satire

I am Binary Woman

I am Binary Woman.

I was born female and embrace the gender woman. I am privileged to be able to embrace the gender that corresponds to my sex, unlike the non-binary people among us who have their own individual personalities that do not correspond to the gender assigned to their sex. How troublesome that must be for them.

I express myself in exactly the way that is expected of me.  I love makeup, dresses, high heels, and getting my long, luxurious hair styled.  I make sure to keep my figure in a shape that will be pleasing to the male gaze, because this is the most important thing a woman can do, aside from bearing his children, caring for them, and cleaning up after them.

As a binary woman, I know my place. I do not work; that is a man’s place. My realm is the home. I cook and clean and I love it. My life is my husband and children. I have no desires other than to serve them.

When I dress myself, I do so for the pleasure of men. My comfort is not a consideration. Although my podiatrist advises me to stop, I continue to wear high heels because they make me look more sexually appealing. I do not need mobility. When a man compliments me on the street, I know I am fulfilling my role as binary woman.

If I were pregnant and the only way to save my life was to terminate the pregnancy, I would not do it. The progeny of my husband is more important than my own life. I would gladly sacrifice all I have to him, and I have. All of my interests are related to pleasing him and being pleasing and accommodating to men in general. I defer to men to show me the way because I am binary woman and I embrace my gender role.

After our second child, I noticed my body was not as youthful looking as men prefer, so I had a tummy tuck and got breast implants. Having large perky breasts and a flat stomach is very important to my gender expression. I make sure never to allow any hair to grow on my body aside from my head.  Binary women don’t have body hair.

Even when I am exhausted and hungry, I prioritize diet and exercise because a binary woman must be thin and toned or she is a failure.

I am terrible at math and driving. I’m much better at floral arranging and being a good listener. I am never aggressive or assertive. When I do become emotional, I know it is just my hysterical hormones and I look to my husband to tell  me how I really feel. If we ever disagree, I defer to him because I know I must be wrong. Binary women never question men.

I acknowledge my binary privilege because I defer to males to explain to me what it means to be a woman.

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writing

A woman has a penis
Woman is female
Penis is female
Penis in vagina is lesbian

A man has a uterus
Man is male
Uterus is male
Abortion is a men’s issue

Bodies aren’t important
Sex is not gender
Yet to treat transgender
Surgery and hormones
Edit the body to appear the other sex

Woman is an internal feeling
Woman is not a social construct
Woman is the nature of your brain
Woman is as woman is seen
Women who do not conform do not exist

Female bodies do not matter
Female experience does not matter
Female desires do not matter
Males have named us and our name is “Cis”

Misadventures in Genderland

Aside
feminism

Men’s Rights to be the Center of All Attention Always

I follow a lot of feminist blogs, facebook pages, IG accounts and the like.  Men follow these pages too.  A small percentage of them follow because they are supportive, intellectually curious, or they totally get it and they are feminists themselves.  But unfortunately, most of the men who follow are there simply to impose themselves, to take over the conversation, and basically to prove the need for the existence of feminism.  Ironically, they don’t realize this is what they are doing.

Ironically, they have no idea that every time they make some comment about women falsely accusing men of rape or women provoking abuse and violence, or women being heartless slut bitch cunt whores, they make our point.  If you threaten women with rape and abuse in an attempt to prove that feminism is unnecessary, you may want to re-think your strategy.

These men are so blinded by their male privilege, they think it perfectly righteous to defend their need to have everything be about them at all times always.  They think that when women are talking about the harassment we face simply trying to walk down the street, that would be a good time to tell us about that time a woman was mean to them when they tried to “compliment” her.  When we talk about the things that men have done to us in our own experiences, they can’t just listen.  They simply must proclaim “NOT ALL MEN” or accuse us of exaggerating or imagining these things.

I’ve seen the laundry list of complaints the Men’s Rights Movement has made about the horrible plight of men.  Some of the concerns are legitimate.  Most are not.  None are the fault of women or feminism, yet women and feminism are the target of all the MRM’s vitriol.

