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Member since: Mon Aug 23, 2004, 10:18 PM
Number of posts: 36,834

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Thanks To The Government Shutdown, College Sexual Assault Investigations Have Been Put On Hold

Have I mentioned how much I despise republicans lately?

The government shutdown, which has now stretched on for nearly a week, is preventing the U.S. Department of Education from continuing to work on sexual assault investigations into college campuses across the country.

A spokesperson for the agency told the Huffington Post that the investigations conducted by the Office for Civil Rights — the division that handles formal complaints about universities’ sexual assault polices and addresses potential gender discrimination — are “not an excepted activity” under the shutdown. They’ll be suspended until the government re-opens.

On a practical level, that means that government officials aren’t in contact with the students who filed formal complaints against their universities. If complainants attempt to reach out to the investigator who’s handling their case, they’re told that person isn’t currently working. And Department of Education employees are also unable to conduct any follow-up reviews for the colleges whose cases have recently been settled. Officials have been forced to cancel site visits to campuses, which are intended to make sure they’re adhering to the terms of the settlement agreement.

The issue of sexual assault on college campuses has made headlines over the past year, as student activists have joined forced to file a rush of federal complaints to hold their universities accountable for failing to take rape cases seriously. Under many colleges’ lenient sexual assault policies, serial rapists are able to evade punishment. U.S. Department of Education investigations are typically initiated after students or faculty allege their university is violating Title IX and the Clery Act, federal laws that require colleges to combat gender-based violence and accurately report the number of sexual assaults that occur on campus.


c.1949: “I dreamed I was a medieval maiden in my Maidenform bra”

Oh Wow, I mean what do you say to something like that today?

The ad is based on one of the the late-15th-century “Lady and the Unicorn” tapestries.

“The Lady and the Unicorn (French: La Dame à la licorne) is the modern title given to a series of six tapestries woven in Flanders of wool and silk, from designs (“cartoons”) drawn in Paris in the late fifteenth century.”

- Wikipedia


Otep: A Voice of Modern Revolution

*trigger warning*

Shamaya of OTEP is a heavy metal Goddess, a rape and incest surviver, one of the few 'out' gay women in metal. Her music cuts you, and for those who can't hear the words in metal, read the lyrics-and they cut you even more, without the buffer of music. Anyway, found this article on her and thought I'd post it. One of her older songs with lyrics is at the bottom of the article.

Revolution universally begins with an idea of something different and a seething desire to manifest that significant change. Human history is a compilation of hundreds of revolutions. Reformation is as much a part of humanity as life itself; and the constant embedment of revolutionary movements are coaxed and aroused through the music of the time period. That is, music is a reflective catalyst for social, political, or simply ideal reformations. The mass encompassing lyrical capabilities of the modern musician and poet Otep Shamaya gives way to cataclysmic thoughts and incites multiple revolutions. Her mysterious life is veiled through cryptic yet personal lyrics dealing with all things from political activism to molestation. Otep is becoming an integral gear of social opinion; she interjects her influences into multiple mediums.

“And I remember him fucking me, and I remember liking it. I didn’t know any better,” these are the painful words of a woman molested, ideally confused due to a childhood ripe with domestic violence. This is the opening line of the song “Jonestown Tea,” Otep Shamaya’s tell all and self- empowering attack against the dark world of child molestation. This song maps Otep’s turbulent relationship with her father that, quite naturally, parallels the lives of many people. The phenomenological response of the listeners is usually intense because of the extreme nature of the song. Culturally, molestation is hidden and something that its victims are usually inclined to be ashamed of; Otep is challenging that idea. On a Headbangers Blog she said, “Writing “Jonestown Tea” was both cathartic and resurrectional for me. I needed to write a song that spoke for those that believe they have no voice but also to empower my own spirit to defeat the demons of doubt.” This song is reforming how many victims of molestation deal with the effects of being abused. It empowers them to achieve what they can in spite their circumstances.

