Thursday, August 30, 2012

And To Think, It Was Once All Fun And Games...

By doug88888.
An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind.
-Mahatma Ghandi

I'm sure you have heard this quote before right? It's a warning that basically says that revenge is not the answer. To engage in revenge is to engage in an ugly and destructive cycle that ends up hurting everyone in the end).

I've gone over how destructive revenge can be in my Musings of a Vengeful Spirit series but while rereading a post over at Good Men Project I was thinking about how revenge isn't always cut and dry in how damaging it can be.

In the last entry "Mass Destruction" I talked about how when a person is bent on revenge they will likely end up hurting people who weren't even involved in the occurrence that they are taking revenge for. But I thought of a small side question while thinking on this.

What is running through the revenger's mind when they are doing such damage to innocent people?

I think there are two possible answers to this.

The first possibility is that the revenger, having given in to an all consuming desire to hurt the ones the hurt them, simply doesn't know or care about the damage they are doing to innocent people when they are acting out their feelings. What does it matter that you are mowing down people that had nothing to do with your pain when you are working on resolving your pain?

The second possibility is that the revenger, having decided that no one should have peace of mind until they have theirs, knows full well that they are hurting those other people and actively do not care. If you can't be happy, why should anyone be happy?

In the first case it's a matter of having your sights set on a specific eye and you don't care what other eyes you tear through in order to get it. In the second it's a matter of willfully deciding that you will tear through any and all eyes until you get the one you're after (and chances are will not stop at that one eye).

Nothing ground breaking here just pondering over exactly how the world goes blind if the cycle of revenge were to go unbroken.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Wow stuff like that really happens?

Have you ever seen that site Damn You Auto Correct? Its a site where people share images of text conversations where someone's autocorrect goes in a completely wrong direction. Here is an example of one below:

If I were to guess I would imagine that most of those are fake and of the ones that are real there was no way it would ever happen to me.

Until it did.

This is a text conversation I had with a friend a few weeks ago about planning our next get together in the near future. To set the context while talking about our meetup she mentioned that her day was good, that it was her first day off in a while and how she was going to have the next few days off of work. Let's start there.
Her: It was okay. First time off in a long time. Spent some time with my daughter.

Me: Nice.

Her: Yea I'm off all the way to Tuesday. So I guess you're my opening ceremony. Lol.

(For clarity in the distant future this exchange took place on Aug. 2, 2012. During the 2012 Summer Olympics in London England. Get it?)

Me: Oh am I? I'll be cheering for you.

Her: Yes you are. Oh really.

Me: Just to be sure, are you planning for more than dinner and movie?

(She doesn't respond for five minutes.)

Me: Why so quiet?

(Another five minutes.)

Her: Sorry I was rinsing the stuff out of my hair. And Oh god I'm blushing now.

Me: Wow now that was funny...

Her: Yea thanks. Lol.

Me: Just so you know the first thing I'm gonna do is laugh next time we meet right?

Her: Yea I know. Laughter is good.
How can you not find that shit funny?

So yes, apparently some of those conversations are real.

For the record she swore by all that was holy that she didn't mean to type that and it was the autocorrect's fault.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Weekly Mashup - Comic Book Style

Phoenix and Starfire. What a combination.

Sorry this is so late. This past Saturday I went to the auto shop for an oil change and a check up (had coupon for a free checkup). Got there at 8:30am. Six hours and $400 of brake work later I finally got out of there. I was so disgusted that I ate lunch and went to sleep....and missed an invite to go out to a party with my ladyfriend. But it was okay because it was for later that night so I was still able to go with her.

Woke up Sunday feeling like hell, finally saw Dark Knight Rises (good stuff) and got rained on. HARD. Like collect two of every animal hard. So my weekend got shot to hell and now I owe you a Weekly Mashup. Enjoy.

Britain’s National Health Service Erases Fathers: This is pretty old but apparently the British Health Service is removing all use of the word "father" from it pamphlets. Why. Because it seems one person expressed concern that the word is not inclusive of children who have same sex couples for parents. I'm sure you can see the problems with this right?

Do you find this sexist?

Charities accuse Rihanna of 'sanctioning' violence: Not surprising at all. Rihanna shows the slightest hint of forgiveness and compassion and it's treated like she is giving Brown a pass on his assault. She has commented that Brown "needed help". Now it is true that Brown has not exactly been on his best behavior since he attacked her but I can't help but think that people are trying to tell Rihanna when she is allowed to feel compassion for him rather than her doing it on her own terms.

