The start of a beautiful friendship?

Sep 23rd, 2020 6:43 am | By

Ah you see it’s a long-term relationship, not at all a rent a woman’s uterus situation.

(First of all, the inelegance of the grammar – “us “demanding” a random woman is our surrogate” – ick. Should be “our ‘demanding'” because gerunds are nouns, but much more…demanding a woman is our surrogate? Come on. That’s what the subjunctive is for. Demanding that something is just makes no sense: who needs to demand it when it already is? If you hate the subjunctive too much to use it then make it “demanding a woman should be” but NOT “demanding a woman is.” Guy’s barely literate.)

But the substantive part is this “it’s building a long-term relationship with someone as a friend and a member of our extended family who [gestates a baby to give to us] for altruistic only reasons.”

I’m trying to picture how that’s going to work. I wonder if they’re working on such a relationship now, and if so, if the woman they’re grooming knows that’s what’s going on. I wonder – do they not already have woman friends? No, probably not, given how obviously Benjamin Cohen hates women. But so then how do they expect to be able to start now, when Benjamin C is being so frank about their plans? What kind of long-term relationship as a friend and a member of their extended family would they be able to create when their goal is not friendship and extended family but the opportunity to exploit the body of their “friend”?

In short how fucking creepy is that? What woman in her right mind would ever want anything to do with this guy?



An adult female

Sep 22nd, 2020 5:03 pm | By

The discussion continued.

Oh look, he said the Forbidden Words – adult female. He said it in quotation marks, but he forgot to tell us the words are forbidden, and transphobic, and terfy, and deserving of punishment.

He doesn’t think he has a right to a specific surrogate, but he does think he has a right to a surrogate in general.

Which is quite an extraordinary thing to think, and all the more so for a man who despises women so thoroughly in every other context.

Because he’s a man and she’s a woman. That’s how it works.



Uhhhhhhhh

Sep 22nd, 2020 4:48 pm | By

Oh no, a reporter asked him a question about the more than 200 thousand deaths. How dare she.



Not a subtle speech

Sep 22nd, 2020 4:29 pm | By

Trump is in Chynah did it mode:

Tensions between the US and China came to the fore of the annual UN General Assembly in New York, with US President Donald Trump blaming China for the spread of coronavirus.

He called for China to be held “accountable” for the pandemic.

The one he calls “the China virus.”

[A]s often is the case for speeches to the assembly, President Trump used his address to tout his achievements and tear into a rival.

It’s all he knows how to do – say how magnificent he is and pick fights with other people. He’s not a talented guy.

But Laura Trevelyan explains that it’s a campaign move.

This was a stump speech by President Trump, who faces re-election in 40 days time. He had Beijing firmly in his sights – blaming what he and his followers call the China virus for taking countless lives.

Mr Trump is trying to deflect attention from his own handling of the pandemic by heaping opprobrium on China, while emphasising US efforts to find a cure.

…For good measure, Mr Trump lumped the UN’s World Health Organization into his critique of China – saying the international body, which he’s withdrawing US funding from, is virtually controlled by China, blaming it for spreading what he called misinformation about the virus.

This was not a subtle speech. It was a clear attempt to shift blame as Americans are already voting in the presidential election.

Has Trump ever given a subtle speech?



The heart of suburbia

Sep 22nd, 2020 10:42 am | By

Cory Booker is not impressed by Trump’s move to whip up his audience by saying the words “suburbia” and Cory Booker!!” together yesterday. Oooooooh Cory Booker gonna move into your suburbia and make it all SCARY and not white so be afraid be very afraid.



It affects virtually nobody

Sep 22nd, 2020 10:14 am | By

Trump was out flapping his lips yesterday.



Through surrogacy

Sep 22nd, 2020 7:33 am | By

Oh look at that now, it turns out women are needed for some things.

(This guy is the CEO of Pink News, scourge of ‘TERFs.”)

