Reading List: Close the Camps, Pride Month, and How to Be an Ally

The Summer 2019 Reading List was curated by Denise Nichole, Editor in Chief of The Hellebore. Read below for the latest articles and revelations in literary publishing, popular culture, and global news. 

Close the Camps

The dehumanization and detainment of women, children, and families in US government operated camps is an atrocity. AOC’s call to action, #ClosetheCamps, is a fierce demand to end the neglect and abuse of immigrants who are imprisoned in these inexcusable conditions. It is no secret that children have died in US custody after enduring unimaginable hardships and cruelties. The terrorization of migrant families continues to result in more panic, fear, division, and loss. We must #ProtectEachOther!

How to be an Ally

With outrage, comes organization. To be an ally you must:

  1. Amplify the voices of those who are affected. Do not steal the spotlight. Shine your light on the population that is targeted or at risk.
  2. Inform yourself on the issue. After researching, decide how you want to contribute.
  3. Listen to those who are already mobilizing. For many the fight is everyday. Encourage them. Support them. Ask how you can join their mission without intruding or forcing more emotional or educational labor on them.
  4. Participate in local and community efforts. Technology is a valuable tool but try to get involved in grassroots efforts as well.
  5. Donate to smaller organizations that directly impact those who are affected. They are doing valuable work that deserves recognition and monetary donations.
  6. Volunteer in your community. There are so many ways to contribute. Text, phone, mobile campaigns. Food, clothing, and supply drives. Rallies, meetings, and other events. Town halls, Twitter chats, and petitions. Have other ideas? Discuss them with those you trust, then work together towards a plan and solution.

Here is a non exhaustive list of organizations to consider:

Fair Immigration Reform Movement (FIRM)

California Immigrant Youth Justice Alliance

California Immigrant Policy Center

Siren Immigrant Rights

Presente.org

United We Dream

Families Belong Together

Pride Month

As June comes to an end, let us reflect on the celebration and monetization of PRIDE.

Who are Pride Collections Actually For? by Chris Mandle via GQ

But rainbows do not an ally make. And branding a consumer isn’t the same as supporting the LGBTQ community. 

Why Queer and Transgender People of Color Deserve Safe Spaces During Pride 2019 by Jor-El Caraballo via Teen Vogue

These safe spaces are particularly important for queer people of color, particularly Black trans women like Muhlaysia Booker, Michelle “Tamika” Washington and others who are being killed for living as themselves. In 2018, the Human Rights Campaign marked at least 26 deaths of trans people (the majority of whom were Black trans women) because of violence against them; in 2019, five transgender people have already died at the hands of violence.

Here’s What a Good LGBTQ Ally Looks Like by Ana Valens via Vox

“As a queer trans woman, my life is often misery. So when I see corporations or big-name artists trying to tap into some sanitized version of my identity that’s only about the fun parts, I feel alienated and that huge parts of my experience are erased,” Diavolo tells Vox. “Being queer is about joy, but that joy is often tempered by a great deal of pain; it is through that bitterness that the sweetness is that much sweeter.”

Now Streaming

Summer television is bringing the heat in more ways than one. Don’t miss live tweets from me on Twitter. I’m watching Pose, Big Little Lies, Trinkets, and Euphoria. Reviews coming soon!

Love and light,

Denise Nichole
Editor in Chief

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