Monthly Archives: July 2019

Katy Perry donates $13k to Planned Parenthood in wake of Trump election win

Katy Perry with Hillary Clinton last week. Photo: Daniel AckerIn the midst of anti-Trump protests, people who support the reproductive rights of women have started making donations to the cause, including pop star Katy Perry.
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Perry, the daughter of two Protestant Christian pastors, donated $A13,000 last weekend to Planned Parenthood – a nonprofit organisation that provides reproductive health services for women, including affordable birth control and access to safe, legal abortion.

Other women have started donating to the organisation, which Donald Trump, the 45th president of the United States promised during his campaign he would stop funding.   It’s time to turn words into action❗️There are so many steps to take, but my first vow is to support organisations that may have their funding support taken from them in the future by the government. I am making a public donation to Planned Parenthood for the teenage me who made several visits to first a clinic in Santa Barbara and then Los Angeles, CA to educate myself on my sexual health, a subject I had little to no information on because of my sheltered upbringing. I had no idea how things worked down there, and had no idea how to make a plan for them. Planned Parenthood educated me on my body and my reproductive health, so that I could focus on my dreams and using my voice until I knew the timing was right for me to make a plan to have a family. Since then, I have been able to focus wholeheartedly on bringing messages of strength and becoming a voice for others. Without this education, I may have had a different life path. That is just my experience, but I know Planned Parenthood’s broader range of services can sometimes be the only medical support low-income families ever see. I know what it’s like to need help. I came from a lower- to middle-class family and never grew up with the option of health insurance. I remember having 13 cavities as a teenager, and the best option my parents could come up with was to try and take me to Mexico because we couldn’t afford anything in California. I am grateful for and stand in support of Planned Parenthood for giving Katheryn Hudson the knowledge to plan, and for continuing to be a haven for women to learn all options for their future. Now, more than ever, we all need to protect and create safe places for each other. I hope I can help inspire you to make a gift as well, and become a member and an ally. Go to: https://南京夜网,plannedparenthood.org to show your support. #wewontgobackA photo posted by KATY PERRY (@katyperry) on Nov 11, 2016 at 5:19pm PST

Perry, one of Hillary Clinton’s biggest supporters, said Planned Parenthood had helped provide the sexual education that her “sheltered upbringing” had not provided.

“I am making a public donation to Planned Parenthood for the teenage me who made several visits to first a clinic in Santa Barbara and then Los Angeles, CA to educate myself on my sexual health, a subject I had little to no information on because of my sheltered upbringing,” she wrote.

“I had no idea how things worked down there, and had no idea how to make a plan for them. Planned Parenthood educated me on my body and my reproductive health, so that I could focus on my dreams and using my voice until I knew the timing was right for me to make a plan to have a family … Without this education, I may have had a different life path.

Vice President-elect Mike Pence is the man spearheading the campaign to defund Planned Parenthood. The governor of Indiana and staunch evangelical Christian is a strong anti-abortion advocate and in 2007 he sponsored an amendment to block funding to the organisation.

“He continued to introduce similar legislation until 2011, when the House of Representatives passed a bill blocking federal funds for the organisation. (The bill later failed in the Senate.) Under his time as governor of Indiana, he passed severely restrictive laws regulating access to abortion in the state, and he slashed state funding to Planned Parenthood in particular. This led to five Planned Parenthood clinics shutting down; these closures were later tied to a HIV outbreak in one of the counties where a clinic was forced to shut its doors,” Bustle explains.

Women who want to send Trump, who once described breastfeeding as “disgusting”, and Pence a strong protest message have also started donating to Planned Parenthood … in Pence’s name.   Done and done @ppactA photo posted by @amyschumer on Nov 12, 2016 at 11:39am PST

Amy Schumer isn’t the only one: Just donated to Planned Parenthood in Mike Pence’s name, it’s easy & a certificate will be sent to his office: pic.twitter南京夜网/GJx3GdyBZl— Gabrielle Moss (@Gaby_Moss) November 12, 2016some friends of mine are donating to Planned Parenthood in Mike Pence’s honor, so he gets a letter every time they do it— V.V. Ganeshananthan (@V_V_G) November 11, [email protected]_pence I just gave Planned Parenthood $2,000 in your name and that’s just the fucking beginning.— Bess Kalb (@bessbell) November 12, 2016

As well as donations, others are encouraging women to get long-acting contraceptives like IUDs immediately, in case of Planned Parenthoods closures or cutbacks. GET AN IUD TOMORROW— Erin Gloria Ryan (@morninggloria) November 9, 2016Making an appointment to get a 10 year IUD this week cause who knows what’s going to happen to my reproductive rights :-)— Katherine Williams (@Kate_williams12) November 9, 2016That’s where #IUDs will be useful as they last longer than a #USPresident term! Worried about #WomensHealth in US 🙁 https://t.co/uip01qUhHc— Alex Perera (@AlexGlobalNut) November 13, 2016

Cecile Richards, President of Planned Parenthood Action Fund, said in a statement after Trump’s win: “There are almost no words to capture the threat that this election result poses to our democracy, to our economic security, to access to reproductive healthcare and most especially to the safety and dignity of people of colour.”

