WHERE FUNCTIONALITY MEETS FASHION.
A BEGINNER'S GUIDE TO KINKS
FEATURES 36 THE LIGHT SIDE OF THE MOON
The fight to decriminalize psychedelic drugs.
Creating actionable progress beyond your social media.
DEPARTMENTS BITS + PIECES
FOOD + DRINK
FASHION + BEAUTY
8 THRIFT FLIPS
12 COLD-WEATHER COCKTAILS
23 AGELESS BEAUTY
10 WATCH OUT
14 GOURMET MELTS
24 SUSTAINABLE STYLE
11 REFRESH YOUR FEED
16 BLISSFUL BOARDS
26 RING 411
Let’s get crafty.
There’s an (Apple Watch) app for that.
From follow to following.
Have a mixed drink year-round.
Grilled to perfection.
Play with your food.
It’s more than the wrinkles and grey hair.
Breaking the fast fashion cycle.
The pro-tips you’ve always wanted.
28 UTILITY TALKS
Continuing style while in a mask.
56 WINTER 2021
WELLNESS + SEX
48 LET’S GET KINKY
53 HONORING TRAILBLAZERS
49 SHOP BLACK-OWNED
54 CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF CHANGE
50 DOUBLE (STANDARD) TROUBLE
56 ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: CHRISTOPHER SCOTT
52 THE OVERLOOKED ORGAN
ON THE COVER
A guide to sexual experimentation.
These products can boost self-confidence.
Sexuality isn’t a one-way street.
Thyroid health is important.
Soundcloud is here to stay.
The man behind the lens.
Image by Tina Intarapanont of Juan Louis (left) & Aashka Patel (right) from the story “Utility Talks.” See page 28.
DRAKE MAG STAFF EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Cheyann Neades
MEDIA EXEC. ONLINE EDITOR
Emily Bondura ASSISTANT ONLINE EDITOR
Sam Rothbardt ADVERTISING + PR DIRECTOR
Jasmine Inthabounh SOCIAL MEDIA EDITOR
ART ART DIRECTOR
Fatima Calderon Ceron PHOTO EDITOR
Tina Intarapanont ASSISTANT PHOTO EDITOR
EDITOR'S Letter 2020 was anything but ordinary. Hell-scape wildfires, potential wars, massive political upheaval, protests in the streets, protests at the ballot box, even protests about the post office. All topped off with an ongoing pandemic. It's like the impending doom is never-ending. That’s why, this past year of all years, even the smallest things are a huge win and that’s what we’re about here at Drake Mag. We’re celebrating any victories, like working remotely. While Zooming with an all-new Drake Mag team comes with its own challenges, we've instead focused on our adaptability. Along the way we've learned how to complement outfits
with masks (pg. 28) and make cocktails that are easy to craft at home (pg. 12). 2020 also continued and strengthened the fight for racial equity. We stand with those who have been advocating for justice for years. We know that these fights need to continue. Performative activism needs to end (pg. 42) and Black folx need to be protected. Antiracist work is a consistent, active effort. Whether we’re protesting or supporting Black-owned businesses (pg. 49), the work doesn’t stop after an election cycle or once you finish a book (I’m talking to you, white people). Our work here at Drake Mag is to both inform and entertain. This content would not be possible
without the many talented individuals listed on the masthead and beyond. Whether it involved staring at a screen for hours or running into a 14-day waiting period, we've persevered and made it work. It doesn’t stop there. Visit drakemagazine.com and keep up with us on Facebook and Twitter (@ drakemag), and Instagram (@drakemagazine). Let’s keep the conversations going, together. Cheyann Neades EDITOR IN CHIEF
SPECIAL THANKS TO: Catherine Staub, Jeff Inman, Sarah McCoy, Kathleen Richardson, Denise Ganpat, Jennifer Dryden, Madi Koetting, Drake SJMC, Christian Edwards Printing, Trixie’s Salon, The Barnum Factory, Fusion Boutique, all of our models, and those supporting behind the scenes. Copyright 2020 by Drake Mag and Drake Magazine. Drake Mag is published with the support of the Board of Student Communications. Opinions expressed in the magazine do not necessarily reflect the views of Drake University. Letters to the Editor are encouraged and may be published online at www.drakemagazine.com. Please direct any questions, comments, or concerns to firstname.lastname@example.org
Ian Evans Charleigh Reinardy Michael Cummings DESIGN
Emma Kerr Amy Flieder Brynn Yoshinaga Steven Peralta Cornejo
WORDS MANAGING EDITOR
Kaili Miller ASSOCIATE EDITOR
Emily Postlethwait ASSOCIATE EDITOR
Caitlin Clement ASSOCIATE EDITOR
Annie Peterson ASSOCIATE EDITOR
Ella Schulte WRITERS
Allaire Nuss Kate Franke Sophia Lacy Kyle Keegan Victoria Soliz Blake Morrow Sawyer Elwell Savanna Bous Emma Brustkern Sydney Hamilton Elizabeth Weyers Vada Abrahamson Lauren Skye Lawson
MONOCHROMATIC MOMENTS WORDS ERIN MUMFORD
Feel as though your makeup routine has gotten dull and is in need of some TLC? Adding some warm hues and pretty blues can help. Keep your look fresh with these three easy looks.
BE PART OF THE CHANGE
HOW TO MAKE YOUR OWN DRINKING BOARD GAME WORDS MEGAN BOHALL
Staying at home means being safe and getting creative. Read how we put together Drunkventure, itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s similar to the classic game of Monopoly, but with a tipsy twist.
WORDS BROOKE BUSCH
Recently, celebrities have been using their platform to speak about BLM. Tennis player Naomi Osaka, uses her platform to discuss the movement; however, she seems to be one of the few still advocating.
STORIES, IDEAS, OR INQUIRIES ABOUT WRITING FOR ONLINE? Reach out to our Executive Online Editor, EMILY BONDURA at Emily.Bondura@drake.edu
FALL + WINTER 2020
BITS + PIECES
THESE TRENDY TRANSFORMATIONS WILL CHANGE THE LOOK OF ANY LIVING SPACE.
BITS + PIECES
Moon Mirror Everyone has an ordinary mirror. Let's take yours to the next level in just a few simple steps. This quick transformation will turn a plain mirror into a new statement piece fit for any room. STEPS 1. Gather all materials: circle mirror, white sand, and white or cream paint. 2. Clean the mirror and let completely dry. 3. Paint a white or cream base layer for a moon outline. Let dry for an hour. 4. Use Mod Podge and sand to build moon layers. Let dry for an hour and then repeat. You should end with two Mod Podge layers. 5. Create craters, dips, and valleys with Mod Podge’s silicone wand spatula to resemble the moon’s surface. 6. Let dry overnight and hang in the desired location.
Teacup Plants Ceramic Vases
Give some of your indoor plants a new look. By adding succulents to thrifted Thrifting vintage or unique ceramic to teacups, you can add an enchanted feeling to any at-home garden. Thrift paint is one thing, but adding baking stores have boxes full of old drinkware; soda will change the look by giving it a chalkier texture. While finding pottery it’s just a matter of finding a design, shape, and style that will fit your home. that matches your color theme can be tricky, this is an easy way to create decor pieces that will go perfectly with STEPS 1. Thrift old teacups or other your home design. vintage pieces. 2. Drill a hole at the bottom of the STEPS teacup to allow for drainage. 1. Thrift old, vintage vases that fit 3. Shop for succulents to fill the cup. your decor theme. 4. Buy succulent soil (this will help 2. Purchase acrylic paint. with moisture control). 3. Add a 1:1 ratio of baking soda 5. Plant the succulent. and acrylic paint. 6. Water and put it on a window 4. Let completely dry between ledge or shelf that receives each coat. natural light. 5. Paint three coats for full coverage. 6. Let dry overnight. 7. Add flowers or other decorations WORDS SAWYER ELWELL to the glassware and put out PHOTO CHEYANN NEADES for decoration. DESIGN BRYNN YOSHINAGA
BITS + PIECES
WATCH OUT THESE APPLE WATCH APPS ARE CHANGING THE GAME.
