This is How Gender is used to Oppress Women: JCPenney Advertises T-Shirt Suggesting Girls Are ‘Too Pretty To Do Homework’

From Think Progress:

By Rebecca Lefton,
August 31, 2011

JCPenney is advertising a girl’s t-shirtthat says, “I’m too pretty to do homework so my brother has to do it for me.” The merchandise description reads: “Who has time for homework when there’s a new Justin Bieber album out? She’ll love this tee that’s just as cute and sassy as she is.”

That’s right, girls starting at the age of 7 are being told that their looks, not brains, are all that matter. And that boys are smarter than girls.

JCPenney should immediately stop selling such sexist products and donate any sales revenue to a girl’s empowerment organization. And for a moment, let’s take a deeper look into the seemingly harmless attention that is given to girls’ appearance. Sexism is still pervasive and limiting women’s achievement.

The stats don’t lie: a recent Commerce Department report on the gender breakdown and compensation in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) fields found that women still only represent 25 percent of jobs in these fields — the same number as over a decade ago — and are paid less than their male counterparts, earning only 83 cents to a man’s dollar. Sadly, that’s better than the overall wage gap of 77 cents (and the gap for women of color is even larger). Why are we telling girls that their academic and professional achievements don’t matter as much?

Every two minutes, a woman is sexually assaulted in the US (note: 60% of sexual assaults are not reported). Peggy Orenstein, author of Cinderella Ate My Daughter, notes that “the pressure has grown much more intense to define themselves and gain all their self-worth from the way that they look, and the way that they look is supposed to be, increasingly and increasingly younger, sexy. And femininity becomes defined for them by sexiness (you know, at the age of four), narcissism, and consumerism—all three of which are problematic for me.” Is this really the message JC Penney wants to send young girls?

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The American Dr. Mengeles: Panel Hears Grim Details of Venereal Disease Tests

The reality is that Americans do not value the lives of the poor and people of color the way they value their own.

How is this any different from what Dr. Mengele did?

Is it any wonder that some people question the emergence of AIDS and how it coincided with both the triumph of the hard core right wing in the US and GB as well as with the campaign to vaccinate those same groups of people who were the initial groups of AIDS victims with a hepatitis vaccine.

It wouldn’t be the first time doctors, especially in conjunction with the war industrial complex have experimented on people they deem sub-human.  You can’t say they don’t have a record of performing these atrocities.

From The New York Times:

Published: August 30, 2011

Gruesome details of American-run venereal diseaseexperiments on Guatemalan prisoners, soldiers and mental patients in the years after World War II were revealed this week during hearings before a White House bioethics panel investigating the study’s sordid history.

From 1946 to 1948, American taxpayers, through the Public Health Service, paid for syphilis-infected Guatemalan prostitutes to have sex with prisoners. When some of the men failed to become infected through sex, the bacteria were poured into scrapes made on the penises or faces, or even injected by spinal puncture.

About 5,500 Guatemalans were enrolled, about 1,300 of whom were deliberately infected with syphilis, gonorrhea or chancroid. At least 83 died, but it was not clear if the experiments killed them. About 700 were treated with antibiotics, records showed; it was not clear if some were never treated.

The stated aim of the study was to see if penicillin could prevent infection after exposure. But the study’s leaders changed explanations several times.

“This was a very dark chapter in the history of medical research sponsored by the U.S. government,” Amy Gutmann, the chairwoman of the bioethics panel and the president of the University of Pennsylvania, said in an interview.

President Obama apologized to President Álvaro Colom of Guatemala for the experiments last year, after they were discovered.

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Judge orders Kansas to resume Planned Parenthood’s quarterly funding, rejects monthly payments

From The Washington Post:

By Associated Press, Published: August 30,2011

WICHITA, Kan. — A federal judge ordered Kansas to immediately resume funding a Planned Parenthood chapter on the same quarterly schedule that existed before a new state law stripped it of all federal funding for non-abortion services.

U.S. District Judge J. Thomas Marten on Tuesday rejected the state’s request that it pay Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri monthly and only for services provided.

The judge also declined to order Planned Parenthood to post a bond in the event the state prevailed in the lawsuit.

Planned Parenthood has sued to block a provision of the state budget preventing the organization from receiving any of the state’s share of federal family planning dollars.

