Aug 16 2009

Redneck Mother sends incredibly a propos Onion link to spinster aunt

Advocacy Group Decries PETA’s Inhumane Treatment Of Women


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  1. Laughingrat

    That piece is pretty enjoyable, although in the fine tradition of dominant-culture “humor,” it manages to sneak in sneers at women and feminism while at the same time slamming PETA. Alas, is nothing pure? (The answer, obviously, is “No, not under patriarchy.”)

  2. Jill

    I echo your sentiments, but I feel the piece is justified by the last line, which is something like “PETA will never rest until all animals are treated better than women.” Haw.

  3. Laughingrat

    Oh yeah, absolutely! It’s pretty breathtaking, pretty perceptive. I wasn’t pickin’ at ya for posting it by any means, just frustrated that even the most exquisite and thrilling indictments of Dude Nation seem to bear within them a kernel of the world’s oldest profession, misogyny.

    What, did you think I was gonna say prostitution was the world’s oldest profession? *snerk*

  4. Kristyn

    ‘“PETA will never rest until all animals are treated better than women.”’

    With the implicit patriarchal, reality-ignorant subtext that ‘women are treated equally to men and nonhuman animals are naturally inferior to humans, right? … -riiight? … RIGHT?’
    -elbow nudge, elbow nudge, knowing guffaw-

    However, as blamers, we see the unintended dual meaning; in other words, the one that has a basis in reality for at least fifty-two percent of the world’s human population.

  5. yttik

    ‘“PETA will never rest until all animals are treated better than women.”’

    That was funny! I love the Onion’s brilliant biting humor. But like most things, they hit too close to the truth. We’ve spent two decades around here trying to build a battered women’s shelter. We’ve got a beautiful new pound that does not kill animals, a second chance animal ranch, two beautiful dog parks, and a shelter for homeless men. Are women’s rights and compassion for animals mutually exclusive? No of course not, but when it comes to limited resources and people’s empathy, animals will win every time.

  6. virago

    I can see the Onion’s humor, but unfortunately, this topic really makes me sick. I love animals, and I don’t want to see them suffer, but I sure don’t want to be dehumanized either. PETA makes me sick.

  7. Felicity

    haha I hope PETA gets a good look in!

    Painful to watch, if only because the humour is mainly from it being so ridiculous in the first place.

  8. Serenity

    I’ve been a vegetarian for ten years, and I loathe PETA. Objectifying and demeaning women to promote animal rights isn’t funny, and it isn’t clever.

    I’m so tired of hearing that sex (read: the bodies of the sex class, women) sells, as if it were accepted, Unchanging Objective Fact and not just the product of the twisted patriarchal culture we live in. Utilizing one type of injustice to protest another really makes me angry.

    Oh, apparently as a fat vegetarian, I can’t exist either:

  9. Jill


    Holy crap, that “save the whales” billboard is beyond the pale. PETA really is one of the most vile institutions going. They give normal vegetarians a bad name.

  10. nails

    PETA tries to make it seem like being a vegan or vegetarian has some culturally approved reward when the opposite is true. People who try it will learn the truth (that it takes some work and isn’t always easy) and quit. Spamming Peter Singer articles would be 1000 times more effective if you ask me.

  11. Oaktown Girl

    That last line does elevate it to “worthy” status.

    Yttik – that’s sadly very telling news about the womens’ shelter. I guess the public feels it’s not really needed now that women have achieved full equality and all.

  12. BMS

    PETA really is one of the most vile institutions going. They give normal vegetarians a bad name.

    Not to mention us Vagitarians.

  13. magriff

    PETA is horrible. I had awful experiences with them back in my undergraduate days, at an Oregon school that has a neurobiology research lab. PETA recruited several of my friends into their college organization SETA and would convince them to sit for hours in cages in front of the administration buildings, encouraging them to suffer for their dedication to animals and coaching them to “sexily” elicit abuse. Needless to say, these students were all young women.

