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22 May 02:52

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22 May 14:00

Why You MUST See Mad Max This Weekend

by Natalie Wilson

212061A version of this article originally appeared on Skirt Collective

Much has been made of the call by Aaron Clarey in his piece “Why You Should Not Go See ‘Mad Max: Feminist Road.’” As many articles have discussed Clarey’s ridiculous, hyper-macho douchery, (for example, herehere and here), I will instead offer a counter call: Instead of “mancotting” the film as Clarey begs “real men and real women” to do, I urge you to GO SEE IT! Go now!

Here is part of Clarey’s original call for a boycott of the film:

[D]o yourself and all men across the world a favor. Not only REFUSE to see the movie, but spread the word to as many men as possible. Not all of them have the keen eye we do here at [Return of Kings]. And most will be taken in by fire, tornadoes and explosions. Because if they sheepishly attend and Fury Road is a blockbuster, then you, me, and all the other men (and real women) in the world will never be able to see a real action movie ever again that doesn’t contain some damn political lecture or moray about feminism, SJW-ing and socialism.

In response, here is my counter feminist call to action: Do yourself and others a favor—see Mad Max: Fury Road and tell as many humans as you know to see the film, to discuss it on social media, to decry the Men’s Rights Activists aiming to make the world a hyper-patriarchal dystopia where heterosexual macho types horde all the power with their weapons of choice, namely violence, oppression, rape, enslavement and hatred.

Not all people will recognize the importance of supporting this film, many may go for the special effects and the popcorn, but even if they don’t attend wearing “This Is What a Feminist Looks Like” t-shirts, they will still be treated to a great action movie which enacts feminism in both content and form. Those who see the film will help to pave the way for a future where real humans can enjoy movies that reflect the real world, which is made up of women AND men, boys AND girls, where gender is a continuum and NO, romance and baby-making are not the be-all and end-all of life.

See Mad Max: Fury Road. See it as soon as possible.

See it because Charlize Theron is amazing, Tom Hardy is a new and improved Max, and because the action is breathtaking and achieved with very little CGI.

See it because director George Miller happily proclaims: “I can’t help but be a feminist” and believes women are capable as actors and directors and are essential to telling imaginative, important stories—something that is all too rare a belief in Hollywood, where in the last several years, women directed less than 2 percent of top-grossing movies.

See it because it was edited by a woman, Margaret Sixel.

See it because Eve Ensler led workshops about violence against women with the cast and crew.

See it because, as MRA Clarey readily admits (perhaps his one correct point), Hollywood DOES condition us. As Carolyn Cox of The Mary Sue puts it,

By admitting they’re threatened by Charlize Theron … Clarey and his commenters are also agreeing that the media we consume and the stories we tell are hugely important.

See it because while Clarey worries women might be conditioned to want to be more like Imperator Furiosa than Sophia Loren (I know, WTF???), we can use that conditioning instead to feminist purpose. As Melissa Silverstein puts it,

A little girl can dream of being a hero just as much as a little boy can because she sees multiple examples of heroic women.

See it because, as Peter Howell documents, “Hollywood doesn’t often let females star in its big ‘tent-pole’ films” because “Male-dominated movie studios don’t believe female action movies make money.” See it because we need to remind Hollywood and MRAs this is false (as Hunger Games, InsurgentAlien, Terminator and so many other films prove that point).

See it to disprove Neanderthal thinking on the part of Marvel Comics CEO Ike Perlmutter and Sony Entertainment CEO Michael Lynton who in a leaked email correspondence “proved” female superhero films don’t make money by naming three such films while ignoring the many female-driven films that have made money and dismissing just how many male-led superhero films have tanked.

See it because Clarey’s assertions are laughable, and contrary to his claim that “feminism has infiltrated and co-opted Hollywood,” we still have a Hollywood machine driven by a privileged male elite who don’t seem to want to give up their own little version of the world, their very own MRA movement—“Men Rule Art.”

See it because there is a culture shift happening in media, a wave that includes GamerGate, calls to stop online harassment (#StoptheTrolls), an evergrowing feminist blogosphere, and a growing call to Hollywood to wake up and smell the feminism.

See it because while some see MRAs as a non-threatening fringe, they DO warrant attention because they consistently and vehemently offer sexism as the answer and their websites and organizations garner thousands of followers. (For some truly horrifying evidence about MRA beliefs, you need look no further than David Futrelle’s piece on We Hunted the Mammoth, which documents some truly horrifying comments running the gamut from espousing beating one’s wife to denouncing one’s daughters if they dare to have college aspirations.)

