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The Fistula Foundation December 12, 2011

Posted by FCM in health, international, PIV, rape.
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as an end-of-year message, i would like to encourage readers who make charitable contributions this time of year (or anytime) to consider giving to the fistula foundation.  i simply cannot overstate the importance of their work, or the impact the fistula foundation has had on my radical feminist awakening: it was the catalyst for it.

the fistula foundation is a charitable organization that works to prevent and treat obstetric fistula worldwide. obstetric fistula is a devastating birthing injury that causes urinary and/or fecal incontinence in women who experience prolonged, obstructed labor; it is frequently the result of young or malnourished women birthing where their pelvises are too small to safely pass the fetus.

when i saw the PBS documentary “a walk to beautiful” highlighting the work of the FF, it stopped me in my tracks. at the time, i had just begun blogging and i was still feeling my way through the gender-politicking and this “what makes a woman” post-modernist doublethink: i admit that i was still confused about it. what makes a woman? well, there are years and years of patriarchal abuse, including sexual abuse of girls and women, by men; grooming to be a wife and mother; fuckability mandates, etc etc. these things do appear to separate women from men (women experience them; men perpetrate them), and these things are problematic, yes. but the gender politickers have that covered: apparently, there are men who wish they could experience these things, as victims, and women who believe that they can overcome having experienced these things, as victims, just by wishing it. oh, okay!

and i admit that it can be difficult to separate the female “sex” from the female “gender” under certain situations (where somewhat-reliable contraception is available, for one) and particularly when internalizing certain dialogs that are deliberately meant to obfuscate the difference, like PIV-positive rhetoric and bullshit genderqueer tropes (see above). but once these obfuscating influences are removed, and we observe (and identify with — we are women afterall) what women experience both objectively and subjectively in the absence of these influences…well, see for yourself:

ah, okay. it suddenly becomes very clear doesnt it? what makes a woman…is female reproductive organs! and half of all human beings are born female, and they live and die as females, in a world where men routinely stick their dicks into female-bodied persons, which is objectively and demonstrably harmful to us because it causes unwanted pregnancy and resultant medical events, and a shared-fate which all female-bodied persons are subjected to, across time and place.

if we are very, very lucky, perhaps some of us, for some period of time, can mitigate the severity and frequency (but not the occurrence) of the female-specific harms perpetrated on us, by men. and female-specific harm includes the risk of female-specific harm…which is harmful in itself, because its stressful and requires behavior and thought modification, because we were born with babymakers in a rape culture, and that has meaning. oh yes it does.

and it doesnt *just* have meaning for female-bodied persons, either. men know that women are impregnable, as a sexual class, and thats why they rape almost exclusively girls and women, and almost exclusively *not* other men. raping female-bodied persons is like throwing spaghetti against the wall, and knowing some of it will stick: by raping women, all women, regardless of age, and not men, (individual men perhaps, but not men-as-a-class) they know that pregnancies will result. they just wont be around to see it. kinda like insisting on PIV-centric sexuality in fact! but i digress.

women as a sexual class, around the world, are defined by our ability to become impregnated by men. our biological reality, and mens exploitation of it, is our shared reality, and no amount of bullshit PIV-pozzie rhetoric will ever cure it. it may attempt to erase that shared reality, and it may well succeed. but it will not cure it, and it cannot change it. so why are they trying? this is not a rhetorical question.

from their website:

You may choose to fully sponsor one woman’s surgery by making a one-time donation of $450 or a monthly donation of $37.50 for 12 months. In thanks, we proudly offer you this personalized certificate celebrating that this life-changing donation has been made in your name or in honor of someone you love.

New this year!

You may also choose to make a Love-A-Sister donation to help pay for a portion of one woman’s surgery.

$240 can help provide transportation for twelve women in need of treatment
$85 can help provide nursing care for one patient
$50 can help provide either an anesthetist or lab tests for one patient’s surgery.

for more information on the fistula foundation, or to donate, please google “the fistula foundation,” click through, or use the FF widget in the sidebar.

