Tag Archives: equality

Gavin McInnes and the Myth of “Real Masculinity”

Have you guys seen the Gavin McInnes video on HuffPo Live yet? The co-founder of Vice let loose during a panel on masculinity with a petulant, aggressive, woefully misinformed tirade about how:

a) Feminism makes women sad

b) Women are trying to be like men

c) Women who work and men who take care of kids are working “against the natural order”

It was baaaad. The other panelists responded well, especially Professor Mary Anne Franks, but McInnes’ volume and tone (he calls Franks a “fucking idiot”) make a rational conversation really, really difficult. I’m reminded of an unrelated line in a Slate piece about Ender’s Game author Orson Scott Card: “There are those who think that the failure of the world to agree with them, and their embrace of violence as a solution, somehow makes them the strong ones and the world the weak ones. But violence is such an easy solution, the emotional coward’s way out of actually dealing with the existence of those who disagree as legitimate equals.”

There is so much in his position to argue against (Um, what about gay folks? Um, working outside the home doesn’t necessarily mean working all night like a crazy person. Um, yes, childcare is exceptionally important, why would we deprive dads of participating? Um, since when has a “natural order” ever led us towards anything but discrimination and prejudice?) but I am mostly just sad for him. He clearly believes in what he’s spouting, that this ambitious, aggressive, chest-pumping version of masculinity is the only way to be a “real man.”

Here’s my piece about McInnes’ outburst, feminism, and all of the work we still have to do:

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Related Post: Ta-Nehisi Coates, street harassment, and being a “real man.”

Related Post: Hey guys, women are not a different species

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Pre-emptive Father’s Day

Did you know that Father’s Day was signed into law more than 50 years after Mother’s Day? Just one of the many fun facts I learned while writing my new Role/Reboot essay about the evolving role of dads (and the inevitable gift of a tie).

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Related Post: How to accidentally raise a feminist daughter

Related Post: The stubbornly persistent “idiot dad” trope.

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The “Proposal/Counter Proposal” and Other Things I Learned

When I sat down to start writing this Role/Reboot article about what straight people can borrow from their gay friends’ relationships, my roommate asked, “So have you talked to any gay people about this?”

Oh right, I should probably do that…

Turns out, my entire gchat list at 9pm on Tuesday happened to be gay friends, and they were more than willing to share. For one thing, they gave me some great quotes for my essay and some really interesting perspectives on equality, fairness, and making up your own relationship rules. More importantly, I learned about the magic of the proposal/counter-proposal, also known as the “propose, propose-back”. Wondering what I’m talking about?

Read the essay!

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Related Post: Thoughts on Senator Rob Portman’s change of heart

Related Post: Six sides of identity, notes from Chicago Ideas Week

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“Trashing” and How We Haven’t Learned Much Since ’76

Did you read the obituary of Shulasmith Firestone by Susan Faludi last week? Did you cry? Yeah… me neither. Sniff, sniff. I was struck by how little seems to have changed; we still beat each other up over what is and isn’t feminist or feminist enough. Even within the ranks there’s a lot of disagreement and finger pointing and us vs. them and right way/wrong way, my way/highway chest beating. Firestone was slayed by this kind of criticism and it ultimately led to her isolation from the movement and contributed to the tragedy of her lonely death.

This week for Role/Reboot I was inspired by the Jo Freeman 1976 essay about “trashing” that Faludi referenced in the Firestone obituary. It just rang so familiar, echoing much of the Sandberg/Mayer controversies of the last few months. You’d think we would have gotten better about this by now…

Screenshot_4_15_13_1_50_PMRelated Post: On raunch humor and feminism

Related Post: Carrie, Kelly, Taylor, the week in feminism

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Monday Scraps 95

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1. DATING: Where do “missed connections” happen? In Illinois, on the train (duh), in Indiana, at home. Wait, what?

2. AUTHORS: Ugh. Ender’s Game was kind of my favorite thing for so so long. It still is, but I hate when the authors you love turn out to be raging homophobes. Dammit.

3. EDUCATION: This amazing investigative piece by WBEZ on the South Side’s Harper High School is incredible in basically every way journalism can be incredible.

4. KNOPE: NYMag has the inside scoop behind Amy Poehler/Leslie Knope’s amazing wedding dress.

5. SPORTS: For the very first time, a woman is participating in the NFL regional tryouts. Kicker Lauren Silberman will probably not play in the NFL, but that’s still pretty f’ing cool.

6. OSCARS: I would write about Seth McFarlane’s horribly sexist jokes, but Margaret Lyons at NYMag  nailed it so hard I’d just be paraphrasing. 

Related Post: Sunday Scraps 94: Bey, Connie Britton, Jane Austen and more.

Related Post: Sunday Scraps: 93: Guns, visiting Chicago, Margaret Atwood

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Filed under Books, Chicago, Education, Gender, Hollywood, Media, Politics, Sports

I Think I’m Doing OkCupid Wrong

This week for Role/Reboot, I did a little internal investigation on how I behave on online dating sites. We already know how I feel about gendered traditions once we’re actually on the date (i.e. Who pays?), but what about the sending of and responding to messages? Why do I sit back and wait? Is the answer really because it’s just so freaking easy? That seems like laziness to me, and no one should rest on their laurels when it comes to equalizing the playing field, least of all ladies who write about gender and equality on the internet…

onlinedatingRelated Post: Comparing dating to church.

Related Post: Guest post: the dangers of dating while freelancing

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Thoughts on Bling

A week ago, I would not have told you that I had any sort of strong feelings about engagement rings. I generally think super expensive, super ostentatious stuff is overrated, but that’s a ship that has sailed on the wedding industrial complex.

Then, through a series of conversations with friends, a lot of internet reading, and a handful of texts with my mom, I realized that the engagement ring tradition is actually one I want no part of. Here’s why:

Related Post: So what does a wedding photographer do exactly?

Related Post: Surprisingly pleased with the Grey’s Anatomy take on marriage…

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