Also I think this speaks to a problem with partner violence in general. It looks like (at least with male against female violence) the concern seems to be to punish the abuser, not truly stop the abuser from being abusive again. Personally I think that no matter what Brown has a bullseye on him that will never go away. I can totally imagine the next time he gets in a relationship people will be telling that next woman that she should leave him, rather than letting her choose for herself.

Italian Dad in Australia Throws in the Towel: After months of fighting for custody of his daughters (and months of dirty tricks by the mother) an Italian father has given up the fight and is returning to Italy. And before you try to say that he didn't want to be there remember that he spent over $100k on this battle and took several months of unpaid leave from his job. Men don't do that kind of stuff if they don't want to be with their children.

When crutches attack: This one is odd. MRA puts up posters supporting men's right. Someone carrying a set of crutches tears them down. After being confronted said someone runs away while holding the crutches under his arm? Mind you I don't totally agree with this piece (namely the implication that the guy was a feminist, although I feel the sentiment) but I do think this shows that people just aren't down with Men's Rights.

Another Black Man Convicted of Rape without Corroborating Evidence: There is no corroborating evidence. No rape kit. No DNA. Still got the conviction. Oh and the prosecutor said she felt intimidated when he banged his hands on the table when the verdict was read.

Sorting out puzzle of male suicide: "It occurred to me that if 86 percent of adolescent suicides were girls, there would be a national commission to find out why. There'd be front-page stories and Oprah shows and nonprofit foundations throwing money at sociologists and psychologists to study female self-destruction. My feminist sisters and I would be asking, rightly, "What's wrong with a culture that drives girls, much more than boys, to take their own lives?"" Pretty much. More proof that people simply do not care about boys and men as much as some would like us to think.

TIL the dowry was NOT a means by which men "purchased" their wives: I have to admit that as far as I heard it told dowry was a transaction of brides being purchased. Is this not the case?

The Military Suicide Epidemic Is Not Just a Military Issue

Decline in circumcisions costing health care system billions, study finds: Yes because it's all about the money right?

The Ass Grab :): I know this particular video was meant to be a joke but I wonder if this were footage of a guy running around grabbing women's asses would it be taken so lightly?

Feds Back To Seizing Websites Over Claims Of Copyright Infringement: It's almost like the government is actually saying, "Because fuck you."

Akin, King, Limbaugh, Ryan: Enough of the Men!!: I understand Jamie's sentiment on one hand that women's voices should be heard on this but there is something that bothers me here. Firstly the "men" that Jamie points out seem to be all be guys (except for a small nod to Obama) that actually buy into that shit (isn't it magical that men become a monolith when we're represented by the worst of us?). Second if men don't speak up this will just be another reference point for women to point to and claim that men are speaking up for women's rights. Yeah we're supposed to be silent because we are men but we are supposed to be speaking up because we are men. That's not confusing at all.

The Genderbread Person v2.0: Saw this over on Nina Hartley's Twitter feed this week. Looks interesting.

Fifteen Years Ago Today, Techdirt Was Born: Say it with me folks. HAPPY BIRTHDAY Techdirt!!!!!

Moral of the story: Don't fuck with a guy who has guns on his car.

Keep it real!!!

Who Needs Men You Ask?

Apparently Greg Hampikian used up an entire page of the New York Times Opinion section on this.

He used too much space. It's as simple as this.

If you are trying to make a case in either direction for "Who needs (insert group)?", you have already fucked up.

This is what's wrong with the way men (and other groups) are treated now. If we aren't useful in some capacity then it's time to wonder why we exist. Because heaven knows we men aren't around doing something for someone somewhere then that must me we really aren't needed.

And I don't want to have this conversation again (but I know I will because of the simple fact that men are disposable and as long as reproduction without sperm is in in the future and women can do heavy lifting people will spit this bull).

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Do Youtube Hits Take Precedence Over Helping People Now?

This is a pretty old video but having seen it recently (at Fathers and Families on a post about the four months and anger management she was sentenced to) it makes me think of a few questions.

1. What's with people that will record a fight, give commentary on a fight, just let it go, etc... pretty much everything but try to do something about it? About the closest thing to intervention was them talking about how they almost want to help him.

