Dear Readers,

I now consider this blog to be my Juvenelia. Have fun perusing the archives, and find me at my new haunt, here.

Friday, May 02, 2008

More Unhappiness-inducing Links

The suicide of the Deborah Jeane Palfrey, DC Madam is seriously one of the more fucked up things that's happened in a week of serious fuckupidtudes. The feminist blogs have covered the double-standard of the trial, the way powerful men in the situation were let off the hook (even Senator Vitter) while the women ended up disgraced or dead.

And if you want to get even more depressed, read this story about Palfrey's mom's 911 call. It will totally break your heart.

It's funny, isn't it, that there appears to be a parallel to the Sean Bell case, in terms of who gets let off the hook by our justice system and who ends up without a life. That parallel helps inform why why the oppression Olympics (which to be honest, was started by some irritatingly tunnel-visioned second-wave feminists) is such a load of crap. You just can't one-up each other to see who is more oppressed. All the "isms" manifest themselves in different ways, some more subtle, some less, some more blatantly harmful, and they interlock and intersect.

Thankfully, Betsy Reed's cover story in The Nation is timely--without in any way giving a pass to the sexism of the media when covering HRC, she makes it clear how disgusting it is that the Clinton campaign has been race-baiting Obama, giving credence to the Wright story and so much else. Well, this radical white feminist jewess is seriously pissed at Clinton. It would be very very very hard for me to pull the lever for her if she steals the election from Obama.

Choice excerpts:

Among the black feminists interviewed for this article, reactions to the declarations of sexism's greater toll by Clinton supporters--and their demand that all women back their candidate out of gender solidarity, regardless of the broader politics of the campaign--ran the gamut from astonishment to dismay to fury. Patricia Hill Collins, a sociology professor at the University of Maryland and author of Black Feminist Thought, recalls how, before they were reduced to their race or gender, the candidates were not seen solely through the prism of identity, and many Democrats were thrilled with the choices before them. But of the present, she says, "It is such a distressing, ugly period. Clinton has manipulated ideas about race, but Obama has not manipulated similar ideas about gender." This has exacerbated longstanding racial tensions within the women's movement, Collins notes, and is likely to alienate young black women who might otherwise have been receptive to feminism. "We had made progress in getting younger black women to see that gender does matter in their lives. Now they are going to ask, What kind of white woman is Hillary Clinton?"

The sense of progress unraveling is profound. "What happened to the perspective that the failures of feminism lay in pandering to racism, to everyone nodding that these were fatal mistakes--how is it that all that could be jettisoned?" asks Crenshaw, who co-wrote a piece with Eve Ensler on the Huffington Post called "Feminist Ultimatums: Not in Our Name." Crenshaw says that, appalled as she is by the sexism toward Clinton, she found herself stunned by some of the arguments pro-Hillary feminists were making. "There is a myopic focus on the aspiration of having a woman in the White House--perhaps not any woman, but it seems to be pretty much enough that she be a Democratic woman." This stance, says Crenshaw, "is really a betrayal."

I was at WAM! When Reed participated in a very interesting panel about sexism and Hillary. In fact, I documented how happy I was that she brought up the racism in the campaign as well, and as the race stuff has blown up and blown up since then, it was a prescient presentation and a much-needed piece. Word!