Category Archives: feminism

It’s Always About Disaffected White People

The same disaffected white people who listen to Rush Liumbaugh and rail against “political correctness” are flocking to Donald Trump and his promise to “Make America Great Again.” Problem is, America has always been great … for them:

Which America is he promising to us? If you ask his supporters, they say life has gotten worse for people like them over the last 50 years. It seems safe to assume that, in the eyes of Mr. Trump’s overwhelmingly white male fans, America was greater a half-century ago. Indeed, it was pretty great — for them.

It’s not just that factory jobs were more plentiful or that women and minorities were largely kept from positions of power. Large national programs that radically changed the country kept America great specifically for white men. New Deal-era systems like Social Security and unemployment insurance; rules that demarcated minimum wages and maximum work hours and protected unionization; and the G.I. Bill at the end of World War II substantially transformed the country and created a booming middle class. But they all purposefully left out most women and minorities.

It’s a little-remembered fact that the social safety net, that product of the Great Depression, initially was available primarily to white working-class men. Social Security excluded domestic and agricultural workers until the 1950s — jobs held largely by people of color and women. Ditto unemployment insurance and the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938. Gays and lesbians, excluded from the right to marry until last year, of course were denied all of the legal benefits of such contracts: inheritance, property settlement in divorce, insurance benefits, Social Security spousal benefits, etc.

So yes, America has always been great for white men. Particularly straight white men. And these are the folks whining that America isn’t great anymore because they have to share their piece of the pie after 240 years? Get the fuck outta here.

I know this isn’t any groundbreaking news to liberals. I’m just really happy to see the paper of record acknowledge what’s really going on with this “Make America Great Again” nonsense. I’ve heard far too much about “wage stagnation” and “income inequality” as if it’s really economics driving the rise of Trumpism. I don’t think that’s it at all. I think it’s the same old shit that it’s always been: loss of white privilege. The news media seems awfully loathe to call out the racism in our electorate, as if it’s impolite to call things what they are. But there you have it.

Here’s something else I learned: watching one of the weekend MSNBC shows, I learned the last Democratic president to receive the majority of the white vote was Lyndon B. Johnson in 1964. Gee, now what happened in 1964? Thinking … thinking

From a presidential perspective, that doesn’t seem to matter: we’ve had several Democratic presidents who managed to get elected without white peoples’ votes. Here’s a nice little run-down. We even managed to have majorities in the House of Representatives and Senate during that time period. So I’m really not too worried about my party losing white voters. If all they want to do is whine about how they have to share their toys, well, let the Republicans have them.

At some point this is all going to change, though. The generation that remembers when they owned the playground is going to die off and a new generation will take over. These will be people who grew up at a time when everyone played together; they weren’t alive at a time when others suddenly got the same rights and privileges they’d been enjoying for decades. That all happened long before they were born. It will be interesting to see what America is like when that happens.

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Filed under 2016 Election, 2016 Presidential Election, Donald Trump, feminism, GLBT, racism

I’m Not Your Smile Monkey

We’ve all been there, amiright right ladies? You’re walking down the street, or in a grocery store, or at the post office, or any old place, really; you’re going about your day (and maybe it was a shitty day, maybe it wasn’t), and you’re thinking whatever you’re thinking, wrapped up in your own business, because the one thing you are not worried about in that moment is what some asshole loser guy thinks about you. And right then the asshole loser guy comes up to you and says, “Smile!”

How much do you want to pop that guy in the nose in that moment? And how much self-restraint does it take to not go full-shrill and tell him to mind his own fucking business and if he doesn’t like your sourpuss face, look at someone else?

This happened to me a lot when I was younger and hotter. Fellas, let me tell you now: if this is your pick-up line, you are Doing. It. Wrong.

“Smile!” is right up there with, “When’s the baby due?” when you’re not pregnant. If I want to smile I’ll fucking smile, okay? And if I don’t, I won’t, and it’s none of your goddamn business how, or why, or when. I’m not here to be your scenery.

