My top news “story” this week is a pair of editorials about recent events in the news regarding the following: legislation, control, violence, and rape.
The first article is a discussion of a variety of symptoms of patriarchal society. The primary symptoms addressed being:
“To begin with there is privacy. Or lack thereof.
And consent. Or lack thereof.
Then there is volition,
and, yes, elusive-to-females, basic physical security.” And continuing with the premise that while “Female bodies are communal. Men’s bodies are their own.”
To me the article was especially relevant given the American presidential elections and the continued encroachment on the rights of women as human beings. States are successively passing laws treating women as less than men, and by doing so, as less than human. Women’s bodies are treated as things to be played with, controlled (legislated) by men, for men. The first article is an excellent run down of the various states where rapists are able to claim custody of their children, where doctors may withhold information from women so that they don’t carry through with abortions (regardless of physical or mental health risks), and a variety of other methods by which a patriarchal system maintains its hegemony and further reduces women
The second article discusses something which I’m sure many of us use daily: Facebook.
Facebook has quite a lot of strict content filtering when it comes to its website. It bans racist imagery, it bans hate-speech, religious defamation, nudity, and advocations of violence. However, when it comes to groups or people posting about or expressing their love for hurting women both physically and emotionally, Facebook classifies these groups as satire and does nothing to remove them. Facebook is again symptomatic of larger cultural problems in the West and the ways in which we treat each other as human beings.
Much posturing is being done by men at the UN these days as well. They’ll play war-games with each other and make grand statements of the world and peace while continuing to be complicity in the perpetuation of the denigration of women.
I think this is the most important news to come out lately because it brings to light that America (and the West in general) are not strictly bastions of hope and freedom from persecution. They are places where we still regularly abuse our fellows because of their sex. Hell, there are even ritual killings in America; it’s called domestic violence and it’s fairly well tolerated, so much so that there’s a distinct name for the kind of sexual violence it engages in.
As for more I’d like to know about the issue… there isn’t a great deal of current events left out from here. I’d probably simply want to do more research on my own and brush up on gender studies.