Trigger Warning Christmas Carols

In honor of the season where people trot out the same “‘Baby, It’s Cold Outside’ is ‘rapey’ (important concept, stupid word) insights that we’ve been hearing for years (every version I’ve heard gives me much more of a coy/playing hard to get/reputation-concerned feeling), we bring you #TriggerWarningChristmasCarols
 
“‘Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer’ is about affirmative action. Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer – elder abuse. And ‘White Christmas is obviously racist.'”
“‘I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus’ – infidelity.”
“Nobody cares about that anymore.”
“Slut shaming.”
“Yes!”
“‘All I Want for Christmas is You’ – stalking.”
“Yeah, it feels like sexual harassment. Imagine how you’d feel if someone was saying that to you.”
“I’ve been trying to think of one for ‘Frosty the Snowman’.”
“It exposes children to the concept of death. Think about how traumatizing it was when Mr. Hooper died on ‘Sesame Street’. Or ‘Puff the Magic Dragon’, which isn’t about death, but you think it is.”
I thought it was about drugs.”
“Santa Baby – capitalism.”
“Deck the Halls should come with a trigger warning for people named Holly.”
“No. They’re special snowflakes, but they don’t get a trigger warning.”
“Santa Claus is coming to town is just about a guy who should be on the sex offender registry list.”
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The floozy standard

Thing 1: It’s not necessarily the best contract…
Thing 2: Will it cover my ass?
Thing 1: Most of it.
Thing 2: So, it’s akin to the bikini bottoms* we see a lot of girls wearing at the beach?
Thing 1: Pretty much. It’s definitely not a thong.
 
*In which the essential parts, but not the full behind is covered. So, you know, floozy-looking, but probably won’t get you arrested for solicitation. This metaphor can be applied as a standard for pretty much everything in life.
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let’s create an old white man sexist jackhole bracket, and other good ideas

Huffington Post senior political reporter and politics managing editor Amanda Terkel today tweeted about a disturbing conversation she had with a professor at the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.

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Ms. Terkel has not, thus far, named the professor. There are many calls for her to do so and I echo them.

However, should she choose not to, as is her right, I suggest we create a bracket of all the male professors at Medill (and for good measure, probably white and of a certain age) and let students and alumni vote to narrow down the candidates.

(Grammarly wants me to replace the period at the end of the previous sentence with a question mark. No, Grammarly, that is not a question, it’s a declarative statement. Adding a question mark would make it upspeaking. Clearly, you have a sexist algorithm that wants to force me, a woman, into upspeaking). 

Obviously, said bracket would group all men (again, presumably white and of a certain age) under the collective umbrella of rude, sexist, unenlightened, unaware of privilege, etc. etc. so on and so forth.

But we’re all cool with that, right?

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(just gonna assume you’re all doing this. don’t know who that blonde is, but she can take off).

My first instinct was to tweet this idea, but I figured some people just wouldn’t appreciate a good* sexist white man joke/feminist barb**.

So I decided to blog it instead.

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* The definition of good being subjective

** Is it a feminist barb or a barb at feminism?

 

slow your roll, PETA

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Pretty sure this is a more a statement about your taste in romantic partners than it is one about the greatness of your dog. And more likely a statement on you as a romantic partner. To be fair, all of your former partners probably thought your dog was the best part of the deal as well.

I don’t get these dog people. Not dog-people as in half person, half dog, people who think their dogs are EVERYTHING. Like, the greatest thing since that machine that slices an entire loaf of bread AT ONCE.

And don’t say “unconditional love.” Unconditional love doesn’t gouge your furniture and sniff your crotch without permission. When men do that, we call it sexual harassment.

Also, I can’t decide if a dog-person would be cool or SCARY AS ALL GET OUT.

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check your privilege

There’s a lot of focus on privilege these days, and too often, it’s focused on other people’s privilege. There’s an expression: Check your privilege. It means (I think): “Consider how good you’ve got it.”

At least, that’s what it means in the best of intention. Most of the time it sounds like “Shut up, you’ve had your turn, take a seat.” Frankly, it is among my least favorite expressions. I find it rude and counterproductive.

And not because I disagree that there are plenty of people, myself included, who need to be more aware of advantages they haven’t earned, but because in an instance where a phrase like “check your privilege” is being used, “privilege” is being thrown like a weapon. I don’t find that useful.

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And what really gets my goat, burns my biscuits, twists my knickers, takes the jam out of my doughnut, is how often I see the “privilege” grenade being thrown by people who are very privileged.

A few years back, I found myself embroiled in an abortion debate with a group of college friends. A theme of the argument was that the men in the room needed to recognize their privilege and hold their tongues. Understandable, yes, that the women should want the floor on that particular matter. But as the discussion moved to tangential subjects, I couldn’t help but point out the obvious:

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We were all, men and women alike, very privileged. We had the standard ones that are always cited: White, cisgender, heterosexual. But we were also all American citizens, able-bodied, college educated (some of us with advanced degrees), employed, mentally capable, etc. etc. people in our early 30’s.

As I see it, many of us have our privilege and we have our disadvantages. I am very privileged in many ways, and less so in others. There are ways in which some people might perceive me as lacking privilege, whereas I can see certain advantages. And it’s good to recognize our own privilege, to recognize when we can use it to serve others, rather than ourselves. And yes, absolutely, many of us need to improve our sense of perspective.

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But what is not good is when we start being the privilege police, often based on surface information only. What’s not good is telling someone “what you think is wrong, and you think what you think because of what you are,” rather than asking “why do you think what you do?” or “look at how we’re different”rather than “where can we find commonality?” That abortion debate I mentioned? We all agreed on 95 percent of the points. It was the five percent that escalated things into an ugly argument.

That happens. It happens a lot. And it seems to happen often when we focus our energy on what someone else’s privilege is, and on how that person is misusing or abusing said privilege. It happens when we use someone else’s privilege as a weapon against them, and when we presume the root of someone’s perspective, and say things like “check your privilege,” while overlooking our own, and shut down the opportunity for open discussion.

As this very insightful young lady says, worry about yourself. 

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pink! (not the singer)

I have made the decision to change my background color to pink because I think being offended by pink is bullshit.

I like pink. It’s pretty. I like pretty things, damn it. And that does not make me any less intelligent, strong, fierce, worthy, etc. etc. than any other man, woman, other or undecided. There are plenty of reasons why I am less than any of the aforementioned, but my appreciation of pink is one of them.

Seriously, does anyone else, ladies especially, feel like you’re waging some rebellion against hyperactive feminism by liking pink. Or buying things that are pink?

I get it. Shit is gendered. It’s bad. Listen, I liked blocks and sports and tree climbing as a kid. I was often more comfortable hanging with the boys than with the girls. BUT NO ONE IS TELLING MEN TO CAST OUT BLUE! I don’t need to demonstrate my feminism or my lady strength* by eschewing pink.

Listen, if you don’t like pink, god bless you. That’s your right. I’m not a particular fan of beige. But not liking it because it’s associated with girls is just dumb.

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*”lady strength” sounds a little like it’s related to ping pong balls.**It isn’t.

**If you don’t get the reference to ping pong balls, I can’t help you.

incest is best, put your sister to the test

Remember yelling that during “Rocky Horror”? Apparently, Riffgenta is about to be A-OK.

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“Genetic sexual attraction.”  Basically, having a romantic attraction to someone to whom you’re genetically related but haven’t had a familial relationship. Or something. I don’t really know. But apparently this is something “normal”.

As a liberal, progressive, educated woman, I should be accepting. Understanding. And to that, let me say this:

SO. GROSS.