Feminism


Hello, it’s me. Yes, I’m back on the last day of the Democratic National Convention to give the fifth list of reasons to oppose Donald Trump’s presidency and to oppose him in general. But if this list doesn’t convince you, maybe the previous four (1, 2, 3, 4) will. If that’s not enough, there will be another list of 21 reasons next time, and another the day after that, and the day after that…and so on until there are 2016 reasons to oppose Trump. 85. Trump supported Brexit. Donald Trump viewed Brexit as the British people taking control over their own country and borders, and putting their needs first, or so he suggested. Unfortunately, a man who somehow got a graduate degree from Wharton doesn’t seem to understand much about the economy. Apparently, business degrees don’t require that a person understand economics or global policy. Liam Fox, Trade Secretary for the United Kingdom, explained how woefully inaccurate Trump’s assumption that Brexit is all about focusing on Britain are, “In fact it was the reverse: In my view, it was about Britain becoming a much more outward-looking country.” He also saw Brexit as an opportunity to bilk money out of his supporters. Donald can’t ever miss an opportunity to do a little song and dance for a check from unsuspecting, innocent people. Sad. 86. …But he didn’t know how Scotland had voted in the EU Referendum. How does a man who was raised by a Scottish immigrant not know that one should never confuse the will of the English with the will of the Scottish? Scotland, along with Northern Ireland, voted to remain in the European Union, a decision that could dissolve the United part of the United Kingdom. It would officially change the way that Scotland and England have functioned for over four hundred years. If ever there was proof that total assimilation within a culture was a bad idea, it would be Donald Trump’s inept understanding of how Scotland fits in to the Brexit situation and into the United Kingdom in general. How do people judge this man to be competent enough to vote for? 87. Donald Trump claims that he broke the glass ceiling for women all by himself. I’ll repeat. Donald Trump claims that he broke the glass ceiling for women all by himself. He told Bill O’Reilly, noted White House slavery enthusiast, “Number one, I have great respect for women. I was the one that really broke the glass ceiling on behalf of women, more than anybody in the construction industry.” He also told O’Reilly, “My relationship I think is going to end up being very good with women.” I don’t even know where to begin. Taking credit for breaking the glass ceiling? Even if he’s succeeded in helping women in one industry, it is not his place to say that he broke the glass ceiling. I guess if he was asked who gave women the right to vote, he’d claim he wrote the 19th Amendment and got it ratified on his own. I bet he’d even claim he was up in Seneca Falls. He might as well. He is taking credit for the achievement of women and of the hardwork put into giving full-fledged equal opportunities and rights to people regardless of sex or gender, even though he fails to pay women the same as men on his campaign. He is asserting his privilege to deny women the ability to say that they earned their position and that they fought for it. To quote the great philosopher and ethicist Taylor Swift, “I want to say to all the young women out there, there will be people along the way who will try to undercut your success, or take credit for your accomplishments or your fame. But if you just focus on the work…you will look around and you will know that it was you and the people who love you that put you there. That will be the greatest moment.” 88. Trump called pregnancies of employees an inconvenience for business. Yes, he actually said, “a wonderful thing for the woman, it’s a wonderful thing for the husband, it’s certainly an inconvenience for a business. And whether people want to say that or not, the fact is it is an inconvenience for a person that is running a business” on video. So there’s proof that he feels this way. To summarize: the pro-life party is now being represented by a man who once called pregnancy an inconvience for business; and he said this after he began identifying as pro-life. 89. Trump has called Elizabeth Warren ineffective. To Trump, ineffective means that Elizabeth Warren pisses him off and doesn’t put up with his bullshit. He’s said she is the least productive Senator, that she gets nothing done, that she is weak. Elizabeth Warren should channel Mean Girls character Regina George and ask Donald, “Why are you so obsessed with me?” Because, clearly, he is. 90. Donald Trump insulted Warren by saying she has a big mouth. Apparently, Trump thinks that women who stand up to his childish behavior are worthy of scorn and deserve to be silenced for it. He’s even said that he wants to shut her up. Way to go, GOP! You’ve nominated a man wanting to silence women. Classy stuff, if you’re in the 1950’s. 91. Trump accused Hillary of only being popular because of the “woman card” and not for any other reason. In yet another example of Trump being an misogynist, he decided that Hillary was somehow getting more support because she’s a woman. He said, in a news conference at Trump Tower in April, “Frankly, if Hillary Clinton were a man, I don’t think she’d get 5 percent of the vote. The only thing she’s got going is the woman’s card. And the beautiful thing is, women don’t like her.” He claims a former United States Senator and Secretary of State is unqualified. You know, unlike a “businessman” who has never […]

