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Wrong. I have ONE cause — Human Rights. All other rights issues stem from this central trunk of the rights and issues’ family tree. Women’s rights, LGBT, genital integrity, workers’ rights, children’s rights, and more — ALL are branches of the primary concept that roots us in our basic right to self-determination, autonomy, and our humanity.
Today provided a perfect example of how different experiences color our activism. Usually, this is a good thing, but occasionally, our pain from our own experiences clouds our words, resulting in our message devolving into a war of emotion. It becomes a contest of “my pain is greater than your pain” — a competition no one wins.
My morning started with me checking my Facebook and Twitter while I made breakfast as I hurried my daughter to get up, get ready for school, and catch the bus.
I try not to spend all day on Twitter, but tomorrow’s Full Moon seems to have kicked up people’s crazy cycles a day early.
First, on Facebook, I responded to a friend’s comment about his neighbors’ loud sex last night. As the conversation progressed to sex positions (okay, I brought it up), I mentioned that the reason the original missionary position is the only position ever condoned by the Catholic church was because it provides the least pleasure for the woman. It puts the man in the superior, stronger, aggressive position while the woman is inferior, at the mercy of the man, and passive and submissive. Another chick chimed in saying some women “love to be ‘conquered.'” As a woman who has spent most of my life fighting NOT to be conquered by men, I disagreed, but I did not linger since I had to get some real work done.
I spent a couple hours working my day-job (Thursdays are a day-off for me), and what followed was an entire day on social media in one activist role or another. And I have preserved some of those exchanges in the photo gallery below. (To view them at full size, click the box on the lower right of your screen.)
The second round of today’s activism started out simple enough — me talking about orgasms, specifically, mine, and how I cry when I orgasm. I followed that with a comment that men crying during orgasm is perfectly natural. Twitter being a public forum, a random guy jumped in the convo with a rude comment ridiculing how it would look with a “he man blowing his load and crying.” This began a series of tweets back and forth as I tried to explain that a man crying during orgasm is perfectly natural. After all, men are human beings, and human beings have feelings.
Apparently, men are still not allowed to be full human beings in our society.
The third and most exasperating exchange occurred with a man who, it turns out, is also an activist — an intactivist, to be precise. An intactivist is someone who fights for ending all circumcision — on males and females — because genital mutilation is a human rights violation of a child’s bodily autonomy and is sexual assault on the child. This guy had tweeted the following comment:
“The sexual urges of women in our society are more important than the pain of a baby boy.”
After a morning of hearing that some women want to be conquered, men who cry are not masculine, and a few other ridiculous notions that are proof positive our society is still sexually repressed and almost entirely mentally unbalanced, I could not sit by and let this tweet go without standing up for women’s right to be sexual and not be shamed for it. Did I do it the right way? Could I have handled myself better? Should I have called him a moron so many times? Maybe. Maybe not.
The thought I had toward the end of this Twitter war (that lasted over a couple hours) is that this guy is reacting and projecting because of his own pain with his circumcision. Just as I possibly was too harsh in earlier altercations today.
Hearing a woman wants to be conquered made me think back to when I was molested as a kid, my rape when I was 21, and my Steubenville-esque experience. Talking about the horribly unsatisfactory missionary position brought to mind my own status as one of the 70% of women who has never orgasmed during sex — a statistic for which I still feel shame for myself and anger at my partners for not caring enough about me to ensure I had pleasure, too. It reignited my distaste for the porn industry that created a caricature of women as hyper-orgasmic nymphomaniac slut-bunnies — as opposed to erotica that presents sex and sexuality in a beautiful, honorable way.
I was reminded yet again of the hundreds of thousands — if not millions — of women who have been raped, tortured, killed outright, and burned at the stake by the Christian church who has feared women’s sexual power since Peter stole the church’s high seat from Mary Magdalene. As a pagan witch doing research for my stage writings, I spent years reading witch trial transcripts, scouring historical documents of witch hunters, Inquisitors, and missionaries in Europe and in colonial America who were obsessed with exorcising the natural sexuality of women. This does not include the women who were beaten, raped, and killed for wanting the right to vote, or the right to fight alongside men in the modern military. Too many thoughts and memories swarmed in my mind.
