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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 5:48 pm 
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Tofulish wrote:
molasses jane wrote:
Tofulish wrote:
And re Des' point - I think there is a big difference between "feeling stabby" which isn't directed to anyone and wanting to smash someone's balls with a cricket bat. And I think this is consistent with the PPK community standards, which are different from other groups.


The OP said "Ugh. One day i'll gain superpowers and bring justice to the world, with my un-shaven pubic area and cricket bat of doom. If you'll excuse the vulgarity, there is plenty of ball-smashing to be done." She did not say she wanted to smash the guy at the pool's balls, any more than Desdemona said she wanted to stab or push someone in particular, which is part of the reason why what some have perceived as a ganging up on the OP about violent language when describing feeling violated seems entirely unwarranted, and beyond a regular ol' PPK "grown up" difference of opinions.


Well the ABazoo said this in her latest post (that I was responding to):

annabazoo wrote:
i do believe people who violate others bodies physically deserve to have their balls smashed.


And my response is in the post above that you quoted from. Basically I think its problematic to say that bashing someone's balls in is ever justified.

I think it is a very interesting discussion on where a look becomes harassment, and where we have to take responsibility for our own interpretations (see my post upthread) of another's intent. I am rather sad that we cannot have a dispassionate examination of that issue without ad hominem attacks and name calling. Personally, for the record, I don't believe in thought crimes. I think there is too much potential for misinterpretations, putting our own interpretations over the intent of the actual viewer. Who knows what the 40 year old guy wanted - certainly none of us.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 5:51 pm 
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Yeah, we are really getting into thought crime territory here. I guess I must be a terrible person for having violent thoughts about people who have victimized me; albeit not physically, but victimized me nonetheless. Sometimes it's nice to imagine taking someone's power away by punching them in the balls the same way they took power from you by harassing you. Sometimes that makes me fee better about having to have my guard up all the time; a thought about a face punch and I can chuckle and be done with it. And I'll thank you to not tell me I'm a BAD FEMINIST because of that, yeesh.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 5:55 pm 
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True, i don't really know what the guy was thinking. he could have been thinking about what a nice girl i look like, and how he'd like to take me out to dinner and get to know me better. But his words and the way he looked at me did not reflect this viewpoint.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 5:56 pm 
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Tofulish wrote:
And my response is in the post above that you quoted from. Basically I think its problematic to say that bashing someone's balls in is ever justified.

I think it is a very interesting discussion on where a look becomes harassment, and where we have to take responsibility for our own interpretations (see my post upthread) of another's intent. I am rather sad that we cannot have a dispassionate examination of that issue without ad hominem attacks and name calling. Personally, for the record, I don't believe in thought crimes. I think there is too much potential for misinterpretations, putting our own interpretations over the intent of the actual viewer. Who knows what the 40 year old guy wanted - certainly none of us.


But she said she was saying it off the cuff in a non-literal way, akin to tonnes of language in this thread from many, many people (stabby, pushing, patriarchy smashing, etc...) that invokes violence/anger/crass language as metaphor. That is certainly something that happens all over this board.

The question is not about pool dude's intent, but about why, when AB is reporting not feeling safe, so many people are jumping on her and telling her she's wrong.

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Last edited by molasses jane on Sat Jul 06, 2013 6:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 6:03 pm 
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And the butthurtedness peppered throughout over saying over 40 is old to someone people is, frankly, ridiculous. Believe it or not, to a 20-year-old, being 40 is TWICE AS OLD as they are. Cut the dramatics and perhaps focus on the real issues (of which I see none), please.

Jesus christ, why do I ever read this thread? I'm done.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 6:05 pm 
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I don't think it's very nice to call someone annoying or dramatic for expressing their views in a calm and direct manner, but whatever.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 6:05 pm 
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molasses jane wrote:
Tofulish wrote:


But she said she was saying it off the cuff in a non-literal way, akin to tonnes of language in this thread from many, many people (stabby, pushing, patriarchy smashing, etc...) that invokes violence as metaphor. That is certainly something that happens all over this board.