Otep’s primary medium of heavy metal music draws, quite naturally, many scarred individuals. Considering that the music is indicative of lives emotional, ideal, and domestic issues, Oteps purpose, apparently, is to rally hundreds of thousands of individuals to focus upon and perpetuate or eradicate an idea. These faithful fans are called “Shadow Soldiers.” On Urban dictionary. Com a “Shadow Soldier” is defined as “a fan of Otep, carrier of the plague. We are the arms and legs of the revolution...privy to all things Otep. We are a vocal, intelligent faction: each of us have experienced the struggle in some form-physically, emotionally, mentally. We are philosophers, scholars, artists and artisans...destroying to create.” Otep is using the influence she has over these people to bring about positivity. On Carbon Rally.com people are challenged to “go green” and calculate their “carbon footprint;” and to do what is necessary to minimize ones emissions as much as possible. Otep formed a group on the environmentally concerned website and petitioned her Shadow Soldiers to join, and within 48 hours her group grew to over 200 members- the largest in the website’s history. On October 29, 2008 the group had grown to harbor 881 active members and collectively had reduced approximately 66.72 tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

Through her epic music, Otep develops multiple philosophies. These ideas are develop through Oteps extreme literacy. Her influences are among great thinker such as Karl Marx, and Frederick Nietzsche. The first and most popular is “Sevas Tra,” which means “Art Saves.” The word “art” carries multiple levels of importance and meaning to Otep and her followers. Otep says, concerning the notion that art is lost in the music, “I don't think the essence of the poetry is lost [in our delivery]; the 'Art of War' teaches you to destroy your enemy from within. We give them something no one else can, and that's something intellectual, poetic, a real thing that is also brutally savage. Our message is being communicated because the music is - The Modern Era


Body Snarking Hillary Buttons a Lowlight at California GOP Convention

It’s time to consider the possibility that the GOP is the giant panda of political parties. That is, in much the same way that pandas simply refuse to fuck even to save their species, Republicans seem to be trying to will themselves out of existence one convention/gaffe/election cycle at a time. Case in point: at the recent GOP convention in Anaheim, Calif., some body-snarking button maker decided that the best way to attract more female voters to the Republican cause was to criticize Hillary Clinton, one of the most prominent women in politics on either side of the aisle, for her body.

YOU GET IT?? Because Hillary Clinton, a presumptive presidential candidate in 2016, is a woman in the public sphere, and so therefore must be held accountable for her body and her professional competence. Hey bro, relax — it’s just California GOP rules. Don’t stress! The party is sinking deeper into irrelevance everyday. In about a year, the California Republican Party convention will be held in somebody’s basement over a twelve-pack of Mountain Dew and a Halo marathon.


How "Jezebel" Smashes the Patriarchy, Click by Click (interview)

Anna Holmes, unlike some of her contemporaries, never considered "feminist" a bad word. As a mixed-race girl growing up in a liberal California college town, she was obsessed with Sassy and Glamour—"back when it was still feminist." She pursued writing gigs at glossy women's magazines after college, but quickly tired of their formulas: "Their point," she says, "is to create insecurities and then solve them."

In 2006, she was tapped by Gawker Media to create Jezebel, a site for women interested in both fashion and how the models were treated. She built it into a traffic behemoth, with 32 million monthly pageviews and beloved features like Photoshop of Horrors and Crap Email From a Dude. Since leaving Gawker in 2010, Holmes, who recently landed a column in the New York Times Sunday Book Review, has kept busy compiling The Book of Jezebel, an encyclopedia of lady things with more than 1,000 entries, from bell hooks and Bella Abzug to Xena and zits. The book goes on sale October 22.

Mother Jones: When I first opened the book and landed on "Patriarchy," I laughed, because the full entry read: "Smash it."

Anna Holmes: Some things you don't need to spell out.

MJ: How did you pick the entries?

AH: The first step was free-associating words and concepts. I don't want the book to feel academic, so there's not gonna be a whole page on "cisgender"—but it is an entry. I sat down with a big dictionary at one point, but a dictionary will have Plato, and not Althea Gibson—someone I forgot to put in the book. I would not call the book comprehensive, but that's because I'm a perfectionist.


Submitted without comment

#BlameFeminism: For the Hurt & the Hustle

A little bit rambling- but awesome conclusion

Feminism is the hustle to survive in a world that does not care about you. The latest Internet satire tells us to #blamefeminism for everything from dying houseplants to paper cuts to breaking down the nuclear family to trigger warnings. As an avowed feminist, and a tad millennial, I’ll join the bandwagon. I #blamefeminism too. As most feminists, I have taken on an unspoken oath to let the bad things in. I’m hyperaware of sexist oppression, trauma, survival, violence, suicide, self-hate, rape and abuse. Being feminist is still more complex than man hating or being the misogyny police, despite modern-day media definitions. Contrary to popular belief, feminists are not simply hypersensitive and unattractive — we’re akin to an Atlas bearing the world’s burdens.

