With the upcoming fourth season of A Game of Thrones about to hit TV screens, you will soon see ‘If you like reading GRR Martin, why not try these authors?’ displays going up in bookshops. I will give a book of mine, of their choice, to the first person who can send me a photo of such a display that isn’t entirely composed of male authors. Because I’ve yet to see one. I have challenged staff in bookshops about this, to be told ‘women don’t write epic fantasy’ Ahem, with 15 novels published, I beg to differ. And we read it too.
But that’s not what the onlooker sees in the media, in reviews, in the supposedly book-trade-professional articles in The Guardian which repeatedly discuss epic fantasy without ever once mentioning a female author. That onlooker who’s working in a bookshop and making key decisions about what’s for sale, sees a male readership for grimdark books about blokes in cloaks written by authors like Macho McHackenslay. So that’s what goes in display, often at discount, at the front of the store. So that’s what people see first and so that’s what sells most copies.
But they’re not the only ones who are operating outside of our enshrined banking system. Other groups, the demographic opposites of the Bitcoin crowd, are doing the same. The clinical terminology for those people is the “unbanked” — they rely on informal, instead of formalized, systems of trading or borrowing capital. Why? The unbanked, comprised of women and people of color, are much more frequently turned down for auto loans, mortgages, and investment advice. Or, when they go into formalized systems, the government isn’t there to protect them. Instead, they’re taken advantage of by unregulated banking — unbanked households on average spend over $2,400, about 10 percent of their income, to use services like payday lending and check cashing.
So they seek options outside of the banking system as mainstream America knows it. One example is a sou-sou. Formally known as aRotating Savings and Credit Association, and called a “min,” “sub,” “partner,” or “sociedad” by various ethnic groups, sou-sous originated in West Africa and were brought to the United States by Caribbean and African immigrants. They’re effectively community banks: A group of people put money at regular intervals into a shared fund and then at regular intervals distribute out that lump sum to one person in the group. So, for example, a group of 10 people would put in $1,000 a month, and once a month one person would receive $10,000 to do with as they please. It works simultaneously as a savings plan and a credit plan — all without interest. And sou-sou participants say that there’s more accountability and obligation to the fund because you know the other people in it.
When [an abusive man] tells me that he became abusive because he lost control of himself, I ask him why he didn’t do something even worse. For example, I might say, “You called her a fucking whore, you grabbed the phone out of her hand and whipped it across the room, and then you gave her a shove and she fell down. There she was at your feet where it would have been easy to kick her in the head. Now, you have just finished telling me that you were ‘totally out of control’ at that time, but you didn’t kick her. What stopped you?” And the client can always give me a reason. Here are some common explanations:
"I wouldn’t want to cause her a serious injury."
“I realized one of the children was watching.”
“I was afraid someone would call the police.”
“I could kill her if I did that.”
“The fight was getting loud, and I was afraid the neighbors would hear.”
And the most frequent response of all:
"Jesus, I wouldn’t do that. I would never do something like that to her.”
The response that I almost never heard — I remember hearing it twice in the fifteen years — was: “I don’t know.”
These ready answers strip the cover off of my clients’ loss of control excuse. While a man is on an abusive rampage, verbally or physically, his mind maintains awareness of a number of questions: “Am I doing something that other people could find out about, so it could make me look bad? Am I doing anything that could get me in legal trouble? Could I get hurt myself? Am I doing anything that I myself consider too cruel, gross, or violent?”
A critical insight seeped into me from working with my first few dozen clients: An abuser almost never does anything that he himself considers morally unacceptable. He may hide what he does because he thinks other people would disagree with it, but he feels justified inside. I can’t remember a client ever having said to me: “There’s no way I can defend what I did. It was just totally wrong.” He invariably has a reason that he considers good enough. In short, an abuser’s core problem is that he has a distorted sense of right and wrong.
I sometimes ask my clients the following question: “How many of you have ever felt angry enough at youer mother to get the urge to call her a bitch?” Typically half or more of the group members raise their hands. Then I ask, “How many of you have ever acted on that urge?” All the hands fly down, and the men cast appalled gazes on me, as if I had just asked whether they sell drugs outside elementary schools. So then I ask, “Well, why haven’t you?” The same answer shoots out from the men each time I do this exercise: “But you can’t treat your mother like that, no matter how angry you are! You just don’t do that!”
The unspoken remainder of this statement, which we can fill in for my clients, is: “But you can treat your wife or girlfriend like that, as long as you have a good enough reason. That’s different.” In other words, the abuser’s problem lies above all in his belief that controlling or abusing his female partner is justifiable….