How casual is his “for gay male couples starting a family through surrogacy” – that is, for gay male couples renting a woman’s body to gestate a baby for them. It doesn’t sound quite so tidy and clinical and impersonal now, does it. “Through surrogacy” is such a brisk way of dismissing a woman’s nine months of increasing discomfort and fatigue ending in X hours of extreme pain.

And he says “if we were straight” but that’s not the issue. The issue is that they are both men, and two men can’t produce a baby no matter what they do. Neither can two women, but what women require from a man is a lot shall we say simpler than what men require from a woman.

It’s interesting that the CEO of Pink News carefully doesn’t utter the word “woman” in this complaint about how difficult it is for two men to make a baby.



Mrs Dude

Sep 21st, 2020 4:21 pm | By

Speaking of “a woman” with accompanying ( ) gesture to explain what a woman is, this is not the most intelligent headline I’ve ever seen.

Image

Via Sister Outrider



A woman ( )

Sep 21st, 2020 4:09 pm | By

This guy.

Check the gesture at 11 seconds.

(There’s also the bizarre riddle of why he says the same thing 4 times in 15 seconds, but that’s a distant second to that gesture.)



“A racial entitlement”

Sep 21st, 2020 12:31 pm | By

John Roberts has opposed voting rights for decades. It was a lost cause for the first 3 decades and more, but now he’s getting somewhere.

Among other things, Roberts dismantled much of the Voting Rights Act in Shelby County v. Holder (2013), and he’s joined decisions making it much harder for voting rights plaintiffs to prove they were victims of discrimination. On the basic question of who is allowed to vote and which ballots will be counted, the most important issue in any democracy, Roberts is still the same man who tried and failed to strangle the Voting Rights Act nearly four decades earlier.

As originally enacted, the Voting Rights Act required jurisdictions with a history of racist voting discrimination to “preclear” any new voting-related laws with the Justice Department or with federal judges in Washington, DC. But this preclearance provision was initially scheduled to expire five years after the law was signed in 1965.

That meant that in 1970, while Richard Nixon was president, Congress had to decide whether to extend the preclearance requirement or allow it to expire. And, because Congress never made the preclearance requirement permanent, Congress also chose to extend this requirement again in 1975, in 1982, and in 2006.

A Republican president every time.

As Sen. Trent Lott (R-MS) told Reagan in October of 1981, conservative lawmakers feared that “anyone who seeks to change” an expansive voting rights renewal that had already passed the House “will risk being branded as racist.”

But now – it’s cool to be racist again!

As Edward Blum, a wealthy anti-civil rights activist who would go on to be the driving force behind the Supreme Court case that gutted preclearance in 2013, complained in a 2006 National Review article, “Republicans don’t want to be branded as hostile to minorities, especially just months from an election.”

But that was then! Yay! We’ve got our racist on!

It’s not hard to imagine the frustration conservative Republicans must have felt each time the act was renewed. Those Republicans elected sympathetic presidents, and they had every reason to believe that those presidents and Republican lawmakers would hear their concerns. And yet, in each case, a Republican president sided with liberals over their own conservative supporters.

Justice Antonin Scalia gave voice to this frustration during oral arguments in Shelby County v. Holder (2013), the Roberts Court case that quashed preclearance. The Voting Rights Act, Scalia claimed, was a “perpetuation of racial entitlement,” and “whenever a society adopts racial entitlements, it is very difficult to get out of them through the normal political processes.”

Only…it’s not a perpetuation of racial entitlement; it’s not an entitlement at all. It’s not a Special Favor Just For You; it’s the removal of Special Obstacles Just For You.

Roberts’s majority opinion in Shelby County posits that the United States simply isn’t racist enough to justify a fully operational Voting Rights Act.

There was a lot of heated dissent to that claim at the time and has been ever since. It’s fucking ludicrous.

