The situation is just intolerable.
There have been a lot of really insightful write-ups recently. A broader perspective—and I almost cringe to say—catch-all by Molly Crabapple left me gasping for breath. This write up, by Elizabeth Sampat giving her thoughts on an industry that’s very dear to me, delivered the final blow and left me in tears.
It’s really rare that I create from a place of grief. It’s just not how I operate. But it’s largely what I have openly felt for the last few days, and reflecting on it, it’s been there for far longer.
This quote from Elizabeth’s piece— “We should have a war memorial for all of the women we have lost to this. We should lay flowers and grieve and see our reflections in stone.”— struck a very literal chord in me.
So yeah, here it is. A place just for me where I can light a candle and remember all of the wonderful people I probably will never get the chance to meet. Folks that have been driven away by these horrible fucks that have the audacity to think they know what gaming and community is about.
I have never, in my life, been ashamed to call myself a gamer. Until now. These misogynist little shitbags are a disgrace to our community.
All of us who care about gaming need to step up and save our community, while there is still something about it that’s worth saving.
RIP women like me. This is beautiful.
I refuse to be added to or thought of as a casualty though. I can keep going. But those who couldn’t or can’t, you are missed. Your voices are missed. I hope I can help carry your memory forward and continue to say “never again”.
Until the game industry/community has active channels of support for survivors of rape and sexual assault in the industry, and mechanisms to prevent developers who commit rape and sexual assault from continuing to do that, in a way that is peaceful and brings about permanent positive change, I’m gonna have a real hard time believing shit about shit.
And this is just, like, one thing I see the deeply enmeshed communities of Game Industry and Consumers of Games (note how it’s often difficult to talk about the industry without also having to assume discussion of the community of fans) needing to address.
"Saving" or whatever is nice, but fundamental structural changes…f-fundamentally change things, and that will probably feel uncomfortable.
We know what white people (hi) and men, and especially white men, are like when they’re uncomfortable. They turn into misogynist, racist, entitled little shitbags. I don’t see that changing even if everyone sent Zoe a dollar for every word of abuse she’s received (which hey we should also do, where’s the Indiegogo to help pay for this woman’s long-term emotional health, if everyone’s so damn sorry?).
The hatred of women runs wide and deep in games, it won’t end when Zoe’s not getting harassed every day, it won’t be gone when Anita’s series is done, it wasn’t gone when I left games, it didn’t disappear when Maddy Myers stopped going to public fighting games tournaments, it didn’t go away when Jade Raymond stopped being the face of the Assassin’s Creed series (these are just the names off the top of my head, writing into the little XKit reblog window right now)
…and meanwhile FYI sexual assaults happen at and around all your fave big tent-pole gamer and game industry events, and throughout the industry all the time, because misogynist little shitbags don’t just PLAY games they also MAKE them. But who wants to report on a colleague, who *doesn’t* want to sign up for this sort of experience (but coming from your coworkers, and at work events)?
(But I’m supposed to have #1reasonwhy I’m excited a woman wants to work in that industry.)
because i’m just fucking sick and tired of everybody wanting to “talk” about and “complicate” yet another fucking murdering man’s life and history—I decided to highlight the women of Michigan who are currently in prison/serving life sentences for murdering abusive male partners and/or committing crimes under threat of abuse by male partners.
Anita Posey struck me as particularly important to highlight because her case points to exactly how fucked up the situation is for mothers in particular—do you know HOW many fucking women I’ve spotlighted/done stories on through the fucking YEARS who have been imprisoned for 20 yrs, some times life, because they *didn’t* “defend” their children? Do you know how many women are sitting in prison right now for the crime of being abused by their partner and not being able to stop their partner from abusing their children?
and yet, a woman kills the man who has beat her WHILE he’s hurting her children—and she STILL winds up in prison.
THESE WOMEN are the people who we DESPERATLY need to understand. along with the cultural mentality in the US that expects women to not only stop men from raping them and beating them, but also expects them to stop men from abusing the kids—while ALL OF SOCIETY STANDS BY AND WATCHES.
The worst part of all of this is that this sonovabitch put her in a Catch-22.
HE THREW AN INFANT AT A WALL.
