Bring it on, brosephs. (As usual, trigger warnings for pretty much everything apply.)
#GamerGate is officially fucking out of control. Anita Sarkeesian had to cancel a planned appearance at Utah State University’s Center for Women and Gender after someone threatened to carry out a mass shooting if she was allowed to speak, and police said that the state’s open-carry laws meant they couldn’t stop people from bringing guns to the event. So basically, someone threatened to commit a terrorist act on US soil because they didn’t want video games to get criticized, but because it involves guns, we can’t take any actions to stop it other than to give in and cancel the event. Or pretty much, THIS:
1999: gamers demand we stop blaming school shootings on videogames. 2014: gamers threaten a school shooting because videogames.
— Squinky™ (@TheSquink) October 15, 2014
Indie game developer Brianna Wu was also forced out of her home after her personal data were released and at least one Twitter user started threatening to come to her house to kill her and her hypothetical children. All because one of her fans made a meme out of six of her tweets that mocked Gamergate, which 8chan turned into dozens of pages of memes attacking her. At least the larger gaming community has started to condemn Gamergate; most recently, ESA put out a statement that “There is no place in the video game community — or our society — for personal attacks and threats.” Most people outside the gaming community just seem to be shaking their heads in confusion, because why do we have to point out that even if video game journalism is a hotbed of corruption, that still doesn’t mean you get to threaten to kill people? And before anyone tries to claim that most of them really are just concerned about journalistic integrity (Not ALL GamerGaters!!), stop.
For the second time in as many months, a judge ruled that taking upskirt photos is totally ok; in this case because the victims in question were sitting on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial and “did not have a reasonable expectation of privacy in such a public place and […] had positioned themselves in ways that made their intimate areas visible to any other passerby.” So, if you sit down and don’t realize your skirt’s riding up or if you flash someone while shifting positions, you have no right to not be photographed by passing perverts.
A U.S. Marine is being charged with murder following the death of a transwoman in the Philippines. Private First Class Joseph Scott Pemberton reportedly met Jennifer Laude at a nightclub and checked into a hotel with her, where she was later found dead. (And it’s pretty fucked that every news source I saw referred to her as “a transgender” instead of “transwoman” or even “transgender person;” at least this one got her name right instead of using her dead name and calling Jennifer an “alias.”)
ISIS announced that they’re enslaving Yazidi women and children because they are “pagans” and not to do so would be apostasy.
Kesha is suing her producer, Dr. Luke, for repeatedly drugging and raping her over the last ten years. And of course, assholes are all over Twitter saying she’s just making it up for attention or some shit.
SCOTUS did something right for a change and overrode the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, putting a temporary injunction on the TRAP law in Texas. This means 13 of the abortion clinics that were just forced to close down will be able to reopen for now. (RH Reality Check has an excellent gifsplanation of all the ups and downs of whether the law could be enforced or not, since this shit is getting confusing.)
Following the legalization of same-sex marriage in Virginia last week, Gov. Terry McAuliffe also legalized adoption for same-sex couples.
Terrible People of the Week
- John Grisham, who’s really upset that “sixty-year-old white men” are going to jail for looking at child porn because there’s totally a difference between watching 16-year-old girls have sex when you’re drunk and looking at 10-year-old boys.
- Jeff Bell, who says he’s getting creamed by Cory Booker in the NJ Senate race because of single women, especially single moms, because they can’t get by without all the benefits Democrats promise them. (Pssh, it’s because Booker is an actual unicorn, and bitches love unicorns.)
- Greg Abbott, for making the bizarre leap in logic necessary to say that we shouldn’t allow same-sex marriage because it would lead to more single moms. Mmmmkay.
- Rep. Louie Gohmert, who said that CDC director Tom Frieden “is apparently the commander of the Democrats’ new war on women nurses” because of the two nurses who contracted Ebola in Dallas.
- Rep. Steve Vaillancourt, for saying that Democratic congresswoman Annie Kuster “is as ugly as sin” and that she’ll probably lose reelection because her opponent is “one of the mot [sic] attractive women on the political scene anywhere.”
- Defense attorney Evangeline Gomez, who said on Fox News that women who choose to wear short skirts don’t deserve legal protection from upskirt photos because they chose to put their privates on display.
- Mike Huckabee, who is freaking out that Republicans aren’t fighting all the courts that have overturned same-sex marriage bans.
- The South Carolina prosecutors who are arguing that the state’s Stand Your Ground law doesn’t apply to domestic violence victims who kill their abusers in self-defense.
- The Tennessee judge who added six years to Lacey Weld’s prison sentence because she used drugs while pregnant and putting her child in danger, even though she was convicted for manufacturing meth, not using it.
- Televangelist Ernest Angley, who forced his parishioners to get vasectomies and abortions, allegedly because he felt that children take people’s time and money away from the church. He was also accused of sexually abusing boys, though he said he only looked at their genitals instead of touching them and he’s totally not gay.
- Judy Finnigan, for saying that Ched Evans should be allowed to play football again once he’s released from prison, because the 19-year-old who he raped was drunk and he wasn’t violent, so it’s totally ok, right?
- Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, who told women at a Women in Tech event that they shouldn’t ask for raises, but just trust that “the system will give [them] the right raise.” Because that’s worked so well so far!
- The “Male Allies Plenary Panel” at the Grace Hopper Celebration, which was pretty much a clusterfuck of mansplaining. Ladies just need to work hard and speak up! There’s no systemic discrimination against women in tech that would make that difficult!
- Sam Harris, who decided to play oppression Olympics and tell feminists that we need to focus more on (supposed) oppression in the Muslim world and less on silly things like reproductive justice.
