Thursday, March 31, 2016

Gif of the Day



That's a lot of Spider Men.

Fuck Nintendo

[TRIGGER WARNING: ONLINE HATE MOBS, MISOGYNY, HARASSMENT]

Yesterday, Alison Rapp, a member of the marketing team at Nintendo, was fired. This is the same Alison Rapp who was targeted by GamerGate over two years ago and has endured the standard completely ridiculous harassment completely disproportionate to her imagined crimes. GamerGate accused her of being the one who decided to make some kind of change to some video game coming in from Japan. Not only was it not her decision, changes are made to video games imported from Japan all. The. Time. It's called localization. They have a whole department for that, as do many, many media companies. I've applied to that department.

But of course facts have never deterred GamerGate from being horrible and doing their utmost to ruin people's lives, especially if they're women. And yesterday, Alison Rapp announced that Nintendo had fired her after receiving an anonymous tip that she'd been doing some work outside of Nintendo for extra money. The company then fired her for “moonlighting.” Alison Rapp says that moonlighting is explicitly allowed by Nintendo, because why the fuck wouldn't it be? She's not doing something that could endanger people's lives if she's too tired to focus. And she wasn't giving away company secrets. Trust me, there's no actual secret to marketing.

So why fire her? Clearly, they were just looking for a reason. Nintendo's another big gaming company scared of online harassers and any negative publicity. This was made clear when they asked Alison Rapp not to talk about rape culture on her own, non-company Twitter account years ago and she refused. Thanks to GamerGate's relentless assholery and Nintendo's cowardice, she was shuffled to a less visible job in the company and now finally let go entirely.

You know, I live in the Seattle area. I love video games. I've loved Nintendo. I have actually applied for two jobs in Nintendo's marketing department – once as a localization writer and once as a standard creative writer. I got no response, but that was years ago. Since then, I've often thought about applying again, as ads for these jobs, especially for localization writers and editors, often pop up on the company's LinkedIn page. But I've hesitated time and time again.

I've actually turned away from my original desired career path, which was to work in games writing in some capacity. This is mostly due to my growing passion for feminism and general social justice, but in no small part because of the way I've seen the gaming industry and the gaming community treat women. I've become so disgusted at times with both that it made me wonder why the fuck they should deserve me, and why I would subject myself to that.

I could have been Alison Rapp. I've always vowed to myself that I would never stop vocally advocating for women and other oppressed persons because it might hurt the reputation of a company I was working for. Now I'm glad I never did get a writing job with Nintendo. They clearly don't care about women and they don't protect their workers from hate mobs. Fuck em'.


Happy Trans Day of Visibility!

Today is the official International Trans Day of Visibility. It's a day for trans people to post selfies and generally remind cis people that they exist.

I want to once again remind everybody that this blog is a safe space for trans women. My feminism is 100% trans inclusive. TERFs and any "trans critical" feminists are not welcome here.

For the rest of us, remember that there are trans and non-binary people out there today who are still in the closet for their safety and so can't participate directly in TDoV. They still matter. Also for the love of god don't out anybody.

Remember to send extra love and support to trans women of color, disabled trans women, mentally ill trans women, and all the others who deal with multiple intersections of oppression. Check out the TDoV tag on Tumblr for loads of amazing trans and non-binary people! I'll be spending the day reblogging.

Have fun today!

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Gif of the Day



That kitten just absconded with a potato.

Is she going to eat it? How did she get a grip on it with her tiny kitten teeth? So many questions.

The Mansplaining Hotline

[TRIGGER WARNING: ABLEIST LANGUAGE, NAZI MENTION]

Despite the unfortunate use of ableist slurs, this is a pretty funny sketch about mansplaining that centers a fat black woman. I've never heard of Party Over Here but I need to look into how I can watch it all the time.


Take a break from mansplaining and watch last night's Party Over Here. That way, you'll have more to mansplain about.
Posted by Party Over Here on Sunday, March 20, 2016

Liberal Tone Policing in the 2016 Election

This piece came out with impeccable timing on The Establishment, another by Ijeoma Oluo, on tone policing and privilege.

The Privilege Of ‘Civilized’ Political Discourse

If your son will never be one of the 1 in 3 black men imprisoned in America, if you will never need an abortion, if you don’t have to fear watching your family die in a drone strike, debate can be vigorous fun—like being a freshman in Poli Sci all over again. When you have nothing to fear, the most important decisions in our government all turn into thought experiments where everything—even the lives of human beings—is up for compromise. 
But for the rest of us, for those of us directly and horrifically impacted every day by the slow and comfortable pace of “progress,” the call for civilized debate is barbaric. The lack of yelling, the lack of protest, the lack of rage and urgency around issues that are literally killing people is a glaring testament, not of our manners, but of our lack of basic empathy as a society.

"But for the rest of us, for those of us directly and horrifically impacted every day by the slow and comfortable pace of “progress,” the call for civilized debate is barbaric."




Yes. Perfect. Absolutely perfect. The call to be nice and wait for privileged people to slowly come to the decision that oppressed people deserve to live as they are actively being murdered on a daily basis is utterly barbaric. Especially because it's a fucking trap. It's a trick. You can be as nice as possible and you'll either be dismissed or your words will still be interpreted as aggression.

I was planning to write on this subject due to the large number of posts I've seen on Facebook of people calling for each other to contact the Washington State superdelegates to tell them to listen to the voters and support the candidate overwhelming supported by the people of the state. But most of these posts come with a cautioning to be nice and polite. Now, I understand if people want to tell others not to blatantly harass these superdelegates, especially the ones who are not cishet white men, but they all seem to come with a lecture about how it's important to be "civil" and that being "aggressive" or "rude" will only push the superdelegates further into their Hillary trench.




I hate this. I shouldn't have to crawl up on my hands and needs and whimper a plea for something resembling an actual democracy and having my voice actually heard in this clusterfuck of an election. What kind of god complex do these superdelegates have that we have to bow our heads and offer our reverence to their bought greatness for them to even consider listening to us? Or else they'll spite us by completely taking the option of voting for Bernie off the table? That kind of behavior is reminiscent of either a toddler or an abuser.

Superdelegates are simply important state politicians give this extra power for being important politicians. But, as laughable as this is lately, politicians are still supposed to represent their constituents. That's their job. They're supposed to serve us, not do what they think is best for us like a pack of dictators or monarchs.

