Has BC got a question?

May 10th, 2022 8:23 am | By

At the tribunal: is “terf” derogatory or no?

Ahhhh there it is – radical feminists who are in power and are oppressing trans people. Those women it’s ok to threaten and assault. How dare radical feminists have any power. Women’s job is to tell men they are whatever they say they are.

There you go, it’s perfectly ok to call women any degrading name you want – cunt, slag, bitch, karen, whore, terf – if you tell yourself they’re “doing harm” by saying men are not women.

“They are being angry.” Yes, we know. Funnily enough that tends to be when the slurs come out. “You cunt.” “You nigger.” “You faggot.” Derogatory words that come out when people get angry are slurs, of course they are, that’s why they come out. KM’s support dog must have been rolling her/his eyes.

And then there’s “cracker.” Of course it’s a slur. As a response to a snarled “nigger” it’s quite a mild slur, but it’s still a slur. If a rich Harvard-educated white guy calls a Georgia truck driver it it’s a good deal less mild.

What is transphobic and what isn’t?

To sum up, not believing that men are women if they say they are is crimethink and a reason to remove people from their jobs.



Guest post: A somewhat eclectic and rambling conversation

May 10th, 2022 7:34 am | By

Originally a comment by Tigger the Wing on Age appropriate.

Four? Nope. Eleven? Well…

Yesterdat evening, eleven-year-old grandson and I were discussing our tastes in computer games etc. and he suddenly blurted out “We’re transgender!” Now, I got the impression it was a new word he’d overheard and had worked out the likely meaning in his head; and that he couldn’t wait to impress Granny with a word which she might not know (that age group does like to get one over on the adults). After some gentle probing, I discovered that he did, indeed, think that ‘transgender’ means ‘gender non-conforming’.

Over the course of a somewhat eclectic and rambling conversation (because eleven and ADHD) I explained that everyone is either male or female, which is what sex we are, and that gender means the set of unwritten rules every society applies to each sex.

Cue side-quest to explain ‘unwritten rules’ and how they are enforced, not by courts and the law, but by other members of society banding together to express disapproval of certain behaviours which are supposed to be for the opposite sex – like being mean to him because he has long hair and likes make-up and glittery nail polish, and being mean to me because I wear men’s clothes, don’t wear make-up or nail polish, and worked in jobs which are done mostly by men.

Cue second side-quest to explain how the unwritten rules for male people are called ‘masculinity’, and how that changes from culture to culture; for example, Irish men are expected to be strong and hard-working; but, unlike men in some other parts of the world, they are also expected to be gentle and nurturing to their families, and definitely NOT aggressive or violent.

We agreed that being mean to someone who doesn’t follow rules which are stupid (since they don’t take into account individual personality) is wrong; and not following arbitrary rules in a way which doesn’t hurt anyone else is not wrong.

After a bit of back-and-forth to establish our definitions of words were the same, I was able to agree with him that the word ‘transgender’ would make perfect sense if it meant ‘someone who follows different gender rules to the ones they’re supposed to’, but that some people think it means that when you are gender non-conforming you must really be a girl in a boy’s body, or a boy in a girl’s body, and that is obvious nonsense, isn’t it, since every cell in our body is the same sex.

Cue side-quest to discuss what cells are. Cue (quite long) sub-side-quest to discuss the fact that women who have had babies usually have some cells from those babies living in them for the rest of their lives, and so blood tests can sometimes detect male cells in a woman, but that doesn’t make them male. Cue sub-sub-side-quest to explain that no, that doesn’t mean that Mammy will feel anything if he hurts himself; that’s not how cells work.

Anyway, the upshot of our nice cosy conversation was that he knows that it is perfectly acceptable for him to have waist-length hair and like make-up and nail varnish, just as it is perfectly acceptable for his granny to prefer none of those things (although we’ve been having an informal competition, from the beginning of the pandemic, to see whose hair will grow the longest. His was shoulder-length at the start; I had a buzz-cut. Mine is growing curly, though, and so he’s bound to win); that believing that someone can be the opposite sex to themselves is obvious codswallop; and there is nothing wrong with being yourself, even if the unwritten rules of your society say that your behaviour should be masculine if you’re male, and feminine if you’re female.



