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Song of the Watermelon: On the Benevolence of Slippery Slopes: Women Taking the Lead

I had the pleasure last week of attending a public talk called “Women’s Voices: What Difference Do They Make?” featuring Canada’s first and only female prime minister, Kim Campbell.

Appearing at Vancouver’s Harbour Centre campus of Simon Fraser University, the former PM sat down with Shari Graydon of Informed Opinions to discuss women’s participation in government, business, and the media. She spoke with ease and humour about her time in politics, relating such anecdotes as the aura of stunned silence which prevailed when, having recently been promoted to cabinet, she disrupted the old boys’ atmosphere by launching into a (Read more…)

A Puff of Absurdity: It’ll Be Fast: On Yes Means Yes

Globe and Mail.

I was struck by the report of an intimate exchange between a man and woman in today’s Globe & Mail; the woman later questioned how consensual the act really was.  She said, “Please stop,” and he responded, “It’ll be fast.”  Later she says “yes,” then later again “no.”

But that “fast” line struck me because of when else it’s typically said.  We don’t offer the cushion that an event will be over quickly unless we’re well aware that it’s not an event that’s desirable.  I might say it when my child’s about to get a (Read more…)

Dead Wild Roses: Protecting the Public Trust? – Intersectional Analysis of Police Behaviour

Two very interesting articles about police conduct came out this week, particularly interesting if you juxtapose them.

Ferguson and the cult of compliance

In cases that seem very different, separated by factors such as age, race, gender, sexuality, geography, class and ability, police explain away their actions by citing noncompliance. They do it because it works. They do it because according to their beliefs, any sign of noncompliance is an invitation to strike.

First, we have to recognize the common denominators in many of these incidents: that people who die at the hands of the police don’t obey commands and (Read more…)

Progressive Proselytizing: Peter MacKay’s wife doesn’t help his – or our – cause

The latest flap over sexist comments from Justice Minister Peter Mackay came about when a Mother’s and Father’s Day emails from Peter Mackay to his staff were leaked to the media. The comparison isn’t pretty: put side to side it makes it seems like mothers should be applauded for doing housework like changing diapers and making dinners while fathers are praised for moulding, guiding and influencing their children. Sigh.

That the comparison is clearly sexist shouldn’t exactly be controversial to most readers of this blog, but the blame game is a little less straight forward. Let’s get a few things (Read more…)

THE CANADIAN PROGRESSIVE: Peter MacKay Said Moms Change Diapers, Dads Form Leaders

In messages sent to employees of the Justice Department this spring, Peter MacKay associated women with household duties, men with “shaping the minds and futures of the next generation of leaders.”

The post Peter MacKay Said Moms Change Diapers, Dads Form Leaders appeared first on THE CANADIAN PROGRESSIVE.

Dead Wild Roses: The Feminist Battle against Male Entitlement and Rape Culture

An excerpt from The Feminist Battle After the Isla Vista Massacre by Rebecca Solnit:

“Six years ago, when I sat down and wrote the essay “Men Explain Things to Me,” here’s what surprised me: though I began with a ridiculous example of being patronized by a man, I ended with rapes and murders. We tend to treat violence and the abuse of power as though they fit into airtight categories: harassment, intimidation, threat, battery, rape, murder. But I realize now that what I was saying is: it’s a slippery slope. That’s why we need to address that slope, rather than (Read more…)

The Canadian Progressive: Lindsey Stocker: “Teach boys that girls are not sexual objects”

by: Obert Madondo

Lindsey Stocker protest poster: “Instead of shaming girls for their bodies, teach boys that girls are not sexual objects” PHOTO: TWITTER

Canada has a serious women-hating problem. One that’s directly responsible for our perennial scourge of sexual violence against women. And to headlines like these:

One in five Canadians think women encourage sexual assault when drunk

Canada blocking UN efforts to address sexual violence against women

Last week , a 15-year-old girl from Quebec, was send away from her high school for refusing to ditch her jean shorts.

Lindsey Stocker, a grade 11 student at Beaconsfield High (Read more…)

. . . → Read More: The Canadian Progressive: Lindsey Stocker: “Teach boys that girls are not sexual objects”

The Canadian Progressive: New study reveals best and worst cities to be a woman in Canada

by: Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives | Press Release | April 23, 2014

OTTAWA—A new study released today by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) reveals the best and worst cities to be a woman in Canada. According to the study, Québec City is the best city to be a woman and Edmonton is the worst.

