Keah Brown is a disability advocate and freelance writer who is best known for creating the viral hashtag #DisabledAndCute to dispel the myth that being disabled and attractive are mutually exclusive. Pop culture is one of her passions and she works to increase the visibility of people with disabilities in media in hopes it might shift the cultural view of disability.
While Brown does not pretend to speak for all people with disabilities, her essays in The Pretty One, the LWV ABC May Book Club selection, raise some interesting points to think about:
Read more of Keah Brown’s perspective on disability:
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In May 2021, Sahan Journal and MPR News collaborated on series called ChangeMakers to ask this question.
Civil Rights Organizer Bo Thao-Urabe described the Minnesota AAPI community as unique with over 60% are Southeast Asians who came post the wars in Southeast Asia - Laos, Vietnam, and Cambodia, and Myanmar – compared to only 10% from Southeast Asian in most states. Minnesota also has a high number of adoptions of Chinese and Korean (15,000) babies, as well as “Medical Alley” that is now bringing in a lot of educated workers from China and India. Lily Tung Crystal of Theater Mu noted that “one of the reasons why we think that the violence is happening is because other people often see Asian Americans as not truly American, or other, or even subhuman.” Community Organizer Anthea Yur wants the Asian community to confront racism head on and hoped “that we can start breaking this narrative of being the model minorities, being considered subservient. When your parents are first-generation immigrants, there is a level of survival that you’re taught. You’re taught not to resist.”
June is Pride Month, a month focused on the visibility of LGBTQ+ people and celebrating movement toward equality. June was chosen to celebrated Pride to commemorate the Stonewall Uprising, often considered the start of the modern LGBTQ+ civil rights movement.
In the 1960's, in many cities, including New York, bars could lose their liquor license for simply serving gay patrons. A 1967 New York Court of Appeals decision opened bars to gay patrons, but bars could still lose their liquor license if patrons engaged in "disorderly conduct". Given that homosexuality was still criminalized, law enforcement interpreted "disorderly conduct" to mean same sex kissing, holding hands or dancing. In response, the Mafia opened private bottle clubs, including the Stonewall Inn, which did not require a liquor license because patrons were supposed to bring their own liquor.
In the early hours of June 28, 1969, New York City police raided the Stonewall Inn and arrested 13 people, including employees for bootleg liquor and patrons for violating the state's gender-appropriate clothing statute. Patrons who refused to disburse and neighborhood residents became increasingly agitated as patrons were aggressively manhandled by police, sparking violence by the bystanders. Protests, sometimes violent, continued over the next six days, sometimes involving several thousand people. The protests received almost no news coverage but were a catalyst for organizing for LGBTQ+ rights. Within a year of Stonewall, LGBTQ+ rights organizations rose from about 50 in 1968 to over 1000 organizations.
The first gay Pride parade was held in New York City in 1970 to commemorate the Stonewall Uprising. The term "Pride" was coined by Craig Schoonmaker, one of the organizers of the parade "not as a slogan so much as an understanding that people should be proud and not ashamed". Pride parades are now held throughout the world, with 5 million people attending the 2019 WorldPride parade in New York City.
In 2016, the Stonewall Inn and surrounding area were declared a National Monument.
March is Women’s History Month and the Minnesota History Center opened both its Extraordinary Women exhibit and continues to highlight extraordinary Minnesota women in its online Votes For Women exhibit. Some history articles highlighting extraordinary Minnesota women:
LWV ABC’s April Book Club selection “Sisters in Hate” focuses on three women involved in the white nationalist movement. Some other resources related to white supremacy in the US:
Asian Enough Podcast
Jen Yamato and Frank Shyong interview fellow Asian-Americans centered around the questions, "Am I Asian enough? Am I American enough?"
A Conversation with Director Jon M. Chu - 2020
Code Switch Podcast
Shereen Marisol Meraji and Gene Demby welcome guests to explore how issues of race and identity manifest in every corner of American culture, from music to poetry to sports.
Who’s Black Enough for Reparations? – Feb 2021
Coffee with My Ma Podcast
Canadian actress Kaniehtiio Horn records the stories of her mother Kahn-Tineta Horn, a 1960’s model and lifelong Mohawk rights activist - “inspiring, funny, emotional”.
Episode 1 - Ma Takes On the Toronto Telegram
MPR News with Angela Davis Podcast
Conversations about life in Minnesota and how the state is changing.
Renewed conversations about racial justice – January 18, 2021
Hosts Ana Sheila Victorino and Brenda Gonzalez bring a Latinx perspective to current events and culture.
Reflecting on the term BIPOC, Race, and Identity – November 2020
Yo, is this Racist? Podcast
Actress and musician Tawny Newsome, writer Andrew Ti, both professional comedians, and a weekly guest provide funny-yet-thoughtful responses to voicemails from people wondering whether a given situation is racist. (Note: Discussion on the nuances of racism are very informative but this podcast may not be for you if you find swearing offensive.)
Anti-Mitten Twitter with Joey Clift – January 2021
Submit your recommendations for articles, blogs, video, podcasts, etc. to email@example.com
Write: RECOMMENDATION in caps in the subject line
Book and Film Club
Book and Film Club
See our website calendar more information about upcoming books and film, including were to watch and the Zoom link for our discussion. Email reminders are only sent to members, but everyone is welcome to join us.
March Film and Book Selections:
April Film and Book Selections
The book “Sisters in Hate” may have a short waiting list at the library so get your requests in now. The film “I am Not Your Negro” has multiple options for free streaming online.
Expand your knowledge, participate in interesting discussions via Zoom. Member Pat Kennedy has organized some more noteworthy and relevant selections. Here are dates and descriptions for some of the upcoming titles.
Click on our website Calendar for the Zoom link and more information, scroll down to find the event.
Time is 6:15 pm Socializing, 6:30 Discussion
for all book and film discussions
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