Perfect Parents Beware: Shouting the New Spanking

rbrs_0257A recent article in the New York Times has sent off a conversation about the latest in parenting problems. The question that is being posed: Is Shouting the New Spanking? Apparently, it is the new spanking and it is a big issue for today’s parents, who apparently are the “generation that yells.”

Most articles that I read in preparation for this post were focused on the guilt parents feel for shouting and the hurt feelings of the child caught off guard by mean mommy. Professor Rohner is quoted in the Times article, “My bottom-line recommendation is don’t yell, it is a risk factor for a family.” He also points out that some religious and conservative groups advocate for spanking, but not for yelling. [Read more...]

Choice: Late Term Abortion

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I revisited Choice this week and found myself having trouble deciding which story to choose until I came across Kate Maloy’s A Normal Woman. With all the goings on with the Tiller murder, this story got me thinking on how if the right would just listen to women and maybe investigate a little bit as to why late term abortions are performed, they might show a little compassion and back off a little.

  Growing up, Kate didn’t menstruate until she was 15 and only then with a hormone injection. She feared she would never get pregnant and never be a normal girl, attributing her failures to psychological short comings put upon her by her mother and her lack of female sensitivity. She had an ectopic pregnancy in her early twenties which spring boarded her into a late puberty as it were, finally feeling like she was a real woman and could in fact get pregnant.  At 38 she conceived with her then husband but something wasn’t right. She wasn’t able to get a proper amnio until well after the 24 week mark where abortion would be possible.  The fetus was too small and the ration of amniotic fluid was too low. When they were finally able to get a sample they found that there was an abnormally large chromosome paired with a regular one on the second pair. This was extremely rare and they were only able to find 9 recorded cases of this happening and the one case they found where the baby was carried to term it died 20 days after birth with severe heart and kidney damage and would most likely have been severely mentally retarded. Faced with this knowledge, or lack thereof, Kate and her husband had a choice to make. [Read more...]

What the Shriver Report forgot to mention

feminis_difference_lgI’m taking a break from my usual legislative updates to discuss something that has been urking me for almost a week now. I simply can’t talk about issues relating to women without at least bringing this up once, so here it goes:

No doubt we’ve all been excited with the recent news coming out of the Shriver Report regarding the male to female ratio statistics in the American work force. I agree that it is a very exciting and historical time for women to now make up, not just half, but almost a majority of the labor force in a country that has historically refused to acknowledge the accomplishments and contributions of women. However, in reading and analyzing the Shriver Report, and the information contained in it, I came to a disturbing and familiar realization….

Not a lot has really changed. [Read more...]

What is the Proper Role of Women in Faith Communities?

This week I’ve been discussing a variety of aspects of a recent report by Maria Shriver called “A Woman’s Nation Changes Everything.” One of the other segments of the NBC series on Maria Shriver’s report about women’s lives focused on the changing role of women within faith communities.

Visit msnbc.com for Breaking News, World News, and News about the Economy

I can agree with many of the points that are made in this segment. I agree that women need leaders who look like them and share similar life experiences. I agree that women want to see themselves on the podium. And I also agree that women want to feel like their lives make a difference. I thought that Matt Lauer makes an excellent point when he says that women who participate in the paid labor force have less time to participate in faith communities. Correspondingly, the more religious a woman is, the less likely she is to work outside the home for wages. However, more and more women are turning to faith communities in difficult times. But the part of this segment that really made me take a step back was when Maria Shriver outright says that churches that do not accept women as priest/pastors and do not accept same-sex couples are going to have to take a step back if they are going to survive the shifting tides of Americans attitudes towards faith. Wow! That’s so refreshing to hear on the mainstream news! [Read more...]

Wednesday News Roundup

candycornThe Abortionist & His #1 Foe – CNN
A Disheartening Victory – Oklahomans for Reproductive Justice
Exposing Fake Clinics: Week of Action – Feminist Campus
Safe Sex at a Glance – Planned Parenthood
Rachel Maddow Takes on Domestic Terrorism – Roeder Watch
Dating Deal Breakers: What Merits an Automatic Dismissal? – Blog Her

Going Down? “Lesbian” Sex is More than You Think!

The sex ed question of the week: I’m a lesbian who doesn’t like eating pussy. I don’t like the taste, I don’t like the smell, and I’m not a fan of all that pubic hair in my mouth. Is there something wrong with me?

