Links of Great Interest 8/14/09

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Bored at work? Check out these links of great interest! ;)

Did you ever wonder what most Americans are doing at 3:10 am? Maybe they’re reading LOLcat slash.

Maya from Heroes will be a CoverGirl!

Oyate is safe!

Warren Hern is the last late term abortionist. :-/ (ETA: I liked the article’s explanation for why they’re using the term, but find it squickworthy myself. :-/)

More on the Diva League and transphobia in televised dance competitions.

Here’s an interview with Malalai Joya, a prominent Afghani feminist. This is an article presenting a case for the elimination of US empire building.

Scarlett Johannsen speaks out against the tabloids talking about her weight.

Here’s a surprising critique of To Kill a Mockingbird; it focuses on Southern forgetfulness and liberalism.

Anti-homeless violence is on the rise.

Have you heard about Men Against Violence and Abuse??

Karnythia reports back from Worldcon.

UnusualMusic has a great vid up on the politics of incarceration, and another good post on regulating companies.

This doll teaches girls how to breast feed. OH NOES, maybe girls will get the impression their boobies aren’t just about teh sexx0rs.

A woman in a Minnie Mouse costume was groped. Maybe the dude thought she was an EA booth babe. :eyeroll: Anyways, the male gaze normalizes the sexualization of women’s bodies. And then it’s all wonky [article removed] when ethnocentrism gets involved. Women are always bodies and those bodies are always political. :-/

I don’t normally read fanfic but I loved the portrayal of Luna Lovegood in this.

More on rape culture! This movie has NOTHING to do with rape. And heeeeeeeeere’s more Sodini.

Doug Spearman suggests gay racism is on the rise.

The LJ comm 1BRUCE1 breaks down the Sweet Valley High reboot here.

Comments

  1. Pocket Nerd says

    May I humbly suggest you avoid the word “abortionist”? It’s a loaded term pushed by the anti-women’s-rights lobby.

    Also: Why am I not surprised the hang-wringing, pearl-clutching article about a breastfeeding doll comes from Faux News? And why are we so eager to groom girls for motherhood from infancy, but so nervous about explaining any of the actual mechanics? The underlying message seems to be “You were born to be a brood mare, Suzy, but you aren’t entitled to understand how it works.”

    Also also: Merciless tapdancing Cthulhu with caramel frosting and chocolate jimmies on, that Sodini bloke is creepy. He wrote on his website he was “not ugly or too weird,” but I suspect women might have picked up on his anger and sense of entitlement.

  2. Maria V. says

    Hi Pocket Nerd!

    I kinda liked the article’s explanation for why they’re using it, and wanted to see if I could feel comfortable using it myself.

    I still find it squickworthy, so am going to edit it when I get back to the office.

    In news of the real — I totally live by a Planned Parenthood, but they only do abortions on Saturdays. That used to be the only day they had protesters. Now they have at least one nutjob everyday, and one of them called me an abortion-lover when I was walking past because I wouldn’t make eye contact with her. The right really does try to make words hurt. :-/

  3. Pocket Nerd says

    Hi back, Maria!

    And yeah, despite all their whinging about the “liberal media” (hah!) the reactionaries are masters of controlling the public dialogue. One of their primary techniques is to push high-inference language that demonizes their opponents while awarding themselves a veneer of virtue: “Darwinism” makes biology sound less like science and more like a religion competing against Christianity. “Small town values” evokes images of Norman Rockwell and the innocence of youth, rather than the culture of xenophobia and homogeneity it really honors.

    Embracing this kind of newspeak cedes a tactical advantage to the enemies of liberty and human rights, and I refuse to do so.

  4. says

    While I don’t necessarily have a problem with the concept of Deadgirl, claiming that rape has nothing to do with it is just mind-bendingly stupid.

    Not stupid, but sad is the story about the abortion doctor. I know that in Germany, it is already very different to find someone to abort your child when serious birth defects are detected – you have to travel to the godless metropolises (and I don’t mean Munich) to find someone. But having only one doctor in a country “slightly” bigger than Germany… wow.

    At least in the US, I can sort of understand why doctors won’t do it – having your whole family harassed by assholes is a serious detriment, and in Germany that doesn’t happen, party I guess because we don’t have abortion clinics, we just have hospitals. But still, those poor women who have to jump through enough hoops and have to withstand enough pressure anyway, and then not finding a doctor? It makes me sad, but it also makes me quite angry.

    Damn. Thanks for the link, I will have to blog about this.

