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where those with minds prove it





Skipped Back 10

November 22nd, 2006

(no subject)


This is Micheal Richards, the man who played Kramer on Seinfield, going on a racist psycho trip.

Here's his apology:

November 21st, 2006

(no subject)

Just in case you didn't know OUTfront, Amnesty International's program on LGBT human rights has a facebook group. Our offical group name is "Outfront: Campaign for LGBT Human Rights" but a search for "outfront" should suffice.
We'll be using the group to distribute actions and invite people to events, so everyone should join.

Of course you can always get info from the OF website: www.aiusa.org/outfront
Have a Happy Thanksgiving!

November 7th, 2006

(no subject)

In doing research for anthropology...
I stumbled across this fact from planned parenthood:

"Embryonic and Fetal Pain

We know for sure that the embryo or fetus cannot perceive pain in the nearly 99 percent of all abortions that occur before the 20th week of pregnancy. It is even possible that a fetus is unable to perceive pain at any time during pregnancy. If, however, the ability to feel pain does develop before birth and consciousness, it is likely to happen only after the 28th week of pregnancy, when abortion is performed only for rare, unusual medical situations."


November 2nd, 2006

Dad gets 10 years in first female circumcision trial in U.S.
POSTED: 5:29 p.m. EST, November 1, 2006
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LAWRENCEVILLE, Georgia (AP) -- An Ethiopian immigrant was convicted Wednesday of the genital mutilation of his 2-year-old daughter and was sentenced to 10 years in prison in what was believed to be the first such criminal case in the United States.

Khalid Adem, 30, was found guilty of aggravated battery and cruelty to children. Prosecutors said he used scissors to remove his daughter's clitoris in his family's Atlanta-area apartment in 2001. The child's mother, Fortunate Adem, said she did not discover it until more than a year later.

Adem, who had no criminal record, could have been sentenced to up to 40 years in prison. He held his face in his hands and wept loudly after the jury's verdict was read.

During her father's trial, the girl, now 7, clutched a teddy bear as she testified on videotape that her father "cut me on my private part."

Federal law specifically bans the practice of genital mutilation, but many states do not have a law addressing it. Georgia lawmakers, with the support of the girl's mother, passed an anti-mutilation law last year. But Adem was not tried under that law since it did not exist when his daughter was cut.

During the trial, Adem testified he never circumcised his daughter or asked anyone else to do so. He said he grew up in Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia, and considers the practice more prevalent in rural areas.

Adem's attorney acknowledged that the girl had been cut, but implied that the family of the girl's mother, who immigrated from South Africa, may have been responsible.

The Adems divorced three years ago, and attorney Mark Hill suggested that the couple's daughter was coached to testify against her father by her mother, who has full custody of the child.

Adem, who cried throughout the trial and during his testimony, was asked what he thought of someone who believes in the practice. He replied: "The word I can say is 'mind in the gutter.' He is a moron."

The practice crosses ethnic and cultural lines and is not tied to a particular religion. Activists say it is intended to deny women sexual pleasure. In its most extreme form, the clitoris and parts of the labia are removed and the labia that remain are stitched together.

Since 2001, the State Department estimates that up to 130 million women worldwide have undergone circumcision.

Knives, razors or even sharp stones are usually used, according to a 2001 department report. The tools are frequently not sterilized, and often, many girls are circumcised at the same ceremony, leading to infection.

It is unknown how many girls have died from the procedure, either during the cutting or from infections, or years later in childbirth. Nightmares, depression, shock and feelings of betrayal are common psychological side effects, according to a 2001 federal report.


(no subject)

Lawyer Arrested for Dressing as Bin Laden

Bob Ambrogi tips readers off to this strange story (Nov. 1, 2006) about lawyer Thomaas Connolly, a prominent defense attorney and 1998 candidate for governor of Maine who was arrested at gunpoint after being seen at a highway construction site carrying a toy gun while dressed as Osama bin Laden. The article quotes Connolly as saying:

"There was a First Amendment this morning when I woke up. I don't know how it evaporated with the dawn."


October 24th, 2006

Devil's Night

Devil's Night is a name associated with October 30, the night before Halloween, particularly in Detroit, Michigan.

Devil's Night is a longstanding Detroit tradition predating World War II, with anecdotal incidents occurring as early as the 1930s. Traditionally, youths in the Detroit area engaged in a night of criminal behavior, which usually consisted of acts of vandalism (such as egging the homes of neighbors) in retaliation for real or perceived wrongs, or simply for the sake of the crime itself. In the early 1970s, the vandalism escalated to more severe acts such as setting vacant houses on fire. As these activities increased and the tradition gained notoriety, individuals including Detroit-area business owners, purportedly took advantage of Devil’s Night vandalism to collect on insurance policies by committing arson on their properties (i.e., setting fire to their own cars and/or businesses)[citation needed]. These incidents were blamed on Devil's Night hooligans and added to the notoriety of the night.

Beginning in the 1970s, the crimes became more destructive in Detroit's inner-city neighborhoods, and included hundreds of acts of arson and vandalism every year. The destruction reached a peak in the mid- to late-1980s, with more than 800 fires set in 1984, and 500 to 800 fires in the three days and nights before Halloween in a typical year.

In 1995, Detroit city officials organized and created Angel's Night on and around October 30. Each year as many as 40,000 volunteers gather to patrol neighborhoods. Additionally, youth curfews as early as 6 p.m. are instituted on the days before Halloween. Since then, there has been a decline to 20 fires per day in the days around Halloween.

