The Big Picture: Help Families Work with Robert Reich

Tanya’s comment: These are all really good ideas. In fact, it’s crazy that there aren’t already laws for these labor rights.

Women on Twitter Start a National Conversation About Misogyny

 

It’s too bad that it has taken tragedy after tragedy for America to start acknowledging and talking as a nation about the consequences of rampant and overlooked misogyny. Just because American women aren’t forced to  cover themselves from head to toe in public doesn’t mean that there is no sexism in this country.

Continue reading

What We Expect of Women

Photo courtesy of Flickr.com

Photo courtesy of Flickr.com

The Guardian has the best article on the Elliot Rodger shooting that I’ve read so far. It is a careful examination of the man and his motives, as well as how society’s attitudes towards women no doubt played a role in the injury and murder of his victims. We’re all asking why this happened, and this article draws attention to what I consider the most crucial aspects of the crime and Rodger’s personality (from TheGuardian.com):

Continue reading

Women’s Magazines Are REALLY Trying to Help You (?)

Kerry Washington on Elle Magazine cover

Kerry Washington on Elle Magazine cover

Here is a sampling of recent women’s magazine articles (print and online):

Cosmopolitan 

(Diet Tips) Six Ways To Make Your Bikini Your Bitch

(Sex Tips) Leg Sex: It’s a Thing

(Beauty Tips) Are You Applying Your Skincare All Wrong?

(Celebrity-Inspired Tips) Nicole vs Anne in The Battle of Bleached Hair- Who Wore It Best?

Continue reading

Black Republican Candidate Speaks Against Planned Parenthood and Gay Rights Movement

Bishop E.W. Jackson- courtesy of DailyNews.com

Bishop E.W. Jackson- courtesy of NYDailyNews.com

From RawStory.com:

Watch YouTube video of his speech– http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Oi_KaZ53eDg&feature=youtu.be

A Virginia Republican who on Saturday secured the nomination to run for Lt. Governor said in an online video published last year that he believes “black civil rights leaders” are responsible for a “genocide” of African-American children by supporting Democrats and reproductive choice.

E.W. Jackson, a pastor and Harvard graduate who previous sought Virginia’s senate seat, is the party’s first African-American candidate for statewide office since the 1980s. He’s also part of a trio of fringe conservatives leading the Virginia Republican Party’s statewide ticket, joined by state Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli running for governor and state Sen. Mark Obenshain running for attorney general.

“The Democrat Party has created an unholy alliance between certain so-called civil rights leaders and Planned Parenthood, which has killed unborn black babies by the tens of millions,” he said in a video published to his official YouTube page. “Planned Parenthood has been far more lethal to black lives than the KKK ever was.”

During his last run for public office, Jackson insisted that the so-called 3/5ths clause in the Constitution, which counted slaves as 3/5ths of a man, was “an anti-slavery amendment” designed to reduce the voting power of slave-owning states. That woefully wrong theory was originally floated by Republican conspiracy theorist Glenn Beck and apparently repeated by Jackson without examination.

In the video published last year, Jackson adds that Democrats “and their black civil rights allies are partners in this genocide,” going on to insist the persecution of LGBT people is nothing like the persecution of African-Americans throughout U.S. history.

“They can keep their homosexuality private,” he said. “You and I cannot hide being black. I need not recount to you the painful history of slavery, Jim Crow, lynchings and sterilizations, all because of skin color. Anyone who dares equate the so-called gay rights movement to the history of black Americans is exploiting the black community.”

Interestingly, as he made these comments, a photo of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. hung on a wall just over his right shoulder. Dr. King’s wife Coretta, before her death, spoke out passionately in favor of LGBT marriage equality despite a coalition of black pastors who urged that she recognize the civil rights movement and the LGBT movement are fundamentally different.

“I still hear people say that I should not be talking about the rights of lesbian and gay people and I should stick to the issue of racial justice,” King said in 1998. “But I hasten to remind them that Martin Luther King Jr. said, ‘Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.’”

