Tag Archives: Where we live

Queer Avengers

So, we’re starting up a Queer Avengers group here, as I’ve mentioned before. It’s  in its very early stages so we’re just getting together to chat about what we want to do. The premise of the group is to get together queer people interested in being a political force within our community; for me it seems to be about advocacy, education, and visibility.

Homophobia and transphobia can be pretty hard to be around, and this group is about finding creative, fun, affirming, and empowering ways to combat it in the place where we live. The sorts of things I’m keen to see happen is to make our city leaders stand up against the violence and discrimination that can happen here (it’s pretty sad that the majority of high schools down here either make it very hard, or don’t allow people to take same-sex partners to schools); I want to make the Police Diversity Liaison Officers more accessible for queer people in the city; I want to make sure that queer friendly businesses and organisations are celebrated; I want I want I want.

If anyone has cool ideas, campaigns, actions, advice, energy, anything they wanna share, please let us know!

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And the subject of politics

So, I used to do some political cartooning for the university magazine a few years ago. I stopped it when I got myself employed, and simply didn’t have the time for it. I have recently become less-employed, started an art course, and bought myself a lovely little tablet (which I’m still desperately trying to learn how to use). And, as our current Prime Minister, the lovely John Key (as drawn above), is a bit of a jerk, it looks like I’ll be brushing up on those old caricatures again…

Superheroes

I’ve been drawing superheroes all week – trying to get an image I can use for some posters I wanna draw up for a project I’m working on. Queer Avengers is a group Joe’s going to start up to connect with politically-minded queer people and queer supporters with the aim of getting active within our community. It will be rad. But more importantly, I get to draw superheroes:

Link Hui

So last week we missioned up to Nelson (about an 11 hour drive… have I mentioned that my boyfriend is amazing?? – I don’t drive so he shared the driving duties with one other person, who’s also rad too!) for a queer youth hui. We took up some people from the youth group I’m privileged enough to run, and a few other awesome people. It was a chance for young people across the country to get together, hang out and share ideas and stories about being queer in New Zealand.

I feel all stirred up inside now that I’m back home – I shared some pretty incredible conversations with people, and feel inspired to create change in our small (sometimes smallminded) city of Dunedin, parts of it was really hard, and other parts felt like I had come home.

Sometimes I feel like I get weighted down and anxious about being trans, I feel like it’s a lot to ask people to change their name, and pronoun for me, and feel frustrated as they try and figure out what label to put on Joe and my strange little relationship.

Tuakana is a Maori word for someone older than yourself, and it’s a really beautiful word I’ve only just learnt. Recently, I’ve had two ideas stuck in my head from two very inspiring Tuakana in my life, two people who probably barely know the impact they have on my life. One told me recently to make no apologies, to be, and know that other people will step up to that. The other talked to me about the power of being, and sometimes the way to make change, is simply by being, and being strong in that. I am trying to follow these words.

Newsflash!

I’m off again for the weekend but thought I’d post a little post first. Joe and I are  working on a fun newsletter to hand out to the people in our little neighbourhood. We’re pretty well connected to our little community down here and as Joe starts T and I begin changing my name in a wider sense, we wanted to find ways to let everyone know. We also wanted to find ways to make it fun and open so that people could laugh and be less intimidated by it, and so we, although this is hard a lot of the time too, could point out how happy being trans is.