I think I speak for all women when I say, Fuck you, asshole. I’m not your smile monkey. Go get some goddamn manners.

So yes, the backlash against Joe Scarborough for Tweeting at Hillary Clinton to “smile” last night is very richly deserved. He actually had the temerity to monitor her facial expressions? We weren’t put on earth to be your set decoration, guys. Ditto the other right-wing assholes who didn’t like the sound of Hillary’s voice. News flash: we don’t give a fuck what you think of our facial expressions, the volume of our voice, or any other aspect of our physical selves. Now go into the kitchen and make me a goddamn sandwich.

The #SmileForJoe hashtag on Twitter is just the kind of smackdown these pompous douche canoes deserve. There’s some brilliant stuff over there. Check it out.

5 Comments

Filed under 2016 Election, 2016 Presidential Election, feminism, Hillary Clinton, media

With Friends Like These …

[UPDATE] 2:

And now for Rep. Littleton’s side of the story, via the Nashville Scene:

“Everyone has had a bad experience with service at some point when dining out at a restaurant. It is unfortunate that my private note to the server regarding the quality of service in this instance was made public. Due to the overall experience that evening, I decided not to provide a tip.”

I’m calling bullshit. If the service was poor, why write “sorry”? Why not write, “poor service” or something of that nature?

Let me add, I’ve certainly experienced poor service at a restaurant before, but even I have never refused to tip completely. If the service is really poor I might leave a small amount. But usually my issues with restaurants have been management-related, not server-related (poor quality food, something nasty in my food, etc.) That’s not the server’s fault.

Anyway, an apparent ironic twist to this story is the server is a former constituent of Littleton’s. Which begs the question: when constituents receive poor service from their legislative reps, can we dock their pay?

——————————-

[UPDATE]:

It appears Rep. Littleton dined with a friend, fellow Republican Tilman Goins of Morristown:

Version 2

And he wasn’t even sorry. What a douche canoe.

——————————————-

Tennessee Republicans are a pretty horrid lot and nothing illustrates that better than this slap in the face a server at a downtown Nashville Hooter’s received from Republican Rep. Mary Littleton of Cheatham County (a suburb of Nashville):

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“Sorry”? What is this poor server supposed to do with your “sorry”? Pay her rent or student loans or put food on the table?

Honestly, Republicans should just stop trying to pretend they’re friends to working people. I love that Littleton is a member of the Church of Christ. Maybe she needs to go to more Bible study.

Ironically, Tennessee Republican Rep. Susan Lynn was just in the news for fighting against an equal pay bill, saying it “wasn’t necessary.” And then we have Mary Littleton not giving a tip to a server. I guess the message is, stay poor.

29 Comments

Filed under feminism, Republicans, Tennessee

Rep. Sherry Jones Files “Viagra Bill”

I’m sure you’ve by now heard of the Kentucky state legislator who has filed a bill requiring a note from the wife of any man seeking a Viagra prescription. Rep. Mary Lou Marzian says the legislation,

…is merely an effort to protect men’s health and ensure they are informed about a drug with potentially dangerous side effects.

“I want to protect these men from themselves,” said Marzian, a nurse.

Well of course! Marzian, who is pro-choice, is merely echoing what we ladies hear from male politicians telling us we need to get transvaginal ultrasounds before obtaining an abortion, and abortion clinics must meet higher surgical standards than many plastic surgery suites, etc. It’s all for our own good.

Also:

HB 396 also specifies that only married men may obtain the drug and requires “a man to make a sworn statement with his hand on a Bible that he will only use a prescription for a drug for erectile dysfunction when having sexual relations with his current spouse.”

“This is about family values,” Marzian said.

Hard to argue with that one, right? Aren’t Republicans concerned about the American family?

So I was absolutely thrilled to learn that Tennessee’s Rep. Sherry Jones has her own “Viagra bill” making its way through the legislature, and that it apparently passed out of the insurance and banking committee and will move on to the health subcommittee. It already has a sponsor in the Senate, by the way.

