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Rape and Sexual Assault, Women's Bodies

Verdict: We Find the Penis Not Guilty

One of Akkari's amazing images

In the Jessica Lunsford thread, the amazing Akkari commented this morning as follows:

Maleness seems to have this ‘thing’ about blood, blood and yet more blood– so much so that I think that the Freudian concept of penis-envy is actually a male admission-by-dissociation of the real problem, which is Menstruation/Pregnancy Envy, big-time. When one gets down to it, there is all kinds of stuff in the historical record about men piercing/cutting their penises in imitation of female bleeding. Subincision (which later morphed into the milder form of circumcision) split the penis open lengthwise so that it looked more like labia, and the men who did this to themselves also made themselves ‘bleed like women’ by reinjuring themselves on a monthly basis. Mayan kings– whose bloodletting was supposed to keep the world running– made their ’special blood’ available by (you guessed it) lancing their penises. The men of Native American tribes who performed the Sun Dance (where they inserted leather-tethered eagle-bone spikes through their pectoral muscles and danced until they ripped loose) repeatedly told historiographers that they did so ‘in order to show the same courage as a woman who sheds blood to give birth’. Of course, when you have lard-assed white men writing the history books, they all blatantly ignore the endless parade of maleness through the centuries trying to coopt female menses/birthgiving through everything from couvade and penile mutilation to crossdressing in what are essentially ‘priestess/shamaness robes’ the world over in order to assume religious/political status. That most famous of ancient garments, the Roman ’senatorial’ toga, was originally a form of female dress, the red-dyed hem indicating a menstruating Mother.

As far as I am concerned, the crucifixion is just another blood sacrifice fixated on by men who were/are pissed off because they can’t menstruate. Xtianity as it is practiced today focuses on the human (+deity) sacrifice of Jesus as the centerpiece of the religion– i.e., humanity has to be saved by a male shedding blood, while women’s natural menses are turned into the untimate taboo substance, presumably so males sticking their pee-pees with thorns and sting-ray spines and nailing each other to crosses won’t look like the life-denying idiots they are.

In conclusion:

1. War is a three-part mix of Menstruation Envy, mass male psychosis, and armed robbery perpetrated by rich men who want more of whatever it is they already have to excess. ‘Smaller’ acts of violence just involve fewer victims.

2. Rape is a political con-game perpetrated by men against women to ensure that women are kept in a supporting, subservient role to men; i.e., women need ‘good men’ (husbands, cops, judges) to ‘defend them’ against the predations of ‘bad men’ (rapists, batterers) and therefore there is a strong conflict of interest set up when men judge other men, as the ‘good men’ require the ‘bad men’ as the reason for their special status. This is in a nutshell why rapists will always be around as long as men wield the bulk of political power.

I read a creative, though idiotic,  defense of transwomen being in woman-only space today*: that feminists should admit transwomen into female-only space because they have nobly sacrificed their penises for the anti-patriarchal Cause, either by having them surgically removed or pretending they don’t exist.  Anybody who sacrifices the penis should be viewed as a hero, man, don’t you get that?  Where is our fuckin’ monument?

Because, you know, it’s the penis that is the issue here!  There’s the culprit!  If somebody was raped, or incested, or flashed, or the penis accommodated the moving of ejaculate from the epididymus onto, say, the body of a woman passenger napping on her airline flight, or something like that, well, that’s the penis’s fault.   Charge the penis!  The man was innocent!

Boys, boys, boys.  The women’s court has convened, we have taken up your claims against the penis briefly — sorry, but briefly was all they deserved —  and we have found the penis not guilty.  There is nothing valorous, honorable, noble or useful, helpful or pro-feminist about cutting off your penis or pretending  it isn’t there anymore.  Cutting the thing off, or pretending it doesn’t exist, can’t change a thing, can’t solve a thing.  A penis is just flesh– skin, fat, tissue.  The penis never does it.   It’s the man.  The man always does whatever he does with his penis, and always enjoys the benefits of what other men do with their penises.  And cutting off any given penis never changes that.

Which is what we have been saying to you, you see, for decades now.   You can cut the penis off of the man, you can pretend it isn’t there, but the male experiences, male reality, years of walking around in the world as a male, remain.  This latter you can never cut off or pretend away, I don’t care what instrument or hormone or technique you find or invent or use or how fine an imagination you have.   And those are the experiences and realities we don’t want the embodiments of in our female-only spaces.

The defense of woman-only space is not a condemnation of the penis.  A penis is just a body part, neutral, not, by itself, a problem.  Woman-only space is about creating a new world in which the havoc and destruction wrought on women by those who possess penises is not a factor, is not an issue.  Men get in the way of that work because they don’t get that.  They can’t.  And they never will–with or without a penis.  

As importantly, I think the reasons men sacrifice their penises — whether actually or figuratively — have to do, not with any sort of noblesse oblige, but with the impulses and envies described in Akkari’s insightful commentary there.  It’s just that we live in an age in which men have been able to devote their lives — and our money — to providing themselves with mechanisms by way of which their every last bodily fancy, fantasy, wish, resentment, envy and impulse can be surgically, medicinally, or pharmaceutically addressed, then christened with names and descriptive adjectives designed to silence female challenges and to obscure the similarity of all the ways these new and improved surgical and pharamaceutical rites mimic the ancient and traditional male rites Akkari describes above.

The author of this article has one more creative, though idiotic, idea.  He (or she) suggests that if we really wanted to be taken seriously, as feminists, what we ought to do is hop to and make men raping other men in prison our number one priority, together with  devoting our attentions to determining when an act is  homosexual prison rape and when it’s  actually gay male sex in prison.  Oh, absolutely.  We’ll get right on that.  Let’s make that our number one action item.  It is something we, as females, have to deal with all the time.

I think Akkari covers this superbly in one of her bullet points up there.  What she says deserves to be read, and re-read, carefully:

“Rape is, … a political con-game perpetrated by men against women to ensure that women are kept in a supporting, subservient role to men; i.e., women need ‘good men’ (husbands, cops, judges) to ‘defend them’ against the predations of ‘bad men’ (rapists, batterers) and therefore there is a strong conflict of interest set up when men judge other men, as the ‘good men’ require the ‘bad men’ as the reason for their special status. This is in a nutshell why rapists will always be around as long as men wield the bulk of political power.

