While the topic of women’s rights doesn’t have the box office draw of a bunch of dudes getting wasted at a bachelor party, say, or a bride-to-be getting diarrhea in the middle of the street, there are many excellent movies that cover various aspects of the War on Women (either directly or metaphorically)—workplace discrimination, violence against women, restricted access to abortion, sexual harassment, and all that fun stuff. So when you make a bag of popcorn and tune into the Sundance Channel this month for movies like ROSEMARY’S BABY, I’M NOT THERE and BLUE VELVET, not only will you be entertained, you’ll also be spending some quality time thinking about women’s rights. In other words, you can feel virtuous about that time on the couch. You’re welcome!
Photo Credit: Cinema Squid
What if gene splicing and genetic manipulation were allowed to be explored in this country, bar none? David Cronenberg’s now classic remake of THE FLY paves way for some big questions regarding human intervention with nature. Whatever position you side with in the great Genetic Manipulation debate, here are ten reasons why you should consider the issues our political system and culture would face if humans and insects shared the same body.
Don’t miss THE FLY airing Tuesday, October 30 at 9p on Sundance Channel.
Election Day’s proximity to Halloween is more than a boon for manufacturers of freakish-looking rubber Romney and Obama masks; it’s an opportunity to reflect on all manner of partisan terrors. There aren’t many movies that explicitly mix election-year issues with horror-picture tropes, but there are plenty of movies on Sundance Channel this month that will scare the ever-loving politics out of you, at least for a couple of hours at a time.
With all the backlash over “legitimate rape” vs. illegitimate (sic) rape last week, another great debate got a little lost in the shuffle: the gay-marriage debate between Dan Savage, sex columnist and married gay dad of one adopted son, and Brian Brown, the president of the National Organization for Marriage and straight married father of seven biological kids.
Todd Akin made a simple mistake. When he said “the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down,” he was obviously referring to ducks. And come on, who hasn’t on occasion confused the human female reproductive system with that of a duck?
Much of this week’s news was slightly infuriating: Animals get birth control but humans don’t? The mistress gets punished but the married man doesn’t? Rapists get rights but their victims don’t? Aaarrrggghhh!
A few years ago a humble little Tumblr blog called Fuck Yeah! Ryan Gosling launched, featuring images of the dreamy, blue-eyed, well-toned actor with imagined lovey-dovey quotes from him to you, the girlfriend: “Hey Girl, if I had to get swine flu, I’d want to get it from you.” It hasn’t been updated in months, but it doesn’t have to be: It spawned a thousand spinoff Gosling “Hey Girl” sites to keep you satisfied: Feminist Ryan Gosling (our favorite, and the one with a book deal), Typographer Ryan Gosling, Shakespearean Ryan Gosling, the list goes on and on… (See Know Your Meme for a more complete history.)
Wedding season is upon us and if you’re looking for the perfect gift, I have a few suggestions that aren’t likely on the registry. You might be tempted to go for the traditional, like something for entertaining or to spruce up the house, but what would really make an impact is a bed. Of course, that all depends on who you’re spending for. Same-sex couples now have the privilege to legally wed in 6 states (woo hoo!), with President Obama recently offering his blessing in the fight for marriage equality. Legions of people, gay and straight, have donated their social media statuses to show support, spent time lobbying and ponied up their hard earned cash, so that two people in love, regardless of their sex, can say “I do” and be granted the many benefits that go along with it. In fact, to advance the cause, a staggeringly large and unprecedented amount of money has been raised with special thanks to donations from folks in Hollywood, on Wall Street and in Washington (amongst other places). Everyone loves love and attending fabulous parties, and those could be part of the inspiration behind this mass mobilization. Plus, with all the revenue gay marriage is predicted to generate, it’s not hard to tell why the ‘powers that be’ are celebrating too. But as we’re preparing to put on our dancing shoes for a weekend of Pride parades and dances celebrating how far we’ve come in the fight for marriage equality, GLBT youth across the country are worrying about where they’re going to sleep. More than 300,000 lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth experience homelessness every year and the already meager funding for beds in shelters is being cut.
To follow up on our Vaginagate roundup post from yesterday, now that the trending on Twitter had died down, here are our top 30 picks for best #vaginamovielines Tweets of the past week, so you can avoid scrolling through the endless stream of mediocrity and get straight to the good stuff:
Join mass action today, Monday, June 18th– Tweet & Facebook #endfossilfuelsubsidies
Every year, around the world, almost one trillion dollars of subsidies is handed out to help the fossil fuel industry. Who came up with the crazy idea that the fossil fuel industry deserves our hard-earned money, no less in economic times of such harsh human consequence? We fire teachers, police and firemen in drastic budget cuts and yet, the fossil fuel industry can laugh all the way to the bank on our dime? Something doesn’t add up here.
The latest gem from the people at Barack Dubs is President Obama “singing” Carly Rae Jepsen’s saccharine song “Call Me Maybe.” A more fitting title of this song for Obama who is on the fundraising circuit for the upcoming election against Mitt Romney should be “Donate Maybe.” Stitched together from his various public appearances and speeches, the Internets wildly approved of their previous video of Obama singing “Sexy and I Know It” by LMFAO. Based on his previous performance singing a bar of Al Green, I think Obama could nail both of these songs at karaoke. Mitt Romney however should stick to just his stump speeches and avoid singing in public.
