Feminist Friday: Deep in the Chickenhearts of Texas


This Week in Ladybits

I know that I should be amazed by how willing the GOP is to harm women in their quest for votes from their far-right base, but to be honest, what’s really getting me is how chickenshitted they are about it. Ohio dropped its abortion restrictions into the state budget at the last minute without debate, and Wisconsin’s Governor Scott Walker signed his state’s nifty radical anti-choice ultrasounderiffic bill out of the public eye on a holiday weekend. My personal stereotype that the kind of men who can’t deal with women as full, intelligent human beings tend to be cowardly losers is holding up pretty well.

The Texas GOP’s plan to essentially stealth-ban abortion through impossible restrictions is still underway, and thousands of brave souls are still not having it. Check out the #HB2 hashtag on Twitter to follow it.

There’s a Stand with Texas Women rally tonight at the state Capitol.

FF Texas Rally

UPDATE: Ahead of the Senate vote, Texas state troopers are confiscating pads and tampons (and condoms) because people could throw them. Concealed firearms? Still totally OK. (Thanks to James and Brangien for almost simultaneous heads-ups about that. Brangien’s comment: “It’s just so Margaret Atwood. Yup.

I would just like to note that thousands of women whirling tampons over their heads would make for one hell of a stirring rally.

Also I need to learn to watch my mouth. Last week I lumped together the Ricks Santorum and Perry as a rhetorical device, and this week Santorum headed into Perry’s territory. Because if there’s one thing Rick Santorum can’t resist, it’s a radical, misogynist anti-abortion bill. Especially if it hurts poor women the most!

There are, however two upsides to Santorum’s insistence on adding to Gooberfest. The first is that it focuses even more national attention on just how cruel, radical, and anti-woman the Republican agenda is right now. Please, please infuriate a few more people into getting out to vote against your ever-smaller, ever more exclusionary club, fellas.

The second upside is that the only reason for Santorum to do this is an attempt to look Presidential to the far-right base. Which he’s doing on the turf of a guy who’s making a pretty transparent bid of his own. I’d think Tweedledum and Tweedledoofus were teaming up for a ticket, except that we already know Santorum wouldn’t take second place to Newt Gingrich when those two thought about joining forces in 2012. I don’t see Perry’s ego accepting a Veep spot either, which means we may have front-row seats to a full-on slap fight between two guys who, let’s face it, aren’t known for being particularly bright. It might be a good idea to stock up on popcorn.

If you don’t happen to live in a state that’s currently under fire, it’s easy to look at the new, breathtakingly ignorant and cruel restrictions as a piecemeal thing, a sad and bizarre incident that’s happening to those poor women over there.

 Rachel Maddow added a dose of national perspective Wednesday night.

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Just as a reminder: The kind of laws Texas (and North Carolina and Ohio and Wisconsin and Virginia and Mississippi…) Republicans are passing don’t stop abortions. They just stop safe abortions. (Thanks to Feministing for the link.) Here’s another look at where the GOP would like to take us.

This Week in Thinky

Natalia Hawk starts with NASA’s amazing new class of astronauts and segues into wondering how we as a culture can start to appreciate smart women more in Mamma Mia.

Melissa Harris-Perry and friends discussed what the mainstream media misses in its portrayal of black women.

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BuzzFeed wondered which conservative women could replace S.E. Cupp on The Cycle.

Are female athletes competing against their own breasts?

And this AFI clip of Dustin Hoffman talking about Tootsie has been making the rounds on Facebook this week. In it, he talks about how getting into character as Dorothy made him realize how many women he had ignored over the years because they weren’t hot enough for him to talk to.

I do love how moved he is in this, and how willing to be open about his thoughts. Am I wrong to want him to think a little more? I was fascinated by the fact that he didn’t just want to pass as a woman—he immediately assumed that he should be a beautiful woman. And I’d love to hear Hoffman’s thoughts on how his career as a high-profile leading actor would have gone if he’d been born female with those same looks.

That said, I don’t want to dump on him here. Good on him for his willingness to be introspective and re-examine his own status quo. I hope he’s still talking to everyone at parties.

This Week in Good

Girls’ education activist Malala Yousafzai spoke at the United Nations and got a standing ovation.

Looks like Pacific Rim allows its male and female heroes to fight and collaborate without having to fall in love. Cool.

This Week in Grody

Matthew Hagee of the Cornerstone Evangelical megachurch says that the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down DOMA is a sign that the Rapture is coming. You know what? Good. I hope he’s right. I can’t wait for these bigotballs to get swept up so the rest of us can scoop their little piles of poorly accessorized clothing out of the way and get on with actually being nice to each other.

The Indiana Department of Human Rights is investigating Exxon/Mobil for sexual orientation discrimination. (h/t to Bisera for the link)

And Indiana made it a felony for same-sex couples to apply for a wedding license.

This Week in Awesome


(Via The Mary Sue)

Colombia’s first gay marriage has been approved by a judge.

And if you need some balm for the pro-choice soul, check out some awesome firebrand testimony from Texas, including the poem—yes, poem—”If My Vagina Was a Gun.” (h/t to Mary for the link)

And Sarah Slamen bringing the harsh truth to the Texas legislators until state troopers pulled her out.

Oh, did you want to hear the rest of what she had to say? So did Lawrence O’Donnell.

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Have a great weekend. Get out there and speak your mind.

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