Monthly Archives: November 2014

The F- Word

I ran across this article while surfing Facebook. And though I knew I would be angered, I read every horrible, untrue word anyway.

http://thoughtcatalog.com/tara-kennedy-kline/2014/11/i-am-a-mother-of-two-children-and-i-cannot-and-will-not-support-feminism/

Luckily, there is hope for the world as some brilliant, unnamed person responded quite eloquently.

http://thoughtcatalog.com/anonymous/2014/11/to-the-mother-who-cant-support-feminism-while-raising-her-sons/

I am well- acquainted with all of the campaigns mentioned in the Anti- Feminist Mom’s article and agree that she exploited them for the purpose of writing a controversial article. More importantly, I think this mom’s article speaks to a higher need of education on ‘the F- Word’. I’m excited for the possibilities of GAG and its role in promoting a more truthful feminism on campus!

W&L Fun at the Expense of the Homeless and Poor

The following messages were forwarded to me by a student who did not find them amusing. I have redacted personal identifiers and inserted remarks in brackets. The messages are otherwise unchanged.

From: [Male W&L Undergraduate]
Sent: Saturday, November 15, 2014 2:10 PM
To: [apparently every W&L female first year student]
Subject: Dirt Poor

Attention members of the upper lower class,

Sick of champagne and limos? So are we. Join us for Dirt Poor and forget your financial troubles by grabbing that brown paper bag and toasting over a joyous oil drum fire. Vagrancy and loitering encouraged at [Address] starting at 8 pm. Food stamps will be checked at the door!

-Dirty Mike and the Boys

Derelicte (SODA Theme) – YouTube
Taken from the popular movie Zoolander. “Derelicte” is the name given to the fashion line designed by Will Ferrell’s character Mugatu. It is described by Mug…
Watch now…

From: [Different Male W&L Undergraduate]
Sent: Tuesday, November 11, 2014 5:57 PM
To: [Presumably every W&L female first year student]
Cc: [Fraternity X]
Subject: [Fraternity X Presents “Filthy Rich”]

Does the phrase tax shelter excite you?
Are you unfamiliar with the concept of “credit limits”?
Has your father been audited by the SEC more than three times?
Do you look forward to the earthy aroma of a fresh WSJ in the morning?
Have you ever scratched your Macbook Pro with your Rolex?
Do Porsche Boxsters disgust you?
Was last summer’s trip to the French Riviera a “business expense”?
Does your family name speak for itself?
Do people often mistake your first name for your last?
Is there a room in your house that you haven’t been in?
Do you have a second home?
A third?

If you answered yes to any of the previous questions then we are cut from the same cashmere cloth.

This Friday, November 14th, the brothers of [Fraternity X] present Filthy Rich.
Let’s look past our fathers’ “busy work schedules” and constant berating to thank them for their kind “donations” that made this party possible.
Come to [LOCATION] to celebrate the true and great values of America. Kindness, sharing, and caring did not create the country we have today.
Dress better than Patrick Bateman [the American Psycho lead character who enjoys sexually torturing and murdering women] . Slacks, ties, skirts, and dresses. Dress for success.

Limousine rides from the quad starting at 8.

-[Fraternity X]

President of a Pennsylvania college says women lie about rape

Robert Jennings, the president of Lincoln University in Pennsylvania college says that women lie about rape when sex doesn’t turn out the way they wanted. A four minute portion of his speech is on YouTube and in this article.

It’s sad and alarming to me that, even after backlash from the YouTube video, Jennings still stands by his comments. He says that the video is taken out of context. While that is true, I’ve watched it, and I find it difficult to imagine a scenario in which I wouldn’t take offense at his comments.

http://www.salon.com/2014/11/10/college_president_women_lie_about_rape_when_sex_doesnt_turn_out_the_way_they_wanted/?utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=socialflow

Appreciating Beauty v. Sexual Objectification

Here are two articles I recently found discussing the objectification of women and the effects it can have on both men and women.  They were both written by Jamie Utt, and I recommend reading them both as he introduces some ideas in the first article that he then goes on to expand in the second.

http://changefromwithin.org/2010/08/04/appreciating-beauty-or-objectifying-women/

http://everydayfeminism.com/2013/04/the-difference-between-appreciation-and-objectification/

While I understand that most people, including myself, will probably not strike up a conversation with every person we find attractive and thus create a relationship with them, I think the important message here is that (1) you do not need to say something to everyone you may find attractive (i.e. street harassment) and (2) you can appreciate someone’s beauty without staring pointedly or ‘gazing’ at specific body parts — as Utt says, we can practice our powers of rational thought and will in order to prevent ourselves from damaging others by compounding the problems of sexual objectification through our gaze.

CHIMAMANDA ADICHIE: “WE SHOULD ALL BE FEMINISTS”

Here is a TED Talk from Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, the intelligent and award-winning writer from Nigeria. Among her novels are The Purple Hibiscus (2003), Half of a Yellow Sun (2006), and Americanah (2013). In “We Should All Be Feminists”, Adichie presents at once a global and a unique African perspective on the questions of gender and feminism. I urge you to listen to it, if you haven’t already done so. It is enlightening and quite funny at times.  Here is the link to it:

 

BAB, A Series: Lucy Wade Shapiro

“BAB, A Series” is our attempt to find the best and brightest of Washington & Lee’s “bad ass bitches.” Faculty, staff, and students work together to select women from our campus to step into the spotlight.

Lucy Wade Headshot 2

We recently sat down with Lucy Wade Shapiro, Student Body President, to discuss her time at Washington and Lee. We felt that she would be a great first interviewee in the “Bad Ass Bitches” series because of her extensive leadership experience – and her incredible dedication to the bettering the W&L community.

We first asked her to describe her take on female leadership at W&L:

Lucy Wade: “I came – just so you know – I came from an all girls high school. I started at this school, St Mary’s, all girls, in fourth grade. So I went from a coed school, to an all girls school, and then back to coed in college. So when I ran freshman year for EC rep, there were 15 of us. I never thought I would win, I just thought I’d put my name out there – actually my sister recommended that I just run to put my name out there, so that people knew who I was, in case I wanted anything in the future. I never thought I would actually win EC – not because I was a woman, but just because there were just so many people running, I didn’t know who I was, no one knew who I was. Whatever.

So. Going through college at W&L, I find that leadership more to me now isn’t “being a leader,” and people looking to you, and people being like, “Oh, that’s the EC president.” It’s more – service. Like now leadership to me is service. And, um, I don’t think a lot of people see that – I don’t know. I don’t think a lot of people really understand that it’s not, “Let me push my agenda, let me push blah-blah-blah” it’s more like, “What do people think W&L needs and let me serve W&L by promoting what those people want – what the student body wants.”

And so – I don’t know if that’s just my definition of it… Or if it’s just because girls – women – are more prone to want to serve rather than to lead. But I think that – ”

Annie Persons: “Well you’re doing both now.”

LW: “Yeah, there’s not a distinction.”

We then asked her to contribute some words of wisdom to future students:

LW: “So one thing that I, um, think that all underclassmen should know is that – W&L is such a great place and there are so many opportunities but you really have to narrow down what you actually want to do. I would highly recommend finding faculty members – or I would think, more specifically, upperclassmen students who are similar to you, who have the same values – and maybe ask them what they chose to pursue at school and get involved by using them – like as your mentor, and having a mentorship kind of thing. And you don’t have to call it that, because that sounds really dramatic, but just like having someone who knows you and looks out for you and helps you get involved in that kind of way.”