Middle of Nowhere.

S/he carved a dagger into hir leg.

Spring in London

khafraco:

We love Solange Knowles’ shoot with Harper’s Bazaar.

After the breakup she relocated to L.A. with Julez, and recorded a more adventurous second album, Sol-Angel and the Hadley St. Dreams. Filled with eclectic R&B, Motown, and blues influences and an equally diverse crew of collaborators including Cee-Lo Green, Pharrell Williams, and Mark Ronson, the record earned nearly unanimous critical praise, and even broke the Top 10 on the Billboard 200. Its success signaled the arrival of a new, liberated Knowles. She also revamped her wardrobe. Gone were the gaudy pink ruffles and awkward fedoras of her Solo Stardays, and in came a playful mix of bold prints and saturated colors, always accessorized with killer shoes and her now signature red lip. “You can pull images of me from seven to 14 years ago and I was absolutely nuts,” she says. “I have always been drawn to interesting pieces and colors, but I didn’t quite know how to limit myself and make those statement pieces work.” That epiphany took one simple thing: having a closet of her own, which she got when Julez started school in L.A. “I had to stabilize our lives and stay in one place,” she says. “It sounds silly, I know, but having space for my clothes made a huge difference. I was able to get organized, free myself of clutter, and develop a style that felt like me.”

Peep the entire interview HERE.

We love Solange ♥

(via ethiopienne)

amanialki:

London, England, February 2014 (One of my favourite humans)

Me with my friend and brother

amanialki:

London, England, February 2014 (One of my favourite humans)

Me with my friend and brother

I love this person - I strive to be this brave and accepting of my body. And I agree, it is really fun to fuck with people when you pass as a woman with a beard/moustache

brujacore:

I think the fact that white people have been the most prone to decide whether I’m sufficiently authentic as a Latina or a WOC really speaks to the amount of authority these people sincerely believe they have, even with regard to cultures/groups they don’t even belong to. I mean really, what arrogance.

I think the fact that EVERYONE ELSE seems to decide whether I’m sufficiently Latin, or Middle East, or European, or white or POC really speaks to the amount of authority that PEOPLE IN GENERAL sincerely believe they have to categorise, discriminate, or include. They usually decide based on what makes them most comfortable. I guess that makes sense…

(via violentqueers)

Manchester Public Hearings of Immigration System on Trial coming up on 22/02/2014

Manchester Public Hearings of Immigration System on Trial coming up on 22/02/2014

Yarl’s Wood Immigation Removal Centre aka Detention Centre aka Detention Hell

and their website is horrific:
http://www.yarlswood.co.uk/

http://www.bedfordshire-news.co.uk/News/Former-Yarls-Wood-detainee-calls-for-an-end-to-detention-hell-20140216080039.htm

Former Yarl’s Wood Detainee Calls For An End To Detention Hell

“WE did not know they were coming for us. Nobody ever knows they are coming.”
Meltem Avcil’s voice wavers as she describes the moment when, in the early hours of August 27, 2007, she and her mother were ‘dragged’ from their Doncaster home and bundled into the back of a van by immigration officers.
“They knocked hard on the door; a terrifying noise. Even now if I hear a loud bang I start shaking,” she says.
Meltem (pictured) was just 13 years old when she was taken to Yarl’s Wood immigration removal centre on the outskirts of Clapham.
Now she is 20, a mechanical engineeering student at Kingston University, and campaigning to end the detention of women seeking asylum in the UK - 
beginning with Yarl’s Wood.
“Whatever they try to call it, any place where they search you at the gates, give you an ID card and lock metal gate after metal gate after you is a prison,” she says of the centre she lived in for 91 days.
On Thursday, she brought her fight to the Government’s doorstep in a peaceful protest outside the Home Office in Marsham Street, London. She was joined by human rights campaigner Shami Chakrabarti and refugee charities including Women for Refugee Women.
Back in 2010, Meltem’s story moved the coalition to act after they pledged not to detain the children of 
asylum seekers.
Her ultimate goal is to put an end detention full stop. But first she is calling for women to be removed from Yarl’s Wood (‘step by step,’ she says).
Since opening in 2000, the centre has been mired in controversy including the fire of 2001 and most recently the dismissal of two guards who sexually abused a female detainee. “Alot of people ask if I am sexist by only campaigning for women,” Meltem says, “but my reply is, of course not. What I know is, for a woman, being in detention is like being in hell”.
A report released last month by Women for Refugee Women, spoke to 46 women who had been detained, the majority in Yarl’s Wood, and found 93 per cent of women felt depressed in detention; 61 per cent thought about killing themselves; and more than one in five had attempted suicide.
More than 85 per cent of the women said they had been raped or tortured before arriving in the UK.
Meltem’s Kurdish family was forced to flee their home in Turkey when she was just four years old.
She travelled to Germany with her parents, where they were refused asylum; they then travelled to the UK, where her parents split up, and she remained with her mother. “After that we lived peacefully in Doncaster until the night they came for us,” she says.
Her message is clear: allow asylum seekers to live in the community they seek sanctuary from while cases - which can take years to be decided - are resolved.
Innocent until proven guilty.
The Detained report also showed that just 36 per cent of women who sought asylum and placed in detention centres were then removed from the UK. The others were either granted leave to remain, or continued their cases while living in the community. Watching her mother endure the experience of detention was enough to convince Meltem that something had to change.
“I had a choice to pretend everything was fine or do something about it. I chose to do something about it.”
In an open letter to Theresa May, which accompanies her petition for change, Meltem makes her plea: ‘It’s possible to create an asylum process which treats women who have survived rape and torture with dignity and humanity’.
Sign the petition at www.change.org/refugeewomen


