Issues

We Deserve Nothing Less

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Trans Women in Politics

By Jamin Pursell

Andrea Jenkins, the first African American openly trans woman to be elected to political office in the United States. She serves Ward 8 on the Minneapolis City Council

In traditionally male-dominated spaces, simply being a woman is an act of radicalism. Being queer is always a rebellion. No matter where you sit in the rainbow of LGBTQI+, your very existence breaks rules that have been long ascribed to the human body and mind.

The 6.7 million LGBTQI women in America primarily vote with the Democratic Party and tend to be actively engaged with political issues. They are volunteers, activists, contributors, advocates, and voters for progressive candidates and causes. It is hard enough being a woman in the world, but being a woman in politics is especially difficult. Often the hardest workers and bravest must fight the stereotypes prescribed to them, and with little recognition. They must tread new ground with no map or guidance. That is why it is essential to uplift these women and admire the vision and fortitude that carries them in politics.

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This Women’s History Month, Try a Little Respect

By Floy Andrews

Margaret Hamilton as the Witch in the 1939 film version, threatening Dorothy (Judy Garland), 1939.

When the former Richmond City Attorney departed during the tumultuous conclusion to 2021, the mayor referred to her as the “wicked witch” and quoted lyrics from the Wizard of Oz song, “Ding-Dong! The Witch is Dead.” The mayor said equally disparaging things about our city manager as she, too, left office earlier last year. On top of that, Mayor Butt suggested that the entire city council had a “drama queen” reputation. I was offended, though not particularly surprised, to read those lines in Mayor Butt’s December e-forums. Such anti-woman attitudes permeate a culture that furthers the white male power structure.

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Rest In Peace Alexis Parsons

By Tamisha Walker

Alexis Parsons, a dedicated fellow of the Safe Return community, passed away on February 1, 2022 at her home in the Sycamore neighborhood of Antioch. She was 30 years old.

Words cannot begin to describe this tragic loss. We miss her so dearly and will always treasure the two and a half years she spent with us in the Safe Return family.

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Rosie Lee Tompkins, Richmond Quiltmaker

By Shiva Mishek

Rosie Lee Tompkins, 1985. Photo courtesy of BAMPFA.

In the mid-1980s, psychologist Eli Leon stumbled across the work of Rosie Lee Tompkins at a Marin flea market. He devoted the rest of his life to collecting her quilts. At the time of his death, Leon had amassed over 500 works by the artist, who chose to live in complete anonymity.

Rosie Lee Tompkins is the pseudonym of Effie Mae Martin Howard. The now-renowned artist was born in rural Arkansas in 1936, where she was one of fifteen children in a sharecropping family. Tompkins moved to Richmond in early adulthood, during the Great Migration of African Americans away from the Jim Crow South and into western states. She lived and worked as a nurse in Richmond until her death in 2006.

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Spring RPA Membership Meeting

Come one, come all!

RPA Membership Spring meeting will be Saturday, March 26, 2-4 pm. We know we’re all tired of Zoom meetings but, for now, it’s still our go-to gathering spot. And yes, the Office Committee is looking for an office but we’re not there yet. Still, we have news to share, people to meet, and actions to plan.

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RPA Calendar March 2022

Here are upcoming RPA meetings and events. Note, most meetings are only open to RPA members, although allies and guests are often welcome. If you are interested in becoming a member, you may do so here. Dues may be waived if they are a barrier to you joining the RPA. If you have questions about joining the RPA, or are interested in attending a meeting as a non-member, please contact [email protected]

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Union Proud

Thank you for your continued support for the Listening Project! We hope you are LOVING the podcast so far and enjoyed last week’s episode, Buying Us Out. In this week’s episode, Union Proud, we are bringing you a conversation between our Organizer, Marisol Cantu, City Council Member Eduardo Martinez, and BK White, Vice President of the United Steel Workers Local 5 Oil Workers Union. Marisol, Eduardo, and BK sat down for a conversation about the relationship between Chevron workers and the Richmond community at-large, and how we can come together to stand up to Big Oil for our health and wellbeing. They talk about the workers’ fight for a fair contract, and how the fight can impact the Richmond community.

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Buying Us Out

 

Thank you for listening to the Listening Project Podcast.  

We have listened to the Richmond community and want to hear from you! Take our Climate Crisis Survey for your chance to win a $100 gift card!

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