Q&A: Avoiding the Friend Zone?

Whether one believes the friend zone is real or not, today’s dating advice should have a positive effect on anyone’s love life. In this week’s episode, we even try to shoot for a bit more maturity, which you can judge in the transcript below…

PROBLEM

according to society, being friends without “benefits” is a purgatory known as the “friend zone”.
lately one geek asked our advice on avoiding this friend zone, when meeting girls he’d like to date.

SOLUTION

at our weekly LAN party, we formulated 5 tips for geeks at risk of such poorly requited love.

JENNIFER H.

“have you been friend-zoned by friends you’ve known for ages? you’re better off with trying strangers.”
“old friends are too accustomed to you as a friend. you should have flirted more from the beginning.”
“next time you meet someone you like, send signals to show you’re open to a relationship. no pressure.”

CIARA M.

“have a nice, friendly personality. contrary to popular belief, most normal women don’t prefer jerks.”
“however, being nice isn’t enough. no one likes guys who act like they’re owed sex for being nice.”
“attractive folks are likeable and admirable. be a good person first, if you’re trying to get laid.”

BRYNNE C.

“being friend-zoned doesn’t mean you’re unattractive. it simply means you’re not her type.”
“it’s politeness, really. she’s friend-zoning you to protect your ego, by not openly rejecting you.”
“it’s not a sign to try harder. avoid pestering her unless you want to look like a predatory plonker.”

KATRINA R.

“i’ve read online that you can dress your way out of the friend zone. that’s so unbelievably stupid.”
“no one’s friend-zoning you over how you dress. well-dressed jerks are still jerks on the outside.”
“if you keep being friend-zoned, maybe your personality needs more work, not your pants.”

MELISSA A.

“to avoid friend-zoning, be honest with yourself. are you really interesting enough to date?”
“if you’re dateable, potential mates will gravitate to you. stop looking all the darn time.”
“in the end, just be the best person you can be. romance and stuff will follow, when you’re ready.”

Have your own suggestions? Post away in the comments.

We’ll do two more of these episodes this summer, for a limited 5-part run – after which we’ll start analysing lessons learned from this project, so we can apply them to our winter project of feminist game reviews. But during the interim downtime, we might allow our younger creatives to try their own ideas around here this summer.

(And by younger, we mean… primary school-aged siblings? Err, stay tuned.)

“Q&A” is an on-going effort to bring more original content to Feministe, via conversations with other feminists. If you wish to send hate mail, please direct to the Republican Rape Caucus.

Posted in Dating, relationships | 62 Comments

Nigeria bans female genital mutilation

[Content note: female genital mutilation (obviously)]

A new ban, passed in May and signed into law by outgoing president Goodluck Jonathan, outlaws female genital mutilation in Nigeria. The practice was banned worldwide by the U.N. in 2012 and already outlawed in several states within Nigeria, but the Violence Against Persons (Prohibition) Act 2015 represents a nationwide commitment to the ban. The new law also outlaws abandonment of spouse and/or dependents without financial support.

“This is fantastic news and a landmark moment. We are now one step closer to ending this harmful practice,” said UK international development secretary Justine Greening.

As the most populous country in Africa, Nigeria’s decision carries significant weight, but it would need to be implemented effectively, said Mary Wandia, FGM programme manager of Equality Now. “With such a huge population, Nigeria’s vote in favour of women and girls is hugely important,” she said. “We hope, too, that the other African countries which have yet to ban FGM — including Liberia, Sudan and Mali, among others — do so immediately to give all girls a basic level of protection.”

Others stressed that the battle to end FGM in a generation was far from over, saying it was crucial that attitudes, as well as laws, were changed.

“It is crucial that we scale up efforts to change traditional cultural views that underpin violence against women. Only then will this harmful practice be eliminated,” said Stella Mukasa, director of gender, violence and rights at the International Center for Research on Women, writing in the Guardian.

