Samantha left her keys

May 11th, 2023 9:47 am | By

The University of Colorado, you’ll be thrilled to know, has a Center for Inclusion and Social Change (or at least a website that calls itself a Center for etc). It has, of course, a pride office, and it offers, of course, lgbtq resources. You can tell that from the url of that office’s resources’ page on

drum roll

wait for it


Pronouns are how you refer to someone if you are not using their name. For example; “Samantha left her keys at my place last night.”

If someone tells you their pronouns, use those! If you don’t know someone’s pronouns, don’t assume gendered pronouns and use gender-neutral ones, like they or ze.

Bad writing; sounds as if they’re saying don’t use gender neutral ones, when of course we know that’s not what they’re saying. Adding “do” before “use” would solve the problem.

Also do college-age students really need to be told what pronouns are? How did they get into college without knowing already?

Whatever; at that point we soar away into the realms of whatthefuckisthis.

The importance of pronouns

Pronouns are one of the ways we portray our identities. When someone asks you to use their pronouns, they are asking for you to respect their identity.

Then they’re asking too much. Clearly this demand, or order, comes from a stranger, so the stranger is asking way too much. We’re not supposed to be “portraying our identities” all the time. We’re really not supposed to ask (or demand or insist or order) everyone we encounter to “respect our identity.” Nobody cares about your identity, or his or hers or mine or ours or theirs or anyone’s. TMI. That’s not how people interact, and it shouldn’t become how people interact.

When someone refers to another person using the wrong pronouns, especially on purpose, that can lead to that person feeling disrespected and can lead to dysphoria, exclusion and alienation.

When someone tries to force me to use a special bespoke counter-intuitive pronoun whenever I refer to her him them, that can and does lead me to avoid that someone like a bad smell. Don’t worry about the pronouns, just get out of my face and be a stranger to me from henceforth.

It is never safe to assume someone’s gender and living a life where people will naturally assume the correct pronouns for you is a privilege that not everyone experiences.

No it isn’t. Other way around. It’s thinking you get to dictate special annoying hard to remember language rules to refer to your special self that is a grotesquely privileged entitled spoiled rotten demand.

Choosing to ignore or disrespect someone’s pronouns is not only an act of oppression but can also be considered an act of violence.

Oh fuck off.

God being a student must be a nightmare.

Sir look up

May 11th, 2023 9:17 am | By

God I wish a meteorite would drop on him. I see in the news a meteorite just punched a hole in the roof of a house in Hopewell, New Jersey. I grew up a few miles from Hopewell. I feel a kinship with this meteorite. I urge it to send a message to its comrades to aim for Trump until they score.

He tells about 17 lies in that one clip, and gets about 50 things wrong.

Send. that. meteorite.

Guest post: Exploiting what looked like a principle of free speech

May 11th, 2023 9:00 am | By

Originally a comment by Artymorty on Weeds.

do they agree that wrong-think should be suppressed and never analysed?

Well, “our” opinion about one specific example of one specific view being presented in one specific context doesn’t extrapolate to whether “we” agree that all “wrongthink” should be suppressed and “never” analysed.

For example, most people agree that Holocaust denialism no longer merits the legitimacy of a platform at a respectable academic institution. This isn’t at all because Holocaust denialism is supposedly “wicked” and should be suppressed: it’s because such views have already been aired plenty, and analyzed to death, and there’s by now such broad, overwhelming evidence against them that the subject is done and buried. There’s nothing left to argue, and it’s reasonable to assume that anyone arguing so is not presenting a reasonable viewpoint in good faith. This is why, famously, the tobacco lobby deliberately kept offering up speakers to deny that cigarettes cause cancer, long after they knew otherwise. They were cynically exploiting what superficially looked like a principle of free speech to suppress years of medical research consensus, to the detriment of society’s public health, and the probable death of countless thousands.

I can see how some people might fancy themselves offering up a neat exercise in showing off their open-mindedness and evenhandedness by, say, inviting a Holocaust denier to speak on campus, but I think it could much better be argued that doing so just undermines the values that any respectable academic institution would presumably uphold.