2016 Reasons to Oppose Trump: Reasons #85-105


“Heading the list of arbitrary barriers that have plagued women seeking equal opportunity is disadvantaged treatment based on their unique childbearing function. Until very recent years, jurists have regarded any discrimination in the treatment of pregnant women and mothers as “benignly in their favor.” But in fact, restrictive rules, and particularly discharge for pregnancy rules, operate as “built-in headwinds” that drastically curtail women’s opportunities. Decisions of this Court that span a century have contributed to this anomaly: presumably well-meaning exaltation of woman’s unique role in bearing children has, in effect, restrained women from developing their individual talents and capacities and has impelled them to accept a dependent, subordinate status in society.” – Struck v. Secretary of Defense brief by Ruth Bader Ginsburg via Tumblr Photo credit: WFULawSchool via Visual hunt / CC BY-NC-ND

“Heading the list of arbitrary barriers that have plagued women ...



“The problem the WRP faced in connecting pregnancy to their line of sex-discrimination was this: Even if a man could take care of the kids and the elders, and a woman could join the air force and handle the family finances, only one of them could get pregnant and give birth. RBG and her team had to convince the justices that pregnancy too was a matter of equality—or inequality—and not just something special that women indulged in, off on their own. Even more radically, RBG wanted the Supreme Court to recognize that women would never be equal if they could not control their reproductive lives, whether they wanted to be pregnant or not. That meant the right to an abortion, and it meant the right to be free of discrimination for staying pregnant.” – Notorious RBG by Irin Carmon & Shana Knizhnik via Tumblr Photo credit: national museum of american history via VisualHunt / CC BY-NC

“The problem the WRP faced in connecting pregnancy to their ...


“Treating men and women differently under the law, RBG told the justices, implied a “judgment of inferiority.” It told women their work and their families were less valuable. “These distinctions have a common effect,” RBG said sternly. “They help keep woman in her place, a place inferior to that occupied by men in our society.” – Notorious RBG by Irin Carmon and Shana Knizhnik via Tumblr Photo credit: WFULawSchool via Visualhunt / CC BY-NC-ND


“The adoring portrayal of an older woman like RBG as both fierce and knowing, points out the feminist author Rebecca Traister, is “a crucial expansion of the American imagination with regard to powerful women.” For too long, Traister says, older women have been reduced in our cultural consciousness to “nanas, bubbes” or “ballbusters, nutcrackers, and bitches.”” – Notorious RBG by Irin Carmon & Shana Knizhnik via Tumblr Photo credit: allaboutgeorge via VisualHunt / CC BY-ND

1
In the time since HB2 was signed into law, I’ve had several heterosexual cisgender men tell me how terrified they were by the idea “men” being allowed in women’s locker rooms and restrooms. They’re convinced that transgender women are really cisgender men who are trolling for women to gawk at, grope, assault, or rape in a shower or bathroom stall. Because that’s apparently what they think any person born with male genitalia would do. After all, it’s what Mike Huckabee said that he would have done as a young man.1 So, of course, anyone born with a Y chromosome has to be just as creepy. These dudes are also the ones who think that women are even more terrified than them about the issue.2 I bet that they would freak the fuck out over what happened when I went to the Wellness Center Thursday afternoon. On the way over to the pool, I had been talking to my father about how another batch of transphobic folks were saying all women are terrified over trans women coming into women’s bathrooms and locker rooms. That they had talked about women and girls seeing the genitalia of trans folks in the bathrooms, like we play show and tell in them instead of peeing like normal folks. That we would have to shower with and soap up pre-op  cis and trans women because locker rooms in the real world are just like the ones from the porn that they watched last night. That anyone with a dick will use any excuse to rape any and all women using a restroom, locker room, etc. We were both grumbling over the ignorance as he dropped me off.  I went in, checked in, and headed to the pool staging area.3 When I got in, the teacher of an infant swimming class told me that there were men working in there. I changed behind a curtain and those pesky maintenance men didn’t bother to assault me. Obviously they didn’t realize that transphobic guys were rambling away on Twitter about the dangers of people people who are male or assigned male at birth being in a place where women pee, disrobe, & shower4 using bathrooms as hunting grounds. That’s why they didn’t attack any of the women who varied in body type, race, and age. Because they didn’t get the rape-y memo.  Or maybe because most people—whether they are cisgender or transgender—don’t go into the bathroom to assault other people. It doesn’t even cross their minds. Because it’s fucking creepy and a major indicator that a person needs to seek professional help.  And it shouldn’t be something the rest of us expect either—or suggest that we expect as a way to pass unjust laws. We have to be better than that.  Mike Huckabee, lover of child molestation enablers and father of an animal abuser and a Trump spokesperson, said: “We are now in city after city watching ordinances say that your 7-year-old daughter, if she goes into the restroom cannot be offended and you can’t be offended if she’s greeted there by a 42-year-old man who feels more like a woman than he does a man…Now I wish that someone told me that when I was in high school that I could have felt like a woman when it came time to take showers in PE. I’m pretty sure that I would have found my feminine side and said, ‘Coach, I think I’d rather shower with the girls today.’” ↩I’ve seen more women—cis & trans—hate this bill than men, to be honest. ↩Sometimes a girl gets tired of calling it a locker room. ↩Not necessarily in that order. ↩

