Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Gif of the Day



Kinda how I felt yesterday. I was a bit hung over. Just a little.

Request for Donations

I know I just got back from a vacation, but in truth it was only three days long not far from home and did not cost much, but I still had to scrimp and save to pay for my part of the bill and I had to work my ass off to get last week's work done early because I didn't know if I could also afford the time off.

I'm trying really hard to make this full time freelance worker thing going, but every step is through the ankle-deep sticky mud pit of anxiety. Yet I continue keeping this blog updated nearly every weekday, which can take around two hours of my time daily. And yes, it's out of love, but also, pay me.

Remember that asking for money as a woman is a feminist act! And if you're a dude, you should be paying the women who do emotional and intellectual labor for you!

It's still my goal to be able to just write in this blog full time. There would be so much more content, a much better webpage, special stuff, maybe video blogging, the possibilities are endless. But I need the time to do it, and right now paying work needs to take up most of my time. If you want to see more content like yelling at people who email me and making fun of white men, consider making a monthly donation through my Patreon account.

Lindsey is creating Feminist writing

If you can't afford monthly payment (though they are as low as $1 per month), consider making a one-time donation directly to my PayPal account.

My PayPal Donation Page

Any contribution will light up my day, guaranteed. Thanks to everyone who has supported me so far. You're all amazing people.

Mail Time!




It's been a bit since I've gotten an email worth responding to. This isn't necessarily one of those, but I've received multiple comments about a particularly popular post about the raised fist in the female symbol that's frequently used by feminists without knowing its origins. It's time to put this annoying debate to bed since no one can be bothered to read the comments section of Feminism and Cultural Appropriation, where they would see me explaining multiple times to multiple people that yes, it is cultural appropriation.

Pay the fuck attention, fellow white feminists.

From "Melissa":

I want to start off by saying I am an intersectional feminist so this not a white feminist rant. I came across your post about the feminist symbol being appropriated from black culture. I know many things are appropriated from black culture, but this is not one of them. The person who told you this was misinformed, and again this is not a statement of white privilege it is simply a statement of factual information that ANYONE can easily research. 
The raised fist was used long before the black power movement of the 60's. The clenched fist dates back to ancient Assyria. The Goddess Ishtar was depicted raising a clench fist. The raised fist was then used as a logo by industrial workers of the world in 1917. Does this mean the black power movement appropriated it from them? The graphic symbol was popularized by a print shop in Mexico in 1948. It It's since been picked up and used by oppressed groups around the world. Combined with the Venus symbol it's the symbol of all feminism. This symbol was decided upon in New York state congress upstate where suffrage movement begain. It was a collective deciding by millions of circles of women who than came together in Sryacruse. There is a very famous photo of two feminist black and white with raised fists. 
The point is to say a gesture of a raise fist belongs to a group of people is like saying a high five belongs to a group of people. 
And I'm very intersectional.

Dear Melissa,

It's good to know you're so intersectional. Did you know that the term intersectionality was coined by Kimberlé Williams Crenshaw, a black woman, to describe the experiences of black women specifically, and that throwing the term around without ever crediting her is yet another way we white feminists have stepped on black women and appropriated their work?

Let's start off by discussing the origins you're claiming. It's difficult to determine the actual origins of the raised fist icon. Many people have come to me claiming many different origins. But if we're going with ancient Assyria, let's consider the racial demographics of that area. Evidence points to them being Semitic, Arab, and/or black. The nation was at one point conquered by the Persian empire. Art from that time depicts dark or olive-skinned people with black, curly hair. Therefore, according to your theory, the raised fist symbol has still been appropriated from people of color.

However, the point that people continually ignore is that regardless of the origins of the raised fist symbol alone, which certainly has a long history and was very likely invented by multiple cultures across the globe before they even had contact with one another (like dragons), the iconic raised fist inside the female symbol is absolutely a creation of black feminists/womanists from the 60's. They used a specific style of raised fist - that of the black power movement. This is the specific symbol that white feminists have been appropriating, using on their blogs, tattooing on their bodies, etc.


The image with the fist in the circle and the one on the lower sign in the above image was appropriated by white women of the time and continued to be until we got shit like this:


I'm not saying and have never said that no raised fist iconography can be used by people who are not black. However, especially us U.S.-based white people, we need to be careful about that use and at the very least acknowledge the black power movement and its iconic use of the raised fist. Even if they didn't invent it, we have a very specific history in this nation surrounding our treatment of black people and our ongoing, horrific attempts to crush the black power movement. Feminists who fail to acknowledge this are not being intersectional in the slightest and are, in fact, shitty racist white feminists.

Okay? That's what's up. I'm going to put a link in the original blog post to here so that hopefully I don't get anymore annoying emails about this. I already had to close the comments section of that post months ago. My fellow white feminists are embarrassing themselves, being nearly as annoying and whiny as anti-feminist men that come here to bother me. Stop it.

Sincerely,

Lindsey "Not Fucking Sorry" Weedston

Morning Announcements

I'm baaaaaaaaaaack!

This weekend was an amazing and much-needed vacation with a bunch of awesome women. We spent most of our time relaxing and joking together. It reminded me of the importance of spending time with other women in all of our awesome female-ness. One day was spent doing our makeup, making flower crowns, and taking selfies. Because that's what we wanted to do.

Also one of my selfies came out so goddamn good, check it:


Nice.

Probably my favorite part of the weekend was when we watched a VHS of The Little Mermaid that we found in the house and came up with an elaborate analogy between the film and the 2016 Democratic primary. Hillary Clinton being Ursula, Bernie Sanders as Scuttle (the seagull), America as Ariel, Jon Stewart as Sebastian, Fox News as the French chef, Bill O'Reilly as his cleaver... It wasn't a perfect analogy but not bad for how drunk we were, and hilarious as fuck.

