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Here’s a juicy, educational tid-bit…sort of.

Voter Registration.  If you’re a student at a college or university, odds are you’ve come across folks poking these forms at you as you pass the major points of pedestrian traffic.  Outside of that, though….how does one register to vote?  I like to consider myself fairly knowledgeable about such things, but I’ve racked my brain and the only way outside of the above described scenario that comes to mind is my very first voter registration process – at the DMV.

By now I am sure a lot of folks have realized that *they* do not want us to vote, to exercise that civic duty/right that I too battle between loving and hating.  But I thought, surely, that the campaign to register folks was a little more robust than just hoping they wandered into the DMV (and even then I have no clue what the protocol really is) or onto a college campus during a strategic point in a major election.  But it’s not really.  There are, however, more ways to register than I knew.

Check it out:

“In addition to the printable voter registration application accessible on this website, voter registration applications are available at county boards of elections’ offices, public libraries, high schools and college admissions offices.

Further, the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 (NVRA) requires certain agencies in this state to offer voter registration services. Voter registration services are offered at the following agencies:

  • North Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV): A person may complete a voter registration transaction at any driver’s license examination office when conducting official DMV business with that office (applying for or renewing a driver’s license, I.D. card, etc.).
  • Public Assistance Agencies
    • Departments of Social Services (DSS)
    • Departments of Public Health (WIC)
  • Disability Services Agencies
    • Vocational Rehabilitation offices
    • Departments of Services for the Blind
    • Departments of Services for the Deaf & Hard of Hearing
    • Departments of Mental Health Services
  • Employment Security Commission (ESC)”

 

Now it might not be an aggressive campaign or anything, but it’s something to be aware of and to spread knowledge of to any and all folks.

Important also is that you register at least 25 days before the election in which you wish to vote. 

Now I’m not one to pretend that this process is perfect or that it’s the means to the ideal end that I envision, but it is a potential stepping-stone.  As is stands, far too many folks vote against their interests, are lied to by major media outlets, are deluded into believing that a 2 party system is a superior voting system, and believe that the presidential election is the make or break of this nation’s future.  The things we could do with proper representation, however, are beautiful.  We could elect representatives who put THE PEOPLE first in their legislative processes.  We could have representation that conveys our interests in, ya know, FOOD AND SURVIVAL, and education for all and human-centered solutions to the alleged problem of immigration across imaginary, stolen borders.  That could be a thing.  We could have universal healthcare.  We could change our laws and agencies and protocols to eliminate their “need” to incarcerate, dehumanize and otherwise attack and brutalize communities of color.

We can do this because, while the process is flawed, we are still in control.  We can use our votes for what they are worth and continue the fight on the 364 other days in the year.  We can use our votes to communicate the needs of the folks in our communities who are being denied the right to vote themselves.  I’m talking about felons, children, undocumented folks – anyone whose voice is intentionally drowned out by our current laws and ideology – consider the folks in the countries the U.S. constantly invades!! Who speaks for them in the U.S. government? Is that what we want? the wanton murder of folks in the name of imperialist strategy and positioning? NO!

But who will we vote for? Who is there to accurately represent these perspectives I’ve just listed?  Can we trust anyone of these majority white, male, wealthy, career politicians to do right by our communities once they have our initial nod?  Probably not.  I mean, maybe we can, but why take that risk if we don’t have to?  Radical folks – rise up!! Run for local office!! Yes, there are limitations to who can make it through the arbitrary list of initial requirements, but it can be done.  Locally elected officials have a real chance to impact the day-to-day lives of the folks in our communities.  Change to the systems we loathe can come from the inside AND the outside!  We can strip away the pretense and the hierarchy one official at at time.  IT WILL BEND TO THE WILL OF THE PEOPLE!!

But yes, so that’s what I learned today and I hope you found it interesting.  Let’s continue this conversation, though, because resources are important and I haven’t covered everything by any means in this short rant.  It’s just something to start/keep thinking about.  I was inspired by the existence of countries with low levels of SES inequality and excellent health outcomes who still use similar processes electorally speaking as the U.S. does.  They also manage not to invade multiple countries per decade. Really sparkling resumes and shit.