While passing the law at all is significant and makes a clear statement about the government’s official position on FGM, the biggest steps remain enforcing the law and changing societal attitudes that lead to the procedure in the first place. While a 2013 study by UNICEF set Nigeria’s overall prevalence of FGM at 27 percent — moderately low among African nations that still practice it — a 2012 study showed a prevalence as high as 76 percent in some regions of the country, largely for reasons of traditional practice, superstition, and controlling a girl’s/woman’s sexuality — all attitudes that can be hard to change through health education or application of law in areas where law enforcement is inconsistent. According to the study, community-led efforts tended to be the most successful in reducing or eliminating FGM in an area — particularly efforts led by women who have been victims of FGM themselves and refuse to subject their daughters to such a terrible practice. According to UNICEF, 62 percent of Nigerian girls and women say that FGM should end, and now they have their government’s support in making it happen. Officially, at least.

Note: Discussion of male circumcision is welcome in the spillover thread.

Posted in Gender, Health, Law | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

Quick hit: Seventh-Grade Hijabis Ruined Rainbow Day

Rainbow Day was supposed to be a day to show school spirit — a day when each class would wear a color, and they’d all stand in lines to make a rainbow and take a picture of the rainbow, and it was going to be awesome. Not, like, a gay rainbow or anything — rainbows aren’t just for gay pride, they’re also for heavenly covenants and leprechauns and middle-school teachers who owned way too many Lisa Frank school supplies as a kid. The only thing standing in the teacher’s way: four Muslim girls in her class who showed up for Rainbow Day in black hijabs and not the purple clothes they’d been assigned.

How a group of students spoiled my celebration of inclusiveness

I felt sick. Putting them to the side would get them more attention. Sending them indoors would leave them unsupervised. So I let them stay put. I hoped desperately that they would change their minds and smile along with the whole school.

Later, I saw the photo. They had covered their faces.

That night, I cried with surprising vehemence. Was this adolescent rebellion, or had their parents put them up to it? Was it as homophobic as it appeared?

In the end, the rainbow was Photoshopped free of black figures and hung in the hall. The four girls got a stern lecture from the principal. They mumbled excuses about the wind. Calling their parents seemed pointless.

I sat the girls down in my classroom at lunch days later and explained that my idea of a rainbow included them, too. I said I was hurt that they hadn’t come to me with their concerns. Three girls looked down and shifted uncomfortably. Basma smirked. Nonetheless, our talk ended there.

[…]

Every time the girls wore purple clothing afterward (even Basma did), it stung. Upon reflection, I believe the girls’ rejection of Rainbow Day released my long-buried feelings as a friendless 10-year-old. Daydreaming about rainbows had blunted the blows of my bullies. These Muslim girls’ actions had revealed a chink in my rainbow armour.

Happy Rainbow Day! Let us celebrate diversity and inclusiveness by ‘shopping girls out of our class picture for not conforming.

Posted in Education | 11 Comments

Spillover #29

A red "Keep Calm" poster with the caption KEEP CALM AND STAY ON TOPICComments on our 28th #spillover thread have closed, so it’s time for a new one. Some reminders:

  1. #spillover is part of our comment moderation system for keeping other threads on-topic. It is intended as a constructive space for tangential discussions which are veering off-topic on other threads. This is part of our blog netiquette, which has the general goal of making it as simple as possible for commenters to find discussions focussed on topics of particular interest without entirely stifling worthwhile tangents of sorta-related or general interest. #spillover is also a space for those ongoing/endless disagreements and 101 issues that just keep on popping up.
  2. Commenters are encouraged to respect the topic of each post and be proactive regarding inevitable thread-drift in long threads: we hope that commenters will cheerfully volunteer to take off-topic responses into #spillover so that each post’s discussion gets room to breathe and tangents can be indulged in a room of their own.

More detailed outline/guidelines were laid out on Spillover #1.
The Moderator Team will enforce topicality where necessary, and off-topic commenters who ignore invitations from others to take their tangents to #spillover are one of the reasons commenters might consider sending the moderators a giraffe alert.

Posted in General | Tagged , , , , | 49 Comments

Fifty Shades of Whatever, I Don’t Even Care Anymore, Life Is Meaningless: Grey

[Content note for Fifty Shades of Grey-type consent issues and general awfulness]

In a bid to wring every last cent out of the “Fifty Shades” phenomenon, author E.L. James has released Grey, the story of Fifty Shades of Grey as told from Christian Grey’s perspective. Some readers, both fans of the series and critics, were curious about Christian’s thought process during the original books, since the story we see from Ana’s point of view was so deeply creepy that dear God, there had to be something, something, something redeeming in the backstory to make it more of an edgy, kinky romance and less of an episode of Law & Order: SVU with a private helicopter.

