Despite my reputation as a humorless feminist, I’ve been working with a small group of undergrad men (& one female student!) on a group called M.A.R.S. – Men Against Rape and Sexual Assault. We have a huge – huger than predicted or expected – event happening tomorrow night where we’ll be showing that short clip on safety and I’ll be speaking super-briefly.
And it’s been amazing, to be honest. I know a lot of you roll your eyes at this kind of thing, and I know an awful lot of queer women, especially, who just can’t and won’t work with the guys, & all for very good reasons. But I like guys. Always have. In so many ways. So this work was really right up my alley, especially as I got to partner with a local community leader, my friend Shannon Kenevan, and the local sexual assault center, SACC. I’m the faculty advisor to Lawrence’s feminist group, DFC, too, so it really brought a lot of worlds together for me.
There are staff and other faculty on board who have been helping organize, too, and of course we needed funding and meetings and space and all of the many things that have to come together. Joe Samalin of Breakthrough is coming to speak as well – so this event draws from campus, local, statewide, and national talent.
But mostly I’m just thankful to be able to do what I do, to know such amazing, inspired, angry young people who want to make a difference, but most especially I’m thankful for all of the women who have stood up to tell their stories and worked to dismantle rape culture from the ground up.
I found a blog of men’s letters about their experiences going to strip clubs – some stories of first times, or lifelong membership, but others try to explain the why of going.
Its unfair to say that all women in strip clubs are weak pawns in a male dominated world, some entries here suggest the opposite, but it was true of this place. I went to a strip club to prove to the world I was a man, maybe I did but as the brother to 3 sisters I don’t think I can justify it on the basis of my self esteem again. I’m pretty bad with women but I prefer rejection to guilt.
While most Feminist would say that a strip clubs demean and objectify women, I believe any woman who has the ultimate control in this situation, really, has the upper hand. Does it bring them self confidence? Perhaps this is just a slimy justification on my part. I imagine most women dance; not because they enjoy it, but because they have to feed their families or something else. This is the cold reality of strip clubs but I prefer to think they dance for the pleasure of making me poorer. Regardless of what I think; I will pass along my Benjamin’s, and when that Benjamin is passed along there is always that look in the girl’s eyes that says I got you sucker…
You pay a fee. For this a naked girl sits on your lap and listens.
It’s ludicrous. I’m forty, drive a Cadillac, have traveled the world and am fully clothed. The girl is half my age, drove her mothers Hyundai to work, hasn’t been out of the state since a trip to Disney World when she was ten and is stark naked.
But she listens for a bit and all is right with the world. That’s why I go.
I’m going to have a hard time not staying up all night reading it.
High heels for men? But of course! Their rules? ” No adult content and men wear heels as men.” Sometimes I wish I could just read things without deconstructing them. “Adult content” means “not a of a sexual nature” I’m sure, but “as men”? No idea what that’s supposed to mean.
Why not link to a post about male orgasm for Boxing Day? Too much eggnog & so too drunk to fcuk, as as the Dead Kennedys used to sing… or maybe that itch isn’t getting scratched in the ways it needs to.
I will add one other “myth” about male sexuality that I find most people don’t realize: plenty of heterosexual men want less sex than their female partners. Lots of them need trust, and love, and commitment to get turned on and to get off.
That is, as Sarah Sloane points out, we all tend to think of ourselves as gendered sexually, when mostly we’re just individuals with different hormone levels, libidos, attitudes about sexuality, ways that we use/desire sexuality, intimacy & orgasm (which are, of course, three different things, & do not always exist together). Some attitudes & aptitudes are encourage more in men and women, and vice versa, but all of us should expect not to live up the “superhero” versions of our sexualities as presented by – well, porn, Cosmo, romance novels, etc.
My friend Lynne alerted me to a post about the uselessness of women. I wish I could say it surprised me, even a little, but essentialism is essentialism is essentialism, whether that’s expressed in “women should rule the world” attitudes or “women are useless” attitudes. To me: same coin, different sides.
