Posts Tagged ‘confrontation’

(This was a Facebook post I did a few days ago, edited for your reading pleasure)

This moment of education is brought to you by a moment’s ire while trying to relax and save Thedas.
Look, ‪#‎SouthernLivesMatter‬ and ‪#‎BlueLivesMatter‬ and ‪#‎WhiteLivesMatter‬, here’s some seats. You need to take all of them. Consider it a prescription from Dr. Feminace.

(other campaigns that focus on actual marginalized groups – #nativelivesmatter and the like, are of course exempt from this ‘script. *raises solidarity fist*)

You’re missing the point so hard that you can’t catch a fucking clue with clue bait, a clue hunting rifle and covered in clue pee in the middle of clue hunting season. So you have to copy an effective campaign and try to look clever when you might as fucking well just use ‪#‎notallwhites‬, ‪#‎whataboutus‬, and ‪#‎imacluelesspieceofshit‬

Why do we say “BlackLivesMatter”? Because, if you bothered looking at the news longer than the latest ZOMG new story of someone getting shot by the cops, it’s bloody obvious that black lives don’t matter. If someone shoots and/or kills a cop, people go out of their fucking way to celebrate their lives, to mourn, to pull up happy pictures of good time, and (most importantly) to find the fuck what shot/killed them. Hell, people do the same thing when POLICE DOGS are hurt in the line of duty.

On the other hand, black victims do not even get the courtesy. Let’s look at that video of the cop throwing down a 14 year old girl while she screams for her mother over and over again. That black male that was shot two seconds after the cops stopped was obvious a dangerous 20 years old man with a really real gun instead of a little boy with a fake one playing in the park. Did that dead black guy have a criminal record that had fuck all to do with his murder? Any pictures of them holding their hands up a way that we can call a gang sign? Say, maybe they had weed in their system. You know how wild and violent they get when they’ve had their pot. So scary.  Shoot/harm first, ask questions later, if not never.

White killers get more sympathetic press than black victims.
Killer cops fucking up at their job get more sympathetic press than black victims.
ANIMALS get more sympathetic press than black victims.

That is what we are talking about when we say “black lives matter”, because it’s fucking obvious that they don’t in our society. Do you fucking get it now? It’s not about hating cops or white people or Southerns or what the fuck ever.  It’s a cry for help, a cry for attention (the right sort, the sort that requires change in our society), and it’s only getting louder.

But you can’t deal with that reality, can you? The press caters to your narrow-minded view of us, leaving you capable of calling our rage “stupid” and whining when we put our protests in your face so you CAN’T ignore our presence. You wag your fingers at us, but remain silent when your token Black friends express their feelings, then turn around and repost/reTweet racism memes that you and your White friends can nod their heads about.  You easily ignore our pain – and that is what copying that slogan is. Hide your lack of empathy by whining like petulant children upset that a sibling got a piece of a cookie compared to their whole one. Even if that sibling has been locked in a basement and beaten most of their life. Even if that sibling made the fucking cookies in the first place.

Because who cares, you’re not getting the attention right now. You’re scared and trying to make shit about you so you feel better. You try to co-opt movements because you need to not think about anything but yourselves (or have a single original thought, for fuck’s sake), because empathy is oh so hard, and you might have to work on seeing us as humans like you, and we see you.

Oh, we see you.

…okay, back to sweet talking Solas. I feel better getting that out.

Hello cats and kittens, class is in.

Let’s say I’m in meatspace. And there are people having a conversation within earshot about sweet potatoes. How yummy they are, different types, different preparations, etc.

I hate sweet potatoes*. Would it be a good idea for me to walk over to that conversation and inform them that I think the thing they are talking about is silly/bad/wrong because I hate sweet potatoes and they’re gross and yuck.

Wouldn’t that be considered rude?

What is the difference between that and doing this online:

“Wow, One Direction is awesome!”
“Yeah, I love their music”
“The boys are so cute”
“This band is dumb! Why do you even bother listening!”

Or this:

“Look at this pictures of large women freely wearing bikinis!”
“They look awesome and brave”
“I need to know where she got this one!”
“Gross! I couldn’t get past the first picture!”