HB 1927 reads, in part:

Before issuing a prescription for a drug intended to treat symptoms of erectile dysfunction, a physician shall:

(i) Obtain from the patient a notarized affidavit in which at least one of the patient’s sexual partners affirms that the patient has experienced symptoms of erectile dysfunction during the ninety (90) days preceding the affidavit’s date, if he has never been married, emancipated by a court, or otherwise freed from the care, custody, and control of his parents;

(ii) Conduct a cardiac stress test and obtain a result, described in writing, indicating that the patient’s cardiac health is compatible with sexual activity;

(iii) Notify the patient in writing of the potential risks and complications associated with taking drugs intended to treat erectile dysfunction, as well as provide alternatives to erectile dysfunction medications, counseling regarding erectile dysfunction, and possible physical and psychological risks of taking erectile dysfunction medications, and obtain the patient’s signature on a form acknowledging the patient’s receipt of the notification; […]

Sounds perfectly reasonable to me. You know men never read directions or label warnings. Someone needs to help these poor dears. ED is a known “red flag” for heart disease, the number one killer of American men, after all.

There’s more. To get a refill, under this legislation, the ED patient has a few more hoops to jump through:

(A) Require the patient to be seen in-person by the physician in an office visit for prescribing each refill;

(B) Require the patient to undergo a cardiac stress test every ninety (90) days while the patient is taking the drug to ensure that the patient’s cardiac health continues to be compatible with sexual activity; and

(C) Require the patient to attend three (3) sessions of outpatient counseling within a period of not less than six (6) months after the drug initially is prescribed to ensure the patient’s understanding of the dangerous side effects of drugs intended to treat the symptoms of erectile dysfunction and which counseling includes information on nonpharmaceutical treatments for erectile dysfunction, including sexual counseling and resources for patients to pursue celibacy as a viable lifestyle choice. […]

Again, all perfectly reasonable, don’t you think? According to a recent study,

If every man with erectile dysfunction were screened for heart disease, more than a million events like heart attack or stroke could be avoided over 20 years and more than $21 billion saved, according to a new estimate.

Why, this legislation is a virtual life-saver! But wait, there’s more:

SECTION 2. Tennessee Code Annotated, Title 8, Chapter 27, Part 2, is amended by adding the following as a new section to be appropriately designated:

The group insurance plan for employees under this part shall not cover drugs intended to treat erectile dysfunction as a benefit.

SECTION 3. Tennessee Code Annotated, Section 9-4-5116, is amended by designating the existing language as subsection (a) and adding the following as a new subsection (b):
(b) No state funds shall be expended to pay for drugs prescribed to treat erectile dysfunction unless the expenditure for the drug is required by federal law. SECTION 4. This act shall take effect July 1, 2016, the public welfare requiring it.

Well, this all seems to make perfect sense to me. I think we should insist that the male citizens of Tennessee be protected and fully informed about these dangerous ED drugs. What could possibly be wrong with them receiving information, be required to get regular cardiac screening, and prevent the people of the State of Tennessee from paying for them?

What do you say, ladies?

6 Comments

Filed under abortion, feminism, Tennessee

Weary Of This Primary

I’ve had enough of this primary. The media has been flogging it since, well, Obama’s last inauguration, if we’re going to be honest. The past 6-8 months have worn me out. And I have lost patience for the thin-skinned followers of St. Bernard — not all of them, of course, but a certain faction of rabid Hillary-haters, the reactionary ones who have decided they will define “progressivism” for the rest of us (including those of us who were working the trenches when many of them were still playing with crayons.)

I have no patience for bullshit from “progressive” outlets like this:

Madeleine Albright Throws Shade To Young, Female Voters

No, she didn’t, Talking Points Memo, and you know better. She repeated a quote she’s been saying for years. Years. In fact, she’s been saying this so long, it’s been featured on a Starbucks cup and mangled by Sarah Palin:

original

This entire nonsense is being ginned up by the media, desperate to divide liberals because it’s so much more interesting and profitable for them when people are at each other’s throats. Lots more advertising money coming their way, amiright? So no, I will not tolerate anyone smearing Madeleine Albright because their fee-fees got hurt. Grow up.