I'm so glad I decided to take this time to take care of myself, and I'm lucky that I'm privileged enough to be able to do so. I hope everyone else was able to engage in some self care this weekend. You all deserve it.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Gif of the Day


That dog never had a chance.

Recommended Reading

Read this. READ IT.

Seattle’s vanishing black community.

The district, which spans roughly from the back side of Capitol Hill toward Lake Washington and from East Madison Street down toward the Interstate 90 Lid, was more than 70 percent black in the 1960s and early ’70s when Wright moved in. 
Today, less than one-fifth of the population is black, with whites moving in in such huge numbers that in the space of a couple of decades, they’ve become the majority for the first time since the Eisenhower Administration, when there was a sizable Jewish presence in the area. 
“This was a deliberate attempt to get us out of here because the area is so central and convenient to downtown,” Wright says, echoing a sentiment held by many who fear that blacks are being pushed away to make the district more desirable for whites with higher incomes.

Gentrification everywhere! God damnit.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Gif of the Day


U.S. Anti-Black Racism Update

Welp. One of Freddie Gray's murderers was acquitted. If you can't remember which case this is, because there are SO FUCKING MANY, Freddie Gray was the one who had his spine severed after being driven around in a police van on the scenic route in a way that was violent enough to severe his fucking spine. How anyone could actually believe that a person could severe their own spine by being "uncooperative" while shackled in a van is, of course, entirely beyond me.

But whatever, probably no one really thinks that. They got away with murder because they're cops. The end.

But that's not all!

Now these shit cops are suing the city prosecutor for defamation and invasion of privacy for doing her fucking job. Apparently, you can't even try to prosecute killer cops because they'll sue you for it. Fuck off.

Luckily, it sounds like it's very unlikely for such a lawsuit to hold up in court. Finally, the courts working against the police for once!

These cops, though:

Through Mosby's statements, they claim their "character and reputation ... were harmed, their standing and reputation in the Baltimore City Police Department and the community at large — locally, nationally, and internationally — were impaired, [and] they continue to suffer mental pain and anguish, and humiliation." 
The officers note that they were placed on administrative leave without pay by the police department, and "have suffered, and continue to suffer, monetary damages in the form of lost income, lost raises in salary, and lost promotions."

Waaaahhhhhh we murdered an unconvicted kid in a van and now everybody hates us waaaahhhhhhhhhhhh.

The cop tears.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Gif of the Day



He tried.

WHAT.


With traditional birth control, a woman takes a hormone pill for 21 days to stop her cycle. Then she takes a sugar pill for a week, so she can have what looks like a period. 
But Micks says, physiologically this isn't a real period at all. And it isn't necessary. "There's absolutely no medical need to have a period when you're on contraception," she says. 
So why have women been having all these "fake" periods for decades? "It's actually a historical thing," she says. 
One of the doctors who helped invent the pill was Catholic. He thought the pope might accept the pill if it looked like women were having periods. 
But the Catholic church never came around to the pill. And when doctors actually asked women if they wanted to have these fake periods, many said they didn't.





All this time I've been told it's unhealthy to use birth control pill to skip periods and it was all a lie? The reason I still have a fake period every month is because some dude actually thought this would convince the Pope to okay the pill?

GOD DAMNIT, CIS MEN.



Bye Bye Bill

[TRIGGER WARNING: CHILD RAPE, SERIAL RAPE]

Bill Cosby officially admitted to drugging and raping teen girls and will stand trial on four counts of felony assault. Apparently, a modeling agency "provided" him with these teens. And for all this rape, he faces up to 10 years in prison.

For the billionth time, "What rape culture?"

His lawyers still say there's no evidence against him despite his confessions. People will continue to somehow say that drugging and fucking underage girls isn't rape. They'll continue to say that 50 women coming forward doesn't matter because surely they're all liars. The world will continue to be terrible. But at least a rapist will stand trial.


Morning Announcements

Whoops I forgot to post a gif of the day yesterday! I was out for most of the day visiting a dear friend. Now I'm back.

Content is probably going to be light this week because I need to bust ass to get all my paying freelance work done by Thursday. I'm going on a trip over the long weekend starting this Friday so there will be no blogging this Friday or the following Monday.

Gonna be spending my time at a beach house with friends. First trip of any kind I've taken in a great while. I'm very excited. Whee!

Monday, May 23, 2016

What People Think About the Mentally Ill

[TRIGGER WARNING: ABLEISM, MENTAL ILLNESS STIGMA, DEATH]

You may have heard about the outrage surrounding an article published on xoJane about the personal feelings of a woman following the death of a former friend with fairly serious mental health issues. When I first started seeing Tumblr posts and response article titles about it, I though it was going to be a piece about a real friend of the deceased who, upon watching a loved one deteriorate for years, couldn't help but feel a sense of relief upon her passing. As horrible as that kind of feeling might seem, it is a feeling, and one I understand. I watched my grandmother deteriorate from dementia, and though that's not the same as untreated mental illness, I felt relief when she finally died. It's normal to feel a sense of relief, among other feelings when a person is freed of intense suffering.

That's not what this article was about.

The article, which has been removed and replaced with an inadequate apology, was called "My Former Friend's Death Was a Blessing." It's been archived, so you can still read it here and not give any traffic to xoJane.

The best word I have to describe this article is cold. The reasons the author has for cutting her friend off are petty and betray a callous lack of understanding and lack to attempt to understand mental illness. By the end, she no longer knows anything about this mentally ill person other than what she sees on her Facebook page. Yet she declares that this person never could have lived a happy or productive life.

She would have either been institutionalized or a major burden on her family. There was just no way she would have survived on her own. Drowning to death was relatively painless compared to what she had to endure in life.

That's cold.

