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Member since: Mon Aug 23, 2004, 10:18 PM
Number of posts: 37,173

Journal Archives

This Is the Perfect Response to Abercrombie & Fitch's Dumbass CEO

Never in our culture do we see sexy photo shoots that pair short, fat, unconventional models with not short, not fat, professional models. To put it in your words: "unpopular kids" with "cool kids". It's socially acceptable for same to be paired with same, but never are contrasting bodies positively mixed in the world of advertisement. The juxtaposition of uncommonly paired bodies is visually jarring, and, even though I wish it didn’t, it causes viewers to feel uncomfortable. This is largely attributed to companies like yours that perpetuate the thought that fat women are not beautiful. This is inaccurate, but if someone were to look through your infamous catalog, they wouldn't believe me.


I couldn't resist this women; she's a total badass.

“They shut me up in Prose–” — Emily Dickinson

Dude Wants to Shoot Hillary Clinton in the Vag, Unaware Vaginas KILL

(Offensive content)

I'm sure by now you're familiar with Pete Santilli, the right-wing radio host, "former U.S. marine, and Coca-Cola Executive," who recently presented his extremely impressive four-point plan for shooting Hillary Clinton in the vagina.

The plan goes something like this: 1) Shoot Hillary Clinton in the vagina. 2) Look Hillary Clinton right in the eye. 3) Force Hillary Clinton, former Secretary of State, who has just been shot in the vagina, to sit there and listen to you bloviate about Benghazi and Osama and building 7 and all the paranoid false flag doodoo-nonsense you talk about with your cousin Craig on the Facebook group you two made called "Cock-a-Doodle-DON'T, Sheeple! Hillary Clinton's Vagina (More Like Hell-Are-She Spit-Scum's Va-SLIME-uh!) Was an Inside Job with Pete 'n' Craig, SocialPISSt Hunters: The Movie, Coming Sept. 11, 2014" (6 people "liked" this!). 4) Win? I guess? Profit?

Now, the problem with this whole thing — I mean, the MAIN problem (lol @ the idea that there's one problem here) — is that the world is currently, clumsily, dealing with a millennia-old epidemic of violence against women's genitals. And reducing the former Secretary of State to her junk is yet another way of reminding women that what's between our legs trumps what's between our ears every time. That's why Pete Santilli went straight for Hillary Clinton's internal sexual organs, not her brain or her heart or her guts — and why it's a more culturally significant statement (though no less brutal) than his follow-up plans to shoot President Obama in the testicles and then penis.


6 Women Scientists Who Were Snubbed Due to Sexism

In April, National Geographic News published a story about the letter in which scientist Francis Crick described DNA to his 12-year-old son. In 1962, Crick was awarded a Nobel Prize for discovering the structure of DNA, along with fellow scientists James Watson and Maurice Wilkins.

Several people posted comments about our story that noted one name was missing from the Nobel roster: Rosalind Franklin, a British biophysicist who also studied DNA. Her data were critical to Crick and Watson's work, but as several commenters noted, Franklin was robbed of recognition. (See her section below for details.)

She was not the first woman to have endured indignities in the male-dominated world of science, but Franklin's case is especially egregious, said Ruth Lewin Sime, a retired chemistry professor at Sacramento City College who has written on women in science.

Over the centuries, female researchers have had to work as "volunteer" faculty members, seen credit for significant discoveries they've made assigned to male colleagues, and been written out of textbooks.

They typically had paltry resources and fought uphill battles to achieve what they did, only "to have the credit attributed to their husbands or male colleagues," said Anne Lincoln, a sociologist at Southern Methodist University in Texas, who studies biases against women in the sciences.

Today's women scientists believe that attitudes have changed, said Laura Hoopes at Pomona College in California, who has written extensively on women in the sciences—"until it hits them in the face." Bias against female scientists is less overt, but it has not gone away.

Here are six female researchers who did groundbreaking work—and whose names are likely unfamiliar for one reason: because they are women.