Yes, Organs Matter. On Female “Hypervigilance,” And Being Born With A Babymaker, In A Rape Culture March 25, 2010

Posted by FCM in authors picks, feminisms, gender roles, health, international, PIV, pop culture, porn, race, radical concepts, rape, thats mean, trans.
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this will make sense in a minute, hopefully.  i am posting this video here, again, for those who havent yet seen it.  because i *still* have fucking transwomen and genderqueers commenting here, on various posts, shrieking about how “organs dont matter!!!11!!”  yeah, sure they dont.  so long as you werent born with a fucking babymaker, in a rape culture.  for the rest of us, our “mere organs” mean a lot.  let me illustrate.  and…i am going to take the long way around.

a few months ago, my mom was telling me how fucking lazy my step-dad is.  and he is so.  fucking.  lazy.  hes the kind of lazy that, if she didnt stage constant interventions, he would never even brush his fucking teeth.  (yeah, they are falling out).  he is the kind of clueless that if it werent for her, he would come home from work to a dark house on the same day every month, and wonder why the lights dont work. (the bills are due monthly, asswipe.  yeah you).  to top it off, my mom knows, absolutely knows for a fact because he told her so and has shown her so (once, as its all she would allow): he actually *likes* it when the lights get shut off.  everything is nice and quiet, and he likes candlelight better.  he says “its kind of an adventure.”  (do i have to also mention that hes an educated professional?  i dont know, but i just did).

ah life, what a fun adventure!  of course, if you were born female, its a different game entirely.  where every day you *dont* get raped or knocked up, you WIN!!!!11!!1  and the prize, if you can call it that, is this: you get to live another day where you do everything you can do, again, not to get raped and knocked up, that day, either. some stuff happens in the meantime.  that “stuff” is what other people (men) call “life.”  you know, work, play, sleep, etc.  some days, you dont even win.  seriously, this is how it works.  eventually you die, and hopefully rape and pregnancy have nothing to do with that.  many times, they have everything to do with it.  the younger, poorer and darker you are, the more likely this will be the case.

men can afford to let the lights be turned off, because nothing bad will happen to them, really, if they do.  if his car gets repossessed, its FUN!!!!11!!1  he will just walk everywhere (he could use the exercise, its true).  if he has bad breath or bad teeth, he wont get fired from his job.  and even if he did, he could find another job where all the men were as dirty and smelly as he was.  it would probably pay more, to boot.

but for women, if we dont keep every detail under tight control, we could end up homeless.  fucking shit, we might end up homeless anyway, and we know it.  and homelessness means rape, when you are a woman.  its an absolute 100% guarantee that you will be raped.  repeatedly.  or that you will have to have sex with men, for money, or for reasons having nothing whatsoever to do with “desire.”  (also rape, but thats a different post.)

if *we* let the lights get turned off, we wont be able to get ready for work.  no shower, no shaving.  no blowing our hair dry.  and not having a job means, eventually, RAPE.  if *we* let our car get repossessed, we will have to walk to the fucking store, in the dark (it gets dark at 4 in the winter.  do men even notice this?  i doubt it).  guess what that means!  not a fun adventure, not 30 minutes of cardio.  it means RAPE.  every little thing we do, you see, has a purpose.  its not “hypervigilance” really, if its exactly the right amount.  and if we stopped doing these things, it would create a downward spiral ending in…mm-hmm.

see…the difference between western, privileged women and the women in the NOVA video who are being injured and killed in childbirth is really only a matter of degree, and we fucking well know it.  its not a matter of kind.  we know that if we arent in control, to the extent we can be in control, that our lives will descend into chaos, where we are literally nothing more than fuckholes, for men.  (now, we are other things, too!!!11!!11!  like, you know, we have hobbies, and jobs and stuff, in addition to just being fuckholes, for men).  if we arent extremely careful, our wellbeing and our very lives will become dependant on men being charitable with us (newsflash: they arent).  when women are dependant on men to keep us safe…we end up raped, disfigured, and dead.  thats the simple, awful truth of it.

