Dear sports writers saying that Don Sterling’s big mistake (compared to other less well-publicized racists, I guess) was that he can’t “control his women”? You know how black people aren’t property? Turns out women aren’t either.
Actually, we’re sickened by all of the sexism and misogyny in the discussion of the Don Sterling thing. All the gawd-awful comments about his wife and the woman on the tape. Yet another way that the patriarchy is preventing anything actually being done about wide-spread racism, while bolstering its entrenched sexism. Thanks patriarchy!
I looked up Don Sterling and misogyny because *surely* we weren’t the only folks to notice the misogyny in the commentary. Well, turns out even the original story is full of sexism and misogyny too (note: we hadn’t listened to the tapes, just the reporting about them), but nobody is paying attention to that, because wimmin, who cares, they really are property. Here’s some [possible triggers] commentary. Which is not to downplay the racism AT ALL. But neither racism NOR sexism (nor their intersection!) should be tolerated.
I got a haircut. The first after um, 14 months. It’s a bob, because everybody else is getting bobs. It took a week for anybody to say anything about it at work. And another half week for anybody else to say anything. Talking to my two RAs about it after the second person noticed (one of my RAs was the first person to notice), I said, “Either it doesn’t look any different from before and nobody has noticed, or it looks terrible and people are just being polite by not saying anything.” One RA (the one who noticed) said, “People probably just aren’t noticing because they’re busy and the school year’s over.” The other RA said, “Who knows? It will always be a mystery.” I told the first one, “Good answer” and the second, “Bad answer.”
In case you were wondering what this economist thinks about the Ta-Nesi Coates article in the Atlantic. It’s excellent. It actually gave me a lot of flashbacks to when I took Race in the Economy as an undergrad– Reparations were in the news back then too, and again, used as a starting point for discussions about what is actually feasible (IIRC, reparations were not feasible just from a logistical standpoint) and how and why we need to still do things to level the playing field. My prof had been a beneficiary of affirmative action hirself and a big takeaway from that class was also that housing segregation has terrible consequences on many levels. We read a lot of William Darity Jr. (Sandy to his friends) in that class, and Coates has as well. Since then I’ve read a lot more and taken more classes and taught a lot more about disparities and discrimination. An important and complicated subject and yes, we need another War on Poverty. Inequality is getting worse, not better, in this country. And we’ve had periods of time in which it was getting better. It’s not impossible to make things better, even if we might never get to perfect, there’s a heck of a lot more we could be doing, and a lot we could stop doing, to bring back the American Dream for everyone.
My mom sometimes depresses me by talking about the state of the world. It’s in pretty terrible shape, but she has hope that it’ll get so bad that it’ll turn around. She lived through the 60s, after all. I fear it’s already gotten so bad but we haven’t turned around. We haven’t rebelled against our 1% overlords. We’ve had chances and they didn’t work out. And I wonder how the world would have been different in 2014 if Al Gore had been president. Would 2014 be more like what my naive self thought it would be, moving forward instead of backward? Or would it just have been 4 years delaying some inevitability. (But maybe it would have been Jeb instead of W… who knows?)
[update] The news depresses me. And never ever read the comments section. Especially when the article is about women.
I want to show you a video that DH and DC1 made, but WordPress says I would have to pay to do it (and I’m too lazy to remember my login to photobucket). So no break-dancing Lego squirrel for you.
“One RA (the one who noticed) said, “People probably just aren’t noticing because they’re busy and the school year’s over.” The other RA said, “Who knows? It will always be a mystery.” I told the first one, “Good answer” and the second, “Bad answer.””
LOL, OMG that is funny. That really is a bad answer.
No, I’ve had some really great bobs in my past, in fact, probably some of the more attractive hairstyles I’ve had for my face have been bobs (back when I was getting free haircuts from the stylist-in-training at Vidal Sassoon.) This was, admittedly, not one of them. Which is probably one of the reasons it takes me more than a year to get my hair cut.
The housing stuff in Coates article is so important, and some of it is so recent, it’s kind of heartbreaking that it’s not been written about in mainstream press more. My own personal neighborhood saw the transfer of wealth from foreclosed hispanic and black homeowners to banks, and then mostly white people buying the properties at a big discount from the pre-crash prices, which will presumably help them build wealth. It’s just stark how much the neighborhood changed in the last 5 years.
My mom and I can’t talk about current events or public policy in any meaningful way. She lives in a conservative echo chamber and gets all her opinions from the Wall Street Journal. Apparently WSJ published an op-ed about the Beverly Hills Hotel protests that was 100% context-free (shocker), because mom thought an appropriate response was to make a sarcastic comment about spoiled Hollywood celebrities and freedom of religion. Two topics, I might add, in which she historically has zero interest, and which I therefore deduce to have been implanted in her head by what she read. We had a silent fight for ten days over that one.
The DH and I are probably in the 5% in terms of income, though we don’t feel terribly prosperous because of expenses. :-) As a historian I am strongly disinclined to think the next revolution (in the U.S.) will be bloodless. I think it will be a religious civil war, actually.
State of the world always depresses me. Even from the perspective that this still is better than the world my parents came from, socioeconomically. Even our misogny (oh god) isn’t as bad as it is there. Although the grossness of the misogynistic men on twitter in response to women/#yesallwomen has challenged that…
Also depressing: imagining that chacha1 is right about the next thing being a religious civil war.
But haircuts! That’s funny cuz I tend to go a year between cuts minimum now, last stretch was apparently so long that my boss couldn’t remember what I looked like with bobbed hair and flipped out excitedly. Pointed it out to EVERYONE. there’s simply no noticing or not commenting with him in the room as your own personal wildly uncontrollable bullhorn. So that’s fun.
Re: hair, mine grows until I cut it and apparently I create all sorts of confusion by the varying intervals of that ordinary process. I was happy to have that conversation the first several dozen times. Then when I lived in the Bay Area I learned that it was rude and objectifying to take notice of women’s (or anyone’s, really) appearance. It was a relief. When I moved to Carolina I found expectant little glances to be the norm, and disappointment when they weren’t met with approving remarks. So many little traps we lay for each other. I think the Bay folks were right, at least for awhile yet, so I let other people’s appearance be their business unless they signal pretty directly that they want commentary.