Weekly Reader Vol 1 Issue 29

It’s time once again for news and views that you can peruse! It’s another Weekly Reader post! Got a little something that you’d like to share? Head over to the comments section and drop a link or three!

On Incels and Courtly Love (from Going Medieval): “These men have the sads because they think that women are all very busy having lots of sex with ‘Alphas’ or ‘Chads’, or men that uphold their ideas of hegemonic masculinity. They believe that women are just out here absolutely throwing themselves at any dude with a square jaw and an expensive car, and they believe that the reason they do not have sexual access to women is because they are ‘Betas’. Their beta-ness they attribute to their own physical looks (which they categorise obsessively, and assign numbers to), as well as their interest in non-“traditionally” masculine pursuits – so maybe video games, My Little Pony (IDK, alright?), or complaining obsessively on Reddit that you can’t get any.

The fact that women are not interested in these men is, of course, the fault of women, who are simultaneously ‘sluts’ who are constantly having sex with Chads, and also frigid and hateful women who are likely to make false rape accusations. Because sure, that is a thing.”

The female price of male pleasure (from The Week): “The Aziz Ansari case hit a nerve because, as I’ve long feared, we’re only comfortable with movements like #MeToo so long as the men in question are absolute monsters we can easily separate from the pack. Once we move past the “few bad apples” argument and start to suspect that this is more a trend than a blip, our instinct is to normalize. To insist that this is is just how men are, and how sex is. ”

Dear U.S. Government: Trans People Exist. I Know Because I Research Them. (from Foxy Folklorist via Patheos): “I mean, I’ve only read about a dozen books on transgender topics (though it’d be a few dozen if you count gender identity more generally), and a couple dozen peer-reviewed articles, and countless websites run both by reputable agencies and by individuals who are activists and/or allies. I’ve only been teaching about this topic in my college classes for about a decade, and I’ve only presented at a few conferences on some of my research on trans identities (I have yet to publish any of it; the world of academic publishing moves at a glacial pace and I’ve prioritized other things). Of course, now I am tempted to do even more research, motivated partly by spite, though I can imagine that applying for grant funding to study a group that supposedly doesn’t exist I’m rolling my eyes so hard right now arggg would be, er, complicated.”

The Professor Who Put Brock Turner’s Face in a Textbook Definition of Rape (from Broadly): “In the 2017 edition of Introduction to Criminal Justice: Systems, Diversity, and Change, Turner’s mugshot is included alongside an explanation of state and federal definitions of rape. The description of the picture includes the discussion question: “Some are shocked at how short [his] sentence is. Others who are more familiar with the way sexual violence has been handled in the criminal justice system are shocked that he was found guilty and served anytime at all. What do you think?” After a Facebook post of the section containing Turner’s photograph went viral, the textbook’s publisher SAGE Publishing released a statement saying that future reprints of the book would clarify that “Turner’s actions, as determined by the California jury, fit the standards for the FBI definition of rape, as well as certain other state definitions, but not the California definition as of the time of the final book manuscript. “”

Want fewer abortions? Rethink that Republican vote (from the Lexington Herald Leader): “Contraceptives help prevent unplanned pregnancies. A Washington University study in St. Louis showed that when birth control was offered to women at no cost, the abortion rate fell to half the previous rate. I doubt there is any anti-abortion activist who supports a policy that raises abortion rates. Yet, Republicans oppose a policy that significantly reduces the abortion rate — and still receive money and votes from anti-abortion advocates.

Republicans also favor taking away services and clinics that provide abortions, apparently believing that if there is nowhere to get an abortion then no abortions will happen. That is hyper-idealistic and does not reflect reality.”

The Lot of the Abused: How We Shift the Blame Onto Victims (from Unfundamentalist Parenting via Patheos): “The adult claims the child wanted it—or the child deserved it—or the child masterminded it—or the child needed it—or the child was sinful. Abusers constantly are trying to shift blame for abuse onto the victims they abused. And society in general is more than willing to give abusers the benefit of the doubt. After all, we live in patriarchal times and men are the most common abusers. So we justify the abuse, or we excuse it, or we come up with reasons for why it was not the abuser’s fault, or we decide it was a mutual decision. Then we repeat these stories and justifications and excuses and rationales over and over again, until even a self-contradictory biblical narrative is interpreted by churches and Christians in favor of the abuser for centuries.”

Thanos is America (from The Week–Warning! Infinity War spoilers!): “You’ve likely noticed that — according to most history textbooks — wiping out tens of thousands of people with atomic bombs did not, somehow, make America the bad guy. Quite the contrary: Dropping the bomb got spun as a form of tough love that saved more lives than it lost. America went on to become the world’s scary, benevolent, sometimes abusive dad. An empire, in fact, with all the paternalism that implies. This new fatherly role America was playing in the world filtered down to our social lives and reshaped the governing myths of the American family. The atom bomb ushered in an era — the ’50s — when the American nuclear family structure hardened around exactly this model of benevolent, autocratic fatherhood. You may think killing hordes of innocent people is wrong, but Father Knows Best.”

Delay, Deny and Deflect: How Facebook’s Leaders Fought Through Crisis (from The New York Times): “While Mr. Zuckerberg has conducted a public apology tour in the last year, Ms. Sandberg has overseen an aggressive lobbying campaign to combat Facebook’s critics, shift public anger toward rival companies and ward off damaging regulation. Facebook employed a Republican opposition-research firm to discredit activist protesters, in part by linking them to the liberal financier George Soros. It also tapped its business relationships, lobbying a Jewish civil rights group to cast some criticism of the company as anti-Semitic.”

As More Women Embrace Witchcraft, Is Another Satanic Panic Looming? (from The Establishment): “One disturbing outgrowth of the Satanic Panic was the growing belief in the phenomenon of Satanic Ritual Abuse (SRA), in which children and adults were physically and sometimes sexually abused in occult ritual contexts. Rumors of SRA were allowed to proliferate due to flawed psychological treatment practices that had become popular but that have since been discredited, such as hypnosis and recovered memory. The descriptions of these crimes were all eerily similar, and all bore a marked resemblance to horror films from the 1960s and 1970s, in particular Rosemary’s Baby. Details like candles, knives, people standing in a circle (either nude or wearing ritual robes), chanting or singing, consumption of wine or blood: all these could be traced to various occult movies or books. Young children who could possibly have seen such media were fed suggestive questions or stories from a therapist or other authority figure, and become convinced they had suffered abuse. One famous, sensational book about one such SRA victim, Michelle Remembers, was instrumental in spreading awareness of SRA, but years later was thoroughly debunked.”

Bernie Sanders says white people who “aren’t necessarily racist” felt uncomfortable voting for Andrew Gillum and Stacey Abrams and Black Twitter is not pleased (from The Grio): “Actually Bernie, feeling “uncomfortable” about voting for someone because of race is racist and in these particular instances that “uncomfortable feeling” translated into the action of voting for the less melanated option. That is racism in action.”

And that’s all for this week. Stop by again next time for more fascinating links you can browse through at your leisure. Until then, happy reading!

About Silverwynde

I'm a Transformers fan, Pokémon player, Brewers fan and all-out general nerd. I rescue abandoned Golett, collect as many Bumblebee decoys and figures as I can find and I've attended every BotCon--official and non--since 1999. I'm also happily married to a fellow Transfan named Prime and we were both owned by a very intelligent half-Siamese cat, who crossed the Rainbow Bridge on June 16, 2018. We still miss him. But we're now the acting staff of a Maine Coon kitty named Lulu, who pretty much rules the house. Not that we're complaining about that.
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