So, she has two options:
1. Stop Him
2. Don’t Stop Him
He’s a violent abuser with a history of erratic and violent behaviour and a past history of getting physical. He’s in a murderous rage, as evidenced by the fact that he THREW AN INFANT AT A WALL.
If she attacks, and is rebuffed, he will—without doubt—kill her.
Ergo, she must succeed in incapacitating him on the first try, which she accomplished.
The reward? 20 years in prison.
Option one nets her a murder charge.
Option two, however, nets her a negligence and accessory to murder charge—-precisely because she failed to act and thus is deemed to be ‘complicit’.
No matter what action she took, she was fucked.
reblogging again bc fuck every MRA and other assorted piece of shit who wants to talk about how the justice system is biased against MEN when it’s men running the show and always has been, and the outcome is a) men who think it’s acceptable to try to kill women and babies and b) men who want to punish women for that
if she hadn’t intervened she would’ve been charged with Failure to Protect a child at LEAST and possibly manslaughter. The system is designed to punish victims
Just a reminder when MRAs smugly state that WOMEN take part in domestic violence TOO that they’re largely talking about women like Anita Posey who were defending themselves/their children and who are being punished for it.
I thought it would be worthwhile to round-up and share some of the great book lists and discussions I’ve seen centering around good reading for those interested in discussing and thinking about the situation in Ferguson. The bulk of these resources are geared toward children’s and young adult lit, though some posts go a bit beyond than, as well as a bit beyond books. Topics include race, civil rights, social activism, and privilege.
There are countless angles working here, but they are all important and worth thinking and talking about.
I can’t add anything new or thoughtful to this discussion, but what I can do is give space to those who are generating much-needed and valuable resources and elements of conversation. If you know of additional book lists or topical guides worth mentioning, please drop them into the comments/feel free to reblog and add. I’m happy to continue revisiting this.
- Ebony, who tweets @EbonyTeach, put a call out for kidlit about social justice.She’s rounded up the responses on Storify. The titles include picture books through young adult books.
- Left Bank Books in St Louis put together two excellent lists featuring titles across age categories. The first is their book list, which focuses on race in America. The second is their compilation of poetry, articles, and other online work that explores race in America today.
- A Twitter hashtags worth digging into: #FergusonSyllabus. This should offer up an array of readings and discussion topics relating to Ferguson. There’s also a Storify roundup.
- Speaking of syllabi, here’s a massive teaching syllabus with ideas, reading, timelines, and more from a pile of social studies educators.
- Rich in Color pulled together a reading list of social justice and activism in YA lit.
- Lyn Miller-Lachmann talks about two YA titles — one out now and one coming out this fall — and the ways that writers and artists respond to social justice. I’m including this post specifically because I cannot get Kekla Magoon’s forthcoming How it Went Down out of my head these last couple of weeks and hope it shows up on your to-read lists.
- At Book Riot, Brenna Clarke Gray suggests 5 good books about race in America. These are all adult titles, but teen readers who are interested should be able to read and think about them.
- The LA Times built a list called Reading Ferguson: Books on Race, Police, Protest, and US History. The focus is on adult titles.
- School Library Journal has a wealth of suggested reading on protest, non-violent resistance, and Civil Rights.
- This list is limited to 2013, but that makes it no less important or valuable (it keeps it quite current): African American Fiction for Teens. I put together a timeline at Book Riot earlier this year, too, that traced black history in America through YA Lit.
- The Nerdy Book Club has 10 picture books for social activists in the making.
- “Reading Helped Me Overcome A Racist Upbringing" by Susie Rodarme, cuts straight to why reading books on topics like racism, social justice, activism, and more matters so much.
- Though not a booklist, the recommended reading from Lee & Low’s blog is solid. This is a great primer and resource, perhaps, for generating discussion from and beyond the books.
- Amy’s post, “On Ferguson and the Privilege of Looking Away,” doesn’t offer reading, but it does offer immense food for thought on privilege.
Note the sources of the above quotes.
Contraception is not the answer. We deserve better.
Boy howdy. This response ended up taking many more hours of research than I had expected. I had hoped to be able to google these quotes, show how they had been taken out of context, and be done with it. Turns out that running down the sources of most of these quotes is harder than you would expect it to be, what with online libraries and whathaveyou. Why? Two reasons: The first is that a simple Google search of the quotes will only get you a cornucopia of pro-ignorance articles (and commenters on pro-choice articles) all parroting the exact same list of 18 karat quote-nuggets. The second reason is that these quotes are old.
