Links of Great Interest 12/18/09

Gah, at this point in the year I should have finished grading. Hm.

In other news:

Religious diversity on the Supreme Court is kinda fail right now.

I can’t tell what pisses me off more — that the NYT decided to make a brown people gift guide, or that I want some of the stuff on it. Farreal, though, think carefully, white people. If you get me the Wise Latina tee, and we are not seriously seriously SERIOUSLY cool, I might cut you. You’ve been warned.

Don’t you dare be a pregnant athlete in high school.

Womanism in black churches? The hell you say! Learn your history, folks.

This series of dance workshops oriented towards fat dancers looks pretty damn amazing.

OMG, COMBAT BARBIE? Really?

Why are male prostititutes so controversial?

Booga booga, there are trans people in your fandom!

This just in — colleges don’t want you to know about sexual violence on campus.

Candace Sams is en route to batty.

Because clearly the bad brown people LIE LIE LIE about their experiences with racial discrimination.

Holy shit, I had no idea the difficulties soldiers face in getting abortions.

Remember Dmitri the Lover? It turns out he’s crazy. God,I haven’t gone on a date that shitty since COLLEGE.

Nnedi Okorafor reviews The Princess and the Frog.

—————

You’ve managed to completely objectify a set of deities. W00T! (ETA: As you can see in the comments, this particular link led to a sometimes heated debate. To clarify: the POST ITSELF is stupid, not necessarily the author himself ;))

Comments

  1. says

    So, as far as that list goes, I’d be happy with about a third of it, but it’s like the writers of that list wanted nearly every other item to be annoying as shit. WTF?

    I will say anything with Princess and the Frog branding automatically pisses me off, because I feel like a lot of the glowing reviews of the film are implying that the bar is set waaaayyy lower for Disney’s black princess movie than it was for any of the Disney movies I watched as a kid. That said: I haven’t seen it yet, I might see it on DVD, and the review you linked to looks good, but… I’m still wary.

    And, um, if pageants want to be taken seriously and prove themselves as more than a less extravagant ANTM episode, STOP giving people FASHION DOLL TITLES.

  2. Scarlett says

    Maria, the link about Dimitri being crazy doesn’t work. Or at least it didn’t on my computer.

    In regards to the stolen generation not happening… I’m always floored by how contentious the issue is. It’s like those Holocost deniers – IT SO BLOODY DID HAPPEN! It was a deliberate, if well-intentioed but misguided, government policy to breed out the Aboriginal race and I can’t believe that there are so many people who a) think it didn’t happen, let alone b) be willing to say it was a pretty lousy thing for a nation/race to do collectively.

  3. says

    Hi!

    I am the “stupid fool” referenced above. I not only objectify Buddhist deities but I can objectify the Cthulhu Mythos as well…one time Azathoth gave me road head on the way to a three-some with the Yellow King!

    Cheers,

    John

  4. says

    pregnant athlete hypothetical:

    school lets her play. she gets injured. fetus gets injured. she sues school, teammates, opposing team, school board.

    possible solution: she signs waiver indemnifying school et al in case of injury. complication: she’s a minor, and such contracts aren’t binding. so mom signs waiver. complication: TX courts don’t enforce parental waivers of this sort.

    i think the school made the right call.

  5. Scarlett says

    I assumed that was why the school banned her from playing. Does anyone know how many places HAVE actually been sued for letting someone play a sport and they went on to miscarry because of it? I wonder how much of it is a real possibility and how much of it is ‘well, let’s wrap these women in cottonwool against their will just to be on the safe side, free choice be damned’. If it’s the latter, well, this attitude that pregnant women must be treated like infants themselves infuriates me but if it’s the former, than I can see where the school’s coming from.

  6. says

    John, I approved your comment even though you’re deliberately being offensive, because I understand you feel this entry was offensive to you.

    However, um, you’re completely wrong about the origin of this website’s name (see here). And I can’t speak for Maria, the author of this article, but I DID read the post and comments she linked to in your post, and I could see why she called you on it. Tantric Buddhism itself has been objectified by westerners looking to co-opt religions that promote sex instead of prudishness. If you don’t have a problem with helping in that process, I advise you not to take issue with being called on it.

    Cheers.

  7. says

    Why are we talking about the school not letting the pregnant athlete play? They did, according to the linked article. That wasn’t the problem. This was the problem:

    But after the school allowed her to play on the team, her coach not only cut her playing time (and none of the other players’) but also disclosed her pregnancy to all of McCollum’s teammates.

    It’s difficult to read that as anything but shaming.

