Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Two sides of a coin

Last week Glenn Sacks was pointing out Brooke Hogan's apology (at People for falsely accusing her father Terry Bollea (aka Hulk Hogan) of verbally and physically abusing her mother Linda during the time of their marriage.

Its good to know that even though her mother influenced her as a child Brooke was able to come to her senses and see the truth for what it was...but then she goes and says some nonsense like this...

Yes that is a link to Jezebel (by way of Renee at Womanist Musings) of the same Brooke Hogan basically saying that because women have menstrual cycles they are unfit for leadership roles nor should they be able to vote.

Its stuff like this that WTF was made for...

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Ah here's one

Remember the other night when I was talking about the difference between privilege and right? Well it would seem that The Fates have dropped the perfect example of a right into my lap.

What we have here is a man who was out in a public play area for children with his three children. As most parents do he decides he wants a momento of their happiness and begins taking pictures. Well it would seem that the woman operating an inflatable slide had seen way to many episodes of NBC Dateline: To Catch a Predator. Instead of calmly questioning the dad's motives for taking pictures (which would have still been way out of line) she just assumes the worst possible motives for taking photos and soon others started to gather around demanding to know what he is doing. Some even went so far as to accuse him of taking pictures to put up on the internet.

Okay you know how women say that they should be able to walk alone at night without fear of being attacked (and they most certainly should)? This is the same thing. I'll bet this man was just as angry over the fact that he can't be in close contact with children without getting Dateline called on him as the countless women out there that are upset over the fact that they have to be extra careful when alone. When is the last time you heard about a woman getting harassed like this when she was taking pictures of her kids playing?

This right here is a prime example of men being denied a right. The ability to come in close contact with their children without being labeled a pervert is not an unfair advantage that some people have. Everyone should have the right to come near their children and take pictures of them without having to face the humiliation of being called a child molester in public.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Privilege or Right?

A comment comment made by ballgame a few weeks ago at Alas got the ball rolling on this current thought.

When it comes to human rights be it gender, race, religious, sexual orientation, or whatever relations we talk about a common topic is privilege. When different sides of an issue cross paths one of the first things to happen will be for all sides to identify who holds privilege over who. Now considering all the possible combinations of gender, race, religion, sexual orientation, economic standing, social standing, and other factors its impossible to say that everyone enjoys some measure of privilege over someone else. However one thing that I think that gets lost in the pointing of the fingers over who is privileged over who is the very meaning of privilege.

When various speakers, bloggers, and other people talk about privilege I wonder if by privilege they mean an unfair advantage that one group has but should never have over another or are they talking about a right, ability, or something that everyone should have but one group has it but another does not. Not sure what I mean? Here goes:

As we all know women are more often the targets of rape than men therefore it is more common that men are not as worried about being raped as women. Now does that mean men have the unfair advantage of not worrying as much about being raped or does that mean that neither men or women should have to worry about being raped but at this point in time that is not so? Frankly I would say that neither men nor women should have to worry about being raped but at this time that is not the case. I don't think that men have some unfair advantage that no one should have. If that were the case then it would mean that not worrying about being raped is an unfair advantage and no one should have, implying that everyone should have to worry about being raped?

In the current state of marriage heterosexual couples can marry and (for the most part) homosexuals cannot. Does this mean that heterosexual couples enjoy an unfair advantage over homosexuals that should be removed meaning that neither should be able to marry? Of course not homosexuals should have just as much right and every right to marry as heterosexuals currently have.

Let's take a look at an unfair advantage.

A big time law firm is setup at a college job fair to scout for prospective talent. Under normal circumstances and on a level playing field that law firm should simply be looking for best and brightest upcoming talent. Well let's say this law firm is only looking to hire _______. Yes I left that blank so that you may fill it in with any gender, sexual orientation, religion that YOU FIT. Now do you really thing that it is fair that a law firm is scouting you just because you are ____? Any fair minded person reading this will certainly say hell no thats not fair. I know I wouldn't want to take a job with a law firm that wanted me only because I'm black. First and foremost its not fair to all the qualified asians, latin people, whites, and other races. And second I'd be pretty suspicious of any company that wanted to hire me because I'm black.

