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May 23 2009

Spinster aunt disagrees with columnist she agreed with that one time

This cuntalina opines in the Daily Mail that women who don’t have kids “lack [...] an essential humanity.” That’s why she only wants “working mothers” on her staff. Her job is something she calls a “hack.” I don’t know what a “hack” is, but it apparently requires a familiarity with the experience of child vomit running down your neck.

“Barren” workers, the author avers, are sub-par in every way, but only if they have chosen not to have kids. Naturally, women who yearn for, but cannot have, children are exempt from her contempt; the choosing is what turns child-free women into vile harridans. Such freaks of nature, for example, always lead the undesirable “office bitch-fest.” Having chosen not to reproduce, they are incapable of “selflessness, compassion, generosity, commitment, fierce loyalty and plain hard work.” The author looks down on women who wait until they’re 40 to get artificially inseminated, but in the end she cuts’em some slack, because at least they’re trying to be human.

[W]e actually need our children; they complete us as women [...]; when we meet a woman who chooses her childlessness in the belief that there is something out there worth more, we smile politely even while – once again – our guts whisper: ‘Lady, you’re weird.’

Hey, wait a minute. This article accusing women of incomplete subhumanity based on a sentimental reading of the Cultural Narrative of Western Motherhood was written by one Carol Sarler. Why does that name ring a bell?

Oh yes. A quick click through the Halls of Blame reveals that in 2006 I agreed with this Sarler on the subject of the hollow promise of “grrl power” (although, unlike Sarler, I declined to blame the Spice Girls personally for the dominant culture’s preoccupation with sexploitation). Sarler, it turns out, is merely an advocate for traditional femininity, the kind that rules out raunch-as-empowerment as well as voluntary spinsterdom. It’s nice that “working moms” should get some props, but what’s with the “lady, you’re weird” baloney? That’s just mean. So I spit in your eye, Carol Sarler, even though pole-dancing as a feminist statement leaves us both a bit cold.

It did not escape my notice that Sarler’s insulting opinion piece is part of that skeezy “Femail” section of the Daily Mail, the one with the sidebar full of vicious gossipy voyeuristical misogyny designed especially to enthrobben the schadenfreude of women readers. Holy shit, is there ever some lobe-blowing, women-as-trainwrecks stuff in that thing.

– A woman is arrested for “antisocial behavior” years after she disgraced herself by failing to successfully eject live octuplets from her uterus.

– A “curvaceous” college student/ beauty pageant contestant reclines in bikini and heels on itchy grass despite her body measurements — reproduced in the article in case the reader would like to plot them on a graph — which do not conform to those of the normal pornulated woman.

– Another constituent of “Obese Britain” has lost a bunch of weight because her therapist has hypnotized her to believe she’s had gastric bypass surgery.

– My favorite: Mariah Carey, who can “produce sounds high enough to startle a bat,” employs a full-time assistant to “monitor her cleavage.”

Dang it, I don’t have time to write the last paragraph of this post. Too bad, it was gonna be a peach.

[Thanks, miz-geek]

168 comments

3 pings

  1. zelda1

    I’m not sure, but wasn’t the mother of compassion childless? Mother Teresa. Plus, there’s all those other mothers and sisters who spend long hours doing community type work and are childless; hell, they are even manless. Because I have two children and raised them as a single mom, I’m somewhat of an expert on the entire ideology that mothers are selfless, and that’d be bullshit. I know mothers who hide not only candy but also chips from their brood. Plus, I’ll be honest, all these women who are mutlitbirthing are not exactly selfless; especially in light of their constantly pushing those little multiple miracles out there for whose pocket books? The people I depend on most, here on the hill, are friends who are without children. They will pick me up when I am too tired to catch the bus, and if I give them a call, they will come help me do just about anything I ask. My friends with pups, on the other hand, are so selfish with their time, even those who have great support, that I dare not call them because what I might get is: well, it’s my time. I am not saying they don’t deserve time, but selfless implies putting that my time aside to help others. Oh, and don’t get me started on who volunteers. That’d be my childless friends who are helping teach ESL or doing literacy projects at the battered women’s shelter, or helping out with the homeless. Not that women with kids don’t help, because I’m big on volunteerism, but selfish comes in both types of women. Generalizations are always a bad way to run a blog. Unless the womb spits out a child indeed.

  2. Susan

    I’m glad she put her weird and ridiculous opinions right out there in the open like that, because who would ever want to work for *her*?

  3. estraven

    I am appalled. I apologize in the name of all mothers for what this idiot said. Becoming a mother is possibly the single most selfish thing I did in my life.

  4. Llencelyn

    Tasty post, Twisty.

    I will be my usual nit-picky self, though, and note that the first two words, “This cuntalina,” looks like they are supposed to be a link (they are blue letters and they get underlined when I mouse over them) but clicking does nothing. HTML quirk?

    Sorry for the picking of the nit.

  5. Zach

    Dear God, what about the men? I don’t have the privilege of humanity-enhancement via fatherhood? So it’s true after all. You women really do want more rights than men.

  6. rootlesscosmo

    our guts whisper: ‘Lady, you’re weird.’

    Whispering guts? Guts that whisper in complete sentences? Now that’s weird.

  7. Pinko Punko

    Oy.

  8. mir

    At least she calls *herself* a hack. What she fails to note (and what all producers of either/or, mommy v. childfree dreck fail to note) is that pre-widdle winkums ALL women are childfree first. And tell you what, I’ve got a year or so (unless things go awry. But we’ve already had the “you can’t live in my basement smoking pot & playing guitar until you’re 30″ talk, so fingers crossed) until my own home is childfree once again and I’m thrilled.

    Becoming a mom doesn’t do one damn thing for your soul but raise the grocery bill for a couple decades. It drives me crazy that so much purely whimsical bullshit is ascribed to parenthood. Gah. Women are women are women are women.

    ps, Twisty I’m gobsmacked by ‘cuntalina’. Is it part of the TF lexicon I’m not in on, or is it really just a variation on “cunt”? Please oh please say it’s the former.

  9. Catherine Martell

    A ‘hack’ is a journalist. I don’t know what a ‘cuntalina’ is.

    Plus, I’ll be honest, all these women who are mutlitbirthing are not exactly selfless; especially in light of their constantly pushing those little multiple miracles out there for whose pocket books?

    zelda1, I may be getting the wrong end of the stick here, but I’ve heard this sort of talk a lot recently (especially around the Octo-Mom) and it really gets my goat. The idea that women have large numbers of children to make easy money seems to me not a million miles from the idea that women accuse innocent men of rape to make easy money.

    What exactly is easy about having large numbers of children? And where do these supposed riches flood in from? It’s not like you’re allowed to send your offspring up chimneys these days, in the first world at least. The image of the “welfare mum” is quite obviously nonsense in the USA where welfare is pitiful, and misogynist anywhere. Especially when coupled, as it is, with the conspicuous lack of pointing out that fathers, who usually have a role in procreation, should have an equal duty of care and finance to their offspring.

    Furthermore, I find this “society shouldn’t pay for your brats, lady” attitude distastefully individualist and right-wing. In a post-patriarchal society, childrearing might well be a communal activity and responsibility. Even in a patriarchal society, there is an extent to which this holds. Though I do not have children myself, the fact children are being born, raised and educated is going to be of increasing benefit to me, because I would quite like to have a younger generation around to provide me with medical care, pay my pension and the other taxes that generally maintain my environment after I retire, produce interesting culture to entertain me, advance technology to make my life more comfortable, and generally liven the place up a bit by being funny and nice.

    So instead of harping on about how much other people’s kids are costing me (and it just so happens I do live in a welfare state, so the answer is a fair old whack) I would like to say thank you to all the parents who are investing their time, energy and money in creating new generations of useful human beings. Even if they are doing so for totally selfish reasons.

    Carol Sarler, meanwhile, can kiss my entire ass.

  10. Mukherjee

    I wonder how she finds out if job applicants chose to be childless or were compelled to be childless. In the country where I live, it is illegal to ask such questions at the interview (though that doesn’t stop some people). Anyway, if I was really mean-spirited, I would say that she is extremely jealous of ‘childfree’ women who have a lot fewer responsibilities and a lot more time for themselves than she does, so she gets back at them by denying them work.

  11. Felicity

    British feminists just laugh at any mention of the Daily Male. It’s mission statement is to make everything fun and misogynistic! Yes making sure we women have it forced down our throat in the FEMAIL section. Always annoying how clearly sexist articles will be anonymously written, or they’ll get some insane woman to blab on for them.

  12. Jezebella

    1. Most mothers of multiple births are NOT on television. It’s not fair to tar them all with one brush as a bunch of greedy sows.

    2. “Octo-mom” is not her name. It’s Nadya Suleman. For heavens’ sakes, she’s a human being. With a name.

    3. If Mother Teresa were so bloody compassionate, why didn’t she promote access to birth control so there’d be less pitiful orphans for her to feed & house? She was as much of a tool of the Catholic Church as any other nun or priest, and I’m not buying this sainthood crap.

  13. Kelsey

    For some reason, the link to the article in question didn’t work for me, so I googled “Sarler” and “Daily Mail.” I couldn’t find this one in particular, but I did uncover an especially stinky little poop-nugget of an article on how women are to blame for the demise of “manly men.” This sterling example of quality journalism comes complete with a picture of a beautiful man applying lipstick to illustrate the disgusting Frankenstein’s monsters us ball-busting bitches have created, and pictures of hunky Harrison Ford and Russell Crowe with the caption “Let’s Hear it for Testosterone.” The article also comes with a scientific-sounding lamentation about “the recent drop in testosterone,” with (do I even have to say it?) no stats or actual science to back it up.
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-1018573/Why-women-blame-killing-REAL-men.html

    Anyway, back on topic, I hear this particular line of crap way too often for a citizen of such a supposedly enlightened and egalitarian era. As a young woman, I can say that Sarler isn’t the only one that is spouting this nonsense. Even for a girl that isn’t even old enough to have graduated college, the pressure is ON to bear children. Oh, and just try saying that you don’t even particularly like kids, much less want some of your own. You will be condescendingly smiled at as if you were a child yourself, almost like you lived in a society in which you will never really be viewed as a competent, fully realized human at all.

  14. nails

    I do agree that in general multiple births for profit is far fetched and unlikely, but I am also pretty certain that Nadya Suleman did it for a reason that involved fame or money to some extent. It is clear that she is mentally ill (for reasons unrelated to her choice to have that many children at once), and when that is combined with motherhood as the ultimate woman experience cultural messages you get that sort of situation. I don’t think Suleman’s obsession with Angelina Jolie is unrelated, and I do think that media portrayals of large families as something to aspire to (Michelle Duggar style) could have played a role.

    The most disturbing part about people who push motherhood as being the only path to feeling complete is that they have all these arguments to try and talk people into having children. There isn’t anything quite as permanent as having kids, and to find out that it’s not different when they are your own has horrifying consequences.

    I would also like to call bullshit on Mother Teresa being a good person. There is plenty of information available about the horrors that she was responsible for, and it is even worse to know that she did what she did after losing her faith. Her home for the dying did not provide pain relief or medicine, it was a place for people to die according to catholic rules. She was used for the catholic church to get good press, period.

  15. Sutton

    (1) The cuntalina link doesn’t work.
    (2) Wonder where adoptive parents fit into this lady’s scheme?

    Talk about stereotypes. IBTP.

  16. Kuleana

    Yeah, Mukherjee, I know in the United States it’s illegal, but I believe (though the link is broken) that this is from a British paper? What I found on Wikipedia is that the United Kingdom has a law that goes like this:

    Directive 2006/54/EC “on the implementation of the principle of equal opportunities and equal treatment of men and women in matters of employment and occupation”.

    I would think Sarler’s refusal to hire women who don’t have kids would violate the principle of equal treatment, since I doubt she applies the same litmus test to men, and indeed, there are so many issues that go into determining whether a man has a child (ie, does a man who ejaculated into a woman and left her high and dry with a kid count? Does a man who’s never fathered a child but is a stepfather count?) that making a policy like that for men would be absurd. Then again, the same issues could apply to a woman — would Sarler hire a woman who had a child but had to give it up for foster care? What about a woman whose child died? What if the kid died as an infant, and the woman said “Fuck it, I don’t want any more kids?” What about a woman who’s a stepmom but never had a biological child?

    Anyhow, I digress. The point is that Sarler’s behavior is likely illegal in the UK as well. Since she’s admitted to the world that she’s engaging in it, it would be lovely to see her face some consequences.

  17. Kuleana

    Ah crap, here’s the Wikipedia article I found it in.

