Happy day-that-only-comes-every-four-years! And although I’ve been too busy lately to pay attention to my blog properly (or even make occasional posts to my Twitter feed), I decided I would leap (ha) on this opportunity to post a few things that make me jump for joy.
- Margaret Cho’s awesome rant about getting mad on Twitter at people who criticize her face and body. She goes out hard about speaking her truth as a way of standing up against the bullies who hurt her in the past and hurt other people now: “I fly my flag of self esteem for all those who have been told they were ugly and fat and hurt and shamed and violated and abused for the way they look and told time and time again that they were ‘different’ and therefore unlovable. Come to me and I will tell you and show you how beautiful and loved you are and you will see it and feel it and know it and then look in the mirror and truly believe it. If you are offended by my anger and my might at defending my borders and my people you do not deserve entry into my beloved and magnificent country.” Go Margaret.
- The Google Doodle for Leap Year 2012. Opera and classic cartoons!
- My friend Hanne Blank‘s new book “Straight: The Surprisingly Short History of Hetereosexuality” has been published finally, and I have a copy sitting right next to me on my end table to read as soon as my quarter is finally over.
- Disney put up a horrible fat-shaming “healthy habits” exhibit at Epcot, and got a lot of flak for it, and they have SHUT IT DOWN. And actually talked to at least two Health at Every Size/Size Acceptance experts whom I know of, about what the issues with the exhibit are, and why making fat kids feel bad about themselves isn’t healthy at all.
- Republican Presidential candidate Rick Santorum said that he does not believe in the separation of church and state, and that JFK’s famous speech on the topic makes him “throw up a little.” I think this is awesome! Because finally someone from the Evangelical Right has come out and said what they really think, and so now we can maybe have a national conversation about what it means to think that your religion should be used to create the laws we all live by.
- Which leads naturally into a discussion of just who should get to decide what kind of sex is legitimate for women to have: women themselves, or other people (the government, their employers, their communities, their male partners…). And while it is incredibly sad that we have to even have this conversation in 2012, apparently we do, so let’s have it! Contraception is something that the vast majority of Americans agree is a good thing, even if they disagree over whether it should be offered in schools, taught about in schools, or covered under your health plan, so let’s talk about what really is at issue here: what constitutes normal, healthy sexual self-expression for grown women, and who should be in charge of giving women permission to have sex when and how they choose (free hint: each individual woman herself, in conversation with her thoughts, feelings, values, and morals).
As Marcotte writes: “And you know what I’ve found? If you defend female sexuality directly, it’s not as bad as you think it’s going to be. They don’t actually have an argument against the contention that women deserve to have support for happy, healthy sex lives, and that sex, being a normal part of human nature, should be incorporated into standard health care just as surely as eating and work are. In my experience, they tend to fall on the naturalistic fallacy, claiming that they have secret knowledge that infrequent and stressful sex is more “natural” than carefree, joyful, frequent sex, or they try to find ways to call you a slut without just saying it directly. Neither is an argument. The latter is something I think we can collectively learn to laugh off. Addressing the real subject at hand can often be clarifying and invigorating, and not so scary at all. After all, most people have sex. If they’re against female sexuality, they’re either ignorant or sadistic (or both), and that becomes clear quickly enough.”
- Finally, my favorite Kliban cartoon: