eumelia: (nice jewish girl)
Stop what you're doing and just watch.

Just, listen.

A response to the question and accusation often hurled at Palestinians by Rafeef Ziadah.

eumelia: (Default)
The Ha'aretz weekend edition in English published a really fascinating article about a visible member of the Trans* community in Israel - Eli Avidan Azar - who isn't shy about talking about the fact that he was born 26 years ago and given the name Lihi.

The whole piece - The man I am - is fascinating and worth the read.
But it's this bit that I found really interesting, the interview portion of the article, that is, his answers to the questions:
Hetero-normative assumption

In 11 years, you've changed identity twice.

"That's a question that bothers me of lot - did I change my identity? Was I straight before I became a lesbian? I don't know. The assumption that until you declare yourself a lesbian you're straight is an assumption of the hetero-normative culture. Anyone we meet, we assume he's straight.

"As for the change of gender, it's weird for me to say, 'When I was a little boy' - to use the male vernacular, but if I'm sitting in class, say, and I were to say, 'When I was a little girl ...' it wouldn't be very coherent. I try, like a lot of male and female transsexuals, to create some kind of connection between who I was and who I am now. There were people who told me they needed to grieve over me - but really they were mourning for themselves, for the function I fulfilled for them. Because of this, too, it's hard for me to come out of the closet to people. It's very hurtful. Suddenly, I feel like my gender function is so critical. I'm the same person. I'm smarter because I've matured a little, I have a few more wrinkles, and yes, I also have facial hair."

Do you feel that girls no longer feel comfortable talking with you about subjects they used to be at ease with?

"Not at all, just the opposite. I really understand, I know what it means to be a girl and I identify with women's struggles, though obviously I can't know how every woman really feels. My girlfriend and I laugh that one day I'll come out of the closet ... I'm a sensitive person, delicate, I like clothes, my transition to the male category doesn't mean I have to obey all the social imperatives that go along with that."

What's it really like to be a transsexual in Israel today?

"One of the main problems right now has to do with physical changes. Not all trannies are interested in physical changes, but our society categorizes gender according to body and appearance, and many of us feel a need to toe the line with this. Someone who's interested in a physical change needs to cope with the difficulties piled on by the Kupat Holim health maintenance organizations. If you want to have any operation in Israel, you can't do it privately. The moment there's an attempt to question the gender you were born into, people freak out and their biggest fear is that the person will change his mind, and so you have to go through this series of tortures that lasts for many years, and includes being humiliated in front of the Tel Hashomer hospital committee. At the basis of the investigation is the question of whether the person is suited to the gender to which he wishes to belong.

Read the rest of it, it's linked above, it's totally worth it.

The video embedded below has been going around for the past week or so. Seeing as it touched on the subject of this post, I though it fitting to put it in.

Enjoy the Gender Subversion!

"On Being Genderqueer" - Text of "Swingset"

Swingset Transcript )
eumelia: (Default)
While I was in Tel-Aviv and protested with my fellow comrades, both Jewish and Arab, against the aggression and war, the IDF began it's ground offensive.

The irony... it is anvil-like.

The body count in going to rise and rise and rise.
And more and more blood will permeate this (un)Holy earth.

The demo was large, over 10,000 people.
It was the first time I'd seen the Palestinian colours fly outside the West Bank (up until last week, there was an injunction against waving Palestinian colours).
There was also a counter-demo of Israeli Fascists.
And I do mean Fascists, saying the IDF must deploy and destroy and calling us - the anti-war demonstrates - a Fifth Column.

I'm an Israeli Jew.
And Palestinian-American Suheir Hammad speaks it exactly the way I see it.

Peace with our enemies.
Hope for us all.
Free Palestine.
eumelia: (Default)
To all the teachers who made and continue to make a difference.

Especially my Mother, who made me.

What Teachers Make by Taylor Mali

He says the problem with teachers is, "What's a kid going to learn
from someone who decided his best option in life was to become a teacher?"
He reminds the other dinner guests that it's true what they say about
Those who can, do; those who can't, teach.