  18. Twisty

    will be my usual nit-picky self, though, and note that the first two words, “This cuntalina,” looks like they are supposed to be a link (they are blue letters and they get underlined when I mouse over them) but clicking does nothing. HTML quirk?

    Fixed!

  19. josiemysourceofmostfrustration

    Wow. As a voluntarily childless woman, I’ll just have to reconcile myself to the fact that I lack “an essential humanity” shared by such inspiring luminaries of parenthood as Susan Smith and Casey Anthony.

  20. Notorious Ph.D.

    Re: Sarler’s discriminatory hiring manifesto. Some commenters here are missing a crucial distinction. It’s not that she’s against women who don’t have children; she’s against women who don’t want to have children. Because having children is what teaches you compassion and selflessness. Therefore not having children means you remain selfish, and the lack of actual offspring correlates with bad workplace behavior. But those who don’t have children but really want them are okay because —

    Oh. There’s that pesky logic flaw.

  21. jayo

    When someone says something mean about childless women, is it really useful to start bashing mothers?

  22. Sabayon

    “Oh, and just try saying that you don’t even particularly like kids, much less want some of your own. You will be condescendingly smiled at as if you were a child yourself”

    Oh don’t even get me started…I assume more experienced spinster aunts don’t have this problem (no doubt you all are considered to be just sad, bitter crones at this point), but if you are under forty and claim to not want children or marriage every wife/mother around will look smugly on and say something to the order of “just you wait..”. Apparently one day I will wake up and be one large throbbing womb with an expansive desire to mother and nurture. This despite the fact that I have been a nanny and a Kindergarten teacher and all this exposure to tiny people has yet to make me want one of my own. Clearly, I am female therefore I must, must want to bear my own young. I am just too stupid to realize it yet, and these days even being a dyke doesn’t get me out of it (I have some choice words about the so-called lesbian baby boom, but I won’t get into that). Don’t you just love how in the patriarchy wanting to have an independent existence, even one dedicated to public service, makes you a selfish, stupid bitch. /rant

  23. Larkspur

    “When someone says something mean about childless women, is it really useful to start bashing mothers?

    No. No, it isn’t. That’s why there isn’t any mom-bashing here. At most, there’s been some reflection on how being kind and helpful are qualities that can be present or absent regardless of whether you’ve had children. I personally come down squarely in favor of being kind and helpful to all creatures great and small, human or not, even if I mess it up a lot.

  24. Twisty

    There’s that Law of Conservation of Human Dignity again. If Mothers get some dignity, the Non-mothers lose theirs in direct proportion. And vice-versa.

  25. yttik

    “When someone says something mean about childless women, is it really useful to start bashing mothers?”

    I’ll second that. There seems to be a lot of woman bashing in this thread, everyone from Mother Teresa to Nadya Suleman. And what is a cuntalina??

    This is one of those rare times when I say, but what about the men?? Are there no men in the world causing patriarchal mischief that we could perhaps refer to as “evil”, “mentally ill” or “cuntalinas?”

  26. Larkspur

    I wish I could pedal around the neighborhoods of the world dishing out huge helpings of Human Dignity from my never-ending supply, like the Good Humor Woman, only with fewer calories.

    yttik, if memory serves, I always agree with you because you’re all smart and everything. But I have to disagree with you on the woman-bashing in this particular instance. For one thing, I wouldn’t want to hold anyone to a literal meaning of “evil” or “mentally ill” without giving them a chance to hunker down and get serious about the discussion. Otherwise it’s kind of off-hand trash-talk.

    Frankly, I’m not sure if “evil” has any meaning to me. And obviously, unless I’m a qualified professional, me calling anyone mentally ill is hardly dispositive of their mental state.

    But talking about bashing induced yet another nasty flashback (I’m getting them a lot lately) to the late 60s and early 70s, when at least in my neck of the radical feminist woods, everything got really crazy, and we’d have these criticism sessions and everyone was really angry but you couldn’t trash a sister per se, so it all just built up and got horrible and wicked and everything shattered, and everyone retreated and started organic gardening or getting rich or whatever.

    It was devastating. I don’t ever want to get in such an uproar again. But I don’t ever want to pledge allegiance to some kind of solidarity, either, if it means I have to lie. I have enormous sympathy for Ms. Suleman, but I don’t think she is playing with a full deck, and I hope, really fiercely, that she’ll allow sensible people to help her. I don’t think she is subhuman – she is very very human: all women are 100% human – but it is not my job to provide the kind of emotional support that means it’s disloyal to yell, OMG, Nadya, what are you thinking?

    I mean it when I say I recognize that women are 100% human. That’s why it makes me uneasy to hear people say how women should rule the world, blah blah blah, because I’m always always going to say, okay, which women? and if they screw it up, they’re so busted.

    In conclusion, I really dislike Liz Cheney. But I don’t want her to shut up and go home and do the ironing. I just want her to get a damn clue.

  27. Other Liz

    Yay Larkspur.

    A cuntalina is a cheap hatchback car that breaks down before the tyres wear out. Marketed at women in an advertisement that implies you will be the centre of attention if you buy it.

    Isn’t it great that she judges women the moment she sees them, then says it isn’t the mothers like her who cause the office bitchiness. I bet everyone in her office can see through it – especially when she judges her woman co-workers to the male boss (hacks don’t employ people).

  28. liberality

    There is no reason to pit women who choose not to have children against those who have or will or are in the process. It’s another of those patriarchy controlling, woman blaming, divide and conquer tactics. No thank you.

  29. rootlesscosmo

    if you are under forty and claim to not want children or marriage every wife/mother around will look smugly on and say something to the order of “just you wait..”

    Or glance around nervously and say, in case the P is listening from a concealed spot (and it is), “Oh, I love children!”

  30. Brianne

    If “cuntalina” is what I think it is, that’s the second time you’ve let loose a really offensive term that threatens your entire status as a feminist luminary. Disappointing.

  31. truffula

    children; they complete us as women

    “Emotional accessory” seems a really unhealthy way to view children, especially for the the children.

  32. TwissB

    What Brianne said.

  33. Unree

    Re “cuntalina,” I am not sure where I come down, but I’ll paste a bit from Reclusive Leftist explaining why it was maybe okay to call a journalist a particular name:

    “Swear words, in order to be effective, must have the weight of use behind them. A sexist society will have sexist swear words. Thus, a feminist in that society, speaking that language, will only have sexist swear words to call on, no matter what her personal beliefs. We can invent new swear words — and there are many feminist experiments in doing just that — but these inventions suffer from the fact that they’re artificial inventions and have no weight of use behind them.

    When I called that woman a “bitch,” I wasn’t revealing that deep down I really believe women are bitches. I just needed a swear word. And as an English speaker, there are virtually no non-patriarchal swear words to use.”

  34. Cissy Strutt

    From a Darwinian point-of-view this is brilliant. Mothers – who, by reproducing, display that they are selfless, compassionate, generous, committed, fiercely loyal and plain hard working – will pass these genes onto their offspring, and so strengthen humanity, by making each generation more selfless, compassionate &c, while the selfish, discompassionate &c genes of the child-deniers will die out.

    Though, if I understand the cuntalina correctly, it is the very act of giving birth which bestows these qualities. So, not being inherent qualities, but in fact environmentally produced, that blows the Darwinian support. Oh well, he was a Product of the Patriarchy himself, bless his beard.

  35. Citizen Jane

    I have a feeling this person is expressing some misplaced anger about the discrimination against mothers. I’m pretty sure most workplaces prefer to hire non-mothers over mothers, because we all know that childcare is 100% woman’s work and a woman can’t possibly be devoted to her job if she’s a mother.

    This is how oppression works. When people get pissed off about being oppressed, do they direct that anger at their oppressors? Of course not, they turn on their fellow oppressed. Perhaps they figure that they can make another oppressed group which they themselves dominate over so they aren’t on the bottom rung.

    Some of the discussion here seems to be teetering on the edge of the same thing. Though not nearly as bad as most people, thank Maude. Go post this link in the average child-free community and watch the exact same phenomenon as everyone starts arguing that only non-mothers should be hired.

    When the oppressed learn that the oppression is what’s hurting them, not their fellow oppressed, then the revolution can truly begin.

  36. katrina

    Well said, Citizen Jane, though, as one of the commenters at the Daily Mail said, all women of child-bearing age are suspect and should not be hired.

    We (newspaper and online newspaper readers) should beware of deliberately unreasonable articles designed to rouse emotions and get page hits and comments, and thence advertising dollars.

  37. E.D.

    Yes. Not having children is really selfish. Because there are only six billion people on this planet. “Room for one more!”

  38. Catherine Martell

    2. “Octo-mom” is not her name. It’s Nadya Suleman. For heavens’ sakes, she’s a human being. With a name.

    Point taken, Jezebella. My intention in deploying the media nickname was to have a dig at the media representation of the story, not at the woman herself, in whom I presume to take no interest, other than generally wishing her well as I do most people. But this possibly would have been clearer if I had used inverted commas around the nickname, or explained why I was using it.

  39. Agasaya

    Arguments like these usually degenerate into discussions of fertility and male rights. After all, the laws which turn women into involuntary baby-makers existed across the centuries to ensure males obtained both heirs (male) and marketable progeny (women).

    So, let us descend into fertility issues. The MENZ are losing rapidly here. It is true that testosterone levels are declining in US men.

    http://www.ourstolenfuture.org/newscience/reproduction/2006/2006-1210travisonetal.html

    No, there isn’t hope that it will reduce male aggression since society stimulates that adequately via the culture without depending upon hormones. Yet, even this study was interpreted solely from the male standpoint of the Risk to Humanity via reproductive threats to male health. Just look at the conclusion.

    Where the fuck are all the scientists hiding while girls attain puberty years earlier than is normal and reach menopause years later than expected? The addition of estrogen (through pthalates) into the food supply, plastics – pretty much everything around us – is screwing up female health in every way. The addition of pthalates is profitable and therefore permitted unless or until males find it will result in fewer erections.

    But then, there is always viagra.

  40. yttik

    “But I don’t ever want to pledge allegiance to some kind of solidarity, either, if it means I have to lie”

    Lately it feels like we are living another kind of lie, mostly promoted by the media, that seems to imply that women run the world and they’re screwing it all up. At the moment our national past time and current entertainment seems to revolve around pig piling on Nadya Suleman, Nancy Pelosi, Sarah Palin, and Carrie Prejean. There are valid complaints about all of them, but it’s a patriarchal trick to sell people on the idea that Miss Ca is the reason we don’t have gay marriage, or the mother of 8 is the reason Ca is broke, or that the first female speaker of the house single handedly authorized torture.

    So I’m left wailing, but what about the men? Are there no men in this world causing any harm?

    Carol Sarler indeed makes an offensive and sexist argument. However, we’ve still got 80-90% of other employers not wanting to hire women who have children, who might have children some day.

  41. nails

    yttik-

    I don’t know what my comments about mother theresa have to do with woman bashing. It sure as hell isn’t bashing, it is debunking. It is an amazing con job and a testament to the power of media that all the horrible things she was a part of are seen as saintly goodness. The information is out there for you if you want to see it, there isn’t a lot of room for interpretation. I resent the implication that I enjoy or prefer to woman bash in the first place.

    I don’t think saying someone is mentally ill is bashing either (well when it has a lot of obviousness to it anyway, constantly voicing your speculation would be pretty rude). Being mentally ill isn’t a character flaw or a sin or morally objectionable in any sense. Do you think it is?

  42. Chihiro

    “At least she calls *herself* a hack. What she fails to note (and what all producers of either/or, mommy v. childfree dreck fail to note) is that pre-widdle winkums ALL women are childfree first. And tell you what, I’ve got a year or so (unless things go awry. But we’ve already had the “you can’t live in my basement smoking pot & playing guitar until you’re 30? talk, so fingers crossed) until my own home is childfree once again and I’m thrilled”

    Just wanted to quickly explain that “childfree” does not mean not having kids at the moment, it means a person conciously choosing NEVER to have them, EVER. So If people have kids they weren’t childfree before, they were childless before they had children. Not trying to nit pick it’s just when parents use this term to explain how they “used to be” it encourages the bingo that we will “change our minds” too, “I used to be childfree” is an oxymoron if you think about it.

  43. slythwolf

    Chihiro, I do think it’s possible for a person to be childfree and then change hir mind. But I don’t think it happens nearly as often as we’re told.

  44. tinfoil hattie

    “Cuntalina”? I’m still stuck on “cuntalina.” What the hell?

  45. Nepenthe

    What tinfoil hattie said. I googled the term to see if it was some obscure word in horsery, say, the proper name for a piece of rock in hoof. I wish I had refrained.

