This Week in Misogyny

This Week in Misogyny: You Won’t Believe What Happens Next Week!

There’s oh-so-much misogyny to cover this week, including a larger-than-usual dose of transphobia, lots of cool study findings, and several Twitter accounts you’re going to want to go follow right now. (As usual, trigger warnings for pretty much everything apply.)

I hereby challenge you to the Taco or Beer Challenge to raise money for abortion funds. Mmm, tacos.

I cannot tell you how much glee it gives me that “mansplaining” is now in the Oxford Dictionary. (Ok, just the online version, but I love it.)

Good news! The Department of Defense finally revised the military grooming policy that discriminated against Black women with natural hair.

Wendy Davis wants to extend the statute of limitations for prosecuting sexual assault cases in Texas.

A young woman in Ireland who became pregnant after being raped was forced to continue the pregnancy even though she petitioned for a mental health exception to the nation’s abortion ban as soon as she learned she was pregnant at about 8 weeks. Even though she was suicidal, the case dragged out for 17 weeks and then the abortion was denied on the basis that the fetus was viable. At that point she went on a hunger strike and the baby was delivered by C-section.

Another mom was arrested for letting her kids (aged 6-8) play in a park; she went to a food bank and it took longer than she thought it would.

Peru has issued new guidelines to encourage the enforcement of a 90-year-old law guaranteeing the right to a “therapeutic abortion,” though it still won’t be easy to go through the necessary review process to get approval for the procedure.

The NFL is considering new guidelines that would recommend four to six games suspensions for players accused of domestic violence, but that’s still not very long and it wouldn’t be mandatory as currently written.

Terrible people of the week!

  • Gavin McInnis, a Fox News regular, for writing a horribly transphobic article on Thought Catalog.
  • Michelle Duggar, for recording a transphobic robocall in response to an Arkansas bill that, among other anti-discrimination policies, would ensure that transgender people can use their preferred restroom. (Alyson has an excellent perspective on why this is fucked up.)
  • Officials at Thorne Middle School in New Jersey, who told a transgender teen that she could only attend if she used her birth name and dressed like a boy.
  • Congressional staffers who edited the Wikipedia page for Orange is the New Black to make disparaging transphobic comments about Laverne Cox and her character on the show, supposedly on the orders of an elected Representative.
  • “DEEPER_IN_DA_BUTT,”Grand Theft Auto V player who hacked the online game so he could rape other online players’ characters and force them to do strip teases.
  • Jon “War Machine” Koppenhaver, the cage fighter who made this list last week for beating his girlfriend in “self-defense,” because it came out that when he was blogging from prison in 2010 he wrote, “The oppression of MEN is worse than oppression of Jews in Nazi Germany, worse than the slavery of blacks in early America … I’m not exaggerating either.” Poor menz.
  • Iowa State Rep. Henry Rayhons, for allegedly having sex with his mentally incapacitated wife at the care center she was living in; he had been informed that she was no longer capable of consent. He was arrested on a third-degree sexual abuse charge.
  • Rep. Mike Coffman (R-CO), for getting so confused when asked about reproductive rights during a debate that he seemingly couldn’t remember what the Hobby Lobby decision was about. (His answer was so vague that his spokesperson had to clarify that he supports the decision, but also wants women to have access to birth control.)
  • The New York Times, for opening a profile about US District Court Judge Claudia Wilken with an anecdote about her involvement in her kids’ school and then seeming astounded that she could rule on a case involving the NCAA without even being a sports fan.
  • The Tea Party of Louisiana, for freaking out that Common Core has already turned kids gay and will continue to convert more kids to The Gay… based on a satirical article. Which they later tried to claim they totally knew was satire, but that its claims were worth thinking about anyway.
  • The male firefighters of Station One of the Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Department, whose response to a female firefighter’s complaint about porn in the fire station was to sexually harass her and make inappropriate comments about her teen daughter.
  • Marvel, for approving a Spider-Woman cover where her ass is sticking up in the air in a truly absurd fashion that defies the physics of how clothing works.
  • The angry gamer bros who are attacking Zoe Quinn for supposedly sleeping with a writer at Kotaku in exchange for a favorable review of her interactive novel, Depression Quest. Except that he never reviewed her site and even if he had, it wouldn’t make this a “feminist conspiracy” to bring down video game journalistic ethics.
  • Twitter, whose ban on sexual content in sponsored tweets includes mentioning contraceptives.
  • Google, for this search bullshit.

Endless side-eye at Doree Lewak, who maybe meant her article about loving cat-calls to be satire, but it wasn’t funny. At all.

High fives to Keli Byers for writing in Cosmo about how BYU’s honor code slut-shames women.

Panties Hats off to Daniel Radcliffe, for refusing to let his new film be named The Friend Zone because he doesn’t like the implications of the phrase. (And bless the Pajiba commenters for quickly shutting down a couple friend zone apologists who popped up.)

Three cheers for Star Trek writer David Mack’s defense of diversity in sci-fi.

Fist bumps to; they updated their moderation policy and will now remove all misogynistic comments on the site.

Awesome: The reproductive justice group formerly known as Fund Texas Women is changing its name to Fund Texas Choice so as to not exclude trans and genderqueer people who also need access to reproductive health care.

Study Break

  • A new study found that LGB* individuals who sought help from religious or spiritual sources were more likely to attempt suicide than those who spoke to mental health professionals or didn’t seek out any counseling at all. (*Trans individuals were not included in the study.) They also found that white people were more likely to seek out mental health care, while Black people were more likely to talk to religious advisors.
  • Lesbians were far more likely to report orgasming during sex (during 74.7% of encounters) than straight (61.6%) or bisexual (58%) women. While this study didn’t look into why, there are plenty of possible reasons.
  • When one mom (who has a PhD in linguistics) documented the number of times kids aged 3.5-6.5 interrupted each other over the course of 10 hours of playdates with different gender mixes, the boys were more likely to interrupt other kids in coed groups. For each extra boy that was present with just one girl, her interruptions grew less and less frequent. (This is admittedly not a rigorous scientific study, but the results are still pretty interesting.)
  • Ha! A study from the Entertainment Software Association found that women over the age of 18 are the largest group of video game users, accounting for 36% of gamers (which is more than double the percentage that are boys under the age of 18), though overall men have a narrow margin at 52%.
  • Bloody hell. A survey of women with engineering degrees found that only 62% are actually working in that field; many left because of sexism in the industry, and some who left to stay home with their kids did so because of a lack of support for maternity leave and flexible scheduling.
  • The pressure to breast-feed is exacerbating post-partum depression.

Chemistry undergrads at N.C. State University have created a nail polish that changes color if exposed to date rape drugs.

Recommended Reading

Mo'Ne Davis on the cover of Sports Illustrated

On a Lighter Note

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.

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