Hearing that a man can’t cry when he experiences pleasure infuriated me because so much of our patriarchal, imperial, testosterone-driven culture still carries the gender-role prejudices of religion and hierarchical misogyny and misandry that does a disservice to women and men.
Today’s activism was about shame. And pain. And how, even when we mean well, speaking up for one issue cannot happen at the expense of demeaning other people who are probably also in pain. After all, the oppressive culture that says mutilating a child’s genitals is okay is the same repressive culture that says a woman is to blame for her rape because of how she was dressed, or two people cannot love each other because they’re the same gender.
I’ve been a grassroots activist for 27 years, and I’ve seen in-fighting in every single rights group I’ve ever worked with — religious rights, American Indian rights, LGBT rights, women’s rights. Who’s a real witch? Who’s a real Indian? Bisexuals aren’t really discriminated against. Women don’t need full body autonomy or equal pay. Conservative Democrats aren’t real Democrats. And it’s all bullshit.
My motto has always been, “Human Rights are non-negotiable.”
I love that there are so many of us, each working in a niche that is important to us. Yet, that does not mean one corner of activism outweighs another. We can’t all work for all causes at all times. We have to split up into different groups to cover all the bases. Remember that equality does not mean we are the same, but rather, though we may be different, we are of the same value as human beings. Our human rights family tree is rooted in and celebrates our differences, with roots deep in the soil of our humanity, echoing the ancient axiom, “As above, so below.”
However, if you only care about one group who is hurt or exploited and not another, then you’re not working for rights issues, you’re a special interest asshat who is no better than the elitist oppressors who mock human rights activism while making fortunes off the masses’ suffering.
So I may not know the full extent of pain that another person has experienced, just as they won’t know the full extent of mine. But we can try to listen better. We can forgo the pain-game and stick to the work at hand. Don’t allow the oppressors’ need to stuff us into boxes and categories or divide us into opposing sides hinder our work of coming together and doing the work.
We are better than that. Do the work. Be the Change.
We Are All Connected.
- NEWS: Zero Tolerance to Female Genital Mutilation
- OpEd: ‘Male Circumcision Is No Biggie’
- Anatomy: #TeamUncut Intact Natural Penis Collage for #ForeskinFriday (21+ NSFW)
- OpEd: The Face of Orgasm: Is Your Woman Faking Orgasms or Not?
- DailyOJ 01-26-13, Part 2: The Fear of Intimacy
- OpEd: America’s Love/Hate Relationship with Breasts
That was random I know, but you share so much about your life and experiences that I wondered how you were doing in the areas that you don’t speak about. You have every right to say nothing. I just enjoy getting a better understanding of the woman behind the blog.
What do you like to do in your spare time, when you’re not being a sex guru or a mom? What do you hope to achieve in the next year, 5 years or 10 years? What is something that no matter how upset or angry you are always manages to make you smile or at least smirk? If knowledge is power, when it comes to the content of your Aroused Woman blog, how powerful do you feel?
All hail Queen Vagina!
You’re sweet! :-) A few posts back, I announced that I was branching out with ArousedWoman(TM), re-focusing on “Awakening Sexuality Through Mind, Body, & Spirit.” So I’ll be posting lots of new topics and crazy wack-a-doo posts that I feel are relevant to my growth and that I hope are interesting to my readers.
As you can see from my “random post” on astral travel, that experience had a profound effect on me — not just my perception of what’s on the Other Side, but experiencing what actually is and is NOT on the Other Side confirmed for me many “beliefs” in regard to humanity, religion, society, etc. My beliefs-turned-knowledge affect me sexually (i.e., there’s no hell and certainly no “sin” as classified by controlling religious dogma), the experience of pure love (I know what I’m looking for when it comes to love, I won’t settle for anything less, and love has to be felt — it can’t be intellectualized or rationalized, i.e., If I love him enough, he’ll change, so I’ll love him really hard and work to change him into the person I want him to be.), and other concepts I’m still integrating even after the 9 or 10 years since the experience.
