So much time advocating heterosexual marriage

There’s a reason we devote so much time to getting little girls invested in the idea of heterosexual marriage.

Imagine if we told them that there is a single life choice that will:

-shorten their life expectancy

-lower their earning power

-immediately increase their household labor

-erode their mental health and make them less happy

-cause their libido to decline, and mean that they have fewer orgasms

-weaken relationships with family and friends

-increase their risk of abuse and violence

-increase their risk of depression, anxiety, and trauma

That choice is marriage.

Marriage is a great deal for heterosexual men. They earn more, have more leisure time, live longer, become healthier. Heterosexual women sacrifice their quality of life, their well-being, and their very lives at the altar of men’s happiness.

That’s not an opinion. There is an avalanche of scientific data showing that marriage is bad for women and great for men.

That’s why we have to indoctrinate little girls from a young age. Because the objective material circumstances of marriage are not something most women would willingly choose.

Not all marriages are like this, of course. It is possible to have an egalitarian, joyful marriage. And we must emphasize this fact. We must emphasize that men do not inevitably force women to carry an unfair load of work. This is not inevitable. It is a choice. Men make the choice to buy their leisure, their time, their happiness and well-being on the backs of women they claim to love. We tell women to accept this, that it’s normal, that he’s a good guy as long as he doesn’t beat her.

It doesn’t have to be this way. Household inequity is a form of abuse with real and long-lasting consequences for women’s well-being.

Not all men are this way. Not all marriages are this way. None of them have to be.

Demand better. And stop telling girls to look forward to marriage. They probably shouldn’t.

Give them tools and books and crafts, not princesses and fairytales.

Zawn

reposted from https://www.facebook.com/radfemsca

Archive of feminist activism 70s-90s

For those of you who weren’t born yet …

Rise Up: a digital archive of feminist activism

You don’t need to reinvent the wheel.

The hardest part about being a woman…

Reposted from ovarit (if you’re not aware of ovarit.com, you should be!)

from Rebecca Solnit’s Recollections

From Rebecca Solnit’s Recollections of my Non Existence

“To be a young woman is to face your annihilation in innumerable ways ….” (p4)

“I was often unaware of what and why I was resisting ….” (p4) 

Yes.  Let’s not understate the value of having words for what we experience.  The words ‘sexism’ and ‘misogyny’ didn’t always exist, so it was hard to identify, let alone talk about, what it was …

“The fight wasn’t just to survive bodily … but to survive as a person possessed of rights, including the right to participation and dignity and a voice.” (p4)

“… back when I was trying not to be that despised thing, a girl, and ….” (p6)

“sometimes at the birth and death of a day, the opal sky is no color we have words for, the gold shading into blue without the intervening green that is halfway between those colors, the fiery warm colors that are not apricot or crimson or god, the light morphing second by second so that the sky is more shades of blue than you can count as it fades from where the sun is to the far side where others color are happening.” (p7)

Best description of a sunset (in San Francisco) I’ve ever read!

“What is rape but an insistence that the spatial rights of a man, and by implication men, extend to the interior of a woman’s body …,” (p77-8)

So well-put.

“Most urban women, you know, live as though in a war zone….” (p98)

Yes.  I’ve often said living as a woman in our society is like living in an occupied country.  And men have no idea.  Most men.

“There are three key things tha tmatter in having a voice: audibility, credibility, and consequence. … Gender violence is made possible by this lack of audibility, credibility, and consequence.”  p229, 231

Women’s Locker Room Talk

“One woman warning you about a creepy dude and a dozen other women chiming in with their own stories is our version of locker room talk.” Caitlin Kelly

reposted from https://www.facebook.com/radfemsca

“Men need Sex” — a story about a story

So I wrote a story, “Men Need Sex.”  I started with the mistaken, but wide-spread, belief that men need sex (PIV).  Mistaken because, unlike food, water, and oxygen, without sex, you don’t die.  Then, ‘inspired’ by Roger Elliott, I thought, ‘What if?’  What if men really did die if they didn’t get sex.  I postulated contagion, perhaps social.  Then I postulated a shortening incubation period (between belief, not getting sex, and suicide). And I added the belief that men are entitled to get what they need, which ramped up rape and, consequently, women’s self-quarantine (after begging, to no avail, for stricter gun laws and a curfew for men).  I ended the story with something like ‘And then the women just … waited.’

The SciPhi Journal rejected it.  Which was disappointing, because I thought the story was clearly sf with a philosophical element (“As its primary mission, SPJ wishes to provide a platform for idea-driven fiction, as opposed to the character-driven mode that has come to predominate speculative fiction”).  Future Fire also rejected it, which was also disappointing, because they focus on feminist sf.  But what I want to focus on is the first rejection because it came with the explanation that my story “reads as a fully seriously intended apology of gendercide.”

How was what I described gendercide?  The women didn’t kill the men; they just waited for them to kill themselves.  Yes, they withheld sex, but if you’ll die without food and I refuse to give you food, am I killing you?  Perhaps.  The philosophical community has not yet come to a consensus on that; it’s called the passive euthanasia vs. active euthanasia debate (and the SciPhi editor should have been well aware of that debate).

