Feminist Friday #10

Hello again! Here I am, with your feminist headlines of the week. Also, to my dear Ohio/American friends, I’m sorry about your heat wave, although I’d love to have just a little bit of that heat over here (it’s currently barely 60F over here). I understand your discomfort though. But I digress. On to the issues!

-A new report from the U.S. Department of Labor Statistics states that even though 60% of women are currently the primary or co-breadwinner in their respective households, they are still doing the lion’s (lioness’s?….har har) share of the housework. From the report On an average day, 19 percent of men did housework–such as cleaning or doing laundry–compared with 48 percent of women. Forty percent of men did food preparation or cleanup, compared with 66 percent of women.”  The article links to the actual report, if you care to read it. I think stuff like this is so interesting and still such an important part of the dialogue around equality-topics like household care often get swept under the rug (damn, I am on a roll here with the topical puns!). Personally speaking, in my household we try to divide everything equally-whoever cooks dinner doesn’t have to do the post-dinner dishes, we take turns doing laundry, Jon vacuums and I dust, etc. Basically the only thing that’s gendered is that he has to get the cereal from the top shelf because I can’t reach it and he’s a giant man, and I don’t know if that even counts. And I cannot imagine marrying a man who would expect me to work all day and also be 100% in charge of cleaning our house. What kind of shit is that? Of course the conversation changes when only one partner works and the other stays home all day. Then-get to cleaning, yo. http://thinkprogress.org/economy/2012/06/25/506017/women-still-doing-housework-and-working/

-I usually avoid “The Good Men Project” because that shit is far too earnest for me-also, I’m not a man. But I had to read their article titled “Why Being a Good Man is a Feminist Issue”. News flash: it really is! This bit sums it up for me:  feminism began as a movement to liberate women from their stupid, limiting gender roles, but…….there’s no separating women’s horrible gender roles from men’s horrible gender roles. Every dumb cliché about how women are overemotional carries with it the connotation that men can’t have or express emotions. Every joke about men being lazy slobs implies that women are destined to do all the cleaning. The idea that women are helpless objects to be protected from everything is tied right in with the idea that men are disposable cannon fodder, whether in combat or civilian life. Men’s issues and women’s issues simply are not two separate problems, and the illusion that they are is just another outdated notion we need to outgrow.  Word. Sadly, it seems that a lot of fellas aren’t responding well in the comments to the piece. Anyway. Read more here http://goodmenproject.com/featured-content/why-being-a-good-man-is-not-a-feminist-issue/

-Researchers at the University of Delaware recently conducted a study regarding NBC’s commentary at past Olympic games, and the conclusion was that they have some serious issues over there, sexism-wise. Annnnd racism-wise. In sum, according to the researcher in charge of the study, “It’s all about luck with the females. It’s all about ability with the males.” When discussing Olympians? Why?? The researchers looked at clips from the tv network’s coverage and categorized them according to 17 different criteria, coming to the conclusion that not only does NBC’s Olympics commentary unfairly compare men and women athletes, it also gives more coverage to U.S. athletes and includes racist remarks. Those remarks include references to white athletes being committed and composed, while black athletes have physical strength and Asian athletes are intelligent. More about the study here http://www.udel.edu/udaily/2012/jun/Olympic-commentary-061812.html

-80% of American 10 year old girls have been on a diet, and the number one “magic wish” for girls aged 11-17 is to be thinner. That’s all. I’m going to go cry now. http://www.upworthy.com/80-of-ten-year-olds-have-been-on-a-diet-yes-you-read-that-correctly?c=mrp1

-An opinion writer from the Washington Post responded to the Atlantic cover story “Why Women Can’t Have it All” (which I linked to last week). I love the response, which centered around the idea that a minuscule percentage of women around the world/in the States even have the option to ever “have it all” and that the argument that they can or can’t is a bit elitist in nature. In reality, most women are just trying to get by, facing daily obstacles while trying to keep their families afloat. High-powered jobs and loads of money and paid sick leave are not things that the average American woman is dealing with-so why are we talking about whether we can have it all? Why aren’t we demanding a living wage for women (and men) who are trying to care for their families? Maybe because other issues are far more provocative? That’s just my cynicism talking.

