Saturday, September 25, 2010

Drop It Like It's Hot

Hello everyone, thanks for another great week of conversation.  Thank you to all of the regular contributors who take the time to share their work with us every week.  Back to school is one of the busiest times of year for my family and so we are all still going through a huge adjustment period.  Ms. Sookie, the new puppy, recently ate the power cord for Destruction's computer, oddly enough this happened right after I replaced the one she ate last week.  Busy is my first name right now, so please be patient with me as I try to get our house in order.

If you would like to participate in the varied conversations that happen here, please feel free to submit a guest post via e-mail to womanistmusings (at) gmail (dot) com.  It can either be your original work, or a link to your blog.  Please include a short three line bio and an image that you would like associated with your work. The more people that participate, the more subjects we can cover from various points of view.

Below you will find a list of posts that I found interesting over the last two weeks. (Yep, I replaced the power cord to my computer, we'll see how long it takes the puppy to eat it)  Please note that this is not an endorsement of the author, I simply found the points raised in each piece to be of general interest.  Please show these bloggers some love and check them out.  When you are done, don't forget to drop it like it's hot and leave your link behind in the comment section.

Stability or Repression? Or, Parents Don't Have Time to Cry
in reaction to 
Eddie Long Is A System Of A Much Worse Disease
Wiccan Community Responds to Christine O'Donnell's Ignorance 
The Big C: So this is liberating
Celebrate Bisexuality Day 2010
What Is Pornography
Tube Tied: Peggy Olson Enters Oppression Olympics, Falters
North Carolina: Consent To Sex Cannot Be Withdrawn
Why "No Wedding No Womb"Doesn't Work
New Barbie Doll Puts The Japanese Back In Time
Depression; wasting energy on labels
When Helpful Advice Is Neither
I Finally Saw 'Ticked Off T******s With Knives'
Native Americans believe that there are dual systems of justice
Why the Trans Community Hates Dr. Janice G Raymond
Red, Brown, and Blue: How our definition of whiteness has changed with each new wave of immigration
Effeminacy. Too feminine....? 
When Twitter Attacks Black Women Better Watch Out
Females: You Just Can't Trust 'Em and Other Lies Women Believe
The case for why Peggy Olson is Not Mad Men's Feminist Hero
When I decided not to be a virgin
Growing Up Jewish - High holiday Edition

Friday, September 24, 2010

Discussing Dusty Skins And Privilege (Part Two)

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.

A few days ago, I ran into an old friend. While I like running into people -- for there are always entertaining possibilities -- what I dislike with a Direct Vengeance Of The Force Of A Thousand Suns And Add All The Angry Stars Too™ is how quickly the conversation goes to bodies. Suddenly, you're not the person meeting your friend, you morph invisibly into the BodyRemarkCouncil while you try to squeeze out just the right insult without seeming to undermine the person, smile tersely while silently fixing the exact difference you imagine in the person. Questions like, "Have you lost a little weight?", "Your hair is as unruly as ever, isn't it?" are quite common. This week as soon as I heard, "You look better than before. Your skin tone is glowing. How did you lighten it?", my LadyBrain slammed itself shut as my acquaintance probed further to learn my 'secret'. I may or may not have told her I peeled a layer of my skin off to achieve the effect. She may or may not have walked away from me mumbling safety chants to herself. It's too soon in the post to digress anyway.

As I discussed earlier, I never really saw myself as 'brown' till the default human being -- White, heterosexual, male -- decided to spell it out for me. Sort of like that in that grotesque way you label a 'thing' in order to castigate and possess it; my 'brown' skin has become one of the most important signifier of my being. This is an especially ironic relationship as somehow online bodies aren't their physical manifestations -- even if your static status picture suddenly starts singing -- or in the most simple manner of speaking, they are 'left behind' on another plane. One where the virtual and the 'real' don't really meet. Isn't that the main argument anyone who is quick to dance to the "Look how far we've come" or "DID YOU KNOW YOU CAN JUST DROP YOUR IDENTITY AND MAKE A NEW ONE ONLINE and THIS TIME YOU CAN WEAR A SHINY DRESS IF YOU WANT" tunes of supposed progress? Of course, that is a possibility, that new identities are made online. There is no point on denying a certain freedom in making and re-imagining bodies. You can be White, Yellow, Brown, Chocolate or as many hues as you want. Understandably, many people prefer being White because that way, you don't get trolled as much. For instance, I can pretend to take on a 'Western' name, even model myself to be a member of the privileged class, that works out without a glitch. But unlike  in a Danielle Steel book, things cannot be compartmentalised that easily. Extremely safe and tested methods of the scientific variety of observation -- otherwise known as legally e-stalking people -- it is clear that your 'old' body inscribes itself on your new one. Whether you acknowledge it or not, shedding bodies isn't nearly as simple as it is made out to be. So how does one go about discussing privileges about bodies that are essentially invisible or at least are virtual? 