    Now, as a pit bull owner, I’m even more horrified by Ingrid Newkirk’s organization. Objectify my sisters, AND put my bestest buddy down? F*** you, you C********a.

  14. MarianK

    Sure, this was a send-up but I still felt very uncomfortable watching it. I can’t put my finger on why … It’s as if it’s using bad-taste patriarchal humour to send up bad-taste patriarchal behaviour and in doing so legitimises both the humour and the behaviour.

    It also seems to me as if it’s banging the anti-feminist drum that feminism is supposed to be obsessed with female victimhood. The skit’s deliberate attempt to parallel the situation of women who willingly pose for these ads and the involuntary plight of badly treated animals seems to enforce this anti-feminist myth.

    Or should I delete all that and just laugh?

  15. speedbudget

    Marian: No, we come here to blame. And dammmit, blame we shall.

  16. Gertrude Strine

    Quoth MarianK

    The skit’s deliberate attempt to parallel the situation of women who willingly pose for these ads and the involuntary plight of badly treated animals seems to enforce this anti-feminist myth.

    The Onion is true to its name: peels the layers to show it’s all the same-same within the dominant paradigm.
    It’s good at showing the recursiveness of Patriarchal stuff.
    However, since The Onion is an endorsed Patriarchy Fool, there is no relief from the Patriarchy within its pages.

    From where I stand, the spoof missed the whole point – – not about coercion, because a trapped woman or a trapped animal is indistinguishable one from the other in the Patriarchy and the coercion is clear, however it may be styled as willing participation. No, the whole point is just how close to the lot of industrially farmed animals is the lot of women, notwithstanding perceptions of so-called progress of women towards being treated as people.
    Who knows why the ads are considered worth running?
    How could they do much to change the status quo when anyone with a speck of patriarchal privilege is more likely to enjoy seeing women abase themselves and to want to keep animals maltreated in order that the porn ads will continue?

  17. Gertrude Strine

    And too, for the record, I didn’t laugh.

  18. yttik

    She who laughs, lasts.

  19. Jezebella

    Serenity, that link? Just made my head explode. Fuck PETA and their fat-phobic woman-hating bullshit. I, too, am a fat vegetarian. Have been for twenty years. They can kiss my entire fat ass.

  20. humanbein

    The serious work of protecting women from violent men is the least glamorous charity out there. Pets get a lot more money than women. I’d like to see the stats, but I’m no researcher, and I really don’t need to see them to know it’s true. I made up my mind a long time ago that the only charity I want to support is one that helps women escape from violent men, since it’s such an epidemic everywhere on the planet.

  21. Alonzo Riley

    PETA seems to get a bad rap on every website I’ve ever visited. I like them just fine, and think what they really do culturally is to push the envelope, be outrageous, and actively try to get into mindset of people who are far right of middle on the “meat growing” industry. It raises awareness and that can make people susceptible to having a positive impression to another group/person/article that takes a less cutthroat approach – when they never would have thought about it before! Printing thousands of Peter Singer articles is one method – and maybe it WOULD be more successful, but in my opinion the more the merrier.

    To address magriff’s issue on SETA getting students to sit in cages and degrade themselves: humans are different than caged animals dramatically because we can think about the situation AND because (especially in these situations,) it’s voluntary. We have the ability to distance the brain from the body and gain insight from unpleasantness. For instance, I think it’s almost the duty of every citizen to figure out a way to get a decent jail stay at least once during their life. Really BEING dehumanized, knowing an inkling about what’s going on in the “underside” of our own culture, and being able to learn from that is an essential human experience. I am sensitive to the fact that the students all “happened” to be women, and that let’s off some stench, but theoretically I don’t think it’s cyanide or anything.

