lady_kishiria: (Kishiria)
I was about to write that what 2015 feminist have to do is "grow up", but the adults they know have too often not let them do that. In a world where playgrounds no longer have sharp edges and parents helicopter over their offspring in order that no negative experience ever plague them, growing up has become something that doesn't happen with age.

They would do well by realizing that the world is a harsh and dangerous place. Like any wilderness, it's full of peril and beauty. It is not safe. Fullstop.

Every girl should be taught to throw a punch and use a weapon. Adults of both sexes should strive towards a world where needing to use those tools is rarely necessary, but since the world is not and never will be safe, they need to know.

2015 feminists need to understand that they have to close the Tumblr app, leave their houses, and participate in society. They need to set actual goals for feminism. They need to set actual goals for themselves. Once they've set the goals, they have to realize the work will be hard. People WILL call them mean names. The answer isn't to cry on the internet about how oppressed you are, but to see yourself as a bulldozer smashing through the obstacles thrown in front of you. You are not a baby, you are an adult. Act like it! 2015 feminists have resources at their disposal that generations of women have not had. Take advantage! Resist! Fight! Break! We laid the groundwork for you, and the laws you need to back yourself are now in place. Use them.

In closing, I'll quote Margaret Atwood again: "Refuse to be a victim. And that is ultimately what it comes down to.
lady_kishiria: (Kishiria)
This has been long in coming. My feminism comes from two concepts:

1. Margaret Atwood wrote in the 70s, and it's still true today, "Men are afraid women will laugh at them. Women are afraid men will kill them." This shouldn't still be true 40 years later.

2. You, yes YOU, are responsible for yourself. Man, woman, trans, intersex, it doesn't matter. YOU are responsible for yourself. If you are an adult, you may be responsible for more than yourself. You may be responsible for your kids, your subordinates and in some cases, the youngsters you encounter on the internet.

In the 70s, feminism was radical because there was a lot to be radical about. Ads from the 50s and 60s cheerfully show narrow gender roles, and situations where women are turned into objects for laughs. Women fought for the radical concept that women are people. People deserve equal pay for equal work, the right to have children or not, the right to own property. And you know what? Women won. The big steps were made, so there was only some small cleanup of the vestiges to do, right?

In the 80s, that's what happened. We became aware of the vestiges and worked on them, largely in media presentation. The idea that gender roles weren't helpful to men or women started to raise its head.

In the 90s, feminism turned to re-examining sexuality. Now that preventing pregnancy or having a pregnancy without the traditional family structure was possible, the idea of female pleasure and sexuality without men became huge. Feminists started talking positively about pornography, S/M, and new forms of family, looking back to the 70s for ideas.

Now it's the 21st century and what the hell happened to my movement?
lady_kishiria: (Yellow Sign)
I went to a panel on Cthulhu becoming a pop culture icon yesterday. There was much talk of the mythos having an underlying theme of repressed sexuality, that Howard created a mythos for atheists, and the otherness of beings that can live at the bottom of the sea and/or in outer space.

I brought up the idea that Cthulhu & Co. might represent nature out of control. I've since thought more about it and the more I ponder, the more I think this might be significant. This doesn't rule out the "repressed sexuality" idea--sexuality is of course where Nature hits us hardest and most regularly. This also may be why kids start reading Lovecraft at the point where their bodies are changing, in the grip of forces that cannot be stopped. (Note that the "changing body" theme is one that pops up more than a little in Lovecraft's stories.)

The ocean is about the most cthonic feature of the planet. It's the origin of all life, goes down to unknown depths, and if we go down to those depths the ocean will crush us.

Another thing that brings up the "Lovecraft was writing about nature" concept for me is how the beings of the mythos don't care. We're just food. An acquaintance of mine who sits in her home reading fantasy too much and not getting out enough tried to impress upon me that the beings are frightening because of that. Well, I can have that by just swimming off of the California coast and being at risk from shark attack. Humans are not the top of the food chain, sharks are, and that, I think, is a very, very scary idea for most Americans. I think it was for Lovecraft.