Late last week, the New York Times broke news about a plan put together by “a group of high-profile Republican strategists” and commissioned by conservative billionaire and owner of the Chicago Cubs Joe Ricketts that explored an aggressive Super PAC strategy for attacking President Obama in the upcoming presidential election. Buried in the craziness was this gem which the Internets jumped all over.
This video of a North Carolinian pastor spewing homophobic hate has been making the rounds. Made “pukin’ sick” by the thought of men kissing men, Pastor Charles Worley comes up with a big idea to get rid of homosexuality once and for all — a “final solution,” if you will:
Build a great big large fence, 150 or 100 miles long. Put all the lesbians in there. Fly over and drop some food. Do the same thing with the queers and the homosexuals. Have that fence electrified so they can’t get out. Feed ‘em, and– And you know what? In a few years they’ll die out. You know why? They can’t reproduce.
It’s not the slickest website, but we love the idea of RockTheSlutVote.com — embracing the insult that’s meant to dismiss, discredit and silence “uppity” women in order to increase voter turn-out for political candidates who respect women’s rights. Yes, the art-work is cheesy (stock illustrations of impossibly thin, pretty, sexy fashionistas all apparently wearing miracle bras for the most part — we guess they’re trying to project the slutty stereotype???); and yes, it could all just be a cover to sell poorly designed CafePress merch (their logo is a cheesy lipstick imprint, ugh); but it does make it fairly easy to get registered to vote. Plus, we love the list that rips off the “You might be a red neck if…” format on their homepage — here’s a sample:
It started in 1910 when a paunchy William Howard Taft tossed out a ceremonial first pitch from the stands on the Washington Senators’ Opening Day.
Photo by DAVID ILIFF. License: CC-BY-SA 3.0
So this week we learned that if you were born horny you should not go to Hong Kong, you should not stop carrying condoms for fear of police confiscation, and you should not assume that by “you” we mean either “he” or “she.”
The ladies got a rough deal this week, what with never being taken outside to play as little girls, being left behind by the Right, being told they don’t care about contraception, and getting spit on yet again by Tucker Max and PETA. Fortunately, Charlize Theron got some aggression out (on tape) on behalf of all womankind:
The Washington Post already announced the official winner (plus finalists and semi-finalists) for their sixth annual Spring Peeps Diorama Contest — a recreation of an occupied McPherson square complete with D.C. rats and “V for Vendetta” masks called “OccuPeep D.C.” — but with so many excellent entries they put together a bonus gallery of purely political-themed peep shows.
photo of a page from Rich’s “An Atlas of a Difficult World” via Flickr
Last Wednesday, the great American poet Adrienne Rich died (1929-2012). If you ever took a “Contemporary American Poetry” class in college, then she surely holds a special place in your artistic heart. In her influential poetry and essays, she explored her identity as a political activist, a feminist and a lesbian (which was bold for the time — and still is, sadly, in some circles). Here are some of our favorite lines of Rich’s poetry about love, sex, sexuality and gender:
It’s been a rough week for President Obama. First, he had a hot mic moment while bantering with outgoing Russian finger puppet, I mean president, Dmitry Medvedev. Then, to add insult to injury, it turns out genealogist, and Megadeth frontman, Dave Mustaine has proven our commander-in-chief was not even born in the United States! It’s OK, Barry. Plenty of people still love you. In fact, plenty of people acknowledge that you are sexy and you know it, as exemplified in the video above. Who cares about what that miniature horse collector thinks?
This week, the GOP’s restrictions of freedom, both real and threatened, kept coming. At least they can’t take our orgasms at the gym away!:
Where reason fails, satire sometimes works — hence the sudden trend of tongue-in-cheek proposed sex laws, like the “personhood of semen” bill. And where satire fails — will a sex strike work? That’s the hope of a group called Liberal Ladies Who Lunch (love it!). They are proposing a national sex strike from April 28 until May 5 — tagline, “If our reproductive choices are denied, so are yours.”
This week’s Doonesbury comic (in five installments over the course of the week) is taking a harsh, satirical look at how Republican legislation all across America (specifically in Texas) is undermining women’s reproductive rights — and many papers are either refusing to run it at all or else moving it to their editorial pages.
Some people hear about all the ridiculous uterus-related legislation being sponsored by Republican lawmakers and they join a protest or they blog about it or they post inspiring images on their Tumblr blogs. Other people — other awesome people — are using their position as lawmakers to go one step further: they’re proposing outlandish penis-related legislation in response.
In a twisted way, it’s nice to know that America isn’t the only country filled with delusional bigots who find it necessary to pick on a minority group as a means of reaffirming their position in society. The President of Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko, declared it was “better to be a dictator than gay.” In terms of comebacks, this schoolyard defense is known as the “straight flush.” But he’s not the only president, or presidential hopeful, to toss the G word around as a blanket response to political critique. Check out some of the more memorable quotes in the recent past from more familiar names.