CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 4, 2012 |
A little before noon last Sunday, I pulled up outside a nightclub in Hollywood. I had come to check out rehearsals for a beauty pageant being staged that night at Circus Disco, a kitschy bar tucked back from the street on an unglamorous stretch of Santa Monica Boulevard. The idea of ranking women on their looks had always seemed objectionable, like a step backward from feminism. But this pageant sounded special. The Queen USA contest is billed as "the premier transgender beauty pageant in the United States.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 6, 1992
Quinn complains that feminism is becoming obsolete because it "trivializes the important issues" and "doesn't represent women or their problems." The quality of women's personal lives is inextricably linked to feminist goals of reproductive choice, gender balance and freedom from sexual harassment and domestic violence. As for Quinn's assertion that feminists frown upon our having babies or would have us "discard our men"--a healthy, happy, supportive family could only be empowering for a woman, and no feminist I know would ever discourage it. DEBORAH SILVER Los Angeles
April 5, 1992
Snortland points out the contradiction of imputing the attributes of one member of a class to another and then she imputes negative attributes to all white males. Isn't that a non sequitur too? She writes, "What a drag it must be to be an African-American and be expected to explain all other African-Americans." Ms. Snortland, it's a drag to be a white male and be blamed for racism, sexism, militarism, pollution, classism, depletion of the ozone and death and destruction the world over.
March 9, 2006
Re "The return of the happy housewife," Current, March 5 Charlotte Allen gloats that the majority of women whose husbands support them financially are happy; she seems to think that fact repudiates feminism. In so doing, she completely forgets that most working mothers work because their families cannot survive without their paychecks. Therefore, by definition, families in which the wife is not required to work are families feeling a little less crushed by the new economy. Lucky them.
September 10, 2009 |
On Monday in Sudan, Lubna Hussein, a 34-year-old journalist, was convicted and jailed for wearing pants (long, loose ones) on the streets of Khartoum. Though she was released the next day and, moreover, avoided the 40 lashes with a plastic whip that is considered a standard sentence under Sudanese law for wearing "indecent clothing," her case made international headlines and attracted protesters outside the courthouse, many of whom were women who wore trousers in solidarity (and some of whom were arrested)
October 13, 1985
Vicki Enscoe and her fellow "anti-feminists" ("Other Voices Crying Out Against the Feminists" by Betty Cuniberti, Oct. 2) might do well to stop a moment and consider what exactly "feminism" is--and what it is not. Feminism is seeking equal rights, equal opportunities and, above all, equal consideration as a human being. Feminism is not "being one-up and on top." Neither is it resenting men or pressuring happy homemakers into becoming hassled career women. Feminism is, above all, a commitment to freedom of choice in the broadest sense: a commitment to giving women the right to choose how to run their own lives--a right men have traditionally enjoyed to a much larger extent than women.
December 2, 2004
Re "An Islamic Feminist Seeks Balance," Nov. 29: Feminism presents itself in various shades, and here is a brand of feminism we rarely encounter in the United States. Islamic feminism is often presented to the general public as if it were an oxymoron, but here we see the beauty and strength in this particular method of female liberation; an attempt to strike a "reasonable balance between progress and tradition." Through women's eyes we can see that Islam does not in and of itself oppress women; male-dominated societies do. Islam provides a way for women to fight for the rights they are entitled to, such as equality and self-determination.
October 14, 2009 |
Feminism made women miserable. This, anyway, seems to be the most popular take-away from "The Paradox of Declining Female Happiness," a recent study by Betsey Stevenson and Justin Wolfers that purports to show that women have become steadily unhappier since 1972. Maureen Dowd and Ariana Huffington greeted the news with somber perplexity, but the more common response has been a triumphant "I told you so!" On Slate's Double X website, a columnist concluded from the study that "the feminist movement of the 1960s and 1970s gave us a steady stream of women's complaints disguised as manifestos ... and a brand of female sexual power so promiscuous that it celebrates everything from prostitution to nipple piercing as a feminist act -- in other words, whine, womyn, and thongs."
October 17, 2009 |
For five years she's lived under the threat of death from Islamic radicals, and in those five years, she has become an acclaimed and provocative author on matters about Islam and the West. Ayaan Hirsi Ali was born into a Somali Muslim family and eventually made her way to the Netherlands as a refugee. There she wrote a screenplay for a short film about women's treatment under Islam. Just over two months after it aired, the filmmaker Theo van Gogh was assassinated. A letter threatening Ali's life has meant she has lived under guard ever since -- most recently thanks to a fund set up by private donors.