Read more: http://www.bedfordshire-news.co.uk/News/Former-Yarls-Wood-detainee-calls-for-an-end-to-detention-hell-20140216080039.htm#ixzz2tWBBojsg

gradientlair:

The hashtag #WhiteFeministRants was started by @RaniaKhalek in response to The Nation piece on “toxic feminism”, a piece that purposely obscured structural power differences and racism within feminism as to why the responses (to various stunts by White feminists) from women of colour do not always have a “nice tone” and are thereby deemed “toxic.” I previously posted about that article and shared an important quote from another response piece to that article. The tweets I sent above were specific to Black women and experiences with mainstream feminism because that’s my experience as a Black woman, but of course Black women aren’t the only ones repeatedly marginalized in these daily hit pieces, within feminism and within society itself. But the role of anti-Blackness within such friction cannot be denied either. 

If we’re going to have an honest conversation about problems in feminism (which simply reflects White supremacist capitalist cisheteropatriarchy itself, “feminist” label or not) but cannot discuss why some womanists/Black feminists, women of colour who are feminists, trans women, sex workers, poor women, disabled women etc. respond to these hit pieces and structural exclusion and oppression because of White Feminism/mainstream feminism's proximity to the State and distance from the oppressed, then things like what I mentioned in the tweets above (which is not really hyperbole…at all) need to be included in claims of “toxicity.”

I do not randomly tweet White women. Other than a handful who are kind to me, I don’t talk to too many online about topics of any significance. I don’t have any White women friends offline because of the abuse I experienced at their hands in high school, college, grad school, a decade of corporate America and social groups/gatherings/in public. So I am not running around planning to be “toxic” to White women or White feminists specifically. I don’t troll them or anyone online. Sometimes I discuss their harmful work and I don’t always tweet them directly. I focus on my life and my work, but that work includes deconstructing racism and how this (among many other identity facets) differentiates how we experience gender. And racism amidst feminism does not get a pass nor am I doing so because I want some kinda “White approval” that they deny me. So this idea that I could ever talk about it “too much” or should ignore it and grin, smile and tap dance for White feminists is an idea that will not ever be valid to me.

Oh and by the way, when they’re saying things like what I mentioned in my tweets above—reinforcing White supremacist narratives and norms about Black women as feminists, mothers, writers etc.—that stuff hurts. I understand that Whites think that Black people—especially Black women—do not experience pain in the way Whites do or at all (as actual research has confirmed their thoughts), that is actually a White supremacist lie with centuries of history used to justify the dehumanization of Black people. These things hurt. And while their “feelings” get “hurt” by critiques that I make of their racist, White supremacist, anti-intersectional, purposely obscuring structural power type of pieces, planning and action, their lies about who I am as a Black woman threatens my life. There is no “both sides” that “goes both ways” when one “side” has White supremacy—which they do not use their feminism to deconstruct—supporting them. 

Related Essay List: 2013: A Year Of White Supremacy and Racism In Mainstream Feminism

Dear XX Group I am not interested in your non-intersectional feminism or general understanding of how race, class and gender play out as systems of oppression.

(via violentqueers)

Not all toxic people are cruel and uncaring. Some of them love us dearly. Many of them have good intentions. Most are toxic to our being simply because their needs and way of existing in the world force us to compromise ourselves and our happiness. They aren’t inherently bad people, but they aren’t the right people for us. And as hard as it is, we have to let them go. Life is hard enough without being around people who bring you down, and as much as you care, you can’t destroy yourself for the sake of someone else. You have to make your wellbeing a priority. Whether that means breaking up with someone you care about, loving a family member from a distance, letting go of a friend, or removing yourself from a situation that feels painful — you have every right to leave and create a safer space for yourself.