The most recent was made about 18 years ago. The oldest, 61 years ago. Let that sink in. Think about how the demographics of contraceptive users have changed, and how they’ll continue to change (in the US) with the passage of the Affordable Healthcare Act. Think about the advances that have been made in contraceptive technology since the days of computers that look like this:
My girlfriend uses her smartphone to remind her to take her pill. How many women could do that in 1996? But, for the benefit of argument, let’s temporarily assume that the quotes in the original post can all be taken at face value and that at various times several doctors, who were respected sex-educators and advocates of contraceptives, stated that contraceptive use led to higher rates of abortion. In this case, my response is…
THEY WERE WRONG
The evidence that increased contraceptive use leads to lower rates of abortion is overwhelming:
“Rising contraceptive use results in reduced abortion incidence in settings where fertility itself is constant. The parallel rise in abortion and contraception in some countries occurred because increased contraceptive use alone was unable to meet the growing need for fertility regulation in situations where fertility was falling rapidly”
“The abortion rate declined 8.0% between 2000 and 2008, from 21.3 abortions per 1,000 women aged 15– 44 to 19.6 per 1,000. Decreases in abortion were experienced by most subgroups of women. One notable
exception was poor women; this group accounted for 42.4% of abortions in 2008, and their abortion rate increased 17.5% between 2000 and 2008 from 44.4 to 52.2 abortions per 1,000….
…The economic recession that was occurring in 2008 may have made it harder for poor women to access contraceptive services, resulting in more unintended pregnancies. Alternately, when confronted with an unintended pregnancy, poor women who might have felt equipped to support a child, or another child, when not in the midst of a recession may have decided that they were unable to do so during a time of economic turmoil.”
“A new study by investigators at Washington University reports that providing birth control to women at no cost substantially reduces unplanned pregnancies and cuts abortion rates by a range of 62 to 78 percent compared to the national rate.”
“Our simulations are performed using FamilyScape 2.0, a microsimulation model of family formation. We simulate both increases in contraceptive use among non-contraceptors and improvements in the consistency and effectiveness of contraceptive use among existing contraceptors. Our results show that changes in either margin of behavior are likely to produce sizeable effects. For example, we find that, if 25 percent of non-contracepting unmarried women under the age of 30 were to begin using contraception, abortion and nonmarital birth rates among unmarried women in this age group would fall by about 25 percent and about 13 percent, respectively.”
“There were fewer than 17 abortions for every 1,000 women in 2011, the latest year for which figures were available, according a paper published Monday from the Guttmacher Institute, a pro-abortion-rights think tank. That is down 13 percent from 2008 and a little higher than the rate in 1973, when the Supreme Court handed down its landmark Roe v. Wade decision. The study did not examine the reasons for the drop. But the authors suggested that one factor was greater reliance on new kinds of birth control, including intra-uterine devices such as Mirena, which can last for years and are not susceptible to user error like daily pills or condoms. They also noted the economy as a contributing factor, because people tend to adhere more strictly to their birth control during tough economic times. But they did not credit the recent wave of state laws restricting access to abortion, because most of those took effect in 2011 or later.“
And those are just a few of the sources I found by Googling “abortion rates contraception.” I guess all the pro-ignoramuses reblogging this post couldn’t be bothered.I should be able to stop this post right here. The claim that contraceptives lead to more abortions is demonstrably wrong, regardless of who made it. But, I set out to analyse these quotes one by one. So, returning to the world of reality, in which I am highly skeptical of the original post’s sources, we will delve into decades long-since passed and try to work out why, if at all, these things were said.
The Kinsey Quote
This is the oldest of the bunch; spoken in 1955 and published three years later, after Kinsey’s death. This is indeed an accurate quotation from a conference sponsored by Planned Parenthood. This Google Book entry is the closest thing to an online version of the original publication I was able to find, but it only lets you see a few sentences at a time. It does, however, confirm this longer version of the quote, taken from the pro-ignorance article which seems to have originated this list of quotes:
“At the risk of being repetitious, I would remind the group that we have found the highest frequency of induced abortion in the group which, in general, most frequently uses contraceptives. I don’t think it is entirely carelessness. As I pointed out before, you don’t do anything putting on your clothes, or going to bed, or drinking, or eating with absolute regularity. And I think it is just too much to hope that we can ever have any contraceptive practice, outside of temporary sterilization, which is going to prevent this occasional slip that accounts for a high proportion of undesired pregnancies and abortions, especially among those of the upper socioeconomic levels.”