Or *sigh* even this:

“Good on those Native actors for walking off that shitty Adam Sandler movie set”
“Did you see that screenshot of part of the script? How is that funny?”
“You mean a Sandler movie’s using lazy sterotypes of an already marginized group? Say it ain’t so!”
“I don’t get what the big deal is. If people don’t like it, then don’t see it!”

See? First of all, you either just harshed someone squee or have made a demand for them to justify themselves to you (and seriously, who the fuck are you?).  Secondly, you’re trying to make this conversation now about you.

So if, you know, people tell you to fuck right off, do you really have cause to wave your burned ass around, or complain that you’re “not allowed to have a dissenting opinion” when those who were speak rightfully pile on?

I want to help you, so here is a strong suggestion: Shutting the fuck up is always an option.**

No matter what.  Food, music, social justice issues, the newest fad app.  It can apply to damn near everything! Just because you have the ability to comment on damn near anything online does not mean you have to.

And this only applies when your opinion is the equivalent of “ew! I don’t like it!” or “explain yourself to me now”.  I’m not a fan of trying to educate in spaces where I’m totally outnumbered, but some have that fortitude and go them.  But for the most part, make it easier on yourself.

I’m just saying, if you’re gonna say something, Say Something.  Make it count. Add to the conversation. Don’t make people take time and energy to deal with you. That is a hell of a lot more rude that any ‘angry cuss words’ I’ve ever heard.

Class is dismissed.

*No, this is not an invitation to inquire of ways I’ve tried sweet potatoes or suggest different recipes. I’m a grown-up and I get to Not Like Things.  I swear, food is almost like sex, if people have decided they don’t like a certain thing, people will come out of the fucking woodwork to either A. act as if my dislike is a personal attack or B. make unasked for suggestions to “help”.  But that is a rant for another post.

**If you are some combination of white, male, straight, and/or cis, tattoo that shit on both your hands, so you can see it before you start typing.

Dear sweet baby Jesus in a cradle up a tree, I am done, done, DONE with people of privilege donning the costume and trappings of marginalized people’s situations and being treated as ‘brave’ or someone we ought to respect because ‘OMG, they totally know what it’s like now!”

I’ma put this bit in bold so you understand: NO YOU GODDAMNED MOTHERFUCKING DON’T!

No, living like you’re on food stamps for a week isn’t “knowing what it’s like”.

No, wearing a hijab for Lent isn’t “knowing what it’s like”

No, binding your boobs and “be a trans guy for a day” isn’t “knowing what it’s like”.

No, wearing a fat suit for a day isn’t “knowing what it’s like”.

This is privilege tourism, a brief visit to get just a taste. Then you come back and talk as if you know damn near everything about the place, when you’ve only seen the highlights.

You wanna know what it’s like to be poor, a hijabi, transgendered, or fat?  Let me make a strong suggestion: Listen to people who are poor, a hijabi, transgendered, and fat.

They are out there.  Some have already placed their experiences in easy to read and possibly understand formats that are just one search on your search engine of choice away.  You can read them.  You can open up your brain past your own damned experiences and LEARN.

LEARN without embarrassing yourself and offending those who can’t take off the ‘costume’ at the end of the experiment.

Let go of this concept that the only way to learn is to walk in someone’s shoes, that the only way you can process another’s world is through you own eyes.  There are some shoes you will never walk in, and there are some shoes you really shouldn’t try to walk in. You can express empathy and understanding by listening and learning from those who walk that path every damned day of their lives.

And you can help, actually help, but elevating those voices, especially if you have an audience (*ahem*Gwyneth*ahem*). Those voices need to be heard a lot more than your twisted attempt at empathy that comes off as another fucking vanity project.

If anything, it might even save you from the righteous anger of those who have every fucking right to be angry at yet another tourist taking a cruise through their lives.

(Quick little blogger’s edit: If you think I’m going to allow your tired ass, shamey, or deliberately ignorant comments to see the light of day, think again.  If it’s trash, it goes in the trash. I’m not hosting a debate here.)

Hello, Dear Taxpayer:

Oh, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to speak too loudly.  Should I stand to the side?  I wouldn’t want to take up too much room.