For example, they believe they are not given a fair shake in custody court.  Okay, that seems like a crappy thing.  Custody should be decided not on the basis of gender, but on the basis of the best interests of the child.  Sometimes the father is the more suitable parent.  This is a feminist position as well.  Yes, that’s right, feminism is about not making decisions on the basis of gender.  So what should be done about it?  I’m no lawyer or expert in legal matters, so I’m honestly not sure how we can change this if it is indeed a systemic problem.  But I do know one thing: feminists did not make it this way.

Child-rearing has been “women’s work” forever.  That’s the patriarchal set-up.  Women raise children and do housework, men work and make money.  Don’t like that?  Me neither.  That’s why I am a feminist.  The idea that somehow feminists created this situation is some very twisted logic indeed.

They point to the dismal statistics about how many men get custody of their children, but they miss one vital point: How many men try to get custody of their children?  My father didn’t, even though he would have been a more suitable parent than my schizophrenic drug-addicted mother.  I guess children would have put a damper on his relationship with his new younger girlfriend.  My boyfriend’s father didn’t.  He ran off and never even attempted to contact his son again.  In my life today, I know one man my age who has divorced his wife and complains about what a horrible mother she is.  Even he did not try to get custody.  Complain as he might, it’s pretty obvious he benefits from having her care for the kids while he meets new women and lives the single bachelor life.

Before we can have a meaningful statistic about how many men get custody of their children, we need to have men who actually try.  Hey, I’ve seen Teen Mom.  NONE of those dads wants custody of their kids.  The moms are lucky if the guy even wants visitation.

I’m sure there are some men who have tried to get custody and failed and I’m sure there are some judges who are prejudiced against them.  That’s our unfortunate legal situation for ya.  We have prejudiced judges making life-altering decisions.  It’s wrong for sure.  I’m not sure it’s as widespread as the MRAs think, but if it’s happening it’s wrong and we should do something about it.

That’s just one example, but I truly feel that the concerns that MRAs claim to have that are legitimate are concerns echoed by feminists.  We could be working together on those.

But I don’t honestly believe that the MRM exists to try to improve the lives of men.  No, I’ve read enough of their forums and blogs to see what they are.  They are a hate group plain and simple.  They are to women what the KKK is to black people.  They try to cover this up in language about discrimination toward men, but it’s pretty fucking obvious when you interact with them that the base argument is that they hate women and despise the idea that they are being asked to treat us like equal humans.

If they were honest with themselves, they would see that their “movement” is about trying to hang onto the privilege men have so long enjoyed.  They cannot stand that straight, white, heterosexual men aren’t the center of attention at all times everywhere always.  And they experience the loss of this privilege as discrimination.

Because when you’ve had an unfair advantage for all of human history and you see it being dismantled, I guess the reaction is to rail against that.  Nobody wants to give up their privileges, even if they are undeserved.

So they insert themselves into feminist spaces, take over conversations about women’s issues, and turn the subject back to themselves.  They are only comfortable when they are the center.  Because they don’t know any different and lack the self-reflection to see what they are doing for what it really is.  I think some of these guys believe in their cause.  I think some of them are probably decent people somewhere in there.  I think many of them are victims of the same patriarchal system feminists have been trying to dismantle for decades.

We could be working together, but their blindness to their male privilege won’t allow it.

An MRA is like a person with a stubbed toe coming into an ICU filled with people with life-threatening and debilitating injuries and screaming “BUT WHAT ABOUT MY TOE!??!?!  WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT MY TOE NOW!!!”

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feminism

Not Just Hello

There has been a lot of much needed discussion about street harassment lately.  I have my stories.  Yes, all women have these stories.

The first time I experienced street harassment I was a 13 year old girl.  They may have thought I was older, because I developed faster than all of the other kids, I was chubby, and I was tall.  I was walking down a country road in my home town and they were in a truck.  The truck slowed and they started saying things to me.  There were three or four of them.  I kept walking and they drove slowly beside me yelling sexual, threatening, and insulting things at me until I ran.  I ran off the road and into the woods.  It was incredibly terrifying and put me off walking outside for many years.

