Saturday, September 18, 2010

Survey about online activism

Editors Note: From time to time I get requests to help women who are pursuing educational goals.  To the best of my ability I always try to help and that is why I posting the following request for people to take a survey.

If you’re reading this blog, you probably care about issues such as gender studies, feminism, womanism, and women’s rights.  I am a graduate student at the University of Delaware, and I’m doing a research study about these issues and how the internet plays a role in people’s beliefs and activism.  I’m looking for people like you to fill out a survey about your experiences online.  Whether you’re a regular visitor of these websites or have just started checking things out, I would really like to hear from you.  Website owners, administrators, and moderators are also welcome!  If you’re interested, please click on the link below to take the survey.  Thanks!



Nena Sechler Craven
Ph.D. Candidate, Sociology
University of Delaware
ncraven@udel.edu

Drop It Like It`s Hot

Hello everyone, thanks for another great week of conversation. Posting is still a little bit slow as I adjust to getting the kids back on a fall schedule and negotiate with a small puppy who thinks that she is queen of the house. 


I am hope that things will get back to normal soon.  If you would like to add to the conversations that happen here, please take advantage of Womanist Musings open guest posting policy.  Just send in a link to the post in question or your original work via e-mail to womanistmusing (at)) gmail.com .  Please include a small three link bio and an image that you would like associated with your work.

Normally at this time I would put up a post of interesting pieces that I came across this week but because the dog ate my power cord for my laptop they are firmly ensconced on my other computer.   Hey, at least she didn`t eat my crocs.  Please use this thread to share anything you have written this week or a great post that you came across.  Hopefully next week, when I replace the power cord I will have a great list for your perusal.

Friday, September 17, 2010

It's Friday and The Question Is......

As you know, last week my family adopted a golden lab/king sheppard cross.  Though Ms. Sookie is a joy to have, it has been a very long time since I have had a puppy.  Her very first day she ate my computer power cord; however, thankfully I was able to save my beloved crocs.  I thought this week it would be great to ask for training tips from everything to house breaking to teaching her not to nip and jump on people.  So please share your dog training tips in the thread and while you are it please tell us about an item that your pet has ruined.  W|e might as well share our joys and sorrows.

Discussing Dusty Skins And Privilege (Part One)


Jaded16 is a Radical Feminist from India. She writes a humour blog Oi With The Poodles Already’, attempting to make her world a little woman-friendly using healthy doses of irony and sarcasm to de-condition the Indian masses. It is at times like these when she loses all her sense of humour and starts looking for a rock big enough to live under.
 
Generally on any given day, I don't go by generalisations or assumptions, given that my LadyBrain is allergic to 'boxing'. But after careful observations and using devices that sound so scientific that you'll be left impressed, I can say that all of you readers are really smart, analytical and incisive; mainly because you read this blog. So it must have not escaped your attention that I am a woman of colour and I write about my country India, the things I see around me or my lived experiences. Call it narcissism or limited vision or selective focus, the truth remains that my nationality and position as a woman of colour in a (virtual) world dominated by the digital dollar is the space I have access to as well as choose to discuss. However, to be entirely truthful, I had never thought of using the phrase WOC till some troll pointed out just what he wanted to do with my 'deliciously brown' face a while back. Since then, the effect of hueism has somehow taken residence underneath my skin and refuses to go away.

Yesterday, my friend and I got to talking over coffee about how we perceive our skin colour as anything but 'brown'. Strangely, she has always considered herself 'fair' and I've seen my skin tone as 'wheatish'. Obviously, from skin tone, the conversation goes to fairness creams. For the uninitiated, 'fairness creams' somehow get under your skin -- literally speaking -- and use some fancyarse magic with the melanin content of your skin and voilà! you're white fair. A good example of this magic would be the following ad. Warning: The ad causes you to hurl and/or fling your computer across the room. Or you may just want to bang your head on the nearest nailed wall.

