Friday, February 15, 2019

Gif of the Day

This show.

Meanwhile, ICE Still Needs To Be Abolished

Remember how Democrats backed off on the idea of abolishing ICE one (1) second after it became clear they got the House back? The agency is still being terrible.

You probably heard about rapper 21 Savage being arrested by ICE all of the sudden after his visa had been expired for years because he's actually from the U.K. The whole affair was fucked up. The fact that 21 Savage is black, an immigrant, and that just a single week before his arrest he ad-libbed lyrics criticizing Trump's immigration policy during a performance on the Tonight Show, combined with this interview with the man after he was released, paints a terrifying picture of the state of the country.

According to 21 Savage, ICE did not declare him under arrest, but said "we got Savage," suggesting that it was a targeted arrest rather than a random traffic stop. The artist believes that it was targeted.

So a public figure was probably arrested by ICE for criticizing immigration policy. Um.

Here's Fascism Part 2 for today? Absolutely.

At the same time, RAICES is down at the border interviewing incarcerated migrants through a chain-link fence because ICE won't let them in. They keep the lights on at all times, which is a torture technique. Illness is rampant and there is "no doctor."

Meanwhile, churches are desperately trying to save immigrants who have lived here for many years and literally done nothing wrong from deportation to dangerous countries where they will have nothing.

ICE is still out here being terrible, but abolish ICE isn't heard from Democrats anymore, is it?

Fuck ICE, fuck Republicans, fuck Democrats, and fuck fascism.

Here's Fascism!

Welp, here we are. Trump declared a national emergency just so he could force the government to build his wall. Because Congress refused to give him the funding for a wall across the entirety of the giant border between the U.S. and Mexico, he'll probably have to take funds out of disaster relief programs like those for Puerto Rico, which is still fucked, and out of funds to rebuild after hurricanes and fight wildfires, which get worse every year due to the climate change Trump is still denying.

This is one of those red lines that, when crossed, lurch us closer to a full, openly fascist state. Semi-reasonable people, including Democrats, have been warning that this will set a dangerous precedent. Pelosi even directly warned Trump that if he went forward with this shit, Democratic presidents in the future could declare national emergencies to fix actual problems in this country. Like gun violence.

That sent the right into a tizzy, oh yes.

Regardless, Trump did the thing. There will be national protests at noon on Monday, February 18, which I plan to attend. Meanwhile, there will be court challenges, though I'm nervous because of the current state of the Supreme Court, though I'm not sure if this case will get there or if it will need to or exactly how that works. It'll be interesting to see how this goes. I have read multiple times that Republicans have been warning/begging Trump against declaring a national emergency because it will go terribly for him. I hope they're right.

Meanwhile, let's talk about the state of the border, and the fate of the refugees/asylum-seekers there. Many of the people who walked here in the "caravans" have been trapped back in Mexico because for some reason Mexico agreed to hold these refugees on their side of the border. That is going terribly.

If you can't click through to Twitter to read the full thread, here is the rest of Commotion.World's report:

Police [h]arassment of families inside the camp has been continuous before this, according to #mutualaid teams and refugees who'd been based there. Yesterday, firefighters at the station next door refused to come put the fire out.  Cops crammed 75 #refugees from the camp into three vans to take them away. Cops seized the water tanks #refugees used at the camp. Some inhabitants are refusing to disperse.  One said: "We began this together. We will be here until the end, together." They - #refugees deprived of clean water and subject constant police violence - are the targets of Trump's #NationalEmergency.  We need to #blockthewall and support vulnerable people, regardless of their citizenship papers.

Human rights violations? In Mexico? I have a question for all the people who said that the refugees of the "caravans" should just stay in Mexico since the country offered them asylum, and said that's what they would do if they had been in that situation. Y'all like having your meager belongings stolen and burned, then being thrown into a police van with 24 other people and being taken away to somewhere who knows while your family is left with no clean water?

I'm waiting for your answer.

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Gif of the Day

This gif has an A+ loop AND an adorable black cat with giant pupils???

Guest Post: 4 Health Issues Unique to the LGBTQ Community That We Need to Work on Fixing in 2019


Kate Harveston is a political writer from Pennsylvania. Her favorite topics are feminist-focused, but she writes on a wide variety of social and cultural issues. If you enjoy her work, you can follow her on Twitter or visit her blog, Only Slightly Biased.

Every population faces health challenges unique to minuscule differences in genetic code. Members of the LGBTQ community, however, face greater challenges than being born this way. Due to societal bias, even finding a doctor who treats LGBTQ individuals with the care and respect they deserve poses difficulty.