Uncle Tom Cobbley and all

May 10th, 2022 7:05 am | By

BradfemlyWalsh shared the best tweet from the Allison Bailey tribunal to date:

“Yes KM, his support person, his mother and his support dog.”

It’s a gift, I tells ya.

KM by the way is the “Head of Trans inclusion at Stonewall” who wrote to Garden Court Chambers to complain about Allison.

I wonder if he had his mother and his support person and his support dog with him when he sent that complaint.



Age-appropriate

May 9th, 2022 5:13 pm | By

Conor Friedersdorf set off an interesting [cough] exchange of views by asking if preschool children can understand what gender-obsessed adults mean by “non-binary.”

I don’t think young children will understand a word of that. I think complicated explanations with many moving parts and unfamiliar concepts just go over their heads. What kind of “love” are we talking about here? Do we know that preschool kids understand it? I think they understand statements like “I love my cat”; “your sister loves you”; “Mommies love their children very much.” I don’t think they understand the kind of love where a boy loves a boy and so he’s called gay. I think it’s both absurd and sinister to try to coach them on Gender Ideology at age 4.

People of Twitter of course don’t agree.

Hm. No it isn’t. Kids learn 1-10 early, and they learn to count 2 things or 6 or 10 early, because it’s not complex. It’s how many fingers you have for a start. It’s not the same kind of thing as erotic love or gender dysphoria, let alone magic identity and being “non-binary.”

(How much easier all this would be if the favored label were GNC instead of non-binary. Not conforming to the rules of gender requires zero acceptance of bullshit, while non-binary requires a non-stop supply of it.)

No, see, again, that’s not a good analogy. All those examples are small discreet facts, not big woolly mysterious concepts.

The real issue of course is that a lot of people want to feed this big woolly mysterious horse shit to preschool kids so that they will absorb it and assume it’s true starting as young as possible.



They will take aim at additional basic human rights

May 9th, 2022 11:21 am | By

Pelosi wrote a letter to the Dems today:

Dear Democratic Colleague,

Last Monday, the Nation saw a draft of a Supreme Court decision that sadly would overturn Roe v. Wade, an action which is the culmination of Republicans’ decades-long crusade against women’s fundamental freedoms.

With this draft ruling striking down the nearly fifty-year-old precedent of Roe v. Wade and undermining the Constitutional right to privacy, Republicans would rip away women’s right to make the most intimate and personal decisions.  If handed down, this decision by GOP-appointed Justices would mean that, for the first time in our history, America’s daughters will have less freedom than their mothers.

Republicans have made clear that their goal will be to seek to criminalize abortion nationwide.  Republican state legislators across the country are already advancing extreme new laws, seeking to arrest doctors for offering reproductive care, ban abortion entirely with no exceptions, and even charge women with murder who exercise their right to choose.  These draconian measures could even criminalize contraceptive care, in vitro fertilization and post-miscarriage care, dragging our nation back to a dark time decades into the past.

Make no mistake: once Republicans have dispensed with precedent and privacy in overturning Roe, they will take aim at additional basic human rights.  At this pivotal moment, the stakes for women – and every American – could not be higher. 

And the prospects could not be bleaker. Well they could, but they’re more than bleak enough. It’s all too likely that the Dems will lose both the House and the Senate in just six months. Gilead is on the horizon.



Men get to walk away

May 9th, 2022 10:31 am | By

Aaron Rupar watched the governors gloat so that we don’t have to.

If the Supreme Court follows through on a leaked draft decision that would end the federal right to an abortion, abortion procedures would immediately become illegal in the 22 red or purple states that already have bans on the books. Comments from Republican governors on the most recent round of Sunday news shows served as grim reminders of what that would mean for women — and hinted at rights Republicans will come for next.