The question is not about pool dude's intent, but about why, when AB is reporting not feeling safe, so many people are jumping on her and telling her she's wrong.


I did say i think some people deserve to be hurt, but i also said i do not support violence. Meaning they may deserve it, but that it should not be carried out. Does that make sense?
Thank you to the people who defended me. Really, i did not expect my comments to be so thoroughly picked apart. I did not mean to sound ageist or violent. I was just angry at the guy at the pool, and this seemed like the best place to vent about sexist behavior and harassment.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 6:11 pm 
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Nice job,AP -

Quote:
As she spoke late into the night railing against proposed abortion restrictions, a former Texas teen mom catapulted from little-known junior state senator to national political superstar in pink running shoes.

Wendy Davis needed last-minute help from shrieking supporters to run out the clock on the special session of the state Legislature and kill the contentious and sweeping bill, but her old-fashioned filibuster earned her widespread praise from fellow abortion-rights supporters — including a salute from President Barack Obama.


Because who cares that she went to Harvard when she is a former Teen Mom (like on TV!) and when we can talk about what she wore.

I highlighted some of the best sexist bits for your enjoyment.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 6:13 pm 
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molasses jane wrote:
But she said she was saying it off the cuff in a non-literal way, akin to tonnes of language in this thread from many, many people (stabby, pushing, patriarchy smashing, etc...) that invokes violence as metaphor.


We can agree to disagree, but I don't think saying

Quote:
annabazoo wrote:
i do believe people who violate others bodies physically deserve to have their balls smashed.


Is an off the cuff, non-literal, metaphor. Its not uncommon for people to believe that rapists deserve to be raped or that people deserve to be hurt physically for hurting others. I just think its problematic to justify any physical violence against the person of another because it quickly becomes a slippery slope, just as after 9-11 the word "terrorist" has now expanded to catch a far wider group of people than originally intended, and is now used to persecute people like MFA and COK.

Either way, Annabazoo has now backed off that statement, so I am happy to let it rest.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 6:14 pm 
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I'd just like to point out that while annabazoo's OP was the launchpad for this discussion, I and several others (foolishly, apparently) tried repeatedly to bring the conversation to some sort of theoretical level viz. the significance of "looking" and where the line lies between passive viewing and active interference (or even violation) in public spaces. (I mean, I brought up Lacan, ferchrissakes!) But whatever; that ship will obviously never sail. I'd still like some clarification as to why saying you'd like to smash a homeless man who looks at you with a bat is universally deemed unacceptable, but wanting to do the same thing to a (presumably) non-homeless man who looks at you is cool, but I may have to remain ignorant on this point.

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Last edited by Desdemona on Sat Jul 06, 2013 6:16 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 6:14 pm 
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Tofulish wrote:
I think it is a very interesting discussion on where a look becomes harassment, and where we have to take responsibility for our own interpretations (see my post upthread) of another's intent. I am rather sad that we cannot have a dispassionate examination of that issue without ad hominem attacks and name calling. Personally, for the record, I don't believe in thought crimes. I think there is too much potential for misinterpretations, putting our own interpretations over the intent of the actual viewer. Who knows what the 40 year old guy wanted - certainly none of us.


I don't think such discussions are bad, but it wasn't appropriate to misread AB's post and say that she's being paranoid and ageist, when she was being stared at and then harassed. Lots of people disclose very comparable experiences in this thread and while there's no safe places on internet forums, I do think that we shouldn't pick each other apart to make sure it was real harassment or whatever, at the very least read very carefully before you do to make sure you understand what had happened. Of all the people in this thread, only AB was there. Its inherently not a dispassionate examination of AB's experience of feeling unsafe and harassed when we're trying to make her feel bad for feeling the way she does.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 6:14 pm 
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paprikapapaya wrote:
Believe it or not, to a 20-year-old, being 40 is TWICE AS OLD as they are.


