Showing posts from January, 2018

Why #MeToo Has Not Gone Far Enough: Due Process and the Price of Transparency.

Since the spark that lit the #MeToo movement, harassers and abusers have been unmasked by victims coming forward, finally coming out of the shadows, sometimes for the first time in decades. From the members of the US Gymnastics team coming forward against Larry Nassar to actresses telling their stories of victimization by Harvey Weinstein, the tree of sexual aggression has been shaken and rotten fruits are falling down left and right. The list of men accused of predatory behavior keeps growing:  Matt Lauer, Bill O’ReillyR. KellyLouis CK, Woody Allen, Russell Simmons, Bill Cosby, Roman Polanski, and of course Donald Trump. Some have launched and contributed to the “Shitty Media Men” list. As described by The Daily Beast, “The accusations levelled in the spreadsheet (the versions this writer saw contained dozens of men) veer into criminal behavior, including physical and sexual assault. Some men’s names are highlighted in red, to indicated that they’ve been accused of 'physical …

The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly : Coming of Age as a Sex Object -- Part III: The Good

At 18 my husband and I were broke and in college. One thing lead to another and I ended up working at a strip club as a waitress and then as a hostess. It wasn't as bad as you think and it taught me a lot about the service industry, the adult industry and life.

While only spent seven months in the “adult entertainment” world, it left me with lifelong lessons and impressions. (I eventually left to become a Legislative Aide in the Texas House of Representatives--which is a story for another day).While working at the club I was surrounded by young women mostly aged 18 to 25. A high proportion of them were high or drunk most nights. They had complicated family lives and many of them—not all—were financially, emotionally, and physically vulnerable. We dwelled in darkness, between predatory clients, sleazy drug dealers, and the fabrication of intimacy. The “girls” walked around wearing their work clothes: enticing tops, thongs and eponymous stripper heels. Waitresses wore more but often …

The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly : Coming of Age as a Sex Object -- Part II: The Bad

While assault and violence are not always par for the course, harassment and victimization are. Harassment and victimization include non-violent acts of aggression. This is where pernicious misogyny lives. It is harder to deny a punch, a kick, or a slap than it is to deny a micro-inequity, tacit discrimination, mistreatment masquerading as propriety or, worse, flattery. The “Bad” of sexual objectification is its casual existence in everyday life. This is the truly hard part to eradicate.
I was around 20 years old when I came back from a legislative internship in the Texas House of Representatives. After spending five months on a small stipend living in Austin and commuting to Houston to see my husband, I was finally home. I was also unemployed and having no luck finding a job. By way of random connections, a Houston lawyer found me and offered to hire me. He would pay me $500 / week to work on an anti-tort reform campaign. That was fine by me. Week after week, I phone banked, block wal…

Star Wars: The Last Jedi. A Progressive Feminist Interpretation; Not What You Think.

What if "Star Wars: The Last Jedi" can be framed as a reflection on current political resistance and, most pointedly, that resistance is the province of historically marginalized people of color and women? Is it all in my head? Fine. That’s where I live anyway, so hear me out. This is what happens when an intersectional feminist walks into a movie theater...

The emerging theme of the Star Wars franchise is that the past must die. Why, though, is not completely clear and each character has its own definition of what the past means. Let’s take, as a starting point, Luke Skywalker who says that the “Jedi Religion” must die. The Jedi Religion, with its absolutes, where the Light Side and the Dark Side are all-or-nothing propositions, where people must pick a side and stick to it, never wavering, is in fact problematic. As a feminist, I was always bothered by the events that purportedly pushed Anakin Skywalker to the “Dark Side” and to become the monster he became. The traditional…