Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Assorted

     1. Headphones, Dunhams, and Feminism.

     There are days the only thing keeping me from climbing the nearest clock tower – why yes, I do own a high-caliber sniper rifle! Why do you ask? – is the incredibly witty (and blessedly prolific) Ace of Spades:

     Recently, feminists went ber-fucking-zerk over an internet article written by a dude explaining how to pick up girls who are wearing headphones (that is, who aren't likely to hear you, because they're listening to music).

     Feminists went absolutely ape-shit over this, as Mollie Z. Hemingway discusses in this Federalist podcast.

     How dare this man give you advice on how to talk to a woman who is strongly signalling she doesn't want to be spoken to! Why, it's akin to a violation! She's carved out a safe space for herself using her headphones as gates and you, Rapist, are trying to break through those gates!

     The insane fury of the feminists that followed can be said fairly to have broke the Internet.

     So you have that? If a woman is trying to not notice you, it is a Violation and a fairly serious one to attempt a claim on her attention.

     Feminists have spoken. This is now the Sex Law.

     Well.

     Please read the rest – and upon completion, immediately proceed thence to this bit of commentary by Stacy McCain:

     The proximate cause of Ace’s glorious rant was, of course, the ridiculous reaction of Lena Dunham to being seated next to New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. at a celebrity event in New York. Beckham was busy looking at his phone and ignoring her and so, in her warped mind, Dunham decided this NFL superstar was dissing her.

     Let’s just state the obvious: Odell Beckham Jr. is 100% USDA Prime Beef. He was a first-round draft pick in 2014, and in each of his first two NFL seasons, he had more than 90 catches with total receiving of more than 1,300 yards. Against the Cowboys in 2014, Beckham had a Dallas safety hanging all over him when he made an absolutely insane one-handed catch for a touchdown that was instantly acclaimed “Catch of the Year.” The man is a phenomenal athletic specimen and there are probably no less than half a million women in New York City who, if they ever got within arm’s length of this 23-year-old millionaire, would strip naked and break down in tears begging him, “Do me, Odell! Do me right here, right now! I want to have your babies!” Lena Dunham, by contrast . . .

     Well, she bears an unfortunate resemblance to a potato.

     It’s been a long time since I laughed this hard.


     2. While We’re On The Subject...

     What subject is that, pray tell? Why, it’s none other than the contretemps over pronouns!

     I have perhaps told the story here before of the Fullbright professor who got the unenviable task of teaching my American lit class in the third year of college. My degree being languages, and the curriculum being more rigid than at any American college, (i.e. we all took the same classes and I rubbed elbows only with people with the same (or similar) major and minor), we were all twenty-something year old women, about 25 of us.

     Other than a brief issue when we could not, for love or money, decipher his pronouncing of “Poem” (It sounded like poym) and he thought we had never heard of poetry and was baffled, the class proceeded with no issues. Most of us had taken American Lit at high school level, so this was territory, just a little deeper and taught by a real American (TM).

     Until in the middle of a lecture he said something like “When any writer sets out to do x, he–” And stopped, growing pale, and started apologizing profusely.

     Apparently looking on that sea of female faces, he thought he was about to be crucified. When we got it through his head that we were not offended, he said “Oh, wow. American women would be. I’d have to say he or she.” We, students of linguistics, pointed out that “he” is the appropriate pronoun for indeterminate gender in ANY INDO EUROPEAN LANGUAGE.

     His answer was something like, “yeah, but–”

     And you can take it from there. For those who haven’t quite grasped the point of the above, the author of the article cited above, fantasy / SF writer Sarah Hoyt, was born and raised in Portugal.

     I am reminded of something I wrote years ago, which appears in my nonfiction tome An Indie Writer’s Odyssey:

     The idea isn’t that anyone is genuinely offended by these idioms, or by the old “he”-for-generic-singular convention. It’s to make us censor ourselves: to compel us to prejudge every word that emerges from our mouths, pens, or keyboards according to whether it might offend someone. This, when American Negroes casually call one another nigger and a feminist playwright concludes her most popular play with a chant of “Cunt...cunt...cunt...”
     As a technique for silencing, and ultimately subjugating, one’s opposition, this one has no superiors and few peers.
     This mick-wop honky has had quite enough:
  • Idioms that use “black” or “dark” to indicate ominousness are just fine by me.
  • Persons who prefer lovers of their own sex are homosexuals, not “gay.”
  • Please, enough with the “undocumented worker” BS. They’re illegal aliens.
  • My fiction will depict villains who are Negroes, homosexuals, Hispanics, and Muslims as it suits me—and given the crime and terrorism statistics, it will frequently suit me.
  • And most emphatically, “he” is my standard generic-singular pronoun.