  22. Hedgepig

    Alonzo Riley, that’s so sweet that you’re sensitive to the fact that all the students asked to degrade themselves were women. It’s spiffingly marvellous that you’re willing to concede that it’s a little bit on the nose. (But of course, not really really badly stinky, like being cruel to animals is.) How jolly clever you are to see PETA’s exploitation of women as an outrageous pushing of the cultural envelope. I mean, who would of thought of using women’s bodies to sell stuff!! However, if you want to be really sweet and sensitive and marvellous and clever, read a bit about radical feminism before even thinking about gracing us with your opinions.

    Now run along back to Dude Nation where you belong.

  23. MarianK


    ‘Really BEING dehumanized, knowing an inkling about what’s going on in the “underside” of our own culture, and being able to learn from that is an essential human experience.’

    Sounds like the subliminal reality of women.

    In that case, why don’t YOU pose naked in a cage for nationwide publication and screening. Not only that, get a campaign going to fight for the rights of men to offer their naked bodies to this particular PETA campaign – to ‘push the envelope’ and all that.

    After that, you could start another campaign for the rights of men to be able to see themselves naked or scantily clad in the public domain just as often as women do. You might just find all those pervasive public reminders that men’s worth equals men’s physical desirability a ‘very essential human experience’.

  24. Jonathan

    The last line from the PETA piece is spot on, although the Onion dudes themselves need to be taken to task for their snuff-porn fantasies.

    They top off their women-as-animals analogies with:

    “Some rescued women so traumatized they had to be put to sleep.”

    Classy, assholes. Classy.

  25. Other Liz

    I thought the Onion piece was great.

    But cheeses, Alonzo, “they ‘happened’ to be women”. The patronising and the devaluing I could handle, but the random quote marks have sent me over the edge.

    They were “chosen” for the titillation “because” they “were” women, it “being” a patriarchy.

  26. Helen

    For instance, I think it’s almost the duty of every citizen to figure out a way to get a decent jail stay at least once during their life. Really BEING dehumanized, knowing an inkling about what’s going on in the “underside” of our own culture, and being able to learn from that is an essential human experience.

    What a hugely privileged, entitled remark. Being imprisoned as a life experience. Like going to camp.

  27. speedbudget

    I stay in a jail every day of my life. It’s called Patriarchal Privilege.

    In this jail, I never know when the wardens are going to crack down on us. Who knows when the next toss will occur? They are always tossing our cells just to mess with our heads.

    Some of the women in this jail are so despondent that are actually colluding with the wardens. Some of us has learned to stick together.

    We worry constantly about how rape is used as a tool by the wardens to keep us on our toes. And hooo-boy, the attitude we get from the wardens for “having sex” with them. (A term I use loosely, since one girl’s “rape” is another guy’s “have sex.”)

    I wish I could get out of here, but my crime, being one of the most serious crimes one can commit, requires a life sentence. What crime, you ask? The crime of being born with *gasp* a double-X chromosome. I know, I know. I should have planned better, made better choices. Really, it’s all my fault. As soon as I learn that, maybe I can get out of here.

  28. Jill

    “a decent jail stay ”

    I for one am dying to hear how your dutiful and decent jail stay went. Did you have a lot of bitches?

  29. Pantsuit Sally

    “I am sensitive to the fact that the students all “happened” to be women, and that let’s [sic] off some stench, but theoretically I don’t think it’s cyanide or anything.”

    Of course you don’t. Thank you for sharing the male perspective. We so rarely get an opportunity to hear that.

  30. Alonzo Riley

    Jail: can allow softies to gain some social perspective.
    Prison: Scarier place with bitches and so forth.

  31. Felicity

    Alonzo, just so you know we all hate PETA and sexism here as radfems. Go preach about your beloved PETA to another forum, we’re all glad about its marketing ploy leaving it hated more than it was before. PETA has only proven it can take ‘annoying’ to new un- established levels.