Which brings me to my “spare time”… Just yesterday, in fact, my daughter asked me, “Just what do you do during the day?” And I had to tell her the truth. Not much. I’m a Libra, a mind-candy person. I’m a creator. It’s difficult for me to actually finish anything because once it’s complete, it’s over — I can’t mind-candy it anymore. But my creative works have to be completed if I’m gonna earn a paycheck and feed my child.
I spend most of my time reading, learning, experimenting, walking, cooking, cleaning, washing dishes, meditating, pondering, writing, tweeting, doing laundry, working, walking, composing music, looking at the trees, studying leaves, watching squirrels and birds interact, more reading, more research, more questing, listening to the wind, being witchy, brewing concoctions, making cool witchy stuff, doing web design for new clients, creating different workshops, textile design, writing, writing, writing, tweeting…
I don’t have “spare time” in that I do what I love for a living (theatre), and I’m currently working on 2 new training certifications, after which, I’ll go for 2 more. (I’m already certified in yoga and Pilates.) Because I do what I love, I don’t earn a lot of money — I live simply and have found that to be rather wonderful. I go to bed every night thoroughly happy with my life. I wish there were more time in the day, but I know I used the time I had to enrich my life, provide for my daughter, and enjoy being in this meat-suit while being amazed at the beauty that is around me.
It can be surreal sometimes. I’ve had people say, “Wow, you lucked out writing for a living.” No, I was in the performing arts for 36 years, I’m an award-winning composer, I hosted a radio show that had 27,000 listeners worldwide (that I put on hold to start ArousedWoman and fight the idiocy of the GOP during the 2012 POTUS election), and I have something to say. I created my “luck” by working my ass off and paying my “dues.” I earned my right to write for a living.
Currently, I’m creating an online course on Musical Theatre training topics, I’m starting a new project (a magazine), and I will get back to my theatre radio show soon. I’m also going to teach some health workshops in my local area to help supplement my income. I’m also working on the ArousedWoman cookbook, and I’m creating my orgasm training method (which will be in beta testing soon for anyone who wants to contact me to participate in it).
I’m still trying to get the AW Forum going and still raising money for ArousedWoman Radio, to interview guests and answer people’s question in real time. But that is slow-going. It will happen in its own time, I guess.
Most of my time is spent on personal growth, getting healthy, and growing my experiences sexually, sensually, tantrically. I want to be a complete human, not a shell of a human in the rat race of society, as so many people are. I want to help others get out of that kind of life — to help them make a better life for themselves, get healthier, find some kind of peace in this crazy world — to see that happiness in self and happiness in life are connected. I want to help people overcome their PTSD with sexual trauma. I want to help others see beyond the hypocrisy of religion, politics, and government — that all that bullshit doesn’t really matter — and if it does matter to you, then don’t just complain, actually get off your ass and do something about it.
I want to help people get off the lie that is the insensitive Western medical system which is being undermined by the pharmacological industry. I want to inspire others to get back to the “beauty way,” back to Mother Earth because the livestock and dairy industries are killing our planet and our bodies. We are not separate from the earth — the earth isn’t just the thing under the sidewalks and asphalt — the earth is our food, our air, our water, our home, our reason for incarnating to this physical plane. If the living biosphere of the earth weren’t so important to us, we would have incarnated on Mars or somewhere else. Duh.
I want people to take back their power to heal themselves without fear of criminalization from the oppressive forces in control of our society.
I want women to take back our rightful place as healers, warriors, judges, peacemakers — as we were before patriarchal misogyny made women property, whores, and household slaves.
Where do I want to be in 5 years? Hopefully, I will have finished my Bachelor’s degree in Transpersonal Psychology from Sofia University and will be nearly finished with my Master’s in Women’s Spirituality. After that, I may take 2 years to study Sanskrit at St. John’s University in Arizona. And of course, 6 years from now, I hope to have completed my work to be an official teacher of Tantra. Essentially, I want to be able to keep a roof over my head while helping others.
I used to think this life was too long. In the past century, we have tripled our life expectancy. Why? Wasn’t 35 years of war, struggle, famine, disease, and natural disasters enough? Now, we have to endure this for 72, or 85, or 105 years?! Now, I see that even that long is not enough. This is a great time to be in a meat-suit on the physical plane. It is a truly wondrous time of change, and we’re a part of it. The past century — this past year! — has seen the rise of women and the awareness of human rights that is 2,000 years overdue.
