I am a Social Psychology PhD student, have already earned my Masters, and hope to be a doctor, university professor, & researcher when I'm 27.
I am an Indie-Kid and, given that I spend most of my time playing Psychology, most of the cathartic joy I find here will be to satiate purely artistic pleasures.
*I don't own any of these photos or media unless explicitly stated*
Also on the docket? Gambling, the minimum wage, and airplane parts.
Last year, people in 38 states weighed in on 174 ballot measures questions. Today, just six states are putting such questions in front of voters, and the 31 items up for decision are a motley bunch, ranging from the bizarre (storage and taxation of airplane parts, anyone?) to more hot-button topics. Here are some of these state-level issues that may end up having larger national implications.
Put a GMO label on it (Washington)
Both sides have already poured nearly $30 million into Washington’s fight over whether to label foods containing genetically modified organisms. While twenty-five other states have considered similar legislation, the vote could make Washington the first to pass a such a requirement. Poll watchers aren’t certain which way this one will go: a KING 5 News surveyreleased two weeks ago showed 45 percent of respondents in favor of GMO labeling and 38 percent opposed, with a full 16 percent pleading uncertainty.
Tax tokers (Colorado)
After Colorado’s approval one year ago of a measure to legalize recreational marijuana use, the state now wants pot users to cover the costs of overseeing the new industry. Proposition AA would add a 15 percent excise tax and a 10 percent sales tax to marijuana sales, meant to pay for retail regulation of the drug as well as some school construction. The measure seems likely to pass, having drawn 77 percent support in an April poll. That hasn’t stopped proponents of low-tax weed from throwing free joint parties in protest.
Supercharge schooling (Colorado)
This ballot measure would raise taxes by nearly a billion dollars to overhaul education, byincreasing teacher pay, charter school funding, and money for early childhood development and English-language programs. The measure has the support of Gov. John Hickenlooper and many prominent state Democrats; opponents include the current Republican state treasurer and the subtly named Coloradans Against Unions Using Kids As Pawns. The initiative’s passage hinges on whether voters can stomach the tax increase in a still-rough economy: 44 percent of voters opposed the measure in a September poll; even more people (52 percent) said they would oppose after hearing how much individual tax rates would increase.
Raise the minimum wage (New Jersey)
After a veto from Gov. Chris Christie, New Jerseyans will decide whether or not to raise the minimum wage from $7.25 to $8.25, and set up a system of annual automatic cost-of-living increases. Despite Christie’s popularity, 76 percent of state residents—including many registered Republicans—favor the increase, according to a Rutgers University poll from September. California and Minnesota recently passed minimum wage increases of their own, while South Dakota voters will decide one next year.
Screw Atlantic City (New York)
Gambling conglomerates and New York state Democratic leaders, including Gov. Andrew Cuomo, are hoping voters will amend the constitution to allow seven Vegas-style casinos, with four upstate and three in the Big Apple. The initiative comes a year after Maryland’s passage of a measure to expand gambling, which drew a record $90 million in campaign spending. New York’s fight won’t be nearly as expensive—the main committee in favor has raised just north of $2 million, while those opposed have raised almost nothing. (What opponents lack in funds they make up for in sledgehammer stunts.) Still, it’s a rare issue that has managed to unite the editorial boards of both the New York Times and the New York Post—both are opposed.
If you’re a feminist who uses the internet (and hey, if you’re reading this post that likely describes you), you probably already follow a few of these awesome people. But, in case you’re looking for some new female-friendly, female-focused faces and voices on your Twitter feed, I’ve rounded up a few of my favorite feminists to follow on Twitter. Get that RT button ready, everyone.
Jessica W. Luther (@scATX): If you followed the #HB2 (Texas abortion law) developments in real time on Twitter, then you’re likely aware of Jessica and her smart, incisive Twitter feed. If not, start following her right now… she’s an editor of Flyover Feminism and also tweets about romance novels
Jamilah W. Lemieux (@JamilahLemiuex): Jamilah is the digital news and life editor for Ebonymagazine. She’s also hilarious and opinionated.
Avital Norman Nathman (@themamafesto): Avital’s Twitter feed is equal parts repro justice, feminist critique, and open-minded compassion…all with a little bit of Ani Difranco fandom thrown in (a woman after my own heart!)
Feminista Jones (@FeministaJones): Feminista Jones is, as far as I’m concerned, the queen of Twitter. She’s extremely sex positive and she’s organized her own social-media driven healthy living challenge, the #SexyShred.
Jodi Jacobson (@jljacobson): As the editor of RH Reality Check, Jodi’s Twitter feed is great for the latest news on political issues that affect women, especially (obviously!) those related to reproductive rights.
Caroline Criado-Perez (@CCriadoPerez): Caroline started a campaign to put Jane Austen on U.K. banknotes and was repeatedly, horrifically harassed for it on Twitter. She publicized her experience, causing Twitter to change its policies on hate speech. Caroline is still tweeting, though, and still serving as one of the most visible feminists on Twitter right now.
Arwyn (@RaisingBoychick): Arwyn tweets a lot about gender-related stuff, everything from the proper way to write “cisgender” to personal stories about parenting her own children.
Soraya Chemaly (@schemaly): Soraya was instrumental in the movement to get Facebook to crack down on rape jokes, gender-based hate speech, and violence against women, back at the end of May. Follow her for all kinds of feminist news and opinion.
Sara Inés Calderón (@SaraChicaD): Badass nail art, feminism, and issues relating to Latino/as…what’s not to like about Sara’s feed?
Michelle Weiser (@riotcurrrl): Michelle’s perspective on feminist issues always makes me rethink my privilege as a heterosexual cisgender woman, so that’s one reason why I like her feed. She shares lots of fascinating links, too.
Feminist Midwife (@feministmidwife): The feminist midwife tweets about birth-y stuff and other issues related to reproductive rights, childbearing, and motherhood.
Totally tickled to be included on this list. It’s filled with some of my favorite writers and activists.