When Sandra Fluke testified at the Women’s Health and Contraception hearing before Nancy Pelosi and members of Congress, she began by specifically stating that her testimony was “on behalf of the women who will benefit from the Affordable Care Act contraceptive coverage regulation,” thereby making clear that she was not there to address any sort of personal grievance or request. She was not there, for instance, to ask members of Congress that she be “paid for having sex.” She was there to praise the President’s new proposal that insurance companies take care of women as well as men. To promote access to birth control. To stand up for women’s rights to full healthcare.
It’s a wonder that we are still discussing such an antiquated topic as “equal insurance coverage for women,” but, here we are, talking about the gender-dividing stuff that the “humanists-not-feminists” regard as outdated issues. And while they go on about how advanced our society is now and how many rights we should be grateful for, after-all-we-don’t-live-in-Saudi-Arabia, and how feminism is now rightly deceased since we no longer need it, the Republicans gleefully chime in with, “Why are you having sex in the first place?”
Despite the common knowledge that Republicans are no fan of science or evolution, most should at least be capable of recognizing that sexuality is quite the permanent and relentless component of our human DNA, without which our species would die off. But instead, without the guidance of evil, feminist science books, they insist that abortion is the one act likely to cause the extinction of the human race.
The follow-up question might then be, “But who needs abortion when you have full access to reliable birth control methods?”
And the unnecessary-but-informative feminist replies: Unfortunately, even 99% effective birth control pills and latex contraceptives can sometimes fail, not to mention the fact that miscarrying mothers may need abortive services along with victims of molestation, rape and incest — but the compassionate, Christian God already knows that darn well, so let’s move on.
So. There are Republicans and then there is Rush Limbaugh. Amirite? Um… unfortunately, no, not really. Rush Limbaugh represents the majority of Republicans and it’s obvious by the tepid Republican response to Limbaugh’s offense against Fluke that they agree with him in some way or another. The “well-I-wouldn’t-have-used-those-exact-words” schtick is reserved for when someone you admire and agree with is taking heat and you simply can’t politically afford to full-on agree with them right now. Amirite? Yeah, I’m right. Moving on.
So, as I was saying, there are Republicans and then there is Rush Limbaugh, their glorious, fat-headed (meaning idiotic, not in reference to his body weight) leader, who thinks it makes perfect sense to whine and cry about “Obama’s” gas prices and the hefty penalty he pays just to take his Hummer out for a spin meanwhile slandering college students for daring to request health services from their own insurance plans. Rush Limbaugh preaches that sexual abstinence is the answer to Fluke’s financial difficulties; however, the idea that he might ride a bike or take the bus to avoid higher gas prices has never occurred to him. And, without reminding our audience that Fluke specifically addressed at length several other medical conditions which require hormonal birth control pills to regulate (such as endometriosis and polycystic ovarian syndrome), Rush has absolutely no idea how birth control pills work anyway.
Rush: She’s having so much sex she can’t afford her birth control anymore!
Rush: She gives the numbers – three thousand dollars worth of birth control pills worth of sex!
Rush: Not one person says, “Well, did you ever think about maybe backing off the amount of sex that you have?”
Obviously, without a Feminazi© to guide him, he has no idea that women do not, in fact, take a birth control pill each time they engage in sexual intercourse. Birth control pills are actually a preventative measure that women take to regulate their periods, govern their hormones and ward off cysts. Oh yeah, and rapist’s babies. Because the reality is that you never know when you could be raped, no matter how high your morals , or your neckline, may be.
We need feminists to remind us of these kinds of things from time to time.
We need feminists to piss people off and rile them up and to speak out against injustice and to applaud measures for equal rights. Like Sandra Fluke did.
Because the only people who are being quiet now are the Republicans. And that’s how I like them.
Feel Free to Sign a Petition or Two:
And Tweet Your Thoughts on the Big Jerk: #FlushRushNow
and Thank The Sponsors Who Stood Behind Women and Flushed His Show:
@JohnDeere, @Allstate, @AOL, @Sears, @ProFlowers, @Carbonite, @LegalZoom, @QuickenLoans,@Geico, @JCPenney, @Netflix, @CapitalOne
Indiana Rep. Jud McMillan (R.-Brookville) recently sponsored and then withdrew a welfare drug testing bill which would have mandated testing for individuals 18 years of age and older who receive assistance under the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program. There was a small hitch when South Bend Democrat Rep. Ryan Dvorak responded to McMillan’s proposal with an amendment that would additionally require elected officials to undergo drug testing. As a result of this amendment, McMillan withdrew the bill. However, he reportedly plans to reintroduce the bill on Monday.
