Remembering Loss and Combating Violence in Select Communities: The Development and Activism of “Hell You Talmbout”

* a link to the song critiqued can be found here....

The last few years have been punctuated by fearful sounds and guns, the grim pictures of black men and women, and the tiptoeing in the media of the circumstances of their deaths at the hands of either police officers or overly zealous vigilante citizens in their communities. Each of these deaths, especially when the circumstances are examined, has opened up an opportunity for all American communities to analyze and attempt to understand the pain, racism , privilege, and class issues that are slowly breaking our communities and society. While there are many conversations that need to be had on this subject and the various means that can be used to create more opportunities, less fear, and more lasting change for all, this paper will focus on the activism inherent in the song “Hell You Talmbout” released in August 2015 by artist Janelle Monae.

This protest song was born from the pain and injustice witnessed by Ms. Monae. The day before she released the song, the artist recorded her thoughts and described how the song came to be developed and published those words on Instagram. She states, “This song is a vessel. It carries the unbearable anguish of millions. We recorded it to channel the pain, fear, and trauma caused by the ongoing slaughter of our brothers and sisters. We recorded it to challenge the indifference, disregard, and negligence of all who remain quiet about this issue. Silence is our enemy. Sound is our weapon. They say a question lives forever until it gets the answer it deserves... Won't you say their names?” This song is not the first written by this artist to try and illustrate her views on racism and state violence in American society- other songs on similar topics include ‘Cold War’ and ‘Sincerely Jane’.

A few things about this song help make it the powerful commentary that is has become. While some of the lyrics are sung to music, throughout the song a drum roll will start and the artists will shout out the name of one person who was either a victim of police brutality / murder or of violence and/or death primarily due to their race. As the name is shouted out, others join in saying “Say His (Her) Name”, encouraging the individuals surrounding them to join in. It is a moving performance that is intensely powerful whether listened to or visualized and uses catchy music and passion to draw itself into your head. The artists shout out the names of nineteen people through the song. As I listened, I felt drawn into the passion expressed and active interest in the individuals who were named. It was not hard to find information on the unfamiliar names that were mentioned. Another aspect of this song is that it reminds members of the black community that they matter as well as reminding members of the privileged community that their community isn’t whole or realistic without the acknowledgment of its minority members. In a few short minutes, “Hell You Talmbout” forces open a door in each listener’s mind to admit the pain and anger felt by many people and the fear and confusion felt by all. It is a rare work of art that can accomplish this.

There are many ways that individuals can help raise the consciousness of others in their communities to social problems and general need. Whether through campaigning or art, through service or advocacy, like-minded individuals tend to form groups to try and understand the unique problems that they face and how to confront or change them. Communities come in all sizes and many names- family, religious congregations, volunteers at non-profits, workplaces, support groups, social communities, friends, etc… Some of these groups can be voluntarily joined and exited while others may be difficult to fully leave without significant work and possibly a lifetime of difficult consequences. By recognizing not only need but specific desires and motivations in individuals and groups, each individual can carefully recognize the differences both in members and motivations of various groups and also potentially recognize how the actions of one group can affect others. With this song, Janelle Monae is making a few clear statements.

• The Black community at large is scared and angry and tired of being scapegoated and discriminated against.
• As a society, we simply allow too much racial violence to happen unchecked… and complacently accept blaming of the victim to help stabilize the status quo.
• Our society has too many layers of discontent and ignoring them will not make them go away.

I am still unclear – or fairly lazy- about some of the small things that I can do both as an individual and as a part of a group to affect positive social change and justice in the communities I am a member of. I have started by writing a few letters to my congressmen and I am going to attend a local transgender support group next week and see if I can not only learn something, but how I can potential help. I also express that I am an ally on Facebook so that vulnerable individuals will know a person they can talk to or ask for help from. It isn’t enough… but it is a start. As I learn more about how different ideas and social constructs intersect and collide, I learn more about myself and the communities I am a part of. For that I am grateful.

pictures found at : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Janelle_Mon%C3%A1e,


Personal Musings on Gender Discrimination and Inequality

In so many ways, this is an amazing time of the year. It feels so peaceful and wonderful to enjoy this time before the struggle to get out in the snow and the piercing cold really settles in and the next few months feel dreary and hunched and dark. So as the semester winds down and we finish up, I find myself reading, contemplating and comparing some of the things learned this semester learned along with my choices, my life and those around me. My thoughts have drifted back to focus more on gender discrimination, harassment, the wape gap and gender inequality at work.