I just want to do my part to “Be the change.” In my own particular brand of “random,” witchy, artistic, holistic, bohemian, awakening, loudmouth IrishLava. :-) But understand, we really can’t change other people; we can only change ourselves and be the example of change we hope to inspire in others.
Being awarded the title of “Class Actor,” Jacob Randolph accepted the award, announcing that he’s been acting every single day of his life — the part of “straight Jacob” when he is in fact an LGBT teen.
Here’s the video his father took of the ceremony. Jusy listen to the crowd’s response as he finishes:
This is a quick note to let everyone know that I am taking the bull by the horns and starting up the Radio show and Forum that I’ve been wanting to create for a while now.
So many people ask me if I do podcasts, and I have to tell them, yes, but not yet for AW. Well, that’s changing!
While we dream of Utopia, running a radio show and hosting a forum is not free. It costs money for the licensed platforms even when the daily toil of maintaining each is based on sweat equity.
AW Radio will cover all aspects of the AW raison d’etre including Women’s Sexuality, Women’s Rights, LGBT, Survivors of Abuse, Religious Freedom, Indigenous Rights, Environmental Issues, Healthcare, Anti-Circumcision/Body Autonomy issues, and more.
The AW Forum will provide a safe place for like-minded individuals and orgs to talk about issues, recovery, and more importantly, foster solutions to put into practice. The Forum will be membership-based (to keep out the crazies) at $14.95/year, with a portion of the proceeds being donated annually to 2 organizations as voted on by the Forum community.
For more info on the Radio show as well as the Forum, visit my GoFundMe page I’ve started. Donations are securely processed by either WePay or PayPal (your choice!).
Be sure to check out the REWARD that accompanies each donation level, and make a TAX-DEDUCTIBLE donation if you can.
I know most of my readers check out my blog for sex tips, so I won’t drag this out. It is a sad reality, though, that the uncomfortable topic of rape doesn’t come up often enough in our culture’s national dialogue. If it did, maybe there would be less rape in the world.
This Twitter drama was more than I ever wanted or needed in terms of having to defend myself from being blamed for my rape and/or being made the villain because I didn’t report it. When the verbal assault happened over Twitter, I felt like I’d been blunt-kicked in the heart. I felt that creepy, dizzy feeling radiating outward from my ribcage, and I started shaking. I just breathed through it and decided to get angry instead of allowing any PTSD take over. The anger allowed me to channel my feelings into writing, which is proactive and productive. See! Being Irish comes in handy!
I want to genuinely thank all of you who sent me words of love and support, and I appreciate the sentiment of those who offered to help do that Twitter jerk bodily harm. Unfortunately, the Law of Karma prevents me from accepting your generous offer. :)
Remember, however, for every rape that is reported, many, many more go unreported thanks to the insensitivity of our misogynist culture that wants to blame the victim.
I am a survivor. Thank you, all! MUAH!
(Click to enlarge.)
Just when you think the Grand Ol’ Party can’t sink any lower in its blatant misogyny of women, women’s rights, and their outlook on women’s bodies, Rep. Todd Akin reveals a whole new abyss of as yet unexplored hatred of the female sex.
It wasn’t long ago that men were the only ones on the House panel on birth control, that 31 Senators voted against the Violence Against Women Act, and the GOP in Michigan censored a female state representative, violating her First Amendment right to free speech. Now, the GOP creeps us out further.
In a TV interview, Rep. Todd Akin (R-Mo.) had this to say about his views on abortion, even if conception is due to rape:
“From what I understand from doctors, that’s really rare. If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down. But let’s assume maybe that didn’t work or something. I think there should be some punishment, but the punishment ought to be on the rapist.”
So Akin is now a medical expert as well as a judge-and-jury on “Legitimate Rape?” So all of us who have been raped now need to measure our own horrible experience with sexual abuse by his and the GOP’s standard? A standard which has no medical basis? Because, according to Akin, every woman who has ever said she got pregnant from being raped was lying?!
The GOP RWNJ Republicans rape women on a daily basis! Oh, wait that’s “Legislative Rape” as they are systematically removing laws and undoing decades of work women have literally fought and died for in the battle for equality. And that kind of rape of women, our rights, and our bodies is just hunky-dorey.
