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Archive for November, 2009

Violence against women has doubled on TV

November 30, 2009 1 comment

Apparently, violence against women has doubled on TV within the last 5 years. This is kind of worrisome, isn’t it? What may even be more worrying is that there is increasing violence against teenage girls. Hmm…I wonder what this says the people (especially men/teenage boys) that are watching? The article explains:

For years, media critics have described television as a cultural legitimizer. At some point, what is seen on television becomes normative. Studies consistently show that media consumers who view televised violence become desensitized to it. This trend is particularly evident for younger viewers.(emphasis mine)

However, no one seems to be concerned about this. TV Watch, a lobbying organization funded by big media corporations, isn’t taking any responsibility for this and says that these stories “provide cautionary lessons”. Suuuuure. Truthfully, some people might take it as a “cautionary lesson”, but you can’t rely on all people to view things that way. It is true that we become very desensitized to things we see on a regular basis. Even as a feminist, I catch myself missing a lot of sexist things, because I’ve been watching or hearing these things my whole life. To view these things as actual wrong actions, we need to learn de-socialize ourselves. But first, we must realize that we even need that de-socialization.

If this is something you are concerned about, please contact the major broadcasting corporations. Click here for ABC, CBS and NBC (the worst of them all!)

Masculinity in Disney films

November 30, 2009 1 comment

I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend, especially for the Americans that celebrated Thanksgiving this past weekend!

We all know about Disney films and how awful they are in terms of sexism. However, most of the conversation I see about Disney films is about how this affects females (rightfully so), but there does need to be conversation about how Disney films affects little boys that watch them. This video below describes the pervasive strength, sexism, and dominance that encompasses most, if not all Disney films. Great little video!

Categories: masculinity, media, pop culture Tags:

A friend helps organize victim’s gang rape?

November 26, 2009 Leave a comment

Police are looking into a gang rape right now, which occurred last Monday in Monroeville, Alabama. There are two girls, and three boys/men involved. One girl being the one who was raped, while the other girl, who was a friend, possibly being the organizer of this gang rape. The three boys/men are 16, 17 and 20. They are being held on charges of felony rape.

When the investigation began, the girl who possibly organized this crime, told police that she and her classmate were planning on having consensual sex with all three of these boys/men. However, now she is being considered to be a part of this organized crime.

The actually victim of the rape did tell the police that it was supposed to be consensual at the beginning, and she felt that it was. However, soon after things started, she repeatedly said no, and yet no one stopped. All three took turns raping her. The other girl, who said that the boys/men tried to rape her, but “nothing happen”.

The victim had severe injuries and had to spend about 3 days in the ICU. Horrible, just horrible and disgusting.

Now what I’m hoping for this case is that it all of a sudden doesn’t become a “let’s blame the girl!” kind of thing. If she had anything to do with the planned rape, then yes, she should be punished. However, I just hope that three boys/men involved won’t be ignored. They are the ones that still chose to do this to a girl. It’s not like they didn’t know what they were doing.

What a discouraging story…especially after the horrific gang rape in Richmond, CA.

CBS blurs out Adam Lambert’s same-sex kiss

November 25, 2009 Leave a comment

Really, CBS? I can’t believe that I was glad you decided to put Lambert on The Early Show when GMA canceled his spot!

The ironic thing is, CBS aired the Britney/Madonna kiss with no censorship at all (and in fact, I never saw any censorship from that kiss ever). But Lambert’s same-sex kiss needs to be censored? Is it the fact that you know he’s actually gay? Is that the problem? Or do more people have an issue with two men kissing, as opposed to two women? Probably both things rings true – although no one will admit it.

After Elton has the whole story here.

16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence Campaign

November 25, 2009 Leave a comment

Today marks the first day of the Commit ▪ Act ▪ Demand: We CAN End Violence Against Women! activist movement. So, why the 16 days?

November 25, 2009 marks the launch of the 19th international 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence Campaign – an annual campaign that runs from International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women through International Human Rights Day. (emphasis mine)

Over the next 16 days, I’m going to try and highlight the violence that women face around the world. If you’re interested in this endeavor, please visit the website and find out what some actions are that you can take to contribute to this movement and to the end of violence against women.