FLICKTYPE KEYBOARD $1.99 on the App Store Practicality is everything. FlickType Keyboard includes gesture typing and word recommendations to make it faster to send texts or emails. The app also has a full iPhone keyboard and effective VoiceOver feedback for accessibility. LENS FOR WATCH Free on the App Store Scrolling through Instagram just got easier. Lens for Watch gives you the ability to interact with posts on your timeline, view videos, and reply to direct messages. The app also keeps you connected to Instagram stories and your ever-changing Explore Page. MOODISTORY 4.99 on the App store Tracking your mood and emotions can be important for your mental health. Moodistory focuses on providing quick journal entries that don’t even require words—just simplistic colored icons. You can log habits or notes, and analyze your mood from previous days. This app focuses on making self-care a priority. ONE DROP Free on the App Store Take your health into your own hands—or wrist. One Drop provides support for those with diabetes, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure through health data tracking. Get in touch with a personal coach, receive the latest news on diabetes, and use the world’s largest food database for grocery shopping and recipes. WORDS + PHOTO CHEYANN NEADES DESIGN BRYNN YOSHINAGA
10 WINTER 2021
BITS + PIECES
THESE INSTAGRAM ACCOUNTS ARE SHARING CONTENT THAT NEEDS TO BE SEEN. @abeautifulmess
You won’t find basic DIYs here. Run by two sisters Elsie Larson and Emma Chapman, this account provides people with everything from recipes to decorating tips. They also partnered with Etsy to sell some of their creations. Their blog is a one-stop-shop for advice, inspiration, prints for sale, and presets for Photoshop and Lightroom.
These aren’t your grandmothers’ recipes. Lindsey Love develops gluten-free and vegan recipes that puts traditional meatloaf to shame. Recently, Love released a recipe for gluten-free pita bread and a new take on chocolate chip cookies. A full list of recipes is available on her website and in her book Chickpea Flour Does It All.
Allen Salway continuously fights for the rights of the marginalized while educating people on how to do the same. As a member of the Oglala Lakota tribe himself, Salway focuses on discrimination against indigenous people. His honest storytelling through personal essays sheds light on why these movements matter to him.
Cat Baloo and dog Henry take friendship to the next level. The rescued duo travels the country with their owners who capture every moment for their nearly two million followers. Owners Cynthia Bennett and Andre Sibilsky founded a nonprofit to help preserve land across America, in addition to creating a book of the best images of their pets.
With 30 years of experience in the fitness field, Jeanette Jenkins actively pushes her followers to be the best version of themselves. She develops workout videos that range in difficulty and length while instilling in her viewers that there is more to a healthy lifestyle than exercise. Jenkins also shares healthy recipes and inspirational messages, while also showing support for social justice organizations.
WORDS ANNIE PETERSON PHOTO CHEYANN NEADES DESIGN BRYNN YOSHINAGA
FOOD + DRINK
THESE DRINKS ARE SURE TO KEEP YOU WARM AND BOOZED.
WHIPPED WHITE RUSSIAN Serves 1
CRANBERRY-ORANGE MULLED WINE
A classic, with a toasty twist. Kahlua, coffee, and vodka are sure to lift any wavering holiday spirits this season.
Traditional winter flavors mixed with red wine to create the perfect holiday drink.
INGREDIENTS 1/4 c. vodka 3 tbsp. milk 2 tbsp. sugar 3-4 ice cubes 3 tbsp. Kahlua 2 tbsp. hot water 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract 1 tsp. mini chocolate chips 2 tbsp. instant coffee powder INSTRUCTIONS 1. In a small bowl, beat together hot water, instant coffee powder, and sugar until mixture is whipped. 2. Add vodka, Kahlua, vanilla extract, and ice cubes into the cup and stir. 3. Pour milk over the ice and alcohol. 4. Fill the rest of the glass with the whipped coffee. 5. Top with mini chocolate chips.
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Serves 4 to 6
INGREDIENTS 1/3 c. honey 1 tbsp. cloves 1 1/3 c. Brandy 2 tsp. orange zest 2 cinnamon sticks 2 whole star anise 1 c. cranberry juice 1 c. fresh cranberries 1 750 ml bottle of red wine INSTRUCTIONS 1. In a medium saucepan, combine all ingredients and bring to a simmer for 15 minutes. (Do not boil. This will cause the alcohol to evaporate, and youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll get no buzz.) 2. Ladle mixture into cup. 3. Garnish with an orange wedge.
FOOD + DRINK
WORDS SAVANNA BOUS PHOTO MEGAN BOHALL DESIGN FATIMA CALDERON
MAPLE BROWN SUGAR IRISH COFFEE Serves 1
A nonalcoholic drink that everyone can enjoy. Beat the winter sniffles with this hot, honey tea blend.
These iconic flavors create one delectable drink that will let you channel your inner barista.
INGREDIENTS 1 tbsp. honey 1 c. hot water 1/2 tsp. nutmeg 1 cinnamon stick 1 tsp. lemon juice 1/2 tsp. whole cloves INSTRUCTIONS 1. In a medium saucepan combine water, honey, lemon juice, and spices before bringing to a boil on low heat. 2. Remove the saucepan from the stove and pour into a cup. 3. Place a cinnamon stick in the cup and let steep for five minutes.
INGREDIENTS 1 c. hot coffee 1/4 tsp. sprinkles 1 shot Irish cream 2 tsp. maple syrup 1 swirl whip cream 1 1/2 tsp. brown sugar INSTRUCTIONS 1. Brew coffee using your preferred method. 2. Stir in brown sugar and maple syrup until they dissolve completely. 3. Mix in Irish cream. 4. Top with a whip cream swirl and sprinkles.
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FOOD + DRINK
GO URM ET FOUR CHEESY RECIPES THAT REVAMP THE CLASSIC SANDWICH. WORDS ELIZABETH WEYERS ILLUSTRATION & DESIGN AMY FLIEDER
OREGANO MONTEREY JACK CHEESE
CRANBERRY MUSTARD BRIE
HAWAIIAN GRILLED CHEESE
CRAN-TURKEY GRILLED CHEESE
In a pan, cook Canadian bacon (4 slices) over medium-high heat for two to five minutes, or until brown. Butter two slices of sourdough bread on one side each. In the same medium-high heat pan, lay one slice butter-side down. Layer Canadian bacon, pineapple (2 slices), Monterey Jack cheese (2 slices), and oregano (1 pinch) on bread. Top with the other slice of bread, butter-side up, and flip. Cook until the cheese is melted and bread is golden brown.
Butter two slices of sourdough bread on one side each. Spread the cheese (1/4 c.) and cranberry mustard (2 tsp.) on the nonbuttered side of both slices. Lay one slice butter-side down in a medium-high heat pan. Add turkey (4 slices) and mint leaves (2-3). Top with the other slice of bread, butter-side up, and flip. Cook until the cheese is melted and bread is golden brown.
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FOOD + DRINK
RED PEPPER FLAKES
GREEN ONION STEMS
SPINACH STUFFED GRILLED CHEESE
JALAPEÑO POPPER GRILLED CHEESE
Butter two slices of multigrain bread on one side each. Lay one slice butter-side down in a medium-high heat pan. Layer spinach (1/4 c.), feta cheese (1/4 c.), mozzarella cheese (2 slices), and red pepper flakes (1 tsp.). Top with the other slice of bread butterside up, and flip. Cook until the cheese is melted and bread is golden brown.
Preheat oven to 3250F. Roast a jalapeño on a baking sheet in the oven for about 10 minutes. Let cool and remove skin and slice. Butter two slices of French bread on one side each. Lay one slice butter-side down in a medium-high heat pan. Spread cream cheese (1/4 c.), and add cheddar cheese (2 slices), Jalapeño slices, and chopped onions (2 tbsp.). Top with the other slice of bread butter-side up, and flip. Cook until the cheese is melted and bread is golden brown.
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B o a L r d U s F S S I L B
FOOD + DRINK
16 FALL + WINTER 2020
FOOD + DRINK
STAYING AT HOME CALLS FOR FOOD CREATIVITY TO SPICE UP YOUR EVENING. COMBINING EVERYTHING DELICIOUS, SWEET, AND SAVORY, THESE FOOD BOARDS HAVE SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE. WORDS SOPHIA LACY PHOTO TINA INTARAPANONT DESIGN FATIMA CALDERON
Sweet Snacks The sweet taste of chocolate and strawberries with a salty touch of pretzels and gooey brownies are just the start to this classy dessert. Whether store-bought or homemade goodies make up the board, customize it to your cravings.
Mixed nuts 8 oz. Oreos 4 Macaroons 8 oz. pretzels 2 bananas (sliced) 6 cheesecake bites 6 oz. vanilla wafers 4 oz. wafer cookies 8 oz. angel food cake 8 oz. peppermint bark 12 count of brownie bites 8 oz. strawberries (halved) 10 oz. chocolate dip (recipe below)
With all charcuterie boards, placement and decoration is unique to the person making it. The board is a blank canvas and you are its artist. For this board, you will need a small bowl for the chocolate dip. Having toothpicks or fondue sticks on the side will add to your dipping arsenal.
TIP: The key to a perfect charcuterie board is filling the board from edge to edge. Use small ingredients, like nuts, to use as fillers to close any gaps.
