6/19/07

Another stale reality series

Many apo-lurgys for not posting sooner.

I will not make any excuses for my recent lackadaisical blogging tendencies. My mind has been overglutted with ideas, and yet, there has always been something (gah) stopping me from bringing them to fruition. I don’t know what that is. Behemothic quantities of work, maybe. Or it might be the fact that I have five classes this summer (do I hear muffled chortlings of ‘loser’, you twerps?).

Oh well, I’ll do away with the customary hedging with respect to lack of activity on this blog and just get on with it.

Instead of typing out a protracted post on issues which usually plague my overstrung brain, I want to actually focus on the mac daddy of cotton candy comb-overs aka the ignominious Donald Trump.

I let out a huge sigh of relief when the Apprentice finally met its scuzzy demise (If you are a fan of The Apprentice, leave quietly. Now.) I loathed, LOATHED the Donald. And his tendency to speak numerous octaves louder than what is deemed necessary for humans. And his bloated, pestiferous ego, which made me want to scratch my ears out every time I heard him bray ‘my building/golf course/insipid casino is the highest, tallest, expensivest, bestest of all the structures in noo yawk ceetee and all of ameyreekaa’. And of course his hair. Oh my god, his hair. Anybody who sports such a do (or a un-do, perhaps?) which resembles orange-ish bile colored puffy cotton candy strands of hair floating precariously above their heads and acts all unaffected, like say Trump, must be suffering from an unidentified form of a monothematic delusion, at the very least.

My main beef with the Donald however (oh yeah, I have a bigger beef with the cruddy comb-overster, if that is possible) is his new and stupendously godawful* reality show called 'Lady or a Tramp' which is still under development and is purportedly set to air on the Fox network. While I will reserve my not so kind judgments on the vapid Fox Network, I will commend their unwavering tendencies to constantly promote reality TV shows which challenge my understanding of utter stupidity and methodically expunge my brain cells, time and time again.

Basically the Donald, who happens to be the bastion of moral righteousness, third marriage to a woman who is 28 years his junior notwithstanding, is upset at the state of ‘these out of control women’ who you know, indulge in normal activities like drinking and partying, because they can. But the Donald, upholder of all things moralistic and decorous, will have none of it. According to him,

We are all sick and tired of the glamorization of these out-of-control young women, so I have taken it upon myself to do something about it. I am creating a real-life version of My Fair Lady with my company Trump Productions. This show is all about getting a second chance and transforming for the better; the idea is genius and the show will be huge.


(From Variety)

The above quote stands for everything which typifies the Donald and that which is largely asphyxiating to the rest of us i.e. theatrical pomposity and smarmy self righteousness.

So anyway, the show is about sending ‘out of control’ and ‘bawdy’ party girls to a fetid and priggish charm school in Britain, where they learn to discipline themselves, and start embracing the Stepford wifeian code of how girls should behave and presto! Their lives have been turned around! Hooray! Not.

Even though I dislike the Trump immensely, my biggest problem is with the premise of this show. I find it very hard to digest the fact that these so called antipodal ‘tramps’ (ugh) need to go to charm school for their behavior. That their behavior is deemed unacceptable and ‘tramp’-like and therefore necessitating a need for disciplinary action, of sorts. That they are considered incapable of taking care of themselves. That their actions are viewed as an affront to womanhood, as if womanhood was about confirming to rigid, sexist patriarchal standards and wanting to have a little fun is somehow kryptonite to what a ‘good’ woman actually should be.

I hope this show fails miserably if it ever gets to be aired. I hope that Trump’s morality whoring is not confused with compassion, because you know he cares. I hope people realize that the way he dealt with Tara Connor (Miss USA) and her partying, was truthfully a fiasco and not something to be emulated.

I can only pray that ‘The Lady or the Tramp’ falls flat on its face with a resounding thud.

* Arguments bordering on "But you haven't seen this show. Surely you cannot make a sweeping generalization" will be ignored. If you honestly subscribe to this worldview, here's some food for thought: this show is backed by the Donald. It involves rehabilitating so called 'party girls'. It's called "The Lady or the Tramp". Enough said.

