Small in America, Large in Korea

By Sunah, cross-posted from Thick Dumpling Skin

I often jokingly say that I decided to live in the States because I fit into an Extra Small size here whereas I couldn’t wear anything but Large in Korea. My American friends find it hilarious. Well, to be honest, it’s not a joke. It’s half of the truth.

Growing up in Korea, I had always been one of the big girls. I was athletic and loved physical activities. I jogged in my neighborhood, where no one else ran unless he or she had to chase somebody. I rode in-line skates when people didn’t even know what they were. I played tennis in college, and practiced martial arts. I was fit, but not slim in Korean standards.
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A Boy Band In Nazi Gear and A Hitler-’loving’ Fashionista

By Arturo R. García

It’s nothing new, unfortunately, to see “celebrities” doing Nazi cosplay or making anti-Semitic remarks. But Wednesday saw an instance of each making the news, on different sides of the world

The day started with the firing of Christian Dior creative director John Galliano after video surfaced (NSFW) of his drunkenly telling a fellow restaurant patron,  “I love Hitler” and “People like you would be dead. Your mothers, your forefathers, would all be f****** gassed.” This came less than a week after being suspended for verbally harassing a couple in the same anti-Semitic fashion at the same restaurant, La Perle.

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links for 2011-03-01

  • Racializens, what are your thoughts on this?–AJP "At present, however, a literature insisting that the problem of the 21st century remains the problem of the color line paradoxically obscures the economic and political problems facing many black Americans, unless those problems can be attributed to racial discrimination. If the nation's black citizens are suffering largely for the same reasons its white citizens are suffering, then that is a problem about which such politics has nothing to say. In the world we inhabit, discrimination stands out most blatantly as the problem to be addressed when you've got a lot of life's other problems whittled down to a manageable size…"
  • "Instead, the real head-scratcher is that as of Friday, there were reportedly no takers for the scholarship. Also, the organization offering the scholarship isn't some kind of hate group that would automatically stigmatize recipients. The website practically ties itself in knots driving this point home (a lengthy disclaimer includes, 'We do not advocate white supremacy, nor do we enable any individual that does,' and 'We have no hidden agenda to promote racial bigotry or segregation').

    "Perhaps it's that applicants (who, interestingly, must only be at least '25 percent Caucasian') might agree with Bohannan that claiming to need help based on being white and male just feels — with good reason — a little 'touchy.'"

  • Although the American-made documentary, “Strangers No More,” celebrates the school’s atmosphere of diversity and tolerance as it tries to integrate the children into Israeli life, there is an ominous subtext to the story that was not explored in the movie. Of the school’s 828 pupils, ranging from kindergarten to 12th grade, 120 are facing deportation with their families because they do not meet government criteria for obtaining legal status.

    "Despite all the school’s attention from the Oscar, Israel’s Interior Ministry said Monday that the government’s preparations for dealing with the children of illegal residents were in their final stages and that the plan would be carried out in the coming weeks."

  • "What if you find yourself homeless and jobless, trying to support yourself and a child on a mere $1,000? Could you recover?

    It's harder than it seems.

    Created by McKinney for non-profit charity organization Urban Ministries of Durham, North Carolina, Spent is a text-heavy flash game that places players in a desperate situation.

    As the game begins the player is given $1,000 and tasked with finding a place to live and a job to pay the bills."

Support Planned Parenthood

by Latoya Peterson

The first time I walked into a Planned Parenthood Center, I was seventeen, afraid, and in a lot of pain.

I had just started having sex for the first time, and every single time I had intercourse a persistent, stinging sensation lingered long after the act was over.

I remember panicking – did I have an STD? Am I allergic to latex? Am I allergic to sperm? (My views on contraception back then were fairly loose and really depended on mood.  Later on, more life experience would cure that stupidity.)

I came into my local center alone and scared.  Luckily for me, the clinicians were kind, figured out what was the problem (a really aggressive yeast infection, the first I had ever had) and put me on a plan for oral birth control, since my relationship with condoms was a little distant.

I am 27 now, and Planned Parenthood has been my health care provider of choice for the last decade.  Every year, I trek over to the center, and sit in the waiting room, surrounded by other women. Some have children, some do not. Some have partners with them, some do not.  Some are seeking pre-natal care, some looking for honest advice about sex that they can’t get at home, some are seeking abortion services,* others need STD testing – there is always an array of women streaming through the doors because so many of us need care.

