All entries by this author

Let’s redefine “woman”

Jan 22nd, 2019 9:37 am | By

And then there’s Alex Sharpe writing at Diva:

Are some feminists asking the wrong question about who counts as a “lesbian”?

Why are there scare quotes on the word “lesbian”? Are we treating that as some sort of “problematic” or tendentious or confusing or reactionary word now? Are we holding it out with tongs because lesbians say no to penis?

Kathleen Stock, a Professor of Philosophy at Sussex University, and enfant terrible of gender critical feminism, has recently asked: “can a biological male be a lesbian?” Of course, framing the question in this way tends to suggest a particular conclusion, one Stock wants us to draw, which is that trans women cannot be lesbians.

And framing the question as “Are … Read the rest

Or another gender

Jan 22nd, 2019 8:37 am | By

Judith Butler explains that being a woman is optional.

In the last few years, protests in Europe, Latin America, and elsewhere have objected to an “ideology of gender”. Elections in France, Colombia, Costa Rica, and Brazil have pivoted on a candidate’s account of gender roles. In the US, both Catholics and evangelicals have opposed a host of political positions linked elsewhere with “gender theory” or “gender ideology”: the rights of trans people in the military, the rights to abortion, lesbian, gay and trans rights, gay marriage, feminism, and other movements in favor of gender equality and sexual freedom.

That’s a lot of disparate concepts thrown into the blender and served up as “gender equality.” It also puts feminism lastRead the rest

An inclusion too many

Jan 21st, 2019 5:34 pm | By

Women’s March London…

“A fully inclusive intersectional feminist movement”…meaning, they include people who aren’t women, and they avoid the word “women.” You can’t have feminism while treating the word “women” as if it has political cooties, and you can’t have feminism while trying to bully women into being “inclusive” of people who aren’t women. Just like other people, women are allowed to organize around the concerns of women; they are under no obligation to be “inclusive” of people who have different concerns. Feminism … Read the rest


Jan 21st, 2019 4:57 pm | By


H/t Katrina… Read the rest

Guest post: On MLK Day

Jan 21st, 2019 4:55 pm | By

Originally a comment by TheDudeDiogenes on Capitalism thrives on the exploitation of the poor.

Since the USA has a holiday for Martin Luther King, Jr, it is good to notice how sanitized and sentimentalized our cultural memory of this great man has become.

Although he no doubt believed “that no matter what the color of our skin or the place of our birth, we are all created equal by God”, that is ultimately a de-fanging and banal understanding of what he was truly about.

This year, remember that what MLK had to tell us should not make us feel comfortable. We ought to be distinctly uncomfortable that we have so greatly failed to achieve what he believed that Read the rest

The dynamics of power and control

Jan 21st, 2019 2:47 pm | By

Of course they did.

Without fanfare or even notice, the Department of Justice’s Office on Violence Against Women made significant changes to its definition of domestic violence in April. The Obama-era definition was expansive, vetted by experts including the National Center for Victims of Crime and the National Domestic Violence Hotline. The Trump administration’s definition is substantially more limited and less informed, effectively denying the experiences of victims of abuse by attempting to cast domestic violence as an exclusively criminal concern.

The previous definition included critical components of the phenomenon that experts recognize as domestic abuse—a pattern of deliberate behavior, the dynamics of power and control, and behaviors that encompass physical or sexual violence as well as forms of

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Mister Wall goes visiting

Jan 21st, 2019 12:06 pm | By

Very brief. How brief?

Two minutes.

About the time it took for Pence to make that wildly obnoxious claim.

Most of us don’t think King considered a massive wall built to keep brown … Read the rest

A Catholic hierarchy that did little to protect them

Jan 21st, 2019 11:16 am | By

Priests will be priests:

Across India, the nuns talk of priests who pushed into their bedrooms and of priests who pressured them to turn close friendships into sex. They talk about being groped and kissed, of hands pressed against them by men they were raised to believe were representatives of Jesus Christ.