The hypocrisy and victim-blaming is at an all-time high within the Republican party. If you don’t have insurance due to a lay-off or unforeseen financial struggles, they cheer for your death. If you don’t have a job due to the sad state of the economy and rampant outsourcing, they tell you to take a bath and shut up. And, most certainly, you are at fault for any personal weakness you may have and you should be either indifferently discarded or righteously punished for such weaknesses.
But apparently not all recipients of government money are created equal. As Assistant Minority Leader Rep. James Clyburn (D-S.C.) told the Huffington Post, “I don’t see anyone in the Republican majority demanding drug testing for folks who receive oil and gas subsidies.”
This bill is merely one of many manifestations of the too-common, bipartisan practice of victim-blaming frequently directed at addicts. It’s so easy to do – much easier than looking closer at the issues, concerning yourself with the fallible human factor, experiencing empathy or compassion for your fellow Americans, and creating progressive policies based on effectiveness. Blaming addicts for their addictions is the latest trend in political band-wagoning.
Addiction, whether or not you consider it to be a disease, certainly has the criteria. According to the Encyclopedia Brittanica, disease is described as “a harmful deviation from the normal structural or functional state of an organism. A diseased organism commonly exhibits signs or symptoms indicative of its abnormal state.” And, whether you believe it or not, no one intentionally sets out to incur an addiction.
People have weaknesses and are susceptible to irrational behavior, especially when distraught. Some of the major risk factors for drug addiction are mental illness, anxiety, depression and loneliness, according to research by the Mayo Clinic.
Do we blame those who suffer from bipolar disease for their distractability, rapid speech patterns, insomnia, impulsiveness, delusions and irritability? Do we demand that these people “stop being bipolar” in order to merit our sympathy or care? (The answer is no.) Fortunately, sufferers of bipolar disorder currently have the option to take medication (that is, if they can afford insurance or qualify for medicaid). Unfortunately, there is no reliable method for treating addiction.
Statistics show that 19.5 million people over the age of 12 use illegal drugs in the United States (Mayo Clinic). 12-step programs such as N.A. have failure rates of between 90-95%, depending on the source of the statistics. It’s easy to blame the participants in the program; it’s easy to claim that they’re not trying hard enough or that they don’t really want to quit. But the reality is that addicts have little to no control over their impulses and actions; their brains are, in most cases, physically impaired by chemical dependence on the substance. Even cigarette smokers have a nationwide 90-95% failure rate for quitting, regardless of their methodology.
These are things that most people don’t want to hear. People want to believe in the success story, like all those 80′s movies where babysitters become fashion designers overnight, or the mailboy makes corporate partner in a week. It makes them feel better about their life. It gives them hope.
Unfortunately, the facts are not very cheery and sometimes there’s no way to climb back out of the gutter.
Family members, spouses, and friends of drug addicts (if they’re not drug addicts themselves) often go the route of “tough love”; in other words, the shunning and alienation of their struggling loved one. This method of encouraging recovery through ostracism is firmly anchored in victim-blaming. It’s also unrealistic. Without a support system, a person is unlikely to acquire enough emotional strength to rip themselves away from their sole source of solace. Additionally, an addict lacks realistic perspective and they need a trustworthy confidant of sound mind who cares enough to help point them in the right direction. Occasionally, a person gets their life together and beats their addiction despite their growing despair and isolation from friends and family, but more often, people fall deeper into the warm, comforting arms of their addiction instead.
Punishing those who struggle with addiction is a backward and harmful policy. The fewer resources and loved ones an addict has to conquer their addiction, the less likely they are to recover.
Not everyone can be helped, either. Some situations are irreparable. It’s not pretty, but it’s true. And the sooner we face it, the sooner we can move forward and make changes that might actually help addicts instead of kicking them while they’re down. “Tough love” policies may be convenient and quick ways to ease our feelings of guilt and responsibility for those in need, but they only make matters worse. Victim-blaming makes people feel better about themselves and their inaction. It’s time to end this cycle of behavior. It’s time to find ways to make things better.
