The 'Black, Queer, Feminist' Legal Trailblazer You've Never Heard Of
Pauli Murray championed the fight for gender equality, achieved sainthood and helped desegregate schools, all while pushing against Mad Men-era social norms.

Dr. Pauli Murray is hardly the household name that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is, but a recent profile in Salon argues she should be. As Salon’s Brittney Cooper explains, Murray, who graduated from the Howard University School of Law in 1944, was one of the first lawyers to argue that the Equal Protection Clause’s approach to racial discrimination should apply equally to gender-based discrimination. Ginsburg credits Murray’s work as the inspiration for her 1971 brief in Reed v. Reed, which ruled that women could not be excluded as administrators of personal estates based on their gender. The Supreme Court case marked the first time that the Equal Protection Clause was applied to sex discrimination, and has served as precedent for many arguments in the decades since then. Ginsburg found Murray’s prior arguments so important to her own that she elected to put Murray down as an honorary co-author on the milestone brief.


Bold, black and brilliant  - Unsung heroes of the Civil Rights Movement

Murray wrote. A prolific poet and author, she penned influential works like Dark Testament and Negroes Are Fed Up. History books don’t often value the stories of people of color, favoring a whitewashed version of the past over the harsh honesty of historical racism. This spin makes history more comfortable, especially for those who don’t want to confront their role in the oppression of people of color.

A direct challenge to this sanitized version of the past is Black History Month - a time to explicitly honor the struggles, triumphs and excellence of the black community.

There are countless heroes of the racial justice movement who are often denied the platform to be celebrated. Though the impact of their work is still felt, their names and contributions aren’t widely known.

It’s time for that to change.

Nannie Helen Burroughs

In 1907, Burroughs, with support of the National Baptist Convention, began creating a trade school for black high school- and junior college-aged girls. The school was called the National Training School for Women and Girls, with themotto “We Specialize in the Wholly Impossible” — a testament to Burrough’s belief in educating those whom others thought were unworthy. The students were trained industrially, also learning about the liberal arts and Christianity. Burroughs was well-known for speaking publicly about harsh truths of racial inequality.

Pauli Murray

A prolific poet and author, she penned influential works like Dark Testament and Negroes Are Fed Up. Her dedication to racial justice law and activism was recognized in 1961 when President John F. Kennedy appointed her to the President’s Commission on the Status of Women Committee on Civil and Political Rights. In 1977, she became the first black woman to be ordained as a priest within the Episcopal Church.Though deeply passionate about racial justice, Murray was critical of the Civil Rights Movement. She often challenged dominant male leaders, coining the phrase “Jane Crow” to hint at the overlooked intersection of gender and race. Throughout her life, however, Murray struggled to find a label that honored her gender and sexuality. Her name switch — from Anna Pauline to Pauli — was a nod to this complexity.

Bayard Rustin

If Martin Luther King Jr. was the star of the Civil Rights Movement, Bayard Rustin was the director. Most notable of his activist work was the organization of the March on Washington, where Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his iconic “I Have a Dream” speech. Organizing the march was an uphill battle for Rustin, though, as many objected his leadership because Rustin was a gay man. King, however, stood firm in his belief that Rustin was the right man for the job. Rustin had been one of his early mentors and continued to work with him as a “proofreader, ghostwriter, philosophy teacher and non-violence strategist.”

He was involved in human rights locally and internationally, including advocacy for black labor unions, economic justice and the protest of the Vietnam War. He also became more outspoken on the rights of gay and lesbian individuals starting in the early 1980s.

Claudette Colvin

Before Rosa Parks, there was Claudette Colvin. Born Sept. 5, 1939, Colvin made a name for herself at just 15 years old when she took a stand against bus segregation in her hometown of Montgomery, Alabama. In 1955, she boarded a crowded bus with her school friends in Montgomery, and when she refused to give up her seat to a white woman who boarded after her, Colvin was removed from the bus and arrested.

Despite being a pioneer for bus protests, the NAACP didn’t publicize Colvin’s resistance because she was dark-skinned and became pregnant by a married man soon after. But Colvin continued to be an activist, and testified in the federal court caseBrowder v. Gayle in 1956, which determined bus segregation laws to be unconstitutional.