Devil's Night was chronicled in sociologist Ze'ev Chafets' 1991 book "Devil's Night and Other True Tales of Detroit," and fictionalized in the 1994 movie The Crow. The burning of an abandoned house featured in the movie "8 Mile," which starred Eminem and was set in his hometown of Detroit, and his rap group D12 named their first album after the night. While the term is still well-known by Michigan residents, the news media in Detroit currently refer to the event as Angel's Night to promote the efforts of the volunteers.

Devil's Night is now becoming popular in Ireland (where it is more commonly called Mischief Night), where youths are out of school for the week around Halloween. Many of the nights running up to October 31 are used by youths to commit acts of vandalism.

The name Devil's Night or Mischief Night is used by criminals in the eastern U.S. and Canada, although the acts are generally less destructive and violent than those committed in Detroit. A survey done in the United States shows the comparative popularity of various names for this night around the country.

This is seriously a DETROIT thing? wow. I thought everyone knew what this was.

October 17th, 2006

I stumbled across this while researching for my term paper proposal in anthropology, which is about historical sexual activity in history.

"Homosexuality is seen in completely different oppositions throughout Biblical texts. In one instance, it is described as an abomination for a man to take another man as a wife. Yet in other instances, it was seen as hospitable to give a son to a house guest that preferred boys instead of girls. Thus, if that were the case the father would offer a son sexually to a house guest instead of a daughter." source


October 10th, 2006

“(G)iven large changes in gender roles over the last 40 years, surely heteronormative scripts have changed, with men desiring more egalitarian sexual scripts and their woman partners initiating sexual encounters or even playing the sexually dominant role.” (Hill)

Gender roles in society have continued to change cross-culturally throughout the years. These changes have included breaking stereotypes and changing levels of social acceptability on each front. Prior to World War II women having a voice and influence in society was a rarity; today it is expected. Less than fifty years ago, it was unheard of to accept a feminine homosexual male relationship in society; today laws are being passed to grant marriage rights to these individuals. As the gender roles have continued to change within society, so have definitions and acceptance of sexual identities.
In the anthropological study written by M. Kay Martin and Barbara Voorhies (released by the Columbia University Press), the authors discuss females of different species. The authors indicate that “as the sexual life of women falls under the control of society, so sexual activity for women becomes a social obligation symbolically detached from individual gratification” in agricultural societies. (Martin) This suggests that the role given to females in an agricultural society not only obligates a woman’s perceived sexuality, but gives no room for deviance from this female gender role. In many societies, sexuality is assumed and accepted to be hetero in nature; to deviate from this is considered immoral or unnatural in many places. However, more recent research indicates this idea of non-heterosexual behavior as more “natural” than popular acceptance warrants.
To further discuss the idea of gender roles determining sexual identity one must consider how general gender stereotypes influence a person’s activity and perception. A stereotypical male can be characterized by watching sports, degrading women, and drinking beer. Contesting these stereotypes sometimes encourages other males to banter, accusing the deviant of being “less of a man” or having homosexual tendencies. In juxtaposition, women are expected to play traditionally submissive roles in family and career aspects; their physique is expected to be “feminine” with soft features and long hair. Women characterized as having a “softball player look” with broader shoulders and or short hair are sometimes characterized as “butch.” These women are identified as lesbians based on their dominance or physique.
In a gender study of heterosexual males, Darryl Hill examines considerations and consequences of breaking these stereotypes:
“One of the potential difficulties a feminine man may encounter when trying to establish heterosexual relations is that, due to gender and sexuality stereotypes, specifically the heteronormative imperative, women may stereotype the feminine man as homosexual, and therefore he is not seen as a potential sexual partner. Yet consider this: in popular literature, it seems that nontraditional men are "just gay enough" (McLaren, 2001) to be extremely desirable to heterosexual women.” (Hill)
When an individual makes the decision to behave a certain way, he or she is sometimes forced to accept the consequences that go along with it.
Sexual identity is like many other concepts of identity. Individuals identify themselves sexually based on sexual and romantic attraction. (Feminism.org) Homosexuals may identify with the opposite gender and therefore dress or feel more comfortable taking on the masculine or submissive role; of course, assuming sexuality on these behaviors is impossible as sexuality is something personal and unknown to others until one discloses it.
As a result of social norm acceptance of gender roles, negative consequences sometimes incur when breaches are made. “Anyone who does not abide by these arbitrary rules may be targeted for mistreatment ranging from not being included in people's circle of friends, through the cold shoulder, snide comments, verbal harassment, assault, rape, and murder based on one's (perceived) sexual identity.” (Feminism.org)
As education continues to rise on the issue of non-heterosexuality, more efforts are made to stop ignorant treatment of these individuals. Through new studies—such as Queer Theory, which examines gender identity and sexuality—we continue to understand and redefine what will be accepted as “normal.” However, as Professor Alfred Kinsey encountered in the early 1900s, questioning social constructs of sexuality is an uphill battle with society. Luckily, with new voices being heard speaking on behalf of non-heterosexuals this necessary research will be continued and the social acceptability of gender roles and sexuality can be redefined.

Works Cited
Hill, Darryl . ““Feminine” Heterosexual Men: Subverting Heteropatriarchal Sexual Scrips.” Journal of Men’s Studies 14 no2 142-59. Spring 2006.
Feminism.org. “Sexual Identity and Gender Identity Glossary.” Feminism and Women’s Studies. February 11, 2005. Accessed October 7, 2006.
Martin, M. Kay, Voorhies. Female of the Species. Columbia University Press, NY 1975

October 9th, 2006

(no subject)

How do you think gender roles influence sexuality?
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