How this overlays onto your AIDS denialist example depends on a few factors:

– how broad is the consensus that AIDS denialist theories have already received broad, thorough review and been properly rejected by overwhelming evidence, which has received overwhelming consensus in the field?

– what kind of institute was this person speaking at, and would him airing his views in that environment be seen to be undermining the insitute’s credibility and/or giving undue credibility to the speaker’s views?

To sum it up briefly: not all views are appropriate for all forums. I by no means believe that Holocaust denialism or flat-earthism or AIDS denialism should be suppressed on, say, the entire Internet. Because free speech, etc. But there’s plenty of room to evaluate the appropriateness of platforming certain topics within certain environments.

However, that threshold — the threshold where a topic should no longer merit being treated as an ongoing, open question, and therefore should not merit some platforms that would grant it that legitimacy — must be taken very seriously. We’ve seen students slip into believing that any views they find “wicked” should “be suppressed and never analysed,” to use your words. I obviously think that needs to be rolled way back.

Town abattoir

May 11th, 2023 3:25 am | By

Trump did a “Town Hall” thing last night, which is to say he did a campaign gig hosted by CNN. Why is CNN boosting Trump? I suppose because $$$.

He may have increased his legal jeopardy though.

The most heated exchange that Mr. Trump had with Ms. Collins was over the special counsel investigation into his possession of hundreds of presidential records, including more than 300 individual classified documents, at his private club, Mar-a-Lago, after he left office.

And it was the area in which he walked himself into the biggest problems.

“I was there and I took what I took and it gets declassified,” said Mr. Trump, who has maintained, despite contradictions from his own former officials, that he had a standing order automatically declassifying documents that left the Oval Office and went to the president’s residence.

“I had every right to do it, I didn’t make a secret of it. You know, the boxes were stationed outside the White House, people were taking pictures of it,” Mr. Trump said, intimating that people were somehow aware that presidential material and classified documents were in them (they were not).

In what will be of great interest to the special counsel, Jack Smith, Mr. Trump would not definitively rule out whether he showed classified material to people, something investigators have queried witnesses about, in particular in connection with a map with sensitive intelligence.

“Not really,” he hedged, adding, “I would have the right to.” At another point he declared, “I have the right to do whatever I want with them.”

All the mental prowess of an angry toddler.


May 10th, 2023 3:17 pm | By

Oxford students shun the Oxford Union because eeeeeeeeeeek a transphobe.

In its 200-year history as a prestigious debating chamber the Oxford Union has hosted world-famous speakers including Mother Theresa, Albert Einstein and Desmond Tutu. But now it is being ostracised by the University of Oxford’s student union, which has accused it of fostering a toxic environment that has led to bullying and sexual harassment.

The student union voted to sever fiscal ties with the OU, banning it from its freshers’ fair, which could put a strain on the debating organisation’s finances. It is the first time such action has been taken.

It comes as a number of Oxford university colleges voted to oppose the OU’s speaking invitation this month to Professor Kathleen Stock, despite the union defending its commitment to free speech and even offering welfare support to those attending.

“Welfare support”? Couldn’t they just stay away if they’re that fragile? In fact shouldn’t they go home altogether if they’re that fragile?

The student union has voted to review its relationship with the OU and to cease any commercial and financial relationships between the two organisations. The motion resolved to add the OU to the student union’s list of “prohibited external organisations”.

The OU’s latest accounts show it had an income of £1.53 million last year but an expenditure of almost £1.5 million.

Funny thing: the OU has even invited me to speak – more than once in fact. I think they thought I was in the UK; when I replied to tell them how far away (and thus expensive) I am, silence ensued.

A spokesman for the OU said: “The university’s compliance policy indicates that free speech is the lifeblood of a university, a principle that is upheld by the Oxford Union. It is unfortunate that many of the claims made on the motion are not factually accurate, and merely represent the views of a minority of the student body.”

And a very feeble tiresome Fotherington-Thomas sort of student body at that.

