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.”
Wish I could find the email I had gotten from her last year when I wrote in opposition to one of a myriad of “get tough on abortion” bills and she replied that she needed to do this to “protect” women, apparently from their predatory health care providers. It was jaw-dropping in its presumption.
“But I can hold two thoughts in my head at the same time.”
How very elitist of you.
I’m no genius, B., and it didn’t seem that complex to me. I thought you made yourself quite clear. Looks like some people might have decided to misrepresent you in order to throw stones at you. Maybe I’m wrong about that.
Yeah, I just don’t see where in that post you said that using the term “sexism” would have prevented Lynn from harassment.
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I don’t know much about the details surrounding the Lynn/Williams situation, so I don’t have anything to add on that note. But I did enjoy the description of “Aunt B, notorious Liberal.” You’ve probably been called more amusing things over the course of your blogging years, but that cracks me up. How does it feel to be a (dun dun dun) notorious Liberal? I’m thinking someone should make a movie about you called Notorious, and your moniker could be The Notorious (Liberal) B.L.O.G.g.e.r (it’s kind of lengthy, I admit), and instead of rap battles it would involve excitement over yarn and discussions of 18th century Spanish erotic poetry (you’ve had those here, right?). That sounds good to me.
I am more amused than I should be to discover that I’m being called a “notorious liberal” and I think your idea of a movie loosely based on Biggy’s life, but modified to fit mine is genius.
There’s that other Notorious, too. The Ingrid Bergman — Cary Grant movie. The woman who risks terrible misunderstanding and calumny to do the right, dangerous, nay, heroic thing. But who is finally understood in the end, and who gets Cary Grant. You need to work that into the plot, somehow.
You should move to Italy. They will provide you a military escort.
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I agree with you wholeheartedly. The definition of what it means to be a feminist has been grossly skewed. I always enjoy your writings, but this one is truly great.
A good rule of thumb: people who capitalize feminism (and, relatedly, would not consider pluralizing it)probably don’t understand what it encompasses.
I like Ken (BCM) BUT….
Anyone who would write the phrase “entrust herself to feminism” seems to imply that women…even when making the decision to demand equitable treatment…are incapable of taking care of and thinking for themselves.
I thought BCM was equating feminism to a religion, which is a major misunderstanding of ideology, but not quite as insulting to women, it seems to me.
I like Ken, too, which is why it pissed me off so much that he was just “And here’s what B. thinks and here’s what she thinks some more and here further is what she thinks and why it’s wrong.” Really? He couldn’t try to engage me in some dialogue but had to denounce me?
Makes me feel like he’s not actually interested in trying to understand me, but just wants to point and have his readers stare.
From the half-dozen emails I get nearly every day, it appears that Ken is trying to build his brand and increase his standing as a Conservative Blogger.
Unfortunately it looks as though he’s taking what we could call the “Dean-Frank Technique” wherein one builds one’s standing not by the strength of one’s own argument but by the systematic attack of high-profile bloggers.
I thought BCM was equating feminism to a religion
I didn’t read the whole thing over there. I just read what was here.
Ha, well, if Ken thinks I’m some big target, I’m going to take that as a compliment.
I am forever going to think of you as the notorius liberal henceforth.
Kat, I didn’t read the whole thing, either. It’s just that the wording in one of the bits B quoted (“Her premise is had Lynn entrusted herself to Feminism this would have been less likely to have happened or maybe never occurred at all”) seems to me to be taken the language used by those who speak of entrusting oneself to the power of Providence, or of the specific divinity of one’s choice. So I assumed that he’s equating B’s take on feminism with a religion. I could be wrong, of course.
Given his rhetorical position and audience, you’re probably right.
I should get a t-shirt made with “the notorious liberal” on it. Just to warn folks.