Learning about Death

I swear, y’all would think that I’d never been outside before, the amount I sit around now blogging about my outside, but the truth is that I really don’t feel like I ever had to think about it before.  About my place in it.  Here, we’re really stepping in after long decades of someone loving this place and planting things all over and taking good care of things.

And the thing is that I’m learning a lot from the plants that they left us.  Every time we kind of figure out what something is, I look it up on the internet and, with the exception of the roses, the general guidelines for what to do with them is “Spread leaves around them and let them do their own thing.”  We have a ton of leaves, so following those directions is pretty easy.

But it has me all the time thinking about how valuable dead stuff is.  All this stuff I used to throw away (or not)–hair from the bathtub, nail clippings, kitchen scraps, etc.  It’s all valuable.  Putting it in the compost pile and letting it break down and then putting it around the yard is an easy and important way to keep the living things healthy.

I was even reading up on what to do when you take a tree out, and many folks recommend that you cut the stump as low as you can, but then leave it, that the rotting roots are good for the soil.  Shoot, even when you burn wood, you can take the ashes out and sprinkle them on your peonies.

I don’t know how to talk exactly about how it makes me feel.  I mean, yeah, we could all break into “Circle of Life,” but that’s not exactly it.

It has to do with feeling like things are useful in all forms.  That you put, say, your hair in the garden to keep the deer away, and the hair breaks down and feeds the plants so there you are now, a part of the dirt that the plants draw from, and then you eat the plant and the land is a part of you.  That there’s the back and forth of feeding and being fed.

Anyway, I’m not quite getting at it, but it makes me doubly suspicious of the way we put folks in concrete boxes once they’re done.

Daron “Smoochy” Hall

You know how it is.  You’re a loveable children’s character (or the sheriff of a major metropolitan city, in which you grew up) and you’re invited to speak some place and you don’t bother to check the group out and the next thing you know, you’re performing in front of neo-Nazis, or in Hall’s case, the Council of Conservative Citizens.  Really, it could happen to anyone.

This is my favorite part:

Hall says he didn’t know anything about the group’s views and figured it was one of many local organizations that request him as a guest speaker to hear about the immigration enforcement program.

“To be honest, I had no idea,” Hall said. “The person doing the scheduling for me had no reason to believe that this was such a group. I regret that we didn’t know. I surely don’t want that reputation.”

Lest we forget, this is the man under whose watch a pregnant woman was shackled during her delivery.  The thing is 287(g) program was most in the news last year for was his department’s shackling of a birthing woman.  Who did he think would want him to come speak to them after that?

Not the good guys, Sheriff Hall.  Not the good guys.


On a side note, I can actually understand how this would happen.  The Council of Conservative Citizens doesn’t have a name that screams “we hate race mixing.”  But once he got there, how did he not know?

How is a Lie Better than the Truth?

I am still fuming about SB0078, Stanley’s bill to ban all unmarried couples from adopting.  It’s not just the language about how adoptive parents must “foster an appreciation for the policies of the state.”  It’s not just that it pisses me off that Stanley thinks it’s an appropriate use of the State’s time and money to go nosing around in Tennesseans’ bedrooms.  And it’s not simply that I find it so small and cowardly that Stanley wants to oppress gay people, but he’s too chicken to come straight out (so to speak) and say it.  He wants to hide behind this language about children being better off in stable married homes.

Gay people in Tennessee, of course, cannot get married to the partners of their choice.  They can, of course, still marry people of the opposite sex.

I mention this because, though there are some folks who can make it work, one of the least stable kinds of married homes is one in which one partner is lying about who he really is and what he really desires.  Sure, it would be nice to believe that, if you want it bad enough, you can just “not be gay anymore,” that you can pray away the gay, as they say.  But we’ve seen repeatedly that this is not the case.  No matter how much a gay man might love a woman–and gay men can and do fall in love with women, especially when they feel their God forbids them from being with anyone other than women–he’s still gay and pretending not to be is incredibly destructive for everyone involved, man, woman, and their children.

Today Andrew Sullivan is talking about the Haggard show on HBO and he says–

But I saw in my own life and those of countless others that the suppression of these core emotions and the denial of their resolution in love always always leads to personal distortion and compulsion and loss of perspective. Forcing gay people into molds they do not fit helps no one. It robs them of dignity and self-worth and the capacity for healthy relationships. It wrecks family, twists Christianity, violates humanity.