  8. says

    I’ve mentioned before that when I was in high school in Knoxville, TN, UT-Knoxville got caught in a scandal: they told female students they must NOT report sexual assaults to the police, but rather to campus security. Then, they passed some reports onto police, but kinda um “lost” any involving members of the football team, which brought a ton of revenue to the town every year.

    When the story broke, the one positive was that the sheriff’s office was all over it on the news: felonies are police matters, period, end of story. Campus security are glorified versions of the dudes who troll department stores looking for shoplifters. UT orientation also made this very clear – at least the year some of my friends started attending there.

    But in the meantime, all those assaults just got lost. And given the nature of sexual assault, it’s likely that having been protected by the system once, all the men responsible figured their society approved of them sexually assaulting women in the future, too. It’s only rational after all.

  9. Maria Velazquez says

    Hey Niji!
    The thing is, I’d love several of the items from that list… but I wouldn’t want someone to get them for me because I’m their BLACK FRIEND, I’d like them to get them from me because they know me. Plus, the books on relationships are just offensive.

    Hi John! Your post is still foolish. Here is a link that might help.
    http://www.english.emory.edu/Bahri/Orientalism.html

    Yo, like Jen says — the problem isn’t the school. It’s that the school admin allowed someone to shame this student athlete in front of her peers. Her pregnancy is not her teammates’ business.

  10. Anemone says

    That article on male prostitutes had a funny line:
    “He said he works to make the brothel industry socially acceptable to both libertarians and conservatives.”
    But not liberals?

    I really liked that review of The Princess and the Frog.

    None of the discussion on the Esoteric Buddhism post makes any sense to me. Can someone explain it to a stupid neopagan, or do you have to be mainstream to get it? (Was it because he was sniggering about withdrawing during sex?)

    (It does remind me, though, of a friend who practiced Kundalini Yoga and who kept asking her teachers and others for information on tantric sex, because she wanted to dampen down her distracting sex drive, but no one knew anything about it. Tantric yoga, which they all practiced from time to time, had nothing to do with sex.)

  11. says

    OK, OK! I posted the jokes because I thought it was a cultist site. They have hit me a few times b/c of Cthulhu references! I posted and then hit the “About” page. Oops. I should have checked first.

    The comment was not meant to be insulting since cultists would have loved it.

    I am not a Tantric practitioner but have been looking into some of the practices. Some seem to me to be pretty absurd but who am I to judge.

    For future reference, feel free to call my posts anything you want but insulting the writer without even a friendly “howdie-do” is a bit rough.

    Cheers and Metta!

    John

  12. Maria Velazquez says

    Oh, Anemone. You are far from stupid.

    Okay, my problem with the original post on Buddhism is sort of related to why your tantric yoga story is funny. Tantric Buddhism is about much more than just sex. To jokingly reduce it to “orc-sex but with mantras” fits into a long standing branch of Orientalist rhetoric that equates Eastern sexualities with kinky, weird sex, particularly when conflated with a spiritual practice.

  13. says

    “Tantric Buddhism itself has been objectified by westerners looking to co-opt religions that promote sex instead of prudishness.”

    – Agreed! And most of my point was exactly that. Green Tara is used in visualizations by men. Utilizing the positive and robust energy of intercourse towards enlightenment (to be honest I don’t like nor do I buy into visualizations).

    Meanwhile women practitioners are left with what? Fudo-Myo or any other saber-toothed freaky Bodhisattva. To me is just seems silly. Being a Zen practitioner myself, the Tantric visualizations are a waste of time and possibly harmful. I prefer to simply enjoy my sex.

    I admit that my humor and presentation is off-the-cusp and I like to have fun with my posts. If you found that I reduced “Easten Sexualities” to some sort of fetish then I do apologize. That was not my intent. I often reduce religious principles to silly one-liners and it is meant in love and fun.

    Tantric Buddhism is not just about sex but it is all about visualizations. A process of practice that I have never really enjoyed nor saw benefit from.

    Heaven forbid if I poke a little fun at my own practice.

    Cheers!

    John

  14. Scarlett says

    Ah, I remember that about the article now. I got distracted by laloca’s point. Which now makes the school look even more in the wrong. It’s like they were trying to hedge their bets; they didn’t want her to miscarry and sue, and they didn’t want to discriminate and be sued, either. Which looks rather cowardly and deceitful to me.

  15. Anemone says

    Meanwhile women practitioners are left with what? Fudo-Myo or any other saber-toothed freaky Bodhisattva.

    And in the West we have vampires and werewolves. Twilight/New Moon is starting to make a bit more sense, now.