“He was drunk,” said one nun, beginning her story. “You don’t know how to say no,” said another.

At its most grim, the nuns speak of repeated rapes, and of a Catholic hierarchy that did little to protect them.

Well it’s a male hierarchy, isn’t it, organized around a male god and another male god and a bird-thing representing a male Spirit. It’s all about the males. … Read the rest

Capitalism thrives on the exploitation of the poor

Jan 21st, 2019 10:56 am | By

Let’s observe Martin Luther King day via a piece by Tavis Smiley in December 2017:

On Aug. 31, 1967, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. delivered a speech entitled “The Three Evils of Society” at the National Conference of New Politics.

Since it’s not the “I Have A Dream” speech, most of my fellow citizens are unacquainted with the text of this particular address, delivered just eight months before his assassination in Memphis, April 4, 1968. And, even if we were familiar with it, it’s not exactly the kind of speech that the corporate media would be quoting with enthusiasm.

Consider what King had to say that day:

“We have deluded ourselves into believing the myth that capitalism grew and

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A word from Mister Wall

Jan 21st, 2019 8:47 am | By

No, I don’t think so.

Read the rest

Guest post: It’s a maze of twisty little passages, all alike

Jan 20th, 2019 5:33 pm | By

Originally a comment by latsot on A fate worse than.

It’s a maze of twisty little passages, all alike. We shouldn’t be altogether surprised when a Grue turns up.

I have tremendous sympathy for people who feel alone, unloved and unrepresented. We have systematically failed those people for as long as we’ve been people and we don’t appear to have learned much along the way. People are feeling desperate about gender identity? I sympathise. Heaven fucking forbid that we try to fix societal expectations, though. It’s obviously far better to reinforce that gender bullshit by mutilating children and.. well… what then?

Seriously. Many of the things I do for a living require that I keep really quite complex and … Read the rest

A rival account

Jan 20th, 2019 5:21 pm | By

The smiling kid in the video has given a statement about what happened, one which I gather is corroborated by other, longer videos.

I am the student in the video who was confronted by the Native American protestor. I arrived at the Lincoln Memorial at 4:30 p.m. I was told to be there by 5:30 p.m., when our busses were due to leave Washington for the trip back to Kentucky. We had been attending the March for Life rally, and then had split up into small groups to do sightseeing.

When we arrived, we noticed four African American protestors who were also on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. I am not sure what they were protesting, and I

Read the rest

Can’t agree with you there, Mike

Jan 20th, 2019 4:53 pm | By

Oh go put your head under a truck wheel, Pence.

In a Sunday interview with CBS News, Vice President Mike Pence likened President Donald Trump to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Sure, don’t you remember how King clamored for a Wall? A Wall keeping black kids out of white schools? A Wall keeping black people from sitting at the Woolworth’s lunch counter? A Wall keeping black people out of white neighborhoods? A Wall keeping all the good jobs for white people and the ones that promise hard labor at low pay for black people? Wasn’t that a time.

“And honestly,” he opined, “the hearts and minds of the American people are thinking a lot today about [this] being the

Read the rest

A condition

Jan 20th, 2019 4:34 pm | By

This seems strange. It’s an entry on the NHS website, under the subhead Conditions, for Gender Dysphoria. Most of the conditions under that subhead are quite medical – you know, sciencey. The GD one isn’t so much.

Gender dysphoria is a condition where a person experiences discomfort or distress because there’s a mismatch between their biological sex and gender identity. It’s sometimes known as gender incongruence.

Biological sex is assigned at birth, depending on the appearance of the genitals. Gender identity is the gender that a person “identifies” with or feels themselves to be.

That, for instance. Notice the scare quotes on “identifies” – yes quite, so why use it? Identifying with something isn’t a medical term. What … Read the rest

Look over there

Jan 20th, 2019 1:06 pm | By

Lawyers and tv explainers Joyce Vance and Mimi Rocah explain what Rudy Giuliani is up to. (Spoiler: it’s not lawyering.)

