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“The way I see things, everyone is entitled to their opinion…”

You say “enlightened mujeres” as if that’s a bad thing? And as if that is new…You call out the medium we use to tell our stories yet it is the same medium you use…

You say don’t be outraged if you respond to our “attacks” so in that case don’t be outraged by our response to the vilification of our voices by you.

You are asking us to ignore experiences we’ve had because they involved “brown men” and our stories do not “support MAS”. You are asking us to do the same thing you claim to be against—the silencing of stories. The silencing of herstories/ histories (or are you just against silencing the latter?). Box that shit up because it might make people angry/hurt/ feel oppressed… it’s racist (because against brown men). Who the fuck does that sound like?!

Open your eyes and heart! You’re right about one thing. This is NOT ABOUT YOU or even Sean. This is not personal so please STOP MAKING THIS ABOUT YOU! You are not my savior, nor is Sean. Your stories do not encompass me, save me, or support me.

I realize that I can turn away, not read but the shit you are spouting is public and many around the country take it as truth and OUR story! Many, as I have, know you as someone who “fights for MAS” and wouldn’t do something to hurt our community so your voice must come correct…. But I’m telling you now, that shit is wrong and hurtful. Your shit is fucked up. And NO it is NOT just “las mujeres” (the women who are brave enough to tell their stories even under your heavy vilification…) saying this! There is a reason why not many folks are liking your shit spouting right now…The fact that folks like ‘El Machete Lopez’ can come on a thread of yours supporting your opinion and spout hate speech like ‘lesbians are man haters and can smell testosterone’ and get away w/ that shit w/you is sickening and shows how blind you are to other injustices. You can use us when needed… when it makes MAS look good ‘This is my white friend, my queer friend, my black friend, my woman friend…’ See I don’t hate so and so…I support all people—makes me sad.

I can go on and on but sadly I don’t think you will get it…but I hope you do. At one point at a meeting you apologized for being “divisive’ with the community. YOU ARE DOING IT NOW. PLEASE STOP! Please go read, discuss, examine with an open mind and heart. Go outside those you know who support this rhetoric you are spewing (especially if people who support you are like El Machete…). I write this not asking for a response but for you to take some time to actually examine why you feel the need to write. Is it really to support the community? The whole community? Or to protect your “brown brothers” and which ones? THINK and STOP please until you figure this out….Who really has lost focus? And how can we focus if we are not only being silenced by Pedicone, Horne, and Huppenthal, but by our own community?

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Posted by on January 21, 2013 in Her stories, Tucson movement

 

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A Taste of Power: A Black Woman’s Story

A woman in the Black Power movement was considered, at best, irrelevant. A woman asserting herself was a pariah. A woman attempting the role of leadership was, to my proud black Brothers, making an alliance with the “counter-revolutionary, man-hating, lesbian, feminist white bitches.” It was a violation of some Black Power principle that was left undefined. If a black woman assumed a role of leadership, she was said to be eroding black manhood, to be hindering the progress of the black race. She was an enemy of black people. Her strategy for functioning as a woman was to rely on the membership’s loyalty to Newton, and it worked, to an extent: …I had introduced a number of women in the party’s administration.

There were too many women in command of the affairs of the Black Panther Party, numerous men were grumbling…. It was a given that the entire Black Power movement was handicapped by the limited roles the Brothers allowed the Sisters and by the outright oppressive behavior of men toward women. This had meant little to me personally, however…. And because of Huey — and now Larry — I had been able to deflect most of the chauvinism of Black Panther men. My leadership was secure. Thus, in installing Sisters in key positions, I had not considered this business. I had only considered the issue of merit, which had no gender…. Oddly, I had never thought of myself as a feminist. I had even been denounced by certain radical feminist collectives as a “lackey” for men. That charge was based on my having written and sung two albums of songs that my female accusers claimed elevated and praised men. Resenting that label, I had joined the majority of black women in America in denouncing feminism. It was an idea reserved for white women, I said, assailing the women’s movement, wholesale, as either racist or inconsequential to black people. Sexism was a secondary problem. Capitalism and racism were primary. I had maintained that position even in the face of my exasperation with the chauvinism of Black Power men in general and Black Panther men in particular. Now hearing the ugly intent of my opponent’s words [one of her opponents in the 1974 election of the Oakland City Council, a black man, had denounced her as a lesbian!, I trembled with a fury long buried. I recognized the true meaning of his words. He was not talking about making love with women — he was attacking me for valuing women.