TRADITIONAL CHOCOLATE DIP
You can use semisweet milk, white, or dark chocolate chips. 4 oz. heavy cream | 6 oz. chocolate chips |Pinch of salt In a medium saucepan, heat the heavy cream until tiny bubbles start to show and simmer. For taste, add a pinch of salt if you wish. Once simmering, remove pan from heat and whisk in the chocolate until smooth. Place in bowls and enjoy. NOTE: You may need to reheat the dip if it gets cold throughout the night.
FOOD + DRINK
Holiday Recovery SERVES 4 PEOPLE
Post-holiday feasts leave fridges full of food waiting to be warmed up and enjoyed. This board will help you present your leftovers in a fun way for everyone. INGREDIENTS
1 pie Mixed nuts 6 oz. turkey 10 oz. gravy 4-5 dinner rolls 6 oz. roasted carrots 6 oz. roasted potatoes 16 oz. cranberry sauce (recipe below)
For this board, you will need forks and toothpicks. A small bowl for gravy and a small bowl for cranberry sauce. Decorations help a board look fuller and more inviting. Think ornaments, small pumpkins, or anything to give holiday flare.
TIP: Keep decorations small and simple. Too big of decorations can make the board seem messy and distract from the food.
COMFORTING CRANBERRY REDUCTION SAUCE INGREDIENTS
2 c. fresh cranberries | 1/2 c. orange juice | 1/2 c. sugar METHOD
Add all ingredients to a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce to a slow simmer, stirring frequently until all cranberries have popped and mixture has slightly thickened. Take off heat and let cool.
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FOOD + DRINK
Classic SERVES 4 PEOPLE
The combination of fine cheeses, an array of delicate meats, fresh fruits, and superior carbs makes this board the finest of them all. This sophisticated spread captures the spirit of entertainment with a classic assortment of holiday favorites. INGREDIENTS
Mixed nuts 4 oz. honey 8 oz. grapes 5 oz. hummus 3 oz. prosciutto 8 oz. blueberries Loaf of French bread 4 oz. cheddar cheese 3 oz. calabrese salami 4.5 oz. kalamata olives Assortment of crackers 4 oz. manchego wedge 8 oz. strawberries (halved) 4 oz. olive oil dip (recipe below)
More traditional charcuterie boards are overflowing with ingredients. This board is no exception. Details are key to making it look organized. You will need two small bowls for the honey and olive oil dip.
HERBY OLIVE OIL DIP
Having a tasteful dip in the midst of all of the harmonious ingredients will set this board apart from all others. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a refined delicacy that is perfect for evening appetizers. INGREDIENTS
1.5 cloves minced garlic | 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil |1 tbsp of white wine vinegar | 1 tsp dried oregano | 1 tsp dried basil |1 tsp dried parsley flakes | 1 tsp salt | 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes METHOD
Simply place all the ingredients into a bowl and whisk until combined. Easy and tasty.
VISIT TRIXIES' WEBSITE BY SCANNING THE QR CODE
22 FALL + WINTER 2020
FASHION + BEAUTY
RATHER THAN WORRY ABOUT WRINKLES, LET’S FOCUS ON WHAT MAKES AGING WORTH CELEBRATING. We all know those advertisements for skin care lotions that help you “stay young forever.” The message is clear: aging is a bad thing. If you’re older, your time is up, your power is gone. But that’s not how I’ve grown up around aging. Family is everything in my culture. The older you get, the more respect you get. Just look at my great-grandmother. Growing up in Mexico, she ran the house. She cooked, cleaned, and was constantly on her feet. But, as the wrinkles started to show and the grey came in thicker, that was when my family knew to step in, to cater to her now. She was finally able to relax; she had earned it. Her wrinkles and grey hair didn’t bring disgust, it brought her peace. My grandma is a different story. She grew up in America. My Nana is so Americanized that she feels she has to look young or she loses her value. She hides her grey hair. And for a long time, I thought that was the right thing to do. I even helped her keep the grey at bay. As a kid, I knew it was time to dye my Nana’s hair when the hair curlers came out—dusty pink rollers that resembled the strawberry wafers she’d dip into her morning coffee. I’d follow
her to the bathroom where the box of hair dye awaited, and I’d watch as she lifted parts of her brown hair that hid the grey. My great-grandmother wasn’t the same. Her grey hair and wrinkles brought privilege. They meant you’ve lived your life as a hard worker. The grey is just another indicator of that. You don’t lose value as you grow older, you just deserve a break and respect. That’s the way I’m looking at my few grey hairs now, and the others that are sure to come. I have nothing to be ashamed of. My grey hair isn’t anything to hide. It should be celebrated. And wrinkles: They’re beautiful. They show that you’ve lived your life. That you’re not just a face on TV. You are real. For anybody else struggling with a similar inner monologue, it’s time for a different perspective. I know that’s hard. It took me years to realize this. But Western society could take a note from my great-grandmother’s ideals on aging. Embrace your grey. You’ll be better for it. WORDS VICTORIA SOLIZ PHOTO CHARLEIGH REINARDY DESIGN FATIMA CALDERON
WINTER 2021 23
FASHION + BEAUTY
ECO-FRIENDLY FASHION HAS BEEN DOMINATING THE INTERNET. HERE’S WHY IT MATTERS. Post-pandemic, everyone is going to want to look on point. We'll all want to be on trend and stylish when we make our public return—and fast fashion retailers will work to drop that perfect top and just-right jeans as soon as people are ready to purchase them. But while that outfit will be cheap, and we'll all look great, the environment will pay for it. According to a report from the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, the fashion industry is one of the largest contributors of pollution, with a trucksized amount of textiles being burned or left at a landfill every second. SO, WHAT CAN YOU DO? Switching from shopping fast fashion to shopping sustainable fashion is one way to lessen fashion’s impact on the environment on an individual level. Plus, it’s a way to make your dollars count. Fast fashion is affordable because of large fashion retailers’ tendencies to cut corners and lack longevity in products. Sustainable fashion is higher quality and longer lasting. It’s a way to put money into brands you can believe in. There are many reasons why sustainability may be inaccessible and finances are part of that. However, becoming a more conscious consumer doesn’t happen overnight. Small changes are better than none at all, so even making one purchase from a sustainable brand in place of fast fashion is a way to make a difference. Some brands may also not be fully sustainable yet but are making an
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effort to be, which often means they are more affordable and are still a more conscious choice. WORKING WITH A BUDGET? WE GET IT. The most sustainable fashion is what you already own. Upcycling pieces in your closet can give them a new life, providing you with something different in your wardrobe. If you’re not feeling crafty, make your way to a consignment shop. Isabella Darouch, owner of 215 Upcycled, loves the meaningful pieces that are found in second-hand shopping. “When you are shopping at stores such as Brandy Melville & Urban Outfitters, chances are you are gonna see the same style of top when you visit both stores,” Darouch says. In-person thrifting is often cheapest, but it may be overwhelming to find items you want. There has been a rise in online thrift shopping, either on websites like ThredUp or through Instagram shops. This curated option makes it easier to locate the best items. Though online thrifting may be a bit more expensive, Darouch explained that 215 Upcycled’s prices reflect the “attentive” customer service and the owner’s dedication to their brand. “When you shop small, you are supporting someone else’s dream,” Darouch says. WORDS LAUREN SKYE LAWSON PHOTO CHARLEIGH REINARDY DESIGN AMY FLIEDER
Not sure where to begin? Try these. It can be intimidating finding sustainable options, but here’s some places that can get you started. GoodOnYou They rate brands’ sustainability and ethics using a detailed scale.
goodonyou.eco 215 Upcycled The college-student shop owner offers unique, affordable, and trendy pieces.
215upcycled.com Girlfriend Collective A pair of leggings is $68 rather than Lululemon’s $100 athletic wear.
girlfriend.com Preservation This storefront in Des Moines, IA has vintage wear. Shop in stores or online.