  5. Charles RB says

    Johann Hari’s interview is a good one, though I admit I did laugh a lot when he said Malalai Joya’s statements are destroying what we’d been told about Afghanistan – when the paper Hari originally did the interview for has been reporting on horrible things in Afghanistan, as have other parts of the UK media, for years.

    The Jezebel blog on Sordini: as with the article’s writer, I am utterly disgusted that some arsehole has been claiming “if he’d followed ‘game’ this wouldn’t have happened!”. This is especially disgusting when, as Salon discovered here, Sordini had been to a class to learn ‘game’ and pick-ups.

    What is the class’ tutor, R. Don Steele, known to have said? “I would say that’s the problem with most of the guys in the room. That you’re too nice. Women don’t like that. They don’t respect it. It’s about as arousing as a booger.”

  6. Pocket Nerd says

    Just my two cents, but… I think women really do like “nice guys.” But “nice” doesn’t mean “spineless doormat,” and it damned sure doesn’t mean “guy who treats me with respect and kindness only because he thinks it gives him a better chance of schmoozing his way into my panties.”

    That’s not a “nice guy.” That’s a predator’s camouflage. Sodini’s private rants show he was anything but “nice.”

  7. Charles RB says

    I didn’t get why Deadgirl was supposed to be a problem when I read that blog. “Guy keeps secret that his friend is raping someone” sounded like a legitimate plot for a horror.

    Then I followed its link to the DreadCentral review of the film which mentioned gross parody and slapstick humour was being used in it. Clearly the filmmakers weren’t trying to do what I assumed they were doing.

  8. says

    I wonder if the problem with breast-feeding dolls is that people want to feed little girls a romanticized image of motherhood. It’s all very sanitized and pleasant with baby dolls. There’s no mention of icky stuff like painful contractions, water breaking, placentas, or having a baby drink its lunch out of your nipples. That might turn girls off to the whole idea.

    I said this before about Sodini, but I don’t think it can be said enough: people do not mass murder out of sexual frustration. If they did, murder would surpass all sports as the national passtime. And if you mindlessly take the word of a crazy person on why he did something crazy, get a clue. Half the time, sane people can’t really explain why they do some of the things they do.

  9. SunlessNick says

    I said this before about Sodini, but I don’t think it can be said enough: people do not mass murder out of sexual frustration.

    Evil can come about from some pretty pathetic reasons. Sexual frustration in itself, maybe not. But that twisted sense of entitlement displayed in the comments and posts praising him … I don’t think it’s a stretch to say he felt the same sense and bought into the same garbage; and not counting as a factor in his actions seems to me to be letting it off the hook.

  10. SunlessNick says

    Oh, in case someone sees my comment before clicking the links – what Maria has linked to are posts about (and condemning) the praise for Sodini, not the praise itself.

    Also, typo: “not counting it as a factor.”

  11. says

    Nick, I’m really struggling to clarify this distinction, so please bear with me if it doesn’t make sense.

    Privilege and entitlement does not make people kill. It does, however, select the victim. And THAT aspect of any entitlement issues that fed into his vemon is very much worth discussing, so I agree with you on that, as far as it goes. Serial and spree killers very often are white men killing women, and why? Because they have overwhelming issues with women, or because they just feel like killing somebody and women are easier victims? Modern psychiatry leans toward the latter, and that’s why I said privilege and entitlement choose the victim, but they don’t inspire the initial urge to kill.

    The discussion then forks: (a) why do sociopaths take a careful hard look at the world and conclude women are a good choice of victim, and (b) why do some damaged, frustrated people go around killing folks while other damaged, frustrated people never lift a hand to any living creature? The answer to A is that society tolerates violence against women to an alarming degree, and in THAT context, privilege and entitlement are very much worth talking about. But B is the question that would force people to recognize there’s nothing sympathetic about Sodini’s motive, and that’s what’s bugging me. If we assume he killed women because he thought they had done him wrong and felt entitled to mete out justice at gunpoint, then he sounds like a normal, frustrated person who made one wrong decision, and that’s letting HIM off too easy. But if you assume he was a violent person looking for release who CHOSE women as a nice target both for blaming and violence, then it opens up discussion both of society’s role in this crime and his personal responsibility.

  12. says

    BTW, I meant to add something about the fact that I may be mistaken about any or all of that. It’s based on my current beliefs, which are based on my current understanding of both abnormal psychology and privilege issues, both of which are works in progress.

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