Hate-y for Katie

Posted in diets, lady-hate on April 28th, 2011 by steph – 4 Comments

All the “zomg Kate Middleton’s too thin!!11!11!!!” panic that’s been building for months now has gotten on my nerves like you wont believe.  People who are not Kate or her doctor shouldn’t  get to have an opinion about that. But today- the day of her wedding- it has come to a head: “Health professionals are concerned Kate Middleton is at risk of not making it down the aisle on Friday.” Omg, did she diet her legs right off?? Nah, a bunch of jerks- I’m sorry, dieticians who don’t treat Kate and have never met her- are super worried she’s gotten so thin she won’t be able to walk down the aisle, presumably because she will collapse on the threshold of Westmisnter Abbey – either due to starvation-induced weakness or because she’s having a sobbing breakdown about how much she wants a pie.  All I can say to that is: fuck right off. The teevee news last night told me lots of people are making royal wedding-related bets, so in that vein I will make one myself: I bet that Kate won’t fail to make it down the aisle due to her “brideorexia” or “waify” thinness (Waify Katie, geddit?!). I think I’m going to bet a million pounds (it’s a Brit wedding, so I’m choosing to bet in pounds) that she will make it down the aisle.

Obviously, the issue of women starving themselves as wedding prep is a a real issue, and the article does touch on it, but couching concern about that issue in concern for Kate -based on pure speculation, really- is not ok.

“What girls these days are wearing”

Posted in New Zealand on April 27th, 2011 by steph – Comments Off on “What girls these days are wearing”

So much nasty judgemental shit in the comments here. I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised; an opinion piece about what girls are wearing “these days” is bound to bring out the haters. But the variety in the name-calling surprised me: slappers, sluts, hookers, skanky little street whores, girls with no class, easy targets for sexual predators, easy girls.  It makes me very glad that my own Mum encouraged teenage me to buy a mini skirt that I liked the look of rather than telling me I would look like a prostitute in it- possibly because she was never so shortsighted as to have forgotten her own sartorial past and the “whorey” and revealing stuff she wore: terry-towelling micro shorts, anyone?

Fruit and veg

Posted in New Zealand on April 26th, 2011 by steph – Comments Off on Fruit and veg

I have obviously completed my transformation into  a full-blown  cynical jerk: my first response to this piece about Claire Gourley trying to make cooking more appealing and accessible to teenagers was to zero in on this part

“Cooking is a dying skill,” Gourley says. “A lot of people don’t realise how food affects them. But two out of three children in New Zealand don’t eat enough fruit and vegetables. That might be fine now, but what about when they’re older? More people die in New Zealand each year as a result of illnesses caused by bad food choices than are killed in car accidents. That’s just terrible.”

(emphasis mine)

and to bitterly think to myself that perhaps there is more than lack of skills that is contributing to kids not getting their veggies. Not that cooking isn’t a potential issue, but I think that rising food prices and poor food security is a more significant part of why people (kids/teens in this case) aren’t eating fruit and vegetables.

I’ve got no issue with someone trying to address a skill gap, but if a family can’t afford produce to cook and eat then having the skills seems almost irrelevant.

/cynical rant over.

Awesomeness in real life

Posted in research on April 18th, 2011 by steph – 2 Comments

I just found out that a friend is doing a (public) poster presentation (and taking questions) this Wednesday on the topic of her Master’s thesis: the title of the presentation is “Why Do Some Men Rape?: An Investigation into the Root Causes of Sexual and Gender-Based Violence in Wartime”. My very bad-ass friend had a placement at an NGO in East Timor last year and I was very excited and interested when I heard about her thesis subject. I’m looking forward to hearing about her work.

The Stroppery

Posted in blogs, Feminism, New Zealand on April 17th, 2011 by steph – 3 Comments

New blog alert! Some of my favourite feminist bloggers  have started up a sweet new blog, The Stroppery.

All I have to say is: I want to go to there.

Now is the time to start panicking, people

Posted in LOLZ, New Zealand on March 30th, 2011 by steph – 8 Comments

This whole column by Garth George is worth a read, but the bit that made me laugh the most was this

Just to show how really upside-down our society has become, the Colmar-Brunton poll of nearly 500 folk in their 20s showed that while females are busy focusing on their careers, it seems the young men they work alongside are dreaming about becoming fathers.


Good gracious me. The grass is blue, the sky is green, and some women don’t even know how to cook a roast chicken any more! Fetch me my fainting couch.

Please Sir, May We Have Some More Rights?

Posted in Abortion, doin' it wrong, New Zealand on March 22nd, 2011 by steph – 19 Comments

QoT hit it out of the park once again in an excellent post about abortion law reform over at The Standard (also published on her own blog here). But how great a point she made is irrelevant; her shrill, angry, demanding, enraged tone and style has completely ruined any chances of anyone wanting to side with her or give her what she’s asking for. Like a child who demands their parent buy them an ice cream, she’s blown it by not asking nicely.


Or, at least that’s what the commentariat over at The Standard have led me to believe. Yeah, they brought the tone argument with them, and liberally sprayed it about. Swearing is so crude, anger gets you nowhere, maybe if you weren’t so confrontational you might get what you want, and so on.