I'm the same age as the parents of some of my (17-18 your old) students and I'm (a bit) younger than 40. Someone old enough to be your father leering at you is creepy, under pretty much any circumstance. Most men are able to "check out" a woman they find attractive discreetly without being a jerk or a crasshole.

Haven't we all been leered at in ways that make us feel unsafe/uncomfortable? I think it can be hard to articulate what makes one look different from another, but I once called my dad at midnight to come pick me up from Tower records because some guy was staring at me. The hairs on the back of my neck were on alert and everything in my body was saying something was unsafe, but this guy wasn't doing anything other than looking at me across a large store. That was many years ago, but I remember the entire scene vividly and would 100% do the same/similar again today. I was NOT about to go out to the (empty) parking lot and return to my (deserted) work place with that guy potentially following me.

I feel like people are looking for reasons to take offense here on both sides, if I could actually figure out what the "sides" even are, which I can't.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 6:24 pm 
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Desdemona wrote:
I'd just like to point out that while annabazoo's OP was the launchpad for this discussion, I and several others (foolishly, apparently) tried repeatedly to bring the conversation to some sort of theoretical level viz. the significance of "looking" and where the line lies between passive viewing and active interference (or even violation) in public spaces. (I mean, I brought up Lacan, ferchrissakes!) But whatever; that ship will obviously never sail. I'd still like some clarification as to why saying you'd like to smash a homeless man who looks at you with a bat is universally deemed unacceptable, but wanting to do the same thing to a (presumably) non-homeless man who looks at you is cool, but I may have to remain ignorant on this point.


I don't think anyone's objecting to the conversation about Lacan and the gaze. LW's point about just *feeling* that something is off is super interesting and the idea of when a gaze turns into a leer, and how power is at play in terms of the subject and object of the gaze (and how that plays into perceptions of age and gender) is a huge question. The issue that seems to have sent us all down this weird path here is that this was D's first response:

"Whoa, Nellie. I don't know how old you are, so apologies (but not really) if I'm schooling a teenager, but there are a few things about your post I find extremely disturbing. A. It seems particularly bothersome to you to be objectified by "older dudes" ("this maybe 40 year old dude" - OMG, amazing he can still walk, much less ogle you while you're stretching, amirite?!); B. you're also at seemingly disingenuous pains to express how "just plain gross [it is] to know that some disrespectful crasshole was looking at [your] body as a sexual object," as if this is a foreign (albeit admittedly nasty) concept with which you have been hitherto unfamiliar; and C. your reference to the "cricket bat of doom" with which you'd like to do some "ball-smashing" makes me super uncomfortable. Not cool; not feminist."

That's pretty strong, pretty personal ("not feminist"), not at all theoretical, and I think what most people are objecting to here. Especially for a post by AB that starts "I wish i could go to the pool without being hit on."

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Last edited by molasses jane on Sat Jul 06, 2013 6:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 6:25 pm 
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Desdemona wrote:
I'd just like to point out that while annabazoo's OP was the launchpad for this discussion, I and several others (foolishly, apparently) tried repeatedly to bring the conversation to some sort of theoretical level viz. the significance of "looking" and where the line lies between passive viewing and active interference (or even violation) in public spaces. (I mean, I brought up Lacan, ferchrissakes!) But whatever; that ship will obviously never sail. I'd still like some clarification as to why saying you'd like to smash a homeless man who looks at you with a bat is universally deemed unacceptable, but wanting to do the same thing to a (presumably) non-homeless man who looks at you is cool, but I may have to remain ignorant on this point.


I already clarified that i did not want to smash this man, and that i instead wanted to give him a stern talking to. I will say again, the original ball-smashing comment was directed towards stories i hear of other people who go through much more traumatic events than being verbally harassed. And again, that while i think these people deserve to be hurt, i do not think violence is a good direction to take. Please actually read my posts before picking them apart.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 6:26 pm 
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I think the "old dude" part of the story was pretty irrelevant. Often times in my irl world I get the pleasure of hearing stories of street harassment where the harrasser's race is the only descriptor and it always bothers me. Would it have not felt crappy had he been 20?