Rape — of whatever kind, including male rape in prison — will end when the rule of males over all the earth ends.  At the end of male power is a rape-less society, whether it is women men are raping or men men are raping, girls or boys, because, as we all know, it is men, not women, who rape.  So you’ll excuse us, as feminists, while we apply ourselves to ending the rule of males in the earth.  We prefer to deal with root causes, yanno,  not these endless symptoms and the overall rottenness which is the evidence of late-stage, invasive, systemic disease.  

In the same way, we occasionally prefer to address the issue of male dominance, male violence, male oppression of females, in the absence of those born male.  It’s not about women born women being the “default” (and therefore “privileged”) women’s experience.  It’s about being female and finding ways to survive, heal, thrive and rebuild after having to spend our lives under the rule of men, those people who have used their penises to hurt us.    Whether someone kept his penis or cut it off is of no concern to us.  What’s of concern to us, in woman-only space, is that those in attendance are those who have not enjoyed  any of the benefits or experienced any of the consequences of having a penis– something all who have ever had a penis have experienced, something those of us who have never had a penis know nothing of, or about.

(*Via a link posted at Amp’s as part of Amp’s ongoing attack on feminist women.  As one of Amp’s commenters asked the other day,  in response to one of Amp’s posts, “Is this Amp, or Daran?”  And no offense to this commenter, whom I appreciate, but I haven’t been noticing any substantive difference between the views of Amp or Daran, a men’s rights activist,  in quite some time).

Heart

Discussion

43 thoughts on “Verdict: We Find the Penis Not Guilty

  1. I call it “The Great Disconnect.” “The penis has a mind of its own!” “It was not me [Adam] it was that darn cunning snake.”

    Lose the penis, and there will still be rape with a broomstick, a coke bottle, a police man’s baton, etc etc etc.

    Posted by chasingmoksha | March 22, 2007, 7:41 pm
  2. amazing post, amazing comment by akkari. hmm…. what more is there to say at the moment?

    Heart, I havent really been through Amp’s place… I am wondering now if I should…

    Posted by Divine Purpose | March 22, 2007, 8:20 pm
  3. CM: I second that emotion!!!

    Posted by Divine Purpose | March 22, 2007, 8:21 pm
  4. ooooh YES. Brilliant post. Thank you.

    Posted by Cinder | March 22, 2007, 8:49 pm
  5. Even though most of the readership of this blog is probably well aware of rape and some of the myths/facts associated with it, this website has some useful information on this.

    I agree with CM, the penis has nothing to do with rape; it’s a societal state of mind, not a biological component of masculinity.

    Posted by apple | March 22, 2007, 8:52 pm
  6. What kills me about this, or one thing, is, they are always calling US “essentialists”! They don’t know what the frigging word means! THEY are the ones who think a penis equals a man and if you cut it off it’s a not-man. What they don’t like to think about is what it is to be male in the world. (And female.)

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | March 22, 2007, 9:40 pm
  7. this is slightly off topic, but re:amp and his link farm. isn’t it annoying how if was RADICAL FEMINISTS who started the whole “Britney Crotch Shots/PornPornPorn” thing and got no attention but when a non-radfem did it it’s all “Awesome! Excellent Idea! Brilliant!”

    we suck 24/7 no matter what we do, even when we do something “they” like because they just pretend like we had no part in it. it’s that whole “invisible until they want to beat us up” thing.

    and they say WE’RE the ones always starting shit and fighting with people. PUH-LEASE. the only reason they pay us ANY attention AT ALL is to tear us down. gah.

    Posted by ms. jared | March 22, 2007, 11:03 pm
  8. p.s. i’m sure he must know that it was radfems who started it (you and amananta to be precise) since amy’s brain today said so in ilyka’s comments!

    p.p.s. i never ever ever even look at his blog unless you mention him. why must you torment me so?😉

    Posted by ms. jared | March 22, 2007, 11:12 pm
  9. Sorry, ms. jared, for tormenting you! I could not let him get away with bullshit that egregious. I went ahead and commented on the thread and asked him what the hell. He knows damn well this was a radfem project.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | March 22, 2007, 11:28 pm
  10. It doesn’t matter. Once something is hot, he appropraites it, like any pimp would. And his readers don’t really want to be feminists, they just want to play at it, play hawt girrll and wanker boi.

    They’re welcome to each other.

    Posted by Pony | March 22, 2007, 11:50 pm
  11. THEY are the ones who think a penis equals a man and if you cut it off it’s a not-man.

    The perils of following the patriarchal narrative. I am still waiting for someone to tell me how Cronus became in power simply because he whacked off Uranus’ penis. What? Uranus was this big powerful bully forcing his penis into Gaia, forcing her offspring to remain inside unborn even as she groaned in pain, and then WHAM, the second his penis is whacked off he retreats. No fight? No manipulation, no negotiations, no nothing? Just your penis is gone, so now I am in charge. Lesson learned: Don’t let your penis get whacked off. It might make you a widdle girly man. And if you do not want to play that game, do not want to compete among the intact big dickers, then go make yourself a vagina by slicing your penis away and represent. “Your honor I could not help it, the whole game was just too much……yes yes, I know I helped make the rules and I of course help enforced the rules, but by GOD why do I have to play by those rules?” The little piggy went wee weee weee all the way home. How about some roast beef for a door prize hmmm? Quiznos offers what real women need.. hee heee heee……..

    UGH!

    Posted by chasingmoksha | March 23, 2007, 12:21 am
  12. *wild applause*

    Posted by Amy's Brain Today | March 23, 2007, 3:01 am
  13. One last observation and I will take a bit of a breather. I have always been bitterly amused by that old male adage, ‘don’t let the little head do the thinking for the big one’, as if it actually *could* happen that way. I am also even more bitterly amused by the old ‘I couldn’t help myself/animal passions’ excuse that men trot out with pathetic regularity to ‘explain’ their actions.

    The FACT of the matter is this: BOTH Women and men have fully developed HUMAN brains, with prefrontal lobes, parietal lobes, temporal lobes and a bunch of other neat neurological goodies grafted onto the more ‘primitive’ limbic areas. While there is a lot of debate on exactly what the brain does/generates with regard to the phenomenon of consciousness, one thing is pretty much clear– a lot of the brain functions as a ‘manual override device’ when it comes to instinctual behavior, enabling humans to NOT be locked in to instinct-programming.