Gender discrimination at work is a challenging topic and how gender affects the work place and work flow is something that I am still not sure I understand even after the readings. The one thing I feel pretty sure of is that I think most of us do not really understand how gender affects them in the work place and how to change it. I have worked for a few different places and have lived in a few different states and even though I have been working for over two decades, I do not really understand entirely how my gender as a woman has affected me in the work force. I can only be pretty sure in a few ways of direct consequences and the readings suggested a few more for my contemplating.

One of the statistics mentioned this semester was that 88.50% of women believe that they have faced harassment and discrimination in the work place. I have dealt with some harassment myself and was fired when I was 23 years old and complained to a supervisor about a co-worker. One month later I was denied unemployment payments even though I had excellent performance reviews for the three years before. I took that experience very personally and only the readings that suggested that some others have been denied benefits for the same reasons suggested to me that the experience might have been more about my gender than me personally. I have managed to work pretty hard to keep to myself and to try and keep myself separate at work because I haven’t wanted trouble for myself and the only female supervisor I have ever had wasn’t a very satisfactory experience for me. I feel like my idiosyncrasies are more accepted by males and so I find that I feel more comfortable in female sparse environments. When I think back, I find that most of the harassment I have received has been from women unless it was overtly sexual… then I tend to have troubles with men. I seem to be doing very well at my current job and I work almost exclusively with men… I wonder how much of my difficulties with women has less to do with my difficulties with communication and more to do with preconceived gender roles by myself and my female coworkers.

I have also found that the gaps in my employment due to family concerns has potentially caused me some significant wage loss… although I do wonder how much of that can also be placed on my lack of easily definable job skills. I do not have a degree and have been trained by on the job or by personal study for many of my jobs. I am definitely a women working in a blue collar job- I am told I am a professional, but my work is fairly physically demanding and I have flexible changing schedules, and even though I am full time, I have very few benefits for it… even my health care comes from the medical marketplace. “Because a blue collar woman learns most of her visible skills on the job rather than in the classroom… she must undergo her training in an extremely vulnerable situation… (as such) there are few visible skills by which the entry level female blue collar worker can be assessed. In situations such as this, where there are few cues available to evaluate ability, evaluators tend to rely more heavily on external characteristics such as gender as a means for judging a worker’s competence.” When I re-read this statement, I thought about how easy it has been for other co-workers to claim my accomplishments for themselves and I can see how my communication challenges combined with that could make me look like an under-desirable employee. I found myself sad but also a more motivated to work hard to stay in the job I am in. I do not make enough, but I am comfortable and respected and that feels pretty awesome and comfortable. Having the stability and less stress makes the financial trade off worth it for me for now.

I too have thought that prejudice and discrimination against women in the workforce has been steadily decreasing over the years so the studies listed (Cox and Harquail 1991), (Stroh, Brett and Reilly 1991) were a bit of a surprise to me. I find myself wondering again how much of my experiences are very much based in my gender and less my personality, behavior, or job performance. I’d like to take more time over the break and chat with friends about this topic and their experiences and see if maybe I can develop a deeper understanding about how it affects me and the people I interact with – both male and female. That seems like a nice interesting survey to conduct. : )

Reading about occupational stereotypes and gender stereotypes in the work place held very few surprises for me. The major surprise was how much I do seem to buy into and live / make decisions based on my acceptable and assimilation of these stereotypes. I hated being a stay at home mom and felt like what I did was fairly useless and my self-esteem was very beaten during this time. In the back of my mind I do not see myself as worth much unless I do have a job and I do tend to see my wage as what my worth as a person is. I do see many occupations as being more gender specific and I can find myself surprised when I am caught in a stereotype assumption in which I have made an unconscious assumption about who someone is based on their work or title (such as doctor) and then discover the person doesn’t fit into the image I made in my mind. One thing I feel like I have picked up from the reading is that while society suggests that the genders are becoming more equal in the workforce, the confidence that women feel (myself included) in being treated as equal is pretty low and we are far more likely to be convinced that each of us is making informed and objective decisions while the organization is making subjective decisions…. I feel like all of us are making pretty subjective decisions and judgments…. We just do not seem to recognize it all the time in ourselves. I have a lot of changing in my thought processes to accomplish.

what are your thoughts and life experience on gender discrimination or harassment? How has it affected your life?