Spoiler: they’re not stopping with abortion.

Hutchinson [Arkansas] and Reeves [Mississippi] know they’re essentially making women second-class citizens. During their Sunday interviews, both governors tried to soften the blow by vowing to provide more support to mothers and children. But as host Jake Tapper pointed out to Reeves, he’s had plenty of time to do that and hasn’t bothered. When ranking states by child well-being, Mississippi consistently lands near the bottom, and there’s no reason to believe that’ll suddenly change if abortions are banned.

Or for any other reason. Reeves doesn’t care, end of story.

If you don’t live in a red and purple state, you might be tempted to think that as horrible as the looming rollback of reproductive rights is, it won’t directly affect you. But think again. Republicans are already talking about a federal abortion ban.

Women must be kept enslaved by their own bodies. It’s god’s will.

Trump gets to shove his penis wherever it will fit but women have to be punished for seeking abortion.



IUD=murder

May 9th, 2022 9:59 am | By

We haven’t finished yet, they gloat. There’s more, they smirk. Your life belongs to us, they sneer.

The Republican governor of Mississippi has refused to rule out attempting to ban some forms of contraception if the supreme court ruling that guarantees the right to abortion should fall.

Speaking on CNN on Sunday, Reeves confirmed that his state’s trigger law would go into effect if Roe is overturned.

Reeves’ host on CNN, Jake Tapper, then referred to neighbouring Louisiana, where Republicans have advanced a bill to make abortion a crime of murder.

Tapper said: “They’re talking about not only criminally charging girls and women who get abortions as committing homicide, but they’re also talking about defining the moment of conception as fertilisation, which would theoretically … mean if you use an IUD [intrauterine device], you are committing murder.

“… I’m not making this up. These are the conversations going on in legislatures in your area. So, just to be clear, you have no intention of seeking to ban IUDs or Plan B [morning-after pills]?”

Reeves waved it off with a “we’re not thinking about that right now.”

One thing we can predict: roughly half of the babies born because abortion was unavailable will grow up to have no right to stop being pregnant. Yay?



Suddenly

May 9th, 2022 7:07 am | By

How dare women talk about women things.



Being targets

May 9th, 2022 6:48 am | By

Another walkout:

A body representing football writers in Scotland has apologised after a speaker’s sexist and misogynistic jokes prompted attendees to walk out of its annual awards dinner.

Gabriella Bennett, the co-chair of Women In Journalism Scotland, told BBC Radio Scotland: “I really enjoy it as an event, but there are always off-colour jokes made by the speakers … sexist or misogynistic. But last night’s speech was really next-level. I walked out after about five minutes of maybe a 20-minute speech.

“My table stood up to leave, and I saw Eilidh Barbour and people on her table start to leave. But there were loads of people laughing at these jokes. We were two tables in an enormous room and lots of people found it really funny, so there’s lots of work that we still need to do in really changing people’s minds about what’s acceptable.”

Wimmin got no sensa yuma.



Branch manager

May 9th, 2022 6:32 am | By

Trump again artlessly tells the world what an incompetent fool he is by talking trash about people he himself gave the jobs he says they did so badly.

Trump, in a written statement to CBS’s 60 Minutes, said he had “no comment” when asked whether he ever asked ex-defense secretary Mark Esper about sending “missiles into Mexico” to destroy drug cartel labs in the country, which Esper claimed in a memoir published this week.

So that’s a yes.

“Mark Esper was weak and totally ineffective, and because of it, I had to run the military,” Trump’s statement to 60 Minutes boasted. “He was a lightweight and figurehead, and I realized it very early on.”

Well not “early on” enough, clearly, because there he was, being the defense secretary. A competent boss would find that out before hiring the lightweight figurehead, not after.

“I fired Yesper because he was a Rino (Republican in name only) incapable of leading, and I had to run the military myself.”

Then wudja hire him for, sir?



In the other hemisphere

May 8th, 2022 5:32 pm | By

Australia’s Labor Party is disappearing women from its policies.

Labor has “betrayed” women by axing the words “mother”, “breastfeeding” and “pregnant women” from its official policy platform, say women’s rights advocates.

The official ALP National Platform, a blueprint for its direction in government, has even got rid of an entire section devoted to “maternal and child health”.

Because…what? None of that is needed any more?

The current 2021 policy document which “sets out the contemporary policy agenda that an Albanese Labor Government will implement” does not mention the word mother once.

In the older 2018 version it spoke about mothers four times, and also had references to pregnant mothers and breastfeeding.

Now the new policy references “people” and “individuals” who are pregnant, which feminists say is part of a transgender debate around “erasing” female specific words.

Same old same old. Erasing women from all conversations out of some warped impulse to humor a tiny fraction of the population who think they’re the opposite sex.

“ … Labour supports the rights of individuals to make decisions regarding their reproductive health,” the updated policy now states.

See that makes no sense. Reproductive health is vastly simpler for men; women have a lot more needs around repro health than men do. Also (though far from unrelatedly) women are the subordinated of the two sexes, so disappearing us is disappearing the people who are in a permanent struggle for equal rights. Imagine Labor dropping all words that related to indigenous people in Australia – would anyone think that was a good idea?

Another sentence says: “ … whether people choose to continue their pregnancy or not”.

Which is insulting. If “people” got pregnant then women wouldn’t be subordinated. It’s the pregnant-getting that is why women are subordinated. To pretend that pregnancy is a universal experience, while not ceasing to subordinate women, is a massive grotesque insult.

Oh look, scrolling down I see

Oh look, scrolling down I see

Oh look, scrolling down I see

Oh look, scrolling down I see Coalition for Biological Sex founder Stassja Frei made the same point I did:

“We don’t elevate the rights of indigenous Australians by referring to them simply as ‘people’.

What I’m saying.



An elite meltdown

May 8th, 2022 4:09 pm | By

Ok so I am reading Sullivan’s revolting piece, because I’m masochistic that way. 14 words in I’m already pissed off.

To say that a leaked draft of a Supreme Court ruling prompted an elite meltdown would be a gross understatement.

“Elite.” What an asshole. Does he think non-elite women want to be forced to bear children they don’t want? You can’t even phrase it so that it makes sense – women who don’t want a pregnancy don’t want the pregnancy, so of course no women want to be forced to do what they don’t want to do. It’s a contradiction in terms. But here’s smug Sullivan calling us “elite” for saying so. Easy for him.

The seriously stupid bit, as we already know, is where he pretends to think Kamala Harris meant all women vote yes on abortion rights.

Kamala Harris also found her voice:

Those Republican leaders who are trying to weaponize the use of the law against women. Well we say, ‘How dare they?’ How dare they tell a woman what she can do and cannot do with her own body? How dare they? How dare they try to stop her from determining her own future? How dare they try to deny women their rights and their freedoms?

The premise here is that all women support abortion rights.

The hell it is. She doesn’t say, or imply, “all women support abortion rights.” She says how dare they [the theocrats] tell women what we can do with our bodies? That doesn’t imply anything about the views or loyalties of the women in question. It’s a statement about rights, not a statement about opinions or votes. There is no premise about how women vote.

What strikes me about all of this is not the emotive hyperbole — that’s par for the course in a country where every discourse is now dialed to eleven. What strikes me most in these takes is the underlying contempt for and suspicion of the democratic process — from many of the same people who insist they want to save it.

Democratic process? What democratic process? The Supreme Court isn’t a democratic process. The appointment of justices isn’t a democratic process, although it is in theory the outcome of one…but of course we know it isn’t, strictly speaking, since Clinton got more votes than Trump. It’s a gerrymandered process that relies on a grotesquely undemocratic Senate and Electoral College, so Sullivan should start complaining about that before he complains about angry feminists dissing Our Demokrasee.