Three Dallas Police Officer Charged with Allegedly Beating a Black Man

By now a tittle like what I have chosen for this piece is commonplace, because police brutality against Blacks happens everyday.  Affluent White people can afford to the cops as friends because they are after all defending their property and Whiteness can be completely enamored of the police because they help to maintain White supremacy.  Blacks have long talked about police violence in their neighbourhoods, only to have their concerns ignored.  Now that cameras widely record police behavior and it is not even remotely plausible to deny police brutality, forces across North America offer platitudes about sensitivity training, while the beatings continue.  Each new video that is released, society expresses faux rage and quickly moves onto the next moment of contrived anger.
Three Dallas police officers, including one who was fired, will face criminal charges for their alleged roles in the beating of a suspect, which was caught on video by dashboard cameras, the police chief said Wednesday.

Andrew Collins, 28, suffered bruising and blood clots earlier this month after being struck by officers, who hit him about seven times with their fists and batons. The alleged beating lasted about 14 seconds following a chase.

The video, which the department distributed to reporters, shows one of the officers moving the dashboard camera so that it does not film the incident.

"This won't be tolerated," police Chief David Brown said. "This is not indicative of the Dallas Police Department. No one incident defines our character." [source]

This Week in Blackness: White People and Black People Are So Different

Elon James has come up with a new This Week in Blackness, and of course I absolutely had to share it with you.  This week, Elon talked about the fact that Blacks and Whites experience the same event differently because of racism.   Whiteness has been taught to ignore this because it has been normalized therefore; it is quite easy to believe in a universal perspective.  There is a large difference from witnessing racism and experiencing racism.  And even though people will on average witness several acts of racism in one day, unless one is on the receiving end it is impossible to truly understand how damaging to the spirit.  This week Elon had this to say.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

End of The Day Happy

Have you ever come across a news story that you just had to share?  Have you ever seen a news story that just made you giddy all the way to your toes?  Well as must of you know, I believe I have a special relationship with chocolate.  It is the one food item that just about makes my eyes roll to the back of my head.  It is even possible to lose track of time.  Trust me on this one. A few days ago I decided to sit on the couch and have three or four pieces of chocolate.  Well, the chocolate put me into such a stage of bliss that I when I finally came to, I realized that I had missed the person who had walked by and eaten the last of the box on me.

 Sorry I got caught up in a flashback of bliss.  Well can you imagine my glee, when I came across a story about the world's largest chocolate bar.  It weighs a total of 9,702 pounds. "The 224-inch by 110-inch by 10-inch bar was certified the largest on record by officials from the Guinness Book of World Records". Are you starting to feel the bliss yet?  Check below the fold at your own risk.

Monstrous Musings: Thanks to Twilight, we can “celebrate” images of Indigenous people as violent beasties for generations to come…

A good friend of mine sent me two emails recently – one complaining that in her graduate psychology classes, the scenarios she is given to analyze often are rife with racial stereotypes. Here is the example she sent: 

“A couple comes to your office seeking advice on how to best support each other as they deal with transitions in their family. The husband, Brian, is a 27-year-old Caucasian in the US Army who returned six months ago from his second (and, he has been told, final) tour of duty in Iraq. His wife Jamie is 24 and has been drinking heavily since Brian’s first deployment; since his return, she has continued regular binge drinking. She expresses concern over this because her father is Native American, and there is a history of alcoholism in their family.”

My friend’s commentary to this “scenario” noted “I love the way the person that is an alcoholic is Native and so was her father-because ya know all Native Americans are alcoholics and should be reminded of that over fucking over again and we better not let that stereotype fade in everyone else's eyes...WTF?!?”


In her second email, which may not at first glance seemed related, she sent the me a link to a July 2010 article from RezNetNews, a site dedicated to “reporting from Native America.” The article, annotated with commentary below, argues that the depiction of the Quileute in Meyer’s Twilight saga is a cultural boon. Yet, it FAILS to consider the furthering of stereotypical representations of indigenous people the saga enacts let alone to note issues of cultural appropriation and commodification. As it is coming from a Native American news source, I found this particularly surprising.