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FASHION + BEAUTY
26 WINTER 2021
FASHION + BEAUTY
TIRED OF DULL, TARNISHED RINGS? IN NEED OF A COLLECTION REVAMP? WE’VE GOT YOU COVERED. HOW TO RING STACK ‘Ring stacking’ refers to wearing multiple rings at a time. To pull it off, start with a collection of rings in a variety of metals and sizes. Balance is key, so spread out your ring placement. This can be achieved by utilizing regular and midi-sized rings, which are smaller rings worn above the knuckle. As a rule of thumb, stick to 4-6 rings per hand, leaving at least one finger bare. The triangle placement method Create an illusion of a triangle by placing a midi ring on your middle finger and full-sized rings on your ring and pointer fingers. For a simple look Use thin bands of various metals across the hand. Minimal rings often include a band or small shape at the band’s center. For a bolder look Go for 1-2 regular-sized statements rings. Statement rings often have cool gems or unique shapes at the band’s center. Complement them with thin bands throughout the rest of the hand in one metal of choice. WHAT AND WHERE TO BUY To avoid allergic reactions and the dreaded green band, look into the types of metals you’re buying. Nickel, cobalt, and chromium can cause red, itchy reactions while the copper in brass can cause a green tinge. The best quality metals are sterling silver, surgical stainless steel, 18-24
karat gold, and pure platinum. Their genuine metal make-up is a surefire way to steer clear of reactions Etsy is a great place to buy quality, affordable rings while supporting small businesses. Irresistibly Minimal, an Etsy jewelry shop specializing in minimal pieces, sells various nickel-free, handcrafted rings in varying metals and sizes. Gold Spoon Jewelry sells 5-star-rated rings in both minimal and statement styles. Golden Moonlight Jewelry sells an assortment of chunky, bold statement rings, made free of nickel and lead. CLEAN AND CARE Tarnish is an inevitable part of wearing jewelry. To prolong the life of your rings, avoid contact with liquids, oils, and chemicals. This means removing your rings before showering, swimming, sleeping, and using fragrant products on or near your hands. The best way to care for your rings is to store them in a dry, dark place, where they do not touch one another. Silver tarnishes quicker than other metals, so it requires extra care. If your rings get dirty, soak them for several minutes in a warm water and dish soap solution. After soaking, gently brush away debris with a toothbrush. Do this twice a year. Infrequent exposure to water should not harm rings. WORDS KATE FRANKE PHOTO TINA INTARAPANONT DESIGN EMMA KERR
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FASHION + BEAUTY
28 WINTER 2021
FASHION + BEAUTY COLLARS, POCKETS, EARTH TONES, AND STITCHWORK. THESE OUTFITS ARE FUNCTIONAL AND FASHIONABLE. WORDS KAILI MILLER PHOTO TINA INTARAPANONT DESIGN FATIMA CALDERON STYLING KAILI MILLER CHEYANN NEADES
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FASHION + BEAUTY
It’s time to rethink your typical cargo pants. Utility pants are versatile and offer a range of desired looks. Dress them up with a sweater for a professional look. Or if you’re going for street or loungewear, your favorite hoodie will do.
ON AASHKA PANTS ASOS SHOES AND SHIRT MODEL’S OWN
30 WINTER 2021
FASHION + BEAUTY
ON ERIK PANTS LEVI'S HAT CARHARTT SHOES AND SHIRT MODELâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;S OWN
FASHION + BEAUTY
Pack it Up
Not looking to pack on the extra weight of a vest or backpack? Throw on a chest pack. It’s light in size, and gives an edgy streetwear vibe to any look.
ON KAIDEN UTILITY CHEST PACK WISHRING SHIRT, PANTS, AND SHOES MODEL’S OWN
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FASHION + BEAUTY
Jacket Versatility Coming in a variety of neutral colors, utility jackets pair with any outfit while also having the ability to hold all of your going-out necessities.
ON JUAN JACKET COLD CREEK SHIRT, PANTS, AND SHOES MODELâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;S OWN
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FASHION + BEAUTY
Addressing the Dress
Utility fashion works all yearlong. On warmer days, go for a dress. The front pockets and buckle belt make a statement for themselves. Add a pair of clunky boots, and you’re guaranteed to turn heads.
ON JASMINE DRESS ASOS SHOES MODEL’S OWN
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FASHION + BEAUTY
Whether you’re working in the house or out running errands, this jumpsuit will add maximum comfortability and flexibility. Pair it with a Panama hat for a free-spirited vibe.
ON DELANEY JUMPSUIT WORN BOUTIQUE HAT ANTHROPOLOGIE SHOES MODEL’S OWN
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36 WINTER 2021
THE MOON MOON THE EXPLORING THE THERAPEUTIC POTENTIAL OF DECRIMINALIZING PSYCHEDELIC DRUGS.
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fter Matthew Kahl returned from his second deployment to Afghanistan in 2011, he was taking between 8-20 prescription medications a day. Like many US veterans, Kahl suffered from severe PTSD as a consequence of his service. But the pharmaceutical treatments weren’t helping. His neurological cocktail of mood stabilizers, anti-psychotics, opiates, and more, were radically depleting his quality of life. He swung between states of blind rage and fell asleep behind the wheel. He wasn’t getting better. “I was dying before everyone’s eyes,” Kahl says. “I realized I had to change something, or I really was going to die.” Motivated by his family, by not wanting to leave his children without a father, he started looking for other alternatives. At first, Kahl found momentary relief in cannabis, moving from North Carolina to Colorado so he could use it medicinally. By 2014, he was an advocate for its decriminalization, testifying before lawmakers about the therapeutic benefits it posed to veterans and others. Though cannabis helped ween him off his prescriptions, he was still heavily reliant, smoking it all day every day, even rubbing it into his skin. “Dependence on a substance was chasing me,” Kahl said. “…It was a bit of a prison, and I wanted to be free and independent of anything.” Then in 2016, he found what he’d been searching for. After years of turmoil— witnessing friends die in a foreign war, a post-service identity crisis, a suicide attempt on Christmas Eve—Kahl finally discovered a treatment for his PTSD that restored his true self. A treatment that made him feel mentally healthier than even before he was deployed. A treatment that, incidentally, is highly illegal in the country he fought for. Psychedelics.
AN INTRO TO PSYCHADELICS
To put it simply, psychedelics are drugs that cause hallucinations. They come in various forms: some are naturally occurring, such as psilocybin in “magic” wild mushrooms, while others are made synthetically, such as lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD, aka “acid”). Though chemical reactions in the brain vary between forms, the trademark effects include enhanced sensory perceptions and hallucinations, which may in turn facilitate spiritual experiences and feelings of euphoria. Psychedelics are classified as a Schedule 1 drug by the US Drug Enforcement
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Administration, who consider them to have high abuse potential and no therapeutic value. This categorization ranks them as a greater threat than methamphetamine and cocaine, which are classified as Schedule 2 substances. Psychedelics then—which are not chemically addictive and have no known lethal dosage—are classified among the most dangerous drugs in existence. What's the source of this disconnect? Why is it that psychedelic drugs, the only effective treatment for Kahl’s PTSD, are thought to be therapeutically worthless and radically dangerous?
Just as different forms of psychedelics vary in their effects, so do their therapeutic applications. Psilocybin is a rising star in psychiatric treatments across the globe, notably used in Amsterdam for treating depression. In August 2020, Canada also legalized the use of psychedelic mushrooms (which contain psilocybin) in psychotherapy treatments for end-of-life patients, aiming to give spiritual solace to dying men and women as they make peace with their impending death. But psychedelics have been used globally long before western countries opened up to their therapeutic properties. Naturally occurring psychedelics have been used in spiritual ceremonies across the world. One example is here in the United States. Some Native American reservations consider peyote, a substance derived from cactuses, a sacred part of their spiritual ceremonies. Consuming peyote on reservations is thus a legally protected religious freedom, with certain states even allowing visitors to the land to use it regardless of religious affiliation. Another example is in South America, where ayahuasca, a brew made from psychoactive shrubs, is used by indigenous tribes in the Peruvian Amazon and elsewhere today. Incidentally, Kahl’s first experience with psychedelics was also in a spiritual ceremony in Peru. An experience he now insists saved his life.
HAVE A NICE TRIP
His opportunity came in April 2016 when a producer for the documentary From Shock to Awe approached him about traveling to Peru to drink ayahuasca on camera. At first, Kahl wasn’t sure the drink was working. He drank cup after cup under the watch of a spiritual guide and surveillance of a camera crew. Then, he became ill. Violently ill. He purged his stomach,
vomiting dark black sludge into a bucket. Then, as the ayahuasca’s psychoactive properties lassoed his mind, he stared at his waste and saw the face of a demon – a manifestation of all his anger, hurt, and hatred. He spoke to his pain, and it spoke back: “It told me that it was hate that I had captured from the world around me, and I had taken it and I had swallowed it. That hate had been burning in the center of my being, in the center of my soul, for years. It didn't want to be inside of me. Every time it tried to get out, I pushed it back down because I wanted to control it. I realized that I had wronged myself, then I realized that I had actually wronged this demon. I said out loud, ‘I'm so sorry. I can't believe that I've done this to you. How can I ever make this up to you?’ The only thing that it said to me was ‘forgive yourself.’ I responded, ‘It's not that easy. You can't just forgive like that.’ And it said to me, ‘It is that easy. All you have to do is let go.’” So Kahl let go. And from that moment, and every day afterward, it's been gone. When he arrived in Peru, Kahl was heavily dependent on substances to cope with his PTSD. Then psychedelics freed him, allowing him to exist today without the burden of his trauma. Now, Kahl returns to psychedelics only when he needs recentering once more, with anywhere between six months to two years between trips. He compares using the drugs “as needed” to people who don’t attend church regularly but go when they need spiritual guidance. Psychedelics aren’t a crutch for Kahl like cannabis was—they’re a resource. A resource he doesn’t take for granted.