Americans are not used to the idea of forces over which they cannot overcome, or which they cannot harness. This notion of not being in control, not being the top of the food chain, not being in a situation in which they will triumph is almost unthinkable and nature fits this bill. I was further reflecting today that Lovecraft's horror would have been much different if he'd participated in World War One. Offhand I can't think of any horror writers who did, anyone? Allison? I saw an interesting piece once on how WW1 influenced horror film, bringing to it images of disfigured humans and fiery hells.

I find human-made horror, or the horror that is the result of terrible human action, much more frightening that the Cthulhu mythos. Cthulhu and his ilk are as evil as sharks, that is to say, not at all. It's nothing personal. The violence that is personal terrifies me where the impersonal destruction of nature does not.

I am reflecting on this at a time when nature is again having its way with me: I am going through menopause. I think that might be why I've read "Shadow Over Innsmouth" twice and am going back for a third read soon. Old women are objects of horror, and like the hero of "Innsmouth" I am seeing myself in them now--and relishing it.

lady_kishiria: (Kishiria)
From a bulletin board entitled "A Quiverful of Snark". I know you already can't resist, DV.

You'll particularly like this topic, where the ladies get sarcastic on the "Rebelution Survey":

In other news, [profile] americanstd and I are going to start a private wiki on refurnishing the house, so we can make joint decisions on furniture and its placement while I'm away. I found a *small* wooden table at Ikea that has drawers built into it. This makes too much sense.

We also had dinner at Khyber Pass. All four of us (we were joined by [personal profile] valdelane and [personal profile] zare_k) had lamb cooked in various ways, and [profile] americanstd fell in love with their pistachio pudding.
lady_kishiria: (Kishiria)
From Salon, a short and loving tribute to Nancy Drew.

My titian-haired princess above needs an icon for when she's being a happy feminist instead of a pissed off one. Then again, she gets so few opportunities.
lady_kishiria: (Kishiria)
[personal profile] miafeliz commented in my last Christian Taliban entry that the modesty movement drives her up a wall. So this link is "A Week In Feminine Dress" from

Did you know that quasi-Edwardian clothes are required for salvation, and for keeping boys chaste? Inner burqa, ahoy.

But wait, it gets horribler. Look at the clothes these girls are wearing. At first I didn't think it was odd; they are practicing for a dance recital and those Little House on the Prairie get-ups are their costumes, right?

Wrong! Those are their EVERYDAY CLOTHES.

This blog is creepy because it's a self-imposed world where males and females are kept separate, females are shoved firmly into gender roles of being pretty and staying at home and doing feminine things like dancing and interacting with nature only as far as taking quiet walks in the rain with a male relative while saying the Rosary. It's worse that they are held responsible for the cleanliness of boys' thoughts, a scenario a friend of mine once called "being your penis's babysitter".

But at least Lily isn't at all cruel. That's my job, but Colleen Hammond has me beat in the mean-spiritedness department:

Colleen loves to be pious and holy, but she's a right bitch. I try feebly towards being a bitch, but I'm an admitted agnostic, so it's rather pathetic really.
lady_kishiria: (Kishiria)
Or even those of us who aren't much persuaded anymore:

Behold, a Catholic conservative feminist who says that "It's easier to tell someone to 'Put on a skirt!' than 'Put on Christ'." She looks at disturbing trends such as the "modesty movement" and the way it starts to become an "inner burqa". She likes Sarah Palin but I'm willing to forgive her that, especially even though Mooseburger Mama is a dunce full of animal cunning, she *is* a governor with what Camille Paglia describes as the physical strength of an Amazon warrior.

I need to sic her on lily-maiden and Colleen Hammond.

Go over and give her some love.
lady_kishiria: (Kishiria)
Today I'm wearing an ankle length denim skirt. You know what? It's dang comfy. I can run for the bus in it and everything. You know what's the only thing I don't like about it?

It makes me look like one of those Christian modesty/femininity ladies.