  46. Kuleana

    What tinfoil hattie said. I googled the term to see if it was some obscure word in horsery, say, the proper name for a piece of rock in hoof. I wish I had refrained.

    I posted this before, but I think my comment got eaten in the moderation queue. Anyhow, I Googled it as well, assuming that there was some explanation, and all I can say is that it’s used by people who I do not think anybody who gives one iota of a fuck about women wants to be associated with. One assnozzle even referred to Condoleeza Rice as “Cuntalina Rice.” I mean, I don’t like the woman, but damn. That is seriously not cool.

    Would it be appropriate on this blog to refer to black people who say misogynist things as “n*^&@rinos?” Would it?

  47. Squiggy

    “Cuntalina,” WTF?

  48. Kelly

    It’s nice that “working moms” should get some props…

    Statistically speaking mothers are much less likely to be hired than their childless counterparts, even with the exact same resume according to a Cornell study and mothers are routinely offered lesser starting salaries. I’ll take equal pay and equal consideration and you can keep your “props”.

  49. Chihiro

    “Chihiro, I do think it’s possible for a person to be childfree and then change hir mind. But I don’t think it happens nearly as often as we’re told.”

    If someone changes their mind about having kids it means they were not truely childfree after all, by definition a childfree
    person is someone who NEVER wants children, childfree people are people that DON’T have kids, to have kids means you were childless but didn’t know it at the time. Yes people change their minds but that isn’t my argument it’s how the childfree definion is used incorrectly by those who did change their minds.

  50. nobodyinparticular

    Well, we have cuntalina on this thread so soon after Satsuma telling all females who have ever been pronged by a male that we’re contaminated.

    So does the misogyny bloom in the late spring, along with the onrush of first cut hay. It’ll soon be time to mow.

  51. XtinaS

    Chihiro:

    If a religious person loses their faith and becomes an atheist, were they were really an atheist all along, and they just never realised it?

    I use “childfree” to refer to folk who do not want children, and “childless” to refer to folk who want children but don’t have them (for whatever reason).  It is entirely possible for someone to change their mind on whether they want children, but that doesn’t mean they were never childfree.  It means they’ve changed.  Saying “Then you were never truly childfree!” just puts more judging on someone’s head (usually a woman’s, now that I think of it), and I disagree with that idea and that tactic.

  52. Chihiro

    The tactic that I disagree with is the stubborness from some parents that want to believe they were “just like me” once upon a time, I can’t tell you the number of people in the childfree community that can’t stand how parents decide what childfree should mean and how it should be applied even though it is not their definition to use. I can’t argue the definitions or dictate the words used in the gay community if I am not gay, it would be an intrusion. Childfree people do not change their minds, they are childfree, they don’t. It’s very simple and straightforward, If a parent were to type “I was childfree but I changed my mind” on a childfree blog, forum, what have you, you would get corrected immediately.

    The athiest comparison is different for one big important reason, being an athiest means “someone who does not believe in a god/gods” not “someone who will conciously never believe in a god/gods” childless is the better comparison to athiesm “someone who does not have kids” the “not wanting” is not in that definition which makes it more appropriote and means that person can change their minds.

  53. Aunti Disestablishmentarian

    Re: Reclusive Leftists use of bitch as mentioned by Unree, and on the topic of other gendered insults

    When I called that woman a “bitch,” I wasn’t revealing that deep down I really believe women are bitches. I just needed a swear word. And as an English speaker, there are virtually no non-patriarchal swear words to use. – Reclusive Leftist Dr. Violet Socks

    I disagree that there are a dearth of ungendered alternatives. The Ass family of swears, for example, are non-gendered, as in -hole, –hat, -clown, -wipe. etc. True, ‘Asshole’ is sometimes used as the male counterpart to ‘Bitch’ but there is nothing gendered about asshole. Everyone’s got one.

    English, like most languages, is fluid and elastic, allowing for a wonderous array of creative coinage. Resorting to gendered insults is a shame when we have so many other possibilities to use or create colorful derision!

  54. Inverarity

    I think there’s a certain irony is comparing being childfree to being gay and then implying that comparing atheism to being childfree is inappropriate.

    Atheists, non-atheists, childfree people, and non-childfree people all change their minds. No belief is immutable and hardwired into your DNA, no matter how unimaginable it might be that you might ever change your mind.

    (And yes, I understand the annoyance: I’ve been told, with smug assurance, by more than one former atheist that I will “see the light” someday because I’m “just like they were.”)

  55. Kelly

    “One study found that women without children make 90 cents to a man’s dollar, but women with children make only 73 cents to a man’s dollar. And single mothers make about 60 cents to a man’s dollar.”

    Now there’s something to be pissed about.

  56. Kelly

    “One study found that women without children make 90 cents to a man’s dollar, but women with children make only 73 cents to a man’s dollar. And single mothers make about 60 cents to a man’s dollar.”

    Now there’s something to be pissed about.

  57. Notorious Ph.D.

    I wonder what it would be like if those of us who have made a choice not to have children of our own went around telling people who did have children: “Oh sure, you like them now, but you’ll change your mind.”

  58. Larkspur

    …”Lately it feels like we are living another kind of lie, mostly promoted by the media, that seems to imply that women run the world and they’re screwing it all up. At the moment our national past time and current entertainment seems to revolve around pig piling on Nadya Suleman, Nancy Pelosi, Sarah Palin, and Carrie Prejean. There are valid complaints about all of them, but it’s a patriarchal trick to sell people on the idea that Miss Ca is the reason we don’t have gay marriage, or the mother of 8 is the reason Ca is broke, or that the first female speaker of the house single handedly authorized torture….”

    yttik, I agree. It pisses me off, partly because I have no trouble recognizing that women are human beings. This scapegoating is real and vicious, and I’m not falling for it either. I really dislike how these women are being used as cannon fodder, or chum to roil up the man-sharks (and their female co-conspirators), and I think it’s deeply embarrassing (once-removed) to see women like this Sarler person, or Charlotte Allen, or Kathleen Parker cravenly throw in with the patriarchophiles that hate them even as they do it.

    And on that basis I will certainly defend Suleman or Prejean. They are entitled to their autonomous existences, their mistakes, their successes, without having to be made to represent us all. Even with someone like Michelle Bachmann, there’s a tendency to point to her as if she embodies the down-side of women in politics. Bullshit. She’s an ignorant jerk, all on her own.

    Does anyone remember that movie “Working Girl”? It was very popular. I hated, no, loathed that movie because of the way Melanie Griffiths’ rival (Sigourney Weaver) was annihilated, just totally pulverized as part of Melanie’s success. The film simply luxuriated in Weaver’s humiliation. Griffiths didn’t just outplay her in office politics: Weaver’s own hyper-female bitchiness was shown to lead to her destruction. Remember what Weaver’s ostensible sin was? She appropriated a subordinate’s work (Griffiths’) as her own, so she’d look good to the company. Yup. Because obviously only women ever do heinous things like that. So I’m not going to tiptoe around anyone out of some supposed solidarity, but I’ll be damned if I’ll pile on, or shut my mouth when I see someone being set up and knocked down in service of the patriarchy. I can criticize and defend. But you know, defending Prejean or Bachmann against slams that insinuate hormonally-based deficiencies isn’t about anything that either of them did. It’s just a convenient, age-old, usually effective way to terrorize all of us. I hate it when women play off this phenomenon to their advantage, but some women, being 100% human, are just gonna be jerks.

  59. mir

    @Chihiro- As I had no idea that ‘childfree’ belonged entirely to the never-want-kids contigent, apologies for the misuse in this context. My point, which was hopefully clear, was that childfree/childless/a parent makes no difference in the temperamental makeup of a woman. A woman with kids is a woman. A childfree woman is a woman. A childless woman who wants kids and has not yet birthed, adopted, inherited or found some extra ones in the back closet, is still a woman.

    Now can we please get some Twisty clarity on ‘cuntalina’? Because that’s fucking crazytalk.

  60. Dauphine

    What is with “cuntalina”? I was laboring under the impression that you’d be about the last person in the world to use such a gendered slur, Twisty.

  61. Nolabelfits

    So what do you call someone like me, who did not want children, therefore was childfree, but got knocked up anyway even tho’ I was using birth control and didn’t figure out I was pregnant until I was past the legal abortion limit so I had the child anyway?

  62. Marilyn

    Clearly, this publication and writer are so desperate for some attention that they purposely decided to incite indignation by any means possible. This is just another of those Internet pop-ups, in editorial form. MOVE ALONG EVERYONE. NOTHING TO SEE HERE.

  63. Larkspur

    Nolabelfits, you are a woman, one who was faced with something really hard. I do not know how long ago this was, but I hope you are well, happy more often than not, and loved.

    I don’t have children and won’t be having any. I like them. It just didn’t happen that way for me. I am childless. I don’t have a problem with the term.

    So I don’t have children or grandchildren, or even nieces or nephews. No Nigel or Nigella, either. But I like the big dumb world anyway. Also, there are dogs and cats who adore me. I’m going to go pet one of them right now. She’s a Belgian shepherd named Zoya.

  64. mearl

    I was impressed by the responses in the comments section. Sarler’s view seems to be quite unpopular, on the whole, with Daily Mail readers. Despite the obvious vengeful “bash-the-moms” examples that were brought up, there were many comments that pointed out what a biased view Sarler espouses, and how each person should be valued according to what they bring to a workplace, rather than be subject to generalisations and lumped into one of two categories (duh).

    I also noticed the absence of any reference to working fathers vs. “childfree” selfish careerist males. Among people I know in various types of workplaces, once a guy is a father, many (if not all) of the same things apply as do for mothers: guys want time with their family; they have to take kids to school and attend birthday parties and soccer games and the waiting room at the walk-in clinic; they run home to make dinner and grocery shop and do housework or yardwork; in a lot of cases job security and benefits mean more to them than before they had kids, “because they have mouths to feed.” Guys who PLAN to be fathers certainly think about setting up their careers and their mortgages and their savings, and they renovate the hell out of their houses with the idea of raising a family, etc. etc. All men don’t just binge-drink and play poker and hang around strip clubs shovelling gear up their sniffers until the day the baby is born and suddenly become angels of moral virtue, and neither do all women. Maturity and compassion are inherent in some people and lacking in others, no matter if they are parents or not.

    To throw in a personal example, two of the more responsible, caring, organised, punctual, reliable and compassionate people I know are a married hetero couple, both air traffic controllers, who have chosen not to have kids.

    Unsurprisingly, Sarler doesn’t consider LGBTT people either, whether childfree or with adopted kids or with kids by other methods. Are the childfree non-het working peeps all off having weekend-long cliche raunchy orgies and coming in Monday morning to work massively hungover, where they immediately jump to the task of starting up bitchy text riots in the lunchroom? FAAAHK! I had to physically twist to get my head around Sarler’s logic.

    Sometimes generalisations can be made and there are few exceptions, but in this case, Sarler really has opened up a can of dumbass on the world. I Blame the Patriarchy for even existing as the framework for this article.

  65. Kuleana

    (Unree, since I know you’re on the fence about the Reclusive Leftist excuse for using misogynist slurs, the following rant is directed at them, not you!)

    And as an English speaker, there are virtually no non-patriarchal swear words to use.

    Oh, that is just so much bullshit. That entire explanation is bullshit, in fact. You can call a person an asshole, a shithead, a jackass, a dumbass, shit-for-brains, asshat, ass clown, etc. Or you can just call them a shit. I don’t see how any of those are misogynist. And that tool at Reclusive Leftist needs to ask themselves why misogynist swear words have more “weight” behind them than non-misogynist vulgarities. Why, for instance, does it not suffice to call a woman an asshole? Why is “bitch” so much more satisfying and demeaning to most people than a non-gendered insult? Because it feels better to put a woman down for being a woman, that’s why. Because being a woman is one of the worst things you can be in this world, and insults that don’t exploit that just don’t have the same “weight” behind them.

    And I further call bullshit on that writer’s excuse for not making up new swear words — it happens quite regularly at Shakesville and generally turns out to be more amusing and accurate than already-existing vulgarities. (Granted, they are using combinations that include swear words already in existence, so people who say all those are already sullied won’t like them.) I think not making up new swear words or considering which already existing ones are acceptable is just a lazy excuse to keep using the same old misogynist slurs.

  66. fsteele

    OT, and maybe I shouldn’t mention it here, but I loved your new hat:

    http://l-userpic.livejournal.com/66600552/9635019

  67. Hattie

    You were aware, were you not, that England has gone totally to hell. Who cares what’s in their rotten press anyway?

  68. katrina

    Notorious, Ph.D., that’s brilliant. Why oh why didn’t I think to say that to all the patronising men who told me I’d change my mind? Now that I’m forty and coupled (and haven’t changed my mind) I think they just assume I’m trying desperately, and they don’t say it any more.