During an interview with CNN’s Chris Cuomo on Wednesday night, Rudy Giuliani, President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer, seemed to acknowledge that there was collusion between one or more people involved in the Trump campaign and Russia — but just not involving his client, President Trump. Giuliani, who, along with Trump, has spent the last year telling the public that there has been no collusion, suddenly shifted gears and claimed he “never said there was no collusion between the campaign or between people in the campaign” only that there was “no collusion” on the part of “the president of the

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A fate worse than…

Jan 20th, 2019 12:23 pm | By

Andy Lewis, Le canard noir, tweeted an interesting letter:

Can you read it? Don’t forget to zoom in if it’s difficult.

The first point is that puberty blockers leave the young person in developmental limbo, without the pubertal hormones or secondary sexual characteristic that would tend to consolidate gender identity. One particular puberty blocker “promotes a continued desire to identify with the non-birth sex” while 73 to 88% of GD patients who don’t get blockers “eventually lose their desire to identify with the non-birth sex.”

What caught my attention there is the fact that that loss of desire to identify with the non-birth sex … Read the rest

Packets of anti-feminist literature

Jan 20th, 2019 10:56 am | By

Meanwhile in South Carolina

A request to hang a group photo of the General Assembly’s female lawmakers in the State House led to an uncomfortable debate Tuesday in which a pro-life activist urged lawmakers not to endorse such symbols of “destructive and evil” feminism.

The 10-member State House Committee, made up of nine men and one woman, rebuked Columbia Christians for Life director Steve Lefemine, shutting down his testimony after three minutes.

Jeez, a guy can’t even testify about how evil feminism is any more, it’s political correctness gone mad.

By then, Lefemine had passed out packets of anti-feminist literature, expressed his view that the Bible says women are not fit for public office, and read aloud from

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This behavior is opposed to the Church’s teachings

Jan 20th, 2019 10:39 am | By

So we’re seeing play out yet another example of “religion is thought to make people better but guess what IT DOESN’T (necessarily).”

The entitled young male shits who bullied Nathan Phillips are all students at a Catholic boys’ school, so that doesn’t speak very well for how Catholic boys’ schools educate their boys, does it. Teaching basic decency isn’t really the role of schools, and probably shouldn’t be, but at the same time, schools by their nature collect children together into a small space for hours every day, so in that sense teaching / enforcing basic decency is their responsibility. They have a responsibility to see to it that the students don’t brutalize each other, which means they have a … Read the rest

The order of the smirk

Jan 19th, 2019 2:43 pm | By

Updating to add: see the competing account by the kid in the cap.

More on the high school bullies who mobbed a Native American drummer in DC yesterday.

The images in a series of videos that went viral on social media Saturday showed a tense scene near the Lincoln Memorial.

In them, a Native American man steadily beats his drum at the tail end of Friday’s Indigenous Peoples March while singing a song of unity for indigenous people to “be strong” in the face of the ravages of colonialism that now include police brutality, poor access to health care and the ill effects of climate change on reservations.

Surrounding him are a throng of young, mostly white teenage boys,

Read the rest

Damp squib

Jan 19th, 2019 2:20 pm | By

Trump made his stupid “announcement.” He’ll extend DACA for awhile if he gets the 5 billion for Wall. No one took the bait.

Trump had indicated for weeks that he would not entertain an extension of DACA, which began in 2012 under President Obama and has offered renewable work permits to immigrants, known as “Dreamers,” who entered the country illegally as children. Trump had said he was hoping the Supreme Court would hear an appeal to a lower court’s injunction on his attempt to end DACA and, if the high court ruled in his favor, that ending the program would give him more leverage in talks with Democrats over the future of the Dreamers.

But the Supreme Court signaled Friday

Read the rest