Individuals identifying with non-conforming gender or sexual identities suffer from anxiety and depression at far greater rates than do those who conform to cisgender, heterosexual norms. In addition, LGBTQ individuals experience harassment and violence at far higher rates than their peers. To consider our nation a truly inclusive place that celebrates equal rights for all, we must address the problem of making health care accessible to everyone regardless of gender or sexual identity.
1. The Prevalence of Sexual Assault
More than half of all women identifying as bisexual have endured sexual assault and rape. The rates of sexual assault prove higher across the line for members of the LGBTQ community. Rape not only traumatizes a person mentally but also exposes them to sexually transmitted diseases. Worse, the attitude of "she was asking for it" crosses gender lines, as even emergency responders judge those who exhibit any degree of flamboyancy with the same critical eye they generally reserve for women clad in miniskirts, crop tops and heels.
Trying to seek justice against their attackers often re-traumatizes LGBTQ individuals, and continuing bias among those who make up juries makes it difficult to obtain recompense. Women may find themselves pregnant with a child they never intended to have and possibly lack the means to raise. Almost all victims go on to struggle with psychological issues, while at the same time, far too many lack the means to visit a therapist or afford psychiatric medication.
2. The Impact of Bullying
Students identifying as LGBTQ often experience bullying far more frequently than other children. Sadly, the harassment doesn't end when they reach high school graduation. LGBTQ community members in college continue to experience higher levels of bullying and even assault.
A 2017 research report indicated that LGBTQ children experience bullying at twice the rate of their peers. Bullying leads many of these children to develop anxiety and depression. Some sadly die by suicide as a result.
Students of all ages who experience bullying often find that reporting what happens leads to further isolation from others. Just as women who report assaults face questions about their attire and behavior, members of the LGBTQ community endure such scrutiny simply for being themselves.
3. Using Opioids for More Than Pain Relief
Depression often leads to substance abuse disorders, as many LGBTQ individuals turn to drugs or alcohol in an attempt to escape from the reality of living in a biased society. Between 20 and 30 percent of LGBTQ community members struggle with addiction.
The nation's current opioid crisis has disproportionately impacted members of the LGBTQ community. While many businesses now provide employee assistance plans, those identifying as LGBTQ often hesitate to utilize these services out of fear of professional repercussions. Others simply lack health insurance or financial resources, rendering inpatient and outpatient substance recovery programs out of reach.
4. Varying Levels of Care
When the time comes for their annual checkup, many members of the LGBTQ community shy away from calling the doctor due to experiencing past discrimination from health care providers. While many physicians do display empathy toward LGBTQ individuals, others openly criticize them for what they interpret as a lifestyle choice, not a biological reality. Most medical school programs spend only a few short hours training new doctors on how to treat those with different sexual or gender identities.
Transgender individuals wishing to transition face long waits before being approved for surgery and sometimes encounter medical professionals who harshly criticize their choice. Before being cleared for surgery, transgender community members must wait two years from the date of their initial mental evaluation and at least one year after commencing hormonal therapy.
Better Health for All
Meeting the unique health needs of members of the LGBTQ community will take time, but no alternative to moving forward exists if we are to continue calling ourselves an equal society. As Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. once said, "Of all the forms of inequality, injustice in health care is the most shocking and inhumane." By addressing the health care needs of those identifying as LGBTQ, we demonstrate our commitment to embracing equal rights for all.

Rep. Ilhan Omar, Certified Badass, Shuts Down White Man


Rep. Ilhan Omar, who has been in the news recently because a suggestion that she may have engaged in antisemitic tropes while criticizing Israel and the right fell all over themselves to be hypocritical assholes about it, is continuing to piss off white dudes and making me fall in love with her.

Most recently, she challenged Venezuela envoy Elliott Abrams, an old white guy who supported multiple U.S.-backed coups in Latin America in the 80s. Omar is already getting a reputation for saying things that others are afraid to say, whether it's about Israel or the fact that the U.S. has been backing violent right-wing coups to overthrow democratically elected leaders in South and Central America for decades. And for that, of course, I am becoming a huge fan. But what I want you to pay attention to today is Abrams' face when she shuts him down at this hearing.

Omar ends her admonishment of Abrams by saying "I fail to understand why members of this committee of the American people should find any testimony that you give today to be truthful." When Abrams says he would like to respond, Omar simple says, "It wasn't a question."

Abrams' pause followed by absolute indignation that not just a woman, not just a woman of color, but a Muslim, hijabi woman would tell him "no," publicly and decisively, is so delicious and filling it almost fills up the vast emptiness inside me where hope for the future used to be.

She talks over him. She says "I reserve the right to my time." Abrams is ready to throw an entire tantrum at this point.

And it just gets better. Abrams is so pissed off at this direct challenge by a hijabi woman that it takes Omar multiple times asking a question that should be the world's easiest "yes" for him to finally give in and answer.

If you can't watch the video, I took screenshots of my favorite moments.

Abrams's face the moment he realizes he's just been shut down by a Muslim hijabi woman:

Abrams wagging his finger at her because he's outraged a woman is refusing to let him speak during her time when she didn't ask him a question:

Abrams looking to the chairman for support like "how could you let this happen to me, a rich white man???"

