Monday, August 22, 2011

what is this i don't even

DSK sexual assault case to be dropped because Manhattan cops say Diallo lied to them.

Two men accused of luring a teenaged girl to an empty house to sexually assault and film her cleared of all charges.

What the hell. What does this say to women who are rape survivors? Oh by the way, we think you're a liar trying to get money out of a rich man and even if you do go to court, you'll have a trial by media and people are just going to think you're a dirty slut anyway.

That's what it says to me.


Friday, June 24, 2011

NZ Media asking for it.

Well, asking for a blog post.

It occurs to me that Tracey Barnett is a complete twit.


Her latest column at the Herald is titled "SlutWalk confuses rape message".

Ok, so first of all, it should be an anti-rape message. And no, SlutWalk isn't that hard to comprehend.

Rape myth:

If you dress like a slut, you'll get raped. Just by being out in town "dressed like a slut" (which is what, exactly? high heels? tight skirt? showing cleavage? spangles? a combination of the above?), you set yourself up as a target for rape.

Myth busted:

a) This is called victim blaming, and it is bullshit.
b) It doesn't matter what you wear if a man decides he will rape you.
c) Most women are raped in places they felt safe by men they thought they could trust. So there is no real correlation between being out on the town (while dressed like a slut) and being a rape survivor.
(Kudos to Scuba Nurse for reiterating that women who are raped are not victims)

So Tracey Barnett's column this week should be called "the media confuses SlutWalk anti-rape message".

Also, what the hell is a "proud non-slut"? Get off your high horse, Tracey. If you've slept with more than one man, that makes you a complete trollop in the eyes of Islam.

And one more thing:
"I could give a whore's thong over whether the word "slut" should be "reclaimed"."
Um, yeah, grammar fail (I could not care less, vs I could care less, same format), and sex worker prejudice in one fell swoop. Also, "queers" have "reclaimed" the "word" for "themselves", so "why not" "sluts" too? Patronizing much?

So yeah, the NZ Herald are a bunch of ninnies. Situation normal, then.

By contrast, the Dom Post has an article from Deborah Russell which spells out the reasons for SlutWalk perfectly. The comments look like a shitstorm though. Just a heads up.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

murder and victim blaming

Reading this article. Having a think as I go.

The name of the woman who was murdered was Marice McGregor. The man who is accused of killing her is named Dean Richard Mulligan.

"Murder victim met men for sex"

"Yesterday, the defence had three statements from NZDating users who arranged sexual encounters with Ms McGregor, to show she did not always keep the safest company."

Is having sex intrinsically unsafe for women? Or is it just if we arrange a hook up via the internet? Clearly all the other men she met didn't murder her. Just one.

Victim blaming seems to be the first port of call for defence lawyers. Stephen Ross is the defence lawyer for Mulligan...and he's full of shit. It shouldn't matter if Marice McGregor met a hundred men on the internet and cybered with them all. I think the defence, and by association, the media, is just trying to cook up some "slut-who-deserved-it" image of her.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

respect and love

What do you do when the people you love do and say things that you can't respect?

I've had a falling out with my godmother, because I called her on her racism and close-mindedness and she got in the last word by saying "I have lost all respect for you".

I can't help but think that...she didn't really know my thoughts well enough to respect them in the first place! I don't think she could be friends with the people that I am friends with, because she couldn't see them as equal to herself.

It's so hard to talk about the important things like gender and race privilege with someone who is set in their views...more so when they are someone you care about. Those arguments hurt!

But, I think that we probably do have to call people on their bullshit. Regardless of whether they are people we love, or people we love to hate.

I'm learning that my feminism involves sticking up for people. Telling people about privilege and trying to help them to see it and understand it.

I don't think I won the war last night. But I think I won a victory for myself, and my own ability to understand.

Friday, May 27, 2011

who dares wins?

But no, really, how DARE they??

I refer to the front page of Friday's Dom Post World Section, and the appalling investigation by Dominique Strauss-Kahn's lawyers into the life of the woman taking him to court for molesting her.

The third paragraph reads "Their mission is to unearth anything in the background of the 32-year old woman that would erode her claim to have been the innocent victim of an unprovoked attack."

"The ideal would be to find that the victim had previously made false accusations against a man or demanded money in connection with a sexual relationship."

Sorry, what was that? If by money for sex, do you mean prostitution? Is that an excuse for rape in your world? Because in the real world, it sure as hell isn't.

This is a disgusting example of what happens to rape survivors when they go for justice. It is part and parcel of the system.

Everything about their life is examined to see if they are anything less than virginal. If it's not our clothes that encourage rapists, it's our drinking, if it's not our drinking, it's our sex life (don't have a one-night-stand, it could mean you're a slut who was asking for it).

This is not justice. I can't imagine that this woman's lawyers are going to scurry around sniffing out all the indecent behaviour Strauss-Kahn may have been involved in.