To borrow and modify from Spivak, it is only when we look at margins and cracks, will we possibly find traces of earlier bodies (in this case). A good example to is to look at the absences that are present in most lingerie ads that come on TV out here. Here is one revolting one :

Terrence Howard as Nelson Mandela in 'Winnie'

I know that I am late to this, but I just found out yesterday that Terrence Howard Baby Wipes is playing Nelson Mandela, in the biopic Winnie, staring the brilliant Jennifer Hudson.

I have written various times about my feelings regarding Nelson Mandela and the end of apartheid in South Africa.  In my mind, his appeasement approach simply removed apartheid in name, while leaving the system of inequality firmly intact.  A small Black elite does not equate to true equality in a country largely run by Whiteness with a Black majority. Though many credit Mandela with a peaceful transition, few will acknowledge that the cost was the maintenance of Whiteness, along with denying Blacks true justice for their abusive treatment at the hands of the apartheid regime. 

Despite his numerous failings, to many he is a hero and in a world that is sorely in need of positive images of Black masculinity, the fact that he is being played by Terrence Howard Baby Wipes is simply atrocious.  There can be no doubt that Howard Baby Wipes is an excellent actor because he pretends constantly to be a decent human being. Terrence Howard Baby Wipes has a history of domestic violence, as well as other  misogynistic behaviour

No Wedding No Womb: LeBron James and His Would Be Daddy

Have you  ever read a story and thought that you would never get your bottom lip off the ground?  Well, prepare yourself for a shocker.  According to TMZ, 55-year-old Leicester Bryce Stovell is suing Lebron for 4 million dollars.
Stovell is seeking $4 million from LeBron and his mother -- claiming fraud, defamation and misrepresentation.

In the new docs, Stovell alleges Gloria falsified the 2007 test -- which showed a "0% probability of paternity" -- and he wants a second, more carefully supervised test.

And then there's this: Stovell wants $$$ because he lost "gifts of money" that he would have received from LeBron had the test proven paternity.
That right there is the definition of a trifling ass man.   Far too often men throw away their kids because they don't want the burden and expense of raising them, but when these same children turn around and achieve something, they are the first one with their hand out. To them, these celebrity children are nothing more than a paycheck for a lucky cum shot. If he is the father, he was an absent one and he expects to be rewarded for that.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Christine O'Donnell Campaign Button

Generally speaking, I don't comment on American politics, but occasionally I find something that tickles me so much, that it becomes impossible to ignore.

Tell me that doesn't just say it all? 


Forbes 400 Richest Americans

Today Forbes released their list of the 400 richest Americans proving that it is great to be White, male, able-bodied, heterosexual and cisgendered.  I decided to post this in response to comment left on my blog from Robot Brother.
"you are delirious if you think being born white gives us a free, how clueless are you...

I have determined after all of...I dunna 3 minutes of my time that this site is nothing but anti white male, which makes everything you say about women, black, all of it null and void.

You want equality, my are on a personal vendetta, that is quite obvious and apparent." 
Well. for people who apparently don't have an easy ride, it seems to me that White, straight, able bodied cis men have it pretty good.  Here is a further breakdown (source)

Sexy and Pregnant, It Is Possible

The physical changes to one's body during pregnancy can illicit many emotions.  I will be quite honest and say that I was not happy with my pregnant body.  I felt like I had been invaded and this was increased by the commentary of my co-workers, who had no problem openly proclaiming how I should feel.  I remember one woman commenting about the size of my breasts and wondering openly if they were going to get any larger.  One direct supervisor who at the time was male, suggested that I was selfish for not enjoying the way my body was changing and that it was a sign that I would fail to be a nurturing mother.  I can safely declare that my two pregnancies resulted in the most body policing I have experienced to date.  Believe me, as a fat Black woman that is saying something.  Everything from what I ate, to how I felt about being pregnant was open for conversation.  The constant interrogation of my person was seen as acceptable, though I was nurturing my children with my body and I was the one who would give birth to them.