I've been ranting on and off about how these ladies are crackpots, but never come up with a seamless explanation for why they drive me up a wall as much as they do. A large part of it of course is how THEY live this way and demand we must ALL live this way. Then they complain about straw-woman feminists who they allege want to practically make being a homemaker or wearing a dress illegal. They're too dumb and brainwashed to realize that they're doing the exact same thing, but on the right not on the left.

Next comes the "perpetual child" side of things. Even though I have renounced and denounced Candy of, I cannot fault her when it comes to saying, "Look, we can't use our femininity to make excuses for being weak or ruled by emotion." She's a nut otherwise, but she does have it correct there. On the other hand we have Colleen Hammond at saying things like, "It's sure complicated being a woman. It must be all those hormones." Then she goes on to say that women shouldn't play sports (muscles are not attractive), wear pants (those are male garments), work outside the home, or anything that would give a woman a place in the world as anything but a perpetual minor.

Finally there's who earned my ire in her next-to-latest post by saying that my rough language compromised her g-rated blog. (For the record I said "boob".) She's 20, home-schooled, still lives with mom and dad, doesn't have a paying job beyond giving violin lessons, and dresses in this weird Little House on the Prairie style--except that Ma Ingalls and the girls dressed to be able to work outside. Claire and her sisters go on camping trips with their family and sit patiently at the campsite while "the boys" do all the hiking and rock climbing. Mustn't be unfeminine, you know! Her whole blog is a freak show; no self-respecting dude is going to show any interest once it's clear she's not allowed to date. She won't meet a husband in college because college "isn't in the Lord's plans for her". I do wonder what will happen when her parents die and she's left with no skills, experience, or idea on how to function in the real world. And I thought *I* was raised like a veal!

Claire's clothes (she does a series of photos of how she dresses) brings me to my last point which is on how all these ladies idealize a past that never was. Notice how many of them feature pictures of Victorian or Edwardian ladies doing leisurely things like reading, gardening and sewing. They think this illustrates how things used to be in a more genteel time.

What are they smoking? Only a miniscule number of women ever lived like that! The rest were working on farms or in factories, owning perhaps two dresses, labouring away 12 hour days, six days a week! Sitting around being a pretty lady was a distant fantasy, since few would actually own a book or a garden.

They say they feel sorry for women like me. I say to them, grow up.

Femininity is a ROLE. It's a role that some play more comfortably than others; I am not very comfortable with it but I'll put it on for fun once in a while. I think the world would be boring if all women were clones of me--something I wish the Christian Ladies would learn to be able to say.
lady_kishiria: (rat)
Bear in mind that I'm a Melissa Etheridge style soft butch.

I have put on the makeup, put up the hair, put on the suit, changed the blouse to better show off the matching jewelry, re-done the consequently mussed hair, and am now ready to go.

I mention this and men say, "Yeah, well I gotta wear a TIE."

This earns a kick to the nuts and they don't understand it.

At least I have forsworn suits with skirts so I don't have to wear pantyhose. I do wear skirts mind you, but not to the interview, so that I don't have to add "making sure the legs are completely shaved and that the pantyhose isn't digging into sensitive places" to the repertoire.
lady_kishiria: (Kishiria)
This is driving me up a wall.

It is SEX discrimination, not GENDER discrimination. That ridiculous 18th-sonogram-for-your-pregnancy determined your baby's SEX not your baby's GENDER. Having the surgery that turns your innie into an outie or vice versa is SEX reassignment, not GENDER reassignment.

Your SEX is what you have in your pants. Your GENDER is the societal role you play, which usually, but does not always or necessarily, coincide.

I admit, it'd be kinda cool to have true gender discrimination. Imagine being able to get the raises that the hot chicks are getting simply by putting on a dress, wearing makeup, and taking your social cues from "Cathy". It'd make much life easier for trannies too, because Becky wouldn't need expensive surgery to become Brian; all she'd have to do is put on a suit and play out the male role. Bingo! Relatively instant change of gender!

If I ever played out my threat to dress my girl baby entirely in blue or my boy baby entirely in pink, would I be arrested for changing my baby's sex without its consent?