This is such a classic bullshit derail trotted out every time a feminist displays even a tiny bit of displeasure or anger. Don’t blow your chance honey, you’re only hurting yourself and your cause. Women getting angry? Not on my watch.


Personally, I think the anger and passion and outrage is what best motivates me, so I can’t see those things as anything other than valuable. When something is outrageous and unacceptable, I will get angry about it and refuse to soften my point because other people don’t want to hear about how something is making me angry.


And too many of the comments on QoT’s post on The Standard made me angry. Shit is wrong in the world, and in our society, and I refuse to grovel on my hands and knees, cap in hand, politely asking (but not asking for to much in case I seem demanding, or too often lest it be seen as begging) for just a few more rights please sir. No fucking way. I don’t care if my anger or my confrontational style is perceived as unacceptable: dancing around the issues isn’t going to get anything done, and ‘nice-ing” myself down to appease others is an insult to all the people before me who let their outrage feed their power and motivate their actions.


But if you do want to listen to those helpful people telling you that your anger is hurting the cause and alienating people from it, and you want to know the proper polite way to ask, Boganette has got you covered.

“The Skanks”

Posted in New Zealand on March 10th, 2011 by steph – 8 Comments

Could this man have said the word “skanks” any more times in his comment about prostitutes in Christchurch??

For the last 20 years the deal was that the skanks stayed in the area over Bealey Ave. We kind of accepted it. But now the skanks are hanging out here, they cross up and down the street and people are really nervous about them and the traffic and people they are attracting. “Yes, it’s legal, but it still doesn’t make it right or acceptable near the homes of decent people. If you have one skank, other skanks will come. It just escalates. Where do you draw the line?”


“If you have one skank, the other skanks will come”. I’m sure they have some kind of skank homing sense, and their skank-y senses tingle, and when one shows up the others will flock there too.


The hard fight

Posted in rape, rape culture on March 10th, 2011 by steph – 4 Comments

I spent too much time this morning trying to convince a (female) “friend” on Facebook that her statement that

No woman asks to be raped, but behaving like a slutty cock tease in skimpy clothes and dating a psyco isnt exactly the smartest idea.

is actually not ok. And it’s not right.  And actually, what really isn’t the smartest idea is being a big, shameless rape apologist who thinks those stupid, slutty teases should’ve known better.

With the aid of Blue Milk’s exception piece, “Don’t Get Raped”, I tried to explain that rapes don’t only happen to women who wear miniskirts and date “bad” guys.  This escalated into pointlessness of the “but women rape men too!”, “maybe the rapists were abused as children!” and  “how easy is it for a women to go to court these days and accuse any man of rape because she is a psyco and wants revenge?” (direct quote) variety. After I mentioned the fact that the rates of false reports of rape are around about the same as false reports of other crimes, she veered wildly off-topic into asking people to discuss the “psyco” women they knew, and did anyone know a “psyco woman”? Oh, and I did I mention that apparently if you’re with a man who hits you that you have options and you either leave of stick around for another bash? I had no idea it was so simple.

And after that, I was exhausted. Tired from how hard I was trying to convince someone that if anyone is victimized by a rapist- a criminal!- that the blame lies squarely with the person who committed the crime, period. Tired of fighting for myself and my right not to be blamed should anything happen to me, and tired of essentially trying to tell her that if some scumbag should ever victimize her that she didn’t ask for it and it wouldn’t be her fault. I shouldn’t have to fight someone so hard to convince them of something that is beneficial to them (unlike their current belief, which would be detrimental to them should they ever be a victim). I shouldn’t have to tell someone that domestic abuse- which may one day affect them- isn’t as black and white as “leave or stick around for more”, and that abusers often try to create a situation where you have nowhere to go or are scared the abuser will hurt your family, and so you stay.

I am so, so tired of fighting this fight. I shouldn’t even be fighting this fight at all- none of us should be. This shouldn’t even be happening; it should be a given that the victim isn’t to blame for the crime committed by the criminal.

And even more draining is knowing that I can’t get through to this woman, and she’ll continue on in life believing what she does and perpetuating her harmful beliefs to other people.  Maybe one of her Facebook friends saw that status about how slutty cock teases should’ve known better (and thus should’ve know tjheir behaviour would have led to rape) and will feel like shit and blame themself for what happened to them. This is the nature of rape apologia: it hurts people.

I hope that one day all this fighting makes things better, and we don’t have to fight this fight anymore.

Just the missionary position

Posted in O RLY? on February 12th, 2011 by steph – 10 Comments

If you were raped, and part of that rape involved the rapist holding you down with his body, guess what? That’s just the missionary position, silly.

(This is not me making a definitive call on whether or not Assange is a rapist, but rather commenting on the idea that it’s fairly common for people to try to redefine the experiences of victims – for example, street harrassment is “just a compliment”- and that there’s something to be said about  “he held me down with his body” being refuted by saying “that’s a normal sexual position” as if the woman wouldn’t know what was an okay sexual position experience and what was force that she wasn’t consenting to)