Friday, June 27, 2008

Male Privilege, Cyberstalking and The Election

A little over 80 years ago, one of the dominant reasons for not giving us ladies the right to vote was that politics would sully our pure spirits. But really it was just another excuse in a long line of excuses used to shut the bitches up.

Now we have the vote(to the lament of many) and after decades of trying to find a public voice and being shut out of traditional arenas (or given token membership if we are willing to disparage our own sex), women have found the internet, just like dudes did. And we use it speak clearly and freely without being hindered by the old standards that kept us not silent, but unheard.

Of course that drives the tools of the patriarchy mad! Mad I tell you! And just how mad is clearly seen in the cyberstalker and trolls. No, not all all men are cyberstalkers and trolls but nearly all cyberstalkers and trolls are men. It's the Catholic/Christian thing (All Catholics are Christians but not all Christians are Catholics).

Recently, the mad boyz of the Obama campaign have reported several Pro Clinton blogs as spam in an attempt to shut them up. Including our favorite Blue Lyon. It's not a coincidence that the bloggers they are trying to quiet are women. I mean, they aren't getting Pro McCain blogs locked up, now are they?

Why would it be more important to silence women than to silence men of opposing viewpoints is the question. Why are these mad boyz so desperately afraid of women speaking freely about their political opinions? I don't think it's just because they think our voices are too shrill or our laughs so cackling that we make their eardrums bleed just by speaking near them. I think they have more pragmatic reasons for trying to keep us quiet.

A little while back, Feministe reported on an awesome Latina teacher in LA who got fired for teaching her mostly minority students about their own histories instead of the regurgitated white bread crap that has been forced down most of our throats. We can't have that. OMG, POC finding out that their entire history is not one of mere oppression/subjugation! If they learn the histories of successful movements against the oppressors, they might get ideas! They might not be willing to accept the lives of poverty that we have planned for them. Shut that teacher up before she undoes centuries of patriarchal brain washing by letting students read about Malcolm X.

And the same principle applies to women. Shut those uppity bitches up before other women (and sympathetic men) catch on and ruin it for all of us. That's why the hopium smokers keep trolling Hillary blogs. Hillary reminded us that there is still a lot of fighting to be done. And she woke up a giant community of women who are tired of being quiet for the good of the party. Hillary may have suspender her campaign, but the spirit of possibility and the drive to create something better has been awakened in many of us. And for those of us who have never been quiet, we now have much larger audiences of willing and enthusiastic listeners. That is what the trolls fear most. That people will hear us and agree.

It is easy to attribute the abuses of privilege to evilness or ignorance. But like I've been saying for a long time, privilege is pragmatic. Rape exists and is allowed to flourish as a means of keeping women in fear. The motherhood ideal exists as a way to keep women doing necessary labor for no wages. And misogynist trolls on feminist blogs everywhere exist to keep us quiet.

But it ain't gonna work this time.

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