Well, the votes are in, and it’s official: Christian Grey really is a serial killer. Or at least he’s going to be; it’s just a matter of time. We don’t get a smidgen of self-awareness, or consequences for his actions, or the impact of his molestation at 15 by a friend of his mother, or an examination of his childhood trauma outside of the periodic flashback. I’m assuming the flashbacks are meant to make him sympathetic and explain his own abusive behavior toward Anastasia, and possibly take an edge off of the creepiness that defies description and makes Fifty Shades of Grey look like Hop on Pop. It succeeds at neither of those things.

The first-person narration, particularly the inner monologue (which is pretty much the lovechild of that guy at the bar who think he’s clever because he can spin everything into a dick joke, and Ryan Phillippe trying to sound slick in Cruel Intentions), eliminates any ambiguity that the Fifty Shades story might be anything other than gross. The stalkiness? Extra stalky when you know exactly how far he went with his background check and GPS tracking. The weird initial interview? Painfully weird when you know that he had a boner the entire time and wanted to “refine her motor skills with the aid of a riding crop.” The creepy scene at the hardware store? So much creepier when you know that while he’s buying rope and cable ties, he’s thinking, “Maybe I’ll find the delectable Miss Steele and have some fun,” and, “Oh, this is going to be fun. You’ll be amazed at what I can do with a few cable ties, baby.”

(All of that notwithstanding, it’s really not that interesting a book — a dead-boring tale of love, lust, BDSM, and a billionaire’s tortured soul. Even the detailed, yet flat and clinical, sex scenes leave you longing for the erotic energy of Ana saying “Argh!” when she gets devirginated.)

The one thing that Grey really has to its credit is that it doesn’t seem nearly the endorsement and romanticization of domestic abuse that Fifty Shades of Grey was. Rather than “Christian is abusive because he loves me so much,” the message we get from Grey (whether James intended it or not) is “Christian is a dangerous person with the power to impose his twisted views on sex and relationships on anyone without consequence, and he should be avoided at all costs.” I honestly can’t see anyone exposed to his inner thoughts thinking, “Now there’s a man I trust to tie me up and blindfold me. Where do I find a guy like that to stick peeled ginger up my butt?” While part of me feels that no one should subject themselves to the pain of reading Grey, another part feels that it should be required reading before picking up the original trilogy. It would change the story entirely.

Because Christian is so much worse than one could have feared just from reading the Fifty Shades books. It’s so bad, y’all.

One upside: For all of her ongoing, willful ignorance of BDSM, James does appear to have spent some time googling the names of expensive things in the hopes of making her super-rich protagonist comes across as super-rich. So if you want to start a drinking game around every time he name-drops Pouilly-Fume, black cod, Bollinger, Gulfstreams, Gaggias, and catamarans, you may get drunk enough to read this book. (Might I recommend a screw-cap bottle of grocery store Chardonnay with a Silly Straw in it.) Final review: gaaah stars out of eeesh.

Excerpts to ruin your day:

“She’s oil on my troubled, deep, dark waters.”

“I’m confused. I want to spank her. But she’s said no.”

“I ask, ‘Are you hungry?’ ‘Not for food,’ she teases. Whoa. She might as well be addressing my groin.”

“She has a fine, fine ass. And I’m going to make it pink… like the champagne.”

“Her sharp intake of breath is music to my dick.”

“In my closet I strip off all my clothes and from a drawer pull out my favorite jeans. My DJs. Dom jeans.”

“That girl provokes me like no one has before. And she’s pissed at me; maybe she has PMS.”

Posted in Domestic Violence, Literature | Tagged , | 6 Comments

Today In “I’m Shocked, I Tell You, Shocked!”: In 2005, Bill Cosby admitted to drugging women

In a 2005 deposition for his first sexual assault case, brought by Andrea Constand, Bill Cosby admitted that he did acquire — and deploy — drugs for the purpose of having sex with women.

