Interview: #StandWithKesha Organizer Adam Bryan

12885961_596340057190871_7756509747453167718_o
Standard

Earlier this year, a judge ruled against Kesha in her case against her abuser Luckasz Gottwald (Dr. Luke), a record producer for Sony.

Kesha, a pop singer and songwriter, signed with Dr. Luke when she was 18 years old. In October 2014, she came forward about her experiences of abuse and filed a civil suit against him, hoping to end her working relationship with Dr. Luke and to be released from her contract with Sony . However, the judge’s decision means that Kesha will have to continue to work with her abuser’s record label if she wishes to continue with her music career.

We interviewed Adam Bryan who is organizing #StandWithKesha, a fundraiser for SACHA and Halton Women’s Place.

event15270How did you react to Sony forcing Kesha to work with Dr. Luke?

It was really unnerving to hear that Kesha was denied the opportunity to get out of her recording contract with Sony and Dr. Luke.  The pictures of her crying in the courtroom are what really did it for me.  She just wants something so simple, to not have to work with her abuser, but even the opportunity they presented to still work and record, Dr. Luke still has final say on everything she releases.  If being a victim of sexual abuse didn’t already make her feel trapped, this situation just feels like she’s becoming an even bigger victim.  I think the decision was totally unfair.

What inspired you to organize the fundraiser?

I woke up one morning after seeing how fans organized to project the hashtag “#FreeKesha” onto the Sony Headquarters and thought “you know what, that is actually really cool.  All the people speaking out for her are really cool.  It’d be awesome if someone organized a fundraiser for organizations that support survivors of sexual assault and women who are survivors of abuse.”  Then I posted the idea on Facebook, without even thinking I would be the one organizing the event, and all of a sudden I get dozens of “like” notifications and a venue being offered to me. Continue reading

Compounding the Tragedy: Reflections on Media Coverage

il_570xN.911842456_tkad
Standard

This past week in Hamilton Jenna Gazzola and Aerlaena Smith were murdered. Jenna by a male neighbour and Aerlaena by her boyfriend.

You might have heard about it on the news or in the paper. Maybe not. Despite it being glaring absent in reporting: this IS about gender based violence.

The media stories seem shrouded in confusion and shock about the violence. It seems almost too much for them to name that Aerlaena was murdered by her boyfriend, for example.

Maybe you felt frustrated too, or confused or angry, anxious, sad– and not just about the tragedy of the murders themselves but also about how off-base the reporting on these situations has been.

That makes sense. The media consistently does a pretty terrible job of talking about  patriarchy, power, and gender-specific violence. Continue reading

#LawNeedsFeminismBecause

Standard

748854_dbb150a37ee14cd58e31fc4ce007a37aRomita Sur is an intersectional feminist and believes that solidarity within community is important to bring about change.  Romita is studying law at McGill University and is a member of the Feminist Collective of McGill Law. Previously, Romita was the faciliator of McMaster University’s United in Colour , a support and advocacy group for students of colour that uses a Black Feminist framework.

SACHA interviewed Romita about the Feminist Collective’s campaign #LawNeedsFeminismBecause.

 

 

How did the campaign #LawNeedsFeminismBecause start? What the goals of the campaign? 

About 2 years ago, two women of color started this campaign at McGill Law called “I am a feminist and…”. People spoke about a variety of things. This year at a team meeting in October, we thought about our goals as the Feminist Collective and making the group more intersectional. We realized the lack of female scholars, people of color, and Indigenous peoples in our readings. So we thought, why not talk about why Law needs feminism. From there two students (Rachel Kohut and Vanita Sachdeva) who had connections with professional photographers took on the project and brought all these quotes and photos to life.

The goal of the campaign is the challenge the notion of law as a whole. At McGill, we learn two systems of law, the common and civil law and we see more and more that it is very calculated and does not always take into account other aspects of peoples’ lives. The launch of the event was also right after the Ghomeshi trial which I think highlighted even more why feminism is so needed in law. Continue reading

Questions I’ve Been Asked as a Midwife

Standard

Spoken Word by Kayla Q

I came across Kayla Q’s poem on social media early one morning, clicking on the link without really thinking about it. It stayed with me the entire day. It stayed with me for days. I mentioned it to other women. Sent the link over, urging them to check it out too because it really is that entertaining. It really is that poignant. It really is that important.

I connected with her words initially because I have a personal interest in midwifery and used midwives for the births of both of my children. But the more that I watched the clip, the deeper I thought about how heavy her words are. In a short few minutes, Kayla managed to summarize so many of the burdens that women carry. We are caregivers and protectors. We are advocates and advisors. Sometimes we’re just bodies and other times we have to be survivors.

I hope that her words will stay with you and make you proud of what women do everyday.

— MF Miller

Learn to Bellydance and Support SACHA!

1913756_1575927426050895_9072761454562807430_n
Standard

Eshe from Mahasti – The Bellydance Emporium is putting on some pay what you can bellydance classes to support SACHA!

belly dancing fundraiser

Who: Created for complete beginners! No experience necessary!

Cost: PWYC (Pay What You Can) No donation is too small.

When:

  • Monday, April 11, 7-9PM
  • Tuesday, April 12, 7-9PM
  • Thursday, April 14, 7-9PM
  • Saturday, April 16, 12-2PM

RSVP: Email eshebellydancer@hotmail.com to reserve your spot!

Where: Mahasti – The Bellydance Emporium, 1 West Ave South, Suite 300, Hamilton ON

Facebook event

#ShowYourSACHASupport