Intersectionality ‘Round the Interwebs, No. 24: Three months o’ links!

Wednesday, October 27th, 2010

Considering I haven’t posted a link roundup in more than three months, this one actually isn’t all that long. What can I say; I’ve used what little free blogging time I’ve had to prepare for the upcoming Vegan MoFo madness. Speaking of which, brand spanking new graphics and an up-to-date press release are now available. Go grab some and spread the word! 400 participants and counting – let’s make it 500, kay? Come November 1st, you can follow the fun on Twitter (VeganMoFo, #veganmofo), the (new!) PPK forums, and Vegan MoFo Headquarters International. See y’all then.

Joel Burns tells gay teens “it gets better”;

Stephanie @ Animal Rights & AntiOppression: “You Coming Out or What?”; and

The Bullies Suck T-shirt

In the wake of a spate of suicides, committed by gay teenagers who were each the target of homophobic bullying, the LGBTQ community and its allies celebrated National Coming Out Day on October 11. Together, these events have focused attention on movements to prevent bullying – particularly those aimed at LGBTQ (or perceived LGBTQ) youths – including the It Gets Better Project and The Trevor Project. The former invites members and allies of the LGBTQ community to upload encouraging videos to its website, the message being that “it gets better”; the latter operates a hotline for LGBTQ youths and young adults in crisis, and also provides resources to parents and educators.

As part of this anti- anti-gay backlash, a number of celebrities and public figures have shared their own experiences publicly – including Fort Worth City Councilman Joel Burns, whose heartbreaking speech went viral and was aired in full on various media outlets, including CNN (where I first saw it). I’ve embedded the video above; even though it’s rather long, clocking in at almost 13 minutes, I urge you to watch the whole thing. It will bring you to tears.

And, while you’re already a sobby, snotty mess, head on over to AR&AO, where Stephanie shares her own “coming out” story. These issues – homophobia, transphobia, misogyny, and the like – are relevant to animal rights activism simply because so many activists belong to marginalized groups; nonhumans are not the only animals exploited and mistreated en masse, for no reason other than the simple fact of their birth. All oppression is bad oppression, and all forms of oppression harm individual activists, as well as social movements and the beings for whom we advocate. These are not “special interests,” to be addressed only after the “important” work is done; these are our interests, to be tackled in concert with other “isms.”

To this end, Ari Solomon of A Scent of Scandal, Josh Hooten of The Herbivore Clothing Company and Jennifer Martin of Ink Brigade created a line of t-shirts to show solidarity with the victims of anti-LGBTQ bullying. Called “Bullies Suck,” the tees are available for purchase through Herbivore (just $20, with kids’ sizes, to boot!); all proceeds will be donated to The Trevor Project.

(More below the fold…)

Intersectionality ‘Round the Interwebs, No. 21: Campaign WIN/FAIL edition

Saturday, May 15th, 2010

MTV's Retro Hit Girl Poster

“MTV’s Retro Hit Girl Poster”: In a reimagining of J. Howard Miller’s iconic “We Can Do It!” poster, a purple-wigged Hit Girl flexes her bicep, gun in hand. The purple bubble emanating
from her head reads, “We Can Kick Ass!” Message brought to you by the Women’s Ass-Kicking Committee. (This photo has absolutely zilch to do with today’s post; rather, it just makes me smile. The warm and fuzzies, I sure needed ’em after wading through not one, but two PETA campaigns. Maybe you will too?)
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Okay, so there’s much, much more FAIL than WIN in this edition of Intersectionality ‘Round the Interwebs, but seeing as I’m all about the power of positive thinking, half-full beer steins, and all that fluffy fun stuff (sike!), I had to lead with WIN. In the title, anyhow. Had you fooled, didn’t I?

The Discerning Brute: Rape of Africa in “A Bid to Save the Earth.”

So this is…interesting. In honor of Earth Day, Christie’s hosted an auction to benefit several environmental organizations. One of the art pieces – David LaChapelle’s “Rape of Africa” – is unsettling, to say the least. Click on over to the Discerning Brute to view the image (which is totally NSFW as it depicts, among other things, Naomi Campbell’s bare breast). Joshua Katcher’s interpretation of the photograph is worth a read as well, particularly as he links the exploitation of farmed animals to that of human women, to wit:

[S]itting beside Naomi Campbell are farm animals, which suggest the failure of programs like Oxfam and Heifer International as well as making the statement that, like domesticated farm animals, Naomi is a chattel.