What Would You Bend Over For

If you read the title of this post and immediately assumed that this piece was going to be somewhat sexual, you guessed wrong.  This is a post about class, poverty and privilege.  The unhusband and I  were sitting on a bench waiting for the kids to finish karate, when he dropped a quarter on the ground.  I waited for him to pick up the quarter, but instead he left it because he could not be bothered.  We began a conversation about what denomination of money we would be willing to bend and pick up.  I would definitely pick up a quarter, but beyond that I would probably would move on, and we both agreed that we would pick up a loonie (Canadian one dollar coin) ir a toonie (a two dollar coin).

We walked away and left the corner, only to walk by that same place 30 minutes later on our way home to find that  the quarter was gone.  As we walked home we ran into a woman who asked us for change to buy a coffee.  Destruction looked at her and said, ``you look like you have had a really hard day.``  The unhusband reached into his pocket and gave her a toonie (two dollar coin).  We headed home to our warm house, with all it`s comfort and safety.

So ask yourself how much money is too little for you to bend over and pick up: a toonie, loonie, quarter, dime, nickel, or a penny.  I remember once telling one of my co-workers, that I will occasionally throw out pennies when I have amassed a ton of them because I cannot be bothered to roll them and she told me that I have never known real  hunger.  For her, those pennies that I was willing to cavalierly discard, represented the possibility of food or even a hot coffee. 

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Really Tired of Lady GaGa

So I am expecting more hatemail, but am I the only one that is tired of Lady GaGa?  She recently decided to walk through JFK looking like this:


Yeah I'm GaGa'd out.  All I see is a woman who steals from everyone and has yet to do one damn thing that is original.  Whether she is doing Elton John, Grace Jones, David Bowie or Madonna we have already seen it and it was better the first time.  I can think of mash re-runs that are more entertaining.  The problem with he media is that when it decides that someone is the next hot thing, or the it girl (see the over saturation of Betty White) they fixate on ze to the point of over load.

What kills me is the realization that we have not moved past the point where false rebellion means something socially.  How can someone be out there and be edgy, if they are only recycling someone's else's act.  I was starting to feel really isolated in my opinion until I read a piece that Camille Paglia wrote for the Sunday Times Magazine.

Although she presents herself as the clarion voice of all the freaks and misfits of life, there is little evidence that she ever was one. Her upbringing was comfortable and eventually affluent, and she attended the same upscale Manhattan private school as Paris and Nicky Hilton. There is a monumental disconnect between Gaga’s melodramatic self-portrayal as a lonely, rebellious, marginalised artist and the powerful corporate apparatus that bankrolled her makeover and has steamrollered her songs into heavy rotation on radio stations everywhere.

Gaga is in way over her head with her avant-garde pretensions… She wants to have it both ways – to be hip and avant-garde and yet popular and universal, a practitioner of gung-ho “show biz”. Most of her worshippers seem to have had little or no contact with such powerful performers as Tina Turner or Janis Joplin, with their huge personalities and deep wells of passion.

Generation Gaga doesn’t identify with powerful vocal styles because their own voices have atrophied: they communicate mutely via a constant stream of atomised, telegraphic text messages. Gaga’s flat affect doesn’t bother them because they’re not attuned to facial expressions.
I am not a huge Paglia fan, but that won't stop me from agreeing with her on this one.  You cannot be avant garde by constantly playing to the media, searching desperately for the next big stolen prank.  She reminds of an attention seeking child desperately following along in the path others to be noticed.  Ooooh burn.  Make sure you spell my name correctly on the hate mail please.

