Cognitive Dissonance

"Democracy! Bah! When I hear that I reach for my feather boa!" - Allen Ginsberg

Posts tagged Women

116 notes

Increasing Number Of Men Pressured To Accept Realistic Standards Of Female Beauty | The Onion

“Nowadays I can’t even leave the house without seeing an ad featuring properly proportioned women of statistically normal weights,” said San Diego–based civil engineer Spencer DeLane, adding that some of the models’ bodies are “startlingly average.” “Sometimes I don’t even want to go online or turn on the television because I know I’ll see a regular, healthy-looking woman. Don’t these advertisers understand how deeply depressing that is for me?”

“It’s not fair to me, and it’s not fair to other men like me,” he continued. “Having to live with society’s expectations that I accept women just the way they are takes an enormous toll.”

Filed under laughing keeps me from screaming the Onion beauty standards media women

11 notes

Andrew and I interviewed Kate Farrar, director of Campus Leadership Programs at the American Association of University Women, on tonight’s edition of Checks and Balances. 

Farrar came from Washington D.C. to conduct the Elect Her conference at UW on Feb. 23. We discussed the importance of women running for office and leadership roles, whether young women consider themselves feminists, AAUW’s mission, and Andrew’s experiences running campaigns and working for female candidates. (at Laramie Civic Center)

Andrew and I interviewed Kate Farrar, director of Campus Leadership Programs at the American Association of University Women, on tonight’s edition of Checks and Balances.

Farrar came from Washington D.C. to conduct the Elect Her conference at UW on Feb. 23. We discussed the importance of women running for office and leadership roles, whether young women consider themselves feminists, AAUW’s mission, and Andrew’s experiences running campaigns and working for female candidates. (at Laramie Civic Center)

Filed under uwyo electher Elect Her university of wyoming women feminism AAUW American Association of University Women Kate Farrar

502 notes

Feminism is itself a challenge. Feminism is a challenge to the way things are in the world. It is by definition an oppositional movement, because it’s trying to accomplish something. I’ve never felt like feminism was a consciousness raising effort in isolation. Everything about feminism is about getting something in the world to get better for women, and to get the world to be less stupid on gender bifurcation terms.

Rachel Maddow

check out https://www.facebook.com/FeministPhilosopher

(via fem-phil)

(Source: fem-phil.org, via mommapolitico)

Filed under rachel maddow feminism challenge oppositional oppositional movement accomplish consciousness world women gender bifurcation

538 notes

On Anne Hathaway and Upskirt Pics: The “she was asking for it” crowd

I knew it was inevitable. There would be people out there claiming that if Anne Hathaway hadn’t, I don’t know, had a ladyflower or something, some poor paparazzo wouldn’t have had to take a picture of it to sell at a profit. Now, these folks will claim it’s not OK to take pictures of people’s genitals without their consent, but….

image

…Anne Hathaway totally brought it on herself by not wearing underwear, getting out of the car properly, taking personal responsibility, wearing a chastity belt, being a woman, being famous, being a famous woman, etc. so therefore, I’m hitting the Google for some upskirt. Or at the very least, defending the creeper photogs making a killing off of Anne Hathaway’s blurry crotch pics. 

image

Seriously. There’s laws against upskirt photos in several states (including New York), and the federal Video Voyeurism Act of 2004, but what it typically comes down to legally is whether or not the person had an expectation of privacy, if special equipment (i.e. a bathroom camera) was used to get the shot, and whether or not the image is of bare body parts most people consider the bathing suit area. Unsuprisingly, there’s no “fair game” clause for famous folks who get out of cars awkwardly in any of these laws.

The “she totally asked for it” attitude goes beyond legal ramifications — there’s a dark undercurrent of institutionalized misogyny and rape culture here. If Paris Hilton were raped by an acquaintance after a night of partying in NYC with drugs and booze, there would probably be more internet schadenfreude than if it happened to a stereotypical sorority girl from NYU. Both are terrible events, both would elicit the “she was asking for it” trope, but Paris Hilton would be raked through the coals because of who she is — I mean, SHE MADE A SEX TAPE AND IT WAS RELEASED PUBLICLY, DUH. </sarcasm>

Here’s another example. A substitute teacher in Georgia was fired this year after posting upskirt photos of his allegedly 18-year-old students to the r/creepshots Reddit. In a few threads, he admits the students were younger than 18. Redditors came to his defense, arguing that the girls were asking for it by sitting at their desks with their legs slightly apart in skirts, or by simply dressing sexy. You get the idea. That’s an outrage, right?