THE DARK SIDE OF THE MOON
Though Kahl’s ventures with psychedelics are largely positive, not everyone has the same productive experience. Odds are you’ve heard of a “bad trip.” “Tripping”—or the experience of intoxication under a psychedelic drug, refers to the drugs’ effects on the user’s perception of their worlds, as if they are in a whole new realm. A bad trip then, broadly speaking, is a negative experience one has while using psychedelic drugs. A negative episode can be mild to severe with effects ranging from upsetting thoughts to frightening delusions that may cause an accident. For example, a person may believe they can fly and hurt themselves. A bad trip can also induce paranoia and panic in the user, causing them to believe their surroundings are no longer safe.
Dependance on a substance was chasing me.â&#x20AC;? - MATTHEW KAHL
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According to Dr. Elizabeth Hartney, the director of the Centre for Health Leadership and Research at Royal Roads University in Canada, an understanding of drugs is essential for recreational use. On the subject of bad trips, Hartney wrote, “Sadly, many people don't know what a bad trip is until they have one, so it is helpful to know ahead of time what you could experience, and what you should do if you have a bad trip or one of your friends does.” If you or a friend begin to experience a bad trip, Hartney recommends finding a comfortable, calming space with trusted supervision to wait out the drug’s effects. Studies have found that having a good or bad “trip” is largely dependent on one’s expectations as they ingest the drug, informed by their previous experiences and the setting where they take it. For example, if a person doesn’t anticipate their hallucinations, they could become understandably frightened by a drug’s effects. Moreover, if they’re tripping in a chaotic, unfamiliar environment like a busy public place rather than the comfort of their own home, they may become similarly distressed. Beyond the influence of expectations, the dosage of the drug is paramount to the effect of the experience. Many therapeutic administrations of psychedelics are through “microdosing”—low, sub-hallucinogenic doses—allowing for a controlled, less intense trip. Inversely, the higher the dosage taken, the more intense the high will be, which can overwhelm the user and cause a bad trip. The logical conclusion then is that negative experiences with psychedelics could be circumvented through a proper, expert administration of the drugs. But to make that a reality, they first need to be decriminalized.
CRIMINALIZATION AND STIGMA
The Crossing Paths PAC in Missouri is one of many groups advocating for the decriminalization of psychedelics in the United States. Executive Director Bharani Kumar is well aware of the stigmas, both legal and social, surrounding drugs in general. In Kumar’s mind, social stigma is the driving force for misconceptions about drugs, marking them as taboo, and limiting productive conversations about them. He believes the dangers of drug use could be helped through education about the substances, not by making them illegal.
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This topic hits close to home. While growing up, some of Kumar’s friends would take Xanax with alcohol, not understanding that it was potentially lethal—no one had ever told them. Their schools had condemned drug use without informing them of the real risks. “At the end of the day, you can’t really control what people are going to do, but you should at least make sure that they know what they’re getting into,” Kumar says. Kumar is also adamant that common knowledge about psychedelics could save lives. Potentially dangerous substances are easily marketed under false pretenses, such as 25I-NBOMe, a synthetic hallucinogen used in biochemistry research, which is being sold as LSD. The 25I could kill someone with a pre-existing heart condition, but if they knew that 25I is bitter whereas LSD is tasteless, they could avoid a fatal disaster. If the drugs were regulated, the false pretenses—i.e. thinking you’re buying one drug and getting something else entirely—wouldn’t happen in the first place. “[Decriminalization] is going to create better quality products that are going to be safer for people to use,” Kumar says. While enrolled at the University of Missouri, Kumar joined a student advocacy group for educating the public about drugs rather than simply brandishing them. Today, his PAC advocates for research to help optimize psychedelics for productive, decriminalized use, rather than being an abstract enigma in the public eye. “There’s just so much we haven’t learned about them yet – with how they can affect our minds and the way we think about stuff.” Kahl is similarly frustrated by the stigmas American society attaches to psychedelics, which he largely attributes to the Reagan administration’s “Just Say No” culture, as well as the invention of the War on Drugs. “The prejudice against most Schedule 1 drugs is a cultural thing that’s been taught to us,” Kahl says. “All of these things have contributed to this massive cultural oppression of certain medicines.” Because that’s what Kahl ultimately views psychedelics as: medicine. It saved his life, and he believes it could save others’ lives if only they were decriminalized. “It’s a slap in the face to anyone who’s trying to overcome their trauma because [psychedelics are] one of the only tools that can really help us leave it in the past where it belongs instead of [it] dominating our present.”
As 2021 begins, matters of mental health are of dire importance. The circumstances of COVID-19 have snowballed into a demolition of public health, social interaction, and countless other sacred aspects of life. As a consequence, data is already suggesting a critical spike in mental health emergencies, with depression being four times as prevalent now than it was in the second quarter of 2019. Studies are discovering that drugs like psilocybin, MDMA, and others may substantially decrease depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder. While other countries like Canada and the Netherlands are making significant headway in harnessing these drugs’ therapeutic properties, it’s worth wondering if and when the United States will open up to the potential benefits, especially given our growing mental health crisis.* Some organizations are starting to push for a national reevaluation of psychedelics. Founders Pledge, a charitable initiative that guides entrepreneur donations, recently released a lengthy report on the importance of funding psychedelic-assisted mental health treatments. Their report pleads, “psychedelic drugs have the potential to revolutionise how we treat mental health conditions.” Donating to causes like the Usona Institute, a research organization highlighted by the Founders Pledge report, could help expedite psychedelics towards therapeutic administration in the United States. And of course, advocacy on small and large scales is essential towards making a difference. Now that Kahl is a restored man no longer haunted by his trauma, he advocates for the decriminalization of the drugs that made all the difference in his life. He believes that once more people familiarize themselves with psychedelics, whether through safe experimentation or education, the more likely legal tides will rise in the cause’s favor. “These things can heal you in ways that we don't even comprehend prior to having a psychedelic experience,” Kahl says. “They can pull us out of the deepest depths and bring us up to the highest heights. This is the reason why I believe psychedelics, more so than any other substance, are the ideal psychiatric drugs, period.” *Since the article was written and edited, Oregon became the first state in the U.S. to legalize psilocybin and authorize it for therapeutic use.
WORDS ALLAIRE NUSS PHOTO AUTUMN PALMER EMMA KERR MICHAEL CUMMINGS DESIGN EMMA KERR
(Sl)ac(k)tivism (Sl)ac(k)tivism (Sl)ac(k)tivism (Sl)ac(k)tivism (Sl)ac(k)tivism 42 FALL + WINTER 2020
THE CONSEQUENCES OF ENGAGING IN ACTIVISM SOLELY FOR SOCIAL CLOUT—AND WHAT YOU CAN DO TO CHANGE IT.
nfographics? Check. VSCO-worthy pictures? Check. Real progress or commitment to change? Absent. We have all experienced it before; we’re scrolling through our feeds and encounter hundreds of posts about social justice issues, ranging from police brutality and racial injustices to equal pay and a woman’s right to choose. Bright and colorful graphics fill our screens. Captions call for action now. It’s enough to make you feel like the world is on the brink of massive change, millions of Instavoices rising in unison to overthrow the injustices of the world. But while social media provides a platform to promote change, is it really making a difference? Can you spark a revolution posting periodically on Instagram?
ACTIVISM AND DIGITAL TOOLS OVER TIME
Before the Internet and way before social media, activism took the form of Civil Rights sit-ins, Vietnam War protests, and Equal Rights Amendment marches. People advocated against oppression, all without the help of digital tools. But the modern era has made it easy to grab the attention of millions. And it’s been used to great effect. Arab Spring, the Ice Bucket Challenge, #MeToo, #BlackLivesMatter, Occupy Wallstreet have taken over timelines on many social media platforms. These movements have helped inform and create change. And it hasn’t stopped. But at times, these continuous posts present the gaps of those who are not giving these movements their best attention and efforts. According to the Pew Research Center in 2018, around 64 percent of Americans feel that social media helps give a voice to underrepresented groups while 71 percent feel that social networking sites make people believe they’re making a difference when they aren’t. Technology is quite literally in our hands. It’s easy to read an Instagram post and select the arrow to “Add post to your story.” It takes minutes to type up a post about equity on your Notes app and share it on Facebook. But even in a digital age, more things need to be done off-screen to make change.