And since I’m on my soap box about fake controversies, I really don’t get what the big deal is with Hillary Clinton’s speeches. Every public official makes speeches for money to various civic groups, business groups, corporate retreats, etc. There is an entire industry devoted to this. Higher profile individuals (like a former First Lady, U.S. Senator and Secretary of State) get bigger paychecks. Republicans do it. Democrats do it. Progressives do it. Tea Partiers do it.

Here’s one of Hillary’s Goldman Sachs speeches which supposedly makes her a Wall Street puppet: she was the main speaker at Goldman Sachs’ “10,000 Women” dinner, an “investing in women and girls” initiative that the firm started in 2008.

Clinton’s topic? Perhaps it was the Rothschild banking conspiracy? Or, “How to screw the poor?” Maybe she revealed details on how she plans to turn the Oval Office over to Wall Street when she’s president? No. It was “Proving the Case for Women Entrepreneurs.”

In fact, Hillary Clinton is represented by a speaker’s bureau. You know who’s represented by the same speaker’s bureau? Bernie Sanders. His All American Speakers bio says he talks about education and Jewish issues. Good for him, I bet they’re great speeches. Maybe someone can go through the 60,000+ YouTube videos of Sanders’ appearances and find one that I can post. I don’t have the time.

I don’t have the time for any of this shit. The reality is, there’s very little difference between Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton. In the two years they were in the Senate together, they voted the same 93% of the time.

I’m really tired of the demonization of Hillary Clinton. And please stop telling me “both sides do it,” because I’m not seeing nearly the headlines in mainstream media outlets targeting Sanders that I see coming from the other side. Did someone say something mean on Twitter? Yeah, sure. But I’m talking New York Times headlines and Talking Point Memo posts.

Bernie Sanders is the shiny-sparkly new thing, so a certain amount of media adoration is to be expected at this point. But just you wait, the MSM will lose interest just as it always does. The media loves nothing more than to smack down that which it has built up. “Dean Scream,” anybody? And I can just see it now, Hillary Clinton will get blamed for that, too. I’m already seeing people blame her for the more offensive “Bernie Bros” on social media, calling them “Clinton plants.” Seriosuly, people? You’ve got to be kidding me.

I just don’t have the patience for this bullshit, at all. Knock it off, and grow the fuck up. There is too much at stake here for us to be behaving this way.

19 Comments

Filed under 2016 Election, 2016 Presidential Election, feminism

Big Government, Liars & Abortion

Government is sooooo teeensy weensy teeny tiny in the State of North Carolina that doctors performing abortions must send their required-by-law ultrasounds to the state:

Per The New York Times, doctors who perform abortions at or after the 16-week mark must send North Carolina’s Department of Health and Human Services “the method used to determine the ‘probable gestational age’ of the fetus, the measurements used to support the assertion and, most controversially, an ultrasound showing the measurements.” The law states that this information is being collected for “statistical purposes only,” and that patients’ and doctors’ names will remain confidential.

But Melissa Reed, the director of Planned Parenthood Votes! South Atlantic, argues that the law, which went into effect on January 1, is “medically unnecessary and purely politically driven. The true intent of the law is clear—to shame women and intimidate the doctors that care for them.”

Anti-abortion activist Tami L. Fitzgerald, who consulted on the bill with Republicans in the legislature, told the Times that the law should “act as a deterrent to the doctors themselves from lying about gestational age. The state has made a public policy decision that babies after 20 weeks have a right to live. So this law is about protecting the rights of those unborn babies.”

Why would doctors lie about gestational age? Just for kicks?

Several years ago I did a blog post where I recounted a conversation I had with my own ob/gyn about mandatory ultrasound regulations the state of Tennessee was proposing, as well as other healthcare issues currently being debated nationally. I couldn’t for the life of me understand why doctors were remaining quiet on an issue that affected their business.

From the 2013 archive:

[…] I asked her if she was aware that there were bills in the legislature requiring women to get an ultrasound before receiving an abortion.