    PETA is so much like the church and its Godbags. Full of geeks who hate women. Women- hating is the only thing that gives it a cultural enevlopey edge; and yet its true moralistic message still gets lost on the masses!! I wonder why people fail to listen to a message about morals if the way you get that message across is by being pointedly moral- less? PETA wreaks of contradictions, insecurity and failure. Ultimately PETA and its marketing stretches embody weakness.

  32. Helen

    we’re all glad about its marketing ploy leaving it hated more than it was before. PETA has only proven it can take ‘annoying’ to new un- established levels.

    Count me out of that sentiment – animal welfare/abuse is important and these clowns use up valuable oxygen putting people OFF doing something about these problems.

  33. Jill

    “Jail: can allow softies to gain some social perspective.
    Prison: Scarier place with bitches and so forth.”

    Dudely enlightenment! We here on Savage Death Island just don’t understand the dominant culture. Thanks for the 411. Who knew that jail is where progressives go to acquaint themselves with oppression? Some people find that just listening to the oppressed achieves a similar effect, but of course that would involve an actual act of humanity, and wouldn’t look as edgy in a blog post.

  34. Paige

    Too much feeding of the peta troll!

  35. speedbudget

    How many here want to bet it was a one-night stay for public drunkenness and Alonzo’s dad, upon receiving the call in the middle of the night, said, “Let him stay in there for the night. It will teach him a lesson!”

    I bet he’s proud of his boy, coming on here and giving us the dealio on his awesome Night of Criminal Justice.

  36. goblinbee

    I sent Alonzo the link for the analysis of the deviantart guy, thinking he would be interested (Alonzo is a photographer). Alonzo left a comment there and also a comment on this post, a comment which has been attacked. I believe his ideas fair game for attack, but I feel sad and disappointed about the ad hominem attacks that have followed.

  37. BMS

    I feel sad and disappointed about the continued, wanton, and willful misunderstanding of what ad hominem actually means.

  38. goblinbee

    Then I’m glad I used it correctly.

  39. BMS

    You didn’t.

  40. hero

    I feel sad and disappointed about the continued, wanton, and willful assholamine poisoning just under half the human population, resulting in the degradation and violence against the other, just over-half.

    By which I mean, I Blame the Patriarchy for making AlonzoBonzoHominem into the deluded, duded rube that he is.

  41. slythwolf

    Right, because as a woman I would totally have to go to jail to be dehumanized, as opposed to just getting out of bed in the morning.

  42. yttik

    “Prison: Scarier place with bitches and so forth.”

    Indeed, a scary place where men are often forced to live as if they were women, complete with the proper terminology and what it implies.

  43. Cathy

    Speedbudget, both of your comments above are perfect! You, too, MarianK, Gertrude Strine and slythwolf. I was just going to suggest to Mr. Gonzo that he try “really BEING dehumanized” this way:

    Go get a sex change – a really good one. Then, when you’re good and sexy, put on a skimpy bikini, and climb in a cage where lots of men can see and harass you. You might learn a thing or two about really pushing the envelope, just like in gonzo porn. But the sex change alone should be enough.

  44. Tigs

    I think it’s important to tread carefully when talking about how day-to-day shi**y experience may be equivalent to spending time incarcerated (at least if we’re talking about the US).

    Locked up is seriously bad news and bears some serious respect and attention.

  45. Agasaya


    Millions of women are locked in homes or situations which are the equivalent of serving a life sentence in ‘prison’. There aren’t any lawyers to appeal those sentences. No point in comparing obscenities – all forms of prison kill the mind, body and spirit. And all are perfectly legal to boot.

    If deemed illegal, there isn’t a law enforcement agency in sight willing to take on the problems of either ‘class’ of prisoners. I know because I am one of them.

  46. TwissB

    PETA has never been anything but an excuse for aggressive misogynists to ply their trade behind a mask of pious self-righteousness.

    PETA,like pornography, is hated all the way to the bank.

