Fighting with the Sky

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.

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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?

Thoughts?

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.

Everyone make sure to check out the new group blog, Equality 101:

Equality 101 is a group blog for teachers. Here, we will post lessons, articles, and thoughts about diversity in K-12 and post-secondary education. Diversity can mean anything from tackling issues like racism, sexism, and classism in the classroom to inspiring diverse learners in any sense of the word.

this ain’t living’: Your Privilege: Check It

There’s an idea which some people have that if they name themselves “good allies” they are allowed to assess their own behaviour, and that they can even do so accurately because, you know, they are good allies. This is a fallacy. It’s a fallacy in part because even the very best allies mess up. Sometimes royally. Allies are like banks, then: You cannot rely upon them to regulate themselves. In part, it’s in their nature, in part, it’s because it’s really hard to self-regulate because you have no distance and perspective.

Bitch Blogs: Race Card: Chris Brown, Charlie Sheen, Race and Domestic Violence

So, is TMZ vilifying Brown in ways that it has failed to vilify Sheen? I’m inclined to agree with commenters who said that TMZ not only hasn’t vilified Sheen but has also tried to garner sympathy for him. After reporting that Sheen’s wife, Brooke Mueller, had accused Sheen of domestic violence on Christmas Day, the Web site first moved to discredit Mueller, reporting that she was legally intoxicated when police showed up to intervene. And the commenters above are correct when they say that there’s been underlying sympathy throughout reports about Sheen needing permission to visit Mueller in the hospital when she developed a high fever related to oral surgery.

Spare Candy: “Living Dolls” could generate big conversation

Author and writer Natasha Walter has a new book coming out (Feb. 4, I believe), called “Living Dolls: The Return of Sexism.” If you pay attention to UK newspapers, you know it’s already generating a number of columns and stories in the press.

Bitch Blogs: The Transcontinental Disability Choir: Pride & Prejudice & Ableism

Which makes it all the more unfortunate that clear notes of ableism were introduced into both of the monster mashups released in 2009. Ableism is not really necessary to the plot (original or new), and it certainly doesn’t add anything to the books. It pushes both books from being playful romps into being something different entirely as they subtly reinforce ableist social and cultural values.

FWD/Forward: Depictions of Disability That Make Us Happy

And I think it might be interesting to have a larger discussion about what makes a depiction of disability “good” by our standards, though I assume that people may have some differing views on this subject. Personally, I think of a well-rounded depiction of a character who happens to be disabled, with a characterization which is not necessarily centered around disability. Where the disability is integrated well into the identity of the character, and acknowledged, but the character is not the embodiment of the disability. I think of characters who avoid common disability tropes, such as the Angry Bitter Cripple or the Telegenic Sick Kid. I think of characters who are rich and complex and who are allowed to have emotions (which can even vary from day to day!). I think, also, of plots which manage to avoid disability-as-tragedy, miracle cures, Empowering Experience for Able People, and other dehumanizing tropes.

Womanist Musings: 7 Year Old Gets Hair Cut By Teacher As a Punishment

Even with all of these concerns, what is not being discussed is Cammon’s race. Black women exist with very little social power and as a result it is extremely easy to devalue a little Black girl. It is already a known fact that in the states in which spanking is legal, Black girls are subject to the most corporal discipline. This is not because Black girls are any more unruly than any other child but that they exist as a group with no social power. Race and gender combine to make them valueless socially from birth.

Feministing: New Moon and domestic violence

However, I was not prepared for the way the movie portrays physical relationship violence, particularly in Native communities. For all the talk of Edward’s abusiveness throughout feminist blogworld, I’ve seen much less written about domestic violence as it relates to the film’s competing love interest, Jacob Black — a 16-year-old Quileute boy who can turn into a werewolf.

fbomb: A Feminist Analysis of “Fifteen”

I love country music. I love it with a burning passion. And inside of my love for country music also comes a love for Taylor Swift. I like her because she is my age, her songs are extremely easy to play on the guitar so I feel like I have some musical talent, and I can relate to most of her songs. Her song Fifteen is now climbing the charts. This is a fine song, and some of the things in it were true in some degree to my life. When I was a sophomore at a new school, I just wanted to be wanted (“when all you wanted was to be wanted”) instead of feeling isolated and friend-less. However there are a few lines of this song I disagree with.

As much as I enjoy my Taylor Swift songs, this one really bothers me.  I’m contemplating a post of my own.

What’s the difference between a golf ball and an SUV?  Tiger Woods can drive a golf ball 300 yards.

Tiger Woods Learning CenterI 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.

I’m enjoying my first day off in about a week by vegging in front of the television.  Not that productive, but it’s pretty enjoyable.  I’ve recently started watching Torchwood and I am currently watching one where James Marsters (Spike from Buffy) is guest starring and it makes me really happy.  But I figured I should take a break from my vegging to do a link love post!  Don’t forget to leave links to what you have been writing/reading in the comments!

this ain’t livin’: On Feminism, and How to Make it Better

Feminism is a huge movement, but it’s not inclusive, and as a result, many people do not want to identify themselves with it because they are excluded by feminism, and they see no need to be a part of a movement which clearly does not want them. Women of colour, trans women, lower class women, disabled women, they are all theoretically candidates for membership in the feminist movement, but they find the movement so inaccessible that they don’t identify with it.

Because, really, why identify with a movement which is actively harming you?

Appetite for Equal Rights: Feminist Holiday Gift Guide

If you’re gift-giving this holiday season, here’s your Feminist Gift Guide to go by. Use it to find the perfect present for the feminist(s) in your life, or put what you like on your wishlist for you to enjoy.

There are some pretty great ideas in there…

Equal Writes: Dockers: making pants-wearing more misogynistic than ever before

Complacent about what? The fact that Men (and yes, I do mean He-Men) also enjoy some veggies with their steak? But no, apparently there are some questions that our “genderless society has no answer for” – like after seeing this ad, why anyone would wear Dockers.

This ad campaign is pretty disgusting.  I’m contemplating a post of my own on the matter.

Womanist Musings: Disliking Tiger Woods is not a Reason to Laugh at Domestic Violence

What I find disturbing about this so-called comedy is that it reduces domestic violence to something that is not serious, damaging and LIFE THREATENING. Clearly, statistically the victims of domestic violence are overwhelmingly women in heterosexual relationships but this does not mean that there are not male victims. In some situations men DO get beaten by their wives. Domestic violence is also a facet of same sex relationships. When we laugh and create images of a man being beaten, we are victim shaming and making it even more difficult for male victims to step forward and get the help and counselling that they desperately need.

Please watch the SNL clip in the post when you read this.  It is truly disturbing.

Small Strokes: On Body Image: Danine Spencer

I could write an entire post about how any one of these things have decimated my self-concept. Any such post would have to be written in past tense, though. Whenever I look in the mirror lately and I feel bad because my skin isn’t clear or my roots are showing, I am reminded that I am standing up, looking in the mirror, without assistance from anyone or anything.

Episode-6-The-Left-Hand-Promo-dollhouse-8722672-683-1024Dollhouse 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.