Monday, November 12, 2012

I've been pretty absent from this blog lately, mostly due to being busy with a new job (more on that later) and a new budding relationship (maybe a little more on that later), but also because especially with the elections, I've reached some serious concern/involvement burnout. While I am not and will never be apathetic, sometimes I need to step back from the rest of the world for the sake of my own mental health.

I stumbled across something on the internetz that I wanted to share here. I don't know who to credit, as the credit seems to have been lost in the meme. It seemed appropriate, especially with all of the post-election hostilities:

"Apologizing does not always mean that you're wrong and the other person is right. It just means that you value your relationship more than your ego."

Also, for a smile and stuff, check out Daily Odd Compliment.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Rape Culture 101... From a Person With a Penis

[TW Rape culture, etc]

Credit to Matthew H.

Rape culture refers to the recognition that there are certain institutional constructs, be they societal, legal, and/or cultural, which has the combined effect of unfairly justifying, marginalizing, or even allowing rapes to occur, and go unpunished.

1. Any talk of cause, other than unwanted sexual contact, supports the concept that rape is a crime for which a man can be not entirely culpable. Comments about how women dress, act, or otherwise present themselves only serve to try and marginalize the absolute culpability of the attacker. It becomes obvious when we discuss another type of crime. Take fraud. Do we do the same amount of questioning of the actions or behaviors of those who are caught in pyramid or other schemes? The inconsistency is the rape culture.

2. Any institution that is set up to require greater burden's of proof or evidence in a particular case (ie, rape) also contribute to the "rape culture." This can be police, or judicial. I don't think I need to go into a long diatribe about how women are unfairly questioned or accused during rape proceedings. The inconsistency is the rape culture.

3. Any talk of cultural constraints also seems to marginalize, or explain-away the action. Things like "well, she was out at a bar getting hammered..." etc. Our cultural constructs exist, but they are not identical to our moral requirements. We punish crimes that could also "fit in" with our cultural constructs. The 'rape culture' says that only in the cases of rape will we unfairly, and inconsistently, try to marginalize the crime. We do not marginalize fraud by bringing up the market economy (in which people are looking to make money). Again, the inconsistency is the rape culture.

I am less than impressed with guys who make claims against what the majority of women understand.

You cannot know what it is like to spend your entire life viewed as prey. Imagine if, god forbid, you were raped and cops and/or other people started asking questions about what you were wearing or the way you were acting, being questioned and accused as if you somehow brought it on yourself. It ought to be recognized, by the way, that this is the same justification abusers use on the abused. It's been used by abusers to justify emotional abuse, physical abuse, and sexual abuse.

Rape culture? You're blind if you can't see it. Or, more likely, a male.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Elephant Crashes Pool Party

In more weird animal news, I recently stumbled across this little gem about an elephant that wanders up to a small pool party and starts drinking the pool. I'm assuming it was pretty focused, because eventually it looks up, seems to realize where it is, and awkwardly retreats from the pool party.

"Drunk Bear Family Downs Over 100 Beers During Bear Rager"

I do love my weird animal news, especially if it involves the animals getting drunk. This story is about an adult bear (presumably the mother bear) and three cubs breaking into a cabin in Norway and getting into over 100 beers and lots food... behaving much like any frat in the U.S.

Monday, July 30, 2012

It's All About Perspective

"If your focus is always looking down when you fall, you will inevitably miss the hand that is reaching out from above or behind you... A slight change of angle often changes the view."

My Aunt Jacqui's response on a Facebook status I posted saying "People inevitably let you down."

She's smart like that...

Monday, June 4, 2012

On "Sister Wives"

(Yes, this is happening.)

Though I don't own a TV myself and I'm not an avid follower of the show, I have seen a few episodes of TLC's "Sister Wives." My mom loves the show. She's not an actual fan; she just watches it with the express purpose of talking shit. I'm not kidding. She does this with a few shows. She even records them. So when I'm visiting my parents, I end up watching all of these shows I would NEVER watch normally.

I'm visiting my parents, and last night she wanted to watch some show where they interview the family (or at least the adults- the husband and his four wives) and all five of them answer viewer questions. I was actually pretty fascinated.

As we were watching, my mom turned to me and asked, "What do you think about all this?" I told her the truth: I don't feel it's my place to pass judgement on anyone else. Who or how someone else loves is not my business, and really isn't up for judgement or my personal opinions. As a queer person, I know EXACTLY how it feels to be on the other side of that judgement. It SUCKS. Do I understand polygamy? Absolutely not. I CAN'T. I don't share their religious beliefs or background. So no, I don't understand it, I really don't think it would ever be something I would do, but it's not my business or my place to judge, and I accept that they are consenting adults who aren't harming anyone*. In short: Not my thing, but who cares? Leave them alone.

Although my mom sort of scoffed at my answer, I was really glad I told her the truth about how I feel when the family was asked what they would do if one of their kids came out to them. Despite their affiliation with a religion that is vehemently anti-gay, they all seemed to agree that they would love and accept their children, no matter what. Even if they were gay.

So take that.

* I understand that there is a (somewhat ironic) panic of "WHAT ABOUT THE CHILDREN?!?!" However, I've seen no conclusive studies on children raised in polygamous families. And ethnographies, legitimate or not, are not conclusive for the entire group. I will say that from what I have seen, the kids seem pretty happy and healthy and their family seems pretty "normal", aside from its size and plural wives.