This week Anne Hathaway, while in NYC for a movie premiere, got out of a car and accidentally exposed her lack of underwear. As she explained to Matt Lauer (who hilariously boorishly quipped, “We’ve seen a lot of you lately”) the incident “kind of made me sad that we live in an age when someone takes a pic of you in a vulnerable moment and sells it rather than deletes it.” She added, “I’m sorry that we live in a culture that commodifies unwilling participants…”

"Unwilling" being the key word there. Both Hathaway and the teacher’s students were unwilling participants. As Erin Gloria Ryan wrote regarding the educator:

"Because when women turn 18, they magically become public property to be photographed whenever and jerked off to by whomever. Hey, it’s not dudes’ faults your existence drives them into a penile frenzy… there’s also, you know, the fact that we over-18 human females also don’t much appreciate being treated like decorative sex toys. Women’s bodies are not public domain, and demanding control over our images isn’t ‘ruining anyone’s fun.’ It’s asking to be treated like a goddamn person."

Exactly. This idea that women’s bodies are in the public domain runs rampant once a famous woman is involved. Don’t believe me? Just Google any famous female celebrity and “upskirt” — you’re likely to get at least a few hits. I would argue that not respecting the right of female celebrities to avoid being commodified as unwilling sexual objects for profit desensitizes us to sexual violations and objectification of all female persons, whether for profit in a capitalist manner (paparazzi, gossip sites, and tabloid publishing) or for the sexual gratification of Reddit denizens seeking to jerk off to a non-consenting target. 

(Note: Before any of you folks get the bright idea to say “but wimmenz is nekkid in movies all teh time!” remember, the operative word is “unwilling.” Actors and actresses are compensated for nude scenes, are often not actually nude, and have arguably more control over what is ultimately distributed and exposed. They’re willing participants. It’s the difference between Anne Hathaway in NYC this week and Anne Hathaway in the 2010 flick Love and Other Drugs [Link NSFW]. Or, alternately, just because I’ve consented to sex with guys before doesn’t mean I’m down to fuck every guy who wants it.)

So where does that leave us? Strangely prudish, with an intense desire to almost punish female celebrities with the loss of personal possession of their image and, symbolically, their bodies. It’s not that far away from justifying exploitation to justifying assault. In both cases, “she was asking for it” and “she put herself in that situation” takes the blame off the violator and places it on the person who dared to wear too little clothing, too much makeup, wear sweats, drink, walk home alone, get out of a car, go to school, have a vagina, have breasts, be a female person, etc.

Here’s Exhibit A. Meet Emily Moray. I posted the comment from political cartoonist Matt Bors about ascribing blame where it belongs earlier. Well, Emily thinks it’s mostly Anne Hathaway’s fault because, as she says, “[T]here is a difference between having your labia photographed when you have the expectation of privacy and when you show up to A PUBLICITY EVENT. I’m not saying that the photographer and the publisher did the right thing, but she is also responsible for her actions.” Here’s what happened after that [Click to view larger]:

image

Got that? Every actress should know she will be photographed upskirt. And Anne Hathaway absolutely cannot haz that sad she told Matt Lauer she had. Because she should know better. And it continues…

image
image
image
image
image
image

Exactly how far does “she was asking for it” go? Apparently, far enough that a woman should shut her goddamn mouth if she’s silly enough to think she deserves to go out in public looking like that — especially if she’s any kind of celebrity. </sarcasm> Remember, every time you giggle and share that Huffington Post slideshow with the latest unintentional exposure by a famous woman captured in upskirt or downblouse shots, you’re reinforcing the message to women across the gender spectrum that their bodies are not their own, and they too can be sexual objects commodified for sexual pleasure or profit.