Fred Hampton

Hampton’s extensive knowledge, leadership and oratory skills accelerated his rise within the BPP — he was chairman of the Illinois chapter and deputy chairman of the national chapter by 1969. In his time with the BPP, he helped facilitate creation of a number of free initiatives, including a children’s breakfast program, health clinics, political education classes, transportation to jails and day care centers. He encouraged the pursuit of education for all black people, especially Black Panthers. To become a member of his chapter, prospects had to go through six weeks of education so they knew what they were fighting for. While leading the Chicago chapter of the BPP, Hampton created the Rainbow Coalition, a multi-ethnic revolutionary group composed of organizations and street gangs. 

 In June 1969, FBI director J. Edgar Hoover described the Black Panther Party as “the greatest threat to the internal security of the country.” As the deputy chairman of the national chapter, Hampton was one of the FBI’s major targets in efforts to “neutralize” the BPP, and he was put under high surveillance. On Dec. 4, 1969, the FBI conducted a raid in the home where Hampton, his pregnant girlfriend, and other members were sleeping. Hampton along with fellow Panther, Mark Clark, were killed in the raid. Hampton was only 21 years old.

Angela Davis

Angela Davis is a major force in the fight for racial justice, using her radical — and sometimes controversial — activism to build upon the solid framework of the Civil Rights Movement. 

 Her activist work first caught mass attention in 1969 when she was removedfrom a philosophy teaching position at UCLA for her affiliation with the Communist Party and the Black Panther Party. A year later, she was placed on the FBI’s 10 Most Wanted List after being accused of aiding in a deadly prison escape attempt. The manhunt forced her underground, where she was eventually caught by officials, tried and found guilty. She served 16 months in prison, until an activist fought back with the Free Angela Davis campaign, which successfully led to her acquittal in 1972.

Though passionate about prison reform before her own incarceration, Davis’ experience with law enforcement propelled her to become a central, critical voice toward police, prisons and law. She became a founding member ofCritical Resistance, a national organization dedicated to radical prison reform. She is also notable for popularizing the idea of the prison industrial complex, coining the phrase to critique prisons as inherently corrupt, advocating for their abolition.

Davis brought her activism to paper, authoring nine books, including Women, Race and Class, Are Prisons Obsolete? and several works on historical black leaders. She was a professor of feminism and the history of consciousness at the University of California, Santa Cruz, until her retirement in 2008. Her current work and advocacy focus on gender equality, prison reform and the realities of systemic racism.

Fannie Lou Hamer

Hamer began to work tirelessly for the Civil Rights Movement, not only helping other black individuals vote in elections, but also working for the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, which participated in acts of civil disobedience in protest of segregation and racial injustice.

Throughout the 1960s and 1970s, Hamer remained dedicated to her activism by helping set up organizations for black people to find more business opportunities, quality health care and family services

Ella Baker

Though Ella Baker wasn’t as visible as others involved, many activists agree there would not have been a Civil Rights Movement without her.

Baker didn’t believe there should be a sole leader of civil rights. Instead, she believed in grassroots political action and collective activism. This pushed her to fringes of the movement, as activists were so eager to champion leaders like Martin Luther King, Rosa Parks and Malcolm X as representatives.

Seeing young people take up interest in racial justice throughout her time as an activist, Baker realized the new generation of young activists were going to be assets to the movement because of their new ideas and eagerness for change. This led her to focus her attention on students for the later part of her activist career, creating the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, which organized the Freedom Rides.

Here’s your history lesson for the day.

Looking for SPN blogs

I’ve unfollowed a lot of people for negativity and just because they’ve changed fandoms so now my dash is pretty dead and I need knew people to follow. So if you are:

  • Mainly SPN with a lot of sam and dean and cas too
  • Hate free and mostly positive about the show and not hateful about stuff you don’t like
  • A tagging system (i blacklist a few things so this is pretty important)
  • Wincest shippers and j2 are awesome too
  • Sastiel shippers are amazing
  • Always looking for more mutuals (this is optional of course) 

Then please like/reblog this and I’ll check your blog out!

I’ll promo the mutuals who reblog this to signal boost
Queer ASL
Queer ASL is a queer & transgender positive environment with a focus on creating a more accessible, affordable, and safer space for folks who want to learn ASL in Vancouver, BC.