The study, by Kate McInturff, a Senior Researcher at the CCPA, ranks Canada’s 20 largest metropolitan areas based on a comparison of how men and women are faring in five areas: economic security, leadership, health, personal security, and education.

“Canada has made great (Read more…)

Christy's Houseful of Chaos » politics: “If you Give a Gay Mouse a Cookie” by Art for a Democractic Society

I bought the book “If you Give a Gay Mouse a Cookie” by Art for a Democratic Society because a facebook friend recommended it, and I have to admit, I’m disappointed. I recognize the spirit of the book. I recognize that they are trying to rebut the crazy “gay marriage will lead to bestiality and people forcing you to marry them” nonsense by saying no, gay marriage will lead to good things, and as expected they followed the pattern established by Laura Numeroff where one (good) thing leads to another.

What I didn’t expect was that the book would erase (Read more…)

Melissa Fong: Things I realize after getting many hater-comments & trolls: On #Intersectionality, #oppression & other stuff

Things I realize after getting many hater-comments and trolls: 1) The world is not ready for Critical Race Theory or talking about the process of “Whiteness” and “racialization”. I thought […]

The Scott Ross: From Five Female Premiers To Just Two

The Parti Quebecois loss tonight shows just how hard it is for women politicians to actually have a chance in government. Pauline Marois will be the 3rd female Premier gone this year, leaving only two; Christy Clark in BC and Kathleen Wynn in Ontario.Why Marois’s loss tonight is bad for women is not because of her exit but because of her entrance. And that is she was doomed from the start.Successful political parties have a habit in Canada of not selecting women leaders, in fact it’s only when those parties are in desperation do they resort (Read more…)

. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: From Five Female Premiers To Just Two

knitnut.net: Gender Failure: Highly readable, highly recommended

I got an advance copy of Gender Failure, by Ivan E. Coyote and Rae Spoon. It’s not quite available in the stores yet, but it’s coming soon and I urge you to get yourself a copy. It’s an extraordinary book.

I loved the show Gender Failure so I knew before reading it that I’d love the book. The book is just like the show except it’s got a bunch of extra goodies.

Ivan and Rae take turns telling stories about their experiences of being trans throughout their lives. Some of the stories were illuminating, like “How to Be Gay When (Read more…)

The Scott Ross: From Canada’s Five Female Premiers To Three

At the start of this year Canada had five female Premiers, but now because of a few old white men the country only has three.

Alberta’s Alison Redford joins Newfoundland’s Kathy Dunderdale on the list of female Premiers forced out not because voters rejected them, but because their respective caucuses did. Caucuses who coincidentally happen to be mostly made up of old white men.

Last year when Ontario’s Kathleen Wynn became Canada’s fifth sitting female first minister, many observers marveled at the gender equality among our province’s top offices. With Dunderdale, Redford and BC’s Christy Clark winning strong popular mandates (Read more…)

Alberta Diary: Women hit by Redford Government’s pension cuts entitled to ask: ‘What are we? Chopped liver?’

Finance Minister Doug Horner and Alberta Premier Alison Redford attempt to skate around opposition to their planned cuts to public service pensions. Points have not yet been awarded for the maneuver. Actual Alberta politicians may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: The real Mr. Horner as he slipped past media and uninvited union leaders at Government House in Edmonton yesterday.

Finance Minister Doug Horner attempted to skate gracefully around Alberta’s furious public employees with some clever PR tactics yesterday when he publicly dictated the pension cuts he says they’re going to have to take, like ’em or not.

The results (Read more…)

Melissa Fong: ‘Women Get Paid Exactly What They’re Worth’: Fox New wants women to accept pickle juice

Equal pay is not special treatment, it is correcting for the inequalities born out of patriarchy.

Christy's Houseful of Chaos politics » Christy's Houseful of Chaos: reminders why feminism is still relevant

It has been one of those weeks where I think about feminism lots. And basically as a married, white woman living a rather isolated life as a homeschool mother and social activist, I’m pretty protected from a lot of the problems women face in the world. So I can forget about feminism for lengths of time, while I homeschool my children and go about daily life. But then little things remind me more, why I need to make reading and improving my feminist analysis a bigger part of my life.