 

That’s all for me today. Happy Friday!

Feminist Friday #9

Back with the feminist action after a week of vactiony goodness! Some interesting topics on the table today. Let’s dig in!

Lisa Brown, State Rep from Michigan, silenced and then banned (!) from the House floor for saying the word “vagina”. Sigh. It’s not like she was just throwing it out there for funsies-this was during a discussion of anti-choice legislation in the state. In which, it is entirely appropriate to say the word vagina. http://edition.cnn.com/2012/06/21/opinion/brown-kicked-out-for-saying-vagina/index.html?hpt=hp_c1

Brave, the new Pixar film is coming out soon! I’m really looking forward to seeing this. Pixar films never disappoint and not only is the main character a girl, the movie focuses on her personal ambition, isn’t obsessed with her finding a prince or true love, and hey! Her mom’s alive! And they have a relationship! (Take that Disney! I’ve never forgiven you for killing Bambi’s mom. Way to take a little piece of my child heart at far too young an age). Ms magazine offers up a great piece, touching on the role-playing of femininity, the idea that male-centered movies are discussed as “universal” while female-centered ones need a tomboy element to reach the same level of appeal, and how rare it is to find a movie where the female characters are complex and not in need of saving.    http://msmagazine.com/blog/blog/2012/06/21/the-bold-and-the-brave/

Adam Corolla, “comedian”, says chicks aren’t funny. And we all know that just isn’t true. Nice to see him getting flack  in the media and public at large for that idiotic comment though. And he blamed it on biology! What kind of crackpot excuse is that? http://bust.com/blog/if-women-arent-funny-i-guess-adam-corolla-has-a-vagina.html , and http://www.nypost.com/p/entertainment/the_man_man_NS5UgwY5j06KwJp4WY1OJL#ixzz1yGhMAK47

With the Olympics a mere month away, the focus in the run up to this global event is on the athletes for their amazing accomplishments, right? Maybe not. Who cares if you’re a kick ass athlete if you’re not also a hot piece of ass? The Bleacher Report, a cess pool of inane sports commentary published an article on the “100 Hottest Olympians”, focusing on the ladies, obvi. Think Progress responded to the sexist (decidedly low-brow) drivel. http://thinkprogress.org/alyssa/2012/06/19/501641/olympians/

A provocatively titled piece in The Atlantic this month. “Why Women Still Can’t Have It All”. This is a topic of endless debate, and I think the world we are living in now is both more open minded and accepting of women in the home AND workplace, and yet somehow more narrow and demanding, not to mention divisive, than ever before. Call it third-wave, if you will.  I’d love to hear opinions from anyone. Do you guys think women really can’t have it all, and must choose what is most important to them-raising a family or finding professional success? And does this mean that men somehow already have it all? Or do they not (general speaking) desire a true work/life balance? http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2012/07/why-women-still-can-8217-t-have-it-all/9020/6/

Feminist Friday #4

Happy Friday! Here’s your dose of feminist media for the week. Get on in there!

Why Feminism is Good for Men : because feminism isn’t about making women more powerful than anyone else, it’s about equality for everyone.

-What Cracked does best-tell the truth and shed some light on the mysteries in life while making you laugh. (Always makes me laugh, anyway). Here, in direct opposition to that first link up there, a piece on 5 ways modern men are trained to hate women.

A state-by-state guide to anti-choice laws in 2012, so far (this is in the US). Yeesh. This is depressing and scary stuff. In a time when the economy is in the pot, all the government (coughcoughGOPcoughcough) can focus on is social issues that affect women’s reproductive health and choices. Oh, and making sure the gays can’t get married. Because THESE  are the important issues people. Yep. Or not. Jobs maybe? The crumbling environment?

– This Funny or Die video featuring Kate Beckinsale and Kitty from Arrested Development is giggle inducing. “Open up your legs and let the government in!”