Queer ASL focuses on introducing basic American Sign Language and Deaf culture to queer & transgender learners in Vancouver, BC. This involves learning the alphabet, finger-spelling, facial expressions, vocabulary, and grammar structures. At home, students access homework videos that feature the local queer signing community and a collection of Deaf culture information such as identity politics, cultural norms, history, current topics and issues, etc. The courses have a voice-off policy in order to both be respectful of signing spaces and to immerse ourselves in a signing environment. People who complete Queer ASL classes are able to carry basic conversations with signing queer folks and have a better understanding of the deaf/signing community.

The courses are taught through using powerpoints, videos, demonstrations, dialogue practice via partners and groups. All instructors are deaf and queer. Deaf queer guests (often folks featured in the homework videos) at times visit to provide additional perspectives and show students how we all have different signing styles. By having guests, this allows both signing queers and Queer ASL students become familiar with each other, thus building a bridge.

We generally have 3-4 cycles of classes per year. To keep an eye on upcoming classes, email us at to be added to our mailing list. Also, liking our facebook and keeping an eye on our events can be helpful.

How the cell’s power station survives attacks

Mitochondria, the power generators in our cells, are essential for life. When they are under attack—from poisons, environmental stress or genetic mutations—cells wrench these power stations apart, strip out the damaged pieces and reassemble them into usable mitochondria.

Now, scientists at the Salk Institute have uncovered an unexpected way in which cells trigger this critical response to threats, offering insight into disorders such as mitochondrial disease, cancer, diabetes and neurodegenerative disease—particularly Parkinson’s disease, which is linked to dysfunctional mitochondria. The work appeared January 15, 2016 in Science.

“Outside marauders come into these power stations of the cell—the mitochondria—and in response, the power stations break into smaller fragments,” says Reuben Shaw, senior author and Salk professor in the Molecular and Cell Biology Laboratory.

In an average human cell, anywhere from 100 to 500 mitochondria churn out energy in the form of ATP molecules, which act like batteries to carry power to the rest of the cell. At any given time, one or two mitochondria fragment (fission) or reform (fusion) to cycle out any damaged parts. But when a poison—like cyanide or arsenic—or other dangers threaten the mitochondria, a mass fragmentation takes place.

Researchers have known for years that mitochondria undergo this fragmentation when treated with drugs that affect the mitochondria, but the biochemical details of how the mitochondria damage is sensed and how that triggers the rapid fission response has not been clear until now.

In the new work, the Salk team found that when cells are exposed to mitochondria damage, a central cellular fuel gauge, the enzyme AMPK, sends an emergency alert to mitochondria instructing them to break apart into many tiny mitochondrial fragments. Interestingly, AMPK is activated by the widely used diabetes therapeutic metformin, as well as exercise and a restricted diet. The new findings suggest that some of the benefits from these therapies may result from their effects in promoting mitochondrial health.

Prior research by Shaw’s group and others had uncovered AMPK’s role in helping to recycle damaged mitochondrial pieces as well as signaling to the cell to make new mitochondria. But this new role of rapidly triggering mitochondrial fragmentation “really places AMPK at the heart of mitochondria health and long-term well-being,” says Shaw, who is also holder of the William R. Brody Chair.

To uncover exactly what happens in those first few minutes, the team used the gene editing technique CRISPR to delete AMPK in cells and showed that, even when poison or other threats are introduced to the mitochondria, they do not fragment without AMPK. This indicates that AMPK somehow directly acts on mitochondria to induce fragmentation.

The group then looked at a way to chemically turn on AMPK without sending attacks to mitochondria. To their surprise, they found that activating AMPK alone was enough to cause the mitochondria to fragment, even without the damage.

“I could not believe how black and white the results were. Just turning on AMPK by itself gives you as much fragmentation as a mitochondrial poison,” says Shaw.

The team discovered why this was: when the cell’s power stations are disrupted, the amount of energy floating around a cell—ATP—is lowered. After just a few minutes, AMPK detects this reduction of energy in the cell and hurries to the mitochondria. Like a guard pulling a fire alarm, AMPK activates a receptor on the outside membrane of a mitochondrion to signal it to fragment.

Drilling down further, the researchers found that AMPK actually acts on two areas of a mitochondrial receptor, called mitochondrial fission factor (MFF), to start the process. MFF calls over a protein, Drp1, that binds and wraps around the mitochondrion like a beaded noose to twist and break it apart.

“We discovered that the modification of MFF by AMPK is needed for MFF to call over more Drp1 to the mitochondria,” says Erin Quan Toyama, one of the first authors of the paper and a Salk research associate. “Without AMPK sending the alarm, MFF cannot call over to Drp1 and there is no new fragmentation of mitochondria after damage.”