    Anyway, I wanted to link to a very amusing article on self-righteous motherhood, by a mother, in Salon.com. She was, of course, deluged with comments by people out to prove the cliché that Americans don’t get irony.

    Only I don’t know how to link things.

    http://www.salon.com/mwt/feature/2009/05/10/mothers_day/index.html

  69. Hattie

    Do what you like and be happy.

  70. The Menstruator

    Wow. Does she go on to mention that if you think me having kids is something that I need to do because I am a woman, that killing my alleged fuck trophies is also part of that process?
    So basicallyt his woman is calling for the mass murder of children who have been squozen out by any forward thinking un-brainwashed female?
    That’s be a lot of bodies.

  71. another voice

    I posted a comment over there twice about how clever the P is to keep us fighting each other (moms vs childfree, young vs old, etc). Neither comment ever got approved. Hitting too close to the truth I suppose.

  72. gayle

    “And that tool at Reclusive Leftist needs to ask themselves why misogynist swear words have more “weight” behind them than non-misogynist vulgarities. Why, for instance, does it not suffice to call a woman an asshole? Why is “bitch” so much more satisfying and demeaning to most people than a non-gendered insult?”

    I agree with your argument, however, Violet is no tool. You could make your case without the insult.

    I had to chuckle when you used Shakes as an example of how to use insults. Don’t get me wrong, I like Shakesville a lot, but they use Douchebag with regularity and their attempts to justify it don’t have anything to do with how it’s used in the real world. For example, I saw two young, college aged men calling each other douchebag on one of those Real Housewife shows the other night. As I watched them insult each other (” Hey, you’re a douchebag, heh heh.” “No, you’re the douchebag, douchbag.”) Something told me they were not using this word because the object in question is bad for women’s bodies.

  73. Gayle

    Women are pitted against each other in the workplace (and out). This article is stupid, but it’s sort of nice to hear someone say they want to hire moms because I hear the opposite almost everywhere I go. It’s automatically assumed women who have kids are going high tail it out of the office for medical appointments, day care pick ups, snow emergencies etc., and those who are left in the office end up resenting it/her.

    Women who leave the workforce for a few years are doubly screwed. No one wants to hire a formerly high powered type who’s been away from her chosen career for 5 – 8 years, no matter how good her former references are. No one warns women of this, but really, you gotta start back at square one and people would rather hire newbies at low low wages than newly returning moms.

    I only see three possible solutions to this: women can stop having kids; women can evenly split all chores with their partners thereby making this a parent issue and not a mommy issue; or women can demand universal, government paid daycare, like they have in France.

  74. katrina

    Gayle, one of the first comments under the Daily Mail article said no-one in their right mind would hire women of child-bearing age. You don’t have to have kids for potential employers to assume all of the above.

  75. Butterflywings

    A ‘hack’ is a *bad* journalist, who writes for for cheap, nasty tabloid publications such as the Male.

    Afaik, it *is* illegal in the UK to ask job applicants personal questions along the lines of whether the applicant has or plans to have children (well, technically, it is only legal to do so if *all* applicants, male or female, were asked – equal treatment).

    Meh, I don’t really like children myself. I just often find them annoying. That said, I don’t go as far as to say they are a ‘lifestyle choice’, & I can accept that they are necessary. (Well, the world is overpopulated, but *some* are certainly necessary). So yeah, I do think it’s good that some people want to have and raise them.

    I like the idea of raising kids being a communal thing (to a point, I mean, parents should have overall control and responsibility, but everyone chipping in with childcare/ teaching sounds good). I mean, as long as I don’t have to change any nappies, and get to deal only with the kids that are old enough to hold a conversation, intelligent, and well behaved.

  76. ehartsay

    “Much as I like to trumpet the importance of a woman’s right to choose all things at all times, there’s one choice I simply cannot understand: the choice of an otherwise sane and healthy woman not to have children.”

    Notice the ‘poisoning the well’ tactic here – your ‘otherwise sane and healthy’ comment clearly states that the choice NOT to have children must be insane and unhealthy as a foregone conclusion. Without actually having PROVED it at all, you present it as a given. Why? If YOU want or like something, assuming that you are sane (and judging from this article that is a BIG assumption), all other sane people must think the same as you? Quite a large logical fallacy here, and were are only on the first paragraph. Not very promising.
    ….


    Yet if she says she hasn’t a shred of maternal feeling in her, moreover, if she says she would prefer to concentrate on her career and that a child would only get in the way of it, then my head might acknowledge her right to do so. But my heart whispers: ‘Lady, you’re weird.’

    So anyone who doesn’t like the same things as you is ‘weird’ by your book? And of course if she is ‘weird’ by YOUR book, she must be objectively really weird and damaged? And you are the one saying that OTHER people are the ones with the problems? Seriously? Archaeology is my life – that doesn’t mean that I need to expect that other people must want to be archaeologists too – and it doesn’t mean that I think that there is anything wrong with them if they don’t. I am confident and happy enough in my own self and path not to need to validate myself by negatively judging those who do not want to follow that path. It is a well known trope that those who are truly happy in what they do, do not feel the need to judge those who do not want the same thing.


    It was welcome news, therefore, to discover this week that I am not alone.

    Because if other people share the same delusion or bigoted idea, that makes it all OK? Would you say the same to those who are racist or homophobic? It is OK, because there are others who feel the same?
    A stereotype being makes it no less bigoted.

    As a result, it is these single-track careerists who are increasingly likely to be vilified, refused jobs and denied promotion because many employers believe them to lack what the study calls ‘an essential humanity’. And I know exactly what they mean.

    I’m sure you do – it is already pretty clear that you can’t look beyond your own choices and lifestyle to allow that others may also be valid.

    And if that touch of ‘essential humanity’ – or its absence – colours such notably tough professions, it’s hardly surprising that employers are starting to notice that the same applies across the spectrum of workplaces.

    *Blinks* wait a minute – where exactly have you proven anything about lack of ‘essential humanity’? Did you drop a whole paragraph? The only mention you made was an idea held by some employers, and now you are trying to pretend that it is an established fact. You are trying to sneak in an unproven claim (a lack of humanity in those who don’t want kids) as a given fact. If you suggest that people who don’t have (or want) kids are less human you had better have something to support such an outrageous and offensive statement. How dare you.

    Of course, we need not be silly about it.
    Nobody wishes to see a female soldier in combat with a six-week-old infant in one arm and a rifle in the other.

    Assuming that she even WANTS the kid.

    ….But most jobs aren’t like that – and most children don’t stay babies for long.

    So what? Those who REALLY want to have kids will find a way to make it work, except for those hardest jobs. Therefore, those who don’t may NOT really want kids at all. Why is this such a shocking concept? Aside from the fact that YOU really like being a mother, and wanted to do it and were attracted to kids! Not everyone is the same as you. That does not make them wrong, damaged or faulty in some way. You are not the default for all women, and your personality is not the be all and end all for all women..

    They’re not there to compete for the attentions of the male executives;
    And women who don’t have kids are? Going after men is connected to whether or not you are in a committed sexual relationship, not whether you have children. You are conflating SINGLE and childless – these are not the same.

    …and they’re there because they have mouths to feed other than their own and shoes to buy for someone else’s feet.

    So, I am not going to work hard because I am only paying my own rent, buying my own food and clothes and medications? If I don’t have kids, I can just live on air? Or does it just matter less if *I* eat and have a place to live?

    Two-thirds of working mothers, a recent survey found, could not provide for the children they love in the manner they would wish if they lost their jobs. So there’s incentive for you.

    And if I lost my job, I couldn’t eat either – is that somehow less important? And I would have LESS access to public help, so I would be in WORSE shape. There is much less of a safety net for people without kids.


    The prioritising that may baffle other people is a cinch for a woman who has spent years juggling a household. Negotiating skills? A request for 10 per cent off an overdue invoice is nothing to a woman who has had to broker a deal on Britain’s Got Talent versus bedtime.

    Because if you don’t have children, you don’t have a household? Are you seriously suggesting that a deal that could affect people’s job security is LESS important than one kid’s bedtime?????


    When it comes to emergencies, if you have run all the way to a clinic with a terrified toddler vomiting down your neck then, trust me, a package delayed in transit is a piece of cake.

    And again, emergencies only count (or exist) if they are baby related?

    And if those are the tangibles, the intangibles – the ‘essential humanity’ – are more important still.

    So? Are you saying that those without children don’t have ‘essential humanity’? Are you only allowed to get to be human after having kids? And does this mean that you don’t think your kids are really fully human yet?


    You cannot be a mother without knowing something about selflessness, compassion, generosity, commitment, fierce loyalty and plain hard work.

    Actually, you CAN very well be a mother and learn none of those things. Not a GOOD mother, but not all mothers ARE.
    Note the unspoken implication that the women who don’t have kids do NOT have those things. This implies that the ONLY way to knowing something about “selflessness, compassion, generosity, commitment, fierce loyalty and plain hard work” is to have kids. I would love to see you back this up! Why do you have to have kids for any of the above? Yes, you can develop in those areas through kids, but there are countless other ways, not any less important or valid. People are either originally essentially decent in those areas, or they are not. If they are, they do not need to have kids to develop as a person.

    You cannot – surely – be a boss and not value assets such as those in your staff.

    But apparently only in those members of your staff who have a similar personal life to yourself? Or does the ‘good’ boss assume that only the people who have a similar personal life to her could have those good qualities? Funny, that sounds more like a BIGOTED boss to me. Do you have the same views of people who don’t have the same sexual orientation or religion as you?

    …But, more than all the things we want, we actually need our children; they complete us as women, they are our light and our love and our legacy.

    And so all other women need to feel the same? Who made YOU the judge of the entire gender? There is something wrong with me because I am complete as a person myself? Do you tell the lesbians that they are wrong because they don’t need a man to complete them? I have different lights, different lives and different legacies than you. You are not the basis for measuring the lives and interests of other people – you are not the default woman, and you have no basis for telling me what should complete me.


    We feel desperately sorry for those who yearn for children they cannot have; the unwilling barren, if you will. But when we meet a woman who chooses her childlessness in the belief that there is something out there worth more, we smile politely even while – once again – our guts whisper: ‘Lady, you’re weird.’

    Why? What have you proved here? Every single argument you make is flawed and based on unspoken assumptions and leaps in logic. First you say that you feel that someone who does not want the same as you is weird, just because they are not like you and you can’t understand it. Now here you present it as some sort of objective observation. You feel that they are weird because they are not you, and because of that they are weird.

    So three cheers for the employers who are catching on, the ones who don’t want to people their workforces with the cold, the calculating, the sad and the mad. The only question is: what took you so long?

    And here you take it even further – now you feel free to insult me openly. How dare you impose your life on mine?
    Each of the things you say here has not been even remotely openly or honestly addressed, yet alone proven. You have not once clearly discussed women who don’t want kids –instead you talk about mothers and their supposed characteristics. Apparently, that was supposed to imply that women who don’t want kids don’t have any of those characteristics. I guess by implying in a sneaky way you didn’t think that you have to support what you say. Mothers are ‘caring’ and ‘hard working’? Well apparently that is supposed to mean that non-mothers are not? Why? How did you make this point, let alone support it?
    Cold? Where did you get this from? Why is not wanting what you want cold? You have never supported this in anyway. The same for calculating. Again no proof. Sad? According to whom? So now I have to be sad if I don’t have what you do, regardless if I want it or not? And MAD???? Here we really see your bigotry, and crazed narcissism straight out. You honestly think that if someone is not like you and doesn’t want to be like and live your life they must be crazy. If you ask me, THAT is the truly insane point of view.

  77. Jezebella

    Now that I know what a “hack” is, I can ask this question: exactly how many people does a hack employ, really? Does a Daily Mail columnist actually need an entire staff, or is she just imagining what she would do if she happened to be an employer? Clearly, if she *was* an employer, she’d have to obey the law and not discriminate against people based on their parental status. Although we all know it’s possible to do so without strictly breaking the law.

  78. RIChris

    The term childless is used much as the term penniless, as though something necessary was lacking. Not necessarily so.

  79. Melissa

    “Essential humanity” has nothing to do with becoming or being a parent. Life experiences are just that, life experiences. They may enrich, teach and deepen you, or they may turn you to the seductive path of the chronic asshole. The woman who wrote the article obviously has traveled far down the asshole path.

    I notice this horrid woman uses patriarchy approved descriptors for women; “selflessness, compassion, generosity, commitment, fierce loyalty and plain hard work.”

    Not that those are bad qualities, but they could decribe my dog.