And I cannot say it any better.  Forcing gay people to pretend to be straight, to marry members of the opposite sex, that screws gay people up.  It does deep violence to the people those screwed up folks come in contact with.  Any good that comes out of gay people pretending to be straight–such as children–can still be screwed up by the deception.  Everyone deserves to marry someone who can love him or her with his or her whole heart.  It’s only in very rare cases that a gay person can marry a straight person and they both love each other with their whole hearts.  Much more commonly, the lies eat at both people.

I bring this up because this damage, the damage that is done not only to gay people, but to their families, is exactly the kind of damage Stanley’s bill is designed to inflict.  The only way, under this bill, for a gay person to adopt a child is for him to lie about who he is, to pretend for other people’s comfort, to be something he is not.

You cannot build a healthy family on lies.  Even Stanley surely must know this, and so his own concern about what’s “best for the children” is revealed as the lie it is.  It is not best for children to be raised by people who cannot be honest about who they are.

So, this bill is not about “protecting children.”  It’s about continuing to inflict as much pain and suffering as possible on gay people.  Stanley may feel a religious duty to oppress gay people, but the State of Tennessee is not and should not be bound by that same religious duty to inflict such misery on our own people.

Welcome, New Convention Center!

I swear, I once read in the New York Times them calling Nashville the Home for Wayward Architecture and yet, when I google it, the only result is me making that claim.  Nothing from the Times itself.  Did I imagine it?  Could I have coined a phrase so awesomely fitting of our great city and somehow forgotten and, upon remembering the phrase, attributed it to the Times because I didn’t believe in my own awesomeness?

I have no answers.

I do, however, courtesy of The Nashvillest, have another piece of architecture destined for the Home.

America, behold the new convention center!  Marvel at the way it resembles some fake-grass contraption you’d put on the floor for your cat to scratch on!  Wonder if that’s real grass on top of it!  Ponder, like me, if incorporating elements from other buildings around down is cool or Frankensteinish!

I don’t know.  I just kind of look at that and go “Huh?”  Which, I guess is better than looking at it and going “Yuck.”  If they send word that we’ll be allowed to sled on the roof whenever we get snow, I will immediately revise my opinion for the better.

Edited to add: Courtesy of Tiny Pasture, here are some bigger, better images.

Hurray! Cancer! (Or Superpowers! Let’s Be Optimistic.)

So, it turns out that the fly ash the TVA couldn’t bother to properly contain is full of arsenic and radioactive materials.

Oh well.  When all the people exposed to it get cancer and get sick and maybe die, then they’ll be bearing the full weight of the cost of coal and then maybe they’ll force the TVA to clean up it’s act.  We’ve been skating by for too long avoiding getting cancer from our power plants and that’s made us soft and complacent.  Only once people know the true cost of coal will we…

Aw, fuck it.  That’s why I could have never been Jonathan Swift.  I have the anger, but I can’t carry through with the satire.

I’ll just be awaiting word from the whole “we must feel the full weight of the cost of coal so bring on the suffering” crew about whether cancer and poisoning is too much or if that is just one more thing that has to be borne in order for us to get serious about the environment.  Hell, I’m sure some of the people who are going to get cancer from this mess probably have flat screen TVs, so they kind of deserve it.

It’s Here

The bill to ban unmarried people from adopting children is here, submitted today by Senator Paul Stanley.

Yes, Citizens of Earth, the very day after the House had to hold a hearing because Representative Williams didn’t seem to understand he wasn’t being elected by his constituents to represent them at a giant frat party, some other elected legislator had the audacity to try to tell us about what’s appropriate morality.  See, they can fuck whoever they want whenever they want or die trying, but woe to you if you want to fall in love with someone and give a child a loving home, if you don’t fit what they think is right.

I’m sorry, but there shouldn’t be a single one of those motherfuckers who can even attempt to vote for this bullshit without being struck by lightning upon reaching for to cast their vote.  In a just universe, God would have these sorry, cruel motherfuckers by the ear, dragging them off to have a stern talking-to, because they are an embarrassment to the good name of Creation.

