Tag Archives: the soapbox

The Soapbox: Tyler Perry Has A Rape Problem In “Temptation”

Rick Ross Rape Rap
rick ross
Rick Ross rapped about drugging a woman and raping her. Read More »
Not Diverse Enough?
Think Like A Man
"Think Like A Man" allegedly banned in France because it's not diverse. Read More »
Is This Film Racist?
Only Decent People
This Dutch film about black women's asses looks pretty racist. Read More »
tyler perry temptation

Usually movies like Tyler Perry’s “Temptation: Confessions of a Marriage Counselor” are right up my alley. You don’t see a Tyler Perry film because you’re under any illusions it will be good. At their best, Perry movies excel at hitting the sweet spot of terrible, the kind of bad movie you can’t wait to pick apart with your friends afterward. Why else did I go see “Twilight: Breaking Dawn — Part 2″ in theaters? I was under no illusions I was seeing a good film. I wanted a glorious waste, and boy, did I get my money’s worth. Michael Sheen’s evil laugh was worth the price of admission alone.

Like Tommy Wiseau’s “The Room,” Perry’s films aren’t so much made as they are loosely cobbled together, and it’s fun to point out the seams in his craftsmanship. The sound design is terrible, the acting is all over the place and the film takes place in about seven different genres simultaneously. “Temptation” can’t decide if it wants to be a melodrama, high camp, a morality play, a broad comedy, a Lifetime movie or a potboiler, so it makes the proceedings into a $5.99 buffet — a little bit of this, a lot of that, doused with camp and unintentional humor. Douglas Sirk would have loved Tyler Perry.

However, despite my best efforts to find the film funny, there’s something immensely troubling about the morality slopped in with Perry’s genre stew. The film is about a Christian woman’s destructive sexual awakening and an affair that leads her away from her marriage. “Temptation” initially feels like a rebuttal to readers of Kate Chopin (or, heaven forbid, E.L. James) showing how passion can destroy the stability we take for granted. The main character is the therapist for a “Millionaire Matchmaker”-type who has her wandering eye on a billionaire client. He looks like a male model, is named Harley and drives a red sportscar. He espouses the belief that humans should have sex like animals. [Spoilers after the jump!] Keep reading »

The Soapbox: It’s Impossible To “Not See Color,” No Matter What Kim Kardashian Says

Kimye Procreates!
These two are having a baby. Not cool. Read More »
Schooled on Racism
How I learned to question my beliefs. Read More »
My Interracial Marriage
What it's like being in an interracial marriage. Read More »

As most people already know, the ubiquitous Kim Kardashian and Kanye West are expecting a baby. I’m happy for them. Unlike most people, I don’t mind Kim Kardashian. She makes an obscene amount of money for being herself (or the version of herself she wants us to see). I’m someone who’d be happy to make an obscene amount of money the same way.

Despite being here for the media blitz surrounding the Kimye bebe, a recent statement the mom-to-be made gave me to pause. And, no, I’m not talking about that weird fake tweet.

In an interview with BET, Kim Kardashian said, “I have a lot of friends that are all different nationalities, and their children are bi-racial. So they have kind of talked to me a little bit about it, what to expect and what not to expect. I think that the most important thing is how I would want to raise my children, is just to not see color. That’s important to me.” Keep reading »

The Soapbox: In Defense Of Wearing Thongs Under Your Lululemon Yoga Pants (If You Feel Like It)

Yoga Pants-Gate
Dudes, women wear yoga pants because they're comfy, not to turn you on. Read More »
Annoying Yogis
These seven kinds of yogis are sure to destroy your peace. Read More »
My Hot Yoga Teacher
Ami pens a love letter to her hot yoga teacher. Read More »

I never thought I’d have to defend my choice to wear yoga pants. Or to wear expensive yoga pants. Or to wear thong underwear beneath my expensive yoga pants. But the day has arrived. I will and I shall.

With all this hullabaloo about Lululemon recalling a bunch of their yoga pants because they were too sheer, everyone suddenly seems to have an opinion about how women should or shouldn’t cover their asses while doing Downward Dog.