I think about how we women are supposed to feel (Read more…)

Bill Longstaff: Should women run the world?

Scientists at at the University of Pennsylvania have once again confirmed what we have always known intuitively. Men’s and women’s brains are wired differently.

Maps of neural circuitry from one of the largest studies of brain wiring showed that connections in women’s brains tended to be stronger across the left and right hemispheres, whereas in men’s brains they were stronger across the front

A Puff of Absurdity: On Designer Vaginas and Media Influence

Labiaplasty is on the rise.  Who knew?

There’s an article in the Guardian in which Daisy Buchanan argues that we can’t blame porn for this rush towards plastic surgery to pretty-up our lady bits because it’s everywhere; in mainstream music videos we can see about as much as porn shows.

I’m not sure what bands Buchanan follows, but I haven’t see much in the way of actual labias in my regular, mainstream video-watching, nor in any of the movies I watch – and I watch a lot of movies.  Even Miley Cyrus doesn’t actually show her junk.  So, if (Read more…)

A Puff of Absurdity: Munk Debates: Are Men Obsolete?

While I was waiting for the newest Munk Debate to show up on the site, I watched an old one.  An excellent debate between Tony Blair and Christopher Hitchens on, of course, religion.  There’s little I enjoy more than watching really intelligent thinkers go at each other with carefully and thoughtfully chosen words.  The debate was run with opening statements, a series of 3-minute rebuttals, then closing statements.   They understood and followed the rules, and they remained focused on the topic without a single barb directly at anything said outside of that arena.

So it was interesting to watch (Read more…)

Melissa Fong: I have a confession: I am a Feminist

I have a confession: I am a Feminist. I honestly don’t know what happened or when it happened. All I know is that for the time that I’ve been actively blogging under my own name (I have blogged for a long time under a pen name on other sites) I have written a LOT of …

Melissa Fong: Let me hate my body if I want to

“Or maybe me loving my body is about you. And how you feel about how I feel about my body. If I tell you that “I love my body. I love my freckles. I even love my sagging ass because it’s on my body.” You’ll pat me on the back and tell me that I’m getting it. And I’m not making anyone uncomfortable by complaining about how much I dislike being held up to fucked up beauty standards and how it fucks with my head.” -Elyse from Skepchick

A Puff of Absurdity: On Strength and Contempt: Skyler and Sinead

the infamous album

I want to start with the admission that the first DVD I ever got was Sinead O’Connor’s I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got.  It’s attached to some fond personal memories.  I was wakened in bed by my partner with the DVD in hand as an “anytime present,” then went downstairs to find an actual DVD player all set up!  We modified the words of her hit single to, “Nothing compares to bears” – our pet name for one another.  Such was the syrupy nature of our young love.  But it was nice.  And I’m (Read more…)

The Scott Ross: Christy Clark Loses & So Does Gender Equality

Christy Clark had as much chance of winning BC’s election today as Canadian politics has gender equality, and that’s close to zero.

With six female premiers, soon to be five, Canada looks like a pretty equitable place, but just as with Christy Clark’s chances on election day, looks can be deceiving.

For instance, on the face of it, British Columbia looks like a province of better gender representation, Christy Clark wasn’t its first female premier after all, Rita Johnston received that honour back in 1991. But considering the similarities between Johnston and Clark, what is clear is not gender equality, (Read more…)

Art Threat: Little girls are better at designing superheroes than you are

“Little girls are better at designing superhoroes than you are” is a part-time project of California based artist Alexandria Law.

Of the project she says: “Kids are more impressionable than you, but kids can also be less restricted by cultural gender norms than you. Kids are more creative than you, and they’re better at making superheroes than you. This is a mini art project where I draw superheroes based on the costumes worn by little girls.”

It’s practically tragic that there are so few opportunities to play with gender norms the way we did as kids, when we didn’t (Read more…)

Dead Wild Roses: DWR PSA – Helpful Gender Toy Chart

Filed under: Gender Issues Tagged: Gender, PSA, Toys for Girls and Boys