  80. Spiders

    “When someone says something mean about childless women, is it really useful to start bashing mothers?”
    Not to mention kids.

    Oh, and “working mothers”? All women work, they just don’t all get paid for it.

    @Notorious Ph.D. wonder what it would be like if those of us who have made a choice not to have children of our own went around telling people who did have children: “Oh sure, you like them now, but you’ll change your mind.”

    Just to add a different perspective and one that isn’t based on media stereotypes of motherhood. Having had kiddos back in the pre-lightbulb days and for all the usual reasons, I would say it *is* possible to change your mind.
    Of course, my kiddos are young adults now and being a single-parent family we have evolved into a very solid and supportive unit that is without hierarchy and with no more vomit than the average group of roomies has.
    However, I not only do not glorify the role of motherhood to other women and girls, I actively discourage it and if my opinion is asked I’m honest and say that no it is too great a disadvantage to women to have children.
    So while I love the kiddos more than any other people, I have in fact changed my mind about parenthood in general. It’s just a bad idea all round, I say.

    @Catherine Martell. Thankyou.

  81. goblinbee

    Catherine Martell, any time you’re gone for a while, I miss you.

  82. Valerie M

    it happens quite regularly at Shakesville and generally turns out to be more amusing and accurate than already-existing vulgarities

    It’s great that they still do that, just unfortunate that the blog has basically been overtaken by male interests in other ways. After seeing not one but two pro-porn references I haven’t been back much.

  83. Antoinette Niebieszczanski

    Jeez, a gal can’t win. Some decline to hire those of active breeding age because they’re going to be preoccupied with baby-producing and -rearing. Along with kiddos, they also spawn higher insurance rates. So here comes this piece a work harshing on those of us who, for whatever reason, choose not to engage in the process. No matter which side you come down on, you’re Wrong.

    Christopher Guest had it right. There’s no sin like that of being a woman.

  84. Agasaya

    Mearl wrote: Guys who PLAN to be fathers certainly think about setting up their careers and their mortgages and their savings, and they renovate the hell out of their houses with the idea of raising a family etc.

    Society doesn’t penalize males for having the potential to reproduce. Having active swimmers doesn’t hamper them in obtaining employment at usual salary/benefits levels. Many employers like Dads because they know Dad will be more dependent upon his salary and benefits and therefore easier to control (they call it more ‘stable’). A woman with kids is automatically considered to be ‘unstable’ as an employee. Boss blames her for making HIM uncomfortable when he either grants or refuses her leave time as needed.

    If men are badly treated in the workplace it’s because that’s the manner in which men prefer to express dominance over one another without the need to engage in hand to hand combat. Men are looked down upon for using ‘the kiddies’ as an excuse for not putting in overtime or working those extra hours at home without extra pay. It isn’t ‘manly’ and employers automatically say, ‘Why isn’t the little woman taking care of things? This guy must have an unstable marriage. Nix the bonus and promotion’. Mom is responsible for Dad keeping his job by doing the impossible – being a working mom and a largely solo parent.

    As for two air traffic controllers not having kids? Good choice, high pressure job and little flexibility with hours. How many people who want kids even choose a job like that? Parenting is a sacrifice of personal goals. Before kidlet comes along, it’s about the parents. Afterwards, it has to be about the kid’s needs. All intentional parents quickly learn that no one is going to make it easier for them to raise children. That haz to be mommy’s job. Even if she can’t find a paying job.

  85. Twisty

    Meh, I don’t really like children myself. I just often find them annoying. That said, I don’t go as far as to say they are a ‘lifestyle choice’, & I can accept that they are necessary.

    “I don’t like kids” is the moral equivalent of “I don’t like Mexicans.”

  86. katrina

    “I don’t like kids” is the moral equivalent of “I don’t like Mexicans.”

    Well, if you’re giving out moral equivalents, I’d like to know if women saying “I love kids!” is the moral equivalent of men saying “I love women!”

  87. Kelly

    “our guts whisper: ‘Lady, you’re weird.’”

    “Whispering guts? Guts that whisper in complete sentences? Now that’s weird.”

    For some reason this part reminded me of that wretched windbag of a patriarch from my childhood, George Banks:

    “My dear, never confuse efficiency with a liver complaint.”

  88. charlotte

    “enthrobben the schadenfreude of women readers”–you’re a goddess of words!

    As someone who’s made the transition from childless-by-choice into a working-mother-by-choice in her 40s, I suppose I can’t really contribute rightfully to the discussion. I will have to say, though, that if you use your child to complete you, something’s wrong. Children exist to grow into independent socially responsible beings, but not to complete anyone.

  89. bonobobabe

    Cuntalina? So, putting a cutesy, diminuative suffix on the end makes it OK to call a woman a cunt? And you’re supposed to be a radical feminist? On what planet is it OK for a radical feminist to call a woman a cunt? Twisty, you have seriously lost the plot.

  90. Spiders

    “I don’t like kids” is the moral equivalent of “I don’t like Mexicans.”

    Well, if you’re giving out moral equivalents, I’d like to know if women saying “I love kids!” is the moral equivalent of men saying “I love women!”

    I would say not. When men say they lurv women they are refering to sexual predation.

    Saying that you just don’t like this or that social group or class of people based on whatever commonality you believe they are characterised by, is a form of racism.

    Children are human, with full entitlement to human rights as far as I’m concerned. They’re not merely extensions or property of big people, and as a class they are totally oppressed and marginalised.

    Hate speech against them is sanctioned for all the same reasons that hate speech against women is sanctioned, and it really ain’t cool.

  91. Larkspur

    ….We feel desperately sorry for those who yearn for children they cannot have; the unwilling barren, if you will….

    I cannot imagine how this might sound to a woman who wanted children but who, for whatever reason, is unable to give birth to them. And let’s not forget parents whose children did not live to adulthood. On Sarler’s planet, there is no possibility for privacy. Unless you want to be consigned to weird lady less-than-human status (and apparently, have no need of employment), you’d have to disclose to Sarler that not only did you very much want children, but you had them, and loved them profoundly, and were genuinely grief-stricken (one assumes Sarler wields the grief-o-meter and can tell if your grief meets her minimum requirements) when they were killed in a car crash with their father, whom you also loved.

    Such a woman can’t ever tell Sarler “no, I don’t have children” in order to spare herself the pain of reiterating the story to a perfect stranger, without invoking Sarler’s judgment of her, not to mention that if the meeting is an employment interview, risking possibly Sarler’s decision not to hire her (which decision she apparently feels is part of a sensibility sweeping the nation’s employers). That is really really mean. Someone that mean is raising her own children? Luckily children are remarkably resilient.

    “I don’t like kids” is the moral equivalent of “I don’t like Mexicans.”” I disagree. No way. Not in this instance. Not taking into account the rest of what butterflywings wrote. It isn’t fair. Taken in context, if I had children, butterflywings would not be my first choice to baby-sit, but if there were an emergency, I’d know that she’d watch them and protect them. Relating to babies and young children is a whole different experience than relating to an individual of a different ethnic or racial background than yourself. Nothing in what butterflywings said suggests to me that random children are endangered, physically or emotionally, from her proximity. She doesn’t want any of her own, and she doesn’t enjoy their company. That doesn’t make her a bigot.

    There’s only one good reason to have children, and that’s because you really really really want to. Of course, many of us arrive without having been really really really wanted, but like I said, children are resilient. They – that is, we – also benefit enormously from the kindness of strangers. Even weird lady childless women like me. Good elementary school teachers don’t have to have had children. And I cannot tell you how many times I have done utterly unremarkable things like cupping my hand around the sharp corner of a cafe table as a youngster barrels by. We’re all in it together.

  92. mir

    Though it was awfully tempting to comment something snarky and horrible under ‘Cringe-of-the-Day’, I’ll keep it here:

    Twisty,

    You are like a light unto the radfem internetosphere. You are insightful and hilarious on all things patriarchy-blaming and I have learned more about feminist critique, and my own feminism, from your posts and the Blametariat than from anywhere else, anywhere, ever, bar none. But hey- you called a woman a cunt. With no comment so far.

    Speaking for myself my obstreporal lobe is BLOWN. It’s nagging at me and I keep checking back here for something- a “whoops” or an explanation or just a “Yeah I said it. Fuck all y’all”. Nothing.

    Can you take a few and say something about it? Please?

  93. Kuleana

    It’s great that they still do that, just unfortunate that the blog has basically been overtaken by male interests in other ways.

    Yeah, well, we’re sitting around here on a blog where it’s okay to call women cunts…If that’s not a male interest, I don’t know what is.

  94. Larkspur

    I am so not getting involved in this cuntalina discussion. I learned my lesson back in the great blow-job debacle. Include me out.

  95. Nolabelfits

    I think Twisty just borrowed language from the patriarchy and used it in sarcasm. This is the kind of woman who gets patronizing inclusion in the boy’s club for being a tool. They would find her worthy of a condescending diminutive. Twisty just found one that shocks because it pretty much reflects what men think of women. Cunt vs. cunt worthy of infantilizing with an endearing diminutive.

    Thats what I figured anyway.

  96. Felicity

    I second Nolabelfits, cuntalina seemed an obvious reference to a woman who flatters the patriarchy and the hatred (‘cunt’) she happily brings onto herself and embraces.. calling herself a ‘cuntalina’.

    Nothing makes it harder to be a feminist, as if it’s not hard enough already, than those in the movement jumping down your throat at a slip, or telling you off about how a feminist should be this – should say that. What other movement is aggressive at members not jumping through hoops? I think it’s something to do with the stigma of being a feminist, the defence is taking the moral high ground on ABSOLUTELY everything in the world. If you angrily cared about every ill in the world, you wouldn’t have time for ordered thinking. Clearly we could all be doing more, so calling out a feminist has always seemed hypocritical. The feminist movement is a hard enough movement to be involved in, normal feminists hatin’ on radical feminists, the WHyyy?! reaction from friends, family. When the feminists themselves start to make it even harder you wonder why? Maybe we’re still aggressively worried about a positive feminist image. Feminism is such a hard cause to fight for, internally, externally, but alas IBTP.

  97. TwissB

    I give Twisty much credit for caring about the meaning of words and for maintaining a blog/forum that discourages ugly verbal mud throwing, and that is why I reproach Twisty for lapsing into an obvious hate term that no convoluted appeals to sarcasm can explain or excuse. Isn’t it apparent that we each speak for ourselves when we use the privilege of posting here?

  98. Kelly

    So what you’re all proposing is that Twisty has finally given in to hipster irony with “cuntalina”? Oh, say it ain’t so.

  99. Nolabelfits

    I made no claim to speak for anyone else. JMO. There’s my internet required disclaimer.

  100. speedbudget

    Wasn’t there a discussion in the comments a while ago about using the word “cunt”? I think I remember that. I can’t remember how it ended up, but it seemed that some people don’t mind the word, some people do.

    For my part, I don’t care. You can use whatever words you want. Other people can use whatever words they want. What matters to me is the context and body of work that precedes the word. In my book, Twisty doesn’t lose any feminist cred for using a diminutive of a word some consider offensive and some don’t. It’s akin to “biotch” for me.

    Just my two cents, since I was not involved in the Major Blow Job Blow Out.

  101. hellonhairylegs

    Maybe using the word cuntalina was a Freudian slip of some sort?

    Or maybe everyone is imperfect, given that we’re in that messy human condition all the time.

  102. bonobobabe

    Nothing makes it harder to be a feminist, as if it’s not hard enough already, than those in the movement jumping down your throat at a slip, or telling you off about how a feminist should be this – should say that.

    First of all, in the sidebar, it says that this blog is for advanced blamers, that this is not a feminist primer. But calling a woman the C word is so, um, basic that it seems like someone who is such an advanced radical feminist would know better.

    Also, a while back, Twisty claimed that she stopped using the word “fucktard,” b/c someone enlightened her that it was a slam against mentally retarded people. Well, aren’t women just as important as the MR/DD population? Or has Twisty joined the happy, post-modernist intersectionality movement where everyone matters EXCEPT women? You can’t be homophobic, b/c men are gay. You can’t be ableist, b/c there are handicapped men. You can’t be classist, b/c there are poor men out in the streets. But it’s OK to be misogynist, because that just has to do with women, and not men. Oh, lets feel sorry for all the fat, poor, handicapped, non-white, non-straight men in the world, but who gives a shit about a bunch of cunts, right?

    What other movement is aggressive at members not jumping through hoops?

    Um, that would be any other movement that actually has principles behind it. I think if you claimed to be an environmentalist and then said that you flush your toilet 20 times a day whether you use it or not, the other environmentalists would jump all over you. If you claimed to be a vegan and then went on a canned hunt, other vegans might get a little miffed at that. There is a difference between harassing women for doing what they do to get by in a patriarchy, but there are some things that are just so cut-and-dried, like calling women cunts.