Music Hit: Anya Marina

November 25, 2009 Leave a comment

Today’s music hit is featuring an awesome artist named Anya Marina. Her music has been featured on a number of TV shows, which include Grey’s Anatomy, Gossip Girl, How I Met Your Mother, The Real World and most recently, The City. Her single, “Satellite Heart” (which is off of her second album, Slow & Steady Seduction: Phase II) is also featured in the new Twilight movie, New Moon. Not too shabby, eh?

Most recently, she’s been making a mark in the musical blogosphere with her cover of T.I.’s “Whatever You Like”, which was featured on Gossip Girl. I recently looked up the video for this song…and I must say, it’s amazing! I like to think that it’s kind of a mockery of the song, but that’s probably just me. Anyway, it was definitely not what I expected. Would anyone really expect a music video to be set in a sex shop? And on top of that, have Andy Botwin from Weeds in it?! No! But yeah, Andy was definitely a huge bonus. So, here, I give you that video.

Alright, now that you’ve watched the music video, go check Anya Marina out at her MySpace, Twitter or her website.

Categories: fun, music Tags:

All this Adam Lambert controversy (and a little #ShameOnYouABC)

November 24, 2009 2 comments

Well, about everyone in the whole universe knows by now that Adam Lambert shared a kiss with one of his male bandmates, as well as simulated fellatio with a male dancer. I wanted to put up the video, but it seems as though the video has been taken down everywhere…so I will share a picture instead!

Needless to say, this shocked most of the population and over 1,500 people formally complained about this. Clearly, homophobia is rampant (not that you needed to remind me, but maybe some other people needed reminding?) Is what Lambert decided to do in his performance really threatening? Does it really do any harm? No. Actually, it doesn’t at all. And I can say without any doubt, that if a woman had been in Lambert’s place, no one would really care. Even if it were only women taking part in this performance, therefore it still being all same-sex, people wouldn’t have cared as much. But men aren’t supposed to act the way that Lambert did. He doesn’t fit the mold of hegemonic masculinity, so people are freaking out.

However, because of all this shock and all the complaints, ABC canceled Lambert’s spot on Good Morning America. People are pretty up in roar about it and this issue is taking over Twitter (hence the #ShameOnYouABC). Instead, he’s going to be appearing on The Early Show on CBS. The good thing about all of this is that Lambert is standing by his performance.

“You know honestly, if I offended some people… it’s apples and oranges. I’m not an artist that does things for every single person,” he told Access Hollywood after the show Sunday night. “I believe in artistic freedom and expression, I believe in honoring the lyrics of a song, and those lyrics aren’t really for everybody either.”

I’m glad he’s sticking to his guns, because we alllll know this is actually about his sexual orientation, as opposed to his actual performance.

Conservatives using “rape” to create fear

November 23, 2009 Leave a comment

Thanks to RH Reality Check for this. Oh, and thanks Rachel Maddow for being awesome and bringing this issue up.

How pleasant, for conservatives to take liberty and use the word rape in this fashion.


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Hayden Panettiere gets, uh, dirty?

November 23, 2009 Leave a comment

First off – **NSFW**

I came across this Hayden Panettiere stuff while doing my weekly search of horrible, trashy, gossip blogs. Don’t judge me!

So, she participated in a photoshoot with Tyler Shields, who is creating a book called “The Dirty Side of Glamour“. Here, we first see a picture of her, obviously naked, licking a machine gun.

Hmm…sex and violence. What a great combination! And how awesome is it that the machine gun is obviously this phallic image and she’s going to lick it. Wonderful. Juuuuust wonderful. This isn’t objectifying at all, right? And I mean, the sensationalized and glamourized concept of sex and violence? That’s not harmful at all, right? Oh, just wait for it. It gets better! Below is the video that Tyler Shields shot along with the photoshoot. You’ll love it. Watch it. Seriously.

Do I even have to explain myself? I hope I don’t, but I will. This video clearly has a huge sexual image. I mean, “champagne” (I know it is champagne, but come on), being sprayed all over Hayden’s face/body? And her looking very sexual about the whole thing? And drinking it? And possibly enjoying it? I mean, fine, I’ll be honest, I don’t know exactly what is being tried to get across here, but either way, even if some people think it’s art, it’s still objectifying. It shows that women are only sexual beings for men to mess around with. Nothing more, nothing less. Now, before I go further, I will say that something similar was done with Zachary Quinto, but you will clearly see that his video with milk does not seem to be an overtly sexual thing. He’s not opening his mouth or drinking the milk; and in fact, he remains fairly stoic during the whole thing. But you can judge that for yourself, I guess.