Preclearance — requiring states to get federal permission before changing their own voting laws — was an “extraordinary” measure adopted to “address an extraordinary problem,” Roberts claimed. Yet, nearly a half-century after the Voting Rights Act first became law, “the conditions that originally justified these measures no longer characterize voting in the covered jurisdictions.” Black voter turnout “has come to exceed white voter turnout in five of the six States originally covered by” Section 5, Roberts claimed.

It worked, so let’s stop using it.

There are a number of fairly obvious criticisms of this argument. One of the most famous was raised by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in her dissenting opinion: “Throwing out preclearance when it has worked and is continuing to work to stop discriminatory changes is like throwing away your umbrella in a rainstorm because you are not getting wet.”

Another problem is that nothing in the Constitution suggests that the Supreme Court gets to decide whether the United States is racist enough to justify extraordinary measures to halt that racism. To the contrary, the Fifteenth Amendment provides that the right to vote “shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude,” and it gives Congress the “power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.”

But the conservative justices ruled otherwise, so now voting rights are being mangled in the previous condition of servitude states.

So we get a flamingly racist criminal as president.



Become serious

Sep 21st, 2020 11:46 am | By

The Post on TrumpBarr’s provocation:

Following a memorandum that President Trump issued earlier this month, the Justice Department published a list of cities that the White House wants to get more aggressive on civil unrest in the wake of police shootings and killings.

“We cannot allow federal tax dollars to be wasted,” Attorney General William P. Barr said in a statement. “It is my hope that the cities identified by the Department of Justice today will reverse course and become serious about performing the basic function of government and start protecting their own citizens.”

He’s an enforcer for the guy who has failed to protect us by failing to deal with the pandemic responsibly, to the tune of many thousands of needless deaths.

The Trump administration was unsuccessful in a similar funding-cut move against New York and other cities over their immigration policies. A federal appeals court ruled that the move violated the separation of powers spelled out in the Constitution.

They can still perform their little play though.

The three cities the Justice Department identified are the same ones listed in the president’s original memorandum. Local officials have accused the federal government of worsening tensions in their cities by advocating angrier confrontations between law enforcement officers and protesters, and in the case of Portland, by sending heavily armed federal agents to quell street clashes.

In recent weeks, Barr has urged federal prosecutors to aggressively pursue cases against those committing violence amid the protests. In a conference call with prosecutors, he suggested that they consider parts of a rarely used law against sedition, if they find evidence matching the law’s language criminalizing the use of force to oppose the government.

Trump’s crimes however are merely harmless pranks.



Neat trick

Sep 21st, 2020 10:52 am | By

Wait a minute though.

Wait.

Religion is about beliefs. It’s also about practices, rituals and so on, but beliefs are important. Beliefs influence how people think, and what people think – high court justices included.

How can we evaluate Supreme Court nominees if we’re not allowed to evaluate their beliefs?

It’s a nice little racket the religions have worked out for themselves in the US: their freedom (of religion) is inscribed in the Bill of Rights, so Catholic bishops have the “freedom” to do their best to police women’s bodies while women do not have the freedom to say that a Catholic Supreme Court justice might have a Catholic view of abortion.

How can we evaluate potential justices’ beliefs if we can’t evaluate them?



Nah, mate, that’s not political

Sep 21st, 2020 10:31 am | By

Jo Bartosch explains those arrests in Leeds yesterday:

Yesterday, when the group Standing for Women tried to assemble at Victoria Square in Leeds to discuss the proposed changes to the Gender Recognition Act (2004) (GRA) their meeting was broken-up by the police. Three of the sixteen women were arrested, including the event organiser Kellie-Jay Keen. A lengthy risk assessment had been completed and submitted ahead of the event to ensure the group were Covid-19 compliant, and the police were kept fully appraised of the group’s plans. After the event Kelly-Jay Keen explained that she knew [she] was likely to be arrested, part of the reason she refused to give her details to the police was in order to have the opportunity to voice her concerns in court.

Despite the current draconian regulations prohibiting public gatherings, there is an exemption for political events. Thanks to this, protests such as Black Lives Matter have been allowed to go ahead unimpeded. But according to West Yorkshire Police, women’s rights are not a political cause. A police officer told Kelly-Jay Keen that Standing for Women “failed to meet the legal definition of a political organisation”, though he himself seemed unable to explain what the legal definition of a political organisation was.

Says it all, doesn’t it. There are such things as oppressed groups…it’s just that women aren’t one of them. Women are meant to be subordinate. Women really are inferior. Women are the second sex.

It seems no-one can quite decide whether Standing for Women is political. In July Network Rail removed a billboard reading “I ♥ JKR” that had been paid for by the campaign group. This statement was in support of the children’s author J K Rowling, who has been accused of transphobia for raising concerns about gender self-identification. Network Rail stated that it had received complaints and somewhat bizarrely concluded that “I ♥ JKR” was a political statement. A freedom of information request revealed there were no emails requesting the poster be taken down, but that there were 158 complaining about its removal.

Yes but the complainers were all women, or doing the bidding of women, and women really are inferior, so of course Network Rail did the right thing.

Whether an innocuous poster or a socially distanced protest, it seems statements in support of women’s rights are deemed threatening, branded either “too political” or “not political enough” and shut down using whichever method is most expedient. Speaking after her arrest and release Kellie-Jay Keen said:

It is not really the right of the state or the police to tell people they are not allowed to assemble to discuss their rights … everyone should have the right to assemble in this country, it is the foundation of our democracy and the fact it’s being cancelled by over-zealous police forces should concern us all.

Feminists occupy a strange “no-man’s land” in the culture wars, hated as ‘TERFs’ (trans exclusionary radical feminists) by the mainstream left and sneered at as identity-obsessed faux victims by the right. But defending the rights of 51% of the population should not be seen as a niche concern; struggling to end the violence of men at home is every bit as political as campaigning for peace in foreign nations.

Yes but if you keep in mind that women really are inferior, you get to count them as only a small fraction of a person, so actually the 51% is more like 10%. Ok? Clear enough now?

Updating to add a demonstration of how it works; SW is Professor Stephen Whittle.

H/t guest



Agitators

Sep 21st, 2020 9:32 am | By

Huh. Suddenly I live in an outlaw city, banished by the Feds into outer darkness.

Statement from the Department of Justice:

Department Of Justice Identifies New York City, Portland And Seattle As Jurisdictions Permitting Violence And Destruction Of Property

Identification is Response to Presidential Memorandum Reviewing Federal Funding to State and Local Governments that are Permitting Anarchy, Violence, and Destruction in American Cities

I guess they mean this presidential memorandum:

The DoJ continues:

The U.S. Department of Justice today identified the following three jurisdictions that have permitted violence and destruction of property to persist and have refused to undertake reasonable measures to counteract criminal activities: New York City; Portland, Oregon; and Seattle, Washington. The Department of Justice is continuing to work to identify jurisdictions that meet the criteria set out in the President’s Memorandum and will periodically update the list of selected jurisdictions as required therein.

The list was published on DOJ’s website today in response to President Trump’s memorandum of September 2, 2020, entitled “Memorandum on Reviewing Funding to State and Local Government Recipients That Are Permitting Anarchy, Violence, and Destruction in American Cities.” 

“When state and local leaders impede their own law enforcement officers and agencies from doing their jobs, it endangers innocent citizens who deserve to be protected, including those who are trying to peacefully assemble and protest,” said Attorney General William P. Barr.  “We cannot allow federal tax dollars to be wasted when the safety of the citizenry hangs in the balance. It is my hope that the cities identified by the Department of Justice today will reverse course and become serious about performing the basic function of government and start protecting their own citizens.”

When will Barr tell Trump to become serious about performing the basic function of government and start protecting his own citizens? Over 200 thousand dead of COVID-19, many of whom would not be dead if Trump had taken the pandemic seriously from the beginning. There are bound to be others dead indirectly because of the pandemic, from stress or grief or isolation or destitution or all those.



