The significance of political misogynistic violence on the anniversary of the Ecole Polytechnique massacre

27 years ago, a shooter entered a Montreal STEM school lecture hall with a loaded gun and held a class at gunpoint. He ordered the class to divide itself into men and women. They didn’t comply until he shot the ceiling.

Once separated, he turned his gun on the women. 14 women were murdered and another 20 injured before the shooter would turn the gun on himself. We would dub this the Ecole Polytechnique Massacre.

As with all atrocities, promises were made to never forget–certainly many Canadian feminists, myself included, observe the day of mourning. Yet it would seem that many in Alberta’s political landscape have a selective memory indeed, given that mere days ago an entire crowd worked itself into a frenzy to speak of our female Premier, “Lock her up!

It certainly puts Alberta’s conservative leadership in an awkward position. Their previous big tent success has always worked only with the cooperation of their snarling, reactionary dickhead vote, in which virulent misogynists have had their home for decades. Now they are tasked with keeping this vote whilst condemning violence spun in the same cloth that occurred on this day, 27 years ago.

Of course this isn’t the first time Brian Jean, leader of Alberta’s right-wing Wildrose Party, has had to contain this feral portion of the conservative voting bloc. He has gone on record to condemn them multiple times, yet they don’t seem particularly convinced by his ineffectual bleating. Maybe it’s because he’ll turn around in 3 months to start courting their vote again, but only before issuing another disingenuous apology about how wrong violence against women is. You’re not fooling your drooling bloodhounds, Jean, and neither are you fooling me.

How fundamentally perverse it is that the authoritarian jackboots can make their proclamations that the Premier ought to be jailed, simply because they dislike her, mere days before an occasion which reminds us all of the cost of patriarchal entitlement. If that’s a “joke,” you’ll have to explain it to me.

-Shiv

Alt Reich stands for free hate–err, speech

Laci Green is a YouTuber running a number of sex education channels in which she covers a wide range of topics that are arbitrarily considered taboo by many curricula across the world. Although she had a few rough patches early in her career with some unintentionally cissexist remarks, she has improved significantly over the years. Her work in the past year or so has been absolutely top notch and potentially expands access to sex education for those unlucky enough to not have it. I have an enormous amount of respect for Laci, and the importance of her work cannot be understated.

She is also a feminist.

Philip DeFranco, another YouTuber who I’ve already criticized for unironically using the term “Social Justice Warrior” as a pretext to dismiss arguments he dislikes, apparently has some kind of vendetta against Laci Green. There are at least two videos on his channel mentioning her by name, and as we all know, critical videos from cishet white men with large followings tend to create harassment campaigns which they seldom if ever acknowledge or even try to reign in.

The crux of what happened was that Laci asked YouTube to launch an inquiry into the use of her face in photoshopped imagery from a third YouTuber, self-styled “free speech absolutist” Roaming Millenial. The image in question ‘shopped an Indigenous headdress onto Laci’s face. Because Laci is white, and not an asshole, she likely would have been concerned with the integrity of her copyright. RM made a video accusing Laci of censorship–and (CONTENT NOTICE ALL THE TERRIBLE) Youtube’s favourite atheist assweasel goonsquad followed suit.

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Trump’s alt right goons prove how not threatening they are by issuing deluge of threats

Pretty much anyone would feel a bit touchy if it were suggested they were the scum of human society. Nobody likes being called that. When we’re talking about the alt right, a cluster of beliefs exhibiting anything from White Supremacy to anti-suffragist sentiments, it’s hard not to point out that they advocate for a lot of harm. Except a detailed description of the harm in question is a feature, and not a bug. They want to hurt you.

However, the alt right is uniquely predictable in that calling out alt right beliefs as being dangerous will inevitably result in you being doxxed and swarmed by rape and death threats, as if this proves how reasonable advocacy for the alt right cluster of beliefs is.

Cue a Canadian university where this is exactly what happened.

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Priorities

A football athlete stands up against institutionalized racism and his fans burn jerseys, he loses his job, and white people everywhere freak out.

A football athlete is caught on film assaulting his wife or raping teenage girls, and…

-Shiv

Defending the indefensible

You’ve probably heard by now that a number of beaches in France have banned the burkini. Far from a rational response, these policies are absurd, sexist, racist, immoral and entirely indefensible. And yet, I see many arguments even from so-called free thinking people defending this policy.