STOP THE VICTIM-BLAMING.
Come one, come all, ladies, and join in this festive sharing of furry overgrowth and joy!! No Shave November (sometimes referred to as “Movember” or “Noshember”) has come once again! Take pictures and fend off the itchies as we take the plunge together in a fight against clean-shavenry. (Ok, you caught me; I’m totally making up some of these words.)
When I first heard of it, I was on Twitter. #NoShaveNovember was trending, so I got curious. I thought, “Oh, ‘No Shave November,’ huh? I might try to do that. Could be fun. Wonder what it’s about.” I then noticed a tweet in my feed from the lovely ladies of Ms. Magazine; they claimed that Twitter was going absolute batshit with misogynistic crap on the topic. I thought, ‘Nah, really? It doesn’t seem like something an entire internet community would get up in arms about. Sometimes these gals are sensitive. Maybe there were three or four things they didn’t like and now they’re pissed off. Best to check for myself.’ I clicked on the trend, and this is what I found:
Aaaand so. The message was clear. Women who do not shave their leg/armpit/pubic hair are seriously disturbing the order of the universe and should be punished thusly.
Interesting, I thought. While men can choose whether or not to sport a face-full of wool (meanwhile cultivating lengthy leg/pubic/arm hair all year round with no complaints from outsiders), women are relegated to the “undesirable” discard pile of life if they do not conform to the social demands of the mandatory depilatory duties.
Even on Noshember.com’s website, they encourage men and women alike to “unite in the height of laziness,” but still refer to body hair as something horrid that one wouldn’t want to reveal to the general public:
“Plus, it is cold enough to wear scarves or jeans (respectively) to cover that unsightly hair.”
Why is body hair so scary? We were born with it; it is a natural, normal part of our bodies, like our eyelashes or our earlobes. And yet… it horrifies so many people. I’ve never heard anyone protest that if a guy walked in the room with a beard they’d literally run the other way, but I have heard that said about female body hair. Female leg hair, facial hair, pubic hair and armpit hair is apparently inappropriate in all situations at all times.
Yeahh, ummm… I don’t think so. I say fuck em. You can’t simply decide for me whether or not I will grow hair on my body.
Yes, but no one will EVER want to have sex with you in your entire life if you never shave!
Well… #1. That’s bullshit and #2. We’ll never get anywhere with that attitude. If everyone simply complies with the status quo and shaves their body hair all the time (or becomes embarrassed when they are caught unshaven, or brands the women who don’t shave as “unkempt” or unattractive), why would anyone else bother to reconsider their narrow viewpoint of beauty? If, once in a while, people bumped into beautiful women with body hair, they might reconsider their “hairless-only” policy. So let’s fight this where it lives! No Shave November for all!! One of our biggest obstacles as a gender is that we allow ourselves to be shamed into submission. There are few who dare cross the line, since the social ramifications are swift and harsh.
In fact, I recently saw a scathing article about Mo’Nique, who was on the red carpet, showing off her unshaven stems. The article began like this:
She may have won a Golden Globe to Best Supporting Actress this week, but larger-than-life actress Mo’Nique won’t be winning any awards for her personal grooming.
Fortunately, fans flooded the comment section, rushing to her defense. If there were more celebrities like her who refused to be shamed into compliance, maybe more people would open their eyes to the ridiculous nature of these social demands.
Now, don’t misquote me or twist my words. If you don’t want to shave, don’t shave. (Don’t worry; you will still get laid!) But if you do enjoy shaving, please do. Just know that, regardless of your level of hair growth, someone will screw you and someone will love you. And you are not, in fact, disturbing the balance of the universe.
On a more personal note: I’m a pretty hot, fun, sexy chick and I guaran-fucking-tee that I’d be able to get 50 guys to fuck me despite my body hair within 20 minutes. And… Gimme a break, ladies. You’re really going the extra mile when you’re chiming in with the misogynistic bullshit these guys are piling on. Feel superior for five seconds, enslave your gender for another century. Whatever floats your boat, I guess… but I’d really appreciate it if you stopped helping. Thanks.
