Friday, March 26, 2010

Your Friday Awesome: Eff Gender Stereotypes

So much gender bending, effing with stereotypes, win:

"Ian (B.S., mathematics; future sociology graduate student) modeling a t-shirt bought for him by his girlfriend, who found it in the children’s section of the Goodwill in Glendale, CA.The t-shirt has been destroyed… for the sake of humanity… and little girls everywhere" - Sociological Images

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Quote of the Day - Choice and Healthcare

"Denying a woman her right to choose is sex discrimination: Burdening women with unplanned pregnancies leads to systemic economic, social and psychological gender inequalities."

Yeah, I never thought I'd link to DoubleX either, but that is concise and accurate.

Rebecca Feibish, Age 17 died 99 years ago today

99 years ago today, 146 women were burned or jumped to their deaths in the Triangle Shirtwaist Company Fire. Amber has a great account of the memorial in chalk across New York.

While I was in Austin, I saw an amazing performance of Slaughter City based on both The Jungle and the fire, as well as, modern meatpacking plants. If it is ever performed near you, go see it.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Your Friday Awesome: Nuns are Awesome

You know the stereotype of the Catholic nun with a ruler? While I'm sure they exist, I've never actually met one of those nuns. But, the nun who stood with my college's Women's Resource Center to say "rape is not about sex, it is about violence," - I met her. The nuns who turned their backs to the Pope (John Paul) because the of the Vatican's stance on condoms? Met those. So, while totally awesome, I wasn't too surprised when the Catholic Sisters came out in favor of healthcare reform. From a letter, they sent to every member of Congress:
We have witnessed firsthand the impact of our national health care crisis, particularly its impact on women, children and people who are poor. We see the toll on families who have delayed seeking care due to a lack of health insurance coverage or lack of funds with which to pay high deductibles and co-pays. We have counseled and prayed with men, women and children who have been denied health care coverage by insurance companies. We have witnessed early and avoidable deaths because of delayed medical treatment.

The health care bill that has been passed by the Senate and that will be voted on by the House will expand coverage to over 30 million uninsured Americans. While it is an imperfect measure, it is a crucial next step in realizing health care for all. It will invest in preventative care. It will bar insurers from denying coverage based on pre-existing conditions. It will make crucial investments in community health centers that largely serve poor women and children. And despite false claims to the contrary, the Senate bill will not provide taxpayer funding for elective abortions. It will uphold longstanding conscience protections and it will make historic new investments – $250 million – in support of pregnant women. This is the REAL pro-life stance, and we as Catholics are all for it.
Way to be awesome, sisters.

via, Shakesville.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Things I've Been Reading About

Constance McMillan wanted to wear a tux and take her girlfriend to her prom. The school said no, so the ACLU sent them a letter saying that was discriminatory. In response, the school canceled the prom for everyone. Constance and the ACLU will have none of that, so they are fighting back in federal court. Go Constance!

Johnny Weir has been deemed "not family friendly enough" for Stars on Ice. For a translation of that, and an argument about how idiotic it is, I'll refer to Bryan Safi:

Did you know that in the 70's the EPA supported a giant project to document environmental problems across the country? Yeah, me neither, but they are all online now, and just as powerful.

The Insight Center for Community Economic Development released their report on women of color and wealth. These are some seriously smart folks I had the honor of meeting, and the report is staggering. Latoya took a look at it and dissects just what it means that the median wealth for a woman of color in the US is $5. You read that right, $5.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Old Navy Supermodelquins a Comment on Higher Fashion?

When the "modelquin" campaign started I thought it was just a way to not have to pay human actors - and it was just kind of creepy. But, now I can't decide if the current Old Navy campaign is ridiculously clueless or awesomely self-aware.

A modeling competition that requires one to be "plastic" - look perfectly inhuman, devoid of any personality and ignoring biological necessities like blinking. Could it be a critique of the Make-Me-America's-Next-Top-Super-Model format that pretends modeling is about individual personality?

The ruse is loosing any shred of believability it had, and not just because Tyra seems a bit cuckoo now and again. ANTM's Mr. Jay's second job is as a fashion commentator for E! and that now means not only insulting celebrities (or more appropriately, their stylists) behind their backs with the Rivers, but shuttling them into the Glam Cam 360 to make sure we can really pick them apart.

Of course, we can't dissect your fashion if you are an actual living breathing person inside of it, so this year the entire Grammys pre-show consisted of Mr. Jay telling women to pose so as to best show off their dress - not themselves.

A prime example? When Paramore entered the camera the lead singer was stoked to be told they could face in what ever direction they wanted and, of course, to be "fierce," but oh no, Mr. Jay was sure to clarify that while the boys could jump around and have fun, it was her job to show off her outfit:

To quote: the camera works best "when the girls stand and actually rock the fashion and the guys have a lot of fun." Yep, fashion means no activity (and also only dresses, btw), but then again that is nothing new since its pretty damn hard to run and jump in a mini and stilettos.

And if we had any question about whether the fashion industry actually gives a crap about the women wearing the clothes, Paris fashion week recently included this:

Models as clothes hangers? You betcha. (Also, noted without comment: those pants are a 34" waist.)

Hell, maybe Margiela is making a commentary on the inanity of high fashion, too. But in this case, at least Old Navy's is a bit more fun. Afterall, when you lose the contest not only do you have to forfeit your dream of shilling cardigans for the masses, you must "hand in your stand" - the metal stick that is shoved up your butt.

What do you think? Commentary or just another example of fashion dehumanizing models?

Image from Jezebel.

"So, that means you love each other!"

In honor of DC legalizing marriage for all:

I have a very vivid memory of my small self sitting on the floor looking at my two aunts and thinking, "hmm, that is more than one aunt..." reconciling that fact with my parents' relationship, and then simply moving on to whatever I did next. Its really that simple.

Full transcript at Shakesville.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Your Friday Awesome: Rockin' Granny

Ruth Flowers decided the "little discos" her grandson had after his birthday party was full of energy and joy so...she became a DJ at age 69.
"I went along quite late and the gentlemen at the door said, 'I don't think you want to go in there, Madame'. And I said, 'Well I rather think I do'," she said.

"I had no idea at the time of electro music," she said.

However, as someone with interests ranging from history to theater and fashion, she was willing to learn.

"It's a little glammy, a bit over the top, but it fits the bill I think," she said of her outfits. "I mean, if I appeared in a cardigan, a sweater and brogue shoes it wouldn't be quite the same."
Oh and she has played Cannes. When the youngins came up to her, this was her response:
"They said, "you're awesome, we want to be like you'," she said. "I always say -- you don't want to be like me. You want to be you."
Note to self: Please make sure you are taking pictures like this and be this generally awesome when you are 69.

via Jezebel.


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