Friday, March 23, 2007
When I call grown ups boys, many of said boys will say things like "oh baby, I'm all man". This gives the the opportunity to point out to them how if they dislike being diminutized so much that they need to assert their manhood when I call them a boy, then they need to stop using the word girl to describe a woman. More thoughtful boys will just ask why I only use the word boys. Then a simple explanation of why works.
But this kind of tactic only works with people I am around long enough to have this conversation with. Lately, before I even know someone well enough to know their name, I am confronted with girl/man problem. The cartoon about a "girl who knows how to treat her man" is something that I can say happens about once a week.
So, since I know that being rational with idiots never works (try debating with a conservative redneck sometime) I am no longer going to point out to the girl/man users that they are being sexist. Nope, I got me a better plan.
Instead, I am going to ask them if it's hard to be a child molester in this day and age since they are being so open about wanting an underage female as a companion. 10 bucks says that the next time they want to call a woman a girl they think twice about it.
Thursday, March 22, 2007
On my way back I was listening to music on my headphones and I walked past a guy who was just hanging out. He was old, at least 65, on crutches and had a cast on his leg. As I walked past he started shouting the "hey baby" crap at me. I could hear him over my headphones but I ignored him. He started to chase after me ON CRUTCHES when I didn't respond. He started yelling shit like "bitch you shouldn't be shaking your ass if you don't want attention" etc.
I turned around, pulled my headphones off and told him that if he didn't shut up I was going to kick his ass, and I absolutely meant it. He said something about how I couldn't kick his ass and how he could kill me. I laughed, pointed out that he was old and broken and walked off. I was a bit shaken up but proud that I had told him off. Today though I am really glad he didn't have a car or a weapon after reading this.
A woman was in serious condition Wednesday morning after Orange County
deputies said a man deliberately ran her over.
The woman and her friend were apparently walking down the side of the road near Orange Blossom trail and Jordan Avenue late Tuesday night when the accident happened. Deputies said the man responsible wanted their attention and wasn't taking no for an answer.
Just to make it simple- here's an easy breakdown so you can understand the problem from a male privilege point of view
1) Women are created to be attractive so that men will pay attention to them
2) All women are attention whores so they all should appreciate any type of attention they receive from men
3) Women who don't show the appropriate amount of respect when receiving attention from men (i/e dropping to their knees and offering a blow job or at least flashing their tits) are teases even if they weren't trying to get any attention at all. If they didn't want attention then they shouldn't have left the house.
4) Teases and whores deserve what's coming to them. They were asking for it.
Most guys don't get how unnerving it is to be yelled at by some stranger. They think that like in publicity- all attention is good. But being yelled at by some stranger or even just having some random guy on the street tell you to smile are not the same thing as having a friend or acquaintance compliment you on your dress or hair or shoes. One action is part of enhancing or creating a social bond between equals, the other is one person turning another into an object for their own gratification and not for the benefit of the person being commented on.
Add the ever present threat of violence that women are warned about everyday from the time we are old enough to know we are different from boys, and this kind of harassment is enough to make me want to get a concealed weapons permit.
Tuesday, March 20, 2007
Many of you know I am authoring a book tentatively tittled 1648: An Astrological History of Europe from the Renaissance to the Victorian Age. I can say with 100% assurance that the period between Neptune-Pluto alignments, approximately every 495 years, offers a more precise way to divide history into manageable portions than the more arbitrary ones of five hundred years etc. I am also finding that the Neptune-Pluto divisions also coincide with the familiar terms of the Middle Ages, The Bronze Age, etal. These divisions gives us the current "wave" (my term) beginning around 1892 and ending in 2384. We are in the first phase or quarter of that wave.
For a long while I had trouble classifying what this wave means. The problem is typically postmodern, too much information instead of not enough. Many of the candidates included global warming, globalization, the new power of women, integration of minorities into the mainstream, how to define religion in a post-modern world, etc,. All of these help define the issues we know face. But the more I ponder them, the more I conclude that these represen symptoms rather than the actual condition. But, seeing them this way lead to a more universal truth: it is the progress, stupid!
Until the last wave, 1398-1892, progress was NOT a given. Indeed, a purposeful march toward progress, the assumption that humans could use their minds to improve their conditions, was shunned as counterproductive and wasteful. Religion also cast a heavy shadow as human-centered progress removes God as the main factor governing our destinies. However, since the damn broke during Age of Reason, human generated progress was assumed as a given. But as we know, progress giveth as much as it takes away.
It is my contention that we have progressed beyond our abilities. What I mean by this is best seen in the climate change scenario, but applies to other issues such as demographic imbalance, income distribution and globalization. Machines gave us abilities to produce ever faster, stronger, more productive, bigger (ands smaller) machines. Science helps us live better and longer. At the same time, we have brought ourselves to the brink of ruining the planet by overpopulation and various forms of pollution. I.e, we moved to quickly without determining the consequences. Now, we cannot return to old ways, but cannot continue with our current path. Something must be said for the old attitude of seeing progress as counterproductive and wasteful.
If my Neptune-Pluto wave model holds true, then this is the first wave than began with human-based progress as a given. The first phase of any wave deals with defining what the overall means. My opinion is that we need to define what human-based progress really is. If whatever we do brings us closer to our overall demise or global destruction to the point of making most life untenable, then is it really progress? The answer seems to be a resounding "NO".
Then if "progress" really is not progressive, what is it? No, there are no simple answers, but not attempting to answer the question is even less progressive.
Monday, March 19, 2007
It is also the 4th year of the Iraq war. The paranoid conspiracy theorist in my head still thinks that part of the reason for starting the war on my birthday was so that the neocons could get one more giant dig into a progressive. But I'm not really that important.
So it's four years into this pointless and badly planned war and no one seems to have any idea what to do about it. Surging is pointless, we don't have and can't commit enough troops to turn Iraq into the lock down, high security prison state that Bush dreams of. If we stay the course then the horrible bloodshed will either maintain its current intolerable level or, much more likely, get worse. And if we pull out, completely leave Iraq to its own devices, then there really will have been nothing gained and much lost after four years of horror and blood.
But pulling out is the only way for Iraq to find its footing and eventually some peace.
The current powers that be, namely Bush and Cheney and their foaming mouthed sycophants, still think we are a country capable of creating puppet "democracies" like we did in Latin America for most of the last century. But not this time. There was no real "Big Man" in Iraq like there was in Chile with Pinochet. Well, there was and we helped put him there, but recently the Iraqi people had their former leader executed.
The Iraqi people need the Americans out so that they can create their own government, be it a democracy or theocracy or flat out anarchy. It is not our place to force a government of any kind on Iraq. One of my favorite quotes is that "Democracy through tyranny is still tyranny". By imposing ourselves and our politics on Iraq we are the worst kind of tyrants- ineffective. If we could justify our presence in the country by showing that the Iraqis are now safe from violence or ethnic divisions, that they are free from the starvation and shortages that they suffered under Saddam because of the embargo, that they could even walk out of their houses everyday to go to work or school, then maybe we could justify staying in the country to promote peace. But everyday life for Iraqis becomes harder and we are the cause.
So we must pull out. It will cause a power vacuum, it will increase violence in the short-term, and every death that follows our leaving will be just as much our fault as the deaths that are caused by our being there. But the Iraqis will then have to deal with each other without the excuse of the Americans as occupiers to continue the violence. Without us there, then the influence of Al Qaida (that only exists since we have invaded Iraq, not before as the foaming mouths will have you believe) will diminish.
Iraq needs a chance to organically develop a leader to take charge of their country and as long as we are there that WILL NOT HAPPEN. Anyone who works with the Americans will be suspect as being a puppet, anyone who works against the Americans will be fodder for our troops. The Iraqis must have a chance for a strong leader to develop the support and organization needed to drag a country out of civil war. It will be bloody, it will most likely be another dictator, and the Sunni minority will probably be the biggest losers. But it is up to the Iraqis to fight or accept that. All we can do at this point is throw money at the infrastructure of the country that we destroyed (and not put that money through government contracts where palettes of money disappear like political Latin Americans in the 70s).
We have failed the soldiers of our country by putting them in harms way for reasons based on lies. We have failed the people of Iraq by taking them from a dictatorship that they knew to a bloody civil war where no one is safe. Saddam was certainly not a saint, but I am pretty sure most Iraqis would prefer a false sense of security over perpetual war. We must admit our hubris and withdraw.