    Here is an example of what I mean– I have a dog. She is very smart and playful, and she did very well when I took her to obedience class. Despite all this wonderful training and our good and trusting relationship, if she was unspayed, no training on earth would keep her from having sex with a male dog if she was in a sexually receptive state. Also, once copulation began, the dog/cat/hamster/horse/whatever would be mentally unable to override the ‘procreation programming’. Thus, while my dog’s sexual act might be disrupted by external circumstances, she would not EVER volitionally stop sex when receptive, because she is in fact unable to do so. Ditto the male dog mating with her.

    This is decidedly NOT the case with humans. We can interrupt our own sexual-program right up to/through the point of orgasm by simply ‘deciding to quit’. We don’t even need a reason– we can literally ‘stop right in our tracks’ and move on to something else. We are the ONLY Beings on the face of this planet who can do this interesting trick. (The ability to manipulate/modulate our sexual response is the basis for all those schools of Tantra everybody is so curious about.) Humans can– and do– mentally moderate a lot of their behaviors on a daily basis. It’s what a lot of religious types like to refer to as ‘Free Will’: we perceive the possibility of choice in all things, even in some pretty gnarly situations, where seemingly there are no choices available.

    So to present the old ‘my dick made me do it’ charade even though one is obviously packing a human cerebrum is tantamount to asking everyone to believe that one only has the on-board computing-power of, say, a dog. Not only is it not true, it is a laughably bad argument.

    Posted by akkarri | March 23, 2007, 3:56 am
  14. Great post Heart, although I can’t say I blame Amp, if I was a guy I would want to be a woman too. lol

    Akkarri

    Well said and you bring up some very interesting facts.

    Posted by say no to christ | March 23, 2007, 4:40 am
  15. Akkari said:
    ***Also, once copulation began, the dog/cat/hamster/horse/whatever would be mentally unable to override the ‘procreation programming’.***

    I don’t know about their blessed “procreation program”, but I’ll tell you one thing – horses can stop their own labor at will, until the water breaks. I have been watching one on foal cam now since the launching of Noah’s ark (or so it seems). She was due Feb.13 and is still pregnant as a house. She finally went into labor yesterday and even the *vet* said the birth was imminent. But she stopped it yet again and as I type she is sedately relaxing with her nose in the feedbag and still no foal!

    Posted by Branjor | March 24, 2007, 1:44 am
  16. This is cetainly one of the strangest, yet most wondeful posts I’ve read in a long, long time.

    Kudoes to the author,whoever you may be.

    Posted by Mai | March 24, 2007, 7:20 am
  17. I don’t think I could agree any more about the ridiculousness of the penis acting/thinking on its own. It is simply flesh. The person to whom it is attached is responsible. In. Every. Case.

    I do think, however, that you gave short shrift to PG’s post and mischaracterized her opinion. Idiotic? Phew. That’s harsh and, imo, simply wrong. She (a womyn born womyn, if that matters to you since you referred to her as “he”) also made no claim that male prison rape should be feminist’s number one priority. She points out, in a subsequent post, that you failed to engage the actual content of her post, and I think that’s a correct charge.

    Posted by Denise | March 25, 2007, 12:33 pm
  18. Denise:

    With all due respect, I do not feel under any obligation to avoid being harsh, or to self-edit to avoid accusations of harshness, towards someone who:

    * Titles her post “The Relationship of Power and Privilege to Discrimination That Is Invidious,” immediately framing the issues such that females, by virtue of being female, are said to enjoy “power and privilege” over transpersons, and accusing pro-Michfest females of “invidious” discrimination. From the moment I read the title, I know that this is neither dialogue, nor engagement.

    * Accuses pro-policy Michfest attendees of “discriminating” against transsexuals, describing us as “convinced” [we are] “powerless, underprivileged people,” and (without any attempt at analysis) comparing us with white persons in a racist society, whereas transgender persons are compared with persons of color (although they have frequently lived for many years as white, male and het). Then again without analysis, as though it is taken as a foregone conclusion, we are described as having “the privilege and power of social approval for [our] gender identity,” a tautology, given that to be women is in fact to have always already been denied the privilege and power of social approval (which is what gender actually IS, men denying privilege and power of social approval to females).

    Next we are described derogatorily as thinking we are “victimized” by “uppity” transwomen, a reversal; in fact it is those of us who stand in defense of female-only space who are consistently reviled, ourselves, for being uppity women whenever we stand for anything at all which men tell us we should be lying down for.

    And of course, we are beaten about the head and neck with the same tired rhetoric, “transphobe!” and “exclusive!” and with barely veiled accusations of essentialism (“XX” and “XY” as though these have anything to do with our arguments or as though we have ever invoked them.)

    Finally, our defense of our spaces is called a “bad conservative joke about how a group has become so focused on its victim status that it can’t recognize how other people might have it worse” — which tells me (1) the writer either doesn’t recognize the uselessness of hierarchy-of-oppression arguments or doesn’t even recognize she’s taken up the torch for the newest round of Oppression Olympics; (2) the writer, in the case of pro-policy females, actually buys the “bad conservative joke” or the connection would never have been made in the first place. In closing, we are described as “alleged feminists”.

    On what basis does all of the above, which amounts to an anti-Michfest, anti-feminist, anti-female attack replete with lies, misrepresentations and mischaracterizations deserve (1) anything other than a harsh response; (2) any engagement whatsoever?

    If I posted something entitled: Anti-Michfest Transgender Activists’ Invidious Victim-Thinking Blinds Them to Their Own Power and Privilege, then went on to attack them, call them names, and mischaracterize their position in four or five published paragraphs, I would expect, number one, to be excoriated and trashed all over the internet and elsewhere, and number two, at the bare minimum, a harsh response! The essay in question was not dialogue and was not an attempt at dialogue. It was an attack full of lies about the actual position of pro-woman-only space, pro-Michfest feminist females, written by a woman who admits she has never gone to Fest herself and who, as such, speaks as an outsider to our community, as does EVERY person who is not a member of our Michfest community and presumes to attack us or the Festival! Michfest is not just a music festival. It is what remains, and pretty much all that remains, of a thriving, vibrant, lesbian womyn’s culture in the United States, a culture and community which has come together on wimmin’s land for, this year, 32 years straight. It is a cultural celebration, a cultural tradition, not a concert; it is a community gathering, not a happy hour, not Friday night karaoke down at Bub’s Bar & Grill. Would the essay writer denounce ANY other religious/ethnic/racial group for establishing guidelines as to who is welcome to its cultural, traditional, community events? Hell no. But as Michfest womyn, females, committed to woman-only space, we are fair game, always.