See it because, as noted by Nicole Sperling in her piece on the film for Entertainment Weekly, it is “one glorious, relentless assault” that may make us “never look at action movies quite the same way again.” As Sperling notes, the film “challenges our perceptions about women and freedom, heroism and extremism.” However, while Sperling claims the film focuses on the “slavery endured by all women,” I would extend this—the film actually details how everyone is enslaved by patriarchy. Yes, the women are the sex slaves whose bodies are raped as well as forced into producing breast milk to feed male troops, but the male minions are also enslaved to the dystopian war machine and turned into heartless warriors and slave-laborers.

See it because Furiosa is not a “degendered…eunech warrior” (as claimed in the Sperling review) but rather a gender-queer, disabled, bad-ass feminist hero who proves that heroism has no one gender, no one body type, no one sexuality

See it because it suggests it will take collective action rather than one lone (male) hero to save the future. In the film, it takes Furiosa, five female “breeders,” a group of badass gun-toting grannies, as well as Mad Max and other males tuned to the feminist cause to bring down the likes of Immorten Joe, the villain at the heart of this iteration whose names speaks to the fact patriarchy is not “immortal” nor is the concept of your average (macho) Joe a thing to espouse.

See it because we are all on this tiny spinning planet together and only together can we find the “Green Place” espoused in the movie where the water will be clean and people will not be oppressed.

See it because if you have ever doubted the acting chops of Charlize Theron, this movie will convince you of her incredible talent. She is absolutely fierce as Furiosa. In a movie with very little dialogue and limited characterization, Theron is able to exude an intensity of will and palpable strength of character that is on par (if not exceeding) other female heroines such as Ripley and Sarah Connor.

See it for the grannies with their mad survival skills, for the fierce “Breeders” who refuse to be sex slaves, see it for its championing of the one-armed sharp shooter Furiosa. See it because how often do we see women portrayed as better survivors, snipers and drivers than men?

See it because it is the best feminist road movie since Thelma and Louise. See it because Furiosa’s story is so much more powerful than Black Widow’s in The Avengers. See it because we need to prove Hollywood big wigs wrong and make Clarey and his MRA minions STFU.

See it to piss off MRAs and show them feminists will not be stopped by their testicle-clutching pleas of superiority. See it for their daughters, and sons, and partners, who can hopefully grow into a world free of their “Immorten Joe” mentality.

Finally, see it because, yes, movies matter, and if we want more feminist-friendly blockbusters, we have to prove there is an audience willing to support such movies.

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natalie-150x150

 


Natalie Wilson 
teaches w
omen’s studies and literature at California State University, San Marcos. She is the author of Seduced by Twilight and blogs for Ms., Girl with Pen and Bitch Flicks.

21 May 08:57

"Unlearn...Privacy" cards (1970s)

by Scarfolk Council

During the 1970s, the Scarfolk Education Publishing company produced packs of cards which taught children about society and its expectations. In particular, the cards focused on eradicating any false notions that children may have picked up from prohibited books, unauthorised wise people and illegal time immigrants (a flood of which materialised in 1979 to stockpile cake following a devastating pudding famine in the future).

In addition to the 1979 'Unlearn Privacy' pack, examples from which can be seen below, other series included 'Unlearn Altrusim', 'Unlearn Democracy' and 'Unlearn Contentment'.


The aforementioned time immigrants claimed that, by the year 2017, surveillance and the invasion of privacy become so ubiquitous that citizens' brains are connected to a central network. No thought, conscious or otherwise, is permitted expression unless it has been approved by a state computer programme nicknamed 'Brain O'Brien'. However, a backlog quickly accumulates, and many people go without a thought of their own for months, if not years at a time.

Fortunately, the government predicted such an emergency and prepared in advance a series of standardised thoughts, ideas and opinions which it inputs directly into citizens' minds. No doubt it is this considerate civic gesture which leads to the overwhelming majority vote for the incumbent party in many subsequent elections.


The bonus card above comes from an earlier pack, 'Unlearn Compassion', which was published in 1971.

22 May 03:30

Zap! Vworp! Pew! Pew!

sleep is dumb

Tonight's comic contains a very difficult Space Choice.

22 May 14:53

Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal - The Velveteen Rabbit

by admin@smbc-comics.com

Hovertext: WHY DOES EVERYONE LIKE RABBITS?! GUYS!