Framed another way, if you’ll die without being able to hurt someone, and no one steps forward to be hurt, are we all killing you?  Not at all clear.  That’s called the Good Samaritan debate (and again, the SciPhi editor should have been well aware of it), often illustrated by the scenario of a drowning child: if the passerby is a competent swimmer, then yes, she has a duty to rescue, but if the passerby cannot swim, and the rescue puts her own life at risk, then no, she has no duty to rescue.  The essential question is ‘On what grounds would one have a duty to sacrifice oneself for another?’ 

Does intercourse put a woman’s life at risk?  If she has no contraception and no abortion, that is, if she’s forced to become pregnant and then doesn’t miscarry, well, maybe.  It is not uncommon for a woman to die giving birth.  At a minimum, there is a clear risk to her health: high blood pressure, diabetes, anemia,  stroke, cardiac arrest.  Perhaps the SciPhi editor is unaware of the health risks of pregnancy and childbirth…

But even with contraception and abortion … why is she obligated to allow herself to be hurt (yes, men, sexual intercourse against our will, absent our desire, hurts)  (maybe that’s what the SciPhi guy didn’t get?) so that the man will live?  If it’s a one-time thing, and the man in question is a good man (yes, that would figure into my deliberation), okay, maybe many of us would, and should, say yes.  Ten minutes, in and out, go on, live. 

But if it’s an ongoing thing, like the provision of food (which is what my story suggests), then the scenario would be very much like one sex, male, enslaving another, female; men imprisoning women to ensure continued sexual access and, therefore, their continued existence.

All that aside, the editor said “Art is free, and I won’t criticise any apology of anything.”  Okay, then, an apology for gendercide, should that have been what my story was about, would have been okay.  “However,” he continued, “all pieces of writing for SPJ must have at least a grain of plausibility.”  When I pointed out that I’d referenced Elliot Rodger and Alex Minassian, he said he hadn’t heard of either one.  What?  What?  (I keep forgetting that since words like sexism and misogyny aren’t used on primetime tv or in mainstream news, most people [in the U.S. and Canada, at least, because their entire worldview is formed by those two media] `aren’t familiar with the concepts. And it keeps shocking me when I remember that.  But wait, weren’t both Rodger and Minassian reported in mainstream news?)  My guess is the editor just didn’t read my story very carefully.  (Both Rodger and Minassian were referenced in footnotes.)  And why might that be?  Because … oh, right.  It was written by a woman.

He went on to say “As a 100% gay male, I can assure you that your statements about ALL men are quite off the mark …”  Quite apart from the fact that any statements I made about ALL men were in the context of the story, a fiction, I never made any statements about ALL men; in fact, I quite deliberately say “Of course not all men” at one point.

“On the other hand,” he continued, “the funny notion implied in your story that women don’t need sex is also wrong”— oh do tell, please, go ahead and mansplain women’s sexuality to me.

“Myself and quite a few of my gay male friends have had experiences of being sexually harassed by women. Therefore, women seem to need sex as well.”  Therefore?  Okay, at this point, I’m thinking the editor of a philosophical science fiction journal doesn’t have a philosophy degree.

In a subsequent email (because yes, I responded to his rejection letter, refuting his points; I’m tired of just letting these things happen without challenge), he said “At any case, there is too much hate shown by the narrator to be humanely appealing.”  Need I point out all the sf in which male narrators show too much hate of women to be humanely appealing?  (Yes, men, any time you write a story or novel in which the males subordinate or sexualize the females, you’re expressing hatred of women.)

And, in yet another email, he said “There is no lack of publishing venues that would gladly accept any kind of male-bashing. SPJ is not one of them.”

To which I replied, “It’s just … disappointing that you didn’t see that the story is actually an argument against male entitlement and an exposé of, and a cautionary tale about, toxic masculinity.” 

A tale of two athletes – thanks to ovarit

https://uploads.ovarit.com/335e8451-83fc-5f33-87c3-101d0622aaa4.png

Toys Make Us

video of “Toys Make Us” from Chris Wind’s album “ProVocative”

chriswind.com

The Assistants by Camille Perri – highly recommended!

Just finished reading Camille Perri’s The Assistants — highly recommended! It’s Nine to Five updated and with a great moral element; better than any nonfiction book about the income inequity between the top 1% and the rest of us … With attitude, to boot! “Robert had tie-clips that cost as much as those [student loan] debts. one man’s private-jet ride to Key West was another woman’s second chance at life. …” (p219) And the sexual harassment seminar — delightful!! Just finished reading Camille Perri’s The Assistants — highly recommended! It’s Nine to Five updated and with a great moral element; better than any nonfiction book about the income inequity between the top 1% and the rest of us … With attitude, to boot! “Robert had tie-clips that cost as much as those [student loan] debts. one man’s private-jet ride to Key West was another woman’s second chance at life. …” (p219) And the sexual harassment seminar — delightful!!

On gender identity and changing your sex

Let’s say we are born with a gender identity.  Either

(1) it isn’t a binary, in which case there’s no need to change your sex to attain some sort of ‘fit’

(2) it is binary, but it doesn’t necessarily or always align with sex, in which case again there’s no need to change your sex, or

(3) it is binary and it does align with sex, in which case one couldn’t possibly feel a mismatch—feeling a mismatch would just prove that (2) is the case. 

I suppose one could say that for 99%, it is aligned, and those who feel a mismatch are anomalies, but look around at all the women who are not feminine.  Are we all anomalies?  If so, then we’re not really anomalies, are we.  (And even if we are, so what?  How does that necessitate chemical or surgical transformation?)

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