TW: This post will be dealing with whorephobia. Specifically the kind leveled at full service sex workers. I got really worked up the more I wrote and I’m hoping my language isn’t offensive. I welcome feedback and other people’s opinions on…
So I just saw something on my dash that as an animator actually makes me pretty fucking angry, and to be honest, it’s something that we face a lot. So many people claim that we shouldn’t look further into media like animation - specifically Disney - that we should just take it at face value and not question if it’s racist or sexist.
Check Your Self.
I was trained by a retired Disney animator - he worked on such things as the Lion King and The Little Mermaid. And do you know what he told me the first time I sat down for a lesson?
'Animators are Illusionists and Brainwashers.'
He taught me how to design characters and scenes to evoke acute emotional responses from the viewer, to ingrain in them certain messages or feelings. I’ve spent seven years studying this practice. How to lay down colours to make someone think a character is evil, or how to make someone move so that they look ‘good’.
To say that Disney doesn’t know what it’s doing when it makes casts that are white, or it makes women who fit the stereo type of ‘beautiful’ is an insult to my craft. They know exactly what they’re doing. They’ve spent years studying it, just like me.
And to say that it’s not important, because it’s for children? How many of you formed your opinions and sense of personality by carefully crafting yourself from your experiences? All of us. And how many of you had Disney movies at the heart of your child hood? A dang good amount, I’d wager. They became characters we idolised and hero worshipped, and as per human nature, the children that we were wanted to be more like these characters.
Children form important social cues throughout childhood, and increasingly form these opinions on TV and movies. To say we shouldn’t be looking into the message that companies like Disney and Pixar put into their movies is to say that our children don’t matter - That their opinions don’t matter until they’re adults and it will either be too late, or take years for them to educate themselves on social issues we could have been introducing them to from day dot.
Animated movies are a hugely important media - media which helps form and solidify social cues and the hierarchy of society. To say that the messages and racial and sexist issues hidden within them are unimportant is to exercise a measure of ineptitude that borders on the imbecilic.
Women feel more guilt than men, not because of some weird chromosomal issue but because they have a history of being blamed for other people’s behavior. You get hit, you must have annoyed someone; you get raped, you must have excited someone; your kid is a junkie, you must have brought him up wrong.
"In 2003 the Free Speech Coalition went to the Ashcroft Supreme Court and basically said that the 1997 Child Pornography Protection Act was too broad. What did that act say? That act said that A) Nobody under eighteen could be in porn and B) Nobody who looked under eighteen.The Free Speech Coalition, the lobbying body of the porn industry, said that that [protection act] limited the free speech of the pornographers and they should be allowed to have women who look under eighteen. The Ashcroft Supreme Court agreed…”
Creepiest law change ever dear fucking god, if you don’t think that’s the creepiest, worst shit, get out of my life
I’ve been slowly moving away from the porn end of sex positivity and this settles it. The porn industry needs to die. Immediately.
I used to think: well, if everyone is paid and not forced, why not? Let adults do what they want.
Since then it seems that porn is not so much about the sex itself anymore, but about comitting violence and degrading women.
I’m very sex-positive (especially with regards to porn) but have recently seen the benefits of pornography being progressively outweighed by the negatives—not just what has been outlined above, but how instead of celebrating and normalising sex, porn has pushed perceptions of normalcy to a new extreme.
Here’s the thing. Men in our culture have been socialized to believe that their opinions on women’s appearance matter a lot. Not all men buy into this, of course, but many do. Some seem incapable of entertaining the notion that not everything women do with their appearance is for men to look at. This is why men’s response to women discussing stifling beauty norms is so often something like “But I actually like small boobs!” and “But I actually like my women on the heavier side, if you know what I mean!” They don’t realize that their individual opinion on women’s appearance doesn’t matter in this context, and that while it might be reassuring for some women to know that there are indeed men who find them fuckable, that’s not the point of the discussion.
Women, too, have been socialized to believe that the ultimate arbiters of their appearance are men, that anything they do with their appearance is or should be “for men.” That’s why women’s magazines trip over themselves to offer up advice on “what he wants to see you wearing” and “what men think of these current fashion trends” and “wow him with these new hairstyles.” While women can and do judge each other’s appearance harshly, many of us grew up being told by mothers, sisters, and female strangers that we’ll never “get a man” or “keep a man” unless we do X or lose some fat from Y, unless we moisturize//trim/shave/pushup/hide/show/”flatter”/paint/dye/exfoliate/pierce/surgically alter this or that.