List of Support Resources for LGBTQI Individuals in Maine

My choice of a Praxis project came about in a roundabout way. Earlier in the semester, I was worried about an individual who was in an abusive relationship and she ended up leaving with her children. She spent some time with other friends until she got her restraining order and was able to find some resources to help her get back on her feet. When I realized she was ready to leave, I started trying to find out what resources were available locally and went to Google- A funny saying of some of my friends that like to tweak church sayings is “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of Google, who giveth to all men liberally….” :) What I found was that the first six sources I found were no longer current and only one of the next few was still operating. I ended up spending hours on the phone and chatting with people trying to find the available resources. As I thought of a praxis project for this class, I realized that an individual who was thinking of coming out to friends and family about their gender or sexual status might also want to look for some resources online for support and help. I found the same exact experience as I had found when attempting to discover resources for domestic violence. So many listings and so few were still open, available, etc…. So this project was born. The majority of these sources have been personally contacted to make sure that they are available and that the small blurbs I put with them give a good idea of what the organization would like to provide in support or resources. I have left some sources off the list that were offered to me…. This list is a bit long and I am out of time…. at least for now. I am hopefully that the University will use this list as they see fit to help and benefit others in their student bodies and in their communities. I have tried to list sources from all over to make sure that no matter where in Maine someone finds this list, they will at least have a starting point to help with their concerns and unique journey.

I would like to give a special thanks to three people who took their time and went out of their way to give me some resources that they have been collecting to share with others and I have agreed to give them a copy of this paper. They are W. Smith, S. Hayes and S. Bock. I cannot express my appreciation of their encouragement and help enough. Any mistakes are mine alone. Please contact me for a better formatted copy if you wish.

AIDS Education / Resources

• AIDS Consultation Service (Virology Treatment Center- 48 Gilman St, Portland, 207-662-2911
• Health Equity Alliance (Ellsworth) : 25 Pine St, Suite A, open Monday through Friday 8 to 4 pm, 667-3506
• Health Equity Alliance (Bangor): 106 Pine Street, open Monday through Friday, 207-990-3626
• Frannie Peabody Center : 30 Danforth ,Suite 311, Portland, ME 207-749-6818 info@peabodycenter.org

Educational /College Resources

• Bowdoin University – Queer/Straight Alliance, 24 College Street in Brunswick. To join contact bgsa@bowdoin.edu or 1800-290-2682
• Colby College- ‘Bridge of Colby College’, 5920 Mayflower Hill in Waterville, 207-872-3635 or bridge@colby.edu
• Husson University- 10% Solutions: a GLTBQ support group for students and staff on Monday evenings, FMI call 941-7990 or
• Thorton Academy Gay-Straight Alliance, 438 Main St, Saco, ME 04072, 207-282-3361. Advisor is Kate Timberlake and can be reached at Kate.Timberlake@thortonacademy.org
• University of Maine Orono Rainbow Resource Center: Located at LGBTQ services, Division of Student Life, 5768 Memorial Union, room 224, Orono, 207-581-1439. Open Monday through Friday 8 to 4:30pm. Open to anyone: for more information, meredith.hassenrik@maine.edu
• University of Maine Gay Straight Alliance, 181 Main St, Presque Isle, ME, 207-581-1439
• University of Maine Machias: offers many services to students including safe zones, physical and mental health services, training on LBGTQ concerns, gender neutral housing and restrooms, as well as the opportunity to change names and gender within its academic system, 207-255-1305
1. 100% Society- advocates awareness and acceptance of everyone. Meetings are confidential. Hosts meetings, trainings and activities throughout the year. Meets weekly on Thursdays at 5pm in Kimball Hall, lkuntz@maine.edu or 207-255-1244
• University of Southern Maine Libraries: has a large collection of primary sources, books, and the largest LGBTQ newspaper archives. For more information, go to
• University of New England-Office of Intercultural Student Engagement. Gay/Lesbian/Bi/Friends Alliance: 11 Hills Beach Road, Biddeford, ME, 207-283-0171
• University of Southern Maine Center for Sexualities and Gender Diversity: Located in the Woodbury Campus Center on the Portland Campus, the Center for Sexualities and Gender Diversity (the CSGD) provides a space for students to connect, get resources, hang out, do homework, meet one another, and more! Provides referral information, a lending library, internships and work study positions at the center.