I decide to bite my tongue instead of his
and resist the temptation to remind the other dinner guests
that it's also true what they say about lawyers.

Because we're eating, after all, and this is polite company.

"I mean, you¹re a teacher, Taylor," he says.
"Be honest. What do you make?"

And I wish he hadn't done that
(asked me to be honest)
because, you see, I have a policy
about honesty and ass-kicking:
if you ask for it, I have to let you have it.

You want to know what I make?

I make kids work harder than they ever thought they could.
I can make a C+ feel like a Congressional medal of honor
and an A- feel like a slap in the face.
How dare you waste my time with anything less than your very best.

I make kids sit through 40 minutes of study hall
in absolute silence. No, you may not work in groups.
No, you may not ask a question.
Why won't I let you get a drink of water?
Because you're not thirsty, you're bored, that's why.

I make parents tremble in fear when I call home:
I hope I haven't called at a bad time,
I just wanted to talk to you about something Billy said today.
Billy said, "Leave the kid alone. I still cry sometimes, don't you?"
And it was the noblest act of courage I have ever seen.

I make parents see their children for who they are
and what they can be.

You want to know what I make?

I make kids wonder,
I make them question.
I make them criticize.
I make them apologize and mean it.
I make them write, write, write.
And then I make them read.
I make them spell definitely beautiful, definitely beautiful, definitely
over and over and over again until they will never misspell
either one of those words again.
I make them show all their work in math.
And hide it on their final drafts in English.
I make them understand that if you got this (brains)
then you follow this (heart) and if someone ever tries to judge you
by what you make, you give them this (the finger).

Let me break it down for you, so you know what I say is true:
I make a goddamn difference! What about you?

(c)Taylor Mail -
No copyright infringement is intended in this blog entry, only admiration and the spreading of the spoken word.

Found via [ profile] omnivorously.
eumelia: (Default)

Sarah Jones rules, she's an amazing poet and actress. Check her out! Here and here.


eumelia: (Default)

June 2015

 12345 6

V and Justice

V: Ah, I was forgetting that we are not properly introduced. I do not have a name. You can call me V. Madam Justice...this is V. V... this is Madam Justice. hello, Madam Justice.

Justice: Good evening, V.

V: There. Now we know each other. Actually, I've been a fan of yours for quite some time. Oh, I know what you're thinking...

Justice: The poor boy has a crush on adolescent fatuation.

V: I beg your pardon, Madam. It isn't like that at all. I've long admired you...albeit only from a distance. I used to stare at you from the streets below when I was a child. I'd say to my father, "Who is that lady?" And he'd say "That's Madam Justice." And I'd say "Isn't she pretty."

V: Please don't think it was merely physical. I know you're not that sort of girl. No, I loved you as a person. As an ideal.

Justice: What? V! For shame! You have betrayed me for some harlot, some vain and pouting hussy with painted lips and a knowing smile!

V: I, Madam? I beg to differ! It was your infidelity that drove me to her arms!

V: Ah-ha! That surprised you, didn't it? You thought I didn't know about your little fling. But I do. I know everything! Frankly, I wasn't surprised when I found out. You always did have an eye for a man in uniform.

Justice: Uniform? Why I'm sure I don't know what you're talking about. It was always you, V. You were the only one...

V: Liar! Slut! Whore! Deny that you let him have his way with you, him with his armbands and jackboots!

V: Well? Cat got your tongue? I though as much.

V: Very well. So you stand revealed at last. you are no longer my justice. You are his justice now. You have bedded another.

Justice: Sob! Choke! Wh-who is she, V? What is her name?

V: Her name is Anarchy. And she has taught me more as a mistress than you ever did! She has taught me that justice is meaningless without freedom. She is honest. She makes no promises and breaks none. Unlike you, Jezebel. I used to wonder why you could never look me in the eye. Now I know. So good bye, dear lady. I would be saddened by our parting even now, save that you are no longer the woman I once loved.


-"V for Vendetta"


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