And, it’s not bad enough that Paul Stanley has to reveal himself as a heartless, cruel, motherfucker.  No.  It’s not enough for Stanley that he thinks he has the right to bring the weight of the state down upon your personal life, to bring the state into your bedroom to make sure you’re conducting yourself appropriately (though you know, you’re not allowed to stand around in Stanley’s bedroom to make sure he’s on the up and up.  Cops get called for shit like that.).  It’s not enough that he wants to bring the full weight of the state down on you to make sure you understand that you’re not a real family.

No.  To twist the knife as far as it will go, he throws in this little gem:

It is also the public policy of this state to place children into adoptive families that provide the most stable familial relationships for that child and will foster an appreciation for the policies of this state that favor marriage over unmarried cohabitation.

See?!  It’s not just about hurting potential parents.  It’s about placing children with adoptive families that will “foster an appreciation for the policies of the state!”  HOLY SHIT!!!!!!!!!!

Okay, so now it’s not just about keeping kids out of the homes of fornicators and homosexuals, it’s about keeping kids out of the homes of liberals and libertarians of all sorts.  A family is now not just a group of people united by love, but a group of people united by love, tied together by the state, and who are dedicated to brainwashing children into believing that whatever the State believes is the best thing to believe.  And if you don’t believe that’s the case, this little law would establish that the State has a problem with that.  A problem Child Services might take an interest in.

Even if you believe that children are better off in married heterosexual families, clearly you’ve got to see the danger in defining “family” in a way that includes propagandizing on behalf of the State.

I am begging you, Democrats, if you can’t vote against this nonsense because it hurts unmarried people and gay people, vote against it because it’s not the State’s business to require you to foster in your children an appreciation for jack shit.

I mean, seriously.

I’ve Reached that Point

I guess there comes a point in every feminist’s career when being a feminist just ruins it for her and today, I have reached that point.  I want to drive up to the capitol and kick in the shins every person who is walking around all “Oh, don’t risk yourself, Lynn.” “Oh, this accussation will harm Lynn more than it will harm Williams.”  “Oh, boo hoo hoo.”  I literally cannot abide by this nonsense any more.

And then I read shit like this and I think, once I’ve hobbled assholes with my kicks of justice, I’m going to light a match and let that motherfucker burn to the ground.

See, I have lost whatever it is that lets you read

You no longer hear stories like the one about the House member back in the 1990s who got a staffer drunk and parked on a lonely road. While she was throwing up out the window, he ran the electric window up, trapping her under the chin. Then he pulled up her skirt and had sex with her. He’s gone, as is the legislator whose colleagues exited a club one night to discover he had a naked intern spread-eagled on the hood of his Cadillac. These stories may have been embellished over the years; no charges were ever filed or investigations launched.

and think “Ooo, how scandalous.”  I read that and I want to throw up myself, because I cannot read that and imagine myself in the position of the men.  Maybe this is a failure of imagination on my part, but I just can’t.  I don’t read those anecdotes and think, “Well, who can blame them for taking an opportunity like that?” or “Oh, maybe they had good intentions.”

I think of those “opportunities.”  If the woman barfing out the car window is a real woman, I wonder if she’s okay.    I wonder if an intern felt she could tell a legislator no.  And I hope she was fucking him because it made her feel powerful to have a powerful man want her.  I hope she wasn’t mortified or afraid when all his friends showed up.

But, mostly, I hope these are made-up stories.

But… and there’s always a but… with that, isn’t there?  But even if they are made up stories, what purpose does it serve that they’re spread around, still?  Are the women who hear them supposed to feel slightly afraid, like “Well, things like that could still happen.”?  Are the women who hear them supposed to feel grateful?  “Oh, sure, honey, I got drunk and grabbed your ass, but did you hear about the guy who had my job who had his way with women in your position?”  I mean, is it supposed to reinforced the notion that men are dangerous and only women who are willing to put ourselves in harm’s way should venture out among them? That women shouldn’t really be at the Capitol?  What?

I mean, no offense to Cagle.  He’s a fine writer and he’s probably making a good point.  But I can’t bring myself to give a shit if people who would do shit like that can have secret files made on them and then have those files used to blackmail them.  Who cares?  If you don’t want someone to find out about the evil shit you do, don’t do it.  If you don’t want to be blackmailed, don’t be blackmailable.  I mean, one of these examples is a criminal act.  That dude should be in jail.  If he can’t go to the police to complain about being blackmailed because it would reveal him as an evil rapist, oh, how terribly sad for him.