I *ahem* receive welfare, and I feel terrible about it. I don’t make enough money to support myself, so I have to steal yours to make ends meet.  I’m sorry.  So very sorry.  

Every day I sit at home and think with gratitude about how you other hardworking Americans work long days to earn me my pittance.  I wouldn’t want to go outside and have you see me.  I wouldn’t want you to know I exist.

Oh wait? You want me to get a job?  Alright.  I’m so sorry, but the wages are so low that I have to beg for a little of your money still.  I’m so, so sorry! Please forgive me!

When I shop, I do it carefully.  I wouldn’t want to mismanage the money you gave me.  Do I buy prepacked processed food and seem wasteful, or do I buy fresh cuts of meats and veggies and good stuff and look frivolous? Please, Dear Taxpayer, tell me what I should buy to make you less angry about my thievery of your precious tax dollars. 

The things I buy with the cash benefit (I’m sorry! I need more money to spend on things that aren’t food!  Please don’t hate me) are simple and basic.  No name brands.  I’m sorry, is that not good enough? How about Dollar Store brands?  Nope, nothing that might not fall apart or break within months for me.  Thrift store outfits all the way.  I wouldn’t want to look too rich in your sight.

Joys?  I have no joy.  I am poor.  I do not deserve joy.  Occasionally eating outside of the house?  Why would I waste your money like that?  Gifts from friends and family who are doing better than me?  Nope, I won’t accept a single one because I am poor and do not wish to be seen with something that is “too good’ for the likes of me.  All of the nice things I may have owned before I needed to put my hands in your hardworking pockets?  Gone.  I threw them all away.  Any children I may have foolishly had while on poor? Gone. A temporal vortex swallowed them the second I applied for benefits.  What was I doing having sex while poor anyway? When you see me, I want you see someone who looks as poor as you think I should.  What choices should I make for my life, Dear Taxpayer?  Please tell me.

Because it’s all about you, Dear Taxpayer.

Hold please, urge to barf passing.

Now that we’re back to me, where the fuck do people get off trying to talk about welfare while knowing fuck all about it? Seriously.  I’ve been in several Facebook “discussions” in the past three days about government assistance and it’s like Groundhog Day minus Bill Murray and less funny.

So, allow me to tackle some of those shit excuses for arguments here, where I can be an uncivil as I please:

“I grew up poor and lifted myself up by my own bootstraps and so should everyone else!”

– You want a cookie or something? Congratulations, you’re better than everyone, you special snowflake you.  Now what will we do with those who aren’t as super-dee-duper awesome as you are?

“People shouldn’t have kids they can’t afford!”

– Mm-mmm that’s some good Just World fallacy! Now, what exactly should we do for the kids born to people you disapprove of that are alive right now? Also, telling people not to fuck has never and will never work.

“People are selling their food stamps for drug money!”

“People live their entire lives on welfare!” 

“Illegals get welfare all the time!”

– I’m just gonna lump all of these into the “Hi, I’m stuck in the 80s.” Update your bullshit, please. Also, and I’m gonna put this in bold and all caps: SNAP IS FOR FOOD.  ONLY. Stop saying otherwise, you ignorant shits.

“Welfare is so easy to get!”

– Says someone who has never had to sign up for it.  Bank statements, paychecks, royalty statements, landlord statements, copies of utilities, the personal information of every person you live with, whether they are getting the benes with you or not. And that’s just to sign up.  Then you have to cough it up again every six months.  You can’t work too many hours or you lose it.  You can’t get married (if you’re broke and your intended isn’t), or you lose it.

Tell me again how easy it is?

“I saw someone use an EBT card and they had an iPhone/a nice purse/a tattoo/new shoes/a nice weave/something I don’t think they deserve!”

– First of all, fuck you for trying to judge based on one look. Maybe it hasn’t dawned onto you, but people in cooperative societies manage to get their needs met in a lot of different ways.  Maybe they had that fancy object before they got poor.  Maybe they got it for free with one of those “sign your soul over” data plans.  Maybe the purse is a knockoff, or traded babysitting or something for someone to fix their hair/do their nails (oh, and nice racist dogwhistle, btw).  Maybe that tattoo is getting paid in installments.