I honestly don't know how this article slipped through xoJane's editors. I've used enough content management systems to know how difficult it is to accidentally post something before it's ready. And how easy it is to revert something back to a draft. There's even a pretty glaring typo in the article, and it's not very well organized. xoJane's short apology doesn't explain how this poorly edited mess ended up being published and left up for long enough to piss off a lot of people (I'm not sure how long but it seems like it had to have been days), only that they're going to work on their vetting process.

Plenty of counter articles have already explained all about what's fucked up in this piece. But what I want people to take away from it is an idea of how many, maybe most people think about the mentally ill. Especially when it comes to those with more severe illnesses than standard depression or anxiety.

The "former friend" of the author was diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder. This is a high-tier mental illness that shares symptoms with schizophrenia and mood disorders like bipolar disorder. Common primary symptoms include hallucinations, delusions, disorganized thinking, depression, and mania. A mental illness like that is difficult for most people to imagine and sympathize with. Schizophrenia is particularly demonized, having been associated with violent behavior. It's often thought that people with this illness can't lead "normal" lives and need to be institutionalized. This is not true.

The author of this piece is a classic case of expecting neurodiverse people to act like neurotypical people. Because this mentally ill person didn't act as she expected, the author decided she was a burden, toxic, miserable, and better off dead. And yes, emotional support and medication are things that mentally ill people need access to and deserve access to. But the same is true for just about everyone. A lack of access to these basic needs does not mean that someone is better off dead.

The real failure here is the author's failure to attempt to understand mental illness. The author complains that her former friend "wasn't quite right," citing clothes on the floor and general mess in her living space as a failure to mature. If you did a little research into simple depression, you'd find that "messiness" is a classic symptom. It has nothing to do with a failure to "evolve" as a person. But even if this person stopped maturing psychologically at some point, this wouldn't have been her fault. No one chooses not to mature. When someone doesn't it's because they have some kind of illness, disability, or are told they don't need to or shouldn't (as is the case for many privileged white dudes).

No one is obligated to support or be friends with someone with a mental illness if they feel like they need to take care of themselves first and can't do that while being friends with a mentally ill person. There are plenty of healthy ways to be friends with an ill person and still prioritize and take care of yourself, but if you aren't strong enough to set the necessary boundaries, then by all means, do what you need to do.

What's not okay is to publicly post a piece of writing about mental illness when you clearly have no knowledge about that illness. It's not okay to promote that kind of ignorance and those kinds of harmful attitudes about mentally ill people. It's not okay to say that the untimely death of a mentally ill person that may have been a suicide was a blessing, for her or for you.

But this is how a lot of people who don't have a mental illness (or more likely don't know they have one) think about people will mental illnesses, especially the severe ones like schizoaffective disorder. They assume that they're beyond help and better off dead, yet at the same time they blame people like this "former friend" for what they view as personal failures like not keeping their rooms clean or quitting a job.

I can only assume this article was the result of guilt and defense mechanisms meant to push that guilt away. This author doesn't need to feel guilty for the death of a former friend she had almost no contact with at the time, but when people do feel guilt, it's very common for them to look for reasons that whatever happened wasn't their fault. The victim being so hopelessly fucked up and miserable that they're better off dead is a thorough reason not to feel guilty, gross as it may be.

This doesn't excuse the author for writing this mess, and xoJane has no excuse for publishing it. My advice to the author is to sit with her own psychological issues and educate herself thoroughly on mental illness before writing anything again, no matter what the topic. Only this will ensure you refrain from doing further harm. Maybe one day you can make amends for hurting mentally ill people and spreading toxic ideas about them.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Gif of the Day


This is the best ever.

Headline of the Month

I'm no grammar fascist, but it can be useful if you're a political party trying to avoid getting made fun of by everybody on the entire Internet.

How The Wrong Verb Meant The Texas GOP Called Most Texans Gay


Click to Enlarge
As Texas Monthly rightly points out, the sentence actually says that homosexual behavior "has been ordained by God in the Bible, recognized by our nations founders, and shared by the majority of Texans." 
That's probably not what Texas Republicans meant. 
The august magazine blames that Oxford comma there at the end for the confusion, but we asked our aforementioned (and heroic) copy editors where the real problem was and they zeroed in on the verb "has." It's singular, so the rest of the sentence ends up referring to the noun "behavior" instead of "truths."

Prepare for the gif dump.









Women Are Winning Against Rape Culture

A report on The Guardian does a fantastic job in outlining the massive progress against rape culture that's taken place in just a couple years, all thanks to survivors coming forward and speaking out in the face of intense, relentless backlash.

Trigger warning for the following link: Multiple descriptions of rapes. They don't go into a lot of detail but could still easily be triggering.

'Breaking the shackles of shame': the rape survivors leading a new wave of activism

As Carol Tracy, executive director of the Women’s Law Project, explains, the more survivors come forward about their experiences, the more fellow survivors feel safe and inspired to come forward themselves. The support of other women and the feminist community is essential in this as a counter to the rape culture that seeks to silence them. And it's working. In spite of the efforts of universities and rape apologists (and many rapists) to excuse rapist behavior and discredit victims, survivors have launched multiple movements to end rape culture.

Another campaign group, End Rape On Campus, also started up in 2013. Founded by former students of the University of North Carolina, its members have helped launch dozens of federal complaints and lawsuits around the US, including some high profile cases. EROC is also involved with Senator Kirsten Gillibrand’s efforts to push fresh legislation through Congress aimed at improving colleges’ approach. 
Meanwhile, the government is reviewing a record 167 institutions of higher education under the gender equality Title IX laws that oblige colleges to investigate sexual assault vigorously, while preventing a hostile environment on campus. 
More widely, in 2014 Obama launched a White House taskforce, citing federal data that a fifth of women are raped at some point in life, as are one in 71 men, that most victims know their assailants and 98% of perpetrators are male. Further guidelines were issued in 2015.