The feminists were right. The value of my life had been obliterated as much by being female as by being black and poor. Racism and sexism in America were equal partners in my oppression. Even men who were themselves oppressed wanted power over women. Whatever social stigma had been intended by the label “lesbian” — always invoked when men felt threatened, I observed with the benefit of hindsight — did not concern me. It was simply the rattle of a man terrorized by a social order dominated by other men. It was a social order I was bent on destroying. But his accusations did wake me. There would be no further impositions on me by men, including black men, including Black Panther men. I would support every assertion of human rights by women — from the right to abortion to the right of equality with men as laborers and leaders. I would declare that the agenda of the Black Panther Party and our revolution to free black people from oppression specifically included black women. I would denounce loudly the philosophies of the Karengas, who raised the name of Africa to justify the suppression of black women. I would lambaste the civil-rights men who had dismissed the importance of women like Fannie Lou Hamer and Ella Baker and Daisy Bates and even Kathleen Cleaver. I would not tolerate any raised fists in my face or any Black Power handshakes, or even the phrase “Black Power,” for all of it now symbolized to me the denial of black women in favor of the freedom of “the black man.” I would claim my womanhood and my place.

If that gave rise to my being labeled a “man-hating lesbian, feminist bitch,” I would be the most radical of them.

Elaine Brown

(pp. 357, 362–363, 367–368)

 
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Posted by on January 19, 2013 in Historical radical pieces

 

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David Abie Morales:

Your announcement that your last post for Three Sonorans was in the works arrived in only the grand fashion that you are known for – that overly dramatized self-important manner usually followed by chisme and posts that polarize rather than bring us together. You know, some of us actually don’t believe this is going to be your last post. We’re taking bets on your return. Let us know if you want to get in on it. You can’t stay away from the attention and the glory, real or imagined. No, David, MAS isn’t dead, and we suspect, unfortunately, neither is Three Sonorans.

It’s interesting what you chose to deliver as your last post. For days, many waited for you to write about Sean’s arrest. SILENCE. Instead, you spent your time having side conversations trying to understand why so many women feel that you don’t have to get beat up black and blue to experience domestic violence. Looking back, there are so many ways you could have figured out how to break the silence rather then run around in panic. How sad for us that we expected more from you. Even more pathetic is how you and other writers only prospered from propping you up as some type of organizing messiah and Sean, as the man meant to bring MAS back. Right now, some articles on your blog, Huffington Post and Salon are starting to look like some sick joke. Oh, wait, maybe this is why MAS is dead – because you realized we all finally got a good look behind your green curtain? If only Yoda could sit down and talk with you. “The narcissism is strong with this one.”

How interesting that in your last post, not only did you decide to continue to debate what is and what isn’t domestic violence, but you also chose to attempt to take down the only other person in Tucson who has steadfastly stood up for MAS in the local media. You say you dearly love her, but how much were you drinking when you wrote this post? Seriously, how much whiskey does it take to try to beat down another Chicana in another post? Someone who once championed your work and stood up for you when you were fired by the Tucson Citizen? But I know women are such a pain. Boy, what are we going to do with all those troublesome vaginas?

Well, maybe if we bully them enough like you’ve done with other people through your blog, we could scare them into silence and remind them they are all malinches to begin with. It’s sad really the legacy you leave us – you could have helped a movement form relationships to create allies in this struggle – but no. It took some time for observers to realize you were a mouthpiece for those who’ve pretended to be the leaders of this “movement,” but have only worked behind the scenes to destroy it. If MAS is dead, as you say… then look at the two men you protect and blame them (and yourself).

There were times when we were proud of you. When you called out the racism we all recognized that propelled the fight against our classes from the right, as well as the racism and its denial from those on the left. There are wonderful moments. Your video magic. Perhaps, if there’s any benefit to your last post, is that we are at a point now that, not only have we seen what’s really behind your green curtain, your credibility, which was always questioned, may now be gone.

It’s gone because we realized you were just a mouthpiece. It’s gone because we realized you’ll never get it and as women, it get’s tiring. It’s gone because you don’t seem to understand what real friendships are about. It’s gone because we are tired of you representing us nationally and locally for some time now – but we were too scared to come forward – too scared you’d bully us down as you had anyone else who dared question you or correct you.

Want one more example? You dared to call out those who wrote about Sean’s arrest or broke the “silence,” on your Facebook post, reminding us of Sean’s children. You wrote that as you status update and you tagged Sean’s daughter. Not only did you allow your followers who come from many many political spectrum’s to see her on Facebook, but she got to read your post and realize that hundreds of others may have seen it too. How dare you? It was disgusting and our stomachs still wretch thinking about it.

How sad that at one time you attempted to call yourself a journalist, and others called you the same. You tried to call yourself an organizer, or someone wrote you were – but you showed you don’t really have the stomach for that. Maybe, rather than call yourself any of these things, you could just call yourself retired. We need new voices to come forward. We need new voices to bring us together. We need new voices that remember what this was all about to begin with – Mexican American studies. You and those who’ve taken the lead have made a mess of things. It’s sad. It’s heartbreaking what you’ve done and how you’ve lowered yourself – especially in your last post.

It just begs the question? Can’t you just really, for once, think about MAS. Can’t you just really mean it when you say, this is your last post?

 
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Posted by on January 6, 2013 in Tucson movement

 

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