Faith and Religion

• The BTS Center – (Bangor Theological Seminary), 207-774-5212
• Circle of Hope Ministry- found in Portland with special outreach to LGBT community members. FMI, mccclergy@aol.com
• Dignity USA/ Resource for GLBT Catholics, PO Box 376, Medford, MA, 1-800-877-8797, info@dignityusa.org
• Interfaith Network of Clergy and Faith Leaders, 122 Neal Street Portland, ME, 207-775-5758
• Unitarian Universalist churches- go to www.uua.org to find a welcoming church in your area
• Some websites that can help find a welcoming congregation in your area-http://www.believeoutloud.com/take-action/find-your-community

General Practitioners / OB GYN / Specialists

• Mabel Wadsworth Center- Family planning which provides educational and clinical services to women regardless of sexual orientation. 700 Mt. Hope Ave #420, Bangor, ME, 207-94705337 or 362 Harlow Street, PO Box 918, Bangor ME 04402, 207-947-5337
• Maine Family Planning- Open Door Transgender Health care: services include hormonal transition therapy and monitoring for trans individuals 18 year old and over, on-site self-injection lessons and supplies for same, referrals to specialty providers and community resources including mental, behavior and medical providers. Located at 179 Lisbon Street, Lewiston, 207-795-4007
• Rosemary Prentice – Southern Maine Family Healthcare
3 Shape Drive
Kennebunk, ME
207-467-8988, 207-283-1407
• Voice and Swallowing Center of Maine – provides voice therapy and training to members of the trans community both in person and through telemedicine. Found at Waldo County General Hospital, 118 Northport Ave in Belfast, 207-338-2500 or www.mainespeechtherapy.org

Homeless Shelters
• Alfred: York County Shelter- 147 Shaker Hill Road, 207-324-1137
• Augusta: Bread of Life Shelter- for victims of domestic violence or single adults, 157 Hospital Street, 207-626-3479
• Bangor
1. Bangor Area Homeless Shelter- 263 Main Street, 207-947-0092 or info@bangorareashelter.org
2. Shaw house – for homeless or at risk youth, 136 Union Street, 207-941-2874 or 1-866-561-SHAW. Rick@shawhouse.us
• Ellsworth: Emmaus Shelter- 51 Main Street, 207-667-3962 (have a long waiting list)
• Farmington: Western Maine Homeless Outreach – 547 Wilton Road, 207-779-7609
• Portland: Preble Street (women’s shelter and youth shelter), 38 Preble Street, 207-775-0026
• Presque Isle: Sister Mary O’Donnell Shelter- 745 Central Drive, must be 18 years old or with parents, program based, drug and alcohol free
• Rockport: Midcoast Hospitality House, 169 Old County Road, must be 18 years old or with parents/guardian
• Rumford: Rumford Group Homes, 346 Pine Street, program based with an intake assessment different homes and shelters based on needs, 207-364-4474
• Waterville: Mid Maine Homeless Shelter- 19 Colby Street, must be 18 or over but will help needy youth find housing if need be, drug and alcohol free

Lawyers / Legal Organizations
• Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders : 30 Winter Street Suite 800, Boston MA, 1-617-426-1350, gladlaw@glad.org
• Maine Civil Liberties Union: 401 Cumberland Ave, Suite 105, Portland, ME, 207-774-5444, fax 207-774-1103, info@mclu.org
• Maine Volunteer Lawyer’s Project, PO Box 547 in Portland, 1-800-442-4293. Website : www.vlp.org
• Seacoast Law and Title- Mary Anne Martell, 240 Main Street, Westbrook, 207-591-7880, law@seacoastlawme.com
• Warren, Currier, and Buchanan – Brenda M. Buchanan, 57 Exchange St. in Portland, 207-772-1262 or brenda@wacubu.com
• Vogel and Dubois- Mathew R. Dubois, 550 Forrest Ave, suite 205 in Portland, 207-761-7796, mdubois@maine-elderlaw.com