I've said it before and I'll say it again. You can't stop progress. And you can't silence the truth. Keep it up, fellow feminists, and rape culture will fall.

Amazing Women of Color

We've got a double feature of awesome women today.

First is Ms. Krystal Lake, whom you probably know by now as the black woman who wore the hat saying "America was never great" at her job at Home Depot. First of all, where can I get that hat, I want to wear it all the time, always, like a cartoon character. Second, damn, she is awesome! I would never have the guts to wear something like that to work, and I'm white.

Of course, Ms. Lake has received death threats and a billion racist comments already since the photo of her went viral. Lake sayshe wore the hat because, despite supposed Home Depot rules against wearing political attire to work, employees have been sporting pro-Trump pins without any recourse.

Personally, a pin like that supporting that garbage bag of bigotry would make me turn right around and shop at Lowe's, but other people are more upset about the hat that dares criticize the so-called greatest national on Earth. None of them apparently stopped to think that black people's first experience in America was SLAVERY and it hasn't been great for them even after the Civil Rights Movement. Lake just sayshe thinks the country has room for improvement. And it clearly does, our Republican presidential nominee is Donald fucking Trump.

People have been flooding the Home Depot Facebook page declaring boycotts and demanding she be fired. If you want to help, I recommend countering those voices with your own. I added my own comment to the page demanding she NOT be fired and telling them to make employeestop wearing Trump pins. 

The next awesomeness comes from Hannah Battiste, who struck out against fat hatred and body policing with this:


Click to Enlarge
Oh my god.

Battiste also didn't expect this image of herself to go viral, but thankfully, most of the commentshe's gotten have been supportive. And how could it not be? This is comedy gold. Now, forever, fat women will have the perfect reaction image to fat hatred coming at them. Just remember to give credit to Hannah Battiste! She's of the Eskasoni First Nation, so it's important we white women give her the credit she's due.

Thank fuck for women like these.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Gif of the Day



At least cats do this to other cats, too, not just to me.

In the Mind of Bernie Bros


Rolling Stone published a series of interviews yesterday with certified Bernie Bros - three men who were caught (or proudly advertised themselves) harassing and threatening Nevada state Democratic party chair Roberta Lange after all the primary election fuckery that went on in that state.

Lange very likely deserved a lot of criticism and an investigation into possible election fraud and other illegal behavior. What she got instead was a ton of messages to her private number, some referencing her home address, since she was doxxed online. Some of the worst messages were screengrapped and posted on the Democratic convention's website, and some of them had the sender's phone numbers attached.

Some Bernie fans insisted that the harassers must have been plants from the Clinton campaign dedicated to making Bernie look bad, but Rolling Stone got ahold of three of these men and found that they were all die hard Bernie supporters with long track records of Berning. They were then asked what the fuck they were thinking.

Pro-Bernie Trolls on Why They Harassed Nevada's Democratic Chair

The interesting thing is that all three of these grown men deny that their messages were at all threatening or deny intent to threaten. Yet all of their messages are clearly threats, at the very least thinly veiled threats. The first guy texted "Someone will hurt you" and in the interview said "I regret saying anything I may have said that may have been offensive or taken as a threat, yeah." Who wouldn't take "someone will hurt you" as a threat? That's a direct threat. Then this guy spends the rest of the interview talking about how emotions were high.


It's funny to me, because of how often I've been called overly emotional, irrational, and angry for my feminist writings. But you know what's interesting? I've never threatened to physically harm anyone. I've never sent a death threat, not once. I'll warn people of potentially dangerous men and in the most extreme situations, attack their reputations, but I draw the line at threatening physical harm, as I think we all should. It seems really simple, just don't send death threats. Yet on all sides, people continue to do so.

At least Austin is very apologetic, but being apologetic after being violent while simultaneously blaming his emotions that he apparently can't control for his bad behavior is a classic abuser tactic. The other two refuse to admit that their messages were threatening, with David guy saying his "was not texted correctly." Apparently he intended to follow up his creepy texting of her address to the chair (another way of saying "I know where you live") with "She has millions of people that she has to answer for, and everybody knows her number, where she lives."

?????? That's supposed to be better???????

The last guy, Tyler, says he didn't make a "direct" threat from a "legal" perspective, which apparently, to him, makes it all okay. Even if he's right that it wouldn't be viewed as a threat from a legal perspective, that doesn't make it okay? What kind of shit morals are men like this being taught that they think any behavior is okay as long as it's not technically illegal?

This guy told her that "Since ten years of age, all I know how to do is make your life more challenging." Threatening her with more harassment and whatever else. And he's apparently proud that he posted this to a Facebook group with the direct intention of encouraging others to send her similar messages.

It's just incredible how men can pull the mental gymnastics and defense mechanisms necessary to justify their behavior to themselves.

"I was angry."

"It was a mis-text."

"It's not technically, legally a direct threat."


I've seen these all before in the defense of threats and harassment of women who have done much less wrong (and actually done nothing wrong) than Lange.

The thing is, when it comes to public figures in charge of things that affect every person in the country and beyond, they should be subject to pressure from the people. I advocate for making your voice heard by contacting elected officials like Lange. I don't even necessarily have a problem with doing so on her private number, knowing it's easy for her to dodge/ignore calls and emails to the contact avenues made available to the public. But there's a difference between ensuring she can't ignore the voices of the public by flooding her email and phone with messages saying that what she did is wrong and sending threats.

I especially have a problem with men sending threats to women considering the current massive problem with online harassment and threatening of women, from politicians to minor employees in gaming companies, including doxxing and calls to private phone numbers.

It's really a simple matter of keeping the focus on the issues and not making it personal and violent. I also always have a problem with any men using gendered slurs. Yet adult fucking men continue to make pathetic excuses for their violent behavior toward women.