  103. undercover punk

    Cuntalina?!? CUNT-A-LINA?!?!? O.M.G. Well, if you’re saying that, I’m saying this:

    Refusing to be accountable for one’s words is an implicit expression of superiority reminiscent of Patriarchy. That’s how males retain their authority; they refuse to be accountable for their atrocious behavior—nor is there a social institution that requires them to be accountable. (No, the law doesn’t work.)

    I mean, are you done with blogging? Have you become so far above reproach that you’re pulling CUNTALINA out of your ass and dropping it like heart-warming nature crap onto the internet? Unequal power dynamics are not feminist. Especially when you scare the Blametariat into relative silence by threatening to stop blogging.

    Even IF hellonhairylegs is right and you made a mistake, be a WOMAN and apologize. Or don’t. Claim that you don’t care what anyone thinks and you’ll repeat a Cuntalina chant accompanied by the Butt Dance until the cows come home. But say SOMETHING!

  104. Twisty

    I grasp that some of you are upset that I described a woman knob as a cuntalina. I am not surprised that so many of you want to revoke my license over it; feminists are a hardcore lot. It’s not a very nice or feminist word, cuntalina, that’s true. Perhaps using it in a moment of insouciance invalidates my entire worldview.

  105. Spiders

    What’s that saying ? “The taller they are the harder they fall”?

  106. Inkling

    Apparently none of us are immune from patriarchy. And apparently Twisty Faster is not an infallible human being. Why that comes as an earth-shattering revelation to some people, I have no clue.

    There’s a saying about not putting people on pedestals, and the logic behind that exhortation *is* infallible.

  107. Felicity

    bonobobabe –

    I’m aware this isn’t for beginners, I’m no beginner, I’ve called a woman a cunt before. It’s like you have to be this impossible person to be feminist, caring about every grain of rice you eat affecting somebody in Africa, thinking backwards on everything said. It’s a little claustrophobic. And I don’t think it’s about principles either, feminism as a movement has always had a spotlight on it as it’s remarkably (for the equality it stands for) a completely untrusted movement in society. This ensures we seem to flitter about what we want to say and obsess about what will get us nowhere. It’s entirely a result of the movement existing under a patriarchal culture that it seems feminists can be so nonsensical at times, (as well as brilliant and refreshing, but they seem to be rare).

    In our Uni’s women’s network, we tend to have two groups of feminists, those who speak the truth, and the truth is most important; and those who find it more important to jump down people’s throats and be pompous with where they’re going wrong. I thought intelligent radfems were liberated of this but apparently not.

  108. Kelly

    “Perhaps using it in a moment of insouciance invalidates my entire worldview.”

    The Imus defense?

  109. lollyhead

    Well, so can we reclaim “cunt”? I wanna use it as a term of endearment for all the strong wimmin I know.

  110. bonobobabe

    I’m aware this isn’t for beginners, I’m no beginner, I’ve called a woman a cunt before. It’s like you have to be this impossible person to be feminist, caring about every grain of rice you eat affecting somebody in Africa, thinking backwards on everything said.

    Oh, I completely see your point. I do find it difficult as well. There is always someone ready to pounce on you for the littlest transgression.

    However, the C word is pretty basic and obvious. There are nuances to misogyny and sexism, just as there are nuances to racism and all the other isms and phobias. Often, black feminists and white feminists get into rows because of something that the black feminists say is racist that the white feminists don’t see. That’s understandable, but it’s NOT understandable for someone to say that they are not racist and use the N word. Same thing with saying you are a feminist and using the C word. It’s so obvious and basic. This isn’t a nuanced thing at all.

  111. Pulsar

    “I don’t like kids” is the moral equivalent of “I don’t like Mexicans.”

    I also disagree. “Kids” are a temporary developmental stage–not permanent. One may dislike qualities of people in that particular stage for various reasons (immaturity, size, etc.), but most people move on from that stage. The term “Mexican” is generally acknowledged as something permanent, therefore making a judgment on an intrinsic quality in a person.

    Re the whole cuntalina incident that has messily exploded all over this blog: My sister and I make an effort to take back words that the patriarchy deems diminutive (bitch, vagina, cunt, etc.). For example, we try to use “bitchin’” as a positive descriptor, and obviously never direct it towards any person as a slur. Another strategy employed by many women I know is to wear these words traditionally interpreted as slurs with pride, voluntarily calling themselves bitches (denoting a strong, courageous woman). I have observed this many times, some tastefully and some patriarchy-compliant. Sometimes it highlights our mutual status as women, sometimes it is a sarcastic critique of how we are viewed by mainstream society. I don’t know why Twisty used the term “cuntalina” but I gave her the benefit of the doubt.

    There is a difference between writing an intelligent critique and an inflammatory, discord-sowing accusation.

    Lastly, @Spiders, what the fuck? It sounds like you are taking sadistic pleasure at this indictment of Twisty, a sentiment that is not welcome at any site of radfem discussion. I don’t defend Twisty because she is my “idol”, I defend her like I would any woman being disproportionately scrutinized.

  112. undercover punk

    It’s not a very nice or feminist word, cuntalina, that’s true.

    Thank you for acknowledging the misogynist meaning of cuntalina. You had a moment of feminist indifference. I get it. That’s all I wanted to hear.

    Perhaps using it in a moment of insouciance invalidates my entire worldview.

    No, it doesn’t. But, really, what kind of feminists would we be if we didn’t CHECK each other? I can only speak for myself, but I WANT other women to call me out when I’ve gone too far. I hope they ask me nicely the 1st time. I hope they allow me the occasional human indiscretion. But I hope they say something. That’s what intelligent, radical feminist Sisterhood is about. At least, that’s what I think.

  113. Comrade PhysioProf

    Twisty must be EXPELLED from Savage Death Island!!!111!!ELEVENTY1!!11!!!!

  114. tinfoil hattie

    Hyperbole, twisty. We don’t want to “revoke your feminist license” over it. We want you to say, “Gee, you’re right – I fucked up, and I’m sorry.”

  115. wendyann

    Twisty, it sucks to be you. All these judgmental people jumping all over your shit for speaking the truth. Some women are cunts. All these prissy faces need to deal with that fact.

    I’ve gotten very angry and radical as I’ve gotten older. Women who collaborate with the oppression of other women deserve to be called the vile names their side (the menz) use on other women. Giving women a pass on their behavior is basically saying women aren’t responsible for their actions because they live in patriarchy.

    In war, if one collaborates with the enemy to save hir own skin and causes the deaths (and or oppression) of their neighbors, are they not guilty? Of course they are!

    I’m not expressing myself very well. Know who else I think are cunts? All these people crawling out of the woodwork to get all up in your face just because they can. The glee with which they do so makes me hate my fellow human beings even more than I already did – which I did not think was possible.

  116. mir

    “All these judgmental people jumping all over your shit for speaking the truth. Some women are cunts.”

    Gee, it appears we’ve “reclaimed” the word already. The revolution is over, break out the champagne flutes.

  117. Another lurker

    What wendyann said.

  118. Spiders

    “Lastly, @Spiders, what the fuck? It sounds like you are taking sadistic pleasure at this indictment of Twisty, a sentiment that is not welcome at any site of radfem discussion.”
    No. You totally misread me. Seems to be a lot of that going on around here lately. I’m a great admirer of Twisty, but I know she ain’t perfect, and I think this outrage or whatever it is, is a measure of people’s respect for her. The greater you think someone is, the more disappointed you’ll be when they turn out to not be superhuman.
    I don’t really care about the cunt thing; it’s minor compared to all the awesome that I read here.

  119. Citizen Jane

    Said WendyAnn: “Some women are cunts. All these prissy faces need to deal with that fact.

    This is exactly what I was talking about above, and you are doing the exact same thing as this woman you are so quick to call a “cuntalina.”

    I was the same. I have a career that means everything to me, and I was infuriated because assumptions about me as a woman of childbearing age was ruining my career. Everyone assumed I was just waiting to get pregnant, at which point I would throw away everything I had spent half my life working towards in order to joyfully fling myself into the position of some dude’s houseslave.

    Who did I blame for these assumptions that were messing up my career? Was it the employers making sexist assumptions about me? Was it all the fathers who couldn’t do their share of the housework and child care? Was it the deeply embedded system that works so hard to make women feel like there is something horribly wrong with them if they don’t spawn and then give up their entire lives in order to relieve their husbands of any work caring for that spawn? A million other facets of a patriarchal system?

    Nope. I blamed the women. I was furious with the women who “chose” to throw out their careers because they were the ones responsible for the assumptions about me. Then one day I came across this blog. “I blame the patriarchy,” it said, and it suddenly became clear. It’s the patriarchy’s fault!

    It’s easy to blame someone more oppressed than you, and it’s still pretty easy to blame someone equally oppressed as you. That’s why we need people like Twisty to tell us that when a system is screwing us over, we need to blame the system, not the other people who are trying to get by within the system.

    Are we here to blame the patriarchy? Or are we here to blame the women who do what they feel they must in order to make their way in a patriarchy?

  120. Spiders

    I don’t know, Jane. I support what you’re saying, and I call people out all the time for their misogyny, but stone the fuckin’ crows, some women push me to the limit of my patience. The Sara Palins, the Miranda Devines, the whoever that woman in the article is. They’ve taken the meagre gains made by women over the last few decades, to elevate themselves and then tear down other women. I think they know what they’re doing, and I don’t think I owe them any respect.
    If a dude said the same thing, I’d be ripping him a new one sure, if Twisty were prominent within the msm or pop culture and said it, it would be dangerous, but here in this community, can’t we let it slide and give each other a break? I think many of us here stress out a lot of the time just from being radical feminists in a patriarchy. We need a bit of safe space to vent without always being perfect radfems.

  121. MariaS

    Cunt is problematic because most people regard it as THE most offensive swear word ever. Bound up in using it to describe something heinous is the fact that the force it carries as a swear word is totally based on woman-hating.

    I don’t think the N word can be successfully reclaimed (from my point of view as a non-American woman of colour who is not of African descent), it has always been a term of denigration, born of racism, and has no alternative meaning that can be attached to it.

    Cunt once upon a time was just a word used to refer to part of a woman’s body. Somewhere a long the way it became used to insult people. Plus, for a man to call a woman a cunt is to reduce her to a sexual object.

    Cunt as an insult tells me that the part of my body that is between my legs, part of me, is the worst thing in the world. That it is totally shameful for anyone to be compared to it. I can’t help having a cunt. It’s shamefulness is part of me – all I can do is shun it as much as possible and have little to do with it. That’s the message that cunt as an insult carries for a woman.

    I don’t have many words for that part of me – this stops me talking about it. I’d be happy to use cunt as a name for it.

    Me, I’m struggling not to use the word bastard. It’s satisfying to throw at people who behave horribly, but a small voice at the back of my head is now always telling me, that’s really a slur on a woman and on her freedom to not be part of a patriarchal institution.

  122. Agasaya

    “Kids” are a temporary developmental stage–not permanent.

    The effects upon a child of being raised by someone, male or female, who resented their existence, is most certainly permanent. If that child is a male, that resentment and rejection can turn to misogyny and abusive behavior. If female, from where would their sense of self-esteem arise? Certainly not from the male population of the world.

    Parenthood is also permanent as a state.

  123. bonobobabe

    Some women are cunts. All these prissy faces need to deal with that fact.

    Well, would you say that some blacks are niggers? If it bothers you to say “nigger,” but not “cunt,” then guess what? You’re a misogynist. Women can be misogynists, too. And if it doesn’t bother you to say “nigger,” then guess what? You’re a racist, too.

  124. Kelly

    Women who collaborate with the oppression of other women deserve to be called the vile names their side (the menz) use on other women.

    All of us struggle under and with the P and not one of us “deserve(s)” any of it; including being called “vile names”. I really hate when anyone tries to justify an act of insult or abuse by claiming that the person “deserve(ed)” it. So what you’re saying is, she asked for it? Nice. I’m always amazed at the extent a true believer™ will go to defend the indefensible. Twisty has never to my knowledge advocated blind, unquestioning acceptance.

  125. wendyann

    Women who side with the patriarchy get no quarter from me. Closeted gay politicians who legislate away my rights or try to keep me in 2nd class citizen status also get no quarter from me.

    I’m angry and for damned good reason.

    Oh, bonobobabe, tossing out the M word – I’m so a-scared!

    I’ll say it again – women who collaborate deserve no respect as women. And I don’t mean women who wear heels and or lipstick when I talk about collaboration. I’m talking about high-profile women who do this shit for fun and profit.

