All entries by this author

We do not want our Guests to be afraid

Jul 19th, 2016 11:22 am | By

That’s how it should work.

Shannon Sullivan was surprised, then angry.

Not two months after 2-year-old Lane Graves was dragged into a lake by an alligator at a Disney resort and killed, she found herself face-to-face with a sign that made her deeply uncomfortable.

The Disney College Program bills itself as a “life-changing,” “once-in-a-lifetime” opportunity. Sullivan knew that she might lose her summer internship if she spoke out about this sign, but she couldn’t hold her tongue. She was willing to risk her spot in the program, one she quickly lost after she posted a photo of the sign to Twitter.

What did the sign say? “Alligators are friendly and cuddly, jump in the water and play with them!”? … Read the rest



A woman only needs to breathe

Jul 18th, 2016 6:10 pm | By

Via Muslim and Exmuslim Women for Secularism:

“Masculinity so fragile, a woman only needs to breathe to hurt it.” Artwork by Rahema Alam.

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It is understood that YS stands for “young sluts”

Jul 18th, 2016 5:30 pm | By

Boys at a private school in Melbourne set up an Instagram account last week in order to post photos of little girls and call them sluts.

Police are investigating an Instagram account which was set up by students at an exclusive private boys’ school to share photos of young girls without their knowledge.

The offensive account was created by two Year 11 boys at Brighton Grammar School and encouraged viewers to vote on the “slut of the year”.

“Offensive” isn’t the right word there. It’s misogynist and sexist and rapey.

A Melbourne mother who spoke out in disgust on her Facebook page after discovering that photos of her young daughter were uploaded onto the social media page, told Fairfax Media

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Be afraid

Jul 18th, 2016 4:35 pm | By

Right Wing Watch tells us about one of the people speaking at the Republican convention this week.

The Republican National Convention released a partial list today of the politicians, activists, C-list celebrities and Donald Trump family members who will be speaking at next week’s convention. What the speakers’ list lacks in establishment GOP leaders it makes up for in fringe activists. One name especially stands out: Sheriff David Clarke, the Milwaukee law enforcement officer who has made a name for himself hurling anti-Obama vitriol on Fox News and elsewhere while quietly cozying up to anti-government extremist groups.

Clarke, who is African American, has built a conservative following by enthusiastically bashing President Obama, his Justice Department, Hillary Clinton and the Black

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The teenager reportedly shouted

Jul 18th, 2016 4:16 pm | By

Another day, another Allahu Akbar. Today’s location is Germany.

A police operation is underway in the German town of Heidingsfeld, part of the southern city of Würzburg, after a man launched an attack on a regional passenger train at around 9.15pm local time (1915 UTC) on Monday.

Three people were seriously injured and a fourth suffered light injuries. Another 14 are being treated for shock.

The suspect was a 17-year-old Afghan refugee.

The teenager reportedly shouted “Allahu Akbar” before launching the attack using a knife and axe. He was shot dead by police in Heidingsfeld as he attempted to flee the scene. His motive was not immediately clear.

If it’s true that he shouted “Allahu Akbar” then his motive … Read the rest



Like so many other differences

Jul 18th, 2016 2:58 pm | By

I shouldn’t laugh, but…who could possibly help it?

What We Mean When We Say “Femme”: A Roundtable

Oh wow, don’t you just long to know what they mean when they say “femme”? I’m all agog, myself.

Femmes. We live in different places. We’re different ages. We have different gender identities. Some of us are people of color, some of us are white. In this representative sample, we are Autostraddle writers, or artists, or musicians, or educators, or all of these things. The only thing we have in common is that we’re queer and that, in our own deeply personal way, we breathe life into the word femme. But like so many other differences, we don’t agree on what the word

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Loophole closed

Jul 18th, 2016 11:44 am | By

Dawn reports:

LAHORE: A First Information Report (FIR) registered against the nominated killers of social media celebrity Qandeel Baloch was transformed into a non-compoundable FIR on Monday, police said, making it impossible for Qandeel’s family to pardon her killers.

A senior police officer investigating the case told Dawn that Sections 311 and 305 of the Pakistan Penal Code had been added to the FIR.

Advocate Balak Shair Khosa, while talking to Dawn, said the addition of these sections was a welcome step.

