What we missed

Puerto Rico will receive $2million dollars in aid to get medicine to those with HIV/Aids. And much needed since “more than 44,000 people on the island of nearly 4 million inhabitants have been diagnosed with HIV/AIDS.”

Why we actually do have to politicize the tragedy in Aurora. Spoiler: it’s too important not to.

Can someone figure out if I’m supposed to be angry about Oprah’s findings on her trip to India? Thanks, because I can’t deal with it.

Courtney on the beauty, difficulty, importance and privilege of writing in solitude (or at a retreat).

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  • http://feministing.com/members/doyouloveanapple/ Rose

    “Can someone figure out if I’m supposed to be angry about Oprah’s findings on her trip to India? Thanks, because I can’t deal with it.”

    I find statements like this so frustrating. I’m not sure why we as feminists are afraid being not-the-most-possible-politically-correct all the time. What motivates so many of us to say shit like that- we are allowed to HAVE OUR OWN OPINIONS. There isn’t one correct position, and things are rarely all good or all bad. Why don’t you read it? Then you can decide if you ARE angry about how Oprah presents what she learned on her trip. Forget if you “should” feel angry.

  • tinicard

    I don’t feel that Oprah has the right attitude approaching people less fortunate than she is. However, exposure on Oprah is a major thing, and there are still privileged people who don’t know/don’t care about what the rest of the world live on, who could learn from this. So overall I feel exposure does more good than bad.

  • http://feministing.com/members/bklynrunner/ Laura S

    Long time reader, first time poster.

    The first conviction in Lackland sex abuse case came down on Saturday. Many are calling on Congress to investigate the assaults. There is a good article in The Nation here: http://www.thenation.com/article/169040/lackland-instructor-convicted-sex-crimes-pressure-congress-mounts

  • http://feministing.com/members/emkm/ Emily

    I think that what Oprah has displayed is a very typical North American attitude: assuming that people can’t be happy without the luxuries that we are accustomed to. I have travelled to a few developing countries and have several friends that work within international development, and there’s one thing that you find so often: people are happy. Of course, there still exists an overwhelming amount of people who are living in extreme poverty and lack access to food, water, education, medicine, etc. But it’s important to understand that people are perfectly capable of being happy without all the material things that we as a society consider so important.

    By talking to the family that way, I feel that she also was conveying another typical, problematic attitude: the condescending “you poor poor person, how horrifying you live this way!” Even if you have a bazillion (slight exaggeration) mansions like Oprah, these people have let you into their home, of which they are likely proud. A proper response would have been to compliment their home, and then ask about their lives. She shouldn’t have asked about their lives in a way that made it sound pathetic, but instead asked questions about how they live, and just generally get to know them. Everyone should be treated as equal human beings. Instead, it sounds like she portrayed these people as lesser humans for not having the material wealth that so many in the Western world possess.

    Soudns to me like just another way to please viewers. Entertain them by showing them some poor, pathetic people and let them all believe that Oprah is a saint for going there.

  • http://feministing.com/members/shubhangijoshi/ Shubhangi Joshi

    I found Oprah’s attitude on her visit to India very condescending. Yes, there is a lot of poverty in India, but I agree with Emily: People find ways to be happy. I often travel to villages, and the warmth and hospitality of the people simply amazes me – They will welcome you graciously to their homes and offer you food. The least you can do is appreciate them, and ask them about their lives in a way that is not patronizing. Asking the children if they’re happy to be living like this was simply pathetic – it angered me so much. Unless she was planning to hand them out one of her own mansions, she has no right to belittle them because of their conditions.
    I found her statement about Indian eating with their hands horrible, simply horrible.
    She made absolutely no attempt to understand the culture and beauty of a vast country like India, rather she preferred to judge the culture and practices of its people through her own narrow lens.