Crisp and to the point

Sep 20th, 2020 5:14 pm | By
Image may contain: food, text that says 'MASK REQUIRED FOR SERVICE Do not pout. ാം not whine. Do not argue. Do not harass the employees. Do not spout conspiracy theories or regurgitate misinformation you got from your dumb uncle on Facebook. This isn't political; is basic health and safety. Do not choose to be the reason the rest of the world is laughing at us. "I forgot in my car." Well, go get it then. "This is Unconstitutional." No, it's not. "This is hoax." You're an idiot. EKROAST Chicken'


Heinous, twisted

Sep 20th, 2020 5:06 pm | By

Despicable.

At a rally in Minnesota, President Trump described an MSNBC anchor hit by a rubber bullet while covering protests after the death of George Floyd in May as “a beautiful sight,” comments quickly condemned by journalists including CNN’s Jake Tapper.

In a statement, an MSNBC spokesperson said “freedom of the press is a pillar of our democracy. When the president mocks a journalist for the injury he sustained while putting himself in harm’s way to inform the public, he endangers thousands of other journalists and undermines our freedoms.”

Of course Trump wants to endanger journalists and undermine our freedoms, so saying that isn’t going to make him feel bad.

Velshi’s MSNBC colleagues Lawrence O’Donnell and Stephanie Ruhle both took to Twitter to condemn the president’s words. “The President of the United States is CHEERING & LYING about our friend & colleague Ali Velshi,” Ruhle said, “calling his injuries incurred while dong his job a beautiful sight.”

You know what would be a beautiful sight? Trump dragged away in handcuffs, screaming bloody murder.

Even Piers Morgan.



Respect ALL the idenninies

Sep 20th, 2020 12:06 pm | By

Another landmark ruling:

A U.K. employment tribunal has ruled that non-binary and gender fluid people are protected under the Equality Act.

Protected from what?

The Equality Act protects people from discrimination on the basis of age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sex, and sexual orientation. But a landmark ruling today now confirms that protection to non-binary and gender fluid people does fall under the gender reassignment category, after years of ambiguity.

Protection from what though? Discrimination, it says, but what would discrimination against non-binary people look like? What exactly are we talking about?

The case was brought by a non-binary engineer working in Jaguar Land Rover’s (JLR) plant. Ms Taylor said she was harassed and directly discriminated against on the ground of gender reassignment.

But what’s a non-binary engineer?

Ms Taylor, who is non-binary, also told the tribunal about suffering difficulties with the use of toilet facilities and managerial support.

Did non-binary Ms Taylor want to use a different toilet facility every day? Every trip? Every other month? And what managerial support did shehe require?

Jaguar Land Rover said there was no gender reassignment so ???

However, today a tribunal upheld Ms Taylor’s claims of harassment, direct discrimination, victimisation and constructive dismissal.

Further adding it was “clear… that gender is a spectrum” and that it is “beyond any doubt” that claimant’s identity fell within the definition.

Clear??? It’s about as clear as the holy ghost.

The hearing heard how during the Equality Bill parliamentary debates in 2009 the Solicitor-General referred to a gender as a “spectrum” and that gender reassignment “concerns a personal journey and moving a gender identity away from birth sex.”

In other words navel-gazers gonna navel-gaze. Whatever, but why does everyone else have to agree with and prop up the navel-gazing? Why are we told it’s “clear” and that we have to worship at its feet?

The landmark judgment means that many other gender identities, beyond transgender, may also fall within the definition of gender reassignment in the Equality Act.

Many many many many many. They’re well up into the billions now. They can all sue, they can all punish us for not genuflecting. Good times on the way.

Robin Moira White, of Old Square Chambers, who represented Ms Taylor, says:

“This is an important judgment, albeit at first instance, recognising for the first time the rights of a small number of individuals with complex gender identities. Once again, the courts have shown themselves willing to stand up for the rights of individuals in a manner which demands respect and admiration. I pay tribute to my brave client.” 