  126. Pulsar

    @Agasaya: I believe you are under the impression I was referring to the situation of a parent. I never mentioned this so I don’t understand the basis of your critique. Of course someone who doesn’t like kids shouldn’t be a parent, this is obvious. I was simply pointing out that there is a significant difference between “I don’t like kids” and “I don’t like Mexicans.”

  127. givesgoodemail

    “it’s NOT understandable for someone to say that they are not racist and use the N word”

    Does that include Richard Pryor?

    Speaking of famous comics, remember this Carlinism:

    “Words have NO power, in and of themselves. None! It’s the context in which they’re used which gives them power.”

  128. jojodunc

    I kind of like the word “asshole” myself. It’s gender neutral, everyone has one, and most everyone *is* one at one time or another.

  129. wendyann

    Quoting

    All of us struggle under and with the P and not one of us “deserve(s)” any of it; including being called “vile names”.

    Do you think the following “struggle” under patriarchy?

    Ann Coulter
    Phylis Schlafly
    Concerned Women For America

    I’m not going to be tedious and list hundreds of them.

    Here’s a test – if your land is invaded and you coooperate with the invaders, causing the death and oppresion of your neighbors, are you not to blame? Are you only doing what you need to do to survive so it’s all good?

    And of course the invaders are to blame, but are the collaborators spared all responsibility? No they are not.

    And for the person who called me a true believer defending Twisty? Do I sound like a true believer? I actually do blame *some* women. I blame privileged women who use that privilege to oppress not-so-privileged women. I do not excuse anti-women behavior on the sole basis of having women parts.

    Not exactly a true believer of the party line that women are entirely without blame under patriarchy, now is that?

    And I know that cunt is a slur – some people deserve it. I seethe with anger sometimes and sometimes it’s gotta come out. I’m glad I’m surrounded by such perfect women.

    As a gender non-conforming dyke who has not been able “pass” as anything else since about the age of twelve, I sure do blame SOME women and their behavior for oppressing other women. To not do so is to not face reality.

    Doesn’t anyone feel any anger? Or are we all cloistered in our ivory towers, bemoaning the state of the world.

    Of course cunt is an anti-feminist slur – meaning it’s perfect for anti-feminist women.

  130. HistoricUpstart

    Wendy Ann, you need to start your own blog, STAT! I love your blamin’ style.

  131. Spiders

    Pulsar, did you see my response to your accusation that I was taking “sadistic pleasure”? I’d like to have that cleared up.

  132. Kuleana

    Some women are cunts.

    FUCK THAT. Seriously, fuck that to the goddamn moon and beyond. My vagina is not some vile, dirty slur that should be used to describe, say, collaborators with Nazis. Really, how the hell can ANYBODY not realize how horrible and woman-hating it is to PROUDLY use that as a slur? I can understand slip-ups when particularly angry, as Twisty described in her most recent post. On the other side of the cunt debate, although I don’t really think efforts to reclaim cunt will necessarily succeed, at least those efforts are arguably made in good faith. What I don’t understand is being PROUD to view vaginas as the most vile, horrible thing possible. What’s wrong with my vagina that it deserves to be viewed as evil incarnate? And how the fuck is this type of view not a part of rape culture — our vaginas are vile and are really the worst things in the world, therefore it’s not such a big fucking deal to degrade us through them in horrible, hellish, indescribably awful ways. And proudly using “cunt” as an insult only adds to the shame that women feel about our bodies; it’s taken me a damn long time to accept that I’m not some foul fiend and that my vagina doesn’t smell disgusting and it’s not wretchedly ugly and I didn’t deserve to be repeatedly raped by my ex, but I know that many, many women — hell, most — never come to this place, in large part because they always hear people describing that most hated and mistreated part of their bodies in degrading, insulting ways.

    So while I don’t think we should beat each other up over every mistake, because it is damn hard and frustrating living in patriarchy, there is no excuse for proudly and explicitly endorsing insults that degrade us simply for being women, and that implicitly endorse the worst violence that is done to us.

  133. goblinbee

    wendyann: “Of course cunt is an anti-feminist slur – meaning it’s perfect for anti-feminist women.”

    I am not seeing this at all. I’m a huge Twisty fan, but I still cannot get my head around her wanting to use her own uniquely female body part as an insult.

  134. Jezebella

    Kuleana, ironic then that you use “fuck” as a term of degradation and violence, innit?

  135. Pulsar

    Spiders: I did. Another misconception now cleared up.

  136. JenniferRuth

    I quite like the word cunt – it sounds nice, rolling around your mouth.

  137. goblinbee

    JenniferRuth: “I quite like the word cunt – it sounds nice, rolling around your mouth.”

    I think the question here is, why would someone use it as an insult?

  138. JenniferRuth

    goblinbee: “I think the question here is, why would someone use it as an insult?”

    Maybe we could start calling everything that is awesome “cuntalicious”

  139. Pulsar

    Kind of like bubblicious? New gum flavor?

  140. goblinbee

    JenniferRuth: “Maybe we could start calling everything that is awesome ‘cuntalicious’”

    Now, THAT I could get behind. Love it!

  141. Valerie M

    So while I don’t think we should beat each other up over every mistake, because it is damn hard and frustrating living in patriarchy

    Yes.

    there is no excuse for proudly and explicitly endorsing insults that degrade us simply for being women, and that implicitly endorse the worst violence that is done to us.

    And yes again. Spot on.

  142. Agasaya

    Hi Pulsar,

    You wrote, “I was simply pointing out that there is a significant difference between “I don’t like kids” and “I don’t like Mexicans.

    The direction of my comments is not specific to your personal likes or dislikes. They are intended to clarify an issue about confusing the characteristics of others with our own reluctance to interact with a particular culture, gender or age group.

    Do you really find all children unlikeable? Or do you merely find the prospect of caring for a child, 24/7 to be unlikeable? They are very different conceptual frameworks. One speaks to the characteristics of all children. The latter speaks to your wishes to avoid handling the demands children make upon adults in order to thrive.

    The “P” doesn’t like women but regards us as a necessary evil for its continuation. Necessary evils never attain equality or emotional security, even if granted ‘legal’ protections. Your own inherent inferiority is still in evidence. Add to that a child’s inability to comprehend an expression of distaste as being impersonal, and you have a recipe for injustice.

    I was a specialist in developmental disabilities and administered programs largely employing women in poorly paid capacities, within male-led corporate hierarchies. The indifference of the men towards the women led to some women becoming indifferent to the children. They just became a means to a meager paycheck until escape was possible. I had to protect kids from actively abusive guardians and also from passively indifferent educators. Both were a danger to them. Things improved when I was able to protect staff from executive expressions of indifference or condemnation.

    It all runs downhill.

  143. Jezebella

    Whoa. Lightbulb moment. People hear me say “I don’t want children” and what they HEAR is “I don’t like children.” Huh. Now I finally understand why people that don’t know me very well (co-workers and the like) are so gobsmack-astonished when they see me enjoying interacting with a child.

  144. slade

    This Hack….isn’t she just playing that old game of ‘Divide and Conquer?’ Pit the Breeders against the Non-Breeders.

    I’ve never understood why, if you are a woman, you must be a Mother. Goddess…look at all the unwanted children out there. Look at the population of the world. Men aren’t supposed to be Fathers.

    Jill, I see why you called her what you did. Sometimes you just gotta let loose with a name that matches the deed….actually it sounds rather pretty….in a way.

    Best to you as always.

  145. Spiders

    It is possible to hate the expectation that women will be mothers, or the idea of being stuck caring for a baby/child 24/7, and even possible to hate *being* stuck caring for a baby/child 24/7 ( I did!) without transferring that hate onto children as a class or as individuals. Childhood might be a temporary stage, but children the class, are always here.

  146. Pulsar

    Agasaya:

    Listen, I understand what you’re saying and completely agree, your argument should be a given. What I don’t understand is why you are directing this at me as if I said something to the contrary? I’ve said this over and over: I never said “I don’t like kids.” Someone else upthread did so, you could direct this at them, if you so wish. What I said was that the sentiment of not liking kids is different from not liking Mexicans. That is all. I never said either one is justifiable, or that one is better or worse than the other, and to act like my act of pointing out a difference somehow indicates that I hate kids and Mexicans and Mexican kids is a logical fallacy. Where did I assert my “personal likes or dislikes”? I’m getting tired of saying this. For (hopefully) the last time: pointing out a difference between two sentiments does not mean you endorse either sentiment. Why are so many people making these bizarre assumptions? Rather, why is this still an issue?

  147. Larkspur

    Um, these threads are all running together in my head. I just posted a comment on this part of the topic (“children: gift from God or imps from hell?” O jeepers I’m kidding) at “Cuntalinagate”. So if you’re interested, you should read it there. I didn’t mean to fracture the discourse even further.

  148. Spiders

    Pulsar, let me clear this up for you. When it was pointed out that children are in fact a class of people who are oppressed and it’s not ok to hate on them, you got stuck on the “but it’s still not the same as hating Mexicans” thing.

    This is the same infuriating, pedantic, derailing, nitpicking tactic used by MRAs and liberal doods alike, when we try to raise feminist issues in non-feminist spheres.

    This frustrates feminists because we don’t believe that the humanity of women is up for debate at all, and we see this nitpicking as just a device to shut down feminist discussion.

    The same thing has happened here; children’s humanity is not up for debate. When you said that children’s oppression is not exactly the same as Mexican people’s oppression, it sounded to me like “But sometimes men get raped too!”.

    I hope this helps.

  149. Kuleana

    Kuleana, ironic then that you use “fuck” as a term of degradation and violence, innit?

    I use it to mean “that’s bullshit,” not as a metaphor for rape. Jesus H. Tapdancing Christ. But I’m glad that’s ALL you could find to criticize about my comment — care to elaborate on the rest since I’m apparently so goddamn wrong rather than looking for nits to pick in order to make yourself feel superior?

  150. Jezebella

    Do I care to elaborate? Christ, no! You think you can deploy “fuck” as a metaphor without it making a reference to sex, which leads me to believe that further discourse would be fruitless. Plus, I try to use my own personal blog for extensive bloviating and elaborating, not other people’s blogs.

  151. Pulsar

    Spiders, you’re interpreting me completely wrong. As I have said before, nowhere did I claim that either group is more or less oppressed. For example, would you agree that racism is different than sexism? They are alike in that they are both strains of oppression, and yet they have their differences. By saying that they are different am I claiming that one is not valid? Of course not. Somehow you came to the conclusion that I am debating “children’s humanity”. I hope you realize that explaining a difference between two things does not have to involve denying the validity of one or the other. If you thought that was what I was doing you were misled.

  152. Helen

    Well, would you say that some blacks are niggers? If it bothers you to say “nigger,” but not “cunt,” then guess what? You’re a misogynist. Women can be misogynists, too. And if it doesn’t bother you to say “nigger,” then guess what? You’re a racist, too.

    Bad simile. A woman calling another woman a Cuntalina maps to a man calling another man a Dickhead. Which is offensive, of course, but we all know men revere their dicks, so that should tell you something.

  153. Butterflywings

    Thanks Pular and Larkspur.
    ‘I don’t like Mexicans’ is really not the same thing as ‘I don’t like kids’.

    And yes, I choose not to have kids of my own, or to work with kids. A lot of parents and teachers etc don’t have that self-awareness, and do damage kids.

  154. Butterflywings

    Also, I never said kids weren’t an oppressed group. I do not actively *hate* kids, or think child abuse is OK.

    I agree that childhood being temporary doesn’t make it so, but there are characterisrics most kids have in common, whereas it is not factually true that all Mexicans have traits in common (and to think they do would be a gross generalisation, xenophobic, and probably racist).

    It was a flippant comment meant in the context of describing my personal experience, since all women are supposed to want teh ickle baybees…I was just pointing out that I don’t. Perhaps not the best thought out comment, but none of us our perfect.

    No comment on ‘cuntalina’…

  155. Spiders

    “but there are characterisrics most kids have in common”
    Oh and you know this despite not having much to do with kids?
    To keep arguing the point that saying you hate kids isn’t the EXACT equivalent as saying you hate Mexicans,is not a point that needed to be made, let alone laboured as much as it has been in this discussion. So what if there are subtle variations? You got the general point didn’t you? At least I hope you did.

    Anti-child discourses about how children are inherently bad/whiny/snot-nosed etc are right out of the Victorian era and are still used to justify a hell of a lot of abuse. As a social worker who sometimes has to enter the dark world of child protection, I find it really fucking offensive to hear people buying into the “Kids? can’t stand ‘em!” discourse, which is based on stereotypes and generalisations and really helps perpetuate the attitudes that perpetuate the abuse of people who are still in the stage of childhood.