Abrams leaning back in his chair all mad after being repeatedly shut down by Omar and realizing that he can't trample over her like he probably does to his wife:

Abrams angrily poking the table while basically saying that a massacre of 800 people and the rape of 12-year-old girls by U.S. soldiers in El Salvador is a good thing because they have democracy now so everything's great! (Fact check: They don't and it's not).

Omar's amazing condescending smile that she paused full seconds to give him to punctuate the fact that he didn't answer her question, so here is the question again with a "fuck you" smile because you are not getting off the hook with your cute little indignant white man tantrum and you will answer the question:

Abrams throwing up his hands and looking to the chairman again because how DARE he be made to answer a direct question that could make him look bad for supporting genocide:

Abrams' look of defeat after finally answering the question/being forced to lie that preventing rather than supporting genocide and human rights violations is "always the position of the United States."

I might watch this video every night before I go to bed so that I can fall asleep with a smile on my face. Thank you so much, Ilhan Omar. I love you.

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Gif of the Day


Recommended Reading


I call this recommended reading but I cannot recommend it to anyone who has been sexually assaulted or had a young child die. I don't actually know if I recommend it to anyone other than rape apologists and anti-choicers. Who probably won't ever read this blog, but fuck it, I have some things to say.

I just finished reading this incredible article by the incredible Dina Zirlott.

I Wish I’d Had A ‘Late-Term Abortion’ Instead Of Having My Daughter

I both read and write some brutally honest stuff, but this article made even me go "whoa, damn." And that is exactly why I stopped everything to read it in its entirety. It made me cry. A lot.

The story begins with Zirlott's story of being violently raped at age 17. After reading about how the horrible trauma derailed her young life, made her go from honor student to high school dropout, made her actively suicidal until her mom finally figured it out and got her help, I paused my reading to do something I've done many times before.

I imagined finding out that a friend of mine had been raped. I imagined going out and buying a gun, tracking the rapist down, and unloading it into his body. Then I imagined going outside and waiting for the police to come arrest me. I imagined opening my mouth and unleashing an inhuman scream from the depths of my soul. Screaming in my head over and over and over before collapsing into uncontrollable sobs punctuated by moans and howls.

Back in real life, I cried. I don't know why I imagine these things, but it happens most of the time when I read a story about rape. Sometimes the victim is a friend or other loved one, sometimes it's me. Sometimes the imagined reaction is more violent than simply shooting the imagined rapist to death. But it always ends in silent screaming. And I wonder if I will ever finally open my mouth in real life and unleash all the pain I have stored in the depth of my guts as I have imagined time and time again.

I read the rest of the story crying. And I realized that maybe the reason I don't talk about abortion much is not because I feel it's impossible to change an anti-choicer's mind or because I have nothing new to say on the subject after many years as a feminist. Maybe it's because the thought of such a fundamental attack on bodily autonomy is too horrifying. Because rape is the ultimate violation of bodily autonomy. Denying someone the right to an abortion is not far behind.

I still feel like nothing will change the mind of an anti-choicer, whether it's because they're too wrapped up in the highly emotional idea of "infanticide" or because they really don't give a fuck about anything except how much power and money they can hoard for themselves. But at the very least, if anyone can motivate those who don't care enough or think it's important to defend bodily autonomy, Dina Zirlott can with her incredibly powerful article.

Listen to me when I am talking to you. I am a human being, and I am more than a vessel and I speak for my daughter whom I never heard cry. I speak for that 17-year-old girl bent across a kitchen counter. I speak for the strange woman I have become. And I speak to all of the women like me, the ones who came before, and after, who have been or will be in the same position ― or perhaps your story is completely different and powerful in its own right. 
These are our bodies and our lives, and so rarely do we ask for the circumstances that command the weight of these critical decisions, but these choices are ours. We should not have to beg for permission to decide what is best for ourselves and our children, even the ones who may never be born ― and maybe never should be born.  

As a writer, woman, human being, and attempted truth-teller, I am in awe.

People Are Getting Laid Off Because Capitalism Is Imploding


Good morning! It's your friendly neighborhood anti-capitalist here to explain to you how capitalism is the root of all your problems.

You might have heard recently about all the layoffs at large news media outlets like Buzzfeed and Vice, and most recently, at the recently-merged video game publisher Activision Blizzard. What you need to know about these layoffs is that they were not the result of these companies being in trouble or not being able to make profits. They were making plenty of money. But they weren't making enough money.

Jim Sterling has been talking about this in relation to Activision Blizzard and gaming companies a lot lately, and I see him getting to the root of the problem. He's incensed that companies are laying people off and pulling other bullshit like promoting loot boxes because they can't just make a profit. They have to promise shareholders extreme profits and when they inevitably fail to deliver, they have to do something drastic.