Put more simply

May 10th, 2023 11:12 am | By

The Pulitzer for insulting women goes to

Andrea Long Chu, a contributor to Artforum and its recently shuttered sister publication Bookforum, has won the Pulitzer Prize for criticism. A book critic at New York magazine since 2021, she was honored on the strength of five stories she wrote for that publication last year…

“Each of her subjects is a portal into something broader,” said New York editor in chief David Haskell at the time of her hiring, “and each of her reviews you end up mulling hours after you put them down.” The Brooklyn-based Chu has written for the New Yorker, the New York Times, and n+1, among other publications. Her book Females was selected as a finalist for the 2019 Lambda Literary Award in Transgender Nonfiction, and her essays have appeared in The Best American Essays 2022 and The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2019.

Also, he’s a man, and he has a very…contentious and belittling view of women.

Femaleness is a universal sex defined by self-negation, against which all politics, even feminist politics, rebels. Put more simply: Everyone is female, and everyone hates it.

Cute, but not true.

The million years of stars and pussies

May 10th, 2023 9:20 am | By

Then there’s the one about the “you can grab them by the pussy” tape.

Carroll’s lawyer Roberta Kaplan asks him: “When you’re a star they let you do it, you can grab them by the pussy, you can do anything, that’s what you said, correct?”

Trump: “Well historically that’s true with stars.”

Kaplan: “True with stars that they can grab women by the pussy?”

Trump tilts his head: “Well that’s what – it’s – ya look over the last million years, I guess that’s been largely true, not always, but largely true.”

Huh. Million years. I wonder how he knows that. I wonder what his sources are.

He adds, with brilliant insight and perception, “Unfortunately or fortunately.”

Kaplan: “You consider yourself a star.”

Trump: “I think you can say that, yeah.”


May 10th, 2023 8:58 am | By

I’ve been thrashing around for what feels like hours trying to find clean clips of Trump’s deposition – clean in the sense of being just deposition, not 80% talking head commentary and 20% deposition – when I finally remembered Aaron Rupar has them all.

(Why do I want them? To pick apart Trump’s “thinking.”)

That she’s not my type? Yeah. [squares his shoulders pugnaciously] Because it’s not politically correct to say it [swings his head defiantly] and I know that but I’ll say it anyway.

There, that’s some of his “thinking.” It’s a new, trendy, silly, pretentious, politically correct idea that one should not make a point of telling people you think they’re ugly.

No, Donald, you festering heap of sadism, it’s not a new politically correct idea that you don’t tell people they’re ugly and you don’t tell the world which women you think are ugly. It’s just absolutely basic manners and consideration for other people and not being a foul hateful punk all the time. You’re “saying it anyway” because you are a foul hateful punk and a sadist and you love to insult people. You do it every chance you get. It’s you all over.

He rages about being accused of rape, of rrrrape, and then says

and you know, you know it’s not true too, you’re a political operative also, you’re a disg, you’re a disgrace, but she’s accusing me, and so are you, of rrrape, and it never took place, and I will tell you, I made that statement, I said “Well it’s politically incorrect, she’s not my type, and that’s a hundred percent true.”

There’s a little burst of rage there when he tells the lawyer “you too” – he loses his temper in the middle of a sentence, and doesn’t have the brains or control to conceal it. He almost told her she’s disgusting and just barely caught it in time.

He’s a completely warped rotting corrupted human being.

Look at those shoulders

May 10th, 2023 8:17 am | By

Another man proudly takes what belongs to women.

“Trans athletes” are welcome to stay. Men are not welcome to compete against women.

Lowerson said while competing against men he “didn’t feel safe.”

So he competes against women and makes them unsafe. Seems fair.

Genner idenniny in schools

May 9th, 2023 4:01 pm | By

The CBC tells us:

N.B. reviews gender-identity policy in schools as supporters accuse minister of caving to anti-LGBTQ pressure

But of course it could be just pressure not to promote trans ideology, as opposed to pressure to hate anti-lesbian gay bi trans queer people. In other words “anti-LGBTQ” is probably a misnomer.

The Higgs government in New Brunswick says it is rethinking its policy on sexual orientation and gender identity in schools because of a backlash against the guidelines.

The Department of Education and Early Childhood Development confirmed it’s reviewing the policy, designed to support gay, lesbian and trans youth, “after hearing concerns and misunderstandings of its implementation.”

