Ah, blog space. Thank you for waiting patiently for me while I finished a semester in law school and enjoyed some time with my family, away from most of my stressors. However, the one, the constant, followed me home. Body image issues! Good times! Continue reading “In pursuit of a happy body”
In the wake of the Aurora shootings, I have been thinking about, as many of us are, the right to keep and bear arms. I am lucky enough to have passionate people on both sides of the issue, and because of my personal history of growing up in a hunting family in Texas, I don’t want the nullification of the Second Amendment. It is an important one, but we need to have good and many conversations about it. My frustration with gun rights advocates comes not from their desire to protect this piece of the constitution but from their belief (conscious or not) that this right is somehow categorically different from other rights. Somehow superior to other rights. They are misguided.
All rights have limits. In the abstract, they don’t, but name me three people that live in the abstract (then check to see if they have an arsenal in their basement). Freedom of speech is famously curtailed by the rule of “you can’t yell ‘fire’ in a crowded movie theater.” Freedom of religion bumps up against the separation of church and state or is limited by the state itself (think about anti-polygamy laws and the FLDS). The freedom of the press is limited by invocations of executive privilege. Right of assembly often now requires bureaucratic paperwork to be legal. We as a society limit our rights in order to have them. We give a little away in order to have the core and important parts of those rights. Continue reading “The limit of rights”
Throughout my coursework at The New School, I consistently found myself researching and thinking about women’s political empowerment. Quota policies seem to be the anchor around which this discussion often happens. In doing research on women’s rights in Chiapas and while gathering data in Nepal, I have started to think about these policies differently. Basically, the necessary first questions seem to be glossed over or ignored altogether. The goal of “increasing women’s presence in government” is of course important, but it proceeds from the the assumption that women can be collapsed into one category and therefore any woman that achieves a government office means women have been and will be empowered. The complexities of women’s lives are flattened or molded or forgotten in achieving this goal. Continue reading “Thoughts On Political Empowerment”
I’ve been fighting my belly for years, demanding that it be flat. It has gotten close at times, but generally it likes to hang out a bit. It doesn’t want to be held back. I should have known that this would be my belly. Both sides of my family talk about the “all gut, no butt” bodies that cling to the genetic lines, but growing up and living as female, surrounded but perfectly photoshopped celebrity bodies, has made the flat belly my personal standard of beauty. Continue reading “My Complicated Belly”
I’m reading a book on the history of sexual violence in conflict zones (light reading before law school, ya know). In reading more about historical gender relations (especially in the West) and thinking about how gender relations were (are) linked to property and ownership, I just cannot help but think that at some point in the past some man decided that if his penis touched something, he owned it.
Continue reading “The Pen is Mightier”
Dear Minnesota State House:
Thank you. From the bottom of my heart. I had no idea how wrong I have been. I had no idea that swallowing a pill could be so difficult, so dangerous, that medical supervision is necessary. I cannot believe how many uterus-Americans have lived their entire lives thinking that they had the proper procedure mastered for swallowing a pill. I am sitting here wondering how many of us have died or been seriously injured because we did not seek out professional care, thinking ourselves full adults capable of managing our healthcare. Think about how many of us take birth control EVERY DAY on our own! Without a doctor present! We might as well be playing Russian Roulette with a fully loaded gun.
You are to be commended. You have joined the ranks of your colleagues around the country (and the world) to say in one voice: “Hold on a second there, sweetheart.” It is so courteous of you to protect us from our uterus-addled brains. Which today is causing me a headache, so I am off to find a physician that can protect me from myself as I take an aspirin. Unfortunately, I am insurance-less now, so I’ll have to find a free clinic or emergency room that can help me. What a wonderful use of taxpayer dollars to have passed this bill.
My friend franklyrebekah has an awesome post up on sexual violence and the treatment of survivors and victims in the criminal justice system and society at large. Check it out!