And if they shirk their duties, why the fuck should we be polite? We have every right to demand our basic rights supposedly given to us in this supposed democracy. We shouldn't have to ask nicely that the rules be followed. Especially when so much is at stake in this election. So many lives.

I get that you want to be better than the people at the Trump rallies screaming racial slurs and punching people in the face. But there is a middle ground. You can demand your rights and be angry without using oppressive language or assaulting people. Come on. Don't let Trump's bullshit push you into being victims of tone policing discourse. Get angry and fight for what you deserve.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Gif of the Day



Still better than Trump.

D:

I say again,


And I say this because of the apparent history Donald Trump has of commenting on the quality of women's skin.

Of course Donald Trump is an objectifying piece of shit who constantly comments on the appearance of every woman around including his own daughter, but I didn't know he was that into... skin.


People are joking about Ted Cruz being the Zodiac killer but has anyone considered what might be in a pit in Donald Trump's basement? Just saying.

Addendum to Fake Geek Boys Mad That Game Company Made a Decision


LMAO.

Fake Geek Boys Mad That Game Company Made a Decision

Must be a day that ends in "y" hahahahahahahahahahahaha.

Yeah, apparently, there's some game called Overwatch and a female character originally did a victory pose where she turns around to show her butt in her painted on leggings. I don't know anything about this game in particular, but fans complained that such an action was ill-fitting with the character. So Blizzard, the developer, decided to change it.

Cue the fake geek boys who apparently don't know anything about the process of making a game crying and breaking their monocles over "censorship."


This game is still in development. What fake geek boys don't seem to understand is that companies make small changes to their games in development based on feedback all the time. Why do you think they hire testers and focus groups? Do you complain when gaming companies decide to fix glitches or removed always-online requirements? No, you demand these changes, and you don't call in "pandering" when those changes are made, do you? Only when the change involves something that you perceive to be about social justice or anything related to it.

Or when the change means you can't stare at an animated woman's ass anymore.

Well, guess what, geek boys? Blizzard is its own company that gets to do whatever it wants to make as much money as possible, as you've pointed out so many times before. Just because the tide of opinion is turning away from your shitty misogynistic asses doesn't mean Blizzard in being censored. In fact, if you demand they change it back, then you're demanding that Blizzard pander to you! Stop censoring Blizzard and go play some more Dead or Alive, a game made entirely to pander to straight men.

Monday, March 28, 2016

Gif of the Day



What a snorgle.

Amazing Girls of Color

[TRIGGER WARNING: BULLYING, FAT HATRED]

Another black girl is kicking ass at a seriously young age. Ten-year-old Egypt "Ify" Ufele has been getting bullied and straight up assaulted at school for her size. Since our schools don't actually do shit about bullying, she decided to fight back by making her own clothes and starting her own plus-sized clothing collection.

After finessing her skills, she began the ambitious undertaking of creating her own line, which she named Chubiiline, with the dual mission of creating beautiful plus-size clothing and "bringing Africa to America."

Her designs are beautiful.

A photo posted by Egypt "Ify" Ufele (@bullychasers) on


A photo posted by Egypt "Ify" Ufele (@bullychasers) on

I would buy so much of this if it wasn't cultural appropriation.

It does make me sad, however, that so many black girls have to grow up so fast because our public schools are such failures. I love the fact that she's getting support and is able to do what she loves, but the fact that she was driven to it by bullying is tragic. She deserves a safe, happy childhood, and that's been denied to her. I hope every school administrator and those responsible for our failure of a public school system feel deeply ashamed.

Nixon Aide Interview Proves What We Already Knew About the War on Drugs

An old but just recently published interview has officially proven that the "war on drugs" was manufactured to attack hippies and black people. Black people, of course, got the worst of it. Hippie movements were de-legitimized and disrupted and leaders arrested for cannabis possession, while the Black Panthers were destroyed, leaders murdered or exiled, and black communities obliterated. Mass incarceration of black people continues today and has increased, if anything, while states legalize cannabis.

“The Nixon campaign in 1968, and the Nixon White House after that, had two enemies: the antiwar left and black people. You understand what I’m saying,” Ehrlichman continued. “We knew we couldn’t make it illegal to be either against the war or black, but by getting the public to associate the hippies with marijuana and blacks with heroin. And then criminalizing both heavily, we could disrupt those communities,“ Ehrlichman said. “We could arrest their leaders. raid their homes, break up their meetings, and vilify them night after night on the evening news. Did we know we were lying about the drugs? Of course we did.”

Yeah we've all been saying that for decades, thanks. Tumblr user ONEVAGABOND has the full story with sources. This interview is decades old but was just published. Not that it would have helped much back then, and not that it will do much now. Facts have historically done nothing in this country to stop our criminal leaders from doing whatever the fuck they want.

Well, except for Nixon.

Washington State Caucus 2016

So I caucused for Bernie, whoopdedoo. It was my first caucus and it was not as fancy or complicated as I expected. As many other people are reporting, my caucus location was packed. We arrived before 9:30 and there was no parking left at the Jr. High School. We parked in a nearby neighborhood and walked over, figured out our precinct, went to our designated lunch table at which there was no seating left. So we stood around until our group leader directed us outside where we could actually hear one another talk.

I'm not actually sure of the racial demographics of Bothell, but the vast majority of people there were white. There were a lot of middle age and older women, and these made up the vast majority of people caucusing for Hillary in our precinct (all white).

The women who spoke for Hillary pretty much had to say that they were tired of old white guys speaking for them. I brought up that Bernie is Jewish and people laughed. Not sure why.

Anyway, I understand the sentiment. I want a woman president, too. Very much. I can also see how that want would be stronger in an older woman who has waited so many more years for a woman president than I have. But the fact is that Hillary only speaks for and works for one type of women. And that is rich white healthy able-bodied neurotypical cishet women. Bernie at least seems like he'll work for the rest of us, and not just saying it to get votes.

Again, I can't throw women less privileged than me under the bus. Not with a clean conscience, I can't.