I mean I think that sounds pretty creeptastic no matter the age of the guy. If it had just been staring that would be one thing, plenty of people stare for various reasons, but the follow up "hey baby..." I mean that's not the kind of thing you say when you're staring because you're thinking of taking up yoga yourself and have a few innocent questions.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 6:35 pm 
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Whoa, yeah, i totally agree with molasses jane. I'm pretty surprised by some of the responses to annabazoo's story.

I will say, i have no problem with dating outside of your age range, let alone finding someone outside of your age range attractive. My sweetie is only 8 years older than me, but we did start dating when I was 23 and he was 31. It has never seemed like an issue at all to me, although I imagine that wouldn't be desirable for some people. But I seem to be attracted to lots of older men since graduating college...there were a few men before my current partner who I went on a few dates each with who were more significantly older than me as well, the biggest difference being a dude I went on a few dates with when I was 22 and he was 40. It did skeeve me out a little bit when I realized he was 3 years younger than my dad (I knew before our date that he was older than me by quite a bit, but didn't realize how much) but not just because of the number. I have had plenty of friends and great non-romantic relationships with people much older than me, and didn't necessarily feel that it was bad to date someone that much older. It was more the dynamic that I felt in that particular situation, some parts of our conversations together and like...him coming to pick me up in his sports car and whatnot...it made me feel like he was looking for someone to fit into a Manic Pixie Dream Girl mid-life-crisis kind of fantasy rather than getting to know ME. And that definitely felt weird.

On the other hand, just a few months later and shortly after my 23rd birthday, I went on a few dates with a guy who was 35 and it felt totally different. Partly because at that age, I felt more confident and secure in myself each and every month. And also because it just felt more like the age gap was incidental, and not something that that guy was specifically looking for.

Also, in the case of each of these older men AND with my current partner, they each showed something ranging from mild interest and lots of friendliness to cute and kind of shy flirtation, but I was definitely the one who either started or escalated the flirtation. I think that made me feel more confident with each of those situations, too. I know they all found me attractive before I made the situation romantic or flirtatious, but because most older men DO have more privilege and power in lots of different ways than young women, I definitely appreciated that they all seemed to be pretty conscientious about letting me take the lead in how far I wanted to take things at each step. Pretty different from the feeling of being ogled or harassed by a stranger, especially one who has more either real or perceived power than you.

Oh yeah, that reminds me of one time I was at a park when I was 19 laying in the grass listening to a band play, and a guy came over and tried to sell me a newspaper. I couldn't hear what he was saying so I leaned up and he leaned down to repeat it to me... and said into my ear that I was so beautiful and he wanted to kiss me but he knew he would go to jail for it. Yuck! The fact that he thought I was younger than I was, and that that seemed to be a significant part of the attraction, AND the fact that my consent was not hinted at at all, only the legal ramifications...All totally gross, and so clearly all totally different than having a friendly flirtatious exchange as equals, even if there is an age difference.

I would still be put off (to put it mildly) by a stranger thinking it appropriate to come up and tell me how beautiful I am and how they want to kiss me while I'm just trying to mind my own business laying in the park listening to music, especially if their come-on intimated that my consent was not even worth mentioning, but I also would feel less vulnerable by that now, at 26, than I did at 19, especially with someone making it clear that they assumed I was even younger. That is clearly what makes the stranger-in-the-park exchange feel like the dude who did it was a Creepy Old Dude, even though he may well have been younger than the guys I went on dates with only a few years later. I'm gonna give Annabazoo the benefit of the doubt that she, too, would see the difference between someone who seems to be interacting with people in a particularly lecherous and perhaps predatory way, and friendly attraction from someone who just happens to be older. And I think a big part of that difference is that if someone seems to be significantly younger than you, you can let them know you think they're attractive but you also back off more than you might with someone who seems more your peer, and let them take the lead at a pace they're comfortable with, if they're interested at all. (Obviously once you're a certain age it doesn't matter any more...like even if you are old enough to be someone's parent, does it really matter once they're a full-fledged adult? But at 20...most people are not at that stage of life yet.)