The idea of “performative activism”—activism that increases social clout— sprung up with the development of Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. For younger adults, performative activism is retweeting a post on Twitter or posting a 24-hour story on Instagram without continuing the conversation offline. On a much larger scale, corporations, companies, and fashion brands also engage in performative activism when they express their support for a movement after it becomes popular in the media. And how many of them continued to show their solidarity as the summer of 2020 stretched on, violence grew, and issues
became more complicated? Very few. And that’s the issue here. Demonstrations of solidarity, unbacked by action, create a difficult situation to navigate: is this person/company/entity really in favor of this movement, or are they posting this to burnish a tarnished reputation or profit from others' vulnerability? Worse yet, performative activism delivers a false sense of accomplishment, which can be hazardous, says Olivia Samples, Membership Coordinator for the Iowa Coalition for Collective Change. “People participate in performative activism to be seen as a good person, but the outcome is disingenuous,” Samples says. “If your actions don’t require you to risk or sacrifice anything, it’s likely not impacting the issue you feign to be concerned about.” The list of potential dangers is long. Let’s be honest: reposting something to my 1,000 followers on Instagram probably won’t inspire a new wave of support, especially if I am unwilling or unable to speak up or take action in real life. Acting like an influencer and attempting to be “culturally woke” are two of the most pervasive practices on social media, and, oftentimes, they distract from the real intentions behind the movements. “Social media gives folks the ability to feel good about themselves without doing something that’s actually helpful,” Samples says. “And sometimes we see that folks actually move further from accountability when they feel they have done their part already, whether that’s reality or not.” Dr. Jennifer Harvey, professor at Drake University and author of several books on whiteness and racial justice, understands the importance of distinguishing between posting to create real progress and posting for attention. “I get concerned about performative activism if we think that making declarations online in and of itself accomplishes social change, or if people do it because they want credit for being justice committed,” Harvey says. White people, for example, are quick to take part in activism online. According to the Pew Research Center in 2018, a third of white social media users say these platforms are at least somewhat personally important to them when it comes to expressing their views or getting involved with issues that they deem important to them. Joslyn Orji, a junior at Colorado State University, believes these discrepancies are a huge issue. “Performative activism is actually extremely retrogressive. Because, in most cases, [people] don’t understand the plight or the struggle, it only makes them appear woke, edgy and cool,” Orji says. Orji’s experience mirrors what many young adults observe on social media: People are willing to post activist photos or infographics, but only if it does not clash with their “…pink, 90s, Y2K, indie aesthetic,” Orji says. Meanwhile, the majority of people disregard the real message behind the post, and the issues portrayed disappear off mainstream accounts as quickly as they appear.
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FEATURES PERFORMATIVE ACTIVISM AND BLACK LIVES MATTER
The Black Lives Matter movement is one of the most prevalent social justice campaigns and has generated a flurry of activity on social media. The movement is representative of experiences and events that are highly emotional and often intense. On June 2, 2020, Instagram users participated in the platformwide “Blackout Tuesday.” The symbolic posting of a black square intended to show support for the Black Lives Matter movement. According to CNBC, the hashtag #blackouttuesday received over 14.6 million posts; however, the gesture fell flat for several reasons. First, the hashtags #BLM and #BlackLivesMatter became filled with photos of black squares, drowning out vital information about protests, donation processes, and police violence. In this sense, a social media-based protest interfered with the actual intent of the movement. Second, the black square became a symbol of support, but an artificial one at that. If someone didn’t post one, they risked being considered ignorant or racist. Peer pressure essentially led thousands of people to post in support of Black lives while avoiding the hard work of creating meaningful change. Cross Robinson, a Drake University senior, experienced this first-hand. “When I see people post BLM posters or memos but favorite tweets that are in direct opposition of the movement or do nothing beyond that post, it frustrates me,” Robinson says. “It frustrates me because I know they are doing it to cover their own reputation, not because they respect and care for all human life.” Performative activism creates a false sense of security, Robinson says. It fools people into thinking they’re making a change when, in reality, it encourages a culmination of inaction and silence. According to a 2020 study conducted by the Pew Research Center, only 31 percent of white Americans strongly support the Black Lives Matter movement, notwithstanding the pervasive posting of support on social media. Samples viewed Blackout Tuesday in a similar light. “Blackout Tuesday is obviously well-intentioned, but had a negative impact when folks were seeking out education and safety information,” Samples says. “The conversation became about the black squares rather than the actual issue. The goal is to get folks talking about what happened, why, and what you can do.” It is hard to distinguish between the changing of one’s mindset and simply acting to avoid being left out of a trend.
Despite the pitfalls, performative activism can lead to positive outcomes. For starters, Harvey believes that a statement made on social media can have good intentions. “If someone is on social media and they are in connection with friends, family, and workplace, and they put a public declaration of their values, that is a kind of action,” Harvey says. Following Harvey’s outlook, Drake University senior Olivia Bruce considers a silver lining to the pejorative term. “Although social media may be seen as just someone hiding behind a screen, when seeing a post in support of something like the Black Lives Matter movement, in my eyes it gives me the green light to discuss such issues with that person,” Bruce says. Before engaging in challenging discussions, Bruce says, we must first address a lack of awareness and understanding. Social media plays a role in sparking conversations and support, but it falls flat without pairing it with other forms of allyship. Allyship is defined as emphasizing social justice, inclusion, and human rights in support of marginalized groups. In terms of activism and social justice, allyship is a necessary element in
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It frustrates me because I know they are doing it to cover their own reputation, not because they respect and care for all human life.” - CROSS ROBINSON, DRAKE UNIVERSITY SENIOR
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We all have a place within the movement. What tools, resources, or skills do you have to contribute?” - OLIVIA SAMPLES, MEMBERSHIP COORDINATOR FOR THE IOWA COALITION FOR COLLECTIVE CHANGE
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FEATURES helping elevate causes outside of social media. Central to this idea, allyship means more than just feeling sympathetic towards certain groups or believing in equity; an ally is a person who is willing to act for and with others to end the oppression. In other words, merely posting on social media is not enough to be an ally. According to The Guide To Allyship, a successful ally takes on a struggle as their own. “We all have a place within the movement. What tools, resources, or skills do you have to contribute?” Samples says. A good start would include having conversations about issues with family or friends. Contributing money, time, or items to an organization or contacting a public official to express concerns are also ways to use privilege to help others. Harvey understands that it is difficult to fully commit to growing as an ally. “The hard part is that sometimes it takes a long time [to become a good ally] because there is a lot for us to unlearn,” Harvey says. But, she argues, if we consistently show up in the right spaces over a long time, we will work directly with affected communities and relearn those necessary skills. Rebecka Musungu, a Drake University junior, emphasizes the importance of support outside of social media. “Actions speak louder than words, or posts, so take time to educate yourself, whether that be watching documentaries on social injustices, reading books [or] looking at petitions,” Musungu says. Likewise, Harvey urges people to continue to read, watch, and listen for ways to learn about allyship and activism.
2020 brought immeasurable suffering to marginalized groups, making it crucial to acknowledge the dangers of performative activism. Racial justice, equal rights, and other social justice issues do not exist to enhance our feed. They are not here to help us “fit in” or appear “woke.” It’s important to be aware of our activism and it’s progression. It’s a lifelong effort that never stops. Work to check in with yourself. “How am I being an ally?” and “What can I do better?” are some questions we can ask ourselves to reflect on our actions. It’s about constantly working to show up and to remember it’s about those a part of marginalized groups. Activism isn’t a “cool” thing to do. It’s an important thing we’re called to do as humans. Moving our activism off social media can be a challenging step, but it is only when we become comfortable with the discomfort that we can start to pursue real change. It is time to move out of our comfort zones, make substantial growth, and step into a future that does not punish anyone for the color of their skin, sexual orientation, gender, or anything in between.
WORDS BLAKE MORROW PHOTO CHARLEIGH REINARDY DESIGN FATIMA CALDERON
HOW TO COMBAT PERFORMATIVE ACTIVISM
1. EDUCATE YOURSELF.
Are the facts circulating on social media accurate? Dive deeper into the subject that you are posting about on social media. Read, watch, and listen.
2. CHECK YOURSELF.
Do you uphold these values outside of social media? Do your political ideologies support the people you are advocating for? Are there any implicit biases that affect the way you view these movements?
Check-in virtually or face-toface with people who may be affected by these issues on social media. Have the tough conversations, even if you feel uncomfortable.