The review was already underway before Education Minister Bill Hogan distanced himself and his department from a recent sexual orientation and gender identity learning session for teachers.

See…this is the problem. What is a “gender identity learning session”? What is “gender identity”? It’s scary that teachers are being taught about “gender identity,” because there’s so much tendentious misinformation on the subject floating around. How can anyone have any confidence that teachers are not being taught bullshit?

Sexual orientation isn’t like that. It’s not spooky. It’s not magic that some people are attracted to their own sex instead of the other one. It was taboo for a long time, but it’s never depended on weird supernatural claims.

But that gets tidily obscured by lumping them all together as LGBTQ. I have to wonder what Canadian teachers are being taught about what Q is, too.

In a new statement, spokesperson Morgan Bell said the Education Department does not “condone the tactics that were directed at our teachers and we will always ensure human rights are protected.”

She said the implementation of Policy 713 “revealed instances where the policy is perhaps too broad and/or unclear” and that was the reason for the review.

The policy, in effect since 2020, lays out minimum requirements for school districts to create a safe, welcoming learning environment for lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer, intersex and two-spirited students. 

Why aren’t they also learning how to create a safe, welcoming learning environment for witches, fairies, gremlins, extra-terrestrials, dragons, ghosts, sprites, elves, angels, devils, goblins, flying horses, und so weiter?

A dominant political figure

May 9th, 2023 3:18 pm | By

The Times sedately reports:

A Manhattan jury on Tuesday found former President Donald J. Trump liable for the sexual abuse and defamation of the magazine writer E. Jean Carroll and awarded her $5 million in damages in a widely watched civil trial that sought to apply the accountability of the #MeToo era to a dominant political figure.

The what of the what? When has it ever been ok for a man to push a woman up against a wall and violently grab her “by the pussy”? Never. That’s never been ok. The fact that some men have thought they get to do it anyway is beside the point.

I don’t believe in this “MeToo era” thing. Sexual assault is sexual assault, and we’ve never said oh it’s okay, it’s no big deal, go ahead, we understand you have your needs.

Mr. Trump is still set to appear live on CNN on Wednesday evening for a town hall in New Hampshire. The network said it had received no indication of a change in Mr. Trump’s plans.

How elegant. Known violent sexual predator and seditionist is due to appear on CNN to try to persuade you to vote for him for president a second time.

The jury also found that Mr. Trump “acted maliciously, out of hatred, ill will, spite, or wanton, reckless, or willful disregard of the rights of another”…

All those. Of course he did. It’s what he is.


May 9th, 2023 12:15 pm | By

Verdict is in. No on rape, yes on sexual abuse. $2 million in damages.

Correction: 5 million. FIVE.

Safe, joyful bullying

May 9th, 2023 11:13 am | By

Safe, joyful, inclusive, all the good things.

Yes isn’t it sickening how feminist women point out why women need feminism. Also: isn’t it impressive how the trans movement never ever ever “weaponises victimhood.” Also what does she mean by “safe, joyful protest”? The “protest” was so safe and joyful that the film was canceled, so the women who went there to see it did not get to see it. Much safe, very joyful.

Dr Baines describes herself as

Equality, Diversity & Inclusion in Higher Education | Co-chair @UoEStaffPride | All opinions my own | End the hostile environment

Equality, diversity and inclusion in higher education except for women. Women can submit or get out; those are the choices. End the hostile environment except for women – make the environment for women as hostile and threatening as possible.

I’m so sick of these quislings.


May 9th, 2023 10:51 am | By

It is, indeed, disgusting.

No stars

May 9th, 2023 10:37 am | By

Sonia Sodha is unimpressed by Stonewall’s tantrum.

Dennis Kavanagh same.

Significant recommendations

May 9th, 2023 9:38 am | By

Stonewall is in a lather.

The UK’s national human rights institution, the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC), has completely failed to engage with significant recommendations given to it for improvement to their governance and conduct, and is instead doubling down on its attempts to roll back trans rights and to seek trans people’s exclusion from public life, a coalition of leading LGBTQ+ charities has warned.

But of course the all too familiar question immediately arises – how are you defining trans rights?

