A man named Patrick Barrett didn’t like what his common law wife was getting up to. She was planning to have an abortion (except she wasn’t even pregnant). She was kicking him out. Whichever it was (or maybe it was both), he decided that the appropriate response was to go get a hammer and beat her with it. His rage still unassuaged, he went to get his Bible.–Oh yes, his Bible, because he’s a Christian. They even met in church.–But you know what goes good with the Bible? A knife. He tore a page from Jeremiah out of the book, put it on his wife’s chest and stabbed her with the knife. He then took her bank card, withdrew some cash, and went to his girlfriend’s.

“I was cursing God, ‘God f— you, you betrayed me.’ I begged you to give me someone to love, to be a good parent and a husband and this is what happens.”

Right. Cause it’s all God’s fault that you are such an evil asshole a nice guy but all the women are so unappreciative.

But hey, it’s all okay because he’s apologised and repents now.

Motion 312 is defeated

September 26, 2012

That’s the good news. Also good news? The vote wasn’t even close: 203 Nays to 91 Yeas, or 69% to 31%.

The bad news? 4 Liberal MPs–John McKay (Scarborough—Guildwood), Lawrence MacAulay (Cardigan), Kevin Lamoureux (Winnipeg North), and Jim Karygiannis (Scarborough—Agincourt)–voted in support of the motion.

More bad news? Rona Ambrose, the Minister for the Status of Women Chattel also voted to keep women barefoot and pregnant by force if necessary. I think she should resign out of shame. I also suggest that Canadians who care about women’s freedom might consider contributing to the campaigns of her opponents in the next election.

Not anti-abortion either

September 24, 2012

Libby Anne of Love, Joy, Feminism has a post highlighting a couple of comments about the reproductive rights debate (they’re good, go read them). In the comments thread, a sub-discussion is going on about the labels “pro-choice” and “pro-life”. Libby Anne makes the following observation:

Those who say they are pro-choice really are pro-choice, but those who say they are pro-life are not consistently so (they generally favor the death penalty and military intervention abroad). I think the term “anti-abortion” would be more accurate, since that is, quite simply, what they are.

Though she’s right that the term “pro-life” would be a sick joke if it weren’t so revoltingly inaccurate, I disagree with Libby Anne’s last statement here.  I wouldn’t say that the other side is anti-abortion. Because if they were, they’d do whatever was necessary to reduce the number of abortions: early and thorough sex education, free access to contraception and Plan B, encouragement of and funding for vasectomies for men who don’t want children or anymore children than they already have, free or at least subsidised child care up to the age of 6, and universal health insurance for (at least) pregnant women and new mothers as well as children up to the age of 18.

They are not pro-life. They are not anti-abortion. They are anti-choice. They are anti-women. They are, in effect, pro-slavery. They want to strip women of their rights to bodily autonomy, free will, security of person, privacy, religious freedom, and even life.

So, okay, I’ll play along for now. But don’t think I’m going to forget about your Let’s Lock Up More Poor Men in Prison bill.

My MP, Bev Oda, has done the only thing I think I’ve ever approved her doing. She’s restored funding to International Planned Parenthood (it’s not all good: for those who don’t recall, abortion is not one of the services that IPP is allowed to provide with the money–kinda like that old Bush ban). But even the whisper of a hint that women in Afghanistan or Sudan might be able to control their own reproduction with the help of Canadian aid money has Saskatchewan MP Brad Trost’s boxers all in a twist (there’s a video of an interview with him there, but I haven’t been able to bring myself to watch it).

But it makes me wonder, does Brad Trost have a quiver full of kids? I mean, if his wife isn’t being a good Christian brood mare and popping them out at the rate of one every eighteen months or so, they must be using contraception. Surely he wouldn’t object to oppressed and starving women in Africa managing the size of their families? Oh, just took a closer look at his website. He’s <b>not married</b>.* And here I thought he was just being a privileged Westerner trying to impose a rule that he’s not even following himself. But his hypocrisy goes even beyond that: he’s trying to impose his religious dogma on women everywhere when he’s not even at risk of becoming a parent himself (after all, as a good Christian, he’s not having pre-marital sex right)?

He writes on his blog about how he and the other forced-birthers in the Conservative caucus worked to get the IPPF funding dropped in the first place:

“Many, many Conservative MPs pressed the PMO to stop the funds from flowing. Federal funding did stop for a time. Funds allocated to IPPF were considerably reduced. Furthermore, federal grants for IPPF also had more strings attached.

This only happened because of the pressure applied. “

Yes, Mr Trost, you got away with pulling funding for Planned Parenthood because you did it behind closed doors. You want to bring your women-are-just-animated-incubators agenda out into the open? Bring it on. We’re ready to crush your iron age thinking into the dust where it belongs. In case you haven’t heard, women now have the vote. And men who acknowledge that women are people too will stand and vote with them.

*I assume, given that there are no pictures or mention of his family and he wears no wedding ring.

Sexism Alive & Well in TV Land

September 13, 2011

So apparently, a game developer got in trouble for being misogynist assholes. They apologised and fired the scapegoat, so we’re all good.

But surprisingly, the software programming world is not the only entertainment production industry where sexism is condoned and cherished. According to a study by San Diego State University’s Center for the Study of Women in Television and Film, only 15 percent of the writers of broadcast network, prime-time programs were women in the 2010-2011 season, a number that has dropped by more than half since the 2006-2007 television season. The wage gap isn’t any better.  The Writers Guild of America reports a rise in the difference in earnings between men and women television writers from $4,735 to $17,343 between 2000 and 2009.

A great article by Maureen Ryan at AOL TV tries to get to the reasons why (though the reasons are, sadly, the same old same old). One thing that she brings up is the influence of the advertisers:

“We’re not making art out here, we’re making programming that allows networks to sell ad dollars,” says Jill Soloway (‘Six Feet Under,’ ‘United States of Tara,’ ‘How to Make It in America’). “The only ad dollars that appeal solely to women only are diapers and cleaning products. The expensive ad dollars, like cars and air travel, must appeal to both genders.

So the sexism in the corporate world is reinforcing the sexism in advertising*, which in turn reinforces sexism at the production level, which reinforces sexism at the product level (i.e. the shows themselves), which reinforces sexism in society at large, and so it goes.

One thing mentioned as an adjunct to this advertising issue, is that the TV audience (at least the one that counts to advertisers) is males 18-49. My mother pointed out the other day that television, along with movies and other forms of entertainment, are made for men because women are too busy to watch. I guess its all the diapers and cleaning they’re doing.

*Srsly? Women are only interested in buying diapers and cleaning stuff? While men wouldn’t be caught dead shopping for dish soap?