Thunderf00t’s unethical breach of our privacy

If you read any other blog on Freethought Blogs, by now you’ve probably heard of Thunderf00t’s despicable actions. FtB has a private email listserv where we discuss boring technical problems (“My YouTube video isn’t embedding properly!”), ask for feedback or discuss certain topics, promote posts or causes we care about, and talk about cats (or how much they suck, depending on what side you’re on). But we also frequently discuss things that are very private in nature, like what’s going on in our personal life, where we live and work, our medical conditions, gender transitioning, rape, abuse, and (for pseudonymous bloggers) our real identities. We do this in agreement that nothing will leave the list, and there’s a disclaimer at the bottom of every email:

“All emails sent to this list are confidential and private. Revealing information contained in any email sent to the list to anyone not on the list without permission of the author is strictly prohibited.”

Well, Thunderf00t has violated that confidentiality. Now, I was on a different continent with limited internet access when the original Thunderf00t drama went down, so I don’t even want to get into that. But being removed from the network was apparently enough motivation for Thunderf00t to breach our privacy. Ed summarizes what happened:

On August 2, a close friend informed me that a mutual acquaintance of ours had been forwarded messages from that private mailing list by Thunderfoot. A few hours later, I received an email from a longtime commenter on the site telling me that “your email distribution list is not secure. Take the time to verify that only the people who are supposed to be on the list are actually members, as messages have been leaked.” Prompted by those messages, I went into the admin panel of our mailing list software, did some checking and discovered that Thunderfoot had somehow managed to get back on the mailing list after he was removed from it on July 1, when the decision was made to close his blog and remove him from the network. I double checked to make sure that he had been removed from the list at that time and he was (I have email confirmation from the system at the time). I then had our site tech do some digging into the database and he discovered that Thunderfoot had used a security loophole (now fixed) to regain admission to the list only a few minutes after he was removed from it on July 1 and had been receiving all of the email traffic between everyone else from that moment forward, without our knowledge. When that fact was discovered, he was, of course, removed from the list a second time and the settings were changed to close the loophole in our security that allowed him that access; over the next half hour he tried multiple times to get back on the list again but failed.

Jason has the technical details, including logs for evidence, in case you want them. Thunderf00t has confessed to breaching our privacy, but of course he’s trying to spin everything to make himself look like some sort of Wikileaks hero against the Big Bad Evil FtB Bullies. He insists that he doesn’t “doc drop,” even though in that very post he releases private statements from the mailing list. And we already have outside confirmation of people receiving mailing list emails through him. Keep diggin’ that hole!

What’s incredibly ironic is that not even a year ago, Thunderf00t was threatened by Muslims that they would release his private information, including his real name. He blasted them for this violation of privacy and “doc dropping”…which is exactly what he’s doing right now. What a hypocrite.

Greta emphasizes why this violation of privacy is so serious:

There’s a reason these conversations are private. Among other things:

People — especially anonymous and pseudonymous bloggers — reveal private information that could jeopardize their jobs if it were made public.
People — especially anonymous and pseudonymous bloggers — reveal private information that could jeopardize their physical safety if it were made public.
People brainstorm ideas that they later decide are bad ideas, and don’t want to be held to.
People discuss private medical matters and personal family issues, which could hurt both themselves and others if they became public.
People hash out differences of opinion that they don’t want to turn into a giant public debate.
People talk about personal, emotional stuff that they don’t want to share with the entire Internet.

If you have ever said anything privately that you wouldn’t want made public — because you were thinking out loud, because you knew the people you were talking with would understand the context but the general public wouldn’t, because you were mad and said things you didn’t really mean, because you don’t want everyone on the Internet to have your home address and phone number, because some things are just private and you bloody well have the right to decide who to tell them to — then you almost certainly understand exactly how important this is, and what a terrible violation it is, and why. People need to be able to talk freely among their friends and colleagues, without parsing every word for public consumption. People need this — and they have a right to have it. That’s a no-brainer.

