Feminist Files: The beds are burning

  • Violence of silence: The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) is in jeopardy of not being passed before the end of this session of Congress. Let’s do something about that!
  • Merry-fucking-Xmas: Uganda is not for lovers. Or, at least not homosexual lovers. Recently, a member of Uganda parliament promised to get a bill to “kill the gays” passed, calling it a “Christmas present.” There’s a petition to put pressure on Citibank and Barclay — both with holdings in Uganda — to exert some influence against this hateful legislation. You can sign the petition.
  • A few good women: It’s about time we do something about military women’s access to health care, including abortion. The ACLU has a handy page so you can send a letter to your representative.
  • The F-word: It’s 2012 and we’re still talking about why people don’t like being called “feminist.” What’s so bad about the f-word, anyway?
  • In the family way: A nice piece on What it Means to be Adopted. It may seem like the road less-taken, but adoption should be celebrated as a wonderful way to build a family.
  • Words matter: The new AP Style Guide — which is the gold standard for journalistic writing in America — is going to drop the words “homophobia,” “Islamaphobia,” and “ethnic cleansing” from its new edition. The rationale is that “phobia” is an irrational fear but hating gay people is not fear-based but more of a belief system. Meanwhile, “ethnic cleansing” is deemed a euphemism and not appropriate. I get where the AP editors are going with this, but I think this is premature and short-sighted. There is no politically correct equivalent of “homophobia” (et al). Furthermore, that word and those like it have a cultural context and meaning that is quickly understood (if not always agreed with). What is the appropriate term for those who hate gay people, Islamic people, and so on? Read more here about why this is a mistake.

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