    I could not determine (and I looked throughout the site) whether “PG” was a man or a woman. I leaned towards “man” and so I referenced PG as “he,” but followed that with (or “she”). In any event, the sex of the author is irrelevant; the words speak for themselves, and it is the words I responded to.

    I didn’t engage the substance of PG’s post — and do not intend to — because I have already spent hours and days and weeks and months over many years now, carefully challenging these same framings, arguments, discussion she at least alludes to amidst her attacks, in comprehensive, meticulous detail, including here on this blog, in at least one post and the following 300-plus-comments comments thread here (323 comments), here (106 comments), here, here, here, and elsewhere. One point of my blog post was to counter Amp’s disingenuous suggestion that there was anything particularly new in PG’s arguments. However, I did engage the two issues in PG’s post which *were* different from the ordinary “Michfest women are bigoted, privileged, transphobes” fare: (1) the idea that removing the penis, or pretending it isn’t a penis, is some sort of offering or martyrdom to the feminist cause; (2) the idea that to be taken seriously, feminist women ought to apply ourselves to issues around homosexual rape and male sex in male prisons. While PG may not have said prison rape should be feminists’ “number one priority”, she did say Feminists should be “the biggest experts on male prisoner-on-prisoner rape” (her exact words), then chided us for the fact that being all about women might “[prevent] those analyzing men’s problems from looking to feminists for help.” She is straight up saying there that the analysis of men’s problems is something feminists should be oh-so-willing to “help” with and take responsibility for. Where has she been for the last 40 years, and if she’s too young to have been around for them as an adult, why hasn’t she done her homework? There are important reasons why feminist women do not prioritize “men’s problems” or helping with “men’s problems” and those reasons can be uncovered by a very cursory skim of feminist literature going back to the mid 1800s. There are also important reasons why lesbians are not all that interested in taking responsibility for “men’s problems.” !! and !! And you know, I wonder how good a reception PG would get if she urged ANY other marginalized, oppressed group to make themselves available to assist with the “problems” of the group which is oppressing them! Honestly, the mind boggles. She’d be laughed off the blogosphere if she tried that. But when it comes to females? No. We get straight up scolded for not being all about men’s issues!

    This is why I didn’t take PG’s article seriously, it’s also why it pissed me off that Amp did or, more like it, pretended to. PG’s article was just another attack, another anti-feminist, anti-woman slam, with one difference: new vistas in arrogance. Not only are we called ten kinds of transphobes, powerful and privileged, and victim poseurs, we’re told we should be attentive to, and thankful for, males removing or ignoring their penises, as though this is some sort of feminist concern, and we’re then, again, scolded for failing to make ourself available for the analysis of men’s problems! Honestly, it would be laughable (in a cynical kind of way) except for the fact that people not only take it seriously, they denounce us as “harsh” and “wrong” when we do not!

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | March 25, 2007, 2:36 pm
  19. The very fact that “Invidious” was used in the title said a lot. Right off the bat the author, by use of that loaded word is saying that females calculated to create ill will or resentment or give offense, are hateful.

    Now what is it that I am supposed to do again?

    Posted by uppitybiscuit | March 25, 2007, 3:17 pm
  20. I don’t for one minute believe that PG is a female-born-female.

    Males are claiming now to be “women born women” on the basis of having had their birth certificates (legally!!) altered to indicate that they were born female.

    PG is male.

    Want to convince me otherwise?

    Show me an ultrasound of “her” uterus. Give me a chromosomal analysis.

    Guess what? I hate him as much as he hates me.

    Too bad!
    🙂

    Posted by Mary Sunshine | March 25, 2007, 4:10 pm
  21. I find it incredibly amazing how certain people can force their way into almost any space they like and because they are denied access to one phucking week, just one phucking week, and that is not one week of denied access to every space on the planet, but one tiny little space on the planet, yet a lot of heir time and energies are devoted to invade that one space in time.

    Talk about myopia. Talk about handing power over. As if because they cannot RAPE that one week, their person cannot be validated even though so many are kissing their asses and validating them constantly, —-including patriarchal medicine.

    I wish as a female, a socially assigned woman because of the fact she is born with a vagina and uterus, an oppressive sex, a rebel against social constructs, an outcast of the status quo, only had one phucking week that I was denied access to. If I did, I would considered myself one of the most fortunate people on the planet.

    Posted by chasingmoksha | March 25, 2007, 10:12 pm
  22. Heart,
    I made the comparison to race in my post because it was raised by Lisa Vogel: “Supporting womyn-born womyn space is no more inherently transphobic than supporting womyn of color space is racist.” Vogel tried to parallel WBWs to womyn of color, saying that as WBWs are to transwomen, womyn of color are to white women. I pointed out that this is a bad analogy because within the general set “women,” women of color in the U.S. and especially in venues such as the MWMF are a minority, non-dominant, non-default group. Within the set “women,” transwomen are a minority, non-dominant, non-default group. White women are the majority. WBWs are the majority. So far, neither you nor Vogel has had the guts to say that white women also should have their own spaces separate from women of color — only that WBWs should have their own spaces separate from transwomen.

    You claim that “to be women is in fact to have always already been denied the privilege and power of social approval (which is what gender actually IS, men denying privilege and power of social approval to females).” If you think you are denied social approval as a vagina-ed person who identifies as a woman, then try living as a vagina-ed person who identifies as a man. There have been multiple cases in which women who were seen as too “masculine” — aggressive, demanding, etc. — were discriminated against, whereas men with those traits were applauded. In the hierarchy of our society, men who behave as men stereotypically do are at the top, but women who behave as women stereotypically do are not at the bottom. Rather, those who go against what genitalia, chromosomes and other biological identifiers of sex dictate their behavior should be are the people scorned as “effeminate” (if they were born with a penis) or as “unwomanly” (if they were born with a vagina). It is these makers of gender trouble who feel the greatest rage of a gendered society, sometimes to the point of being raped and murdered for the transgression.

    So there are men-born-men who are taking a great interest in whether transwomen are allowed into MWMF? I confess that in my readings on the debate (including my college roommate’s honor’s thesis, which discussed it), I haven’t seen much from MBMs; the debate is engaged by those who actually have a stake, i.e. those who *ever* have been identified, or who identify themselves, as women. I would be interested in reading these MBM who tell WBWs that they should lie down for letting transwomen into MWMF.