Men at Work (In the Women’s Locker Room) 



1
So, while I wait for my sunscreen to power-up, I thought I’d say that the only real use for a certain stigmatic trending topic, #TheTriggering, is to fill my 100,000+1 strong blocklist .2 I’ve seen a lot of those assholes pretend like it isn’t an attack on people with PTSD. They claim that the people who talk about needing trigger warnings aren’t “really” PTSD patients. Well, in a way, they’re correct; some who need trigger warnings are not PTSD patients. Many psychiatric ailments have environmental/stress-related triggers. Many “physical” ailments do as well. They claim that people who talk about having PTSD haven’t really been diagnosed; that they just looked it up on the internet and randomly decided that they have it. Randomly claiming to have PTSD is apparently a lot less classy than telling a stranger on Twitter that you know more about their psychological health than they do.3 Maybe some who claim to have PTSD are faking, but I guess the shitlords don’t realize that if a person is faking a mental illness for attention or sympathy or because they genuinely believe they have it, they are still suffering from a mental illness. Guess what that means: They still deserve respect & compassion.  Most of the posts I’ve seen that don’t bash PTSD patients are bashing non-whites, LGBTQ community members, the disabled, and other marginalized groups. They’ll glorify free speech and free enterprise, while wanting to restrict votes4 to people they don’t like and saying that a private business5 cannot ban people who violate its terms of service–they think that’s censorship.6 They deny that their harassment and bullying campaigns are abuse because, to them, abuse has to involve physical violence, but they’ll use Eron Gjoni’s supposed psychological abuse to promote those campaigns. Many profess a belief in Christianity, while not understanding its tenets. Others claim to be atheists—a belief they promote as one for morally superior individuals—while simultaneously engaging in harassment and bullying of others for fun.7 Many are Trump supporters and/or identify with KKK, neo-Nazi, or other alt-right ideologies. #TheTriggering is nothing more than a bigotpalooza. It’s sick and fucking twisted.  And all of their hate is over what? Having to give a heads up that their words might upset others? At worst, that’s an inconvenience. They’re basically assholes complaining that they can’t be assholes to other people.8 There are kindergarten graduates who have a better grasp on how to behave around others than they do.  Photo Credit: Pixabay Seriously. ↩And it’s not even all that useful since I already have most of the assholes using it blocked. ↩I speak from experience on this. I was told that I couldn’t have PTSD from childhood emotional abuse, sexual abuse, and bullying. I was told only military service personnel who were atracked in a war zone could have the disorder. ↩Voting is a form of free speech. ↩Twitter. ↩It isn’t. ↩If you think terrorizing another person is fun, seek professional help. ↩Get some manners, guys. ↩