Marten wrote in his ruling that the intent of the court’s earlier order was to restore and maintain the prior status quo between the parties, a relationship that was based on quarterly installment payments of the federal money. He said the monthly reimbursement schedule the state wants would have the effect of undermining the clinic’s ability to maintain its current level of services.

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Tea Party Family Values and the World’s Greatest Freak Show

From RH Reality Check:

by Vyckie Garrison, No Longer Qivering
August 29, 2011

On fundamentalist counterculture & juvenile black market adoption fantasies …

Do you remember when it first dawned on you that your relatives are all a bunch of crackpots and weirdos?  Seems like I was around 8 or 9 — my mother worked all night in the casinos and slept most of the day, leaving me alone to protect my naïve older sister from the depraved advances of Mom’s alcoholic boyfriends and worry about my big brother’s drug addiction. I couldn’t count on my grandparents to help — they were too preoccupied with their own divorce, dating, and remarriage dramas.

“Holy sugar,” I thought to myself, “these people are seriously messed up!”

That’s about the time the fantasies began.  My home, I imagined, was a three-ring circus — and my relatives were the freaks and the clowns.  In my daydreams, I was not really one of them.  No — surely, I was of aristocratic origin.  My REAL family were royalty in a faraway Kingdom and I was born a beloved Princess in a fancy castle with many servants and my own Fairy Godmother.  Somehow, I’d been separated from my blood kin as an infant — I was captured by gypsies and sold in a black market adoption — that’s how I ended up being raised by this group of crazies!

ABC’s Primetime Nightline recently aired a segment featuring the Gil & Kelly Bates family — a conservative, Evangelical mega-family of twenty.  The Bates, who are close friends of JimBob & Michelle Duggar of TLC’s “19 and Counting” fame, hold to the extreme fundamentalist ideals of the growing “Quiverfull movement.”

During the one-hour special, Gil, Kelly, and their children explained the family’s lifestyle which, to all modern appearances, represents a throw back to the imaginary 60’s-style “Leave It to Beaver” family combined with strict, Victorian Era sexual mores and the atavistic gender roles of ancient goat-herders. The Bates eschew all forms of birth control and adhere to the marriage model of the biblical Patriarchs — with Gil as family leader and Kelly as submissive “help meet.”  Kelly and the girls adorn themselves in modest, hand-sewn dresses, while Gil and his clean-cut sons teach bible study and participate in local Tea Party politics.

Aren’t they lovely?  Don’tcha wanna be just like them?

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The GOP War on Voting

From Rolling Stone:

In a campaign supported by the Koch brothers, Republicans are working to prevent millions of Democrats from voting next year

By Ari Berman
August 30, 2011

As the nation gears up for the 2012 presidential election, Republican officials have launched an unprecedented, centrally coordinated campaign to suppress the elements of the Democratic vote that elected Barack Obama in 2008. Just as Dixiecrats once used poll taxes and literacy tests to bar black Southerners from voting, a new crop of GOP governors and state legislators has passed a series of seemingly disconnected measures that could prevent millions of students, minorities, immigrants, ex-convicts and the elderly from casting ballots. “What has happened this year is the most significant setback to voting rights in this country in a century,” says Judith Browne-Dianis, who monitors barriers to voting as co-director of the Advancement Project, a civil rights organization based in Washington, D.C.

Republicans have long tried to drive Democratic voters away from the polls. “I don’t want everybody to vote,” the influential conservative activist Paul Weyrich told a gathering of evangelical leaders in 1980. “As a matter of fact, our leverage in the elections quite candidly goes up as the voting populace goes down.” But since the 2010 election, thanks to a conservative advocacy group founded by Weyrich, the GOP’s effort to disrupt voting rights has been more widespread and effective than ever. In a systematic campaign orchestrated by the American Legislative Exchange Council – and funded in part by David and Charles Koch, the billionaire brothers who bankrolled the Tea Party – 38 states introduced legislation this year designed to impede voters at every step of the electoral process.

