Monthly Archives: October 2014

They Are Not Trolls. They Are Men.

I love this blog. Just so many good points.

Make Me a Sammich

Oliver Rawlings Oliver Rawlings

Trigger warning for discussion of the various types of abuse perpetrated by those humans known as “trolls” incuding rape and death threats and suicide.

Back in July, during Netroots Nation 2014, Zerlina Maxwell spoke on a panel about online harassment. I wasn’t there, but someone tweeted a quote that stayed with me:

“Don’t call them trolls. They’re assholes.”

I think this is important. By calling these people “trolls,” we are basically letting them off the hook. It’s a lot like the “boys will be boys” mentality that helps to keep rape culture thriving, but it’s also different, because boys are expected to be human. By calling these people “trolls,” we relegate them to non-human status, and we make it clear that we don’t expect them to live up to the same behavioral standards as human beings.

So, who are these assholes? Well, the subset of the population we…

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The Ottawa Shooting, a Heathen Canadian’s reaction.

Yesterday, in the heart of my country, a tragedy occurred.  A soldier, standing guard over one of our most sacrosanct monuments, the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, marking the sacrifice of all soldiers who had made the ultimate sacrifice upon the field of battle and beyond, was gunned down in cold blood.

His name was Cpl. Nathan Cirillo.  26 years old. Father of one. Soldier of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders based out of Hamilton Ontario.

Those that are remembered, live.

I will not mention the name of the gunman, who was taken out by the Sgt. At Arms of the Canadian Parliament.  The Sgt. At Arms position is generally ceremonial, offered to soldiers, police officers and CSIS agents who have spent a long time in service, and only offered to the best of the best,  Mister Vickers was one of the best.  Mister Vickers is a twenty seven year veteran of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.  He acted valiantly in accordance to his office, and stopped the threat in it’s tracks.  I hope he never has to buy himself a drink again.

The fact that this horrific act, that violated the very core of Canadian values, happened not two days after two other Canadian military members were run over outside of St. Jean in Quebec, has many to believe that these two acts are linked somehow, I personally am waiting on the investigation to be complete.  The soldier  that died in that incident was Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent a firefighter.

Anyway, here’s my reaction after putting out these facts.

The people who committed these heinous acts were Canadian citizens.  In my humble opinion, this is an act of treason.  Attacking the military members of your country, is considered treason in my book.  Gunning them down and running them over like a mongrel dog, because you seriously believe your God told you to do it, or it’s for the “Good of Islam” is treason.  Fighting in a foreign war alongside of people who are actively fighting against your home country is treason.

I say give them their passports back, let them go fight with The Org that Shall not Be Named, take their passports away once they’re over there and let them fight our troops on equal ground.  They are too cowardly for that I guess.

I know that The Org that Shall not Be Named is to Islam as the KKK is to Christianity, and what the Folkish/Odinist movement is to Heathenry.  I really, sincerely hope that the moderate people of Islam are also taking a stance against this horror as well.  Since in combating The Org that Shall not Be Named and their ilk, we unfortunately cause casualties in your population.  We do NOT want to harm those who are innocent, we truly do not.  It’s up to you all to make life difficult for these people, to cast them out away from you, so you don’t get harmed.

If you are a moderate Muslim in Canada and know someone who’s about to snap like that, turn them in to the authorities.  Save some lives.

I’m using the term “The Org that Shall not Be Named” because I don’t want the real name tagged as a search term.  They do that.

Anyway, I’m just venting about it, it’s my personal blog.  I just want all this shit to end.  Seriously.

The “good” disabled person

I was at the hospital today getting blood work taken and Xrays done on my spine to see what has been causing my back pain that has been going on for 7 years now.

For the longest time, I didn’t want to go to the doctor. I’ve been told time and time again by other people, that I must have injured myself, slept wrong, did something, that I was too young for this kind of pain. I was too young for this kind of pain. Since when has pain become an age thing anyway?

I told this to an old lady in the waiting room when she asked me why I was there. She looked at me and said “Sometimes, the body doesn’t give a damn about how old you are when it chooses to break.”

But yeah, I’ve spent the better part of 7 years acting like nothing was wrong. Pushing beyond my pain, trying to be as independent as possible because I felt I had no other choice. Helping a friend clean her house from top to bottom lest CPS come and take her child away, left me virtually bed ridden in agony for the better part of a week. Raking leaves, washing the floor, household tasks that I *should* be able to do, and am *expected* to do on a routine basis, either get done, to my detriment, or they don’t get done, and I get growled at.

Maybe I need to step up and be more assertive once I get this diagnosis of wtf is wrong with me, maybe. I dunno.

Why we need feminism

trigger warnings, sexual assault talk, bullying talk and other things that may trigger a person. This is also the rumination of a mother who has personally faced most of the topics in this blog post.

