October 27, 2012

That's not misogyny Julia: this is misogyny

Now that Prime Minister Julia Gillard's moment in the viral sun has cooled, and Tony Abbott is inexplicably tarnished by demonstrably untruthful accusations, let's compare and contrast a woman who has suffered so little sexism, so little misogyny, so little social marginalization, that she became and continues to be Australia's first and only female Prime Minister - let's compare that, shall we, with a few other versions of modern day sexism and misogyny.
These pressures will inevitably lead to acts of rebellion. In the Semnan region of Iran a few weeks ago, a cleric was passing two women, and reportedly told one to cover her head better. The woman, punching him to the ground, told him to cover his eyes.

Western politicians can apologise for crooked policies and retreat into passivity for fear of committing new errors. Yet none will change the elemental facts. The notion of an Islamic democracy is merely another euphemism for turning women into lesser citizens, and it ought to be deemed as unjust and anti-democratic as America before the end of racial segregation. ''Terrorism'' is only one manifestation of the evil that the world hopes to root out from the region where part-time terrorists have always been full-time chauvinists.

The real enemy is misogyny. Malala Yousafzai is not just a teenager in Pakistan's Swat Valley but a victim of the greatest apartheid of our time, and a wounded warrior in feminism's newest front line.
Islamic world unleashes the demons of misogyny

Just as in Islamic countries, over in the United States of America, the Republican Party, aka the Grand Old Party (GOP) has, in the twenty first century, thrown off all pretense of modernity, equality, or respect for girls and women.

Out from behind the shelter shed, the men and women of the GOP are loud and proud in their determination to insult and degrade women, and to deny their interests and well-being.  Why let women be second-class citizens when they can be relegated to nothingness, hey?  And they are cheered on, with Mittens a serious threat of becoming the next POTUS.  All on the back of a frightening level of unapologetic sexism and misogyny.  
In Ohio, the state Treasurer, Josh Mandel, rejected a rape exception: ''I'll do everything I can to protect innocent life.''

In Michigan, congressman, Pete Hoekstra, was asked if a woman should have to bear her rapist's child. Already on record against a rape exception, he replied: ''I believe life is a gift.''
In North Dakota, a reporter asked the congressman, Rick Berg: ''You would not make an exception for rape?'' Mr Berg replied: ''No.''

The Senate numbers for Republicans are equally striking. Of the 28 non-incumbent nominees, 12 to 15 share the view of Mr Akin, Mr Mourdock and the party platform: a rape victim should not end her pregnancy.

This is no longer a fringe position. It isn't a couple of gaffes by renegade crackpots. It's the predominant view among Republican nominees for the nation's highest legislative body. It's what the Republican Party is.
Mainstream Republicans take hardline on rape and abortion (and loathing of women in general)

Borowitz, as always, hones in on the wonders of American culture and the wonders of the continued existence of the Republican Party.  (Scary reminder:  people do vote for the GOP, lots and lots of them.)
In one camp is the Indiana Senate candidate Richard Mourdock, who says that his view that God is sometimes O.K. with rape is “gaining real traction with a key demographic: men who don’t like women very much.”
"I can’t tell you how many misogynists have come up to me at my rallies and said, ‘Thank you for saying what you said,’ ” he told reporters today. “I think they’re like, finally, someone’s taking a more nuanced position on rape.”
 But in the other camp is the former New Hampshire governor John Sununu, who worries that the Republican Party’s emphasis on misogyny is threatening to drown out its “winning message of racism.”

“I understand the appeal of Mourdock’s anti-woman theme, but I worry that it’s going to overshadow our core value of racism, which is still our best shot at winning this thing,” he said. “In politics, you’ve got to dance with the one who brung you.”

Hoping to heal a possible rift with so little time left until Election Day, the R.N.C. chairman Reince Priebus said today that there is room for both views in today’s Republican Party: “Our ‘big tent’ message to voters should be this: come for the misogyny, stay for the racism.”
 GOP split over whether to emphasize misogyny or racism

With a dry, knowing wit, journalist and former news reader, Tracey Spicer, pokes misogyny in a way Gillard and her career-politician female ministers never can, because they don't know any of this, have not confronted it, have never slunk home having been subjected to it. 

Spicer, with her calm intelligence and deep experience, makes Gillard's confected rant at Abbott look deeply embarrassing.

As it turns out, wrinkles were the least of my worries. I'd gotten myself knocked up.

I wanted to go back to work when bubby was three months old but, once again, it took a man to show me the error of my ways.

''Women should be at home with their children,'' my news director said. ''Or the fabric of society will be rent asunder.

''Anyway Trace. You're getting a bit long in the tooth. Why don't you give some of the younger girls an opportunity?''

Suddenly, all the lights went on. And it was so bright - it made your light look like a limp insipid flicker.
This is difficult for me to put into words but if I had to, it would sound a bit like this: F--- you.

F--- you, you misogynist bully with your archaic beliefs, intellect of a pygmy, and tiny dick.

The reason I am writing this letter is to thank you.

Among others - too many to mention - you lit a fire in my belly that's become an inferno and these days, I don't cop shit from anyone. When I was sacked by email after the birth of my second baby, I fought the lot of them.

I do hope you receive this correspondence. I had trouble finding a forwarding address after you lost your house due to that unfortunate sexual harassment case.

(I'm sure the bitch was asking for it.)

Yours in emancipation
Tracy Spicer - And here's the news:  my bum's got nothing to do with the story

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