 

Oh – PS. Total afterthought but needs to be discussed also — *they* don’t want us to vote and so *they* have implemented a Voter ID law to make it more difficult for the populations to which they wish to deny rights.  This isn’t going into effect until 2016 – so let’s…I dunno..raise so hell, or…appeals,….or….beat them at their own game and make new legislation that requires the gov to provide these IDs free of charge and at the voter’s convenience, or…I dunno. Something.

Thoughts? Feelings?

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I can’t find a transcription of this speech that is correct.  All of the versions available leave out critical bits of this speech.  They leave out the mention of spending too much on military bases instead of bases of genuine concern, etc.  A typical example of the attempt to de-radicalize the good Rev. King.   Listen to this in its entirety.

“My third reason moves to an even deeper level of awareness, for it grows out of my experience in the ghettoes of the North over the last three years — especially the last three summers. As I have walked among the desperate, rejected and angry young men I have told them that Molotov cocktails and rifles would not solve their problems. I have tried to offer them my deepest compassion while maintaining my conviction that social change comes most meaningfully through nonviolent action. But they asked — and rightly so — what about Vietnam? They asked if our own nation wasn’t using massive doses of violence to solve its problems, to bring about the changes it wanted. Their questions hit home, and I knew that I could never again raise my voice against the violence of the oppressed in the ghettos without having first spoken clearly to the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today — my own government. For the sake of those boys, for the sake of this government, for the sake of hundreds of thousands trembling under our violence, I cannot be silent.”

……..

“A true revolution of values will soon cause us to question the fairness and justice of many of our past and present policies. n the one hand we are called to play the good Samaritan on life’s roadside; but that will be only an initial act. One day we must come to see that the whole Jericho road must be transformed so that men and women will not be constantly beaten and robbed as they make their journey on life’s highway.

True compassion is more than flinging a coin to a beggar; it is not haphazard and superficial. It comes to see that an edifice which produces beggars needs restructuring. A true revolution of values will soon look uneasily on the glaring contrast of poverty and wealth. With righteous indignation, it will look across the seas and see individual capitalists of the West investing huge sums of money in Asia, Africa and South America, only to take the profits out with no concern for the social betterment of the countries, and say: “This is not just.”

It will look at our alliance with the landed gentry of Latin America and say: “This is not just.” The Western arrogance of feeling that it has everything to teach others and nothing to learn from them is not just. A true revolution of values will lay hands on the world order and say of war: “This way of settling differences is not just.” This business of burning human beings with napalm, of filling our nation’s homes with orphans and widows, of injecting poisonous drugs of hate into veins of people normally humane, of sending men home from dark and bloody battlefields physically handicapped and psychologically deranged, cannot be reconciled with wisdom, justice and love. A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual death.”

I have pulled some quotes from this speech but reading or listening to the speech in its entirety is the only way to do this speech justice.  Please do.  Here is the speech in full text w/an audio: http://www.americanrhetoric.com/speeches/mlkatimetobreaksilence.htm

Posted by Carissa Morrison

We’re back from spring break.  Midterms are over. Graduation, which will steal away far too many of our beloved members, is a mere 2 months from us! I’d say it’s about time to have some serious fun.  Who’s with me?

GREAT! Then in that case -FSU is glad to announce that we will be hosting renowned poet & activist Andrea Gibson! 

AND you are cordially invited to join us on March 21, 2012 in the Stone Center Auditorium for what is bound to be an unforgettable spoken word experience. I’ve sampled a bit from her bio (which you can read in its entirety HERE ) to give you an idea of what to expect if you are unfamiliar with her work:

Andrea Gibson is not gentle with her truths. It is this raw fearlessness that has led her to the forefront of the spoken word movement– the first winner of the Women’s World Poetry Slam –Gibson has headlined prestigious performance venues coast to coast with powerful readings on war, class, gender, bullying, white privilege, sexuality, love, and spirituality.

“Gibson is among the nation’s most admired and emulated poets. Her verse is at once personal and political, feminist and universal, filled with incinerating verbs and metaphor, and delivered with gut punching urgency.”

Metaphor Media

“Andrea Gibson is a truly American poet, or rather, she represents the America I want to live in. Her work lights a candle to lead us where we need to go.”

Cristin O’ Keefe Aptowicz

Thursday, following this performance (3/22), Andrea Gibson will be leading us in workshop focused on the poet’s responsibility in the current political climate. We will read and discuss poems by contemporary writers focusing on issues of race, class, gender, sexuality, patriarchy, and capitalism, after which we will use the shared poems as writing prompts to inspire our own radical voice.  12:30pm in Student Union Room 2518A-B

Space for the workshop is limited, so if you are interested, please register immediately. The first 48 to register will receive an email confirmation within 24 hours of the workshop.