Don't Offend Whitey

I am writing this post to address an issue that has repeatedly come up in the e-mails that I get.  Many people tell me that they agree with the point I make until I start to talk about Whiteness.  Whiteness makes them uncomfortable it seems, so I suppose I should be quiet and put up with the racism that is directed at Black people.  How dare I make people uncomfortable.  It feels like they are waiting for a great White God in the sky to come and smote me into submission.  I really don't care about peoples fees fees when I am talking about race, because quite frankly there is too much at stake.  It is bad enough that I have to write the same posts repeatedly because someone cannot be bothered to get their 101 on

What is a poor White person to do -- they are after all disadvantaged in conversations about race right?  Ummm that would be your privilege speaking loudly in your ear sweetie.  If you cannot hold your own in an anti-racist conversation, it is because you have not bothered to learn what it is the marginalized go through every damn day of their life.  You get to walk around in your own little White heaven, where everything reflects you and every one thinks that you're just amazing.  Woot freaking hooray for Whiteness.  Oh I know you think that you are reaching out, but when you are closeted away in your all White neighborhoods, attending your all White schools, and hanging out with your all White friends, the effort is very hard to see and dude I wear glasses.

But, but, but, what do us darkies want from Whiteness anyway.  Poor White people just cannot win.  Whiteness has after all come such a long way.  Just look - Blacks can vote, there is a Black president -- all you have to do is ignore the over representation in the penal industrial complex (can't expect Whitey to give up its surplus population) the over representation in the military (well someone's gotta die for the right to be racist pigs), the police brutality (hey, at least they're not wearing White sheets anymore), the purposeful under education (hey they let us have ebonics, how's that for a bone), and higher rates of unemployment (But look at all of those wonderful social programs like work fare that keep you from starving)  It's all better than slavery -- so why aren't Black people thrilled?

The Boondocks: Someone Teach Riley That Hate Speech Is Not Social Commentary


As I mentioned in the first piece I wrote about The Boondocks, much of it is excellent but quite a bit of it should be critiqued for the message that it sends.  Today the character I would like to focus on is Riley.  He is eight years old and is already a devout homophobe.  Everything around Riley confirms that not only is heterosexuality normal, but that there is something deviant about gay men.

The first episode I watched of The Boondocks was the Tyler Perry Winston Jerome  episode.  I wrote, I am no fan of Tyler Perry, but I think that the way in which this episode was constructed specifically attacks him for his alleged homosexuality, and this is indeed a problem.  Sexuality should never be used as a weapon to attack someone, no matter how vile we think he is. Unfortunately I was to learn after watching more episodes of The Boondocks that homophobia and hate speech are a mainstay.

The two words that Riley says the most are nigger and gay as a slur.  No one ever corrects him on his speech and yet he is eight years old. If a male sits next to him or shows any kind of physical attention is common response is nigga you gay.  He is quick to refer to an action as gay and clearly sees homosexuality as something real men don't participate in.  If he says something affectionate about another man, he ends the sentence with no homo.

In  an episode entitled The story of Gangstalicious 2, the viewer is lead to believe that the point is to question the homophobia of rappers, but instead it felt like the point was that gay is the worst thing a person can be.  When Riley begins wearing Gagstalicious gear, Grand Dad and Uncle Ruckus begin to question his sexuality.  In fact, Uncle Ruckus says, "I'm sorry Robert, a gay grandson.  I can't imagine anything worse than that". As Robert begins to grimace, Uncle Ruckus continues with, "Wake up and smell the gay coffee.  All the evidence you could possibly need is right in front of your face.  It will only be a matter of time before that boys is a grown man, bent over a table with his pants around his ankles, being entered repeatedly by another man. Choo choo first train to faggotsville leaving in five minutes, through the chocolate tunnel hole."

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Spark of Wisdom: Why Does Gay Sexuality Automatically Mean Adult

 
 
 
This is a guest post from Sparky, of Spark in Darkness.  Many of you are  familiar with him from Livejournal, as well as from his insightful and often hilarious commentary here. Each Tuesday, Womanist Musings will be featuring a post from Sparky.

Disclaimer: Absolutely no-one is allowed to make any judgments about my musical tastes from this post. Including Sunday Shaming by certain Canadians with horrible horrible plastic shoes :P
  
So I was pottering around looking for some musical accompaniment to the randomness  that has been plaguing me of late and decided to go for Lady Gaga's Teeth - because it always makes the day a little more fun. And I'm sure the guy in the chair could be a lot of fun, yes yes I am.