Filed under gender Anne Hathaway commodification entertainment politics feminism Upskirt downblouse law legal celebrity control misogyny rape culture rape objectification women creeper consent sexism capitalism

66 notes

Diary of a Mansoldier, the Great War on Men

This might be one of the greatest comments posted on the internet in the history of ever. It’s at least in the top ten. I present Jezebel commenter Ari Schwartz: The Dark Lord of Snark summarizing the future from the post "Fox News Troll Returns With a Breathtaking Sequel to the War on Men" — Hint: the troll is anti-feminist Suzanne Venker, darling of the Men’s Rights movement and niece of Phyllis Schlafly. I discussed Venker in depth here already. Anyhow, here’s Ari:

Diary of a Mansoldier, the Great War on Men

I was told once that women are nurturers. That they were the “fairer” sex. Little did us men know that it was all a ruse. A ruse by the Women’s Operations Militia Army and Navy. The forces of WOMAN close in on us beleaguered men by the day. Soon, men will have nowhere to turn but the dark corners of reddit and 4chan.

First they demanded entrance to the universities, to the jobs. We capitulated, unaware that it was just the first salvo in our demise. What could they possibly do with college educations and decent jobs? Besides, they’d all just leave to make children anyway, right? And yet, all those WOMANs were just setting the stage for their war.

Then they got a wonder pill that gave them agency over pregnancy. But we didn’t see the signs. We just thought it was all fun and games. It was so obvious. But for a WOMAN, it was just a way to gain further control.

Then they came for equal wages. But we were told that it was just fair to be paid equally. Raised on a steady diet of “fairness,” we thought that the forces of WOMAN were just demanding what we had.

Then they demanded to be part of the government, and the military. It was so impossibly obvious that they wanted the keys to everything. But what could we do? At that point, we still had enough control left that there wasn’t much to fear. Sure, they had started to earn more than many of us, and sure, they were graduating college more than we were, but it was okay. We were still men, right?

Then it all came crashing down. 2157, the forces of WOMAN came forth, bringing with them decrees of fairness and equal treatment under the law. Men quickly found that being on the same level as a WOMAN caused irreparable damage to their previously unknown macho gland. The macho glands literally shrank away, and men were left changed. Those who did not undergo regular treatments of Tucker Max therapy became known as “pleasant human beings.”

Those of us who are left have migrated to a colony in Texas. There, we practice the manly arts: farting loudly at dinner, wolf whistling at anything with tits, talking about our favorite episode of Family Guy, and calling WOMANs “bitches” for no reason.

Not many of us are left. The war has taken many of us. Some men have even joined the WOMANs in their heartless and cruel crusade for equality and same treatment. Every day our kind grows fewer in number. Every day we grow weaker, less interested in talking about the sizes of our “guns.”

The war on men is won. Now we shall all live as equals. This is a sad day for men indeed. I weep for the future of bros everywhere.

Ari Schwartz, this is for you:

Filed under War on Men this is why we can't have nice things Ari Schwartz Jezebel Suzanne Venker lulz best comment ever WOMEN teh wimenz is coming!

278 notes

Men want to love women, not compete with them. They want to provide for and protect their families – it’s in their DNA. But modern women won’t let them. It’s all so unfortunate – for women, not men. Feminism serves men very well: they can have sex at hello and even live with their girlfriends with no responsibilities whatsoever.

It’s the women who lose. Not only are they saddled with the consequences of sex, by dismissing male nature they’re forever seeking a balanced life. The fact is, women need men’s linear career goals – they need men to pick up the slack at the office – in order to live the balanced life they seek.

So if men today are slackers, and if they’re retreating from marriage en masse, women should look in the mirror and ask themselves what role they’ve played to bring about this transformation. Fortunately, there is good news: women have the power to turn everything around. All they have to do is surrender to their nature – their femininity – and let men surrender to theirs.

Suzanne Venker, writing for Fox News about how she’s super mega concerned that feminism makes men not want to get married. She’s currently promoting her book, How to Choose a Husband with statements like: “I’ve accidentally stumbled upon a subculture of men who’ve told me, in no uncertain terms, that they’re never getting married. When I ask them why, the answer is always the same. Women aren’t women anymore.” Oh, and she has a quiz to determine if you need this book. Questions include “Deep down, do you feel superior to men?” “As a general rule, do you pursue men (as opposed to letting men pursue you)?” and “Are you a product of divorce?”

