Last night, PBS aired the documentary MAKERS, a truncated history of the women’s movement. It’s streaming here, and is worth a watch — it’s powerful, inspiring and sometimes enraging. It serves as a good reminder of the debt of gratitude that we owe our feminist foremothers. At the end, though, there’s the question of where feminists are today — and there’s nothing about feminism online. I address that issue in the Guardian:
Read on for a self-indulgent blather about mental illness, medication, creativity, and a little bit of self pity. Or don’t. Whatever. Potentially triggery for bipolar II.
The House is voting tomorrow on the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act. The anti-VAWA Republicans are introducing their own version of the bill, which removes protections for people in same-sex relationships and weakens provisions to allow courts on Native lands to prosecute non-Native Americans who commit violence on tribal lands. If the Republican version fails — and I hope it will — then the House will take up the more comprehensive version of the bill already passed in the Senate. The fact that VAWA remains controversial, and particularly that Republicans would want to make prosecutions more difficult on tribal lands and strip protections from people who suffer intimate partner violence from a member of the same sex, is stunning, though not surprising. There are 22 senators opposing VAWA, including Republican It Boy and Poland Springs spokesman Marco Rubio. The Ms Foundation for Women has brought a little levity (along with some eduction) to the issue with this parody video, which I am helping them disseminate, featuring the queen of the revenge tune, Ms. [fake] Taylor Swift:
Good work, University of North Carolina! It’s worth noting, too, that the student didn’t even use her alleged rapist’s name; she just detailed her struggle with reporting the rape and stalking she experienced, and how UNC’s honor code wasn’t all that helpful.
Journalist Eric Pape is raising funds to create the graphic novel The Beauty Curse, about gendered attacks in Cambodia. Details of the project are here. The inspiration for the book:
Here’s something that should make you smile-cry of a Monday morning: Feminism has met its goals and achieved what it set out to do, and we’ve become equal both in education and in the job market. We’re on top, and that’s why men can slack off and make C’s. It’s time, says University of Nebraska senior Zach Nold, for men to jump up on that pedestal next to women as equals.
In the Guardian this week I’m writing about how advocates for healthy food and journalists covering addictive junk food should focus on the bad health outcomes of that food instead of body size. I differ with much of the Feministe commentariat on a lot of food issues, especially insofar as I think the government should absolutely incentivize healthy eating and exercise, and I’m fine with limiting sizes of nutritionally useless, almost-entirely-bad-for-you processed items like soda (I’m also fine leveling taxes on products like soda, alcohol, cigarettes, etc). I prefer positive incentives — letting food stamps count double at farmers’ markets, for example — but I’m fine with doing both. That’s because at a basic level, it is the government’s job to promote the public health. How we eat is central to our health. My issue comes in with the obesity justification. Promote everyone’s health, whether we’re fat or thin or somewhere in between — because bad food is damaging to all bodies, not just fat ones. A piece of the column:
This embroidered cushion in a Space Invaders Scandinavian pattern in this week’s threadalicious host. Please natter/chatter/vent/rant on anything you like* over this weekend and throughout the week.
* unless it’s #spillover material
The National Women’s Law Center explains it all.
Posting has been slow! I am sorry! Enjoy this visual history of the vibrator.