Huff and Puff


If you don’t follow me on Twitter, you might have missed my tweets over the judge determining Kesha couldn’t leave her contract with Dr. Luke & Sony. To say the judge’s decision bothered me would be an understatement. A big one.  I’ve encountered quite a few people who have said that if it was really rape, Kesha would have reported it. Around 68% of rape victims don’t report. Some said that it’s not really rape because because Kesha denied it in a deposition. If Dr. Luke was intimidating or threatening her into denying it, she likely lied to prevent further abuse by him. Sexual assault and other types of abuse can cause a person to deny abuse is occurring. When you’re being hurt, you will do anything to prevent future abuse because you know that if you upset your abuser, they may lash out & they may become more violent. An abuse victim learns what actions they can take & what words they can say that won’t lead to aggression, injury or death.  Of course I stand with Kesha, because I personally understand what it’s like to not share your abuse, your trauma with the world. I lied about the aspects of the abuse1 that occurred in my past for years. I lied to therapists. I lied to doctors. I lied to my parents. I lied to friends. I lied to other relatives. I lied to people who read this blog.2 I lied over and over. I could tell people with ease that it didn’t happen & that I didn’t know why they thought it did. I was ashamed. I was afraid. And, like most people who endured traumatic events, in denial that what I went through was truly abusive or traumatic.  It might make more sense to some to write Kesha off for her denial or delay, but I can’t judge her for that.  And then there are the people who say that she must be lying because all or most victims lie. This is untrue. Those who do report don’t usually see their rapist go to jail or even to trial. And those who report or even acknowledge that it happened at some point in their past are automatically called liars/accused of crying rape, which is statistically unlikely, as there’s a 2-8% rate of false reports with rape & sexual assault. They have their credibility & morality challenged, while they hear nothing but praise for the perpetrator.  Look at Kesha’s case, people are using her image as a “party girl” to discredit her. That image was likely one decided upon by the producers & label executives. She was niche marketed by them, more specifically by her abuser3 himself, Dr. Luke. It’s entirely possible that the idea of Kesha as the booze-loving sex pot was an attempt to keep her silent about the abuse. And even if she really was a party girl, she still could be a rape and/or abuse victim. We shouldn’t stick to the idea of a perfect or preferable victim type because that silences so many of the abused. There is always one aspect of a victim’s life or personality that gets used against them to deny that abuse ever happened or to pretend that they were responsible for it happening.  I stand with Kesha & I will continue to do so. I applaud the celebrities who are willing to risk their careers to stand up for her. I applaud the non-celebrities who have posted in the #freekesha & #boycottsony hashtags and who have defended her, even when they don’t like her music. I applaud the people who have shared their own stories. There is so much courage, goodness, & hope being shared. It’s very beautiful. It gives me hope that even when a judge makes such a dehumanizing decision that people will support an abused person’s decision to get away from their abuser.  Downplayed the severity of the emotional abuse, denied the sexual abyss occurred. ↩If you read old entries on here, you can probably even find some here. ↩And producer & label executive. ↩

I Stand With Kesha



Well, I may get to see the doctor after all. I got a response late Friday afternoon to my complaints over the scheduling (or lack thereof) of my annual exam. It was from one of the attending physicians in the OB/GYN clinic at UAB’s Huntsville offices. It sounds like I will probably get to have the exam and may get the prescription for the mini-pill after waiting over a month. I am unsure of what you have experienced with the scheduling. Can you clarify for me what date you were in the office and were told that you could not be seen? I notice a cancelled appointment 9/22/15 with a no-show appointment two days later on a Thursday. I apologize if you perceived the interaction as rude, and I will address the situation accordingly, but I will need specifics of the encounter. Our clinical days are limited, and I won’t be back in the office to respond to an email until Monday, but if you call our front desk, I’m sure they can work with you to get you seen in the office. So I explained what happened back in September. I tried to do it as calmly as possible because I know that if I sound angry that I won’t be taken seriously. The day that I came in the office & was told I couldn’t be seen was actually the Thursday no-show. I showed up for the appointment and, as I was signing in, was told that my insurance wouldn’t cover the visit, so I could either pay $90 to have a birth control consultation or wait a month. I was then told that someone had already left a message that my appointment was cancelled, which was untrue. I tried explaining how I needed the medicine and asking if I could appeal the decision or do something so that I could still go through with the appointment. Again I was told that, unless I paid the $90, I couldn’t see a doctor that day. That is a lot of money, especially when you’re on a fixed income, so I had no real choice. (I was going off Depo, which was due that week, because of the risk of bone loss. I have Ehlers-Danlos, a Vitamin D deficiency, and family history of osteopenia, so I wanted to avoid bone loss.) I left in tears & have been worrying about my anemia since then. I was somewhat surprised that they had marked that appointment as a no-show. I don’t know why I would be as I’ve seen updates to my Electronic Medical Record at UAB’s Huntsville clinics where they’ve falsified results.1 I’ve wondered, since the day in September, why they didn’t go ahead and schedule my annual when I was in the office. It seems like they could have, if they intended for me to come back. And that had me wondering if the reception staff at the clinic wasn’t planning on seeing me again. Does that sound paranoid or delusional or something? Because I sort of feel like their behavior has made me feel a little more paranoid or, at least, more anxious. Anyway, like I said, I’m hopeful I will get my exam and that I will get to go on the much-needed medication asap. This whole situation has been frustrating and tiring. It would be nice for it to resolve already. I’m still waiting to hear back from the customer service people at the insurance company to find out if there are other gynecologists in town that are in network. Knowing their reputation, I would doubt there are. Maybe they’ll prove me wrong. With my strep tests, one went in and changed the ordering physician from the doctor who saw me at that appointment to the one who had seen me the time before–who hadn’t ordered the test at all. If you’re going to falsify data, you might want to make sure you turn patient notifications off. ↩