2. Why is it considered "funny" when a woman beats on a guy?

3. Notice how one of the women watching commented that he better not hit her back even after being beat and spit on. Why is it wrong for a guy to protect himself from a woman that's attacking him? And let's not kid ourselves he had fought back there would have been a very good chance that that video would have the only thing to save him jail.

Do you have any answers to these questions or perhaps questions of your own?

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

So about Rep. Todd Akin...

I knew it. I fucking knew it. I knew that as sure as the goatee on my face that somewhere sooner or later someone was going to take Representative Todd Akin's words on "legitimate rape" and say something to the effect of "when it comes to rape bad stuff only happens to women".

Specifically, it demeans women, because we don’t hear these words in describing male rape, that’s always honest, forcible, and legitimate*.
Just to slow your roll from going over there to inform them of their erroneous thinking that little star there is a note adding in the fact that someone has already done that.

James Landrith to the rescue.

The truth is as for as horrible as Akin's remarks were towards women that horribleness IN NO WAY translates into the idea being taken seriously is a consideration that is only extended to male rape victims. In fact the record has shown that male rape victims face their own set of uphill battles when it comes to rape (you can follow that link to Landrith's blog for that breakdown if you wish).

Now that we have that straight let's continue to call Akin on the bull that came from his mouth shall we?

Let's take a look at what he said:
“First of all, from what I understand from doctors [pregnancy from rape] is really rare,” Akin told KTVI-TV in an interview posted Sunday. “If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.”

Akin said that even in the worst-case scenario — when the supposed natural protections against unwanted pregnancy fail — abortion should still not be a legal option for the rape victim.
Okay I don't know where he got his learning on biology of the human female but from what I've learned the female reproductive system on it's own doesn't have the capacity to recognize if a pregnancy was the result of a plan, an accident, a rape, or whatever. Even when bringing the female mind into it's not like she can just will her reproductive functions to just stop on command (but if they could....).

Personally I think he meant "legitimate" in the sense of "If it really was rape...." but it still doesn't hold water.

As was said this type of talk does indeed demean women by trying to take away abortion rights on the grounds that, "If she really wanted to she could shut down the pregnancy on her own so why does she need abortion options?".

And this guy represents a large population of people somewhere?

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Weekly Mashup - Demon Lord Style


Maybe it's because I've been busy this week but it seems like there was a lot going on in the world in terms of news and events.

Hiding emotions may exacerbate depression among black men who confront racial discrimination: Looks like the combo of being black and being a man may put a strain on one's mental health.

GamingAngels is looking for writers!

Man Refuses to Pay Attention to Woman; She Poisons Him Slowly With Eye Drops.: Leave it to Jezebel to take a story of a woman poisoning a turn HER into the victim.

Abuse of Youtube's copyright infringement claim process for doxxing purposes: Apparently a couple of cowards have been trying to find out GirlWritesWhat's personal info by making false copyright claims on her Youtube videos.

Who is behind the Commercial Drive men's rights campaign?: When I read stuff like this about MRAs I have to admit I smile a bit. Partially informed whining because people are starting to speak up for the sake of men.

10 Tips for Helping Men Talk About Their Problems

Woman Indicted for Murder of Ex-Husband; Media Won’t Call it ‘Domestic Violence’: Am I the only that's noticed this? When a man attacks a woman people have no problem calling it domestic violence but when it's the other way around suddenly that term is nowhere to be found. I wonder if that has something to do with how they are counted.

Complain there are no reasonable MRAs. Delete comments from reasonable MRAs that try to engage.

Link drop courtesy of Julie.

This blog berated for 'thumping our chest' when we advocate for the wrongly accused : Apparently looking out for the falsely accused means disregarding rape victims?

5 Reasons To Beware Of Feminist Men: Okay I have my problems with feminists but this list is merely an exaggeration of things that may or may not be real problems.

What 'makes a man' needs to change - experts : I think a part of that change also involves talking about violence being done to men, not just the violence that men do. I like what they are saying about male against male violence but it seems to leave out violence against men in general.

A video by Mark Manson.

Take it easy people!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Being A Man Doesn't Mean His "No" Doesn't Matter

(The link in this post is about a man retelling the story of a woman that came way too close to raping him. Tread carefully.)

A while back I came across a rather serious post about a man giving his account of a night during which he was almost raped.