You do make Bernie look bad and put the onus on him to apologize for your asses, but that's not why you should be ashamed of yourselves or why you should stop. You should stop because it's wrong and fucked up and oppressive to do that to someone you have male privilege over. Just stop.

Hey Look Even More Racism

Editor-At-Large of the Daily Beast Goldie Taylor recently told a tale on Twitter of how her son was accosted, handcuffed, and illegally searched for trying to sell a Macbook that he owned because his mother gave it to him. The teen boy is black, and the tale is horrifying.

You can find her tweets on the incident on her account or see screenshots of the account on the Black Matters Tumblr account. I don't know how the cops knew her son was black from the Craigslist posting, but I've never heard of something like this happening to a white kid. Regardless, what the police did here was clearly illegal and absolutely terrifying for a black kid living in a society that kills black kids for nothing all the time.

Goldie's son, Joshua Taylor, also had his story published in the Daily Beast.

Cops Cuffed Me for Selling My Own Mac

We’re just sitting there, and suddenly I’m approached from behind by an officer, or I think it’s an officer. He immediately orders, “Put your hands behind your back! Put your hands behind your back!” and he has something pressed into my back. I look over my shoulder and can see a big yellow Taser. 
I first put my hands above my head, then had to lower them so he could handcuff me. Everyone at Caribou was staring at me. Time ceased for a few seconds. Then a woman approached on my left side. Both of them are dressed in tactical gear, with button-up shirts and khaki pants underneath. The woman asks Derek, “Is this the one?” “Yeah, I don’t know. Hold on just a second,” Derek says.

Once they found that this wasn't the laptop they'd been looking for, all Joshua got was "sorry, these things happen" before they left.

Yeah, these things happen in a racist, horrible society where cops get to run around fucking with whoever they want with impunity. Now this poor kid is traumatized. All because someone stole some white guy's laptop? This is all kinds of fucked up. Joshua deserves restitution and an explanation, at the very least.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Gif of the Day



Dance! Dance! Dance!

Another Black Woman Died in Police Custody

News about horrible racism seems to come in batches.

22-Year-Old Black Woman Dies in Custody

This story comes with a whole new layer of fucked up. The woman, Symone Nicole Marshall, was taken to jail directly after being the victim of a severe car accident in which her car rolled over multiple times. Marshall told her sister that she was run off the road by someone.


Apparently, Marshall did not have a valid driver's license. This does not explain why she wasn't taken to a hospital following the crash or why she was denied treatment while in custody despite her complaining of headaches and blackouts. Clearly, she had untreated head trauma. She reportedly died from a blood clot in her lung - something that should never happen to a healthy young person like Marshall but can result from untreated trauma injuries like those resULTING FROM A CAR CRASH.

According to the Atlanta Black Star, the police are, as usual, giving a different story. And, as usual, I don't fucking believe them. Not after so many have died at the hands of police, most of them black, and not after cops have been caught lying so many times. I have a hard time believing that anyone refuses medical treatment after having her car flipped like that. Plus, medical care in jails and prisons in this country are a joke.

And this "white passenger," what happened to her? Was she jailed? Is she alive? Give me a fucking break.

Local Racism of the Day

[TRIGGER WARNING: RACIAL SLUR]

Students at Seattle University are apparently occupying the college in an attempt to get the university dean to resign over charges of racism that are clearly true.

Dean Jodi Kelly, a white woman, responded to a black student's request for a more diversified curriculum by handing her a book titled as just the n-slur. The student says that the dean then used the slur several times in their conversation. Dean Kelly has been "evasive" in clarifying whether this particular detail is true. See here:

Go Read "N*gger," Seattle University Humanities Dean Told Black Student Who Complained About Curriculum

You can find an email conversation at the bottom in which the dean is all "I'm not in the habit of ever using that word" DIRECTLY AFTER USING IT.

It still counts if it's in a quote, dean.

Plus the fact that in response to a black student asking for more diverse reading in the official curriculum, all the dean does is hand her one book written by a black man? Um, that's not what she meant, Kelly. Did you really think the problem was going to be solved by you recommending that one book to a black student? What the fuck were you thinking?

If this is how Kelly responds to reasonable requests, by traumatizing students, then she absolutely should not be dean. And fuck university president Stephen Sundborg for saying that demanding her resignation "sets up an opposition." The fuck does that even mean? The students are opposed to Kelly being dean. Hence the occupation. Also, if anyone set up an opposition, it was Kelly herself by being fucking racist.

Demand the resignation of Sundborg, too, damn.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Gif of the Day



Can we talk about what giant dorks cats are. All of them.

Look At This Dork




DORK.

And the Award for Most Pathetic Thing Ever Goes to....

Men who try to tear down women they were literally just hitting on after being rejected.

Like this guy, for example:

Comedian Mike Faverman Throws Sexist, Fat-Shaming Tantrum When Woman Kindly Turns Him Down

Social media users across the country are taunting Los Angeles comedian Mike Faverman after viral images of him allegedly harassing a woman who rejected him spread from Facebook to Twitter, Reddit and Imgur.  
The anonymous woman, who wrote that she already had a boyfriend, replied to his text offer ("When am I taking you to dinner?") with a polite rejection, saying she was "sorry" if she gave him the "wrong impression." 
That's when Faverman went off, unleashing several paragraphs about her weight, her appearance and women in general.  
Among his nuggets of wisdom were, "I know fat chicks give good blow jobs and are easy to push to the curb when you're done with them."

[TRIGGER WARNING: FAT HATRED, MISOGYNISTIC SLURS]

Male comedians are a lot like male nerds. They tend to be some of the worst, most insecure, most defensive and ultimately violent assholes around.