Note that Kinsey specifically bemoans the “absolute regularity” needed for contraceptives. Remember that 2014 study that attributed the recent drop in abortion rates to improved contraceptive technologies that don’t require a daily pill? (Scroll up if you don’t.) I would love to have access to a full digital version of the conference’s write-up. While more recent data renders one man’s 60-year-old opinion moot, I am still curious to see what the wider context of Kinsey’s statements was. “But it seems so straightforward what he meant; More contraceptives = more abortions,” you object. Well, as you are about see, a lone piece of information can appear to mean something very different when deprived of its context.
The Guttmacher Institute Study
Note that the original post does not quote the Guttmacher Institute study (And hey, this one is only 18 years old!) but merely pulls a single statistic out of it. This one I was able to find in its entirety, and it turned out to be a textbook case of fact-mining. You see, the cited figure is 100% true. Out of a sample of almost ten-thousand women who had abortions, 58% were using contraceptives at the time. Case close. Contraceptives suck 5evar. Right? Wrong. You see, deprived of its context, the lone figure becomes a lie.
Lets pretend for a moment that I don’t have access to the full text of this study; I only have the lone fact from it the pro-ignoramus wanted me to see (58% of the women who had abortions were using contraceptives). I can still prove it’s bullshit just with armchair reasoning.
Consider that the sample set is made only of women who had abortions, rather than a random sampling of women using contraceptives. Now consider that if I asked you to find a group of women who were likely to be using contraceptives, you’d be damn smart to look for women who recently had abortions, since the obviously don’t want to be having a baby right now. While the quote-miners are likely trying to imply that the 58% overlap is proof of contraceptive failure rates or that contraceptive use leads to abortions, the only real reason for the correlation is the common third factor among the two groups; NOT WANTING TO BE PREGNANT.
If lots of people are using contraceptives, which have a small but present failure rate, it stands to reason that most of the people getting abortions; didn’t want kids, tried using contraceptive, but were the unlikely few that experience contraceptive failure.
Let’s say a birth control method X has a failure rate of 1%. A doctor sees 1,000 women who want abortions. 500 of them say they were using method X when they got pregnant. A pro-ignoramus (correctly) concludes ”50% of the women who had abortions were on contraceptive X.” What they fail to mention is the 49,500 other women (the 99%) that never got pregnant in the first place because of method X.
Not convinced by my armchair reasoning?
Let’s look at some excerpts from the exact same study the original post quoted:
“The patterns of contraceptive use among abortion patients may or may not mirror the use patterns of all women at risk of unintended pregnancy. Each contraceptive method entails a different probability of becoming pregnant, and women’s method choice often differs by their socioeconomic and demographic characteristics. Consequently, users of each method may differ in their likelihood of carrying an unexpected pregnancy to term or of having an abortion.”
“According to the 1988 NSFG, 90% of women at risk of unintended pregnancy are using a contraceptive method and 10% are not. The abortion indices for current users and nonusers are therefore 0.6 and 4.3, respectively, indicating that women using any method are only about 15% as likely to have an abortion as are women using no method. In other words, even though contraceptive use is often imperfect, it reduces the probability of having an abortion by about 85%.”
Gee, I wonder why they didn’t quote that last line.
The Judith Burty Quote
Honestly, I hit a brick wall with this one. The quote is supposedly from a 1981 edition of ‘The Scotsman’ newspaper, but strangely, The Scotsman’s archives don’t have any articles more recent than 1950, and their main website has nothing older than 2000. I couldn’t find much out about Judith Bury either. Googling her just brings up lots of pro-ignoramuses copy-pasting these same quotes. As with the Kinsey quote, more recent research renders the point moot, and (especially given my findings with the previous statement) I would be very interested to see the full context of the quote,
The Malcolm Potts Quote
So what year did Dr. Malcolm Potts predict that there would be a rise in abortion rates as people “turned to contraception”? 1973. Yes, this is really some cutting-edge material here. Again I cannot find the original source for this quote. The pro-life article that seems to be the originator of this list of “quotes” (see what I did there?) gives the following citation:
Malcolm Potts, M.D., Medical Director of the International Planned Parenthood Federation, in 1973.