All told, a dozen states have approved new obstacles to voting. Kansas and Alabama now require would-be voters to provide proof of citizenship before registering. Florida and Texas made it harder for groups like the League of Women Voters to register new voters. Maine repealed Election Day voter registration, which had been on the books since 1973. Five states – Florida, Georgia, Ohio, Tennessee and West Virginia – cut short their early voting periods. Florida and Iowa barred all ex-felons from the polls, disenfranchising thousands of previously eligible voters. And six states controlled by Republican governors and legislatures – Alabama, Kansas, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Wisconsin – will require voters to produce a government-issued ID before casting ballots. More than 10 percent of U.S. citizens lack such identification, and the numbers are even higher among constituencies that traditionally lean Democratic – including 18 percent of young voters and 25 percent of African-Americans.

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Women have Vaginas and Men do not get Pregnant

Call me an essentialist if you will.

I am tired of all the Transgender Borg BS.

This has nothing to do with my being polite and using gender appropriate nouns, pronouns or titles.  It has nothing to do with what is on a persons driver license.

I have always found the post-modern attempts to replace sex with gender to be highly problematic and inherently misogynistic. I’ve outlined my reasons for believing this on numerous occasions in the past.

Basically I see the use of “Gender” as a tool of the patriarchy which can and will be used against women.  It is nothing but “Sex Roles” in new drag.

Women are women because they are adults with vaginas between their legs.  They do not have penises, even small and always hidden penises, even penises with out nuts.  But absence of a penis isn’t as much a defining characteristic as having a vagina.

I have spent the last couple of weeks listening to the Borg and Transgender Inc attack what Cathy Brennan and Elizabeth Hungerford  proposed in their letter.  I have listened as the concerns of women, adult people with vaginas have been dismissed.  It has been implied that post-transsexual women should side with Transgender Inc and The Borg instead of with women since our having had  sex change operations makes usa part of the “Transgender Community” forever and ever.

The problem is this.  I am also a rape victim.  I barely escaped being brutally murdered.  Talked him out of killing me and leaving my body in the mountains north of LA.  I also know the dark side of many in the TG Community.  Know how so many of the ones who want the state to cover their surgery while they are in prison for murder are there because they murdered women.

I’ve heard the misogyny, know about the kink some TG people are into.

And I am a woman identified woman.  I side with women on these issues.  I know that some thing like 20 percent of women and girls have been sexually abused as children.  I know that a similar percentage of women will either be forcibly or date raped as an adult.

Women have reason to fear people with penises.  I am disgusted by attitudes prevalent with many in TG Borg and TG Inc that women have nothing to fear as TG and Gender Queer people deconstruct gender and invade spaces where women have the expectation of only encountering other people with vaginas.

Too often people within TG Inc and the TG Borg want to have their cake and eat it too.  Even sterilization much less sex reassignment surgery has come to be framed as brutally unfair to ask of people who wish to legally change their birth certificates.

Instead we are supposed to applaud Thomas Beatie, the “Pregnant Man”.

I’m tired of his attention starved antics.

Today on my News Feeds I got an alert that pointed me to the following:

Pregnant Man: Chaz Bono Hurt My Chances For ‘Dancing with the Stars’

From TMZ:

The Pregnant Man — Thomas Beatie — claims he SHOULD HAVE been chosen to compete on “Dancing with the Stars” this season … but says, “Chaz Bono stole my thunder.”

Complete article at:

And people wonder why I don’t want to be considered part of the so called “Transgender Community.

Texas Sonogram Law: Judge Strikes Down Key Provisions Of Abortion Bill

From The Huffington Post:

August 31, 2011

AUSTIN, Texas — A federal judge on Tuesday blocked key provisions of Texas’ new law requiring a doctor to perform a sonogram before an abortion, ruling the measure violates the free speech rights of both doctors and patients.

U.S. District Judge Sam Sparks upheld the requirement that sonograms be performed, but struck down the provisions requiring doctors to describe the images to their patients and requiring women to hear the descriptions.

The law made exceptions for women who were willing to sign statements saying they were pregnant as a result of rape or incest or that their fetus had an irreversible abnormality. Sparks questioned whether the Republican-controlled Texas Legislature was trying to “permanently brand” women who are victims of sexual assault.

The law – one of dozens of anti-abortion measures that advanced through state capitals across the United States this year – takes effect Thursday. The New York-based Center for Reproductive Rights had sued to block it.

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