That’s also why when a woman wears revealing clothes, it’s okay, in our society, to assume that she’s “looking for attention” or that she’s a slut and wants to sleep with a bunch of guys. Because why else would a woman wear revealing clothes if not for the benefit of men and to communicate her sexual availability to them, right? It can’t possibly have anything to do with the fact that it’s hot out or it’s more comfortable or she likes how she looks in it or everything else is in the laundry or she wants to get a tan or maybe she likes women and wants attention from them, not from men?
The result of all this is that many men, even kind and well-meaning men, believe, however subconsciously, that women’s bodies are for them. They are for them to look at, for them to pass judgment on, for them to bless with a compliment if they deign to do so. They are not for women to enjoy, take pride in, love, accept, explore, show off, or hide as they please. They are for men and their pleasure.
If a girl is lucky enough to receive any sex education, she will be taught the biological basics. She’ll learn that men have penises and testicles and produce sperm and women have vaginas and uterii and produce ova. She’ll learn that when a man and a woman have sex, the man inserts his penis into the woman’s vagina until he ejaculates. She’ll learn that the semen in the ejaculate will render her vulnerable to pregnancy so she will have to protect herself by using a hormonal or a barrier contraceptive. Hormonal contraception is preferable because barrier methods such as condoms, while safer for women, apparently reduce sensation for men which is obviously a no-no. It’s much better that a woman take a pill every day for her entire reproductive lifespan, or get a painful injection every 12 weeks, or have a copper rod inserted into her uterus, or a silicone rod implanted into her arm. She probably won’t learn that 3 out of 4 women never orgasm from vaginal intercourse. She almost definitely won’t learn how women do achieve orgasm. She’ll learn her place as a receptacle.
But as far as I’m concerned, none of this actually trumps Moffat’s single most baffling achievement as a writer, now successfully accomplished in successive seasons: he is better than anyone else I know at taking a Victorian story, translating it into the 21st century, and making it MORE sexist than the original in the process. That’s a pretty impressively abject feat.
The main problem I have with Men’s Rights Activists is that their name really doesn’t do them justice.
They’re Straight Cis White Men’s Rights Activists.
I have NEVER seen Men’s Rights Activists campaign for the inclusion of trans* men in their spaces. I have NEVER seen Men’s Rights Activists campaign to end the social stigma around black fatherhood. I have NEVER seen Men’s Rights Activists campaign for better pay and equal career mobility for men of colour. I have NEVER seen Men’s Rights Activists actively campaign for more gay men’s rights. I have NEVER seen Men’s Rights Activists advise others in their group on how using faggot to emasculate men who aren’t part of their cause is alienating and marginalising other MEN. I have NEVER seen Men’s Rights Activists campaign, raise awareness of, or support victims of male rape unless it’s in order to derail a discussion around female victims of rape. I have NEVER seen Men’s Rights Activists campaign, raise awareness of, or support male victims of domestic abuse unless it’s in order to derail a discussion around female victims of domestic abuse.
Men’s Rights Activists are hypocrites and frauds. They’re bitter privileged white men who don’t want to campaign for the rights of men - they want to campaign to keep their privilege unchecked and their ability to discriminate against others.
If you want to be a real Men’s Rights Activist - be a fucking Feminist.
I support men’s rights as much as humanly possible (after all, I’m not a man, so while I do what I can to end discrimination, certain issues like male-on-male violence I cannot affect) and often feel like I support them more than MRAs do. It’s ridiculous.
In pop culture, girls who crush hopelessly on guys they can’t have are painted as just that – hopeless. Over and over again, we’re taught that girls who openly express sexual or romantic interest in guys who don’t want them are pitiable, stalkerish, desperate, crazy bitches. More often than not, they’re also portrayed as ugly – whether physically, emotionally or both – in order to further establish their undesirability as an objective fact. Both narratively and, as a consequence, in real life, men are given free reign to snub, abuse, mislead and talk down to such women: we’re raised to believe that female desire is unseemly, so that any consequent shaming is therefore deserved. There is no female-equivalent Friend Zone terminology because, in the language of our culture, a man’s romantic choices are considered sacrosanct and inviolable. If a girl has been told no, then she has only herself to blame for anything that happens next – but if a woman says no, then she must not really mean it. Or, if she does, she shouldn’t: the rejected man is a universally sympathetic figure, and everyone from moviegoers to platonic onlookers will scream at her to just give him a chance, as though her rejection must always be unfounded rather than based on the fact that he had a chance, and blew it. And even then, give him another one! The pathos of Single Nice Guys can only be eased by pity-sex with unwilling women that blossoms into romance!
Lamenting the Friendzone, or: The Nice Guy Approach to Perpetuating Sexist Bullshit