It’s iPhone madness here in the virtual world of gay-bashing. [Edit: This week, news broke that Apple was getting a little heat from receiving commission from links to anti-gay organizations. But that's really no surprise.] The one and only rainbow-clad-fruit company has found ways to approve several hurtful, stereotypical and derogatory apps aimed squarely at the GLBT community. Their Manhattan Declaration app was intended to encourage a community cult comprised of people who are anti-women’s rights, anti-gay-couple-adoption rights, anti-extramarital sex and anti-gay marriage to sign an inner-circle petition which expresses these tenets. In this “declaration,” they also voice their disregard for man’s law in favor of “God’s law.”
They respect laws, they say, as long as they go along with their personal Christian dogmas:
“Through the centuries, Christianity has taught that civil disobedience is not only permitted, but sometimes required… Unjust laws degrade human beings. Inasmuch as they can claim no authority beyond sheer human will, they lack any power to bind in conscience.”
As an example of “inspiring” civil disobedience, they cite the abandonment of orphaned children by a Catholic Charity… as a good thing:
“After the judicial imposition of “same-sex marriage” in Massachusetts, for example, Catholic Charities chose with great reluctance to end its century-long work of helping to place orphaned children in good homes rather than comply with a legal mandate that it place children in same-sex households in violation of Catholic moral teaching.”
In regards to proponents of gay marriage, they state, “They [couples who fall outside of the heteronormative categorical] fail to understand, however, that marriage is made possible by the sexual complementarity of man and woman, and that the comprehensive, multi-level sharing of life that marriage is includes bodily unity of the sort that unites husband and wife biologically as a reproductive unit… If [marriage were redefined], it would lock into place the false and destructive belief that marriage is all about romance and other adult satisfactions, and not, in any intrinsic way, about procreation…”
I mean, if this ain’t a forward-thinking, positive, socially-mobilizing app, I just don’t know what is!
But that’s not all! If you liked the Manhattan Declaration, you’ll LOVE Exodus’ “Gay Cure” app. This app is for unsatisfied cocksuckers and rug-munchers who wish they could pray away the gay! The Exodus project is described as “a therapeutic, clinical process that operates under the premise that men and women dealing with same-sex attraction are attempting to restore broken familial relationships in an insufficient, unhealthy way.” Right. I probably like vagina because I was breastfed as an infant. Or something.
Back in the real world, even schoolchildren can check biology texts for more cohesive facts. Thankfully, these morally reprehensible programs were pulled off the market once those iGeniuses realized that one rotten app could spoil the whole barrel.
In response to their app being pulled, Exodus International’s Senior Director stated, “We want to ask that there would be fair and equal representation of religious belief on this platform as is already existing. We would like the spirit of diversity and tolerance that is so valued within the LGBT community.” Yes, of course. All they want is the spirit of tolerance that will allow them to freely condemn innocent people as hell-bound sinners for their sexual orientation and brainwash them to feel irreparably-destructive guilt about their natural sexuality. I mean, isn’t that what Jesus would want?
I was just sitting in a massage chair with my toes soaking in the deliciously-warm whirlpool below me and flipping through a People magazine when I was suddenly slapped in the face. Ok, not literally, but that’s definitely what it felt like. I stared at the ad, blinking a few times just to make sure I wasn’t imagining things. An attractive guy was holding an armful of white towels while talking on his cell phone in the foreground; in the background, a female was enjoying a leisurely soak in a bubble bath. Okayyy, I thought. So….? Then I read: “Reason to get him whipped #8.” Pinnacle Whipped Vodka.
Seriously?? So… what are they trying to say here? Let’s say your boyfriend does the laundry (and mine does – well, actually, we both do it). Does that automatically make him “whipped”? Or does it only make him “whipped” if he does the laundry *while* you’re doing something enjoyable, such as taking a bath? In which case… are you supposed to immediately scamper into the kitchen to find some kind of household chore to do as soon as he extracts the first few items from the hamper? Well, fuck it. I guess I’m just one of those stereotypical, humorless feminazis who doesn’t understand why the portrayal of a helpful boyfriend would include the insinuation of utter female domination.
Is this supposed to let men know that whenever they dare step out of their role as the stereotypical lazy-slob bachelor, they might as well check their testicles at the door?
And what does this say about women? What do you call a woman who does household chores? Anyone got a punchline for that one??
