Wednesday, 25 May 2016 / TRUTH-OUT.ORG

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Speakout

Speakout is Truthout's treasure chest for bloggy, quirky, personally reflective, or especially activism-focused pieces. Speakout articles represent the perspectives of their authors, and not those of Truthout.

We recently became aware of an article published in the Chicago Sun­-Times, originally titled "Hooker gets 15 years for stabbing Brother Rice teacher to death" (they have since amended the title), that promotes an anti-sex worker, misogynistic gloss on the traumatic events it purports to report on. The Chicago Sun-Times not only saw fit to publish a piece that spread stigma and shame against a survivor of client­ violence, they also used degrading whorephobic language, and sensationalized headlines.

News outlets around the world have been awash this week with stories on the Panama Papers. The biggest data leak in history, they contain over 11 million documents detailing the secretive activities of Mossack Fonseca, a Panama-based legal firm who specialize in creating offshore companies that enable wealthy individuals and corporations to keep their money hidden from prying eyes and out of the hands of the taxman.

Nearly two years ago, Center for American Progress President and CEO Neera Tanden wrote, "We have a historic opportunity to address poverty today, because the interests of low-income people and the middle class are converging." As the first vice-chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus (CPC), I couldn't agree more. In fact, it's one of the reasons I was proud to unveil the CPC's budget for Fiscal Year 2017 -- The People's Budget: Prosperity Not Austerity; Invest in America.

This month, British junior doctors are staging the first full walkout strike in protest against a new work contract that is unsafe and unfair; a contract which will have predictable detrimental effects for both patients and doctors. In February this year, the UK government made its position concerning the ongoing junior doctor contract dispute quite clear: Jeremy Hunt, the secretary of state for health, announced that the Department of Health will "impose" the unfair and unsafe new contract, despite nationwide uproar from frontline doctors like me.

Twenty-four US states have the ballot initiative. Unfortunately, the process is heavily skewed in favor of rich interests and unsuitable for making informed decisions. A much better method of citizen lawmaking is needed. In a ballot initiative, citizens can put a measure (proposed law) on the ballot for a binding vote in an upcoming election by gathering a large number of petition signatures within a set time.

In this interview we talk to the former finance minister of Greece, Yanis Varoufakis, and philosopher, activist and author, Srecko Horvat. This interview was conducted on the 9th of February, 2016, in Berlin when the Democracy in Europe Movement 25 (DiEM25) was launched. Questions about the movement's solutions and strategies are addressed in the following video.

Apr 17

We Stand With Palestine in the Spirit of "Sumud": The US Prisoner, Labor and Academic Solidarity Delegation to Palestine

By Members of the US Prisoner, Labor and Academic Solidarity Delegation to Palestine, Speakout | Op-Ed

At a moment of growing resistance to state violence and injustice the world over, a delegation of nineteen anti-prison, labor and scholar-activists from the United States traveled to Palestine in March 2016. Our delegation included former US-held political prisoners and social prisoners, former Black Panther Party members, prison abolitionists, trade unionists and university professors. We are the first US delegation to Palestine to focus specifically on political imprisonment and solidarity between Palestinian and US prisoners.

Deemed as one of the world's top intellectuals and renowned for his groundbreaking work in linguistics and for being a fierce critic of US foreign policy, Noam Chomsky is the most cited living author and the 15th-most cited author of all time. Born in Philadelphia in 1928, Chomsky grew up discussing anarchist philosophy at street side newspaper stands and bookstores off of Union Square and Fourth Avenue while visiting his aunt and uncle in New York. Having written his first editorial at the age of 10 about the rise of fascism, Chomsky is now an author of hundreds of books and articles and even has a species of bee named after him. 

Apr 15

A Shirt With a Heart Seized in a Heartless UN Building

By Malú Huacuja del Toro, Speakout | Op-Ed

After a nine-day hunger strike in front of the United Nations headquarters for the kidnapped Ayotzinapa students and against crimes of the state, Mexican activist Leobardo Santillán was almost arrested when trying to mail a letter to the General Assembly president about the massacres happening in Mexico. I was forced by the UN officers to delete the video of his being handcuffed. I was photographed and banned from returning to the United Nations.

I've tried to tell these stories through six photo essays. I hope you'll enjoy them as much as I did in putting them together. They depict the #Enough! GENeration I'm privileged to be working with, tender human beings who wish to nurture Green, Equal and Nonviolent relationships. These green, equal and nonviolent relationships can change our politics, economy, environment and our understanding of safe and secure spaces. They have been changing me by laughing, crying, worrying, healing and shivering with me.

