Screenshot of Patagonia's homepage that says "The President Stole Your Land" in response to the largest reduction of public lands protection in US history

Weekend Feminist Cheat Sheet

It’s been a long week, fam. Here’s just some of the stuff our team is reading to make sense of what’s happening:

In case you live under a rock (and/or are a man and/or only get news from Fox News), thousands of survivors have come forward using #MeToo to share our stories, leading to a wave of men being outed as serial perpetrators (and racists, such as Charlie Rose). Accordingly, TIME Magazine this week chose “The Silence Breakers” of the #MeToo movement as their 2017 person of the year. They also omitted the black woman who created Me Too, Tarana Burke, from the cover.

As #MeToo grows, so does the backlash at colleges across the country, with accused students filing defamation suits against women who say they were assaulted. As Christine Emba importantly points out at the Washington Post: “Where sexual misconduct is concerned, arguments for due process are rarely about legal standards or constitutional ideals..”

Victoria Law asks: does our belief in women’s stories extend to survivors behind bars? Directly related to In Justice Today’s critical coverage of “perfect victims” and the campaign to free Cyntoia Brown, who was 16 and working in the sex trade when convicted for shooting a violent client in self-defense.

One piece of good news on this front though: Massage Envy, the massage franchise we mentioned last week that had been ignoring widespread sexual assault at their facilities, just announced a comprehensive and transparent plan to prevent sexual assault at its franchises and support survivors.

These corporations are helping elect GOP sex abuser, Roy Moore, to the Senate. Boycott them and for good measure, Netflix too for admitting to disbelieving victims.

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The Senate passed the hideous benefit-billionaires tax bill last Saturday. The next step in the radical GOP agenda? Gut the welfare state. Are you a young person interested in higher education? The bill, which Republicans will now try to merge with its House version this month, would make college and graduate school expensive and/or impossible. Anyone with a moral compass needs to name and fight this (as Bernie did last week) for what it is: class warfare.

Relatedly, as Southern California is engulfed in wildfires, some farms remain open despite air hazards, exposing their workers to wildfire ash.

Because none of this is enough, Trump announced the largest reduction in public lands protection in U.S. history, giving most of Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante in Utah away to greedy fossil fuel interests. This is devastating for the environment and those of us who access public parks recreationally (outdoor retailers like Patagonia are joining coalitions to oppose Trump). But let’s not forget the heart of this issue: this is a horrific attack on tribal sovereignty and Native communities in Utah, whose stolen land we live on and who stand to lose so much more than pretty hikes.

Some inspiration on this front: we love this article on indigenous peoples in Canada building off-the-grid tiny homes to physically block the construction of a pipeline.

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Because, well, this is what the U.S. military does: they are burning detainee art in Guantanamo as a cruel form of censorship.

While the GOP wreaked havoc on peoples lives, Democrats chose to focus their energy on collaborating with Trump (yes you read that right) for the very urgent, bipartisan goal we need in the year of hell 2017: escalate the Israeli occupation. Read Jess’ piece on our government’s move to to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. And then read this reminder not to oppose the Jerusalem move because it will “provoke violence” but because it is morally reprehensible.

Want to take action? Support the young Jewish Americans boycotting free trips to Israel that Birthright provides.

Mahroh Jahangiri is the former Executive Director of Know Your IX, a national survivor- and youth-led organization working to end gender violence in schools. She cares about the ways in which American militarization, racism, and sexual violence impact communities of color transnationally. You can say hi to her at @mahrohj.

Mahroh Jahangiri is the former Executive Director of Know Your IX, a national survivor- and youth-led organization working to end gender violence in schools.

Read more about Mahroh

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