There was one young woman there who introduced herself and explained that she was caucusing for Bernie because she has five years to live, maybe. She has some kind of terminal cancer, and I saw as she was speaking that there were tubes coming out from her backpack that went under her clothes. She said that even since she'd been diagnosed and plunged into ridiculous medical debt just to stay alive, she'd been fighting for universal healthcare. And she couldn't support Hillary because although Obamacare had prolonged her life by allowing her to be able to access care at all, it wasn't nearly good enough. Though she was alive, her illness and debt made it so she and her husband couldn't live in better than the cheapest apartment. They couldn't travel, they struggled to pay their basic bills.

She explained that she shouldn't have to be forced into poverty and massive debt because of an illness that she didn't choose. She should be able to live during her last five years alive. And though supporting Bernie wouldn't save her, prolong her life or erase her debts, she wanted to fight for all the people in the future who will be diagnosed with a terminal illness.

And it breaks my heart that she feels the need to go around being inspiration porn to the rest of us because that's what it takes to get people to listen about the necessity of free healthcare. Not that she changed the mind of any of the Hillary supporters in our precinct, because apparently having a woman president of any kind is worth fucking over the terminally ill.

It makes me wonder how far this type of Hillary supporter would go. How conservative would a woman have to be that you wouldn't vote for her for president? I'm guessing as soon as she started advocating for taking away things that affect rich white women. Ha.

Friday, March 25, 2016

Gif of the Day



Steven universe knows what's up.

Whorephobic Professors Whining About Free Speech

One again, shitty college professors are having all the sads about protecting students from sexual harassment. This time because one professor got in trouble for holding an incredibly whorephobic role-playing exercise.

At the conclusion of the term , undergraduate teaching assistants participated in and witnessed role-playing exercises featuring subjects relevant to course material involving the global sex trade: these performances animated character types, such as an “Eastern European ‘slave whore,’ a pimp, a ‘bar whore,’ and a high-end escort.” Adler’s Dean offered her a buyout for early retirement and indicated if she did not accept the offer, she could incur penalties up to and including forfeiture of her retirement benefits.

Throwing around the word "whore" is a shitty thing to do in the first place, and it makes it sound like this "exercise" is totally stigmatizing of full service sex workers. Not only that, but it's definitely entirely possible that a college student could be a current or former sex worker or could be a survivor of sex trafficking. That kind of intense, ongoing trauma would probably make such an exercise impossible to get through.

So basically, once again, privileged people are saying that their right to do whatever the fuck they want regardless of anyone else's trauma or status as an oppressed person trumps the right to an education or any feeling of safety or the right not to be further stigmatized in a society that already criminalized their existence.

I am 10,000% tired of this bullshit. Fuck that "exercise." That professor should have to change it. It wouldn't be hard at all. Fuck these assholes' callous disregard for anyone but themselves.



Recommended Reading

More on the racism on both sides of the Democratic primary.

Your Bernie / Hillary fandom makes people of color invisible

This is a great piece calling out white liberals in the Seattle area. Once again, it's not just about individual failures in the campaigns and histories of these two candidates. It's how the "fandom," that is, the reactionary impulse to defend one's preferred candidate no matter what, harms people of color.

I had my honeymoon moment with each candidate myself. But both campaigns bring out a side of my white friends that worries me. 
Hillary and Bernie appeal to so many in part because they each represent a population of underdogs: 
Hillary’s story speaks most directly to the scads of women experiencing gender inequity in middle-class America. 
Bernie’s platform lets even straight white bros proclaim “the Man” has them down because they are saddled with student loans and third-rate health insurance. My white friends want to see themselves as the underdogs. They are excited about the candidate that allows them this mindset. 
I see white liberals becoming more fiercely protective of their own identities.

This was written by woman of color Anis Gisele and is required reading for my fellow white people.

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Gif of the Day


I love dogs that make that face.

Man Arrested for Spouting Islamophobic Bullshit

We need some good news for today. Some shitty white guy tweeted about harassing a Muslim woman by blaming her for the recent IS attacks in Belgium and got arrested for being a dick. It's beautiful.

London Man Who Asked Muslim Woman to "Explain" Brussels Terror Attacks Arrested

Also, a ton of people made fun of him on Twitter.


After he was arrested "on suspicion of inciting racial hatred" (why can't we have laws like that in the U.S.?), he went right into whining about how he was actually politely racist!

He told the Telegraph that his tweet was blown way out of proportion; that he didn't actually "confront" this random woman; that confront was maybe not the right word, come to think of it; that the internet didn't have the story straight.  
"What everyone's got wrong about this is I didn't confront the woman," he said. "I just said: 'Excuse me, can I ask what you thought about the incident in Brussels?'" 
"She was white, and British, wearing a hijab — and she told me it was nothing to do with her," he continued. "I said, 'thank you for explaining that' — and her little boy said goodbye to me as we went out separate ways." The "mealy mouthed reply" bit must have been an internal aside, in that case.

Lol this guy thinks that you can't be white, British, and Muslim. "Wah wah no I actually lied about how confrontational and racist I was being but I admit that I was still trying to blame each individual Muslim person for every terrorist attack tied to organizations that sound Muslim."

What a pathetic piece of shit.

TERFs Are Responsible for Bathroom Bills

You know who helped get this trans women in the bathroom hysteria going? Feminists! Haaaaahahahaha fuck.


TERFs, or trans-exclusionary/exterminatory radical feminists, have literally partnered with transphobic and homophobic conservatives just for the chance to fuck over trans women. An anti-trans attack ad called "Women: Decide for Yourselves" (I have, thanks) even credits the notorious website Gender Identity Watch created by horrible, trans girl-harassing/outing Cathy Brennan.

Cathy Brennan and her ilk have condemned the North Carolina bill and some bathroom bills, only because they negatively affect cis lesbians. But make no mistake, TERFs are responsible for this shit in the first place.

Melissa Gira Grant wrote an extensive piece on this fact and the history of transmisogyny in feminist in the Pacific Standard. All cis feminists need to give this a read. And we need to reaffirm our efforts to rid feminism of this kind of hatred and bigotry. No transmisogyny in my feminism, ever. I will not accept any ideology that harms women of any kind.

Anti-Transgender Bathroom Bills Are Deadly Violence

[TRIGGER WARNING: MURDER, DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, CIS MAN VIOLENCE, GUN VIOLENCE, TRANSMISOGYNY]

They're also entirely predictable, but that doesn't make them any less horrible.

It's typical. The general public starts to notice an oppressed population actually exists and responds with state-sanctioned bigotry. But the violence directed against trans people, particularly trans women, particularly trans women of color, is already so intense.