    While there are Onion lines that can still make me laugh years after they appeared (e.g. “Terrorists surprised to find selves in Hell”), I find their PETA spoof to be a sneaky piggyback on PETA’s misogynist schtick. Cute. IBTP

  47. magriff

    Oh wow Alonzo, thanks for enlightening me. I’ll be sure to spread the word to my little sis who just got out of the clink for a drug charge! Or, should I say, thank’s?

    Keep reading “On the Road” like it’s the bible of gross dudes, which it is.

  48. speedbudget

    Tigs: No offense, but I will not tread lightly.

    I have to watch every word I say. I have to watch everything I do. Can’t have too many sex partners, or I ruin any chance I have of winning a rape case, should I decide to bring one to court. I can’t have too few sex partners, then I’m a prude, which is almost as bad as being a slut, and I will have to be taught a lesson. I have to be careful about what I wear. I have to be careful about where I go, especially if unescorted. If escorted, I have to worry about whether or not said escort is going to assume that I am going to give him some just for the favor of being a decent human being. I can’t be out too late at night. I can’t walk alone through a park in the evening or late night. If I want to go solo camping or hiking, I have to be extra-special careful.

    I can’t believe I have to explain this on this site.

  49. Jezebella

    Which is still not quite the same as, say, being a woman in an actual prison, with bars and guards and 24-hour surveillance, now is it?

  50. gayle

    “PETA has never been anything but an excuse for aggressive misogynists to ply their trade behind a mask of pious self-righteousness.”

    You’re wrong. PETA has done a hell of a lot of good work in the past, including the recent past. Their investigative work has ended some barbaric practices. For example, the auto industry doesn’t use live animals as crash test dummies anymore specifically because of PETA.

    “I find their PETA spoof to be a sneaky piggyback on PETA’s misogynist schtick. Cute. IBTP”

    On that last point, TwissB, we agree.

  51. blondie

    My favorite Onion bit? A caption under a photo of a white-coated pharmacist reading something like, “Christian Scientist Pharmacist Refuses to Fill Any Prescriptions”

  52. slythwolf

    gayle, I have a tough time believing your example dates from the “recent past”, considering non-living crash test dummies have been around longer than I have.

  53. Tigs

    Thank you Jez.

    @Agasaya, that’s why I phrased my note to speedbudget the way I did. I know full well that women’s agency is restricted to various and often times critical degrees outside bars as well, which is part of why I think one should be careful when talking about limited agency.

    What I meant to be emphasizing was:
    As women, our agency starts out limited, but for some of us those limitations are relative (or perhaps a better phrase is tempered by other privileges). I think to collapse all women’s existence into the class of non-agency represented by incarceration minimizes both that experience of non-agency as well as the potential power of limited-agency.

  54. Agasaya

    And you underestimate the degree of torture and abandonment suffered by women incarcerated within ‘main stream’ America. But that is privilege for you – and I’m rather glad you can’t imagine it from the “inside” as I live it and witness it daily. Many accounts are written about it all over the world but Americans mostly have no idea about the local versions.

    I am surprised that anyone reading this blog wouldn’t know about the commonplace loss of agency among daughters and wives in America.
    However, not all losses of agency are intended to sexually discriminate. It is unfortunate that our gender suffers more egregiously from poisoning by industry than males simply by virtue of human physiology. And a lot of us are dying of it. You don’t have to live in Bophal or be born in Vietnam in the post Agent-Orange period to suffer from the same diseases from the same chemical agents. The same poisons are active here and used with full knowledge of their results.

    Many women in prison have greater agency than that but, as I said, comparing hells is not particularly productive. Plans of liberation are far more useful. Give it a go. I can’t do much more.

  55. jael

    Agasaya – what? I mean.. really?

    I doubt any of us would be reading this blog if we didn’t see the fundamental constraints that exist in women’s lives, here in the US or elsewhere. I’d turn it around on you – rather than saying Tigs doesn’t know the America she lives in, have you spent much time in the prison system, seeing how that works in order to make your claim of equivalency?

