What Super Tuesday Says of America
For all intent and purposes of not going into a deep depression, I have not consumed every article written on the presidential election. I can recount moments of nausea due to comments from each contender, but I am not here to tell you who to deem the most reprehensible and who to vote for. I’m here to say Super Tuesday has come and gone, that Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump led in wins and… Where were you? You have, for sure, heard the notion all too many times on the importance of voting, so I will not drill that in either.
Instead, let’s talk about Mohamedtaha Omar, 23, Adam Kamel Mekki, 20, and Muhannad Adam Tairab, 17. These three Black Muslims were shot dead, in what is believed to be execution style in Indiana and it has barely made the news. I know…wait… I thought we were on Super Tuesday? We are. Reports have come in that Trump had the most Republican wins in Super Tuesday, that sadly Trump represents the voice of so many who propose to make “America great again,” by very terroristic tactics. Trump’s anti-Muslim campaign has made the news, twitter feeds and protests but what about Omar, Mekki and Tairab’s story?
Sometimes we get so caught up in the hype of the elections, the debates that often mimic reality TV shows and forget the very real everyday lives being threatened and denied due to the thinking engrained in some of those leading our polls. I fear the coming America and that fear is very tangible, causes very serious thoughts of remaining abroad, very real tears for not being home to help. We must not become desensitized to the lives (not headlines) that represent our own from Black voices, Muslim voices, disabled voices, trans voices, reproductive rights advocates… the elections reveal the real America. But now, what are we going to do? The fight against body terrorism lives at every level, it certainly starts within but it must reverberate in the policies and people will give power.
Get inspired below by the Bolivian activists’ radical moves and let’s not settle for what a “great” America means in someone else’s eyes.
Real Radical Protest : Disabled Activists in Bolivia
If we ever tire of this work, may we think of Bolivian activists who risked much to make their voices heard.
BBC reported a group of disabled protestors in Bolivia was forced to take their protest to new heights as the government continues to ignore their demands. The protestors are working to raise awareness of the problems faced by those disabled in the country. They are requesting an increase to state subsidies of around the amount of $70 per month, but their ask is falling on unrelenting ears.
Instead of backing away from their request, the protestors took to suspending themselves off of a bridge over a major highway in Bolivia as other protestors stood beneath them disrupting traffic and gaining visibility. “Unfortunately, since we have not had an answer from the government, we’ve had to take these extreme measures,” one protestor told the local news cameras on scene.
BBC stated that the group attempted to speak to the President Evo Morales at the end of February when he last visited the city, but was stopped by police. The government has allocated $900,000 to the disabled where half is distributed by monthly allowance and the other half is allocated to funding projects. Protestors, however, say they have now seen the benefits of such allocations.
Children to seniors could be seen in the streets fighting to be heard. They are threatening to take their protest to the president next. We are living in a world where the famous “by any means necessary” rhetoric must be more than talk. The Bolivian protestors show us there are no limits to the tactics that can be taken to get our voices heard and no amount of silencing that can keep us still.
I Am a Woman: First Trans Actress Wins Hollywood Film Award
As we celebrate Women’s History Month this March, one woman making history and pushing the margins of what the “norm” is in Hollywood is 24-year-old Mya Taylor. If you’ve never heard of Taylor, allow us to introduce you to the performer who took home the Independent Spirit Award for Best Supporting Actress this past Saturday for her work in “Tangerine.” This makes Taylor the first trans performer to receive a major Hollywood film award.
The Independent Spirit Awards are awarded to films that spent less than $20 million to produce and Magnolia Pictures made sure the talent in their film wouldn’t go unnoticed. While many films have hired, cis gendered actors and actresses to play trans roles Magnolia made it a point to authentically represent their character in “Tangerine.” This authentic representation didn’t go overlooked and Taylor said it must happen more often.
“There is transgender talent. There’s very beautiful transgender talent. So, you better get it out there and put it in your next movie,” said the history-maker in her acceptance speech.
“Tangerine” premiered last year at the Sundance Film Festival and has been highly celebrated since. The film follows two transgender sex workers in Los Angeles as they search for their pimp and was filmed solely using an iphone. Intrigued? You should be, the barrier-breaking film is now on Netflix.[Feature Image:Actress Mya Taylor stands at the podium after receiving the Best Supporting Actress Independent Spirit Award. Talyor is wearing a long white dress with sparkling gold lines, with black hair falling at her shoulders. In the background is an image of the movie cover, a shadow of a woman outdoors with “tangerine” written across as well as another image of Taylor in black and white. Youtube screenshot. ]