“There cannot be an agreement [after this]. These sections were created to end karo-kari. Now that they have added them to the FIR, the victim’s family cannot forgive the killers as the state has become

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They’re in the stadium

Jul 18th, 2016 11:25 am | By

The failed coup has been a gift to Erdoğan. Patrick Coburn at the Independent says he’s using it to get rid of what’s left of secularism in Turkey.

The number of people detained so far is at 6,000 including soldiers, and around 3,000 judges and legal officials who are unlikely to have been connected to the attempted military takeover.

Reichstag fire.

The failed coup is serving as an excuse for a massive round-up of members of the judiciary and army officers, far greater than anything seen in Turkey for years, and is presumably a bid to secure Erdogan’s grip on the Turkish state. So numerous are those detained that a sports stadium is being used to hold some of them,

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Helping men become more alpha

Jul 18th, 2016 10:57 am | By

The NY Times on the Baton Rouge shooter.

As investigators worked, details about [Gavin] Long, 29, of Kansas City, Mo., began to emerge. Court records filed in Missouri showed that Mr. Long filed a name-change notice with the Jackson County recorder’s office, seeking to change his name to Cosmo Ausar Setepenra and saying he was a member of an indigenous tribe. A spokeswoman for the court said Mr. Long never filed a petition with the court, so the document was not legally binding.

Using that name, Mr. Long billed himself online as a self-help author and life coach who could help men become more “alpha.”

Like the gunman who killed five police officers more than a week ago in

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Left for dead in the bushes

Jul 18th, 2016 10:19 am | By

The punishment for reporting a gang rape is…another gang rape. By the same gang.

There has been outrage in India after a student was allegedly gang-raped by five men who had also raped her three years ago.

Police are yet to make any arrests although the 21-year-old was attacked last week in Rohtak town in the northern state of Haryana.

She had been pursuing a case in court against the five men, when she was attacked on Wednesday.

The woman said she was forced inside a car and the men tried to strangle her.

She was seriously injured and left for dead in the bushes. A passerby saw her and took her to the hospital.

She’s a Dalit.… Read the rest



“Yes of course, I strangled her,” he said

Jul 17th, 2016 5:42 pm | By

Qandeel Baloch’s brother confirmed that he killed her. He’s fine with it. No problem. She was embarrassing, so obviously he had to make her dead. Women who make men feel ooky don’t get to go on being alive.

Police presented Azeem before the media in Multan, where he confessed to killing her. He said people had taunted him over the photos and that he found the social embarrassment unbearable.

“Yes of course, I strangled her,” he said.

Of course. What else is a man supposed to do when his sister causes social embarrassment that he finds unbearable? His feelings of social discomfort are obviously infinitely more important than a trivial thing like her life.

Azeem said he acted alone

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Something did

Jul 17th, 2016 4:55 pm | By

Well, if you want to turn the sadness dial up you can always look at Qandeel Baloch’s Twitter.

July 15 – the day her brother strangled her to death.

July 14

As a women we must stand up for ourselves..As a women we must stand up for each other…As a women we must stand…

If you follow the link, you get the Facebook Not Here message.

Also July 14

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A rather more sinister trend

Jul 17th, 2016 12:35 pm | By

Chris Moos pointed out to me another Theos blog post by Ben Ryan. It too is badly written and badly thought.

A blog was recently drawn to my attention by one Dr Chris Moos that tries to paint the LSE Director Professor Craig Calhoun as a “faith warrior”. By deigning to argue that religion ought to be taken more seriously in academia in a range of different subjects as an overlooked cause Calhoun is displaying some sort of scary Christian zeal (apparently).

That last sentence really is gibberish, plus he appears not to know what “deign” means. To attempt to translate: I think he’s saying that Chris Moos is saying that Calhoun is a faith warrior because he (Calhoun) … Read the rest



Theos researcher says “surrender now”

Jul 16th, 2016 5:38 pm | By

A researcher at the godbothering thinktank “Theos” wrote a blog post saying France should stop being so stubborn and just do what the murderers want, dammit.

After each attack the security services and beefed up. After each atrocity gallons of ink are spilt about whether it is time to rethink laïcité (the famous French model of secularism) or the nature of Republic French values.

That’s how badly he writes. Apologies for making you read it.

