This series is most likely not long in my Netflix queue.

Thursday, March 31st, 2011

Oh Eureka, how you confuse me.

One episode, you have a woman taking back her ex-husband and accepting his son as her own – even though, seven years earlier, he divorced AND SUBSEQUENTLY CLONED HER when she refused to relocate to Eureka for his job and further told him that she didn’t want to have children. (What remains unsaid is that he probably had to create several clones before he found one sufficiently amenable to his desires. What became of the others, I wonder?*)

The next, we meet a genius scientist who habitually subverts her desires to those of her (supposedly) slightly-more-genius husband, all for the greater good – only to discover that she’s the true intellectual superior in the relationship; he’s merely been stealing her ideas all along! (And their marriage is most likely an ongoing kidnapping/rape situation, built on his theft of her short-term memories…using a device he stole from someone else, to boot.)

So which is it – are you feminist-friendly, or not?

* You can call it “over-analyzing”; I consider it “taking a story line to its logical conclusion.”

Rape-rape and Money-rape

Saturday, February 5th, 2011

@TheDailyShow‘s @kristenschaaled on rape-rape and money-rape: http://bit.ly/hwWTQG Trenchant as fuck. #dearjohn #prochoice #rape #taxes

Pass this one along the the libertarians and “small government” conservatives in your circle who equate money with bodily autonomy – and taxes with rape – mkay?

Direct link: Wednesday February 2, 2011 | Daily Show: Schaal – Rape Victim Abortion Funding | Kristen Schaal doesn’t think hard-earned tax dollars should go to women who have only been rape-ished.

the war on christmas: 2010 edition

Tuesday, December 21st, 2010

The Daily Show: Monday December 6, 2010
The Gretch Who Saved the War on Christmas
The holiday season wouldn’t feel the same without people going out of their way to be offended by nothing.
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(More below the fold…)

dolphin nom!

Saturday, December 18th, 2010

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: googly eyes make everything awesomer. Everything.*

* Which begs the obvious question: why didn’t I think to glue a googly eye on Ralphie’s sewn-up eye socket for our criFSMas card photo shoot? Ah well, there’s always next year.

your annual criFSMas update

Friday, December 17th, 2010

Even though I rarely blog here anymore – V for Vegan is my main space now – I’d planned on posting a few more FSMas tutorials in the days leading up to December 25th. Alas, exhaustion and burnout from veganmofo iv, coupled with the foolhardy decision to make many of my gifts by hand this year, have pretty much blown that plan out of the water. (Oh, the boiling, pasta-filled water. FSMas NOM!)

But seeing as I’ve already taken and uploaded a number of photos, it’d be a shame not to at least throw up a photo essay. So here’s a sampling of this year’s decorations. You can view the entire set on Flickr, along with those from years past. The dogs’ annual criFSMas humiliation is forthcoming – they deserve their own post, dontchathink?

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The “pirate altar” in our front window features a mix of relevant books, framed flying spaghetti monster photos, pirate accessories, pasta decor, gold tinsel and doubloons, and sparkly flying spaghetti monsters.
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A closer look at book collection #1, which consists of vegan/vegetarian/Italian cookbooks (including Cathe Olson’s Lick It!, which I snagged in a veganmofo contest) and – of course – a copy of The Gospel of the Flying Spaghetti Monster.
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(More below the fold…)

Kick. Ass.

Tuesday, April 20th, 2010

Yes, there are debates to be had about Hit Girl and Kick-Ass. There are always debates to be had about violence and vigilantes, and what they say about us. But I’d prefer the conversation also turn to why preteen girls don’t have a movie like Kick-Ass that they could see. Let’s ask why Kick-Ass was the only script option Ms. Moretz had if she wanted to play, in her own words, “an Angelina Jolie-type character. You know, like an action hero, woman empowerment, awesome, take-charge leading role.” By now, she should have had a lot more superhero and fantasy options to pick from. There are young adult genre books that center on something other than vampires. There are comic characters who are teenage girls. It’s ridiculous that they languish on the shelf while Spider-Man goes back to high school. Again. You might even ask why Millar thought no one could relate to a teenage girl, and insisted on centering the story around Dave and his girlfriend problems.