Later there was another somewhat similar incident in the same town.  I was older, had graduated from high school, had an apartment in the same small town, and was walking home from work at night.  Again, some men in a vehicle slowed beside me and started yelling things.  I walked, then ran, to get away from them as they followed me in the vehicle.  But I was afraid to go home, lest they know where I live.  So I ran to a friend’s apartment and escaped them.

Soon after that I moved out of that town.  I will never go back there.  Them country boys scare me.  Yes yes I know.  Not all men.  Tell that to thirteen year old me.  Tell that to the woman who is so terrified her heart is going to beat out of her chest.  Explain it away.  Tell me it was meant as a compliment.

I have other stories, of course.  But none scared me the way those two incidents did.  Once I lived in the city, having strange men say things to me became par for the course.  I would sometimes yell back, tell them to go fuck themselves.  I would sometimes ignore them and keep walking.  Occasionally I would come up with a witty response on the fly.  But generally these things now happened in areas with street lights and other people and I felt relatively sure that I wasn’t about to get grabbed and dragged off somewhere for I don’t want to think about what.

I still get harassed today.  I’m almost forty and I’m hoping to soon be old enough that they leave me alone, as some of my older friends say happens to them.  They tell me how relieved they are to be past the age where men find you a good target to yell “Hey baby, I want to fuck that ass baby, why you ignoring me baby, you fucking stuck up bitch!”

I’m still chubby too so that invites another kind of harassment.  One time, as I was walking down a city street, I walked past a man who looked at me like he wanted to murder me and said “If my wife was as fat as you I would divorce her.”

I have never had any man yell something at me that could even vaguely be considered a compliment.  Mostly it was very vulgar sexual talk, or talk about my body- my tits, my ass.  Or it was something insulting about being fat.  Of course, being fat gives me bigger tits and ass, so you see how the two subjects are related.  Often times it starts as a “hey I want to do ___ to your ___” then when I don’t respond, it becomes insults or threats.

Only one time did a man actually grab me, and I shoved that asshole so hard he fell on his back and whacked his head on the sidewalk.  I didn’t stick around to find out if he was alright.

When I see men defending street harassment, they always make it out like it’s just innocuous compliments. “Aw, I’m just trying to tell you you look good, why can’t I tell you that?”  Yeah.  No.  That’s not what it is and we all know that.

That incident that happened when I was 13, I know it could have been a lot worse and for a lot of women it is much, much worse.  After that, I found myself considering what men might say to me or try to do to me if I dared to do something risky like leave my house.  No, it did not keep me from living life, but it was always there in the back of my mind.

How many times have I looked over my shoulder?  How many times have I crossed the street to avoid walking close to a group of men or even one man?  How many times have I felt my heart pound and race in my chest? Too many to count.  Those experiences colored my whole life.

It’s not just hello.  Almost every woman can tell you.

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feminism

Anti-Feminist Strawmen

I am a feminist.  I’m also in my late thirties so I’m nowhere near as concerned about what anyone thinks of it as I once was when I was a teenager or young twenty something.

It is fine with me if other people don’t want to call themselves feminists.  I will still believe they deserve equality under the law and in society and I will still speak out and fight for them.  What you want to call yourself is up to you.  Some labels have connotations beyond their real meaning and some people just don’t like labels at all.  For example, “Vegan” simply means a person who does not consume or use animal products.  However, there are a lot of people who believe “Vegan” means being a pushy overbearing difficult person to be around, so they believe they hate vegans.  They really hate a few loud obnoxious outliers- there are plenty of soft, kind, quiet vegans too.  It’s not vegans you hate, it’s obnoxious people.  There are obnoxious people in every group.