I think there is something worth looking at in regards to men being attacked by women.
I hate her for this. I hate her because the only way out is to start swinging at her, and it’s not until I’ve connected with three solid palm strikes to the side of her face that she finally releases her bite. I hate her because I’m a gentleman, because I was raised to treat women with the utmost respect,...
I put emphasis on that last part because this is a dilemma that many men face when it comes to situations like this.

Guys are raised to be all tough and badass. We can fight our way out of any situation and we will kick the ass of any and all that get in our way. Surely the application of such badassitude would be deemed valid when staring face to face with a rapist right?

Not if that rapist is a girl/woman. If attacked by a guy the gloves are allowed to come off and all bets rendered null and void. Open the gates and give the guy what's coming to him and for the most part people would be okay with it. But when it's a girl/woman all of a sudden he is supposed to seal away all his power and ability and just take the attack. Or at least he should be careful not to hurt her or anything like that.

(And of course this is not to say that all men have such power and ability for it is certainly possible for a woman to overpower a man even when he fights his hardest against her.)

This is a matter of guys being told that we are not allowed to defend ourselves against girls/women that attack us (and this is not limited to rape, you see it in domestic violence situations as well). Why is that? He gives the answer.

He's a gentleman. Not just a gentleman but a "real man". Yeah a mark of being a "real man" is to never under any circumstances hit a girl/woman.

This is a pretty dangerous bit of programming here. When one's safety and and (possibly) life is in danger there is no good reason for a male to be expected to not fight back because of some arbitrary attribute of the attacker like gender.

And speaking of respect, simply put no woman that would violate me in a sexual manner (or any other manner) is a woman that is deserving of my respect.

If giving women a free pass to hurt me is a requirement for being considered a "real man" then I am perfectly fine with not being a "real man".

You can see how this dilemma plays out in the end of his post:
What if it’s not really that big a deal because I’m physically stronger? Will people accuse me of being sexist or some creepy Men’s Rights douche if I acknowledge this? Does this detract from the legitimately scarier issues women face? What if there’s retaliation? What if she claims it never happened and tells everyone I’m just The World’s Worst Human?

What do I do now?

What am I supposed to do now?
1. Being physically stronger than your attacker doesn't mean that it's not a big deal. Combat training, weapons, etc... Absolutely none of those things mean that being attacked when in position of them is not a big deal.

2. If people do accuse him of being a Men's Rights douche then the problem isn't when him or with MRAs, the problem is with the accusers. A man acknowledging that he was nearly raped by a woman IS NOT SEXISM. Talking about female against male violence and rape IS NOT SEXISM. The people that think it is are the ones with the problem. Be they man, woman, MRA, or feminist.

3. Talking about the issues that face men does not distract from women and anyone that thinks it does are the ones with the problem. Issues that women face, issues that men face. They are both valid, they are both real, and they both need to be talked about, confronted, and remedied. In short "Not no but hell no".

4. This would be absolutely horrible. If someone were to retaliate against him for speaking up then it would only prove that he is not the one with the problem. There is nothing in his story that warrants any retaliation.

5. This is a legitimate fear. Contrary to what people say it is possible for a woman to damage a man's reputation with stuff like this. And it's also possible that she could take the fact that she was drunk and spin it around until the story is rewritten into him trying to rape her.

6. and 7. Truthfully I wish I could offer some straight forward set of directions on how to proceed from where he is now but I can't, as I have never been in such a situation (almost but not quite, that's a story for another day). But I do think that by simply speaking up and telling his story he is off to a good start. A good start not only for himself but for other men who have been and are currently where he is now.

This man was almost raped. The last thing that he should have had on his mind is worrying about hurting his attacker because said attacker was a woman and the next to the last thing he should have on his mind is how it will distract from talking about women. If people are as serious as they say they are about supporting people of all genders then at the least they should be able to leave guys like this alone as they speak up.

Oh and the person that made the comment, "The sad part is, no one will ever ask you what you were wearing and how much you had to drink." is really not paying attention. Rather than going on about women have it worse because they are shamed over what they had on or how much they had to drink they would be a lot better off paying attention to how men aren't even given that much of a benefit of the doubt. But I bet money that if instead of saying that certain criteria (such as attire alcohol consumption) meant a woman was not raped they were saying that by virtue of being a woman she was not raped they would notice it just fine.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Sometimes a comment is just a comment

Guys have you ever been in a situation where someone makes a comment or observation about you and your first thought is to dismiss it? I know I have. Let me share a recent experience with you.