I doubt that my experiences with pregnancy were unique.  Pregnancy is a time when women are expected to fixate on becoming mothers and reject all other facets of their identity.  Though women are able to have sex safely well into their pregnancies, for many people, the idea is somehow repellent. Good mommy's aren't expected to have carnal desires, even though that is exactly how women become pregnant in the first place. Sexuality is expected to become dormant and any act that publicly indicates that it is still an important part of our identity is quickly frowned upon.  With WOC this experience can be heightened, as we are often constructed as irresponsible breeders, who are filling the world with undesirable offspring.

It is assumed by many that pregnancy in a woman's life is a time when society is less apt to discipline or attack, but that is a patent falsehood.  Just as with every other aspect of a woman's life, this is something we need to redefine for the sake of women's empowerment.  A child within our womb does not suddenly justify intrusion, or the empower others with the ability to dictate how we are supposed to feel about our bodies or perform femininity/ motherhood.   When I came across the following images taken of model Kim Bella by photographer Felix Natal Jr., what I saw was a challenge to the idea that one must see pregnancy as a time for celibacy and self denial.

The following images below the fold may not be safe for work

Homophobic Bishop Eddie Long Accused of Coercing Men Into Sex

Normally, I avoid the stories where someone is outed, but the alleged behavior of Eddie Long is simply impossible to ignore.  It seems that he promised two vulnerable young men that he would be their "spiritual father" and then used that position to allegedly gain their trust.  It has been alleged that he bribed these young men with jewelry, cars, and even trips abroad.  The behavior apparently escalated from chaste kisses to oral copulation.
"Long is considered one of the nation's top black preachers. His church has more 25,000 members, according to the suit, and was the site of Coretta Scott King's 2006 funeral, attended by then-President George W. Bush and three previous presidents. King was the widow of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. The pastor took one plaintiff, Anthony Flagg, 21, on overnight trips to a half-dozen American cities in recent years, Flagg's suit alleges. 'Long shared a bedroom and engaged in intimate sexual contact with plaintiff Flagg including kissing, massaging, masturbating of plaintiff Flagg by defendant Long and oral sexual contact,' the suit says. Long took the other plaintiff, Maurice Murray Robinson, 20, to Auckland, New Zealand, in October 2008 for his 18th birthday and engaged in oral sex with him, Robinson's suit alleges. The suits also said that Long framed the sexual relationships as religious in nature. The suits allege that Long chose the plaintiffs to be his "Spiritual Sons," a program that allegedly includes other young men from the church." (source)

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Jodie Foster Comes to the Defense of Mel Gibson

I will be the first to say that Mel and Jodi had great chemistry together in Maverick. but enough should really be enough.  Though Jodi is apparently his longtime friend, at what point do you decide that your friend is deeply damaged?  It is not like Gibson is being shunned for no reason.  He has proven to be a racist, sexist asshat.  His recorded threats to Oksana reveal a man that is filled with rage, but apparently for Foster it amounts to a "dark time" in his life.
A longtime pal of Mel's, Foster was one of the few celebs to go public with her support of the thesp in the wake of his infamous Jew-hating, sugartitted rant several years ago, and in a new interview has once again—this time in the wake of completing a suddenly indefinitely postponed film with Gibson—risen to his defense.

In an interview with More magazine, conducted several months prior to Oksanagate, Foster called Gibson the "easiest, nicest person I've ever worked with…The second I met him, I said, 'I will love this man for the rest of my life.'"

Lest you think that an unfair barometer of Foster's feelings toward Gibson, the magazine contacted the actress after tape upon tape (upon tape) of vile, misogynistic and generally hateful vitriol was released from his leaked voicemails.

Credit to Foster, she didn't change her tune.
"When you love a friend, you don't abandon them when they are struggling," she told the magazine. (source)

The Black Play Thing on The Big C

Spoiler Alert

Let me say from the start that I take no issue with inter racial relationships, I do do however have a problem when Black sexuality is used as a device in the media.  Much of monday's episode had to do with sexuality.  Cathy, played by Laura Linney is dying of cancer and is determined to change her life before she dies.  The episode begins with her standing up for herself when someone rudely steps in front her and ends with her having sex on a desk with a Black man that she barely knows.  While this kind of sexual behavior is out of character from her, I am not certain that anonymous sex as liberation is a positive move for women.