Additionally some people just don’t like labels because they don’t like being lumped into a category with other people.  Sticking with the vegan example, some people who don’t eat animal products choose a different label like “plant-based” or they just don’t talk about it at all.  These are all valid choices.

However, there seems to be a special confusion surrounding Feminism and make no mistake about it, it is manufactured.  I have heard about the mythical “Feminazi” many times, yet I have never met one.  Did you know that the term “feminazi” was actually coined by Rush Limbaugh, who is hellbent on keeping women “in our place.”  I don’t know about you, but feminist or not I am guessing that most rational people do not want to be associated with Rush Limbaugh.  The women and men I have met who are feminists are kind people who care about the equality and rights of everyone.  For certain, online, I have encountered a few extreme commentators, but isn’t that the case with everything online?  Hell, there are extreme commentators in the cat group I belong to on Facebook.  This is the internet.  If you’re judging an entire movement by the comments of a few people, you might be missing the overall point.  However, again, it’s okay.

The highest tenant of my feminist belief is that you alone should be able to choose how to live your life and you should be given the same treatment under the law as everyone else.  The fact of your sex or gender should not be a deciding factor in what you are allowed to do.  Women who want to be stay at home moms or fashion models are just as welcome and valid as women who want to be corporate CEOs or President of the United States.

Most anti-feminist arguments I encounter are nothing more than Straw Man arguments.  A Straw Man is a type of logical fallacy, which is, in-essence, a misrepresentation of the other side to make it easier to attack.  Here is a list of the most common straw man arguments against feminism I see repeated again and again:

1. “I am not a feminist because I love men.”

Straw man: Feminists hate men

Reality: Feminists do not hate men.  Feminists want equal treatment for both sexes and all genders and believe this will benefit men as well as women.  Many feminists are women who are married to men or in long term relationships with men.  Many of us have fathers and brothers and sons and we love them dearly.

2. “I am not a feminist because I want to marry and have children.”

Straw man: Feminists believe women should all have a career and not prioritize family.

Reality: Feminism is about allowing women to make our own choices.  Marriage and children are great choices for some women, and not others.  Some women want to be at home with kids, some don’t.  Some men want to be at home with kids too.  These are all valid choices.  Feminists can be stay at home moms.

3. “I am not a feminist because I like to wear makeup and high heels.”

Straw man: Feminists are masculine and don’t believe in presenting yourself in a feminine way.

Reality: Feminism is about choices.  If you want to wear high heels and makeup and you enjoy those things, that’s wonderful.  Go for it!  You can dress sexy and be a feminist.  However if you don’t want to, that is also a valid choice.  You don’t have to wear makeup or high heels.  If you feel forced into those things and you do not enjoy it, that is something feminists want to change.  We want you to be able to be you, whatever that means to you, without being forced into a tiny little box marked “woman” by society.

4. “I am not a feminist because men and women are different.”

Straw man: Feminists think men and women are the same.

Reality, Feminists know that men and women can be different in a variety of ways, we just think we should all have equal rights and equal choices.  Sure men and women are different.  And women and women are different.  And men and men are different.  Certainly, in general, men are bigger and stronger than most women.  However, some men are 5’3″ 120 lb and some women are 6′ and 200 lb.  Some men like to be quiet and peaceful.  Some women are loud and competitive.  These are all valid choices under feminism.  It’s about breaking out of the narrowly defined gender roles IF you want to.  We are all different.

5. “I am not a feminist because I think men deserve rights too.”

Straw man: Feminists want to take away men’s rights.

Reality: Feminists simply want women to have all the same rights men have always had.  And we also want men to be free to make choices that are right for them as individuals. Men and women should have equal treatment under the law.  Just as women should not be discriminated against, neither should men.  Men should not be disadvantaged in custody court.  This is a feminist position.  The law should treat us as equal individuals, not judge simply on our sex or gender.