New comic!
Today's News:

 I'll be taking questions on Twitter today!

23 May 02:59

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23 May 11:22

Way to Go, Ireland

by John Scalzi

It's beginning to look like Ireland will show its true colours in #MarRef today. pic.twitter.com/rfle1YyhA6

— Micheal Mac Suibhne (@MicMacSuibh) May 23, 2015

They’re still doing the counting but everyone knows how it’s going to go: Ireland is going to have marriage equality, and be the first country to have it via popular vote. And to be clear, it looks like the vote isn’t going to be close; it’ll be on the order of 2:1 saying “yes.” That’s a lovely thing, it is.

Some of my forebears are Irish, so I feel it is all right for me to feel some pride in Ireland and its people making this call for equality. If I drank, I would raise a pint of Guinness to them. I may do that anyway, and then give the pint over to Krissy, who will take it from there.

In any event. Well done, Ireland. Well done indeed.


22 May 16:16

This comic makes privilege incredibly easy to understand

by Laura Hudson
One of the clearest depictions you'll ever see of how small advantages can make huge differences. Read the rest
22 May 17:32

gashetka: 1972 | Burroughs-Wellcome Headquarters (Research...















gashetka:

1972 | Burroughs-Wellcome Headquarters (Research Triangle Park, NC) | Design by Paul Rudolph | Source

21 May 23:41

Quadriplegic man with brain interface controls robot arm with intent

by David Pescovitz
andersen_robotic_arm-first_drink

At Caltech, Erik Sorto, a quadriplegic, controlled a robot arm with his mind to drink a beer, feed himself, and play video games. Read the rest

22 May 04:01

Not Yours

by Robot Hugs

New comic!

This comic was originally created for Everyday Feminism here.

I have yet to meet a woman in a relationship with another woman who hasn’t encountered a guy suggesting a threesome. Hey dude, what’s up with taking the one of the only possible configurations of sex and intimacy that doesn’t involve you as a demographic, and then just mentally shoving yourself in the middle of it?

21 May 19:03

maudelynn: A Crime of Fashion Nov 15 1938 On Nov. 9 1938...

Courtney shared this story from Super Opinionated.



maudelynn:

A Crime of Fashion ~ Nov 15, 1938 

On Nov. 9, 1938, Helen Hulick, 28, wore slacks during a court appearance to testify against two men. Her case was rescheduled and Hullick was asked by Judge Arthur S. Guerin to next time wear a dress.

Hulick was quoted in the Nov. 10, 1938, Los Angeles Times saying, “You tell the judge I will stand on my rights. If he orders me to change into a dress I won’t do it. I like slacks. They’re comfortable.”

After Hulick’s next court appearance, the Nov. 15, 1938, Los Angeles Times reported:

In a scathing denunciation of slacks – which he prosaically termed pants–as courtroom attire for women, Municipal Judge Arthur S. Guerin yesterday again forbade Helen Hulick, 28, kindergarten teacher, to testify as a witness while dressed in a green and orange leisure attire.

Miss Hulick, who Thursday was ordered to return to court in a dress, was called to testify by Dep. Dist. Atty. Russell Broker against two [men] accused of burglarizing her home.

After she was sworn in as a witness, Judge Guerin stopped the proceedings and declared:

“The last time you were in this court dressed as you are now and reclining on your neck on the back of your chair, you drew more attention from spectators, prisoners and court attaches than the legal business at hand. You were requested to return in garb acceptable to courtroom procedure.

“Today you come back dressed in pants and openly defying the court and its duties to conduct judicial proceedings in an orderly manner. It’s time a decision was reached on this matter and on the power the court has to maintain what it considers orderly conduct.

“The court hereby orders and directs you to return tomorrow in accepted dress. If you insist on wearing slacks again you will be prevented from testifying because that would hinder the administration of justice. But be prepared to be punished according to law for contempt of court.”

Slack-shrouded Miss Hulick was accompanied by Attorney William Katz, who carried four heavy volumes of citations to appear in whatever dress she chose.

“Listen,” said the young woman, “I’ve worn slacks since I was 15. I don’t own a dress except a formal. If he wants me to appear in a formal gown that’s okay with me.

“I’ll come back in slacks and if he puts me in jail I hope it will help to free women forever of anti-slackism.”