I’ll leave it there. He scrapes my nerves.



You need a damn good reason

May 8th, 2022 3:07 pm | By

Remember how we were told the FBI was investigating Kavanaugh? When it wasn’t? Remember how Kavanaugh lied under oath in his hearing? Remember his fake tantrum? Remember who and what he is?



Forced pregnancy will bring us all together

May 8th, 2022 12:10 pm | By

Oh yay, we can all live together at last.

Absolutely. Half of us told we have no rights over our own bodies will do wonders for living together.



A pheasant graveyard

May 8th, 2022 12:00 pm | By

The war between peasants and pheasants continues.

Some people from Totnes, in Devon, went out for a picnic in the woods.

[T]he Duke of Somerset owns much of the area’s woodlands, and they remain largely off-limits to the public because they are used for a large pheasant shoot.

The Duke owns 2,800 acres of land in some of the most beautiful areas of Devon, but the vast majority of it is inaccessible to the public. This is despite the fact he has received funds for the woodland the protesters picnicked in under the English Woodland Grant Scheme, which comes from taxpayer money.

Yes but owning huge tracts of land is what being a duke is all about. Nobody gonna make you a duke if all you own is a little semi with a garden.

This walk in the woods was illegal because there is no right to roam in England’s countryside. In Scotland, visitors have a right to visit green spaces, and it is agreed they should pass through respectfully and not leave a mess.

Those on the protest made a point of picking up litter in the woods, which are used chiefly for pheasant breeding and shooting. Plastic cartridges and piles of pheasant feathers littered the floor, and in a valley visible from the field the protesters picnicked, there was a “pheasant graveyard”, with at least 100 bird carcasses dumped alongside an old washing machine and a pile of wire fence.

Carcasses! Dumped?! That bit surprised me. I thought they ate them. It seems the dukes and dukelings raise them to be killed for the sheer fun of it. I find that disgusting.

Large swathes of private woodlands remain out of bounds to walkers, with estate owners using them instead for releasing and shooting pheasants, a non-native species of game bird. An estimated 50 million pheasants are released into the British countryside every year – equivalent in weight to the total biomass of wild birds in Britain.

All just for target practice. It’s breathtakingly stupid.



What it was like

May 8th, 2022 11:00 am | By

Ursula K. LeGuin on abortion rights:

My friends at NARAL asked me to tell you what it was like before Roe vs Wade. They asked me to tell you what it was like to be twenty and pregnant in 1950 and when you tell your boyfriend you’re pregnant, he tells you about a friend of his in the army whose girl told him she was pregnant, so he got all his buddies to come and say, “We all fucked her, so who knows who the father is?” And he laughs at the good joke….

What was it like, if you were planning to go to graduate school and get a degree and earn a living so you could support yourself and do the work you loved—what it was like to be a senior at Radcliffe and pregnant and if you bore this child, this child which the law demanded you bear and would then call “unlawful,” “illegitimate,” this child whose father denied it … What was it like?

And meanwhile what was it like for that guy, the boyfriend? Nothing. It was like nothing. Nothing happened to him, it all happened to her. He could go on his way rejoicing; she could not.

It’s like this: if I had dropped out of college, thrown away my education, depended on my parents … if I had done all that, which is what the anti-abortion people want me to have done, I would have borne a child for them, … the authorities, the theorists, the fundamentalists; I would have born a child for them, their child.

But I would not have born my own first child, or second child, or third child. My children. The life of that fetus would have prevented, would have aborted, three other fetuses … the three wanted children, the three I had with my husband—whom, if I had not aborted the unwanted one, I would never have met … I would have been an “unwed mother” of a three-year-old in California, without work, with half an education, living off her parents

That’s an aspect of abortion rights you’d think even feral conservatives could grasp. Isn’t it better for children to be wanted as opposed to forced? Taking the long view, isn’t that a profoundly better way to be born? Isn’t it better even for relations between women and men, and among couples, for women not to be basically prisoners and slaves? Wouldn’t you think?



