Whose Violence?

I initially wrote this piece in the mid-1990s. It was published in Philosophy Now in 1999 when I was a columnist there. Ten years later, in 2010, I posted it at my other blog; it seemed required. Another three years later, I’m posting it again, here, because the people in power in mainstream media apparently still have their heads up their asses on this matter.

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I read the other day that “Violence in our society continues to be a problem.” One, duh. Two, no wonder. I mean, we haven’t even got it named right yet.

“Violence in our society.” It sounds so – inclusive. So gender-inclusive. But about 85% of all the violent crime is committed by men. The gangs are made up of men, the bar brawls are fought by men, the corner stores are held up by men, the rapists are men, the muggers are men, the drive-by shooters are men. This is sex-specific. The problem isn’t violence; the problem is male violence. Continue reading

Pretty Frickin’ Amazing.

Check out this video, “Pretty” by Katie Makkai:

http://vimeo.com/44259213

Pretty – Katie Makkai

“And son? Take care of your mom while I’m gone.”

Excuse me?  I don’t need a child to take care of me.  I know, he might reply, I’m just trying to –  trying to what?  Teach him to be a man?  Teach him that grown women need looking after?  And that he, as the one with the penis, is just the person to do it? Continue reading

Women’s Fiction

I finished a novel by J. D. Robb the other day and also happened to read the back inside cover blurb: “Nora Roberts is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of more than one hundred novels.  She is also the author of the bestselling futuristic suspense series written under the pen name J. D. Robb.  With more than 145 million copies of her books in print and more than sixty-nine New York Times bestsellers to date, Nora Roberts is indisputably the most celebrated and beloved women’s fiction writer today.”  Why the qualification women’s fiction?  My guess is that with those numbers, she’s a well celebrated and beloved fiction writer, period. Continue reading

Population Growth (i.e., rape)

I am amazed at the number of population growth analyses that don’t mention rape.  So far I’ve read, let me see…none.  And if they don’t even mention rape, they sure as hell can’t consider it a major causal factor.  Do people really believe that millions of women want to be pregnant for five to ten years?  Do people really believe that most women would actually consent to child number four when the other three are still under six? Continue reading

Mr. and Ms.

I’m in this world, okay, and the people identify each other by sex.  All the time.  It’s like ‘Female Person Smith’ and ‘Male Person Brown’ or ‘Person-with-Uterus Smith’ and ‘Person-with-Penis Brown’ – I don’t know the exact translation.  But sex-identity is a mandatory prefix.  They distinguish males from females.  Before they do everything else.  Before they do anything else. Continue reading

Surrogacy — Why Not?

Sure, women should be allowed to be surrogates.  We all do work with our bodies, some of us also include our minds in the deal (some of us are allowed to include our minds in the deal), so why not?  As long as they get paid for service rendered. Continue reading

A Man Shaken by a Bomb

I picked up a sci-fi novel the other day at a used bookstore.  The jacket said it was set after a nuclear war and written by someone who’d rubbed shoulders with a lot of military people.  Well, I figured it’d be interesting to see what they imagined life’d be like after a nuclear war.  (The pages weren’t blank.) Continue reading