Cosby, giving sworn testimony in the lawsuit accusing him of sexual assaulting Constand at his home in Pennsylvania in 2004, said he obtained seven quaalude prescriptions in the 1970s. Constand’s lawyer asked if he had kept the sedatives through the 1990s, after they were banned, but was frustrated by objections from Cosby’s attorney.

“When you got the quaaludes, was it in your mind that you were going to use these quaaludes for young women that you wanted to have sex with?” [Constand’s lawyer, Dolores] Troiani asked.

“Yes,” Cosby answered.

“Did you ever give any of these young women the quaaludes without their knowledge?” Troiani asked.

Cosby’s lawyer again objected, leading Troiani to petition the federal judge to force Cosby to cooperate.

Cosby later said he gave Constand three half-pills of Benadryl, although Troiani in the documents voices doubt that was the drug involved.

Deadspin has made all of the unsealed documents available online, and has pulled out a few key excerpts. Highlights:

  • The efforts Cosby’s attorneys went to to keep him from exposing the number of women he’d given drugs to (the evasive and only technically grammatical “he gave the Quaaludes” being as far as the lawyer was willing to go)
  • The fact that when he first spoke to Constand and her mother, they just wanted an apology and to know the name of the drug that he’d given Constand, and he was the one who later offered money
  • His statement that he met one of his accusers backstage, “[he gives] her Quaaludes. [They] then have sex” (whereas Therese Serignese, almost certainly the accuser in question, would be more likely to characterize it as him giving her two unidentified pills and then raping her in a bathroom)
  • And the fact that he still contends (despite his stated predilection for Quaalude-facilitated sex) that the drug he gave Constand was Benadryl

The AP asked the courts to unseal the documents, despite arguments from Cosby’s lawyers that “his embarrassment at the release of the discovery motions — deposition excerpts about sex, money, health, and marriage — would be severe.” (Whereas the women whose personal lives have been laid bare in an effort to vilify and discredit them obviously didn’t suffer severe embarrassment.)

U.S. District Judge Eduardo Robreno ultimately unsealed just part of the deposition, saying, “The stark contrast between Bill Cosby, the public moralist and Bill Cosby, the subject of serious allegations concerning improper (and perhaps criminal) conduct is a matter as to which the AP — and by extension the public — has a significant interest.”

More than two dozen women have come forward to accuse Cosby of sexual assault going back to 1965. A statement on Cosby’s website by his lawyers from November of last year (now removed) dismissed the new accusations as “decade-old, discredited allegations against Mr. Cosby,” saying that “[T]he fact that they are being repeated does not make them true.” Shortly thereafter, they clarified in another statement that the aforementioned blanket denial didn’t apply to Constand’s accusation — because, one assumes, they knew the courts had a deposition giving credit to that decade-old allegation, and that Cosby’s reputation as a friendly, fatherly, trustworthy type would be scuttled once and for all with his very own sworn testimony that he was actually a slipping-women-‘ludes-to-make-them-more-rapeable type. But yeah, all of those women are totally lying, and Bill Cosby would never do something so awful. We’ll just stick with that.

Posted in Celebrity, Rape Culture, Sexual Assault | Tagged | 15 Comments

Shameless Self-Promotion Sunday

Promote yourself. (Or somebody else.)


Netiquette reminders:

  • we expect Content Notes as a courtesy to our readers for problematic content in linked posts and/or their comment threads (a habit of posting only triggering/disparaging links may annoy the Giraffe (you really don’t want to annoy the Giraffe)), Content Notes are not needed if your post title is already descriptive of problematic content.
  • extended discussion of self-promotion links on this thread is counter-productive for the intended signal-boosting –  the idea is for the promoted sites to get more traffic.  If it’s a side-discussion that would be off-topic/unwelcome/distressing on the other site, take it to #spillover after leaving a note on this thread redirecting others there.
Posted in General | Tagged , | 16 Comments

Q&A: Talking to a Hot Guy?