But what rights? What follows from all this? Is the idea that people with “complex gender identities” can never be fired because hey why risk it when they are Protected? Or what? What are we required to do now? What is expected of us? What does any of this mindless pretentious gibberish mean?

“I see no reason why this ruling should not extend to other complex gender identities such as agender and genderqueer.”

Sure, why not. Nobody knows what any of it means so what the hell.

Dr S Chelvan, a Barrister at No5 Barristers’ Chambers and specialist in LGBTQ law, tells me this marks a ‘coming of age’ for U.K. LGBTQ law:

“Recognition of gender-fluid and non-binary identities within the gender reassignment protected characteristic in the Equality Act marks the coming of age of LGBT+ law. What makes us human is our differences. What makes us a free society, is our ability to celebrate and protect our right to be different, across the human spectrum.”

But what does that mean? What is “the human spectrum”? What does “Recognition of gender-fluid and non-binary identities” mean?

Usually law people are very careful about precision in language. Usually.

I would think this was a parody but it’s in Forbes.



The night prowler

Sep 20th, 2020 10:37 am | By

Been wondering why Trump talked to Woodward at all? I sort of wondered, before other things replaced it.

Trump was piqued that he did not take part in Woodward’s previous book, Fear, which reached damning conclusions about his administration, so was determined to give his version of events for Rage.

Because he’s too dim and too narcissistic – both! – to realize that his version would only damn him further.

As Woodward recalls of this “surreal time” starting last December, Trump initiated seven phone calls, sometimes at 10pm, sometimes at weekends. The author had to keep a tape recorder to hand at all times.

10 pm. Who the hell calls people – non-intimates – at 10 pm?

Stupid question. Trump. It’s a wonder he didn’t call at 2 a.m.

Apparently he wanders around the White House at night because he’s got nothing to do.

“I call him the night prowler. I think it’s true. He doesn’t drink. He has this kind of savage energy and it comes through in some of the recordings I’ve released. It comes through in his rallies. So for me, it’s a window into his mind. It’s much like, as somebody said, the Nixon tapes where you see what he’s actually thinking and doing.”

As one journalist observed on MSNBC: “Trump is the first candidate for president to launch an October surprise against himself. It’s as if Nixon sent the Nixon tapes to Woodward in an envelope by FedEx.”

The other defining issue of the year [along with the pandemic] has been an uprising against racial injustice following the police killing of George Floyd, an African American man, in Minneapolis in May. In one interview, Woodward confronted Trump about the need both men have to step into someone else’s shoes.

That is, to try to imagine what it would be like to be someone else, with different life circumstances.

“I said, ‘Look, I am somebody who comes from white privilege.’ My father was a lawyer and a judge in Illinois, and I reminded Trump he came from this white privilege also, and I just asked do you understand the anger and pain that particularly Black people feel in this country? He just mocks me and he says, ‘No, you really drank the Kool-Aid, didn’t you? Just listen to you, wow. No, I don’t feel that at all.’”

No, you callous shit, it’s not that we drank any Kool-Aid, it’s that you are too deficient in intelligence and empathy even to grasp that you are where you are because of where you started from.

“It’s about the awareness of what’s going on in the country that he governs. The Black Lives Matter movement was a slap in the face for all of us, particularly white privilege. It was all around us, it was obvious, there was articulation of it. There was support for it by white people.

“It’s a revolution of sorts and you connect directly to the civil rights movement and the awareness of what was going on and he didn’t understand it. He said, ‘Law and order, Bob, law and order, that’s what we’re going to do.’ Well, OK, there’s a problem there and it needs to be addressed very seriously, but law and order’s not enough.”

Oh no, you’ve drunk the Kool-Aid, you’re Woke, you’re virtue signalling, you’re antifa, yadda yadda yadda yadda.

