Friday, February 23, 2007

A Post About How I Can't Post

I cannot blog about this story. I just can't. I know I should, but I can't. Anything I'd write about it would be too ridiculous, dripping in too much privilege, and generally too disgusted and emotionally charged to be at all important. If I were a better blogger, maybe I could. But as of right now, I just can't.

So, I hereby direct you to ilyka's post about it at Pandagon, because something has to be said of this monstrosity.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Wouldn't It Be Great . . .

If this happened to every sexist asshole on the planet?

But honestly, I'd settle for this.

South Dakota State Senate Committee KO's New Abortion Ban

That makes me want to say "Rejected!" like Walt "Clyde" Frazier and Keith Hernandez do in that Just for Men commercial.

The "new and improved" South Dakota abortion ban that was supposed to get more supports was rejected by the state Senate committee 8-1. I just hope that it wasn't rejected for the fact that it wasn't strict enough, but that doesn't seem to be the case. State Representative and bill sponsor Gordon "I Just Don't Know When to Give Up" Howie is going to try to bring the bill to the full Senate anyway.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Of Special Interest To Me

I'm an art history geek, so when I got this link from NOW in my e-mail, I was really excited and wanted to share it. It's about the new feminist art museum that just opened in Brooklyn, New York, The Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art.

The above work is The Dinner Party by Judy Chicago. It looks amazing. It's a triangular table with place settings for 39 prominent female figures, and on the tile floor beneath the table, the names of 999 other prominent women, to Margaret Sanger to Sojourner Truth.

I love the way it mimics past art in the title and the subject matter. I think it's very effective in glorifying the women that it mentions. I absolutely love the concept. Wish I could see it. Gotta put it on my list.

Check out the museum website!

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Ponderings Coupled with PostSecret

Postsecret has a lot of great images up this week. Many of them have themes consistent with gender/feminist issues. Definitely worth a look.

This one caught my eye:
Not only did the verbal imagery remind me of certain people I know, it is also a very powerful message about the state of rape awareness in this culture.

I've heard too many stories of women who have been raped and don't even know it. It's just more proof of how morphed society's view of sex really is. If sex can be confused with rape, or rape with sex, then something is amiss with our view of sexuality.

All this gray area does is create rape apologists who explain and justify rape (and the subsequent slap on the wrist that most rapists get if they're brought to court at all) with things like "Well, she must have just been teasing him" or "How was he supposed to know she was being serious? Women say 'no' when they mean 'yes' all the time".

This is also why I dislike depictions of sex, be they in books/movies/television, that create a fight-sex mentality. That sex as a struggle is somehow erotic or better than sex that is obviously consensual is not a concept that I'm a fan of.

Now, for risk of being labeled "anti-sex", "frigid", or "prude", allow me to say that whatever one does in their own bedroom is their business (unless its abusive or non-consensual of course).

Still, all the time, trashy romance novels, soap operas, popular F/X television shows, movies, and all different forms of entertainment show sex as some sort of erotic battle. The less consent the better it seems. This attitude also spans every range of taste. And of course, this isn't even mentioning the fact that this is often the main line of defense in rape cases.

Even so, the people who write/direct/create these works don't even seem to buy into what they're presenting (with perhaps the exception of Dennis Leary). Even in these consensual rape fantasies, it's still consensual! So, the only thing that is presented is rape as a violent act of domination, and with that, the line is blurred. What is consent when sex is supposed to be a battle?

It's no wonder people have secrets like the one above. How could anyone ever know if they consented or not when non-consent is often portrayed as consent?

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Friday, February 09, 2007

Take Action for Women in Mariana Islands

For those who don't know, Northern Mariana Islands is a US territory located in the Pacific Ocean. You've probably seen "Made in Northern Mariana Islands" on the garment tags of your clothing. Maybe it just said "Made in USA," but it was actually made by indentured servants in the Northern Mariana Islands. Well, Congress is trying to stop the exploitation of these people buy passing labor laws that are equal to those in the US. Here's a disturbing article about the sweatshop conditions women in the Northern Mariana Islands work in and the abuse they have to endure (including forced abortions) just to keep their jobs that was published in Ms. Magazine last year.

Basically, Saipan tricks people, mostly women from China, into working in "America." They pay thousands of dollars to relocate, only to work off their debt in garment factories in Saipan making clothes for Abercrombie & Fitch, Ann Taylor, and other major retailers for $3.00 an hour. Here's a very interesting video I just found that exposes sweatshops in Saipan.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Female Freedom?

My sister sent me this site.