Shareholders and the stock market in general might seem like the root of the problem, but they are just another symptom. The real problem is that capitalism, by nature, has to keep growing. That's why big companies are constantly chasing bigger and bigger profits by merging, laying off, and relying on forms of online gambling to rake in ever more cash. They're compelled by capitalism. The problem is, of course, that we live in a finite planet with finite resources.

There's a book on capitalism that really opened my eyes on this. It's called Capitalism Must Die. I went into it thinking the title meant that we MUST destroy capitalism before such and such happens. By the end of the book, I understand that the real meaning of the title is that capitalist WILL die no matter what. Because capitalism has to keep growing. It has to make more and more profits. That's why the stock market even exists. Our finite planet ran out of real, tangible resources for capitalism to trade in and so an entire market of trading in imaginary money was born. And that market keeps demanding more and more and now we're seeing an increasing number of monopolies as companies rapidly merge.

The result is layoffs. The layoffs will get worse and worse until the economy won't be able to handle the amount of unemployed, poor people who can't afford to buy things like video games and will collapse and capitalism will implode entirely.

You can argue against the idea that capitalism is bad or that it will inevitably collapse but you can't argue with reality. Things keep getting worse and we are unable to reign it in anymore because the corporations are too big and too powerful and they will pay off politicians to allow them to do anything they want.

Can we end capitalism before the inevitable total collapse that will throw all of our lives into chaos? I honestly don't think we can. But capitalism must die. So if you're not going to become anti-capitalism, at least start stockpiling non-perishable food and other supplies. Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Gif of the Day

Cats asking for pets is just the most precious, wonderful thing in the world.

Fat Hatred and the Tumblr 'Adult Content' Ban

I wrote another thing for the Establishment and it was published today! In celebration, I'm just gonna link it for you here rather than writing another blog post. Then I'm gonna spend the extra time I saved smoking weed. Happy Tuesday!

Two Months After Tumblr ‘Adult Content’ Ban, I Miss The Fat Naked Bodies

And to anyone who wants to pretend they care about my health as a thin veil for their fat hatred that they can really just let go: Kiss my fat ass.

Amazing Women of Color

While the President of the U.S. is busy going into full denial mode about his humiliating loss on the border wall in spite of all his efforts to paint all Latinx people as criminals who are coming to invade our jobs and tie up our women, a Mexican woman and her team of Latinx scientists developed a treatment that eliminates HPV in people who have already been infected, therefore eliminating their risk of developing cervical cancer and stopping the spread of the virus.

Eva RamΓ³n Gallegos was able to use non-invasive photodynamic therapy (PDT) to eradicate the virus in 29 patients who had been infected. This is not a "cure" for HPV as some headlines suggest, but it's very important research that will certainly help lessen and someday end the threat of HPV strains that can lead to cervical cancer. They even found that 64.3% of women with HPV who had already developed pre-malignant lesions were also cured of HPV with this therapy. I'm not sure if that means the risk of cervical cancer in those particular women is reduced or reversed or what, but it sounds pretty freaking cool.

Thank fuck for Mexican women working to cure the diseases that the U.S. won't cure anymore because cures aren't profitable. Thank fuck for women of color.

Monday, February 11, 2019

Gif of the Day

This is funnier without context.

2020 Challenger Lineup: John Delaney

I've already written a couple screeds begging people on the left (by U.S. standards lol) to chill out and let people examine and critique Democrats running for president for 2020 at least until a Democratic nominee is officially chosen in 2020, and I figure it's probably fair (and a better use of my time) to actually write up a summary of each candidate looking at their qualifications, records, and positions. This will help me decide who to support and might help some others as well.

I figured I'd go in order of who declared their candidacy first. You might be saying "John Who?" and for good reason. Delaney declared his candidacy back in fucking 2017. July 2017.

John Delaney was a Representative for Maryland's 6th district from 2013 to January 3, 2019. It looks like he didn't bother to run for anything in 2018 because he's focused on his presidential campaign. Before entering politics, he co-founded two lending companies, which, ew.

During his time as a Representative, Delaney introduced legislation to fight against gerrymandering and make Election Day a federal holiday. He earned a 100/100 from the Human Rights Campaign for his support of LGBT rights. He also sponsored bills to allow more veterans to get paid medical leave, two bills to fund improving infrastructure, and a bill "that would extend coverage of medical foods, vitamins, and amino acids to those with metabolic disorders" via Medicare, Medicaid, and CHIP.

These are all good things in my book. He also wanted to raise the corporate tax rate to 23% to pay for those infrastructure improvements.

He sounds like a moderate, and according to Wikipedia is often called one. Here's what Delaney has to say about himself:

People have a hard time labeling me. Some of the things they hear me talking about are on the total progressive or liberal end of the spectrum, and in other ways I'm kind of a solutions-oriented moderate who wants to get things done.

