Glendale Public Library To Host ‘Why Pronouns Matter’ Event Funded By Taxpayers

Glendale Public Library To Host ‘Why Pronouns Matter’ Event Funded By Taxpayers

By Corinne Murdock |

The Foothills Library plans to host a “He/She/They: Why Pronouns Matter” event next week with funding from the Arizona State Library and Arizona Humanities.

The Arizona State Library is a division of Secretary of State Adrian Fontes’ office; Arizona Humanities is a nonprofit affiliate of the independent federal agency, the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH).

According to the event summary, the pronouns lecture will focus on defining pronouns, the relations between pronouns and gender identity, and explaining various gender identities. The library rated the event as for adults on their events calendar. 

The event is one in a series of “FRANK Talks,” produced in partnership with Arizona Humanities and the Arizona State Library.

There are 14 FRANK Talks topics across categories of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI); Civics; Education; and Environment. “He/She/They: Why Pronouns Matter” is categorized as a DEI topic, along with:

  • “Decolonizing Beauty: Who is Considered Beautiful?”: a critique of the privileges and advantages given to “Western standards of beauty” defined as “blondness, fairness, blue-eyes, and slender figures (in women).” 
  • “What Does Language Tell Us About Society?”: how to ensure respect and inclusivity in language related to social categories of gender and race. 
  • “Jocks and Nerds: Stereotypes in Our Everyday Lives”: how to recognize and prevent the stereotypes that lead to both conscious and unconscious, or implicit, biases.
  • “The Road to Inequity: Understanding the Wealth Gap”: a historical review of federal policies and discriminatory practices, such as redlining and the “current gender wage gap,” that persist today in the form of social and economic inequities, and how to practice equity (not equality) to counter those systems.
  • “Then and Now: What is White Nationalism?” (virtual only): defining and identifying modern white nationalism, or white supremacy, groups and individuals.
  • “What Happens When Social Movements and Social Justice Collide?” (virtual only): discussing the importance of social justice movements like Black Lives Matter (BLM), LGBTQ+, and #MeToo, as well as concepts like intersectionality.

The speaker for next week’s pronouns lecture is listed as FRANK Talks host Erick Tanchez. Tanchez is a self-described “Queer Xicano” that identifies both as a “he” and a “they.” Tanchez has served as a program specialist for Maricopa County Community Colleges and president of Equality Maricopa. 

Tanchez is an Arizona State University (ASU) alumni, where he served as the executive director of CollegetownUSA@ASU, the college program of the national anti-gun and social justice group, Anytown USA. 

Tanchez also hosts speeches for the FRANK Talks topic “Undocumented Americans: Who Gets to Go to College?”, in which he advocates for the equal treatment of illegal immigrants in college admissions.

The other FRANK Talk speakers are Kaari Aubrey, founder of a LGBTQ+ and BIPOC-only digital publishing company and former teacher; Andrea Christelle, vice provost for research at  the Navajo Nation’s Diné College, founder of Philosophy in the Public Interest at Northern Arizona University; Derek Keith, a senior project manager at Arizona State University’s (ASU) Learning Enterprise responsible for internal DEI committees and trainings, and a former California educator who incorporated diversity and social justice into curriculum through courses like Social Justice literature; Mathew Nevarez, board member for the Alhambra Elementary School, alumni of AZ Leading For Change Fellowship; Gail Rhodes, PhD student and adjunct professor at ASU, former reporter for Fox Sports Network; Matthew C. Whitaker, founder of the ASU Center for the Study of Race and Democracy; and R.J. Shannon, a community activist with involvement including the founding of Healing Racism, former board membership for the Arizona ACLU, chairmanship and state liaisonship of the local committee for the anti-gun group Moms Demand Action, and planner for an indigenous LGBTQ+ conference.

On Wednesday, Arizona Humanities also hosted “The Art of Drag,” featuring Arizona State University (ASU) English professor and Drag Story Hour president David Boyles to discuss the history of drag and the experiences of modern drag performers.

Corinne Murdock is a reporter for AZ Free News. Follow her latest on Twitter, or email tips to

Arizona Sheriffs’ Association Rebukes New Mexico Governor For Gun Ban

Arizona Sheriffs’ Association Rebukes New Mexico Governor For Gun Ban

By Daniel Stefanski |

The political fallout has continued from New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham’s controversial executive order on the Second Amendment from earlier this month.

Late last week, the Arizona Sheriffs’ Association issued a letter to “publicly rebuke the order of New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham that suspended the second amendment in Bernalillo County, New Mexico.”

The letter, which was signed by the Association’s President and Yavapai County Sheriff, David Rhodes, asserted that “this chilling executive order erroneously cites a public health emergency but is nothing less than a full-blown violation of constitutional rights.” Rhodes’ letter added that the executive order out of New Mexico is “unparalleled and unprecedented” executive overreach in the United States, and that it “completely disregards well established case law and interpretation of the second amendment by the United States Supreme Court which has upheld an individual’s right to bear arms in self-defense.”

Sheriff Rhodes acknowledged the worries over crime across the nation and shared his insight on how communities and law enforcement officials could get control of the issues they face, writing, “To regain control of public safety, measures must be taken to inspire confidence that the law will be enforced against those who commit crimes, not those who don’t. Zero tolerance for crime, support for law enforcement, border security, and the encouragement of law enforcement to be proactive in their duties are all strong starting points. No community will ever be safe without the ever-continuing development of relationships between the police and the community.”

In his letter, Rhodes warned that “violating constitutional rights will do nothing to make the public safe,” but would rather “make the public less safe by eliminating individuals’ ability to defend themselves.”

The leader of the state’s sheriffs’ association closed his communication by addressing his fellow colleagues across all jurisdictions in law enforcement. He said, “And finally, to all our elected sheriffs, chiefs of police and law enforcement officials that took an oath to their office: Remember this: that oath is absolute, no matter what the governor of New Mexico claims. The Constitution, which you swore to uphold and defend, was designed by our founders specifically to protect us from the government overreach that the governor of New Mexico is attempting to exact on her citizens right now. We have been warned many times throughout history that leaders would attempt to exchange perceived security for constitutional rights. Resist that urge now by refusing to violate the constitutional rights of your fellow citizens of New Mexico.”

Rhodes’ letter stands in stark contrast to a social media post from the Arizona House Democrats Caucus that was sent out shortly after the New Mexico executive order hit the wires. That post appeared to endorse the controversial and legally suspect action from New Mexico’s Governor.

Republican Maricopa County Attorney Rachel Mitchell was quick to respond to the House Democrats’ post, vowing to see them in court if it ever came to that point on this issue of restricting Arizonans’ constitutional freedoms.

Just days after the executive order was signed, a U.S. District Judge in New Mexico granted a temporary restraining order to two of the governor’s sections in her action. That court decision followed a letter from the state’s attorney general, Raúl Torrez, who informed the governor that she was on shaky constitutional grounds with her order. Attorney General Torrez stated, “Though I recognize my statutory obligation as New Mexico’s chief legal officer to defend state officials when they are sued in their official capacity, my duty to uphold and defend the constitutional rights of every citizen takes precedence. Simply put, I do not believe that the Emergency Order will have any meaningful impact on public safety but, more importantly, I do not believe it passes constitutional muster.”

Daniel Stefanski is a reporter for AZ Free News. You can send him news tips using this link.