Fuck no. Rape culture doesn't allow that. Rape culture says it has to have been her fault somehow, that she deserved it.

I feel so badly for her. And so angry. I want her to win, and I want Strauss-Kahn to go to jail for a long time. I want him to pay lots and lots of his precious money to the woman he hurt, and all the rest of it to Refuges and Crisis Centres. I think that would be justice.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

rape is just not permissible. ever.

Wallace Chapman, you are a fuckwit for even daring to ask someone if women in short skirts could be "asking for it" (rape)
Paul Quinn, you are also a fuckwit, for answering that it's down to drunkenness and their behaviour.

It is not a woman's fault she gets raped. There are no excuses for rape.

Damn it, I've been having intense conversations with my male friends over the last couple of weeks that have left me stressed and on edge trying to explain to them what rape culture is and not to crack jokes that promote it. (Including, but not limited to "it's not rape if you say "surprise!"...)

Listening to one young man explain how he was accused of rape and then hearing the horrible details of what happened the next morning, and trying to find sympathy for both people. It ended up in front of the cops and neither of them got counselling.... Christ, sometimes it just isn't as black-and-white as you'd like it to be.

I've got one mate who insists that all rapists should be killed. I still don't know if he quite understands what that would mean. (Obviously, a helluva lot less men.)

I've explained that most of the time, women who are raped aren't out in a dark alley at 3am wearing a miniskirt and heels. That they're at their home or a friend's house, somewhere they felt safe, and were with a man they thought they could trust.

I've told them that when they call women sluts, skanks, whores, bitches, it pisses me off personally. (Especially "whore", because not one of them has had any experience of who prostitutes are and what they do.)

I've even told them the short form of Kate Harding's "that guy thought you were on his side". Yeah, that one shut them up.

Some of them seem to get it. I don't know if they're getting it because I'm there calling their crap, or if they actually have had their thoughts shaken up. But this is all down to the SlutWalk. Hearing about it, reading about it, and planning to be there.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

belated blogswarm

So apparently there was a blogswarm on the 7th, which I missed. Regarding "abortion is a health issue not a crime"

Which, oddly enough, is exactly the wording I used to a friend of mine (a male) when he mentioned a friend of his (a female) had blogged about being pro-choice.

Random gleanings from today's conversations with the usual gang included a thought questioning why pregnancy is a sickness (you can get a "sickness benefit" if you're pregnant) and why, instead of being in the health area of the law, is abortion still a crime?

Anecdotally, I had a serious in-depth conversation with a friend regarding her current pregnancy and whether or not she should terminate. She's a grown woman, a mother, and she's feeling scared and alone because the people who should be supporting her CHOICE the most...aren't. They have made their choices before she's made hers. It's not right.

I felt torn up just hearing her story. It's so seldom black-and-white, got-raped-gonna-terminate.

And people dare to say that women would use it as their primary method of birth control. A scant few, perhaps, but why have an abortion when you can use contraception first...

Anyway, slutwalk, keen bean. :)

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

not so quietly pissed off

I've had my thoughts adjusted by transsexuals. Firstly, by a friend who I hang out with every day at uni, and secondly by a woman who I only know as V.

Yeah, ok, of the two I really only know and like my mate, but V has raised an important issue for me. It's about ignoring transsexuals. It's not right. It's like when society used to ignore homosexuals and their issues. And before that, women. Which is bullshit.

I've also had my thoughts adjusted by reading that when cisgender men and women choose to use the wrong personal pronoun, ask questions about their bits, claim they're not "really" a woman or a man, we're being transphobic.

It galls me that transgender women get beat up and killed in hate crimes. Case in point:
This woman

I don't know her real name. Nobody will know her real name, because the fucking media is calling her "Richard" and calling her a "him".

I see you.

Monday, February 21, 2011


Goddamn it!

Goddamn John Key and his rotten National Party Cabinet Ministers are so keen on screwing over women, Maori and their children in this country it makes me fucking angry as hell!
Welfare "shake up" recommendations via - warning for misogynist, idiotic comments...

We gotta protest. They ignored us when we protested against the employment law reforms, they ignored us when we protested against the Voluntary Student Membership bill, they cannot fucking sit back and ignore us again!

We got together to protest the exploitation of our land, we have got to get together and protest their plans to trample over our sick, our unemployed and our mothers.

I can't be the only person who feels this way. If anyone else out there hates what's happening to our people, hit me up.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Lifestyle choices

Oh Christ.

Just getting away from a blog post with open comments on Stuff about food parcels and John Key's moronic comment about beneficiaries' lifestyle choices.

The amount of misogyny in the comments just makes me SICK. From women as well as men!!

A stunner from someone named Claire - ranting about a woman with three children and collecting the DPB "her choice to have sex and get pregnant" well yeah we really hope it was her choice to have sex, and definitely her choice to have her children but that doesn't mean it's her fault that she can't afford everything she needs to provide for her children and herself.

