Today, The Washington Post ran a column praising 17-year-old Olympic gold medalist Missy Franklin as a tenacious athlete. In fact, you could describe columinist Sally Jenkins’ piece as gushing. So it’s unfortunate in an otherwise awe-filled piece that Jenkins’ made a poor choice of words (emphasis mine):
This was her first Olympic gold medal attempt in a grueling program of seven planned events — and on top of that, she had had to swim a semifinal heat in the 200 freestyle less than 15 minutes earlier. But with about 25 meters to go in the backstroke, a mean girl took possession of her.
Whoa, hold up. Why does winning have anything to do with being a “mean girl”? Keep reading »
A pregnant 16-year-old with leukemia was at the center of a debate over abortion in the Dominican Republic, as doctors feared repercussions of administering chemotherapy that may kill her fetus. Fortunately, hospital officials told CNN the anonymous teen began receiving chemotherapy last Tuesday after conversations between her parents, the hospital, and presumably government officials. There were initial concerns that doctors at Semma Hospital in Santo Domingo would withhold the treatment because she is 10 weeks pregnant and the DR has a strict ban on abortion, claiming life begins at the moment of conception. Keep reading »
Wouldn’t it be funny if the boys that photographed themselves assaulting Savannah Dietrich got raped right now? Also, that priest, Monsignor Lynn, who is going to serve three to six years for failing to investigate sex abuse claims against priests — wouldn’t it be hilarious if he were raped in prison? And Jerry Sandusky? Just picture him in the showers with a bunch of bigger guys! Are you laughing? No? Well, that’s because imagining someone getting raped is about as humorous as imagining someone stepping on a landmine or getting car-jacked. It’s terrifying and no one deserves it.
But using rape in a joke is another story. A couple of years ago, I taught a writing course at The New School called Humor and Controversy. The premise was that humor artists like Margaret Cho, Chris Rock, and Sarah Silverman speak with more insight and honesty about race, sexuality, reproductive rights, gender, religion, and class than most politicians, which is why comedy is important. Students were encouraged to use wit and self-deprecation to shed light on thorny issues. One prompt was to write an essay entitled “My Rape Fantasy.” Keep reading »
I will never for the life of me understand why men whip their dick out in front of strange women. Especially when it is flaccid. What woman in the world has ever said, “Oh my god, you know what I need right now?! Your penis! Your flaccid penis! Thank God you are here!” Comedian Sasheer Zamata did a skit for the web series Storytime about this very occurence. She’s just better able to laugh about it than most of us. [Clutch Magazine]