My Projects

28 09 2009

I really don’t think I will be bored anytime in the next few decades. There is much to do to try to improve the world that I live in. I wish I could magically do it all but I’m one person and the best I can do is concentrate my efforts in a few causes, support other causes and the people that work for them and be a positive role model for people around me who think that they can’t do anything to change the world.

In no particular order:

  • Finish my PhD. I’m doing this mostly for myself because I’ve always wanted to go to the end of the educational system and, even though I’ve discovered its many flaws in the course of my academic career, finishing will give me the sense of completion that I need. It will also give me social credibility. I don’t agree with the social values that give me more of a voice as a scholarly academic type than it does to people who chose other paths but I can at least use this voice, in combination with consultation with those who have less of a voice, to promote the well-being of the voiceless (or, more accurately, those whose voices go unheard).
  • Promote decolonization in Canada. I’m quite sickened by my provincial and federal governments who proceed with neo-colonial projects on one hand while denying that their actions are oppressive toward Aboriginal peoples. My future political career will have Aboriginal rights as one of its primary goals, as will the rights of the mentally challenged, LGBTQI people and Indigenous rights worldwide.
  • Promote autism awareness in my city (to start). I’m appalled and saddened by the reactions of strangers to my son and I.  People know that autism is supposedly on the rise but have no idea of the actual manifestations of autism. When my son has had meltdowns in public, we have been threatened, harassed and called names by passers-by and, occasionally, by workers in whatever establishment we happened to be in. This widespread ignorance is a primary contributor to the sense of low self-esteem and isolation that affects autistics and their families. A little respect, tolerance and help would go such a long way.
  • Alternative family solidarity. Those of us families who have a member who is autistic, LGBTQI or physically or mentally challenged or who have values that don’t quite adhere to the mainstream, such as alternate spiritualities or polyamory, are often excluded at best and ostracized at worst from mainstream family gatherings. In these contexts, we always have to explain ourselves or watch what we say. I want to gather “alternative” families of all stripes and their friends to organise social activities where we will feel free to be ourselves AND have the opportunity to learn from each other. A secondary goal would be to support each other in our specific struggles to gain acceptance in the various communities in which we take part.
  • DIY Porn. About a year and a half ago, I wrote the following: Have you always wanted to be in porn movies but thought you were too fat/gendervariant/non-white/disabled/old/whatever? Are you tired of whitewashed heteronormative glossy porn that does not reflect the true complexities of human sexuality and that underscores rather than subverts patriarchy?
    I have a vision: a low-tech, low-budget grunge porn collective that will model alternate avenues for the exploration of human sexuality. I want to create porn that allows for the sexual expression of people who have either been invisible or fetishized in mainstream porn: non-op, pre-op and post-op transsexuals, genderqueers, fatties, disabled people, ethnic “minorities”, older people, and our friends. I want to create porn that simultaneously deconstructs socially sanctioned sexuality and allows both performers and viewers to get off. I want to create porn that portrays the whole sexual experience from desire to negotiation to sexual interactions of all flavours to afterglow and aftercare. I want to create porn that does not censor all the raw human emotions that permeate real sex.
  • Write books! I have lots of book ideas – fiction, social commentary, even plays. One would be an edited volume, in French, containing articles written by various types of trans people about their lives. There isn’t nearly as much info on trans issues in French as there is in English and what is out there falls largely within the “transition as an alternative to suicide” model. As I’ve written here before, I understand that this may be the case for many trans people but I think it’s important that other narratives be heard. I also have a book called: “A Sleeper’s Rage” that I’ve been mentally writing since I was 23.
  • Make short and long films. I have some film ideas that would include people who are usually not portrayed in film independently of their non-mainstream status: auties, LGBTQI, etc. I want to make ethnically and racially diverse films that feature folks of different backgrounds, sexualities and genders, sizes, abilities and so forth in ways that go beyond tokenism.
  • Zine: A friend and I came up with a story line for a superhero names Clit Woman. With his permission, I plan to elaborate stories for this hero and their friends. I just need someone to illustrate and I think I have an interested party.
  • Cooperative housing. I’ve long wanted to find people to live nearby. Not communally in the “hippie” sense but perhaps sharing an appartment building or a large house that would be subdivided into appartments. The idea is that each family, couple or individual would have their own place but we would also have common areas in addition to that for gatherings, occasional communal meals and so forth. I think I have people for that too!
  • Work-wise, I’m not sure of my long term goals but they include teaching, activism and writing for sure and, more than likely, political office.
  • Phew! Now if only I didn’t have tedious things to do like dishes, laundry, grocery shopping and stuff it would be a lot easier to accomplish all these plans.
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