    I am an outsider to the MWMF. Does this incapacitate me from critiquing its policies? Should Martha Burk not criticize the Augusta golf club because she is not allowed into its membership? You say I would criticize no other group for maintaining its traditional spaces and restricting who can enter them, yet I have criticized Augusta for its “male members only” policy. I have criticized South Asian groups that marginalize — not even exclude, just marginalize — Sikhs. I have criticized Christian Legal Societies for excluding homosexuals, and the U.S. military and Boy Scouts for doing the same.

    MWMF is for lesbian culture only? How did Sarah MacLachlan get in? Or is it possible to be part of lesbian culture without being a lesbian?

    You’re still claiming that I’ve said “removing the penis, or pretending it isn’t a penis, is some sort of offering or martyrdom to the feminist cause” — yet you never quote any part of my writing that says anything of the sort. Please point me to that portion of my post, because I’ve read and re-read it to figure out how I could have given such a false impression of my ideas, without success. This is a recurrent problem in your writing: you claim that I’ve said women should be “all about” men’s problems, without ever indicating any place where I said such. A group that has expertise in a subject is not necessarily “all” about that subject; I probably know more about 1920s American literature than anyone commenting here, but that doesn’t make me “all about” that subject; it’s one of many, many interests that I have.

    You point to a post you put up about a transwoman who was rejected as a counselor at a rape shelter because she lacked the requisite experience — despite apparently having had experiences of rape/ battering that started her as a client of the counseling program before she ever sought to become a counselor herself. Oddly, the shelter apparently is willing to serve transwomen, yet doesn’t think that experience as a transwoman is necessary to counseling them. When you’re a client, all women are women; when you want to be a counselor, only WBWs need apply. I confess to not finding a court finding as definitive about what the law ought to be; I also disagree with the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision that the Boy Scouts have the freedom of association to exclude homosexuals. Should I assume that you have an actual principled agreement with the Canadian court about freedom of association that means you agree with the Boy Scouts as well? or do you only support such freedom when it allows you to exclude those whom you believe unworthy of admittance?

    As for your claim that feminist women have no business with men’s problems, I guess I should inform the law journal I help edit that we must not be feminists after all, because we recently published an article about male-on-male prison rape that applied the insights of heterosexual rape to the paradigm of homosexual rape. As women with fathers, brothers, sons and friends who have joined our battle against subordination by men, how dare we care about how they too could be mistreated by men?

    Uppity Biscuit,
    Because I was writing on a legal blog, I assume my readers were familiar with the phrase “invidious discrimination” as it is used in the law, and would not simply pick the first definition of “invidious” they found on dictionary.com. The Supreme Court describes invidious discrimination as “a classification which is arbitrary, irrational and not reasonably related to a legitimate purpose.” McLaughlin v. Florida; 379 U.S. 1984 (1964). I apologize if I failed to give sufficient context for the term such that laypeople could understand the meaning I employed. Invidious discrimination does not require malicious intent toward the people being discriminated against. For example, when men were not allowed to attend a public nursing school, this was viewed as invidious discrimination though no one would argue that the rule came out of malice toward men — it was an arbitrary, irrational rule based on the gendered assumption that nurses are women.

    Mary Sunshine,
    First, I don’t hate you — I actually can’t think of any woman I hate. Of the people I really loathe right now, there’s the usual selection of genocidal dictators & such, plus a white male colleague who acted disrespectfully and deceitfully toward me when I had an authority position with regard to him. I’m sorry to hear that you harbor hatred against me, but I will not let it silence me.
    I’ve frequently had people assume I was male because I write about law and politics and people assume that only men write about such things. I’ve also had people think I must be specifically a *gay* male because I frequently write in favor of ending discrimination based on the sex of the victim vis a visa the sex of the person to whom the victim is attracted. This is the first time someone’s refused to think I could be female-born-female because I wrote about discrimination against transwomen. Some people can’t believe that a woman could write about something they assume she couldn’t possibly be interested in, and particularly couldn’t have a somewhat self-disinterested reason for supporting. In such people’s minds, no one would support orientation equality unless it provides an obvious benefit to himself; no one would support an inclusive definition of “women” unless she feared that the narrow definition would exclude her. By the way, I’m also opposed to the estate tax despite the possibility that I could inherit enough money that its continuance would affect me; I’m in favor of affirmative action for underrepresented racial and socioeconomic groups even though my ethnicity and class is overrepresented in higher education. Some of us are capable of caring about those who we are not.
    My menstrual cycle seems to be screwed up (I started bleeding last week even though I was in the middle of my pill cycle), or I’d send you some next week (when my period normally would start) and you could get the chromosomal analysis and pass along the leftover to any guy with Menstruation Envy.

    Posted by PG | March 25, 2007, 10:56 pm
  23. Hi, PG,

    I made the comparison to race in my post because it was raised by Lisa Vogel: “Supporting womyn-born womyn space is no more inherently transphobic than supporting womyn of color space is racist.” Vogel tried to parallel WBWs to womyn of color, saying that as WBWs are to transwomen, womyn of color are to white women.

    Vogel is not talking here about transwomen. She is talking here about females under male heterosupremacy. The comparison she is making is not of females vis a vis transwomen but of females vis a vis men. As females, some of us have created female-only space for reasons similar to the reasons women of color create WOC-only space. The point she is making is that there is nothing inherently phobic or exclusive about marginalized groups, affinity groups, creating their own spaces.

    I pointed out that this is a bad analogy because within the general set “women,” women of color in the U.S. and especially in venues such as the MWMF are a minority, non-dominant, non-default group. Within the set “women,” transwomen are a minority, non-dominant, non-default group.

    Transwomen have lived some or most of their lives as males under male heterosupremacy, a lived experience and reality females do not share and which transwomen share with dominant male culture.

    Michfest is female-only space, for females who have lived all of their lives, from birth, as infant girls, little girls, girls, and women in a context in which women are subordinated to males.

    Transwomen do not share this experience. For some or most or in some cases all of their lives, they have been members of the majority, default, dominant group, males. This history remains after transitioning, and it remains for transwomen who do not transition; it cannot be left behind anywhere, including at the gates to womyn’s land.

    White women are the majority. WBWs are the majority. So far, neither you nor Vogel has had the guts to say that white women also should have their own spaces separate from women of color — only that WBWs should have their own spaces separate from transwomen.

    White womyn should not have “their own spaces” separate from women of color (except possibly to work on their racism). Neither I nor Vogel would say white women should have our own spaces because neither of us believes white women should have our own spaces. Women of color have the shared experience of racism under white supremacy and have a right to take their own space for their own reasons, including healing, encouragement, political strategizing, and so on, out of the presence of white women, who share experiences with the oppressor class.