“Really?!” She seemed genuinely surprised. Jesus, lady! I wanted to scream. You’re a gynecologist! This is your field! Don’t you pay attention to what legislators are doing affecting your own business?

I asked if there was any medical reason why this procedure would be necessary. “They need to do it,” she said, “to determine the age of the fetus.”

“But what if a woman is positive that it’s within the first trimester?”

“They still need to do it, to make sure.”

“To make sure?”

“To make sure she’s telling the truth.”

So, ultrasounds are needed to make sure women are telling the truth. This was my own doctor of going on 20-something years telling me this. And now, we have taken that idea to its next logical place: state government bureaucrats must review these ultrasounds becase the doctors might be lying.

Oh and also, “statistical purposes.” Right. (Statistics? Seriously? Of what?)

Where do we go from there? I have to think we’ll need some kind of federal oversight, don’t you? In case the state government bureaucrats are lying, especially if one of those ‘bortion lovin’ LIEberals gets in the governor’s office, right? Could happen! You know it could!

I mean, why not? If a universal background check is the first step towards Obama coming to confiscate everyone’s guns with his magic gun-grabbing super magnet device, how is this not the first step toward fascism?

If government has to check an ultrasound because they think a doctor might be lying about a fetus’ gestational age, and that ultrasound itself is required because the government thinks a woman might be lying about gestational age, it’s not a big leap to assume everyone is lying about everything and the government better just Big Brother-up on everything. Amiright?

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Filed under abortion, feminism, Women, women's rights

No, But His IQ Test Was Conducted During His Proctology Exam

Cheese and rice, people:

BOISE, IDAHO — An Idaho lawmaker received a brief lesson on female anatomy after asking if a woman can swallow a small camera for doctors to conduct a remote gynecological exam.

The question Monday from Republican state Rep. Vito Barbieri came as the House State Affairs Committee heard nearly three hours of testimony on a bill that would ban doctors from prescribing abortion-inducing medication through telemedicine.

Barbieri later said that the question was rhetorical and intended to make a point.

Dr. Julie Madsen, a physician who said she has provided various telemedicine services in Idaho, was testifying in opposition to the bill. She said some colonoscopy patients may swallow a small device to give doctors a closer look at parts of their colon.

“Can this same procedure then be done in a pregnancy? Swallowing a camera and helping the doctor determine what the situation is?” Barbieri asked.

Madsen replied that would be impossible because swallowed pills do not end up in the vagina.

“Fascinating. That makes sense,” Barbieri said, amid the crowd’s laughter.

Here’s a thought. Before you idiots in the Republican Party try legislating women’s bodies, why don’t you first learn something about them? Or is that too much like work?

Okay, he now says he was trying to get the doctor to testify that colonoscopies aren’t the same as abortions or whatever. I would think that would be patently obvious, but of course you’re dealing with a Republican here. They aren’t “scientists,” as they will frequently remind you.

Idiots.

[UPDATE]:

You know, after giving this more thought, I’m going to come back and say no, I don’t know what the fuck this idiot was trying to say. I’m not sure why swallowing a pill with a tiny camera for a colonoscopy (which, near as I can tell, is by no means the standard practice for these routine exams anyway) would preclude a tiny camera being put on the tip of a tampon or whatever. I mean, we all know how transvaginal ultrasounds work. Surely Idaho already has one of those vaginal probe abortion bills on the books — we do in Tennessee. Why he thought a tiny ingestible camera would be his “ah-ha” moment, I have no clue.

You know, my advice for you Republicans is to just shut up about women’s stuff. You continually make fools of yourself.

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Filed under abortion, feminism, Republican Party, women's rights

Small Govt. Loving MT Republicans Mansplain Decorum For The Ladies

The menfolk sure do love to tell us ladies what to do! Is anyone surprised that a patronizing dress code for Montana state legislators was written by a male Republican?

