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ismnotwasm

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Member since: Mon Aug 23, 2004, 10:18 PM
Number of posts: 37,045

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Portraits of Albanian Women Who Have Lived Their Lives As Men

Stunning photographs; incredible story.






For her project Sworn Virgins of Albania, photographer Jill Peters visited to the mountain villages of northern Albania to capture portraits of “burneshas,” or females who have lived their lives as men for reasons related to their culture and society.

Many of the women assumed their male identities from an early age as a way to avoid the old codes that governed the tribal clans, which stated that women were the property of their husbands. Peters explains,

The freedom to vote, drive, conduct business, earn money, drink, smoke, swear, own a gun or wear pants was traditionally the exclusive province of men. Young girls were commonly forced into arranged marriages, often with much older men in distant villages. As an alternative, becoming a Sworn Virgin, or ‘burnesha” elevated a woman to the status of a man and granted her all the rights and privileges of the male population. In order to manifest the transition such a woman cut her hair, donned male clothing and sometimes even changed her name. Male gestures and swaggers were practiced until they became second nature. Most importantly of all, she took a vow of celibacy to remain chaste for life. She became a “he”. This practice continues today but as modernization inches toward the small villages nestled in the Alps, this archaic tradition is increasingly seen as obsolete. Only a few aging Sworn Virgins remain.

Thus, Peters wanted to capture this fading tradition before it disappeared forever. She also writes that she learned a great deal from her interactions with her subjects and their communities:

I learned that the Burrnesha are well respected within their communities. They possess an indescribable amount of strength and pride, and value their family honor above all else. Their absolute transition is wholly accepted, posited and taken without question by the people among whom they live. But most surprising, is they have very few regrets for the great deal they have sacrificed.


http://petapixel.com/2012/12/26/portraits-of-albanian-women-who-have-lived-their-lives-as-men/

Victim Testifies in US Naval Academy Gang Rape Trial

Nearly a year and a half after reporting her own gang rape, the victim of the alleged sexual assault enacted by three football players from the U.S. Naval Academy has finally had her day in court. Wednesday, the female midshipman testified that fellow U.S. Naval Academy students Tra’ves Bush, Eric Graham and Joshua Tate all had sex with her at an off-campus party in April of 2012 when she was too drunk to consent.

The victim testified that she only remembered snippets of the evening, with one memory of sitting on the bed with Bush (who she had just ended a casual relationship with) standing over her and another of being crouched down in a car alongside Tate and Graham. In the car, she recalled being upset and repeatedly saying “I’m sorry, I’m sorry,” but the rest is blank. Of when she awoke the next morning — still at the party house — the victim told the court, “I noticed I was really disheveled. I was really nerve-racked because I didn’t know what had happened.” According to previous reports, she also had a sore back and bruising on her body.

Getting a ride back to the academy in the same car she remembered being in with Tate and Graham the night before, the victim noticed a discarded condom wrapper, but it wasn't until a short while later, when she began reading derogatory things posted by her classmates on social media about an unnamed woman and a possible assault that had taken place at the party, that she began to piece it all together.

The victim testified that she then confronted Tate, who had invited her to the party, and asked if they had sex. Tate confirmed that she had had sex with both him and Graham, allegedly telling her, "What, you don’t remember? I’m going to have to refresh your memory, then."


http://jezebel.com/victim-testifies-in-us-naval-academy-gang-rape-trial-1221936315

Hitler was a bitter Beta Male who wouldn’t have started WW2 if he’d read my pickup artist blog

Heartiste: Hitler was a bitter Beta Male who wouldn’t have started WW2 if he’d read my pickup artist blog


Some people dream of going back in a time machine and strangling baby Hitler in his crib, thus preventing World War II, the Holocaust, any number of stupid memes. Our dear friend Heartiste — the repellent right-wing pickup guru — dreams instead of delivering the incredibly wussy teenage Hitler his own Sixteen Commandments of Poon, thus saving young Adolph from the horrors of Betahood and perhaps also preventing World War II, etc.

Heartiste, who evidently gets his news from seven-year-old stories in the Daily Mail, has been reading about a not-so-new book that tells the story of teenage Hitler’s unrequited crush on a girl named Stefanie Isak. To hear the Daily Mail tell it, Hitler was quite the beta simp, watching from a distance in fury as alpha male army officers charmed (and won over) the young lass. Heartiste is driven to comment:


Hitler the bitterboy beta. Instead of learning from his alpha male betters, he lashed out at them, much the same way our modern manboobs lash out at alpha male “douchebags” and “players”.

Thanks for the mention, douchebag!

Anyhoo, so young Hitler wrote the girl poems, stalked her, contemplated kidnapping her, and considered a murder-suicide backup plan in case the kidnapping didn’t work out — you know, all your typical nice guy stuff. What he never did was talk to her.