While the future of the organisation stands in limbo, its message on Twitter was powerful and simple: “These doors stay open.”

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‘Don’t agonise, organise’: Lena Dunham’s call to action after Trump’s win

Lena Dunham speaks to a crowd at a Hillary Clinton campaign office in January. Photo: Scott Eisen/Getty The Lenny Interview: Lena Dunham interviewed Hillary Clinton in September 2015. Photo: Lenny Letters/ Youtube
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After actively campaigning for Hillary Clinton during the US election, actress Lena Dunham has penned an essay, urging people not to agonise, but organise, saying now is not the time for minorities to understand the mindset of Donald Trump voters.

The creator and star of the HBO series Girls, who labelled a Trump victory “unconscionable” during the “Emergency Election Edition” of her podcast Women of the Hour last week, has taken to her corresponding site, Lenny Letter, to reflect on her year and a half of campaigning and to lament Clinton’s loss, before delivering a striking call to action.

“As horrifying as I found Donald Trump’s rhetoric, as hideous as I found his racism and xenophobia, as threatening to basic decency as I found his demagogue persona, I never truly believed he could win,” Dunham penned.

Reflecting on the campaign’s culmination of her experience and built friendships, Dunham pointed out that being a staunch supporter of Clinton subjected her and others to vitriol and threats online.

“We wanted a female president. We wanted guaranteed control over our own bodies. We wanted equal pay. That made us nasty. That made us targets,” she wrote.

“Now, more than ever, our power is in numbers and in our refusal to accept the idea that our leaders intrinsically know what’s best for us, better than the people we meet every day.”

She continues by detailing the “worrying” behaviour she witnessed in the days after the election including, “watching a little girl cry, wondering if her mother would be deported” and listening to an African-American reporter ask “how to explain to his sons, ‘You tell them, over and over again, not to be a bully or a bigot, to respect women, to be kind, that’s how you get ahead. And now a bully is the president. How do you explain that?”‘

“In this new reality, we have all been radicalised. It’s no longer a word for those living on the fringes. It’s a word for everyone who walks in pain with the results of this election, who feels their identity being crushed under the weight of the half of the country who voted for a man who denounces and denies the basic rights of women, the queer community, immigrants, Muslims, people of colour and the differently abled. We’ve been radicalised and therefore we’ve been deputised to do our parts.

“What that means will become clearer over the coming months, and we will all have to use the tools we have to speak for ourselves, but moreover speak for the voiceless, the people who can’t demand change for fear of very real and violent losses. Those who are gagged by the system Donald Trump proposes.”   Like so many of you I have been gutted, breath taken in the worst way, by the results of this week’s election- a sadness like a death or a separation, crushing and fresh every hour. But in the words of the immortal Flo Kennedy we most organize, not agonise. My thoughts up now on @lennyletter- link in bio. AND: if you wonder why comments are disabled on this post? I refuse to take any more verbal abuse, threats of violence, taunts, jabs at my body, my family, my humanity. I refuse not just for me but for all of us. Across many intersections, we are done. There is no space left- the caverns of begrudging acceptance have been emptied and filled with fight. Just like she would want. Just like all the those who have fought for us would demand.A photo posted by Lena Dunham (@lenadunham) on Nov 11, 2016 at 8:59am PST

Dunham borrowed the concept of “don’t agonise, organise” from championed African-American activist, feminist and lawyer, Florynce Kennedy, proving the fight for change is just as important now as it has been over previous decades. Using similar quotes from various influential women throughout the essay, including Clinton herself, Dunham noted the power of millennials rejecting Trump and where she sees the movement moving forward.

“Our generation says no, as do first-time voters, to what this man and his presidency represent. We reject, wholesale, his brand — any brand — of hatred and bigotry. We are the generation with the strongest and most vast understanding of identity politics yet. We recognise intersections and contradictions and want to make room for them in people and in government. Our hearts are open, but our resolve is strong. We want to create a different kind of America than has ever existed. America will not be great until it fulfils its promise of liberty and justice for all.”

After thanking Clinton for her campaign and 30 years of political service, Dunham concluded the letter with a strong call to action, saying that the work isn’t complete, “it is only the beginning”.

“Thank you, Hillary, for bravely taking every shot and standing tall, for weathering assaults from every direction, for telling us that no, this wasn’t politics as we know it. Thank you for showing our daughters something beautiful to aspire to. Thank you for reminding us what we are capable of when we are focused and ferocious. Thank you for 30 years of that. Thank you for not abandoning us now,” she wrote.

“We will stun ourselves with what we are capable of. We will laugh with surprise like kids who finally threw a punch back at the schoolyard bully. We will watch our friends in awe as they step forward and demand more, as they recognise and wield their politicised identities. We will not be governed by fear. We will show our children a different way. We will go home like shooting stars.”

Dunham also took to Instagram after being criticised for her comments on plans to leave America if Trump claimed victory.