    Transwomen have, in fact, lived as members of the male oppressor class, for some or all of their lives and they bring this lived history and reality into women’s spaces. No female has lived as a member of the male oppressor class at any time. We take our own space as females on womyn’s land for healing, comfort, and to strategize our own liberation, away from members of the oppressor class or those who have ever been members of the oppressor class, as all male-born persons have.

    You claim that “to be women is in fact to have always already been denied the privilege and power of social approval (which is what gender actually IS, men denying privilege and power of social approval to females).” If you think you are denied social approval as a vagina-ed person who identifies as a woman, then try living as a vagina-ed person who identifies as a man. There have been multiple cases in which women who were seen as too “masculine” — aggressive, demanding, etc. — were discriminated against, whereas men with those traits were applauded. In the hierarchy of our society, men who behave as men stereotypically do are at the top, but women who behave as women stereotypically do are not at the bottom. Rather, those who go against what genitalia, chromosomes and other biological identifiers of sex dictate their behavior should be are the people scorned as “effeminate” (if they were born with a penis) or as “unwomanly” (if they were born with a vagina). It is these makers of gender trouble who feel the greatest rage of a gendered society, sometimes to the point of being raped and murdered for the transgression.

    First, horrifyingly huge numbers of girls and women are raped, sexually assaulted and incested because they are female. Being born female under male heterosupremacy means men will rape and sexually assault you. Being born male under male heterosupremacy doesn’t mean you will never be raped or sexually assaulted, but if you are, the numbers are much smaller, and in general, males, not females will be the perpetrators. As females we seek female only space away from the presence of members of the class which has raped, incested and sexually assaulted us.

    Rather, those who go against what genitalia, chromosomes and other biological identifiers of sex dictate their behavior should be are the people scorned

    Yes, and these are the women who attend Michfest, women who “go against what genitalia, chromosomes, and other biological identifiers of sex dictate their behavior should be.” [ETA, I clarified this in my next post down.] Yes, they are scorned. But not at Michfest. There, they are honored, celebrated, respected. There, they are the ones all of us look to for wisdom, counsel, guidance, courage, and strength, because they are the true pioneers.

    Michfest is a haven for gender-nonconforming females, meaning females who are women, who identify as women, who have always lived and identified as women, and yet who have been read, for all, some, part, or most of their lives, as men or as other than women, as ambiguously gendered, hard to read. Female-only space is space in which women are free to present as they always do, or in any way they want — fat, bearded tattooed, bald, unshaved, shaved heads, pierced, you name it — while being appreciated and celebrated as females, in a context which is completely free of gender coercion. Michfest womyn who have experienced the oppressions and attacks you cite need the Festival, and womyn’s spaces, most of all. While there are females who present traditionally at the festival and in womyn’s spaces, generally, by far, most are gender-nonconforming. They are fully female, they are women, they understand themselves to be women, but they have been up in the face of gender coercion for all of their lives.

    Their, our, sentiment, is, why would or should any female born person “identify” as a man? Female born persons are women, no matter how they look, present, think or live. It is this lived reality that the festival celebrates.

    So there are men-born-men who are taking a great interest in whether transwomen are allowed into MWMF? I confess that in my readings on the debate (including my college roommate’s honor’s thesis, which discussed it), I haven’t seen much from MBMs; the debate is engaged by those who actually have a stake, i.e. those who *ever* have been identified, or who identify themselves, as women.

    Read a bit on the internet. If you do, you will encounter white, heterosexual men who fancy themselves to be “queer” and “progressive” and “liberal,” who wear skirts now and again, and who think they belong in womyn’s spaces. There is also the frat boy problem; what a great initiation right, crashing a womyn’s festival. And LOTS of het white men do indeed take great interest in whether transwomen are allowed into MWMF; there is substantial opposition, on the part of men, to female-only space, wherever it exists and no matter why it exists because it hinders male access to females.

    I am an outsider to the MWMF. Does this incapacitate me from critiquing its policies?

    Can any of us, as feminists, critique the practices or views of ethnic/racial/religious/political groups with whom we disagree and to which we are outsiders? Sure. But if we behave like imperialists, colonialists, and arrogant assholes, we are going to get called out, and rightly so.

    Should Martha Burk not criticize the Augusta golf club because she is not allowed into its membership?

    Martha Burk certainly should, but the gender-nonconforming lesbians of Michfest bear no resemblance to the white male heterosupremacists of the Augusta golf club.

    MWMF is for lesbian culture only? How did Sarah MacLachlan get in? Or is it possible to be part of lesbian culture without being a lesbian?

    The Festival is a lesbian festival, lesbian run, lesbian owned, herstorically lesbian. Het women and bi women attend as guests at the invitation of lesbians. That invitation can be withdrawn at any time and het women, bi women, would be bound to honor and respect the withdrawing of the invitation. The Festival is a celebration of lesbian womyn’s culture.

    You’re still claiming that I’ve said “removing the penis, or pretending it isn’t a penis, is some sort of offering or martyrdom to the feminist cause” — yet you never quote any part of my writing that says anything of the sort. Please point me to that portion of my post, because I’ve read and re-read it to figure out how I could have given such a false impression of my ideas, without success.

    This is what you said:

    The womyn-born-womyn go on about the male privilege that Male-to-Females have had, while ignoring that MTFs’ refusals of male identity frequently mean that they can access the privileges of neither sex. (Yes, women do get some gender privileges, though they’re mostly ones I don’t want.) The refusal of these alleged feminists to recognize that having a penis can be a bad thing sometimes strikes me as the biggest threat to the feminist movement’s continued viability

    The suggestion here is that those born male can “refuse” male identity, presumably via the recognition that “a penis can be a bad thing,” the inference being that it is possible for males to vault themselves out of male power methodologically (as CAM would put it). It is not. It is possible to reject manhood as it is forced on you, to reject male supremacy, as a male, but not to “refuse” the fact of being born male, just as it’s not possible to “refuse” the fact of being white, although white people can and should reject white supremacy, just as the male born can and should reject male supremacy, i.e., being men. If you were born to male privilege, you had it, you participated in it, you got it, through the point at which you were read as a woman 24/7. No matter when that might have been, your experience was not the experience of the women for whom Michfest was designed, i.e., the experience of being born female under male heterosupremacy, and living with that, for all of your life.