Being Stonewall, they are of course defining trans rights as doing whatever they want all the time, which unfortunately clashes with the rights of other people, in particular women, lesbians, gay men, children, teenagers…quite a lot of kinds of people, really.

And of course the EHRC is not seeking the exclusion of trans people from public life.

…the EHRC has escalated attempts to undermine the long-established rights of trans people in the UK, most notably in April when it sent a letter to the Equalities Minister Kemi Badenoch on the merits of redefining the term ‘sex’ in the Equality Act to make it clear that trans people would no longer be protected. 

Again: how are we using “protected”?

Trans people can have rights (aka can be protected by the Equality Act) even without being “validated” as the sex they’re not in all circumstances. It’s not a “right” to falsify one’s sex on all occasions for all purposes. That can’t be a right, for the simple and sad reason that one sex is potentially a threat to the other. The two sexes aren’t on an equal footing when it comes to physical safety, bodily integrity, freedom – little items like that. Men can impregnate women against their will; that fact all by itself is enough to make it clear that no, men cannot be treated as women at all times by all people no matter what.

Such a change, if it [were] implemented by the UK Government on EHRC’s recommendation, would make it impossible for trans people to live their day to day lives safely and with dignity…

Note Stonewall’s indifference to women’s ability to live their day to day lives safely and with dignity.

Nancy Kelley, Chief Executive of Stonewall, (she/her) said: ‘The EHRC’s recommendations over the past year are extraordinary, in that they are designed to promote the exclusion of trans people, in particular trans women, from everyday public spaces.’

No, they’re not. That’s just the usual Stonewall lie. They’re designed to prevent the invasion of women’s everyday public spaces by men who are or claim to be trans women.

Women have rights too.

Thomas knew such gifts needed to be disclosed

May 9th, 2023 6:51 am | By

Dahlia Lithwick reminds us where we are:

Over the past few weeks we have learned that Justice Clarence Thomas took multiple luxury vacations, valued in millions of dollars, over many years, paid for by Harlan Crow, a billionaire GOP donor who has business before the court. We know Crow had also contributed the $500,000 seed money that became Ginni Thomas’ Liberty Central, which paid her salary. We also know that Harlan Crow purchased the home in which Justice Thomas’ mother currently resides, rent free. And late last week, we learned that Crow paid years’ worth of private school tuition for Thomas’ grandnephew, Mark Martin, of whom Thomas had legal custody and whom Thomas was, as he put it, “raising as a son.” Justice Thomas knew such gifts needed to be disclosed because he did so with another tuition payment gifted to Martin in 2002. But he did not report the tuition Crow paid.

In 1969, Justice Abe Fortas resigned his seat at the Supreme Court for accepting $15,000 in exchange for a series of paid lectures at American University. Part of the Fortas scandal also involved news of him accepting a stipend for doing legal work for a very rich friend (money he had actually returned when the benefactor was indicted and before the outcry).

None of Fortas’ colleagues defended him for this. No one blamed the press or even the Nixon administration (which very much orchestrated the ouster). It was widely understood that Fortas had done something that undermined the public legitimacy and independence of the court and that he had to go.

Over the past few weeks we have learned that Justice Clarence Thomas took multiple luxury vacations, valued in millions of dollars , over many years, paid for by Harlan Crow, a billionaire GOP donor who has business before the court. We know Crow had also contributed the $500,000 seed money that became Ginni Thomas’ Liberty Central, which paid her salary. We also know that Harlan Crow purchased the home in which Justice Thomas’ mother currently resides, rent free. And late last week, we learned that Crow paid years’ worth of private school tuition for Thomas’ grandnephew, Mark Martin, of whom Thomas had legal custody and whom Thomas was, as he put it, “raising as a son.” Justice Thomas knew such gifts needed to be disclosed because he did so with another tuition payment gifted to Martin in 2002. But he did not report the tuition Crow paid.

