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um... who me? uh i guess i'm the lounge's resident tranny. old school bustie formerly known as butta.

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 | Category: politics
entry Jul 10 2008, 03:38 AM
so, i'm going to cut and paste some things not written by me. i'd like to get the writer's permission, but well they don't post here anymore, and even if they did i doubt that i would be on speaking terms with some people. but this is a public forum, and they were using a pseudonym. i figger, fair game.
QUOTE
(maddy29 @ Feb 2 2007, 09:36 PM)
i think that it can be useful to examine WHY we choose the things we do. If I'm doing something that the patriarchy approves of, I'm sure as hell going to check that out.

GGG-my ? to you would be-why do you wear mini skirts? tight shirts? etc. Not saying it's bad, but asking why? I think sometimes this stuff is sooo firmly entrenched in us that we can think we are "just doing it for ourselves" but in reality that's not totally true.

rudderless makes some great points-really nice. i don't think it's just the effort involved, although that's part of it. To me, when a feminist gets a boob job, she is capitulating to the pressures of society. Does that make her not a feminist? Of course not, as long as she believes in equality and all that good stuff. However, she should be aware that she is capitulating. She should NOT try to pass this off as a "feminist" act.

My main problem is when people try to defend their actions by calling them feminist. hey, we all choose our battles-just don't call it feminist...i mean, if you like watching mainstream porn, fine, but don't say it's a feminist act. Doesn't mean YOU aren't a feminist, but don't try to say oh it's feminist because it's ME doing what I want. That's what bugs me a lot.

Again, I really don't care what individuals do, for the most part, as long as they aren't hurting anyone else. ANd I do think we have to take responsibility for the part that we, as women, as feminists, play, when we strengthen gender roles, etc. It's not about feeling shamed of our bodies, or the feminist rules, or anything like that. It's being aware of how your personal choices can effect others.

Now, that being said, I DON'T think this is anywhere near the most important issue in feminism, far from it. There is clearly tons and tons of big stuff that is WAY more important. But I get frustrated when I see people saying "Oh this is feminist, because I'm a feminist, and I'm doing it." That doesn't make it feminist! A feminist posing for playboy is not a feminist act-it's just a woman posing for playboy. I get tired of the excuses....
exactly. exactly! Not blaming us as individual women, trying to make choices in a world where we are constantly being pressured to be this or that....but blaming patriarchy for forcing us into these stupid choices.

QUOTE
(nohope Mar 18 2007, 04:00 PM)
As I mentioned to Girltrouble in a private discourse we had, I don’t think there is such a thing as "famine power" and "masculine power," there is just Power

Further more what I believe Girltrouble was describing is not power at all but rather coercion. She called it persuasion. But the truth is that those people who would be persuaded are not persuaded because of their inner strength, but rather because of their inner weakness. i.e. what we are talking about is suckers. Now the ability to sucker people is not power…. And to sucker someone is ultimately a form of coercion. And that coercion is made possible because of Patriarchy and the limitations it puts on men as well as women. A rational and stable person would not fall victim.

So is there a place where "feminine power" is considered libratory for women? Sure there is a place. But is being seductive that "feminine power?" I think not. But lets say it is. If so it only exists with in ht confines of patriarchy. With out patriarchy femininity would have no "power." Does that mean it never is libratory for women with in patriarchy? Probably not…. But it does mean that it usually isn’t, no matter how much thought we have put into it.

And the reason is that when we use patriarchal tools to gain feminist ends, we ultimately strengthen and reinforce the patriarchy.

And important distinction here is women and woman. Just because something empowers a female does not mean it empowers all females. The metric for women liberation is does a particular action empower the group. I mean to me that is what makes an action libratory verses repressive.

The means are the ends.

p.s. I find the question is something feminist, to be kind of pointless, be cause feminism has become to fluid an idea to have any meaning. Women’s liberation is at lest a little more precise.
(...Mar 18 2007, 05:58 PM...)
I guess that depends on ones definition of power. But for me power is the ability to determine ones own destiny. Not the destiny of others, but ones own.

There for from my perspective power is non-gendered. But who has power with in any particular context is a function of the social contract.

