“In response to people who tell me that I’m too angry at the ways in which autistic and otherwise disabled people are treated, all I can say is: I’m not angry. I’m not having a personal feeling that I need to resolve. No. I’m outraged. I’m having an ethical response to a society that needs to right its wrongs. I’ve been outraged all my life at injustice and needless suffering, and I always will be. I consider it an ethical obligation of the highest order.”—
1. Ad Hominem Argument An argument that counters another’s claim or conclusion by attacking the person, rather than attacking the argument itself. (Latin, “against the man.”) A specific example of the Genetic Fallacy…
"This video is only partly about a geek finding out that his girlfriend is more geeky than him, and more about how gross it is when your girlfriend starts acting like an actual, fully-developed geek, a person who decides what she likes without referencing your desires first, and explores those interests because she’s a person and that’s what people do.”
“You don’t owe prettiness to anyone. Not to your boyfriend/spouse/partner, not to your co-workers, especially not to random men on the street. You don’t owe it to your mother, you don’t owe it to your children, you don’t owe it to civilization in general. Prettiness is not a rent you pay for occupying a space marked “female”.”—
This month, the 230-year-old toy store confirmed that it has dispensed with its pink “girls” and blue “boys” floors. From now on, toys will be organized around types like “Soft Toys” and interests like “Outdoor” and “Arts & Crafts” with gender-neutral red and white signage.
“It’s Okay to be Neither,” By Melissa Bollow Tempel
Alie arrived at our 1st-grade classroom wearing a sweatshirt with a hood. I asked her to take off her hood, and she refused. I thought she was just being difficult and ignored it. After breakfast we got in line for art, and I noticed that she still had not removed her hood. When we arrived at the art room, I said: “Allie, I’m not playing. It’s time for art. The rule is no hoods or hats in school.”
She looked up with tears in her eyes and I realized there was something wrong. Her classmates went into the art room and we moved to the art storage area so her classmates wouldn’t hear our conversation. I softened my tone and asked her if she’d like to tell me what was wrong.
“My ponytail,” she cried.
“Can I see?” I asked.
She nodded and pulled down her hood. Allie’s braids had come undone overnight and there hadn’t been time to redo them in the morning, so they had to be put back in a ponytail. It was high up on the back of her head like those of many girls in our class, but I could see that to Allie it just felt wrong. With Allie’s permission, I took the elastic out and re-braided her hair so it could hang down.
“How’s that?” I asked.
She smiled. “Good,” she said and skipped off to join her friends in art.
An really interesting article on teaching kids about gender issues and tolerance. While I do believe that kids should be taught about this stuff, I’d always been kind of uncomfortable with the idea because I couldn’t imagine a good way to do it - but this teacher’s strategies are spot on. Awesome!
“Excuse me while I throw this down, I’m old and cranky and tired of hearing the idiocy repeated by people who ought to know better.
Real women do not have curves. Real women do not look like just one thing.
Real women have curves, and not. They are tall, and not. They are brown-skinned, and olive-skinned, and not. They have small breasts, and big ones, and no breasts whatsoever.
Real women start their lives as baby girls. And as baby boys. And as babies of indeterminate biological sex whose bodies terrify their doctors and families into making all kinds of very sudden decisions.
Real women have big hands and small hands and long elegant fingers and short stubby fingers and manicures and broken nails with dirt under them.
Real women have armpit hair and leg hair and pubic hair and facial hair and chest hair and sexy moustaches and full, luxuriant beards. Real women have none of these things, spontaneously or as the result of intentional change. Real women are bald as eggs, by chance and by choice and by chemo. Real women have hair so long they can sit on it. Real women wear wigs and weaves and extensions and kufi and do-rags and hairnets and hijab and headscarves and hats and yarmulkes and textured rubber swim caps with the plastic flowers on the sides.
Real women wear high heels and skirts. Or not.
