feminist frequency

Just in case anyone doubted misogyny was a real thing… 

Feminist video game critic forced to leave her home after online rape and death threats

but he is probably just a disturbed individual with a mental illness, right?

We probably shouldn’t look at what the hell is going on with our society and our culture… 

*/sarcasm*

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The Hive Mind community project came out of a desire to organize across different political and cultural spaces in the city, in order to create an intentional community in which the personal and the political constantly and seamlessly intersect, and which integrates both political education and artistic creation. This goal eventually manifested in August of 2013 as an intentional gathering combining live art and art displays, spiritual & contemplative practices, and several group discussions exploring culture and social justice issues. This first Hive Mind was organized by Albert Dwan and Bluelette Alba with the collaboration of many different community members who volunteered to introduce discussion topics, lead workshops, bring food, and provide entertainment (music, fire art, live-painting, etc.). The main goal of the gathering was for community participation, and was that goal what made Hive Mind so valuable in people’s mind. The venue for it being at artist & entrepreneur Eddie Bee’s home in Druid Heights fittingly gave it a very intimate, community feel which allowed the gathering to evolve organically and freely throughout the time of the event.

[…]

Hive Mind Revolution was the second gathering following the same intention of further exploring the synergy between art, activism, culture and politics and it took place on Saturday, February 8th. Organized by a small group of young activists and visionaries including Albert and Bluelette, along with Jamie Coyne, Andrew Mattingly (residents of the home), Robin Gunkel— and other main volunteers and planners (Jerry Raitzyk, Summer Blake, and Brice Lankford) Hive Mind Revolution followed the semi-structured, open-format blueprint of the first event that took place back in August 2013, and which included a potluck, discussions, workshops, and an open mic.

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Hive Mind One Year Later: Reflections on Revolution 

-cultural transformation in Baltimore City

OVERVIEW from Planetary Collective on Vimeo.

Actual evidence shows the Nordic model works
Actual evidence shows the Nordic model works

feministcurrent:

A study commissioned by Norway’s government shows that criminalizing the purchase of sex has decreased trafficking and has not caused violence against women to increase, as some have claimed.

Johns have been criminalized in Norway since 2009, following in Sweden’s footsteps.

Reuters reports:

"The nearly 200-page report is based on six months of research, including interviews with male and female prostitutes, police and support organizations.

The Norwegian law applies to all its citizens anywhere, making it illegal for Norwegians to buy sex even in countries where the activity is accepted.

Penalties for breaking the law are set by local municipalities. In Oslo, Norway’s largest city, convicted sex buyers face a 25,000 crown ($4,000) fine.”

Since criminalizing the purchase of sex in 1999, the number of men who buy sex in Sweden went from one in eight to one in 13.

Opponents of the Nordic model tell us that criminalizing the purchase of sex will make it more dangerous and push the trade “underground.” Despite the fact that there is zero evidence to back up these claims and that, in truth, the “underground”/illegal sex trade thrives under legalization, this myth persists, thanks to this oft-repeated misinformation.

The truth is that criminalizing the purchase of sex makes countries that do so less desirable for pimps, johns, and traffickers. It is no real surprise that organized crime has taken over the trade in places that have legalized — it’s simply easier to buy and sell women in places where the practice is normalized and legal. Women and girls are trafficked because there just aren’t enough of them who enter the trade willingly — demand begets exploitation; reduce demand, reduce exploitation.

Meanwhile, claims that legalizing or decriminalizing the purchase of sex and the exploitation of women would make the trade safer, have not proven to be true. As a result, countries like Germany and New Zealand are reconsidering their laws.

In 2012, New Zealand Prime Minister John Key said that he didn’t think the Prostitution Law Reform Act 2003 had reduced street prostitution or underage prostitutes, stating:

“The argument was that it would eliminate all the street workers and underage people, particularly girls, and the reports that we see in places like South Auckland is that it hasn’t actually worked… I think it’s been marginally successful, if at all.”

The study is timely as the Canadian government has recently put forward a bill that, if passed (which it most-likely will), will target demand and criminalize pimps and johns.

*sigh* maybe one day… 

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But in its drive to create equal opportunities for women in the workforce, liberal feminism helped to sustain the devaluation of certain types of work—namely the work of bearing and raising children and overseeing the domestic realm. While middle-class housewives left the home to find their place in the office, they failed to challenge the distinction between work that merits fair wages and work that does not. In order to pursue the path of the career woman, many housewives hired women from less privileged demographics to fill their old roles as poorly compensated labourers in the home. Dismantling the role of housewife by choosing to seek fulfilling work elsewhere didn’t abolish the need for underpaid or unpaid domestic work. Rather, this work-for-equality movement served to further conceal the fact that the exploitation of women’s work is integral to oppressive social and economic relations.

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Nearly forty years later, the young intern who finds herself willing and able to volunteer her time out of love for her work resembles those happy housewives of the past. It is worth noting that the internship is always temporary. Unlike the housewife, the cheerful intern is vaguely promised fair wages in some not-so-distant future. In the words of its advocates, unpaid training is yet another stepping-stone toward independence, a necessary extension of one’s education. But the truth is that unpaid internships perpetuate a gate-keeping mechanism that ensures only financially stable and well-connected young people can grab onto the bottom rung of the ladder. What’s more, Ross Perlin writes in Intern Nation, this “race to the bottom” ultimately determines whether specific tasks are in fact worthy of monetary compensation: “Every time young people scramble for an unpaid position, they reinforce the flawed perception that certain kinds of work have lost all value.”

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Moreover, by encouraging us to be anxious about open conflict, liberalism actually masks how today’s political debate obscures as much as highlights our differences.

Recoiling from the screaming and name-calling, liberals point to conflict-oriented infotainment as toxic to the public discourse. Yet because they are so distracted by the surface noise, they miss the undisturbed bedrock of consensus positions.

In debates about poverty policy, for example, liberals often do push back against the nearly sociopathic desire of conservatives to destroy the welfare state . If you really want to fight poverty, they insist, you need to help folks get back on the job, not leave them at the mercy of circumstance.

Remaining undisturbed, however, is the assumption that the solution to poverty is to push as many poor people as possible into the job market — to “fix” poor folks rather than restructure the economic institutions that place them in such a quagmire. The fact that this charade of a debate often involves yelling creates the illusion that a fundamental difference is being discussed — but it’s merely the means that are being disputed.

At the same time, identifying fundamental disagreements that do exist becomes extremely difficult when one cannot even name what is being struggled over — power. For at the root of the liberal denial of conflict is the liberal denial of power. And on this falsehood, all attempts to honestly confront conflict run afoul.

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