You Don’t Often See Headlines Like That

Over at The Flypaper Theory, Jeff points us to the story of a girl taken over by God during school in December.

My favorite parts are the headlines.  On the article itself

Was High School Girl Possessed In Class?

Girl Spoke In Tongues, Made Predictions For Future

and on the video

Was Student Possessed By God, Satan?

Because clearly she was possessed, so now it’s up to the hard-hitting news team to figure out by whom!  I would love to read the follow-up on that story.

Weddings, Funerals, and the Internet

We have this relative, C., who is the grandson of our grandpa’s sister.  So, his dad and my dad are cousins.  And we see C. only at weddings and funerals, but it’s understood that at said weddings and funerals, he will sit with us and our parents will sit with his and those two places will not be in close proximity to each other.

And we like him just fine.  You look at him and you look at the Butcher and me and you can see that a lot of traits that get blamed on my grandma’s side of the family must really have come from my grandpa’s.  But we only see him every few years at best.  He could be a raging skin-head for all I know.

But along comes the internet and now I go from hearing from C. only at weddings and funerals to hearing from him all the damn time.  And he’s always got some cool idea–Did you see this thing about Led Zeppelin?  If you could be one Lovecraft character, who would it be and how much dispair would you sew in the world?  Etc.

We would ask my Grandma A. to tell us about the good old days and she would look at us like we were crazy.  In her “good old days” she had to empty chamber pots every morning and even though folks were supposed to go out to the outhouse to poop, they often didn’t.  She told us that they’d have to pry her microwave from her cold dead heads.

I sometimes feel that way when I read people grouching about the internet and how much time people spend on computers.  Blah blah blah, maybe everything they say is true, but for me, it’s outweighed by my ability to keep up with people I thought I’d lost track of, and to meet new folks I now hold dear.

I just get so tickled by it all the time I about can’t stand it.

In Which Our Hero Again Raises One Eyebrow

At this:

During the apology, the legislator tried once more to assure me of the sincerity of his remarks. This upset me and I expressed to Leader Mumpower that this was not really an apology. Leader Mumpower stated to the freshman legislator than this was upsetting me and that he should stop repeating his sincerity over his original ‘offer.’

There comes a time when a girl doesn’t even have to blog it.  She can just raise her eyebrow, catch your eye, and you both can nod, and we can both feel pretty damn sure that you’re thinking what I’m thinking.


Those Emotional Hurricanes

Today was a little crazy.  We had some work drama in the morning that concerned me but wasn’t directed at me and then in the afternoon, we learned how close we all came to not getting paid in September, and then got a semi-reassuring email about how our workplace was going to stay afloat, hopefully with all of us above water.

That afternoon drama made me want to go to the purveryors of the morning drama and ask them… I don’t know exactly.  The two aren’t related.  But they’re related for me because the happened on the same day to and around me.

The Butcher is at a job interview as we speak.

I thought that we could make it just fine on my income, so I was not stressed about him not having a job.  And we can make it on my income, assuming that my income continues to, you know, come in.  But we, like most people, have no cushion.  I have $75 dollars in a savings account.

Everyone I talked to this afternoon is in the same boat.  People who have good jobs but just haven’t been able to get it together as quickly or as easily as they thought they would.  People who expected to be able to retire next year who now aren’t sure if they’ll be able to retire at all.  And none of us trust that the people who are guiding the boat, so to speak, really get the fear we have.

Maybe it’s not fair, but it’s hard for me to believe that, if you’re pulling down what our congresspeople are pulling down, that you get how those of us who maybe even still have jobs, feel like we’re riding the edge of disaster.

I don’t know.  I just know that I’m scared.  I’m scared for the Butcher, whose gone out every day for three months looking for a job and this is his first interview.  I’m scared for me, should I have to find something else.  I’m scared for the people who are struggling to find something else.

Robin Smith Loves the Thugs, Apparently

I swear, who needs soap operas when you have the GOP?  You’ll remember, when last we visited, Robin Smith had decided not to endorse Chip “I love parodies about Negros” Saltsman for chair of the national party and had instead thrown her weight behind Katon “I got into politics because the government made me go to school with black kids and I hated it” Dawson.

