I am glad Obama finally has spoken up on this issue. But I also had many of the same issues that Melissa McEwan had when listening to this speech. Not talking about abortion while defending Planned Parenthood, despite that the fight is not just about services other than abortion, it is about abortion services which countless women will need at some point in their lives. But the thing that struck me the most, and always does when the president talks about women, because it demonstrates an inability, sadly shared by many men, to empathize with women and recognize their existence not just in relation to them, is this:
I also want to note that the President, and he is not alone among male politicians here, continues to have a problem talking about/to women without defining them in relation to men. “They’re mothers, and daughters, and sisters, and wives.” Well, some of us are those things, and some of us are not. It is enough to simply say: “They’re half of this country.”
And what’s with the “they” stuff, anyway? A message to “Planned Parenthood Supporters” is disproportionately a message to women. And yet the message still isn’t really to us as much as about us, as if the President is talking to men. It’s weird, and it’s alienating.
I point this out as a constructive criticism, not because of some variation on “she doesn’t like anything Obama does,” of which I am routinely accused. It might feel like nitpicking, but it’s these “small” things, like the ability to speak authentically and inclusively to women, that can win and lose elections. I want my president to be a successful ally to women.
I’m not sure throwing Obama a bone just because he is finally saying something supportive suits me, just because the other guys are at the utmost extreme end of not giving a shit about women. But at least he is finally saying something.
In related news (related to me hyperbolically hating everything, that is, and also issues of privileged people having more than their share of the voice in law and public opinion), we’re starting on the subject of Rape today in criminal law, and while I realize this is a crude and inadequate equivalency, I have realized that basically if I did the same thing in the face of a rapist as I did when I got mugged, i.e., give it up BEFORE the knife was shown out of fear for my physical safety, rather than after my attacker realized actual violence (or, if I was lucky, just explicit threats of violence) was necessary to get me to comply, the law would say it wasn’t forcible rape. Whereas when I got mugged, the whole Austin PD showed up and gave me full benefit of the doubt, looking to arrest these two guys for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, despite the fact that I immediately handed over my purse when I realized that’s what was happening and they didn’t flash the knife until they were running away (I’m sure that, too, probably had something to do with me being a white woman and them being black men. And let me tell you, even as the victim of the crime, I thought the response was way overboard.).
Then again, since I would be likely to know my rapist (ex-boyfriend of the victim in the first case today, in which the appeals court very wrongly decided there was not sufficient proof of force), not so much the case with my muggers, clearly I would probably be asking for it? Granted, the Model Penal Code is stuck in the 60s, and the cases we read for today weren’t that current, but the fact that old men ever decided that the victim’s behavior rather than her reasonable belief she would be harmed (oh, wait, it’s not reasonable to men with no understanding or empathy for the daily lived experience of women constantly knowing they could be subjected to sexual violence) was an okay basis on which to decide cases, and the fact that case law, I feel pretty safe assuming, hasn’t yet taken a 180 degree turn on this issue, makes me sad about humanity.
By mid-May, I will have a summer job lined up (because that is my #1 focus after this brief is turned in).
By mid-May, I will no longer have to decide between sleeping alone in my own bed and waking up at Mike’s, or asking Mike to come over which he would, but then we’d both feel guilty about leaving Indie alone for 18 hours and then he has to wake up 4 hours after he went to bed so he can go home.
This semester being over, finding someone to let me work for their small divorce/family law firm and maybe even hopefully get paid for it, and simplifying my living situation (combining the place where my stuff and a decent shower are, and where my freaky family is) will be so much better.
I keep seeing all these posts about Draw Something, and it looks awesome. So cenizasyarena, I’m testing it out on you. Of course, I’m not sure if the people it showed me as options to play with actually already have it or if it is just going to send you a thing inviting you to download it, so if the latter is the case, sorry.
Sending this to a friend who was saying how the Trayvon Martin case could have just been a guy that was crazy, but was more likely a guy who was racist (crazy racist?), and think it’s a good read for anyone.
To: Rep. Pridemore
Subject: In response to your comment about divorce in case of abuse
Mr. Pridemore - I would like to make a deal with you. I propose we live together (I’ll even relocate to Wisconsin!) for a year in an abusive relationship. I’ll beat the shit out of you on a regular basis, verbally assault you, make you live in extreme fear, break down any shred of self-worth you might have, all that good stuff. After 12 months, we can both reevaluate our positions on the issue.
Granted, you don’t know me well enough to “love me,” thus giving you happy thoughts to call on when I’m beating you violently, but let’s see what we can work out. What do you say? :)
I am stressed out about school and my career and stuff right now. It’ll all work out fine, I know, but my anxiety is high right now.
But I’m so happy waking up at Mike’s 5+ days of the week, and having his bright blue eyes be one of the first things I see, and having Indie see that I’m awake and jump up to cuddle and try to lick my face even though I won’t let him.
I am so excited that if everything works out and it looks like it will, in less than 2 months I can do that 7 out of 7 days, in a non-slummy apartment, with all my stuff there, not just the most basic toiletries and my clothes for the day. Even the morning after spending the night partying with my current awesome neighbors and not having to drive home.
(While saving $250 on rent. What a perk!)
And the school stuff will all be fine, and my life will continue to be awesome.
Oh, also, I did eventually tell my mother the truth about how long we had been seeing each other, and that I had not been up front about it because I was nervous about how she would take the age difference. Always come out honest in the end.
