Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Student's Protest Duluth's Anti-Abortion "Clinic"

About a dozen amazing activists from the UMD Student Advocates for Choice braved the cold today to protest the Women’s Care Center today. The Women's Care Center is a fake clinic that is located right across from the Women's Health Center (the actual abortion clinic). The purpose of the Women’s Care Center, and other fake clinics like it, is to deceive and misinform patients about their reproductive options. Today’s event was meant to help blow the whistle on these kind of deceptive bait and switch operations. Thank you Student Advocates for Choice!

To stay in the loop about other upcoming UMD Student Advocates forChoice events, follow them on facebook. We also highly recommend the Feminist Justice League’s facebook group as a great place to hear about local feminist activism!

Thursday, November 22, 2018

Who You Should Thank on Thanksgiving

Behold the Thanksgiving feast. Not the one in the history books - the one on your table. The star of the show is almost surely a turkey, with a support cast of a variety of vegetables: potatoes, corn, and maybe some varieties of beans and squash. Where did those biological entities, in their present forms, come from? Were they created by an "intelligent designer" or did they arise by natural selection, along the course of Darwinian evolution? The correct answer is "neither of the above".

Oh, a great deal of intelligence went into their creation all right, but it would be a stretch to claim that they were designed, in the sense that their creators had an idea of what the finished products would look like. And as for the notion that those plants and animals you're about to eat were the outcome of natural selection: no way! That plump ear of corn you're eyeing hungrily is hardly more natural than an iPod.

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

The Illegitimacy of the Ruling Class

Despite Christine Blasey Ford’s stirring testimony, an FBI investigation, thousands of protesters (hundreds of whom were arrested), petitions and phone calls from constituents, an elevator confrontation and a record-high disapproval rating, on October 6 the U.S. Senate confirmed Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court by a margin of two.

That evening, Kavanaugh was granted a lifetime appointment to a deeply undemocratic institution. He was confirmed by a legislative body that counts some votes more than others, giving the loudest voice (per capita) to the most sparsely populated states. The Senate’s majority vote represented a minority of Americans (44 percent). And Kavanaugh was selected by a president who lost the popular vote, a pedigree he shares with three of his esteemed colleagues: Neil Gorsuch, John Roberts and Samuel Alito.

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

“Mom, I’m too Tired to Walk”: Children of the Migrant Caravan

I was just tired. Tired of waking up in the morning and my son saying ‘Mom, I’m hungry’ and having to count coins to get him a juice box. And at the same time, the big businessmen throw food away.”

This desperation and poverty drives countless families to leave Central America, bringing their children along with them. To them, 1,000+ miles of walking with children is less scary than the prospect of a life of poverty and violence in Honduras.

Monday, November 19, 2018

What’s the Real Cause of the California Wildfires?

Things are getting serious. Dozens are dead and hundreds more are missing. Thousands of homes and businesses burned down. And three raging fires, one in the north of the sate and two in the south, are still not under control. There are scenes that could be the aftermath of an American or Russian bombing raid in the Middle East – bodies littered on the ground, people burned to death in their cars, families devastated with grief at the loss of homes and loved ones.

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Midterms: Democrat's "Blue Wave" Falls Short

This is the most important midterm election in the modern history of this country,” said Senator Bernie Sanders, and many politicians and pundits agreed. President Trump spoke similarly during his week-long campaign tour, aimed mainly at shoring up Republican candidates in so-called Red States. “Everything we have achieved is at stake,” Trump declared to his cheering admirers.

After the election, however, the mood quickly subsided; there was no evidence that substantial changes had come onto the political landscape. For one thing, the hoopla that Democrats had drummed up to create a mighty “blue wave” produced merely a ripple of elected candidates. In a Nov. 7 news conference, in fact, Trump boasted that his campaign rallies had “stopped the blue wave.”

Sunday, November 4, 2018

The Caravan That Defies Borders

SAN JOSE, Costa Rica — The 8000 poor people marching together through the states of Central America towards the United States are another sign that the pillars of imperialist domination, already weakened by the blows of the global recession in 2008, are now shaken by the exploding social contradictions of this organic crisis.