Is it pathetic to do household chores period? Are women everywhere being tricked into thinking they’re doing something to help out when, in reality, they’re being laughed at and seen as broken, manipulated fools? If so, what’s the “cute” name for a female idiot like that? Is it “housewife”? No, it can’t be that – we’ve heard over and over again that to be a housewife is a choice that we’d better respect because it’s just as dignified as having a career outside the home.
So… what’s so hilarious about a guy doing laundry while talking on his cell phone?
I checked out the Pinnacle Whipped website and… omg I have to try some of these. There’s actually a Cotton Candy flavor (!!!) as well as a plethora of other tastebud-tempting flavors such as: Cake (you can’t be serious!!), Butterscotch, Gummy (as in, gummy fish!), Chocolate Whipped, Espresso, Root Beer (sheesh!), and, of course, plain old “Whipped”, featuring a huge dollop of whipped cream on the front. These amazing flavors alone are enough to have their clearly-female demographic racing to the liquor store even before they give their partner’s testicles a final, parting cigarette burn.
There are so many ways this product could have been marketed seductively toward women without harming men in the process. It’s hard enough for a man to find self-respect and dignity in a world of must-watch football, must-drink beer, must-lift weights, must-have muscles, must-drive sportscars and everything else that is counterproductive to a man’s self-esteem and individuality. The gender binary oppresses both genders and forces each into little boxes from which they dare not stray.
I call bullshit and remind these marketing assholes that REAL MEN can do laundry, REAL MEN can cook, and REAL MEN can iron clothing. For fuck’s sake, leave the guy alone.
Other “Whipped” ads from Pinnacle include:
Chrissy Polis, a 22-year-old transgender woman, decided to go to McDonald’s one night. Following Chrissy’s use of the ladies’ restroom, McDonald’s employees looked on amused she was repeatedly kicked in the back, face and head, pummeled with fists, spat upon, had her hair pulled and her earrings torn out. These heinous abuses were doled out by two teenage girls, one 14 and one 18. One good Samaritan, an older woman, attempted to intervene and demanded that the assailants “get off of her,” but she herself was struck in the face. The seemingly-endless, three-minute long beating was recorded by a McDonald’s employee, Vernon Hackett (who has since been fired), while the other employees watched, laughed and rooted for the abusers. The assault ended only after Chrissy suffered a seizure near the front door. Seeing this, the employee who’d been recording the crime actually encouraged the criminals to leave immediately since the victim was bleeding and the police would be on their way. Yeah… wouldn’t want anyone to get arrested for brutally assaulting a helpless victim or anything.
So why did this happen? According to various news sources, including the Huffington Post, it had to do with Chrissy’s attempt to use the women’s restroom.
Polis told the newspaper that after she used the restroom, “They said, ‘That’s a dude, that’s a dude and she’s in the female bathroom.’”
Does it matter what it’s about? Well, WMAL Radio Host Chris Plante had plenty to say on the matter. He blathers on about the nature of transexuality and complains grievously about the term’s flexibility. He has a big problem with the idea that this incident is considered a hate crime since, in his astonishingly-enlightened mind he believes that if this were “simply a matter of” two black girls destroying a white girl, the incident would not be labelled as such. His mind-broadening commentary of course being due to his extensive life experience as a transgender, African-American female… oh, wait… he’s cissexual, white and male. One YouTube commenter, Nirvanfan4ever, prefers to refer to Mr. Plante as a “fucktard,” and I don’t think it’s really my place to disagree with him.
Worse still is yet another well-informed intellectual who calls himself RedBaiter, who begins his article regarding the tragedy as follows:
Nothing excuses the behaviour of the animals responsible for the McDonald’s beating, however it is necessary to dispel the widely held misconception that the victim was a white girl. The victim has been identified as Christopher Lee Polis and a male of Arab or Indian descent who dressed as a woman. Its debatable that such a person has any real right to enter a women’s toilet [emphasis mine].
Chrissy is, in fact, half white and half something else. Why this is relevant to whether or not she should use a toilet… I can’t quite figure that one out. But some people will attack from any angle they can muster when it comes to GLBTQ injustices.