I am the mother of an eleven year old daughter. I am also the mother of a seven year old son. I fear more for her starting a new school, than I do him. That is why we need feminism.

Why? You may ask. Well let’s start off with the simple premise that middle school is hell for the average child. My daughter has Asperger’s syndrome. Kids with autism are bullied far more frequently than their neurotypical peers. She has this innocence about her that her peers are half decent people with the maturity to ignore her if they don’t care for her. The school she attends now, helps foster that kind of environment.

You are probably wondering why bullying links to feminism. Well, considering my daughter, regardless of her neurobiological status, is more at risk being bullied than my son in the chance we have to move (we are military, it is always a possibility) by virtue of her gender, it goes hand in hand.

Girls will bully her because she will be viewed as “competiton” for the boys in the school. She will be new and different. Causing the competition enoug distress that they remove themselves from the gene pool gives these mean girls an advantage genetically. They live to pass their genes on, while the unfortunate target of their unrelenting psychological abuse has taken their own life. This is my armchair anthropology talking by the way, as well as personal experience as a person who went through merciless bullying as a teenager. The girls were always the worst. They got even meaner when I miraculously managed to get a boyfriend. Notice how slut shaming usually starts with girls ripping apart other girls? These girls have been taught that they are valueless without a man, and all other girls are competition for the high status male they desire to get somewhere in life. How messed up is that? That a woman’s status is only as good as that of the man she winds up with. Feminism is needed to change that line of thinking. I’m working on it with my daughter right now actually. With that line of thinking comes another threat to my daughter, the guys.

My daughter wants to get into programming. Robotics, computer programming, those kinds of fields. Those are traditionally male dominated fields. In high school, she will need to bust her ass, despite all the other obstacles thrown at her, to keep her grades high enough for a university to even look at her. (In Canada university admission is a highly competitive and costly thing so scholarships are a must.) This means some of the male peers will feel threatened by her. The fact she will be taking their opportunities away by virtue of her sex, will enrage them. So the bullying will come from them in an attempt to break her down and make her give up. Eventually the males will figure out the power of their penis, as always and the threat of rape will be omnipresent for her, as all other women out there from there on out.

If she manages to get through the gauntlet of high school and university with her head held high and a proverbial rod of iron in her spine, she will then have to fight for a job, and to keep it. As a woman, she will make 77c for each dollar her male colleagues make. She will have to work twice as hard to be respected in her workplace. She will have men trying to take credit for her work, and will need to be “the bitch” in order to keep it from happening. Heh. Bitch, another word to describe a woman who claims her equality next to men. Funny eh? Let’s go out on a limb, and pretend my daughter chooses to reproduce one day. In Canada, we are guaranteed one year paid maternity leave at %60 of our salary. Cool beans, eh? Not so fast. Just because an employer can’t legally terminate a person for their choice to procreate, doesn’t mean it doesn’t occur for other reasons.

If my daughter chooses to procreate, when she comes back, there is a big chance that her employer will make it insanely difficult on her to perform her job, and balance family obligations as well. Men rarely have to deal with that. Eventually her job performance will suffer, and the employer will hand her her pink slip, record of employment and final cheque and tell her they are sorry to see her go, and it was unfortunate she was unable to balance life properly, with vague hints that it will be for the best that she be home with her own children. Game over. In a field such as programming, one needs to keep ones skills current and sharp, usually by working, and potential employers see huge gaps in resumes as a very negative thing.

So, what sparked this? Well, being military moving is always on the horizon. We have been in this area for five years now, give or take. Her current school has helped her so much, academically and socially with her aspergers. She has grown from a young child who would have two to three hour meltdowns per day, refuse to eat, and unable to communicate what was going on in her head, to a well rounded independent young lady. My heart would be crushed if that got reversed in any way. A move now would be a very rough go with months of recovery, as well as the bully gauntlet of a new school. Right now, she’s thriving. That’s all I want for her.

After reading all that, you are probably thinking, wtf does this have to do with feminism? Well, as I stated earlier, I have a son. Yes, I know boys are bullied as much as girls, but not for the same underlying reasons. Sure he might be bullied for being smaller than his peers, even if all that happens, he is still a white male and has all the societal privilege as afforded a white cis male. Because of this inherent privilege, I fear less for his outcome than I do my daughter’s in this society. THAT is why we need feminism.

Bullying absolutely crushed me. I had hopes and dreams, but they were put aside so I could just survive my day to day life. The bullying began for me when I moved schools when I started grade nine and never let up until I graduated. I did all I could to stay off the radar. That included keeping my grades low so the teachers wouldn’t call on me for anything. I moved from a safe school to an unsafe one. I foresee the same damn thing happening to my daughter.