Now, he was already a more interesting character because he had a narrative–the librul government butted into his life, forced him to go to school with black kids, and one of them beat him up.  Oh, the tragedy!  Oh the humanity!  I mean, he was running around telling college kids this tale of woe, about the evils of the government stepping in and causing folks to get beat up, like that really meant something.

So, really, I have to ask you, is it any ANY surprise to learn that Dawsom seems to have, in his government-role, stepped in and caused someone to get beat up and run out of state?

Via Pam’s Blend, we learn of the rumors of said incident:

After divulging the nature of the incriminating material, the blackmailer is said to have requested $200,000 dollars to furnish all copies of the material in their possession to Dawson.

According to our sources, after viewing a sample of the material and receiving the extortion demand, Dawson reportedly told the blackmailer to give him twenty-four hours to come up with the money.

The next day, the blackmailer is said to have returned to Dawson’s home, only they didn’t receive the money – but were instead taken away and given a savage beating by three SLED [S.C. State Law Enforcement Division] agents.

Well, well, well.  One wonders if it gives any Republicans pause to learn that Dawson thinks he’s above the law–that he doesn’t have to report an extortion attempt, that he can direct law enforcement agents to unlawfully administer beatings to people.

But who knows?  Maybe the national GOP has a whole lot of people who know a whole lot of their secrets and maybe it’s a plus for the Chair to be willing to abuse his power in order to keep that stuff from coming out?

One More Thing about Josephine

She was born on my dad’s birthday, which means her birthdate is almost as cool as my dad’s.

She will, forever, be born on 01/23.

Why is that only almost as cool as my dad’s?

Because he was born on 01/23/45.

(Also, I don’t want to reveal Josephine’s last name, in order to protect her privacy, but it starts with a W., so the Shill tells me that she’s already taken to referring to her as “The Outlaw Josey W________.” which tickles the shit out of me.)

My Super Power

Oh, I forgot to tell you that I’ve decided what superpower I would choose, assuming I could choose one.  And it’s a good one, so don’t be stealing it:

I have the power to grant immortality to whoever sleeps with me for as long as they sleep with me.

No, not sleep as a euphamism for fucking.  We have sex later because you’re so grateful that bedding down with me keeps your sorry ass alive.

Think about this.  Say that your beloved grandma needs surgery, but the doctors are afraid to put her under the anesthetic because she’s frail.  I come over, sit on the couch with her, you turn on old Matlock re-runs and soon we’re dozing.  That nap is good enough to get her through the surgery and recovery safely.

Say your squad is getting sent to Afghanistan.  Well, bring over a king-sized mattress and snuggle in, folks.

Or, shoot, I could use my powers for evil, selling time-shares with me to hit men and gang members, making them impervious to bullets.

And, best of all, my pets would live as long as I did.

In Other Republican News

Remember how there was a guy who thought that sending everyone “Barack the Magic Negro” would convince them that he was right for the job of RNC chair and the whole nation laughed and said “What?!” except for the few folks who sulked and said “What?”  You may recall that for no other reason than because of the massive sigh of relief the Democrats exhaled because we know that church-going African Americans tend to be conservative and there are a whole lot of church-going African Americans and some day, if the Republicans ever, ever get their heads out of their asses about race, Democrats will not be able to count on the Black vote.  In fact, when that day comes, there won’t be any such thing as “The Black Vote” anymore because conservatives will vote with the Republicans and liberals will vote with the Democrats.

That day would have been put off by the RNC turning itself over to Saltsman.

I thought that was obvious to everyone.

But then Robin Smith went and threw her vote behind the guy who got into politics because the government forced desegregation on him.

So, maybe not.

I Listened to You and I Heard You

So, the folks over at The 9513 point us to the new Johnny Cash video.  It’s a remix of “Folsom Prison Blues.”

And I’m just going to state for the record that it’s terrible.  There are many reasons why it’s terrible–the “remixing” adds nothing to the song, just some syncopated rhythms and a busy mishmash of noise that sounds mostly taken from a typewriter; the remixing doesn’t tell you anything new about the song; the difference in recording quality between the original and the added pieces is too great to go by unnoticed, but seems to, etc. etc. etc.

But here’s the main problem, as I see it (and I’m hoping some of you DJs will advise me if I’m off-course), but it seems to me that, if you’re going to do this type of remix, the point is to bring new artistic ears to the song, to say to the song “I listened to you and I heard you” and then for you to take your artistry to it and to make from it something new, something you have added your vision to.