Elisabeth Rappe, The Geek Beat: Hit-Girl Hysteria

The Nostalgia Chick on The Smurfette Principle

Monday, March 1st, 2010

I will see you a life of quiet desperation,

Monday, February 15th, 2010

and raise you several millennia of gender-based oppression.

Ambushes for Justice (in your UTERUS!)

Monday, February 23rd, 2009

ZOMFG! Bill O’Reilly believes in a Constitutional right to privacy!

No, it’s true. Well, kinda sorta:
 

 
Apparently the Constitution only protects the rights of the rich, the white, the heterosexual, the cisgendered, the faithful and the non-pregnant – and only when they’re in complete agreement with all opinions O’Reilly, natch.

Well done, Jon, well done.

In which CNN lowers itself to TMZ’s level.

Saturday, February 21st, 2009

Yesterday, when reporting on the LAPD’s leaking of photos of a battered Rihanna to paparazzi site TMZ, CNN acted honorably and chose not to run the photo(s) in question.

KYRA PHILLIPS: It’s a chilling photo involving a story that’s getting tons of buzz and reflecting a growing crisis. But we’re not going to show it to you. And I’ll tell you why in just a moment. LA police are trying to find out who leaked a picture that apparently shows singer Rihanna bruised and battered after an alleged attack by her boyfriend, the singer Chris Brown. It showed up on a celebrity website and you can choose to see the photo at any time. We’re just choosing not to show it to you. And here’s why.

The face on that photo is one of millions of battered faces. Men and women, all races, all classes, all victims. We can’t show you all their faces, but we can push this story forward and try to help you heal the scars. Let’s get past the headlines and straight to the heart of domestic abuse. At the bottom of the screen we’re showing numbers for the National Domestic Violence Hotline where you can report abuse or get help. Also here to help, our guest, Sheryl Cates, CEO of the National Domestic Violence Hotline which has taken millions of calls. Good to see you, Cheryl.*

Oh, what a difference a day makes! Today, during the 1 o’clock hour,** CNN backtracked and aired the photo – while explaining that law enforcement policy usually precludes releasing the identities of (alleged) victims of domestic violence, let alone releasing photos of their injuries. They go on to speculate that the paparazzi must have bribed someone in the department in order to illegally obtain the photo(s)…as a photo of an obviously bruised Rihanna occupies the top 1/6th of their video screen!

No fucking shame.***

(More below the fold…)

SSDD

Tuesday, February 17th, 2009

During their one o’clock hour, CNN highlighted these top three “most popular” stories:

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From top to bottom, the screenshot reads

1. Islamic TV Founder Accused of Beheading;

2. Teen Girl Found Dead in Army Barracks; and

3. Chinese Mistress Contest Turns Tragic

Here we have three cases of violence against women; most, if not all, of which involve some degree of sexualized violence, as well.

Upping the ante, the ticker simultaneously reads “Slain actress found dark side of Hollywood dream.”

Sigh. Same shit, different day.

The only shocking aspect of CNN’s “most popular story” roll call is that Tony Harris was able to report on it without cracking a joke about sexual assault.

“Condoms, Rose. Condoms!”

Monday, February 16th, 2009

In honor of National Condom Week, Planned Parenthood put together a playlist of their favorite pro-condom videos on You Tube. As one is a Golden Girls skit (love those broads!), naturally I had to watch.

Which, of course, led to one click through after another.

(More below the fold…)

Buddy!

Tuesday, February 10th, 2009

Ever since Shadow passed away, my parents have been kinda-sorta looking for a new companion for Copper. Last night, mom emailed me a link to this listing on Petfinder:

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Buddy is a wonderful boy with lots of energy. He is house trained and has manners. He was given up because an elder couple could not handle his high energy. He is a small cream lab with the cutest ears that flop foreword. He is very smart and and eager to please. He would be best placed with a family with a fenced in yard. Once he has run around the yard for 20 minutes he comes in the house and lays about. He likes playing tag and pull the stuffed bear. He is inquisitive and friendly. Buddy has just completed obedience training and is wonderful and perfect. He gets 10 paws for personality 10 paws for training and 10 paws for placement. Boy in picture free with dog.