A few weeks ago I was just coming into the office for the day and one of the women that work in the building (different department though) strikes up a conversation. We are talking about some random stuff when out of nowhere she comments that I look slimmer.

Okay there is no need for me retell my feelings about my body but for those of you who don't come here often bear in mind that my opinion of my body is something I've been working on in the last few years. However even after years of work is it still hard not to rush back to that old familiar "I hate my body" comfort zone. The most common manifestation of this comfort zone is an automatic disbelief when anyone makes an observation/comment on my body that might be positive*. Imagine having an auto response that kicks off remarks like this:
"Oh no but I wish I was."

"Yeah, right."

"They're just making conversation."

"Does that mean I'm fat?"

"And I bet you really believe that don't you?"
Yes a sharp tongue can lead to a bloody mouth.

That's the kind of thing that a lot of guys have been dealing with and are dealing with. The idea that such comments about ones body are either lies, small talk, or a jabbing insult.

This is the type of thing that I have had to work on overriding when they come up. What if to each other those responses I responded with:
"Oh but maybe I am and I don't notice it because of my own doubts?"

"Yes, that is right."

"They're just making conversation about my slimming down."

"Yes it does and it also means that I might be losing weight."

"Well if they didn't they wouldn't be saying it would they?"

Don't get me wrong. There are huge cultural changes that need to be wrought when it comes to how we feel our bodies. Our size is often translated into being unintelligent, brutish, jock-like, lazy, slobbish, unhealty, and all sorts of other things. It would do a lot of good if these illusions were broken but at the same time we have to work on the personal internal stuff as well.

* - I say "that might be positive" because it's possible that the person making the comment may not mean it in a positive or negative way. Just saying "you seem to have lost weight.", which she did say she meant as just an observation rather than good or bad.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Weekly Mashup - Drop Style

Whoa!!! She's really dropping it!!!

How goes it people?

What Do Men Want?: My goodness. Asking men what they want instead of just assuming we are in it for only sex? Madness!!!

Why Men Can’t Have It All

Renee, chillaxing until the fall.

Intact or Circumcised: A Significant Difference in the Adult Penis: It's an old post (almost 1 year in fact) but it does show in GRAPHIC detail (as in actual photos of the difference between uncut and cut and of baby boys being cut) how the penis is affected by circumcision.

Male Victims of Domestic Abuse: A few links on male victims of abuse.

How Rape Laws Remove the Presumption of Innocence

Must Reads 8/10/12:Julie's link drop.

Ex-county prosecutor says prosecutor bowed to pressure from victim's groups and charged a student with sexual assault just "to send a message": What's a little thing like fairness when there are messages to send?

Stressed Men Prefer Heavier Women: Study: Ah it all makes sense now. The reason the white boys were shouting wasn't simply because they were looking at attractive women that just happen to be not skinny. They were shouting because they were stressed and the stress is what caused them to look at those non skinny women in the first place. That's a Sir MixALot reference if you don't know.

Something to think about the next time you go to Dubai.

Greetings from Redneck Nation: Mother of God there is a show out there called, "Here Comes Honey Boo Boo.". It's redneck mockery at it's best.

Theater: If A Man Brings Bag Into Movie, He’s A “Possible Shooter”: So here we have a long time customer at a movie theater who has been bringing suddenly being told that men are not allowed to bring bags inside. Not just "We have to check your bag.", which would be reasonable to me.No it's "Because you're a man your options are to either take the bag to your car and come back or leave the theater".

And yes I said "because you're a man" because at the same time he was being treated like this women were walking in with bags no questions asked. Now I know some may be thinking, "Well it was man that shot up that theater so it should be only men under the spotlight.". One there is a difference between having one's bags checked and being flatly told one cannot bring a bag in. Two I hope those folks remember that the next time a woman commits some act of violence and people start making such blanket judgments about women.

Speaking of blanket judgments...

Father’s Hateful Letter To Gay Son After Coming Out Goes Viral: Yeah I'd say "Fuck You, Dad." pretty much sums it up.

Inmate moms and dads, and the kids left behind: I think this is a good idea. Instead of only having pictures and memories to cry over, having inmates regularly interact with the children they left behind may serve as a very potent motivation not only stay straight themselves when they get out but also motivate them to keep their children from following that same path that leads to prison.

Manteo Mitchell made a qualifying run...with a leg that broke halfway in the final lap. Your argument is invalid.

