wells Fargo, Goldman Sachs, and Bank of America spent a combined $137 billion on fossil fuel projects, according to a report from a coalition of environmental advocacy groups..”

We need to put pressure on companies such as big banks to stop investing in fossil fuels and instead invest in wind and solar energy.

I’m also looking into how to make my energy come strictly from solar and wind resources. I’m a renter, so I can’t put solar panels on my roof. But I get energy from Xcel, and they appear to have an opt-in program where you can request energy from just solar and wind. I’m looking into this, as this is also a work in progress…

These, of course are small steps. What we truly need is a Green New Deal, to immediately get off fossil fuels and demand corporations pay for the damage they’ve done and change their ways.

Another important aspect of reducing the climate crisis, and one that is not talked about a lot, but which is one of the most important aspects, is allowing people to control their own bodies. Comprehensive sex education and access to contraception is vital to a healthy planet. And when accidents happen and pregnancy somehow happens, it is important to allow people the right to choose whether or not to carry that pregnancy to term. Overpopulation is arguably the largest component fueling the climate crisis. If forced birthers get their way, abortion will become illegal in many states. Forcing people to carry pregnancies to term and to procreate, when they don’t want to, fuels overpopulation. If people want to bring life into the world, that is beautiful and that is their human right. But if they choose not to do so, that is also valid and also their human right. It is important to allow people to make the choice to avoid creating life if they want to, which in turn helps reduce the amount of people on the planet consuming fossil fuels and environmental resources. Forcing more people onto the planet through women and men who don’t want to be parents is morally wrong.

All in all, I do believe we have the power to sustain a healthy planet and to curb the crisis. But time is running out. We have to fight and push corporations and politicians to do the right thing. Or else fires, hurricanes, and other man-made natural disasters will continue to decimate our people, our wildlife and our planet. We are already on track to making the planet uninhabitable: We must fight hard to make sure we do what we can.

Mass Shootings and How to Prevent Them From Happening

When I was a teacher in a new classroom, I remember one day I was moving things out of the cupboards in my room. I came across a bucket and some cat litter and thought that was strange until a coworker of mine asked if I’d found the cat litter yet, to which I replied, “Yes, what’s it doing there?” She said, “It’s in case there’s a mass shooter and kids are locked in your classroom so long they need to use the bathroom in the corner.”

I remember the feeling that day and the understanding that I as a teacher had an enormous responsibility, much more than teachers in other countries do, because they don’t have mass shootings like we do. I understood from day 1 that I would potentially have to risk my life for my students. And that was just a given. Reports say that police officers didn’t enter the school for a full hour after a shooter entered the school in Uvalde, supposedly because “they could get shot.” But teachers risked their lives to save the students

Mass shootings at schools are now so common, this is what it’s come to: We’ve taken the steps enough to supply classrooms with cat litter, but we haven’t been able to enact adequate gun laws to prevent these things from happening in the first place. And it’s thanks to the NRA and Republican law makers. It makes me sick.

Dr. Jackson Katz, anti-sexist educator and author, has been speaking on the issue of gun violence for years and points out an important piece about mass shooters. “How are we defining manhood in such a way, that so many boys and men feel like they need to use violence to either gain power and control, to establish themselves in a status hierarchy, [or] to redeem their manhood, something that has been taken from them…”

In this video clip, he discusses how gender plays a role in young men acting out by committing mass shootings

Our men deserve better and our society deserves better.

Dr. Caroline Heldman poses the question: How do we prevent mass shootings from happening?

Katz’s response is two fold: Number 1: We create gender equity. Number 2: We enact important gun control legislation. To see the full interview go to YouTube and search Jackson Katz Caroline Heldman or go to Missrepresentation’s Instagram page.

Here is a list of legislators who are accepting money from the National Rifle Association. They are the ones we need to vote out of office.

Marco Rubio, Mitt Romney, Roy Blunt, Todd C Young, Thom Tillis, Jon Ernst, Tom Cotton, Bill Cassidy, Rob Portman and Richard Burr. (Source: The Brady Campaign.)