Poor Hitler! That’s what “One-itis” can do to you!


http://manboobz.com/2013/08/27/heartiste-hitler-was-a-bitter-beta-male-who-wouldnt-have-been-so-mad-if-hed-read-my-pickup-artist-blog/


How We Got Here: A Timeline Of The Syria Chemical Weapons Saga

While the White House insists in public that no decisions have yet been made, it seems increasingly likely that the U.S. will join in with several of its allies in launching limited punitive strikes against Syria for the use of chemical weapons against civilians. While the wisdom of setting so clear a trigger for action has been questioned since Obama first set chemical weapons use as a so-called “red-line,” the international norm against their use has been growing since the horrors of mustard gas were first observed in World War I.
Here’s a look at some of the most important events that have taken place in the time since the red-line was first put into place:

Aug. 20, 2012: President Obama during a speech on the threat of weapons of mass-destruction warns against chemical weapons’ use in Syria, for the first time setting the U.S.’ red-line against such a move. “That would change my calculus,” he said. “That would change my equation.” The warning serves as the first U.S. threat of intervention in the conflict through military means, at a time when it is becoming more obvious that the civil war would be lengthy.


Dec. 3, 2012: Obama repeats his warning to Assad in a speech at the National Defense University, saying “The use of chemical weapons is and would be totally unacceptable. And if you make the tragic mistake of using these weapons, there will be consequences and you will be held accountable.”

Mar. 19, 2013: Syria claims that rebel fighters used chemical weapons against government forces during fighting outside of Aleppo, killing 26 people including government soldiers. To add credibility to their claim, Damascus writes to United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon to send in a team of investigators to confirm. The Syrian oppositions denies the regime’s claims, saying the weapons were actually unleashed against them, echoing the call for an investigation.


http://thinkprogress.org/security/2013/08/28/2539341/syria-chemical-weapons-saga/

Solidarity is For Miley Cyrus: The Racial Implications of her VMA Performance

I thought this deserved its own thread. This whole article is good.

Jezebel's piece on the performance chose to focus on the slut shaming that has been thrown Miley's way in the wake of the performance. All fine and good. Slut shaming is bad, don't do it. On that we can all agree. What it didn't acknowledge was the incredibly racist nature of that performance. So I brought it up.

Okay.... but can we talk about the problematic and racist nature of her performance? Her literal use of people as props? Her association of her newfound sexuality with the traditional codifiers of black female culture, thereby perpetuating the Jezebel stereotype that black women are lewd, lascivious and uncontrollably sexualized? Can we talk about the straight up minstrelsy of that performance? Can we talk about how not a single black person won an award last night even though the people who did win awards have been mining black music and culture for years?

No? Ok... I'll just sit at the back of the bus then. #solidarityisforwhitewomen


So I'll include it here. What Miley did last night was easily one of the most racist displays I've ever seen. From her insistence on twerking, to her use of all black women as literal props (they were teddy bears) to her smacking of her dancer's ass and the simulation of rimming, it is very clear to me, that Miley thinks that black women's bodies are to be enjoyed, devalued and put on display for entertainment purposes.



Now some people have said that Miley is only 20, and she's "just a child" and that she doesn't understand what she's doing. But Miley isn't new to this. Her video for the single wasn't even the first precursor to this madness. She has been quoted as saying that she explicitly wanted "a black sound" for her new album. She is more than aware of what she's doing, and has consciously made the choice to dabble in traditionally black aesthetics and sound in order to breakaway from her good girl image and further her career.



http://groupthink.jezebel.com/solidarity-is-for-miley-cyrus-1203666732?action_type_map=%5B%22og.likes%22%5D&action_object_map=%5B155252038013239%5D&fb_action_types=og.likes&fb_source=other_multiline&fb_action_ids=10200674489208193&action_ref_map=%5B%5D

To The Dudebro Who Thinks He’s Insulting Me by Calling Me a Feminist by Jonn Scalzi

(Fun pictures inside)


Over the weekend, some dudebro with a history of shitting on women took this picture of me (which you may remember from here) and meme-ized it, with the intent, given his personal history and predilections, of mocking me — both for my views as regards women, and for wearing a dress.

Well, this dudebro clearly knows his way to this site, where the picture was originally posted, by me, so let me go ahead and address him directly.

Dudebro: Let me detail for you the various ways this picture has utterly failed you as an attempt to ridicule me.

One: This picture was taken as a result of a dare, to wit: if people on Twitter pledged $500 to the Clarion Foundation in a half hour, I would take a picture of myself in a regency dress, of which there just happened to be one in the house because my friend Mary Robinette Kowal, writer of a number of successful, award-nominated regency-era fantasies, was visiting and had one with her. Twitter came through with $600 in the allotted time, and, well, fair’s fair.

So when I see this picture, what I am reminded of is that I have the power, with just a simple, entirely mild instance of cross-dressing, to raise hundreds of dollars in minutes for a worthy charitable organization. If you had that power, would you not use it? Well, actually, I don’t imagine you would use it, since the idea of being a man in a dress apparently fills you with sniggering, confused terror. Fortunately for Clarion, I don’t have that problem. Which brings us to this:


http://whatever.scalzi.com/category/uncategorized/

So how come Miley Cyrus gets shamed

For her performance On the VMA's with Beetlejuice aka Robin Thicke, and Robin Thicke slides on by like oil, even though he looks like the King of creepers?