But if you want to hear from someone who’s privacy is probably on the line the most, read this post by Natalie Reed. Thunderf00t had previously threatened her with releasing private backchannel information before he… actually started doing it:

Natalie Reed is not my “real name”. I use a different name for “real life”… for employment, for housing, for everything I don’t necessarily want connected to my being out as a transsexual, atheist blogger. There is a huge amount of highly personal, highly stigmatized issues I discuss on this blog, or in other venues under the name Natalie Reed. Transsexuality and transgenderism, my heroin addiction, stories from my life and past, my being a survivor of multiple rapes…I’ve even mentioned my being an incest survivor, an issue that’s incredibly, deeply painful for me. Most of these things I never, ever would have felt able to write about without feeling protected by this name.

It also protects my ability to pursue housing and employment without the threat of being outed as trans, a recovering addict, an atheist and so on by a simple five minute google search. It protects the possibility of my someday choosing to go “stealth” if I ever feel the desire or need, in which I could finally live as just a woman instead of always as a trans woman. It keeps me further removed from my birth name and images of my former self, and the life I led before transition. It protects my physical safetyfrom those who feel the need to enforce their beliefs and feelings about gender through violence. It protects me from the countless rad-fems and HBSers who consistently out or dox trans women, often with the deliberate, explicit intent of exposing them to harassment, discrimination and violence.

Natalie Reed is my safety net.

The e-mail address I had been using on the FTB list was not under this name. It was under my real one.

So, yeah. Thunderf00t scared me. A lot.

Thankfully I’m not in the same situation as Natalie – I don’t believe I have any personal information I shared on the backchannel that could really damage me. But I care about my fellow bloggers, and I care about Thunderf00t’s severe ethical violations and potentially illegal actions. He is a vile hypocrite who has lost whatever shred of credibility he may have had left. And honestly, it’s just fucking sad. How are you that obsessed with taking down a freaking blog network because you disagree with the fucking no-brainer of having sexual harassment policies that you’re willing to cost innocent people their jobs and safety? How is destroying lives of your atheist allies your priority over combating creationism in the classroom, faith healing, the Religious Right, and homophobia?

Just fucking sad.

Nazis, genetically modified babies, Mothman, and Jesus

I didn’t think those topics could be combined, but I’ve been proven wrong. No, it’s not the next hit superhero movie. One of the “perks” of being an atheist blogger is that I get signed up to all sorts of wacky mailing lists for creationists, woo peddlers, and conspiracy theorists. I suspect they think this annoys me, when really it usually goes straight to my spam folder to die with all the penis enlargement ads. But sometimes things slip through to my inbox, and sometimes their insanity is hilarious.

I present for your entertainment, “V Blast: THE BEAST REVEALS THEY CREATED GENETICALLY MODIFIED BABIES”