According to his Delaney for President website, he is into "unity" between progressives, moderates, and disaffected Republicans. He says something about making better jobs, which sounds like he at least understands that the low unemployment rate in the U.S. right now doesn't mean things are good.

His third platform is "security" which, ugh.

He then lists "justice" and says he wants to "fix some fundamentally flawed institutions—education, health care, the criminal justice system, infrastructure, retirement security." He cites the American Dream, which suggests he doesn't get that the very concept is bullshit.

You can view his full voting record here. Notably, he voted against that bullshit bill to redefine "crimes of violence." BUT he voted yes on the "Protect and Serve Act," which "Requires a sentence of up to 10 years in prison for an individual found to have knowingly caused serious bodily harm or injury to a law enforcement officer or attempted to do so." That bill passed with flying colors, by the way. He also seems to have voted against multiple department transparency acts, which raises a red flag.

He and also everyone else voted yes on funding to put more cops in schools. He also looks to have consistently voted against anti-choice and anti-immigrant legislation. He voted against the "Thin Blue Line" act which imposes the death penalty for attempted murder of a cop. That also passed, holy shit.

He voted against approving the Keystone XL pipeline multiple times. He voted against a bill prohibiting the U.S. from providing weapons to Syria. He voted yes on the USA FREEDOM Act of 2015 that continued a lot of the bullshit from the Patriot Act. He voted to reauthorize VAWA in 2013.

PLEASE keep in mind if you're looking through his voting record that the names of bills can be very misleading. Some of these bills do the exact opposite of what the name implies. Click on them to read a summary of what they're really about.

Looking for racism in Delaney's past, I only found that he's joined the call for the governor of Virginia to resign after the blackface thing. Nothing on homophobia, transphobia, or misogyny. Doesn't mean it doesn't exist, but nothing immediately came up and I don't have all day.

John Delaney is definitely a capitalist, unsurprisingly.

Mr Delaney said his politics was based on “simultaneously celebrating the power of our free-market economy while insisting that there is a role for government to set goals and rules of the road and take care of those who are left behind.”

Overall, I give John Delaney a solid "meh" as a Democratic candidate. Maybe a C+ or B-. He is, for the most part, your average white male Democrat, with some bonus points for supporting gay rights and sometimes voting against ridiculous cop worship bills. But unless he does something drastic, it's extremely unlikely that I will support him for the nomination.

Tune in next Monday for my overview of Tulsi Gabbard.

Friday, February 8, 2019

Gif of the Day

Cats are cats.

Mariner High School Step Team, I Love You

In local news, some people in Marysville, Washington were super offended by a performance by the Mariner High School step team that appeared to have the theme of Black Lives Matter. These kids were actually brought in to be part of an assembly at the Marysville-Pilchuck High School, and afterward the principal sent out an official statement apologizing for it in a very "all lives matter" kind of way.

Watching the video of the performance, I have difficulty understanding what the kids are shouting, but it sounds like near the end the kids are shouting out names of black individuals who have been killed by police in recent years such as Michael Brown and Freddie Gray. They then exit chanting "hands up, for justice."

The performance is impressive and well-coordinated. The kids are wearing black step team shirts with camo pants and most of the students are Black. In the background, the classic raised fist symbol is on a large screen.

These kids did an incredibly brave and important thing and the response by the Marysville-Pilchuck principal is gross.

"We believe that debate and discussion grounded in research and facts is imperative to providing our students the tools and skills necessary to be successful in our ever-changing world," he wrote. "We will continue to provide our students opportunities to debate and engage in controversial topics because this is at the heart of how positive change and innovation happens. We will take better notice of the development and delivery of programs for students to make sure that the outcomes of the programs are not skewed by the delivery of the lesson."

What about this performance says to you that any part of these kids' education was skewed? I highly doubt that the step team created this routine because of anything they learned in school, and declaring that black lives matter is not some kind of biased statement. Justice is not up for debate.

I'm so impressed by the kids in this video. Watching them made me realize that the older I get, the more I love kids. It made me wish that I could go back in time with the knowledge I have now so that I could engage in actions like this and support my classmates of color. Teens are doing incredible things right now despite having to fear retribution by adults who hold significant power over them. And I want to use my power as an adult to protect them at all costs. Kids like these are one of the precious few reasons (and by far the biggest reason) I have any hope for the future.

I support the Mariner High School step team 100%. You kids are doing amazing and I love you.

Fox News Blames Schools Teaching Fairness For Popularity Of AOC's Tax Plan

Nothing in that headline is exaggerated. It's completely accurate.

Fox News Laments That Schoolchildren Are Being Taught Fairness

So what happened is that during some Fox News segment where they were complaining about Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's suggested 70% marginal tax rate on earnings above $10 million, they brought up a poll that seemed to catch them off guard. Because it showed that 70% of people polled are in favor of this plan. And 65% are for increasing taxes on earnings over $1 million.