Local Support Groups

• Bangor- MTN Trans Only, 1st Monday of the month (6:00-7:30), 106 Pine Street
• Brunswick – MTN Trans Only, 2nd Friday of the month (6:00-7:30), 24 College St, Bowden College
• Ellsworth - Gay Guyz Group (GGG), meetings on the second Wednesday of every month at various locations, 207-667-9482 or wayne@mrlanguage.com
• Ellsworth- Down East Gender Diversity Group:
1. Trans Ally – 3rd Sundays at 3pm, Health Equity Alliance Building, 25 Pine St, Suite A
2. Trans Only – 1st Sundays at 3pm, Health Equity Alliance Building, 25 Pine St, Suite A
• Kennebunkport- Gender Innovation, Trans youth programming, for more info contact giadrew2@gmail.com
• Lewiston- MTN, 3rd Friday of every month, Center for Wisdom’s Women, 97 Blake Street
• PFLAG Machias- meets every second Wednesday of the month at 6:30 pm at the Centre Street Congregational Church on 9 Center Street in Machias. 207-255-1288 or downeastpflag@gmail.com
• Portland – Bare Bears- a gay / bisexual nudist (male) group that meets on the second Saturday of every month in South Portland, barebearsmaine@yahoo.com
• Portland- Maine TransNet:
1. Trans only- 1st Wednesday of the month (6:00-8:30pm), Maine Medical Center, Dana Health Education Center, 22 Bramhall Street
2. Allies Only- 1st Wednesday of the month, (6:00-8:30pm), Maine Medical Center, Dana Health Education Center, 22 Bramhall Street
3. Trans and Allies- 3rd Wednesday of every month, (6:00-8:30), Maine Medical Center, Dana Health Education Center, 22 Bramhall Street
4. Non-Binary- 3rd Tuesday of the month, (7:00-8:30pm), Maine Medical Center, Dana Health Education Center, 22 Bramhall Street
5. TYEF- Youth and Parents Groups, for more information, contact contact@transyouthequality.org
• Waterville- mixed group, last Friday of the month at 6pm, Pleasant Street Methodist Church, 61 Pleasant St, Waterville, ME · (207) 872-7564

