Banter in the Garden
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Tea and Strumpets
Submissions on the Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Bill close this Friday. So you need to do the submission thing NOW.
Here’s a post about how to make a submission: How to make a Select Committee Submission.
Here’s the call for submissions on Parliament’s website: Make a submission: Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Bill. Very, very handily, if you scroll to the bottom of the Make a Submission page, you will find a button that enables you to make an online submission. So really, you can go ahead and make your submission right now. All you need to do is say something like, “I support the Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Bill, and I think it should be passed immediately.”
Please, do make a submission. Here’s what FoTLG Oliver had to say about making a submission on this bill, in his guest post (linked above).
… even if you have nothing to say except, “This is a wonderful bill, and I think it should be passed immediately”, say that. Those submissions are counted, rather than considered, but they are counted, and the only thing every politician agrees on is that numbers are the most important thing there is.
So go on. Click on the link, and make that submission now. Make a submission: Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Bill
Let’s play fatshaming bingo, shall we?
Don’t believe me about that first one? How’s this from North & South’s FB page?
Is sugar the new fat – and will it cause the next wave of heart disease? (No, our cover model isn’t especially fat but, like many of us, you can bet she’d like to lose a few kilos. What she probably doesn’t know is how much “hidden” sugar she’s eating.) In the new North & South –Donna Chisholm reveals some surprising new discoveries on why we gain weight.
So. North & South is clearly the new Cosmo. Vague, threatening claims about weight on the cover, and references to “breaking up”. Chuck in something about a blowjob, and the transition will be complete.
I mean, do they actually know this woman would “like to lose a few kilos”? To me, she looks strong and healthy and beautiful. But, then, what would I know, being a fatty? And OF COURSE, it’s a woman. Men aren’t fat, right? It’s only women who suffer from obesity. I’ve only skimmed the article, because I value my mental health, and smarter people than me can debunk the claims therein. Also, what I care about is how this issue is presented. But as far as I could tell, this is a stock photo. So HOW DARE someone suggest she might want to lose a few kilos?
Inside the article, there’s a few more photos. A (male) researcher, and a dude who has cut sugar out of his diet. And another stock photo of an overweight woman, back to the camera, hunched over the scales she is standing on. So: Men, capable of talking about weight. Women, just used to illustrate the story.
And this. Everyone’s favourite.
The ubiquitous headless fatty. Sigh.
Want to bet, based on the pose, she’s smiling, or pouting, or something other than looking ashamed of herself? And we couldn’t have that, could we?
Women in Australia, and all throughout the world have been chortling with glee today, delighting in every word of Julia Gillard’s truly wonderful speech calling Tony Abbott out on his appalling misogyny.
For nearly three years now, Abbott has used the most sexist epithets against Gillard, and against women. He has tolerated the use of words such as bitch, witch, “that woman”, allowed his supporters to use vile language against her, told Australian women that they ought to get back to doing the ironing, that they just don’t have what it takes to be a leader.
Gillard has simply taken it all. She has had to. We know what happens to women who dare to fight back. They are simply subjected to a further round of abuse, derided as shrill harridans who can’t take a joke. Abuse, followed by dismissal. She simply could not afford to fight back. She had to (pretend to) ignore it all.
How demoralising that has been all of us. When Gillard took power, my daughter and her friends raced around the oval (playground) at their school, thrilled that a woman had become prime minister. It was a tremendous moment of liberation for them. They could aspire to anything!
And then they watched. And I watched and other women watched, as Julia Gillard was attacked for the sin of being a woman. Each time my daughters watched, and each time I watched, and each time women in Australia watched, we learned the lesson that to be a woman in a public role is to invite abuse, for the crime of being a woman in public.
Finally, Gillard hit back. Hard. In a forum where her chief tormentor was forced to sit and listen. Just for once, a woman could tell a man exactly what she thought of his despicable beahviour, and he couldn’t simply walk away. At last, he was being held to account for his misogyny.
Didn’t he hate it?
It gets so wearying, day in day out, watching and listening to women in power being derided simply for being. So often we just shut the rhetoric out, try to let it not get to us. But it is so very, very tiring.
And this is why women everywhere are cheering for Gillard. Just for once, a woman has had a chance to tell it like it really is, and the bloke has had to sit and listen. And be held responsible for the hate he has been spewing.
Today has been a good day.
Should you not have watched the speech yet, make yourself a cup of coffee, or pour yourself a glass of wine, and take 15 minutes to enjoy it.
Or you can read a transcript: transcript of Julia Gillard’s speech on the Sydney Morning Herald site. But seriously, if you have time, watch it.
Mum, you will *love* this. And so will you, my beautiful daughter, who was so pleased when Gillard became Prime Minister.
Well, who would have thought?
Free birth control led to dramatically lower rates of abortions and teen births, a large study concluded Thursday.
I’ve never been able to understand the mindset of people (read, the Catholic Church hierarchy) who condemn abortion, and in the same breath, condemn contraception. Yes, I know that the Church’s arguments can all be held together by some cant about respect for life, or openness to life, or some such thing, but it just seems bleedingly obvious that if you want to minimise abortion, then one easy way to do it is to make sure that women have easy access to effective contraception, of their choice.
That choice bit is important. Our Minister of Social Welfare is keen on getting beneficiaries to use long term contraceptive implants, to stop all the slappers from breeding. But in the US study, women were offered a *choice* of contraceptives. When women could choose, when they were empowered, rates of unwanted pregnancies dropped dramatically.
Of course, it’s much harder to control women when they have choice…
trigger warning for rape, victim blaming, and a healthy dollop of institutional sexism.
This letter should have, actually, been titled “Women get dangerous message that it’s wrong to expect not to be attacked”.
It’s doing the rounds on Twitter now, of course. And of course, we’re all angry and pissed off and making arguments about victim blaming and slutshaming and OH MY GOD FUCK OFF ANNETTE WALE.
Not to mention the argument that all men are a few beers and some exposed flesh away from being rapists. You’re all hopped up on testosterone, dudes, and too weak to withstand flirting from a sloppy drunk chick.
So far, so not new. Feel free to combat those arguments in the comments. It’s not like we haven’t before.
Here’s a question though. What the ACTUAL FUCK is the “paper of record” in our capital city doing printing shit like this? Does the Dom have a responsibility to think about how this perpetuates double standards and makes it easier for rapists to commit their crimes? Or is it really just about getting people to look at its letters page?