And, yes… it does matter what it’s about. When the level of violence exacted at an individual is escalated to the point of potentially fatal actions due to their personal identity, it DOES MATTER, and it MUST BE RECOGNIZED AND PUNISHED AS EXACTLY THAT. Some people contend that “all crime is ‘hate crime’” since a person would not commit a crime against someone they were fond of. This is missing the point. Identifying an act of violence as a “hate crime” is important because there is an extra element at play here. An element which has NO place in civilized society. This element is the act of the “-ism.” Scholars refer to it as “othering.” When you “other” a group, you dehumanize them and find ways to justify violence and other injustices committed against them. This is no simple error in judgment and it is unacceptable in a society which purports to value equality. Had it been two black girls thrashing some white girl due to her skin color, it would most definitely be a hate crime as well. (Not to mention, Plante’s example proves his egregious underestimation of the eagerness with which the legal system prosecutes African-Americans in general.)
Click here to watch the beating. >>CAUTION: IT IS NOT FOR THE SQUEAMISH… YOU MAY WANT TO HAVE A PAPER BAG HANDY. AND A VALIUM.
Unfortunately, there has been longterm fallout; since the incident, Chrissy has been concerned about the result of this unwanted publicity. She lives in a smaller town and is concerned about obtaining employment and living a normal life. She, in fact, has been hesitant to leave her house altogether due to the mental trauma she has suffered from this brutal incident. She spoke out about the injustices served and the unnecessary fearfulness that transgender individuals experience every day in an interview with the Baltimore Sun.
What the FUCK is wrong with people?
Transgenderism. I am only recently learning the ins and outs of how the terminology is perceived in the trans/queer community and attempting to educate myself on protocol. As with any group, there are diverse preferences in how individuals prefer to be viewed and treated, but one thing I’m pretty sure about: TRANSGENDER PEOPLE ARE HUMAN BEINGS AND DESERVE TO BE TREATED LIKE HUMAN BEINGS. Is that a concise enough definition for you, Plante?
Or, here’s a tip: stop trying to stuff everyone into a category. There are too many of us and there are endless variations of individuals. It’s a futile project at best… and a terrifyingly harmful one with dire consequences at worst.
And here’s the 18 year old ****’s mugshot:
Teonna Monae Brown, 18 years old,
One of the assailants who administered a brutal beating to Chrissy Polis…
at the McDonald’s located at 6315 Kenwood Avenue… has done it before. At the same McDonald’s…
To a mother and her children. Read more on this at TSG.
I was recently reading an article about Eva Longoria’s lesbian love scene in a new comedy, “Without Men.” My blood really started pumping when I thought about Eva and some other beautiful woman trading lipstick in the name of old-fashioned, gratuitous, girl-on-girl, softcore-for-the-mainstream visuals… but then my lady-boner was knocked down with this statement from the Huffington Post:
“It was a little difficult as the two girls are both straight so they were very nervous and laughed a lot,” the film’s director, Gabriela Tagliavini, told Fox News. “But I think that just made it even lovelier. [Female audiences] don’t want to watch porn, so it was all very sensual, both are very beautiful women aside from being incredibly funny.”
First of all, I don’t see how two straight women kissing is lovelier than two women who might actually want to kiss each other. Secondly, what?!? I’m a woman and I find myself absent-mindedly browsing the web for naked ladies and fantasy material on a regular basis. Besides, the Internet makes porn so readily accessible that it’s practically impossible not to get sucked in (no pun intended) to look at something naughty, even when you’re not really looking for something naughty. When a person says something like this, what are they really saying? Are they saying women don’t have a sex drive? Are they saying women don’t masturbate?
I keep hearing how “men are more visual than women.” Since I am neither a scientist nor an omnipotent being, I can’t attest to the validity of this statement. However, I do know that when I’m staring at a dick (or a vagina, for that matter), or even when I’m looking at someone attractive who has clothes on, I’m usually revved up and ready to go. I refuse to believe I’m the only female on the planet who is sexually stimulated by visual input. Besides, how do you explain all of these women who fall for good-looking jerks? Obviously, women are sexually aroused through visual stimulation. Why aren’t they watching porn? Who says they aren’t?? A scientific poll?
Many women don’t want to be seen as “sluts.” Because of this, they are less likely to explore something like porn for fear of being caught… and if they do explore porn, they probably don’t fess up to it.
Do women watch porn? YES. Don’t be naive. Do they constantly broadcast it or wear t-shirts and buttons that advertise their appetites? Um, no… well, unless they’re me