No, there’s nothing wrong with you.

Contrary to popular belief, there is no such thing as “gay sex” or “lesbian sex,” at least not in the limited ways that people often think—therefore there is nothing wrong with you because you do not enjoy a particular sexual act. Sex acts of all sorts cross the boundaries of all identities. What I mean by that is there are no prescribed ways that any person of any identity has to have sex for it to “count.” You do not have to enjoy or engage in oral sex to be a “true lesbian” or have sex as a lesbian.

[Read more...]

Pregnancy: The Ancient Greek Cure For What Ails You

hippocratesI’d like to talk ancient Greece this week (I promise I won’t be focusing solely on antiquity). I watched Hercules and Xena growing up and I was utterly fascinated with the models of ancient Greece and Rome they presented. Kick ass women! Lesbianism, or at least the appearance of it, totally accepted! There was even an episode where a transvestite won a beauty pageant.

Unfortunately, this was all fantasy. I was one betrayed-feeling little girl the day I found out. But the sad reality is ancient Greece was yet another culture where women were regarded as property and given little thought.

However, this didn’t stop those always-curious Greeks from coming up with theories and ideas about women and their bodies. Even that great father of medicine, Hippocrates, and his followers (who actually wrote the majority of the text accredited to him) explored and attempted to explain female phenomena in the Hippocratic Corpus. [Read more...]

Do Media Images of Women Match Reality?

Women now constitute 52% of the paid labor force. More women are serving as CEO’s now than ever before. Women are participating in career fields that have traditionally be dominated by men. But sometimes the more things change, the more things stay the same. Despite these advances, the most common jobs for women are administrative assistant and teaching positions. Here’s a clip of Maria Shriver discussing her report “A Women’s Nation Changes Everything” on MSNBC with Playboy CEO Christie Hefner.

Visit msnbc.com for Breaking News, World News, and News about the Economy

It’s interesting that women are increasingly being portrayed as doctors, lawyers, and cops on TV, even though women are still the minority in those fields. Part of that could be that television and the movies reflect a fantasy of life, not the real world. How else would a shoe-addicted writer be able to live in a brownstone in Manhattan, or a struggling actor be able to life in a loft in the Village? We don’t want to see our daily lives reflected when we tune in for our favorite TV dramas – we want to escape into a fantasy world. However, I think there’s something positive to be said about the fact that women are fantasizing about themselves in the hero role.

Getting back to the MSNBC clip, it baffles my mind that we are 40 years post the second wave of the feminist movement, and women are still asking themselves how they will balance their work and family lives. Why aren’t men asking these same questions? Why do we still need books like Happy at Work, which tell women how to find a decent balance between their work and family responsibilities? Where are the corresponding books for men? [Read more...]

Tuesday News Roundup

mouse-clickCan Cheating Be a Feminist Choice? – RH Reality Check
Is Birth Control Safe? What Brands are Best? -RH Reality Check
Tell eBay No Auction for Scott Roeder – Roeder Watch
Topping: A New Frontier – Essin’ Em
Have Attitudes Towards Women Gotten Worse? – Broadsheet @ Salon.com
Scalia Says Some on Court Are “Inventing Rights” – East Valley Tribune
Oklahoma v. Women – New York Times

Morehouse College Bans “Women’s” Clothing

morehouse collegePut this one down in the “oh, jeebus” category. Morehouse College, an all-male university in Atlanta, has passed a new policy that prohibits students from wearing “women’s” clothing. According to the Atlanta Journal Constitution:

The policy details 11 expectations of students, including:

  • no caps, do-rags and/or hoods in classrooms, the cafeteria, or other indoor venues
  • no sun glasses worn in class or at formal programs
  • no jeans at major programs, as well as no sagging pants on campus
  • no clothing with derogatory or lewd messages either in words or pictures
  • no wearing of clothing usually worn by women (dresses, tops, tunics, purses, pumps, etc.) on the Morehouse campus or at college-sponsored events.

Students that violate the new rules risk academic suspension.

I’m all for people pulling up their pants – I don’t need to see ya’ll drawls, thank you very much. I’m really against the assumption, though, that a piece of clothing belongs exclusively to one gender or the other. If a male student likes wearing skinny jeans and he has the ass to carry off the look, more power to him. If a male student wants to carry a man purse, go for it. It’s certainly a more appealing look than a sloppy backpack slung over one shoulder. [Read more...]