I can't say this enough. The average lifespan of a trans person is 32.




Their suicide rates are through the roof. The rate at which they're made homeless is through the roof. And, of course, the chance that you'll be murdered as a trans woman of color is astronomically terrifying.

You know what else is through the roof? Their rates of urinary tract infections and other complications from having to hold their pee at school, work, and in public because trying to use the bathroom is a flaming gauntlet of stares, harassment, and possibly being kicked out or arrested. And the chances of something like that happening is being made so much worse by these fucking bathroom bills that keep popping up.

I'm not going to pretend for a second like I think any Republican politician gives a fraction of a shit about a trans person. Trans people are just another segment of the population they can throw under the bus to get votes. They can boast about protecting cis privacy and all the transphobes will rally under their banner, and they can justify their shit existence as actual lawmakers.

But when it comes to the common people, let me ask you a thing. How in the fuck are these bathroom bills supposed to work? In Kansas, Republicans recently introduced a bill that will let students sue any public school for $2,500 each time they spot a trans person in a bathroom that doesn't match the gender they were assigned at birth based on their genitals and supposed chromosomes.




Okay so how does that work. How is a student supposed to prove that a trans person dared to use a bathroom? The only way I can figure is to take photos or video of people in the bathroom. What a great activity these transphobes have inspired! Nothing says privacy like filming strangers in the bathroom. And how are you even going to prove someone is trans? Are you going to accost them and force them to submit to a DNA test? Are you just going to force them to drop their pants? Because that won't even work. Anyone can have any genitals. Surgery exists to alter or create genitals. Genitals literally prove nothing, but this bill is encouraging students to creep on each other in the bathroom, peeping on one another with their pants down and snap photos of their private regions.

And this is supposed to be about bathroom privacy.

There are a thousand ways to promote privacy that don't involve frivolous lawsuits, all of which trans people would appreciate since we cis people are clearly the ones being creepy in the bathroom. Make bathroom stalls with walls that go all the way down to the floor at up to the ceiling. Require locker rooms to have secure changing rooms. The end. So simple.

But this isn't about privacy at all. That's clearly a lie. This is about fucking over trans people. And in doing so, they promote the idea that trans people are perverts. It directly encourages the harassment and bullying of trans people in the bathroom, and that's going to bleed right out into the streets. Today we have a report of yet another trans woman of color murdered by a cis person in public. Kourtney Yochum is the 7th victim of deadly cis violence in the U.S. alone this year.

This also comes after the disgusting North Carolina bill just passed that not only overturns a law that made public facilities safer for trans people, it actually bans LGBTQAIP+ non-discrimination ordinances. Anything that would help any of these people? Illegal. Can't even use the democratic process to help them. And, once again, this was done under the guise of protecting cis women like myself.




Fuck you, North Carolina Republicans. I don't want your bullshit "protection" and I don't need any. Trans women need the protection from us cis people.

It's the same story every time. But we cis people have to do everything we can to fight to get through this period of backlash against the existence of trans people because every day we allow shit like this to happen, more trans people suffer and more trans women of color die. The blood of Kourtney Yochum is partially on our hands because we haven't done nearly enough. No more. Make sure everyone you know hears the truth loud and clear. Trans women are women. Trans men are men. They deserve privacy just as much as any cis person, and they deserve all basic human rights.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Gif of the Day



Same.

Donald Trump Needs to Be Stopped

[TRIGGER WARNING: DEATH, MASS SHOOTING, RACIAL HATE CRIME]

In the past, I've brushed off the idea of a Trump presidency, saying that he can't possibly win, even as he's been killing it in the primaries. Maybe I've been optimistic, maybe I've been trying to keep myself from being sucked into a bottomless void of despair. But I need to stop. Because people like me not believing that a guy like Trump could become the leader of a nation like this is exactly how that thing happens. More and more people are coming forward to talk about how former horrible dictators got into power by saying ridiculously horrible things and exploiting the anger and bigotry of large segments of the population.

And yeah, that includes Hitler.

And even if Donald Trump doesn't have a shot, that doesn't mean he's not doing damage. You've probably all heard about the white Trump supporters attacking black and Muslim protesters. From repeatedly shoving a young black woman to very deliberately throwing an elbow into a black man's face.

And now this:

Trump’s America Is Here: Man Kills 3 People For Not Speaking English

It was Sunday afternoon and Jesus Manso-Perez, 40, and his 18-year-old son, Jesus Manso-Carrasquillo, had left the apartment to do laundry. They ran into Popp on their way to the basement in their apartment complex, who Manso-Carrasquillo said offered them a beer. When they declined, Popp asked where they were from and they replied that they were from Puerto Rico, to which Popp reportedly replied, “Oh, that’s why you don’t speak English. You’re Puerto Rican.” After they parted ways, the father and son started a load of laundry and made their way back to their apartment. It was then that they met Popp at the stairs, he pointed a rifle at them, said “You guys got to go” and shot the father in the head. The son managed to run away and just barely missed the shots that Popp fired at him.

Two other people of color were dead before this ended.

It's not coincidence that as racist, hateful rhetoric increases and is highly publicized and accepted, physical violence against people of color increases. And Trump's rhetoric is all of those things. From calling Mexican individuals rapists to talking about "those people" ruining "our country."

I don't typically watch Rachel Maddow, but a segment of her's on the subject really made the point sink in for me. HuffPo has the full segment plus a written-out timeline of Trump's escalation of violence in his rhetoric.

We have way too much military power to let Donald Trump become the next president. And too many people have been assaulted and murdered for any of us to stand by and let his hatemongering go on. I challenge every person, especially every one of my fellow white people, to refuse to tolerate Trump or any language that comes from Trump or any support of Trump. This has gone far beyond opinion having. People are dead.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Gif of the Day



Turtle stretches turtle neck to try and eat kitten toes. Help.

Recommended Reading

Speaking of black women creating things, I think that one of the most important writers and activists of our time is Ijeoma Oluo. She lives in Seattle and is writing incredibly powerful pieces on racism and blackness. Today, this was published on The Establishment:

Black In The Time Of Trump

This is such a striking piece on how racism has directly fueled the rise of Donald Trump and how terrifying it is for black people. It's not long, and you should read the entire thing. But here's a great bit:

But the time for celebration is over. These last few years have highlighted how little even a black president can do to steer this massive ship first built to transport slaves in a different direction. I’ve spent the last three years watching video of my people being gunned down in the street with the confidence that only a gun and badge issued by this state can provide. I’ve been reminded time and again that the slight majority of Americans who decided they did not want me dead will draw the line at being mildly inconvenienced. I have learned that the slight majority of Americans who decided they could see the competency and leadership of a man who looked like me, will use that one benevolent choice to refuse to see the rest of us.

