Read This Now

by matttbastard

Over at Global Comment, Sarah Jaffe, in a devastatingly on-target critique, utterly eviscerates yesterday’s head-pattingly patronizing L.A. Times article/future-bird-cage-liner (where the credentials of Dr. Jill Biden were examined [and dismissed] in a manner that was maddeningly glib, highly gendered–and entirely sexist).

Jaffe’s point about the underlying (and intersecting) double standards at play is especially sharp:

I have to wonder, if we were discussing a male academic who taught at a prestigious Ivy League university, the reporter would feel the need to spend the entire piece debating whether he deserved the prefix “Dr.”

The article’s dismissive tone is symptomatic of the way the media treats women, particularly accomplished women in the public eye. Jill Biden has several advanced degrees, and yet chooses to teach in a community college, helping students who often cannot afford to attend school full-time. This is worthy of respect, not a quibble over whether she deserves the title as much as someone who stitches up wounds, treats skin conditions, or performs nose jobs.

Highly recommended reading–the whole damn thing, goddammit.

Go.

Update 02/04: The Women’s Media Center has reposted Jaffe’s article in its entirety.  Check it out, and show some love.

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Shorter Washington Post

by matttbastard

“Some people are worried that Obama’s cabinet may be too competent and overqualified.”

Yes, because the last thing anyone would want in Washington is people with expertise, ability and actual know-how (to say nothing of ACADEMIC COOTIES!!!1). Government should be more like contemporary Beltway journalism: all hat, no cattle. That way the inherent inadequacies of the Villagers are far less apparent.

Moo.

h/t Jay Rosen via tweet

Update: Rosen again:

I’m just saying… Obama’s team has no yet one from the Arabian Horse Association or Regent University or the Waco Rotary Club…could hurt.

Oh, snap!

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Silence of sex workers

by sassywho

Renegade Evolution may be uninvited to this debate:

On Monday, April 21st, at 5:30 pm, in the Andrews Building on the Campus of William and Mary College, there will be a debate focusing on…you guessed it, porn (and presumably other sex work related stuff).

On the Anti Side, we shall have John Foubert, who is a professor of education at the college who adamantly and publicly opposed the Sex Workers Art Show. He is a self-identified feminist, and he believes that viewing pornography increases male sexual violence against women. He also believes that the SWAS is pornography, and thus that having it on campus increases the likelihood of rape for women at this school. He’s also the founder of the national all-male sexual assault prevention group 1-in-4 (http://oneinfourusa.org/). Also on the anti side will be Samantha (Sam) Berg. She’s the creator of the web-site genderberg.com. She also seems to have coined the term “pornstitution,” and is a co-founder of the Antiporn Activist Network, and “has dedicated herself to educating people about the inherent harms of sexual capitalism.”

Apparently some prefer that sex workers know their place within a certain dogma, which excludes academic debate(?)

So, I seems I might be uninvited to the forum at William and Mary. Why? Because apparently, Sam Berg, who has been booked as a panelist longer than I and is traveling further than I, is uncomfortable with me being there. Apparently, once upon a time I said I wanted to push her in front of a truck.

Something radical feminists so often forget is that sex workers have voices that can neither be synthesized nor collected under their umbrella. Those voices do not need your permission, nor approval and there is something very wrong with your movement if you can’t recognize that.

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