Quoted in Andrew Scholberg, “The Abortionists and Planned Parenthood: Familiar Bedfellows.” International Review of Natural Family Planning, Winter 1980, page 298.
Yes, their source is literally, “Some 34-year-old anti-choice propaganda said that he said that.”
Well, since I can’t find the full context of “Dr. Pott’s” quote, lets see what the real Dr. Potts has to say on the matter. Here’s a quote from a paper he co-wrote in 1990:
“If more funds were available to expand counselling services and increase the use of newer, more effective methods such as subdermal implants, abortion rates could be lowered. Thus, all those who are disturbed by the tens of millions of abortions that take place each year must work together to help bring about a significant reduction in that number by advocating a considerable increase in investment in family planning services and in support for contraceptive research. Without such a change, it is possible that more legal and illegal abortions will be induced in the 1990s than in any previous decade. Whatever happens with funding, universal access to safe abortion could undoubtedly save the lives of a million or more women in the 1990s.”
You can check out more of his more recent research into family planning in developing countries here. Regardless of what Dr. Potts said or didn’t say in 1973, or in 1990, abortion rates are now at their lowest since 1973. The authors of the study that found that specifically credit the development of new kinds of birth control. You know, the ones that weren’t around during the decades these quotes seem to be from.
“Sex Education: A Teacher’s Guide” quote
Ok, last quote from the original post. Who wants to guess what decade it’s from? Let’s see, the quote is from a sex education book put out by the Canadian government in….1973! (Why does that year keep coming up?) Unfortunately there aren’t any online copies of this ancient tome floating around, the department that published the book hasn’t even existed for twenty years, and I’m not paying $50 to buy a used copy to debunk some anti-sex douche-canoes on the internet. So, I’ll have to supply some other Canadian (2012) statistics:
“In Canada, the teen birth and abortion rate is 27.0/1,000 women between the ages of 15-19 versus 61.2/1,000 in the United States.The abortion rate among all women of reproductive age (15-44) in Canada is 14.1/1,000 versus 20/1,000 in the United States. Put another way, the teen birth and abortion rate is more than 50% higher in the United States versus Canada and the abortion rate is about 25% higher in the Unites States. Canadian women also have something else. They have access to health care and sex education is widely taught in the schools. Laws, cost, and indignities don’t reduce abortion, knowledge and contraception do.”
Furthermore, the quote’s claim that “abortion is the most widely used birth-control method in the world” is patently absurd, and a well known abortion myth. Contraceptive use is increasing, while rates of both contraceptive failure and abortion are decreasing. Consider:
“In 2010, publicly funded contraceptive services helped women prevent 2.2 million unintended pregnancies; 1.1 million of these would have resulted in unplanned births and 760,000 in abortions. Without publicly funded contraceptive services, the rate of unintended pregnancies, unplanned births and abortions in the United States would all be 66% higher; the rates for teens would be 73% higher. The number of unintended pregnancies averted by public funding was 15% higher in 2010 than in 2006, even though the number of clients served fell 5% during that period. This is partially because more family planning clients currently use highly effective contraceptives, such as long-acting reversible methods, than previously. More importantly, women who are unable to obtain public services are more likely now than in 2006 to be using either no contraceptive method or a less effective one, probably because of the recession.”
In conclusion, (and as we already know) if the pro-ignorance movement had any interest in actually preventing abortions hey would advocate for better sex education (not ‘abstinence only’), better ease-of-access to contraceptives, less restrictive abortion laws, and welfare programs that make it easier for women to afford to keep their children. These things have been proven to reduce abortion rates. Restricting abortions and discouraging contraceptives increase the frequency of abortions. But of course, the pro-ignorance movement actually has very little interest in preventing abortions. “It’s about controlling women. It’s about making sure they have consequences for having unapproved sex.”
Unpopular fannish opinion: just seeing “a/b/o” makes me gag and I need AO3 savior to be a thing so that I can blacklist everything related and never have to see it again because NO.
heh. I don’t even… understand… what it is? why it’s popular? it just… what? baffling? who? why? the…. huh? oh. really? That’s….. huh. ok?