Those who are aware that conspiratorial practices have already wildly exceeded even the most fantastic speculations were not surprised to hear that scientists have now admitted that genetically modified babies have already been born. Although the mainstream, or the so called “ethical” medical community is now publicly acknowledging they’ve mixed genes from multiple parties to produce designer babies all the way back to the late 1990’s, the reality is genetically engineered babies were probably born as far back the 1940’s in one of Joseph Mengele’s Nazi laboratories.
Generally speaking, secretive “black” science significantly precedes the allegedly legitimate version, in which the mainstream commonly lags behind by decades. In fact, the recent mainstream media exposure in the Daily Mail periodical, reignited interest in a subject which was actually covered, albeit rather quietly, years earlier.
It turns out that In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) clinics have been using a technique now for years that “rejuvenates” the eggs of women who are having trouble conceiving, by injecting components of another woman’s egg. This component is called cytoplasm, and it contains the mitochondrial DNA from the donor – thus making the resultant baby the product of 3 parents – the father, and two mothers.
It turns out this has been publicly known since 2001 and, by tracing the research (and the scientist who developed the technique), we learn that babies with more than 2 parents were born at least as far back as 1997. Once again, once such things go public, it virtually always means it’s been going on for quite a bit longer, and has gone much further than is generally acknowledged.
Time for a science break! It’s actually true that scientists are trying to develop methods that use a third individual’s mitochondria during IVF, but it’s not to make abominations or super babies. It’s to cure diseases caused by malfunctioning mitochondria. Mitochondria are the “powerhouse” of the cell, making lots of energy so your cells can actually function.
They also have their own genomes because they were once a separate organism! They were engulfed by another type of cell and the two formed a symbiotic relationship, and now every eukaryote (anything that’s not bacteria or archaea) has mitochondria. Mitochondria are passed from mother to child, not father to child. This is because egg cells have the room to store mitochondria, but sperm don’t.
So if you have a disease that’s caused by a mutation in the mitochondrial genome, you could technically suck out all the “defective” mitochondria and replace them with “healthy” mitochondria from another person. And people are going nuts at the ethics around this, because yes, technically you’d have a third genetic “parent.” If you want to learn more, read this great article in The Guardian.
For instance, there is nothing to indicate these maniacs have stopped at 3 parents, as they could have, theoretically, added the cytoplasm of a dozen women – each selected for what are perceived as desirable characteristics – i.e. blue eyes from mom #4, physical speed and agility from gymnast mom #5, a very high IQ from mom #6, and so forth.
Yeah, theoretically you could add all sorts of mitochondria. But mitochondrial genomes are tiny and don’t really contribute to any distinguishing traits. Things like eye color would still be determined by nuclear DNA (the ones egg and sperm contribute to).
To put it another way, this is the stuff the Nephilim were made of.
I’m not even going to touch that.
What happens if they try to splice in the mitochondria of another father is anyone’s guess, but such outcomes could look like something out of a horror film. And it gets worse.
Actually, nothing different would happen if you took the mitochondria from a man. The only reason mitochondria are transfered maternally is because eggs have the room to do so. There are rare examples of mitochondria being transmitted paternally, with no real consequences.
Now we’ve learned the key research embryologist who pioneered this technique left the fertility clinic work he was doing, and was hired by a US military medical institution. This chilling fact begs the question, is there anyone who seriously doubts the military establishment will seek to engineer a super-soldier, and will not be deterred by any of those messy moral or ethical considerations?
Christian Media, the ministry which fields the V Channel output such as the V Blast Internet letter, the Eclipse printed periodical, and the Exotica TV and radio show, has previously produced material on the efforts to create robo-soldier. In what looks like a Marvel Comics fiction, hardly anyone knows military scientists have already succeeded in growing (with spider DNA) a dense, Kevlar like compound, directly into the skin of solders, so they can withstand a bullet wound (see the Exotica TV episode on the subject).
Military scientists are talking about using spider silk to make structures that are stronger than Kevlar…but they can hardly hardly make enough with the current technology, and they definitely haven’t started breeding genetically modified soldiers. We don’t have that technology. We hardly understand how spider silk production works.
With such efforts, one can only wonder if these madmen will eventually produce a modern version of the mothman, replete with wings that can quietly transport the organic killing machine behind enemy lines. Furthermore, it is certain the Biblical prophets described just what is occurring.
Oddly this was probably the paragraph that offended my brain cells the most. Mothman? Not…you know, Spiderman? I…I just don’t understand why they wouldn’t go with the obvious if they were going to invoke genetically modified superheroes.
For instance, the prophet Joel described military men that were unstoppable in very scary terms:
 “a great people and a strong: there hath not been ever the like…A fire devoureth before them; and behind them a flame burneth…and nothing shall escape them. The appearance of them is as the appearance of horses [centaurs]; and as horsemen, so shall they run. “They shall run like mighty men; they shall climb the wall like men of war; they shall march every one on his way, and they shall not break their ranks: Neither shall one thrust another; they shall walk every one in his path: and when they fall upon the sword, they shall not be wounded” (Joel 2:2-8)
For those unfamiliar with the prophetic texts, the manipulation of genetics is a primary theme found in the numerous descriptions of the end of the age. Jesus Christ said the last generation would be “…as it was in the days of Noah, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man” (Luke 17:26)
The primary description of the days of Noah was focused on what is sometimes called the “first incursion,” wherein the fallen angels tampered with the genetics of men and women, and the offspring became “mighty men” – a population which was quickly catapulted into leadership within the old world order.
The book of Genesis tells us the whole world was “corrupt” and the LORD saw nothing but “violence” everywhere, so He purposed to destroy the world (Genesis Chapter 6). This is what Jesus used as a template for the last generation – a time of massive destruction, preceded by violence and genetic manipulation.
When coupled with the descriptions of world war, famine, and pestilence, to say nothing of the massive fraud of the so called pre-tribulation “rapture” in which millions of deceived believers “know not” that they are about to be “taken away” to the grave in a violent judgment (Matthew 24:39),  this tribulational devastation could occur at any moment.
– James Lloyd
Jesus blah blah blah.

The only other thing worth highlighting is their unique instruction on how to remove yourself from their mailing list:

Of course, if you have been convinced Christians should never send an Email to someone without permission (Did the Disciples of Jesus ask people for permission to tell them the Good News?), then we will cheerfully delete your name from our database.

Woah, gettin’ a little defensive there. Of course I want to stay subscribed! I love getting a good laugh at conspiracy theorists with no solid grasp of science.

The parade of misogynistic twits is live now!

I love waking up to a slew of comments about how repulsive I am. It always means some MRA has linked to me so he and his buddies can pat themselves on the back, and that’s exactly what happened. The author of the post I eviscerated yesterday tweeted this this morning:

The link comes here, which features this profile picture (for the weak of stomach, avert your eyes!).

And boy, I guess I’m just so hideous that I make misogynistic eyes bleed or something:

Because, you know, my life revolves around attracting and pleasing clueless misogynistic fuckwits. Oh wait, it doesn’t.

Some of his supporters have decided to dive into the comments to offer wisdom that just can’t be constrained to 140 characters. Like AnonJon:

You do realize that only Men can determine what is sexy to them?

No matter of projecting from females on to males of what females think men SHOULD find sexy will have any impact.

The biggest problem of feminism has been this very notion.  That females try to decide for men what they should find arousing.

it just doesn’t work that way

You do realize my sole purpose in life isn’t to worry about what men find sexy, and that many men don’t agree with you that educated women are repulsive, right?

Here’s Zorro to the rescue with more stupidity:

Female college professors all stink like yeast and tuna. Everybody knows that!

This dumb broad should learn how to make a sandwich and STFU.

To be fair, S. cerevisiae culturing can smell kind of weird. But I have a feeling that’s not what he’s talking about.

Herdasperser:

Attractive and happy women have no use for feminism.

And because he says so, it’s true. Or something.

Karl:

Your overall level of physical attractiveness (negative 10, if your photo is anything to go by) is enough to keep self-respecting, non-totally-desperate men away from you. Misogynistic or not. Your level of education has nothing to do with it.

I know it’s useless to say it to a feminist, but… get real.

I’m just so hideous, I am a negative 10. Not a zero. I’ve broken the scale. Damn. Do I get a gold medal for that? Is there an Olympic Sport for Repulsing Assholes?

I really don’t get why these people think I care. I would never date anyone who thought women must spend all their time and effort on being “attractive” to men. I put “attractive” in scare quotes because these guys fail to realize that not all men agree with them on what’s sexy, which was kind of the point of my last post. I dress and look how I want to dress and look, and I only date people who are okay with that. But apparently this makes my boyfriend a “latent homosexual” because he doesn’t follow their ideals of what’s sexy.