That part, of course, is talking about white liberals. My fellow white Obama voters. But it's just one of the heartbreaking aspects of the piece. Every paragraph smacks you in the face and leaves you stinging. At least, it should.

Black Women Created All the Things You Love

I wrote another piece for Yes! Magazine that was published last night. It's a list of 10 black women and their inventions/contributions to the modern world. Because both Black History Month and Women's History Month tend to leave out the black women.

10 Black Women Innovators and the Awesome Things They Brought Us

My favorites are Sister Rosetta Tharp, the godmother of rock and roll and an influence on so many of the men credited with creating the genre, and Biddy Mason, who was such a fucking badass. She won freedom for herself and her family after her slave owner brought them all to California, where slavery had already been abolished. Then she proceeded to become a real estate mogul and make Los Angeles the metropolitan hub it is today.

Did you know that? That a black woman is the reason LA is so important? I bet you didn't.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Gif of the Day



This is from a Mythbusters episode wherein they show what it would really be like to carry all that equipment you pick up in video games. Seems impractical. Myth busted.

Wake Up

I've got a lot of non-blog work to do today so here's a Vine. Careful, it may be loud.





I love this as much as I love System of a Down.

Bernie Sanders' Foreign Policy

I've seen now and again speculation on Bernie Sanders' foreign policy, or seeming lack thereof. Hillary Clinton supporters often use this as an attack against him, though I'd prefer a foreign policy of "*shrug* dunno" to Hillary's "let's just fucking bomb Iran already come on" policy. But according to the World Socialist Web Site, if you look at his voting record, his policy on war and military action is not that different from Hillary's.

The report goes on to detail the positions that Sanders has taken on a range of foreign policy issues, based on his voting record as a congressman and senator. His profile is typical of liberal Democrats, supporting the Clinton administration’s war against Serbia in 1999 and the Bush administration’s invasion of Afghanistan in 2001, while voting against the Persian Gulf War in 1991 and the Authorization for the Use of Military Force against Iraq in 2002. Sanders criticized Obama’s bombing of Libya in 2011—mainly because he did not seek congressional authorization—but backed his bombing of Iraq and Syria in 2014. 
Sanders is a down-the-line supporter of the state of Israel, repeatedly endorsing Israeli onslaughts against the Gaza Strip, most recently the savage bombardment of July-August 2014 which killed nearly 2,000 Palestinians, including more than 500 children. At an August 2014 town hall meeting, Sanders notoriously demanded that audience members “shut up” when they questioned his support for Israel’s criminal actions.

If true, that all sucks pretty hard. Though I'm a bit unsure about the Israel thing. I've heard others say that he, at the very least, is less of a supporter of Israel's attacks on Palestine than any other candidate, and that claiming he's totally pro-Israel is antisemitism at work.

At yesterday's rally, Bernie did lament the war in the Middle East. If I remember right, he was asking why we're spending so much money on this war when we have so many sub-par inner city schools leaving black children without a decent education and funneling others into prisons.

Currently, his website has both a "War and Peace" section and a section declaring that war should be "the last option." It says, in part:

I support the agreement, and opposed the Republican’s resolution of disapproval, as I believe this approach is the best way forward if we are to accomplish what we all want to accomplish — that is making certain that Iran does not acquire a nuclear weapon – an occurrence which would destabilize the region, lead to a nuclear arms race in the area, and would endanger the existence of Israel.

Ehhh

It is my firm belief that the test of a great nation, with the most powerful military on earth, is not how many wars we can engage in, but how we can use our strength and our capabilities to resolve international conflicts in a peaceful way.

Ehhhhhhhhh

That sounds exactly like the racist, imperialist, white savior nonsense that has created so much destabilization, unrest, and horribleness throughout the world. It goes on to say that Bernie will defend the U.S., blah blah blah.

The War and Peace section says this about Palestine:

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has been one of the world’s most difficult and intractable disputes for more than sixty years. Moreover, the failure to resolve that crisis has helped fuel other conflicts in the region. Senator Sanders has long supported a two-state solution that recognizes Israel’s right to exist in peace and security, and the Palestinians right to a homeland in which they control their political and economic future. 
The most recent violence in Gaza represented a particularly ugly and violent time in the dispute. Senator Sanders strongly condemned indiscriminate rocket fire by Hamas into Israeli territory, and Hamas’ use of civilian neighborhoods to launch those attacks. However, while recognizing that Israel has the right to defend itself, he also strongly condemned Israeli attacks on Gaza as disproportionate and the widespread killing of civilians as completely unacceptable. 
The U.S. must play a leading role in creating a two-state solution, which will require significant compromises from both sides. The Palestinians must unequivocally recognize Israel’s right to exist, and hold accountable those who have committed terrorist acts. The Israelis must end the blockade of Gaza, and cease developing settlements on Palestinian land. Both sides must negotiate in good faith regarding all other outstanding issues that stand in the way of a durable and lasting peace in the region. In the meantime, strict adherence, by all sides, to the tenets of international humanitarian law is necessary in order to avoid escalating the conflict yet again.

So that contradicts the claim that Bernie supported the horrifically disproportionate attack by Israel upon the Gaza strip. However, it's true that Bernie's website says nothing about reducing military spending, which is disappointing. We absolutely need to slash military spending. We have no right to be this big military bully imposing our will upon other nations whenever we feel like it. Even when we claim that we're trying to help, we fuck things up, so.

Sanders is not only generally aligned with Obama administration foreign policy, he has refused to specify a single weapons program or Pentagon project that he would cut or eliminate if elected in 2016. He is a longstanding backer of the most expensive US weapons program, the $1.4 trillion F-35 fighter jet, some of which are to be based in Burlington, Vermont, his hometown. 
The so-called “socialist” has voted repeatedly for vast Pentagon appropriations bills, maintaining funding of the wars he was (rhetorically) opposed to, as well as funding for the CIA, NSA and the rest of the vast American intelligence apparatus, the infrastructure for police-state spying against the American people.

