Weekly Feminist Reader

Women and unions at the 50th anniversary of the Equal Pay Act.

Silence is a woman.

The Lambda Literary Award winners have been announced.

A high school valedictorian called out her school on its discrimination against Native Americans.

A lot of people wrote a lot of things about the FLOTUS heckler conflict.

Sontag is reborn!

Queers should care about sex offenders.

Protesters across the country demand accessible emergency contraceptives.

SiriusXM dropped an anti-trans radio show.

Bitch is pro-“Frances Ha.”

It turns out it actually isn’t legal in Texas to shoot an escort who refuses sex.

The correct response to Michael Douglas’s throat cancer is not, in fact, “lololololol cunnilingus lololololol.”

Why is the conversation about rape jokes a white conversation?

Has American progressed?

North Carolina doesn’t want to let racial justice get in the way of it killing people.

Any burning questions about Prancercise?

“I never wanted to be a “strong Black woman.'”

Do babies matter to academic careers? The answer will surprise you exactly not at all.

Of scalps and savages.

Feminist photographer Abigail Heyman died in May. Explore the New York Timesslideshow of some of her finest work.

Five ways congress is trying to combat military sexual trauma.

The Salvation Army believes same-sex parents should be killed.

Shakesville on PRISM.

How to not die.

The whole having it all debate is even more exhausted than you’d thought.

Support Poland’s only feminist magazine.

Why has the Argentinian same-sex marriage movement been so much more radical than our country’s?

It’s not just old men! Millenial women can make you gag, too.

Jessica writes about GOP magical thinking at The Nation.

The winter/patriarchy is coming–and it destroys kingdoms.

Gloria Steinem and Katie Holmes hung out this week. Ok.

What have you been reading/writing/watching/listening to this week?

New Haven, CT

Alexandra Brodsky is an editor at Feministing.com, student at Yale Law School, and founding co-director of Know Your IX, a national legal education campaign against campus gender-based violence. Alexandra has written for publications including the New York Times, the Atlantic, the Guardian, and the Nation, and she has spoken about violence against women and reproductive justice on MSNBC, ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN, FOX, and NPR. Through Know Your IX, she has organized with students across the country to build campuses free from discrimination and violence, developed federal policy on Title IX enforcement, and has testified at the Senate. At Yale Law, Alexandra focuses on antidiscrimination law and is a member of the Veterans Legal Services Clinic. Alexandra is committed to developing and strengthening responses to gender-based violence outside the criminal justice system through writing, organizing, and the law. Keep an eye out for The Feminist Utopia Project, co-edited by Alexandra and forthcoming from the Feminist Press (2015).

Alexandra Brodsky is an editor at Feministing.com, student at Yale Law School, and founding co-director of Know Your IX.

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  • http://feministing.com/members/michnele/ Nele

    Wow, I am so disappointed and shocked that Feministing posted the article “Why Queers Should Care About Sex Offenders.” As a survivor, it was very triggering to come to this trusted news source and read this horrible article. I don’t usually think that me being triggered is other people’s responsibility … but in this case, it’s because the article actually promotes some very offensive and dangerous thinking.

    I DO NOT at all agree that as queer people we should “care” or build “solidarity” with sex offenders as a whole just because people are sometimes wrongly labelled as sex offenders (not that this is not a very horrible thing). In the case where that is a systemic issue (sex work comes to mind) we should be saying “sex workers are not sex offenders” and get behind those people. As with sex crime in general, there are many sex offenders who deserve to be labelled as such and whose freedoms are in fact not sufficiently restricted (the recent Star investigation on sex offenders from Canada freely travelling for child sex tourism comes to mind).

    On top of that, I don’t think his best examples speak that strongly in favour of his argument. For instance, he says that sex offenders can also include “photographing or videotaping without consent,” “peeping,” “public nudity,” “consensual sex with a 17-year-old” (never mind the age of consent!), etc as if those cannot be serious acts of violation. On top of this, he doesn’t cite any sort of statistics as to proportionally how many sex offenders have been labelled as such for these … minor? … offenses and whether they are treated homogeneously by the justice system.

    The whole thing seems based in shoddy logic. It seems to me that the article has three main arguments:
    (1) There are cases when people get mislabelled as sex offenders and this is terrible
    (2) Therefore, queers should support sex offenders as a group

    (1) Queers are criminalized and jailed often
    (2) There are cases when queers get mislabelled as sex offenders
    (3) Therefore, queers should support sex offenders as a group

    And perhaps most offensively:
    (1) Society has attempted and does attempt to brutally police queers’ sexuality
    (2) Society also attempts to police sex offenders’ “sexuality”
    (3) Therefore queers should support sex offenders as a group

    None of this makes sense.

    The language of oppression as used in this article also boggles my mind (not even talking about what it does to my heart): framing sex offenders as “marginalized” … the “plight of sex offenders,” “the persecution of sex offenders”

    As one commenter explains in simple terms:
    “being persecuted and discriminated against because of who you love is not the same as being persecuted and discriminated against because of who you want to victimize.”

    PLEASE, Feministing, tell me you’re not actually on board with this!!

    • http://feministing.com/members/diablitaratoncita/ Jenny G-B

      I want to add my support to Nele’s words. In addition to all the strong points Nele makes, I think I’m kind of seeing why they treat “should” as a troublesome word in my mental health/recovery groups. I can’t imagine anyone in the queer community appreciates being compelled to feel a certain way about sexual abuse perpetrators than I like people who presume to tell me how I’m allowed to feel about my experiences.

      Furthermore, there’s been a lot of discussion (some of it even on Feministing) about how survivors of trauma may process it in different ways. And some may see this as an unreasonable demand.

    • http://feministing.com/members/azbrodsky/ Alexandra

      Hi Nele, I’m sorry that the article was upsetting to you. I should note that, because the WFR is meant to be a round-up of the most talked about articles in the feminist blogosphere, the articles we post do not reflect the staff’s or my own beliefs. The comment section, though, is still a great place to talk about problems you have with linked posts, and I appreciate you doing so. Definitely consider posting a response to the article on the community blog as well!

  • http://feministing.com/members/shasty/ emmie

    Yeah sorry, obviously not buying Lex and Terry’s apology at all. Regardless of whether they are now going to work with GLAAD to address the issue of trans violence, it is already way too late. They had already made it perfectly clear where they stand on trans issues, and have proven to be disgustingly violent loving, trans hating men themselves. They already showed their true colors on the air, so why should they bother “apologizing” and saying they are going to work with the trans-community? It is so obviously not sincere. They’re probably just upset they got cancelled.

  • http://feministing.com/members/bellecloche/ Emily Sanford