And a message came up, I had to log in (which necessitated remembering my password, an event in and of itself) to prove my age because the video had been flagged for adult content.



And I have a "hmmm" moment. Because, yes, it is sexy - oh so very sexy - but none of the other music I'd been listening to had been flagged.

Katy Perry feat Snoob Dog: California Gurls

Near complete female nudity, strongly sexually suggestive, whipped cream shooting breast guns (I can't believe I just typed that)...

Not Flagged.

If I Could Turn Back Time: Ageism is Alive Today


That is Cher in her If I could Turn Back Time Outfit at this year's VMA's.  There have long been jokes that Cher is more plastic these days than woman. There is not doubt that money has a large role to play in why she looks the way that she does, but what I find interesting is not that she has a shapely fit, youthful, body but that she is willing to display it at 64 years old.  Ageism is something women face in a very specific way.  Beauty is seen as a fading power because as age we become socially less desireable whereas; the reverse is true of men. The very same lines on a man's face are supposedly reflective of character, and strength whereas; a woman is looked upon as haggard and used.  Even starlets in their 40's find themselves photo shopped to remove any hint of their true age, as though the experiences that they had which made them who the are, are useless and unimportant.

The older women become, the more they are told to hide their bodies and any evidence of their maturity.  The very idea of Cher walking across a stage revealing much her body and daring to be sexy at 64 is something that should not go by unnoticed.  On many occasions I have watched talk shows focusing on makeovers women of various ages.  The designers take the same style and alter it according to the age of the woman in question.  We are told that we can look good at any age, but there is always a limitation.  One of the more popular prescriptions is that older women cannot and should not have long hair or shorter hemlines on a skirt, no matter how beautiful their hair is or how nice their  legs look. 

White Feminists and Me: a Fable of Solidarity

 I'm a 23 year old Sinhalese woman in Minnesota by way of Dubai by way of Sri Lanka. I am a Womanist, and part of my womanism is figuring out how to be in solidarity with my transnational sisters worldwide. I'm a daughter, a sister, a partner and a writer. I'm a brown girl who knows Shakespeare by heart and devours anything Toni Morrison. I believe in radical, revolutionary living and loving.  I blog at Irresistible Revolution.

 Firstly, a little background for context: before coming to the US, I never had white friends. While there is a sizeable population of white folks in Dubai, economic stratification ensures their residence in exclusive suburbs, while I grew up in the teeming, claustrophobic city heart. My graduating class in high school boasted no less than 80 different nationalities. Bilingualism was the norm, rather than the exception, and most people were closer to tri- lingual. Simply put, diversity was a fact of life. I had friends from Sudan, Iran, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, South Africa, Tanzania and many many more. My close group of friends is all women of color, and while our experiences in Dubai were mediated through colorism, lookism and other currents of discrimination, there was no steep difference in privilege as often manifests between white women and WOC. 

When I moved to the US almost 4 years ago, I was lost. I had no friends or family here, and it took many many hard months before I was myself again. When I discovered Women’s Studies and feminism, I discovered a source of immense comfort and empowerment, as well as a sense of community with feminists and progressives et al.

 I grew close to a number of white feminists, and for a while I was happily assured that their professed allyhood and my own racial identity development meant that our friendships were foolproof. And so when cracks developed in those friendships, and I found myself feeling betrayed on several fronts, I was at last compelled to take a long hard look at the emotional realities I had avoided.

For some reason, in my friendships with white women, I had implicitly decided not to think about race between us. I could talk about critical race theory, I could talk about my experience of racism in other places and at the hands of other people, but to personalize that in the immediate moment, and to acknowledge the insidiousness of race, invisible and ubiquitous as air, that permeated the interaction between me and the person in front of me – I just couldn’t do it.

And that was a grave error.