And you know, I know the book is called “The Dirty Side of Glamour“. I get it. It’s supposed to be dirty. But why does it have to be dirty at the expense of women? If you go to Tyler Shields website, you will see that there are many more photos that are complete, disgusting, objectification of women, which involves a combination of sex and violence. Like I said, just wonderful! In fact, click here, here, here and here. You will see what I mean! (Seriously, click there NOW – despite me not wanting to give him more traffic). But hey, it’s just art, right?


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Transgender Day of Remembrance

November 20, 2009 Leave a comment

Today marks the 11th International Trans Day of Remembrance. This is a day where we stop and remember all of those who have lost their lives due to others hatred towards transgender people.

This day of remembrance is held annually, and here is why it all began (courtesy of GLAAD):

The Transgender Day of Remembrance is observed in late November in recognition of the 1998 murder of Rita Hester. Rita was a highly visible member of the transgender community in her native Boston, where she worked locally on education around transgender issues. On Saturday, Nov 28, Rita was stabbed 20 times in her apartment. A neighbor called the police and Rita was rushed to the hospital, but passed away from cardiac arrest only moments after being admitted.

A year later, Gwendolyn Ann Smith decided to take it upon herself to create a vigil for Rita, but also for other transgendered people who had been killed. Therefore, the Transgender Day of Remembrance was born. It has become an internationally recognized day, and events and vigils are held all around the world on this day.

Some facts about violence towards those that are transgender (again, courtesy of GLAAD):

According to an estimate by the Human Rights Campaign, transgender Americans face a one-in-12 chance of being murdered.

Statistics from the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) show that in schools 14.2% of transgender students report being physically assaulted as a result of gender expression, while 30.4% experienced physical harassment.

According to the International Transgender Day of Remembrance website, there have been 12 people murdered out of anti-transgender bias during 2009 in the U.S. alone.

To get more information, you can go to the Transgender Day of Remembrance website, here.

Categories: death, lgbtq, murder, transgender, violence Tags:

Because laughing about rape is hilarious…

November 19, 2009 Leave a comment

Sofia Vergara was on The View this morning and said a little something about rape. Watch here:

So, don’t you just love when people laugh about rape? It’s just fucking hilarious isn’t it? And what a great time to laugh about rape with the recent gang rape in Richmond, CA? And don’t you love how everyone just laughed about it? And how Vergara tried to kind of brush it off once it was said, saying a kind of “noooo” under her breath? The only person who seemed actually shocked that she said it was Whoopi Goldberg.

This kind of shit is not appropriate. Jokes about rape make it seem like not such a serious crime, and allows for it to remain so prevalent in our world. So, next time you somehow feel compelled to tell a rape joke, shut the fuck up!

I love me some Sarah Haskins!

November 19, 2009 Leave a comment

Sarah Haskins has come out with a new Target Women! It’s about Broadview Security and it’s of course, a great new video!

What I especially love is that it’s clear that males are the ones that are breaking into the homes and are a threat, however, it’s also men that “save the day” and are the “hero” because those are the men that work at Broadview Security and call you, when your house has been broken into. I love that Sarah brings that up!

Categories: ads, fun, media Tags: , ,

Women in developing countries carry the brunt of climate change

November 18, 2009 Leave a comment

Who ever said that environmentalism wasn’t a feminist issue? I know it’s something that I have kept on hearing…but it’s clearly incorrect!

A new report from the United Nations Population Fund has said that women in developing countries are the most vulnerable in these climate changing times.

The report acknowledges that women in these countries to most of the agricultural work, which is of course greatly affected by climate change. Also, it discusses how women are the ones who generally are the caregivers for their families in these countries, which means they have less of a chance to up and move, which threatens them when there are (pending or not) natural disasters. The report also talks about gender issues of family planning and reproductive healthcare. Too bad that those things are not overly available to all poor people in developing countries, and some may refuse these things even.

Ultimately, the UNFPA wants there to be more research and analysis done in this area, since there is so little attention to it at this time, even though it’s something that’s extremely important.