The next day Hulick showed up in slacks. Judge Guerin held her in contempt. Given a five-day sentence, Hulick was sent to jail.

via <a href="http://latimes.com" rel="nofollow">latimes.com</a>

21 May 04:01

typette: I wish we could have pet dinosaurs, I bet they’d be...







typette:

I wish we could have pet dinosaurs, I bet they’d be smart and like birds or something. Big fluffy ones you could feed with snake mice and stuff. Jurassic Park could’ve been huge if they bred big cute fluffy dinosaurs. You could take them on walks! Teach them things! They’d probably sound like slowed-down birds! Adorable!!

Realistically they probably would hate you and rip you apart but… imagine

21 May 13:16

iguanamouth: kept getting requests for gryphons so heres a...



















iguanamouth:

kept getting requests for gryphons so heres a bunch of them At Once

21 May 22:06

(photo via quail66)



(photo via quail66)

20 May 08:12

thewriterkid: nettlewildfairy: bakrua:people who tell me i shouldnt drink lava: the mediapeople...

Courtney shared this story from Super Opinionated.

thewriterkid:

nettlewildfairy:

bakrua:

people who tell me i shouldn’t drink lava: the media

people who lie: the media

conclusion: i am going to drink lava

I am a geologist with no association to the media and I would not recommend drinking lava

Get a load of Big Geology trying to oppress the voice of the people. Teach the controversy. Drink the lava.

20 May 23:10

Y el mejor perrito caliente del planeta es…

by Troy

Es difícil elegir cual puede ser el mejor, especialmente si no podemos darnos el placer de probar todos y cada uno de ellos.

Lo que si podemos adelantar ya es cual es el perrito caliente más friki del planeta.

Como no podía ser de otra forma, ese galardón recae en Japón y su pulpito caliente.

hot-dog-mundial

visto en imgur

Ver más: hotdog, perritos
Síguenos: @NoPuedoCreer - @QueLoVendan - @QueLoVendanX


21 May 09:00

Arriving home after a long deploy

by sharhalakis

by uaiHebert

21 May 23:19

Cockatoo screams into tiny cup

by Xeni Jardin

"This sounds different for some reason." (more…)

21 May 21:49

Police Report Says 12-Year-Old's Crime Was "Abated by Death" (After They Shot Him)

by Kevin

You hopefully recall the case of Tamir Rice, the sixth-grader killed by a Cleveland police officer last November even though the 911 caller who reported that the boy had a gun told the dispatcher it was "probably fake." This is the case where the police pulled up right next to the kid, hopped out and shot him within two seconds of stopping, and then knocked down and handcuffed his 14-year-old sister when she tried to run to him. All captured in the first two minutes of this surveillance-camera video.

This doesn't make it worse, I guess, because how could it? But it's awful.

Shaun King originally posted the document below on May 20, saying it had been recently obtained from the Cleveland PD. It appears to be an incident report completed on November 29, a week after the shooting (the 5/20 date in the top right is presumably when it was printed). Some reports describe this as a charging document, but it seems unlikely that anyone would actually have considered charging Tamir Rice with anything, if only because he had been dead for a week. This is probably just a bureaucrat filling out a form, but it is still a chilling if no longer very surprising look at how police view incidents like these.

Here are the takeaways:

  • The incident, in which a police officer shot and killed a 12-year-old who had a fake gun, is described as involving one offender (the 12-year-old) and three "victims": the State of Ohio and the two police officers. Maybe "the State" is being used here to represent "the people," but still it is hard to see how it/they could be considered "the primary victim" of any crime. More baffling is how either officer, especially the one who did the shooting, could be classified that way. (But that's apparently the way it's always done—as I wrote a while back, Officer Darren Wilson was also described as "the victim" after he killed Michael Brown. Though he did have that bruise.)
  • In fact, the officer who shot Tamir Rice is described here as having suffered "minor injuries" for which he was treated and released. Unless he hit himself with a ricochet, these "injuries" could only have been incurred while he was helping his partner handcuff a 14-year-old girl. (He's not even the one who tackled her.)
  • The offender is said to have potentially committed two offenses: "aggravated menacing" and "inducing panic." Now, the idea that he "induced panic" in the officers is ridiculous, but that's not what the charge would have been. These offenses are defined broadly enough that if there was reason to believe the kid had been threatening people in the park with a real gun, they might fit. But since it was apparent within 30 seconds of the cops' arrival that those weren't the facts, why does an incident report created a week later still say this?
  • Possibly worst of all is the "case narrative" at the end, which isn't a narrative but rather looks like a list of key phrases or terms that might be used in a database. This "narrative," for example, includes "Aggravated Menacing," "Inducing Panic," "Facsimile Firearm," and "Juvenile Complaint," and it concludes by saying, apparently, that the matter pending against the offender has been "Abated by Death." Well, I guess he got lucky there.
  • Note that there appears to be no key phrase in their database even remotely equivalent to "Shot by Officer." Or if there is, they didn't bother to include it.