If it’s true that after each atrocity gallons of ink are spilt about whether it is time to rethink laïcité, then people should save their ink, or rather their keyboard tapping. No, it is not time to rethink laïcité, nor is it time to … Read the rest



Testing, testing

Jul 16th, 2016 3:45 pm | By

No no no. We don’t need a “Sharia test.” That’s ridiculous.

Newt Gingrich says we do.

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich has suggested testing all US Muslims to see if they believe in Sharia, and deporting those who do.

Mr Gingrich’s comments follow an attack in the French city of Nice, which has killed at least 84 people.

His comments echo the sentiments of Donald Trump, who has said Muslims should be banned from entering the US.

That’s a crap idea for civil rights reasons and basic decency reasons, but even if it were acceptable to go around “testing” citizens and immigrants in that way, believing in Sharia would be the wrong criterion. I hate religious laws in … Read the rest



The transfer of those lands identified

Jul 16th, 2016 12:00 pm | By

The Republicans have added a Bundy-party clause to their platform.

The Republican platform committee met this week to draft the document that defines the party’s official principles and policies. Along with provisions on pornography and LGBT “conversion therapy” is an amendment calling for the indiscriminate and immediate disposal of national public lands.

The inclusion of this provision in the Republican Party’s platform reflects the growing influence of and ideological alliance between several anti-park members of the GOP and anti-government extremists, led by Cliven Bundy, who dispute the federal government’s authority over national public lands.

“Congress shall immediately pass universal legislation providing a timely and orderly mechanism requiring the federal government to convey certain federally controlled public lands to the states,”

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2,745 judges

Jul 16th, 2016 10:40 am | By

And Turkey.

Prime Minister Binali Yildirim called the insurrection “a stain in the history of democracy” at a news conference on Saturday in Ankara, the capital. He raised the death toll in the clashes to 265, with 1,440 people wounded, and he said 2,839 military personnel had been detained.

Early Saturday, soldiers surrendered on a bridge that traverses the Bosporus, one of two bridges that the military shut down as the coup attempt began Friday evening. Footage showed abandoned military clothing and helmets along the bridge. The government also moved on a military school in Istanbul, arresting dozens.

Disciplinary actions extended to the judicial system on Saturday as an oversight body, the High Council of Judges and Prosecutors

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One way or another

Jul 16th, 2016 9:25 am | By

The BBC reports arrests in the Nice slaughter.

Five people believed to be linked to the man who killed 84 people in Nice are in police custody, the Paris prosecutor’s office says.

Three arrests were made on Saturday and two on Friday, including the man’s estranged wife, Le Monde reported.

Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel drove a lorry into crowds marking Bastille Day on the Promenade des Anglais on Thursday before he was shot dead by police.

So-called Islamic State claimed one of its followers carried out the attack.

A news agency linked to the group, Amaq Agency, said: “He did the attack in response to calls to target the citizens of the coalition that is fighting the Islamic State.”

Not … Read the rest



Controversial, provocative, notoriety

Jul 16th, 2016 8:24 am | By

Well today is looking gruesome – Erdoğan is busy purging judges as “plotters” by way of making himself even more of a dictator, IS says Lahouaiej-Bouhlel was one of theirs, and Pakistan’s Kim Kardashian has been murdered by her brother for being Pakistan’s Kim Kardashian.

Pakistani social media celebrity Qandeel Baloch has been killed by her brother in an apparent ‘honour killing’ in the province of Punjab, police say.

Ms Baloch, 26, recently caused controversy by posting controversial pictures of herself on social media, including one alongside a Muslim cleric.

She caused controversy by being controversial. Got it.

This is, of course, the BBC yet again reporting violence from the point of view of the perpetrators, which I wish they … Read the rest



Not just a few colonels

Jul 15th, 2016 3:51 pm | By

More from the BBC:

An army group in Turkey says it has taken over the country, with soldiers at strategic points in Istanbul and jets flying low in the capital, Ankara.

A statement read on TV said a “peace council” now ran the country and there was a curfew and martial law.

Erdogan is saying no it hasn’t, this is just some hotheads. He told the people to resist and that he’d be there to help as soon as possible.

PM Binali Yildirim had earlier denounced an “illegal action” by a military “group”, stressing it was not a coup. He said that the government remained in charge.

The military group’s statement on national broadcaster TRT, read by an announcer,

Read the rest