This is a Fox News poll, by the way, which means that most of the people responding were regular Fox News viewers. I'm sure Fox put out that poll expecting a very different result and I'm surprised they didn't try to bury it. Instead, they opted for the route of... bashing the very idea of fairness?

“The idea of fairness has been promoted in our schools for a long time,” Payne explained. “We’re starting to see kids who grew up with this nothing of fairness above all. Now they’re becoming voting age, and they’re bringing this ideology with them.”

I mean, coming from anything but Fox News, this would sound like a positive thing. But this is coming from a Fox News pundit. I'm tempted to seek out a full video of the segment because like, where were you going with that? There are only two options here. Fox News is having to come to terms with the fact that taking earnings above more money than anyone would ever need to live comfortably is fair, or they're hating on the idea of fairness.

Remember when their slogan was "fair and balanced"? I guess they ditched that for a reason.

I'm honestly a little excited for the incoming meltdowns about socialism as conservatives begin to realize just how popular it is with younger generations. Not to mention communism and anarchism. They're going to lose their minds and I'm like

Thursday, February 7, 2019

Gif of the Day

Really the only appropriate headline for anything involving loose llamas.

Republicans Freaking Out Hardcore Over Abortion

One of my favorite things about conservatives is that they like to pretend they're all about logic and not emotion, they don't get "triggered," they're not "snowflakes" who need "safe spaces." They don't use emotional appeals but rely on cold hard facts to make their points.

Until abortion comes up. Then all that shit is right out the window.

Conservatives have zero legs to stand on in the emotion vs. logic thing, bullshit though it is, because nothing is more based on emotion than the "pro-life" position. The entire thing was manufactured by the right in order to galvanize Christians to get into politics on their behalf. Not that long ago, it was kind of taboo for churches to get involved in politics. We used to take that whole separation of church and state thing seriously. Like, the whole country did, including Christian churches. They were against abortion on principle, but were essentially pro-choice. They were not about to try and influence the law and if someone outside of the church decided to get an abortion, that was really none of their business.

Flash forward to today and social media is full of anti-choicers desperately trying to make the lie that the New York bill supporting "late-term" abortions means literally killing babies who have already been born.

I don't actually recommend this at all, but if you search for "infanticide" on Twitter, you'll see what I mean.

What a great use of time and resources while the entire midwest is frozen solid.

For a feminist, I don't talk about abortion much. The reason for that is because it's already very well covered, I have nothing new to say on it after many years as a pro-choice feminist, and because there is even less of a chance than usual of convincing anti-choicers of anything or having anything resembling a productive discussion on it because their stance is rooted in "abortion murders babies." You can try to to explain the difference between an embryo and a baby, you can try to explain the importance of bodily autonomy, but you might as well be telling it to a brick wall.

But this new fervor over late-term abortions is so intense that Trump even exploited it in his SOTU address. We are also about to have to deal with the first abortion case in the Supreme Court since Brett "I'm A Rapist" Kavanaugh was confirmed. This will combine into a clusterfuck of right-wing lies, the biggest being that somehow the New York bill allows for "post-birth abortions." It doesn't, post-birth abortion is not a thing at all, and the New York bill literally only expands protections for people who are carrying non-viable fetuses and people who are likely to die if they give birth. The vast majority of these individuals want the child, and calling what they have to do "infanticide" only worsens an incredible trauma and tragedy.

But anti-choicers couldn't give a single fuck. I wish I could somehow get through to the majority of anti-choicers who are just people raised to be conservative Christians, basically brainwashes into it, that the public figures pushing this "post-birth abortion" lie absolutely know they're lying and are simply exploiting manufactured outrage for their own power. And many of them have probably either secretly had abortions or have pressured/paid for their partners/mistresses to have abortions.

But I've tried, and I can't.

I guess what I'm here to say is that A) I'm annoyed, B) Get ready for this to become a lot more annoying, and C) if some right-wing asshole ever claims to be a paragon of logic and that he wins whatever argument because you expressed a hint of emotion somewhere, just bring up abortion and watch him descend into screaming about baby murder.

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Gif of the Day

Dog tries to teach human baby how to jump, humans don't deserve puppers.

State of the Union Highlights


Yes, I did watch the State of the Union address last night. Because I had to for work. I'm technically a journalist, I guess, lol, so I have to watch these things, but I absolutely would have boycotted otherwise.

But it's us journalists who allow people to skip the SOTU but also find out what happened so YOU'RE WELCOME. For this selection of things you've probably already heard about because other journalists already wrote about it before 3 PM the next day.

Anyway, let's see. Most of the SOTU was predictable things you've already heard over and over. Something something wall, something something MS13. Using a racist boogeyman tale of brown men tying up and gagging women and raping them in order to convince people that those same women should be forced to stay in the same countries where these men live. Tolerance is actually cruelty! That might have been my favorite part. Tolerance might seem like a good thing, Trump said, but it's actually CRUEL.