  16. Maria Velazquez says

    Hi John!

    Your last comment helped clarify your intent, though TBH I still don’t see that thoughtfulness reflected in the original post. I found that especially jarring, since I originally came across your blog looking for some new anti-racist, anti-sexist blogs on spirituality to add to my blog roll. As you can see from above and from previous posts, I have two on Christianity I read somewhat regularly for the LOGI feature on Hathor. I came across yours because of the little featurette on Buddhist magazines. The shift from “Wow, look at the whiteness here” to “Hurhurhur those silly tantric Buddhists and their hot green babes” is really noticeable and glaring. Even now, you’re still calling it absurd.

    Regarding me calling you stupid fool… I also joked about cutting people, called Dimitri the Lover crazy, and said the Supreme Court was fail. :D You’re not the only one on the internet who’s tongue in cheek! :D I sincerely did not mean to piss you off with that, especially to the point where your follow up post on your blog would pretty much center on the stupid fool part and NOT the critique I was trying to make.

    Haha this got long because we had a nor’easter and I’m snowed in.

  17. says

    @Anemone – I honestly do not understand Vampire/Werewolve romance but I have many friends that are very addicted and swear by it…maybe if they “glammed” Fudo up a bit he would be more attractive.

    If they can move from Nosferatu to Lestat then I suppose there is some chance for good tatric sexual visualizations in the West.

    Jizo is fairly attractive but a monk…
    Kannon is bisexual (actually more trans-gender)
    Manjusri is good-looking but tends towards the books (dork)

    0h and by “the West” I suppose you mean europeon. In the states we have Wendigo and Coyote…I suppose the Jersey Devil would count but the Native Americans did visualizations with animal forms all the time…a huge part of their spiritual practice.

    But if you wanted to infuse any deity of your choose with the right attributes then I see no need to focus on just Buddhas and Bodhisattva archtypes. One can actually use whatever they want but the process of visualization is a long and difficult one. I havea few link on my blog that describe the process. Of course most of these visualizations are done on a mat or cushion not in the bedroom!

    I find that it hinders my practice but have fun and explore. I found myself visualizing Christ during my sitting sessions after I converted. It was strange since I assume it took awhile for me to flush out all of that crap I was raised on. Like saying good-bye to someone who only hindered and never helped.

    Its been fun visiting you ladies! Keep in touch. If you think I am crossing the line feel free to call me on it but please, next time, leave a comment or shoot me an email.

    Cheers and metta!

    John

    Oh! For you Neo-pagans out there, I have an Asatruar (NeoNorse-Pagan) posting on the solistice as well as his practice and its similarities to Buddhist thought.

  18. Maria says

    John, we’re not all ladies! ;) Both in the moral and gendered sense.

    It really isn’t about crossing the line and having an internet dog fight. If I link to you again (which I probably will, since your blog, Angry Asian Buddhist, Zen Under My Skin, and DharmaFolk are now on my blog reader (this is not a threat!)) it really is about fostering debate. I promise not to call you a stupid fool if you promise not to pout in your blog afterward if I disagree with you! ;)

    Seriously, though, I’ll try to remember to let you know if I do link back… BTW on your blog do you have it set to do pingback notification? I think most people have that, which is why I never comment to say I’m linking since they’ll get that email. It’s useful because it’s like an automated ego boost.

  19. says

    Ha! I agree that there are glaring differences in my posts at times. I don’t belittle tantric practice as much as the perception of it as well as my own confusion about it. But I do agree that that post did get me some flack from a few different quarters…

    But, in the end, it does get everyone talking and me a’learning. I’m still a beginner after all these years! Alot of what I post is my struggle with my practice (whether it is to broaden myself into something more esoteric or fighting not to stagnate) and doesn’t tend to be pretty or nice. But when people “call me out”, post about my viewpoints or comment on my blog it is seen as constructive and as an aid to my practice.

    Funny that you mention Angry Asian Buddhist b/c we have shared “not-nice-words” in the past over issues where we did not agree on. In the long run though I have a much better worldview for it.

    So feel free to link up, argue, contest or agree with me. No issues here although I do tend to pout…

    Cheers,

    John

  20. says

    Maria,
    Are you the Maria who left a comment on The Happy Nappy Bookseller’s blog in order to win a signed copy of I SO DON’T DO MYSTERIES? If yes, could you email me: barrieDOTsummyATgmailDOTcom
    thanks!

  21. says

    Thank you for clarifying your remarks, I have removed that post I made. I do like this site and think it has a lot to offer everyone.

    Metta

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