4. SPEAK UP.
If you see or hear something that is against the values you hold or is part of the microaggressions that pile up every day, say something. If you see or hear something that doesn’t align with the photos someone posts on social media, say something. Hold others accountable.
Volunteer. Sure, signing petitions and expressing your solidarity is a good start, but work to make tangible progress in your community.
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WELLNESS + SEX
KINKINKY Let's Get
LOOKING TO BROADEN YOUR EXPERIENCE IN THE BEDROOM? HERE’S HOW TO SAFELY EXPERIMENT WITH YOUR PARTNER. When people think of sexual kinks, a Fifty Shade of Grey scene may be the first thing to come to mind. But kinks aren’t only in the movies. A study by The Journal of Sex Research found that nearly half of all adults expressed they have a desire for fetishism, otherwise known as having a sexual kink. A sexual kink can be described as the use of non-conventional sexual practices, concepts, or fantasies. You may already know what your kink is. But for those still thinking about their kink in question, let’s dive in. The first thing to always keep in mind is consent. If there is no consent from every party involved, it is not classified as a kink and you can certainly be classified as a creep. COMMON KINKS Some of the more common kinks include BDSM (bondage, discipline, sadism, and masochism), non-monogamy, and voyeurism. BDSM is a sexual fantasy that includes roleplaying, bondage (being tied or handcuffed), dominance, and submission among other dynamics. Non-monogamy is an umbrella term for every practice of a nonstandard monogamous relationship. Being non-monogamous in bed means you have more than one partner at the same time. This could be anything from an open relationship dynamic to swapping partners with another couple. Voyeurism is when consenting adults gain sexual pleasure by watching others partake in sexual activity.
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SO WHAT NOW? If you are interested in trying out a kink with a partner, there are a few things you want to make sure are communicated clearly before you begin your sexual adventure. Consent: I’ll say it again. The first thing that must be established is consent. There needs to be clear communication on what is to be expected in the bedroom. If this is not done properly, the experience could potentially be ruined. A good tip for communication is to create a safe word that all participants can use during the process if either were to be uncomfortable. Resources: Whether it is visiting a sex shop or talking with a sex or relationship specialist, it’s key to utilize resources to ensure that you are setting yourself up for success. If you are using a sex toy or a new technique, figure out how to properly and safely incorporate it into your sex routine. Voicing your questions and concerns is an important part of ensuring your comfortability in the bedroom. Checking In: After the experience, ask each other questions—whether the other person had an enjoyable time, if they would do it again, or if there were any areas that they felt unsafe or uncomfortable. This exploration can be a pleasurable one if open communication is involved throughout its entirety.
WORDS EMILY BONDURA PHOTO TINA INTARAPANONT DESIGN S. PERALTA CORNEJO
WELLNESS + SEX
black-owned WHEN IT COMES TO SHOPPING FOR OUR NEEDS IN THE BEDROOM, SUPPORT THESE BLACK-OWNED SEX TOY AND LINGERIE BUSINESSES. ORGANIC LOVEN
Organic Loven is a one-stop shop that includes eco-friendly body products, safe sex toys, and educational sex-positive books. They focus on honoring your body by providing only nourishing products. Their subscription boxes and erotic seminars leave customers feeling energized and adventurous.
Safety first. B condoms isn’t your typical corporate condom company. As the only Blackowned condom company in the U.S., they provide resources to help people live sexually healthy lives and aim to end health disparities in Black communities. B condoms are organic and vegan.
bcondoms.com LOVE VERA
Love Vera puts representation at the forefront of fashion and aims to encourage women to feel confident in their bodies and in lingerie. They feature an array of sexy bodysuits, teddies, bras, and robes. Whether it’s a pink lace teddy or a leopard print bodysuit, Love Vera focuses on empowering the Black community in every aspect of their brand.
Teased Toys is a Black female-owned business that sells safe silicon pleasure products for people of all genders and sexual orientations. Ranging from bondage gear to vibrators, Teased Toys offers versatile goods that will leave you feeling a sense of satisfaction in your sexual experiences.
Transparent conversations about our bodies and sex need to happen more often and Talk Tabu helps make that happen. Talk Tabu provides a space for people to have shame-free conversations about masturbation, vaginal health, and anatomy through e-courses and sexual wellness products. They give everyone a seat at the table and aim to make sex, in all aspects, as comfortable and pleasurable as it can be.
WORDS EMILY POSTLETHWAIT DESIGN + ILLUSTRATION BRYNN YOSHINAGA
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WELLNESS + SEX
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WELLNESS + SEX
Double (STANDARD) Trouble
REALITY CHECK: WOMEN ARE STILL SHAMED FOR THEIR SEXUALITY. The first time I got butterflies below the waist was when I was 13. Through fragile fingertips covered in pale-pink nail polish, I caught a glimpse of Allie Hamilton tangled up in Noah Calhoun in The Notebook’s fairy-tale sex scene. Pushing passion, heat, and a little more than heavy petting, the pair conveys the kind of perfect romance young girls can only dream of. But I’d be lying if I said those butterflies weren’t paired with a gob of guilt and embarrassment. I grew up in a small-town Christian school where we were taught to remain “pure,” innocent, and, well, virgin. Sex education consisted of textbook lessons blacked-out with sharpies, paired with feelings of impurity. But seven years later, I’m faced with even more narratives. American media—other than those vaguely religious abstinence videos— glorify “getting it on.” Sex appears on prime-time sitcoms and special episodes of teen-targeted shows. YouTubers talk about it openly and frankly. And musicians? Well, who cares about virginity when Cardi B is talking about parking a Mack truck in her garage. We’re surrounded by sex constantly, yet women are still taught to abstain from satisfying their sexual desires. How dare we feel proud of our bodies or pursue our sexual needs. Certified Sex and Relationship Therapist Joseli Alves-Dunkerson sees this duality in her everyday work. “I believe there is a double standard: the media promotes losing virginity, while sex education mostly teaches about refraining from sex,” the West Des Moines, Iowa, based therapist said. Sexual confusion in America takes root in these mixed messages. While influencers and celebrities promote
and advocate for the promiscuity of women, on the flip side, religious institutions shame pre-marital intimacy. Instead of treating sex as a normal and healthy aspect of life, the act itself is demonized. As a woman, this shame can feel overbearing at times. Growing up, my teachers frequently reminded their students that it’s sinful to explore one’s sexuality before marriage. Contraceptives such as birth control were condemned, the male gaze was not. In a book by Kathleen A. Bogle titled Hooking Up: Sex, Dating, and Relationships on Campus, Bogle addresses how women are understanding the need for sexual liberation. “Feminists have promoted the idea that women should be free to be sexual both in and out of marriage and that not only ‘bad’ girls like sex.” Oftentimes to men, sex is seen as a source of power. Watching porn, masturbating, or having frequent sex is rewarded. Men are applauded for their sexual behaviors. Women are still having to prove that it’s their body. That they can do what they choose to in that body. There’s an effort to move past the influence of gender stereotypes in our everyday lives. But it takes understanding to rebuild the thoughts and stigma we have towards one’s sexual reputation. We have to stray from the harmful norms. It will become the courage and fuel needed to finally set us free. WORDS ELLA SCHULTE PHOTO TINA INTARAPANONT DESIGN FATIMA CALDERON
WELLNESS + SEX
YOUR THYROID GLAND IS ESSENTIAL. HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW. We’ve heard about gut health. But what about the thyroid? This rather small gland has a huge amount of responsibility and is a crucial part of maintaining a healthy body. Located at the base of the throat, just under the Adam's apple, the thyroid plays a vital role in the production and release of hormones that affect metabolism and energy levels. Two main diseases stem from the thyroid. Hypothyroidism occurs when there are not enough hormones, while hyperthyroidism happens when too many are made. They both have numerous symptoms which include weight gain or loss, hair loss, anxiety, depression, and an irregular period. Around 20 million Americans will experience a variety of thyroid diseases, according to the American Thyroid Association. Of those, 60 percent will go undiagnosed. The high rate of missed cases can be linked to the symptoms. According to Dr. Ann Minciotti, thyroid diseases tend to mimic the symptoms of other diseases. People push themselves every day. So, it’s only natural to blame the tolls of daily life for fatigue and weight fluctuation. People might think, “Well, I am a doctor and working hard and that’s why I am so tired and exhausted and feel bad about life,” Minciotti says. “And it turns out that their thyroid is just totally out of whack.” In some cases, misdiagnosed symptoms can be so bad that there are cases of people who are suicidal, Minciotti says. While thyroid disorders can affect anyone, women are more likely to have one.
