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via Small Town Gay Blog

A Florida judge awarded custody of a 1-year-old boy to the foster family he’d been living with, saying the boy was “happy and thriving.”

The adoptive parents, however, happen to be gay.

And that didn’t sit well with the Florida Family Policy Council of Orlando, who sent out an alert to its members about the judge’s “arrogant judicial activism.”

On the left is the picture that the Policy Council used to illustrate the gay couple that was awarded custody. On the right is the actual couple.

(from The Orlando Sentinel)

I completely agree with the majority of the sentiment in the Orlando Sentinel, especially this section:

That judge’s ruling — which focused solely on the child’s well-being — enraged some on the religious right.
Why? Because the little boy’s adoptive parents are gay.
So now those who profit from division are pouncing.
They aren’t the people who have cared for this little boy, who have nursed his wounds and tucked him in at night. In fact, they haven’t done a thing for him.
They haven’t consulted the experts — everyone from a child psychologist to a Guardian ad Litem — who say the parents provide precisely the loving environment that this child needs.
All these critics know is that they don’t want gay people to have the same rights as straight people.

HOWEVER their attitude towards the other photo is distressing. I don’t agree with using that photo to represent a completely different couple. But I also don’t agree with the judgement that the first couple would be bad adoptive parents based solely on what they look like. It was this that worried me:

The couple look so odd (you literally can’t tell whether they are male or female) that one might wonder how any judge could place a young child with such a disturbing-looking duo.

That androgyny is still scary is sad. That, just because this couple don’t look like ‘normal’ people, it is okay to assume that a judge would deem them bad parents is sad.

An otherwise very accurate and well-meaning article thus manages to contradict it’s main point (that, regardless of who you are, as long as you love the child you are raising you shouldn’t have that right taken away from you) by saying that actually, that’s only true if you look “more like J.Crew models: all-American with catalogue clothes and smiles.”

Yes, it was a sly move on the part of the batshit crazy folk trying to spread intolerance. They knew that a lot of people are scared of difference. But articles renouncing their claims should be ashamed to conform to their frame of mind when it comes to judging people, declaring them a ‘caricature’, rather than seeing that this couple, too, is being discriminated against.

So, to jump the mighty bandwagon that is hopefully trampling this film into the ground, to add my voice to the chorus that is hopefully already drowning out the sounds of the cast and crew of this film protesting ‘but it’s hilarious irony’, I just wanted to say that I will also be boycotting Observe and Report. Any film that suggests that rape is funny, or that it is ‘not actual rape’, is not okay.

And it amazes me that anyone can see it any other way. Surely, a man having sex with a drugged, drunk, unconscious woman is rape? Surely that’s not funny?

But according to the poll over at Huffington Post, 36.74% of voters think

“It’s a JOKE people. Get upset about more important things.”

So instead of simply repeating what has been said hundreds and hundreds of times, I’ll link you all up.

For the advert, and a response that involves quotes from the cast, check Jezabel

For responses to arguments for seeing the film, see The Pursuit of Harpyness

For a video response to Seth Rogan, check Feministing’s video

But if you’re only going to read one of these, READ THIS ONE. It is very powerful, and really gets across the issue here.

I mean, it would make sense, if you’d been raped. But what happened to you wasn’t really rape: it was just that time when a guy fucked you and you didn’t want him to. Rape only happens between strangers; rape only happens when you say no; rape only happens when you say no enough; rape is what happens when you physically fight back, and give him a chance to physically beat the shit out of you or kill you in addition to raping you. Rape only ever happens these ways, we tell ourselves, because that’s how we are able to tell ourselves that rape hardly ever happens.

And when you’re done reading/watching, join the Facebook group but more importantly actually boycott this film. Do not give financial and moral support to people who believe that we ‘should get upset about more important things’ than normalising date rape. People who think that raping a woman is funny. People who think that they can get away with joking about rape. People who, by doing so, help rapists get away with it.

They do not deserve your time, your respect or your money.

