“In 1784, five years before he became president of the United States, George Washington, 52, was nearly toothless. So he hired a dentist to transplant nine teeth into his jaw—having extracted them from the mouths of his slaves.”—The sorry legacy of the founders
“That said, stereotypes aren’t so much about people totally projecting things that completely aren’t there but about people having a framework with which they interpret things that actually are there. It’s not that racism causes people to see (for example) belligerent teenage boys where there are none, but that a white belligerent teenage boy is just seen as himself while a black belligerent teenage boy is part of a pattern, a script, and when people blindly follow the scripts in their head that leads to discrimination and prejudice. So yeah, it is a fact, I think, that I was a bit off-putting in my Jeopardy! appearance—hyper-focused on the game, had an intense stare, clicked madly on the buzzer, spat out answers super-fast, wasn’t too charming in the interviews, etc. But this may have taken root in people’s heads because I’m an Asian and the “Asian mastermind” is a meme in people’s heads that it wouldn’t have otherwise.Look, we all know that there’s a trope in the movies where someone of a minority race is flattened out into just being “good at X” and that the white protagonist is the one we root for because unlike the guy who’s just “good at X” the protagonist has human depth, human relationships, a human point of view—and this somehow makes him more worthy of success than the antagonist who seems to exist just to be good at X. So we root for Rocky against black guys who, by all appearances, really are better boxers than he is, because unlike them Rocky isn’t JUST a boxer, he has a girlfriend, he has hopes, he has dreams, etc. This comes up over and over again in movies where the athletic black competitor is set up as the “heel”—look at the black chick in Million Dollar Baby and how much we’re pushed to hate her. Look at all this “Great White Hope” stuff, historically, with Joe Louis. So is it any surprise that this trope comes into play with Asians? That the Asian character in the movie is the robotic, heartless, genius mastermind who is only pure intellect and whom we’re crying out to be defeated by some white guy who may not be as brainy but has more pluck, more heart, more humanity? It’s not just Flash Gordon vs. Ming the Merciless, it’s stuff like how in the pilot episode of Girls Hannah gets fired in favor of an overachieving Asian girl who’s genuinely better at her job than she is (the Asian girl knows Photoshop and she doesn’t) and we’re supposed to sympathize with Hannah. Okay, here’s one more comment from the Internet that kind of encapsulates it. The kind of un-self-awareness of what someone is saying when they say they’d prefer I not win because I try too hard at the game, work too hard at it, care too much about it, and that they’d prefer that a “likable average Joe” win. This is disturbing because it amounts to basically an attack on competence, a desire to bust people who work very hard and have very strong natural gifts down in favor of “likable average Joes”—and it’s disturbing because the subtext is frequently that to be “likable” and “average” you have to have other traits that are comforting and appealing to an “average Joe” audience, like white skin and an American accent.”—
It’s not against the law in Massachusetts to secretly take photos up a woman’s skirt, the state’s highest court ruled Wednesday. The court dismissed charges against Michael Robertson, who was arrested by Boston transit police for taking photos and videos up multiple women’s skirts or dresses on the subway.
The judges sympathized with the notion that a woman should be able to have a reasonable expectation not to have secret photos taken up her skirt when she goes out in public, but ruled that current state law does not address that. Massachusetts’ “Peeping Tom” laws, as written, only protect women from being photographed in dressing rooms or bathrooms when they are undressed. Since upskirt photos are taken of fully clothed women in public, they don’t count, according to the court.
“A female passenger on a MBTA trolley who is wearing a skirt, dress, or the like covering these parts of her body is not a person who is ‘partially nude,’ no matter what is or is not underneath the skirt by way of underwear or other clothing,” the court wrote.
Robertson’s lawyers defended his actions by arguing the photos were a matter of free speech.
Upskirt photos are becoming increasingly common with the spread of camera phones, but the law is slow to catch up with new technologies. Under most voyeurism laws, women must have a “reasonable expectation of privacy,” which is difficult to prove when she is in public. The Massachusetts court is hardly the first to acquit men who take these photos; perpetrators in Oklahoma, Indiana, and Washington have all been cleared by judges because the laws on the books did not apply. In response to one case in which a man legally took upskirt photos of a 10-year-old girl, Indiana lawmakers passed an upskirt ban in 2011. Other states have considered but not passed similarly updated voyeurism laws.
Things heard by people I haven't seen for months at a friend's birthday party last night:
1. “I barely recognized you with that hair….”
-response from another immediately following “You look like a yuppie!”
2. “That’s a…pretty big sweater, you look like some Scandinavian lady.”
3. “That sweater looks….warm.”
4. “Is that your actual natural hair color?”
5. “You need to not be so covered up.”
6. Physically takes off my sweater and unwraps my warm scarf from around my neck to expose my scoop neck white tee underneath which shows a little bit of my cleavage “There that’s better.”
7. Immediately following Dan walks up and stands next to me and notices my tee shirt then grabs my boobs, twice.
I hadn’t seen these people since well before I moved to California last year for school. Most even longer than that. Nobody asked me how my schooling went. No one asked me what I was doing back in the state. No one asked me anything personal or engaging whatsoever. EVERY SINGLE INTERACTION MADE WAS BASED SOLELY ON MY PHYSICAL APPEARANCE. Mind you I literally threw on a pair of jeans, 2 wools socks with my warmest boots, a tee shirt and an oversized wool sweater from my mom’s best friends closet I quick grabbed while heading out the door with a scarf. I walked 5 blocks to the party in -20°F weather so I dressed appropriately so I wouldn’t get frost bite. Everyone else other than myself gave more thought to what I was actually wearing than I did. I’m old enough to know better and was fortunate enough to grow up in a family with very strong and empowered women to not allow this to affect the importance my physical appearance actually plays on my life but this is not the case for most women. This happens all the time in the workplace, school, on the street, in media, in public and personal affairs. Nearly every women’s magazine is geared towards how you should look and what you can do to change yourself if you don’t quite fit the bill. It’s repulsive. I expect it from media sources and other external communications but when it comes from people who I personally know when there’s easily so many other things that could be talked about it’s just dull, diluted, and completely numbing. People don’t even fucking realize they’re being objectifying AT ALL! This is why feminism is important. We can’t keep treating people like objects, especially young girls and teenagers. When you see a little girl, don’t comment on how cute she is, ask her what she likes to do, if she has any pets, what she wants to be when she grows up. If you constantly tell little girls how cute they are they’re made to believe that their appearance is important. Little kids are unbelievably impressionable and are constantly learning how the world works and we need to stop teaching little girls that this is a world where their outfit is more important than the last picture they drew. I’m over it. We’re all over it.
“I’m not a Beatles lover. I’m kind of a Beatles hater, actually. And I know people will hate me for saying I hate Sgt. Pepper’s, right? But the greatest rock & roll record of all time? To me, rock & roll is more Rolling Stones, sexy and dirty. They’re clever. But there’s nothing raw about the Beatles. There’s no dirty sex with them. And that’s not rock & roll.”—Chloe Sevigny (via ohchloesevigny)