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Busy day

Between looking after the lost dog I found yesterday, putting up fliers, returning the dog to his home, and then taking down the damned useless fliers, I didn’t really have time for much writing today.

It didn’t help that I got used to writing tomorrow’s post in the evenings, then managed to miss a day and wrote yesterday’s post yesterday evening. It was really weird when I was plotting out my evening and realized that I hadn’t posted anything yet today.

Anyways, here’s a story from London that really pissed me off. When I went to that blog just now to find that link, I saw another! So apparently threats of violence are effective at curtailing free speech in the UK. Good to know, I guess. Read the rest of this entry

Seriously, what is wrong with people?

Found this on Pharyngula, under the heading “Female genital mutilation has medical benefits?” and my first thought was “Oh how cute, those sick girl-cutters are copying a page from the sick boy-cutters and claiming bullshit hygiene improvements”. And at first it seemed to be exactly that, it started with some bullshit about secretions that accumulate causing an odor that leads to infections (odors cause infections? What?), but then I read this:

Circumcision reduces excessive sensitivity of the clitoris which may cause it to increase in size to 3 centimeters when aroused, which is very annoying to the husband, especially at the time of intercourse.

At some point during the reading of that sentence, part of my brain started screaming and hasn’t fully stopped yet.

The site is called Islam Question and Answer, and is pretty much exactly what it sounds like, a place to ask questions about Islam and have them answered by people who presumably know what they’re talking about.

Ok, first of all, listing the removal of an annoyance to her husband as a health benefit for her seems like a joke in very poor taste, considering the flimsy excuses abusive spouses use to justify their violence. Also it really suggests that the woman isn’t being considered a person in her own right, but rather a thing belonging to her husband, to be modified for his pleasure. My little fucktoy, or something. I want to emphasize that the part about considering a woman a person in her own right is more important than what follows, even though I’ll spend less time on it.

Second, I want a serious show of hands from any men in the audience who have ever been annoyed by a woman’s clit during sex. Seriously, as they say on Wikipedia, citation fucking needed! How is that even supposed to work? Read the rest of this entry

“a violent society, racism, sexism, sexual harassment and hypocrisy”

A couple days ago I wrote about Aliaa Magda Elmahdy, a young Egyptian woman who posted naked pictures to her blog to “call attention to  a violent society, racism, sexism, sexual harassment and hypocrisy”. I believe I called her one of the bravest people I’ve ever heard about, and I stand by that statement. It probably doesn’t surprise you at this point to learn that some Egyptians want to have her whipped.

Look, if someone says that you are violently oppressive and their stance of defiance against your alleged violent oppression is to publicly post photos of themselves, then calling for them to be brutalized, possibly executed, really just tells the world that they’re right.

I’m far too tired to do this subject justice. So I’ll just ask you a question. What’s more obscene, posting public naked photos, or having some publicly whipped?

Naked in Egypt

Aliaa Magda Elmahdy is an Egyptian student who posted nude pictures of herself on the internet in the name of women’s rights. Here’s an article about it, and here’s Elmahdy’s blog, which now has many pictures of naked people. It’s caused a surprising amount of backlash: surprising to me, at least.

The comments on her blog are in many languages, so I’m stuck with using Google Translate to get the gist of most of the discussion. And most of them are from outside Egypt, outside the Mid-East, even, and are overwhelmingly supportive.

That gives me some hope, maybe the hardline Muslims will look at that and have a moment of introspection. Maybe they’ll think “If the rest of the world sees our policies as oppressive and archaic, relics of a dark age, could we be mistaken?” I know that’s pretty unlikely, not only because religious fundamentalism leaves little room for introspection but because these movements to expand religious power and take rights and freedoms away from people are expanding. Read the rest of this entry

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