Oppression Envy seems to be a thing now…

So, some people are trying very hard to make “Straight Pride” a thing. I’m going to take a moment out of my day to explain why it isn’t and why it shouldn’t be.

Look! I have a list!

  • No one is oppressing straight people.
  • No one is telling you to pray the straight away.
  • No one is going to beat you up just because you’re straight.
  • No one is going to refuse you medical treatment because you’re straight.
  • No one is going to deny you an adoption because you’re straight.
  • Your right to marry has never been denied because you’re straight.
  • You are not going to be thrown in prison because you’re straight.
  • There is no country on Earth where you can be put to death for being straight.
  • You will never have to fight the psychological medical field to have being straight removed from the list of mental disorders.
  • You aren’t going to be told you can’t give blood because you’ve had sex in the last year/six months because you’re straight.
  • Your family isn’t going to throw you out of the house when you tell them you’re straight.
  • You are not at risk of losing your job just because you’re straight in twenty nine states in the US.
  • You will not be evicted from a rented apartment or house because you are straight.
  • No one will refuse you service because you are straight.
  • You will not be told by your religion that you are going to burn in hell for being straight.
  • No one is going to ask you if you’ve really, really tried not being straight.
  • You will never have to search for representations of straight people in mass media.
  • Your sexuality does not get treated as a kink in pornography.
  • No one is ever going to tell you that you just haven’t met the right person of the same gender yet.
  • Your straightness will never be debated.

What’s happened is that you’ve looked around and seen not straight people having parades, you’ve seen them fighting for basic human rights. And you’re feeling left out. So you want your very own pride movement.

But pride movements don’t come out of thin air. They come out of systematic oppression of minority groups by the majority. They come from a place where the oppressed have been pushed so far that there is no place else to push them.

Pride movements do not come from a place of joy in being what you are. They do not come from comfort with your place in society.

Pride movements are acts of defiance. They are the collective roar of “No more!” They are the point where the oppressed push back.

Not being oppressed is not a type of oppression. Stop pretending that you are.

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Gamer Gate? Seriously?

To be absolutely honest, I would never have heard of Zoe Quinn if the so-called “GamerGate” hadn’t come up on my twitter and facebook feeds. Because two men I respect and find amusing brought it up or replied to others in their posts. I never would have heard about Anita … I can’t even remember her last name much less how to spell it. That woman making all the really good points and critical observations on Feministfreqency over on YouTube.

But here’s the thing. Spreading the personal information, addresses, locations, financial information, and phone numbers of other people all over the internet … this Doxxing crap? It’s a crime. Making threats of rape and murder? That’s a crime. That’s terrorism.

Here’s what it boils down to: So what if Zoe cheated on her former boyfriend? That’s between her, her ex, and whoever else. If you weren’t having sex with her, it isn’t your business. If you were, that’s none of my business. And if you’re going to start screaming “journalistic integrity” how about screaming it at the journalist instead of the game developer? Oh, and before you start pointing out all the real celebrities who’ve had their personal lives splashed across the media? I don’t care, that’s none of my business either.

So what if you don’t agree with Anita’s observations on her YouTube videos? You’re allowed to disagree, you’re more than welcome to offer a different viewpoint, but calling people crude names and threatening violence, especially sexual violence, is really just proving that she isn’t wrong.

If you can’t figure out a way to express your disagreement in a mature manner, well, it’s only ever going to come off as you being a twelve year old stomping his feet in the middle of the arcade screaming that girls aren’t allowed to play after your high score got wiped out by someone in pigtails and a Hello Kitty tee-shirt.

Y’know what, though? Half of all the people playing video games in the US are female. Some of us have been gaming since we had to beg our parents to give us our allowance in quarters and give us a ride to the nearest arcade so we could spend the entire roll on a beat ’em up or a shoot ’em up game.

We have been here just as long as you have. Playing video games, reading comic books, watching Star Trek, Star Wars and Doctor Who, and collecting dice for table top RPGs and action figures.

We have as much right to enjoy and create and even criticize games and game culture as you do. That goes for the act of being a nerd and/or geek in general, actually.

And we aren’t leaving.

So go make your own sandwich, we’re busy.

Single in a World of Pairs

Can we all take a moment out of our busy schedules to contemplate the plight of the single woman in today’s society?

No, I’m not talking about the single woman who keeps bemoaning the fact that she keeps dating losers, man-children, and the guys who hit it and quit it. I’m also not talking about the single woman who keeps going on about “I need a man who” has a job, isn’t high all the time, won’t beat the crap out of me. Those are entirely different problems.

I’m talking about the single woman who is happy with her life and doesn’t feel that adding a man to the situation will make her happier.

Hi. I’m Jill Horton and I’m single because I want to be.

And I’m sick and tired of hearing “you just haven’t met the right guy yet”. I’ve met lots of perfectly nice men, and I’ve even dated some of them. Hey, for that matter I’ve dated a few nice women, too. I’m just not interested in tangling my life up with someone else.

No, I haven’t had my heart broken. I haven’t been hurt, emotionally or physically by a guy. And my father is a fantastic person and dad, thank you very much.

I’d like people to stop asking me if I’m dating anyone new. I’d like them to stop asking when I’m going to settle down and have a few kids. I’d like people to stop implying that I haven’t grown up just because I haven’t gotten married and/or popped out a baby.

I’d like to know where man who’s been married and divorced multiple times thinks they have the right to question my choice to stay single.

Mostly I’d like people to stop acting like I’m defective because I’m single and in my thirties.

I have interests, hobbies and goals that keep me occupied. I have a job. I’m trying to find a job that will make use of one or both of the degrees that I got while I was busy being single. I volunteer at Sci-Fi/Comic conventions and get to meet some fantastic people that I’d never get the chance to talk to in any other situation. I create things. I craft and I write and I draw. I enjoy going for target practice. I like to get out into nature and take photographs.

I have a life.

And I don’t think I’m missing anything just because I don’t have a man taking up space in that life.

To the women who do feel that something is missing in their lives when they don’t have a romantic partner, I wish you all the best of luck finding a wonderful one.

Just stop treating people like me, who are single because we want to be single, as if we’re somehow defective because we don’t feel like there is a person shaped hole in our lives.

Who knows? I may some day find someone I want to make a space in my life for, and I might want them to make a space for me in their life.

But I’m not going to go man hunting just because we live in a society that says I need one and I should want one.