What amazed me even more was this post on the same blog about terminology in this “manosphere.” I hate to say it, but the stuff is so pathetic I just feel sorry for them in their hateful little world. Okay, not really, but I can’t even imagine what it’s like to live in that tiny a brain.
Fantastic rant from ultrageek over at Daily Kos:
She has courage. She has guts. She has a spine. She has tenacity. She has fortitude. BUT, she does NOT have balls. The inner feminist in me, long hidden in my workaday world, has been getting more and more irritated all day by the continual reference to Speaker Pelosi’s non-existent testicles.
Let me be clear: ONE DOES NOT NEED TO BE MALE IN ORDER TO GET THINGS DONE IN WASHINGTON . . .
It took someone with a uterus to make this happen, to bring this home.
And, while I’m at it, can we please stop talking about what a good looking woman she is? How she looks so young, and vibrant, and HOT?
JESUS CHRIST! WHAT DOES A WOMAN HAVE TO DO TO BE JUDGED ON HER OWN MERITS?
This woman brings home one of the most progressive pieces of legislation in 45 years, and we talk about her HOTness? Are you shitting me?
No, they are not shitting you, ultrageek; a woman’s hotness is still, surely, far more important than her accomplishments. (& We wonder why we can’t get more women into office.)
Happy Christmas Eve! Check out this amusing post from 2004 about the 10 Least Successful Christmas Specials. Here’s my favorite:
Ayn Rand’s A Selfish Christmas (1951)
In this hour-long radio drama, Santa struggles with the increasing demands of providing gifts for millions of spoiled, ungrateful brats across the world, until a single elf, in the engineering department of his workshop, convinces Santa to go on strike. The special ends with the entropic collapse of the civilization of takers and the spectacle of children trudging across the bitterly cold, dark tundra to offer Santa cash for his services, acknowledging at last that his genius makes the gifts — and therefore Christmas — possible. Prior to broadcast, Mutual Broadcast System executives raised objections to the radio play, noting that 56 minutes of the hour-long broadcast went to a philosophical manifesto by the elf and of the four remaining minutes, three went to a love scene between Santa and the cold, practical Mrs. Claus that was rendered into radio through the use of grunts and the shattering of several dozen whiskey tumblers. In later letters, Rand sneeringly described these executives as “anti-life.”
Morehouse College has chosen to have a clothing policy that prohibits crossdressing:
The dress-wearing ban is aimed at a small part of the private college’s 2,700-member student body, said Dr. William Bynum, vice president for Student Services.
“We are talking about five students who are living a gay lifestyle that is leading them to dress a way we do not expect in Morehouse men,” he said.
Before the school released the policy, Bynum said, he met with Morehouse Safe Space, the campus’ gay organization.
“We talked about it and then they took a vote,” he said. “Of the 27 people in the room, only three were against it.”
There has been a positive response along with some criticism throughout the campus, he said.
Senior Devon Watson said he disagrees with parts of the new policy, especially those that tell students what they should wear in free time outside of the classroom.
I’m wondering if someone needs to tell them about straight crossdressers, and about pre-transition MTF trans people. Hopefully Morehouse’s Safe Space already does – but I doubt it.
There is too much rape in the news coming out of Africa, but this story, covering the recent spike in male rape victims, should be required reading. It’s not easy to get through.
Aid workers struggle to explain the sudden spike in male rape cases. The best answer, they say, is that the sexual violence against men is yet another way for armed groups to humiliate and demoralize Congolese communities into submission.
And as with female rape victims, the male rape victims are mocked for their suffering:
But nobody knows the exact number. Men here, like anywhere, are reluctant to come forward. Several who did said they instantly became castaways in their villages, lonely, ridiculed figures, derisively referred to as “bush wives.”
Gender-baiting is a worldwide fucking sport, and it tires me. These poor guys. That said, this phenomenon certainly is another excellent argument for why we should give a shit when women get raped – because obviously, gender stops mattering and a whole country is being traumatized.
(another h/t to Sarah)