This is a blatant sign of the ensuing institutionalized brainwashing against women that we can expect if the GOP continues to buy its power via elections in the United States.
What’s worse than our rape experiences being de-valued by the patriarchal, misogynist GOP is that this makes men look bad as well. The men who love women and support women’s rights will be lumped into either the GOP misogynist corner or the corner of “all men” who are abusers.
By the way, Akin’s thoughts on the morning-after pill are pretty clear as well:
“[T]he morning-after pill is a form of abortion, and I think we just shouldn’t have abortion in this country.”
Maybe we should not have misogyny in this country?! The elections this year are paramount to blocking the GOP’s persistent #WarOnWomen!
Agree? Disagree? Leave a comment below!
Feminism is a hotly-debated topic in America and other narrow-minded, backwards, patriarchal areas of the world. As a woman who is a humanist, I often have to deal with the backlash from other women who think I’m a traitor to “the cause.”
I will write a longer piece detailing my why’s and wherefore’s of being a humanist rather than a feminist, but today on Twitter, I gave a brief “nutshell version” of my reasoning. The responses in return ranged from thought-provoking to hilarious.
Below are a few of the comments that made me think and made me smile.
Rape is prevalent. Yet, there is no sane reason why it should be except that rape is a tool for instilling fear and ensuring dominance. Rape is anger, aggression, frustration, emotional impotence, a power trip, a threat. Rape is not about sex or being sexual — which is why rape happens not just with a man’s penis, but also with the barrel of a gun, the neck of a beer bottle, the handle of a broom, or other implement of terror.
In talking with survivors who have been raped, the quote that comes to mind is Nietzsche’s, “That which does not kill us makes us stronger.” But why do so many women have to be brought near “death” to gain so-called strength? And why is associating sex and violence so ubiquitous in our culture? (Oh, yeah, religion.)
Worse, it makes me wonder what men’s definition of rape is. With marital rape, do men understand that they are raping their wives — not having sex? That legal marriage does not equal the right to rape? Does the drunk friend realize the alcohol was not an excuse for rape? And what about sanctimonious, judgmental women who are as much a part of the rape culture as the rapists and callous men who make rape jokes?
In sharing my rape experience and subsequent shame of reporting it, I received several messages from other women who told me of similar situations. I’ve removed their pictures and blacked out their names. These are just a few of the comments I received, but it points to a pervasive problem that still lurks on the fringes of open discussion.
As a stage artist, I trained my voice for years. I studied the sounds we make and how we make them. As a writer, and especially as a lyricist, I have toiled over the perfect words to scribe for dialogue or a song because the sound of the word itself has as much of an effect on the listener as the meaning of the word.
Just talking about rape brings strong emotions from women (and men!) who have experienced rape as a teen or an adult, or rape as a child, more commonly known by its euphemistic pseudonym, molestation.
Years ago, I realized that “rape” is a harsh word just as the act of rape is harsh. The growling of the “R”, the blunt hit of the unaspirated, hard “P” mimics the sharp, precise consonants’ onomatopoeia effect of “BruTal” and “aTTacK.” Conversely, the word “molestation” rolls of the tongue, rendering the word practically useless in conveying the horror of being raped as a child and softening the disdain society might otherwise feel. Example, decide for yourself which sounds worse: “A priest molested a boy” … or … “A priest raped a boy.”
I’ve rarely talked about my “molestation” as a kid, and I’ve almost never talked about the night I was raped. Only recently did I even tell people that I was still a virgin at age 21 — it was here on this blog, actually. For some reason, our hypersexualized culture has made it shameful to hold off on sex until a person is really ready. It’s as if teens must be sexual or they’re not normal. I was normal in many ways, but still dealing with my “molestation,” I had lots of issues I had to work out on my own when I was a teenager.
Also, my rape was not “real” rape. My rape would be sub-classified as “date-rape.”
We were in my bedroom — so clearly, I was “asking for it.” I was wearing a button down shirt and jeans. In 1994, it was fashionable to wear jeans that had rips in them. Mine did, right along the ass-line of the left leg. If a woman can show some butt cheek when she wears a swimsuit or shorts, I didn’t see the harm in a little peek-a-boo of my upper thigh at the butt line. And I was in my own home.