Last Thursday, we also learned that in January in 2012, Leonard Leo arranged to have Ginni Thomas paid $25,000 for consulting work through Kellyanne Conway’s polling company. The funds came from the Judicial Education Project, a dark money group that listed its address as a UPS Store in Georgetown. Leo’s instruction to Conway asked her to funnel the cash to Ginni, and took care to note that the paperwork should have “No mention of Ginni, of course.” A few short months later, the Judicial Education Project filed an amicus brief in Shelby County v. Holder, arguing for the dismantlement of the Voting Rights Act. Shelby County was a 5-4 decision, with Justice Thomas in the majority.

The insult-comic response to all these revelations has been some sighing version of “I sure wish I had friends like Harlan Crow,” and “I sure wish had friends like Leonard Leo.” The problem is: Most of the justices, and certainly most politicians and judges and people of generalized fanciness already do have friends like Harlan Crow. American governance is so inextricably bound up with capitalism and cronyism that the shocker would in fact be if justices didn’t have a few friends who were the sort of wealthy political operatives who could buy them a pony or two on demand.

Emphasis added. It’s true, and it’s maddening.

[T]he way power currently works in this country is that you get to buy it. If you don’t see the straight line between Citizens United, Leonard Leo, Shelby County, and the concerted effort to take power from regular you and give it to Harlan Crow and Leonard Leo, you are not seeing the plan clearly.

There’s also something specifically infuriating about the way defenders of the deep spiritual kinship between Harlan Crow and Clarence and Ginni Thomas root their argument in the fact that paying for an at-risk youth’s private school tuition is a noble act—“charity” even. The problem with that is: This is a conservative legal movement that is racing to subvert voting, public education, the administrative state, and (at present) the possibility of student loan forgiveness. So Harlan Crow’s replacement of an entire New Deal safety net with an ad hoc charitable benefits system administered by himself and directed only at the offspring of personal friends is specifically infuriating. 

See, the New Deal safety net was (at least in theory) for everyone who needed a safety net. Harlan Crow’s ad hoc charity, not so much.

Fashionable to say it out loud again

May 8th, 2023 5:07 pm | By

What a lovely fellow. Imagine not wanting to be part of a political trend he approves of.

Birthday clips

May 8th, 2023 11:30 am | By

Belief can’t be compelled

May 8th, 2023 10:42 am | By

Joanna Cherry’s statement on The Stand Comedy Club:

“In January, I accepted an invitation from The Stand to speak at an event in The Fringe this coming August. To my disappointment, and after initially backing the event, the Board of The Stand cancelled the event, citing concerns expressed by staff who were unwilling to work at it. The event has been running for four years and has a wide and diverse range of speakers, including from various political backgrounds.

I immediately required to defend my reputation. I said last week on BBC Radio Scotland:

“I’m being cancelled and no-platformed because I’m a lesbian, who holds gender-critical views that somebody’s sex is immutable.

“I’ve made those views clear over a number of years. I have never said that trans people should not have equal rights. [emphasis added]

“Because a small number of people don’t like my feminist and lesbian activism, I’m being prevented from talking about these things and others in my home city where I’m an elected politician.

“I think it says something’s gone very wrong in Scotland’s civic space.

“Small groups of activists are now dictating who can speak and what can be discussed.”

It strikes me afresh how very religiony it is. How very Inquisitiony (minus the torture and executions, to be fair). How very “you must believe what we tell you to believe, no matter how magical and impossible to believe you find it.” But we can’t. Even if you tell us to we can’t. We just can’t. It isn’t believable. We don’t want to harm or punish trans people, but we can’t believe the claims. I can’t believe Jesus was his own daddy and rose from the dead, and I can’t believe that men wearing lipstick are women.

She’s taking them to court, by the way.

“I am prepared to take whatever legal action is necessary to vindicate my right not to be misrepresented and not to be discriminated against. This is not about money. My primary goal is to have the actions of the Stand acknowledged as unlawful and to ensure the event proceeds. I have asked The Stand to apologise to me too. If they don’t agree with my reasonable requests, I intend to ask the court to decide on the issue. I hope that my actions in defending myself will give courage to everyone particularly women who wish to express views on legitimate issues of public interest. That, after all, is the very job of a politician and one of the reasons I entered politics in the first place.”

It’s really not asking much. “Don’t abuse and punish women for being unable to believe that men are women.”