Whew. Who knew I had so much to say about age differences?


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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 6:35 pm 
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I thought this was an interesting article about physical appearance and beauty.

http://theladyaye.kinja.com/beauty-is-a ... -658393028

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 6:37 pm 
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annabazoo wrote:
while i think these people deserve to be hurt, i do not think violence is a good direction to take. Please actually read my posts before picking them apart.


How does that make sense? Isn't hurting people violence?

Shy Mox wrote:
it wasn't appropriate to misread AB's post and say that she's being paranoid and ageist, when she was being stared at and then harassed.


Its exactly the point though - is staring at someone harassment?

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 6:40 pm 
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Tofulish wrote:
annabazoo wrote:
while i think these people deserve to be hurt, i do not think violence is a good direction to take. Please actually read my posts before picking them apart.


How does that make sense? Isn't hurting people violence?

Shy Mox wrote:
it wasn't appropriate to misread AB's post and say that she's being paranoid and ageist, when she was being stared at and then harassed.


Its exactly the point though - is staring at someone harassment?


That's not the point. The point is that AB wrote here thinking this was a safe space, and saying she felt very unsafe and harassed. And then was taken apart in personal, dismissive, and frankly, I think, condescending, ways over her wording. That's the point.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 6:45 pm 
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Ok, we need to move on from this discussion, since it really isn't going anywhere. I think we can chalk up a lot of the argumentation about and around annabazoo's comment to people not being careful with their word choices or tone. I really don't want to shut down the thread since there are lots of interesting and helpful things going on in here, but I will if we can't move forward without namecalling and other nastiness.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 7:08 pm 
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Tofulish wrote:
annabazoo wrote:
while i think these people deserve to be hurt, i do not think violence is a good direction to take. Please actually read my posts before picking them apart.


How does that make sense? Isn't hurting people violence?

Shy Mox wrote:
it wasn't appropriate to misread AB's post and say that she's being paranoid and ageist, when she was being stared at and then harassed.


Its exactly the point though - is staring at someone harassment?


I think those people deserve to be hurt, but that actually hurting them would not be a good action to take. They may deserve to have their balls smashed, but actually smashing their balls would just open the door for more violence, so it is not a good course of action. What someone deserves can be different from what should actually really happen to them.

But really, this has gone on for long enough and i don't want this thread to get shut down, so this will be my last post about it. It is clear to me that no matter what i say at this point, i will not be able to find the right words to convey my meaning and someone will take offense or have a problem with it.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 7:16 pm 
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molasses jane wrote:
. The point is that AB wrote here thinking this was a safe space, and saying she felt very unsafe and harassed. And then was taken apart in personal, dismissive, and frankly, I think, condescending, ways over her wording. That's the point.


Is this a safe space thread? I have always thought it was a space for critical discussion of feminist issues including what constitutes harassment.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 7:18 pm 
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Dr. Apricot wrote:
Ok, we need to move on from this discussion, since it really isn't going anywhere. I think we can chalk up a lot of the argumentation about and around annabazoo's comment to people not being careful with their word choices or tone. I really don't want to shut down the thread since there are lots of interesting and helpful things going on in here, but I will if we can't move forward without namecalling and other nastiness.

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That commercial didn't make me want to go out and buy Dove, but this thread did make me sniff my armpits. They smell like apricot. - designedtobekind


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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 7:21 pm 
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molasses jane wrote:
Also, love the Hothead Paisan reference, Pandacookie. Chicken!

Chicken>Lacan all day, any day. We ought to meet up sometime when you are in town.

Anna, do check her stuff out. The collected comics have been published as one edition and I bet you would enjoy it if you have feminist superhero comics in your head already. Also Dykes to Watch Out For, which had a strip in the late 80s where Lois and Mo deal with street harassment and dream up the feminist posse.

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 Post subject: Re: Who challenges your feminism in your life?
PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 7:23 pm 
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Whoops! Cross posted with the good Dr. A.
Meanwhile, at stately Wayne manor....

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