We were talking on the bed — but neither he nor I even mentioned having sex together. The next thing I knew I was being flipped over, my shirt ripped open, and he was inside me. I couldn’t think. The shock of pain like a thousand daggers stabbing me in my core and up my spine was something I’d never felt before. I couldn’t breathe. My brain started going into survival mode, and I felt like I was about to black out. I felt as if I were falling backward into an abyss. I couldn’t feel the bed or even him in that moment, just falling and shockingly intense pain throughout my body.
I realized I was still wearing my jeans. The button was still done, the zipper was zipped. He had entered me through the rip in my jeans. Dry mouthed, I asked him to slow down so I could adjust. All the while, I’m thinking, “How did he do that? Just breathe… How did he get inside of me with my jeans still on?” He said my tightness just made him harder, so he went faster. He said he couldn’t help himself… He pulled out, pulled me on the floor to my knees and told me to suck him off — he’d been wanting me to give him a blow job “for forever,” he said. Then he grabbed my hair and rammed my head down on his erection. I was still in shock, so my mouth must have felt like sandpaper. I was in a daze, on my knees, trying not to throw up, wearing all my clothes, trying to process what was happening. Just as quickly, it was over, and he was leaving. He was a friend. Dazed, but still true to my Southern upbringing of being polite, I walked him to his apartment a few buildings over. I walked home, but noticed I couldn’t feel the ground beneath me; my legs felt like jelly.
I stood in the center of my room, looking at the bed. I felt this whoosh of fluid. I was bleeding. I bled for 4 days. I thought about going to the police, but most of the people I knew also knew him. And if it went to trial, my “character witnesses” would all say they thought I’d been whoring for years — everyone assumed I was “loose” because I had large breasts. I feared being laughed at by the male policemen, ridiculed in court, verbally attacked by the opposing lawyer — I’ve watched enough TV to know how rape accusers are treated in court.
Yet, the hardest part — the part that actually made me not report my rape — was having to say in public that I was technically still a virgin at the old age of 21. Who would believe that? So I didn’t go to the police. Or the hospital. I just prayed I had not contracted some disease. After all, it seemed getting raped was inevitable in our society, so why should I complain? It’s not like is was a “bad rape” like being mauled in an alley by a scary boogeyman.
So then, maybe I wasn’t really raped. Maybe it was “just sex” after all…. Maybe sex with all my clothes on and without my permission is just “date-sex-I-didn’t-want-to-have-especially-since-I-was-a-virgin-but-it’s-not-really-rape.” Maybe Comedy Central comedian Daniel Tosh has a funny rape-joke commentary to make on my behalf?
People still think rape only occurs when the scary boogeyman assaults a woman in the mall parking lot at 10 p.m. Most women are raped by men (or women!) they know, particularly their spouses, family members, or neighbors. Rape is not the bullshit storyline you’ll see on Lifetime Television for Victims, just like you won’t find the secrets of orgasms in a Cosmo poll.
Because of my experience, I don’t do “blow jobs” — I do oral sex on my terms. I tell a man ahead of time not to grab my hair or he’s getting a fist in his balls. I also don’t get on my knees for any man or any god. More importantly, I don’t blame all men or hate the penis for what was done to me by one man.
As the mother of a daughter, the one thing that guided me in practically every decision I have made in her care and upbringing was that I wanted her to get to the age of 18 without being molested or raped. Now that she’s 14, I’m working on making sure she has a foundation of what is right for her and that she never has to succumb to an abuser. The age of 18 is now innocuous as I no longer hold the pessimistic world view that being raped is an inevitable fact of life for women.
Rape is not inevitable. Rape is preventable. To me, “rape culture” is a society that knows rape and sexual abuse are wrong but looks the other way while mocking the survivors who are willing to speak up and shaming the survivors too scared to speak out.
When our culture stops heeding the media’s marketing and drinking the misogynist KoolAid that de-values our experiences as rape survivors, only then can we adequately prevent rape from happening. Women, men, and children are experience rape on a daily basis. Rape culture exists in religion as well as government and society. Rape is a tool of war. It’s time we put an end to the rape culture that propagates sexual abuse while it terrorizes and punishes the survivors.
