I have this problem where I think that sitting down to write a post will take me hours and every one of them has to be long and detailed. But! That is not true. I put too much pressure on myself sometimes, and to ease that, I am going to start doing something a little different. This might also put me on a better schedule as far as posting more regularly. Instead of posting at random times about one particular subject, I'm going to try and update once a week about a few different current time news stories, giving just short summaries of each. We'll see how this goes. Any feedback is much appreciated :) That being said, here are some popular news stories from this past week as they pertain to my blog!!
Columbia Student Carries Mattress at Graduation to Protest Campus Rape
Emma Sulkowicz carried a mattress along with her cap and gown on Tuesday, May 19th. She graduated from Columbia University, more specifically, the undergraduate arts and sciences college. While she was there, she began a senior visual arts thesis called, "Carry That Weight." The project consisted of her carrying a twin-sized mattress around campus, including during her graduation ceremony. Why would she come up with such an idea? Well, Sulkowicz was raped during her sophomore year of college in August 2012 in her own dorm bed by a fellow student. Nothing came of her reports against the student with her campus authorities, nor her NYPD police report filed in 2014. She filed a Title IX Complaint with the US Department of Education, which is basically for anyone who feels they have been discriminated against due to their sex while receiving financial aid. She is not the only student who has complaints about how Columbia handles sexual assault reports, but she is definitely the most known. Her alleged rapist is Paul Nungesser, and it looks like he also graduated this year. But he didn't want to go out quietly. No, Nungesser also filed a Title IX Complaint, his lawsuit claiming that “The Mattress Project subjected Paul to verbal aggression, intimidation and hostility based on his gender,” the lawsuit states." You know, the aggression and hostility was because of a girl carrying a mattress, not because he raped said girl. What a piece of work. Now that they are both graduated, I hope that Sulkowicz continues to put such works on display, bringing more and more attention to the issues of sexual assault and polices regarding it on campuses.
|Graduate Emma Sulkowicz and her mattress|
|Twins Marcus and Lucas. Not the twins from this story, but some from a 2011 story.|
This story is pretty anonymous--everyone mentioned is only identified by their initials. Basically, a woman, "T.M." gave birth to twin girls in January of 2013. T.M. wanted child support for the children and had been in a relationship with a man at the time, A.S. She listed A.S. as the father of both twins. A DNA test was ordered for the child support petition to go through and--lo and behold! The DNA of A.S. did not match up with both girls. The mother then admitted that she had had sexual relations with another man the same week she was impregnated by A.S. Whoa! How is this even possible? Well, basically, two different men impregnate two eggs during a woman's cycle--a crazy thing called heteropaternal superfecundation. Sperm can live inside of a woman for about five days, but in order for a woman to get pregnant, she and her partner must be fertile. She must have ovulated two eggs and happened to get pregnant with both. This lady must have been pretty fertile, and she must have an excellent biological taste in men to pick two with such strong sperm. I hope she was able to get the other man on the child support front. Here is another story of twins with two different fathers.
Well...the title kind of explains everything, doesn't it? Rev. Matthew Makela worked as an Associate Pastor at St. John's Lutheran Church in Midland, Michigan. He did what many Reverends do--he spoke against homosexuality and apparently called it a "sinful temptation." How very hypocritical of him, seeing as how he was active on Grindr--a popular app that helps to bring together gay, bi and bi-curious guys. From what I've heard, it's pretty much a dating/hook-up site. So, what was Makela doing on this website? Surely he was preaching to the gay men about the evils of their ways? Nope, he was "looking for a guy to mess around with," talking to men and posting shirtless pictures of himself. Makela, who is in a heterosexual marriage, has posted on Facebook and other websites about how he does not agree with gay marriage. Apparently, fooling around with someone of the same sex is okay. Makela resigned on Sunday, conveniently, a day before news of his Grindr profile surfaced. His former church issued a statement telling members to ignore talk of Makela during this scandal.
London Chanel was a 21-year old male-to-female transgendered person from Philadelphia. Chanel's 31-year old roommate, Raheam Felton, has been arrested for stabbing Chanel in the neck and back during a domestic dispute. Authorities claim this dispute had nothing to do with Chanel being transgender. Regardless of why she was killed, let's take a minute to acknowledge the Anti-Violence Project. According to the AVP website, "AVP empowers lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and HIV-affected communities and allies to end all forms of violence through organizing and education, and supports survivors through counseling and advocacy."
Also according to the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs (NCAVP), Chanel is the eighth homicide of a transgender or gender non-conforming person of color in 2015. Anyone who lives in the United States can attest to the surge in violence among non-white persons, especially by law enforcement. Add into that violence against anyone active in the LGBT community, and we have a real problem here. Yes, others are killed of every ethnicity. But can you imagine just how much harder a person like Chanel has to work in life to get by, being an African-American Transgender person? Geez. Reports say that after moving to Philadelphia, Chanel lived in a youth shelter and crisis center, due to disagreements with her family. May she rest in peace.
There ya have it, guys. This week's popular news articles that were brought to my attention. Let me know if you all think this is a good idea. I will try and post more stories in the news next week Wednesday!! Happy reading!!