WIN or FAIL? Well, I dig the piece, though it’s not exactly something I’d hang over the fireplace, if you know what I mean.

Catholic Vote - Earth Day 2010

Her Authority: Women’s Bodies Are… Pieces of Land?

In this Earth Day-themed ad, the anti-choice group CatholicVote.org links women (particularly mothers, o givers of life!) with the natural world by superimposing an image of the earth over the womb of a heavily pregnant woman. A cute (read: white, blond-haired, appropriately feminine, etc.) little girl rests her head against her mother’s belly; index finger pressed to her lips, she seems to be saying, “Shhh! My little sister is trying to sleep in there!”

With this imagery, CatholicVote.org is romanticizing two “homes,” if you will: that of the developing fetus (baby!), i.e., a womb which belongs to an adult human female; and planet earth, i.e., home to all of humanity (and a trillion other creatures, as well). Women are not individual beings with their own thoughts and desires, but rather pieces of land. And what do we humans do with land, the earth, and the natural world, class? That’s right – we conquer and dominate them! Nice.

Which makes the romanticization of each – women/mothers and the earth/nature – all that much more distasteful and disingenuous. Throw me on the bottom of the shitpile and tell me that I live on a pedestal, why don’t you?

(More below the fold…)

PETA Doubles Down On the Misogyny

Tuesday, April 20th, 2010

PETA (Canadian Bacon)

Woman and pig: PETA says that neither of us is meat.
So kindly stop treating us ladies that way, mkay PETA?
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Okay, in all truth, the following ranks fairly low on the Misogo-meter, particularly where PETA’s concerned. But – catchy title, etc. Surely you understand.

Anyhow, in reporting on the reaction to KFC’s newest “culinary” creation – the Double Down, i.e., a couple of slabs each of bacon and cheese, crammed between two pieces of fried chicken(s), and slathered in “The Colonel’s Sauce” – in the Twitterverse, PETA singled out two celebritweets.

First up, Asher Roth, who writes: “Well, at least were making strides towards food quality and portion control – bravo colonel”

All fine and good, yes? Nothing jaw-droppingly witty, but Asher Roth (um, who?) seems to capture the popular consensus re: a “sandwich” made entirely of animal products and containing a reported 32 grams of fat and 1380 mg of sodium. Namely: yuck! and wtf!.

Next, PETA offers up a screenshot of Bow Wow’s KFC themed tweet: “I don’t know what’s more hideous, a girl with a hard fake booty with dimples in it or KFC’s new doubled down chicken sandwich.”

Hyperbole aside (e.g., clearly an unattractive ass is not nearly as hideous as are the corpses of several animals, lathered in the secretions of many others, all cobbled together to form a gluttonous, heart attack-inducing foodstuff), I hope I don’t need 140 characters to explain to you what’s wrong with this quip. Mocking a woman’s physical appearance? Not cool. (48, bitches! 68 if you factor in a bit.ly link!)

(More below the fold…)

Intersectionality ‘Round the Interwebs, No. 15: BEEF!, Bitches & "Bruised Feelings"

Tuesday, January 26th, 2010

BEEF! For Men With Taste

vegansaurus!: BEEF!: nicht für Frauen–unless your Mann gives it to you

In which “beef” has its own magazine (and it’s a gentleman’s magazine, natch!): BEEF! for Men with Taste. Luckily, vegansaurus is all over that shit.

Ida @ L.O.V.E.: Political Correctness, Political Expediency, and Veganism and

Royce @ Vegans of Color: notes on “Veganism Overly Defined”

Ida (taking a break from The Vegan Ideal to guest post at L.O.V.E.) and Royce respond to a guest post at Vegan Soapbox (Veganism Overly Defined) in which the author dismisses an intersectional approach to veganism and animal advocacy as “attach[ing] favorite causes” and “baggage” to “Veganism.” Likewise, vegans who object to human-based “isms” “get so involved in the bruised feelings of some humans that the plight of voiceless animals becomes a marginalized issue.” Emphasis on “bruised feelings.”