    Seriously, pick on someone your own size.

  156. goblinbee

    Helen: “A woman calling another woman a Cuntalina maps to a man calling another man a Dickhead.”

    Bad simile. Dickhead does not pack nearly the same wallop as does cuntalina, when using either as an insult. It’s much more of an offense to be a woman or a woman’s parts.

  157. Cathy

    Catherine Martel, the “society shouldn’t have to pay for your brats, lady” attitude pisses me off too, especially when coupled with, “Society shouldn’t have to pay for your abortion, slut.”

  158. sevanetta

    Chriiiiiiist. Go away to a remote mountaintop village with no electricity for five days, and see what happens on the intarwebs in the interim.

    I cannot believe the over-reaction.

    Just do like my friend Cass does, lovelies. She decided she was going to reclaim the word ‘cunt’ and as part of that, she’d start using it as a term of endearment. So she started calling friends ‘her little cuntie’. La lala.

  159. Tupe

    Any time someone tells you that you have to DO something to ensure your basic humanity they’re pretty much fucked.

  160. ehartsay

    Myself:

    I do not want kids
    htis is not the same thing as saying that I do not like kids:

    I don’t like kids

    This is not the same things assaying that I *dislike* kids

    and it is certainly not the same hting as saying that I hate kids

    I do not like red-heads
    this means that I do not have the specific emotion of ‘liking’ for all red-heads,
    it does not mean that I specificially dislike redheads.

    When it coems to children, many of them do share certain characteristics that I either find to be irritating or can’t stand to deal with.
    This does not mean that I hate them,
    it does mean that I am not going to share much of my own space and time to take care of them

  161. Agasaya

    ehartsay,

    Okay, let’s try this again. This is about the theory you have posed here, whether or not it represents your personal views.

    ”I do not want kids.”

    Excellent judgment. It’s damned hard and you really have to want it badly to do it well. That statement says nothing negative about children or yourself.

    “I don’t like kids. This is not the same things assaying that I *dislike* kids… I do not like red-heads. This means that I do not have the specific emotion of ‘liking’ for all red-heads,
    it does not mean that I specificially dislike redheads.”

    There are certain semantic subtleties distinguishing ‘disliking’ from ‘not liking’ things. When applied to people or characteristics of people, the distinction ceases to matter in legal terms. Impact over intent is the legal litmus test for discriminatory speech. The fact that ‘dislike’ represents an active state while ‘not liking’ is more passive, matters little when applied to people. It places the onus of your negative feelings upon some characteristic of theirs.

    “I don’t like dealing with women in the workplace.” That isn’t really different from “I don’t care for dealing with children.” These statements would be better translated into, “I like my comfortable, male world-view too much to want to disrupt it because women require too much from me in the workplace without the usual sexual rewards that go with tolerating their crap outside of work.”

    OR

    “I like my comfortable adult life too much to disrupt it by dealing with kids who would just need too much from me and offer little in return for the effort.”

    Of course you don’t have to have children. Men can also choose to work away from anyplace where women work. However, how you discuss kids with others, and how that man represents his choice to other men has an impact upon society. We are all called upon to exercise a certain amount of patience, effort and expense (taxes for one) to see that kids aren’t abused and are raised to become educated, contributors to a stable society.

    Red hair may or may not seem attractive to you. That’s fine. But having pro or con feelings about redheads? That constitutes a personal remark moving away from your personal tastes to the realm of something others (e.g. redheads) are supposed to do to make your life happier.

    Interacting with the elderly can also be difficult but saying, “I don’t like old people.” is not going to express the reality of the situation and does harm to seniors.

    We are adults who are speaking with one another purely out of a common hatred for the baseless hatred of women. We can handle these concepts. Just look how upset everyone got around here regarding an epithet reflecting upon female genitalia. A physiological characteristic of women until the noun becomes an adjective representing a state of mind, at which point conversation gets derailed.

    When discussing children, think about one of them being in the room. Kids can handle the idea that people might not want to be parents. But the idea that somehow, they are not worthy of being liked? Not their problem. So, that is my take on what appears to be your theoretical premise here. Habits of speech lead to alterations of thought and perception. Societal attitudes are often based on such phrases.

    Whorfian hypothesis anyone?

  162. Agasaya

    Crap. Done in by html coding. Sorry.

  163. oldfeminist

    sevanetta: “Just do like my friend Cass does, lovelies. She decided she was going to reclaim the word ‘cunt’ and as part of that, she’d start using it as a term of endearment. So she started calling friends ‘her little cuntie’. La lala.”

    Reclaiming a word is recasting it as a positive. Using it as a negative allows all the patriarchal bullshit imbued in the word to live on, whether you want it to or not. Like “douche.”

    That said, I still love Twisty, whether she apologizes to anyone’s satisfaction or not.

  164. Pally

    You know, I applaud Twisty for bringing this up. I hated giving that a click.

    I have to say, even on so-called feminist, liberal sites, if you EVER bring up the topic of chosen non-parenthood and that the people who are not mothers are sneered at in the workplace, you NEVER hear the end of it. It is not true that childless women are not discriminated against. There was on a study, I believe, posted on Enchine of the Snakes, where women with and without children experienced pay and promotion discrimination, which “surprises” conventional wisdom that if only women didn’t take off time to have children, they would not be discriminated against.

    And I can testify, when it came to the layoff I experienced this Spring, the men with kids were protected because “they needed the jobs.” The women, with kids or without, are seen as working as an optional thing. Gee I can’t wait until I’m an older “spinster” – people LOVE the older graying woman at work without kids, don’t they?

    There is some back-handed bitchiness about women in that new book “Womanomics” where, basically, these rich ivy-schooled chicks blame other women in the office for working so hard and making the women with kids look bad. They blame all of the overtime and horrible working conditions on women making choices – to take it. As if, there were one woman slot to be promoted and their “real” competition is to beat out other women, not men.
    And they make the argument that healthy women should live kid-centered lives. When they write “women,” they really only think of mothers. You know, regular people. Not childless women.

    Sure. “Womenomics” makes it a psychological magazine issue like pleasing your husband and having a great marriage and sex life by just attitude. Oh! It’s all just because women created this problem and if we’d snap out of it, work would be a delight! Whatever happened to mentioning unions and legal protections from abuse?

    There is some bitchiness from mothers – ok, I’ll say, some mothers, (but just try to mention that on other feminist sites) where they believe it is unfair that childfree women achieve while they would, if only they didn’t have to devote time to kids. And instead of celebrating choices, they take it out on the childfree women, as if, if they can paint them as “unnatural” women in their competitive office, they can take them down a peg in the office political race.

    This is some woman on woman hate and we ought to call it out. If a childfree or single woman hated on mothers, you’d never hear the end of it on women’s forums. Yet. Here we are.

    There is a suspicion of wonton women who do not have kids and are “out” about it by women who have kids. It’s easy to call it out when it is men doing it. But a surprise when there is woman on woman hate.

    But it is a patriarchical trick and these mothers in the office cozying up to it thinking they are buying themselves some protection. How can you lay off the “good mother” or expect a high level of competion from a “good mother?” They are arguing they should be given a weight handicap in the horse race that is office politics. They do not want to compete against women that mythically have all this energy to show them up at work and sexually. (as if, women can only compete for the token rewards only given to…token women) They do not want the alternative lifestyle of childfreeness to be throw in their face. I’m surprised they don’t want single childless women to throw a tarp over themselves as the patriarchy does women in backward countries. Can’t see the mythical wonton woman. She’s comin’ to take your man and your job!!!!!!

    Meanwhile, I have to say, I’ve seen FAR more support from childless women supporting mothers on forums and at the workplace, than mothers supporting childfree women. It is so engrained and hypnotized into women that otherwise liberal women can’t see it.

  165. RIChris

    Every woman has to decide what at what level of respect she will settle, for herself and from others. If she deems certains terms to be derogatory, they are. Proclaiming ‘hard core feminism’ is as much an excuse as ‘boys will be boys’. Sucks either way.

  166. No Blood for Hubris

    Gasp.

  167. ehartsay

    “There are certain semantic subtleties distinguishing ‘disliking’ from ‘not liking’ things. When applied to people or characteristics of people, the distinction ceases to matter in legal terms. Impact over intent is the legal litmus test for discriminatory speech. The fact that ‘dislike’ represents an active state while ‘not liking’ is more passive, matters little when applied to people.

    Then what would you call it? If I do not have any liking or positive emotions for children, but don’t dislike them or actually have negative emotions for them either? I do not dislike them but I do not not ‘like’ them either.

    It places the onus of your negative feelings upon some characteristic of theirs.”

    You seem to be missing my point. Not liking something is not a negative feeling – it is a neutral one, the absence of the feeling of liking. THe absence of the feeling of liking somehting is not hte same thing as disliking it. It is neutral, not negative.

    “I don’t like dealing with women in the workplace.” That isn’t really different from “I don’t care for dealing with children.”

    Why?
    Are women the same as children?
    DO children belong in the workplace?
    Are you trying to claim that childrne do NOT do things that people might not want to deal with? Personalyl, I don’t care – I don’t pay enough attention to kids to even be bothered by these things, but there ARE people who can’t abide noise, crying, high pitched noises, messes, yelling, running, and a lot of the things that do tend to go along wiht young children. children as a whole, do tend to do more ‘interesting’ things in common, than do women.

    These statements would be better translated into, “I like my comfortable, male world-view too much to want to disrupt it because women require too much from me in the workplace without the usual sexual rewards that go with tolerating their crap outside of work.”

    1. You really need to show how ‘women’ are equivelent to kids in any way for this to really work.
    2. You seem to be assuming that I am male?

    OR

    “I like my comfortable adult life too much to disrupt it by dealing with kids who would just need too much from me and offer little in return for the effort.”

    Or “I have little or nothing to do with kids as a whole or the concept of children, don’t think about them and don’t particularly care about them.


    Of course you don’t have to have children. Men can also choose to work away from anyplace where women work.

    Not sure what your point is about the workplace – what does htat really have to do with kids enough to work as an analogy. It is not like I go the the playground and get pisssed that kids play loud there!

    However, how you discuss kids with others, and how that man represents his choice to other men has an impact upon society.

    *shrugs* I honestly do not think or care about kids enough to discuss them as per kids.

    We are all called upon to exercise a certain amount of patience, effort and expense (taxes for one) to see that kids aren’t abused and are raised to become educated, contributors to a stable society.

    ok….

    Red hair may or may not seem attractive to you. That’s fine.

    That was not my point.
    My point was that I have no particular feeling of liking fo rpeople with red hair, as a group, the same way that I do not have any particular feeling of lkiking for the group of ‘people who have ferrets’ or ‘people who drive Fords’. The fact that I do not have a specific feeling of liking for these groups means that I do not ‘like’ them. It does not mean that I dislike them. It is neutrality about them.

    But having pro or con feelings about redheads? That constitutes a personal remark moving away from your personal tastes to the realm of something others (e.g. redheads) are supposed to do to make your life happier.

    You have netirely missed my point. My point is that there is feelign the emotion of ‘liking’ for soemthing (positive), feeling the emotion of ‘dislike’ for it (negative) AND there is also completly lacking the emotion of ‘like’ aka ‘not to like’ which is NEUTRAL. This is hte middle ground where you just don’t give a sh-it either way, and do not feel EITHER pro or con.
    This is pretty much how I feel about children, just like any other group.

    Interacting with the elderly can also be difficult but saying, “I don’t like old people.” is not going to express the reality of the situation and does harm to seniors.

    But I DON’T LIKE ANY group of people, I don’t LIKE any group and I don’t DISLIKE any group. I only like or dislike individuals on their own merits.
    And I don’t have to like anyone to assert and uphold their rights and human dignity and survival.

    …..

    When discussing children, think about one of them being in the room. Kids can handle the idea that people might not want to be parents. But the idea that somehow, they are not worthy of being liked?

    But that kid has no more right to have me like him or her ‘just because’ than does any other person. I am not going to dislike him/her just because, either. I am going to be neutral about wheter or not I like him/her or whether I dislike him/her until I know what sort of person I am dealing with. So I am going to be neutral, I am not going to like him/her until I know if he/she is likeable. That is neutrality, not negativity.

    Not their problem. So, that is my take on what appears to be your theoretical premise here. Habits of speech lead to alterations of thought and perception. Societal attitudes are often based on such phrases.

    Whorfian hypothesis anyone?

    Good point, but I think you missedthe point I was making :D

    Sorry response took so long. I have been painting a house and working very long hours.

  168. ehartsay

    I think I waited a little too long to reply :(

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