    You’re right, comparing “hells” leads us no where; but at the same time, we feminists do our selves a major disservice when we equate the first world women’s experience with every other negative experience that exists.

    Women’s experience =/= Experience of incarceration
    US women’s experience =/= experience of women under the Taliban
    US women’s exposure to chemicals =/= Agent Orange poisoning/the Bhopal tragedy.

    By making such claims we detract from the legitimacy of the feminist movement, and is a gross dereliction of our responsibilities to those who suffer tragedy and other experiences of oppression.

  56. ma'am

    Looking at that picture when I open your blog is way worse than the creepy thingy with a gazillion legs a month ago. eeewww.

  57. Agasaya

    I’m glad you don’t live the nightmare of poisoning which physicians, the EPA, law enforcement and the general population refuse to acknowledge despite clear proof; of women unable to leave the shelter system for fear of their stalkers who go unrestrained; of women who submit daily to abuse by husbands and fathers in any location. But just because you don’t believe it happens here on a significant scale, doesn’t alter the fact that it does.

    I live it. My friends live it. I have worked with people living it to one degree or another all of my adult life. I will die from it. Much of it occurs silently and without acknowledgment by patriarchal agencies profiting from true and pretended ignorance. No, it is not on the scale of occurrence that occurs in Afghanistan or Bhopal but it is happening in front of you daily in your own community. You just don’t see it, mainly because people like myself are persecuted (and even prosecuted) for mentioning it.

    How much agency does a woman on chemotherapy in end stage cancer from environmental causation have from her bed versus a woman in prison for prostitution? Why even compare the two. Neither one should happen.

    But if that is too much realism for everyone, I’ll return to lurking. But these are the stakes. Did you think the patriarchy is so roundly condemned here because of mere ‘unfairness’?

    Sorry, Jill. I’ll leave it at this.

  58. jael

    Agasaya – remember. The internet. You don’t know what any of us know or do not know, or do or not do.

  59. speedbudget

    Okay. Shit. For fuck’s sake. I didn’t know radical feminists weren’t allowed to use metaphors.

    Jill, I have made props for you. How do you deal with this kind of BS?

  60. Jezebella

    Are you saying prison was a *metaphor* all along this thread? Because that’s not how I read it. Not at ALL.

  61. speedbudget

    Well, if you read the first post where I responded to someone telling us to STFU about our experiences because we have never really been in prison, yes, I was using prison as a metaphor for how I have to live my life.

    I stay in a jail every day of my life. It’s called Patriarchal Privilege.

    Am I doin it rong?

  62. jael

    i think it’s less that you can’t use metaphors, rather about mkaing metaphors apt.

  63. Tigs

    “I think it’s important to tread carefully” = STFU.

    Further, it’s a metaphor that has the potential to erase the experiences of people, and yes WOMEN, who are in prison because life for many women– while always under patriarchal oppression, is not the same as being in a jail/prison.

  64. delphyne

    The skit would probably have worked better if they’d had a fake PETA representative in the studio arguing how it was really really important to cage and strip women in order to free animals, and that seeing women nearly naked was vital to animal freedom.

    Creating a mock feminist to say what were supposedly hilarious over the top things about how women shouldn’t be degraded, when the pictures accompanying what she was saying were disturbing and degrading and underlined what was supposed to be a mock point didn’t really work as a joke.

  65. Bird

    I am disturbed that some of us still don’t get that appropriating someone’s oppression and claiming what you experience is “just like that” is not cool.

    I hear white feminists telling women of colour that their oppressions are just the same; I hear (temporarily) able-bodied women tell women with disAbilities that their oppressions are just the same; I hear oppressed dudes tell women that their oppressions are just the same. Now I hear non-incarcerated women claiming that their oppressions are just the same as women who are in literal, actual prisons.