Organizations for Support

• All About Guys: is a group of guys (GSB or questioning) getting together to meet in healthy and safe ways to socialize and talk. Meetings in Lewiston/Auburn on the 1st and 3rd Mondays of each month and meetings in Brunswick on the 2nd and 4th Monday of the month. Also offers some STD prevention services and supplies, 207-725-4955. Website: www.allaboutguys.org
• Equality Maine: works to secure full equality for LGBTQ individuals in Maine through political action, group organizing and collaboration. Can provide resources for local support. Located at 550 forest Ave, suite 101, Portland, ME, 207 761-3732, info@equalitymaine.org
• Family Affairs Newsletter – a twice monthly free social activities newsletter for GLBTQ individuals that also doubles as a business directory, classifieds and community bulletin board. FMI, zack@familyaffairsnewsletter.org
• Gay- Lesbian Phone Line of Maine – Hotline for individuals, friends and family members offering information and support. 1-800-468-2088 or 498-2088
• Gay Maine – the lesbian/ gay directory to gay owned and gay friendly places in Maine including bars, clubs, hotels, restaurants and more. www.gaymaine.com
• GLSEN (Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network) supports ‘Gay-Straight-Trans’ alliances/ student clubs in high schools and middle schools to work to reduce hate language and harassment inside schools. Is currently working with 40% of Maine’s high schools as well as periodic regional meetings for trainings and leads presentations for organizations and the legislature.
1. Portland - PO Box 10334, 207-619-1417 or glsensomaine@gmail.com
2. Ellsworth – PO Box 373, 207-217-9873 or downeastme@chapters.glsen.org
• Living Queer Here! - A radio show on station WERU that is aired the 4th Thursday of every month at 10-11am. Various topics are covered. Can be listened to in the greater Blue Hill area on frequency 89.9 FM, in the Bangor area on frequency 102.9 FM, and streams on the web at www.weru.org. WERU also broadcasts the nationally syndicated GLBTI show, ‘This Way Out’ every Wednesday afternoon from 4 - 4:30 pm.
• Maine Gender Resource and Support Service (MEGRESS) - provides education, information and consulting for transgender and intersex individuals in Maine. PO Box 1894 in Bangor, 207-862-2063 or megress@tds.net
• Maine Transgender Network, Inc.: provides support and resources for transgendered individuals and their families/significant others with support groups in Portland and Bangor. www.mainetransnet.org , PO Box 1034, Westbrook, ME mtn@mainetransnet.org
• Maine TransYouth Equality Foundation: provides education, advocacy, and support for transgender and gender non-conforming youth and their families to help foster a healthy caring, and safe environment for all transgendered children. contact@transyouthequality.org
• Out! As I Want to Be: A supportive and empowering organization for individuals 22 years old or younger. Has twice weekly drop in programs as well as community education. Drop in at 328 Main Street, Suite 305 in Rockland. 1-800-530-6997 or .outmidcoast@gmail.com Also sponsors a radio program on Wednesday nights that is supportive of GLTBQ and intersexed individuals aged 14-22 that can be found if you tune your radio dials to WRFR - 93.3 (Rockland) or 93.9 (Camden).
• Out and Allied Theater: created through the Waterville Inclusive Community Project which works to create safe and welcoming communities for LGBTQ youth by using theater as a means to provide education to the community. Meets on Saturdays from 11am-2pm at Studio 93, 93 Maine Street in Waterville. 207-660-1672 or Markfair56@gmail.com
• Outright Lewiston-Auburn: creates a safe and affirming environment for youth under 22 years old. Friday drop in from 6pm – 8:30pm at the First Universalist Church of Auburn, info@outrightla.org 179 Lisbon St, Po Box 1038, Lewiston, 207-795-8956
• Parents, Families, and Friends of Lesbians and Gays: Po Box 8742, Portland, ME 04101, 207-774-3441. Helpline- 207-774-3441. PFLAGPORTLAND@aol.com Also found in Bangor – 36 East St in Bangor, 207-990-3626 or c35269@aol.com. Also Brunswick- 72 Woodside Rd, 207-725-6390, or shodgdon@blazenetme.net
• Portland Outright: youth driven program for LGBTQ individual and allies ages 14-22 in the greater Portland area. Drop in every Wednesday 6-8pm at 175 Lancaster Street, Portland, 207-828-6560 or 1-888-567-7600, portlandoutright@gmail.com or outright@outright.org
• Proud Rainbow Youth of Southern Maine : provides a safe and positive space for LGBTQ and allied youth 22 years and under offering social support and leadership, 343 Forest Avenue, rear entrance, 207-874-1030, info@commcc.org 165 Lancaster street Portland, 207-874-1030 ex 403, robert@commcc.org 43 Baxter Blvd, Portland, ME, 207-874-1030 prsym@commcc.org
• SAGE / Services and Advocacy for GLBT Elders – services and support for older individuals with drop in centers in Augusta, Bangor, Damariscotta, Ellsworth and Farmington. Monthly dinner in Portland and a monthly lunch in Bangor, PO Box 466 in Hancock, 207-809-7015 or doug@sagemaine.org. website: www.sagemaine.org
• Southern Maine Pride: 467 Congress Street, Portland, ME 04101, 207-650-8219 or 207-893-2550, info@southernmainepride.org
• The LinQ- serving the greater Farmington area and meets every Wednesday during the academic calendar year in the psychology building at the University of Maine-Farmington. Located at 234 Main Street from 7-9pm
• TransSupport Group: PO Box 4075 in Portland, 207-774-7029 or 207-642-6023

Runaway / Suicide Resources

• National Runaway Hotline (24 hours) : 1-800-786-2929
• National Suicide Prevention Initiative (24 hours) : 1-800-273-8255
• Statewide Crisis Hotline DHHS : 1-888-568-1112
• The Trevor Project: a leading national organization which provides crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to LGBTQ young people ages 13-24 years old. 1-866-488-7386, www.thetrevorproject.org

