Thursday, November 30, 2006

And another thing...

Everyone is talking about the Michael Richards freak-out. And it's no wonder. If you saw his racist freak out at the laugh factory, you might be left wondering, as I was, "What the hell."

Watching the video, I actually moaned in agony for Richards. It was just brutal to watch. It was as if he had gone completely mad and as he came back to reality, you could feel the horror in his voice. While I condemn the words he used, I have found myself respecting his apologies. He never blamed his racist speech on alcohol or drugs (which surprised me since he came off seriously whacked out) and he is making a real effort to start a dialogue, for example speaking on Jesse Jackson's radio show.

Richard's freak out, reminded me of the Mel Gibson's anti-Jew tirade, and it made me really start thinking about these celebrities with racist meltdowns. We give them a lot of press time because A) it's scandalous and B) It involves celebrities. Yet, I often find myself thinking-- would anyone give a second thought if a male celebrity went on a rampage insulting women?

For example, ---- If Michael Richards screamed into the audience "shut up ***" insert horrible word here "Bitch," "cunt" etc. Would we still be talking about it? Would he have to apologize on Leno, Letterman or whatever?

Think about it. In his arrest Mel Gibson also harassed a female police officer calling her "sugar tits." Hardly any press people reported on this and if they did, it was only in passing.

I certainly am not suggesting that slandering Jewish people or black people is any light matter. I'm glad the public is holding Michael Richards and Mel Gibson accountable and forcing them to accept some responsibility. However, I just wonder... would a vicious attack on women get similarly shunned by the public or would we shrug and just accept it as another example of woman-bashing?

Plan B anger

A quick thought while I sit in class today. I'm just cranky.

True, it's a major victory that Plan B is now avaliable over the counter (as it should have been years ago, before it was blocked by anti-choice zealots). But why the age limit? Women under 18 still need a prescription.

WHY? We know it's a safe drug to take over the counter!

No man ever has to flash an ID card when he wants to buy condoms. But a girl under 18 needs to go have an appointment and possibly beg to get E.C.? There's no good reason except we want to monitor these young girls and make it more difficult and possibly let them know (yet again) that we don't trust their decisions.

Lame. So very, very lame.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Uphill both ways...

Today I read this blog entry from Biting Beaver (BB), a new blog I've been visiting. BB is sad because we lost another feminist blogger. I think she's talking about "Molly saves the Day" -- it was one of my fave blogs but has recently disappeared. In a way it's not surprising. BB commented (and she is right), being a radical feminist blogger is sort of like volunteering to run into a brick wall over and over again.

Originally this blog was part of a bigger one-- one that encompassed my life with photos, personal stories. Once these comments started, I painstakingly moved all the posts away to a "safe" place. I didn't want the people who sent vile, threatening comments to see my face or the face of my friends. It's tiring to be so afraid and to come up against the same stupid arguments over and over again.

Well....I had a major lesson in patience when I organized a pro-choice rally on my college campus last week-- a day before critical midterm elections (including the S.D. ban on abortion) we were out in the cold from 8-5:30 holding signs, giving out information and proudly standing by our signs proclaiming messages of prevention/contraception and keeping abortion legal. To my delight, our response was 90% positive to 10% negative. Only one person aggressively attacked us and verbally taunted us about killing babies. But the kind of ignorance is easy to roll your eyes at. There I am...

Sometimes I think pro-life people are just lazy. Seriously. Hear me out. Of course, if you never heard of abortion before, and someone explained it to you-- it would sound like "pro-life" would be the way to go. Hell, even the name insinuates you should get on board-- I mean, what is the alternative? PRO DEATH? Abortion is a very seductive issue, really. Standing up for the rights of innocent, beautiful babies or stand up for the rights of a fully grown woman who's had sex. It's much easier to get behind a silent sonogram photo and talk about "innocence" etc. It's harder to defend an adult woman who's going to have flaws.

That's why so often we pro-choice people talk about the rape victim, the incest victim etc. And they are sooo important to remember, don't get me wrong. But there's a danger in all this. Because I believe, as do many others, that South Dakota's abortion ban was voted down because no one wanted to force pregnancy on a molestation/rape victim. But women who get pregnant from ol' fashioned regular sex... I guess since they weren't forced, they deserve to be punished with pregnancy.

And we have a lot to fear. Articles in South Dakota newspapers show that the S.D. legislature is already planning the second round attack on abortion. This time they may write a law with exceptions for victims. This will be a harder battle because most of the time, pro-choice people have trot out their own "innocent" cast to compete with babies. ---- "You may have pictures of happy babies, but I can show you a woman's bruises!"

And I can't stress enough how I don't mean to belittle a woman's situation as a victim. However we REALLY have to stand up for women who weren't "victimized." Because society is likely to feel more comfortable judging them. Calling them a "whore" and saying "you made your bed now lie in it." Every woman deserves bodily autonomy and no third party should make decisions for her just because their bloated, religious, arrogant ego tells them that they are better equipped (sorry, that's the bitter in me).

It's harder to defend women who aren't:
-- ready for kids
-- willing to mother kids
-- able to support children

It's easy to talk about victims, but what about defending a 21 year old woman who just broke up with her boyfriend and doesn't want to be a single parent? What about a women suffering from alcoholism or drug abuse? Could you defend a prostitute seeking an abortion? Would you defend a married woman who simply said, "I have all the kids I want."?

Maybe you're pro-choice but some of these "what-ifs" are making you recoil in horror. Well, get used to it. You have to be prepared to defend everybody. Women shouldn't be required to prove their victimhood to access legal, safe procedures. Yes, it's harder, and yes it's an uphill battle but it's the right thing to do. Just like we can't let the jerks get us down. Keep bloggin and singing the feminist tune. You won't be singing alone.

Friday, November 10, 2006


Watch this-- if you can handle it...

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Naughty Nurse

I agree that the costumes are misogynistic but not sure how I feel about the bigger controversy. I mean if we start fighting these battles are we gonna spend all our time picketing Playboy and Halloween costume outlets too?

Maybe I'm wrong....Any thoughts?

Video clip