May 16, 2007
Just for the record
[And just to be on the safe side: yes, I actually am an XM subscriber. No, I don’t listen to the Opie & Anthony show, but I do listen to channel 150, the comedy channel with the “explicit” label, on a fairly regular basis, so I don’t think the “you’re just a stupid feminazi with no sense of humor” idea holds water here — not that it ever really does, of course…]
Kate Harding puts it (in the third post linked above) terribly well (emphasis in the original):
But the way [trolls responding to Melissa’s two posts, the first two above] choose to express their hate is worth taking seriously. It is meaningful. Because it tells us a lot about ourselves as a culture. . . .
These are the most devastating things people can think of to say to a woman in this culture. And they all come back to the same basic point: your body is not your own. You do not get to control it, you do not get to decide how to nourish it, you do not get to decide who enters it, you do not get to make statements about it. We will tell you what your body is, what should happen to it, what has happened to it.
And the second you forget that, we’ll be right there to remind you. What to do with a woman blogger who has a strong mind, a loud voice and a devoted readership? Tell her her fat ass deserves to be raped and murdered. What to do with a woman who becomes Secretary of State? Fuck her to death.
Fuck her to death. It was all right there in the first place. Really, all the comments directed at Melissa are a variation on the original theme. When a woman starts showing signs of power, the thing to do is fuck her until she loses it — whether because she’s mortified into submission, because she loves teh cock so much she gets all distracted, or because she ends up dead. The how doesn’t really matter. What matters is, you fuck her so hard she becomes powerless. . . .
This is the exact same shit they pull out time and again, woman blogger after woman blogger. These are the words and themes they choose to wound and humiliate as deeply as they know how. You can have your brains and opinions, but we still own your body, you fat cunt.
The question isn’t whether we should let it hurt us, or even whether they’ll make good on their threats — we know the majority won’t. The question is: Why are they so confident that those particular messages will devastate us?
The answer to that is where you’ll find lessons about the culture we’re living in and what women experience every day. The answer to that is where you’ll learn what we’re fucking complaining about all the time.
There isn’t anything I can add to that — she hit the nail on the head. And then the first comment she got was that lame joke about KFC’s Hilary special.