Tuesday, June 16, 2009

More Racially Charged Police Brutality?

An ambulance being driven by a black EMT "failed to yield" to two white police officers. Why does the skin color of the men involved matter? Because after you watch this video, you might agree that this "confrontation" (as the news gingerly calls it) may have been racially motivated.

The cop grabbed the EMT driver by the throat... how is that appropriate? The EMT driver calmly discusses that he is transporting a patient to the hospital... the trooper doesn't seem to care much about anything but punishing the EMT driver.

Here is the clip i saw this morning on the news:

In light of all the racially motivated police brutality recently, this one shouldn't go unmentioned.

Monday, June 15, 2009

June 15th is "National Man Day"

Apparently today is "National Man Day" according to two Indiana brothers. The Longanecker boys declared June 15th to be a day for men to "stand up and do manly things" and reclaim their masculinity. The brothers are spreading their message using facebook that encourages men to participate in "manly things" today. What are these "many things" you may ask? Well according to these boys manly activities include:
  • being left alone by your woman (no chores, no telling you to be home by dinner time, no helping with the kids, and no "honey do" lists!)
  • sitting in your favorite chair and scratching yourself
  • shooting stuff or blowing something up
  • eating steak
  • shooting animals
  • punching someone in the face

From their facebook group:

On June 15th, men across the nation will unite in one cause and one voice saying, 'I am man!'On that day, men across the nation will blow things up, they'll shoot big guns, they'll punch each other for no reason, they'll pump some iron, or they'll watch every Rambo movie from beginning to end. Straight through. And when asked why we do these things, we'll say 'Because I'm a MAN!' Since when has there been a time when that answer to a question has was unacceptable? Since when has being a man been lame? Since men have let down their guard and become sissies. It's time to take back the crown of masculinity.

It's time for men to be men.What should you do on this day? Be the man God made you to be. Be a good father, drop kick your best friend when he least expects it, dump a whole tank of gasoline on a pile of sticks and ignite it by shooting another can of gas! Be responsible for your actions, go out there invite every man you know, eat an 18 oz steak, get your wife some flowers, punch another guy in the jugular and be a MAN!

Hey at least "be a good father" made the list??

As laughable as all this may seem, there is a serious and growing problem with what young boys are taught about masculinity. Patriarchy, sexism, and "machismo" culture are just as damaging for men and boys as they are for women. For example, boys learn the type of masculinity that the Longanecker brothers are advocating at a young age are are rewarded for being tough, macho, and strong in the physical sense. This also teaches them that being a “real man” is associated with violence, power, and control. The consequences of this are not only great for women (due to increased instances of rape, sexual harassment, domestic violence, and physical abuse) but also for men who are often violent against other men. Men commit the majority of violent acts in this country, towards both women AND men because they are taught early on that they are being "manly" by doing so.

There are many wonderful groups forming that teach the type of masculinity that empowers young men in ways other than through violence. These groups embrace inward evaluation, compassion, bounding, and positive contribution to the community.

Check out these sites for more info and please leave others in comments if you know of more: V-Men, Homeboy Industries, and MAVAW

Wednesday, June 10, 2009


A new over-the-counter product called IntelliGender can possibly predict the sex of an unborn fetus as early as 10 weeks old.

It claims that within 10 minutes of taking the urine test, a woman will be able
to tell her baby's gender. The specimen will turn green if it's a boy, and
orange if it's a girl.

A product like this has serious implications in countries (and families) where one sex is preferred over another. 10 weeks is early enough to terminate the pregnancy, and the thought that this product may aid in abortions based on the sex of a child is more than troublesome. For example, China's preference for male babies is ingrained in both culture and politics. At one point the Chinese government set into place a one-child-only policy as an attempt to target overpopulation which significantly increased the number of female infanticides. The Communist Party took power in 1949 and outlawed this practice. However, in the 1980's the Chinese government census continued to show hundreds of thousands of missing baby girls each year. The practice of female infanticide in China is most prevalent in rural areas where boys are valued for their ability to help with the land and take care of their parents later on in life. Girls, however, traditionally move in with their in-laws and cannot further help their birth family. Baby girls are often "abandoned, suffocated, or drowned soon after birth." Aside from being an inhuman, unethical, and sexist practice, female infanticide effects the Chinese culture in many ways, "in 1997 the London Telegraph quoted ...a Chinese journal... which warned the male-to-female ratio in China has become so unbalanced that there will soon be an 'army of bachelors' in China - an estimated 90 million Chinese men in search of a spouse." Female infanticide is an old practice dating back to 200 B.C. in Greece. It still exists today mostly cited in China and India.

The makers of IntelliGender state they will not be distributing to China and India. Still, products like these terrify me. It makes me feel like we are one step closer to being able to generate our "ideal" child.

At least it turns orange and green rather than pink and blue? Oh for small victories...

Thanks, Joanne, for sending this over and pointing out the "i need it right now" instant world we currently live in.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Friday Feel Good: New Hampshire Legalizes Same-Sex Marriage

Now New Hampshire can really proclaim the right to "live free or die!"

Friday Feel Good: Gay Penguin Couple Adopt & Hatch Egg

Via BBC News and Edge:

A pair of male penguins in a German zoo have taken in an egg that was rejected by its biological parents, hatched the egg, and now are rearing the chick, according to a June 3 article carried at BBC News.

Such behavior is not unknown. In many animal species, from fruit flies to birds to primates, same-gender sexual contact and social bonding (including long term pair bonding) have been observed.

In the case of Z and Vielpunkt, two penguins at the zoo in Bremerhaven, the pair had been observed attempting to hatch a stone. When a male-female pair of penguins at the zoo rejected their own egg, keepers gave it to Z and Vielpunkt, who tended and hatched the egg and now, a month after its hatching, continue to care for the chick.