The result was that oftentimes, I became the receptacle of their white guilt, or would prioritize affirming their Good White Person qualities over honestly engaging my own positionality. So there I was, a fiercely empowered brown woman, trampling and ignoring my feelings so that I could ensure the white women felt good.

Monday, September 13, 2010

True Blood: Evil is Going On

 Spoiler Alert

I don't know about you, but Sunday nights just will not be the same without True Blood.  Last night's episode, opened with Eric and Russel chained together with silver lying in the sun. We were treated to another great guest appearance by Godric, who tells Eric to let go of all of the pain and that peace follows death. Bill revives Sookie, who goes out to save Eric after slapping Bill for his betrayal of her.  It's about time she got sick of the whole I had to deceive you to protect you routine. When she cannot break the bond between the two, Russell tells her to use her powers.   She drags Eric in and allows him to feed on her, but when he announces his attention to get Russel because of what Godric said, Pam answer, "do the world a favour and let the fuck fry". Sookie drags Russel into Fangtasia, where Eric tells her not to stake him before going to bed with Pam and Bill.

Sam makes breakfast for Tara, who is pleasantly surprised to see him in the kitchen. She comments that she never gets a good night sleep with Sam, because he is always barking in his sleep.  When Sam tells Tara what he is, she is repulsed saying isn't that the kind of thing you're supposed to tell someone before you sleep with them.  Sam apologizes, but makes it clear that he is done hiding who he is.   When Tara talks about wanting a re-boot, Sam tells her that it is possible, she just has to keep moving so that her past does not catch up to her.  It is clear by the end of the episode that Tara is going to take a journey.

Will  Maxine ever leave Hoyt alone?  When she staged the intervention with little Miss do you want to taste my biscuits Summer, I was certain that Hoyt's happiness does not matter to her, his obedience does. She rounded up his old high school guidance counselor to inform him that he needs to choose life and leave Jessica.  Hoyt made it very clear that Jessica was who he wanted and that Maxine needed to accept that or stay out of his life. Later, alone with Jessica in the new apartment that Hoyt has rented, for the two of them he tells her that he wants to marry her even if he has to get a licensee online and do it himself.  As the two dance the camera pans in on what seems to be a doll in one of the spare bedrooms.

I suppose I have to mention Jason, who to my great disappoint was not killed off this season.  Egged on by Crystal, Jason attempts to find out when the DEA is going to raid Hot Shot.  Andy warns him not to intervene if he has any hope of becoming a cop, but Jason rushes head first with the belief that love will save the day.  Once at Hot Shot, Calvin orders everyone to ditch the V and hide the meth equipment.  Felton arrives in a rage to save the V and shoots Calvin dead in the face.  Let me say right here, that this really upset me. What Alan Ball did to the character of Calvin was terrible to begin with, but to see him cut down like that really was unacceptable.  Felton threatens to kill Jason and so Crystal leaves with him, but only after Jason promises to look after her people. I know that Harris mentions inbreeding in the book at Hot Shot, but I must say, to see them look right out of Deliverance was a shock.

Trans is the Next Cool Thing


Matt Kailey is a transman living in Denver, Colorado, and an author, public speaker, and trainer on transgender issues. He blogs at Tranifesto. In his ideal world, no one would be equal to anyone else – everyone would just be equal.
 
There's always a “next cool thing” - something hip, something edgy, something rebellious that puts you just one step ahead of everyone else in your crowd. This year, I think we're it. 2010 is the year that it's cool to be trans.

After being relegated to Jerry Springer for more than a decade, we're now on just about every reality show on TV. We're modeling, we're blogging, we're running for office, and we're just there - everywhere you look. 

And although we can still get fired in 38 states just for being trans, and although we can still get arrested in probably just as many places for using the restroom that corresponds to our gender (unless our paperwork is in order), it's still very cool to be us.

It's even cooler to have a trans friend. It not only brands you as open and accepting, but also, in many cases, as hip, edgy, and rebellious - and who doesn't want to be that?

