Discussing A Fantastic Woman

A discussion group at the Broadway to celebrate the Oscar win of “A Fantastic Woman” and discuss trans issues raised by the movie and in Nottingham now.
Hearing stuff I was unaware of.
One remark struck me in particular – (something like) – ‘I don’t know whether I want to start taking hormones, and then have surgery; I just know I’m happier when I’m trans.”
Other references to people in Nottingham being trolled, and stories of violence against trans people (particularly in Brazil).


Votes for Women

Women Nottingham City Councillors Linda Woodings and Wendy Smith are among many celebrating the 100th Anniversary of the Act that gave votes for women in the UK; well, most women, and at a minimum age 9 years older than for a man.
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Wikipedia shows the terms of the “Representation of the People’s Act 1918” was qualified, and in aspects confusing.
– Women over 30, but not all.
– Men over 21, but some younger than 21 if they served in the war at a certain point – something that might inform campaigns for the age of majority to be reduced to 16 since we call on people to join the armed services below 18.
A range of events are being organised to celebrate.

Cyrille Regis in a Shrewsbury shirt

So many spectacular goals by Cyrille Regis but not many will remember the one he scored wearing a Shrewsbury Town shirt.

Meeting an inswinger from the wing, getting ahead of the last line of defenders and powering in a header from 12 yards.  (“Good morning, ball”.)
Yes, 1981 and West Bromwich Albion wore either the classic navy & white stripes or the iconic green & yellow stripes – both deemed to clash with Salop’s blue & amber.  So when they drew Salop in the League Cup in an era before third strips (and universal TV coverage), the Albion had to wear our all red away kit.

It was a phenomenal match when the second tier side beat the top tier side 3-all at home.  By which I mean, the Albion were 3-0 up at half-time, thanks in part to Cyrille’s header, but we brought the game back to 3-all at full time (a last minute goalmouth dribble by Steve Biggins).

Regis’s death is so emotional for many reasons – the phenomenal footballer he was; Cunningham & Batson; that West Brom team; how he broke barriers for black players; the content of his character; that 59 seems no age for such a former athlete – and cos I witnessed it: vs Salop, vs Man U at The Hawthorns (1979) and the “match of the decade” (that wasn’t) at Anfield (also 1979).

It brings back memories of the racism – especially that gorilla chants were OK and good cos they put black players off (which I felt often was not the case – e.g. Wimbledon at home, Laurie Cunningham scoring at Old Trafford in the 5-3 victory).
You wanted to be on the Three Degrees’ side, cos of the victimization, cos it was right, and yes, because they were the heroes.

See Guardian tribute; and a cartoon tribute.  Look out also for the Youtube videos.


NHS Crisis

Time for people to reflect on what, with 3 General Elections, we have allowed to slip with regards to our health care and our NHS.

I received 2 tweets in quick succession from Theresa May boasting about a scheme that they claim will help a few thousand people onto the property ladder.
That evening, a BBC tv East Midlands political journalist lists the kind of conditions that warrant a visit to A&E (and I didn’t hear broken bones included).
Whatever was said, on top of the cancellation of non-urgent operations, this is a pretty shocking statement. And it’s the BBC announcing it! (Not someone from the NHS.)
Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt, comes on national tele to say they’re trying to do it a different way this year – expressed in a way that makes it sound like he deserves some sympathy at least.
Another spokesperson has said that a range of factors have come together – including the cold weather. (Maybe it’s true that we didn’t have snow in Tony Blair’s era.)

Time to remember, the factors of growing demand (including more people, an older population, more cures (with greater expense) and more people surviving with challenging conditions) existed before 2010 when (after 13 years), New Labour more than trebled the spend on the NHS including the launch of the largest hospital building programme in our history. Targets for getting a GP appointment, being tended to in A&E and for operations, were set and were being met.

We deserve better. We used to get better.


“Command respect throughout the world …”

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So need films that make Americans think on –  on who they are, and what they did, and why, in 2016.
And to know that the challenge isn’t just current, but been issued before.


Pentrich Revolution exhibition

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England’s last armed rebellion, from 1817, and exhibited at the National Justice Museum on High Pavement in Nottingham city centre opened on 200th anniversary of the conviction / execution of 4 of the leaders.
Open until 7th January 2018 and free entrance, put together by the Pentrich and South Wingfield Revolution Group and supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund.
Opened by Roger Tanner and attended by Paddy Tipping, pictured alongside a display on decades of Police spying on activists.
Stating plainly that the Luddites were not anti new technology, but anti shoddy goods and poor working conditions.


Moral fundamentalism

The problem of “moral fundamentalism” on campus: Many act as if they had taken this pledge (from Steven Fesmire).
(Brought to my attention by co-Councillor Nicola Heaton.)