Posts Tagged ‘domestic violence’
I normally don’t participate in the Facebook trends, such as changing your status to your bra color to raise awareness about breast cancer research. I don’t see the connection or the point to it. But this newest trend really bothers me.
It has become popular to change your profile picture to a picture of your favorite cartoon from childhood in order to end child abuse. Why? What does this do? Yes, child abuse is horrible and it’s a big problem. But changing your profile picture is going to do absolutely nothing about it. I feel like a lot of people who do this just want to be cool and just want to be able to say, “yeah, I care about child abuse, look, I changed my profile picture.”
If you really care about ending child abuse, or any kind of abuse for that matter, there are more proactive things that you could do that could actually have an effect on someone’s life and work towards ending child abuse. Report any abuse that you see. Even if you think, “oh, it’s just a one time thing” or “it’s not my place to get involved.” This child’s life could be in danger and if you see the abuse and do nothing, you are letting it happen. Get involved at a local shelter. Many domestic violence shelters also offer children’s programming. You can volunteer with these programs and help children escape from the cycle of violence and begin to heal.
There are so many things that you could do that could actually work towards ending child abuse. Changing your profile picture on Facebook is going to do absolutely nothing. So I will not participate in this Facebook trend.
I don’t know how to feel about this song. I would normally have an aversion to it just because it’s Eminem. But is it trying to bring awareness to domestic violence or glorifying it? And what about the fact that Rihanna, who was part of a largely publicized domestic violence assault, is the featured artist? Or that Megan Fox donated her fee for appearing in the video to a domestic violence shelter?
As a purely personal side note, when I was really disappointed in my dear, lovely Charlie (Dominic Monaghan) when I first heard that he was appearing in an Eminem video, and that was before I even had heard the song. Dominic Monaghan and Megan Fox both actually did a good job in just acting the video, no matter what my conflicted thoughts on the subject matter are.
What’s the difference between a golf ball and an SUV? Tiger Woods can drive a golf ball 300 yards.
I was watching Live with Regis and Kelly the other morning (yes, I know, but it’s one of my guilty pleasures) and Bryant Gumbel was guest hosting in Regis’ spot. And, of course, they had to talk about Tiger Woods because that seems to be the topic of the week. Bryant Gumbel felt the need to express how bad he feels for Tiger Woods.
I mean, really? Ok, it sucks to have your personal issues dragged through the media, but that kind of comes with the territory. If you are as famous as Tiger Woods, you have to know that your personal issues will be the fascination of the public and if you screw up, everyone will find out.
I haven’t been following the story that closesly (frankly, Tiger Woods doesn’t really interest me that much), but last I heard, he had affairs with 6 to 9 women. And reports of domestic violence against him committed by Elin, his wife, were unconfirmed (I’ll get to this point in a moment). Forgive me, but I don’t really feel sorry for Tiger Woods for having his multiple, multiple affairs made public. He’s the one that cheated on his wife. He’s the one that cheated on his wife with many different women.
But one thing that is not ok about this whole situation is the jokes that people think it is ok to make about domestic violence (please also read the post from Renee at Womanist Musings on this topic). Domestic violence is funny when it happens to a man. Ha ha, a man got beat up by a woman. I can’t blame Elin for being upset; I would be pretty pissed if my hypothetical husband cheated on me, let along with 6 to 9 women. But being upset, no matter how upset, is not an excuse for domestic violence. Like I said, the last I heard, these reports of domestic violence were unconfirmed, just speculation based on some happenings. Even if the domestic violence didn’t happen, that does not mean that it is ok to joke about it.
But domestic violence doesn’t happen to men, so it’s ok to joke about I guess. Men aren’t victims of domestic violence, they just get beaten up by girls, which makes them less of a man, and therefore funny.