Beyond war: women transforming militarism, building a nonviolent world

If we want to ensure that humanity is not doomed to repeat it’s bloodiest century, the logical move would be to mount an international campaign to see that competent women are swiftly accepted into policy-making positions in all conflict countries, says Scilla Elworthy

Next year will mark the centenary of the start of the “war to end all wars”. Watching television news today, you might conclude that humanity is doomed to repeat it’s bloodiest century. But watching the trends, you would see a very different picture - a picture that shows the key role of women in decreasing violence worldwide.

In a brilliant article in December 2012 former Australian foreign minister Gareth Evans spelled out the facts: “Over the last two decades, major wars and episodes of mass violence worldwide have become much less frequent and deadly. After a high point in the late 1980s and very early 1990s, there has been a decline of well over 50% in the number of major conflicts both between and within states; in the number of genocidal and other mass atrocities; and in the number of people killed as a result of them.”

Explanations of this phenomenon vary. Steven Pinker: “The decline of violence is a fractal phenomenon. You can see it over millennia, over centuries, over decades and over years.” Evans concludes that this is due to “the huge upsurge in conflict prevention, conflict management, negotiated peacemaking, and post-conflict peace-building activity that has occurred over the last decade and a half – most of it spearheaded by the much-maligned UN.”

Our own experience at Peace Direct would enhance this explanation by demonstrating the fast increasing role of women in peace-building. We have so far documented 164 active and effective women’s peace building organisations in conflict areas worldwide - with 23 such organisations in Pakistan alone - and there are surely hundreds more to research worldwide.


The controversial 1972 "Women's Liberation issue of Wonder Woman


Article about 'letters to Ms.' And Mary Thorn

Yesterday, I attended the memorial for reconstructionist Mary Thom, whom we lost in a tragic motorcycle crash last month and who changed the voice of women’s rights as founding editor of groundbreaking feminist magazine Ms. In the early 1970s, just as women were emerging from the stifling grip of the Mad Men era and beginning to raise their voices against injustice at the workplace, Ms. came in as a beacon of what many of us have since come to take for granted, a brave promise of what life would be like in a gender-blind world.

Named after the form of address recommended in secretarial handbooks for when a woman’s marital status was unknown, subsequently subverted by women who wished to be recognized as individuals rather than defined by their relationship to a man, the magazine proclaimed in its inaugural half-column announcement that “Ms.” was meant “only to signify a female human being. It’s symbolic, and important. There’s a lot in a name.” Indeed, there was: From the outset, Ms. made no apologies for calling things by their true, hegemonically defiant names — in the Preview Issue, which appeared as an insert in New York magazine in the spring of 1972, Ms. launched “a campaign for honesty and freedom,” in which fifty-three women signed a statement declaring that they had had an abortion, which at the time was illegal in most states.


We need to talk about masculinity

We need to talk about masculinity. Across a country torn by recession and struggling to adapt to social change, men and boys are feeling lost and powerless, unsure what the future holds and what role they might play in it. Most feel as if they're not allowed to question what it means to be a man today – or discuss what it might mean tomorrow.

The Labour MP Diane Abbott, launching a new campaign this week, is not the first person to kick up a fuss about this "crisis of masculinity". In a speech to the thinktank Demos on Thursday she said that millions of young men are in distress, acting out violently or sinking into depression. Unfortunately, the only solution many in the audience could offer is not giving men and boys more power over their own lives, but restoring their traditional power over women, as "breadwinners" and "male providers".

In the real world, not all men want to be "breadwinners", just like not all men want to be violent, or to have power over women. What men do want, however, is to feel needed, and wanted, and useful, and loved. They aren't alone in this – it's one of the most basic human instincts, and for too long we have been telling men and boys that the only way they can be useful is by bringing home money to a doting wife and kids, or possibly by dying in a war. It was an oppressive, constricting message 50 years ago, and it's doubly oppressive now that society has moved on and even wars are being fought by robots who leave no widows behind.