Male geeks may think dating is easier for women, but any woman who’s endured modern dating hell will likely disagree. Partly the problem is mathematical – when women outnumber men, men have the leverage to set the terms. But then there are those girl geeks who really challenge themselves, gunning for guys they find “hotter” than themselves. This week’s episode lays out our tips for girls trying to flip gender scripts (with the usual transcript below)…

PROBLEM

male geeks often have trouble with talking to girls they like. but girls can be just as insecure too.
recently a gamer girl asked us for advice, on talking to a guy she thought was “hotter” than herself.

SOLUTION

at our weekly LAN party, we thought up 5 tips for boosting her confidence in the face of such hotness.

JENNIFER H.

“he might be hot, but don’t let it bother you. use his hotness to gauge his own interest in you first.”
“hot guys are more likely to be snooty. so if he’s polite when you talk to him, that’s good news.”
“if he acts like he’s superior to you, you’ll know he’s a prick. dodge that goddamn bullet.”

CIARA M.

“to be honest, most guys prefer a relatable partner over a hot one who sounds stupid in public.”
“to get a hot guy’s attention, target his brain. talk about his favourite videogames, films and stuff.”
“most guys are into some geek stuff. he’ll be nicely surprised to learn you like the same stuff too.”

BRYNNE C.

“hetero males often can’t discern flirting from friendliness. to reduce headaches, be upfront with him.”
“don’t make a big deal out of it. just casually mention in the middle of chatting that you’re interested in him.”
“he won’t be creeped out, because most guys aren’t afraid that a girl is secretly a rapist-predator.”

KATRINA R.

“if he make jokes at your expense when he talks to you, run away. life’s too short for that crap.”
“even if he’s hot, it doesn’t entitle him to be offensive. don’t lower your standards for hot guys.”
“if he wouldn’t insult his own family or posse, he shouldn’t act any differently with you, or anyone.”

MELISSA A.

“sure, everyone wants someone attractive. but in the end, guys want compatibility as much as hotness.”
“guys come for the graphics, but stay for the gameplay. focus on who you are first, not your looks.”
“if he’s worth your time, he’ll evaluate all parts of you. hold him to that same standard too.”

Have your own suggestions? Post away in the comments.

In the meantime, we’re definitely listening to your feedback. This series is a sort of dry run, for something interesting we’ll launch later this year – perhaps a year-long season of feminist game reviews? If so, you heard it here first.

“Q&A” is an on-going effort to bring more original content to Feministe, via conversations with other feminists. If you wish to send hate mail, please direct to the Republican Rape Caucus.

Posted in Dating, relationships | 14 Comments

Quick hit: We Bought a Huge Effing House, and Now We Can’t Afford More Kids

An Elle Decor essayist has come out with a horrible confession: She and her husband sacrificed a child to buy their dream home.

(How awesome would it be if that were the actual story? “Our realtor didn’t mention the fiery, bottomless hellpit in the basement into which we have to throw a small child at the peak of the new moon to keep our mortgage rate low. She said it was a walk-in wine closet.”)

Really, what happened was that they planned responsibly and ate canned food and shopped consignment until they could afford their “luxury dream home.” Only now have they realized that they want a sibling for their two sons but can’t afford one without lifestyle changes. Her uterus literally aches for a third kid, but they’ve priced themselves out of the three-kid market, and now all they’re left with is the fully-loaded luxury home of their dreams, several dogs, a fenced yard, a riding lawnmower, an annual family vacation to their timeshare, and two healthy, happy children with a happy-to-stay-at-home mom. With an achy uterus. #TheStruggleIsReal.

Sometimes, I can see us living in a smaller, older home somewhere, selling this one, and adjusting to accommodate life with a third child in a home that is definitely anything but a dream, but then I overhear our boys having a blast playing in our big, beautiful, safe backyard, or listen to their laughter billowing out of the colorful playroom space we have created and designed just for them, and I know this was always meant to be our forever home. This is the American dream and we are in it, living it, every day, just the four of us.

With that said, the sacrifice has been made. Because we live in this dream home, we can only afford to have two children. It’s our quiet sacrifice but it’s also our beautiful life, well-earned and fully-lived.

Posted in Class, Domesticity, Parenthood | Tagged | 20 Comments

Quick hit: Misty Copeland has been named principal dancer at ABT

Ballerina Misty Copeland (she who was too old and had the wrong feet, legs, turnout, torso, and bust to even start training as a ballet dancer at age 13) has been named a principal dancer with American Ballet Theatre — the first African-American woman to rise to that position in the company’s nearly 80-year history.