”—Lundy Bancroft, Why Does He Do That? Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men (via redwinerivers)
After Autism Speaks released I Want to Say on youtube, Amy Sequenzia, a prominent non-speaking autism activist, wrote this article about the issues inherent in the short documentary. It was supposed to be a video about unlocking the voices of non-speaking autistics through the use of technology.
I watched a video about AAC changing lives of non-speaking Autistics. It sounded great and the title - I Want to Say - seemed to indicate that our voices, the voices of Autistics who type to communicate, would be the main focus.
My first alert signal came when I saw the Autism Speaks logo associated with the video. It turns out that the video is part of a project – Hacking Autism – which is also an Autism Speaks project.
But I did not have to know this to feel disappointed. In the first few minutes of the video, Autism Speaks’ favorite statement: “more children will be diagnosed with autism than AIDS, diabetes and cancer combined.”
The comparison is not real, since autism is not a disease and nobody dies of autism (unless one of us is murdered for being Autistic – it happens).
Then a self-important “autism specialist” says that we suffer, because we are Autistic, much more than anyone can imagine. I am Autistic and I do suffer, not from being Autistic, but from ableist societal attitudes.
There are scenes of Autistics typing and it would have been great if the producers had focused on what they were typing, how it helps them and how to make it available to more people. After all, the title of the video is “I Want to Say.”
As it has been their practice, Autism Speaks never allow Autistics to say what we “Want to Say.”
Instead, parents are the ones telling the story, their version of it. I would like to hear the Autistic voices, their experience from not being able to understand to being finally heard.
It makes me sad that the ones who were supposed to be the stars of this video, and who obviously understand what is said about them, are watching this and hearing what is being said.
“Swallowed by his autism”
As if there was a non-autistic person before the autism “swallowed” him.
“Suffering with Autism”
Maybe they should have asked the Autistic himself if he suffers.
“He is very sweet for an autistic child”
Apparently that mother believes Autistics are, in general, monsters.
When I read that particular statement, the phrasing reminded me distinctly of a scene from Fiddler on the Roof, a film close to my heart as someone half-Jewish myself. When the Russian Constable is speaking to Tevye, he says in a moment of astonishing anti-Semitism, "You’re an honest, decent person. Even though you are a Jew." The sentence, "He is very sweet for an autistic child," sounds remarkably similar.
Here is another quote from the video, referring to not being able to communicate:
“How would I feel like if I could not get across what I want to get across?”
They should have asked the Autistics. But they didn’t. Autistics in the video were not allowed to get their message across. They were never asked what their message was, how they feel or even asked to type their names.
It’s no sin to be gay. None. Not a little, not in some ways, not under some circumstances: virtually, 100%, now and forever never. Being gay is no more sinful than is being red-headed, blue-eyed, or left-handed. It’s simply the way God, in his infinite wisdom, saw fit to create some human beings to be.
God doesn’t think the people he created are abominations to him. What I guarantee you he does think abominable are people who have allowed their ignorance, fear, and anger to fuse into a bigotry which they then dare to ascribe not to their own lack of character, but to him.
God incarnated as Jesus so that all people might know how much He loves them–and then people somehow manage to turn that wondrous benevolence into a vehicle for hating people who aren’t exactly like them.
Research-based wedding vows. Despite the white, young, heteronormative picture, I find the vows fascinating and applicable to many kinds of relationships. Including my complicated polyamorous life.
[For those who don’t know, I have a live-in romantic partner (another woman; we’ve been together 16 years) and our (non-romantic) live-in life partner (also a woman; we’ve been a family for 13 years), with my separately domiciled partner (male, we’ve been together 10 years) and his long-term live-in partner (female; they’ve been together more than 30 years). And this doesn’t even get into the kink relationships.]
These are all people I love deeply and have been through many ups and downs with. I am deeply committed to having them in my life for the long haul. These vows look like excellent ways to do so.
“…the empathy connection comes from bridging a gap – it’s not what you see but what you imagine. You have to imagine what it’s like to live that life, what that person has to go through and the struggles they face.”—» Some words on some problematic stuff Sophie’s Blog
“Being willing to apply violence becomes a key part of establishing why people should respect us. It’s a quick and easy way of saying “Yes, I’m a manly man.” In fact, much of homophobic and transphobic violence is inspired by the need to reassert one’s manhood; homosexuals and trans people threaten their beliefs of masculine identity and behavior and thus they lash out as a way of reaffirming their status as “man”.”—When Masculinity Fails Men | Paging Dr. NerdLove
“The most frustrating thing is that, frankly, the MRM isn’t entirely wrong… or at least it wouldn’t be if they were actually trying to help men instead of looking for excuses to keep hating on women.