The big secret about the golden age of "male providers" is that it never existed. First, women have always worked. Second, and just as importantly, there have always been men who were too poor, too queer, too sensitive, too disabled, too compassionate or simply too clever to submit to whatever model of "masculinity" society relied upon to keep its wars fought and its factories staffed. "Traditional masculinity", like "traditional femininity", is a form of social control, and seeking to reassert that control is no answer to a generation of young men who are quietly drowning in a world that doesn't seem to want them.


Best Thing You'll See Today: Town Sponsors Amputee Vereran's Wedding

Best Thing You'll See Today: Town Sponsors Amputee Veteran's Wedding
Marine Corporal Juan Dominguez, who lost both legs and his right arm in an explosion in 2010 while serving in Afghanistan, married the love of his life, Alexis, on April 27, 2013 in Temecula, California. People from the town celebrated Juan's service by gifting elements of the wedding to Juan and Alexis — including the reception venue, rehearsal dinner, entertainment, photography, flowers, cake, and makeup. The result is as heartwarming as you'd expect it to be. Damn these spring allergies!

Mom Dresses Daughter Up As Historical Badass Ladies, Is Awesome

My favorite;

Did you know that a thing parents do is take photographs of their kids? I know, a wild and wacky concept. I guess a parenting trend right now is to dress your kids up when you take photos of them on their birthdays, which actually sounds so fun because think of the possibilities! You could dress your child up like a puppy. Or a burrito. Or a cat dressed up as sushi. The options are endless! (I'm kind of jk, please no one call child protective services re: the emotional well-being of the children I do not currently have). But apparently most parents out there are not interested in dressing their little girls up as edible animals, and are instead sticking with the ever original ~*~DISNEY PRINCESS~*~ theme. Yawn.
But! But but but! Mom and photographer Jamie Moore bucked the trend, and the results are fantastic. Jamie seems to be less cynical and eye-roll-y than I am about Disney princesses, acknowledging "their beautiful dresses, perfect hair, gorgeous voices and...ideal love stories," but she didn't want to dress her daughter up like one for her 5 year photos. So she picked five influential extraordinary women from history and dressed her daughter up as them instead. The result is adorable amazing photos plus an inspirational message – this mom wins the internet this week, according to me, and I work at a parenting magazine by day so my opinion is very valid and important.


What’s in your Vulva?

Teaching women about the most intimate parts of their bodies was a hallmark of the feminist health movement of the 1970s. Our Bodies, Ourselves, published in 1970, signaled the beginning, encouraging women to know what was happening both in the gynecologist’s office and in the bedroom. It was 1983 when I was reaping the benefits of this up close and personal approach to my own body and the bodies of several other women.

The cervical cap instructional session turned out to be one of the most formative experiences of my life. It taught me several things that I never would have truly believed otherwise. The most important lesson was that everyone’s body looks different. In this group that I had the privilege to observe, some women had large labia; some had small; some had a visible clitoris; some women had shaved; others hadn’t. And all these women had sexual experiences with men apparently, because they all were at this gathering to obtain birth control. Their private parts—in fact, their entire bodies—were ALL alright, even desirable to somebody!

The realization that everyone’s body was different went beyond what their labia looked like. These women were young, old (from my mid-20s perspective), thin, fat, homely, pretty. . . . all kinds of women who didn’t want to get pregnant and who were taking matters into their own hands, taking charge of their own sexuality and their own bodies. The entire experience was weird (I’m not going to lie), but exhilarating.

Self-health is power!

I am convinced that if more women had the opportunity to see other women’s labia and vaginas, we might stem the rising tide of cosmetic vaginal surgeries. Labia reduction and vaginal rejuvenation, as these procedures are broadly called, are the fastest expanding area of cosmetic surgery. In fact, an entire discipline, called cosmeto-gynecology, has evolved to accommodate (and convince) the increasing numbers of women who believe there is something wrong with the way their labia are shaped. Some people are making a lot of money off of women’s growing insecurities. How do these women know their labia are not “normal,” when, most likely, they have no idea of the wide range of what normal actually is? Heterosexual women typically do not have the opportunity to scrutinize other women’s genitals.

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