- The Iowa police officers who deployed spike strips and forced a couple to the ground and held them at gunpoint because they were speeding on the way to the hospital because she was in active labor.
- The Family Dollar manager who told a Louisiana mom that she wasn’t allowed to have a stroller in the store, so she needed to either carry both her infant daughter and disabled 3-year-old son or take him back out to the car to wait for her. On a 95° day, which is hot enough to kill a child left in a car.
- The asshole HuffPo UK commenters who called a mommy blogger a “child abuser” because her 2-year-old son likes Sofia the First and she wrote a post about how and when to talk about feminism and other social issues with him.
- “Your 40 Year-Old, Male, Single, 5’10”, Fit, Bald, Caucasian, Hazel-Eyed, Overeducated, Nice Dressing, Wine- and Food-Obsessed, West Loop-living Secret Admirer,” who just wants Chicago’s single women to smile!
Oof. The National Women’s Law Center is launching a new campaign to raise awareness of the gender wage gap and launched their fundraising efforts with a satiric video of Sarah Silverman saying she’s going to have a sex change so she can be paid like a man… except that’s hella fucked up, because transgender people face tons of discrimination in the workplace, and that’s not funny.
People seem divided over whether it’s awesome that Facebook and Apple will start providing coverage for female employees who want to freeze their eggs (because any expansion of reproductive health rights is a good thing, even if it’s still a tiny group of women who are affected), if it’s kinda scary (because women who don’t want to wait to have kids may feel pressured to put their career first, and because it doesn’t solve the problem of women leaving tech when they have kids due to lack of support for working moms). I kinda feel like it’s a nice gesture (assuming any of their employees even want to freeze their eggs; they may not actually have to shell out a single penny for this policy), but they’re probably doing it for the PR as much as than anything else.
No, Houston’s openly lesbian mayor, Annise Parker, is not waging some sort of war against religion. Fuck, people are paranoid.
BAMFs of the Week
- The “Butterflies” of Buenaventura, Columbia, who just won the Nansen Refugee Award for their support of abused women.
- 12-year-old McKenna Peterson, who called out Dick’s Sporting Goods for not featuring any women in their basketball catalog (aside from one reference to women’s shoes and some cheerleaders on the coupons).
- Agatha Tan, for calling out her school for hosting a sex ed workshop with absurdly sexist content from Focus on the Family. Truth bombs all over! And the best part is, it worked; the Singapore Education Ministry announced that they’ll stop offering that class by the end of the year.
- Sophie Houser and Andy Gonzales, the New York teens who created Tampon Run, a video game that points out how absurd it is that we’re totally ok with first-person shooters but embarrassed about anything to do with menstruation. You get to throw tampons at people!!
- In a poll of 2,000 fathers, 56% admitted that they sometimes pretend to sleep through their babies’ cries so they won’t have to get up and deal with them. Some say the kids want their mom anyway, so why bother, while other excuses ranged from having to get up for work in the morning to just being too tired. Because moms are never fucking tired either and totally don’t need a full night’s sleep to get through their days, whether at work or with the kid(s).
- When it comes to medical professionals whose jobs require scheduling around the clock, male doctors unsurprisingly have the easiest time arranging their hours however they like without having to worry about taking care of their kids, while Certified Nursing Assistants who are largely WoC and/or single moms and only earn an average of $21,000 per year have little control over when they work and don’t have many options to care for their families.
AfterPill is a new generic emergency contraception that’s only sold online, so its manufacturer can sell it for only $20 plus $5 shipping, which is half the price of EC at drugstores. Of course, you’ll need to have it on hand in case of emergencies, since shipping can take longer than the effective range of when you should take EC to effectively prevent pregnancy, and they don’t take insurance, but it’s discrete and doesn’t require asking a pharmacist for the medication, which can be daunting.
- Here’s your reminder that Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker sucks, especially when it comes to issues that affect women and PoC.
- Roxane Gay on celebrity feminism as a gateway, not the end-all be-all of feminism.
- Lachrista Greco of Guerilla Feminism talks about rape culture on college campuses.
- It’s bad enough to condemn parents in general for choosing to formula feed their babies, but when the mother had breast cancer and physically has no milk-producing tissue left and you still give her shit? You fail at life.
- Laurie Abraham talks about the rhetoric of “good” abortions vs. “bad” abortions and why that’s bullshit.
- Ezra Klein talks about how California’s affirmative consent law goes too far, but that makes it exactly what we need.
- This is from a few months ago, but still excellent: Zara Bennett talks about how being Muslim has made her a better feminist and how Western feminists need to understand that in most cases, wearing a headscarf is a personal choice that has more to do with controlling one’s own body than about letting men control it.
- Catherine Buni and Soraya Chemali on how social media sites are breeding grounds for misogyny, but rarely take it seriously.
- Cosmo editor Joanna Coles talks to NPR about how she’s taking the magazine in a more feminist direction.
- Why schools should focus more on male aggression than female clothing choices (and why they should define what it means when boys are “distracted” by girls, because either the boys are behaving inappropriately, which needs to stop no matter what the girls are wearing, or the school administrators are using “distraction” as a smokescreen to get away with slut-shaming girls).
- The money the NFL raises via Pinktober merchandise doesn’t actually go to breast cancer research, but to “awareness” and screenings that have been proven to not increase survival rates.
- Amanda Hess on the thorny issue of male feminist allies.
- Pajiba has a lovely list of terrifying celebrity feminists.
- Don’t get too excited about the promised Wonder Woman movie yet; after all, DC is making it and their track record isn’t the best.
- Sarcastic fashion advice for women who don’t want creeps to take upskirt photos of them.
- Bye Felipe, the new Instagram account that collects the hostile reactions of men who get rejected on dating sites.