Here’s the thing: queer people are not optional. We don’t appear at a certain time or place in life. We’re always here. If you mean to teach kids about the world, you have to teach them about queer people in the same way that you have to teach kids that people have different religions than you, or different hobbies, or different diets. Otherwise, you’re not protecting kids. You’re giving them false information, which is confusing at best, and damaging at worse.
10

10 Cuban Photographers You Should Know

1.  Alejandro González. 

2.  Eduardo García

3.  Liudmila & Nelson

4.  Pavel Acosta

5.  Alfredo Ramos

6.  Pedro Abascal

7.  Alejandro Pérez

8.  René Peña

9.   Kadir López Nieves

10.  José Julián Martí

Read more huffpostarts or at the Committee to Protect Journalists for more on press freedom in Cuba.

2

Sophie’s middle school censored her “feminist” shirt in the class photo, so now she’s fighting back 

The choice to identify as a feminist in middle school is pretty remarkable. It can also inspire backlash, which one eighth-grader in Batavia, Ohio experienced firsthand.

This student, identified as “Sophie” on Women You Should Know, wore a shirt bearing the word “feminist” the day her class photo was taken. Though the shirt doesn’t violate the school’s dress code, it was deemed potentially controversial.

But she isn’t backing down. In fact, she’s doing the opposite.

1. You already know

2. South

3. N***a

4. Ball so hard, man, this shit cray

5. And you ain’t gettin’ money ‘less you got eight figures

6. For that Jesus piece, man, I’ve been saved

7. Just talked to Farrakhan, that’s sensei

8. Allstate n***a

9. If you run into me, better have Allstate with ya

10. You a Rico Suave n***a

11. Ride around listening to Sade

12. If you ain’t with us, you in our way

13. You actor, you should be on Broadway

14. Cause you do shit the broad way

15. Your bitch got a ass, but my broad way thicker

16. Tell your P.O. how long you been high? All day (This line was not censored in the first verse)

17. Pour some Hen out for my n***s that died

18. They need that Ye in the streets, boy

19. Like a light-skinned slave, boy, we in the motherfuckin’ house

20. My leather black jeans on

21. Middle America

22. Number one question they’re askin, fuck every question you askin’

23. If I don’t get ran out by [Catholics] (Catholics was not censored))

24. So follow me up cuz’ this shit bout to go down

25. Stop all that coon shit

26. Early morning cartoon shit

27. This is that goon shit

28. Fuck up your whole afternoon shit

29. Black out the room, bitch

30. Stop all that coon shit

31. Them n***s ain’t doing shit

32. Them n***s ain’t doing shit

33. You n***s ain’t breathin’ you gaspin’

34. These n***s ain’t ready for action

For the record: The line “300 bitches, where the Trojans?” was not censored. [x]

One thing I tell my own young friends is that a book is a wonderful, safe place to practice saying “No.” If a girl is reading something that feels icky or overwhelming or unsafe, she has the power to close the book and put it down. She says, “No.” Maybe she will come back to the book later and try it again. Maybe she won’t. She has power, and she can choose. No one gets hurt; no one says, “But, really, it’s okay, let’s keep going, I promise you’ll like it.”

The girl alone, as Reader, has agency and complete power. Isn’t that a practice we all want our girls to develop?
—  Elana K Arnold continues marvelous, empowering dialog in the comments on her post, “Appropriate Literature.”
It is because female YA authors ignore the voices telling them their work isn’t serious, isn’t literary, isn’t valued, isn’t anything but kid stuff, isn’t “good enough” that the roots keep growing deeper and it becomes clearer and clearer that women play a major role in not only the expansion of YA, but the amplification of the female voice more broadly.

We can turn back through history and see, time and time again, women like Hinton and Blume are the reason we can even make such statements.