6/4/07

men's issue

Rape happens, is happening and will continue to happen with all its horror and its murky pervasiveness.

This is as obvious as daylight. Yes?

Right.

So why isn’t it conspicuous for the droves of men who vociferously support the cause for anti-rape or at least the ones who can agree that rape = bad, that rape cannot be pooh-poohed away as a ‘women’s issue’? If it really were a ‘women’s issue’ don’t you think that women would have aggressively found a way to stop it or decrease its prevalence considerably?

Regrettably, most men do not even acknowledge the fact that rape is a men’s issue let alone take any responsibility for it. Any mention of ‘as a man you must feel obligated to contribute in stopping rape and sexual violence’ is met with defensive cries of ‘how dare you say I must be ‘obligated’, I don’t rape and I resent being bunched in with rapists’ and other variants of ‘I am not a rapist hence it is not my problem’.

But it is a men’s issue. The lives of men and women are, and always will be irrevocably connected and cultivating an inner disconnect and denying accountability for the violence meted out to women (and men) is just plain foolish and pathetically ignorant. You are connected to a planet where women are assailed indiscriminately. You are connected to those women who obligatorily alter their lifestyles and behavior out of fear for their wellbeing and their lives. All women suffer the repercussions of rape irrespective of the fact that they’ve been raped or not. Realize that your lives as men will also be affected by rape, whether you are the perpetrator or not.

So why should you as a man, really care about rape?

Here’s why,

1. Men rape. Understand that ‘men rape’ does not equate ‘every man is a rapist’. Break out of your miasma of denial and defensiveness. Do not skirt around, derail or evade this issue. Accept it.

2. Comprehend the fact that men get raped too, and an overwhelming majority of their assailants aren’t women, they are other men.

3. Women do not provoke rape by what they wear, the amount they drink or where they choose to be. This stems from an insidious and a dangerously flawed belief that rape is an impulsive act by a person who seeks instant sexual gratification. Nothing can be further from the truth. Rape is not an enjoyable sport; it is an act of violence, aggression and coercion. It is primarily a crime of power, of shaming, humiliating and rendering the victim powerless.

4. Women do not use rape as an excuse for ‘revenge’ or getting back at a ‘cheating partner’ or whatever. In the United States, less than 2 % of rapes are reported false. The media and rape apologists may glorify this miniscule percentage and make it seem like it is much larger than it actually is. Understand that it is not.

5. A large majority of all rapes are committed by acquaintances, friends and sometimes even the loved ones of those who are raped. This cultivates an intrinsic distrust and fear of all men, an unconscious classification of all men as ‘prospective rapists’.

So what can you as a man do, to work towards making this your issue?

a. Scrutinize your own behavior and question your attitudes. For starters, use the following questions as a paradigm for judging your attitudes towards women and sexual violence.

+ Do you think that jokes glorifying sexual violence are funny?

+ Consciously or unconsciously, do you contribute to the sexual objectification of women?

+ Do you think that it is acceptable to force a woman to have sex with you?

+ Do you think that when a woman says no, she actually means yes?

+ Do you and your friends push each other to ‘score as much pussy as possible’?

+ Do you constantly refer to women as bitches, whores, cunts, sluts, pussies, and so on?

b. Educate yourself about rape, sexual violence and assault. Knowledge is empowering.

c. Listen, really listen to women. Chances are, you might be directly or indirectly connected to at least one woman who is a survivor of sexual violence. Respond with compassion and understanding. Let her speak.

d. Confront your peers when they indulge in exploitative or brutal behavior. Non- interference in such situations is akin to participating. However uncomfortable you may feel, speak up and interfere.

e. Lastly, try to consciously devote your time and money to organizations which promote the prevention of violence and women or sexual violence.

Instead of being defensive or bitter, be thankful that as a man, you do have the power to help stop rape and other acts of sexual aggression or violence.

Really, you do.

Addendum:
This is just vile, unadultrated, filth. Because, you know rape is obviously funny, har har. And whats even worse are the fucked up comments like "its not like he really is going to rape a girl and if he does well that his business not yours". Go watch it if you can stomach it.