Or maybe, and this might hurt your feelings, but I don’t give a shit, when that cash assistance money hits their account, it’s none of your fucking business how they spend it.  Does your boss have a say in how you spend your check?

I know, I know, “But I earned my money.  Poors didn’t earn theirs!”

And? The state, the social worker who had more access to their financials than your nosy ass does decided on the amount to give, not you.  It’s their money.  As long as they’re not breaking any of the rules attached to it, they can spend it however the fuck they want.  Basic household supplies, clothes and shoes, make up, a nice aftershave, a cup of fancy coffee, a .99 phone app, whatever.  It is ours to save or spend.

Poor people aren’t some cast offs living where needs above food, clothing and shelter are different.  Not making enough to make ends meet doesn’t mean we check out of all the good parts of being human.  I’ve heard people piss and moan about seeing someone using SNAP for a birthday cake for a child.

A motherfucking birthday cake for a kid.

Because being poor apparently means you get no joy (and being born to a poor family means you’re just shit out of luck).  No temporary comfort.  Nothing that makes you feed good in a world that is shit and even more so when you apparently are too poor to exist without some ignorant motherfucker peeping in your shopping cart for shit your not “supposed” to have.

There is nothing easy about being poor. If you think otherwise, you try it.  If that’s too scary for you, then climb the fuck off our backs.

So our merry band of morons have been more pushy considering the property line they are not supposed to cross.  Because Screw the Rules, I have Jesus.

“Good morning.  That is the first and last time you will hear that from me, so savor it.  Here we go:

Rule one: If you are an adult, I don’t like you.  I don’t care if you say that you “love me”; that’s creepy and you don’t know me.  I don’t care if your God loves me.  As a matter of fact, if you feel the need to tell me that, like you have the express line to God, I don’t like you even more.

Rule one point one: If you’re a kid and you’re here, I feel sorry for you.  There are better ways to spend a Saturday morning than being dragged to a clinic to wander with signs near pictures of medical waste.  Like the park near the clinic.

Rule two: Become familiar with the property line.  Tell your newbies.  Ignorance is no longer an excuse.  I WILL call the cops on your ass.

Rule three: We don’t have to talk to you.  For any reason.

Rule four: We can talk to anyone we want.  Deal.

Rule five: Don’t fucking LIE to us.  If you’re a protester, we’ll figure it the fuck out. We talk to each other.  We talk to our security guy.  The fucking ninth commandment?  Your rules. Not mine.

Rule Six: You are creepy, young or old.  If you bothered to think about it for five seconds, you would get that.  Complete strangers don’t owe you information about their bodies or medical condition.  Not that you would care.  I heard a woman was on the floor bawling after you dismissed her telling you her fetus’ lungs weren’t working.  You are shit.  Actually, let me make that a rule:

Rule Seven: You are shit.  The very thing you are doing is shitty and you are shit.  This is why you get the disdain you whine about.  But hey, that’s what gets you people going, I know.  You don’t give a fuck about babies, you just wanna get decent people pissed off so you can go home and wank (figuratively and/or literally) about how persecuted you are. We know your game.

Lying to Men

Posted: May 9, 2014 in feminism, fuckery
Tags: , ,

I have been lying to men since I was old enough to know the difference between truth and lies.

Random Dude: “Hey <Nickname he gleaned off the airbrushed shirt I was wearing>, your momma told me to come take you home.”

Eight Year Old Me: “Let me go tell my Daddy over there.” *points to man who was at the park with his own kids and was NOT my dad*

Sometimes it didn’t work so well:

Random Dude: “How old are you?”

Ten Year Old Me: “12” *keeps getting hit on*

Sometimes it downright blew up in my face with how badly it didn’t work:

Random Dude: “How old are you?”

Twelve Year Old Me: “10” *keeps getting hit on*

Fourteen Year Old Me: “12” *keeps getting hit on*

Sixteen Year Old Me: “14” *take a guess, folks*

Random Dude: “Is that (toddler aged sibling) your baby?”