Because it’s not just Ferguson.
What white St. Louis thinks about Ferguson
By Julia Ioffe | New Republic
About a 15-minute drive from the Ferguson protest that, by now, feels more like a block party, in the more upscale St. Louis suburb of Olivette, there’s a new strip mall with a barbecue joint and a Starbucks and an e-cigarette store. On a mild Thursday evening in August, people sat around tables, sipping coffee, sipping beer, dabbing barbecue sauce off their fingers.
All of these people were white.
It was a stark contrast to Ferguson, which is two-thirds black. Olivette is almost the exact opposite, at over 60 percent white. St. Louis, and the little hamlets that ring it, is one of the most segregated cities in America, and it shows.
Here in Olivette, the people I spoke to showed little sympathy for Michael Brown, or the protesters.
"It’s bullshit," said one woman, who declined to give her name. When I asked her to clarify what, specifically, was bullshit, she said, "All of it. I don’t even know what they’re fighting for."
"It’s just a lot of misplaced anger," said one teenage boy, echoing his parents. He wasn’t sure where the anger should be, just that there should be no anger at all, and definitely no stealing.
"Our opinion," said the talkative one in a group of six women in their sixties sitting outside the Starbucks, "is the media should just stay out of it because they’re riling themselves up even more."
"The protesters like seeing themselves on TV," her friend added.
"It’s just a small group of people making trouble," said another.
"The kid wasn’t really innocent," chimed in a woman at the other end of the table (they all declined to give their names). "He was struggling with the cop, and he’s got a rap sheet already, so he’s not that innocent." (While the first point is in dispute, the second isn’t: The police have said that Michael Brown had no criminal record.)
If anything, the people here were disdainful and, mostly, scared—of the protesters, and, implicitly, of black people.
"I don’t think it’s about justice for Michael Brown’s family," said the teenage boy. "It’s just an excuse for people to do whatever they want to do."
One man I talked to, a stay-at-home dad who is a landlord to three black tenants and one white one in Ferguson (“my black tenants would never do that,” he clarified) was more sympathetic to Brown and also had the sense that the police had overdone it a bit. But he was scared of the protests. I told him that the protest that day was entirely peaceful, festive almost. “You know,” he said. “I have a wife and three children, and if something were to happen to me, that would be very bad.”
As for the protests, well, they weren’t about justice; they were just an excuse. “People are just taking the opportunity to satisfy their desire for junk,” said one woman, knowingly. As if black people, the lust for theft encoded in their DNA, are just barely kept in line by authority.
"When they kill each other, we never hear about it," one of the Starbucks women said. This, she meant, was a good thing. "When it’s black-on-black violence, we never hear about it."
I asked why she thought that was.
"Because, basically, they hate whites!" her friend chimed in. "Prejudice, reverse prejudice. Prejudice goes both ways."
The others signalled their agreement.
"It’s not Ferguson people. It’s a lot of outside people coming in."
This was a sore subject with several of the people I spoke to. A major problem with the protests—and they very clearly did not mean the militarized police response to the protests—was that they were tarnishing St. Louis’s image as a nice place.
"I’m embarrassed to say I’m from St. Louis," the "bullshit" woman grumbled.
"Me, too," said her friend. "I don’t tell people I’m from St. Louis anymore."
"This is not representative of St. Louis," said one of the older women, back at Starbucks. "St. Louis is a good place. And Ferguson is a very good place."
"We have never had anything like this in St. Louis!" her friend exclaimed, flustered, as if trying to clear the city’s good name. "Ever!"
As the women grew uncomfortable, one of them hit on a way to fight back.
"Where are you from?" she asked me.
"Washington," I said.
"Well," she said, satisfied. "You people have trouble too sometimes."
And they all laughed.
"Not all white people"…
This article shorter: The white people responded in a very racist way. #NailedIt
Their perception that Mike Brown was an “alleged criminal”, therefore his death was justified, would be the same perception even if Mike Brown was squeaky clean. Black Lives hold no value to these people in the article. What happened to their sense of right and wrong, baring color? This is what happens to people who live in a homogenized bubble. This is why we must value OURSELVES.