The caravan participants, marching together as a precaution against attacks from both human traffickers (coyotes) and the drug gangs linked to the forces of state repression, are primarily from Honduras, the geographic keystone in the military and intelligence networks of U.S. imperialism in Central America.

Trump Attacks Trans Rights

The New York Times reported on Oct. 21 that the Trump administration is “considering narrowly defining gender as a biological, immutable condition determined by genitalia at birth, the most drastic move yet in a government effort to roll back recognition and protections of transgender people under federal civil rights law.” This announcement is one in a long line of attempts to take away trans, non-binary, and intersex people’s democratic rights.

The Rise of Right-Wing Violence in Trump’s America

Homemade pipe bombs sent to prominent Democrats and Trump critics sparked nationwide fear and an FBI manhunt. The 14 bombs were sent to billionaire George Soros, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, former President Barack Obama, Former Vice President Joe Biden, actor Robert DeNiro, and others. One of the devices was delivered to the offices of CNN in New York City, causing an evacuation of the building.

ACT UP’s Struggle Against Power

The AIDS Holocaust took place from 1985-1995, and it saw the loss of many gay men who had spearheaded Stonewall and launched the gay liberation movement. But many continued with a new fight. Remembering that history will remind us of a time when gay men, together with lesbians and straight supporters, organized and led a militant struggle against some of the most powerful institutions of this nation.

Sunday, October 21, 2018

Hurricanes, Global Warming, and Dire Projections for the Future

Two big hurricanes hit southeastern United States in September-October. The first was named Florence, which devastated North and South Carolina with torrential rains, up to 40 inches in some locations over a few days, causing massive flooding as rivers overflowed for weeks.

The second was Michael, which hit Florida with very high winds. Near the coast, on the east side of the eye, sustained winds were 155 miles per hour when the storm made landfall, which, together with the ocean storm surge, made the coast look like it had been devastated in a bombing raid. It was the third largest hurricane to hit the continental U.S. in history.

Argentine Workers Stage Strike Against Austerity

After a day of nationwide protests on Monday [Sept. 24], Argentine workers participated in mass work stoppages on Tuesday. Many of the country’s streets and avenues were practically deserted as public transportation workers and private-sector employees stayed home. It was perhaps the most forceful of the four national strikes that have been organized so far during the administration of President Mauricio Macri.

Ireland Will Offer Free Abortions

In a stunning victory for women, Ireland officially removed its nearly total ban on abortions in late September. The change was a result of a referendum on May 25 of this year, in which 66.4% of voters (to 33.6% against) overwhelmingly voted for a repeal of the Eighth Amendment to the Constitution, which banned abortions in nearly all cases throughout the country.

Monday, October 8, 2018

Honor the Indigenous Communities Leading the Way in the Fight for Climate Justice

When Christopher Columbus landed on Turtle Island, which we now call North America, he brought with him a goal of making profit—of taking from  the land and people to create commerce. Today, approximately 526 years later, that same pillaging continues to drive our planet further into the climate crisis and lead us into ecological collapse. Instead of honoring the violent colonization Columbus represents, we should use this day to call for truth and reconciliation—and honor the Indigenous communities at the forefront of efforts to heal the long-lasting environmental harm Columbus and his ilk have wrought.

Our Planet and Our Lives Are Worth More Than Their Profits!

Not surprisingly, the IPCC’s special report on global warming of up to 1.5°C confirms that the impacts of anthropogenic climate change are formidable and have been underestimated, both socially and environmentally.

The 1°C warming we are already experiencing is enough to cause major tragedies: unprecedented heat waves, hurricanes, flooding, glacier and ice-cap dislocation. These give an idea of what awaits us if human warming is not stopped as soon as possible. Disaster is no longer preventable, but it is still possible and necessary to limit it as much as possible.
The report leaves no doubt: a warming of 2°C would have much more serious consequences than the 1.5°C warming included in the Paris Agreement (under pressure from small island states, the least developed countries, scientists and the climate movement). According to recent research, the threshold of a “hothouse planet” could even been triggered at 2°C. Every effort must be made to ensure that this limit of 1.5°C maximum is respected.