Eva Hopkins
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I'm a writer & artist with experience in the comic book industry I'm also a… more »

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Mar 6, 2016 Eva Hopkins commented on Nancy Reagan.
Sorry. I won't feel guilty about remembering history, & those who died in the 80's, & how society talked about them / treated them. This tendency we have to speak kindly of people because they're deceased is a polite glossing over of the messiness of life. People were also quick to laud Richard Nixon for being a statesman right after he died; there wasn't much mention of Watergate.

I don't have anything unkind to say about either of the Mrs. Bushes, but they didn't play as strong a role in their husband's Administrations as Nancy Reagan did in Ronald's.

Lava @26..yeah..watching people all around me die with nobody seeming to care..that has stayed with me. Seeing couples torn apart, people shunning them, families not supporting them..the memories of that grow dim, but they're not forgotten.

HIV isn't the likely death sentence it was when it first appeared & now that we have antiretroviral drugs, the horror of AIDS going ignored for so long feels like forever ago, most days. Just, not as much today.
Mar 6, 2016 Eva Hopkins commented on Nancy Reagan.
@17, It's not "wallowing in hatred" to not lament the death of someone who turned a blind eye to so much suffering. Nancy had massive influence in that White House, both on policy and (famously) on personnel choices / hirings / firings. We as a nation have a tendency to beatify people after their death. Yes, Mrs. Reagan had a complex life, & I didn't know her personally. I'm sorry her husband got Alzheimer's. But they encouraged the religious influence still currently tainting politics & ignored a huge health epidemic that carved huge holes in other people's lives & families.

The rest of the media is paying tribute to Mrs. Reagan. On Slog especially, it would feel disrespectful to Thomas's memory - & so many others - to not acknowledge how fucked up their treatment of gay people (we didn't say LGBTQA back then) & poor / minority people was.

She had a peaceful death at 94. Good for her. But I'm not going to suddenly forget how it really was back then because she's no longer living. It's not dancing on her grave to remember how the actions of her husband's Administration affected people.
Mar 6, 2016 Eva Hopkins commented on Nancy Reagan.
@20, I *did* forget to mention her later-life activism about Alzheimer's.

I just can't forget how the setup from back then - the huge religious influences of that administration, the war on drugs, the lavish lifestyle in the face of a troubled economy - has contributed massively to the setup we have today. & the tens of thousands of people dead from AIDS before it really had research dollars & basic compassion thrown at it.

Mar 6, 2016 Eva Hopkins commented on Nancy Reagan.
@15, I remember Nancy Reagan sitting on Mr. T's lap, even though I was just a kid. I understand that she was "just" First Lady. But she had a huge influence on her husband & was a powerful presence in his Administration. It's been said in political circles that if Ronald hadn't married Nancy, there would've been no Governor Reagan or President Reagan. President Obama just said about her: "She redefined the role of First Lady." (There ya go, I said something nice. Oh wait, she also made Ronald Reagan apologize for the Iran-Contra arms deal..so there's TWO nice things.)

“It’s hard to envision Ronnie as being a bad guy,” she said in a 1989 interview. “And he’s not. But there are times when somebody has to step in and say something. And I’ve had to do that sometimes — often.” - Nancy Reagan

The restoration & redecoration of the White House - one of things you mentioned - came at a time when the rest of the country was suffering through a recession; inflation was high & so was unemployment. Yes, she had a love of glamour, big parties & high fashion, & the office of the Presidency is expected to have a certain level of style when entertaining heads of state. Some of the excesses of that Administration didn't reflect well on their empathy for the people they governed & their economic struggles, though.

I'm hearing from other online circles that the Reagans had gay friends. The first openly gay couple to spend the night at the White House - Ted Graber, the Reagans' interior designer & his partner - stayed in the private White House quarters one night. It's a shame whatever relative tolerance for individual gay people they might've had didn't extend outward into their policies. I'm sorry if what good their was in her life is outweighed by them turning them back, repeatedly, on Americans less fortunate than themselves, but to me, that is their legacy.

(Thanks for the kind words about the typos, though. May have to have corneal surgery & am trying to figure out how the hell I'm gonna afford that. Yay, we have such a great health care system!)
Mar 6, 2016 Eva Hopkins commented on Nancy Reagan.
(sorry for any typos, BTW, I've developed a corneal condition & so can't read small type ATM.)
Mar 6, 2016 Eva Hopkins commented on Nancy Reagan.
@2 - Be nice? Why? Because she's dead now, a state we'll all be someday..? It's been suggested that Ronald Reagan's Alzheimer's & his mental decline in general started while he was still in office, & that Nancy Reagan had huge influence over policy decisions. She definitely had her husband's ear, regardless of how true the reports of the President's health were / are.

Under the Reagan Administration, communication director Pat Buchanan was able to say that AIDS is "nature's revenge on gay men" & still keep his job. Reagan steadfastly refused to comment on the AIDS crisis at all; more & more cases kept happening, & he said nothing while thousands - mostly gay men - died. In 1983, there were over 1000 cases w/ 394 deaths; in 1985, Rep. Henry Waxman said: ""It is surprising that the president could remain silent as 6,000 Americans died, that he could fail to acknowledge the epidemic's existence. Perhaps his staff felt he had to, since many of his New Right supporters have raised money by campaigning against homosexuals."