Sickening. Fellow white people, callousness and oppression are what you excuse and perpetuate when you say “not all cops” “not all white people” “never in my town”. You are not being empathetic or fair or egalitarian like you may think. The “moderate”, wishy washy response isn’t automatically right. Blame is necessary, even if it makes you uncomfortable. Police brutality, murder, and denial of due process for Black people happen and they happen everywhere, whether you want to notice and care or not. No amount of church and “family values” can scrub you clean if you can’t value your fellow human beings at the same level you value yourself and people who look like you. You CAN’T be a good person if you are choosy about who you protect and care about.
There was no elegant way to present this information, but it’s stuff you need to know. It’s basically in order, from top to bottom, budget plans to ritziest. HMOs are notorious for denying basic treatment and, before the ACA, dropping customers when they actually got sick. FFS plans are the ultimate in health care freedom, for a price.
This is interesting.
We have an HMO for our medical and just pay a copay for appointments. I was charged a “specialist” copay to see a gynecologist, but was charged NO co-pay to get a pelvic ultrasound with a referral from her. My kid’s got a referral to see a pediatric orthopedic surgeon, and it sounds like we won’t be charged for that, either. Our HMO plan limits who we can see, but 1) is more expensive than PPO & 2) covers more stuff (assuming we can get referrals for it/find a doctor in network). WAY more stuff. We live in a big city so it’s pretty easy to find doctors.
We have a PPO for dental and ran through our benefits FAST and have been paying out of pocket for stuff to the tune of over $5k so far. We’re going to try and switch to HMO when we can. Again, it’d mean a slightly more expensive monthly insurance payment for us, but WAY MORE is covered & I need at least one dental implant. I need to find out if my current dentist takes the HMO version of our insurance. FUN FACT: dentists HATE insurance, especially HMOs, at least in Chicago. Too much paperwork, too little payout.
IME, HMOs totally are the most restrictive, but for US they cover more stuff and also cost more. I wonder if that’s because it’s a union job, or if things have changed since this was researched & published, or something else entirely. I have a feeling we’re really benefiting by living in a big city, though. There are LOTS of doctors and hospitals around here, a very different experience from the area I grew up in. So even with the restrictions of an HMO we still have choices.
Iron Man 3: Maya Hansen dies, really
Thor 2: Frigga dies, really
The Amazing Spider-Man 2: Gwen Stacy dies, really
98% of the females in X-Men:Days of Future Past: Dead, really
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: Victoria Hand dies, really
Ant-Man: JANET VAN DYNE DIES, REALLY
Marvel, fridging women since… Who was the first fridged woman again?
On your left! (but only if you’re a dude)
A year into our relationship, Matt finally revealed why he had never introduced me to his family: “Once, a black and white couple walked by my grandfather and me on the street, and he turned to me and said, ‘That’s just not right.’”
Matt was from Ashland, Kentucky, a small town where almost everyone was white. All of his relatives had either brown or dirty blonde hair, green or blue eyes. I had black hair and brown eyes.
Before he moved to California, he had only known two Asian people — Sam, a wealthy study-abroad student from Seoul, Korea; and Derek, a half-white, half-Japanese boy, whom everyone in town identified as strictly Asian.
When Matt and I had first started seeing each other, I often feared that he liked me only because, to him, I was a rare sight. His comments about my physical features often triggered that same concern, but I put it out of my mind. I didn’t want to think about it.
The same day he told me about his grandfather, he invited me to celebrate July 4th at his house because his parents always had a large family reunion during that time. “You would get the most face time with everyone,” Matt said. I said yes only because I didn’t know how to say no.
Within two months, I was sitting at an airport in Kentucky with a suitcase filled with my most conservative clothes and shoes. When I finally arrived at his house, his parents greeted me at the door with a hug. Matt’s family showed me around the house and took me out for ice cream after dinner. I smiled when they looked over at me and laughed when they made jokes.
But later that night, in bed, I kept cell phone propped up on the pillow next to me. I didn’t call home, but I needed to feel like I could.
Matt’s parents were polite and kind, but I knew their kindness was not completely sincere. We had almost met once before, when they had flown out to southern California for vacation. Matt had invited me to join the three of them at the beach, but his father told him that it was unnecessary for them to meet me.