Associate editor of the Washington Post, where he has worked for 49 years, Woodward is a shoe leather reporter of the old school for whom the border between fact and opinion is sacrosanct – the antithesis of journalists who flood social media with “hot takes”. So it is all the more surprising and striking that, in the book’s final sentence, he reaches an unequivocal conclusion: “Trump is the wrong man for the job.”

He explains by phone: “You have to tell the truth and you can’t dodge that if that’s what you believe the truth to be. As a reporter, one plus one equals two: you can say that. And this is factual. It’s overwhelming. It’s incontrovertible and, as people are saying, it’s bulletproof. So I left it in.”

I think that’s right, but I can also see ways to poke holes in it. It depends on what you think the job is, and how you define “wrong.” What if the job is to consolidate Republicans’ grip on power for years into the future? What if the job is to undermine the US to help Putin consolidate his power? What if the job is to make the rich richer and everyone else much poorer? Or to make American White again? Or to destroy environmental and safety regulations and crush the few remaining unions? Or to reduce the population? Or to make racists feel at home?

It all depends on where you’re standing.



Collective targeted abuse

Sep 20th, 2020 9:25 am | By

Catherine Bennett analogizes misogynist abuse of Rowling to the abuse of Salman Rushdie when the fatwa was issued:

Anyone who was around for the Rushdie fatwa may have been reminded of remarks by some eminent UK figures to the effect that, since he had caused actual book burnings and whatnot, he really should have known better. You often got the impression that a British-born target would have elicited more sympathy. “I would not shed a tear,” said the historian Lord Dacre, “if some British Muslims, deploring his manners, should waylay him in a dark street and seek to improve them.”

He wasn’t One of Us, and neither is Rowling.

In the case of Troubled Blood, not much changed after readers failed to spot any vilification of cross-dressers or of trans people. My colleague Nick Cohen’s reading is supported by early reader reviews on Amazon: “ignore the sensationalist headlines”, one writes, “this isn’t ‘that’ novel”.

But let’s abuse her anyway.

Maybe Rowling wasn’t trolling everyone via Strike, after all? Yes, but she is still JK Rowling, infuriatingly uncancelled by the latest Twitter charge sheet – and, maybe most galling of all, powerful and female. That’s enough, since nothing has been done to combat increasingly extreme and pervasive levels of misogynistic hate speech on social media, to guarantee an offending woman’s exposure to collective, targeted, sexualised abuse.

For the sake of standing up for those most downtrodden, fragile, vulnerable, at risk people of all…men. Women who refuse to agree that men are women if they say they are must face maximum level abuse; it’s only fair.

If you compare the online correction of male as opposed to female sympathisers with Rowling, what’s fuelling much of this new literary criticism is, as James Kirkup noted in the Times, dismally obvious: “It’s about people who hate women.” (Naturally, nobody immediately told Mr Kirkup to choke…) There were objections, but if the Rowling death hashtag was not rooted in misogyny, what explains the relentless rape speak, and the absence of similarly dehumanising insults when Robbie Coltrane (Hagrid in Harry Potter) volunteered his support for the author? That is, if it’s not the great misogyny facilitator, Twitter itself.

…The less easily her book could be represented as a suitable candidate for Goebbels treatment, the more last week’s indulgently curated insults added to the evidence marshalled by Laura Bates, and consistently indicated in earlier research, that the misogyny of the manosphere has permeated mainstream culture. In 2018, Amnesty identified Twitter as “a toxic place for its female users”. Now, regardless of earnest pledges to improve, the reach of its orchestrated abuse must be the envy of the most rabid subreddit.

So long as misogyny stays off the list of hate crimes, and endemic male violence against women remains a negligible political concern, it evidently suits both certain campaigners and this social media platform to keep up their contributions to the spread of professional, private and street-located hate.

We thought misogyny was going to fade away. We did not think it was going to come roaring back.



Leeds

Sep 20th, 2020 8:08 am | By

From what I can tell so far, a few gender critical women put on a small, socially distanced political discussion in Leeds today. Result: they got arrested.

Yeah, women, eh – what could they have to protest about? Silly bitches.