By the time Ronald Reagan finally publicly addresses the AIDS epidemic, 36,058 Americans had been diagnosed with AIDS & 20,849 of them had died. That's disgusting on every level.

The disease had also spread to many other countries. The Reagans' friend, actor Rock Hudson, wrote to them directly to appeal for help when he contracted AIDS; he wanted to be moved to a French hospital but needed a special dispensation. The Reagans refused the request. A;though some have said Nancy Reagan pushed her husband to finally address the AIDS crisis, other reports say it was superstar Elizabeth Taylor who was the motivation behind Nancy's finally changing her mind. Nevermind all the dead Americans, a Really Famous Person (who didn't have the 'icky' disease) said do something, so things finally started happening.

Also, in 1982, Ronald Reagan declared a "war on drugs". The policies enacted in this pointless "war" have cost the country a stunning amount of money & primarily target poor & minority non-violent offenders. Those laws & attitudes were enforced & amplified by both Presidents Bush & the first President Clinton. The USA is currently an incarceration nation; only 5% of the world's population but about 22% of the world's jailed population.

So no. I don't have to be nice, & anyone else who lived through the horror of the ACT-UP activism days doesn't have to be nice. Nancy Reagan may have been beloved by many, but I remember the first person I knew who died of AIDS, Thomas. He was a sweet young man with a kind face who was a customer at my mom's bookshop, where I sometimes worked after school. He got very sick & started losing a ton of weight. Then he was just...gone. The local hospital was one of the few around that were treating AIDs patient, so I had my suspicions about what happened to him, but my mom just said "pneumonia" & changed the subject. The second, third, etc, times I saw it, I knew what it was. The fear & misinformation the Reagans allowed to happen while the country was under their care is responsible for thousands of death that might not h ave happened had Falwell not had their ear, had they been able to see gay men as fellow humans.

She had some pretty dresses but they're both better off as tree food. I don't have to be "nice"for the sake of the memory of someone who had immense power, wealth & influence, but narrow, discriminatory views that cost people their lives.

Feb 10, 2016 Eva Hopkins commented on Savage Love.
LW #2 - SUB - looks like Dan & others above already gave you great advice: of special note is Mr. Vennominon's saying that you met a bully with appeasement. Take that advice, & don't do that again. If you give someone control over your actions - & not in the hot subbie way, but in the manipulating you with their emotions, way - then that pattern will continue. If ze contacts you again with zir trauma & threats of exposure, do exactly what Dan said. Make sure your conversation with them has a witness / witnesses, & be perfectly clear that the consensual activities that you & your BF indulge in are none of zir damn business. If ze is as freaked out by checking out someone else's Tumblr, then ze shouldn't be online unsupervised &/or shouldn't go looking up things that ze knows will upset them.

The bit about ze being involved with campus queer politics has me concerned that if this isn't handled pronto, ze will use zir position in those groups to cause trouble for you / your BF. Mebbe your BF wouldn't be upset by being further outed, or whatever; ze might then feel the need to contact your/his teachers, roommates, parents, etc. I could be wrong, just, that stripe of drama sounds familiar to me.

Because I'm cynical, my first thought about this situation was that ze had the hots for either you or your kinky bi sweetie, SUB, & that their nosing around & subsequent alleged triggering was zir way of trying to cause trouble between you two. (Oh whoops, Mr. Ven already wondered the same thing! Not surprised.)

Best of luck.

(PS: I've missed you, Sloggers..!)
Nov 12, 2015 Eva Hopkins commented on Models to Feel Bad For.
@32 & @34 - right on.
Jul 23, 2015 Eva Hopkins commented on Glasgow's Alt Pride Celebration Bans Drag Acts.
"I wouldn't wanna be in a feminist group that didn't excluded transwomen. They're women. *second shrug, it's a shruggy night* "

EDIT: This should of course say: "I wouldn't wanna be in a feminist group that excluded transwomen. They're women. *second shrug, it's a shruggy night*

Late-night typing after a long day, woo-hoo..!
Jul 23, 2015 Eva Hopkins commented on Glasgow's Alt Pride Celebration Bans Drag Acts.
A real woman = someone who identifies as & lives as a woman. Sometimes they're born women, & there's a baggage & set of experiences that come with being a woman from birth that is sometimes difficult for someone who hasn't lived that to fully empathize with, I feel.


I don't think biologically born women are "more" a woman, or a more "real" woman than trans women. *shrug* The difference is probably important to people looking for a date, who wanna date a woman. People feel how they feel, they're attracted to who they're attracted to. As long as nobody's lying to / hurting anyone, that's all fine.

Gender's a spectrum, though, & some of us are at different places than others on that line.

Aside from the qualifier of potential dating interest for those for whom that's an issue, someone's gender is their business. I use general pronouns if I can't tell, & those of how someone's dressed if that's the only method of differentiation.

I wouldn't wanna be in a feminist group that didn't excluded transwomen. They're women. *second shrug, it's a shruggy night*

One can speculate about why music festival ended. But it was the passion project of a lone person, that grew to something much larger, & she chose not to hand it off to anyone. Only she knows for sure why she chose to let it end.

..but I'm just an "angry bisexual", what do I know..? ;)