Charlotte Cowles, a regular yogi, weighed in on the Lululemon recall in New York Magazine, attributing the problem to thongs rather than pants:

“The problem with sheer yoga pants isn’t so much that your butt cheeks are visible, but that your thong is. Still, I don’t see why this is a terrible concern, since lots of ladies’ thongs stick out during yoga anyway.”

Keep reading »

The Soapbox: Should White Women Be On The Cover Of ‘Black Magazines’?

Racism In Modeling
Chanel Iman has been told "We already found one black girl." Read More »
Black "Bachelorette"
Misee Harris
Dr. Misee Harris wants to be the first-ever black "Bachelorette." Read More »
Know About Black Women
10 things every non-black person should know about black women. Read More »
essence

The always-inquisitive Jada Pinkett-Smith recently posed a question that has many people scratching their heads and some folks outright upset. In short, she’s wondering if black women ask to be represented in mainstream media, on the covers of magazines like Vanity Fair, shouldn’t white women be represented on the covers of traditionally black magazines like Essence, Ebony and JET?

The answer? Yes and no. Keep reading »

The Soapbox: I Am Not Your Wife, Sister Or Daughter — I Am A Person

Teach Boys Not To Rape
On Steubenville High School and teaching boys not to rape. Read More »
I Was Date Raped
Amelia was date raped in college by a guy she liked. Read More »
CNN on Steubenville
They're mourning the lives of the rapists. Read More »

I don’t have to tell you that Steubenville is all over the news.

I don’t have to tell you that the fact that Trent Mays and Ma’lik Richmond, the two teenagers convicted of raping a sixteen year old girl, were only sentenced to a combined three years in juvenile prison, is a fucking joke. Each will serve a year for the rape itself; Mays will serve an additional year for “illegal use of a minor in nudity-oriented material.”

I probably don’t even have to tell you that the media treatment of this trial has been a perfect, if utterly sickening, example of rape culture, with its focus on how difficult and painful this event has been for the rapists who raped a 16-year-old girl then bragged about it on social media.

And I almost certainly don’t have to tell you that the world is full of seemingly nice, normal people who want to go to bat for the convicted rapists. I’m quite sure that you already know about the victim-blaming that’s been happening since this case first came to light. You know about the fact that people have actually come out and said that the real lesson to be learned here is that we need to be more careful with social media (i.e. go ahead and rape but make sure you don’t get caught). You already know that people seem to think that being a sports star and having a good academic record should somehow make up for the fact that you are a rapist.

I don’t have to tell you any of that because it’s all par for the course.

What I do want to tell you is that you need to stop using the “wives, sisters, daughters” argument when you are talking to people defending the Steubenville rapists. Or any rapists. Or anyone who commits any kind of crime, violent or otherwise, against a woman. Keep reading »

The Soapbox: The Case Against Sex Offender Registries

Verdict: Guilty!
trent mays malik richmond
Trent Mays and Ma'lik Richmond have been found guilty of rape. Read More »
Sex Offender Talks
A convicted sex offender tells his side of the story in "Vanity Fair." Read More »
"Hot" Sex Offenders
Texas paper runs article on the 10 hottest sex offenders. Read More »
sex offender

There’s no defense for rape. And there’s no defense for defending rape — be that minimizing the crime, blaming the victim or focusing so exclusively on the perpetrators that the victim is rendered invisible, as in CNN’s coverage of the Steubenville guilty verdict. As I read over the case, the verdict, the media response and the backlash to it, I feel sick and I feel sad. Like the rest of you, I want these boys to be made to understand exactly what they did. I want everything that was taken from the victim to be restored to her, somehow. There is no defense for the crime of rape.

There is, however, a good argument against sex offender registries. Keep reading »

The Soapbox: In Defense Of Personal Essays

Soapbox: Black Bachelorette
Misee Harris
Why has there never been a black "Bachelorette." Read More »
My Nose Job
One writer talks about getting a nose job. Read More »
Mirror, Mirror: Skinny Girl
Kate used to be known as the skinny girl. Read More »

When I started writing personal essays on the internet, I was half embarrassed, half proud. Even though I grew up in a generation that’s supposedly all about oversharing and Facebooking and nonstop blabby social connectedness, I’d still learned that privacy is a virtue, modesty is preferable, and you shouldn’t air your dirty laundry. But I also wanted to talk about things that felt relevant but had been kept quiet. And I wanted to share those things with other women, because I had a sneaking suspicion that I might be facing some of the same challenges that girls and women all over the world deal with, even if those challenges at times felt intensely, well, personal. Even if they felt too small and mundane for the news. I came into personal essay writing open-minded, scared, and determined.

