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Fuck Politeness

This is a revolution, not a public relations movement

Well this month’s carnival is both huge and unwieldy with submissions pouring in:

February opened in a blaze of posts around Tony Abbott’s inability to keep his pie-hole closed when it came to the apparently pressing political issue of the virginity of young women (yeuch Tony – silence is golden, particularly from you):

From tigtog at Hoyden About Town on February 1, we have the Obligatory Tony Abbott Said What Now? Thread – an excellent post raising some serious points about Abbott’s agenda and callousness, and the start of a thread monitoring the regular ludicrous things he has come out with – I think I count three major ‘what the’-s for February alone

From the ‘mainstream media’ on the same issue, and linked and referred to in tigtog’s post, Virginia Haussegger published in Sydney Morning Herald on February 1 with Virginity is One Hell of a Gift, and Marieke Hardy in The Drum on the same date with First Person Politics are Virgin on the Ridiculous.

It wasn’t long before Abbott disgraced himself again, covered in

tigtog’s Quickhit: Abbott says homelessness a choice

On Abbott and the pressing (oh ha ha) issue of Women Who Iron and What They Need To Know:

But he meant it to be ironic from Blogger on a Cast Iron Balcony:Old advertisement for 'hot starch' product - black and white ad with large picture of enormous old-style iron that has seemingly fallen on, knocked unconcious and trapped a seemingly blonde white cis-woman in a dress underneath it. Tagline 'Don't Let Your Iron Get You Down...' The ad has the flavour of 'what the housewives of Australia need to know' about it.

More in the comments thread of Obligatory Tony Abbott Said What Now? Thread

and in discussing Abbott’s dismissal of those offended by his ironing comment:

News With Nipples brings us  Abbott again, and so soon

Moving on from Tony Abbott (as I wish the Liberal party would)…

February 2nd brought us Hummers and Hybrids, Elaine Kelly’s post at Looking for the Holes – an examination of the concept of Hummers and Hybrids as two faces of capitalism in America (as a visiting feminist and feminist blogger)

A publication in the mainstream media in early February Muslim Feminists Deserve To Be Heard, by Randa Abdel-Fattah and Susan Carland was immediately met with hateful and dismissive comments despite being well worth a read.

My own furious rant on the ignorant and ironic reactions of some of the commentors, First take the plank from your own eye was not well received by some.

Randa Abdel-Fattah, co-author of ‘Muslim Feminists Deserve To Be Heard’ also guest posted in February at Justine Larbalestier on writing, a love of books and writing identity.

On pregnancy, medical advice and abortion (new guidelines requiring doctors treating pregnant women to mention that termination is an option have been met with some horror/outrage/moral panic) we have the following three posts submitted by several readers:

At In a Strange Land, Deborah points out that doctors are treating women as though they are children in her post  Memo to doctors: women are moral adults

From the Queen of Thorns at Idealogically Impure we have If we tell them about it it’ll just encourage them

From Julie at The Hand Mirror we have Deeply Uninformed is the best possible outcome

And in a follow up post, we have Julie again with An Article We Will Never See on the front page of The Herald.

On issues of family, parenting, the lack of support for parents in society and the various challenges parenthood can present:

Stef at A Touch of Crazy discusses the condescending ‘pity’ for blended families in ‘pity the blended family?no thanks we’re fine the way we are’

Puzzlement at Incrementum documents parenthood and getting to know her child in a series of rather moving posts

From “What I don’t say” we have Quick Rant: WOHM/SAHM its all ridden with guilt on the crappy choices faced by parents with regards to care/work

Happily Guilt Free from Julie at The Hand Mirror

Political Inactivity from SAHM Feminist

From Kiwi Back in Sydney! we have ‘Wiring Fault’

and my own post on Child Support – creatively entitled ‘Child Support’

On living with mental illness we have:

In Which I Speak Its Name from Spilt Milk

On the ways in which media erases the names/identities/personalities of persons with disabilities we have:

Lauredhel at FWD/Forward: FWD (feminists with disabilities for a way forward) with Who Shall Remain Nameless: The Othering of PWD

On the New South Wales Government inquiry into the provision of education and education to students with disabilities or special needs, and what can be done we have:

In which you are given information you may be able to use to help a few thousand disabled students out! from Chally at FWD/Forward: FWD (feminists with disabilities for a way forward)

On the boys/girls divide, women/men divide, the ‘us/them’ mentality, and on recognising our own internalised gender norms we have:

Spilt Milk with Shouting Out Loud

A Shiny New Coin with ‘Half the population can’t be a niche market’

Women aren’t “us” from Deborah at In a Strange Land

and Gender based ethical standards from Ariane at Ariane’s little world

On taking on ad campaigns we have

I write letters from Spilt Milk

On the merits of womens mags and the lack of merit of advice dished out to women from the ‘two Sams’ from the SMH:

Rachel Hills on why women’s mags matter

Give it up Sam, you’re not a feminist from News With NipplesAnd uh…me with Sam in the City on ‘The orgasm gap’

On the publicity surrounding Lori Gottlieb’s Marry Him (yes that’s right – women should just *settle* and all will be well) we have Rachel Hills again:

In the book’s introduction, Gottlieb poses the question: “What’s the difference between settling and compromising?” But it is a question she never quite manages to answer. Marry Him seems to swing indecisively between the two options, erasing the very real differences between them in the process

and Mindy posting at Hoyden About Town with Waiting for Mr Right or taking Mr He’ll do?

