Links for Sexy Feminists: Against Rape Culture, Female Beauty, and more

Against Rape Culture: Wonderful Indian actresses team up to explain why every rape ever is the woman’s fault, and their words ring sadly true for the U.S. And it’s too bad it was needed, but this great “Missed Connections” listing calls out a serious douche for street harassment.

African Feminists: Women in Rwanda are making great political gains through organized feminism, and we all could learn from them.

Bringing Home the Bacon: Why there was never a “traditional male breadwinner” in most of human history.

Intersectionality and Inclusion: If you’re a white feminist, chances are you could benefit from reading this simple list of ways to be a better ally against racism.

Not a Parody: Great humor piece about a woman who is making 300 sandwiches to get her man to propose. Flag this for use in your next “Make me a sandwich” style flameware.

Creepy Uncle Sam: We’re delighted that the “Other 98%” has turned the imagery of the Koch ad around on itself to argue against transvaginal ultrasounds.

Female Beauty Standards: Blogging for The New Yorker, Rebecca Mead uses the hook of Lena Dunham’s recent tweet on George Eliot to mention that the renowned writer of Middlemarch was probably far less desperate than her legend suggests.

Clinical Irony: Obamacare vs. Abortion Rights

Watch the above video with the sound muted.  Until the second title card comes up, what point of view do you think it is advocating?  With elements like the Big Brother-like surveillance of the women’s clinic and the supremely creepy Uncle Sam menacingly approaching the woman waiting for a gynecological appointment, it’s easy to believe that the ad is about the recent inundation of state laws that regulate women’s clinics.  Even the first title card, which reads “Don’t Let The Government Play Doctor” supports this thesis.  Despite state legislators’ statements that the laws are attempts to make clinics and procedures safer for women, studies have shown that not only is there little evidence of the purported dangers, abortion is one of the safest medical procedures available.  Compare this to childbirth, which, despite being natural and vital to the continuation of the human race, remains extremely dangerous (maybe we should try to make contraceptive methods readily available to ensure that women who are not physically or emotionally ready for pregnancy need not get pregnant).  If these are the laws the government chooses to enact, I too would be wary of the government “playing doctor.”

But no.  This ad encourages people to opt out of the Affordable Care Act, which conservatives still feel compelled to call Obamacare (possibly the least effective derogatory nickname ever conceived).  In other words, it’s fine for the government to select what procedures a woman must endure before maybe being allowed to have an abortion; it’s fine for the government to decide that these procedures may be excluded from insurance plans; it’s fine for the government to require doctors suggest one course of action (carrying the pregnancy to term) over another (abortion).  But for the government to insert its own bureaucracy in place of private insurance bureaucracy is not fine.  The “Don’t Let The Government Play Doctor” statement becomes almost comical.  Almost.  Because many people who are proposing and voting on these laws are blind to this irony.

Links for Sexy Feminists: Hindu Goddesses, What is a Woman? and more

Goddesses Under Siege: A PR campaign aimed at raising awareness about domestic violence in India by depicting Hindu goddesses as victims of abuse has recently become a source of controversy.

What is A Woman?: A charming collection of watercolors of realistic female nudes paired with some hella empowering text. Probably NSFW.

Male Ally: A man talks about how he plans to tell his son about respecting the women around him in a very sweet and moving essay.

Feminists Prank Playboy: Some internet feminist activists successfully pranked Playboy, with total awesomeness ensuing.

Sexual Abuse Recovery: A thought-provoking first person perspective on why negative reactions to childhood sexual abuse can be at least as damaging as the abuse itself.

Love and Transgender: This cis person who married a trans individual will make you think twice about your assumptions about transgendered persons.

War on Women, Ground Floor: We’re unfortunately not surprised to hear this awful tale of a Texas woman who now drives four hours to Planned Parenthood after an uncomfortable experience with her doctor.

Links for Sexy Feminists: Abused Women As Joke Fodder (Still), When the Wage Gap Starts, More

Violence Against Women: This Texas truck company’s “gag” decal of a woman tied up in the back of a pickup will have you sick to your stomach. And if that’s not enough, DC Comics unleashed a wave of controversy by sponsoring a contest to draw a naked woman committing suicide.

Pay Equality: A study from the University of Michigan suggests that the housework gap and the income gap both begin in childhood.

Toys and Gender: UK Toys R Us is doing away with gender labels for toys, an important step we can only hope our own country emulates.

Geek Girls and Race: An excellent, badass perspective on what it’s like to be a black female cosplayer.

Women in Tech: The first perspective a high school girl gets on programming shouldn’t be negative, and it’s every high school teacher’s responsibility to work on that.

Links for Sexy Feminists: Cherice Morales, Cliteracy, and more

No Blurred Lines Here: An important but mostly overlooked aspect of the Miley Cyrus debacle is the importance of talking to one’s sons about Robin Thicke. And apparently we need to mention that no teenage girl is ever asking to be raped.

Remembering Cherice Morales: A necessary perspective on why the young teen who “consented” to sexual relations with her 49-year-old teacher was too emotionally immature to “consent.”

Feminism 101: Feministe has introduced a new feature specifically set up to introduce young folks to the basic principles of feminism.

Trans Inclusion: Chelsea Manning (known to the world as Bradley)’s decision to come out to the world as trans highlights the importance of trans inclusive healthcare.

40 Days of Dating Experiment: Jessica and Timothy will have their big reveal on the direction of their relationship later this week, so if you haven’t gotten sucked in yet it’s not too late.

Best for Last: Artist Sophia Wallace has made it her mission to educate the public on the importance of the clitoris in a piece she charmingly calls “cliteracy.”

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