Now, one more point:

I know when I point out trollish behavior I’m receiving, a lot of people like to run to the rescue and say how attractive they find me. One, if you think what you’re going to say might come off as creepy, then just don’t say it:

I feel immature sharing this information, but given the context I hope you find it amusing rather than creepy.  I developed a mild erection while reading your list of “masculine” traits and thinking about your potential as a girlfriend.  What can I say?  I like nerdy, laid-back, slightly chubby women.  (I am aware you are taken and live far away, but it’s a mostly involuntary response.)

I think this is the definition of TMI.

Two, the point of these posts aren’t for people to swoop in and heal my bruised ego by telling me how hot I am. My ego isn’t bruised – I love laughing at these nitwits. But the point is my attractiveness shouldn’t matter. Even if I was a negative 10, my appearance has nothing to do with the content of my arguments. But notice these guys never actually addressed what I wrote. When you don’t have an argument to make, you have to resort to pot shots about appearance as a desperate attempt to take someone down. Too bad they just make me giggle instead.

Those boner-killing educated women

I’ve never been more glad that I’m getting my PhD. Apparently it’s a great way to keep away misogynistic idiots who think educated women decrease men’s happiness because they aren’t sexy. Because you know, fuck becoming educated and pursuing a career you’re passionate about – you should be acting sexy for some guy! Sorry lesbians and bisexuals, you don’t count. I know it sounds like nonsense, but he has a GRAPH!

Can’t argue with something made in Excel! How did he come up with this highly scientific, objective measurement of femininity and education?

A good test to see if a girl is over-educated is to add the word “sexy” before her job title. If the resulting phrase ignites arousing images in your head, then she’ll most likely have what it takes to satisfy you.

Sexy Waitress? Unf. Sexy Professor? Get the barf bag. I guess this explains why you never hear about Sexy Librarians or Sexy Nurses, and why nerdy girls universally repulse guys on the internet. …Wait.

Anything beyond a bachelors at a public university is a near guarantee she’ll possess a large basket of masculine traits that will prevent boners.

I’m getting nervous at this point. Why, I’m pursuing something beyond a bachelor’s! Though at least I’ve never attended a private, elitist, feminazi university. What terrible masculine traits have I been subjecting my boyfriend to?

1. They’re fat. (This guy probably thinks so)

2. They’re constantly glued to their phone. (Only men are allowed to do this)

5. They think being funny and witty is a quality that men love. (We all know women can’t be funny, right?!)

8. They wear flip-flops even when they’re not at the beach, pool, or in their house. (Comfort be damned, you should constantly be subjected to only the highest of heels!)

9. They have condoms in their drawers because they expect to have random sex with strange men. (I’m such a slut, using condoms)

10. They cannot dance. They also do not know how to sing or play basic musical instruments. (Doing the “shopping cart” counts as a dance move, right?)

12. They acquire pets instead of putting effort into landing a quality man. (I do have more photos of Pixel on my phone than my boyfriend…)

18. Their idea of travel is going to the beach or France. (Paris was awesome!)

24. They make lame excuses for not putting effort into their appearance. (Like “I look fine without makeup and don’t care enough to put forth the time or effort.” LAME!)

25. They obsess about the environment above what is reasonable, even though they pollute more than 90% of people in the world. (#1 pollutant is apparently the rays of masculinity I’m exuding)

33. They insist on eating pizza or otherwise fattening food after a night of binge drinking. (I guess only guys are allowed to fulfill their late night munchies with some nice biscuits and gravy or a Seattle Dog (hot dog with cream cheese and sautéed onions, mmmm))

35. They care more about maintaining their career than a good home. (Pay no attention to the mounds of dirty dishes and laundry)

36. They rarely wear high heels. (Because I don’t own any)

40. They like Ikea furniture. (But it’s like adult Legos! It’s a furniture amusement park! LINGONBERRY SAUCE!)

Pixel enjoying my Ikea furnishings

42. They go on and on about the stupidest shit. (Well, I am a blogger)

That’s only 15 out of 42, which is probably around the Average Masculinity Unit for 3rd year graduate students. By the time I’ve graduated, I’ll probably have picked up a few more terrible traits, like getting acne and watching too much tv.