On heinous behaviour from celebrities parading their ignorance and bigotry, well February was a corker of a month for this so strap yourselves in:

First up the Amanda Palmer/Evelyn Evelyn debacle – [trigger warnings, rape discussed] heads up for anyone not currently aware of this, but a side project of Palmers involves she and another artist pretending to be conjoined twins, replete with a whole rape/child porn/circus ‘back story’. Unfortunately when it was pointed out that this was offensive and ableist Palmer (and many others) reacted poorly culminating in her claim to have been ‘crucified’. Her stunning arrogance and snideness on Good News Week (oh haw haw haw a DISABLED FEMINIST??? What an HILARIOUS concept!)  is technically fodder for the March carnival though it is certainly linked. [Trigger warning - Anaham and Lauredhel were subject to nasty, bigoted and threatening treatment for daring to critique the project, reading the posts regarding how the controversy over the initial posts unfolded is extremely upsetting]:

Evelyn Evelyn: Ableism Ableism? from Anaham at FWD/Forward: FWD (feminists with disabilities for a way forward):

Let’s get something out of the way: I say this out of love and respect. I say this as a fellow artist (albeit an unknown one). I also very much doubt that the people involved in this project have created it with any bad intentions. That said, however, intentions don’t equal a free pass for an end result, particularly if the end result is problematic.

“Saying conjoined twins are disabled is insulting”: Evelyn Evelyn Redux from Lauredhel at FWD and crossposted at Hoyden About Town:

How can people simultaneously look at this project as funny and edgy and worth paying money to stare at, while considering conjoined twins to be “not disabled”? Why are their bodies so hilarious, then? Why is it so funny when Palmer and Webley cripdrag-up in that modified dress? Why do they snigger and smirk as they talk about “the twins” and their tragic tale? They do this – you do this – because you do see these bodies as Other. Fascinating, bizarre, freakish. Fodder.

Who Killed Civil Discourse? Evelyn Evelyn, Marginalisation, and Internet Discussion by Annaham covering the controversy surrounding the critiques offered by herself and Lauredhel with regards to the Evelyn Evelyn project and the horrendous reception of these critiques [trigger warning for the blockquote below and the reactions discussed]:

We were, in various other places around the web, called “retarded,” “angry bloggers,” had the legitimacy of our contributors’ disabilities questioned, and (trigger warning) threatened with rape (link goes to a screencap of a comment left on Amanda’s blog) — among many, many other things. In the comments thread to my original post, I was told that I need to focus on more important issues, that I was blowing things out of proportion, that I was censoring people and/or trampling on their free speech rights by laying out guidelines that specifically told potential commenters  to not leave derailing comments,  and that intent should excuse offensiveness. Eventually, I lost my patience.

On John Mayer’s bizarre attempt at seeming more ‘real’/less of an arsehole by being a complete bigot in a Playboy interview:

‘John Mayer’s Ill Fated Campaign to be seen as Not a Douchebag’ – what else can you say really?

On Australia’s continued rejection of the possibility of same sex marriage we have:

Rayedish from The Radical Radish with Every Now and Then

On the appalling treatment of Lara Bingle who clearly (SARCASMSARCASMSARSCASM) deserves ritual public humiliation and shaming because she both Dated a Man and happened to want to Take a Bath:

Michelle from The Red Pill Survival Guide gives us It was going to happen anyway. Besides she was asking for it

and Mindy at Hoyden About Town with ‘Quickhit: Maybe it’s her fault for having a shower?’

On Michelle Obama’s use of stories about her daughter’s bodies to frame her discussions about childhood obesity we have

Maia from The Hand Mirror with ‘It’s Not OK’

On Australian and New Zealand domestic politics and ‘the rich getting richer while the poor get poorer’ we have:

But what about the parents from Deborah at In a Strange Land

and Elsewoman with ‘On making the rich richer by making the poor poorer’

From Elsewoman we have a personal tribute to Sonja Davies with

The final farewell to a great New Zealander

On the centrality/rejection of U.S-centrism:

Dear USians on the Internet by Chally guest posting at Feministe

and On not being in America: Notes from beyond the centre of the universeLarge rippling U.S flag from Rachel at Musings of an Inappropriate Woman

On sexual violence and the ways in which it gets discussed we have:

[TRIGGER WARNINGS] Find the Funny in Gang Rape by Luddite Jouno

and from Musings of an Inappropriate Woman again we have Rachel with “But women don’t rape: sexual pressure, rejection and the male sex drive discourse”

On to lighten things up a little, in crafts (and craft themed inspiration), photographs and personal stories we have:

Friday Frock(s): Inspiration from Craft Is The New Black

Ladies A Plate another post from Craft Is The New Black

and Evening from 2 B Sophora, which seems an appropriate image to close with:Photo of five trees on a downwards slope of hill, gold grass around the bases, green hills in the background, the whole seen backlit with a sunset, the sun sinking out of view in a dip in the hills

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