Her son is 14 years old and as such he is beginning to explore his sexuality.   He bumps into Andrea, who is played by Gabourey Sidibe, running laps around a track.  She tells him to "stop looking at her titties". When he denies looking at her, she tells him how great hers are and that he probably has never touched "titties" before.  Of course, this leads to male bravado, which prompts her to invite him to touch her breasts.  When he hesitates she grabs his hand places it on her breast and then promptly jogs away.  Considering that Gabourey's character is nothing but filler on the show, it gives the impression that Black female bodies exist for the purposes of White male sexual experimentation.  This is even further problematic when we consider the brutal history of rape and slavery that exists between White Men and Black women.  You cannot divorce this narrative from a scene on television no matter how race conscious the actors themselves are. Furthermore, the language which is utilized in this scene does not inspire a full respect for Andrea's body. 

Gays Gain The Right To Adopt But What About The Birth Mothers?

We live in a patently unequal society and though many people find themselves on the receiving end of discrimination, they seem to have no issue oppressing another group in the false belief that this equates to real social power.  Sometimes in an effort to redress wrongs, we end up further marginalizing another group.  New York State recently changed the law to allow unmarried couples and gay men to adopt children.

"Governor David Paterson signed a law making the change on Sunday. The law also puts "married couple" in the adoption statute, in place of what used to read "husband and wife." Bill sponsors say that is meant to ensure children get insurance and other benefits from both adults, as well as lifelong support even if couples split up."  (source)
How could I possibly have a problem with this?  There are so many children in the system waiting to be adopted and this means the potential for them to have loving families.  It is also a great step forward for gay rights, because they have traditionally been constructed as destroying the innocence of children or having an agenda of creating more LGBT people, as if homosexuality is something you can teach someone.

I wholeheartedly agree that no adult who is capable of providing a loving safe home for a child should be prevented from adopting, but I cannot help but notice how in this fight for rights, few are talking about the birth mothers that are coerced into giving up their babies.  What about the fact that we provide little to no support systems for single mothers? It stands to reason that the system would not be nearly as burdened, if we invested in women.   How many times do we need to hear from women whose arms ache to hold their babies, about the pain that adoption has brought them to understand that the key to the reduction of the number kids in the system is support for their mothers?

Sick Baby

Hello everyone.  The baby is home sick for the second day in a row and I am up to my arm pits in puke.  Things will be really slow today, while I try to make him as comfortable as possible.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

When Homophobia Poisons Your Work Environment

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.

As people who read my ramblings on my LJ probably know, work has been causing me no small amount of grief lately and while there are many factors to their causing me grey hairs, a fair amount of it comes from unpleasant pits of straight privileged cluelessness that has caused me no end of headaches. 

When I had my expedited descent down a stone staircase, they called my brother in Wales before thinking to call my husband. In fact they didn't think of it at all until I insisted.  

I've been told to put Beloved's picture away because it upset clients - I've had the Senior Partners then apologize to both those clients and others who didn't want to work with me. I have yet to establish exactly what they were apologizing for. I've been taken off cases because clients and, in one case, a barrister objected. I've been put on cases because it was felt they needed a female lawyer and our female lawyers wouldn't add to their work loads. 

I do more flexible hours, more traveling, more police station call outs at 3:00am (which are so FUN, especially since 80% of the clients are too drunk to do anything more than vomit on your shoes) and more 90 hour weeks than my straight counterparts - we're all in relationships, but mine doesn't need time like theirs - it's not the same, "not really." My husband  - no, wait, they corrected me on that, "civil partner" - doesn't need as much attention as my heterosexual colleague's partners.

Gabourey Sidibe As Mammy

In the spam area of this blog, there are several comments which remain unpublished due to the fat phobia, that suggest that Gabriel Sidibe is a mammy.  The very nature of the repeated commentary leads me to believe that this is an issue that people are interested in delving into and this is why I have decided to address it.  Let me say from the the onset, that any fat phobia in the comment thread will not be tolerated.  This is a space about uplifting women and I will not have it fouled by fat hatred.

The obvious elephant in the room is Gabriel's weight and so I will say it from the beginning -- she is a fat Black woman.

Her weight, in my mind does not obscure her obvious beauty.  To compliment her, many believe is an act of PC speech because fat is coded as repulsive in our society that privileges thinness as an idealized norm. On several occasions, men like Howard Stern have deliberately demeaned her and suggested that she has no place in Hollywood because of her weight.  She is seen by many as a one hit wonder, simply based in her size, rather than her raw talent.