Montana’s one-page list of fashion guidelines (officials say they are not formal rules) were handed down Dec. 5 in what Representative Keith Regier, the House Republican majority leader, said was a response to questions from newly elected lawmakers about what to wear on the floor.

“We do hold decorum at a high standard,” Mr. Regier said. “What we’re saying is: Be appropriate in what you wear. Don’t wear something that could be a distraction from the legislative process.”

(… yes that would be the same Mr. Regier who compared pregnant women to pregnant livestock — repeatedly — during debate over anti-choice legislation … but I digress …)

The seven-point list covers men’s attire, calling for a suit or a jacket and tie, dress slacks and shirt, and “dress shoes or dress boots.” But the guidelines for women are a little longer and more detailed, and had many female lawmakers rolling their eyes. The list includes what kinds of footwear they should avoid (flip-flops, tennis shoes and open-toe sandals), declares that leggings are not considered dress pants, and encourages modesty on skirt lengths and necklines.

“It’s like something out of ‘Mad Men,’” said Representative Ellie Hill, a Democrat from Missoula, referring to a television drama set in the 1960s. “The whole thing is totally sexist and bizarre and unnecessary.”

Apparently the dress code was written by a Republican staffer who decided to model it on Wyoming’s — but stricter:

Montana GOPers also removed an item from the Wyoming dress code allowing sleeveless dresses–IF and only if they were worn under jackets that is. Apparently however, the thought that some woman might be sleeveless underneath her suit coat was too much for MT Republicans, so they took it out.

Finally, although Wyoming lawmakers have generously been allowed to wear knit dresses–if sufficiently covered by a jacket. That language is also removed from the MT dress code. Perhaps one of these items was the mysterious item number six which was missing from Montana’s dress code. That document skips from 5 to 7.

I’m trying to imagine the guy whose job it was to write the dresscode for Montana’s female legislators. Did he sit around and think of all the ramifications of a knit dress? Did he perhaps have this in mind?

88BAC905

I’m trying to imagine where the poor guy’s mind went. “Nope! Can’t have a sweater dress! Too many curves!”

Look, I don’t have a problem with things like “no flip-flops” when it’s applied to both men and women — hey, men wear flip-flops, too! — even though I think it’s asinine and patronizing. Do legislators really not know what “business attire” is? Whatever, it’s Montana … it’s a casual place. But no sleeveless dresses even when worn under a jacket is just sticking your nose where it doesn’t belong.

I once had a job back in the ’80s in a teensy weensy two-person office where my Israeli boss told me I needed to wear stockings to work. (This was the same boss who — even though I was never late — tried to tell me what route I should take to work because, mansplaining!)

Nobody wears stockings in Southern California, it’s too damn hot for one thing; also, I’m pretty sure women stopped wearing stockings at all somewhere around 1973, I’m not sure. But I told him I was not going to wear stockings to work and he could find my replacement if he wanted to. I kept the job.

Ladies, there are some men in the world who just love to tell you how to run your life. Sadly, too many of them are elected to office.

6 Comments

Filed under feminism, sexism, women's rights

Hey: Girls Do It All The Time

This was hilarious: American guys in European style swimsuits!

Their reaction to wearing what is the male equivalent of female swimwear was hilarious. One said the skimpy European-style swim briefs made him feel “uncomfortable” and “very sexualized.” Another lamented (probably ironically) that, “it’s about my mind not my dick pocket.”

Um, yep. That’s about the, er, size of it.

3 Comments

Filed under fashion, feminism

More Follow-Up Questions, Please

This is why I watch Aljazeera America:

Ah, those pesky “follow-up questions.” Don’t see them too often from the likes of Chuck Todd or David Gregory.

The fact of the matter is, when you ask the follow-up questions it becomes apparent that Republicans are not only legislating shit they don’t understand, they’re legislating shit they never bothered to think about. “Why would a woman want to get an abortion?” “Well gee now, I’ve never thought about that …”

Maybe you should, asshole. This should be asked of every anti-choice politician. If they can’t answer it they need to get to the end of the line.

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Filed under abortion, feminism, media, Republican Party, women's rights