Posts Tagged ‘feminism’

which is not the same as superficiality or superfluity (and which is all the more appropriate ’cause I got more heavy stuff coming, shortly).

I ADORE Suze Orman. She’s in her 60s and is one of those Boomer women (like Cher and Tina Turner — well,  Tina’s actually slightly older than Boomer women — and Oprah and Maria Shriver and many others who look simply fabulous for their ages (or for what we used imagine as appropriate-looking for that age).

Orman is also a survivor and a self-made woman (in spades). I’m pretty sure she’s an out lesbian. She’s a trail blazer in her field, wealthy yet money isn’t the most important thing in the world to her. The way I think she puts that is: “People first, money second and things last.” Don’t quote me; I’ll listen more carefully to her next time and report back. Of course I do realize that when you have a lot of money, it’s much easier for that not to be the most important thing in your life — and yet, a lot of people never make it to that point.

Best of all, IMO, she works damn hard to empower others, especially other women, and opens doors for them, which makes her not just a feminist but a real sister and an angel to boot.

I’m not the only one who likes her: Sara Hepola of Salon’s Broadsheet likes her too and for many of the same reasons.


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1. Okay, Heather Wilson is bad, but not that bad.

One poor fool holds Congresswoman Wilson responsible for her husband’s alleged sexual assault of a teenage boy:

Anyone married to that beast would be capable of very evil sex deeds.

Sheesh. Is that sexism gratuitous enough for ya? It’s clear the guy doesn’t even mean it, yet simply has to say it anyway. Can’t stop himself. Ugly. Unnecessary. And yet it’s allowed to stand without being removed.

2. News stories on two of the North Carolina women murdered: Holly Wimunc and Nancy Cooper.

I’ve been thinking some more about the threat to our military women posed by our military MEN. More to come on that.

3. How to be a feminist activist without having to work too hard or risk jail at feministgal. Good piece. One of my first “lessons” about political activism was that merely voting is a form of activism.

4. Feministing does a very good job of revealing the bankrupt logic of PETA’s use of women’s naked bodies to capture public attention. (Is THAT gratuitous enough for ya?)

5. Everyone agrees: Purity Balls are creepy to the max.

Well, perhaps not the male half of those participating. But who knows?

There’s a very good reason for the overwhelming negative reaction by the rest of us. I think most psychologists would refer to the practice as incestuous on some level. Emotionally incestuous, perhaps. There’s something quite unnatural, I think, (not to mention highly inappropriate) about a father being overly interested in his daughter’s sex life.

Sure, he has a right to be concerned about her — but not quite to this extent and not in this way. Not to the extent he spends much time thinking or imaging or talking about it or having grown-up style formal dances around the subject. Not to the extent he makes her promise her sexual fidelity to HIM. No, no, no, not right at all!

To be honest, I think this practice is almost worse than being chattel. At least chattel has no overt sexual context.

We’ll talk more about sex and young women in the days to come too. I’ve got a lot to say on the subject.

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Here at Echidne of the Snakes, and here at The Hathor Project. Much fascinating reading abounds. You may not see me again for a week, maybe two.

Edited to add: Be sure not to miss a feminist critique of comic book heroes and superheroes: Women in Refrigerators with all its links (not that many). It’s apparently an oldie, since the author, Gail Simone, is herself now a well-known and apparently quite successful comic book writer. It’s not my genre, but boy, after reading this you can see how desperately the field needed more strong, feminist women. Of the responses to her original critique, from writers/creators themselves, the several women’s responses are for the most part gold, and I especially liked Rachel Pollack’s.

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Must read. I’m not even much of a poetry fan, but found this stunning: Don’t Write a Poem About Rape.

2. Gloria Steinem: Women Are Never Front Runners
An exquisite exposition about the differences between Obama’s candidacy and Hillary’s candidacy, due entirely — entirely — to gender. Please read. In fact, please copy it to someplace where it will be safe.