     Don’t like it? Read someone else.
     I won’t give in.

     An Indie Writer’s Odyssey is available for free, in all popular eBook formats. Get your copy while I remain insanely generous.


     3. To The White House or a Hospice? It’s Up To You.

     Here’s Wesley Pruden with a brilliant backhanding of the Left’s cries that questions about Hillary Clinton’s health are forbidden:

     When questions were raised about Barack Obama’s birth, and whether he was actually eligible to be president of the United States, he brushed the questions aside as if answering them was beneath the dignity of a prince of the crown. He let the questions fester for years before putting them to rest....

     Hillary Clinton is trying a similar tactic, portraying criticism of her vulgarity, her greed and her intolerance as hatred of women, and envy of a woman finally breaking through a crystal ceiling. It’s not working, in part because men have a reputation built over the centuries for mortgaging their lives to provide for their women, and in part because nobody knows better than women themselves that the accusation is silly. Is there a woman anywhere who wants a reputation for ethics, character and feminine grace like Hillary‘s?

     She, like candidates before her, may not like the questions, but voters have the right to ask candidates, and particularly candidates for president, any question they please. It’s what democracy and democratic elections are about. “If you can’t stand the heat,” as Harry S. Truman reminded everyone, “stay out of the kitchen.”

     Pruden doesn’t stop there. Please read it all.


     4. Just In Case You Had Any Lingering Doubts...

     ...here’s Jed Babbin on the Clinton email scandal:

     It’s a matter of record. Americans now populate the largest, wealthiest and most powerful banana republic in the world. The differences between Obama’s America and Maduro’s Venezuela are defined only by degree.

     The defining characteristics of banana republics are a matter of history. First, the law is not enforced against a chosen class in a banana republic, usually the allies of the autocrat in charge. Second, foreign policy is always performed in the autocrat’s interests and often in disregard of the nation’s actual interests. This describes how America functions in the era of President Obama.

     The newly-released FBI documents on the investigation of Hillary Clinton make it clear beyond argument that the fix was in and that the FBI never had any intention of recommending that she should be prosecuted for her crimes.

     That is very hard to write. I have had very good friends among the agents of the FBI, men of unshakeable dedication to the fair enforcement of the law. But that is no longer the FBI’s goal, as just a few references to the documents published last week reveal.

     Please read it all. Babbin makes an airtight case that the U.S. has descended to banana-republic status.

     I lived next door to an active FBI agent as a lad. He was one of the most thoroughly admirable men I’ve ever known...and I severely doubt he’d lower himself to serve in today’s FBI, especially under James Comey.


     5. But Even If She Respected The Security Laws...

     ...Hillary Clinton would still be culpable for putting the interests of Chinese Communists over those of the United States:

     Former secretary of state Hillary Clinton turned away a high-ranking Chinese defector who sought political asylum after the communist police chief sought refuge in a U.S. consulate in southwestern China four years ago.

     Critics say Clinton’s handling of the defection of Wang Lijun, a close aide to a regional Communist Party leader, was a blunder and lost opportunity for U.S. intelligence to gain secrets about the leaders of America’s emerging Asian adversary.

     Instead of sheltering Wang and granting him political asylum, Clinton agreed to turn him over to Chinese authorities in Beijing, and claimed he was not qualified for American sanctuary because of his past role as a police chief accused of corruption.

     However, the defector’s case highlights Clinton’s policy of seeking to preserve U.S. ties with China’s communist leadership instead of pursuing much-needed intelligence gathering on China at a time when Beijing is emerging as an increasingly threatening power.

     This is another story you don’t want to miss, especially if you harbor any lingering doubts about Donald Trump’s fitness for the Oval Office. Trump, whatever else one might say for or against him, loves this country, has never betrayed it, and can be expected to put its interests above those of foreign oligarchs or autocrats.

     I find that I agree with the sentiments of the pseudonymous writer who has said:

     2016 is the Flight 93 election: charge the cockpit or you die: You may die anyway. You—or the leader of your party—may make it into the cockpit and not know how to fly or land the plane. There are no guarantees.

     Except one: if you don’t try, death is certain. To compound the metaphor: a Hillary Clinton presidency is Russian Roulette with a semi-auto. With Trump, at least you can spin the cylinder and take your chances.

     That’s a sobering thing to contemplate.

     Later, Gentle Readers.

1 comment:

  1. What a quandary. Making your safe space via headphones will become defacto birth control. Has anyone considered the effect this will have on Planned Parenthood and the democrat party. The 'right to choose' is a non-issue if you have no need to choose because you were wearing headphones.

    ReplyDelete

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