*is dancing for Obama right now*

So it’s been a while since I posted regularly, and it’s also been a while since I read the blogs which I follow regularly. Which means that my Google Reader now has 1000+ blog entries to read, and I am working through. I will link you to anything I think is interesting/important…

  • A long time ago, I wrote about the dissertation I was doing about Women in Science. Here’s something which can only give us hope that things are changing, improving: Women In Physics.
  • “A man who fathered nine children by raping his two daughters over many years has been jailed for life with a minimum term of 19-and-a half years.” More here.
  • Maggie Lee warns women about the effects of having a hysterectomy, here.
  • Derek of Doing Feminism talks about White Ribbon Days
  • Jessica Valenti talks about Funny Women
  • Just in time for Thanksgiving, Jill on Feministe writes about who she’s not thankful for, here.
  • And if this isn’t enough links, here‘s the latest Carnival of Feminists (the 68th, don’t you know) with TONS of links to all kinds of relevant blogs…
  • Aaand finally: According to http://genderanalyzer.com, my blog is written by a man! Well, that was a surprise. I do so love being told my writing is 74% male in the morning…

I’ll return when I return to my Reader – it’s still at 1000+, so I could be some time catching up!!

who has an issue with the way this has been reported?

I know by now I should be used to the victim-blaming of our media, but yet again I am left speechless. The headline and first few paragraphs of this news item seem to blame Funke Sobo for her ‘lie’ provoking Crampton’s ‘angry reaction’. With a headline like

Lie sparked slaughter of family

can one possibly question who they see as to blame?

Follow this with

“Desperate to get him out of her life, Funke Sobo, 36, told him she was seeing another man.

It was a fatal mistake, as her unbalanced ex-partner claimed he was driven by “extreme possessiveness.””

and you have the perfect recipe for a victim blaming article. Sobo’s attempt to get a deeply troubled and dangerous man out of her life was, apparently, ‘a fatal mistake’.

Honestly, if these women would just stop lying to these murderers everything would be just fine.

[EDIT: In fact, the BBC have reported on this in a different manner, with a much more suitable headline and tone. Which leads you to question – why write an entire new article with the blame focused upon Sobo?]

We Can.

FANTASTIC news on Obama. If you missed his victory speech, check it out over at Menstrual Poetry : link

I didn’t vote for Obama

The beginning of something incredible, February 10, 2007:

Here’s where I’m checking voting details: link

H/T, as ever, to Shakesville 🙂

I know I for one am crossing my fingers as tight as possible for Obama. I wish we could get involved, I feel so helpless, but at least it looks clear that McCain is fighting a losing battle. If only we could be sure.

This just in from The F-Word:

In Argentina, journalists have adopted a ten point list of commandments for reporting on sexual violence. It’s something the UK could do with adopting too, here’s the list:

  1. The following terms are correct usage: violence against women, gender-based violence and sexist violence.
  2. Gender-based violence is a crime insofar as it is illegal behavior that must be prevented and punished, a social problem, an assault on the right to life, dignity, and physical and psychological integrity of women, and an issue that concerns the defense of human rights.
  3. We will uproot from our work the term “crime of passion” to refer to murders of women who are victims of gender violence. Crimes of passion do not exist.
  4. It is of the utmost importance to protect the identity of the victim, rather than that of the aggressor. Make it clear who is the aggressor and who is the victim, and indicate what attitudes and situations may put women in violent relationships at risk, to help raise their awareness about their situation.
  5. Some information can harm the victims and their families. It is not always a good idea to identify the victim. It is offensive to refer to victims by diminutives, short forms of proper names, nicknames, and so on.
  6. We will never look for justifications or “motives” (alcohol, drugs, arguments, jealousy, a couple’s separation, infidelity, and so on) that only distract attention from the central issue: violence. The cause of gender-based violence is the control and domination that certain men exercise over women.
  7. It is essential to check the facts, especially from official sources.
  8. Keep the subject on the agenda by denouncing violence in all its forms: psychological, economic, and emotional, without waiting for women to be killed. Tell the story taking into account the uniqueness of each event, but also the elements that each has in common with other cases. This will help us avoid the use of expressions like “once again” or “yet another case of,” and prevent a dulling of sensitivities.
  9. Be particularly careful with the photographs and images illustrating the article. Respect the victims and their families, and avoid sexism, sensationalism and obscenity. Never steal images or audio material from a victim. When using a musical background, do not select motifs that inspire terror, or lyrics that talk about “love-sickness” or jealousy.
  10. Our articles will always include a free telephone helpline number for victims, and any other information that may be useful for them.

The post it’s from has some other interesting bits and pieces from the news – check it out!

Is incredible.

I’m hoping you’ve all seen these, but just in case…

First: Tina Fey and Amy Poehler do Palin and Clinton:

LINK

Second: Palin and Fey meet:

LINK

Third: Palin enjoys Amy’s Palin Rap:

LINK

Fourth: “Palin” and “Couric” interview:

LINK

Sorry I can’t put the videos into my post, WordPress hates me!

WordPress won’t let me embed the video (it hates me), so jump on over to Womanist Musings (which you all should read anyway) to watch it.

Flickr Photos