And then I read the comments. Keep reading »

The Soapbox: On Getting A Black “Bachelorette”

Race Discrimination
"The Bachelor" sued for racial discrimination. Read More »
Silly Diversity Ideas
What "The Bachelor" really needs is an A-cup or a freegan. Read More »
Guy Talk: Race
Why this guy dates outside his race. Read More »
Misee Harris

Pediatric dentist Dr. Misee Harris of Kentucky is petitioning to become the first ever Black “Bachelorette.” This prospect means a lot is surfacing for me regarding the harmful stereotypes reinforced by women of color on reality television. How would she be received? If she did get an opportunity to be on the show and chose a non-black man, what would the social implications of that be? But more than that, I feel disheartened because I know that this reality reflects how America feels about who deserves to be happy and who doesn’t. Keep reading »

The Soapbox: Lisa Lampanelli’s Racist Schtick Abuses The Art Of Comedy

Race In Hollywood
The search for an actress to play Nina Simone is skin deep. Read More »
Tokenism?
Erica says lay off "Girls" for being all-white and give black girls a show. Read More »
Lena's Ignorant Tweet
lena dunham veil photo
Lena Dunham tweeted a joke about looking "fundamentalist." Read More »
Is This Film Racist?
Only Decent People
This Dutch film about black women's asses looks pretty racist. Read More »

Insult comedian Lisa Lampanelli has made headlines again – for all the wrong reasons. Last week during the Writers Guild Awards, she shamelessly tweeted a picture of she and HBO “Girls” producer and star, Lena Dunham captioned “Me with my Ni**a @LenaDunham of @HBOGirls – I love this beyotch!!”

The interwebs erupted with rage as yet another privileged white comedian made a “joke” at the expense of the Black experience. The ubiquitous nature of racism means while we see and hear it everywhere, we’re rarely given the opportunity to understand the motivation behind it. Lampanelli’s entire shtick is to exploit the sensitive nature of race and homosexuality and to make money from abusing the art of comedy, not taking responsibility for the social implications of her “work.” Keep reading »

The Soapbox: Women Wear Yoga Pants Because They Are Comfortable, Not Because They Apparently Give You A Boner

Men On Makeup
When men say they like "no makeup," they really mean the no makeup LOOK. Read More »
He Hated My Style
But it was really about trying to hurt my ego. Read More »
Amelia Does Yoga
Watch Amelia tackle anti-gravity yoga. Watch »

Poor Nathan Graziano. He has an obsession and is surrounded by temptation all the time. He can’t stop thinking about women in yoga pants, especially now that us ladies are wearing them in places outside of yoga class. “Yoga pants have brought out my worst chauvinistic characteristics — the characteristics I’d like deny exist inside me,” he writes on The Good Men Project. “But when it comes to yoga pants, I can’t.”

Huh. I’ve never thought about it before, but I guess I get it. Yoga pants are tight. They hug hips, thighs, and butts. If they’re too small, they may even give you serious camel toe. (I will happily size up to avoid showing off my labia.) But, as the female friends Graziano talked to explained, yoga pants are also ridiculously comfortable. It’s why we have started to wear them outside of yoga class or the gym. I wear yoga pants basically all weekend, to run errands, to walk my dog, around the house, and sometimes to go to brunch. Yoga pants! They’re the best! Apparently some guys find them drool worthy — I’ve yet to be hollered at while wearing mine, but maybe that’s because I have no makeup on, my hair is unwashed and I’m in a rush to get home to eat my footlong Subway sandwich. The best thing about yoga pants is they stretch while I eat all the food!

But Graziano isn’t buying this whole “yoga pants are so comfy” excuse. They’re so tight, how could they be?! Therefore, us ladies must be wearing them because we want to turn guys like him on. Keep reading »

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