But this is the money quote for me:

Unless you’re a latent homosexual, you won’t get many benefits from a relationship with a woman on the right side of the chart.

Wow, I never knew my current boyfriend and all of my exes were secretly latent homosexuals! Apparently it’s easy to confuse “latent homosexuality” with “not being an idiotic misogynistic jackass.”

(Via Man Boobz)

Catholic Bishops reduce their issues to “PR problems”

How clueless can you get? Very, if you’re a Catholic Bishop:

There’s no doubt that America’s Roman Catholic bishops have had their share of what might quaintly be called bad press. The priest sex-abuse scandal, a Vaticancrackdown on nuns, a head-knocking fight with the president of the United States over contraceptive coverage — none of these would qualify as good news.

On Thursday, the bishops said they’ve had enough. It is time, they said, to beef up their public relations arsenal.

“We need more help and sophistication in our messaging,” said Cardinal Sean O’Malley of Boston, who decried the “latest debacle” of bad PR over the treatment of American nuns (which involves an investigation by the Vatican, not the American bishops).

Hemant beat me to what I was going to say:

You don’t need more sophistication in your messaging. You don’t need someone who can deliver your message more clearly.

You need a new message.

Your current image is that of men who are anti-gay, anti-women, and anti-comprehensive-health-care. You don’t do enough to punish the rapists in your midst. A spokesman (I was going to say spokesperson… but we all know they would never hire a woman for the job) won’t be able to make you look good when so much of what you preach goes against common decency.

Exactly. “PR” can only spin so much.  Good PR can convince you Franzia tastes pretty good. Good PR can’t convince you that child rape is somehow awesome.

This is post 46 of 49 of Blogathon. Donate to the Secular Student Alliance here.

The sleep deprivation induced delirium is starting

I just grabbed Red Bull #2 of the night. The previous Red Bull and the triple shot mocha have since worn off, and I needed the energy boost. The first thing that concerned me is that I’m actually starting to like the taste of Red Bull, which is a major red flag. I rationally know the stuff used to taste absolutely vile, so I feel like I’m hallucinating. But as I was chugging it down, I started reading the nutritional information.

Me: Can you overdose on vitamin B6?
Sean: What?
Me: This is the second Red Bull I’ve had, but each one contains 250% of your daily recommended serving of vitamin B6.
Sean: Uhhh…
Me: I just had 5 times my daily recommended serving of vitamin B6.
Sean: I think you’re fine.
Me: I’m going to diiiiieeeeeeeeeee *arm flail*

Wait…does drinking 5 times your daily recommended serving of vitamin B6 cause taste hallucinations? Crap.

This is post 37 of 49 of Blogathon. Donate to the Secular Student Alliance here.

Today in traumatizing wildlife videos…

Nature is often weird. But sometimes, it’s REALLY fucking weird. I give you the pearlfish:

For those of you who can’t watch the video (though if you can, you really should)… Adult pearlfish are long skinny fish that live in open habitats. In order to not get eaten, they need to find a suitable place to hide. The problem is, they tend to live in places that are missing the typical hiding places like rocks and corals. They are, however, surrounded by lots of large sea cucumbers…so they hide by swimming up a sea cucumber’s butt and living inside of it. Most don’t harm their hosts, but some are parasitic, nibbling away at the sea cucumber’s gonads for nourishment.

This is post 14 of 49 of Blogathon. Donate to the Secular Student Alliance here.

Thank god I don’t go to Bob Jones University

I wouldn’t last a week thanks to their fascist student handbook. The 2012-2013 version was just released, and boy is it full of goodies.