Rape is not inevitable. Rape is preventable. End #RapeCulture.
Anyhoo, here’s a brief rant I had with a male friend on Twitter that pretty much sums up my thoughts on all things equality in the ongoing battle between the sexes — in bed… and elsewhere. Luckily, he’s a smart guy and agreed with me.
In the past few months, we’ve witnessed the careful and deliberate dissolution of women’s rights that already exist and the steadfast determination of Right Wing, Christian, Conservative Republicans to further strip women of much-deserved basic, human rights.
Now, the Senate has failed to get S. 3220, the Paycheck Fairness Act, off the ground. The title of S. 3220 is thus:
“A bill to amend the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 to provide more effective remedies to victims of discrimination in the payment of wages on the basis of sex, and for other purposes.”
What did the Senate have a problem with? I can only surmise that “basis of sex, and for other purposes” must have struck fear in the black holes (i.e., hearts) of the GOP. “Sex” is the Republicans greatest enemy! Republicans fear sexual gender (women and transgender) and sexually active people (everyone on the planet who’s not a hypocritical Republican, of course). Without sex and gender being a problem, the Republicans would not have anyone to hate. Expecting the Republicans to hand out “fairness” to anyone with a vagina — or genitals they use on a regular basis — must have been too much for them to process. In fact, it seems the only sex that Christian Conservatives approve of is GOP politicians’ illicit sex with hookers, college date rape, and pedophile priests.
Oh, wait. Discrimination victims of “other purposes” could mean skin color, religion, shape of nose, kinkiness of “foreign” hair, height, weight, looking scary…
Clearly, moving into the 21st century has taken its toll on the GOP. It was bad enough for upper-class, white Christians to have to sit by black people at a restaurant. Then women wanted control over their bodies. Now, everybody wants fairness. Well, not if the GOP can help it! And they certainly did everything they could to prevent the Paycheck Fairness Act from getting through.
With a needed vote of 3/5 majority (60 out of 100 Senators), the vote was clearly divided between bleeding heart liberals (52) and RWNJ GOP types (47), with 1 abstention. The phrase that comes to mind is, “They’re thick as thieves.” Stealing fairness, like pay equality, from the majority of Americans is a trademark GOP tactic and should be criminal not a daily Congressional activity.
According to Senate.gov, here’s how the voting went.
|Not Voting – 1|
You’ll notice that this Kirk from Illinois also did not vote on the recent Violence Against Women Act. I can only guess that he does not want to pass such “fairness” for victims of violence, but come re-election time, he probably does not want it on his record that he voted against VAWA… and now the PFA. Coward.
I’m a stage person, not a video person, so I don’t have all the fancy equipment to do video. I had to use my phone (held by my fabulous daughter!). I’m also still losing my miserable-marriage-weight, so video has been the last thing on my to-do list!
And yet, I’ve been wanting to do a weekly video round-up of news and blog posts but have been too self-conscious. Maybe now, I just won’t care about what I look like on video and do the weekly vids anyway.
So for what it’s worth, here’s the video of me giving the nutshell version of my stance on why I work for Women’s Rights.
According to the Intactivist site, Circumcision and HIV, the local ACLU chapter of Santa Cruz, CA, was in very bad form at a recent Pride parade, and apparently, this isn’t the first time Northern California ACLU chapters have displayed a double standard in protecting civil liberties — particularly protecting the religious freedom rights of parents over the basic civil liberties and human rights of infant boys.
Protecting the United States’ First Amendment is the cornerstone of my writing and music. I find it unconscionable to see the ACLU’s Northern California and Santa Cruz affiliates and others putting some people’s religious beliefs ABOVE infant boys’ pro-choice rights to their bodies.
If someone wanted to take a slice out of my body or my daughter’s, the ACLU would stand behind my right to my body and her right to hers. I doubt the ACLU would support the stoning of a woman because she had premarital sex — a stoning dictated by a misogynist religious mandate. And yet, the circumcision of newborn boys is a perfectly acceptable religious mandate?
