Why (We) Believe Victims Don’t Lie (with Special Guest Iris Vander Pluym)

(Please note: the amazing, snarktastically awesome Iris Vander Pluym [read her blog here!] contributed to this little blog post of mine. Her part will be in the color of royal purple [because that is the color of royalty and, apparently, sarcasm, so…].)

Also content warning for discussion of rape culture and victim-blaming. Same content warnings, as well as trigger warnings for direct discussion of rape, apply to all links here, as well.)

Very recently, I put up a post declaring my support for Amber Heard. You can read the post if you don’t know what I’m talking about, and you should. One of the things I said was this:

I am on record as saying that I will always believe and stand with the victim until evidence comes out that they’re lying, because them actually lying is so incredibly rare that there’s no reason to entertain it; in our culture of victim-blaming, I do not believe that most people would think lying like this would be worth it.

In response I got a… fascinating comment, permanently languishing in moderation:

What make you think lying is rare among human beings in such situations as this?

Why didn’t you link to the police report?

Let’s start with that last one… Iris?

[Read more…]

On Baseball Bats, Heads, and Free Speech

(Content note: rape culture)

So, if you haven’t heard (though I can’t see how you haven’t), a very horrid preacher was shouting “you deserve to be raped” at a bunch of high school students. A 19-year-old woman walked up behind him and whacked him upside the head with an aluminum baseball bat.

This has raised an interesting conversation, as many (myself included) have utterly no sympathy for him, and have, in fact, made fun of him over it. In fact, I commented, and then posted on my Facebook, the following:

To be completely fair, I think we need to ask some important questions…

What was he doing there, at that time of day, just being all provocative, and not even with a chaperone? Things happen when you go out like that. I mean really… he shouldn’t have expected any less.

And what was he wearing, anyways? Did he have on a provocative shirt, showing off too much?

And before you say it, no I’m definitely *not* victim blaming. All I’m saying is that there are ways he could have minimized his risk, and really… shouldn’t he be held responsible at least for his own actions?

[Read more…]

Welp. Another Day, Another Hero is an Asshole. #IStandWithAmberHeard

(Content warning: domestic abuse)

Many of you probably know this already, but Amber Heard filed for a divorce from Johnny Depp back on May 21st. I’ve always been a fan of Johnny Depp and Amber Heard as actors, and have enjoyed most of their movies. I had heard about their marriage, and their recent divorce, but wasn’t aware of the details as I tend to not pay attention to celebrities outside of their art, unless that celebrity does something incredibly egregious…

Well…

Now I know the reason Amber Heard has filed for divorce. Alex Rudewell over at Skepchick posted a statement released by Amber Heard’s legal team. I’m going to post that statement here. Be aware that this statement contains discussion and descriptions of domestic abuse.

[Read more…]

This is Our Country Right Now

I just wanted to post this picture because I feel like it accurately sums up where the US is right now. I got it from the TWiBNation Facebook group (on a separate note; does anyone here listen to TWiBPrime? I highly recommend it.)

13267963_10153975696280342_8838768739866378491_n

Picture with two columns and three rows.

First row..
On Left – “Largest Nuclear Waste Storage Site in US is Leaking”
On Right – “Meh”

Second Row…
On Left – “Shell Dumps Nearly 90,000 Gallons of Crude into Gulf of Mexico”
On Right – “Meh”

Third Row…
On Left – “Target Lets Transgenders go Pee in Bathrooms”
On Right – *face red with rage*

ETA:
I just realized that “transgenders” is not the appropriate terminology? I’m really sorry for that. I didn’t catch it initially. I should have. I wish I knew who made this, now…

Alex Jones Would Have a Field Day With This

(Note: there are three Facebook videos here. I sincerely apologize if they auto-play. Hopefully they won’t, but if they do, let me know and I’ll replace the videos with links…)

So let me start out by reassuring everybody that I’m no conspiracy theorist.

I know that the Illuminati disappeared a couple centuries ago and that the New World Order was a heel wrestling outfit in the WCW in the 90’s led by Hulk Hogan and Eric Bischoff. I also am no fan of Alex Jones, who I think is possibly dangerous and certainly peddles basically nothing but bullshit.

