The Practice of Allyship

This blog post was originally published as a subscriber-only article entitled “Yopp’s Guide to Being an Awesome Ally,” at the beginning of January 2020. I decided to share it more widely because it was such valuable information and I also updated it as my opinions and understanding of allyship had shifted over the years.  CN: broad discussion of oppression I once saw a post from someone somewhat new to social activism saying he wished there …Read More

A Tale to Tell: A Cherie Priest Tribute

Just a few months ago I re-published my article, “Creating Social Change One Person at a Time,” in which I talked about how the impact you have on individual people around you can, in itself, be a form of social activism. Denny Upkins is back to demonstrate exactly how this phenomenon can happen and the ripple effect it can create.  CN: general discussion of racism and homophobia An author by the name of J.D. Stroube …Read More

A Gay Man’s Guide To Life: An Interview with Britt East

CN: discussion of racism, homophobia, transphobia, and explicit violence toward the LGBT community– especially transgender folks; mention of abuse, AIDS epidemic, and addiction.  One of the things I love about having Denny Upkins as a guest writer is he has some connections with amazing people and he takes great joy in interviewing them for Yopp! I’ll let Denny introduce today’s interview. Upon Yopp’s return from hiatus, I knew there were a number of intriguing and …Read More

Creating Social Change One Person at a Time

Do you remember a time when you were a child and an adult in your life changed something in you for the rest of your life? Maybe they were the only person who believed in your ability to achieve your dreams. Maybe they taught you kindness and compassion towards the people you found difficult to forgive. Maybe they saw you for who you were and reflected you as good and valuable when no one else had before. Even just a small word of encouragement can be important enough to us at that age that we remember it for decades. That person that helped you probably has no idea that they affected you so much, even if that impact lasted a lifetime. What if you could be that person for someone else? 

What if you could be that person for dozens of people? Or hundreds? Imagine the reverberations of your actions throughout the world as each of those people carry that change with them through life.  

Hiding Behind “Good Intentions”: Why Good Intent Does Not Erase Oppressive Impact

CN: general discussion of oppressive social dynamics, brief discussion of misgendering We’re all familiar with the people who tell you outright that they hold hateful opinions towards oppressed groups. But for every blatantly malicious bigot, there are 10 people who “meant well” or “didn’t mean it like that” or “had good intentions” when they said or did something that actually had a harmful effect on a member of an oppressed group. You have probably been …Read More

S.W.A.T.: How a TV Show Gave Us A Template For Police Reform

CN: extensive discussion of police brutality, police tactics, institutional racism, brief discussion of of gender-based violence, sexual assault, and mass shootings We know that fiction can be based on fact but how often is fact influenced by fiction? The beloved show Star Trek has long been famous for inspiring the invention of many of the “futuristic” technologies used in the show. The Black Lives Matter movement has repeatedly called on us to dismantle and recreate …Read More

What Bolivia Can Teach Us About Confronting Systemic Violence

CN: extensive discussion of government sanctioned violence, racially motivated police brutality, and violence against women; brief discussion of of 45, sexual assault, torture, and immigrant deportation camps. Living in the US, it can be easy to forget the ways our systems and political histories are mirrored by those of other countries, and as a result, we can potentially find wisdom in other political movements similar to ours. Guest writer Marie-Ève Monette does an excellent job …Read More

7 Lessons on Racism That White People Need To Learn

CN: extensive discussion of systemic racism, racially motivated violence, and white supremacy; general discussion of other forms of oppression. As soon as the Black Lives Matter protests reached their peak, I knew that I needed to have some kind of response on my blog and I knew that the best possible response would be from a black writer. The first person I contacted was Dennis Upkins, whose scathing and witty critiques have been published several …Read More

The Problem with Misrepresenting Oppression as Just Part of Life

CN: extensive discussion of the mechanics of oppression, oppression-based violence and discrimination, and racism; brief discussion of ableism, sexism, trans-antagonism. Note: This article was published after the first week of Black Lives Matter protests but it was written back in March. Due to seasonal health issues, from mid-May until September I am rendered almost completely incapable of writing new material which meant that I could not write a response to current events. A guest article …Read More

The Complexion For The Protection: White Privilege in Media

CN: extensive discussion of racism and white privilege, brief discussion of fictional instances of stalking, murder, sex, illegal drug-use, abusive/manipulative relationships, false rape accusations, war and mass violence. Brief discussion of real-life murder, mass violence, and racially-motivated violence. Assume potential spoilers for all media mentioned below. As always, the beauty of guest posts on this blog is that they enable Yopp to include subjects and types of content that I could never hope to create …Read More