In the future, the team is interested in addressing what other consequences this signaling pathway has for specific cell types, according to Sébastien Herzig, the other first author of the paper and a Salk research associate. “We want to see what a defect in communication between the mitochondria and AMPK would do to different tissues, particularly ones very dependent on healthy mitochondria, such as brain, muscle and heart,” says Herzig.

Adds Toyama, “On one hand, AMPK is known to be important for type 2 diabetes, immune disease and cancer. On the other hand, mitochondrial dysfunction is becoming increasing connected to metabolic diseases and neurodegenerative diseases. We’re making some of the first steps in connecting these two things that have major disease implications.”

anonymous asked:

May you please make a list of gravity falls blogs you follow/recommend to follow? I'm a newcomer and want to hang out with this fandom for what looks like the last time. Thank you very much.

Thanks for asking, anon! (and don’t worry, I’m sure the fandom will live on for quite some time after the finale, considering there’s Journal 3 coming out this summer; also Alex doesn’t mind the idea of making a special in the future c:)

Anyway! Here’s a list of my favorite Gravity Falls blogs/blogs I recommend:

@gravi-teamfalls - the blog of the GF creative team
@fuckyeahgravityfalls - a major multi-content blog for all your GF needs
@alternatefalls - if you’re into AUs, this blog is for you

Artist blogs:

Hope you’ll find it useful! :)

on Aogiri arc parallels

credit where credit is due - last week, way before any spoilers for this chapter came out, @i-azaurusfyre sent me an ask with a theory that Mutsuki would end up eating Torso to recover from some kind of serious wounds, considering he was left alone and there wasn’t any other CCG personnel around to either help him, or report the action.

I didn’t get a chance to respond because I got a ton of asks last week and also I was working on this fic.

I tried to publish the actual ask, but tumblr decided to eat it instead of publishing it. So here’s this.

Also, I didn’t really know what to think about it. I guess I hoped in vain that Sensei wouldn’t take the Aogiri arc parallels that far. I guess that’s what I get for hoping.

It’s actually really fitting that at some point it’d be Tooru forced to confront the Ghoul part of himself in a terrifying situation. 

Back at the very beginning, when watching Sasaki fight Serpent, the three Quinx present all reacted differently, and it might have been a foreshadowing for what would cause each of them to push themselves to the point of becoming half-ghouls like their mentor:

Shirazu breaks through all his frames while trying to protect his squad - the same reason that Sasaki gave in to his more wild ghoul abilities against Nishiki here.

Urie went through his frame opening surgery to become stronger and get a promotion so he could prove he was better than Sasaki and Kuroiwa - and even if he’s grown since then, the side effects of that action seem to be having repercussions for him now.

And then there’s Mutsuki.

We learn more about exactly what it is he fears later during a conversation with Suzuya:

It isn’t exactly the same thought process Kaneki has before Aogiri - Mutsuki isn’t in denial like Kaneki is, so much as he’s scared of it as something inevitable. But it is by far the closest reaction we’ve seen from any of the Qs. 

And we all know what finally forced Kaneki to accept that he was, indeed, a ghoul after all. In case you didn’t see it posted in parallels all week last week -

My only question now is whether or not Mutsuki will go the route Kaneki did and eat Torso, or go one step further, symbolically, in paralleling Kaneki’s tendency to take things on himself and internalize his problems and end up eating his own limbs, which Torso, because he’s a sick fuck, is keeping around.

Kaneki’s own arc was, and still is, fraught with the struggle between his tendency to take everything in and bury everything inside - his “be the one getting hurt rather than hurting others,” and moments where he lashes out, often out of his own control and with extreme violence. It’s something we first see against Nishiki. It’s something he tries to harness and control, but only can to some extent as we see in the raid on Kanou’s lab and with him hurting Banjou.  In :re, it’s revealed that this has always been the flip side of his mother’s “be the one getting hurt rather than hurt others” - the physical violence she would inflict on Kaneki as a child.

But Mutsuki’s arc doesn’t have that specific struggle as much. (With the Qs, that struggle is paralleled primarily in Urie.) Rather, Mutsuki’s story is more about agency - about being objectified verses taking active action. So I think, symbolically, it could play out either way. Either autocannibalism, or eating Torso.