So no, I’m not about to crow about some one-world shadow government planning to enslave of us all to some hivemind or whatever.

That said, though… I’m not very comfortable with this:

[Read more…]

Raising the Skeptic Signal! What Do You Think of These Videos?

This Youtube video features what are supposed to be “real” videos of “actual” ghosts. I’m curious what you skeptics think. Fakes? Misinterpretations?

I feel like there’s always a natural explanation, and often it’s just that people are so easily taken in by practical jokes that they refuse to see it as a practical joke.

But anyways… what’s your opinion? Quick warning, though… I wouldn’t watch this at night. The music and background images used are a bit creepy, and if you’re easily creeped out, this will creep you out…

Also, sorry for the lack of a transcript. It’s kind of hard to transcribe this one, I think, though someone’s certainly welcome to try! And I apologize if the video autoplays. I have a Chrome extension that keeps videos from doing that, so I don’t know whether or not this will autoplay if you don’t have that extension…

[Read more…]

(In Memory of Prince) Great Guitar Solos – While My Guitar Gently Weeps – Live at the 2004 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

(I don’t know if this signals a return of my Great Guitar Solos series or if it’s just a one-off; I haven’t decided, yet.)

So I have a confession to make: I don’t have Prince’s music in my collection. His music was never completely my jam.

I don’t hate his music.

On the contrary…

Prince, IMO, was a monster of guitar, a talent surpassed by very, very few, perhaps almost none, during his time. His ability to play the guitar was phenomenal to watch, and I loved watching him solo. His solos were incredible, up there with Jimi Hendrix, Jimmy Page, and David Gilmour, but with a technical know-how above all of them. Each time Prince laid down a solo, it was a master class in how to play the guitar as the leading instrument.

So yes, I respect, immensely, the talent that he wielded. But I was never a big fan of the 80s musically, and Prince was part of that. He was brilliant, however, and I would defend him as a master talent of guitar to anyone who would dare claim otherwise. Even someone who would assume that their musical opinions are objective facts would have to bow to Prince’s mastery of guitar.

And this performance I want to highlight here shows that off incredibly, in my opinion…

[Read more…]

(Best of) Tales from the Second Window

So for a couple years I worked as a shift coordinator and overnight manager at a 24-hour Burger King in Florida. Since we were situated across the street from a large group of bars, we would get a lot of interesting customers during the overnight shifts. I shared some of the best stories on Facebook that I then brought to my old blog in two posts, here and here. I’m bringing what I consider the funniest ones here, along with two new ones from my current job at Teavana.

I have to admit that I have a slight ulterior motive for doing this… I desperately want to publish a comic made up of all of them (not just the ones I’m posting here, but all of them in those two links), but there are a couple obstacles I need to overcome:

1. I can’t draw (including doing illustrations on a computer) to save my life. And I’ve tried, believe me. You do not want to see the results…

2. I’m not sure how to handle the fact that I basically steal the format (and idea, really) of Not Always Right. Well… okay… let me be honest… I’ve submitted to them before these stories happened, but I never saw anything resembling my submissions posted, so I gave up and did this, instead. It probably won’t matter given the format of a comic, but still…

Also, I’m pretty sure I’d have to obscure the references to Burger King and Teavana. For a lot of these, that’s easy, but for a few of them that will be more difficult… and I’m not the best editor (as anyone who reads my writing can attest :D).

(Content note for some ableist words. It’s mostly in the dialog from customers, but at the time I originally wrote these, I wasn’t really aware of ableism, unfortunately, so I use some ableist words, as well. I do apologize for that.)

Anyways, without further ado, here are the best of Tales from the Second Window…

[Read more…]

How Would You React to the Emergence of Superheroes?

I actually posed this question on Facebook before Batman v Superman was released. It didn’t get as long of a discussion as I’d hoped, but it did get some fascinating comments. I thought I’d bring it here, too, if people are interested in talking about it.

For the record, I saw Batman v Superman again on April 19th. Dad wanted to see it, and I went along with him. I liked it a bit better the second time around. I still have most of my complaints, but in general I’m not as bitter about it as I was after my first viewing, and I did see a few more things I enjoyed, plus the ending hit me a hell of a lot harder the second time around, too.

But that’s not what this is about, really…

[Read more…]