“I had moments of doubting myself, and wanting to quit, because I didn’t know that there would be a future for an African-American woman to make it to this level,” Ms. Copeland said at a news conference at the Metropolitan Opera House on Tuesday afternoon. “At the same time, it made me so hungry to push through, to carry the next generation. So it’s not me up here — and I’m constantly saying that — it’s everyone that came before me that got me to this position.”

[…]

Over the past year, whenever Ms. Copeland, 32, danced leading roles with Ballet Theater, her performances became events, drawing large, diverse, enthusiastic crowds to cheer her on at the Metropolitan Opera House, the Brooklyn Academy of Music and the David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center. After she starred in “Swan Lake” with Ballet Theater last week — becoming the first African-American to do so with the company at the Met — the crowd of autograph-seekers was so large that it had to be moved away from the cramped area outside the stage door.

Posted in Art, Body image, Race & Ethnicity, The Cultural Canon | 1 Comment

Catholic bigots are not alone! in new coming-out video

As coming-out videos go, it’s a heartbreaker. It’s pretty moving. They’ve got the style right on: black and white, sentimental music, earnest testimonies delivered straight to the camera. A little bit of tearfulness at the back of the throat, because seriously, it’s hard to come out. It’s hard to be honest with people when you don’t know how they’re going to react, that they’re not going to judge you. It’s scary putting yourself out there and saying, “Listen, I trust you to take this part of me, this vulnerable piece of me that I’m putting in your hands, and still love me once you know the truth. The truth, that I am…

… A CATHOLIC WHO’S AGAINST SAME-SEX MARRIAGE.”

It’s a coming-out video from Catholics who are against same-sex marriage.

Words fail me.

And they know exactly what they’re doing, too: It’s not until you’re nearly a minute in that they finally reveal that being nervous that people won’t welcome them, that feeling like society already thinks they’re weird, that you wonder who you can really be open with, that you’ve tried to change — that they’re talking about being opposed to marriage equality. Fifty-four seconds they hold out, keeping everything specifically vague and emotional, before they spring on you that they’ve co-opted this particular style of earnest confessional for an anti-marriage-equality message.

I honestly don’t think it’s a parody, either, that they’re trying to be funny. I think they’re seriously trying to make connections. “See, LQBT folk? You know how hard it is to be yourself in society, worrying that you’ll be judged and disowned and assaulted and murdered and oppressed because of who you are and who you love? It’s just like that for Catholics who are afraid that people won’t like us once they know how intolerant we are!” “Bigoted” is a big word. And the only way to break down barriers… sniff… is to get to know us. Us Catholics who don’t think you deserve basic rights, because you aren’t like us. And who don’t want to let you in on our precious rite because — sniff — you’re gross and into butt stuff. And to all you other Catholics who are afraid of being persecuted for your bigoted beliefs? You’re not alone.

Whew. Bet that felt good to get off your chests, right? You… are not… alone.

Fuck my life.

One at a time, people walk in and sit against a plain white background, facing the camera. WOMAN 1. MAN 4. WOMAN 2. Quiet piano music is sentimental, a little bit tentative, a little bit hopeful. Our people are as well.

WOMAN 1. I am a little bit nervous about people, um, kind of hearing that I’m this way and then thinking, “Oh, well,” you know, “she’s not welcome here.”

MAN 1 [chuckling]. I would say I’m different. We’re all different.

MAN 2. Most people probably think I’m already weird anyway, I mean, so I don’t think society’s impression of me is going to change drastically based on one or two discoveries that come to light after this video.

MAN 3. Pretty scary, you know? You — you wonder, how many people can I really, truly, honestly be open with?

W2 [dabbing at tears]. I’ve tried to change this before, but… it’s too important to me.

The music’s starting to pick up, just a little.

W1. I actually think marriage is between a man and a woman.

M2. I believe that marriage is between a man and a woman.

M4. I already have an idea of what marriage should be. That will never change.

M2. At the end of the day, I think we don’t need to truly be ashamed of how we really feel about things, so… so be you.