Real women are feminine and smell good and they are masculine and smell good and they are androgynous and smell good, except when they don’t smell so good, but that can be changed if desired because real women change stuff when they want to.
Real women have ovaries. Unless they don’t, and sometimes they don’t because they were born that way and sometimes they don’t because they had to have their ovaries removed. Real women have uteruses, unless they don’t, see above. Real women have vaginas and clitorises and XX sex chromosomes and high estrogen levels, they ovulate and menstruate and can get pregnant and have babies. Except sometimes not, for a rather spectacular array of reasons both spontaneous and induced.
Real women are fat. And thin. And both, and neither, and otherwise. Doesn’t make them any less real.
There is a phrase I wish I could engrave upon the hearts of every single person, everywhere in the world, and it is this sentence which comes from the genius lips of the grand and eloquent Mr. Glenn Marla: There is no wrong way to have a body.
I’m going to say it again because it’s important: There is no wrong way to have a body.
And if your moral compass points in any way, shape, or form to equality, you need to get this through your thick skull and stop with the “real women are like such-and-so” crap.
You are not the authority on what “real” human beings are, and who qualifies as “real” and on what basis. All human beings are real.
Yes, I know you’re tired of feeling disenfranchised. It is a tiresome and loathsome thing to be and to feel. But the tit-for-tat disenfranchisement of others is not going to solve that problem. Solidarity has to start somewhere and it might as well be with you and me.”
“My point is that feminists are not biological determinists. Feminists are the least likely people to say ‘all men are bastards’. Some of them might say ‘many men behave like bastards’. But they don’t imply that such behaviour is acceptable because its genetic or ‘natural’ for men to behave that way, like those arguments defending rapists which imply that men are really all just stupid cavemen who can’t be blamed when they rape because, hey, men just can’t help it when they see someone in a mini skirt. Feminists don’t write books about how men are genetically incapable of picking up an iron. Feminists don’t write books about how men are from another planet, one where men have to be left ‘in their cave’ because they just don’t have proper emotions like women do. That’s because actually, feminists think men should be treated as fully functional human beings with brains and morals who should be held responsible for the choices they make.”—
“If I could change three things about how the world sees autism, they would be these. That the world would see that we feel joy—sometimes a joy so intense and private and all-encompassing that it eclipses anything the world might feel. That the world would stop punishing us for our joy, stop grabbing flapping hands and eliminating interests that are not “age-appropriate”, stop shaming and gas-lighting us into believing that we are never, and can never be, happy. And that our joy would be valued in and of itself, seen as a necessary and beautiful part of our disability, pursued, and shared.”—
“Not being racist is not some default starting position. You don’t simply get to say you’re not a racist; not being racist — or a sexist or a homophobe — is a constant, arduous process of unlearning, of being uncomfortable, of eating crow and being humbled and re-evaluating. It’s probably hard to start that process if you’ve been told that every thought you have is golden and should be given voice, and that people who are offended by what you say are hypersensitive simpletons.”—
If I was to steal a chocolate bar because it was sitting at the counter looking all tasty, it’d be theft. Nobody would say but oh, look at the creamy picture on the packaging. It was taunting him. He had no choice. It was instinct. Impulse. Drives and desires beyond his control.
Some interesting perspectives on the portrayal of female characters in comics.
Honestly I don’t think most of them go far enough, and there’s a lot of coy side-stepping around the real issues, which pisses me the hell off (the way to fix objectification of women in comics is to just think of your female characters as real characters too! WHOA, THAT’S SO RADICAL, MAN). Strange how both male and female “feminist” comic creators are still so timid about the elephant in the room.
Whether or not you agree with them, it’s definitely an interesting read.
A lot of dudes say they wish they were objectified sexually like women are. And I admit, it can definitely be fun. But that’s because it’s something rare for men in our society. It’s not the same for women.
