It’s so cute when they think they know who they’re dealing with.

#BlameOneNotAll is a tag that begs to be derailed, so I joined in the fun this afternoon. Soon enough, this reply appeared in my interactions.

My Tweet says: "#BlameOneNotAll because gendered violence is all unrelated." I've blurred out the profile pic and username of the person who replied to me. Their response is: "Yeah, the female teachers molesting young boys. Coincidence, surely."

My Tweet says: “#BlameOneNotAll because all these acts of violence on women are totally unrelated. Nope, just one isolated incident after another.” I’ve blurred out the profile pic and username of the person who replied to me. Their response is: “Yeah, like female teachers molesting young boys. Coincidences, surely.”

No, I didn’t engage with this user. I can think of about 100 things I’d rather do with my time—pull my toenails off with pliers, for instance—than get sucked into an argument with an anti-feminist. Nope, this exemplary character kept on popping into my mentions, and I kept on Tweeting.

I’m just showing off this one reply as an example of how some of us have different reasons for doing what we do.

Some of us do talk about sexual violence with male victims and female perpetrators, as it comes up. Maybe not as often as we should! But when we talk about it, we do so because we see female-on-male violence as part of the same system that enables male-on-female (and male-on-male, etc.) violence. We talk about it because we care about men and boys as our fellow human beings and we value their vulnerabilities. We sometimes ask, “But seriously, what about the men?” without irony, because bodily autonomy matters for everyone or it matters not at all. We object to abuses such as female teachers and other authority figures molesting boys because all children should grow up free of abuse.

And then some people bring up male victims with female assailants as a dishonest “Gotcha!” tactic on feminists. It’s all a question of priorities.

The Other Woman: Gals, Don’t Do That

I read a review in the NYT of The Other Woman (the 2014 movie) that made it sound so bad I simply had to see it for myself. I finally got a chance to rent it last night, and now that I’ve seen it, there’s something I need to get off my chest. The pun, which will become apparent below, is acknowledged but not intended.

The story is, basically: insecure Connecticut housewife Kate King (Leslie Mann) finds out her husband Mark (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) is cheating on her with gorgeous lawyer Carly (Cameron Diaz), so she befriends Carly and the two of them plot their revenge on Mark. Then they find out he’s also fucking a sweet young thing named Amber (Kate Upton), so they recruit her into their circle and involve her in their scheme to ruin his life.

I was told the movie was offensively sexist, only occasionally funny, and that the man at the center of this revenge scheme was “charmless.” I simply had to see the movie just to see if it was possible to make Nikolaj Coster-Waldau seem charmless. I can’t believe that unless I see it for myself. The movie was nowhere near as bad as I was told to expect. Granted, I thought the jousting dwarves on Game of Thrones were hilarious, I was laughing right along with Joffrey, so my sense of humor is not such a good example, but I found The Other Woman to be, for the most part, a good piece of mindless, slapstick entertainment. I’d say it’s moderately sexist rather than offensively so. The writing is surprisingly clever; not quite strong enough to convince me of Kate and Carly’s need to go out of their way to find Amber, but it sold me on the idea that it would not be sufficient to send Mark pictures of the three of them dancing together on a beach in the Bahamas. No, he’s a dishonest, unethical piece of shit and he needs to be punished. I’m with them there. If the movie was trying to make Nik C-W seem charmless, they failed miserably; the character is despicable but the performance is perfectly charming and funny. I can see why these three attractive women would become sufficiently invested in him to get angry enough to plot their revenge when they learn of his infidelity. I didn’t like Nicki Minaj’s character, and I’m even more troubled by the fact that the only person of color with any substance in the movie is so incredibly obnoxious, but she does have some funny things to say. It’s well-acted all around. Diaz and Mann are hilarious together, and Kate Upton is perfectly likable. It’s not especially thoughtful or original comedy, but it’s plenty entertaining.

There was just…this one…part, where I found myself unable to turn off my brain and enjoy the ridiculousness. It was plenty ridiculous, but it failed at being funny. It was disturbing, excessive, and not amusing, and this morning I finally figured out what it was about that one scene that grossed me out so hard.

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Victory against the non-existent coerced abortion

Robin Marty tells us about a court order to prevent Planned Parenthood of York from performing an abortion on an unwilling 14-year-old. The story was supposedly that this girl’s parents scheduled an abortion for her, but she wanted to keep the baby, and the father’s parents also wanted her to keep the baby, so the Independence Law Center came to her defense in court.

Now she points us to Paul Carpenter at the Morning Call, who reports that the injunction probably doesn’t exist.

The release listed Dyan Cross as its contact person. Cross was unable to answer any questions, referring me to the Pennsylvania Family Institute, which then referred me to Randall Wenger, chief counsel for the Independence Law Center, also mentioned in the press release. “The Independence Law Center,” it said, “helped the girl from York, Pa., to fight the abortion in court. The mother and stepfather of the girl had scheduled an abortion for their daughter against her wishes and against the wishes of the family of the unborn child’s father.”

Also, the Law Center’s website listed various cases it was pursuing, including that of a York student fighting a school ban on an anti-abortion T-shirt. I found nothing, however, on an injunction against parental abortion atrocities in York. When I called Wenger to ask for details on that phantom injunction, he did not return my calls.

Still, there were other leads. “The court-ordered injunction,” said the press release, “was presented to the girl’s parents and Planned Parenthood of York.”

Planned Parenthood often helps families with abortions or birth-control advice, so it’s logical that it may have been helping the parents. Planned Parenthood of York referred me to Suellen Craig, head of the regional Planned Parenthood of Southcentral Pennsylvania, who knew nothing about any injunction.

Carpenter’s story goes on to explain how Wenger is perfectly happy to fight for parents’ rights to force their minor daughters to give birth against their will.

Now, the issue here isn’t that the girl’s parents have won their bid to force their 14-year-old daughter to abort. The issue here is that the injunction doesn’t exist because it wasn’t necessary. Planned Parenthood isn’t interested in performing abortions on unwilling women, including 14-year-old girls with non-supportive parents. If the girl comes in for her appointment, she can just say to any clinician that she doesn’t want the procedure, and they’ll let her go, no harm, no foul.

Also, Independence Law Center? The wishes of the fetus’s paternal grandparents are irrelevant. If the girl’s options are to abort or leave her parents’ home, then the father’s family can offer to take her in and provide for her and the baby until the girl is grown up and able to support herself, but the decision is ultimately hers. The outcome of her pregnancy is not theirs to claim.

Foreskins and face creams, my bitches!

Sullivan gives us this drive-by post which eventually leads us to this post at The Stir on medical uses of baby foreskins.

These include the frivolous (collagen for wrinkle creams), the lifesaving (skin grafts for burn victims) and the weird (cosmetic testing).

One question for these endeavors might be: what about adult foreskins? Wouldn’t they be able to do the same things with a foreskin taken from an 18-year-old who asked to be circumcised, as from a newborn whose parents made his decision for him? Christie Haskell apparently answers that much here:

Like embryonic stem cells, not all cells are fully “dedicated” or haven’t fully developed their identifying proteins, meaning they haven’t quite decided for good what they want to be when they grow up and therefore are much more versatile. This means that they can be used to help cultivate skin and skin byproducts (like collagen) with very little chance of rejection.

Well, that sounds a lot more applicable to a newborn’s foreskin than that of a grown man.

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