Comedian or not, I can't tell you how many examples I've seen of shit like this where one minute a man is drooling all over a woman, giving her all kinds of compliments and practically begging her to go out with him or just fuck him, and the very instant she says "no" he turns on her, like a fucking Jekyll and Hyde situation, saying the worst things he can think of in order to try and tear down her self esteem. Basically trying to get back at her for wounding his incredibly, extraordinarily fragile ego.

Masculinity soooooo fragile.

Oh and here's the cherry on top. After calling her fat and an angry cunt and basically saying he was just going to use her and then "push [her] to the curb" because he's so totally NOT attracted to her and NOT wounded by her polite, totally not angry at all rejection, he then whines that HE'S the victim because she dared to post screenshots of the conversation in which he called her a fat angry cunt and now people are being mean to him! People are HARASSING him over the conversation in which he called a perfectly nice woman a fat angry cunt.

This is where I was going to embed the tweet of Mike Faverman's pathetic whining, but his Twitter account doesn't exist anymore! When I check last night, he was just reblogging all the people calling him a pathetic loser with the cry laughing emoji. But it looks like he was really just crying, and now he's been shamed right off of Twitter.




Bye bye, Mike Faverman. I hope this ruined your career. It probably did. No one could ever find anything you said funny now because you've made yourself into the most pathetic caricature of pathetic men.

Monday, May 16, 2016

Gif of the Day



He's so into it oh my god.

Steven Universe and Trauma

I saw this on Tumblr the other day and it was so touching. Tumblr user not your ex/rotic posted an interpretation of the concept of the cluster and shattered gems from Steven Universe as a metaphor for traumatized people. It hit me so deep I teared up a little.

ok i posted this last night and went back to sleep, but i wanted to add that the cluster is probably a metaphor for trauma, and steven’s solution is similar to a powerful solution for those of us who’ve gone through trauma. 
those of us who have been broken and shattered can often face issues with knowing who we are or what’s going on. our sense of identity, our notions of reality, or perceptions are all wonky because of trauma. depression, anxiety, ptsd, tons of personality disorders…all related to trying to cope with being “shattered”. 
and one of the things we do? we try to make ourselves whole. trying to find others who can relate, who can connect to us. we try to find the other parts of ourselves - who we were before the trauma. 
steven’s solution is connection: the shards can talk to each other. and in talking to each other, they protect each other by bubbling. similarly, one of the most powerful ways for us to find our missing pieces is to connect to each other. find friends or companions, help each other out, protect each other. 
it doesn’t have to be a “you complete me” situation. notice that steven isn’t actually that interested in whether the shards came from the same gem. he just wants all the shards to talk to each other, whatever gem they came from originally. 
the way we broken, shattered people can heal is to find each other.

The very idea of feeling "shattered" hit me hard. I've long expressed my own feelings as that of having an essential piece of myself missing, but feeling "shattered" may be more accurate. At my worst, in the grip of a panic attack brought on by a strong trigger, I do feel shattered in that I feel so broken that I could not possibly ever be repaired or whole again. That's the difference between "broken" and "shattered." You can't glue all those pieces back together again.

In Steven Universe, being "broken" or "shattered" is implied to be death for gems since injuring their projected forms can't kill them. However, the new episodes suggest that being shattered isn't death. The pieces are still alive, but without a sense of self. That lack of a sense of self is a common symptom listed for victims of trauma and abuse.

And I love the fact that Tumblr is like a place where survivors of abuse and trauma come together to find sympathy, common experience, support, and healing. It's fucking beautiful and so is Steven Universe. And so is not your ex/rotic. If you're on Tumblr you should really follow her.

Trans Punk Rock Star Says Goodbye to Gender

I have to say, though I'm cautious, I'm pleasantly surprised about the widespread support that the trans community has received over these disgusting "bathroom bills" that are grossing up the country. From Attorney General Lynch's speech declaring federal action against North Carolina until they drop HB 2 to the many celebrities cancelling appearances in the state. At this point, every other state politician thinking of parading their hatefulness around for votes and every state governor will know that the passing of a bathroom bill will be met with massive loss of revenue.

I honestly didn't think that this many of my fellow cis people even understood trans people, let alone would stand up for them. I'm still skeptical. I don't know how far that support will go. Obviously the bathroom thing is a basic civil right. What will happen when trans people demand real equal treatment?

But I do maintain hope thanks to the upcoming generations. Fewer and fewer young people are abiding by heteronormative expectations and the cisnormative gender binary. They're questioning the foundations of both sexual orientation and gender identity. The very concept of gender may be on the verge of a revolutionary change.

As illustrated by punk rock band Against Me! frontrunner Laura Jane Grace, trans woman, when she burned her birth certificate on stage at a show in North Carolina.

Against Me!'s Trans Frontwoman Burned Her Birth Certificate Onstage in North Carolina

And on Sunday, Grace delivered on that promise. Stepping out in front of a sold out crowd at Durham's Motorco Music Hall, Grace immediately lit her birth certificate on fire. "Goodbye gender," she said. "The way you affect change is by empowering the grassroots movement, by empowering the people."

Fucking amazing. Thank you, Laura Jane Grace, for being so awesome.


Gender will remain a concept that needs to be named in our society for as long as people continue to be oppressed based on it, but I'm delighted by how it's being questioned, challenged, examined, and rejected, and how the gender binary is being completely subverted and shut down.

Recommended Reading

What's the non-Not Sorry Feminism recommended article today? Oh look, it's me!

I did a guest post for Holly Whitman of Only Slightly Biased after she was kind enough to do a few guest posts for me. It's my current thoughts on likely upcoming moral dilemma we on the left are about to face when Trump gets the Republican nomination and Clinton gets the Democratic nomination. This outcome isn't set in stone, but it's looking more and more likely. And if that happens, how many people on the left are going to write in Bernie Sanders? In the swing states? And good lord, did I just hear about Ralph Nader again?