And we’re not shrugging it off.

Letting the bad things in is an act of strengthening our critical consciousness. Many women of color, immigrant, queer and trans people of color, lay on the margins of conversations in the mainstream white-feminist sphere, which seek to lean-in, negotiate, and strive for equality. But when tragedy and sexism overcomes the news like wildfire, as did the murder of scholar Jonathan Ferrell, the massacre of innocent mall-goers in Nairobi, the objectification of black bodies à la Miley Cyrus, or the horrifying gang rape in Delhi, we must confront it, and let the bad things in. That is, feminist work in the new millennium requires a loving recommitment to reckon with oppression, but to not fall apart in the process.

This is when it gets hard.

Fighting is not so easy. We lose our jobs. We deal with the pain of losing family, friends and lovers. We run out of money. We don’t have health insurance to get a check up or go to therapy. We make art no one wants to buy or pay us for.

These are everyday tragedies of living, and no one is spared. It’s only a matter of when it’s our turn. Yet it’s in these moments, when we are experiencing oppression, that beckons revolution and response. We begin to embolden a feminist politic that is for everyone. This is when we dream, forgo the hurt, and embrace the hustle.


Tanzania: Women push for gender equality in new constitution

DAR ES SALAAM, Tanzania (Thomson Reuters Foundation)— Women’s rights groups in Tanzania are demanding that a new constitution clearly define the word ‘person’ to mean a man and a woman in a bid to promote gender equality.

The groups have also suggested significant changes in the electoral systems with the aim to give women more political presence in a new constitution whose draft was presented in June this year for public scrutiny.

Debating the proposed law at a meeting organised recently by the Tanzania Women Cross Party Platform (TWCPP), in the town of Bagamoyo, representatives from the groups said the draft constitution in its present form overlooked important gender elements.

Anna Abdallah, the chairwoman of the group, said that the draft constitution is gender blind since it does not expressly recognise the roles of a man and a woman.

“The constitution should define the word ‘person’ because in some communities people believe a person is a man and not a woman,” she said.

She observed that although article 46 of the draft constitution guarantees some women’s rights it doesn’t fully address the issues that affect women

“We do not want only one article explaining everything about gender, we need them covered broadly in the constitution,” she said.

Women’s rights activists among other things, are lobbying for a 50-50 representation of women in Tanzania politics, the right to own land and widow’s right to inherit property and protection against gender -based violence.

Ruth Meena, from Women Fund Tanzania said gender equality was an important issue in the new constitution because without it women would still be oppressed.


Tina Fey and Amy Pohler ask Neil Patrick Harris to "Twerk it"

Sinéad O'Connor's open letter to Miley Cyrus

Boom! there it is

The music business doesn't give a shit about you, or any of us. They will prostitute you for all you are worth, and cleverly make you think its what YOU wanted … and when you end up in rehab as a result of being prostituted, 'they' will be sunning themselves on their yachts in Antigua, which they bought by selling your body and you will find yourself very alone.

None of the men ogling you give a shit about you either, do not be fooled. Many's the woman mistook lust for love. If they want you sexually that doesn't mean they give a fuck about you. All the more true when you unwittingly give the impression you don't give much of a fuck about yourself. And when you employ people who give the impression they don't give much of a fuck about you either. No one who cares about you could support your being pimped … and that includes you yourself.

Yes, I'm suggesting you don't care for yourself. That has to change. You ought be protected as a precious young lady by anyone in your employ and anyone around you, including you. This is a dangerous world. We don't encourage our daughters to walk around naked in it because it makes them prey for animals and less than animals, a distressing majority of whom work in the music industry and it's associated media.

You are worth more than your body or your sexual appeal. The world of showbiz doesn't see things that way, they like things to be seen the other way, whether they are magazines who want you on their cover, or whatever … Don't be under any illusions … ALL of them want you because they're making money off your youth and your beauty … which they could not do except for the fact your youth makes you blind to the evils of show business. If you have an innocent heart you can't recognise those who do not.

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