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Music Hit: Let’s Go Sailing

November 18, 2009 Leave a comment

Direct from the website, “Let’s go sailing is full of rainbows and fairies. But it also has a darker side…It is full of lost and neglected stuffed animals found at the side of the road.” Let’s Go Sailing is headed up by Shana Levy, who decided herself to start this new venture, and is the essential face of the group. They have worked with Chris Chandler (Flaming Lips/Modest Mouse/Elliott Smith) and Rod Cervera (The Rentals/Weezer).

I personally enjoy the song “Sideways”. It’s chill and mellow, yet a little happy, but offers more heavy and dark than that. There is a deep, beautiful use of instrumentals, especially strings, in the song. Check out Let’s Go Sailing at their Myspace, Facebook, or Last.fm.


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Categories: fun, general, music Tags:

Men Against Violence Against Women, Part 2

November 18, 2009 Leave a comment

So, going on from my previous post about the “Men Against Violence Against Women” panel discussion, I just wanted to mention some other things that stuck out for me.

1. What is a woman’s role?
So, although it is clear that men must take responsibility for this issue, there is still an important role that women play, and have been playing for many, many years. Resistance. Women have been resisting violence against them for a long time and women must continue to play this part. Our resistance is extremely important. But now, since we’ve been resisting for years, it is time for men to respond to this resistance!

2. Safe spaces for men
New safe spaces need to be created for men to discuss these things. These safe spaces need to be places that men can come and grow and learn how to have an emotional life, outside of just having anger. This will bring together a collective of men who believe the same things and will be able to fight against violence against women.

3. Live the way you believe
Finally, what I want to end with is something that one panelist said. “Live the way you believe”. This is the first step in action. This means that everyone can act. It doesn’t matter who you are. If you believe certain things, live it out. Do not be silent. Your silence will condone this violence (or whatever other issue it may be). You CAN help this situation, no matter how helpless you may feel. It doesn’t have to be some huge act. Small acts everyday will build into a great movement, and actually be a part of a movement that is already happening. I hope that you feel a little inspired to at least try something!

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Men Against Violence Against Women Panel

November 17, 2009 2 comments

Last night, I had the great experience of attending an all men’s panel discussion, provided by my university’s Anti-Violence Network. The panel was entitled “Men Against Violence Against Women”. I wasn’t sure what to expect when I first showed up, but it turned out to be a great discussion and some awesome points were brought up, that I want to highlight here.

1. Men need to acknowledge hegemonic masculinity
One speaker went over the basic hegemonic masculinity in our North American culture. This means strong, invulnerable, emotionless, silent, and angry (with anger really being the only emotion allowed). Homophobia is also a part of this. Men aren’t allowed to be feminine in any way, because the traditional man is supposed to be everything opposite of femininity. All of these things open up the pathway to violence, because women and homosexuals are “othered” or dehumanized; therefore, men feel that they CAN be violent.

2. There needs to be a new conception of masculinity
There needs to be a positive conception of being a man, which will make for better partnerships with everyone (women, other men, and children). Men need to reconceptualize strength. Strength can be something that is good, and not used for harm. Also, there needs to be insight within this new masculinity. Openness, self-reflection and self-awareness are necessary for this new masculinity.

3. Men must take responsibility
Many times, men are excused from their violence, or have some form of excuse for their violence. One of these excuses is that it’s a man or boys “nature” to be violent. But we were reminded again tonight that nothing is biological about violence! But another important point was that men who are not violent against women must also take responsibility. These non-violent men must not be silent. They must tell other men and boys that violence against women is not acceptable. Without these men leading other men and boys, this issue is NOT going to go away.

4. Action must be taken
One panelist discussed how there is too much damn research. We all KNOW that there is a problem, and we can continue paying for research to be done, but it’s not doing anything about the problem! We need to move on from identifying the problem. It is now time to seriously act. We must be examples to the younger generation. We must tell others that this issue is not acceptable. However you can act against this issue, you have to do it!

There were some other really awesome things discussed, which I’m going to save for a later post, since I don’t want this post to go on forever. I will just say that it was simply refreshing to hear men discuss this issue and not pat themselves on the back for having this panel in the first place. You know, that self-congratulatory thing? Not cool! So, it was awesome not seeing that. More discussions like this need to happen, because ultimately, this is an issue that only men can get rid of.

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Well, Reebok sucks!

November 16, 2009 1 comment

Thanks to Sociological Images for this one!

Reebok has a new ad campaign out for their EasyTone shoes. This ad campaign pretty much consists of objectifying women. There are 3 new ads for it, which can all be seen at Sociological Images, but here I’m just going to show you the one that I think is the worst!