M4. No one should be looked down upon. No one should be suppressed, or no one’s views should be suppressed.

M3. I know a lot of people who are gay. I have friends who are gay, I don’t fear them, you know? They’re wonderful people. I love them. What I do feel insecure about is speaking from the heart. And being really open and honest about what I believe.

M2. I mean, I love my friends. Several of them happen to be gay. How would it not be the case that — that the ever-loving Creator, who gave us everything we have, doesn’t love us?

The music’s picking up a little bit more, now with a touch of strings coming in.

M1. Where’s that balance, you know? Where can you say, “No, I’m not going to be a part of this?” but still respect someone?

M3. “Bigoted” is a huge word that gets thrown around. It’s just not true.

M4. You cannot have a society of hatred, or a society of bigotry.

M2. I happen to know what marriage is, and I don’t see how it could change.

W1. The best way to kind of break down all these barriers — [choked up] sorry — is to just get to know people one on one.

W2. [Tearfully] You’re not alone. [Over solemn, tearful shots of the other speakers] You’re not alone. You’re not… alone.

The music swells dramatically as we, too, are moved to tears along with the speakers, and then the final art card:

Speak truth with love.

Catholicvote.org Education Fund

Posted in GLBTQ, Media & Media Literacy, Religion | Tagged , , | 9 Comments

Look at them ladies, trying to do science: 2 of 2

Moving on! Just a couple of weeks ago, Nobel Prize-winning scientist Tim Hunt let the World Conference of Science Journalists in Seoul, South Korea, in on the secret of successful science, and it’s get them skirts out of the lab. Not out of research entirely of course — just into their own, segregated lab, because of the possibility for hot lab bench lovin’. “Let me tell you about my trouble with girls,” he reportedly said (in a speech that was tragically unrecorded, but which took place in front of a big crowd of people who agree that yeah, he totally said that). “You fall in love with them, they fall in love with you, and when you criticize them, they cry!”

Bitches, amiright?

But again, he doesn’t want to stand in the way of their research — that’s why he wants them to have their own labs, so everyone can get their work done without worrying about the romance. And the crying.

Lest you think that poor Dr. Hunt is being slandered, and that his remarks are being mischaracterized, he assured BBC Radio 4 that while he was “really sorry that [he] said what [he] said,” but that he “did mean” part of his remarks and that he was “just trying to be honest.” Again: You try to be honest, and bitches cry. (This, and their lack of male co-authors on their research manuscripts, is why women will never truly succeed in scientific fields.) He told the interviewer that he had, in fact, fallen in love with people in his lab, and that people had fallen in love with him (primo catch that he is), and that it’s “disruptive to science.”

Hunt resigned his teaching position at University College London and his position on the European Research Council. In the meantime, female scientists took to Twitter to express their displeasure. Astrophysicist Sarah Tuttle gave ‘er in a series of tweets criticizing his “backwards, draconian, and inappropriate” attitudes.

Every one of her tweets on the subject is worth reading. Possibly out loud, as a monologue, with swelling music and applause afterward, if you can arrange it.

Also readable, although slightly less monologuable, are the female scientists who tweeted pictures of themselves on the job, apologizing for being #distractinglysexy. (And yes, before your boner starts writing any notes, I’m sure that a woman in a Hazmat bunny suit can, in fact, be desperately sexy. They’re just going for an effect here.)

(Whatever you do, don’t check out the SkyNews debate between Dr. Emily Grossman and smug bastard Milo Yiannopoulos in which he says that “the science is very much still out” on the question of whether men’s brains are better suited to science than women’s; argues that women are actually “structurally advantaged,” not disadvantaged, in science; argues that if Hunt’s comments discouraged you from a career in science, “um, how committed were you really in the first place…?”; throws in some bizarre comment about how gay people can “basically get away with murder” and can be “bitchy” and “nobody complains”; and says that none of this is a big deal because if Hunt was your granddad at dinner, no one would even notice what he said; and then commenters deluge Dr. Grossman with sexism, antisemitism, bad science, and suggestions that she get back in the kitchen, the existence of which Yiannopoulos denies, saying it’s “right out of the damsel in distress playbook.” Don’t watch that. Just stop after the #distractinglysexy tweets.)

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