A few things: This woman is Phyllis Schlafly’s niece. Schlafly rose to prominence by campaigning against the ERA and is generally a terrible person. I’ll let this 1908, 1958, 2008 exchange demonstrate this:

Could you clarify some of the statements that you made in Maine last year about martial rape?

I think that when you get married you have consented to sex. That’s what marriage is all about, I don’t know if maybe these girls missed sex ed. That doesn’t mean the husband can beat you up, we have plenty of laws against assault and battery. If there is any violence or mistreatment that can be dealt with by criminal prosecution, by divorce or in various ways. When it gets down to calling it rape though, it isn’t rape, it’s a he said-she said where it’s just too easy to lie about it.

Was the way in which your statement was portrayed correct?

Yes. Feminists, if they get tired of a husband or if they want to fight over child custody, they can make an accusation of marital rape and they want that to be there, available to them.

So you see this as more of a tool used by people to get out of marriages than as legitimate-

Yes, I certainly do.

Speaking of legitimate, Schlafly also backed Todd Akin. Venker has bought Auntie Phyllis’ bullshit hook, line, and sinker. In defense of Michele Bachmann as a modern submissive wife, she wrote, “Indeed, the opportunities women enjoy today are not the result of a bus load of feminists shouting for change. Rather, it has been a natural progression — aided in large part by men. It’s male engineering, ironically, that has freed women from their former domestic lives.”

Uh-huh.

Here’s Venker reminding us that we women must find a man to support us in this gem from 1911 2011. Because babies:

“The other, very taboo thing to say to young women is ‘you need to look for a man who can support you.’ And the reason why you want to do that is not because you’re never going to make your own money and go out into the world; it’s because you’re going to hit a point - particularly in those years when the children are not in school, the first five years - when you are not going to want to be bothered with making an income because you’re going to want to be with those babies.”

The furor over her Fox News article, quoted at the beginning of the post, forced her to issue a statement on her Facebook page. Venker wrote, “The vitriol spewed forth on the Internet is precisely the reason so many people – men, especially – keep their mouths shut when it comes to gender issues. That’s called thought control, and feminists are the ringleaders… I made a point that’s hard to hear — that women should surrender to their nature — and people chose to extrapolate all kinds of meanings from this statement.” THINK OF THE MENZ WHO CAN’T TALK ABOUT THIS YOU GUISE!

Does it really need to be said that Venker’s views leave no room for anything else other than a conceived-in-perfect marshmallow-fluff marriage between two upper class heterosexual WASPs?

But perhaps the hashtag on her Tweet promoting her article on Fox News explains it all:

Is it any wonder she’s a hero to the MRA charmers out there?

(via cognitivedissonance)

Update: She issued a new explanation to The Daily Beast's David Freedlander today:

"All I can say in my defense is that it can be so hard when you write as much as I’ve written—three books, articles, blogs—you think you have said something but you haven’t. It’s like I am thinking something and I am so clear about it and I think what I have said is that. I don’t know. I don’t know. I didn’t think that much about it…

I am not advocating a strict division of gender roles. I am not suggesting that women can’t compete with men in the workforce or that men can’t handle strong women. People are extrapolating these things because the article is, I admit, rather open-ended.

[Rather], women, once they have children would prefer to work part-time or not at all when their children are young. Their career trajectory will be different than that of men. Feminists don’t like that. They want everybody to want the same thing, career trajectories to be the same. Women may say I really want to exercise or hang out with my friends and have coffee or go shopping and have a cushier life, and your guy will be happy to do that, and go to the office all year long for 40 years to allow you to do that. Men don’t have that option. And there is nothing wrong with having different road maps.”

Ahem. May I give you some practical PR advice? 

Just. Stop. Talking.

Stop. Like now.

Or alternately, keep going. Please. Make sure that no one takes you seriously ever again.

(via cognitivedissonance)

Filed under Suzanne Venker Phyllis Schlafly feminism politics gender gender roles women men men's rights But who will think about the menz? feminine femininity I can't Conservative MRA Republican

278 notes

Men want to love women, not compete with them. They want to provide for and protect their families – it’s in their DNA. But modern women won’t let them. It’s all so unfortunate – for women, not men. Feminism serves men very well: they can have sex at hello and even live with their girlfriends with no responsibilities whatsoever.