“Remind you of anyone?” mom asked.

Indeed.

(More below the fold…)

Hoping for a change in how our government views the sex class.

Saturday, January 24th, 2009

President Obama rescinded the Global Gag Rule yesterday. Wishes really do come true! Well, kinda sorta. Being the cynical bitch I am, Obama’s timing and statement threw up all kinds of red feminist flags for me.

As I said in Thursday’s Blog for Choice post, I had hoped – fervently – that Obama would repeal the Global Gag Rule that day. Instead, he chose to do so a day later. What’s one day, right? Practically speaking, not much. I don’t imagine that much money was distributed to international NGOs between Thursday the 22nd and Friday the 23rd, so most likely Obama’s slight delay didn’t have a negative impact on any family planning organizations. And yet.

Had he chosen to take action on the anti-abortion rule on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade – like the two administrations before him – he would have sent a strong message to anti- and pro-choicers alike: Women are humans, and I respect their right to privacy and bodily autonomy unequivocally – no matter how popular such a stance may or may not be. Period. The difference is one of symbolism – and symbolically, Obama seems reluctant to align himself too closely with the pro-choice side.

Of course, he also chose to repeal the rule on a Friday – the slowest of all news days. Consequently, I’ve seen little-to-no coverage of the Gag Rule on the cable news shows. Seriously, Sully Sullenberger has received more air time. The more cynical part of me (which is to say, 99%) can’t help but think that this was Obama’s plan all along.

Of his rescinding of the Global Gag Rule, Obama wrote:

It is clear that the provisions of the Mexico City Policy are unnecessarily broad and unwarranted under current law, and for the past eight years, they have undermined efforts to promote safe and effective voluntary family planning in developing countries. For these reasons, it is right for us to rescind this policy and restore critical efforts to protect and empower women and promote global economic development.

For too long, international family planning assistance has been used as a political wedge issue, the subject of a back and forth debate that has served only to divide us. I have no desire to continue this stale and fruitless debate.

It is time that we end the politicization of this issue. In the coming weeks, my Administration will initiate a fresh conversation on family planning, working to find areas of common ground to best meet the needs of women and families at home and around the world.

I have directed my staff to reach out to those on all sides of this issue to achieve the goal of reducing unintended pregnancies. They will also work to promote safe motherhood, reduce maternal and infant mortality rates and increase educational and economic opportunities for women and girls.

In addition, I look forward to working with Congress to restore U.S. financial support for the U.N. Population Fund. By resuming funding to UNFPA, the U.S. will be joining 180 other donor nations working collaboratively to reduce poverty, improve the health of women and children, prevent HIV/AIDS and provide family planning assistance to women in 154 countries.

(More below the fold…)

Blogging for Choice: A bitch’s wish list

Thursday, January 22nd, 2009

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Oh, yays! Today marks the 36th anniversary of Roe v. Wade – and it’s also the fourth annual Blog for Choice Day!

Over at easyVegan.info, I spent quite a bit of time examining reproductive rights as it relates to animal advocacy, but I fear I only scratched the surface. Volumes can be – have been! – written about the exploitation of women’s and non-human animals’ sexuality separately; methinks we’d need an entire encyclopedia set to fully examine the parallels and intersections between the two together.

For example, I didn’t even touch upon Nestle’s exploitation of new mothers in impoverished nations by convincing them that unaffordable, dairy-based formula is better for their babies than mother’s milk; dairy-based formula, of course, necessarily involves the exploitation of female cows.

Anyhow, this year’s topic is “What is your top pro-choice hope for President Obama and/or the new Congress?” Easy, peasy as (vegan) pie!

I have so many hopes, that it’s hard to choose just one. If forced, I’d have to get vague: Be progressive in words and actions.

But that doesn’t make for a very interesting post, so instead I’ll name my most immediate pro-choice hope for Obama: Repeal the Global Gag Rule. While this is only one of many pro-choice hopes I have for the Obama administration, I would love for it to be the first he enacts – because in so doing, he’ll send a strong, clear, pro-choice message, not just to the nation, but to the world.