3. I Met Gloria Steinem Once.
She was speaking at Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville, IL, on the occasion of her 40th birthday. Steinem is my personal favorite hero of the Women’s Movement, with Ellie Smeal close behind. There were so many wonderful, brillliant women — I absolutely honor them all. But I wanted to BE Steinem, with her rapier wit and incredible gift for feminist analysis.

Anyway, it was a huge crowd, and women in the audience were astounded at how good she looked for 40. Her response? “This is what 40 looks like. We women have been lying about our ages forever, but this is how 40 really looks.” We all laughed.

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Sad, but true. The Super-Woman myth is just that: a myth, a fairy tale. When women dare to have careers and families, something’s gotta give unless they are wealthy enough to have help — a nanny, perhaps an extended family of grandparents to deliver childcare, whatever.

What really needs to change, in my opinion, is SOCIETY’s support of women being in the wider world than just the home and family. Think of this: (more…)

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that so-called Sex Positive Feminists are, for the most part (all the parts I’ve seen, anyway), waaaaay off base. Misguided. And they usually have to twist themselves into pretzel shapes to try to make their rationalizations sound, well, rational. In the cases I’ve seen they don’t quite make it.

I’m not trying to be unkind, but it’s disheartening to see young women so clearly trying to talk themselves into something that’s just not true and not good for them in any case.

Here’s just one example. FeministGal cites a postcard with this titillating text: (more…)

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Ack. These got lost in draft land. I’ll toss ’em out anyway. You can get away with a lot of things when you don’t have a lot of readers. Or so I’ll tell myself. For now.

1. Hillary and Obama and the Relentless Misogyny
I really love what Melissa McEwen over at Shakesville says about Obama and Rev. Pfleger in her Hillary Sexism Watch #104, with which I concur:

Meanwhile, given yet another opportunity to specifically denounce the misogyny being wielded against Clinton, Obama chose yet again to wholly ignore it: “As I have traveled this country, I’ve been impressed not by what divides us, but by all that that unites us. That is why I am deeply disappointed in Father Pfleger’s divisive, backward-looking rhetoric, which doesn’t reflect the country I see or the desire of people across America to come together in common cause.”

He didn’t even mention Clinton by name.

I concur, and I wrote about something similar with Obama myself. He’s a very clever man. I have commented also on his aikido-like ability to fend off attacks and attackers. I’m sure it will serve him well, but I’m not impressed with this use of it, this clever silent allowing of misogyny to work against her while it benefited him.

While you’re there, don’t miss her How Feminism Works, either.

2) Howard Dean, feminist
I was a Deaniac and really still am. My whole flippin’ heart was in his presidential race and I’ll probably never get over the whole thing. One of the things I love about Howard is that he is a feminist. I’ll never forget how shocked and delighted I was in the early days of his campaign to watch him answer certain questions from a fairly pure, unadulterated feminist perspective — totally unscripted, no thinking about it or choosing words carefully, no posturing or pandering, just Howard’s wonderful feminsm.

Here he is being our best advocate right now, the one male Democratic leader I know of who gets it, and by Goddess, I think that’s an enormously important and valuable thing. I totally understand Tennessee Guerilla Women’s complaint that it’s “too little too late,” but I choose to celebrate that SOMEONE actually gets it. That’s my Howard.

3. Hillary’s Great Failing

And a clue to precisely who she’s a champion for after all. Oh, Goddess, is this ever the truth as I see it, according to Michael Bouldin over at CultureKitchen:

If Hillary Clinton had fought the Bush administration with the same zeal and fervor she devoted to a contest where she had a personal stake, she would definitely be the nominee today. Her ferocious campaign against Democrats, however, made clear that her all-but silence for the last seven years was not a matter of temperament, but one of calculation. When the country needed a champion – a fighter, as the campaign literature has it – she was quietly nursing her own resources for her own turn in the spotlight. Choices matter.

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