and every time a woman gets pissed off at her male partner for not picking up his socks, she is demonstrating that she knows her position in life, and how tenuous it is (or at the very least, the man is demonstrating how safe *he* feels, and indeed how safe, as a man, he really *is*).  when women are disproportionately presenting with anxiety and depression, they are telling it like it is, too.  so, what are they saying when they wear makeup, and dresses, and blahdy blahdy girly blah?  what are women demonstrating that they *know* to be the truth, having been born with a babymaker in a fucking rape culture?  (they are saying they dont want to get fucking RAPED, thats what.  they are trying to play by the rules, so that wont happen).

and what are transwomen demonstrating, when they do (and ENJOY doing) the same things?  this is not a rhetorical question.

look.  as born-women, our “organs” (well one of them in particular) are jam-packed with meaning.  and only a fucking transwoman, or a gender-obsessed western-privileged snot-nosed asshole fun-fem could possibly believe otherwise.  so stop posting this “organs dont matter” shit here.  i will not entertain your bullshit delusions for one.  more.  second.

It’s Pat!-Privilege December 13, 2009

Posted by FCM in entertainment, feminisms, gender roles, health, PIV, pop culture, race, rape, self-identified feminist men, trans.
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actress julia sweeney as “pat”

theres been a lot of talk lately both here and elsewhere about what i describe as gender-bending.  the trans- are doing it.  the queer-identified are doing it.  the GLBs might be doing it, and the non-gender-conforming straights too.

but no matter how gender-bendy any of us first-world privileged people think we are being (i make more money than my spouse, and i am a hardass!  give me a prize!) one fact remains, and i think feminists everywhere need to take a hard look at it.  women in other parts of the world, in *most* parts of the world in fact, and in the rural and urban-poor first-world too, are being oppressed based on not their gender, but their born-sex.  how can you tell?  they have a gaggle of kids following behind them calling them mommy, thats how.  either that, or they are being injured or killed in childbirth.  because world-wide, womens female gender-role as heterosexual wives and mothers are as rigorously enforced upon them as is their born-sex.  they dont have a choice.  and to whatever extent *we* have a choice there, we are privileged.

you may or may not remember the character “pat” from saturday night live, but i am certain that i am dating myself by using the reference.  heres what wiki has to say:

Pat (whose full name was revealed on an episode of “Saturday Night Live” as Pat O’Neil Riley) was a somewhat overweight character with short, curly black hair who wore glasses and a blue western-style shirt with tan slacks. The character spoke in a nasally voice that sometimes squeaked. Pat apparently suffered from very sweaty palms, and constantly wiped them on his/her clothing while making a strange whimpering sound, further adding to the character’s unappealing quality. Sweeney wore no makeup and colored her lips beige to further hide any sex identity clues.

The sketches always involved the celebrity guest hosts of the show playing everyday people who encounter Pat and then go to great lengths to discover Pat’s true gender without being so rude as to actually ask (since Pat can be short for either “Patrick”, a traditionally male name, or “Patricia”, a traditionally female name). Pat remained completely oblivious, endlessly frustrating the questioners with answers that leave the character’s sex vague. The character often made statements that seemed to reveal a sex, only to then immediately confuse things again. (A typical example might be, “Sorry if I’m a little grumpy, I have really bad cramps… I rode my bike over here, and my calf muscles are KILLING me!”) In another sketch, Pat tells Kevin Nealon that his/her name is Pat Riley, same as the coach of the Lakers, “except there’s a big difference between him and me. I’m not the coach of a professional basketball team.” Other gags included Pat’s attempts at humor, which served to confuse everyone further, such as when asked what Pat is short for, the character would reply, Pat is short for “P-a-a-a-a-a-t!”, or when asked in an application for sex, Pat responded “Please!”. Another joke was when Pat was asked the full name, to which the character responded that Pat almost never referred to the character’s self by the middle name, as it was embarrassing, to which an eager audience was filled in that it was “O’Neill”, again continuing the joke.

The character was popular enough to spawn a feature length 1994 film called It’s Pat (from the lyrics of the character’s theme song on Saturday Night Live). In the film, Pat meets Chris, another sexually ambiguous character played by Dave Foley. (On SNL, Chris had been played by Dana Carvey.) They quickly fall in love and propose to each other at the exact same time. Before the wedding, however, Chris breaks up with Pat on account of Pat’s arrogance and the fact that Pat cannot decide on a direction in life.

emphases mine.