Random

Why Rights are Wrong

shootings-300x169 Why Rights are Wrong

Map showing location of all 352 mass shootings in the US in 2015 so far. via Washington Post

It seems these days everybody has rights, and don’t we all know them? The right not to be offended, the right not to be upset, the right to have what you want, when you want it. The right of religion. The right to bear arms.

Who gave us these rights, exactly? Here I hear a cry of Americans shouting “The Constitution!” but that’s a document made up and written down by men who were claiming those rights for themselves. They weren’t naturally or intrinsically bestowed. Continue reading →

Posted by Kate Aaron in Random

World AIDS Day: Looking Forward

HIV_Budding_Out_of_an_Immune_Cell_%286813326451%29 World AIDS Day: Looking Forward

Microscope image of HIV cell attaching to human immune cell. Wikimedia Commons

It’s been thirty-four years since the first patient was diagnosed with what we now know to be HIV/AIDS. Last week, UNICEF reported that AIDS-related infections are now the single biggest killer of adolescents (15-19) in Africa, and the second most common worldwide. Most were born with the virus, and are the last generation for which HIV-positive pregnant women didn’t receive anti-retrovirals to prevent transmission to their babies. Many won’t even have known they were HIV-positive until they fell sick.

When we think about HIV/AIDS, too often we forget that the pandemic is still ongoing. On World AIDS Day, people in the west usually look back to generations lost; to gay men in New York and San Francisco and London and Manchester; to those in their forties, fifties, and sixties who lived through the dark days when their friends were dying all around them, not knowing what was killing them, how it was transmitted, or who would be next. Continue reading →

Posted by Kate Aaron in Random

Waxing Lyrical

If you’re interested to hear my opinion on self-publishing, I’m over at Jay Northcote’s blog today, talking about how and why I do that thing I do.

And don’t forget the LGBT Push Back Fundraiser is still happening! We’re creeping up on 100 entrants, and there’s still plenty of time to lend your support to this wonderful charity initiative. Follow the link for a free, exclusive story by AJ Rose.

LGBTQBannerFB-300x118 Waxing Lyrical

Posted by Kate Aaron in Random

A Taxing Time

So I’m seeing a lot of discontent from readers about the impact the new EU tax laws are having on the price of ebooks. These rules came into effect on the 1st January this year, and for many readers, the first they knew of them was when they tried to buy a book and found the cost had increased by somewhere in the region of 20%. Authors should be less surprised, because we all had warning weeks or even months ago that this was going to happen.

So for those who don’t know, here’s the skinny on what went down. Continue reading →

Posted by Kate Aaron in Random

Something in the #Facebook Water #MyNameIs

So this all began a week or two ago, when Facebook deleted a ton of accounts en masse, all belonging to drag performers, all for contravening a ‘real name’ clause in their terms. Basically, they can all use their full legal names (and Facebook is requiring legal ID to evidence them), switch their existing profiles to ‘fan pages’, or get off Facebook completely.

mynameis-300x273 Something in the #Facebook Water #MyNameIs

Source: Unkle Mikey, Facebook

Continue reading →

Posted by Kate Aaron in Random

Facebook, Redux #Namegate

Following on from yesterday’s saga…

The email I sent bounced back with a generic “We don’t deal with this, go to the Help pages” response. I found a page that let me file a dispute to an account being disabled. Hurrah! Except… they want me to scan my ID (drivers’ licence, passport) and upload it as a JPEG. I decided to send this instead. Continue reading →

Posted by Kate Aaron in Random

WTF, Facebook?

So, I’m sure you’ve heard how certain trans* performers and drag artists have recently fallen victim to Facebook’s sudden insistence that everybody on its site uses their full, legal name. I’m sure you’ve read all about the potential pitfalls and repercussions attendant with such a stipulation, especially in a country where in most states you can still be dismissed from your job and evicted from your home for being LGBT. Plus, y’know, the very real risk some people face of being physically harmed, were their identities known. Continue reading →

Posted by Kate Aaron in Random

Why the Hobby Lobby Ruling Should Worry Us All

I blogged about the Hobby Lobby case while it was being heard in the US Supreme Court. Back then, I was annoyed that it had even got that far, but I had faith. Faith in a Constitution which guaranteed the separation of church and state, and faith in the nine Justices who almost a year ago to the day handed down two massive human rights rulings concerning Prop8 and DOMA. It was utterly ludicrous for a company to claim any sort of religious right, and even crazier to think that right would supersede the medical needs of its employees. Yet that is exactly what SCOTUS just ruled.

aclu-300x91 Why the Hobby Lobby Ruling Should Worry Us All

Continue reading →

Posted by Kate Aaron in Random