Therapists and Mental Health Clinics
• Auburn
1. Rebecca Hardy :207-743-9337
2. Paula Marcus-Platz: 207-784-8747
3. Melissa Snyder : 1-877-838-5741
• Augusta: Chris York: 207-662-9433
• Bangor
1. Maria Baeza : 207-942-2230
2. Penny Bohac-Cardelle : 207-942-8767
3. Jeanine Crockett: 207-942-1433
4. Cheryl Pelletier: 207-942-1483
• Bar Harbor
1. Lori R. Alley: 207-288-0594
2. Pamela Parvin: 207-288-5344
3. Barbara Peppey: 207-667-3277
• Belfast: Shelly Fein: 207-338-3111
• Bucksport: Diane Keubler: 207-469-0505
• Brunswick: William M. Barter: 207-854-4321
• Ellsworth
1. Marc Mylar: 207-667-2095
2. Sally Smith: 207-667-4042
• Hancock: Doug Kimmel: 207-669-4178
• Kennebunk
1. Dorothy Carlson: 207-985-7655
2. Denise Hammond: 207-251-1282
3. Fran Kessler: 207-332-8881
• Lewiston
1. Claire Bergeren: 207-753-0213
2. Stephen Hayes: 207-753-0323
3. Robin Rockett: 207-753-1462
• Portland
1. Rick Bouchard: 207-650-6450
2. Alexandra Bouvrette: 207-602-1636
3. Cindy Boyak: 207-662-0111
4. Frank Brooks: 207-780-6068
5. Jeremy Cole: 207-878-8001
6. Norma Kraus Eule: 207-650-1804
7. James Maier: 207-662-2004
8. Alex Roan: 207-408-1685
9. Laura Gottfried: 207-774-0046
10. Josh Kingsbury: 207-773-2828
• Presque Isle
1. Georgette Beaulieu: 207-764-8573
2. Robley H. Morrison: 207-768-5013
• Saco
1. Alexandra Bouvrette: 207-602-1630
2. Karen Neale Leary: 207-229-8006
3. Jane Thursten: 207-282-1500
• Wells : Rosemary Ananis : 207-646-6641
• Winthrop: Mary Fredricks: 207-524-3721
• York: Erin Latulippe: 207-415-8512

pictures from : http://www.mesmacnortheast.com/rainbow-hands-up/, http://all-free-download.com/free-vector/download/free-abstract-colorful-rainbow-vector-background_147996.html


Praxis Project Reflection

This semester, I have found myself pulled in many different directions. Between emergencies with friends, medical tests and physicians mumbling around me, I feel like this semester has flown by so quickly I haven’t gotten more than a few glimpses of what I was trying to gain… like a hummingbird I see the beauty and remember it but I have to keep going over my notes and writings to really pull up the clear full image that I had in front of me. I changed my ideas on a project a few times over the weeks from blog post biographies on my favorite feminists to a newsletter with basic articles for on different aspects of feminism…. to my final and completed project of resources for Maine individuals who identify as LGBTQI.

This project came about when an individual finally discovered that her fear of her husband was also her children’s fear… she discovered that he was hurting the children as well and they were terrified their father would kill her. She pretended to be ‘normal’ for two days while quietly making plans with friends and the moment her husband left for work on Monday with the only car, she walked out to meet a friend with her children and hasn’t gone back. She was lucky and even though the struggle with the courts is all encompassing still, they are safe. Those two days were awful, with several people trying to find what resources there were out there for her. Domestic violence resources are supposed to be prolific – and they are- but out of almost 50 searches, over half had disconnected numbers, were closed, had lost funding, were full and unable to help others, or even had very strict limitations. That same week, some of the readings combined with this particular experience, caused me to push aside what I had done and begin again. I wanted to see what resources that there might be pulled up on google and spent two hours writing up every source I found for LGBTQI resources in Maine. My goal was to create a comprehensive list and hoped that I was able to fill a few pages of solid and available resources to pass along to the university.