___________

In conclusion, I completely understand why some people who believe in equality cannot be persuaded to use the term feminist.  And some people do not believe in equality.  Just remember, without feminists, women would not be allowed to vote or own property or basically do anything without the blessing of her husband.  If that’s the world you want, you are definitely not a feminist.  But if you’re making the above arguments, it would be worthwhile to read some history and find out if what you think about feminism is really true or if you’ve fallen victim to Rush Limbaugh’s anti-feminist smear campaign.  A lot of people have, it’s nothing to be ashamed of.  You can always change your mind, and you will always be welcome to call yourself a feminist if you realize the label truly does suit your beliefs.  Even if you do not, we will continue to fight for your rights regardless.

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rant

Your Female Body Belongs To Us

Let’s set the record straight: your female body belongs to us and you must comply.

First, let’s talk about your appearance. Your body should be thinner, it should be smoother, it should have perkier bigger breasts, it should have a perfectly round bum, it should not have any visible hair, it must not be too white or too dark, it should not be blotchy or rippled, it may not have too much muscle or too much fat, nor too little muscle nor too little fat. We can see your cellulite; that is disgusting. We can see your ribs; that is nasty.

You must cover your female body or you are asking for trouble. It is your duty to be sexually attractive to males at all times. You must take care of yourself by removing all traces of body hair no matter how painful it might be. Do not be high maintenance. You must paint your face to ensure it is acceptable, especially when working because it is unprofessional to be undesirable to heterosexual men. You must wear fitted clothing that is not too loose or your will look shapeless, but it must not be too fitted or it is inappropriate. Your shorts should be longer than that. You should not show that cleavage. You look like a nun, come on, have some fun! You look like a bum; that is disgusting. You look like a prostitute; that is nasty.

When a man gives you a compliment on the street, you will smile and thank him because you are lucky you are attractive enough for him to pay attention to you.

You didn’t run away when that strange man approached you? You are so stupid. Anything bad that happens to you is your fault.

It is against our religion for a female like you to make your own health care decisions. From here on out, every gynecological appointment must be performed in the presence of a panel of male advisors. Otherwise, you may do something unacceptable like interfere with your body’s natural purpose of serving as an incubator for more males. Before you receive care, we must discuss it with your husband, father, and brother. They are only looking out for your best interest, don’t be mad sweetie. Do you have PMS?

Your employer-based insurance plan may not cover your birth control if it violates his testicles’ precious religious beliefs. You can go to Planned Parenthood anyway. We will scream in your face that you are a baby killer when you do. We might even try to murder you, but don’t worry you deserve it.

Just so you know, we have decided that Viagra, Cialis and Penis Pumps should be free to all men from now on.

You must never, ever have sex unless you want to have a baby. You owe sex to any man who compliments you or buys you dinner. When you do have sex, it must be focused solely on the pleasure of the penis. The penis is the only indicator of whether or not sex is good. If the penis is happy, you must be happy even if you are sexually unsatisfied or in pain. You’re welcome.

You should not have worn that dress. You should not have gone there alone. You should have used the buddy system. Why did you drink? Never walk home in the dark. You should have left that party. Don’t you know better? But come on really, you can tell us. You actually liked it right?

Why should our tax dollars pay for you sluts to have sex? An unintended pregnancy? Tough shit. That is the consequence of your bad decisions. You cannot have an abortion, even if the sperm donor has abandoned you and your unborn fetus. You shouldn’t have opened your legs. It’s too late now. You sinned and now you must face the music. It was your choice. I knew we shouldn’t let you make any.

The fetus is precious, don’t you see? It could still turn out to be male!

You’re not prepared to have a baby and you want to have an abortion? No, we’ve already been over this. Your possibly male fetus is precious. You, however, are a worthless slut. You do not matter.

You had a baby and you cannot afford to care for it? Tough shit, maybe you shouldn’t have gotten pregnant if the only job you are qualified to do doesn’t pay a living wage. You’re on your own. No handouts, you welfare queen.

Your decisions are not yours to make, but all of the consequences of those decisions are yours and yours alone. Never forget that. It’s for your own good, really.

Your female body belongs to us.

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