In a way, I agree. Tolerating Trump as President, for example, has been incredibly cruel, and we'd all have been better off if the majority had just dragged him out of his gilded mansion the day after he was elected and hanged him. See, you can use the "the ends justify the means" argument to make just about anything sound like a moral act.

My least favorite part of the SOTU was definitely how much of my time was wasted by Republicans and often also Democrats giving a long standing ovation at every goddamn empty platitude that came out of Trump's mouth. "AMERICA GOOD" *two-minute standing ovation*.

What else? Apparently America "saved freedom" or some nonsense like that. There was a ton of trotting out veterans, a little girl who survived cancer, and people who survived mass shootings without once mentioning doing anything real to stop those mass shootings or mentioning white supremacy and neo nazis even after the bit with the Holocaust survivor who also survived the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting last year.

Also this actually happened while I was sick but Trump mentioned withdrawing from a nuclear treaty with Russia? So uh, Cold War II: Electric Bigaloo?

The only actually good thing Trump said was to promote national paid family leave so that parents can have time with their newborn kids. What was interesting was that, at least on the feed I was watching, the camera only showed Democrats standing and applauding for that one and didn't show the Republican side at all, so I'm not sure if they stood for it, too? Because Republicans have always been against such a dirty socialist idea. And then later Trump literally named socialism as a threat to America. Awesome.

Trump tried to take credit for the female Democrats wearing white and standing for more women in Congress. Nancy kept looking like she was trying not to laugh, which would make me laugh, and then I would miss something important.

Oh another great part, Trump bragged about the U.S. economy being the best in the world, with the second best not even being close to us. What's great is that while I was waiting for the SOTU to start, I read an article about how the U.S. will probably lose our top spot to China by next year and we're unlikely to get it back any time soon. We'll probably also be passed up by India, which I think is currently at #3.

But tarrifs are working, right? My best tweet from the night:

The whole thing was an hour and 20 minutes long, which was way too much. After that, I watched Stacey Abrams' response, which was a much better speech all around. Abrams also has one of those smiles that makes it impossible not to smile back even when you're just watching her on a screen. I was not, however, thrilled with the old talk about bipartisanship and working together. We're all tired of that old Democrat line. You can't work with fascists who only care about their own power. Just stop.

And, as much as I don't like Nancy Pelosi, I did absolutely love that little clap she did for him at the end. Some people are calling it a hate clap or something but what I saw was the clap you give a little kid who just did a terrible job at something but they tried and are five so you do that little clap and go "good effort, Brandon!" The smile at the end, too. "You got through the whole thing without pooping your pants, good job!"

There was some other stuff too, like Trump making up a weird nonsensical rhyme to try and convince people that Mueller should stop investigating him. But generally it was a circus that I would be embarrassed to show anyone outside of the country. That is the state of our union.

Nineteen months to Election Day 2020!

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Gif of the Day

Working at a haunted house isn't the easiest job.

Intersex Woman Reveals Just How Sexist The Gaming Industry Is

Video game developers? Sexist? Noooooooo. Haha just kidding, I am one of the women who was driven away from the industry because of GamerGate and the way so many companies caved to the profoundly misogynistic "movement."

But serious props to this woman for speaking out on just how bad it still is. Delaney King is an intersex individual who recently transitioned from presenting male to presenting female. She recently described the stark difference in how she was treated by the industry on Twitter after transitioning.

So, yeah. Fuck the entire video game industry, fuck gamer dudes, and I'm glad I got the fuck out of that business and also it's your loss, video games. Not just me but so many other women out there could have made incredible contributions to the industry but you had to go and treat us like shit. Now you're in a slump and everybody hates every single AAA developer and publisher and you can't make enough money to ever satisfying your stockholders and you deserve all of it.

Also, Delaney King needs to eat, and obviously isn't make nearly as much money as she used to, so if you appreciate what she's doing which is likely to make it even harder for her to get work, you can donate!

She also has commissions open as an artist.

There's also a lot more to the thread which is great to read. She talks about being non-binary and intersex and directs people to another thread in which she explains what intersex means, in case you don't know.

She could also probably use some positive messages as she is, predictably, getting both sexist and intersexist abuse.

Anyway she's a hero.

Monday, February 4, 2019

Gif of the Day

Waddle waddle..... waddlewaddlewaddlewaddlewaddle.

How The U.S. Planned To Traumatize and Steal Migrant Children


I already posted this on the Facebook page but it absolutely deserves its own blog post.

A United States Government (USG) Memorandum Released by Oregon Senator Jeff Merkley to NBC News Shows According to Him that the USG: “planned to traumatize children and intentionally create a humanitarian crisis”

Following reports on Thursday that federal officials forcibly separated thousands more migrant children from their families than previously reported, Sen. Jeff Merkley (D.-Ore.) released a document to NBC News revealing the Trump administration intended to “traumatize children and intentionally create a humanitarian crisis at the border.”