Fourteen to Sixteen Year Old Me: “Yes” *keeps getting hit on*

 

The lies that didn’t work (and the truths that also didn’t work) followed me from my childhood to my adult years. I’d say I was too young, or too old, that I didn’t have a phone number, and the number one “get the fuck away from me” line – “I’ve got a man”. I used it.  No matter if I actually did or not. Some times it would work, a lot of times well…

Now, you’re probably thinking, “Feminace, why did you spend so much time making up lies when a simple ‘I’m not interested’ would suffice in avoiding unwanted attention?”

You may even be thinking, “Are you doing feminism wrong by making up a supposed ‘owner’ of your girl-bits to avoid being bothered?”

Oh, my sweet summer child.

The best way to explain would be in song. Don’t worry, I’m not going to sing.  Anyone remember this little ditty from 1992?

 

It’s called “I Got A Man” performed by a gent named Positive K and is positively the catchiest tune my little preteen ear had heard that year. I had this song memorized.  It wasn’t until several years later, when I was able to call street harassment for what it was, that the song went from delightful to fucking obnoxious.  This dude is every persistent fuck I’ve had to deal with on buses and trains and on the street.  Here, read the lyrics. I know, I know, there would be no song if he just dipped the first time she says “I already got a man”, but it wouldn’t make such a wonderful example of how it’s not women not saying ‘no’ correctly that’s the problem, but men not accepting it, because they don’t like the answer.

The dude keeps talking.  He accuses her of “getting a kick out of telling brothers no” (and that’s before she even mentions having a man already). He accuses her of trying to “play him like a clown” when she says she isn’t the type of woman who cheats or flits from man to man – one would think that would be an admirable quality. He plays sour grapes – don’t come crying to him once he becomes big time.  And in a show of the pure essence of pathetic if he wasn’t so infuriating, he claims to have a bigger dick.

The only thing that seems to shut him down is the claim that this woman’s partner buys her gifts and takes her out on dates: “Well you can keep your man, cause I don’t go that route”.  Gee wiz, what a charmer.

That only lasts for a brief musical interlude, because BOOM! he’s got one last trump card, how much pleasure he could give her.  You  know, between you and me, dude, I would have led with that first and save the peacock posturing of how awesome you are for much later.  Like never.

Okay, enough of my attempt to analyze music.  The point I’m trying to make is that no one gets to judge how another person avoids harassment.  Okay, I take that back.  You’re welcome to judge, and I’m welcome to call you six shades of asshole for it.  And the most recent attempt at this nonsense has come in the form of attacking the “I got a man” defense as, I guess, a bad feminist act?

Seriously?

You know, if your defense for the ladies sound a lot like blaming said ladies, you’re doing something so very wrong. It isn’t the fault of the woman who wears a fake ring or invents a fake boyfriend that some dudes will only respect another man’s “property”.  We are not the ones perpetrating that nonsense.  Sometimes it is a matter of safety or convenience (if you call “being able to go through your day with the possibility of less harassment” a convenience).  And yes, the song I talked about shows that even that won’t help at times – there’s more than a few songs out in recent years that have dude lording over the fact that they can have other dudes’ ‘girls’ – but if it makes a woman feel more secure, then your “judgement” is just plain fucked.

This is my comment I left on Skepchick after the article about the Michigan anti-bullying fuckery.

Of course, I edited it a bit, but it pissed me off enough to repost it here:

I am so incredibly sick of hearing the tired old chestnuts of “just ignore it/let it go/punch them in the face and they’ll stop” when it comes to kids being bullied.

First of all, it presumes entirely too much about the situation in question.  If it’s a light/low level “hurhur yer momma dresses you funny” bully, yeah, maybe a kid could say “whatever” and keep on trucking, but it’s a completely different ball game when several kids are giving you shit each and every day because of something about you that you can’t change. That shit is hard, especially as a kid when you’re just learning about how to deal with the world. It’s far too easy to look back in hindsight with our adult minds and just go “well, why don’t you ignore it?”

Also, and I’m going against the advice of my own mother when I was little,  fighting a bully isn’t always the solution. This isn’t a movie or “special episode” of a sitcom where the skinny little geek gets a lucky punch in and the bully doesn’t glance at them anymore. Fights are dirty and can be fatal or with permanent damage to either combatant, and nothing good comes out of any possible grudges if the bullied gets lucky. What would we say if the bully comes after this kid again with friends? What do we say if the bully comes after this kid with a weapon?