Planned Parenthood has always been there for me. Insurance or no insurance, back when I was making $8 to now, I could always receive high quality care, that accommodated my budget, and respected me as a person.  (One year, with insurance, I went to their recommended provider for my annual – one glove snapping, five minute spread ‘em, finger in and out, no-you-can’t-talk-to-the-doctor exam later sent me flying back to Planned Parenthood.)

However, Planned Parenthood is in trouble.

Learnvest, a financial planning site geared toward women, recently published a discussion on what is at risk if Planned Parenthood goes under. 

How defunding Planned Parenthood could affect you:

  • 4.7 million Americans may lose access to reproductive and family planning care, particularly middle- and low-income women.
  • If you don’t have insurance, you may have to pay for a doctor’s visit to receive a prescription for birth control and pay full price at the pharmacy for it.
  • Be careful! Without easily available screenings, counseling and treatment, the transmission of STDs and HIV may rise.
  • Your daughter, niece, or younger cousin (and her boyfriend) may lose their safe, confidential, and free place to receive counseling, birth control, and testing.
  • If you are low income and/or without insurance, you may have to pay the full price of STD screenings, which can cost $85 to $220 for each type. That doesn’t include the cost of the doctor’s visit, which can be another $200.
  • You will have to visit a private practice for prenatal health care and, if you don’t have insurance, pay full price.
  • Depending on the location, you may lose access to free or reduced cost general services like anemia testing, cholesterol screening, diabetes screening, physical exams, flu vaccines, help with quitting smoking, high blood pressure screening, tetanus vaccines, and thyroid screening.
  • If you are an OB/GYN, your number of patients may increase.

Here are three reasons to stand with them in their time of need. Continue reading

Donald Sterling Wants To Welcome You To Black History Month

By Arturo R. García

If you’ve ever wished black history could be celebrated every month, the L.A. Clippers are feeling you – sorta.

No, that picture (via Ball Don’t Lie) is not a fake. It’s a real advert the Clips paid for and ran in the Los Angeles Times this past Sunday, promoting their Black History Month “celebration” … on March 2.

It’s tough to say what’s worse: that the Times would run this ad, or the fact that the typo isn’t even the worst thing about it.

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Quoted: Miss Navajo Nation Radmilla Cody

The Root: The experience of having your Miss Navajo Nation reign challenged calls to mind the debate over the Cherokee Freedmen. Is this a common issue across the Native community, of African-Native Americans having trouble finding acceptance?

Radmilla Cody: I grew up having to deal with racism and prejudices on both the Navajo and the black sides, and when I ran for Miss Navajo Nation, that especially brought out a lot of curiosity in people. It’s something that we’re still having to address as black Natives, still having to prove ourselves in some way or another, because at the end of the day, it all falls back to what people think a Native American should look like.

But there’s been many times when people have said to me, “Oh, my great-great-grandmother was an Indian.” I’ll ask them if they know what tribe, and they don’t. It’s very important because in order to be acknowledged as a tribal member, you have to be enrolled. So I can see where Native people are protective about defining who’s a tribal member, and are questioning of people claiming Native ancestry.

TR: Were you surprised by the backlash that you received?

RC: I wasn’t surprised. I knew it was going to happen. Right before I left to go to compete in the pageant, my grandmother sat down with me. She said to me, “My child, I just want you to know that there are going to be some people who are not going to be accepting of this.”

Growing up, I was taunted at school with racial slurs and would come home in tears. My grandmother would be there, waiting to console me. She always said, “Let ‘em talk. You are a Navajo woman. This is your land. This is how I raised you. You be proud of who you are.” Every time, that’s what she would say.

So this day before the pageant, when she cautioned me about people who wouldn’t be accepting of me participating, I turned around and told her, “Let ‘em talk, Grandma. I’m a proud Navajo woman, remember?” She had a big smile on her face. I think she felt content that I was ready for what I was going to be challenged with.

TR: Do you have any connection to African-American culture and community?

RC: I spent more time in the Navajo community growing up because my grandmother raised me. When I would come into town in Flagstaff, Ariz., to see my mom, who had black friends, and my dad’s relatives, I was in the black community more. I went to high school in Flagstaff, and one day a friend was wearing a T-shirt with a big “X” on it. I said, “That’s cool! I should get one that says ‘R’ for Radmilla!” I didn’t know anything about Malcolm X. He told me to join the black student organization. I had a lot to educate myself about and embrace, because I come from two beautiful cultures.

In the black community I also had my challenges. I was always told, “You think you’re cute because you got that long, fine hair,” and I would have to stand up for my Navajo side because of stereotypes placed upon the Navajo. When I’d go back to the Navajo community, I would have to stand up for my black side because of stereotypes.

Read the rest of the interview here.

Image credit: unieketrouwringen.nl