I am starting to realize that sex/gender is the social studies equivalent of the hacker/cracker word pair in the computer geek culture. We all know that hackers are not necessarily crackers, and that most aren't, but how many people know or care about that distinction? I still back up those who do, because I like calling things by their properly descriptive names. For instance, if you are one of the aboriginal people of the Americas, I will never call you an Indian unless you've somehow obtained citizenship in a certain Asian sub-continent.

I can tell you why this distinction bothers me so much, and it's because I'm accutely aware that gender is for many people, sometimes my good self included, something you put on, that you wear. To define people entirely by a role that they may only play for a certain number of hours a day is to lack any sort of grasp on who that person actually is.

Of course, this would be easier if we could tear interests, activities, and emotional reactions away from their being assigned to gender roles. I wrote earlier about the Dangerous Book for Boys and Hilary Clinton acting like the worst female stereotype. It wasn't Hilary acting like a "girlfriend" to win votes--that was a drag show.

I really need to wrap all this up; I started thinking about how drag is dependent on clear gender markers and all of a sudden imagined a gang of angry drag queens at my door, fearing extinction. Got to go.
lady_kishiria: (Lady Liberty)
I grant, there are a few, but this one is new.

The governor there is demanding that all schoolgirls receive the new HPV vaccine. Now, I've been hoping for this vaccination for years and was overjoyed when it came out although AFAIK I'm too old to receive it. However, some politician telling parents that their daughter MUST have it sets every civil-liberties alarm in my mind to screaming.

People are arguing that it's no different than the smallpox, polio, and measles vaccines. Some parents would argue that making those mandatory impinges on their rights to raise their children, and since I've read some scary things on those vaccines I must say I'm undecided.

There is one clear difference between the above mentioned diseases and Gardasil. Those diseases are transmitted through air, water (such as in a swimming pool), or touching something an infected person has touched. HPV is usually (not always) sexually transmitted, and this has further implications to parents.

I come from a Latino family where, even Americanized as they were, my purity was very much the pillar of the family's "honour". (This, by the way, is where my much-discussed hatred of the whole concept of "honour" comes from.) I know my parents, my mother especially, would have objected to the implication that I'd be sleeping around at the age of 11. Where would my parents' rights over me be?

I know that when I was 11, the idea of being forced to have this vaccine would have outraged and upset me. I was a very pious child, with further complications stemming from an obvious case of sexual identity dysphoria, and I would have seen the clear implications that they were expecting I'd do "it" with a boy. Where would MY rights to my own body be?

Lastly, the vaccine has only been on the market a few months, so it's unknown if there are any side effects. Some should be expected; even the standard ones have them. That in and of itself would make me as a parent hesitant to have my daughter innoculated.

When I first heard of the vaccine, I pictured it as something older teens and young women would take voluntarily. Making it mandatory for middle-school girls feels like violation, not liberation. From Gardasil it's a short jump to birth control, and while I support making birth control easily available to all who need it, making it mandatory would be disgusting and wrong.

It took a while to fully articulate why this story bothers me so much. I'm looking forward to what [personal profile] libertarianhawk in particular has to say about it.
lady_kishiria: (Default)
If you put in their URL, the front page comes up. If you click "enter" you get a 404.

I imagine they get hacked often. I assume that when this happens they run around screaming hysterically waiting for their husbands to come home and fix the problem, even though they are fully capable of doing it themselves. Of course, Hubby is at the bar saying, "I'm not going home till I know that crazy bitch is asleep."

That's my summary of women who take an extreme position against feminism: they just don't want responsibility. Feminism demands they (gasp!) GROW THE HELL UP and stop being perpetual minors whose only function is to make babies.

Gonna take that argument over to the feminist discussion in [community profile] catholicism later on today.
lady_kishiria: (Kishiria)
What to do on a day when I'm depressed than to get my juices going with some good old CHRISTIAN TALIBAN!