Also known as The Mexico City Policy, the Global Gag Rule is a policy which

requires non-governmental organizations to “agree as a condition of their receipt of [U.S.] federal funds” that they will “neither perform nor actively promote abortion as a method of family planning in other nations”. The policy has exceptions for abortions done in response to rape, incest, or life-threatening conditions.

Referrals to abortion providers – indeed, even broaching the subject of abortion – qualifies as “actively promot[ing] abortion.”

(More below the fold…)

::RAGE::, Redux

Sunday, January 11th, 2009

In audio clips posted on their website, Pastor Rick Warren’s Saddleback Church preaches that, for one Christian to divorce another Christian is a sin – even if one of the so-called Christians is physically abusing his (or her!) partner.

On whether women can divorce an abusive spouse (question #32):

I’d always rather choose a short-term pain and find God’s solution for long-term gain than try and find a short-term solution that’s going to involve long-term pain. … [In scripture] adultery is one [reason for divorce] and abandonment is a second. I wish there were a third in scripture. Having been involved as a pastor in situations of abuse there’s something in me that wishes there was a Bible verse that says if they abuse you in this and such kind of way then you have a right to leave them. … If you’re in this kind of situation I strongly recommend that you take advantage of our lay counseling ministers. Go in and talk to someone and let them minister to you. And the advice that we give is not divorce but separation.

On whether a woman has to stay in a “miserable” marriage (question #31):

The Bible answer is yes. Does God expect me to stay in a miserable marriage, and why would he do that to me? I often say to people when they’re facing this decision, really, you’re choosing your pain in this moment because it’s going to be painful either way. If you stay in your marriage there is the opportunity for reconciliation and for the loss of pain, but there is going to be short-term pain on the way there. … There is lifelong pain in divorce. … I wish there was a way to say there is a choice here where you’re not going to have pain but there is pain in relationships. Now, God understands that… He can be with us in our pain and he can comfort us, he can strengthen us, he can give us perspective. He can also give us wisdom. Does God expect me to live with this pain? No. I think he expects us to ask for wisdom to do the things that would cause the pain to begin to be solved. … The Bible says the husband is to sacrifice for his wife and the wife is to respect her husband and if that doesn’t happen you have the right to keep pushing for that.

According to Warren’s teachings, abused women have no right to divorce their abusers.

(More below the fold…)

Post-holiday blues

Sunday, January 4th, 2009

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It’s been a long week, especially for our cat Ozzy. He went to the vet on Monday with a blockage in his urinary tract, and returned home yesterday, with a gaping hole where his penis used to be. Well, not gaping so much as sewn almost completely shut. Quite frankly, I’m not sure how he manages to squeeze anything through it.

To add insult to injury, his entire backside is shaved, from his belly on down to his ass. He looks as though he just finished filming some kitty fetish porn.

On second thought, my week doesn’t seem so shitty after all. Relatively speaking. The little bugger had me worried, yo!

(And no, I’m not posting a photo of his bald tush. Shane won’t let me.)

The “show” must go on.

Sunday, January 4th, 2009

I could not make this shit up if I tried:

Intelligence officers created a voluminous file on Norfolk-based People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, calling the group a “security threat” because of concerns that members would disrupt the circus.

And:

The DC Anti-War Network, which opposes the Iraq war, was designated a white supremacist group, without explanation.

One of the possible “crimes” in the file police opened on Amnesty International, a world-renowned human rights group: “civil rights.” […]

The operation has been called a “waste of resources” by the current police superintendent and “undemocratic” by the governor.

Police have acknowledged that the monitoring, which took place during the administration of [Maryland’s] then-Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R), spiraled out of control, with an undercover trooper spending 14 months infiltrating peaceful protest groups. Troopers have said they inappropriately labeled 53 individuals as terrorists in their database, information that was shared with federal authorities. But the new documents reveal a far more expansive set of police targets and indicate that police did not close some files until late 2007.

The surveillance ended with no arrests and no evidence of violent sedition. Instead, troopers are preparing to purge files and say they are expecting lawsuits.