I've had a few people urge me to use whatever position of influence I have to tell others to vote for Clinton if she's the nominee even if they prefer Sanders. But I don't think I can do that.

The Politics of Voting in Sight of a Trump Presidency

We may be in for some hell. That's all I know.

Friday, May 13, 2016

Gif of the Day


Same.

Morning Announcements

Important announcement: I have way too much work to do today, so I'm not gonna worry about blogging. Make sure to make a man feel unimportant today.


Thursday, May 12, 2016

Gif of the Day


Self Care Time

Lots of heavy content today. Take an otter break.

Have you ever heard an otter eat its otter food? Make sure your sound is turned up.


A video posted by ayako🇯🇵 (@poncayan) on

Stop Asking Why Rape Victims Don't Report

[TRIGGER WARNING: CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE]

I just can't believe people are still asking why rape victims don't go to the police. I got yet another comment on the Jared Leto thing, because apparently there's no limit to the number of people living in his butt. This gem asked why these underage girls who clearly didn't understand that what they'd experienced was rape go to the police rather than "gossiping" on a message board.




Gee, I dunno, maybe it's because the anonymity of a random message board is the only place it might be possible to discuss such a thing, especially when it involves a popular celebrity, without being attacked and smeared and harassed and getting rape and death threats? Maybe?

Maybe it has something to do with the fact that even when the evidence against the offender is damning, especially when it comes to celebrities, our rape culture makes legal battles around rape absolute hell for victims to the point that most people can't handle it.

Case in point, Dylan Farrow.


This column is by Ronan, Dylan's brother, about how the news media supports celebrity rapists because god forbid they harm their relationships with important rich people. This, by the way, is a real issue of ethics in journalism.

The open CC list on those emails revealed reporters at every major outlet with whom that publicist shared relationships — and mutual benefit, given her firm's starry client list, from Will Smith to Meryl Streep. Reporters on the receiving end of this kind of PR blitz have to wonder if deviating from the talking points might jeopardize their access to all the other A-list clients.  
In fact, when my sister first decided to speak out, she had gone to multiple newspapers — most wouldn't touch her story. An editor at the Los Angeles Times sought to publish her letter with an accompanying, deeply fact-checked timeline of events, but his bosses killed it before it ran. The editor called me, distraught, since I'd written for them in the past. There were too many relationships at stake. It was too hot for them. He fought hard for it. (Reached by The Hollywood Reporter, a spokesperson for the Los Angeles Times said the decision not to publish was made by the Opinion editors.) 
When The New York Times ultimately ran my sister's story in 2014, it gave her 936 words online, embedded in an article with careful caveats. Nicholas Kristof, the Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter and advocate for victims of sexual abuse, put it on his blog. 
Soon afterward, the Times gave her alleged attacker twice the space — and prime position in the print edition, with no caveats or surrounding context. It was a stark reminder of how differently our press treats vulnerable accusers and powerful men who stand accused.

You tell me why underage girls wouldn't go to the police if raped by a celebrity. Would you want to be put through the kind of shit Dylan has gone through? No? Then shut the fuck up.

Rape Culture At Its Finest

This fucking NPR article basically has me screaming expletives in my head, and it shows no signs of stopping.

Push Grows For A 'Scarlet Letter' On Transcripts Of Campus Sexual Offenders

The Scarlet Letter reference comes from one particular abhorrent quote by a particularly garbage human being.

"I think at some point Hester Prynne gets to take the scarlet letter off," says attorney Justin Dillon, referring to the A (for "adulteress") worn by the character in the Nathaniel Hawthorne novel The Scarlet Letter. Dillon has represented dozens of students accused of sexual assault. "This is essentially public shaming in its worst form."

Let's go ahead and break down all the wrongness that one man managed to cram into two short sentences.

Firstly, the point of The Scarlet Letter is that being publicly shamed for adultery is horrible and ridiculous because while infidelity can be very hurtful, it's still consensual sex and in no way should it ever be illegal. The basis for its illegality back in the day was based heavily in misogyny and the idea that women are basically property that belong to their fathers and then their husbands, and how dare they ever act like autonomous beings who can make their own choices about who to fuck?

Rape, on the other hand, is a horrific fucking crime that should always be a crime because it's a violent and terrible violation of someone's autonomy, body, and soul. Comparing rape to adultery in and of itself has so many layers of awful, misogynistic, rape culture-supporting shit to it that I can't even fit it into my head right now. But what I can do is say FUCK YOU JUSTIN DILLON, FUCK YOU FUCK YOU FUCK YOU FUCK YOU FUCK YOU.

Secondly, putting a notification on a transcript is not public shaming. The only people who see that notification are those people working for the colleges the rapist chooses to apply to who deal with transcripts.

Thirdly, putting notifications of misconduct on transcripts already happens, it's just usually not specific when it comes to sexual assault.

Fourthly, RAPE IS A FUCKING CRIME. These rapists should be thrown in jail, but they get to go free, free to pursue more education and have normal lives. Why would anyone thing this is okay? If a student murdered another student on campus there would be no "oh but what about his precious education, how dare you publicly shame him for murder??" That student would go to jail for murder and have that on his very much public criminal record for the rest of his life making it impossible for him to get a decent job if he ever got out. Same if he was caught robbing another student. Or beating another student up. Or was caught with too much drugs. Or was black and breaking some really minor law.

But oh, we want to let other universities know that the reason a student was expelled was because he raped another student? PREPOSTEROUS. Kid robs a store to try and get by, maybe to pay for their ridiculously expensive textbooks? THROW HIM IN JAIL. KICK HIM OUT OF SCHOOL. PUT IT ON HIS CRIMINAL RECORD. HE MUST BE PUNISHED FOR LIFE FOR THIS ONE BAD DECISION BECAUSE CRIME IS WRONG. ROBBERY IS BAD. Guy rapes a woman? HOW DARE YOU TRY TO PUBLICLY SHAME HIM FOREVER BY NOTIFYING OTHER COLLEGES THAT HE MIGHT TRY TO RAPE STUDENTS. DOESN'T HE DESERVE AN EDUCATION? A LIFE? AFTER RAPING SOMEONE?

