Death Threats are not Cool.

*Trigger Warnings; abuse, death threats*

The point of this post is brief and I’m choosing to leave out names because the situation is real and serious.

Last night a friend of mine posted a status about when people are abusive and their “friends” continue to support them, they are only enabling the abuser. I know the constant “Facebook statuses are stupid go out and be a real activist” argument. This doesn’t apply here. This amazing person is an activist on and off the Internet and because of her amazing work, Facebook is a great place for her to spread even more of her amazingness.

Sadly, we live in a society where men’s feelings and the need to protect their pride matter more than women victims. Side note, I know women are abusers and men are victims but unfortunately we see more of the opposite. Society constantly reaffirms that women are the weaker sex and no matter what standards are thrown our way, it doesn’t matter what we do, we can never live up to them.

The first respond you hear about women reporting or coming forward about abuse is “they could be lying”, “woman are crazy”, “not all men”. But no one ever seems to care that the woman is actually a victim of abuse. It’s sad when women won’t even stand beside other women but men who go the distance to show they haven’t done anything wrong, even after you can pull up their convictions online, is scary.

When the ex-wife who is open about her past situation and this man does have convictions you can pull up and surprise! The stories don’t match up. This man has the audacity to get his friends to send my friend death threats via Facebook but he says nothing to her about it. But he writes about how my friend should be courageous and contact him directly. Hypocritical? Manipulating? Playing the good guy? Typical abuser traits.

Without spending two minutes on his Facebook page you can tell what kind of person he is and that any word he types should not be believed. He was not the one being abused, he is not the one getting threatened, he is not the one that will live with anxiety, he is not the one that has to worry at night.

The ex-wife and my friend are only two of the many strong, courageous, brave women who speak out about injustices and they should not be suffering because of it. Women’s rights are important in feminism but so are men’s rights. We need to live in a society that is NOT ok with men abusing women and continuing to make them suffer when they are the heroines.

Death threats are unacceptable to anyone. There is never a reason you should actively go out of your way to make someone feel unsafe and fear for their life. You want to be real men? Respect women and stand up as an ally, don’t stand for abuse.

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White and Cisgender

This week I have decided to talk about the new LGBT movies coming out this year. LGBT coverage in stories, TV, news and movies is fantastic and much needed. I’ve been following new LGBT movies coming out, crying over the trailers but now that I’ve had time to analyse them, I’m not too impressed.

I saw the trailer for About Ray about a month ago on Tumblr and was really happy to see that a transgender movie was being made that talks about issues the transgender community faces. The issue with this movie is that the actress Elle Fanning, a cisgender female, is playing Ray, a transgender male. It is great to have movies supporting trans people, but the director of this movie has made some transphobic comments in regards to Ray’s character by using female pronouns. It doesn’t seem like she understands trans people or how she is being offensive to them.

Carol is a movie set in the 1950’s to 1960’s and is a classic lesbian love story. The two women are married or in relationships with straight cisgender men and they fall head over heels in love with each other and deal with heartbreak and first lesbian experiences. Yawn. I’ve seen and read enough about this story line especially with white lesbian women. Why not make a movie about women of colour falling each other and exploring their sexuality?

Stonewall, an extremely important movement in the late 1960’s, started by a black drag queen and a Mexican trans women for gay rights, has a white, cisgender, straight, male actor playing the part. In the trailer there’s a scene where he throws the first cement block through a window as the first move of the protest. All you have to do is Google the Stonewall Riots and you can find this information is inaccurate. This movie has no problem misrepresenting and erasing these two important women from LGBT history!

I just saw the trailer for Freeheld last Saturday and it almost brought me tears. It’s an emotionally charged story of two lesbian women fighting for the right to be equal to straight married couples. For straight couples, if one spouse dies the other is entitled to their possession. Whereas in same-sex marriage, they aren’t granted that same right. Ellen Page stars in it, for those of you who don’t know, she is a lesbian in real life so her playing a lesbian is awesome!! Again, really important issues being discussed, but does it need to be a white couple? Why not an interracial couple? Why not have one partner who is bisexual? Why not have one partner be a trans character?

Finally, The Danish Girl trailer gave me goose bumps and I had to hold back tears watching the trailer. The movie is set in the early 1920’s and focuses on the transition of a trans woman, but she is playing by a cis, white man. This movie is based off a book and is very important, as the main character, Lile Ebe, is one of the first people to have gender reassignment surgery. Gender reassignment surgery is still a controversial topic today and is not understood. Having this movie focus on that issue is great, but how many times do we need to see a trans character being played by cis people? Are there not any trans actors or actresses in Hollywood that can play these parts? And if not, how come?

Talking about LGBT issues and having movies portray these issues are so important. I just wish there was more diversity in these films. Sexuality and gender haves a huge spectrum with a range of people. It’s so unfortunate for these films to stay in such a narrow-minded box. White lesbians, white settings, white cis people, white men pushing women of colour out of history. White privilege is so over done in these films and the sad part is, it doesn’t have to be.

