From Willis & Rainey to MLK Youth Summits: A week filled with timely events

MLK day advance

Sandwiched between the historic attempted insurrection two weeks ago and the coming Presidential Inauguration, today may be one of the most significant Martin Luther King Jr. Days in decades. So it’s only fitting that events honoring the day extend all week and into next week, in many online forms, and also throughout Iowa and Illinois. On the new TRM Calendar (updated today), our top pick for the week is a free viewing of “I Am Not Your Negro.” Showing at anytime through Thursday, this film is a documentary on author…

Read More

“Basic ethical principle that is equally good for everyone” is focus of two-parter

doingthework

Please partake of the information in this two-part attempt to close out The Real MainStream‘s commentary and analysis on the topics covered below! It’s been a tough conversation, but one focused (as the “Careless Whispers” blog states) on “a basic ethical principle that is equally good for everyone, including you.” Links provided: “Iowa City, Put Down Those Pitchforks:” Original Jan. 9 editorial Also, for broader context about The Real MainStream, here are links to other recent articles about other topics: • “Kindness Queers,” “queerantine kits” provide relief to LGBTQIA youth…

Read More

“Kindness Queers,” “queerantine kits” brighten LGBTQIA youths’ lives during pandemic

kindness queers

CHAMPAIGN, ILL. — When Anna Peters and her business partner at the Art Coop began to think about how the pandemic might affect LGBTQIA children, they became worried. And then, inspired. Peters and co-owner Hilary Pope, along with Pope’s art teacher partner, realized they were already equipped to help with the arts resources all around them in the Coop, founded in 1971. The result, quickly, was 250 “queerantine kits” filled with art supplies out the door to “Kindness Queers,” who are LGBTQIA youngsters who may not have access to arts…

Read More

Social justice pioneer Kesho Scott resumes outreach to small Iowa communities

kesho scott cover

CEDAR RAPIDS — It’s been eight months since George Floyd’s death triggered nationwide historic protests against racial injustice and police brutality. But the work of memorializing him, and so many other people victimized by inappropriate policing, isn’t over, says Kesho Scott. Tonight at 7 p.m., from Cedar Rapids, Scott will lead an online memorial of Floyd, resuming a series she began this summer at the invitation of seven small Iowa towns.  The retired Grinnell College professor has worked for decades on behalf of social justice, including on the streets of…

Read More

TRM Blog: Challenging lessons for Iowa City, activists after rumor-post controversy

balloons 3696902 1920

An editorial we ran last week turned out to be a grand social experiment. The results, outlined below, aren’t a good look for progressives, liberals and the far left. But before we get to that: for anyone who started, fanned, flamed, continued or belatedly joined the witch hunt against Kelly Stucker and The Konnexion, start planning your “I was wrong” party now. Seriously, make it a party. A light-hearted affair. Enjoy the liberation of contrition. Let yourself laugh about it. Because after all, when you look back, it IS laughable…

Read More

Konnexion controversy: Just the facts!

14678811161 3648efe9a8 c e1610674055618

UPDATED JAN. 15: See end of piece for additional Fact #7 We’ll keep this brief: Facts only! Below are six essential facts that hopefully put the Konnexion controversy to bed, once and for all. In addition, we are blanking out the names of all posters in these screen shots, to protect their privacy and to shield them from undue embarrassment. #1: Stucker shared her actual reason for being in Washington, D.C., in a text with her friend three days before the insurrection. “I’m going on my own to protest the…

Read More

Pet Wellness and patient health go hand in hand at The Project of the Quad Cities

mary oliver max e1610271815700

QUAD CITIES — The pandemic has reminded us that having a pet can be important for one’s mental and physical health. It has also revealed that the financial burden of pet ownership is harder for many. The Project of the Quad Cities is tackling this challenge with a fundraising campaign for its Pet Wellness Program. This nonprofit organization, which advocates for health equity and provides health services to people living with HIV and sexually-transmitted diseases, aims to help more of its clients consider adopting a pet by helping with the…

Read More

Poignant live performance from ’90s dream pop Fishmans re-emerges

new fishmans cover

In spite of such a difficult COVID-consumed year for all of us, the universe gave us unexpected gifts along the way. Some are bright and shiny; some are dark and stormy. Some are both. One of those dual-sided gifts for me has been discovering a 42-minute concert film that a commenter on RateYourMusic calls a “post-rock/dream pop/neo-psychedelia epic…. absolutely heavenly.” Known officially as “98.12.28 Otokotachi no Wakare” (“A Men’s Farewell”), this concert is, as video game developer Daulton Nelson writes,  “a mastery in progressive pop and psychedelic pop” and “an…

Read More

“POC and Q+T-centered:” new Methodist denomination takes intersectional to new levels

lmx cover

“No one is shunned,” announced Rev. Alex Da Silva Souto, a queer native Brazilian Methodist pastor in Connecticut, about halfway through the first-ever Zoom service for LMX. They and Althea Spencer-Miller, a Drew University professor who studied in the West Indies and Jamaica, then began listing just some of the identities beyond LGBTQ+ that LMX is intended to reach. “Subalterns, outliers, speak!” Spencer-Miller said. “Wounded leaders,” said Da Silva Souto. “Mama bears… sis with an s, cis with a c … and if you have no idea what I’m talking…

Read More

Author and comic artist Huda Fahmy confronts Islamophobia with humor, wit

Huda Fahmy cover

Life in America can be challenging when you wear a hijab. Huda Fahmy shares her experiences as an obviously Muslim woman in America with humor and wit in her book “Yes, I’m Hot in This.” This comic collection of her experiences reveals the Islamophobia and ignorance that Muslim-Americans have to deal with. One recurring theme in Fahmy’s book is dealing with people who react with instant negativity and hatred when they see a hijab. Her comics show her responding with poise and witty comebacks, but Fahmy said that it’s always…

Read More