Excuse #1: The French have been victims of a string of terrorist attacks and are scared

This might be a reasonable explanation for how the owners of these beaches thought this was a great idea, but it does not actually excuse the policy. A random Muslim on the street is no more culpable for the Nice or Paris attacks than I am for the routine Planned Parenthood terrorist attacks carried out by self righteous white Christians. It is racist to presume that every brown-skinned person is complicit in the attack because they are not, AT THIS EXACT SECOND, protesting or otherwise condemning the violence. That is a backward and perverted idea of justice.

They’re people. They have errands to run and chores to do. Even though every mosque goes on record to condemn a terrorist attack the moment it happens, this is not enough. Brown people who are on their way to the grocery store? They’re complicit in the violence! Taking time to do housekeeping or paying the bills? Tacit approval! Engaging in self care–including trips to the beach? That’s practically an endorsement! Arrest! Deport! Publicly humiliate!

You wouldn’t try to argue I’m complicit in poverty because I don’t donate 100% of my earnings to shelters. You shouldn’t try to argue that because Muslims may have spoons invested elsewhere they agree with terrorists, particularly when they do adhere to your ridiculous demands and condemn the attacks anyway. Neither Muslims nor brown people should have to prove their humanity to you.

Fuck off. Fear does not justify irrationality, it causes it. Have some fucking perspective. After all, many of the victims at Nice were Muslims.

I have a question. What does the burkini ban actually solve? Are you intercepting finances directed towards ISIS? Disarming dangerous people?

Oh, here’s a good one, Excuse #2. “Liberating women.”

Excuse #2: We’re liberating women.

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Woman breaks swimming world record; result obviously the work of men

I hate sports for a lot of reasons. NBC demonstrates one of the more fantastically tone deaf sexist reasons:

Hosszu’s husband, Shane Tusup, also serves as her coach and was on the pool deck wildly celebrating his wife’s gold medal Saturday. While their relationship has been well-documented and has invited scrutiny in the swimming world in the lead up to Rio, the Twittersphere erupted after Hosszu’s performance on Saturday, with a number of Tweets blaming  NBC announcer Dan Hicks for calling Tusup “the man responsible” for the record-breaking performance.

Ah yes, the tried and true “woman achieved something, but it must secretly be the work of men anyway” routine.

When the fuck did NBC start hiring MRAs to do their sports commentary?

Fuck off, Dan Hicks.

As for Hosszu, congratulations on your win, I’m glad all your hard work paid off.

-Shiv

Internet proves how not sexist it is by hurling sexist abuse at female Premiers

CBC News ran a piece, additional video linked below, on sexism in politics called “The Meaning of Hillary.” Although the show’s premise was to discuss the implications of Clinton’s nomination as the Democratic candidate, it did so by inviting Canada’s female Premiers–Christie Clark (British Colombia), Rachel Notley (Alberta), and Kathleen Wynne (Ontario)–to discuss their own experiences as political leaders who are also women.

All three of them, despite all being Left(ish) leaders, have a common feature in their interfacing with their administrations: Men still engage in sexist microaggressions, despite being subordinate. 

You’ll never guess what kind of comments are in the video.

It’s a bit like shouting, “I’m not sexist, you cunt!” isn’t it.

The video, for anyone who is curious and has the stomach to pore through the blissfully ironic misogyny in the comments:

Something about authoritarianism must immunize these people from irony.

-Shiv

Indigenous women protest misogyny in Indian Act

Joan Jack, a lawyer and indigenous woman, takes to the road on her Harley to partake in the Road to Niagara campaign:

A Manitoba Ojibway activist is hitting the road on her Harley to bring awareness to misogyny in the Indian Act and to inspire Indigenous women to be political leaders.

Joan Jack travelled from her home in British Columbia to her home province of Manitoba to take part in Road to Niagara.

The Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs is leading a ride that starts in Winnipeg on Thursday. It aims to raise awareness of the spirit and intent of treaties as First Nations seek to return to a nation-to-nation relationship with the federal government.

Jack said she will stop in communities along the way and try to empower women to be leaders.

“Many of the communities are still stuck in chauvinistic views of a woman’s place and a woman’s role and I’m just here to say that’s just BS,” she said.

Jack, a retired lawyer who ran for the leadership of the Assembly of First Nations in 2012, said part of the problem is the Indian Act. She calls the act one of the original sources of misogyny against Indigenous women in Canada.

“It’s legalized misogyny,” she said.

“Most First Nations reserves have no resources to deal with male violence against women. There are no safe houses, there are no trained people.… We need to have human rights training. Most oppression is born out of ignorance, not intent,” she said.

I don’t have a motorbike, and I’m also really broke so I wouldn’t be able to take time off work–nonetheless, I hope the campaign goes well and many a woke Indigenous feminist is made.

Joan Jack, smashin’ the kyriarchy.

-Shiv