Do you fucking see the goddamn fucking problem I'm having with this particular line of thinking yet?

And it's the epitome of rape culture that survivors are wary of legislation and policies making colleges but that notification on transcripts of students kicked out for sexual assault or rape because it's already really fucking hard to get colleges to do anything for victims already. Colleges already tend to side with rapists and do anything they can to dismiss accusations because god forbid the college gets a bad reputation.

It just goes to show you that as long as we live in a rape culture, there are no good choices for victims/survivors. And also, fuck you, Justin Dillon. I hope you die.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Gif of the Day



No wets on the feets.

RIP Donnell Phelps

[TRIGGER WARNING: DEATH, STABBING, MURDER]

Another young black man has been slain, this time because he came to the defense of three women who were being assaulted by another man. This guy was groping the women, and when Fort Valley State University freshman Donnell Phelps tried to intervene, the attacker stabbed him repeatedly in the stomach. Phelps later passed away from the assault.

Phelps was an agriculture engineering technology student and only 19 years old. He's described as an incredibly caring person, though it's clear through his heroic actions that he cared a lot about others - more than the many people who do nothing as bystanders when women are harassed and sexually assaulted. His death is a loss for the community and the entire human race.

Thank you, Donnell Phelps, for doing the right thing for those women. You didn't deserve to die. If this society did more to teach men to respect women and not assault them, you never would have had to sacrifice your life for those women.

There's a candlelight vigil for Phelps at the college, which is unfortunately all the way in Georgia, otherwise I'd probably go. Men doing ally work like this are so rare, and though nobody deserves to lose their life like this, I can't help but be especially mournful for Donnell Phelps. It's also especially horrible considering how many young black men are pointlessly killed because they're seen as lesser by police. But this young man was so much better than so many white men who do nothing to help women being harassed and assaulted. I hate this all so much.

Rest in peace, Donnell. You were a wonderful person and and you looked awesome in that suit.

Donnell Phelps

Amazing Women of Color

I know the only airline I'll be flying from now on!

The First Airline Founded By A Black Woman Is Going International This Month

Fly Blue Crane, which has been operating domestically within South Africa since its inception last September, will be conducting its very first international flight when it launches its service from Cape Town to Windhoek on May 13. The airline is under the leadership of CEO, Sizakele Mzimela, who’s also the first black executive vice president of South African Airways and the first woman to be selected to the Board of the International Air Transport Association, AFKInsider reports.

I don't know if that airline would actually be available in my area but it doesn't matter because I'm too poor to fly anywhere. Anyway, this is an amazing accomplishment in yet another industry that's been a goddamn boy's club since it existed. I'm sure she'll help the under appreciated and often harassed flight attendants.

A photo posted by Fly Blue Crane (@flybluecrane) on

Yay!

Recommended Reading

I just stumbled across this article written by a woman with a mysterious chronic illness who is haunted by the concept of laziness. If you need a fine example of how this concept harms people, read up.

I'm Chronically Ill and Afraid of Being Lazy

It's said that the disabled are the largest stigmatized population of which any person can become a member at any time. This frequently comes to mind when I see people on social media speak with a certain amount of pride about hustling so hard that they haven't slept more than a few hours in a week. When I see women that I admire scoff at the idea of self-care, I shrink because I'm often reading their words on my phone while lying in bed, engaging in the most intense self-care that I can manage.

Esmé Weijun Wang experiences frequent fever, pain, nausea, and fatigue so intense it has a severe effect on her memory. This comes after years of priding herself in how far she could push, getting up at 4 am to do work before going to work - shit I'd never do despite being able-bodied and generally physically healthy.

Yet she lost her disability benefits because she dared to express joy.

Compounding my shame is the private investigator sent after me last fall by my insurance company—a common practice in disability benefits cases—who reported that I was seen "smiling and laughing" after a doctor's appointment, clearly a sign that all was well and good. Surely, then, I could be making myself useful. My disability benefits were pulled last September. I was horrified by the outcome, but, laughably, too ill to fight the ruling.



Ridiculous ableism and the widespread myth that many people fake sick to scam the government out of disability benefits because they're just that "lazy" lost Wang her disability benefits, which she clearly needs and deserves. Thanks, capitalism. The obsession with productivity combined with laziness hysteria has fucked over yet another.

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Gif of the Day



I don't even remember saving this.

If you can't tell, I believe that's Pidgeotto. Might be Pidgeot.

#MaybeHeDoesntHitYou

[TRIGGER WARNING: VERBAL AND EMOTIONAL ABUSE]

Meanwhile, over on Twitter, there's a hashtag campaign going on that's actually about verbal and emotional abuse.

To me, the idea that verbal/emotional abuse is a thing is such a non-revelation. But there are still a lot of people out there who don't "believe" in it (as though that matters). To me, it's as simple as whether or not people have minds.

People have bodies. Those bodies can be hurt. They can be abused.

People have minds and emotions. Those can be hurt. They can be abused.

And thanks to all the people who don't recognize or take emotional abuse seriously, it can be easier to fall into an emotionally abusive relationship, harder to get out of said relationship, and harder to recover from that abuse. As someone who suffered from verbal and emotional abuse for many years, I can say that the most difficult thing about recovery is getting myself to believe that my emotions around the abuse are valid - that I'm not just being weak or overdramatic. That the things done to me were really wrong and that my reactions to such behavior were normal and understandable.

And because of that, anyone who doesn't "believe" that these types of abuse are real has my absolute and complete contempt.

Here are some gems from the hashtag: