Evolution of “Egalitarianism,” “Feminism,” and Such Words

Egalitariansim

In 2011, I wrote a post called “On Feminism and Egalitarianism” which was a follow-up to the post “SlutWalk NYC is pissing me off with its DSK protesting.” You can read the comments on all the posts, where I feel like I fairly dealt with the criticism.

Normally I wouldn’t be highlighting a controversial post at a critical time in my writing career. (If I had no backbone, I would simply delete the original post.) But, in the spirit of evolving conversation, I want to leave no stone unturned in documenting my evolving views in the context of societal change.

One aspect I neglected to emphasize, that I probably could have done a better job at in the original post, was the legal aspect.

Due Process is a very important issue to me. I don’t want to make this a “I was a victim, so I can’t be biased” point, but I have personally had my Due Process violated and was told by a private lawyer that they wouldn’t take my case. This discouraged me from even thinking about taking the case higher up to maybe the ACLU.

But I understand why the lawyer didn’t take the case. It would have been an uphill battle against a system in a case with somewhat unprovable evidence and questionable damages.

I’m not saying the alleged victim in the DSK case was lying. I’m not saying there’s no possibility the prosecutor dropped the case because of political pressure. All I was saying is that frivolous charges and lawsuits exist, and that sometimes (albeit rarely) people in power or not in power are falsely accused; I don’t know the specifics of this case other than what the media reported, and unless Slutwalk NYC had a source on the team with more inside information than NYT, they didn’t know the details of the dismissal either.

DSK sounds like a scumbag. I believe, through study data and personal experience, that when there’s multiple allegations about sexual abuse, there’s usually more fire than conspiratorial smoke.

Rhetoric Update

In this 2018 climate, I am no longer comfortable using the word “egalitarianism” casually. I have seen this word hijacked by too many MRAs who are more concerned with their own oppression than by the oppression of others.

And, of course, the power structures in this country have changed. If you’ve read this far, you know what I’m talking about.

I’m not an argumentative person by nature. If a person (usually a man) asks with a loaded tone if I’m a feminist these days, I just say Yes and leave it to them if they want to argue.

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Men are NOT Raped More than Women in the US pt. 2

Men’s rights activists (MRAs) were abound in the comment’s section of my post, “Men are NOT raped more than women.” They ignored all the statistics I posted and made up their own conclusions using incorrect analyses of the data.

So here’s my long-awaited, follow-up post, with yet more proof and numbers.

The original link to a DOJ study, cited by Feministe, is now down. Here’s what I found on the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) government website that I believe was the same study.

http://www.bjs.gov/content/pub/pdf/pdca16.pdf

The NIS-3 was conducted in 233 state and federal prisons, 358 local jails, and 15 special confinement facilities operated by ICE, the U.S. military, and correctional authorities in Indian country. A total of 92,449 inmates age 18 or older participated in the survey, including 38,251 prison inmates, 52,926 jail inmates, 573 ICE detainees, 539 inmates in military facilities, and 160 inmates in Indian country facilities. The survey was also administered to 527 youth ages 16 to 17 held in state prisons and 1,211 youth ages 16 to 17 in local jails.

So in the 2011-2012 National Inmate Survey (NIS), which is the updated version of the one my post originally talked about, they had a sample of 92,449 inmates age 18 or older and 1,738 inmates ages 16 to 17.

http://www.bjs.gov/content/pub/pdf/svpjri1112.pdf

Among the 91,177 adult prison and jail inmates participating in the NIS-3 sexual victimization survey, 3,381 reported experiencing one or more incidents of sexual victimization in the past 12 months or since admission to the facility, if less than 12 months. Since the NIS-3 is a sample survey, weights were applied for sampled facilities and inmates within facilities to produce national-level and facility-level estimates. The estimated number of prison and jail inmates experiencing sexual victimization totaled 80,600 (or 4.0% of all prison inmates and 3.2% of jail inmates nationwide).

I’m not sure what happened to a couple of the adult inmates; maybe their surveys were unacceptable for some reason. But keep in mind that this is men and women. Here’s another PDF about the same study:

http://www.bjs.gov/content/pub/pdf/svraca0911.pdf

The reported number of victims for lifetime sexual victimization in the survey is 8,763. The reported number in the 12 months in 2011 is 3,381. There were reported 31,110 surveys from men’s facilities and 7,141 from women’s facilities. So it turns out that 80,600 total victims is just an estimate, extrapolating from the survey.

Between 2009 and 2011, females represented about 7% of all state and federal prison inmates, but accounted for 22% of inmate-on-inmate victims and 33% of staff-on-inmate victims.

I think we can safely say that more total men are “sexually victimized” in prison than women, but this is mostly explained by the much higher percentage of men being in prison.

Meanwhile, let’s look at numbers for estimated sexual assaults for 2011, the same year the NIS-3 was conducted. First, I tried to find a study from the BJS so my numbers for prison abuse came from the same place. BJS referred me to the “National Crime Victimization Survey” (NCSV).

http://www.bjs.gov/content/pub/pdf/cv11.pdf

So here are the results from 2011 NCVS. 143,120 persons age 12 or older from 79,800 households across the country were interviewed during the year. The estimated total number of rapes/sexual assaults reported in 2011 was 243,800. This PDF did not break this total down by men and women. I had to look at some other method that did.

https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/ss6308a1.htm

12,727 telephone interviews were completed in the National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey, 2011. This was conducted by the CDC.

In the United States, an estimated 19.3% of women and 1.7% of men have been raped during their lifetimes; an estimated 1.6% of women reported that they were raped in the 12 months preceding the survey.

1.6% of women raped in the 12 months before taking the survey is 1.9 million women.

The case count for men reporting rape in the preceding 12 months was too small to produce a statistically reliable prevalence estimate.

Men weren’t even statistically significant enough to be counted for 2011.

Final numbers:

Estimated number of all “sexual victimization” victims in prison/jail in 2011: 80,600 (BJS)

Estimated number of all rapes/sexual assaults reported in 2011: 243,800 (BJS)

Estimated number of women raped in 2011: 1.9 million (CDC)

There probably is a way, somehow-through bullshit polls-to conclude that men are raped more than women. But the amount of cherry-picking and statistical juggling it takes to reach that conclusion is beyond the scope of reasonable facts. I used the very best (in terms of sample size) and most reliable available statistics for the same year. I believe that, even if you adjust the methodologies of the studies to include different definitions of “rape” and “sexual assault,” the gap between the numbers for men and women remains huge. I don’t see how the data can be any more clear that men are NOT raped more than women.

Joyce Brown – Billie Bogs and NYC’s Forgotten Involuntary Confinement Program

Joyce Brown was a New York City resident and homeless woman who was involuntarily hospitalized in NYC in 1987.

On October 28, 1987, Ms. Brown was transported to Bellevue Hospital as the first patient under Project HELP, a city program spearheaded by Mayor Ed Koch, a program aimed at the hospitalization of the homeless. She had been living on the streets in Manhattan and often used the fake name “Billie Bogs” to avoid being found by her family.

On December 18, the Appellate Division of State Supreme Court in Manhattan upheld her involuntary commitment.  However, the judge that wrote the dissenting argument claimed that there was not enough evidence to support the notion that she was a danger to herself.1

Dr. Francine Cournos, an assistant professor of psychiatry  Columbia University, stated that although she thought treatment would be helpful, it was not advised treatment be given against her will. On January 15, 1988, a judge ruled that Joyce Brown could be not involuntary medicated.2

The appeal to confine Joyce Brown was eventually successful, with help from lawyers from NYCLU, whom she had called herself for legal support. Acting State Supreme Court Justice Robert Lippmann determined that she was competent enough to not be a danger to herself or others. She was released after nearly three months of involuntary commitment.3

She went on to seek gainful employment and many have written published articles about her civil rights case and involuntary medication and commitment.

1. Kirk Johnson. The New York Times. Court Backs Treatment of Woman Held Under Koch Homeless Plan. Published: December 19, 1987.

2. Josh Barbanel. The New York Times. Joyce Brown Obtains a Ban On Medicine. Published: January 16, 1988.

3. Jeanie Kasindorf. New York Magazine. The Real Story of Billie Bogs.Published: May 2, 1988.

Related reading:

Treatment Advocacy Center: Involuntary Hospitalization in the Modern Era: Is “Dangerousness” Ambiguous or Obsolete?

I Have a Crush on Reza Aslan (Fox News Interview)

So this video has been making its rounds on BuzzFeed lately:


“Why would you say that?” I love how smug and condescending he is without even trying.

Oh, Fox News, I will link to you only in YouTube videos and Google cache links just because it gives me great joy to deny you ad revenue.

I first saw Reza Aslan on The Daily Show during the Green Revolution. I thought, “Who is the gorgeous gorgeous Iranian man?”

Reza Aslan is a pretty big deal in academic circles and probably the biggest name in religious studies, and definitely Islam, off the top of my head. The only time I’ve seen him get flustered is when he debated the relationship of violence and Islam with Sam Harris.

It turns out Aslan is 41 and married, but… would still tap.  Mmmmm, articulate men with symmetrical faces and terminal degrees.

Yahoo! Ruins the Only Thing Tumblr Had Left Going For It

Via Zdnet:

Adult Tumblr blogs now removed from every form of search possible


Summary: Rather than leave adult content alone Yahoo’s Tumblr has eliminated its Erotica category, disabled search engine indexing for adult blogs, and removed adult Tumblrs from all internal search. Users are furious.

Top Reddit Comment:

My-Work-Reddit 1371 points 10 hours ago

Well, technically, Marissa Mayer didn’t lie, they did leave the adult blogs alone … VERY alone.

My personal favorite Tumblr of all time is: http://indifferent-cats-in-amateur-porn.tumblr.com/ (NSFW) Which was everything I hoped it would be and more.

Oh Marissa Mayer. My dream of creating the complementary “Overly Concerned Dogs in Amateur Porn” Tumblr is dead now because of you.

Yahoo! Inc.  If I was your shareholder, I would tell you to just crawl into Rupert Murdoch’s asshole and die. (It can join myspace in the grave of all graves.)


[EDIT/UPDATE: Tumblr officially responds to outrage. Zdnet post was apparently misleading. Here is a link to a Tumblr Staff post regarding NSFW content on Tumblr: http://staff.tumblr.com/post/55906556378/all-weve-heard-from-a-bunch-of-you-who-are]

The Cult of Cutco Tries Desperately to Knock Me Off Google

Vector Marketing Scam

My most popular post currently, in terms of per-day page hits, is my old exposé on Vector Marketing:

The Cult of Cutco: How Vector Marketing Mass-Hires Students into Dubious Contract Labor

Vector Marketing caught on and, realizing they could lose a bunch of money on a Google Search, bought a bunch of shitty domain names to bump down all the talk about how everyone hates Vector Marketing.

They even bought vectormarketingscam.com with links to… personal testimonies! *gasp* Read a real story by a real 18-year-old kid!

I understand SEO, Vector Marketing, I see it.

Anyway, if you are a pissed off former Vector employee, go the original Cult of Cutco article and share it. If you want to blog about Vector also and link me, please copy paste the entire post title or use the phrase “Vector Marketing Scam,” because I think those are the two easiest way to help bump my Google rankings back up.

There are easy share buttons at the bottom of the article too. I think the one that gets the most exposure these days is Reddit.

So, thanks, guys. Rock on spreading the information.

Louis CK Explains NYC Subway Frustration at the Comedy Cellar

Louis C.K. describes the worst part of the subway perfectly.

Hat-tip to Brokelyn for the Link:

Man, I miss his TV show. (The second one, of course, although Lucky Louie wasn’t actually all that terrible.)

Also…

Louis C.K. re-imagines classic jokes:

“I don’t know why the chicken crossed the road… Shouldn’t it be on a farm fucking other chickens?… There is no dialogue or conversation with a chicken; It just gets eaten and I take a shit.”

Dan, Me, Sex And Marriage

Dan Savage has been doing a video AMA series for The Dish too.

I haven’t read his book, but his podcast is one of my favs. I like listening to crazy sex shit or useful relationship perspectives while I clean the house.

The Dish

Last week, my old friend Dan Savage and I sat down for an extremely ill-advised public chat about, well, a lot of things. We were at the New York Public Library at a sold-out event, promoting Dan’s typically funny, moving, enraging, provoking, uplifting series of essays, now collected as American Savage. Here’s the full program. Enjoy:

View original post

Liz Katz and the Cosplay Controversy

I never knew crowdfunding could get so bitter before today. Especially for something like this…

Liz Katz is a model and actress based in LA and is very active in the nerd /gamer community. Petite modeling, booth babe gigs–she’s a perfect pick for an elf or a faerie photoshoot. She recently set up an IndieGogo page for a “Sexy Princess Peach Cosplay.”

It’s exactly what it sounds like. Funds would go to props, lighting, cameras, etc. Her goal was $650, but she managed to raise $4,690 between 52 backers.

It seems like an example of using social media to do a successful project funding. But amazingly enough, people are pissed off about it.

Nerd Reactor has an article titled “Is Fundraising a Cosplay Outfit Wrong?”

The top comment by James Campbell:

Why should we pay to help some wannabe actress/model? Cosplay should be a hobby done for love of the source material, not as a means of income. To many of these “cosplay” girls are using it as a means to get free exposure to further their goal of being an actress/celebrity. If you’re selling posters and prints of yourself donning different costumes you are not a cosplayer and are violating the very spirit of cosplay.

Hah. This sounds like the type of person who would slut-shame someone and then jerk off to them at the same time.

First of all, if you’re getting paid, you’re not a wannabe. If you’re getting paid AND getting press coverage, then you’re definitely not a wannabe. For a model, “free exposure” is a good thing.

Have these people not been to LA? Have they not seen the iconic costume photo hustlers on Hollywood Boulevard?

There is nothing wrong with using an image to make money. Intellectual property can get tricky, but nobody is arresting the guy dressed like Superman for hitting up tourists for a photo op.

There are definitely issues with the videogame industry oversexualizing nearly every female character. Don’t get me wrong. Feminism in videogames is a complex topic. It’s a good discussion topic, and it’s fascinating to watch the dynamics between gamer girls and the so-called “beta males.”

But if the fans start bullying each other’s interpretations of fandom and sexual expression, then they are failing to make an inclusive community.

And that violates the very spirit of cosplay.

The “Rat Park” Drug Addiction Comic

Stuart McMillen is a comic artist from Australia who uses comics as a medium to explore deep, often philosophical topics.

This month he writes about the experiment that purports that well-socialized and stimulated rats will actually choose opiate withdrawal over giving up their normal interactions. The rats in isolation cages do not.

Read the entire comic here.

Wiki article: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rat_Park

Despite all our rage, we’re still just underfunded rats in a cage.