Month: November 2012

Fringe and Astrid as a Disposable Mammy

Five years ago when Fringe first appeared on television, there was absolutely nothing like it on the air. Since then, we have seen alternate universes, fantastic events and now finally a dystopian world. With it’s final season, Fringe is taking the opportunity to wrap up storylines and bring closure to the world that they have created.

When I learned that the fifth season would be the final season of Fringe, one of the things I had hoped for was the redemption of the character of Astrid. Astrid, played by Jasika Nicole, has the distinction of not only being the only recurring African-American woman, but fifty percent of the cast of colour. Clearly, from the beginning, racial inclusion has not been a high priority for Fringe.

California school district hides the abuse, blames the victim

Trigger warning for sexual abuse.

Starting in 1996 and continuing for four years, Kristen Cunnane was sexually abused by two of her teachers at Joaquin Moraga Intermediate School. Cunnane has sued the Moraga School District and the principal, assistant principal, and superintendent at the time for negligence, fraud, concealment, and infliction of emotional distress for ignoring allegations of abuse and allowing her and other students to continue to be abused. The school district has replied that Cunnane “was herself careless and negligent in and about the matters alleged in the complaint,” that “said carelessness and negligence on [her] part proximately contributed to the happenings of the incident,” and that she “was herself responsible for the acts and damages.”

She was 12 years old when the abuse started.

I also kick men in the shins when they try to hold the door for me

Yesterday, I did a HuffPost Live segment on paying and dating — specifically, if you’re on a mixed-gender date, who should pick up the check? Back in the day paying was a dude’s responsibility, but now it’s less clear. So I got to be the crabby feminist talking about who I think should pay, and how to negotiate date payment. And as a response, my mug ended up on the homepage of AOL (awesome) with a caption that could have just as easily read, “Jill Filipovic, leader of the online castrati” (less awesome). You can watch the whole video here, but a basic summary of my points (and a bit of expansion on some of them):

Bid for Good

WAM, an organization very near and dear to my heart, is auctioning off some awesome items and services just in time for the holidays. Feministe friend Captain Awkward will give you advice! Ann Friedman will tell your story in GIFs! Baratunde Thurston will bring you as his date to Whiskey Friday! Rebecca Traister will edit your manuscript! An autographed Tegan and Sara vinyl pack! Dinner with Jessica Valenti! A strategy session with Sandra Fluke! Tickets to the Colbert Report, Wanda Sykes and more! SO MANY THINGS. GO BID NOW.

Cory Booker, food stamps, and looking great with the Poverty Diet

Newark, NJ, Mayor Cory Booker and a Twitter follower will be living on food stamps for a week following a Twitter discussion about the role of government in funding school breakfast and lunch programs. Follower TwitWit asserted that “nutrition is not the responsibility of the government.” Booker disagreed and was willing to put not a whole lot of money where his mouth is.

Women need to stay home and serve men, says woman who makes a career out of telling other women not to have careers.

I love a good hypocrite, and Suzanne Venker is today’s winner. She’s writing in Fox News about how women have ruined marriage and men are the social underdogs. How have women ruined marriage? Probably by making the same stank-face as the chick in the article’s accompanying photo. At least chick in the photo is dating a Real Man who knows that the best response is to be like, “You believe this bitch?”

Bring the binders full of men!

When I was a kid, grownups would tell me, “Only prostitutes need to be on birth control.” As I grew older, I saw these kinds of people being elected to office. By the time I came to university, they were openly waging war on women’s contraceptive rights, lecturing us on how rape survivors don’t need abortion access because you can’t get pregnant through “legitimate rape.”

Well, last week, two-thirds of women our age rose up and voted these creeps out of office – and elected a record number of women. Next year they’ll make up 20 percent of the Senate. One of them is openly lesbian. As a sibling to an LGBT sister, I almost cried when I heard that.