She wrote: “And for those demanding I move to Canada based on something I said when this man seem like a steak salesman with a long shot at the presidency: stay busy revelling in your new regime. I will go many places during my lifetime, surrounded by kindreds on a mission to spread justice and light.”   And for those demanding I move to Canada based on something I said when this man seemed like a steak salesman with a long shot at the presidency: stay busy reveling in your new regime. I will go many places during my lifetime, surrounded by kindreds on a mission to spread justice and light. I can’t wait for all of of this, and for the change to come, as we use what we’ve been given to protect those who can’t protect themselves. What are you living for?A photo posted by Lena Dunham (@lenadunham) on Nov 11, 2016 at 9:03am PST

Her words echo other celebrities that have spoken out against the election result. Oscar-winning actress Jennifer Lawrence wrote an impassioned essay calling supporters not be be afraid but to “be loud” and Amy Schumer lambasted Trump supporters, labelling them “kicking and screaming babies.”

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Crown Resorts says China releases one of 18 detained casino employees

Crown’s Shanghai-based administration assistant Jiang “Jenny” Ling and her husband, American expatriate Jeff Sikkema. Photo: SuppliedBeijing: One of 18 Crown Resorts employees detained a month ago in China has been released on bail, suggesting authorities have concluded their preliminary investigations and could soon move to formally arrest and then charge those remaining in custody.
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Chinese national Jiang Ling, a Shanghai-based administrative employee for Crown, was released on bail on Thursday.

Crown confirmed a “junior” Chinese employee had been freed on bail, but did not provide a name or other details. The gaming group declined to comment on whether it expected any of its other staff to be released or charged in the coming days.

Neither Ms Jiang, who also goes by the name Jenny, nor her husband, American expatriate Jeff Sikkema, could be reached over the weekend. In China, it is not uncommon for police to warn against making public comment about an ongoing investigation or trial as a condition of bail.

Mr Sikkema has argued that Ms Jiang’s responsibilities did not extend beyond organising Australian visas for Crown’s Chinese customers and that she was not involved in any sales or marketing.

The news of Ms Jiang’s bail was received with surprise by relatives of other detained employees, who have also been unable to contact the pair.

While glad for Ms Jiang, any elevated hopes of their own loved ones being bailed in similar circumstances were fading as the clock ticked down to the 37-day deadline next week, the maximum period Chinese police can hold criminal suspects without formal arrest, which almost always leads to charges being laid.

It is possible more employees could be released before then, but family members acknowledged it would have been more likely that police would release those it intended to at the same time.

“There’s no news,” said one family member of another Chinese Crown employee who declined to be named.

“There’s not much we can do other than wait.”

Standard procedure dictates that police obtain approval from court prosecutors to formally arrest within 37 days of detention based on preliminary evidence. Further investigation will then be carried before charges are formally made and the case handed over for prosecution, a process that could drag on for months.

Three Australians are among the 17 Crown employees remaining in detention in China after a series of coordinated police raids on October 14 and 15.

They include Jason O’Connor, the head of Crown’s international VIP program, Jerry Xuan and Pan Dan. A fourth Australian, who is not a Crown employee and who has not been named, is understood to be among a number of “junket” operators who recommend gamblers to Crown detained in connection with the case.

At least some of the junket operators were also due for release, The Australian newspaper reported, including Chinese nationals Tian Di and Ou Hui, who is also known as Johnny. Both men are understood to have links to the Melbourne-based “China City” junket.

The Crown employees have been detained on suspicion of “gambling crimes”, and it is illegal to promote or organise gambling activities on the mainland. It also comes amid a broader anti-corruption blitz targeting money laundering and illicit money transfers offshore.

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Daily World Dispatch – the season of ‘truthiness’

How do we know what we know? In the wake of Donald Trump’s US election victory, journalists and pollsters around the world are asking this question.
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We judge people by what they say they will do. In Trump’s case, that is a variable. We also look at data. The data tells us that Trump’s victory was not a “landslide”, so the idea that anyone who opposed him is discredited electorally or in terms of the positions they hold does not follow.

What’s more, there are still facts. If those protesting against Trump’s election are not paid to do so, then calling them “professional protesters” is a travesty. And such lies have consequences.

When the government of Myanmar treats everyone in its province of Rakhine as a separatist militant, or the Syrian regime dismisses those who oppose it as “terrorists”, the same sins of commission and omission are perpetrated.

And, it should be said, that when people are called “deplorables” that is also a travesty.

But when someone asks a tough question and is dismissed by saying “she had blood coming out of her eyes . . . out of her wherever”, then the media is also obliged to call that what it is. “Deplorable” is one word for it.

As the far right continues its march in France, the challenge will certainly be to bring the narrative of those voting for Marine Le Pen to our audiences – but also to make it clear when that narrative deviates not only from facts but also from the basic decency which every member of society is entitled to expect.

A tough task, but still a worthwhile and exciting one.

Must reads:

After US election, Russia feared influencing French vote, corroding Western values

Donald Trump advisers urge Obama, Clinton to call off ‘professional’ protesters

Fighting flares in Myanmar’s western state of Rakhine

​Donald Trump is about to learn all of America’s ‘deep secrets’

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