Just found out that Forever 21 has done away with all of their in-store plus size sections in my area, Los Angeles. And their return policy is crap. WTF.
ew, good to know (well, not ‘good’, but you know what i mean)- forever 21 is a great example of what i’m wary of with the modcloth announcement. basically, this is what happens every time:
clothing company: hey, let’s make plus size clothing ! but only sell it online or in limited stores.
fat people: hmm, i’m reticent about buying clothes online without trying them on, and none of your stores in my area carry the plus line, but we’ll give it a try.
clothing company: hey, but what if we make the clothes pretty mediocre? our super thin buyer thinks fat women will like big baggy sacks to cover their fat shame, polyester sassy diva leopard print, fake leather covered in non-functional zippers, and like 30 stunning tank tops featuring a union jack covered in sequins (US only)?
fat people: hmm, i don’t really like this stuff, but i like the non-plus stuff you make. can you just make that stuff bigger?
clothing company: i can’t hear you, your fat is too loud.
fat people: we said…
clothing company: never mind, you people aren’t buying the clothes we were so nice to offer to you, so we’re taking it out of stores.
fat people: well, i guess we can buy it online, but we can’t try stuff on and your return policy where we have to pay for return shipping or pay a restocking fee means we’re basically paying money to try your clothes on…
clothing company: well if you’re going to be like that, we’re going to stop carrying it online too !!!! plus size clothes just don’t sell !!!! we TRIED !!! we can’t offer bigger sizes because we TRIED and fat people were so ungrateful !!!
the point of this story is going to be that i’m worried about my personal healthcare options in the future. this is going to take a bit of background, so please read all this through if you’re interested.
in may 2007, i graduated from undergraduate school. along with my diploma, i received notice…
I’m pretty worried about my future for healthcare too, and you should as well. Take a read.
“When feminism does not explicitly oppose racism, and when anti-racism does not incorporate opposition to patriarchy, race and gender politics often end up being antagonistic to each other and both interests lose.”—Kimberle Crenshaw (b. 1959), African American author. Race-ing Justice, En-gendering Power, ch. 14 (1992). (via grasstomyknees) Boom! In every way. (via blackfoxx)
“There’s glory for you!’
‘I don’t know what you mean by “glory,”’ Alice said.
Humpty Dumpty smiled contemptuously. ‘Of course you don’t— till I tell you. I meant “there’s a nice knock-down argument for you!”’
‘But “glory” doesn’t mean “a nice knock-down argument,”’ Alice objected. ‘
When I use a word,’ Humpty Dumpty said in rather a scornful tone, ‘it means just what I choose it to mean— neither more nor less.’
“An official says Malala Yousufzai, who was shot by the Taliban for promoting girls’ education, has urged Pakistan to reverse a decision to rename a college in her honor to avert militant attacks on students. The 15-year-old who became a symbol of youth resistance to the Taliban made the request after students broke into the school, tore down Malala’s pictures and boycotted classes in her home town of Mingora. They say renaming the college endangers their lives.”—
Did you read that, raging liberals of Pakistan and the West? Malala does not want the attention. She does not want to be a symbol. She does notwant to lose her life because your obsession with symbolizing Muslim women into icons of resistance render damage to their very lives. If you genuinely care, try to understand the context and gravity of the situation.
Everybody thought Kennedy and Johnson and Nixon were spending four-and-a-half percent of the federal budget each year to prove that America owned Science. This was all a fiction. The Apollo Program was an elaborate demonstration of how even the blandest among us are under the heel of the spirit.
NASA needed astronauts to go plant a flag on the moon. For obvious reasons, the astronauts ended up being the most reliable type of man America makes: white, straight, full-starch protestant, center-right, and spawned by the union of science and the military. Every last one of them was the heart of the heart of the tv dinner demographic. But then
they get shot into space, tossed from the gravity of this planet, across a quartermillion miles of nothing, to be snagged by the moon after three days. Eighteen guys did this and twelve descended further to find out that moon dust smells like gunsmoke. Every single one of them came back irrevocably changed. America had sent the squarest motherfuckers it could find to the moon and the moon sent back humans. Armstrong became a teacher, then a farmer. Alan Bean became a painter. Edgar Mitchell started believing in UFOs. And also managed to crystallize the experience of seeing your entire planet at once:
‘You develop an instant global consciousness, a people orientation, an intense dissatisfaction with the state of the world, and a compulsion to do something about it. From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, “Look at that, you son of a bitch.”’
Reconciling the disparity between America’s promise of equality and its reality is a near constant exercise of cognitive dissonance. So we warp the facts of history to suit idea of America rather than the actuality, our collective memory of the Civil Rights movement is a testament to that. In his remarkable book Blood Done Sign My Name, Timothy Tyson writes,
“No one, in the rosy glow of our hindsight, was opposed to this movement except potbellied, tobacco-chewing racist rednecks in Mississippi (106).”
This has always been a supremely convenient notion for us to adopt. Casting racists as marginal outcasts allows us to laud freedom activists as exemplary Americans, to reclaim America’s moral authority by co-opting the work of dedicated few to represent the opinions of the majority. This lie aligns nicely with the virtues and ideals of equality and democracy that America professes. Yet during the marches, protests, and activism characterizing the time, blacks and the white allies professing solidarity with civil rights causes were denounced, attacked and rejected across the nation.
One of the greatest Americans to have ever lived, the man we honor today, is only regarded as a national hero because he won. In his own time Martin Luther King was abused and vilified by the highest authorities. The FBI wrote him a letter encouraging to kill himself. He was labeled a threat to national security, “the most dangerous and effective Negro leader in the country.” That is what we should remember today, not a passing acknowledgement of his success but a deep reflection on his struggle. Martin Luther King Jr. should be positioned as the anti war, anti white supremacy, anti capitalism, civilly disobedient, freedom fighter he was. A man who while steadfast on the right side of morality found himself on the wrong side of the law. Americans today have more to learn from that than from a day off.
When Stuyvesant says that women’s dress and bodies are distraction in a learning environment, for example, what they’re really saying is that they’re distracting to male students. The default student we are concerned about - the student whose learning we want to ensure is protected - is male. Never mind how “distracting” it is to be pulled from class, humiliated, and made to change outfits - publicly degrading young women is small price to pay to make sure that a boy doesn’t have to suffer through the momentary distraction of glancing at a girl’s legs. When this dentist in Iowa can fire his assistant for turning him on - even though she’s done absolutely nothing wrong - the message again is that it’s men’s ability to work that’s important.
And when rape victims are blamed for the crime committed against them, the message is the same: This is something that happened to the perpetrator, who was driven to assault by a skirt, or a date, or the oh-so-sexy invitation of being passed out drunk. Women have infringed on their right to exist without being turned on. (Ta-Nehisi Coates describes this centering of male sexual vulnerability quite well.) Our very presence is a disruption of the male status quo.