I vote old guy. Chemistry over age any day. I love my older guy. Even my mother thinks we have 20 years before the age difference is a problem, and I think ours is more years than yours.
Tee-hee. Thanks! We talked for a bit on FB yesterday and today he called just to say hi, so that’s a good sign, I think. He is 20 years older than me, and I’m not sure how my mom would react were it to become an actual thing (meaning I would have to tell her). She loves the show Modern Family and the old guy/young woman couple on it, but I dunno if she’d love it in real life :p
Okay, Mike is 5 months shy of 20 years older than me. Admittedly, I have a totally awesome mom, but here is how I eased her into it: Once it started to become an actual relationship instead of a casual fling, I told her that there was this guy I kinda liked and was thinking about dating but he was older, almost 40 (if your mother thinks small white lies like this are unforgivable, maybe don’t go this route). She didn’t have a problem with it, so a few weeks later I told her we had started dating, and then a few weeks later I told her how old he actually was (42 at the time, I was 23. Now we’re at 44 and 24). I got this lying about his age at first thing from my sister, who dated a guy at one point who was 8 years older than her or something, who she said was 29, wait no 30, wait actually 32. I don’t know if this will help you, but it’s what worked for me.
Now we’re moving in together, and she’s like “You’re happy, you’re being smart about it, it’s your life, I don’t have a problem with it. You probably have 20 years before the age difference becomes a problem.”
Oh hey, news: We turned in our applications for the 1br today, and though they didn’t actually tell me that we were approved, they left a “Resident’s Notice of Intent to Move Out” form on my door with a “sign and return” note, so I think we’re probably set!
Since I’m so convinced I’d be excellent at advice, I’ll start with myself. Well, no, this story starts with me giving excellent advice to Gwen, which I now am modifying to apply to myself.
I told Gwen that choosing to be monogamous with this dude that is super nice and awesome and perfect for her is JUST choosing to be monogamous with him, and is IN NO WAY choosing to settle down with him and marry him and have his babies and be with him forever and ever. It might not work out, and then she can still sleep with the other cool dude, because he’s into open relationships (and in one). He will pretty much always be available for a post breakup booty call, so monogamy with Paul is really not at all a risky choice, and actually an awesome healthy one.
So here’s where it’s my turn: moving out of this apartment complex, whether it’s across the street or 2 miles away IS NOT breaking up with Gwen or my other neighbors. AT ALL. That is NOT the choice that I’m making. Sure it will change things but 2 miles is really not far at all, even if it’s 1000 times further than we are now.
Generally, don’t let your brain trick you into thinking your decisions are more meaningful and permanent than they actually are.
I want to start an advice column. I’ve been a little obsessed with them lately, not in an “I’m going to read this and it will solve my life” way, but in a “wow, these problems are really interesting (or not) and this advice is all heartfelt and much of it is obvious and some of it is wise and SO MUCH OF IT IS SO AWFUL, JUDGY, AND/OR MISGUIDED” way. For example, on The Hairpin I read the tale (last question) of a girl who had started dating this guy and had slept with him a couple times and everything was great and he was like, wait a sec, I like you a lot so lets stop sleeping together so the emotional bond isn’t messed up by the sexy bond or some bullshit and she felt rejected. And The Dude’s advice was that it’s “sad” that “in this day and age” someone being a “good guy” made this girl feel rejected (I didn’t actually check those quotations, but that’s the jist). And maybe the guy was just trying to be a good guy with a girl he liked, but instead of just not worrying about it she probably should have talked to him about it openly and honestly, because guess what? Thinking you can’t have sexytimes with someone you like and respect and are interested in on other levels without messing it up is … actually kinda messed up. Not that he’s a bad guy, but those are some (admittedly very culturally influenced) attitudes that are going to bite you in the ass, and not in the fun way, when you do try to reintroduce sexytimes. But usually these kinds of things can be cleared up or overcome by communication, and if they can’t, fuck that guy, and again not in the fun way.
And therefore I should totally have an advice column.
But I’ll miss them! They’re so cute. (Disclaimer: they are being quiet and adorably snoozing right now, not talking loudly and constantly like they usually do.)
I know I’d be thinking of getting rid of them anyway because of the noise in this studio apartment, but if it weren’t for Mike and Indie I don’t know if I could go through with it.
We could shop around for a cheap 2br and they could live in the office, but I’d have to give up almost $600 and my community for that, and adorable as they are, I don’t think that’s worth it.
But I will kinda miss them. And they are adorable, if annoying and not super friendly.
Maybe someday I’ll have a big house and both a dog and a cockatiel. Parakeets, though adorable, are too small, and therefore too scared, and take way too much work to hand tame, work I wasn’t able to commit to, and I couldn’t find any that had been hand raised so someone had already done that work because they are too little and common for people to make any money at that when they could be raising more lucrative birds.
I should have gotten a cockatiel.
I’ll miss my parakeets, but not enough.
Hopefully they will find a home at least as happy as this one. I wish it weren’t prohibitively expensive and time consuming for me to bring them to my parents so that I would know they’d be happier.
But I worry about them, and even though they annoy the crap out of me, I care about them and I’m ambivalent about having to let them go.
Could we keep them in the bedroom and prevent them from pooping on the bed? Could Indie be trained to not try to eat them once he stops being freaked out about them flying around inside? Probably not. :(