Carol J. Adams: Remembering Mary Daly and

jenna @ L.O.V.E.: Feminism and Animals: What You Won’t Find in the 101

Mary Daly, a self-proclaimed “radical lesbian feminist,” recently passed away at the age of 81. While much has been written of Daly’s radfem theology, I didn’t realize that she was also an animal rights advocate and vegetarian until I read a memorial written for Daly by Carol Adams. Herself a former student of Daly’s, Adams’s obit is rather charming and provides a glimpse of what it must have been like to be a young adult attending college in the ’70s.

Unfortunately, Daly was also something of a transphobe, perhaps most famously referring to trans people as “Frankensteinian.” On this point, jenna’s post at L.O.V.E is well worth a read; in it, she illustrates why, as advocates for justice, compassion and respect, it is ill-advised and hypocritical for vegans to leave any marginalized group, human or non, behind. (Also click through the many links jenna provides to The Vegan Ideal, where the intersection of ecofeminism and transphobia is discussed in much greater detail. That is, if you haven’t yet; I’ve included many of these posts in past link roundups.)

(More below the fold…)

DawnWatch: KFC parent brand bids on PETA-owned property — NY Times 1/17/07

Wednesday, January 17th, 2007

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: DawnWatch – news [at] dawnwatch.com
Date: Jan 17, 2007 11:11 AM
Subject: DawnWatch: KFC parent brand bids on PETA-owned property — NY Times 1/17/07

There is an article, by Andrew Martin, in the Wednesday, January 17, New York Times, which has a fun basis but is packed with important information.

Headed, “Even Free, the Price Wasn’t Right,” (pg C4) it tells us that Yum Brands, which own KFC, hoped to buy a property in Norfolk Virginia and made a $1 million dollar offer. Yum didn’t know the property is owned by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.

We read,

“The animal rights group has been engaged in a campaign against KFC… The campaign, called Kentucky Fried Cruelty, has sought to force the chain to adopt more stringent animal welfare guidelines.”

The article tells us of PETA’s counter offer:

”PETA would be willing to give Yum this warehouse — free and clear — if KFC requires its chicken suppliers to adopt the recommendations made by members of its own animal Welfare Advisory Council on March 11, 2005. A copy of these recommendations is enclosed for your reference.”…

(More below the fold…)

UPC: Urge the United States Postal Service not to Endorse KFC’s Cruelty!

Thursday, November 2nd, 2006

Via United Poultry Concerns:

KFC has recently petitioned the United States Postal Service (USPS) to create a postage stamp commemorating Colonel Sanders. Since the Colonel’s legacy includes breeding and drugging chickens to grow so large that they suffer painful diseases and broken bones, slitting their throats while they’re still conscious and dropping them into tanks of scalding-hot water, please tell the USPS that to commemorate him is to endorse cruelty to animals – something Americans oppose.

Please fill out the USPS’ Customer Service Form to let Postmaster General John Potter know that you do not want to see a stamp commemorating cruel Colonel Sanders. […]

You can also call, write or fax the USPS:

The Honorable John E. Potter
CEO and Postmaster General
United States Postal Service
475 L’Enfant Plaza, SW
Washington, DC 20260

Phone: (800) 275-8777
Fax: (303) 574-9650

Additional talking points are available at KFC Cruelty.

FYI: When I wrote the USPS using the online feedback form, I was advised to address my complaint to the following department:

CITIZENS STAMP ADVISORY COMMITTEE
C/O STAMP DEVELOPMENT
US POSTAL SERVICE
475 L’ENFANT PLAZA SW RM 5670
WASHINGTON DC 20260-2437

No fax/phone number was included. (My cynical side says that this is an obvious attempt for the Postal Service to drum up extra business – why else require printed letters when digital ones would do?)

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Tagged:

Greenpeace: Not a Colonel of Truth

Tuesday, July 18th, 2006

KFC’s secret ingredient is crispy fried Amazon rainforest, and the company is serving it up by the bucket. KFC’s famous chickens are being fed soy grown on illegally cleared rainforest land, and are then sold in hundreds of restaurants throughout Europe.

Soy traders in the Amazon encourage farmers to cut down the rainforest and plant massive soy crops. The traders take the soy and ship it to Europe where it is fed to animals like chickens and pigs. The animals are then turned into fast food products.

The Amazon rainforest is not only one of the richest and most biologically diverse regions on the planet, it is also one of the most threatened. In order to protect this ancient treasure, this unsustainable development needs to stop immediately.

Take Action >> Tell KFC to put a lid on its destruction of the Amazon rainforest.