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Speakout

Speakout is Truthout's treasure chest for bloggy, quirky, personally reflective, or especially activism-focused pieces. Speakout articles represent the perspectives of their authors, and not those of Truthout.

We recently became aware of an article published in the Chicago Sun­-Times, originally titled "Hooker gets 15 years for stabbing Brother Rice teacher to death" (they have since amended the title), that promotes an anti-sex worker, misogynistic gloss on the traumatic events it purports to report on. The Chicago Sun-Times not only saw fit to publish a piece that spread stigma and shame against a survivor of client­ violence, they also used degrading whorephobic language, and sensationalized headlines.

News outlets around the world have been awash this week with stories on the Panama Papers. The biggest data leak in history, they contain over 11 million documents detailing the secretive activities of Mossack Fonseca, a Panama-based legal firm who specialize in creating offshore companies that enable wealthy individuals and corporations to keep their money hidden from prying eyes and out of the hands of the taxman.

Nearly two years ago, Center for American Progress President and CEO Neera Tanden wrote, "We have a historic opportunity to address poverty today, because the interests of low-income people and the middle class are converging." As the first vice-chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus (CPC), I couldn't agree more. In fact, it's one of the reasons I was proud to unveil the CPC's budget for Fiscal Year 2017 -- The People's Budget: Prosperity Not Austerity; Invest in America.

This month, British junior doctors are staging the first full walkout strike in protest against a new work contract that is unsafe and unfair; a contract which will have predictable detrimental effects for both patients and doctors. In February this year, the UK government made its position concerning the ongoing junior doctor contract dispute quite clear: Jeremy Hunt, the secretary of state for health, announced that the Department of Health will "impose" the unfair and unsafe new contract, despite nationwide uproar from frontline doctors like me.

Twenty-four US states have the ballot initiative. Unfortunately, the process is heavily skewed in favor of rich interests and unsuitable for making informed decisions. A much better method of citizen lawmaking is needed. In a ballot initiative, citizens can put a measure (proposed law) on the ballot for a binding vote in an upcoming election by gathering a large number of petition signatures within a set time.

In this interview we talk to the former finance minister of Greece, Yanis Varoufakis, and philosopher, activist and author, Srecko Horvat. This interview was conducted on the 9th of February, 2016, in Berlin when the Democracy in Europe Movement 25 (DiEM25) was launched. Questions about the movement's solutions and strategies are addressed in the following video.

Apr 17

We Stand With Palestine in the Spirit of "Sumud": The US Prisoner, Labor and Academic Solidarity Delegation to Palestine

By Members of the US Prisoner, Labor and Academic Solidarity Delegation to Palestine, Speakout | Op-Ed

At a moment of growing resistance to state violence and injustice the world over, a delegation of nineteen anti-prison, labor and scholar-activists from the United States traveled to Palestine in March 2016. Our delegation included former US-held political prisoners and social prisoners, former Black Panther Party members, prison abolitionists, trade unionists and university professors. We are the first US delegation to Palestine to focus specifically on political imprisonment and solidarity between Palestinian and US prisoners.

Deemed as one of the world's top intellectuals and renowned for his groundbreaking work in linguistics and for being a fierce critic of US foreign policy, Noam Chomsky is the most cited living author and the 15th-most cited author of all time. Born in Philadelphia in 1928, Chomsky grew up discussing anarchist philosophy at street side newspaper stands and bookstores off of Union Square and Fourth Avenue while visiting his aunt and uncle in New York. Having written his first editorial at the age of 10 about the rise of fascism, Chomsky is now an author of hundreds of books and articles and even has a species of bee named after him. 

Apr 15

A Shirt With a Heart Seized in a Heartless UN Building

By Malú Huacuja del Toro, Speakout | Op-Ed

After a nine-day hunger strike in front of the United Nations headquarters for the kidnapped Ayotzinapa students and against crimes of the state, Mexican activist Leobardo Santillán was almost arrested when trying to mail a letter to the General Assembly president about the massacres happening in Mexico. I was forced by the UN officers to delete the video of his being handcuffed. I was photographed and banned from returning to the United Nations.

I've tried to tell these stories through six photo essays. I hope you'll enjoy them as much as I did in putting them together. They depict the #Enough! GENeration I'm privileged to be working with, tender human beings who wish to nurture Green, Equal and Nonviolent relationships. These green, equal and nonviolent relationships can change our politics, economy, environment and our understanding of safe and secure spaces. They have been changing me by laughing, crying, worrying, healing and shivering with me.