Think about your favorite food. Now imagine that every day since you…
“Nobody realizes that some people expend tremendous energy merely to be ‘normal’.”—
Important to remember when you think of saying to someone, “why can’t you just act normal?” Maybe they used up all their ability to act normal that day. Or, maybe, they’re just tired, tired, tired of spending all their enery to please you, instead of spending it on their own life.
Fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck, this just makes me so fucking angry and depressed I can’t handle it. I was hoping I’d be able to reply to Ablecynic’s horrific comments but I think it might just give me an anxiety attack and I don’t think I can deal with reading any more of them. So if anybody who reads this feels like they can keep their shit together better than me and wants to spam Ablecynic with scathing, devastatingly brilliant responses, please, please do.
1. You’ve Been Psychologically Conditioned To Want a Diamond The diamond engagement ring is a 63-year-old invention of N.W.Ayer advertising agency. The De Beers diamond cartel contracted N.W.Ayer to create a demand for what are, essentially, useless hunks of rock.
2. Diamonds are Priced Well Above Their Value The De Beers cartel has systematically held diamond prices at levels far greater than their abundance would generate under anything even remotely resembling perfect competition. All diamonds not already under its control are bought by the cartel, and then the De Beers cartel carefully managed world diamond supply in order to keep prices steadily high.
3. Diamonds Have No Resale or Investment Value Any diamond that you buy or receive will indeed be yours forever: De Beers advertising deliberately brain-washed women not to sell; the steady price is a tool to prevent speculation in diamonds; and no dealer will buy a diamond from you. You can only sell it at a diamond purchasing center or a pawn shop where you will receive a tiny fraction of its original “value.”
4. Diamond Miners are Disproportionately Exposed to HIV/AIDS Many diamond mining camps enforce all-male, no-family rules. Men contract HIV/AIDS from camp sex-workers, while women married to miners have no access to employment, no income outside of their husbands and no bargaining power for negotiating safe sex, and thus are at extremely high risk of contracting HIV.
5. Open-Pit Diamond Mines Pose Environmental Threats Diamond mines are open pits where salts, heavy minerals, organisms, oil, and chemicals from mining equipment freely leach into ground-water, endangering people in nearby mining camps and villages, as well as downstream plants and animals.
6. Diamond Mine-Owners Violate Indigenous People’s Rights Diamond mines in Australia, Canada, India and many countries in Africa are situated on lands traditionally associated with indigenous peoples. Many of these communities have been displaced, while others remain, often at great cost to their health, livelihoods and traditional cultures.
7. Slave Laborers Cut and Polish Diamonds More than one-half of the world’s diamonds are processed in India where many of the cutters and polishers are bonded child laborers. Bonded children work to pay off the debts of their relatives, often unsuccessfully. When they reach adulthood their debt is passed on to their younger siblings or to their own children.
8. Conflict Diamonds Fund Civil Wars in Africa There is no reliable way to insure that your diamond was not mined or stolen by government or rebel military forces in order to finance civil conflict. Conflict diamonds are traded either for guns or for cash to pay and feed soldiers.
9. Diamond Wars are Fought Using Child Warriors Many diamond producing governments and rebel forces use children as soldiers, laborers in military camps, and sex slaves. Child soldiers are given drugs to overcome their fear and reluctance to participate in atrocities.
10. Small Arms Trade is Intimately Related to Diamond Smuggling Illicit diamonds inflame the clandestine trade of small arms. There are 500 billion small arms in the world today which are used to kill 500,000 people annually, the vast majority of whom are non-combatants.
And people ask me why I don’t find diamonds romantic.
“Sex-negative messages don’t keep people from having sex. They keep people from having good sex. They keep people from having pride in their sexuality, from sexual self-awareness. They keep people from asking questions about sex, and communicating with their partners. They discourage experimentation. They blur the lines between consensual sex and rape by framing all sex as an undifferentiated mass of “bad.” They combine victim-blaming with generalized guilt about sex, so that perpetrator and survivor are equally culpable.”—Sex-Negative Education and the Spectre of Rape