Saturday Link Encyclopedia and Self-Promotion

This post comes a little early this week. Enjoy and don’t forget to self-promote!

On contempt that Evangelicals have for women.

Tell me this isn’t true, please, please tell me: “Last week, the government of Sweden took the decision to retain a 1972 gender recognition law under which TS/TG and gender variant people who want to change their legal gender are required to be sterilised.” Talking about barbarity, this is definitely it, people. Shame on you, Sweden!

College freshmen need a class on mental health: “Our culture doesn’t emphasize mental health; it emphasizes productivity and perfection, so stress management isn’t something we learn unless we make the effort.” Hear, hear! And those who didn’t take this class in college would benefit from taking it later in life. If I had a company of my own, I’d offer such a class to my employees for free.

I’m not a fan of Mitt Romney but if he says that making $362,000 in speaking fees is not a lot of money, that’s a reason to admire him, not to dump on him. If there is evidence he coerced anybody into paying him to speak, then obviously we should condemn him. Otherwise, however, I don’t see the reason behind the outrage. What are we, against public speaking now?

So it’s not OK to stereotype “Arab girls” but it is perfectly fine to stereotype “white girls”? Some people think that these “things XYZ say to ZYX” videos are cute but I just find them beyond stupid and obnoxious.

Might Stephen Harper be somebody’s sex fetish?

On anti-smoker hiring policies. What do you think?

I was going to write a post on the topic of facials (in the sexual sense, not the cosmetic one) but then I discovered that Danny had already blogged about it and did it better than I ever could. So now I will just blog about the cosmetic kind of facials. :-)

Risperdal, an absolutely adorable anti-psychotic for the millions of American children who, thanks largely to Biederman’s research, have been diagnosed bipolar. What’s adorable about Risperdal is how it’s marketed. What child can resist free legos? Risperdal puts legos stamped with the word RISPERDAL in pediatricians offices.”

Teachers don’t fail you. Your failure is your own.

This contribution to the Blog for Choice Day is so good that it gives me goosebumps. I will write my contribution tomorrow but it will not be nearly as cool.

An explanation about the full coverage for birth control for those who are still pretending not to understand what it entails.

Building a fence around special needs students.

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27 comments on “Saturday Link Encyclopedia and Self-Promotion

  1. Thanks for the link!

    Re: the smoking link: I’m continually amazed at the moral outrage that smoking cigarettes sparks in people. I began smoking in college, while I was in student government, because of stress. I don’t feel any guilt over it (not for the lack of others trying)–I enjoy it. But oh, the dirty looks and the lectures I got! Even in Kentucky, where one of our largest cash crops is tobacco, people who are “against” smoking are for anything that would get us dirty smokers out of the way. Get us out of bars and restaurants, far away from doors, out of our cars, off university campuses altogether, and now, unemployed? Humph. Those same people would never trade in their big trucks and SUVs for electric cars, yet my cigarette is the bigger danger to their health.

    One of the commenters made a very good point–that we pay for the increase in health care costs with the high taxes we pay for our cigarettes.

    I would also be very skeptical of what people say about smoking–I was dating a man who worked at a tobacco company a while back, and most of the ingredients I’d heard were in cigarettes, weren’t. I wish I had written all of it down. People love telling me fiberglass are put in cigarettes (See the crystals? SEE THEM?!?!), for instance, but it’s just sugar. I always thought these people were pathetically gullible, but it’s ridiculous how many people believe it.

    • I’m sorry, but this article of Renee’s is a piece of rubbish. This approach is, once again, deeply offensive to women because it denies us the capacity to understand why we do or do not enjoy certain aspects of our own sexuality.

      And it is also sad that a mother of two sons somehow manages not to notice that male sexuality is demonized and vilified in our society.

      • “male sexuality is demonized and vilified in our society” – interesting use of the passive tense there! It seems to me that it’s just as often men as women who perpetuate this stereotype of male sexuality. Are there any men activists taking up this cause? Hugo Schwyzer, for instance, talks about being faithful to his wife, but makes damn sure everyone knows about his previous exploits.