It’s the women who lose. Not only are they saddled with the consequences of sex, by dismissing male nature they’re forever seeking a balanced life. The fact is, women need men’s linear career goals – they need men to pick up the slack at the office – in order to live the balanced life they seek.

So if men today are slackers, and if they’re retreating from marriage en masse, women should look in the mirror and ask themselves what role they’ve played to bring about this transformation. Fortunately, there is good news: women have the power to turn everything around. All they have to do is surrender to their nature – their femininity – and let men surrender to theirs.

Suzanne Venker, writing for Fox News about how she’s super mega concerned that feminism makes men not want to get married. She’s currently promoting her book, How to Choose a Husband with statements like: “I’ve accidentally stumbled upon a subculture of men who’ve told me, in no uncertain terms, that they’re never getting married. When I ask them why, the answer is always the same. Women aren’t women anymore.” Oh, and she has a quiz to determine if you need this book. Questions include "Deep down, do you feel superior to men?" "As a general rule, do you pursue men (as opposed to letting men pursue you)?" and "Are you a product of divorce?"

A few things: This woman is Phyllis Schlafly's niece. Schlafly rose to prominence by campaigning against the ERA and is generally a terrible person. I'll let this 1908, 1958, 2008 exchange demonstrate this:

Could you clarify some of the statements that you made in Maine last year about martial rape?

I think that when you get married you have consented to sex. That’s what marriage is all about, I don’t know if maybe these girls missed sex ed. That doesn’t mean the husband can beat you up, we have plenty of laws against assault and battery. If there is any violence or mistreatment that can be dealt with by criminal prosecution, by divorce or in various ways. When it gets down to calling it rape though, it isn’t rape, it’s a he said-she said where it’s just too easy to lie about it.

Was the way in which your statement was portrayed correct?

Yes. Feminists, if they get tired of a husband or if they want to fight over child custody, they can make an accusation of marital rape and they want that to be there, available to them.

So you see this as more of a tool used by people to get out of marriages than as legitimate-

Yes, I certainly do.

Speaking of legitimate, Schlafly also backed Todd Akin. Venker has bought Auntie Phyllis’ bullshit hook, line, and sinker. In defense of Michele Bachmann as a modern submissive wife, she wrote, “Indeed, the opportunities women enjoy today are not the result of a bus load of feminists shouting for change. Rather, it has been a natural progression — aided in large part by men. It’s male engineering, ironically, that has freed women from their former domestic lives.”

Uh-huh.

Here’s Venker reminding us that we women must find a man to support us in this gem from 1911 2011. Because babies:

"The other, very taboo thing to say to young women is ‘you need to look for a man who can support you.’ And the reason why you want to do that is not because you’re never going to make your own money and go out into the world; it’s because you’re going to hit a point - particularly in those years when the children are not in school, the first five years - when you are not going to want to be bothered with making an income because you’re going to want to be with those babies."

The furor over her Fox News article, quoted at the beginning of the post, forced her to issue a statement on her Facebook page. Venker wrote, “The vitriol spewed forth on the Internet is precisely the reason so many people – men, especially – keep their mouths shut when it comes to gender issues. That’s called thought control, and feminists are the ringleaders… I made a point that’s hard to hear — that women should surrender to their nature — and people chose to extrapolate all kinds of meanings from this statement.” THINK OF THE MENZ WHO CAN’T TALK ABOUT THIS YOU GUISE!

Does it really need to be said that Venker’s views leave no room for anything else other than a conceived-in-perfect marshmallow-fluff marriage between two upper class heterosexual WASPs?

But perhaps the hashtag on her Tweet promoting her article on Fox News explains it all:

Is it any wonder she’s a hero to the MRA charmers out there?