  1. No listening to music that “borrows from the styles [of] rock, rap, jazz, and country.” Yes, that insiduous jazz music that kids these days love so much is corrupting our youth! Damn you, Dave Brubeck!
  2. No headphones allowed, because you can’t be trusted listening to music in private.
  3. You can only watch PG-13 movies if accompanied by faculty or staff in their home. R rated movies are right out. And you can’t watch any movie in a public theater when school is in session. Jesus hates Finding Nemo.
  4. No playing video games rated above Everyone +10. To put that in perspective, the next rating level is Teen. Apparently things suited for people age 13 and older is not suitable for Christians age 18 and older.
  5. No publicly criticizing BJU. Well, that’s that, I guess. Thanks, Big Brother.
What I want to know is if anyone voluntarily signs up for this fucked up boot camp, or if they’re all forced to go by fucked up parents. This is more like a prison than a university. I’m sure all these students will come out of their education totally prepared for the real world. They just have no never go out in public lest their ears explode from a rock song played in a restaurant or their eyes shrivel up at the sight of an R-rated movie billboard.

This is post 5 of 49 of Blogathon. Donate to the Secular Student Alliance here.

Creepiest pickup line ever?

Seattle buses provide ample opportunity for creepy, bizarre, and/or uncomfortable situations with strangers. The one I just witnessed is the current “winner,” as the creepy older guy managed to somehow simultaneously hit on and witness to an attractive young woman sitting behind me.

Guy: You’re so beautiful, intelligent, and spiritual.. I know because I can look into your soul through your eyes, because I’m a warrior of Christ. I’d love to have a relationship with you.
Gal: Um…no thank you
Guy: Well if you change your mind my address is (address) and you can visit whenever you like…you’re so wonderful.

He then proceeded to ask her questions about her name, age, profession, and if she would go on a date with him for the next 15 minutes…which she stupidly answered, albeit in a way that screamed “please stop talking to me.” EDIT: Hopefully she was giving fake information. When she got off the bus he started chanting all these facts to himself, including the intersection she got off because he assumed that’s where she lived. He then started groaning about how hot she was and how badly he wanted her for the rest of the bus ride, until he got off at his stop.

Lesson 1: Don’t give personal information to creepy people on the bus. Eek. WTF. I hope this guy doesn’t turn out to be a stalker. Women are socialized to be polite even in situations that make them incredibly uncomfortable. We need to feel more comfortable saying “No” or “Please stop talking to me” or even moving to another part of the bus.

Lesson 2: Women have to deal with this stupid shit all the time.  I had a similar event happen about a week ago where an older man tried to convince me to get off the bus with him to go on a coffee date, and was trying to pry all sorts of personal information out of me. Even though this time the guy wasn’t talking to me, I was incredibly uncomfortable. I was worried about the young woman (who was the same age as me) and worried that he may start talking to me next. It’s worse because a bus is a situation where you feel “trapped.” You can technically get off (if it won’t make you late for something important), but there’s the chance someone will follow you, so staying trapped on the bus with that person is actually the safer situation.

I know a lot of guys don’t understand why getting hit on by strangers can make many women so uncomfortable. I hear “I’d love random women hitting on me!” all the time. But when you can’t ride the bus in peace…when you dread sitting at a bus stop with other people because they’ll do the same…when you stop wearing nice or flattering clothes because you want to decrease your odds of receiving wolf whistles and cat calls…when you have no idea if any of these people are potentially dangerous…

“Flattery” turns into “fear” very quickly.

I get comments: Slut edition

Someone found an ancient post just to call me slut:

I’m gonna have to side with the hater–using the term “sex positive” doesn’t make you come across as a well-rounded human being. It depresses me to think of how young you probably were when you lost it. And since then you haven’t slowed down your tampin’ around, clearly

I’m all about liberalism, but a slut is a slut, even if you do have good politics. Sex has ruined a lot of people. Be an infidel if you want, but God does exist–I’m sure of it, honey. And if you’re not with God, well, you’re with…

I assume their answer is Satan, but we can come up with something more entertaining than that. Dear readers, can you please enlighten me who I’ve been hanging out with instead of God that’s turned me into such a slutty-slut?