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Friday, September 25, 2015

Introducing Desiree

Hello Readers!

I am so excited to be writing to you from the AS Gender and Sexuality Equity Center’s blog! Writing has served as an outlet for me, and is integral to my activism. With the increase of social media and the facilitation of information spreading, I use my writing as a platform to amplify my own lived experiences, and to expose systemic injustice. I am also very excited to have been offered this new internship opportunity! When I transferred to Chico State University almost two years ago, there were no spaces or organizations that addressed the specific needs of people of color who identify within he LGBTQ+ community. When I initiated The Queer People of Color Society, a student organization intent on fulfilling that need, as well as bringing our unique experiences to campus and the greater community, the GSEC was intentionally and entirely supportive of our efforts. This semester, I am working directly within the women’s program, and I hope that my presence in the office will continue the GSEC’s commitment to working with marginalized communities through an intersectional lens.

All of our identities inform our unique experiences, and cannot be separated. For me, there can be no trans movement that is separate from the women’s rights movement, that is separate from the black power or #blacklivesmatter movements, that is separate from the gay rights movement, as I--and several people like me--embody a number of those identities simultaneously. Therefore, our activism must also take into consideration the ways in which our identities intersect and impact our lives in unique ways.

I have been doing activist work for my entire life, and it’s one of the things that really gives my life purpose. I am an activist because it’s important for me to feel like I’m creating change and am impacting the lives of others. As a black queer woman who experiences several forms of systemic oppression, I try to do whatever I can to ease the lives other people like me. Whether it’s working on ways to support formerly and currently incarcerated black women (since we are the fastest growing demographic within the prison-industrial complex), whether it’s facilitating workshops focused on empowering inner city girls of color, --whether it’s using singing and performing as an artistic and creative outlet to highlight the struggle--my life is devoted to improving the conditions some of us are forced to endure. That is the center of my work! Expect a critical racial, queer, feminist lens to be the basis of the work that I post here. Thank you for reading, and I look forward to my work and the work of the GSEC this semester!