It's always more fun to rile up [profile] desert_vixen while I'm at it. Here's a good one (and it's short):

We're such dirty sluts.
lady_kishiria: (Kishiria)

The blogger asks the question on everybody's mind, "Why do these crazy women want to take over the country just because they want to be [BDSM] bottoms?"

And I still think their men should run screaming. How many jobs do they need to take on to pay for as many babies as will drop out of their wives' worn-out panochas? And you know those panochas are the only ones they're gonna get because they're too strapped to hire prostitutes.

Plus, as I said to [profile] electorprince, since exercise is unfeminine, and hard to do in layers and layers of fabric, what kind of beauty must one of these women have after kid #4? If you recall my whole "lotus birth" kick a while back, there was a photo essay about it. The Prairie Muffin in that was a Mormon living the lifestyle. Take a look at her. That's what these guys have to look forward to.

About 7 years ago, there was a woman who started a small movement called the Surrendered Wife movement. It wasn't religious per se, but it was based on the idea of the wife being submissive to her husband in the name of peace in the home. There were two fundamental flaws with it.

1. It assumed there was no middle ground between being a doormat and being a shrew.

2. It was heavily based on deceit. The classic example of good surrendered behaviour was letting your husband take the wrong exit off the freeway even though you know it's wrong because you must not make him feel stupid by telling him so. Apparently it's better to keep silent and let him get lost and frustrated.

All of this is based on refusing to see middle ground. I make cracks about being dressed like a whore because according to the PM lifestyle I am, when I'm wearing knee-length shorts and a t-shirt because it's 90 degrees outside. In their demented minds, there is no middle ground between being a college girl walking around in her underwear (no kidding, I actually read that) and wearing one of their big denim Taliban-approved jumper dresses.

So, who do I think is a good Christian wife?

This lovely lady is Katarina von Bora, wife of Martin Luther. Isn't she formidable? She'd have taken a whip to these PMs. Sure, she adored Martin and had a lot of kids, but at the same time, she was his business manager (she handled publication of all his books), ran a brewery, took care of the finances (she would hide money from him because otherwise he'd give it to the poor at times when they WERE the poor) and still found time to theologize with him when he was stuck on a problem.

Their courtship was funny too. She was a former nun, a noblewoman obviously, who was set to marry Martin's friend Phillip Melancthon. Still, she'd set her sights on Luther himself, and once she did that, get the hell out of the way. He didn't stand a chance.

Oy vey...I need a job, and not just for money. I am bored and my brain is on overdrive. I'm stopping now before I go into my rant against Womens' Studies programs and an essay on "Man As Head of Household As Dangerous Path to the Gnostic Heresy."

You may all de-friendlist me now. :P
lady_kishiria: (Kishiria)
[personal profile] patgund clued me in to a movement called "Prairie Muffins". I'll leave you to Google them because there's some pretty amusing feminist parodies and MST3Ks of them. These are women with the "Marylike Modesty" thing going, but they're Evangelicals.

A look at the website hosting their manifesto pretty much summarizes their life as being a quiet stay-at-home mama who accepts as many babies as God will "give" them, who don't believe in women having the vote, and who decry such firebrands as Louisa May Alcott and Laura Ingalls Wilder as being bad examples of womanhood for young girls. Jo after all wanted education and Laura Ingalls and her Ma had to work like absolute dogs on their homestead because Pa was away half the year making money and Mary was blind.

For a Catholic view, check out this chick's creepy blog: To cut STRAIGHT to the chase, look at the entry on "The Western Media is At It Again."

Ready? No, you don't need the smelling salts because you're not hallucinating. She just PRAISED the way women live in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Made me die more than a little inside, too.

Make sure to go to her homepage (just remove "blogspot" and check out her essays on why women should not play sports (short answer--it's not attractive, whatever THAT means), and of course the ever-popular modesty thing.

However, one essay of hers gave me the in, the missing puzzle piece, the password, to what's going on with these movements. In it, Mrs Hammond admits throwing her hands up in frustration and telling her husband to do the household finances from now on.