    Women=oppressed group
    People of colour=oppressed group
    People in prison=opppressed group

    Oppressions share characteristics, but they are not the same thing. Some of us belong to more than one group. But pretending like your experience of oppression is the same as the experience as someone else who has a specific experience (i.e. incarceration) is just not cool, and I’m astounded that radical feminist women still don’t grasp that all women are oppressed, but some women do experience special forms of oppression which are simply not comparable to others.

    I’m not saying this to minimize the loss of freedom that many women face (through men’s violence, economic circumstances, etc.), and one is not worth more points in the Oppression Olympics–it’s not a competition. But there’s a huge fucking difference between the two, and equating one with the other minimizes the absolute loss of freedom that comes with a prison sentence.

  66. Valerie M

    Speedbudget et al. were responding to an (almost certainly white) dude talking about a quick ‘jail’ (not prison) sentence from a very (white) dudely perspective. It is not in any way unreasonable to compare this to women’s oppression. She has not been playing oppression olympics or minimising anyone’s experience – read the context she was responding to.

  67. yttik

    Alcoholism= a prison of addiction
    Depression= a prison of the mind
    Working in a cubicle day after day= a claustrophobic prison
    A man trapped in an unhappy marriage= imprisoned in a bad marriage
    Stuck on an airplane on the runaway for 20 hrs= worst than prison

    Comparing women’s lives under the patriarchy to a prison?? What? How dare you?! You have now disparaged real prisoners! Where is your empathy, your awareness of your female privilege? Your gratitude for the fact that you are not also behind bars?? Have you no shame?? Why would you do such a despicable thing? Do you not know how good you have it??

    And while you’re at it, please be sure to support your locally grown, politically correct, environmentally friendly, vegan, PETA, recycling, global warming, world peace demanding, animal rescue project, with your blood, sweat, and tears. If you have any energy left over, we’ll let you discuss women’s issues. Just be sure you have also addressed every other socially conscious issue known to humankind and that your discussion in no way detracts from the importance of anyone else’s oppression.

    Got it?? There are rules here, people. Try to follow them.

  68. nails

    Agasaya- what is all this poisoning buisness? I am really confused about that. I am skeptical if its a conspiracy theory of some sort.

    As for the prison thing- I can go where I want to and vote and purchase things and have a job where I actually earn money and can date people I want to and not have to go to court or a state mandated hearing in order to do so. There is a lot of fucked up shit in the life of a woman but I refuse to take the things that I do have for granted. There are people a lot less free than I am for sure.

  69. Jezebella

    I still don’t understand how I, as a woman in America, am NOT substantially MORE at liberty than a woman in an American prison. I don’t see how any thinking person can claim otherwise.

  70. Hedgepig

    Alonzo Riley suggested that everyone should engineer some jail time for themselves in order to experience being dehumanized. Speedbudget pointed out that women are dehumanized regularly while out and about in the P.
    I thought we were dealing with an ignorant, privileged dude but we’ve ended up arguing with each other. How did that happen?

  71. Jezebella

    I think it all went downhill when someone made the boneheaded assertion that being a woman *outside* of an actual prison was really no different than being *inside* an actual prison.

  72. speedbudget

    Thank you, Valerie.

    And Jezebella was right, only the person who made that assertion was the MAN that came onto this blog and started this by telling us all to STFU about oppression because we have never been in prison.

    If you can’t read the whole thread, don’t comment.

    I’m out of this thread now.

  73. TwissB

    @Hedgepig – “I thought we were dealing with an ignorant, privileged dude but we’ve ended up arguing with each other. How did that happen?”

    You have just identified one of patriarchy’s most effective and historically consistent ploys for sabotaging a women’s revolution.
    @Gayle – Without commenting on the value of PETA’s stated mission, I still question why that mission requires inhumane treatment of women.

  74. nails

    I dislike the whole idea that people shouldn’t argue because the ruling class likes dividing people. It is only divisive to argue if you absolutely cannot stand being wrong, and how the hell did any of us end up as feminists without seeing that a lot of what we originally thought was totally wrong?

