This Week in Misogyny: I Can’t Even

I just can’t with some of these stories this week. The Cleveland abduction is feminism’s fault? Beyoncé puts girls at risk of becoming sex slaves? Women have to work an extra 12 years to earn the same amount as men? Seriously?? (Trigger warnings for pretty much everything apply.)

According to MRAs, feminism is to blame for the abduction of three women in Cleveland and the kidnapping somehow disproves the existence of the patriarchy. Really, bros? Really?

Dear Douchebags: If you’re going to post sexist drivel about how women have become immoral and don’t respect themselves anymore and shouldn’t wear skimpy clothes and all kinds of other crap, maybe you should realize that it’s just the teensiest bit hypocritical to include extremely large pictures of scantily women. Also, go fuck yourself.

Beyoncé is apparently not a role model because she wears outfits onstage that “can be found in brothels, strip clubs, and red light districts” and that somehow contributes to sex trafficking? I don’t even know.

The officer in charge of the Air Force’s sexual assault prevention program was arrested this week on sexual battery charges. He has been removed from the position, but one wonders how the fuck he got the job in the first place.

A vendor at last weekend’s NRA convention that sells life-size target dummies has a female version called “The Ex” that bleeds when shot. There are pictures of it at the link and they’re awful, so tread carefully.

Why the tips on the Ending Rape twitter feed are completely full of shit and put the burden solely on women not to get raped.

The U.S. is the most dangerous industrialized nation for newborns, with about 11,300 American babies dying on the same day they were born. Overall, we rank a pretty dismal 69th place globally. Many of the babies could be saved if the mothers had better access to prenatal care.

British retailer Boots has agreed to stop labeling toys by gender after an uproar arose because all of the products from the Science Museum brand were put in the boys’ section.

School dress codes are generally much more restrictive for girls than boys, and in many cases turn into slut-shaming. As someone who was removed from class in 6th grade because her skirt was ¼” too short and was thereby unacceptable and distracting, I wholeheartedly agree that they can be completely ridiculous and unfair.

Abercrombie & Fitch’s CEO says that his stores won’t carry women’s clothing above a size 10 because he only wants “cool” people to be seen in his brand. I say he can go fuck himself.

Meanwhile, some fashion lines don’t even bother trying to hide their sexism, but consumer backlash means a lot of the T-shirts with offensive “jokes” eventually get pulled from shelves. Next step: stop them from getting there in the first place.

Holly Baxter at The Guardian talks about sexism in science journalism, especially when it comes to reporting on evolutionary psychology (which is a field that has an unfortunate tendency to try to justify sexism and traditional gender roles in the name of “science”).

Another great piece from Emily Bell at The Guardian dissects why Jill Abramson from the New York Times is analyzed differently than men at the same level. “When was the last time the approachability of a male editor made for copy?”

More on how readers expect female characters to be more likeable than male characters.

On Hollywood’s tendency to cast women to play the mothers of actors who are only a few years younger than them, because god forbid they actually hire older women.

The gender wage gap means that over the course of an average 40-year career, women earn $443,360 less than men and would have to work an extra 12 years to break even.

Are feminist bloggers guilty of “groupthink” because we largely agree on many issues? Martha Gill thinks so, and also thinks we all write with the same voice. Nope.

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[E] Hillary

Hillary is a giant nerd and former Mathlete. She once read large swaths of "Why Evolution is True" and a geology book aloud to her infant daughter, in the hopes of a) instilling a love of science in her from a very young age and b) boring her to sleep. After escaping the wilds of Waco, Texas and spending the next decade in NYC, she currently lives in upstate New York, where she misses being able to get decent pizza and Chinese takeout delivered to her house. She lost on Jeopardy.

9 thoughts on “This Week in Misogyny: I Can’t Even”

  1. With every story about Hollywood my dream of becoming a kick ass film person who will cast old people for older characters and will use actors who ARE of the same age for same age love interests instead of giving the 40 year old male the 20 something female and pretend they can be married for 10 years get stronger.

    I wanted to read the MRA shit stain but I don’t want to give them another hit so I’ll just think of something vile and probably get remarkably close.

  2. The Hollywood article immediately made me think back to Alexander when they cast Angelina Jolie as Colin Farrell’s mother even though Jolie is only SIX years older than him, AND they were rumored to be dating at the time. I hadn’t realized just how close in age female characters are to their sons on television and film. My clueless ass always thought, “Oh wow, she looks young for her age.” Duh. And it also reminded me of a critique Jeffrey Dean Morgan made about the casting choices of Supernatural. He plays the father of Jensen Ackles (35) and Jared Padalecki (30). JDM is 47! And I remember him basically calling the CW stupid because “I’d have to have had Jensen when I was 10 for it to make sense that I’m his father.” Obviously it happens more with mom/son casting but still. Hollywood. Skewing reality since I dunno when.

    1. There’s this light-hearted page called Shut The Front Door and the mod posted how she and her son’s car was vandalized and how grateful she was that they were nowhere near when it happened. I’m talking broken windows, smashed headlights, the works. And some asshole posted that “you can prevent being attacked by not putting yourself in a position to be a victim..” and I immediately scrolled away from the impending victim-blaming how-to before my rage could amplify.

  3. I think the Gaurdian piece went off the rails here, “I find that you often have far more productive discussions—and address many of the same issues in a deeper way—when you stop letting gender be a necessary focal point.”

    She starts the article by addressing the real issue of sexist perception. But then just drifts to talking about how literary characters shouldn’t be judged on whether or not you’d want to have drinks with them. I think it’s two separate articles at that point. Closely related, but still.

    And the way people bitch about characters like Katniss Evedeen should be proof enough that people judge female characters more harshly. Katniss became irritating to read by book three, but that’s because she suffered major traumas. And the author has said she wanted to portray the psychological affects of war in a real way. And for however bad Katniss was, she was no where near as irritating as Harry Potter was in book 5. Yet, …who does everyone complain about?

    And of course you’re going to get more “productive discussions” when you don’t mention sexism. Any article pointing out sexism is bait for misogynists everywhere to come and scream as loud as they can that this stuff doesn’t exist.

    The groupthink article was obnoxious. I think this comment best sums it up,
    “So it’s not groupthink when a whole culture tends to blame the victim for being raped, but it is groupthink when a tiny subset of that culture says we shouldn’t do that. Gotcha.”

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