Literally. Their actual plan was to literally traumatize children. It looks like the intent was to have a "deterrent effect." I don't know if that works, but it doesn't really matter. It's evil. They targetted families and traumatized babies in the hopes that it would make it so the U.S. would have to deal with fewer asylum seekers. How absolutely fucked up is that?

But wait, it gets worse when juxtaposed with this bullshit:

Jonathan White, who leads the Health and Human Services Department’s efforts to reunite migrant children with their parents, said removing children from “sponsor” homes to rejoin their parents “would present grave child welfare concerns.” He said the government should focus on reuniting children currently in its custody, not those who have already been released to sponsors. 
“It would destabilize the permanency of their existing home environment, and could be traumatic to the children,” White said in a court filing late Friday, citing his years of experience working with unaccompanied migrant children and background as a social worker.

Not only is this mindblowing aside the revelation that traumatizing these kids was the goal in the first place, taking children of color away from their birth parents, giving them to white families, and refusing to return them is literally a genocide strategy. Literally. I am not exaggerating.

The same thing was done to Native Americans and is actually still happening to them. It's just not as noticeable because there are so few Native Americans left and we're a little less blatant about it than sending them all to extremely abusive, brainwashing boarding schools that cut their hair and beat them for speaking their native language. Now it's just individual white families who do that after Native American children are taken away from their mothers for bullshit that white mothers get away with daily.

And so the U.S. goes on committing atrocities. I've been seeing some racist panic lately around the idea that the U.S. is in decline and all I can think is GOOD. Maybe if we're not a superpower anymore we won't be able to get away with this shit.

Here's Fascism!

This is your irregular reminder that certain rights, including the right to travel even if you have a perfectly valid passport and haven't broken any laws, can be revoked at any time if our government chooses to. This becomes a serious problem when you fill up the government with white supremacists and fascists.

Four critics of U.S. immigration policy denied entry to Mexico, passports flagged

Two immigration attorneys and two journalists have reported being denied entry to Mexico in recent days after their passports were flagged. The immigration attorneys have been vocal critics of the administration’s policies, and they belong to a group that has sued U.S. Customs and Border protection for allegedly denying asylum seekers access to the asylum process.

One of the journalists was detained for 13 hours because of this. One of the attorneys absolutely thinks it's retaliation.

“I think this is retaliation,” Phillips said. “I think this is because we sued the U.S. government. I think it’s that we’re pointing out gross, flagrant human rights violations being committed by the U.S. government, and they don’t like that.”

This is what fascists do to their critics. Flag their passports, restrict their travel, and interfere with their work. It usually starts with journalists. If things keep going the way they are, this could easily happen to any of us.

Okay Let's Talk About That One Mass Shooting

I was sick when it happened and honestly didn't want to deal with it but how am I gonna ignore this on this blog? If you're like "which one" right now let's just take a pause to think about how sad that is.


The SunTrust Bank shooting. Some Milo Youneedtostopolis fan walks into a bank, forces five women to lie face down on the floor, and executes them.

How much longer are we going to let far-right incels murder women for being women? How much longer are we going to let white men commit horrendous acts of violence before enough is enough? This kind of shit is happening daily and yet this country still can't handle a razor commercial suggesting that men can do better, you know, if they feel like it.

Is it really worth it to defend toxic masculinity? To pretend like the word "toxic" in that context functions as anything more than a standard adjective and not an indictment of all masculinity, as though men should collectively lay down and die?

Adding to the horrible, deadly misogyny of it all is that this fuckoff's ex-girlfriend was warning people about him for a long time before he finally did the thing he was inevitably going to do.

Alex Gerlach, who identified herself as Xaver’s ex-girlfriend in Indiana, told WSBT-TV he "always hated people and wanted everybody to die" and has long been "fascinated with death and guns." 
Gerlach said she tried to warn people about his potential for harm and told the TV station "he got kicked out of school for having a dream that he killed everybody in his class, and he's been threatening this for so long." 
She said "every single person I've told has not taken it seriously, and it's very unfortunate that it had to come to this."

If you see something, say something! But if you're a woman warning us about a white dude, then we'll ignore you, let him murder a bunch of people, and then act surprised.

Why are men allowed to be in charge of anything?

Friday, February 1, 2019

Gif of the Day

Damn, Ampharos. That's cold.

Why is This Legal

I'm still sick, getting better but thing lingering cold is really annoying. But I have the energy to get furious about this:

ICE set up a fake university enrolling hundreds of foreign students as part of a sting operation

Why are they allowed to do this? Why isn't this illegal? Offer a path to that mythical "American dream" and then arrest them and throw them into a nightmare. Not only is ICE an unnecessary organization that we did just fine without for the vast majority of America's existence, if this country were a person, ICE would be the reason we didn't get into heaven.

Abolish ICE.