I was already packed and ready to go when Matt told me that it would be best if I stayed behind.
On July 4th, Matt took me to a family reunion potluck at his uncle’s house. His aunt and uncle greeted me in the same friendly manner.
His relatives complimented me on my “exotic” looks. I wanted to frown, but instead, I smiled and thanked them.
When we walked into the living room, I immediately lost myself in the crowd. Everyone was white and towering over me. Although I had grown up in a predominantly white community, I had never felt more aware of my race than I did at that moment.
I reached over for Matt’s hand, but he gently pushed mine aside and said, “Not here.”
When his grandparents finally arrived, they greeted me with handshakes instead of hugs. Matt generously introduced me to his grandparents and other relatives as his “friend.”
We spoke with a number of people who could not seem to remember my name, even if I had introduced myself a minute before. Conversation was often directed toward Matt instead of me. He didn’t notice and continued. I stood by his side at the party, but I had never felt more distant from him.
Later at the party, Matt talked to his relatives about his negative experiences at college. Matt said that he’d felt marginalized by our school because he was white. He didn’t think minorities should be treated better in college because that wasn’t how the “real world” worked.
I was stunned by his comments. He seemed to have forgotten that I was part of this minority.
I turned to him and spoke out. I tried to explain that moving beyond the status quo was the whole point, that our college wanted to empower marginalized communities by providing students with opportunities that may not otherwise be available.
Matt looked at me with disgust.
He ignored me and continued to defend his point of view. I deferred to his opinion and stopped talking.
When we left the party, Matt told me that he thought it all went well. His parents agreed. I nodded, even forced a smile, but when we arrived at their house, I said my goodnights quickly, rushed off to my room, and closed the door. I heard Matt and his mom in the hallway talking quietly.
Part of me wanted to open the door, pull his mother aside and ask her every question running through my head: What was I doing wrong? What should I have talked about? Was our relationship destined to fail?
I waited until the hallway was silent before I turned off the lights and got in bed. I knew things would not end well, but I tried to put it out of my mind.
When our relationship finally ended, I struggled because I’d given up so much of my identity to accommodate his.
I didn’t know how to define myself without him.
But I realize now that our relationship didn’t fail simply because he was white and I was Asian. It failed because we had different values systems.
Although Matt did not use racial slurs against me or tell me I was unequal because I’m Asian, he had racial biases that prevented him from seeing people of color as the same as him. He didn’t think minorities should be afforded equal opportunities because he benefited from white privilege and wanted to maintain that. He viewed me as an exception, someone who could pass as white, even though his family didn’t.
But I’m not white. I don’t identify as white or as a member of the “model minority.” I don’t want to pass or be privy to conversations supporting white privilege.
I know this now, but back then, I was too afraid to speak up, and too afraid to be alone.
These days, I am in a much better place. I’m in a healthy relationship with a person I love who accepts me for me.
It took me a long time to get here, but I know exactly who I am now.
I no longer waste my time on people who judge others based on the color of their skin, and I will never, ever allow myself to compromise my identity for a relationship again.
SPX is coming up! I’ll be at Table K-11!
In addition to all my usual products (Skin Deep books, Borogove card games, prints, stickers, charms) I will also have these spx EXCLUSIVE prints and stickers! The prints will are 11x17 and limited edition of only 75! The stickers are 4x6 and there’s only 50 of them!
(and yes I know there’s a typo on the sticker. That just makes it EVEN MORE UNIQUE AND ONE (fifty) OF A KIND.)
AND AGAIN — if anyone I know is going to SPX, I’d be very happy to send you money to pick up & mail a print & stickers to me.
I. The outcry for ethics in game journalism this week began as a witch-hunt against women in the game industry. This cannot be denied. Ask Zoe Quinn and Patricia Hernandez and Cara Ellison how many of the people crowding their twitter mentions are concerned about “ethics”, and how many are simply abusive, toxic, misogynist, and hurtful.
Regardless; here we are, now. This genie isn’t going back in the bottle.
For The First Time Ever, All Four Eyewitness Accounts of The Murder of Michael Brown Put In Chronological Order: The most detailed side-by-side telling of each eyewitness account of the Mike Brown murder in chronological order #JusticeForMichaelBrown [@ShaunKing]
Reblog the fuck out of this