It’s leaving kids out to dry, especially since we has adults have better ways to deal with this stuff in our own lives. If someone calls me a “nappy headed n**gger” at my job, I can file a complaint. If it’s a reoccurring thing, I can see them fired or file a hefty lawsuit. Why wouldn’t I have a similar option if I were 14 and a schoolmate called me such?

If someone is harassing me at work, in my home, on the street, I have recourse. I can call the cops, I can file a complaint at work (it might not stop the idiot, but it’s SOMETHING). If someone actually assaults me, I have the same recourse. We need to either apply the laws we’ve already got against assault and harassment between kids, or support better laws – which this one sure isn’t and I really wish the family could get their poor son’s name off it.

(And another thing, while my heart goes out to bullies who are just lashing out because of their own abuse or bullying or whatever, telling their victim to just “ignore it” isn’t getting them any help either)

And it’s the gays who are destroying marriage. Can’t let them homos call their filth “marriage” now, it’ll ruin it!

Seriously, folks. Seriously?!?

Why I Can’t Shut Up Anymore

Posted: October 15, 2011 in skeptic
Tags: ,

Folks, I’ve got a confession to make. As much as I love disparaging and debunking and revealing the nonsense of woo, I’m about as non-confrontational as Ghandi on nitrous oxide. When I skim my friends’ postings on Facebook, I grit my teeth and keep scrolling whenever someone is hyping some sort of woo or sharing some really grating tenet of faith as if it were fact. If I just can’t ignore it, I’ll repost it with my thoughts and a little part of me hopes that the original poster won’t notice and respond with flames. If a discussion gets too heated on my Wall, I will ask the combatants to take it elsewhere, and have once deleted an entire thread when two of my more – how should I put this? – jerkish friends refused to back down, or at least take it outside, boys. I do err on the side of shutting up, though.

Well, most of the time. Not a few weeks ago, I did my “reposting” thing about an alternative treatment in India that had been going on for 166 years with hundreds of thousands treated. It involves swallowing a small live fish, then a “secret blend” of herbs in a paste and a strict diet for 40 days afterward. (link) and is supposed to cure asthma and other respiratory distresses. It has all the trappings of alternative medicine nonsense; the spiritual origin story, the family refusing to reveal the recipe, arguments from nature and antiquity and even hating on evil Big Pharma. It didn’t take 30 minutes before the same friend that first posted it to respond with arguments supporting just leaving this family to administer their medicine, since no one’s complained until now. We went back and forth for a bit, but that stuck with me. As far as we knew, being two women living in the US and unable to know for sure, no one has spoke up about whether this cure even worked until now. Either people honestly believed this would heal them or their children, or hey, why rock the boat?

It has been a few weeks, and that conversation really stuck with me for a variety of reasons*. Did I change her mind or encourage her to think more critically about these sorts of things? Probably not. But still, I now understand that I can’t back down anymore when it comes to the nonsense of the world. There are many examples in recent history of average folks without letters behind their name striking out there and making a difference in the name of science, critical thinking, and consumer protection. The 10:23 Campaign, Elyse from Skepchick’s push to get anti-vax ads out of the theaters around last Thanksgiving and the campaign to get Power Balance (and now the NRG Titanium Ion band) off the shelves in Australia instantly pop to my mind from just sitting here and typing these words. They rocked the boat, they spoke up when no one had before, they risked a lot of hate from believers, but they spoke up and stuff happened.

And I know, I know, there’s the fear of becoming the stereotypical cynic in skeptic’s clothing who has no friends because s/he keeps pissing on everyone’s parade. A lot of skeptics, particularly those still closeted, have this fear and we bend over backwards to keep from causing offense to our friends and family members. There have been blog posts and podcasts and talks upon talks upon talks about this and while I agree that a softer touch could be effective at times, there needs to be more touching, period.

Well, no one’s said anything before” can’t be an excuse anymore. Time for me to stop shutting up.

*I regret that I didn’t get a chance to mention in our conversation that there is an Indian skeptical movement whose aims are combating this sort of “holy” nonsense in the guise of “medicine”, and they have nothing to do with scary Big Pharma.