When I was growing up female - in the 1960s, in the Midwestern United States, in predominantly white middle- and lower-middle-class neighborhoods - the “cool thing” for some of the girls was to have a black boyfriend. 

It was hip, edgy, and very rebellious - guaranteed to piss off your parents and make them ground you so that you could sneak out your window to see your man, adding a layer of romance and intrigue to the whole affair.

Suicide: An Individual AND a Family Crisis

" I am a 36 year old disabled woman who has been variously labeled "fat", "crazy", and "a hippie weirdo." I now try to embrace labels that others use in an attempt to "shame" me into being someone more "acceptable". I am passionate about issues of race/racism, criminal (in)justice, fat acceptance, and mental health advocacy. I blog at My Name Is JuJuBe and Inside JuJuBe and I am on the team at The Intersection of Madness and Reality

Two years ago, GA took a bottle of heparin (a blood thinner) from the veterinary program at her job. She kept it stored in her home, and took it with her when she moved to a new location. She also took the needles needed to inject the medication. She told no one that she had procured this item. She had a plan in mind for it.

One night last May, she injected herself with the heparin. She then tied a noose out of an electrical cord and fastened it to her shower door. She proceeded to use a straight razor to slit her wrists vertically up to her elbow. The blade was dull, so she had to make several cuts. She bled so much that the blood soaked through a 6 inch couch cushion. She then went to her bed and waited to die.

The noose in her bathroom was there in case she did not bleed out and needed to resort to another method to end her life. However, she was so weak from blood loss that she was unable to walk to the bathroom. In fact, during the night, when she had to urinate, she had to crawl across her apartment to reach the toilet. Miraculously, she survived until morning.

Perhaps We Should Not Celebrate Gabourey Sidibe on The Cover of Elle

Gabourey Sidibe is featured on the cover of Elle magazine in celebration of their 25th anniversary.

I have spent the last few days reading the positive commentary about how wonderful it is to have a fat Black woman on the cover of a major magazine.  Gabby is after all, not only fabulously beautiful, she is extremely talented and it is a step forward to see her in the mainstream, which has a tendency to promote a thin Euro-centric aesthetic.  So, we are all supposed to be happy right?  Yeah for inclusion except for this:

and this:


Do you see the point that I am making yet? I am sure that Elle felt that just having Gabby on the cover was making some statement about how progressive they are, and so I suppose that actually having a picture of Gabby in her natural skin colour was easy to deem unimportant.  As the two other images reveal, Gabby is actually several shades darker than she is pictured in Elle.  Photoshopping is quite common in magazines, but when they chosoe to lighten a dark skinned Black woman, it is racist no matter what the original intent was.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Sunday Shame: Doggie Slipper Edition

It seems that my beloved Sparky and Gus, AKA Allison McCarthy both believe that I have serious shoe issues.  I never been one of those girls that goes shoe gaga, as my love of crocs proves.  Now that it is fall, I have moved to my super comfy state.

 Yes, those are my comfy slippers.  I absolutely love them and refuse to believe that there is anything shameful about them.  I love them so much, that I have no problem sitting on my front porch and wearing them while I am having my morning tea.  This means that my neighbors (much to Sparky's horror) are well aware that I wear them.  Each year, new fluffy animal slippers are the first thing on my x-mas list.  The unhusband is well aware that if I don't open a pair of animal slippers on Christmas morning, that I will be greatly disappointed. 

As I was crowing about my love of my fuzzy doggies slippers, I was told my Gus aka Allison McCarthy that they rise to the level of Sunday Shame, this btw from the queen of Sunday Shame.  If you go through the archives, you will see that no one has been shamed as much as Allison has, so I believe that her taste is dubious to say the least. Clearly we need a ruling, I believe that the slippers should elicit joy and not shame and if you agree, I say this is Allison's and Sparky's shame and not mine. Hit me up in the comments and let me know whose shame it is, and while you are at it, don't forget to share what your comfy slippers look like.