In my opinion:
I found this article on RawStory.com (which has also been reblogged by a few others) and had a very strong reaction to it, which I’d like to recount here. First, I’d like to take a look at the statements made by E.W. Jackson in the article, then analyze them.
In his first statement, he says, “the Democrat Party has created an unholy alliance between certain so-called civil rights leaders and Planned Parenthood,” and likens abortion facilities such as Planned Parenthood to the Ku Klux Klan. To equate abortion facilities to the KKK with the claim that millions (really, millions?) of black babies die due to abortion assumes the fact that black mothers are disproportionately pressured by society to get abortions. Now, I admit that I don’t know the exact statistics on the proportion of black women to other women in regards to which group gets abortions more, but to say that black babies are being murdered is an extreme statement. Abortion is a choice a mother makes, and with a still strong and aggressive anti-abortion movement, most women feel pressure NOT to go through with the procedure. In fact, the lives of abortion doctors are often threatened by anti-abortion activists.
Therefore, this statement is illogical. It is also hateful- just because you disagree with another person’s values or politics doesn’t make it right to accuse them of such evils as racism and genocide, which he states in paragraph five. How can he be a leader of people, including black people, since he is black and presumably cares about the lot of blacks, if he hates half of them?
In paragraph six, he states that “you and I cannot hide being black” and that “anyone who dares equate the so-called gay rights movement to the history of black Americans is exploiting the black community.” Very bold words, but I only partially agree. As a black women, I know it’s true that no matter what I do, I cannot hide my skin tone. But it makes no sense to compare the experience of the gay community with that of the black community. Both suffer injustice and discrimination, so why build walls between each other when we could be showing kindness and empathy for each other? Which approach really benefits both groups more- hate or love and compassion for our fellow living beings with whom we share this Earth?
To E.W. Jackson and those who share his mindset, I say this: to carry such hate must weigh heavily on your heart and spirit. I can only imagine how it must feel for you to walk around giving off that vibe. When you give out meanness and intolerance, you get it back eventually- people will know what you are doing and will respond accordingly. When you hate, you turn your back against what you are- a member of this planet, a living thing that is made of the very same things your “enemies” are.

Kanye West is a Misogynist

Kanye West- Photo courtesy of Wikimedia.org

Kanye West- Photo courtesy of Wikimedia.org

 

Even if you don’t listen to rap music regularly, you’ve most likely still heard of rapper Kanye West. He’s sold millions of albums, been nominated for and won Grammy Awards and MTV Videos Music Awards, and has been hailed as a great musician by Rolling Stone, Time, Vibe magazine, and several others

All of this disgusts me. Why? Because of his lyrics. While it is true that some of his music is more introspective than a lot of rap music of the day and discusses social and racial issues, enough of it is so sexist and narcissistic that the praise heaped on his work is baffling to me.

The dictionary defines the word “misogynist” to mean a person who hates, dislikes, mistrusts, or mistreats women. Kanye West does an excellent job convincing us that he indeed is a misogynist through his own music. Below are a sampling of some of his Grammy-winning lyrics. I apologize in advance for the crassness of the content. Just remember- he’s actually won AWARDS for this.

When necessary, I include translations- much of it is very difficult and messy to understand.

Lyrics from “Niggas In Paris”:

“She said, ‘Ye can we get married at the mall?’/I said, Look you need to crawl ‘fore you ball/Come and meet me in the bathroom stall/And show me why you deserve to have it all”

“You know how many hot bitches I own”

“Fuck that bitch, she don’t wanna dance”

For clarification purposes: “Ye” is short for Kanye. “Fore” means before. “Ball” means to make a lot of money and show it off.

Lyrics from “E.T.” (with Katy Perry) (from MetroLyrics.com):

“I got a dirty mind/I got filthy ways/I’m tryna lay my egg, egg,/ in your Milky Way”

“Pockets on Shrek, rockets on ya dick/Tell me what’s next, alien sex/I’ma disrobe you, then I’ma probe you/See I abducted you, so I tell ya what to do/I tell ya what to do, what to do, what to do”

For clarification purposes: “Tryna” means trying to. “I’ma” means I’m going to.

Lyrics from “Gold Digger”:

“18 years, 18 years/She got one of yo’ kids, got you for 18 years/I know somebody payin’ child support for one of his kids/His baby momma’s car and crib is bigger than his/You will see him on TV Any Given Sunday/ Win the Superbowl and drive off in a Hyundai”

“If you ain’t no punk, holla, “We want prenup”,”We want prenup!”/ yeaah/It’s something that you need to have/’Cause when she leave yo’ ass she gone leave with half”

For clarification purposes: “Crib” means house.

Lyrics from “Deuces” (remix):

“You know what, yo?/you a bitch!/you should have a travel agent cuz you a trip/you should make your own toilet tissue since you the shit/but all you got is some fucking issues you fucking bitch.”

For clarification purposes: “You the shit” means you think you’re so great.

Why is he being rewarded for this trash? Is the entertainment industry still this sexist?