Yes, of course, many women who get pregnant and consider the consequences think "well shit, if I have this kid now money is going to be really tight" but it doesn't mean that they don't want the child!

Me, personally, I would probably rather take my chances with pregnancy, parenthood (maybe by myself) and maybe having to sacrifice a bit than have an abortion. (unless I really didn't want the man's child, for whatever reason) But abortions just squick me out. The whole procedure makes me nauseous and scared. I don't just mean the tried and true D&C, the pills, the having to leave and come back again thing, the sedation, yeah, nah. Horrible. Not for me, if I can possibly avoid being raped (odds aren't that good, I'm a woman) or getting knocked up to a guy who really couldn't handle fatherhood.

Abortion law pisses me off too, I've read the section of the Crimes Act (CRIMES! Can you believe it?!) that contains NZ's current abortion laws and it's twisted and wrong. D:

This is totally turning into a rant, but FUCK OFF with the benefit cutting already. Hypocrites! Marginalising women and Maori while they buy themselves flash new cars. Paula Bennet... you are damned lucky I've spent today reading a book by the Dalai Lama. I am grateful to you for being my enemy, because you give me the opportunity to practice compassion.

Damned if I will, though!!!

EDIT: In hindsight, I should probably link to something that analyses some of the statistics regarding women, Maori and social welfare.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

things I found today

Thank you, feminist blogosphere.
Thank you, Wellington Young Feminists' Collective.
Thank you, Peggy Orenstein.

The Destructive Culture of Pretty Pink Princesses

"What really floored me, both as a girl-advocate and as a parent, was the way that prematurely sexualising girls or play-acting at sexy for them from a young age disconnects them from healthy authentic sexual feeling. So that they learn that sexuality is something that you perform, instead of something that you feel."! I had to sit for a few minutes to digest that. I haven't even finished reading the article myself yet - I just had to share it!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

from the horse's mouth

"From Stripper to Acting CEO

I clicked on this article in the hopes that it would be a woman making it to the top. But no.

It's a bloke, having done a one-night stint in a local production. "Very tastefully done".

Has anyone else been to a strip club featuring female dancers? Seen the way they accept tips from the patrons, bending over and giving a full view of their cunt a few scant inches from their faces?
Competition for getting tipped has done this to strippers - they used to be dancers, entertainers...burlesque. But now, the more skin they show and the ruder they dance, the more money they get. Taste has little to do with it.

Still, more power to ya if that's you. More power, more money.

But the man in the article says it himself: "I am probably one of the few CEOs, if not the only CEO, to have been a stripper for a paying audience."

That's like saying that no stripper could ever become a CEO of a company. That she's not worthy enough for the job. And that hacks me off!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

one of the boys

This article has caused an uproar in our house.

It started with Dad - he said he'd heard the interview and was incredulous that Tony Veitch (remember him? He beat the hell out of his partner) could ask John Key if he'd like to be Shane Warne. This as a slight tangent from asking who Key's favourite sportspeople were.

But lo and behold, Key would be Warne in a heartbeat because of that thing he's got going with Liz Hurley. Other "normal manly sentiments" include a liking for Jessica Alba and Angelina Jolie too.

So Katie and I checked out the online article ourselves and what do we find? Not a single sportsman in sight, but John Key at the top and pictures of Alba in a bikini, Jolie looking rather lovely, and Elizabeth Hurley showing a lot of cleavage down the side of the text.

Then there was this stunner of a quote from former league player Dean Lonergan:

"Those women who might be upset at his comments are obviously just disappointed they never made John Key's list and never will."

Friday, January 21, 2011

Women and Science

So I was watching the TV today (as you do) and a name was given to me.

Rosalind Franklin.

Today I learnt that Rosalind Franklin was a British biophysicist, specialising in X-ray crystallography.

Of course we've all heard the names Watson and Crick.

But I'd never heard of Rosalind Franklin. At the very same time Watson and Crick were building models of the molecular arrangement of DNA, Franklin was taking x-ray photographs of DNA.

Without Franklin's consent, her research partner Maurice Wilkins showed photograph 51 to Watson.

Because Rosalind Franklin died in 1958, she is not eligible for a posthumous Nobel Prize. However, her former partner Wilkins joined Watson and Crick in receiving a Nobel Prize in 1962 for work on nucleic acids.

IMHO, her research contributed to Watson and Crick's work on the double helix, and it's a damned shame her name hasn't been a part of my vocabulary until now.

Rosalind Franklin on Wikipedia

Thursday, January 6, 2011

pardon me?

Did someone suggest they pardon convicted rapist Moshe Katsav?

Oh, wait, no, he's some bigwig in Israel. A politician. His humiliation is enough.


What rubbish.