In conclusion, as I've said before, Bernie Sanders is no revolutionary, and though his presidency would be a step in a good direction, it wouldn't be a revolution and I understand the fear that liberals will become complacent under him when he's definitely another capitalist and seems to be another imperialist. He's not a real socialist. I can hope that increased tolerance for socialist-like policies will bring the nation farther left and improve things for many people, but I don't know. I still feel like this is our best option at the time, and I guess the best I can do is to keep demanding more and encouraging others to keep demanding more. And if we don't all die from global warming, maybe we'll find real justice.

Seattle Bernie Sanders Rally 2016

Yesterday, I attended an official Bernie Sanders rally to see him speak. It was at the Key Arena, a rather large venue build to house over 17,000 people. My friends and I got there at 12:30, having heard the doors would open at noon and the event would begin at 2. As far as I can tell, the doors opened at about 1:00, though it's hard to tell because the large mass of a line began moving soon after we got there, but it was hard to tell if that was from scrunching or because of the very slow trickle of people being let in by the Secret Service.

Only two doors were open, presumably because those were the only ones with metal detectors. I don't know what kind of terrible planning allowed this to happen, because no one should have been surprised that 20 to 30 thousand people showed up for a Bernie rally in the city of Seattle. Bernie rallies are notoriously huge and Seattle is a big liberal city. Some people were grumbling that this was done intentionally to encourage Bernie supporters to turn away, speculating on who owns the Key Arena. It's actually owned by the City of Seattle, but operated by AEG, which is owned by The Anschutz Corporation, which is owned by Philip Anschutz, a conservative billionaire. So yeah, it's plausible.

It took us nearly three hours to get inside, standing in the Seattle drizzle that never ends, and we were definitely more toward the front of the line than the back. Some people never got inside. Instead, when Bernie arrived at the Key Arena, he first spoke to the people standing outside in line so that they could get some Bernie at least. Apparently something very similar happened in Vancouver, WA just a couple hours before that.

Before Bernie arrived, members of the Tulalip tribe were kind enough to come onto the stage and perform the "warrior women's song." I absolutely love that the Bernie campaign invited indigenous women to specifically come and celebrate indigenous women. Before that, a representative for an LGBT+ group gave a speech urging people to volunteer for the Bernie campaign. And the person introducing Bernie was also of a local indigenous tribe. He was quite young, I think he said he was the vice president of some high school political organization. He talked about the struggles of being an indigenous person in the U.S. and about falling into homelessness at one point. It was a very passionate speech and I wish I had gotten his name.

This comes right after reports that Bernie altered his stump speech in Arizona to talk about the treatment of Native Americans and, you know, the genocide. In his Seattle speech, he said that we non-indigenous Americans owe them an incredible debt that we can never repay. I guess because in order to do that, we'd not only have to give back all of America, but also like, clone them a ton of people that we killed, and somehow reverse the devastation to their many cultures, etc.

I really appreciated how much time he put into thanking and crediting different oppressed racial groups. He took the time to specifically address the differences in pay gaps between different races - something that many feminists fail to do. He addressed how young women are even worse off than men in today's fucked up economy - something liberals in general often fail to do.

His speech wasn't perfect and he didn't say anything that was, to me, actually revolutionary. But I was generally pleased. He exceeds my expectations for politicians in general in a lot of ways.

I'll be caucusing for Bernie this Saturday in Kirkland. I encourage everyone who could be involved this Saturday to do the same. I believe that Bernie can win the nomination and that we'd be a lot better off if he did, even if he still is a capitalist. If things get better under Bernie, who knows, maybe a real socialist could be next!

I'm currently in the process of uploading the videos I took onto the Not Sorry Feminism Facebook page. They'll give you a clue as to how many people were there and how fired up they were, but also here's a photo I took of the line outside from inside the Key Arena:

Click to Enlarge
Right?

Oh and also:

Click to Enlarge
Finn the human came out for Bernie. Thanks, Finn.

Friday, March 18, 2016

Gif of the Day



Yes thank you I needed this.

"What Rape Culture?"

Also, speaking of our schools being terrible. At least this involves adults instead of children? Fuck.

Sex on school bus was assault, driver says in $2.5 million lawsuit against Reynolds district

A bus driver who was fired from the Reynolds School District after she reported being sexually assaulted on her bus by a fellow driver has filed a $2.5 million wrongful termination suit against the district. 
Debra Madtson, who drove a school bus for the district for 17 years, reported the alleged assault in February 2015 to the district and to Gresham police the following morning. No charges were ever filed against the other driver, who drove a bus for special education students.

Wow that's all fucking terrible, anything else?

The alleged assault was caught on the district's bus cam video. The lawsuit claims that Madtson could be heard saying "no'' and "stop'' multiple times during the encounter with the other driver, yet police and the district concluded the sex was consensual. The suit is filed against the district, but not the other driver.

So a woman can be filmed being raped, with audio so you can hear her staying "no" and "stop" multiple times, and it will still be ruled as consensual by police.

So maybe it's not a good idea to have police decide which rape kits deserve to be tested, hmmm??

I hope global warming wipes us all out, forever.



Can We Talk About How Terrible U.S. Schools Are?

[TRIGGER WARNING: RAPE, CHILD RAPE, PEDOPHILIA, MISOGYNY, ISLAMOPHOBIA, BULLYING, ABUSE]

I'm not talking about in terms of test scores. Or even how much fucking ridiculous standardized testing we put kids through these days. I'm talking about treating kids with basic humanity.

Three pieces of news cropped up in three days illustrating just how fucking worthless schools are when it comes to protecting our children.

School may expel Muslim teens for standing up to bullies — after ignoring their pleas for years

You can probably guess how I feel about the idea of just ignoring bullies. A) It doesn't work and B) Stop ignoring problems thinking it will make them go away and C) Fucking protect victims and correct bullies. Both victims and perpetrators of child bullying (assuming the perpetrator is also a child) need intervention. Fuck.

“You don’t know if someone is going to come up behind you or come right up to you and say something,” said Adam, a sophomore. “You always have to watch where you are, what you’re doing, who’s around you. You always gotta have a watch out.” 
They’re hounded on social media and harassed in the hallways at school, and vandals broke windows and doors at the family’s home over the weekend by throwing rocks and eggs.