      • ““male sexuality is demonized and vilified in our society” – interesting use of the passive tense there! It seems to me that it’s just as often men as women who perpetuate this stereotype of male sexuality. ”

        – We all participate because it suits us all. This is a fiercely Puritanic society.

    • I wish the Hugo thing could just go away already. I’m sure I’ve mentioned before that I don’t like the guy but I’m just so tired and bored with it now. It seems I can’t open my laptop without yet another reminder of how Hugo Is Not A Good Feminist. Everything that can be said about him has been said and now there’s just an echo chamber of righteous harrumphing. I feel like if we all shut up about him he won’t magically gather the reins of Internet Feminism into his claws and just go back to being some obscure gender studies professor I never heard of.

      [btw I'm annoyed here with Renee, not you, Danny. I'm pretty square with you on your post.]

      I’m also fed up with this thing about how women are supposedly always getting the short end of the power stick no matter what, even when it comes to private sexual activity. I can dig come on my face for the right guy [well, not just now, being involved and gay and all], and the right guy would be one that didn’t see my body as a “canvas” or a “receptacle”, which thank you I’m smart enough to figure out on my own, Internet Feminists. It’s possible to do messy top/bottom stuff without partners disrespecting each other or oppressing entire genders, for chrissakes. I feel sorta bad for Renee if her post really reflects how she feels about heterosexual activity, but I’m also kinda tweaked that she’s projecting her “dog lifting its leg” hang-ups on other women who may get off on the messy part of sex.

      [ps here’s a fresh link to my sort of aimless blog http://prhoeas.wordpress.com/%5D

      • Logical links are broken in Renee’s reasoning. She somehow equates being into facials with being into sexual submission and being into sexual submission with being submissive in life. This makes no sense, though. People who are into sexual submission are not necessarily submissive in life. And then there are all those folks who enjoy being sometimes submissive and sometimes dominant sexually.

        There is such a variety of sexual preferences and behaviors that trying to classify them in this rigid way is meaningless.

        P.S. I hope you keep blogging regularly! People need to be exposed to your wit and great writing style. In return, I promise not to write about Hugo any more. :-)

  2. I began smoking cigarettes in high school, where there was a senior smoking lounge. When my dad drove me to college, he took me to a pipe store and bought a pipe and some tobacco for me. I have smoked my pipe ever since then, in 1959, with one brief hiatus. That came when I needed major surgery for cancer and knew that I could not smoke while in hospital. About six months later, I resumed when I realized that I was almost hoping for a cancer recurrence, which I had been advised would be untreatable, so that I could resume smoking my pipe. That seemed pretty stupid so I started again (that was in 1999) and I continue to enjoy it greatly.

    Doing something enjoyable in circumstances where it does not harm (as distinguished from merely offend) others is an important part of freedom. There is too great a tendency to elevate whatever perceptions and desires we may have over those of others who, were they to act in accordance theirs, might harm only themselves.

    The recent solo circumnavigation by a young Dutch girl, Laura Dekker, who could have died in the process, was much opposed by those intent upon meddling in her affairs to protect her. She completed her circumnavigation today and, although I have never met her, am very, very proud of her guts, competence and determination to “followed her bliss.”

  3. I found that exercise did wonders for my stress. As long as I could get a half-hour in on an elliptical or swam or went to my karate classes, I was fine. I don’t think mental health classes are a good idea- they too often end up being excuses for navel gazing,
    Smoking? Well, I react really badly to cigarette smoke now, to the point of it being nearly an allergy, so I prefer smoke not to be in places I have to work- or be for any length of time. I remember going to a bowling alley as an adult, and being amazed that I could breathe. And there are certain places, such as hospitals, where smoking is a really bad idea. That said, I still don’t think it says anything about someone’s personality. I prefer not to do it, but don’t care if anyone else smokes.