21 May 19:25

Judge Ignores Defense Lawyer Because He Is an Owl

by Kevin

The caption in this KGMH report oversells the story a bit, but then so does my headline.

Solomon

The Aspen Times reported on May 19 that a man who was accused of violating a protective order brought a stuffed owl along with him and suggested that it was going to act as his defense attorney. Referring to the owl as "Solomon," presumably to suggest wisdom, Charles Abbott claimed that it had no fewer than three law degrees and was more responsive than a public defender was likely to be.

"He's a very sensitive guy," Abbott told the judge, "[and] has law degrees from Yale, Harvard, and Stanford." He must be sensitive, if he's willing to work for this guy despite presumably being at least half a million dollars in debt now. It's also frankly a little surprising that somebody smart enough to graduate from Yale, Harvard, and Stanford law schools wouldn't also realize that he only needed one law degree. But then he is a stuffed animal.

Despite his impressive credentials, the judge just ignored him.

The report says that Abbott is subject to a protective order intended to keep him away from his former roommate, and that he was arrested last weekend on suspicion of violating said order by going over to pick up some belongings. The roommate was out of town at the time, but the judge said that the order precluded Abbott from going to the house anyway, at least without a deputy present.

Solomon, meanwhile, just sat there like a potted plant and said nothing even when his client started to stray off-topic. Abbott claimed that his roommate had actually shown up in court wearing one of his shirts ("the blue one," as he described it, which suggests to me that he only has two shirts), and then demanded that the Aspen Times reporter leave the courtroom because he—or maybe the Times?—engages in "yellow journalism." Colorful, but not really helpful.

21 May 20:06

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21 May 16:57

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20 May 14:08

When the oil runs out, what do we do with all the tankers?

by Rob Beschizza
3046359-inline-i-1-these-beautiful-floating-copy

They are innumerable, immortal and enormous. Let's turn them into beachfront villages!

19 May 07:39

Bottled water: the ultimate throwback to feudal selfishness

by Cory Doctorow


Sure, you're boycotting Nestle for draining California's drought-stricken aquifers for bottled water, but why stop there? Read the rest

18 May 13:28

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19 May 16:17

schmergo: schmergo:I want a movie about a guy who runs for president and wins but then suddenly...

schmergo:

schmergo:

I want a movie about a guy who runs for president and wins but then suddenly realizes that he doesn’t want to be president, so he just starts doing ridiculous things all the time trying to get impeached, but it NEVER WORKS because they always miraculously end up being the right thing to do. Like, he declares war on Canada? Next day it turns out that Canada had secret plans to nuke Washington. he bans Doritos? Turns out theyr’e the number one cause of cancer and natural disasters. He sends his vice president to jail? Turns out the VP was a terrorist in disguise. He has 100% approval rating, most popular president ever.

I’ve decided that I want him to be played by Jeff Goldblum. 

19 May 14:19

Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal - Asteroid Harvesting

by admin@smbc-comics.com

Hovertext: I'm just saying this isn't definitely not false.


New comic!
Today's News:
19 May 18:29

America's terrible trains are an ideological triumph

by Cory Doctorow

America's trains suck on purpose: "Ride a fast train to Washington today and you’ll start thinking about national health insurance tomorrow." Read the rest

19 May 17:16

Reminders for readers:

eternal-books:

  • It doesn’t matter how many books you read. 
  • It doesn’t matter how many books others read.
  • Don’t worry too much about your reading goal.
  • Don’t judge others on their preferences.
  • Nobody likes book snobs.
  • Don’t worry about how many books you own. 
  • Don’t force yourself to read books.
  • You can put a book down if you aren’t enjoying it.
  • Life’s too short to read books you don’t like.
  • You are allowed to reread books as many times as you want.
  • Ebooks are books and they’re great. 
  • Audio books are books and they’re great.
  • Physical books are great too.
  • You are still valid. You are still a reader. It literally doesn’t matter how or what you read. 
  • Don’t worry about what everyone else is reading.
  • Don’t worry about other opinions. 
  • Read what you want.