Hey, there goes your feminist cred You claimed for "Blurred Lines" Robin. You're not even trying anymore

If Betty Draper Joined The Army

As the U.S. military prepares over the next few years to open all jobs to women, including combat roles, the Army recently debuted a newly designed, female-friendly uniform. Originally conceived as a women’s uniform, it’s now being referred to as a unisex option. The new style is designed to better fit a woman’s body, featuring narrower shoulders, a fitted waist, adjusted sleeve length and a rank insignia that sits above—rather than right on—the breast.
What’s most striking about the new uniform is how similar it looks to the current masculine-geared version. The new design incorporates small tweaks for fit rather than any great re-imagining of style. It seems like a conscious effort to ensure that female soldiers won’t stand out from their male counterparts.

But not that long ago, the U.S. Army was advising a far different look, style and attitude for women serving in the military, as is evident in these official training films from the late 1960s and early ’70s, which recently were made available on the National Archives’ YouTube channel.
“Military Etiquette and Grooming” is a series of three films produced by the Department of Defense, aimed at teaching members of the Women’s Army Corps the proper way to dress, style their hair and makeup, and behave in a proper military (read: feminine) manner.
The shorts, along with a fourth bonus video, are an amazing time capsule, and, from our 21st-century perspective, unintentionally hilarious.

Remember, of course, the context: These films were made in the era of the Vietnam War, the ’60s counterculture, the early stirrings of the Watergate scandal and the rise of the modern women’s movement. The world was turning upside down, and institutions were scrambling to resist the changes or to adjust, often in embarrassingly awkward ways.

Like the TV series Mad Men, which now is edging fitfully into that same late ’60s/early ’70s era, these Army training films serve as a reminder of how far women have come. But they also reveal a deep current of sexism in the military that continues in today’s armed forces.


http://www.thedailybeast.com/witw/articles/2013/08/23/army-offers-women-updated-roles-and-new-clothes-to-go-with-them.html

Listen Up, Ladies: Here's Everything Real Men Think Is Wrong With You



I've been doing some scholarly research, and I noticed this thing that's been really dragging society down for the past few millennia: it's that everything is wrong with you. You are gross. First of all, your hair is gross, because it is not long and thick enough. But don't strap fake hair to your head! That's also gross! Also, what the fuck is up with your skin? It is so dry and scaly like a lizard (but not one of those sexy lizards)! Except uuuuuuugh, do you have to take so long putting on your idiotic woman-lotion? This penis isn't going to fondle itself! CHOP CHOP. Now, I know all this contradictory minutiae regarding your attractiveness can get confusing (especially with your lipstick-encrusted walnut brains!), but luckily, plenty of guys are generous enough to explain what they don't like about you in great detail. Over and over. You're welcome.

For your edification, the good folks over at Yahoo have compiled a list of the "15 Biggest Beauty Turnoffs from Real Guys"—yet another survey of "real guys" to reinforce the precise line of shit we women need to walk to remain attractive to them (it's the least we can do, really). Because that media trope never gets tired. Let's jump in!

If you are looking to attract a man with your fluffy false lashes and your flowing fake mane, it is time to take a different approach. We scouted the truth and discovered the things women do that make men turn the other way. All in all, men love to see the woman underneath the makeup, so ditch the dramatic routine and go natural for once.
First of all, I am neither an empty man-socket nor a fucking venus flytrap. I am not looking to "attract a man." I am just trying to do my stuff and then maybe meet a person who likes me because I am also a person. I didn't want to get all serious right off the bat, BUT SORRY: Women's grueling, lifelong, losing battle to transform themselves into magical, flawless creatures with Disney hair and 15-inch waists and massive ham-lips is not for the benefit of women. And when men say that they "love to see the woman underneath the makeup," they're not saying they want to see your leg stubble and greasy bangs—they're saying they want you to be better at hiding your maintenance routine. Because the maintenance spoils the fantasy.



http://jezebel.com/5936323/listen-up-ladies-heres-everything-real-men-think-is-wrong-with-you

Losing Virginity for Good


Virginity.
It’s something we all know of, something we’ve all talked about. It’s something we, as a culture, obsess over.
It’s a very valuable thing to have, if you’re a woman, and a very perplexing thing to have if you’re a man.
Female virginity is valuable to society, but a man’s isn’t really worth anything; in fact, it’s better for a man’s social status if he is not a virgin.
And this ties into what is known as the sexual double standard: Women are shamed for having sex and men are rewarded for it.
The idea of your first penis-in-vagina sexual encounter being something significant and life altering (well, for women anyway) has origins in women being considered property.
That is to say, virginity is a social construction that came about because of the commodification of women.
Since women were (and sometimes still are) considered property, when they got married, they were passed on to their husbands from their fathers. You know the whole father-walks-his-daughter-down-the-aisle tradition? Well, it represents a transfer of property from her father to her husband. Her father was literally giving her away.


http://everydayfeminism.com/2013/08/losing-virginity-for-good/
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