Category Archives: Sic

Misplaced male; a seasonal liability

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Misplaced male; a seasonal liability

This reblog from Girls Globe makes many pertinent points. Its original title ‘Take Action against Gender-Based Violence this Season’ along with the language and tone of its content also illustrates perfectly why the ‘inclusive’ language favoured by Western-model Liberalism actually excludes and annuls meaningful debate and any remote possibility of change. So-called ‘Gender-based violence’ describes violence commited mostly by males against, well, everybody and everything. Male Violence, or better yet, male-pattern violence is a more descriptive term, since it acknowleges that said violence is the responsibility of males and mostly perpetrated by same, whilst admitting the possibility and the reality that our system of hierarchy (patriarchy) is so pervasive, that often females can be brainwashed into adopting it, in microcosm at least. Witness that FGM is performed by women in the interests of male culture; that child-abuse by mothers and women in loco parentis is, if not endemic then certainly widespread; that corporations seemingly bend over backwards to promote their courting of female talent and that much of the focus of third-wave feminism rests on a nominal ‘equality’ in place of the previous generation’s vision of ‘liberation’.

If naming their agent(s) of oppression is the first step on the road to liberation, then today’s females, by constrast to their ‘gay’, ‘…of colour’ and ‘transgender’ (would be) compadres in activism seem reluctant. If that’s surprising to some, it shouldn’t be: the fight here is not to aquire the privileges accrued by deception and/or outright force by class male over millennia: rather, it is to disabuse said class of the notion that its privileges are righteous. ‘Gay’ men are men; Men ‘of colour’ are men; and whether ‘Transwomen’ are men is in most respects a moot point, since they anticipate retaining the same male-defined ‘human rights’ upon transition and any loss of same is incomprehensible to one raised with male biology in a male-governed (ruled) society.

If the point of liberation was to free all; then the object of equality is to subject all; from or to the same oppressive, impossible standard. Male nature provides a convenient spirit level: we may not all wish to fight; but we sure as hell all want to fuck (or as near all as makes no odds) which to those who don’t is as good a weapon as can be.

A remarkable thing happened to men during the AIDS years: sex (by which I mean PIV or, on the same pattern, PIA) became, for the first time since the advent of antibiotics, actually dangerous: a matter of life and death for men. We changed our sexual habits (on the whole) not a jot. We could read this as evidence of the inflexibility of male nature; or as proof of our own privilege; or as somewhere in between. Either way, men are the agent of gay oppression as much as they are the agent of female oppression. Transgender is a cunning wheeze to avoid either; one which only works half the time.

Somewhere along the way, the precision of second wave feminist writing  – which, to exemplify Germaine Greer confronted male hatred of the female and correctly identified transgender women as ‘pantomime dames’ – has been lost. There is a rush to accomodate any deviation from the male norm as if it is transgressive when in fact we are anything but. Would ‘Gay’ even be a thing were it not for the centuries-old (and long-in-the-tooth) male idea of heteronormativity: proponents in that bygone age could scarcely be expected to have forseen today’s overpopulation and consequent climate change…

Talking about violence being ‘gender-based’ glosses over these and much else, particularly for today’s reader whose notion of what ‘gender’ is is as wooly as the language itself.

Just remembered I’m only writing a comment, not my own post so I’ll now stop waffling 😉

 

Girls' Globe

Signs read: "Don't Bury Me." Photo Credit: MelinĂ© Bilbulyan Signs read: “Don’t Bury Me.”
Photo Credit: Meliné Bilbulyan

Many of us look forward to the holydays – to lighting candles, traditional food and spending time with friends and family. But the higher economic burden following the mandatory spending on food, gifts and decorations and the pressure of living up to the perfect-holyday-expectations put strains on the household. The risk of domestic violence is higher during the holyday season and for women already experiencing violence at home, the holydays bring with them a promise of increased plague.

Numbers presented by UN women reveal that one out of three women worldwide have experienced physical or sexual violence, mostly by an intimate partner. In some countries the numbers are as high as 70 percent. Violence against women is an urgent global problem.

Whether or not domestic violence occurs in your home or in any other home you know about, gender based violence


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The post-modern penis…

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…or indeed, the post modern-vagina

Seems the dagger and the scabbard have become interchangeable in this age of unreason. Who knew? Call  me old-fashioned but as a language-aficionado I like our words to mean something, and if the one word has multiple meanings at least let them not be contradictory….