These are the trailers for the five movies I talked about. Please let me know your thoughts on them. Do you think they could show some more diversity?

About Ray;

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4SkwJk9KB2c

Carol;

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H4z7Px68ywk

Stonewall;

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LGEJmPwB4yI

Freeheld;

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=blk27Jj9UE8

The Danish Girl;

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d88APYIGkjk

Being offensive is, believe it or not, not funny

**Trigger Warning: Fat shaming, body image, Nicole Arbour**

This week I noticed an article floating around about some YouTuber that was fat shaming people. Another article came up from Jodie Layne who wrote about why fat shaming is bad and how to respect fat people.

The article was so phenomenal and empowering that it prompted me to watch the video to see exactly how bad it was. Within is the first seconds I wanted to shut it off. After enduring six minutes of utterly offensive, repulsive, vulgar, hate speech I had more than a few things to say.

Nicole Arbour, the girl who made this offensive video, is a white, straight, skinny girl who has NO place to make this video in the first place. She does not struggle with being over weight, does not understand how the human body works, and does not understand what comedy is.

The human body is this magical place where it is different from one person to another. Someone’s body depends on their class, sex and race among other things. If a poor family lives off $20 a week, you can bet they might eat at McDonald’s or buy cheap food. This might be a contributing factor to what their weight is, not that it matters. Should they be made fun of? No.

Someone might be on the average to smaller size and eat like complete garbage and because their metabolism is so high they don’t gain any weight. Not all fat people are unhealthy and not all smaller people healthy. Again, should these people be made fun of? No.

By fat shaming people she encourages people to judge each other. She’s telling people who struggle with their bodies and body image that it’s their own fault. This is not healthy. Part of being a feminist is to lift people up to be the best person they can be. If you’re on the heavier side when it comes to weight, embrace that. When you look at yourself in the mirror, be proud of who you are.

My favourite part about Jodie’s article is when she says, “Here’s the thing: Lots of people use the word “fat” as an insult. However, many fat people are reclaiming it as a descriptor that’s empowering instead of a pejorative put-down.” This is beautiful. People are fat. People are thin. People are in between and everyone is beautiful.

What isn’t beautiful or healthy is someone tearing you down. Fat shaming is never ok and it will never be funny. The sooner people realize the damage it causes people, hopefully fat shaming and fat phobia will stop. It’s also important to realize that it’s not comedic to insult people and that freedom of speech does not justify dehumanizing people.

This morning, September 11, 2015, an article came my way that said Niccole Arbour has been fired from a movie she was supposed to star in as a 16-year-old girl struggling with her weight and overcomes the bullying she endures. Irony? I think so.

Please read Jodie’s beautiful article; http://www.bustle.com/articles/109182-7-things-you-might-not-think-are-fat-shaming-that-definitely-are?utm_source=FBOnsite&utm_medium=Facebook&utm_campaign=1

This is the video I am referring too, but I do not encourage anyone to watch. Huge trigger warnings on this video: fat shaming, body shaming, hate speech, racism, homophobia, overall offensive nature.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CXFgNhyP4-A

Want to hear what the director of the movie Arbour was supposed to star in has to say about it? Check it out here, http://zap2it.com/2015/09/dear-fat-people-comedian-fired/

What are your opinions about these articles? Do you consider fat shaming a real thing? Leave respectful comments and let’s discuss this!

The Freedom of Expression

At the beginning of July, same-sex marriage became legal nation wide in the United States of America. Even though so many people, gay and straight, were over joyed with this announcement, there were people who were against it.

Kim Davis, a county clerk in Kentucky, is one of those people. She’s been in the news a lot this past week but this story started in July right after the legislation was passed. The biggest argument that seems to be coming from this is does she have the right to exercise her freedom of religion and have it overrule the law? Or does she need to respect the law despite her religious beliefs?

I think that if you work in government or with anything to do to the law, you need to respect it. If the law contradicts your religious beliefs, you should not be working with the law. She does not have the authority to deny couples marriage licenses. She does not work under “God’s authority” but under the law’s authority. Same-sex couples and straight couples should not have to continue to fight for the right to marry when it’s already legal.

I find myself getting bored with the idea that gay people can’t get married and gay people are sins. If you actually read the bible, everything in the modern world is a sin. There will always be homophobes and bigots in this world, but I always find myself questioning why are they are so concerned with gay people?

Straight marriages have been dissolving from adultery and divorces way before gay people could get married. Adultery and divorce are huge no-no’s in the bible yet no one seems too concerned with that. Blaming same-sex couples for destroying marriage when straight people are good enough at destroying it themselves is just ignorant.

I’m happy that Kim Davis is in jail and hopefully people can see this and realize that people deserve to be in love and married to who they wish. I’m even happier though that the couples that have been fighting against Davis are now married and can live the happiest lives that they deserve.

What are your opinions on Kim Davis and the same-sex couples who fought against her?

Please follow this link for more information on the story: http://www.cbc.ca/news/world/u-s-county-clerk-kim-davis-jailed-for-contempt-over-same-sex-marriage-licences-1.3214735