    Reading material about racism was painful for me because I felt the sting of the crap I had thought/said/done that was racially insensitive, but it was worth it because it was the truth and I could prevent the mistakes from happening later. I can accept being wrong plenty if I make an effort to behave correctly after that. This is one way personal growth happens; especially when the arguers respect each other.

  75. Felicity

    Maybe arguing and uncomfortableness is inherent in any gathering of the oppressed class? I don’t understand feminists saying we HAVE to argue, making out it’s really healthy, natural and good for our movement. All I sense is a complete lack of direction and people feeling awkward in a movement they don’t yet know how to embrace. IBTP, patriarchy is why we feel on some level we shouldn’t be attacking here all that is thrown in our face from birth as natural. Patriarchy is what makes us behave like foxes in a hen house.

  76. wiggles

    I agree with delphyne.

  77. Shopstewardess

    Also, one of the things the patriarchy does to women is to teach us not to argue, and this can spill over into women learning not to use positive behaviours such as negotiating strategies.

    Sometimes arguing can be positive rather than negative, and I think I’ve learned something valuable from the discussion here about the uses of analogy versus the appropriation of oppression.

    I agree there is the danger of the patriarchy turning women on each other. A long time ago I travelled round the Mani, a rocky peninsula which was the first area of Greece freed from Turkish rule in the nineteenth century. It attracted Greeks wanting to live in freedom, became overcrowded, and ended up with villages of multi-story defensive towers built within feet of each other. The ruins are picturesque, until you learn the scary story behind them.

    I hope I don’t offend anyone who takes this story as appropriating for women the nineteenth century oppression of the Greeks by the Turks.

  78. Hedgepig

    Shopstewardess, I love your comment above! I, too, have learnt something in this thread: it’s much better to be elegantly witty like you than use low-grade, sledgehammer irony like I did up the thread.

    Alonzo Riley just really pissed me off.

  79. Jill

    Blast! My blog is now nuking my own comments!

    What I meant to say yesterday was, I think we all know the difference between spiritual prison and actual incarceration. But how annoying when commenters on blogs take that supercilious, self-righteous “j’accuse!” tone that implies a grasp of the sociopolitical world that is greatly superior to yours, you stupid cow. These comments are not at all charming.

    Meanwhile, I’ve had a long email from Asagaya. She says she is suing some unnamed chemical company for poisoning her with a likewise unnamed poison, and that because of her action she is being stalked and threatened, and that law enforcement won’t lift a finger to help her. So that’s what all the non-sequitur poison stuff was about.

  80. Jonathan

    Out of curiosity, do you think Alonzo Riley is even a vegetarian? Or is it more likely that he he posting from a Wi-Fi hotspot in McDonalds?

  81. nails

    If Alonzo is a troll he is doing a good job of seeming genuine.

  82. Gayle

    “@Gayle – Without commenting on the value of PETA’s stated mission, I still question why that mission requires inhumane treatment of women.”

    Of course! It doesn’t require that at all. We’re in complete agreement.

    All I’m saying is that they have done some good things in the past. And yes, the example I used isn’t so recent– my bad. I could have used other examples. That’s just the one that stuck out in my mind.

    If they’d only drop the women-hating ad campaigns I could get behind them.

    PS: Some good news: I just read they dropped the “Save The Whales” campaign. Maybe there is hope!

  83. polly styrene

    Resorts to quoting George Bernard Shaw: (yes he’s a dead white male)

    “The man with a toothache thinks everyone happy whose teeth are sound. The poverty-stricken man makes the same mistake about the rich man. ”

    Of course women who aren’t in prison have an advantage over women who aren’t in prison. They’re not in prison. That doesn’t mean their life is wonderful. Martha Stewart has been in prison. Do you think it taught her anything? Or made much difference to her privileged life?

    Most people who are in prison started off with pretty crap lives outside prison. That’s how they ended up in prison.

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