Officially Fundraising!

Social Justice Exchange is officially raising money for the Fall semester. These funds will help us provide refreshments and compensation for people attending our events and panels. This money allows us to remain independent of St. John’s University so we can keep spreading our message of radical justice without censorship.

This money allows us to bring amazing people to speak or perform at St. John’s University as a means to promote justice, activism, advocacy, and education. If we decide to try to become an official org to secure funding, we would not only be waiting for a possible rejection but we also might have to give up some of our core values as an organization.

In maintaining our independence, we can make sure we provide the best content without compromising our beliefs and your access to social justice education.

We ask that you strongly consider donating to us, even if it’s just one dollar. You can donate to us here if you feel so inclined. We appreciate it.

Radically,

LJ Vogel

The Psychology of Racism

“America is not a stranger to the issue of racism. With its history of African American slavery and segregation, America has come a long way since the more explicitly racist policies of our past, but racist ideals and biases are still going strong today. These ideals and biases help create a more subtle, systemic racism, which is ultimately what lead to the outcome of the Philando Castile shooting and acquittal. While there’s certainly a historical background that precedes the racism we see today, there is also a psychological aspect that attempts to explain why racist ideas are integrated into our thoughts, our actions, and our world. This essay is not meant at all to justify the hatred, violence, and trauma that racism creates, but rather, understand the psychology of racism so that we can actively combat the racism that hides in the way we think and act. Only by viewing the subconscious reasoning behind racism can we attempt to break it down by being active in conversations surrounding our internal biases.”

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International Women’s Day Statement

While I, as a non-binary identifying person, have a really hard time connecting to my own sense of womanhood, the people around me still view me and treat me as they would a woman. Thus, I understand the oppression. Being treated like I don’t know as much; like I can’t go as far; like I can’t be as strong. We have to remember to make room not just for women’s bodies, but for their minds, their hearts, their passions. We need to make room for them to have muscles and body hair; to study math and science; to play in the dirt and like G.I. Joe more than Barbie. We need to make room for the women who have dyed blonde hair and read Cosmopolitan just as much as the women who go into politics. We need to make room for the unashamed housewife and mother who chose not to work, and we need to make room for the women who choose careers before family. We need to stop allowing the word “woman” to define what we

We have to remember to make room not just for women’s bodies, but for their minds, their hearts, their passions. We need to make room for them to have muscles and body hair; to study math and science; to play in the dirt and like G.I. Joe more than Barbie. We need to make room for the women and girls who have dyed blonde hair and read Cosmopolitan and Vogue just as much as the women who go into politics. We need to make room for the unashamed housewife and mother who chose not to work, and we need to make room for the women who choose careers before family. We need room for the Hillary Clintons, the Elle Woodses, the Serena Williamses, the Oprah Winfreys, the Ellen Degenereses, the Janet Mocks, the Laverne Coxes, the Madeline Stuarts, and so many more. We need to stop allowing the word “woman” to define what we should be, and start defining it by what we strive to be.

We must also begin to make room in feminism for our sisters of color, for our sisters who are religious and modest, for our sisters who are sex workers, for our trans sisters, for our sisters who still have some learning to do, for our sisters with disabilities, and for our family members who identify now as men but were socialized as women and experienced the plight of womanhood firsthand. There is no time for party lines, divisions, ignorance, or hatred. The patriarchy is at work constantly, and the only way we can truly do something about it is if we stop letting things divide us and we form a united front against ALL FORMS OF OPPRESSION. We don’t fight just for white women, just for cishet women, just for middle class and wealthy women, just for English-speaking or American-born women, but women everywhere. Starting today, starting right now, starting with me and you.

With power,

LJ

Food Desert Lesson Plans

On Wednesday morning I was called into my old junior high school to teach a few classes. I’d done that a few times before and it’s always a pleasure to get to talk to young students about how they can make a difference in the world. I was unsure of what to discuss with the three classes because there is so much political turmoil right now, but I decided to discuss the concepts of food deserts and access to food.

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Why Conservative Immigration Reform Doesn’t Work

Since Trump was elected president, I’ve been hearing a lot of conversations about his wall, deportations, and undocumented citizens in general. People claim that this wall would keep Mexican people out; that deporting undocumented citizens works and that we only deport undocumented criminals; that these criminals depress wages and take American jobs; and that all of the people here who are unauthorized are here because they snuck across the border. These views are shared by many conservatives and are a large reason conservative people voted for Trump. Under the cut, I explore these arguments and address them individually with rebuttals and citations.

Continue reading “Why Conservative Immigration Reform Doesn’t Work”

What Do Anti-Black Oppression and Racism Look Like?

We were given a prompt in my feminist philosophy course: define oppression and discuss how one or more groups are affected by it. I decided to write about the general oppression of black people in the United States, and also went a bit deeper into how black women, especially, are affected by stereotyping, biased media, Eurocentric beauty expectations and more, culminating in misogynoir. You can read my thought under the cut, and my sources are cited and can be found in the Reading Material part of SJExchange.

Continue reading “What Do Anti-Black Oppression and Racism Look Like?”

Is the Free Market a Good Thing?

I had the pleasure of getting to hear Dr. Christian Nasulea speak about the free market system vs communism and socialism in Romania. I’ve been a big critic of capitalism and the American free market system for a while now, and that is based in my understanding of the fact that capitalism is built upon people working to live and eventually being exploited and made to be reliable on a system that will only ever exploit them. I’ve got a slightly less revolutionary view than some of my other leftist and Marxian friends, but I digress.

Under the cut, I will outline some of Nasulea’s main arguments against socialism, and then I pose a few questions and other things to ponder on. I also went into some of the Facebook groups I am a part of with other leftists and I will be outlining some of the discussion that occurred there, as well.

Continue reading “Is the Free Market a Good Thing?”

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