Dollhouse is back! Even with the sad news that Dollhouse has officially been cancelled, I was glad to see it return and I’m glad that they are letting them run out the episodes that they have left. Last night they aired two connected episodes, “The Public Eye” and “The Left Hand.” So much happened in these two hours that I am just going to do some quick bullets to recap some of the main points and then I’ll get into analysis. So this is what we found out in these two episodes:
- Senator Perrin (played by Alexis Denisof) is an Active/Doll and Rossum is using his fight to bring down the Dollhouse to their own advantage
- Madeline (aka November/Mellie) has turned against the Dollhouse and now wants to testify against them at the Senate hearing
- We get to see one of the other Dollhouses — the D.C. Dollhouse. Their chief programmer (Topher’s position in LA) is played by Summer Glau who knew Caroline before she became Echo and has a grudge against her. Bennett tries to kill her using Senator Perrin.
- Topher has to go to D.C. so he imprints Victor with himself to run things back in LA. Victor as Topher was hilarious.
- The Dollhouse must have gotten to Senator Perrin because he testified that Rossum was a good company and the Dollhouse didn’t exist.
- Echo escapes the Dollhouse. At the end of the episode she is out wandering around in “doll form,” as they say.
I really like that Dollhouse is back and I enjoyed seeing Alexis Denisof and Summer Glau (both Joss Whedon alums) play major roles in this episode, but I have to say, I’ve seen better. I really like episodes of Dollhouse that push on controversial issues and really make the viewer think, whether they want to or not. While there are always some controversial issues that are addressed in episodes of Dollhouse, this episode didn’t really stand out in any way for me.
The trials about Rossum and the Dollhouse always bring up the issues of consent and autonomy. But one of the main things that I got from these episodes were questioning what happens to the people the Dollhouse creates when they imprint an Active. When Echo and Senator Perrin realize that they are both Actives and go on the run, they start questioning who they are, who they were, and if they really want to go back to that. The both come to the conclusion that they want to stay the way that they are, that they don’t want to go back to their original personalities/selves.
When the Dollhouse imprints the Actives, they are creating new people who have lives and emotions. So when they wipe those imprints, are they essentially murdering those people? Is it ok that they murder these people since they created these people?
One thing that really stuck out to me as well was the random joke about domestic violence. When Senator Perrin’s handler (his wife to the public) brings him in, she discusses with Bennet (Summer Glau’s character) how they are going to explain (as in program) all the bruises on both of them to him. His handler makes the joke “he beats his wife.” Bennett doesn’t accept that and just brushes it off by saying he loves his wife. But why would the show even joke about that? Why even put that line in the show? I think it’s just an example of how not seriously domestic violence is taken in this country, and around the world.
I was really looking forward to Summer Glau’s guest spot on Dollhouse, but I was kind of disappointed with her character. She played a mentally unstable, super-smart programmer with a grudge. She did a great job at playing the character, I just think they could have come up with a better character for her. I was half expecting her to play a doll because of how well she’s played characters like River Tam in Firefly, but maybe that’s exactly why they didn’t make her an Active — because everyone was expecting her to be one.
My favorite part of this episode, though, was Victor imprinted with Topher’s personality. He did such a good job and getting all of Topher’s mannerism and his voice even sounded eerily similar. It was just hilarious to see Victor acting in that way when we are so used to seeing it in Topher. And then to have them interact with each other and recognize that they are the same person, it was really funny.
Even though I am sad that Dollhouse has been cancelled, I still can’t wait to see what Joss Whedon has up his sleeve for the last few episodes. I’m not sure exactly how many episodes there are left, but I’m really excited to see how Joss Whedon uses the storyline and how they are going to end things with the Dollhouse.
Based on the recommendations of others (particularly meloukhia), I have started watching Veronica Mars…and I love it! I am about halfway through the second season right now and I can’t wait to get the next discs from Netflix. There are of course some problematic things with the show (stereotypes, slut-shaming, etc…more later), I think that Veronica Mars is an overall feminist show.
Veronica Mars is a show about (surprise!) a teenager named Veronica Mars, played by Kristen Bell. Her dad is the ex-sheriff, now private detective in a town in Southern Califonia called Neptune. Veronica plays a large role in her dad’s private detective agency and all runs investigations through her school. Her best friend, Wallace, is usually her accomplice and she has a group of people who she turns to for information. She has run-ins with the now sheriff who pretends like he doesn’t want her help, but often takes the leads that she gives him.