Let me paint the picture. Mr. Hammond works, supporting a wife and a larger-than-normal family. Mrs Hammond breeds of course, but she also writes books, goes on speaking engagements, and otherwise puts the lie to the lifestyle she claims to espouse. Now she is able to foist another responsibility onto her husband while she does whatever she wants to do, namely, her best to impose her lifestyle on other women.

Similarly, the Prairie Muffins seem to do little but reproduce and clean house. No thought or responsibility involved. Heck, they want to get rid of as much responsiblity as possible, claiming it's against what it is to be female.

As I said to Steve, what a scam! These husbands should steer these freeloading heifers to the curb.

I really like how these self-created cows condemn women who won't buy into their line of bullshit with words of pity. "Oh you poor thing, you've given up your femininity and True Womanhood in search of the American Nightmare." Well, I guess so. Go ahead and pity me for my willingness to be an adult, to pull my own weight in the life partnership, to look a little rough around the edges while I defend YOUR freedom to stay childish and worthless.

Cause when your husbands do wake up and you find yourself abandoned in a house you can't pay for with ten kids you suddenly need to feed, you are going to wish you had my life.
lady_kishiria: (Default)
I realize that while I'm at medium risk for breast cancer (no kids, moderate drinker) I could never, EVER participate in breast cancer activism.

The short answer is that there's too much damned PINK. I do not do PINK.

This is shorthand for "to participate in activism against a disease that attacks women no matter what their lifestyle, only women who fit a certain stereotyped femininity need apply." If you're white, married, preferably with kids, and you are conventionally feminine and like pink, come on by. If you're butch or androgynous or queer (the three do not necessarily all go together) please go away.

I tried to picture [profile] ommkarja, [profile] vzd, [profile] prushrush and myself as part of this event. I couldn't do it.

I'm tempted towards a long dissertation about the subtle death wish against those who don't fit the stereotype of a "good" woman, but I won't.
lady_kishiria: (Default)

Okay, we were discussing Jessica Lynch. This is my post from 2003 on it, and on what it says about racism and sexism these days.
lady_kishiria: (Default)
So, I just finished reading "The Da Vinci Code" by Dan Brown. I don't want to give away too much, but it's largely about the Priory of Sion, revival of the goddess, and Mary Magdalene, the same subject matter as "Holy Blood, Holy Grail". As everybody knows ad infinitum, I'm a feminist theologian and Virgin Mary expert. (This is why I work a crappy non-related job.)

As I was reading, something started to annoy me. It took me a while to figure out what it was. Finally, it hit me. Consider this paragraph:

"The ability of the woman to produce life from her womb made her sacred. A god. Intercourse was the revered union of the two halves of the human spirit--male and female--through which the male could find spiritual wholeness and communion with God...The Hieros Gamos ritual is not a perversion. It's a deeply sacrosanct ceremony."

The idea is that Mary Magdalene, mother of Jesus's children, is in a way unclear to me a prophet of the goddess.

Okay, now am I the only one who is bothered by "divine feminine as fertility"? Cause I am bothered by it a LOT. I have no children, probably never will. This concept of the divine feminine doesn't speak to me at all. Also, I know a lot of you reading are queer in some description. This whole thing smacks of divinely-mandated heterosexuality as well. Finally, how nice to know that women are the means to a MAN'S enlightenment. All we have to do is fuck them and they see God. Yay.

Sister Elizabeth Johnson in her book "She Who Is" proposes a good theory for the "divine feminine" by the way. She says that since all mens' patriarchal experience is assimilated to God (fatherhood, soldiering, rulership, to name a few) that womens' experiences need to be assimilated to God as well. Motherhood is part of that, but she proposes that if it is part of womens' experience, it needs to be studied to see how it can be shown to reveal God. She suggests that images and language about the Virgin Mary, who is queen, healer, mother, virgin, widow, and prophet, be mined for images of God. Johson points out that that's only the tip of the iceberg, as such images as sister and friend are not applied to God much yet, and I observe that lesbians have their work cut out for them.

Just say no to dualism! (Rosemary Radford Ruether is a source for the evils of that.)

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