(changing up the featured image because of this)
All right so:
People determined to excuse Aziz Ansari because the woman he was super aggressive towards didn’t just leave the apartment entirely or say explicitly “no” or “stop” was annoying today. Based on the discussions I saw about it I was expecting it to be much grayer than it was when I actually read it. I was thinking, “Really, guys? You think she wasn’t being clear enough?”
There was also some Margaret Atwood nonsense. She wrote an op-ed called “Am I a Bad Feminist?” and the answer is yes. She really is, if indeed she’s a feminist at all. Her shtick is calmly, gently restating over and over that feminism makes us all want to insist that women are angels, victims always, forever blameless.
- To me, feminism is the radical notion that a woman can be flawed and complicated and that human experiences can be gray and SHE SHOULD STILL HAVE HER BASIC HUMANITY RESPECTED.
- I honestly thought, until recently, that was kind of what Atwood meant, to a certain extent. But apparently no.
- To Atwood, “women aren’t angels” means “we need to always always always mistrust sexual misconduct allegations especially if they’re against well-respected and powerful men I like. Because women aren’t angels.”
- (Nobody is saying we need to instantly convict every person accused of sexual misconduct. Nobody. NOBODY IS SAYING THAT.)
- (False accusations are rare.)
- (Rapists and sexual harassers never facing any consequences whatsoever for their actions is PRETTY COMMON.)
- (That NEEDS TO CHANGE.)
- (We can start by getting rid of judges who excuse rape because of what the victim was wearing or because there was previous flirtation or because “she didn’t look like a thirteen-year-old.”)
- (Holding more terrible men accountable for their actions is PROBABLY NOT GOING TO HURT ANYONE WHO ISN’T A TERRIBLE MAN.)
- Fuck you, Atwood.
- Ten bucks several Atwood controversies down the line is going to be one that is her going full TERF. I’m calling it now.
Also the thing she retweeted the other day, apart from the Sullivan shit piece, was a shit piece about how #metoo goes too far in that workplace flirtation can be hot.
There’s a little paragraph that’s like, “Straight women like when men are sexually aggressive because it confirms our desirability and can be thrilling and unexpected.”
OK so kudos to this writer for discovering what kinks are.
She should have followed through with her research to determine that acting on those kinks with a partner still requires consent if it’s being done, like, right.
I find it hard to believe that – look, I don’t care how kinky you are. You aren’t always, in every context, with any potential partner, up for being grabbed and kissed, or even just flirted with. Which is where the millennial feminist affirmations of “FUCKING ASK” or “enthusiastic consent” come in. It should not be that hard to understand that none of us are asking you to not have your romance and your sexy funtimes the way you like them. And MAYBE, a conversation about harassment and assault, particularly where women are just trying to go to work and do their jobs, is NOT THE PLACE FOR YOU TO SHOW UP AND SCREAM INTO THE VOID THAT YOU LIKE FLIRTING.
Nobody cares. Do your thing. Do it consensually. THAT ISN’T WHAT WE’RE TALKING ABOUT, BRENDA.
I’m finding it legitimately exhausting that the backlash so far has been people itching to do a bad take looking at a movement revolting against the silencing and horrific sexual harassment and assault of women in the workplace and going, “But, but, but, how will we do romance, then?”
THAT. ISN’T. ROMANCE.
IT ISN’T ROMANCE.
THAT YOU JUMP SO QUICKLY TO EQUATING IT TO ROMANCE IS SCARY AND AWFUL.
So on this episode of Anne, a pastor shows up and says Anne doesn’t need to go to school anyway because she can just stay at home and learn how to be a wife, and then Marilla gets PISSED and yells at Matthew, who basically just asks if she’s OK, “Now, is there anything I can bake or clean or mend or fetch for you?” before storming off, and then when Billy jokes that “girls are so useless” and they should “stay in the kitchen” and that they should “leave the men to their work” Anne screams, “Why don’t you give me that hammer and I’ll finish the job myself if YOU’RE too busy being a bully to GET IT DONE?” And then all the men laugh.
Last episode I thought Ruby and Josie smiling in a rather shocked way meant that they admired Anne for smacking Gilbert with the slate, but apparently I was wrong. This time, I’ll say I guess it’s possible that the men think Anne is just being silly, but it still plays to me as though they thought it was legit great that she screamed that at him.
When it comes to Ruby (and Josie, probably, but she isn’t here this episode), I still think she does admire Anne. I think she just understands that Anne’s behaviour and personality and orphan status make her stick out, and that it’s socially unacceptable to be seen publicly liking her.
I’m going to hold onto that because the smiling/awe from last time really, really doesn’t make sense to me as the girls laughing at Anne’s expense. Do they not know what to make of it? Are they shaken to their cores? Yes. You’re not supposed to loudly, violently, publicly rebuff Gilbert Blythe. But Anne did. Upon further reflection they decide to uphold status quo and keep treating her badly because she’s too dramatic for their delicate sensibilities (or so they’ve been taught).
So apart from the screaming, this episode was fairly dramatic in other sort of overblown ways. Anne gets to be a hero and I like it, but it is kind of out there. I prefer the budding friendship with Ruby. I also like the moments she gets with Gerry, who keeps hinting that he really wants to go to school and be educated but he doesn’t have that opportunity. My prediction is that Anne will lobby for him to go to school at some point, or that she’ll teach him herself, or both.
Well that’s all. Hopefully news won’t be as aggravating next time I recap an episode, or, if it is, hopefully Anne will scream at someone again because it’s so rare to see girls and women in media fully let loose with their rage. It’s CLEANSING, I say.