    I posted links to five or six blog posts on this blog which are responsive to your questions and concerns. I am not going to repeat or restate what I have carefully posted or commented on these other threads. I suggest that you (and others with similar questions) read them.

    If feminist women want to address male issues, such as prison rape and gay sex in prison, that’s fine. I have said, and say again, that feminism is about women and our issues, not men, or men’s issues, except indirectly.

    I’ve frequently had people assume I was male because I write about law and politics and people assume that only men write about such things.

    This isn’t why I assumed you were male. I assumed you were male because I have substantial experience with males who post to the internet under gender neutral screen names and want to blab on ad nauseum about the way gender is “not about what’s between the legs,” until, of course, they want to valorize and bow and scrape before those who apparently believe gender IS what’s between the legs.

    In sum, there are many of us who believe that to make revolution, we are going to have to reject gender, gender coercion of all kinds, and live and present in any way we like, as females and women, as males, without cutting anything off or adding anything or transitioning to anything or pretending we don’t have something we actually do have. In other words, we are going to be up in the face of white, male, lesbophobic, homophobic, heterosupremacy without apology. It’s this group that Michfest and other womon-only spaces celebrate — a group relentlessly marginalized, targeted, denied housing, jobs, raped, assaulted, discriminated against, made invisible, silenced in every way. We have a right to our own spaces and to define the boundaries of our spaces.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | March 26, 2007, 3:05 am
  24. Rather, those who go against what genitalia, chromosomes and other biological identifiers of sex dictate their behavior should be are the people scorned

    In the interests of precision, genitalia, chromosomes and other biological identifiers of sex don’t dictate anything at all, including behavior. Male power assigns certain behaviors to certain genitalia, chromosomes and other biological identifiers of sex. This is what gender coercion is all about. Gender nonconforming females and males reject this coercion as a matter of feminist resistance to male power.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | March 26, 2007, 11:07 am
  25. Great response to PG, Heart.

    Anyway, this bothers me: ***Male power assigns certain behaviors to certain genitalia, chromosomes and other biological identifiers of sex.***

    I cringe every time I read/hear the words “male power.” Not only do I think it is excessively flattering to men, I don’t think males *have* power. Power is something which comes from the inside and I don’t see males as having any of it. What males have is not power but *CONTROL*. It is male *CONTROL* which assigns certain behaviors to certain genitalia, etc, etc. I think we add to the problem by saying “male power” again and again, because every time a male reads it he becomes more and more puffed up with his own “power” (even if its use is being condemned) and every time a female reads it she feels smaller and smaller by her own lack of same. The more puffed up males feel and the smaller females feel, the harder it is for females to gather enough energy to rise up and DEFEAT male control.

    Posted by Branjor | March 26, 2007, 1:16 pm
  26. You could be onto something there Branjor.

    Posted by stormy | March 26, 2007, 3:42 pm
  27. Thank you, Stormy, but I must give the credit to Sonia Johnson. I first read it said by *her*.

    Posted by Branjor | March 26, 2007, 4:02 pm
  28. Hi PG,

    Thanks for your patience and articulation. My apologies.

    I don’t hate you. I would if you were a male joining forces with all the other males who are hell bent on penetrating female-only space.

    I don’t hate you: I can only wonder at your misapprehension!

    M.S.

    Posted by Mary Sunshine | March 26, 2007, 5:29 pm
  29. Thank you Heart and PG. *This* is what I am used to seeing from you. Intelligent conversation. It’s the ad hominem attacks that I dislike. You have no need whatsoever, Heart, to edit yourself — it’s your blog; I was simply expressing my opinion. I have known PG for the past few years and know her (and her arguments) to rarely, if ever, be idiotic.

    As to the content of the arguments themselves, I’ve made my opinion known for a long time (I would never try and force myself into MWMF space. I get that I have had male privilege in my life.) so I won’t reiterate it here.

    I don’t know if I’ve ever seen where hate, for hate’s sake, has been constructive.

    Posted by Denise | March 27, 2007, 12:31 pm
  30. Denise, where are you seeing hate for hate’s sake?

    Posted by Heart | March 27, 2007, 12:53 pm
  31. Thank goodness I was set straight, so to speak, regarding language comprehension, (“invidious discrimination”). Ya know, this legalese stuff, especially when used amongst the ‘common people’ makes me think that the user is young to the legal field, is just full of new words and is so eager to use them that they forget to talk like a person who wants to be understood. It sounds like a juvenile approach to something new to them, as if to say, “Look at the words I found, guess how creative I am at using them. I’m a lawyer or wanna be a lawyer and I’m so slick with words. Look at me. I’m not really secure with myself so I’m going to throw out these words that I think make me sound so smart. Look at me.”

    I should just stay with drawing pictures in the dirt with a stick and not venture over to blogs that use big words.

    If I say, “You are an ass hole” and someone looks up that lovely phrase, I kind of know what definition they will find. I would just be messing with them if later said, “Oh, you should not use common definitions of ass hole. You should have known I meant that you are like a sphincter muscle, a regulator, a muscle of a person who controls passages. You know, an ass hole, a person who addresses the flow of ‘stuff’. That’s what you should have known that I meant when I said you are an ass hole.”

    Here’s a suggestion for those that may fall into that category, do not, ever count on people of any stripe taking the time to run around the word bush to hunt and guess at what your special interpretation or use of a word is. I ain’t gonna do it. How’s dem apples?

    Now, PG, tell me when or if you think that those of us born female ever have a right to gather without a person born male present. Just to hedge a word problem, please be careful to not confuse gender with sex.

    Posted by uppitybiscuit | March 27, 2007, 2:18 pm
  32. Here’s a suggestion for those that may fall into that category, do not, ever count on people of any stripe taking the time to run around the word bush to hunt and guess at what your special interpretation or use of a word is.

    Oh snap! How shall I ever communicate again?

    Its my meaning, donna get it?

    LOL!

    Posted by chasingmoksha | March 27, 2007, 3:16 pm
  33. Heart, I just want to thank you for being a champion for women. When so many others seem willing to suck dick (I mean figuratively, mostly anyway) to get along, you never falter, even when they’re telling you it’s not a dick but a vagina being shoved down your throat.

    I am so sick and tired of hearing (well, reading) self-proclaimed feminists go on about how focusing on the suffering of only one sex, the oppressed one, is somehow a shortcoming of feminism, something to be overcome and rectified, rather than being the point of the whole movement in the first place. I am so sick and tired of hearing about how patriarchy hurts men too, as if it ever does so before first doling out the perks. I am sick of hearing about how men being raped in prison should be a feminist concern of the highest priority, as if incarcerated women aren’t being raped right now by male guards and giving birth in shackles, and as if women who haven’t been convicted of crimes aren’t being raped right now in their homes and on the streets with little or no legal recourse.