I learned a few things from this project. The first was that as I had predicted, most of the resources that I had carefully listed were either no longer operational or if they were, I had no information to find any new information for them through follow up searches. However, as I just started cold calling different people and organizations, I not only found more resources but also found people who were collecting some of the same information I was looking for. I found individuals who not only were enthusiastic that I was willing to spend the time creating this resource and were willing to help me, but were hopeful they could have a copy of it when completed to help community members near them. I had conversations with one group who was saddened that I had found them by accident and gave them ideas on my search so that they could try and make their organization come up in search engines instead of my lucky referral from a lawyer’s office. I also worked on it at work and as my project became locally known, I had a co-worker and a few patients quietly pull me aside and hand me a paper with an email or a phone number on it. I ended up having to leave resources off the list due to time constraints (I could probably spent another 25+ hours and have twice as many pages), but I feel really good about what I have. I was pleasantly surprised at how many resources there are around… even though so many parts of Maine are rural and far flung. I was also a bit surprised to find some organizations carefully not answering some of my questions and I realized that they didn’t want to be a resource, but could not come right out and say it – due to their funding models, personal opinions, etc.… (I did leave those groups off the list.)

I discovered that in some ways, those who identify as lesbian, gay, transgender, bi-sexual or intersex may have extra difficulties in finding resources and support even in areas that are known for being ‘liberal’. While there are so many resources, finding out about them was a significant amount of work and took quite a few resources to find. It appeared to me that just like my anonymous 'individual', when you are in a tough place, you really do need people with some social privilege and resources to help you find and access what you needed. I think this project was as successful as it could be with my limited time frame and the blinders of my own privilege- after all, I did choose what resources I left off the list due to time constraints… I have to wonder sometimes how things did or did not make the cut. I am hopeful that this assignment will have the forward removed by UMA and be copied and distributed wherever is appropriate. I am hopeful it will be useful to someone. Thank you.

picture from: http://all-free-download.com/free-vector/download/abstract_rainbow_background_vector_148022.html


Introduction to my Intersections Praxis Project

The next few days, I will be putting up two pretty large posts so I thought I would introduce them here. Last semester I took an Intersections class and we were able to make a choice as to a large and convoluted semester project. I am afraid I sent quite a bit of the semester trying to figure out a project and then came across my project idea from a comment at work and some contemplation. The project I chose was to try and develop as comprehensive a list as I could of LGBTQI resources in the state of Maine from emergency services to longer term mental health and medical services. The first post will discuss how I came up with the idea and how it became a reality and the next post will be the full list that I came up with and turned in for a grade. This list is accurate as of May 2016 and while it is missing a lot- due to lack of time or imagination, I wanted to share it here to make sure it is accessible (hopefully) if someone needs it. If you are reading this and want to add or change a resource, please feel free to let me know. :)


Little Things

Isn't is interesting that it is the little things in life that really make this journey worthwhile? Each of us has different ideas of what a 'little thing' is in our lives, but each of us can find something we are grateful for. I found myself dwelling on the idea of little things today and how wonderful they make life... and also confound it. How many times have we found our focus moved to a little thing- a small fluid leak from our cars, a short temporary illness, a small want that isn't fulfilled- in such a way that we are unable to fully and clearly focus on the really big things in our life. Sometimes a little thing is vastly important or becomes so... and sometimes we find that it was truly something that we could have ignored and wasted too much of our limited time on. It really is the little things that can bind and bring us joy.

There is so much ugly in the world and my country right now with so much violence and anger... so much I can do so little about. So today my focus is rest, healing, my son and service.... with a small focus on petting cats... boy I love that!

What are some of the little things that you are focused on right now?


Starting Again...

It's been awhile since I've been on here. I've been doing a bit of writing on the side, but I will admit that I feel slightly uncomfortable with the idea of putting a lot of personal information on this blog since it has been found by family... so I simply delay and then never put anything up. I want to try and reclaim the blog for myself, but I will admit that I am unclear as to how to do that. So I'll probably be a bit sporadic over the next few months. Starting again was the hardest part... so here I am giving it a try.

To any loyal readers, thank you for being patient. Comments are still more than welcome and will just be slow to post due to moderation. Any specific topics that you wish me to cover can still be requested through comments as well. Thank you for continuing the journey with me. :)