  4. Re: Romney – I don’t think the issue is that he’s making money. I think the issue is that he tries to be all down-home, middle-class, I’m-the-99%, then makes a statement like $300,000 is not a lot of money, or reveals that he’s paying far less in taxes than the average American household, or offers to make a bet of $10,000. That’s the part that ticks me off, anyway; the blatant disregard for how the average American is struggling in this economy paired with his attempt to make himself “one of us.”

    • That’s what it is for me, at least–that he keeps tossing around these huge amounts of money, as if it’s chump change to him, while pretending to be otherwise. It’s like, dude. $300,000, not a lot of money? I could buy both my parents a house, and pay off my debts with that. It’s a LOT of money to most of us.

      Really, it’s just showing that he’s complete unable to identify to most Americans, or even empathize with us.

  5. Ooh, you could just tell that I’m sick and bored at home, couldn’t you? :P

    I wrote about football and body strength, maybe touching on if expectations about how to develop strength are gendered.

    And about breasts, particularly regarding how a Slate article makes some erroneous (and possibly offensive) assumptions about larger breasts.

    I’m almost at the end of Unwisely, writing about trying (a first time) to leave an abusive relationship.

    Finally, a book review of the young adult novel Fairest. I am happy to finally have read a story about an ugly girl who is, in fact, ugly by the standards of the story.

    • I love the post on breasts. People sometimes take one’s large natural breasts as some sort of a personal insult. Which makes no sense because sometimes large breasts just happen. And they don’t make life easy on all counts, either, because finding underwear that would accommodate them and not look completely hideous is very very hard.

      • To the extent that I have given up on the “not look completely hideous” clause. ;)

        I mean, I prefer my bras to be aesthetically pleasing or at least plain, but I will take what I can get.

  6. Thanks for the link! I really enjoyed the piece of facials; it makes me really happy that people are finally starting to talk about male sexuality as something other than an inconvenience/source of disgust for women.

  7. twicerandomly :
    “male sexuality is demonized and vilified in our society” – interesting use of the passive tense there! It seems to me that it’s just as often men as women who perpetuate this stereotype of male sexuality. Are there any men activists taking up this cause? Hugo Schwyzer, for instance, talks about being faithful to his wife, but makes damn sure everyone knows about his previous exploits.

    I think male sexuality is less vilified than it is romanticized as a necessary evil. The ideology I’ve heard is that male sexuality is necessarily violent –which is why men rape, beat their wives and deny women abortion when needed. The associated stereotype is that women are just too namby-pamby and unrealistic to accept the need for this necessarily violent male sexuality. Don’t we realise that society would pass away without it? Are we that selfish?

  8. twicerandomly :
    “male sexuality is demonized and vilified in our society” – interesting use of the passive tense there! It seems to me that it’s just as often men as women who perpetuate this stereotype of male sexuality. Are there any men activists taking up this cause? Hugo Schwyzer, for instance, talks about being faithful to his wife, but makes damn sure everyone knows about his previous exploits.

    Yes there are men who perpetuate that. Doesn’t mean that it doesn’t happen. For example I would think its proper to say that there are women who slut shame other women (and I’ve seen this happen in person). Does that somehow negate the fact that slut shaming harms women?

    • Of course it happens. It just seems to be easier for women change the myth from the extreme (women don’t really like sex, they only use it to get married) to the middle (women like sex and sometimes they want it in the context of a relationship and sometimes they don’t) than for men to change the myth from their extreme (men want sex all the time with whatever woman they see and can barely control themselves, and never want to get married) to the middle (men like sex and sometimes want it in the context of a relationship and sometimes they don’t). It seems to me that the male myth is taking longer to fade away. Tiger Woods, Derek Jeter, Charlie Sheen, James Spader’s character on Boston Legal etc. all live out this myth.

      • That is more likely explained by the fact that people have been challenging the myth faced by women for much longer than the myth faced by men.

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