Register here: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/viewform?formkey=dFZfb2kwaXZPaXQzNjdwd1FjYTNIQXc6MQ

There is also a link here on our site. Look. Upper left-hand corner. See? Great.

Tickets are available this Thurs (3/15) at no charge through the Union Box Office.  Space is limited, so act now (or Thursday)!!

Doors open @7:00pm and opening performances by spoken word group EROT will commence @7:30pm. At 8:00pm any remaining seating will be opened up to non-ticket holders.

For more details you can check out our Facebook Event Page

This event is sponsored by Feminist Students United! and The LGBTQ Center!!

Posted by Carissa Morrison

In her acceptance speech for this award, Kleinman reminds us of the work that remains and the women who are deprived of opportunities to advance:

I’d like to thank everyone who nominated me for this award, especially
students, former and current, who work against sexism and ALL systems of
privilege and oppression in this society.

The description of the award states that it “recognizes contributions to the
advancement of women at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.” It
is crucial for us to recognize that many women at the university do not have
the same opportunities to advance as others.

I started working at the university as a professor in a tenure-track position,
with the possibility of promotions and job security. Lecturers do not have the
same opportunities; they usually teach more courses per semester than
tenure-track or tenured professors, for less pay, and without the
possibility of tenure. Women are overrepresented among the fixed-term
faculty and underrepresented among tenure-stream and tenured professors. On our campus, women make up only 34% of tenured and tenure-track professors,but 56% of fixed-term appointments. And only 25.6% of faculty in the higher ranked category of full professor are women.

There are women in staff positions who are paid so little that they must
have 2 or more jobs to make ends meet. Under these conditions, conditions
faced by many of the housekeepers here at UNC, there is little opportunity
to advance.

I like to think I’ve played a part in communicating the feminist idea that
every decision we make has consequences for others, and that we should work *together* for justice rather than focus exclusively on individual career
advancement. Working with others continues to be a meaningful and moving
experience for me at UNC, Chapel Hill, and I thank everyone who has been a
part of the struggles and joys of this ongoing journey.

Every week, check feministstudentsunited.org for our This Week in Feminism post – a list of the most current strides in feminism and instances of sexism and racism and class inequality, from a rotating round of co-collaborators.  Do you have a link you think would be appropriate for this section? Please feel free to leave it in the comments.Right on the tails of our event last night on Crisis Pregnancy Centers, many of this week’s links are about reproductive rights being cut across the country and world.

— Jessica & Eva

LOCAL
This Saturday is HKonJ – Historic Thousands on Jones St – a huge rally in Raleigh, NC put together by the NAACP and attended by progressive activists across the State.

Apex mayor’s op-ed piece on why the Town Council unanimously voted to stop coverage for abortions in town employee’s insurance plans.

NATIONAL
Project HOPE publishes a new study with findings confirming that “…immigrants are not contributing disproportionately to high health care costs in public programs such as Medicaid.”

Eviction has become typical in the lives of poor black women – a piece on this new reality for people in lower income neighborhoods.

A Camarillo, CA hospital has banned midwives from delivering babies – are women-centered practices not welcome?

A proposed bill in Utah will make it a crime for a woman to have a miscarriage, and make induced abortion a crime in some instances.

Lousiana ordered to issue a birth certificate naming a same-sex couple as the parents of their adopted child.

New anti-abortion billboards in Atlanta boldy proclaim “Black Children Are An Endangered Species”.

INTERNATIONAL
Marjan Kahlor is the first woman to represent Iran in the Winter Olympics.

Kenya poised to constitutionally ban abortion.

Feminist Students United (FSU) is a progressive feminist organization which affirms that no form of oppression can be overcome until all aspects of racism, classism, sexism, and heterosexism are dismantled. We acknowledge intersecting identities and strive to be mindful of these intersections in all our work. We endeavor to create an environment which is non-hierarchical and supportive in nature, and we work to bring about change in our community through education, outreach, direct action and community organizing.

Weekly Meetings

Spring 2015: Wednesdays at 7:30 PM in Murphey 202

For a better look at events, check out FSU's Calendar

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contact us

uncfsu AT gmail (dot) com