Now take that shoe off and put it on the other foot.

Go back and fill in that blank with something that DOES NOT FIT YOU. Now do you really think it is fair that a company is NOT scouting you because you are not _____? Any fair minded person reading this would certainly say hell no that's not fair. I know I would not be pleased if a law firm didn't hire me because I'm black. It would not be fair to all the qualified people who were not ______.

To be checked out by a company just because you are ______ or not to be checked out by a company because you are not ______ is an unfair advantage that NO ONE should have unless its the rare occasional job that specifically requires a certain trait (and that wouldn't be unfair would it?) but other than gender I really can't think of any.

I think that is something we should take into consideration whenever privilege comes up.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

For when you abolutely positively to justify your position of power...

We all know that judicial bodies just cannot stand being made to look foolish for pursuing trumped up charges. When the courts have been humiliated by the fact that they were caught trying to build weak cases on weak evidence against people who truly are innocent they must prove that they are indeed the law of the land therefore they must make an example out of someone.

The city of Boston (not the people mind you) needed to thrown someone under the bus for those "bomb-like devices" that were put up as part of the advertising for the Aquateen Hungerforce movie last year. Mike Nifong didn't care about destroying the lives of three young men when he tried to prosecute them on false rape charges. And it looks like the state of Connecticut is still trying to put substitute teacher Julie Amero on trial for showing porn to underage children in school.

Okay people this state is trying to bring this woman to trial over something that was proven to be a mistake when it happened three years ago. The computer in question had malicious software on it and said software is what caused the porn to pop up. Amero has been proven to be almost computer illiterate. The exposure was only for a few seconds and she actively tried to stop the kids from seeing anything. Oh and did I mention that originally she was staring down the barrel of a possible 40 years in prison? There are murderers and rapists that don't face that much time. I know some of you are out there thinking that once the conviction was overturned the closing credits rolled as she walked off into the sunset right? Think again .

Apparently she has lost a job because of her arrest record. She was in a line of work that included contact with children and she is being charged with a sex crime involving children...game over for that career. She may now be on medication. Her and her legal counsel have to "play it smart" by remaining silent for fear of incurring the wrath of the state. And worst of all she may have lost a baby because of the extreme stress. Read that again. It is possible that the state has strung this woman along on false charges for so long that she (and the world) may have lost a precious child. (I want anyone who assumes that false charges don't hurt the accused to reread that until they realize that false charges can cause life altering damage.)

If this woman had intentionally tried to show porn to those children I'd be the first one to say that she needs to go down hard. This is instead a computer illiterate woman that is sitting in the cross hairs of an angry court system that wanted a high profile case to prosecute. Just leave the poor woman alone and let her try to put her life back together.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Can I pleez has lotsa choices in summer clothes too?

For those of you reading this that don't know I am not the smallest person in the world. So when it comes time to do some clothes (and I'm including shoes too) shopping my options are pretty...limited. In fact over the years I've come up with a 2 rules that I go by when shopping:

1. Unless there is an actual Big & Tall store in said mall DO NOT bother going to a mall for clothes. You will only get your feelings hurt when you walk into Aeropostle, GAP, Banana Republic, Abercombie & Fitch and all those other stores to realize that they don't carry any pants over a 34 waist or a shirt over XL.

2. If your shop focuses on a specific item (winkwinkShoeCarnivalwinkwink) and you don't have a certain size, then you need to work on your focus. Yeah I'm looking at you and your "We don't carry anything over a size 14." asses Shoe Carnival. And if the item you "focus" on is in the name of your store and you still can't satify any size then plain and simple you have failed.

I don't expect all shops to just roll over and start selling only big and tall stuff but goodness I think there are enough of us out there that the selection can be a little bigger.

P.S. - For mercy's sake can someone please tell me why a standard t-shirt in size XL may cost $5 but that same shirt in XXXL will cost $7 or $8? Those few extra inches of material can't cost that much?

And it would seem that Shayera and folk at her spot are not pleased with the poor selection of plus sized clothes.