When I first moved to Alabama from North Carolina, I was surprised when I bought my first set of groceries at the local grocery store. I bought the same items I would usually buy, but something was different. These same items, it seemed, cost much more here, no matter what store I went to. When I travel to North Carolina, I stock up on pantry goods at the discount food stores to bring back with me. As my students in my class and I have been researching local circumstances of poverty, we have been delving into the politics behind such. Two states apply their full sales taxes to home food consumption, with no additional rebates to offset any costs: Alabama and Mississippi. These Deep South states are also ones that hold some of the most regionally-vulnerable populations in regard to poverty. Grassroots organizing has a place in this issue that affects people on the local level of their homes.
The care of oneself without medical, professional, or other assistance or oversight.
“Caring for myself is not self-indulgence, it is self-preservation, and that is an act of political warfare.” -Audre Lorde
Self-care is something that I have had strong feelings about for a good while now. Being involved in progressive politics, it has been a topic that has come up around me from time to time. Every time it has come up, I have discussed my thoughts on the concept with the same general feeling:
I hate it.
Voting rights have emerged as a crucial issue, again. In the 2012 election, many issues regarding voter rights emerged across the United States. These issues are continuing to grow, and the groups that have the most at stake with new voting requirement laws are the most vulnerable, those who perhaps need to express their electoral voice the most. What I want to discuss today is not so much the idea of the voting rights, but, rather, the issue of regional privilege and power within the South. It is time for southern progressives to come together and build each other up in the fight for a Blue South.
I was visiting Cottonmouth, which is a fantastic progressive blog in Mississippi, when I came across this video calling for the expansion of Medicaid under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA):
The ad seemed real polished, and it seemed like it would connect with many low-income and working-class voters. I say many instead of most or all because of the following passage from the same video:
They’re saying no to 9,000 new jobs and almost $1 billion of economic activity in our state, and they are leaving 200,000 of our neighbors in the cold. Working families, not freeloaders; preventing them from getting decent medical care.
I just cannot understand this.
In a strange twist on Republican policy initiatives, women’s breasts have become hot topic issues, again. In Asheville, North Carolina, a topless protest had at one point exceeded 2000 participants, although this year participation had declined. From acts such as this, Republican legislators in North Carolina have written and promoted a “topless bill” that would send women to prison for baring their breasts, explicitly including the nipple as part of the “crime.” As of February 26, the bill has been sent back to a committee. Rep. Tim Moore had even quipped, “You know what they say, duct tape fixes everything.” Clearly Rep. Moore has little knowledge or concern for how sensitive the nipple area is and how illogical and offensive that remark is. This issue, though, is indicative of a greater political issue of expressing opinions with our bodies.