Which leads to the obvious question – if the state government expects to enter litigation with its own citizens, why on dog’s green earth are they “purging files,” i.e. evidence?

And also, who’s terrorizing who, again?

Step Inside My Noodle House (Take 1)

Tuesday, December 30th, 2008

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Last year, when I initially conceived of FSMas, one of the first diy craft ideas to pop into my head was that of building a Noodle House. (Think “gingerbread house,” but with uncooked pasta instead of cookies and icing…and not at all edible, natch.)

I finally found some time this month to experiment with my first noodle house. Even though it turned out to be a bit of a flop – I spent a good half hour yesterday dismantling what I’d made, so I could at least recycle the cardboard frame – I’m going to blog the process anyway, share what worked and what didn’t, and hopefully hammer out some new ideas for the 2009 holiday season.

OK, well, where to begin? I started with two smallish-medium square cardboard boxes. The larger box, the dimensions of which were slightly longer/wider than the length of a lasagna noodle, formed the base of the house. I taped the top and bottom closed so that all the surfaces were level.

(More below the fold…)

“Tolerating the intolerant” isn’t change I can believe in.*

Thursday, December 18th, 2008

Update, 12/21/08: Nina M., guest posting at Reclusive Leftist, has an excellent dissection of Obama’s “talking points” on the Warren issue. Go read now!

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Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve probably heard that Obama’s chosen the homobigoted, woman-hating pastor Rick Warren to give the Inaugural invocation. Setting aside the issue of whether an invocation, delivered at a government event, is even appropriate, it’s really shitty of Obama to choose Warren, friendship and shared ideologies aside.

As PFAW President Kathryn Kolbert noted,

Pastor Warren, while enjoying a reputation as a moderate based on his affable personality and his church’s engagement on issues like AIDS in Africa, has said that the real difference between James Dobson and himself is one of tone rather than substance. He has recently compared marriage by loving and committed same-sex couples to incest and pedophilia. He has repeated the Religious Right’s big lie that supporters of equality for gay Americans are out to silence pastors. He has called Christians who advance a social gospel Marxists. He is adamantly opposed to women having a legal right to choose an abortion.

I’m sure that Warren’s supporters will portray his selection as an appeal to unity by a president who is committed to reaching across traditional divides. Others may explain it as a response to Warren inviting then-Senator Obama to speak on AIDS and candidate Obama to appear at a forum, both at his church. But the sad truth is that this decision further elevates someone who has in recent weeks actively promoted legalized discrimination and denigrated the lives and relationships of millions of Americans.

The Obama camp’s “leaked talking points,” as reported in HuffPo, are, well, laughable:

At his press conference on Thursday, Barack Obama for the first time addressed the flurry of protest that has erupted over the choice of Rick Warren to give the inaugural invocation.

Stressing his own advocacy of equal rights for gay and lesbian Americans, the president-elect raised a relevant anecdote from his biography as a defense.

“Advocacy of equal rights for gay and lesbian Americans”? What the fuck is he smoking? A supporter of “civil unions” – for reasons that basically amount to religion and “tradition” – Obama is a-ok with allowing individual states to decide whether GLBT couples should be granted the same civil rights that heterosexual folks enjoy. How’s that advocating “equal rights for gay and lesbian Americans,” again?

A reader at HuffPo said it best:

I was very enthusiastic to have Obama as my president for the most part but I always had reservations about his commitment to GBLT issues and this is more than disappointing. I wonder if people would be saying, “it’s not that big of a deal, give him some slack” if someone of the ilk of David Duke or a virulent Holocaust deny-er was invited to give the invocation, you know, in the spirit of unity and to be open and inclusive. Why is it ok for a spokesperson of the anti-gay movement to be included and not recognized as a step too far into so-called post partisanship ? Why is Warren’s AIDS work supposed to mollify angry GBLT voters? Is AIDS still only erroneously considered a gay thing in America, so if you are doing work for that you are, by default working for the gay community? Why can’t even progressives understand what a stinging slap in the face to the GBLT community it is to have a vocal, active, and powerful homophobe given a platform no matter how large or small that platform may be?

Somehow, I doubt it.

* Bah, it isn’t even “change.”