    I was beginning to think I was crazy because I couldn’t find it in myself to give half a damn about the harm men do to each other. The man at the bottom of the totem pole only puts up with as much abuse from his male superiors as he expects the woman underneath him to tolerate in turn. Frankly, if he wasn’t so committed to having a default inferior to piss on for himself, he might have time to devote to toppling the heirarchy that’s “hurting” him so much.

    Anyway, I can’t tell you how much I appreciate that you make your voice heard, unpopular though it may be. Women are listening and we are inspired.

    Posted by justicewalks | March 27, 2007, 8:19 pm
  34. Aha!

    Well, Denise, as long as you’re not trying to force yourself into MWMF, then I don’t have to hate you.
    🙂

    There’s only so much hate to go around.😐 I’d rather enjoy life.

    Mary

    Posted by Mary Sunshine | March 27, 2007, 8:31 pm
  35. Ah, Justice Walks, thanks so much! What a nice thing to say. Made my day.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | March 27, 2007, 9:34 pm
  36. UppityBiscuit made my day with this:

    If I say, “You are an ass hole” and someone looks up that lovely phrase, I kind of know what definition they will find. I would just be messing with them if later said, “Oh, you should not use common definitions of ass hole. You should have known I meant that you are like a sphincter muscle, a regulator, a muscle of a person who controls passages. You know, an ass hole, a person who addresses the flow of ‘stuff’. That’s what you should have known that I meant when I said you are an ass hole.”

    LMAO!!!

    Posted by CoolAunt | March 28, 2007, 4:47 am
  37. I concur in the ROTFLMAO way with CoolAunt, go Uppity!

    Thanks Justicewalks, always nice to hear the reminder that feminism is not at fault for concentrating on the plight of females. Whenever I hear the phrase “patriarchy hurts men too”, it’s one of those trigger phrases, where I just want to scream (and break things, esp dangly things)! Of course, it doesn’t help the situation that this phrase is oft uttered by our dear friends, the MRAs.

    Posted by stormy | March 28, 2007, 9:48 am
  38. Stormy said:
    ***Thanks Justicewalks, always nice to hear the reminder that feminism is not at fault for concentrating on the plight of females.***

    *Somebody* has to concentrate on the plight of females and who is going to do that if not females?

    In patriarchy, all females are in such dire straits that there is simply not any time to divert to men without sacrificing females.

    The purpose behind the demand that feminists devote their time and energy to men’s issues is to *eventually* convert feminism into a full time auxiliary working for the benefit of men only.

    Posted by Branjor | March 28, 2007, 12:05 pm
  39. The purpose behind the demand that feminists devote their time and energy to men’s issues is to *eventually* convert feminism into a full time auxiliary working for the benefit of men only.

    Yep, and “feminists” are hopping to it, ever-ready to reassure men that we don’t hate them, that we want to be sexy for them and we feel empowered by performing sexual acts they see as degrading, that we want to have babies with their last names, and that we don’t think female leadership would be any better than male. I’d say that the “eventual” conversion of feminism into something male-centric has already been realized.

    Posted by justicewalks | March 28, 2007, 4:27 pm
  40. I’d say that the “eventual” conversion of feminism into something male-centric has already been realized.

    I completely agree. Sadly. 😦

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | March 28, 2007, 4:34 pm
  41. You know, you’re right😦 , I should know that from all I’ve read in past years.

    The fact is, around 1980 and the election of Reagan, I sensed that that was happening and I stopped reading/listening to almost all mainstream media. I *looked away* as one would do to avoid seeing the impact of a terrible accident. I didn’t want to see it, didn’t want to hear it, didn’t want to read about it. I only started to come face to face with it and look squarely at it a few short years ago (about 2001) on the old Ms board just after I got my first computer.

    How utterly 70s of me to think it was any other way.

    Posted by Branjor | March 28, 2007, 8:30 pm
  42. I would say the timid branch of the feminist movement has always been more or less male-centric, since it has been more interested in winning a place in the world of men than anything that would really rock the boat. This branch is basically part of the mainstream, since it does not wish to be seen as a threat to the status quo. The mainstream is only too happy to take this branch as representative of reasonable feminism, as opposed to the branch daring to challenge the mainstream. How representative of women this nonthreatening form of feminism really is I could not say, but I have my doubts that it represents nearly as many women as it, or men who find that kind of feminism to their liking or at least tolerable, would like to believe.

    IOW, I am skeptical that a branch of feminism that thinks, for instance, any choice a woman makes is a feminist choice, or that Hillary Clinton would make a fine President, is actually representative of feminism in general, as opposed to feminism palatable to the mainstream, which I would consider oxymoronic. NOW apparently does not, since it endorsed Hillary for President today.

    Posted by Aletha | March 29, 2007, 6:07 am
  43. I am holding a couple of comments in the moderation queue, one from PG and one from someone defending PG, because they are gigantically long and seem to want to cover and re-cover ground that has been covered forevermore, ad nauseum here on Women’s Space, in threads I linked to in my first post. I am not willing to have restated, and restated, and restated the same tired and often disingenuous arguments as though they have never been stated here, in response to points which are raised and re-raised as though they have never been raised here. It starts to feel like just more of the same of what I have experienced forevermore around this issue on the internet: anti-Michfest, anti-feminist, anti-female propaganda and spam which masquerades as “questions” and “discussion.” I’ve had to put up with that stuff elsewhere over and over and over again, but I don’t have to make space for that here on my blog.

    I will probably excerpt the few new or worthwhile points which the commenters have recently made in the comments that are still in moderation and I will respond to those points only.

    In the meantime, before anyone spends more valuable time writing gigantic comments, please familiarize yourself with posts and comments threads which already exist here and which are responsive to the issues you raise. I’m not going to host the same discussions here, over and over again. To do so would be to disrespect all the time women have already devoted to posting their thoughts originally. Anybody who is actually interested in what women here think about the issues in this thread will find the other posts and comments threads and read them. My hunch is, the interest is more along the lines of spamming my blog with the same old propaganda and rhetoric which I’m not buying and will never buy because it is not in the best interests of females, and it is females who are my priority.

    I’ll be back with a few excerpts and a few responses in time.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | March 29, 2007, 5:04 pm

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