For Black women, fat represents more than ugly, as it does for White women; it represents mammy.  Mammy is a figure that most if not all Black women would like to see die, because she represents servitude and submissiveness to Whiteness.   One cannot help but reasonably wonder that even as White people praise her for achievement and the sometimes racist fat positive movement steps up to her defense, if they do so out of love and respect, or because they see in her a non threatening mammy?  One commenter had this to say:

Thoughts on 'For Coloured GIrls'

This is a guest post by the ever fabulous Monica of TransGriot

Like other peeps in the Afrosphere, I have my love-hate moments with Tyler Perry, Madea and his films at times.

But I have to grudgingly admit that many of them are in my personal DVD collection. When I need a good laugh, I pop the microwave movie butter popcorn, fire up the DVD player and watch them on a regular basis along with the other Black cinema classics such as Carmen Jones, Shaft, Cabin In The Sky and Imitation of Life that are in my movie collection.

So I was surprised to find out he was directing and producing the screen version of Ntozake Shange's classic play For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When The Rainbow Is Enuf considering all the Black female directors such as Gina Prince-Bythewood, Julie Dash, and Kasi Lemmons, or screenwriters such as Suzan Lori Parks that I believe would have done a better job with this play than Perry.

Well, he was the one tapped by the studios to do it and the trailer has been released for the movie. For Colored Girls debut has been moved up to a November 5 release date so it can get Oscar consideration.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Vampire Diaries: Brave New World

Well, I am sure by now everyone reading knows that I am a complete vampire freak, from True Blood, to Twilight, I just cannot say no.  Two weeks ago, the season premier of The Vampire Diaries aired.  Can you guess what that means?  Yep, happy, happy, joy, joy, I will be writing a review each week.  If you are not already watching, now is the time to start.  This week I am just going to do a simple overview,  but I will get into more details with each successive post.  On Monday evenings at 6pm EST Tammi, of What Tami said and Racialicious and I, will be hosting a podcast to share with you our thoughts on each episode starting on September 27.
The Vampire Diaries airs on the CW and so of course, this means that it is not without its share of teen angst.  The very first season pretty much established a bit of a love triangle between Elena, our typical teenage heroine and the GORGEOUS, Salvatore brothers (they are the vamps in question).  Stefan is stoic and the good vamp because he only feeds on animals whereas; his hot brother played by Ian Sommerhalder (that man makes me want to fan myself) Damon, is a very complicated individual, who subsists on human blood.  It is clear that he has a tough exterior and soft under belly.  Damon is stronger than Stefan though they are the same age because he feeds on human blood. Both vamps are attracted to Elena, because she looks like her vamp ancestor Katherine.  Katherine crossed both brothers over to the side of the undead and fueled the competition between them.  

The Salvatore brothers are considered a founding family in Mystic Falls.  Only the descendants of the founding families know that vampires exist, and they have made it their duty to keep the town safe from the undead.  In their human life, the Salvatore brothers watched as several vampires were buried in a tomb.  Both Damon and Stefan tried to save them, for love of Katherine, but they were unable to.  Damon vowed to set Katherine free one day.  What he did not know, is that she had escaped the entrapment and spent the last 140 years doing as she pleased, leaving him to focus on what he thought was his lost love.  When he is finally able to get the tomb open with the help of Steffan, Elena and Bonnie the local witch, he is disappointed to find that she is not in there.

At the end of season two we find Catherine on Elena's porch kissing Damon, because he believes that she is Elena.  Ummm, if you have not seen that kiss, you really should; it`s hot as hell.  When they discover that it is indeed Katherine, she makes it clear that she came back for Stefan and not Damon.  When Damon tries to kiss Elena, she rejects him saying that she loves Steffan and not Damon.  Let me say right here, that these women are making the wrong choice.  At any rate, we now have a rejected and brooding Damon.  Both Salvatore brothers want Katherine out of town and so she declares her evil intentions by killing Elena's friend Caroline, unaware that she was full of Damon's blood.

In the background, we have what are clearly a family of werewolves.  Don't you just love stories that have many supernatural creatures?  Well, Tyler is still unaware that he is a werewolf, but his uncle knows what he is, because he is one himself.  Breaking the tradition of working class werewolves, Tyler is the son of the former mayor and he has  a lot of class privilege. It is clear that there is an impending showdown between the werewolves and the vamps.  Of course,  everyone knows that these two creatures are unable to share the same habitat without some kind of shit going down.