Okay, these kids are going to come out of school with fucking PTSD. It sounds like they're living in some ultra oppressive country and/or warzone. And of course, now that these students have fought back, they're the ones facing severe punishment.

The way our schools operate when it comes to bullying and abuse is completely and horrifically wrong. The message is that no one will help you if you become a target and victim. They might tell you to report bullying but nothing will be done to stop it if you do, and if the other kids find out you reported it then the bullying gets worse. If you fight back, you'll be the one who is punished.

I myself was sexually harassed for a period in middle school. I was targeted by a group of boys for systematic harassment and I knew that if I went to the administration for help, nothing good would come out of it. So I didn't. I endured in silence until they grew bored of me. I was lucky that it didn't escalate, but I never should have had to endure that at all.

These are kids. Considering what we're teaching them in schools across the nation, it's no wonder our adults are all fucked up and supporting a horrible racist fascist for president. Why hasn't this been better addressed? Why are we letting the children suffering like this? Why isn't this shit a national fucking scandal? Why is this country so terrible?

Okay, that's one. It gets worse.

OUTRAGE at Southend school after girl is sent home for looking TOO PRETTY in uniform

This is not a fucking joke. I mean, it is, but it isn't meant to be.

She got sent home because her glasses, which she needs to see, were somehow provocative. There's a picture at the link. She's 13 and looks younger than that to me. Her glasses are like, rectangular, with blue ear pieces.




How is that provocative? Why are girls being sent home, being denied their right to education, because adults consider them too pretty in their new goddamn glasses?

And the letter, oh my god. It talks about her being subjected to "glances" from "older members of the public." Okay so this girl is being denied her right to education because of fucking pedophiles on the street that might look at her????????? I will fucking kill somebody right now.

Okay I just realized that this is in the U.K. So this is probably more of a Western cultural thing? THAT'S DESTROYING GIRLS' EDUCATION TO PROTECT BOYS AND PEDOS OR SOMETHING.

Like literally investigate these administrators for possible possession of child porn, I'm not kidding.

One more.

Sent Home From Middle School After Reporting A Rape




When G. reported her rape, Spring Creek’s response denied her that very right, according to a federal complaint G.’s attorney filed against the New York City Department of Education in November 2015. 
The first school administrator G. confided in didn’t report the incident, the complaint states, while another asked her why she hadn’t fought the boy off. Then, the principal sent G. home — indefinitely — while the school tried to get a handle on the situation. 
Administrators didn’t refer G. to counseling or legal services. They didn’t forward her homework. They didn’t follow up at all. After a four-day investigation, the principal told G.’s mother that she had arranged a “safety transfer” for G. to another school, as there was nothing more Spring Creek could do.

Again, 13 years old. This time a black girl. Not only raped, but denied her right to an education and told to fucking transfer schools. Meanwhile her rapist is free in that school to rape other girls.

Sue sue sue sue suesuesuesuesuesuesuesuesue.

Actually, that puts the onus on the family. Someone just fucking arrest these administrators and throw them in jail. All of them. Everyone involved in failing this girl. Then legally prevent them from ever working with or being near children again. Then fucking DO SOMETHING ABOUT THE HORRIFIC STATE OF SCHOOLS IN THE U.S. AND THE U.K. THAT ARE FAILING CHILDREN OF COLOR AND MUSLIM CHILDREN AND GIRLS AND VICTIMS ON A DAILY FUCKING BASIS, AND CONSTANTLY EXPOSING OTHER CHILDREN TO DANGER. MAKE THIS SHIT STOP. RIOT FOR THE CHILDREN. GOD FUCKING HELL I WILL BURN SOME SHIT DOWN.

This has been a PSA.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Gif of the Day


I'd be grumpy too if I had a hair cut like that.

"What Rape Culture?"

Okay I said I wasn't gonna post but then this comes across my fucking goddamn Facebook feed.

Local sheriff reacts to rape kit legislation

"I really believe the Legislature needs to take a strong look at allowing law enforcement to do their job and not try to dictate what we need to do.  I think they're trying to help, I really do," Bingham County Sheriff Craig Rowland said. "They need to let us decide if we're going to send the kit and when we send the kits in. Because the majority of our rapes, not to say that we don't have rapes, we do, but the majority of our rapes that are called in, are actually consensual sex."



Hahahahahahaha reminder that this is how most police officers and sheriffs think. They still think that women lie about consensual sex because they regretted it or something when study after study has found that the fast majority of rape accusations are fucking true. Not only are they extremely wrong, they're using their wrongness to speak out against testing all rape kits. This guy actually thinks that the cops should be in charge of deciding which kits get tested.

I need another reaction gif.




Idaho's not that far away, that's all I'm saying.

Just the fact that you could be against something that should be so universally supported as testing all rape kits. Of course, if all of his shit county's rape kits were tested, he'd have to deal with how fucking wrong he is about everything.



Morning Announcements

I've got a doctor's appointment and friend appointment today so I'm gonna let myself off the hook for the blog today. Even though, of course, there are like five thousand things I marked last night to blog about. Tune in tomorrow.

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Gif of the Day



This is probably old but I nearly had a conniption when I saw it.

Trump Campaign Put Out a Casting Call for Hispanic People

No really.


Someone posted this to Tumblr and asked everyone to spread it. If you see "ethnically ambiguous" people appearing to work for the Donald Trump campaign, they're probably an actor.

I know we joke about shit like this but when it turns out to be true it's just sad and terrible. Also, what kind of compensation is a "social media share"??

The U.S. Political Clusterfuck




Okay. So. Um. Where are we.





The latest is that Rubio has dropped out of the race after losing Florida, his last hope, and Hillary Clinton has pulled further ahead after winning most of today's states. It's not looking good for Bernie. This is disappointing to me, despite the fact that Hillary getting the nomination brings me closer to being right about my prediction made three years ago.

It's kind of surprising, though, because I don't even know what Hillary's been doing lately. The thing where she tried to claim Bernie wasn't around during her healthcare battle? Hasn't she learned by now that the Bernie campaign has receipts? But then again, mainstream media continues its extreme bias toward Hillary. But then again, there have been record turnouts at this year's primaries.

To think that eight years ago I barely knew that primaries existed.

Anyway, the latest I've heard about Hillary Clinton being a rich white imperialist:


Ugh. But this is much worse:


This is from 1994, when Bill was president and Hillary was throwing around a lot of talk about "empowerment."