At the risk of jinxing myself with hope again, I almost hope for the former. There’s a real “you are what you eat” thing that follows Kaneki after Aogiri, and Torso is right up there for grossest individual in the TG universe. 

On the other hand, if Mutsuki survives by eating his own limbs, as traumatic as that would be, and as much as it would totally trigger all the fears he had about becoming the monster he saw Sasaki become, if we follow the pattern with Kaneki, it could almost turn into a boost in self confidence and self affirmation.

Just as Kaneki ended up ascribing his power to Rize and even Yamori, Mutsuki would be able to see that strength as coming from himself, rather than that disgusting terrible Torso. Rather than feeling like he owes any part of himself to that creep, he might feel like, in the end, he had the power to save himself.

(I’m not going to comment on where the manga might take that re: gender. Thematically, it could go either way, depending on what is really going on in Mutsuki’s head. Which you can either say only Ishida knows at this point, or which you can call Death of the Author on and decide for yourself and sit with your headcanon up to, or even after, the manga goes one way or another. Tokyo Ghoul isn’t my creation, and I’m going to play this topic pretty hands off, as far as predictions and probably reactions go.)

But who knows. That might not be enough. And I will not in any way begrudge Tooru the desire to chew that asshole into tiny pieces as a means of conquest or control.

Hell, even if Tooru doesn’t end up eating Torso, I hope to god and anything else out there listening that he kills the bastard. Kills him very, very dead. And then chops his kakuhou into hundreds of tiny pieces so no part of him ever has to show up again ever.
Transphobic Bathroom Bill Dies in Washington State
The state Senate barely defeated legislation that would have repealed the state's new gender-neutral bathroom policy.

Washington’s state Senate has killed a transphobic bill — but only by a hair. Legislators voted 25-24 to defeat SB 6443. The bill would have repealed a new rule issued by the state’s Human Rights Commission that allows transgender people to use public restrooms that correspond with their gender identity.

Outfest Fusion LGBT People of Color Film Festival Announces Lineup
Marking the important intersection of queer cinema with other minority voices, Outfest Fusion 2016 will take place early next month in Los Angeles and its lineup is looking pretty impressive.

Opening the fest on Friday, March 4, is the 20th Anniversary screening of (digitally restored) cult film The Watermelon Woman, followed by a panel discussion the next day with writer-director Cheryl Dunye on her film’s lasting influence. Other screenings include the GLAAD Media Award–nominated BET documentary Holler If You Hear Me: Black and Gay in the Church, Jake Witzenfeld’s Oriented, exploring the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and Made in Bangkok, Flavio Florencio’s fabulous documentary about a prestigious transgender pageant in Thailand and star contestant Morganna.

Receiving this year’s Fusion Achievement Award is Emmy-nominated and Golden Globe–winning director, producer, and writer Nisha Ganatra, who directed arguably the best episode of Transparent Season 1, “Moppa” (although it’s very hard to choose just only one). Ganatra is also responsible for the vivid late-90s treat Chutney Popcorn, an ahead-of-its-time story about love, family, and surrogacy.

For complete listings and to purchase tickets, log on to
Jim Obergefell and Andreja Pejic Get Real About the 'T' in LGBT
Jim Obergefell, a leading advocate for marriage equality, and the world's most famous trans model talk about the adversities faced by transgender people.

With the recent media attention and public support surrounding transgender male models such as Ben Melzer and Aydian Dowling, one might think that broad acceptance of all trans people is inevitable. However, even within the so-called LGBT community, prejudice against trans and gender-nonconforming people still arises, as a recent petition to LGBT media and advocacy groups asking them to “Drop the T” illustrates.

This tension was the topic of discussion for Jim Obergefell, the lead plaintiff in the marriage equality suit that resulted in the freedom to marry nationwide, and Andreja Pejic, the world’s most famous trans model, as they sat down for an interview with Amanda Silverman of Foreign Policy.

Pejic was adamant about the impact that sharing one’s own story can have.


Beate Klarsfeld (b. 1939) is a German activist and Nazi hunter who dedicated her life to documenting the Holocaust in order to bring was criminals to justice. Thanks to her and her husband’s efforts, multiple German and French officials responsible for the killing of thousands of Jews were discovered and brought to court for prosecution.

She was arrested several times for protesting antisemitism in her native country and in others, such as Poland or Czechoslovakia. The couple also founded an association for the children of deported Jews.