If there is such a thing as gender recognized by the social contract, and if that gendered social contract conceives of a male gender among others and if all other genders are subservient to that male gender then what we have is called patriarchy. And under a social contract, in which patriarchy operates, yes non-men exercise less power and there fore have limited ability to determine their own destinies outside of prescribed social norms.


and i retort:
QUOTE
[color=#ff0066]oh, come on, nh. your contention that power is the ability to determine one's own destiny, not the destiny of others, is, honestly, absurd.

when your boss fires you, does he not exert power?

if power is a matter of social contract, then what does a gun do? rewrite the contract?

the social contract doesn't change, but the context does. the social contract doesn't change, but the context does if you know the gun isn't loaded.

i think what you describe in your last para below, is the way we assume that power works, it is the male=gun sort of view, but if someone doesn't abide by the social contract, refuses to play along, or knows that the "gun" isn't loaded/doesnt exist/apply to them, the context changes.

you switch between power and 'coersion' when it suits you. your labeling it as such is a means of changing it's context and meaning. in the story i gave about getting a tire changed, i doubt anyone who is in the slightest bit sane would call flirting with a man to get him to change a tire is coersion. holding a gun to his head, perhaps. using his "dick" to your own advantage? not even close.

as i said in the private email with you nh, i think like many, you confuse sex (what is actually between your legs, or more precisely the organs in your body cavity) and gender (which is more society's perception of your actions) they are not one and the same thing.

this is an important distinction. to make this more clear i think we should talk about this not as male-masculine/female-feminine power dialectic, but rather in terms of a butch/femme one.

because your sex is male does not mean that you are relegated to strictly butch power. you have an option of using any type of power you choose. but because of your socialization as a man, you would more than likely be prone to use butch power. in the same way that in certain situations, women would probably use a more femme power. there is certainly a difference between because when you say that there is not male or female power there is simply power, i think you are putting on those same blinders that you spoke about in one of your posts. my story is asking, is there a means of using femme power as a form of resistance to patriarchy? i say yes. now you may not be aware of the kinds/forms of femme power, other than the most blatant, because of the "sea" you swim in. it's similar to the way that white people aren't always aware of white culture because they don't know anything else. but the reason i talked about femme power in the context of dyke communities is because in that context male and female power-- as you put it-- is removed from a body attached view. that is not to say there is not sexism, misogeny, or any other hatred in that community, but rather simply it is a different M.O. for women to exert or exercize power absent of it being attached to maleness specifically.

despite your need to relabel it coersion, i think there is very much a case to be made for femme power as resistance.


and...
QUOTE
Mar 19 2007, 10:29 AM
QUOTE
I'd also say it falls into being "femme" behaviour. Putting it into butch/femme classes actually makes a lot of sense; while they are echoes of what could be considered stereotypically male/female behaviours, they effectively remove sex from the equation.


i think the problem-- and it was some feminist high-femme dykes that pointed this out--- is that the wider culture AND feminist circles think of that femme power as weakness, or lack of power, but it is far from it. and i think that feminists need to take a look at that, examine it. the other way of thinking, that there is only male power and that it neutralizes all other power, is sexist. i think feminism will/has/should move in that direction.
...and...
QUOTE

i understand what you're saying, mornington, but that is not what i'm getting at, but it illustrates what i am trying to say, if you follow me. but i am coming from this place of specifically gendered power. as i said, gender is different, distinct from sex. remember i am talking about different ways of operating even with people of the same gender: i.e. dykes. among dykes male/female isn't a real dynamic. a woman who is a butch is not male, but very much female, but the kind of power she uses is butch. the flip side of which is femme. so we are NOT talking about male/female but rather BUTCH/FEMME. it may seem a quibble, but the reason this is so important, is that even when we are talking about an all female population, the tendancy is to discount femme power in favor of butch power. and this is what i am getting at: feminism, much like the patriarchy is in the habit of erasing/discounting/erasing femme avenues of power.

does that make sense?

if you say sex neutral, i'd agree with you, but to posit that all forms of power are gender neutral is to erase the femme in the equation by virtue of how we usually frame/view power. femme power isn't considered "powerful" when practiced by men. it's simply not thought of as power. its that same over arching thing that gives women no alternative avenue of resistance/power under patriarchy. there is only one way of exerting power, and to use my terminology it is butch. there is no space for the femme. that is why this line of thought is emerging from the femme dyke community. it is one of specifically femme power where a new, younger population of femme dykes are asserting their power and strength.

 
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