It's pretty crazy. I love the idea, considering it is pretty bad to be a woman and have to pee when there is no bathroom (or hygienic bathroom) around. Still, I have a little bit of a problem with equating women's freedom simply with the ability to be like men. Still, overall I think it's a good thing.

Anyway, I just thought it was crazy. Any thoughts?

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Wal-Mart Faces Billion-Dollar Lawsuit for Sex Discrimination

And there's why. As many as 1.5 million former and current female employees of Wal-Mart allege they were paid less and denied promotions because they're women. Now the case is going to trial. Here's a very short article announcing this news, and here's some more detailed information about the case.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Another "Men Are More Logical Than Women" Spouter Offers Himself As Proof Of The Opposite

Check out this guy.

First of all, I want you to know that men have Logic-o-rama. Women, well, we just don't. Estrogen just doesn't come with little logic capsules. Penis = logic. Uterus = emotional and illogical.

Going there would just be beating a dead horse.

It just goes downhill from there. Women get into science classes in college because men are discriminated against. Feminism is a hate movement. There are like a bajillion laws in place that discriminate against men. Feminism like totally wasn't and isn't needed because women would have gotten their rights without it. Science like totally is teh roxzorz.

That, my dears, is the basic gist of it.

My response was as follows (It is only so short because og character restrictions):

But then if we get into your science programs, it would only be because you were discriminated against!! Or are we only to look from the sidelines in skimpy cheerleading outfits? In any case, the invention of the pill came before a court case which made it legal. It's invention would have been meaningless had women not been able to legally use it, and I don't think you change laws in a laboratory. I don't think science gave women the right to vote, either.

In response, I received this:

The first part of your post is irratinal don't want to be a cheerleader? Then don't. You can do what you want to do, didn't anyone tell you that? (btw, I did study science in uni and there was anti-male discrimination).

The second parts are good points, yes there are good changes that feminists have made, but feminism takes credit for all the advances that women have made.. Advances that would not have happened if the science wasn't ready. That was my point.

So by now I'm just laughing. However, while laughing, I constructed what I believe to be quite a clever response to Mr. ArgusEyes.

My comment was just a tad on the long side for YouTube regulations, so I figured I'd just send you a message. I hope such a thing is not too bold. In any case, here is what I had wanted to say before I was denied by ridiculous character restrictions:

The point was not irrational because you didn't get it. The cheerleader comment was a snide remark in reference to first the "men have more logical minds" (yeah right) comment, and secondly, the "man-discrimination". The point was that you say look to science, yet when we do and we beat out the men who also look to science, we're told it's because men are just discriminated against. Therefore, you must not want women to actively participate in science, just watch and ooh and ahh over your manly logicalness (yes, I know that's not a word). If you believe men were being discriminated against, then you must believe that the women who took their places were not as qualified as the men. I saw no explanation for such a belief. Having a special interest in including women isn't discriminating against men. You say that there were 8 women in your class, right? Do you believe they were all inferior to the male candidates they beat out? I mean, if I did try to go into science, wouldn't I just be stepping on all of the men who are better at it than I am? Wouldn't you consider me a black mark on the boy's club of logical thinking? You say all these things in your comment ("You can do whatever you like"), yet it completely contradicts your apparent attitude in your video (If you're in a science class and have excess amounts of estrogen, it's because men are discriminated against and you suck at logic and science). Someone's wringing their hands.

In any case, without feminism, the advances of science would have been meaningless. When epidurals first came out, many people were against them because of the Bible and the whole "pain in childbirth" thing. Therefore, feminism had to step in. Didn't see science doing anything for women that it wasn't doing for anyone else. Science improves the lives of everyone, but it doesn't work in awarding people human rights. That requires social efforts. What you're suggesting is that because science helps everyone, it's been better for women than feminism. I mean, I'm sure scientific breakthroughs in diagnosing and handling Sickle Cell Anemia helped the black community because Sickle Cell Anemia disproportionately affects black people, but it didn't do more for their human rights than the civil rights movement. It just improved their quality of life just like it would have for anyone. Big whoop!

Not only that, but you've changed your story. Is feminism a horrible hate movement or has it had positive changes? Are you saying positive changes can come from hating men and erecting horrible man-hate laws that just keep men down? Come on now. Not only that, but you specifically said that feminism was not needed. Women would have gotten those rights anyway. I see absolutely no evidence of that, and in fact, see evidence in direct OPPOSITION to that. That was also contradicted by your saying that feminism has had positive effects.

So, in conclusion, I think you yourself are proof that perhaps men aren't more logical than women. It was a good attempt at defaming feminism, though. I give you points for creativity at least.
Also, feel free to watch his other videos. Did you know? Women are more sexist than men! Oh the horror!