Finish reading here

This Week's Top Troll

Trigger warning for various forms of evil

Hello everyone.  It's been awhile since I have shared with you some of the ridiculousness that I forced to wade through each day to moderate this space and keep it as safe as possible for everyone.  Once again, I am going to publish some of the comments that did not make it onto the blog for various reasons.  Please select the one that you find to be the most heinous and if you are up to it after wading through the muck, please share in the comment section why you picked who you did.  I know that some of these will be difficult to read but I feel it is important to understand why viewing isms in the way that these commenters do is extremely problematic.

Get Out Of My Way I Have Things To Do

This is going to be a rant, because I  just need to let off some steam.  One of things that I have learned since becoming disabled, is that I am invisible. Regular readers know that I use a mobility scooter, because I cannot stand for long and have difficulty walking even the shortest distances.  This weekend, we needed a few odds and ends for the house and because the unhusband had to work, the task fell to me.  I got on my scooter and headed to my local mart.  The abelism greeted me before I could even make it to the local grocery store.

Before shopping, I had to go to the bank, and would believe that a woman waited a full five minutes to hold the door for me, though it had an automatic door opener?  As I rolled the opposite direction to go out the front door of the bank, which was in the direction I was heading, she called after me saying, "Miss, don't go that way, I have been waiting to hold the door for you." So she was waiting to hold a door that I had no intention of going through, that had automatic door openers should I have chosen to use them and I was expected to be thankful. That her behaviour was anything but helpful, did not even cross her mind and people seemed surprised when I refused to go out the door she had been waiting to hold.

Instead of taking my turn entering the store with everyone else, I was forced to wait.  People simply pushed their cart in front of me and because I didn't want to take the risk of hitting someone, I waited.  Normally, there is a give and take when people share a space, but apparently, my right to take up space evaporates anytime I am in public with my scooter.   One woman even walked right into me while I was stationary and then had the nerve to blame me.  You see, sitting in my scooter means that I am no longer at eye level and therefore invisible to those who seem to willfully forget that the disabled exist. I suppose she expected me to move out of her way, but why should I when I there first?  Do these people walk into children that easily, or is it only fire engine red scooters that are hard to see?

I waited patiently for a woman to finish stocking the bananas, so that I could grab a bunch for my family.  The moment she finished, a woman cut right in front of me and helped herself, while my body smoldered with rage.  She glanced over her shoulder and smiled at me as she walked away.  Of course there was no need to actually apologize, because I am just a disabled woman in a world created for able bodied people.  Time and time again, I get cut off or pushed to the side --  unless of course, I am in front of a door -- at which point people race to help me, even when no help is needed.  To many, helping those with disabilities means holding a door, but it certainly does not mean giving us basic human respect.

Bill Maher Says The N Word on Larry King and no one Cares

Just a few weeks ago, Dr. Laura caused a stir by repeatedly saying the word nigger to a Black woman, who had called into her show, for advice on dealing with racism in her inter-racial relationship.  To be fair, much of what she said was also overtly racist, but for many her true crime was her comfort using the word nigger.  Dr. Laura has at times been even more conservative than caribou barbie Sarah Palin.

On September 14th, Bill Maher host of, Real Time With Bill Maher, went on Larry King live in a sort of quasi celebration for receiving a star on the Hollywood walk of fame -- thus bringing down the value of said award. Of course, the conversation naturally turned to Republicans and racism.  When they began to speak about the 2012 election, Maher had the following to say:

I cannot wait to see the Republican debates in 2012 when you think about who is going to be on that panel. Sarah Palin, Newt Gingrich, Haley Barbour, John Bolton, Tim Pawlenty, Mitt Romney.

How are they going to out-fire breath each other? I mean where this rhetoric has gone to at this point? It's only 2010. And we're having Newt Gingrich, as we were talking about before, calling him an anti-colonial Luo tribesman. Luo tribesman.

That's the new Kenyan, Larry. And Kenyan, of course, was code for nigger. But that's where they are. They can't say it out loud. But that's where this whole campaign is going to be.

You asked about racism. It's all about racism. They cannot fathom this idea that there is a black president. And that's what they are going to fight about.  (source) (emphasis mine)
So, Dr. Laura used the word nigger to demean someone and the whole world goes into a snit because overt racism simply cannot be tolerated.  Then we have Bill Maher, who some would consider a leftist -- but I consider to be a libertarian douche bag, who uses the word to talk about the racism that someone else is engaging in, and no one has a problem with this.  Larry King did not even blink an eye and he went on with the interview, as though the word nigger had never been uttered.  I suppose when it is said by those that really don't mean to be racist, and they happen to exist with a shit ton of privilege, it doesn't really matter.