Local clinics offered food and money to encourage sterilization. “Acceptors” were promised that vasectomies were not only reversible, but would help prevent AIDS. Women were offered clothing in exchange for agreeing to use Norplant (the five-year contraceptive implant), which led to a host of problems including constant bleeding, headaches, dizziness, nausea, radical weight loss, depression and fatigue. Demands that the Norplant rods be taken out were obstructed.

Fucking god damn hell. This shit has happened all over the place, at least where white Western countries have been involved. Fuck us.

Guest Post: 4 of the Best Feminist Fundraising Causes

With Hillary Clinton running for the presidency and the potential for a record-breaking fourth female Supreme Court justice to be appointed to the nation’s highest court, feminism is front and center in today’s news. Though women may disagree about the direction feminism should take next and which policies are best suited to pin an election on, most of us can agree that supporting feminist causes is vitally important.

Women supporting other women by financing feminist causes is happening all around us — just look at Taylor Swift’s contribution to Kesha’s court costs for inspiration about the intersection of girl power and cold, hard cash.

You don’t have to have Taylor Swift’s mega-millions to make a difference, though. There are many great feminist causes to support that can make a huge difference in the lives of women. Here are four of the best ones to consider:

1. Women’s Health

Medicine has taken a long time to catch on to the notion that women’s bodies aren’t just inferior male bodies, and that means there’s still a lack of research into and funding for women’s health issues. Giving to women’s health causes provides crucial cash, but it also raises awareness about the inequities that still exist.

Breast cancer research and awareness foundations are the obvious example of charities that have done incredible things to raise awareness and reduce stigma for a women’s health issue, but there are a lot of other causes to consider. The Black Women’s Health Imperative and the Society for Women’s Health Research work to fund scientists and erase inequities. The Women’s Health Alliance does similar work in the United Kingdom.

However, while women are on the forefront of many of these health issues, several other groups are fighting simultaneously for the same kinds of dignity. As many as 700,000 people, or 0.3% of the population, identify as transgender and experience many of the same health concerns: menstruation, breast cancer and more. Any conversation about women’s health needs to take into account the individuals with a more fluid gender identity.

2. Domestic Violence

According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), 20 Americans are victims of domestic violence every minute. The vast majority of these victims are women, and they often can’t escape their abusers without serious financial and emotional support.

Consider raising money for a local women’s shelter or donating needed items like toiletries and feminine hygiene products. These shelters do incredible work but are chronically underfunded, and your donations can make an impact on women in your own community who need help. Womankind’s empowerment and anti-violence outreach also helps women around the world escape abusive situations and take control of their own lives.


3. Empowering Girls

Do young girls in your community have opportunities to explore math and science? Are they sitting on the sidelines while the boys enjoy youth sports leagues?

If you see a gap you can fill with your own skills, you can start your own community project by teaching an after-school course or running a club. You can also donate to national groups like the ōGirl Scouts of America or local clubs that teach girls valuable skills. For more global outreach, consider donating to CARE International’s educational programs.

4. Women in Leadership

To fully address gender inequities, the world needs more women in leadership positions. You can directly support female candidates for public office by donating to political campaigns, or you can focus on workplace discrimination issues in the private sector. The National Partnership for Women and Families has worked to enact anti-discrimination laws and lobbies for family-friendly workplace policies with a great track record of success.

Once you’ve chosen a cause you care about, it’s time to raise the money. The more people you involve, the greater your impact will be, so consider organizing a community event to raise money. Here are just a few great ideas:

  • Organize a “-thon” around a popular local activity.
  • Set up an online fundraising campaign and go viral (at least among your own social media contacts).
  • Get help from local schools to raise awareness and get youth involved.
  • Organize eager volunteers to donate time as well as money.


To learn more about fundraising techniques and skills, check out FirstGiving’s fundraising resource library for helpful webinars and online guides to getting your first big fundraiser off the ground. No matter what you choose to do, your work is sure to make a difference in the lives of many women — and that is something you can definitely feel good about.



Holly Whitman is a feminist writer and journalist living in Washington DC. You can find more of her writing at Only Slightly Biased or on Twitter at @hollykwhitman.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Gif of the Day



I love when cats lick things like this.

WHAT THE SHIT


This is too much.



ARCTIC FOXES LAUGH LIKE HUMANS OH MY ACTUAL FUCKING GOD HELP ME.

Amazing Girls of Color

What in the what. How does one person already contain so much awesomeness, I don't get it.

Asia Newson Is Detroit’s Youngest Entrepreneur

How young, you ask? She's 13. 13.

But she started when she was five????? ??????????????

Born and raised in Detroit’s Brightmoor neighborhood, Asia started her business, Super Business Girl, at the age of five years old after learning how to make candles from her father Michael Newson. Now at age 13, Asia hopes to open up shop in Downtown Detroit and become the city’s “Youth Mayor,” but also finish school so she can attend Michigan State University.

I'm 27. This post series is honestly starting to make me feel inadequate.

And just look at this beautiful cinnamon roll:


She's like, radiating perfection. And she says things like this:

“I teach at-risk youth how to become entrepreneurs, empower themselves, and become self-sufficient. My mission is to recognize the true potential in every child and to develop intrinsic security that makes optimum use of their individualized talent.”



SHE'S 13.

Here's a video. Bask in the awesome.


Request for Donations

Hello again! I am once again here as your donation-requesting blogmaster to request donations. Last time I did this I actually got a one-time donation, which made me incredibly happy. It made me feel like my dream of one day being able to blog full time and support myself could become a reality.

Blogging does take up a large portion of my time each weekday. As a freelance writer, sometimes work can take up pretty much the entire day. But at the same time, I would never give up writing in this blog for anything. I love my anti-sorry feminist blog and I'll keep writing in it, donations or not. But I could do so much more if this blog started bringing in some real money.

I know many of my readers are probably struggling themselves, but if you do read on a regular basis, consider compensating me for my work if you can. A donation of even a dollar warms me in my tired feminist heart. If you're a dude, remember that you need to be giving your money to women for the free feminist education you've been receiving.

Thanks for reading, everybody. For your convenience, here are the links:

Patreon account for monthly donations.

PayPal link for one-time donations.

Oh and happy birthday to the Notorious RBG.