This Week in Misogyny

This Week in Misogyny is Going for the Gold

So many people have medalled in Misogyny this week! I’m not giving them medals, though. More like epic stink-face. (As usual, trigger warnings for pretty much everything apply.)

After a pregnant immigrant was gang-raped in the Sudan, a video of the assault went viral, leading to her arrest for distributing pornography. While her assailants have also been arrested, all requests for bail have been denied or ignored despite the fact that she’s the victim and is close to giving birth.

Democrats really need to learn that it pretty much always backfires when they comment on how they would have voted if bills had been written differently. Especially if you’re Wendy Davis and you say that you’d have been ok with a 20-week abortion ban if only the life and health exemptions had been written just a teeny bit looser.

Wall Street Journal editor James Taranto went running his mouth and said that women who are raped while drunk are just as guilty as the men who raped them. NO, THAT IS NOT HOW IT WORKS.

A new study finds that many pharmacists are either uninformed about the legal age restrictions to purchase Plan B and other emergency contraception or are lying when callers posing as teen girls ask if they can buy it.

For fuck’s sake, President Obama is not having an affair with Beyoncé.

Michelle Obama wore a ballgown to a state dinner and people apparently freaked the fuck out about her wearing expensive clothes. What was she supposed to wear??

Hillary Clinton was also criticized for shopping at Bergdorf Goodman, and Page Six took it to mean that she’s running for president in 2016 instead of just, you know, a damn shopping trip.

Misogyny at the Olympics!

  • David Epstein discusses the physiological differences between male and female athletes, including the changes that transgender athletes experience as they start taking hormones to transition, and how women have been discriminated against because they shouldn’t have their accomplishments measured against men. In Amanda Hess’s response, she discusses how for women, “feminine” sports like figure skating and gymnastics are promoted more than more athletic ones like basketball and tennis (and how athletes in those sports basically have to be pretty to be popular, no matter how good they are).
  • Many Olympic events are severely scaled down for women, with shorter courses, lower jumps, and fewer iterations than men. Mostly based on outdated paternalistic ideas about “protecting” women’s frail bodies and ignoring the fact that women may actually be better suited for events like the ski jump (which wasn’t an Olympic sport for women until this year).
  • Salon covers the sexist comments aimed at the awesome ladies competing in Slopestyle snowboarding. I was watching when one of the announcers on NBC stated that “Torah [Bright] knows how to ride a snowboard better than a lot of guys I know, and these are guys that get paid to do it,” and nearly started screaming at the TV. (Also, amazing gif of Putin sorta-clapping for Yulia Lipnitskaya while the rest of us basically hyperventilated about how amazing she was.)
  • We should talk about figure skaters’ athleticism instead of coming up with silly narratives about Gracie Gold being a golden girl/princess and Ashley Wagner being an evil ice queen based largely on their looks.
  • More discussion of the archetypes female athletes are expected to fit into, and why the Russian skiers are posing in lingerie.
  • And let’s not ignore institutionalized homophobia in figure skating, where it’s pretty clear that male skaters are being pressured behind the scenes to refuse to discuss their sexuality.
  • And The Onion sums it all up quite nicely: “Lolo Jones Becomes First American To Be Objectified In Both Winter And Summer Events.”

Barbie is getting a spread in the upcoming Sports Illustrated Swimsuit edition. I don’t even know what to say.

Mockup cover of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit 2014 issue with Barbie on the cover
Promotional cover mockup released by Mattel. I can’t.

Please, I beg of you, don’t get your sex advice from the Duggars.

The unemployment numbers may look good on the surface, but they’re actually pretty terrible for women.

A new study looking at women in STEM fields has mostly depressing results.

Earlier this week, several feminist-friendly blogs including Skepchick, Feminist Frequency, and Freethought Blogs were the target of a DDoS attack. Sorry haters, they’re back!

A French short film called Oppressed Minority flips male and female roles to demonstrate how pervasive things like catcalling and slutshaming are, but why can’t people understand these very basic concepts unless we make men the victims?

After a same-sex couple appeared in an episode of Disney Channel’s Good Luck Charlie, the show’s star, Mia Talerico, received death threatsShe’s a fucking five-year-old.

Turns out your new-mom friends aren’t just posting about their babies. Facebook algorithms just tend to put more of those posts in your newsfeed because they get lots of likes and comments.

Speaking of Facebook, TIME came out with a really stupid app that looks at what age your married friends are to figure out when you need to get married in order to keep up with them. Good grief.

And one more, but some good news this time! You can now choose from over 50 different options to define your gender instead of just picking male/female, and can choose your pronouns as well (though just he/she/they).

Recommended Reading

And now for a quick Valentine’s Day rant! I am really sick of Valentine’s advice for men that says to ignore women if they say they don’t want anything, that they’ll be in Big Trouble if they don’t go all out against our wishes. Because why respect what women say? We don’t know what we want! But of course the flip side is that when women say that they do want their SO to do something special, we’re presented as high-maintenance princesses. We can’t fucking win.

By [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.

6 replies on “This Week in Misogyny is Going for the Gold”

Fitandfeminist had a great response to the SI cover:
“With all of the photoshopping in magazine photos these days, we’re almost not even looking at actual women anymore as much as we are looking at digital recreations of what a couple of photo editors think women should look like. Some have even gone as far as to replace the model’s actual bodies with computer-generated ones. I say, why not go all the way and replace all models with Barbies?….
And best of all, when you ask her to put on one of those teensy little bikinis that looks more like an eyepatch, you don’t have to worry about airbrushing out her labia because she hasn’t got them. And Barbie can frolic around on the beach with only her hair to cover her like a pointy plastic Venus, and you don’t have to do much in post-production because she has no nipples with which to offend.”

Also here’s an article tracing contemporary silencing of women back to the Romans:

Leave a Reply