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Member since: Mon Aug 23, 2004, 10:18 PM
Number of posts: 40,317

About Me

Whiteness is a scourge on humanity. Voting for Obama that one time is not a get out of being a racist card

Journal Archives

Virginity, Violence and Male Entitlement

I can even manage to feel sorry for the men who empathize with Elliot, because I’m sure that recognizing that part of yourself is difficult and frightening.

I cannot, however, feel sorry for Elliot himself. I don’t especially care how sad and lonely he was. I can’t find it in me to feel badly that women rejected him over and over. I definitely don’t have time for people who seem to think that all of this could have been prevented if only Elliot had gotten laid.

I was a virgin when I was twenty two, by which I mean I’d never had penetrative sex with a man (or any kind of sex with anyone, to be honest). And yes, I believe that virginity is a social construct and not an actual thing, but at the time it was very real to me. I was embarrassed and ashamed of my virginity, and I definitely felt unwanted, undesirable and unattractive. To make things even worse, there was (and continues to be) this pervasive myth that any woman can have sex whenever she wants, because all men are animals and will fuck anything they can. But they didn’t want to fuck me.

And you know what? Literally at no time ever did I think, gee, I should go on a killing spree.

I never felt entitled to men’s bodies just because I wanted them.

I never blamed all men everywhere for my inability to get it on.

Never. Not once.

And while I understand that there is more social pressure for boys to be sexually active than there is for girls, that doesn’t mean that girls experience any kind of expectations surrounding their sexual initiation. To be honest, being a twenty two year old virgin made me feel like a freak – no one else I knew was as inexperienced as I was, and the older I got, the harder it became to admit to my peers that I’d never even seen a guy’s junk, much less done anything with it. By the time I got to university, whenever I told people that I’d never had sex, they gave me the once-over, like, what is wrong with you. I worried that I had some kind of sell-by date, like there was an age that I would hit when no one would want to touch my virginal self with a ten foot pole. I just wanted to get the damn thing over with already so that I could get on with the rest of my life.

But I never considered blaming all men everywhere for my problems.

See, the difference is that I didn’t feel like sex was something that men owed me. I didn’t believe that other women, the women who dated the people with whom I was madly, hopelessly in love, were unfairly co-opting something that was rightfully mine. I didn’t think that being nice to men meant that I was entitled to date them. I was miserable and lonely, but I didn’t try to pin the blame for that loneliness on anyone else, let alone an entire gender.


Why Girls Today Think Sexual Harassment Is Normal Stuff

The study, from the journal Gender & Society, built upon results from a 2011 survey where 56% of middle- and high-school girls and 40% of boys reported that they’d received aggressive sexual advances — pressure for a date or to have sex, or verbal harassment. Of those harassed, only 9% reported the incident.

Harris-Perry and company were aghast at what they mistook for an initial report on how often sexual harassment occurs among kids. Unfortunately, though, that bit is actually old news.

In fact, the original contribution of the Gender & Society study is to reveal the extent to which girls who’ve suffered sexual harassment often see it as “normal stuff” that “just happens” because it’s what “guys do.”

The researcher, Heather Hlavka, finds that survivors of sexual aggression understand these aggressive encounters partly in terms of “dominant discourses.”

Translation: they frame their own experiences of harassment based on cultural notions about what gender and sexuality are — or should be.


Yes, All Men: Every Man Needs to Understand Internalized Misogyny and Male Violence

In the aftermath of the weekend’s ghastly events at UC Santa Barbara, there’s been plenty of discussion about our pervasive culture of misogyny, and the myriad destructive ways in which it manifests. A large part of the narrative has been that men need to shut up and listen to women’s voices on this topic, which is certainly true. But men also need to talk, honestly and amongst ourselves, about the nature of masculinity, and acknowledge our own destructive impulses. This is a problem that men need to be discussing precisely because it’s a problem with men. And it’s only men who are going to fix it.

The most important thing we need to realize is that potential to be the problem lies within all of us — and because only by acknowledging this can we start to look to a solution. I’m not saying we all have the potential to be killers, but we all have the capacity to to be unthinkingly misogynistic, to refuse to examine our behavior and our assumptions, to subscribe to the sentiments that fuel the “men’s rights” movement and its ilk.

We’re brought up that way — not always by our parents, but by the world we live in. (In general, when I say “taught” in this piece, I don’t mean that someone actively sits you down and says, “Now listen, son, this is how to objectify women.” It’s more a case of cultural osmosis than anything else.) No one — least of all kids in their late teens and early 20s, a demographic that accounts for the overwhelming majority of Reddit MRA types — exists independently of the environment that shaped them.