Filed under Suzanne Venker Phyllis Schlafly feminism politics gender gender roles women men men's rights But who will think about the menz? feminine femininity I can't Conservative MRA Republican

49 notes

theweekmagazine:

Honda has designed the Fit She’s, “the only car model aimed exclusively at women.” The designers took a regular Honda Fit and made it “adult cute.” The seats, steering wheel, and floor mats are all stitched in pink, and the apostrophe in “She’s” is shaped like a heart. Wrinkles, be gone: A special windshield cuts ultraviolet rays, and the AC unit allegedly improves the driver’s skin quality.
7 patronizing for-women-only products


Oh hi.
Please don&#8217;t market this in America.

theweekmagazine:

Honda has designed the Fit She’s, “the only car model aimed exclusively at women.” The designers took a regular Honda Fit and made it “adult cute.” The seats, steering wheel, and floor mats are all stitched in pink, and the apostrophe in “She’s” is shaped like a heart. Wrinkles, be gone: A special windshield cuts ultraviolet rays, and the AC unit allegedly improves the driver’s skin quality.

7 patronizing for-women-only products

Oh hi.

Please don’t market this in America.

(Source: theweek.com)

Filed under women car honda driving female feminism advertising fail

246 notes

Our country might have been better off if it was still just men voting. There is nothing worse than a bunch of mean, hateful women. They are diabolical in how than can skewer a person. I do not see that in men. The whole time I worked, I’d much rather have a male boss than a female boss. Double-minded, you never can trust them.

Because women have the right to vote, I am active, because I want to make sure there is some sanity for women in the political world. It is up to the Christian rednecks and patriots to stand up for our country. Everyone has the right to vote now that’s 18 or over (who is) a legal citizen, and every person that’s 18 and over and a legal citizen should be active in local politics so they can make a change locally, make a change on the state level and make a change in Washington, D.C.

God bless America.

Janis Lane, president of the Central Mississippi Tea Party, on why women shouldn’t have the right to vote.

I assure you, this is not The Onion and she is a real person.

That said…

I just don’t even know what to say here. Words fail me. 

Filed under I can't Mississippi Tea Party politics Election 2012 Election Janis Lane women seriously GOP Republican

57 notes

Talking with a hipster slacktivist, and this happens...

Slacktivist:
I just don't get what we're supposedly doing wrong as feminists. I was talking with this black girl on campus about it and she said we need to bring women of color into feminism more. As leaders. Like, we're supposed to just suddenly bring a bunch of women of color into our movement, you know, POOF, diversity! Feminism IS inclusive!
Me:
Well, I bet you could start by not saying "our movement" when talking to people in general, acting as if you're doing women of color a favor by letting them tag along.
Slacktivist:
But we're all WOMEN. Like with ovaries and stuff.
Me:
What about trans women?
Slacktivist:
What about them? Isn't that more like gay rights territory?
Me:
Um, that's so not inclusive.
Slacktivist:
Why? I don't get it.
Me:
No, you don't.
Slacktivist:
...
Me:
...
Slacktivist:
So wait... just because a black trans woman could get her feelings hurt I can't say "our movement" any longer? Why? Isn't that a little oversensitive.
Me:
For fuck's sake... You don't get to arbitrate what's being oversensitive. FUCK.
Slacktivist:
What? You're super touchy, like oversensitive.
Me:
*facepalm*

Filed under slacktivist activism feminism Thank jeebus she doesn't rep all feminists politics trans* GLBTQ women of color racism you're doing it wrong gender women Diversity and yes she's a fan of Girls

49 notes

Happy Birthday, Phyllis Schlafly!

I read some of your ramblings in high school, fifteen or so years ago. And I’d like to thank you for helping to mold me as a progressive activist, and making me understand why the ERA is a big deal.

In your incoherent desire to see women in my generation retreat from a battle our grandmothers and mothers fought, I felt my spine and my resolve harden to KEEP PUSHING FURTHER. This serves me well when I think nothing I do matters. I look up quotes from you, like this 2007 gem: “By getting married, the woman has consented to sex, and I don’t think you can call it rape.” AND THE FIRE IN MY BELLY RAGES.

So Phyllis, bravo on being the antihero at best, and the villain at worst. You’re sixty years older than me, and a century behind. I hope you sleep fitfully tonight, stuffed with birthday cake and bile, knowing the War on Women is far from over, and the women of my generation have begun picking up the artillery of those who came before us.

We come from all walks of life, all ages, all races, ethnic backgrounds, religions, sexual orientations, and all points on the spectrum of gender.

And we will outlive you by decades and outrun you by miles.

Sleep tight, Phyllis.

Filed under Feminism Phyllis Schlafly women ERA equality politics progressive conservative gender women's rights reproductive rights