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Category: The Establishment

The Green Party Is Failing Sex Workers

Posted in Journalism, Sex & Relationships, and The Establishment

At a time when our country’s two major political parties are increasingly alienating, many politically engaged voters are turning in exasperated hope to third party candidates, like the Green Party’s Jill Stein.

It’s no wonder the party attracts the attention of progressives, independents, seasoned voters, and newly mobilized Bernie Sanders supporters alike: the Green Party bases its platform on 10 key values, ranging from social justice and equal opportunity to nonviolence and ecological wisdom. Stein has called for a 50% cut to military spending, proposes a “Green New Deal” that would invest in renewable energy infrastructure, has called for an immediate forgiveness to all student loans, and has been a very vocal critic of the corruption in the DNC.

While Stein’s positions are often controversial, the desire for an alternative to the Democrats and Republicans isn’t hard to understand in this election cycle. Especially for left-wing voters looking for a candidate who will stand up for the rights of workers and our society’s most marginalized, the Green Party is, at least ideologically, an ideal choice.

But the party has a major, hypocritical flaw.

Why Veterans With PTSD Are Turning To Cannabis

Posted in Journalism, and The Establishment

When Dr. Sue Sisley, a lifelong Republican, was just beginning her residency at the Veterans Affairs hospital in Phoenix, she refused to believe her patients when they told her about the healing potential of cannabis.

“I’ve always been interested in cannabis as a social justice issue and a matter of public policy, but I was never able to embrace it as medicine until these veterans really taught me how,” Sisley told me.

Sisley was “highly dismissive and judgmental” of marijuana at first but, over time, as more and more veterans shared their experiences, she started to accept its therapeutic potential.

Now, not only does she regularly treat multiple conditions by prescribing legal medical cannabis as an Arizona-based family physician, she’s part of a team involved in the first government-funded study to examine the effectiveness of cannabis in treating post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in vets.

Interview with Black Tower Radio: Lauri Love, Green Party & The War On Drugs

Posted in Journalism, MintPress News, The Establishment, and Truthout

Lauri Love is facing extradition, and potentially torture in U.S. prisons, if he is extradited from the U.K. for allegedly taking part in an Anonymous hacking operation in retaliation for the death of Aaron Swartz. On Wednesday, I appeared on Black Tower Radio to discuss the Love case, along with my coverage of the Green Party Convention and the need for electoral reform. I also briefly discussed an upcoming article for The Establishment about how veterans treat themselves with cannabis.

Inside The Fight To Protect Face-To-Face Visitation For Prisoners

Posted in Austin, Journalism, and The Establishment

When you’re behind bars, “there’s something psychologically uplifting about knowing someone is coming to visit you,” Jorge Renaud explained.

Renaud is an organizer with Grassroots Leadership and Texas Advocates for Justice who spoke with me by phone from Austin, Texas. He told me that unless you’ve been incarcerated, you can’t understand the emotional impact of a visit from a friend or loved one. His voice vibrated with emotion as he recalled those desperately needed visits, his tone expressing more than words could say.

This crucial connection with the outside world is endangered around the country, as more and more prisons and jails install video visitation systems. While the technology theoretically offers a new way to connect with prisoners—for those who can afford it—jails across the nation are also doing away with in-person visitation entirely, in favor of relying exclusively on these video visitations.

‘Trapped’ Reveals The Human Cost Of Anti-Abortion Laws

Posted in Journalism, SXSW, and The Establishment

A 13-year-old rape victim makes the long journey from McAllen, in Texas’s Rio Grande Valley, to the closest open health clinic that provides abortions. At the time, it’s the Whole Women’s Health Clinic, 200 miles away in San Antonio. At 20 weeks and five days pregnant, she arrives just as the deadline for their services approaches.

Despite the willingness of the clinic workers to help, and the availability of an increasingly rare abortion doctor, the clinic is unable to obtain a nurse anesthetist. Nothing can be done, short of another expensive journey of hundreds of miles into New Mexico. The impoverished victim will never be able to make that journey in time.

“We sentenced her to motherhood,” declares a tearful Marva Sadler, director of clinical services at the clinic, in one of the most affecting scenes of the film Trapped.

Why You Should Meet Your Partner’s Lovers

Posted in Polyamory, Sex & Relationships, and The Establishment

Two months ago, my lovers met over tacos.

The holidays were coming up, and it seemed like a little familiarity would help us all negotiate those emotionally-charged times more easily. Also, one lover felt a little jealous when she saw me with the other in selfies on social media.

I was confident they’d get along. Besides the obvious, they have several things in common: They both love cats, feminism, and, of course, Tex-Mex food. This would give us at least three topics to talk about, even if things got awkward.

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