According to womenshealth. gov, one in eight women will deal with a thyroid issue in their lifetime. The reason for this is unknown but Minciotti noted that in general, women are prone to having more auto-immune diseases. A blood test can reveal the state of your thyroid levels. It is key to pay attention to your body and mind. Pay close attention to both sides of your lower neck to check for lumps or inflammation. Drastic weight changes out of the blue or irregular periods are signs that the thyroid could be malfunctioning.
WORDS ANNIE PETERSON DESIGN + ILLUSTRATION FATIMA CALDERON
52 WINTER 2021
LEARN ABOUT THE RICH HISTORY OF BLACK QUEER AND TRANS PEOPLE THROUGH THESE FIVE DOCUMENTARIES. TONGUES UNTIED (Vimeo, 1989)
Directed by the esteemed Marlon Riggs, Tongues Untied focuses on the culture of Black gay men and their experiences with racism, homophobia, and marginalization. The film serves as a critique of hypermasculinity within the Black community, as well as the hypersexualization of Black gay men. Riggs uses poetry, music, and storytelling to create a documentary experience like no other.
PARIS IS BURNING (Apple TV, 1990)
If you love Pose, it’s time to check out Paris is Burning. This film chronicles ball culture in 1980s New York City, which predominantly involved Black and Latinx gay and trans people. With interviews from famous members of the ballroom scene, it’s essential viewing for anyone wanting to learn more about Black LGBTQ+ culture and the intersections of race, gender, sexuality, and poverty.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MARSHA
(Prime Video, 2018) As one of the Black, trans sex workers credited with starting the 1969 Stonewall Riots, Marsha P. Johnson is truly a gay icon. At only 14 minutes long, this mini-documentary gives you quick insight into what Marsha’s life looked like just hours before the riots. If you want to remember your roots and honor LGBTQ+ trailblazers, Happy Birthday, Marsha is the perfect dose of queer history for you.
JEWEL’S CATCH ONE
Jewel’s Catch One shines a light on a disco of the same name, once the oldest Black-owned disco in America. Owned by a Black lesbian businesswoman and activist, the disco served as a safe space for the Black queer community, especially during the AIDS crisis. This film celebrates four decades of culture and reminds viewers of the importance of safe spaces.
(Prime Video, 2016) Hailed as the unofficial sequel to Paris is Burning , Kiki shines a light on modern ballroom culture and activists among LGBTQ+ youth of color. The documentary follows seven individuals from “the Kiki community” as they battle homelessness, illness, and prejudice, all while delivering spectacular performances. With stunning visuals and a vibrant cast, Kiki is a must-see.
WORDS EMMA BRUSTKERN DESIGN S. PERALTA CORNEJO ILLUSTRATION FATIMA CALDERON
WINTER 2021 53
Cloudy with a ONE OF THE MOST INFLUENTIAL STREAMING APPS LOOKS TO BE LOSING ITS GRASP ON THE MUSIC WORLD. CAN SOUNDCLOUD REINVENT ITSELF?
54 WINTER 2021
There have been plenty of ups and downs with SoundCloud’s evolution. It started as a free, creative outlet for underground artists. Now it’s a premium service, mimicking the likes of Spotify and Apple Music. But if we’re being honest, SoundCloud has struggled to draw in a significant revenue-generating audience for its creators, meaning it has failed to rack up the number of subscribers to financially compete with the top dogs of the streaming world. SoundCloud got worse when rumors of their potential shutdown swarmed the internet in 2017. That prompted Chance The Rapper, one of the app’s original artists, to confirm via Twitter that SoundCloud was “here to stay.” SoundCloud knew it was time to make changes for its users. No more ignoring artists’ pleas for monetization. No more lackluster interface that leaves both users and creators disengaged. And no more headaches for those trying to upload their music. Artist Dion Janoyev, who releases music under the name “loveseat,” has been a SoundCloud user for five of the six years he’s been making music. He appreciates the improvements SoundCloud made to make it more creator-friendly. “The difference between SoundCloud a couple years ago and the difference now: it’s so much better,” Janoyev says. “Back then, you needed to tell people that you had a SoundCloud to listen to it, but now you can just upload songs, and if you have good tags and people are listening to stuff that is related, you’ll get plays.”
Back then, you needed to tell people that you had a SoundCloud to listen to it, but now you can just upload songs and if you have good tags and people are listening to stuff that is related, you’ll get plays.” - LOVESEAT, ARTIST SoundCloud has introduced a new feature, Premier, to help creators promote their music and get more plays. Janoyev says that, for smaller artists like him, the service is pricey and quite counterproductive for underground artists trying to make a name for themselves. “You spend money, like twenty-five bucks on a song, you get, per click, like .1 of a cent or 13 cents,” Janoyev says. “To really see improvement, you have to drop like a thousand dollars on a song, but I’m not going to do that.” Distribution and Mastering are two new additions to SoundCloud that Janoyev raves about. Distribution allows artists to bring their SoundCloud tracks to other streaming apps. Mastering puts the finishing touches on their music before release. Yet, with both these features, Janoyev still prefers to release his more refined work on Spotify. “For SoundCloud, I feel like it is better for stuff you want everybody to hear.
Sometimes I will release a little beat that I made that I don’t care if everyone hears,” Janoyev says. “If it’s a song I’m really proud of or I’ve been working on for a while, I would release it on Spotify.” Along with Spotify, TikTok has become an outlet for Janoyev and other streaming artists’ music. Fearful of being taken over by the new social media giant, SoundCloud will have to adapt once again. Janoyev believes the app should innovate the way creators and users interact with one another. “I don’t want to turn SoundCloud into Instagram but maybe the ability to make posts or for people to know when you’re online, or to make an announcement—something like that would be cool,” Janoyev says. “I feel like if they add a personal side onto SoundCloud that could get some more people on there and also help out artists—and make it fun for their fans too.” Maybe SoundCloud should focus on what made their app popular in the first place: making music accessible to everyone. It’s what got artists hooked in the beginning and what keeps them engaged today. There’s no other online platform that matches the freedom and creative vibes which SoundCloud provides. Perhaps we should keep that underground. WORDS KYLE KEEGAN PHOTO MICHAEL CUMMINGS DESIGN S. PERALTA CORNEJO
WINTER 2021 55
ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: Q&A
Christopher Scott PHOTOGRAPHER CHRISTOPHER SCOTT HAS AN EYE FOR LIGHT AND A HEART FULL OF HOPE. Think of any sunset location or neon light in Central Iowa, and you can guarantee Christopher Scott has already taken a model’s photo there. Scott is a Des Moines-based portrait photographer from Arizona. After moving to Iowa in 2015, he worked to expand his business. We chatted with Scott about what makes his work unique and got an inside look at how he brings his ideas to life. WHAT IS THE MISSION OF YOUR WORK?
CHRISTOPHER SCOTT: To give people hope through my photography. My creative purpose is to get people to think when they look at photos of mine, which is most important to me. If I’m just taking pictures to take pictures, it’s not worth it. If I’m taking pictures with a purpose for people to possibly think differently or to be challenged in a certain way, that’s my goal. WHAT IS ONE OF YOUR FAVORITE PHOTOS AND WHY?
CS: The ones that we took in the water. That was such a cool, unique setting and it blew up too. It was just one of those pictures that everyone loved. I think it got, like, 500 likes out of nowhere. The photo at Saylorville sunset was just perfect timing, perfect lighting. The way I edited it, I didn’t try to do too much because it was already a good shot. I think more than anything I tried to get rid of the little bit of land you see in the background, so it looked like it was just the ocean because we don’t have oceans in Iowa.
you would as a photographer. (As a photographer) you see light in certain situations, and you can already imagine a shot. ONCE YOU HAVE A VISION, WHAT ARE YOUR NEXT STEPS? CS: I’m very picky about who I shoot with because I already see the look in my head. I want to ask somebody that I’m comfortable shooting with, that’s comfortable with me, and that I know is comfortable shooting in an awkward situation. We go out, and what’s in my mind comes to reality. IN 10 YEARS, WHERE DO YOU SEE YOUR BUSINESS?
CS: I’m talking dreams here. Two things: I want to create a photobook of life, lifestyle, places I’ve been, things I’ve shot, and things I’ve seen. Then, and I know it sounds crazy, but I want some of my photography in a New York Gallery. Officially, people are going to see my work. INSTAGRAM @Iamchristopherscott FACEBOOK @Christopher Scott WORDS VADA ABRAHAMSON PHOTO CHARLEIGH REINARDY DESIGN FATIMA CALDERON
WHEN YOU LACK INSPIRATION, HOW DO YOU GET BACK INTO THE GROOVE? CS: What always keeps me motivated is the way I view light—I think that’s so important. In the mundane of life, you’re not thinking about light like
56 WINTER 2021
PHOTO CHRISTOPHER SCOTT
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