Meet the cast of Team Fortress 2. This makes me want to try that game out. But I'm already scared of the Pyro.

Just because I couldn't do a great job in my marriage doesn't mean I can't do a great job as a father.

Until next time!!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

The Musical Mind

Am I the only person that, when working on a post on a particular subject, will listen to a particular type of music or even a specific song as a way to focus on that subject?

It seems like while listening to music my emotional state is enhanced and allows me to dig a bit deeper into the topic I'm writing about. I'll give you an example.

I've been working on a series called Musings of a Vengeful Spirit and when I need to really stop and think on it I listen to "We Watch Our Sad Eyed Angel Fall" - Black Tape For A Blue Girl

This song gets me in a mood where I am able to ponder revenge and the effects it can have on people. It makes me feel like a Sad Eyed Angel that is falling from grace as the result of giving in to hatred and seeking out revenge for some painful experience. I actually visualize myself falling into an infinite black space, with no hope in sight.

So back to the question.

Do you listen to music to get into a certain mood and if so what music triggers what mood in you?

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Attraction....born of fear?

You know how people sometimes (or often times?) fall in love with long time friends/acquaintances right?

I wonder if if one reason this happens is because the person in question is so fearful about talking to other people their focus narrows to the point that they see that friend as the only person of interest in their life.

As in do they fear rejection so much that they try to pursue something with a friend, under the thought that the possibility of rejection is (or should be) very low.

Of course this may be counteracted by the fear that trying to take an established friendship could lead the ruination of a good friendship.

What do you think?

Sometimes the best way to help is to listen to those in need

This letter, published at The Independent, was written by Karl Lokko, a former gang leader who was one of many gang members arrested in the London riots that took place during the summer of 2011.

I like to think that despite all the conflict that happens in the halls of power at least some of the folks up there do want to help people like Karl. However sometimes what those in power fail to do is take the time to hear out the Karls of the world that need help.

Instead of seeing what they need or asking what they need the leaders just toss out mandates, reforms, and aid plans, not really knowing or caring if they are doing any good.

Working with such methods is probably doomed to fail.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Weekly Mashup - Horror Style

Resident Evil 4 Chainsaw Guy vs Pyramid Head

From the ashes of Ethecofem (don't worry, it will stay up for the sake of history), April is working with a new crew of folks and have launched Paper Revolution. From their initial post:
Paper Revolution is a group blog focusing on radical politics, social justice, economic issues, and the personal narratives and expressions of those affected by our current socio-political reality. We want to help build a space for people to read, write, and share news, ideas, art, and information, and hope you’ll help by contributing your voice.
Conan O’Brien’s Fat Girl Rapist Joke Against Olympian Holley Mangold

“Gay Tests” – Pass or Fail?

White Knights Ride While Dark Knight Rises: Rita Adams is wondering why the buzz is about the THREE heroes that died protecting others when FOUR people died under that circumstance.

Gentlemen, start your keyboards: So it looks like Maine prosecutor Mary Kellett is about to face the music of the Maine Bar Association for her actions. (Look at this Google search for more on her).

Julie's Links To Love: 8/3/12

Lube Up & Smell Better: Because anyone that works "Big Foot's taint" into a product review deserves a shout out.

Now Bloomberg Wants to Legislate Women’s Bodies+

No, but seriously… what ABOUT the menz?!: Yeah some of the comments reek of the usual "The only reason men have a hard time with feminism is because they aren't giving feminism a fair chance. It's all men's fault" but it's worth a read anyway.

For a mens health magazine they don't seem to care about men.: Because calling a suicida guy out on his responsibility to pay child support or telling him how he could have prevented the child's creation trumps addressing the whole suicidal part?

Family Reunited With Muscle Car Stolen During Foreclosure Wants Bank Of America To Pay For Damages: So does that mean if Bank of America hires my cleaning company to clean one of their branches and some of my employees steal some computers, me and my cleaning company are not responsible for them?

Reddit, rape and responsibility shifts

Letter To My Unborn Child

I need Men's Rights because....: Not many lists are perfect but I think there are some thing in this list that hit really close to home for a lot of people and are valid points.

Harassment in Gaming: Too Much Focus On Women?

Borken Chromosomes and Damaged Brains: Males being considered damaged eh? I think we're doing pretty good despite this and in the ongoing gender discourse I think it might be worth invoking one of the traits that men are expected to embody in times of hardship. To make due with what we have.

