How inner city gun violence is a gendered issue
I’m obviously not the only person who understands gun violence to be an issue about families and gender. I had to check Mitt Romney a few months ago about his comments about unwed mothers contributing to gun violence. I disagreed with him for a lot of reasons, the main one being that most of the perpetrators of gun violence are not single mothers, or mothers at all. Shooters are usually men. We make violence sexy to men. We package and sell violence, and guns, to men. And we do this on an even larger scale to young men; and on a disproportionately larger scale to men of color. Violence is a part of how we gender our society.
Not only does this packaging of violence give us the sexy, hyper-masculine men of our Western dreams, it also helps us disproportionately target, criminalize, police, and continue to dominate communities of color. This is where we see a difference between numbers and exceptions. When we think about the death of the 15-year-old girl who performed at the inauguration, we think of someone who didn’t belong on the receiving or giving end of a bullet. But who does? I think about that 15-year-old girl and then I think about Number 500, the Westside man who was shot and became the 500th person to be murdered in Chicago in 2012. Or I think about Tony Dunn, my loved one, who I’m sure has a number assigned to him as well. Poor, uneducated men of color are the face of “the shooter.” And when they are shot we are allowed to look away, add a tally mark, and continue to report on how people like them kill folks who get to have names and not numbers.
Yet objectifying and assigning value to Asian women is okay in the mainstream. Why? Because we are “helping them” by telling them what we think they should do with their bodies? Because Asian women are submissive and quiet and won’t speak out for themselves? “I Can’t Stop Looking at These South Korean Women” is a piece which is endemic to how American media looks at Asia, particularly Asian women, and even more particularly Asian women’s appearances.I can’t stop thinking about other people who can’t stop looking at Korean women
Women’s closets are often mocked as a form of self-indulgence, shop-a-holicism, or narcissism. But this isn’t fair. Instead, if a woman is class-privileged enough, they reflect an (often unarticulated) understanding of just how complicated the rules are. If they’re not class-privileged enough, they can’t follow the rules and are punished for being, for example, “trashy” or “unprofessional.” It’s a difficult job that we impose on women and we’re all too often damned-if-we-do and damned-if-we-don’t.The Balancing Act of Being Female; Or, Why We Have So Many Clothes » Sociological Images
Sex and gender journalists ask our sources to bare highly personal details that others find painful to discuss even in private. Our subjects are not compensated when they tell us their stories. Instead, comments sections around the Web compile the most heinous reactions to their private lives, written by the world’s foremost anonymous bigots. Our story fades from the news, but it continues to hover over their Google search results, possibly forever. Their friends are free to constantly rewrite their online personalities with a new Facebook status update, but our subjects’ life stories are crystalized at a moment in time — and in someone else’s words. The reporter who lent them a sympathetic ear has shifted her focus to the next piece.We write about sex to help change the world, but we don’t always help our sources.
Janet Mock: It’s About Love, Not the Gender of the Loved
[…] I feel love has no gender, no body, no boundaries. It is we who put such limits and restrictions and rules on something so intimate and pure. Yet I know definitions and words and labels help us shape our world, and even reach back to bell hooks who posits in All About Love, “Imagine how much easier it would be for us to learn how to love if we began with a shared definition.”
hooks goes on to quote psychiatrist M. Scott Peck: ”Love is as love does. Love is an act of will-namely, both an intention and an action. Will also implies choice. We do not have to love. We choose to love.” […]
And in Ocean acting to love this man by revealing his heart to him despite the boundaries we all put on him and the disappointing outcome of this unrequited love, he is revolutionary, and the bravest sort. But what is also implicit in his public letter to us is that he, in his act of choosing to love despite gender, Ocean also chooses to love himself without restrictions. And if more of our people chose to love themselves, they would protect their hearts and bodies in every act of love. […]
The two women are human beings, not just women, and as Simone de Beauvoir wrote, whenever women start acting like human beings they are accused of trying to be men.A critic quoted in Julie D’Acci’s ”Women Characters and ‘Real World’ Feminism” from her book Defining Women: Television and the Case of Cagney and Lacey. The article sketches the history of the development of Cagney & Lacey as a progressive TV show founded on liberal feminist ideals and the constant negotiation of the femininity portrayed by Cagney and Lacey between the creators of the show and CBS.
The first act of violence that patriarchy demands of males is not violence toward women. Instead patriarchy demands of all males that they engage in acts of psychic self-mutilation, that they kill off the emotional parts of themselves. If an individual is not successful in emotionally crippling himself, he can count on patriarchal men to enact rituals of power that will assault his self-esteem.bell hooks
First: actually, everyone is talking about gender and race and class, even if they do not choose to mention it explicitly. If you do not include any aspect of the latter into your work, you are making a conscious decision and chose a very specific positioning in terms of race and class, namely that of male white privilege. You are talking about race and gender: you are talking about white men. Surprise! They have a “race” and a gender too, despite being marketed as universal, and you chose to put the focus on them yet again.
Good, challenging text on (the lack of) intersectionality, especially in academics and activism. Do read it in full, it’s well worth it.
Her breasts were ruined. Ruined? Are mine? Are my hips (wider than in past years) or my stomach (not stretch-marked but a bit looser due to pregnancy), or my feet (once a petite 7, now an 8 or 8.5 depending on the shoe) are they ruined? Or are they just written upon by life. By the stories of being young, of aging, of producing children. Of pain, of joy, of conception and labor, of strain and challenge. I can look at my body and read those histories.A Ruined Body Is A Poem — The Good Men Project