The running investigation in the first season is that of the murder of her best friend, Lily, which is solved in the season finale. Lily was the daughter of a wealthy family whose son (and Lily’s brother) is Veronica’s ex-boyfriend (then boyfriend again in the second season). In the second season, the running investigation is that of a bus crash that killed 8 students. There appears to be an explosion in the bus that caused it to drive over a cliff. As I am not done with the second season yet, the investigation of the bus crash is not yet over.
So, why is this a feminist show? Veronica Mars is all about a girl taking her life into her own hands. She investigates everything from blackmail to murder to theft. She doesn’t care what people think about her and she’s not afraid to get in people’s faces.
Other than the fact that Veronica Mars is about a kick-ass woman, it tackles some really great issues. The show actually has a pretty good representation of the diversity of Southern California. Many other shows that take place in Southern California fall into the same old tv show model…an all-white cast. While a large amount of the cast of Veronica Mars is white, there are also a large amount of African American and Latino/a characters that are major players in the show. The show also tackles class issues. The high school that Veronica Mars attends is heavily populated by “09-ers” – the people who live in a certain zip code that are very wealthy. Veronica, on the other hand, is not wealthy and there is a big divide between the “09-ers” and people who don’t live in that zip code. Veronica has the uncanny ability to somewhat navigate between these two worlds. Her best friend Lily and her ex-boyfriend Duncan, as well as her other ex-boyfriend, Logan, are all “09-ers.” She kind of fit in with that world, at least with those people. But once she doesn’t associate with them anymore, she’s cast out of the “09-er” crowd. These situations really highlight class issues that happen in real life, and not just in high school. The show also handles issues of rape, exploring and developing one’s sexuality, and domestic violence.
For such a feminist show, though, there is a large amount of slut-shaming. Women who slept with their boyfriends, slept with people other than their boyfriends, or were even raped were shamed. Most of the shaming was done by high school boys — and even occassinally high school girls — but I didn’t really think that it was necessary. Not only was there slut-shaming for women who freely expressed their sexuality, there was slut-shaming for women who were raped and had not control over what was happening to them. Not cool.
There was some occassional problematic language and events, but the slut-shaming was the only ongoing, overall thing that I saw wrong with the show. What do others think? Is there something I’m missing? Or is Veronica Mars really the awesome, feminist show that I see it as?
Have you seen Lady Gaga’s new music video for “Paparazzi”? I have mixed feelings about Lady Gaga, but this music video is just a little too much.
The extended music video has the embedding disabled on youtube, so I wasn’t able to bring it here. But you can watch it here. There is a short excerpt of a different music video before “Paparazzi” starts.
I can’t always understand what she is saying when she is singing this song, but I can definitely see what the music video looks like. The music video seems to be glorifying domestic violence and violence against women.
The opening part of the music video features Lady Gaga with her boyfriend, played by Alexander Skarsgard (Eric on True Blood, swoon). He takes her out onto the balcony so the paparazzi can get pictures. When Lady Gaga resists, her boyfriend starts to hit her a little bit then pushes her over the edge of the balcony.
Lady Gaga is then rolled around in a wheelchair and has to use crutches to walk around (but being a music video, she doesn’t have to for long). Throughout the music video, there are pictures of dead models that flash across the screen. At the end of the music video, she poisons her boyfriend and calls the police. After being released from jail, the paparazzi love her again.
I think the song is about how the paparazzi have been killing her personal life (but I could be majorly wrong). I get that. But I don’t think that we need to glorify violence against women to get that message across. By depicting a horrifying case of domestic violence and then showing numerous dead women throughout the video, that’s pretty much uncalled for.
Her song and music video is not intended to promote violence against women and domestic violence (I hope) but with the position that Lady Gaga is in to be influential and what her music video is depicting, it kind of comes across that way. Depicting domestic violence and the dead models makes these things kind of sexy, which they completely are NOT! I just wish that Lady Gaga had a little more class and tact that this music video, but I guess she doesn’t.