There are legitimate grievances to be had over the way that, say, child custody in divorce tends to favor the mother even if she’s otherwise unfit, or the way that adult male victims of sexual abuse or rape are functionally ignored by both society and law enforcement. The problem is that the MRM types are so up their own asses with their hatred and fear of women that they resemble a one-man Human Centipede. They’re directing all of their efforts in the wrong direction. It’s not women who are the problem. It’s men. More specifically, it’s masculinity. The traditional societal definitions of masculinity – and its attendant gender roles - fails men.”—When Masculinity Fails Men | Paging Dr. NerdLove
It’d be super-cool if you guys wouldn’t be cruel when you reblog posts. You’re entitled to an opinion and you don’t have to like everything, but maybe try to remember that the tattoo you’re reblogging belongs to a person who loved it enough to show it off, is stuck with it forever, and who will read what you write. If you’re going to single individuals out for criticism, a little empathy won’t hurt.
And, if you’re submitting a tattoo, you should know there will be people who won’t like it, regardless of what it looks like. That’s just how life is, and, on the Internet, there will be people who’ll be a jerk about it. You don’t have to let them have any effect on you. Ignore it. But, if you’re the type of person with an ego that can’t handle anything but praise, please, don’t submit. Your feelings will get hurt and you’ll want the post removed, and that’s a waste of my time.
Thanks for your time.
this is hilarious
It’d be super-cool if people didn’t get shitty tattoos
Having a tattoo you don’t think is good doesn’t make someone deserving of abuse.
I post a fair amount of tattoos here that I wouldn’t classify as technically good or that I don’t personally like. Technical and artistic excellence aren’t necessarily the end goal in contrast with expression, self-healing, memorializing, etc. Criticism about that is often valid (and I’m not above it), but there’s a BIG difference between saying, “I don’t like this” / “this isn’t a technically good tattoo for X reasons” and saying “Lol. Look at this idiot. He should kill himself. Hope he never procreates.”
The latter is abusive. It’s cruel. And if that’s not a distinction that’s readily apparent and important to you, you either don’t know enough about tattooing to be running your mouth or you’re not a very good person. And that’s your prerogative, but I’d much rather hang with people who have “shitty tattoos” than people who have shitty personalities.
According to the NPR report: When researchers at the University of Toronto and the University of Washington observed young people’s behavior in bars, they found that the man’s aggressiveness didn’t match his level of intoxication. There was no relationship.
Instead, men targeted women who were intoxicated.
The researchers hired and trained 140 young adults to go into bars in the Toronto area and note every incident of aggression they saw. They found that 25 percent of all incidents involved sexual aggression. And 90 percent of the victims of sexual aggression were women being harassed by men.
“Definition of terms
Majority: The dominant group.
Minority: (1) A racial, religious, political, national, or other group thought to be different from the larger group of which it is part; (2) A group having little power or representation relative to other groups within a society; (3) a member of one of these groups.”—Checklist of Neurotypical Privilege: New Draft | Square 8
Just gonna post this here because I am sick to death of hearing the “but rich people are a minority” argument.
Neurotypical: (1) Having a type of neurology that is expected and/or favored by the society in which one lives. (i.e., having a “normal” or “typical” brain, and the typical sensory processing/body movements/facial expressions associated with a typical neurological system.)
We: (1) The people who helped to create this document—most of us autistic or with other less typical neurology; (2) those who support the recognition of human rights for autistic people and others with less typical neurology.
Very interesting checklist for the NT people in our lives to do a privilege check. I tend to dislike the terminology only in seeing it misused and used as another form of belittling others. It’s still a valid concept, and this list does bring a lot to light that perhaps the average NT person might not notice.
A work in progress but a good start at identifying the privileges of neurotypicality and the prejudice obstacles not faced by NTs.
No matter how well someone passes. No matter what someone has accomplished. No matter how well they speak. Even if they’re married with children.
All autistic people are disabled. And, if you interact with them enough, it will present a practical problem at some point.
And, if you are autistic yourself, you are going to face practical problems associated with it.
And that’s ok. Disability is not a big deal, if you accept and accommodate it.
Going around pretending that it is not so just makes everything harder.
This is the absolute truth. :)
This is so hard for me to accept. Probably because somewhere deep down, “disabled” still means “broken” to me, and I don’t want to admit I’m broken. But I clearly don’t function normally and never have. But I ain’t broke. I’m just me. The only thing that makes me feel not right is being expected to act like other people. Like, left on my own, there’s nothing abnormal about me at all. Until I have to interact with other people.