And many of them can relate to the misogyny that drove Elliot Rodger — if not in degree, then at least in principle. The Atlantic‘s Noah Berlatsky wrote an excellent piece yesterday about how he could recognize the sentiment that underpinned Rodger’s video:


Men Who Read Magazines That Objectify Women Are Less Likely To Respect Sexual Boundaries

One to put in the 'No Shit' pile

Young men who read magazines like Maxim, Playboy, and Men’s Health are less likely to seek their partners’ consent or respect sexual boundaries, according to a recent study conducted by Washington State University researchers. The study’s lead authors say that could be because magazine articles providing tips about how to have a better sex life often give readers a “false impression” about how to negotiate a consensual sexual encounter.
The study was based on over 300 college students who responded to questions about their magazine consumption and personal relationships. Researchers found that “the dominant heterosexual scripts in men’s magazines is negatively associated with consent negotiation intentions.” In other words, the men who read articles about how to land a hot girl are more likely to make inappropriate sexual advances toward women who aren’t interested, or push a sexual situation too far even when their partner is telling them to stop.
The correlation here doesn’t prove that these magazines are causing men to approach women in a predatory way. The researchers point out it’s certainly possible that guys who already have “dismissive” attitudes toward women are drawn to reading magazines that objectify women. But they also suggest that the media can contribute to larger cultural attitudes about sexual relationships.
“We learn a lot about how to act in a relationship by what we see and read in the media,” Stacey J.T. Hust, the lead researcher for the study, explained in a press release about her results. “Bad information can lead to bad decisions.”



When Women Refuse

This is a tumbler for stories of the violence men inflict on women for refusing sexual advances. It's pretty new. Each link is a story. Obviously, strong trigger warning. About that-- trigger warnings, the irony of having to use them given the activities of the last couple of days is supremely ironic.

I'll let those browse who wish to, add your story if want to


Judge orders release of man who admitted raping 40 women

A California judge has ordered an admitted serial rapist be released from a mental hospital after spending more than four decades in and out of state custody.

KTTV reports the judge decided Christopher Hubbart must be released by July 7.

DISTRICT ATTORNEY: "We will do everything within our authority to protect the residents of Los Angeles County from this dangerous predator."

Now, protesters have gathered outside the home where Hubbart is expected to live within the next month and a half.

PROTESTER: "We don't want him here."

RESIDENT: "Now, all these women and these children are going to be in fear."

MAYOR PRO TEM: "This is probably the biggest travesty of justice in my lifetime."

KABC points out Hubbart admitted to raping about 40 women between 1971 and 1982, but police say the number might be closer to 100.Hubbart was sentenced to prison in 1982, made parole in 1990 but was sent back to prison after committing another attack just two months later. He's been in a state mental hospital since 1996, but officials now say he is "fit for release." (Via KCBS)

Though the upcoming release does not mean complete freedom for Hubbart. He'll move into a rural home away from the hospital, but police say a GPS tracking device will constantly monitor him. (ViaKNBC)

For the first six months to one year after his release, a supervisor will also be with Hubbart any time he goes out in public. Hubbart must also go to therapy sessions twice a week. Still, the Los Angeles Times reports many people are outraged. So far, it's not clear when Hubbart will be released.


If gay guys talked to straight guys like straight guys talk to gay guys

(From a FB friend)

Neil Gaiman's Journal: Why I am Smiling In This Picture

One of the reasons I'm smiling so widely in this picture is I'd just been talking to the people in Azraq camp who run the child friendly space it was taken in. They were mostly from UNICEF.

They had explained that when the kids arrived in the camp, only the previous week, they didn't talk or make noise. They were subdued. When they drew pictures, the pictures were of explosions, of severed body parts, of weapons and dead people.

The camp had only been open two weeks. The kids I saw and spoke to were kids – noisy, happy, curious, hilarious, and they showed us their drawings, of butterflies and children and mountains and animals and hearts.

That's what I'm smiling about. That room full of noisy kids was the best place in the world.

I spoke to some of these children, who told me about their lives in Syria during the troubles, about their escape (“there were rocks in the desert, and we had to turn on the headlights to see, but when they turned on the headlights of the car people would shoot at us, and my parents were frightened, but I wasn't...”). For some of them it had been three years since they last went to school.


How To Tell Who Hasn't Read The New 'Atlantic' Cover Story

How To Tell Who Hasn't Read The New 'Atlantic' Cover Story

1. They talk a lot about slavery.

When people hear "reparations," they automatically think that what's being discussed is reparations for slavery. Coates does talk about slavery in the piece — in particular, he notes the story of a formerly enslaved woman named Bellinda Royal who sued her former owner for recompense for her labors. But much of his focus falls on American housing policy from nearly a century later, events that have happened within living (and even recent) memory.

2. They talk about the logistics of reparations.

One of the critiques that always greet conversations about reparations is that they would be politically untenable and logistically thorny.

Coates is pointedly not interested in these questions. (Or at least, he isn't in this essay.) His larger argument is less about reparations for our history, per se, than it is about a kind of excavation of it.

3. They talk about affirmative action or welfare.

The other leap that people make when they hear conversations about reparations is to point to contemporary policy attempts to ameliorate inequality, most notably affirmative action and welfare. (Let's leave aside for a moment the very big question of whether these policies do or were ever intended to right historical wrongs or inequities.)


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