Obama to sign Lejeune water bill: "The president plans to sign a bill that will give health care to thousands of sick Marine veterans and their families who were exposed to contaminated water at Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, according to a White House official."

Toy Soldier has a few words about this clip from a recent episode of Newsroom.

I'm out!

Friday, August 3, 2012

Is this really called for Bloomberg?

Look I'm all for trying to make sure kids have access to the best and greatest child care options available to them as they grow up but there has to be a line. A line between offering and mandating. And it looks like Mayor Bloomberg of New York City is going to be the next to cross that line.

It would seem that he is urging hospitals to take up the city Health Department's Latch On initiative that among other things would call for hospitals to start locking away baby formula as if it were medication.

How do parents get access to said formula for their newborns? Well they have to get a Registered Nurse to sign it out to them, a bottle at a time. Now apparently there are assurances that all requests will be honored. So why do this you may ask?
With each bottle a mother requests and receives, she’ll also get a talking-to. Staffers will explain why she should offer the breast instead.
That's all. The formula is being locked up so that every time someone goes to get some they have to listen to a sales pitch on the virtues of breast feeding.

From what I've seen of coverage of this on the net so far most (if not all) of what I've seen is coming from the angle of "How dare they try to control the sources of food mothers provide to their newborns?" That is a perfectly legit angle but I want to come from a slightly different one or three.

1. What about a woman that just gave birth but for who knows how many possible reasons, is not able to breast feed?

2. How about a woman that for some reason is not permanently unable to breast feed but is unable to do so temporarily? (I'm not sure how this could happen but I can't really say that it could never happen either.)

3. What happens in the event that there is no mother around, leaving dad on his own?

These are people that should not have to go through a marketing attempt to convince them to do something that they are not able to do.

The initiative is voluntary but 27 of the city's 40 hospitals have already agreed to it. That is imposing on a lot of people.

There's data on both sides here that argue that breast feeding is or is not superior to bottle feeding. As I said I get that people just want to "look out for the best interests of the children" but how far can people go with this before it turns into "dictate the best interests of the children"?

Thursday, August 2, 2012

So about that whole men and abortion thing...

A while back I recall a post at Good Men Project by Courtney Martin in which the argument was made that men need to be talking about abortion.:
There is a price to both men and women when men don’t feel supported or safe to talk about their experiences with a partner’s abortions. Men can be pushed further into anxious masculinity, subconsciously convinced that if the world acts like their feelings don’t matter, they’ll just pretend not to have them. Women are then burdened with both the physical responsibility of the abortion and the entire emotional responsibility of processing what it means.
As I said in that post the path of shutting men out of the conversation altogether is not right. You can't hardly expect someone to be secluded from the discussion and then get mad when they are not receptive or responsive or maybe even angry later.

For the record let me clear something up. By all that is holy I am not trying to say that men (or those who do not or cannot bear children or are not bearing the child in question) should have the final say on an abortion. What I am saying is that if women (or those who do bear children or are bearing the child in question) are expecting some sort of magical filter where only supportive things are said then things might not end so well. Or at least that is what I'm thinking.

Would it really hurt if a guys were freely saying what they think about abortion? Is it the mere act of men saying their possibly unsupportive going to cause so much trouble that they deserve to be be silenced?

Looks like some folks do:
As men who wish to be called men, you have no role in the abortion debate other than to unquestioningly support women in whatever choice they might choose to make. Politicians, we are not your daughters, and even if we were you have no right to compromise our futures with one stroke of your patriarchal pen. Boyfriends, lovers, flings, sex buddies and men we knew for a night, this is not your choice. It is ours. We will figure it out. Trust us.
Letting the attempt at insulting manhood with the "wish" bit slide this is pretty much why guys don't talk up much about abortion, even in cases where we support it. I actually agree with most of what's going on here. But what I do not agree with is that opening bit which is nothing more than a demand for us to stay quiet unless we agree with them.

That is basically the definition of a yes man.

So there you have gentlemen. We are only allowed to talk about abortion if we agree with women. If we disagree we deserve to be silenced. That sounds a good bit different than saying we shouldn't have the final say (which I agree with).

At first I was thinking about not making this post and trying to be nice and say that the scope of this was being limited to politics. And then I read the comments. Between the presumptions that woman that makes the decision along has a good reason to be doing so and the followup that even if the reason is bad he still deserves to be silenced I just had to.