Why would any person or group support the physical and sexual abuse of defenseless infant boys by putting religion over the child’s right to his body? Is this a case in which the Orwellian adage rings true: “All animals are equal… but some animals are more equal than others”? Since this body mutilation occurs on the penis, which is necessary for reproduction later in his life, isn’t circumcision a violation of the boy’s reproductive rights as well?
Every American baby boy has inherent, inalienable, protected rights including his First Amendment right to Freedom of Religion. Since he is only days old when the scalpel-happy doctor and religious fanatic parents are wanting to permanently modify and potentially permanently harm his newborn body, the baby boy cannot say what HIS religion is yet — if he even wants to participate in his parents’ religion that mandates this mutilation.
The baby boy does not have a voice. Except for us activists — intactivists!
Contact these ACLU branches and use YOUR freedom of speech to speak out against the ACLU protecting adults over innocent babies: ACLU-Northern California: (415) 621-2493, and ACLU-Santa Cruz: firstname.lastname@example.org. Tweet them @ACLU and @ACLU_NorCal or find them on Facebook to let them know this is NOT acceptable for an organization supposedly devoted to protecting civil liberties for ALL.
I want to be proud of the ACLU again. So ACLU-Northern California and ACLU-Santa Cruz need to do the right thing and protect baby boys from religious extremism.
(* In response to a young man who said my openness in discussing female orgasms gets his “heart pumping with jealousy, envy,” then complained that his female partner doesn’t explore her own body, saying “I know she can’t really understand what I was trying to tell her.” *)
Men’s jealousy toward female orgasms is absolutely ridiculous.
Women’s biological ability to have orgasms is small compensation for everything we’ve endured for the past 2,000 years of male domination, patriarchal government, and misogynist, institutionalized religions that have painted women and our bodies as sinful, our opinions as unimportant, and our anger as “hormonal.”
Since the rise of the testosterone-driven, expansion-through-genocide, dominance-through-cultural-extermination, imperial society, the matriarchal, matrilineal cultures have almost completely died out. Women lost control of our bodies, our sexual freedom, our sacred sexual and spiritual traditions, and our inherent right to the self-determination of our futures.
Women have been subjugated as the property of our fathers and then our husbands to prevent us from achieving equality in society. Our inheritances have been passed over to our husbands so we didn’t attain economic equality. Organized religions banned us from equal standing and full participation simply because we have a vagina. Women have been beaten, raped, tortured, maimed, butchered, and burned at the stake for standing up for our rights and demanding to have our voice heard. While all of this is called “ancient history,” look around the world to see the violations against women still being perpetrated as well as the current anti-women agendas of the Republicans in the U.S. Congress.
Orgasms are just the beginning of reparation for 2,000 years of male bullshit.
But there is no reason for men to be jealous of us because men have just as much ability to experience multiple orgasms. Learn to control the impulse for male ejaculation by moving the energy up out of the genitals and through the body, up to the skull and out the hands and feet. The method that seems to work best for men to achieve ejaculation control and experience multiple energy orgasms involves relaxation and low-belly breathing as taught in yoga, Taoism, Tantra, Kundalini, KSMO, and other energy-based practices. (Both men and women can achieve coregasms through working the lower abdominal muscles.) The PC muscle “squeeze techniques” pale in comparison, according to the men I’ve talked to. But I’m not a man, so I cannot attest to any one method being better than any other, or which ones work best in combination.
As for a female partner who doesn’t want to touch herself, I’d be willing to bet she was sexually abused at some point, especially between the pre-pubescent or teenage years, and/or was raised in a strict, religious household. Either way, you can’t “make” her come to terms with her sexuality or accept her body. That has to be a path she wants to pursue.
The female body is sexualized in all aspects of media and entertainment and vilified in religion. She has to want to change her perspective. You pushing the issue may be seen as yet another male making her do something she is not ready to do. Let her know you’re there to support her, and leave it at that. Don’t push her or keep reminding her that her problems are interfering with your sexual fulfillment. See if she is open to getting professional help.
And I doubt she lacks the mental capacity and “can’t really understand” how this affects you, but her comment sounds like a good sign she’s in the early stages of wanting a new sexual journey, free from whatever is currently holding her back.
Aroused and journaling,