The No-Show That Wasn’t


2
After getting the notice that UAB was closing their OB/GYN office in Huntsville, I sent a request for a first available appointment for an annual exam. You know, the exam that I was I could schedule in October…when they cancelled my birth control consultation without informing me and told me that I could either pay them $90 that I didn’t have if I wanted to get my birth control that day or schedule an appointment for an annual in October and get it then. Obviously, I should have fucked up my finances even more and paid for the $90 appointment because I got this response to my request: Unfortunately we are no longer scheduling annuals due to the closure of our office next month. Your last one was 10/14/15 so you can have one at any time. I show you have Human insurance and MC. You should contact Human for a list of preferred providers. Once you find a new Dr you will need to sign a release form for your records. Feel free to call if you have any questions Needless to say, I was not amused. It wouldn’t be a stretch to say that I was pretty pissed off, so I fired off this response: I understand your office is closing, but this appointment is important and time-sensitive. I went off the Depo, then was rudely told my birth control consultation appointment was cancelled when I arrived for said appointment, and was told that day that I would need to wait until my annual exam at your office to get the birth control prescription. Now you’re refusing to schedule the exam? This birth control prescription is to keep my anemia in check and prevent me from having to undergo infusions. I’ve already had some bleeding because it has been so long since I had my last Depo. And I’ve already started having early signs of the anemia popping up. If I am even able to find a local doctor that takes the Humana & the Medicaid, it will probably be 2 months for me to get in, so I would appreciate you making an exception in this case…especially since part of this predicament is on you guys in the first place. Yes, it’s manipulative. Yes, it’s abrasive. Yes, all of that was necessary. The reality of their office closing on short notice is that it’s putting lives in danger. I know that they still have pregnant patients that they need to see, but they also have cases like mine where birth control is a life-saving medication and they have people who may have diagnoses of cancer delayed by months because they had to transfer their care to another doctor. I am so sick of doctors and their employees acting like routine appointments are unimportant. They may not seem to be important to some patients, but they are actually very important for others.1 And it will take a while to find a doctor who takes my insurances. It always does. Right now, I can’t even get the physician finder on Humana’s website to work. Once it starts to work, I can’t even guarantee that who they list will even taken the insurance.2 What am I supposed to do? Am I supposed to let my health get worse? Am I supposed to just pretend like all of this bullshit, douchenuggetry, and dumbfuckery is acceptable? Fuck that. This is my life that they are messing with and they don’t have a right to jeopardize it. I shouldn’t have to sit here and wonder if I’m actually going to get medicine that I need in time to avoid infusions. I shouldn’t have to worry that lately I’ve been cold on hot days and that I’ve been paler than usual. But this is what I have to worry about when medical offices and insurance companies decide to make arbitrary decisions that endanger my life. I know that neither the office nor the insurance company are intending to harm patients by making these decisions, but that is what is happening/can happen when they cut off proper healthcare. Actually, they’re very important for all of them. ↩Humana has a tendency to list people who don’t accept their plans and not list ones who do. ↩

I Need That Appointment