Daniell Koepke (via internal-acceptance-movement) so relevant…. (via blackfoxx)

Most are toxic to our being simply because their needs and way of existing in the world force us to compromise ourselves and our happiness.”

wow. that right there.

(via so-treu)

(via violentqueers)

Caseworker Emmanuel Lartey has the power to make a decision on Aderonke’s asylum application. 
Will you call Emmanuel now and ask him to approve the application immediately?
If you are in the UK:
·         Call: 020 8760 8700
If you are NOT in the UK:
·         Send Emmanuel an email here: emmanuel.lartey@ukba.gsi.gov.uk
Here’s what you can say for either message:
“Dear Mr. Lartey, I urge you to approve Aderonke Apata’s application for asylum into the UK, regardless of the Home Office’s controversial belief that she need to prove her sexuality. If Aderonke is sent back to Nigeria she will be imprisoned - if not sentenced to a horrible death. Her life is in your hands. Grant Aderonke asylum now. 
Sincerely, 
Your Name”
https://www.causes.com/posts/898240-this-one-thing-could-save-her-life?utm_campaign=post_mailer%2Fcampaign_update.cb_24917&utm_medium=email&utm_source=causes&ctag=682d142234a1a19db89d4a0cf5049a0065&ctoken=lCVtA_ZiHaotoyidvF5gXJJ1yYkb17oBscuMs7fMIA1AalFyHDSL-CPpndohSc_XHTqTBNSUW-WM7gC4IZ8_ZsF4oZHhv4u5&uid=187907795
"I fled for my life" - This is Aderonke’s story
"Growing up in Nigeria, I was unable to disclose my sexuality, yet unable to hide it.
The culture in Nigeria makes it clear that being gay or transgender is a sin, a sentiment that is fueled by homophobic messages from faith communities, political leaders, families, and schools.
I took these messages in, identified with them, and carried the shame of being a lesbian woman in Nigeria.
After graduating from University, I was arrested, tortured and extorted by the Nigerian Police. I was forced to endure the murder of three members of my family, who were killed because of my sexuality.
After a false allegation of adultery, I was sentenced to death by stoning by the “Sharia” Court.
It was then that I fled for my life.
Now, I am under threat of deportation in the UK, at risk of being sent back to a country that just passed an anti-gay law that would send me to prison for 14 years. I feel I will receive that sentence only if I am able to keep my life.”
- Aderonke
Please share this story with others, and ask them to join us in protecting one of Nigeria’s bravest activists and voices for equality.

Caseworker Emmanuel Lartey has the power to make a decision on Aderonke’s asylum application. 

Will you call Emmanuel now and ask him to approve the application immediately?

If you are in the UK:

·         Call: 020 8760 8700

If you are NOT in the UK:

·         Send Emmanuel an email here: emmanuel.lartey@ukba.gsi.gov.uk

Here’s what you can say for either message:

“Dear Mr. Lartey, I urge you to approve Aderonke Apata’s application for asylum into the UK, regardless of the Home Office’s controversial belief that she need to prove her sexuality. If Aderonke is sent back to Nigeria she will be imprisoned - if not sentenced to a horrible death. Her life is in your hands. Grant Aderonke asylum now. 

Sincerely, 

Your Name”

https://www.causes.com/posts/898240-this-one-thing-could-save-her-life?utm_campaign=post_mailer%2Fcampaign_update.cb_24917&utm_medium=email&utm_source=causes&ctag=682d142234a1a19db89d4a0cf5049a0065&ctoken=lCVtA_ZiHaotoyidvF5gXJJ1yYkb17oBscuMs7fMIA1AalFyHDSL-CPpndohSc_XHTqTBNSUW-WM7gC4IZ8_ZsF4oZHhv4u5&uid=187907795

"I fled for my life" - This is Aderonke’s story

"Growing up in Nigeria, I was unable to disclose my sexuality, yet unable to hide it.

The culture in Nigeria makes it clear that being gay or transgender is a sin, a sentiment that is fueled by homophobic messages from faith communities, political leaders, families, and schools.

I took these messages in, identified with them, and carried the shame of being a lesbian woman in Nigeria.

After graduating from University, I was arrested, tortured and extorted by the Nigerian Police. I was forced to endure the murder of three members of my family, who were killed because of my sexuality.

After a false allegation of adultery, I was sentenced to death by stoning by the “Sharia” Court.

It was then that I fled for my life.

Now, I am under threat of deportation in the UK, at risk of being sent back to a country that just passed an anti-gay law that would send me to prison for 14 years. I feel I will receive that sentence only if I am able to keep my life.”

- Aderonke

Please share this story with others, and ask them to join us in protecting one of Nigeria’s bravest activists and voices for equality.