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Categories: ads, image, media, sexism, women Tags: ,

Single-sex classrooms on the increase

November 16, 2009 3 comments

According to some news reports, single-sex classrooms are increasing in some parts of the States. This idea isn’t new, but I hadn’t heard much about it for awhile. According to one report, the single-sex classrooms “increased their grades, self-confidence, interest in trying new ways of learning, class participation and ease in making friends.”

I’ve personally never figured out if I’m for or against this form of education, because I haven’t researched it enough. I think I’ve gone back and forth on this issue before, because there are of course pros and cons to this. The National Association for Single Sex Public Education state the many pros of this classroom setting.

We now have good evidence that single-sex classrooms CAN break down gender stereotypes, particularly when teachers have appropriate professional development. Girls in single-sex educational settings are more likely to take classes in math, science, and information technology. Boys in single-gender classrooms…are much more likely to pursue interests in art, music, drama, and foreign languages. Both girls and boys have more freedom to explore their own interests and abilities than in the coed classroom.

The Association of course does make it known that you can’t just set up single-sex classrooms and leave it at that. They make it known that teachers and administrators must be trained and understand the methods of teaching for these single-sex classrooms.

The ACLU on the other hand is opposed to single-sex classrooms. They state,

In addition to being unlawful, the rationale behind sex-segregated academic programs is bad for kids. These programs are often based on questionable science about how girls’ and boys’ brains develop and on disturbing gender stereotypes.

The ACLU explains some of the stereotypes, and believes that co-education is beneficial for girls and boys.

So, what is your take? Do you believe that single-sex classrooms are a good or bad thing? Or, are you not sure? Take the poll!



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#ARealWife? Really?

November 13, 2009 3 comments

As I do my daily Twitter visit, I look at the trending topics to see what’s what. Well, one thing caught my eye, which was #ARealWife. I just knew this was going to be golden (insert sarcasm here) and disgustingly sexist, so I clicked on it to see some of the responses. Try to disregard the horrible spelling and grammar. Here we go:

#ARealWife Has a sore jaw after 5 days on her period…. LMAO + WORD

#arealwife will hide dope in her purse for u and prostitute to keep the cable on an food on the table

#ARealWife gives her husband head. Come on!Its 2009. If u not then some other hoe is so u might as well be yo husband slut. LOL

#ARealWife keeps it tight, keeps her figure right, keep her hair fixed, rocks the hottest outfits…

#arealwife is submissive to her husband.

#ARealWife should have dinner ready when #ARealHusband comes home from a long day at work

These are just some of the beauts I saw, but there are several hundred, possibly thousands more. So, let’s do a rundown. To be a real wife, you have to constantly give your husband head while you’re on your period, because you know he needs constant sexual satisfaction. And hey, if you’re not making ends meet, you better get out on the street and become a prostitute, but it might only be helping your husbands drug problem. Also, you need to look perfect. ALL THE TIME. No questions asks. Oh, and you should also be a good cook and make sure that dinner is on the table when your husband comes home, even if you have your own full-time job. Hell, that doesn’t matter, you must be submissive to your husband at all times and if he wants his damn dinner on the table when he comes home from work, it better be there! And my favourite, your husband may be getting head from someone else (or, sorry, some other “hoe”), but probably thinks that you need to be giving him head, because you might as well be your husband’s “slut”.

So, it pretty much addresses many stereotypes about women and how wives should be. Ridiculous. It’s stupid things like this that make this kind of dialogue so damn pervasive! Do people not see this? Even if some of them are “joking” about it, joking allows for this idea to continue getting entrenched in our minds.

Counterfeit condoms!

November 13, 2009 2 comments

Apparently, it’s been found that the spread of counterfeit condoms is “rampant” in China. There may be about 1 million counterfeit condoms in China that has been produced by one factory in central Hunan province.

Four people were arrested at the factory which was distributing illicit condoms nationwide that provided little or no protection and carried the risk of both pregnancy and disease.

As well…some weird bits about this story…

Authorities say when they entered the factory they saw bare-chested employees using vegetable oil to lubricate the condoms and putting them into fiber bags without any sterilization.

So, I guess that’s the random story of the day; but also serious for those in China who have picked up some of those counterfeit condoms and used them, expecting protection.