In what way is this remix anything other than the equivalent of Pete Rock banging a tambourine in his basement along with a record?  In what way do you listen to that and feel like Rock’s addition has made a new song?

The thing of it is, I think, that it’s hard to hear “Folsom Prison Blues” as anything other than the iconic song it is.  I mean, I sympathize with Pete Rock in this case.  You hear the song and you think, “Wow, that’s a classic” as if “classic” means immutable.  But, of course, immutablility and remixing are opposites.  In order to remix the song, you have to start from the premise that this is not the only configuration the song might take, that it can be broken down, reconstituted, and redone in such a way that it is something new.

And thinking that about an iconic song is difficult, I’d imagine.

But this?  This with almost nothing added or changed?  With a video that’s designed to say “Vaguely old fashioned”?  I mean, what’s the purpose of that?  To give CMT an excuse to put Cash on the air?  I don’t know.  But I don’t like it.  It feels like a total failure of the whole art of remixing.

Thoughts, I Got ‘Em

1.  I just read Coates quoting Sullivan

…self-confident political groupings seek converts – look at Obama. Failed and failing political groupings seek to punish and list heretics.

and was thinking, “Well, then, shit, by that standard, all Tennessee has are failed and failing political groups” when I saw that Vibinc seems to have reached a similar conclusion by a different path.

The culprit in both cases, a long held sense on the part of individuals in both parties that Patronage and Privilege somehow in some way protected them from the unwashed masses that ultimately hold the key to their success.

The uprising isn’t party specific, it’s specifically a reaction to the privilege and patronage that follows an organization that has lost its way. Tennessee has the pleasure of being served by two such organizations, both political parties.

What to make of that?  I don’t know.

2.  I’m tired of defending Lynn, who I despise as a legislator, but Jesus Christ.  She seems to me to be the only person in this whole sordid affair who is actually acting like a real person with no agenda.  She did what she thought was the best thing.  She also, for reasons I don’t comprehend, wanted to keep this whole thing private and now finds that she can’t.  And she wants to be an active participant in her own life–“I don’t want to be treated like an object. I want to be treated like a professional, like a peer. That’s all I was asking for.”–(And I’m sorry, but that breaks my heart.)–which means that, for herself, she has to figure out how to act like a professional, like a leader.  So, yeah, it means she’s going to speak when she said she wasn’t going to.  She may have been pissed at Williams and also friendly with him.  So what?  She’s making her way as she goes.

I don’t like her, but I’m rooting for her to find her way.

3.  I am not sure where the proper comparison might be made, but I feel like comparing District 3 to District 19 doesn’t really tell you much about an urban/suburban divide because District 3 is not exactly suburban.  It’s a weird mix of urban/”rural” (or what passes for rural in this county.  As of yet, we don’t have any big box stores.  No chain restaurants.  No national grocery stores.  Shoot, the hardware store by my house only takes cash.  There’s nothing here (yet) that makes this area a recognizeably suburban area.  On the other hand, the southern parts of the District are closely tied to Bordeaux.  In fact, it seems clear that the bottom border of District 3 bisects neighborhoods (and I wonder in some cases, if that wasn’t intentional–to try to make everything north of Briley “safe” for whites).  So the more neighborhood-like parts of our district (meaning areas with discernable blocks and small lots and side streets you can walk on or play in), which are more heavily populated, are predominately black.  No surprise then, that the district went for Obama.  But the rural areas are predominately old white people, who are more likely to come out to vote on a special election day.

So, it makes sense to me that the general election would handily go to Obama, but the special election would more narrowly go to English only.  I’m not sure what that tells you in a comparison between the two districts, though, because I think the two districts may have more in common than they do in comparison.

A Shawl

Do people wear shawls any more?  I don’t know.  But I’m making one for Mag and I’m so excited about it.  Plus, I figure, if anyone could pull it off, it’s her.

Probably More Proof of My Dangerous Hypocrisy

I swear, a girl could get a big head from all the folks practically hyperbole-ing themselves to death in order to denounce her.  Honestly, folks, I put my skirt on one leg at a time, just like you.  I sit next to a farty dog and cats that don’t respect that a person likes to shit without an audience just like you.  And, like you, I only eat aborted fetuses in a Satanic feminist ritual once or twice a month at most.  I don’t want to overdo things.