The most immediate effect

May 8th, 2022 10:32 am | By

Amy Davidson Sorkin on how it’s going to be if Alito’s poison pen ruling stands:

The most immediate effect of Dobbs, if the draft opinion holds, will be that tens of millions of women will abruptly lose access to abortion. The ruling itself would not institute a ban, but it would give states almost boundless power to do so. More than twenty states already have measures in place that would severely curtail access: “trigger laws,” designed to go into effect once Roe is overturned; restrictions in state constitutions; or laws that predate Roe but were left on the books. After the draft was leaked, Louisiana legislators moved forward with a bill that would not only ban almost all abortions but would define them as homicides. Sixteen states, meanwhile, have laws protecting abortion rights. This should be cold comfort to people who live in those jurisdictions or who have the financial means to travel. Their own rights will be conditional; they may feel that their choice of where to live is constrained; their country will be more divided and unequal than it is now. But the burden will fall most heavily on Americans with less money.

Reading, I was forgetting even to think about the “pregnant person” issue but then it intruded suddenly, out of nowhere.

But a Republican-controlled Congress could also, with the help of a Republican President, introduce a nationwide ban. Following the leak, people around the country donated to funds that, for example, would help someone of limited means in Missouri, which has an onerous trigger law, pay for a plane ticket to obtain an abortion in Massachusetts. These efforts echo the work of groups such as the Jane Collective, which helped women find reputable abortion providers during the pre-Roe era. They are a positive means of providing mutual support—for now. Some Missouri legislators, however, have pushed for a measure that would allow anyone who helps someone obtain an out-of-state abortion to be sued. A follow-up case to Dobbs could easily involve a pregnant person’s unrestricted right to travel to get care in another state. (Women who have miscarriages may be exposed to legal scrutiny, too.) In fact, Alito’s opinion offers a blueprint for a future finding that the Constitution not only doesn’t protect abortion but prohibits it.

It’s so abrupt and out of place I wonder if there’s an editorial mandate or similar. “Say it at least once to keep the screamers off our backs.” But still, as always, it’s only women this is done to. It’s only women who might be criminally prosecuted and convicted and punished for trying to stop being pregnant. It’s not something men ever have to face, because their bodies are the ones that don’t get pregnant, that can’t get pregnant, that never get pregnant.



7 x

May 8th, 2022 7:48 am | By

New Mexico:

“Historic” and “extreme” weather conditions could fan a wildfire in New Mexico which is already the second biggest ever seen in the US state.

The so-called Hermits Peak Fire has been burning for more than a month and has torn through an area larger than the city of Chicago.

Many families have been left homeless and thousands have been evacuated.

Winds, near-record high temperatures and dry conditions are now expected to stoke the blaze further.

This is the new reality. In some places it’s rising sea levels, flooding, land disappearing the way it is in the bayous south of New Orleans, in other places it’s crops failing because of heat and lack of water or torrential rain, in other other places it’s wildfires devouring whole towns.

The frequency of large wildfires has increased dramatically in recent decades.

Compared with the 1970s, fires larger than 10,000 acres (40 sq km) are now seven times more common in the west of the US, according to Climate Central, an independent organisation of scientists and journalists.

And the trend is not going to turn around.



Nope no pills neither

May 7th, 2022 3:56 pm | By

Make sure to nail all the windows closed before releasing the cyanide.

As the Supreme Court considers potentially overturning Roe v. Wade, abortion rights activists are heralding abortion pills as a potential option in places where clinics may have to close — but several red states are already cracking down on the pills.

They’ll be mandating bags over the head next.

The governor of Tennessee signed a law in May making it a felony to mail abortion pills, punishable by 20-year imprisonment and a $50,000 fine. The law also adds further restrictions to medication abortion.

There is no crime worse than aiding The Enemy Woman to be free.



Its own unique DNA

May 7th, 2022 2:53 pm | By

Unbelievable.