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Open Thread 71

December 10, 2010

10 Comments
  1. December 10, 2010 5:55 pm

    Gallus Mag:

    “It was her custom, after she’d felled an obstreperous customer with her club, to clutch his ear between her teeth and so drag him to the door, amid the frenzied cheers of the onlookers. If her victim protested she bit his ear off, and having cast the fellow into the street she carefully deposited the detached member in a jar of alcohol behind the bar…. She was one of the most feared denizens on the waterfront and the police of the period shudderingly described her as the most savage female they’d ever encountered.”

  2. December 10, 2010 8:33 pm

    Even black dogs can’t get a break. Never in a million years would I’ve thought people have a problem with black dogs. I wonder if the same is for cats. My favorite cat of all time was black.

    • December 13, 2010 6:02 am

      My dog is black and she was in the dog-home for TWO YEARS before I finally adopted her. She is the most wonderful, caring, affectionate best dog ever who helped me with my mental health issues.

      And she HATES males in any form, shape or size 🙂

      Love that link Kitty, especially the top ten reasons 🙂

  3. December 11, 2010 1:04 am

    Isn’t that picture so beautiful? I should make a combination red and white scarf. I always think of these things when it is too late. And you know even though peppermint is not specifically Christmas, few would wear such a scarf after Christmas. Come January it seems to be all deep blue, silver and white. Or it may just be my perception.

  4. December 11, 2010 4:23 am

    I’m talking about the photo essay over here because I don’t want to derail the other topic. The second I saw these photos I suspected they were taken by a woman. There was just something about them that was not obviously male gaze like but was pushing something unnatural, performed. They are very white-hetero-centric, and fun-feminist. Sure enough the photographer is Paula Bronstein.

    Of course I was in the military for many years so several things jump right out at me. For one thing, I would not appreciate that the first picture was of a female (white woman) hair in a bun. With that very picture she is taking the sex female into gender performance when it is unnecessary. Females are under no obligation to keep their hair. They can cut it as short as they want to. I mention this because never in a middle years would I have long hair if I was sent to any of those countries. It wouldn’t be practical. The helmet, the gear, the showers (or lack of) the time restraints, the potential hazards etc would easily convince me to chopped my hair off before I left to said country or the second I was there and realized what I was in for and found the first pair of scissors. The main reason for a female to keep her hair (unless she has some strange attachment with long hair) (whether she admits it or not) is to announce to the world that she is heterosexual and not one of those women. Now, I am not saying there are not lesbians with long hair; I am talking about my experience in the military. I played that game during the first 60% of my military career without even knowing consciously that I was playing. I glammed myself up big time. And you know what? I was promoted out of this world. I was a rank-grabber (a flattering insult for someone who is promoted almost impossibly too fast). The men like promoting me too. I was the pet prize for one high ranking officer who supposedly had a ball-busting wife who was also in the military as a higher ranking officer. He was always talking about how he could not wait to tell his wife what he had done for me. My promotions stopped when I stopped glamming it up. Naturally that happened the same time I stopped taking shit from men.

    The thing is, and I thought about it when I was viewing the photo essay is it does not matter if that woman in picture number three is technically a lesbian or not, she will be perceived by others to be a lesbian (and if not a lesbian, a hetero woman not worthy of oohing and ahhing about being a female in the military in the middle of a war zone). Notice how her napping picture (picture number eight) is not as flattering as the white woman’s (with long hair) napping picture (picture number 4) is as well as the differences Margie mentions about the children. I say it is fun-feminist because the majority of the photos focus on how one can still be girly-girl (feminine) and be a “strong woman” in the military. Why do we see the one doing her hair?

    I guess I am saying the photographer prefers/values/hierarchizes
    femininity over non(or less) femininity in women . Yet there will be women who will swear femininity has no privilege.

    Of course I didn’t have to be so clumsy in this comment and could maybe made it into a post, but, I mentioned it before, it is quite triggering, thus, it pisses me the fuck off. I shouldn’t had to glam up in order to be treated fairly. And it is not limited to the military.

  5. joankelly6000 permalink
    December 11, 2010 6:22 am

    I don’t know if this is the right place for this either but it didn’t seem exactly on topic anywhere else right now – a woman I love talked tonight in a small room of other women about having been ashamed her whole life about being a lesbian, that the only place she felt accepted was prison, prior to finding the group of women she is connected to now. Prison. And then she talked about being afraid to use public restrooms to this day because of how some women treat her like she doesn’t belong in the women’s room because of how she looks, and she started crying. And at a certain point she said “it makes me feel like I can understand how transsexual people feel.”

    There is nothing about her that doesn’t-look like she is female – she is so clearly and beautifully female. She is also a dark skinned black woman who doesn’t practice femininity, which means within racist misogyny she is expected to accept that she is not as authentically “woman” as lighter skinned-anybody, and femininity-practicing female people.

    And to be fair I am not omnipotent so I am not saying it never happens or never has happened, but so far, I personally have not ever seen any transgendered males express, as a direct result of their own pain, compassion for the pain butch women are put through for not conforming – I’ve never seen them *identify* with it, I’ve only seen them claim it is far worse when it happens to them, and also it’s supposedly totally different when it happens to them. You see, the butch lesbian at least has the privilege of never having her vagina doubted if anyone gropes or attacks and tears her clothes off!

    Seriously, it is a human rights violation for not prioritizing the pain, the need to pee, and the safety of male people over female people, when it comes to people being told “you’re not a real woman?” An actual female person is actually harmed *less* by being socially excluded from whatever benefits are to be had by conforming to femininity, by basically being excluded from womanhood as it were?

    What the merry fuck is wrong with people.

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