And yet, it seems like January has been the month of folks deciding that I have gone too far and they cannot tolerate it any more.  Was I off my game in December?  I don’t think so.  But weirder still, doesn’t this feel like it’s become a blog of my yard and my crocheting?  Isn’t a girl-blog full of gardening discussions and ponderings about yarn just about as traditional as you can get in this modern age?  I swear, the more I’m convinced I’ve become a boring ordinary blogger, the more outraged some quarters get.

Imagine if this became a mommy blog.  I’d probably be denounced from the floor of the Legislature as a subversive element.

Shall we consider Blue Collar Muse’s post?

“Her premise is had Lynn entrusted herself to Feminism this would have been less likely to have happened or maybe never occurred at all.”

No.  That is not my premise in the least.  First, there is no “entrusting oneself to Feminism.”  That’s not how it works.  Feminism is not, despite some folks’ wishing, an organized political or social or philosophical movement.  It is the belief that women are human beings and that we are, shamefully, not always treated as such.

From there, there are all kinds of different opinions about what the implications of that belief are.  Is it possible for men and women to have different spheres of influence as long as the woman’s sphere is as influential?  Should rules be changed to include more women in things?  Etc. etc. etc.  And all women, feminists and non, have opinions on those things.

Being a feminist is not some magical protection from the ills of the world.

Being a feminist would not have shielded Lynn from what happened.

But, I believe, being a feminist would have allowed Lynn to smell out the bullshit of this whole thing a whole lot sooner.  The only thing I think Lynn has done wrong in this situation is to feel bad about it, like she has any reason to keep it hidden or to be ashamed that Williams is a jackass.  I believe that feminism might have helped her see that she has no reason to hide what happened or to be ashamed of it.

I mean, she’s already benefited from the hard work of feminists–sitting there with her college degree and her fancy legislating job–things she would not have if not for feminism.  Why not go whole hog in the benefiting department?  Not only can you have fun stuff like a job and a bank account and the ability to read and go to college, courtesy of feminists, you can have the knowledge that it’s not your job to smooth things over for jackasses.  It is the job of the jackass to fix his own damn problems.

But my point in this post is simple.  And it is simply this.  What Lynn is going through is not new or unusual or likely to end in the near future.  It has everything to do with people seeing and understanding that women are autonomous beings who are, first, for ourselves, not first for your pleasure.  She is not alone in what she’s going through.  She’s not the first woman to feel the way that she does.  And, most importantly, if she would stop being an enemy to women who want our autonomy, she would find many, many allies ready to come down hard on the Williams.

But talk about hypocrisy.  Lynn thinks she has the right to decide for me what I should and shouldn’t do with my body.  Even though she clearly, clearly thinks–and rightly so–that it sucks ass when a legislator thinks your body is put for there for his pleasure and that your feelings and wishes aren’t that important.

I’d like for her to draw the line between those two things.  And, frankly, I am pissed that she doesn’t.

But let us go on to the other point of contention

This leads Aunt B to treat her, not as a woman and an ally, but as a political foe in need of skewering. Given most of those currently demonizing Lynn are also Liberals and Democrats and given Aunt B doesn’t condemn them preferring instead to join in the fun, it seems clear her politics trump her principles.  Turning female victims into villains seems to be OK sometimes, especially if the woman is Republican and the attacker is another woman.

to which I can only offer a hearty “Fuck you.”  I invite Blue Collar Muse to look around the lefty Tennessee blogosphere and see who has condemned the Democrats about this incident and who’s been mealy-mouthed about how, oh, well, but look when this is coming out, isn’t it expedient and oh well, um, but it’s he-said-she-said and gee, that does stink, but it’s politically expedient so what can you do.

I have been as loud and clear on my anger at the Democrats and at Williams as I know how to be.

But I can hold two thoughts in my head at the same time.  One of them is “Dirty shame on you, Democrats.” and the other is “Lynn, if you don’t like it when it’s done to you, don’t turn around and do it to others.”

The Rest of the Day

Here are a bunch of other pictures I took today, most of them of the bulbs that are sprouting all over the yard.  One of them of a dog’s butt, which, when you own a dog, you spend a lot of time looking at, and one of the Butcher refusing to let the dog pet him, and a few of the chair that broke.