For since records began ‘the tail has been male’: but no longer, it seems…

Bollocks, I say.

Linguistic disconnect evidences real-life disconnect: and disconnect is a core value of the male-centric socio-political system that led up to this violent, confused shitheap of a world which so many of its citizens seem so desperate to change; except no one can agree how, or what, or if it’s even possible.  Rape culture; animal torture; climate change; racism; war: connection? What connection?

Lib-fem-po-mo-trans-culture isn’t merely redefining language; it’s redefining the way we interact with out world. Or rather, it’s redefining – as in reducing – the power we feel we have to positively interact with our world. It’s old, conservative wine with a none-more-trendy, liberal label.

The Emperoress is resplendent in his her Kirsty Ward wardrobe. Look! No penis!

 

6 Days, 6 Degrees…

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Musicbugsandgender doesn’t entirely set out my stall, so to speak. My blog was thus christened via a brainstorm perhaps not far removed from that process fledgling bands go through trying to find a moniker that’s snappy, apposite, memorable and as-yet un-trademarked.  The music part was pretty much a given; that being my consuming passion. Bugs and gender were inspired by a cursory glance at my sagging bookcase, prompting the realisation that a number of my most memorable forays into literature to date had consisted of two comprehensive documentaries of the 1918 Flu Pandemic * ^ and a few variously witty and worthy tomes by the likes of Ariel Levy, Susan Brownmiller and Andrea Dworkin. On reflection I think I chose pretty well, but as my opening sentence implies, it’s far from all-encompassing. The sub-heading ‘A leisurely browse thru the rickety shelves of my mental bric-a-brac’ is perhaps more apposite, a worthwhile suffix at any rate: it grants me room to manoeuvre; permission to include heterogenous, deviant missives from time to time.

A couple such I posted towards the end of last year when I on a slippery slope into a mental black hole (later, when I was in the hole I wasn’t posting at all) exemplify this well; and I reiterate them here only by way of contrast (indeed, polar opposite) to my somewhat elevated mental state of the past six days. I’ve been positively buzzing, actually; feeling reckless and vulnerable in a way quite different to the aforementioned slump. As much as it’s been enjoyable, there’s an edge to it which is slightly disconcerting, accompanied by increased clumsiness (not good when one’s workplace is filled with a multitude of hot and pointy things like my kitchen!) forgetfulness and a temptation to indulge. In reality, these feelings may have begun sooner and more stealthily but the meat of today’s missive begins with last Friday…

I worked ’til seven on Friday, having swapped a shift with my junior chef to get my usual – working – Sunday off, thus enjoying what ‘regular’ folk will know as a weekend: an unusual experience for me. This worked out well, since our lovely nursing team – always a solid bet for a proper piss-up – had organised a staff night out on Friday, helpfully covening at, if not my local, then – five minutes up the road – as good as. This gave me the whole of Saturday to recover – necessary, given the eventual 4 am finish – prior to another engagement on the Sunday (more of which in my next post).

Friday night was great. Outside we don’t – en masse – socialise as regularly (and generally not to the degree of – chemical and alcoholic – indulgence) as we once did, but when we do it’s gratifying to see that a spirit of comradeship quickly comes to the fore. It’s always there, of course; but nights like those remind me why, approaching a decade of uninterrupted employment, my enthusiasm and affection for our team and wider organisation remain undiminished. The aphorism, I believe is ‘work hard, play hard’: we do, and I actually enjoy it (the playing) all the more because it only happens once in a while. Besides, the costs are higher and take longer to pay off. Booze is still a nice buzz; but there’s deeper satisfaction to be had and I’m starting to get an inkling of where that might be had…

I’ve been feeling broody of late. If you’ve hung out with me for any length of time – and I count myself lucky to have a select bunch of lovable reprobates who have – this might come as a surprise. Hell, it surprised me! Having given some thoughts to the undercurrents that nudged this particular impulse to the surface just recently, I offer you these: 1) I’m fast approaching forty. This is less significant from the point of view of actual age, mind (though I’ve read recently that as guys get older their chances of fathering healthy kids begins to diminish – deteriorating quality of the genetic material in our sperm, apparently) so much as that that was the age my folks were when they adopted me. 2) Everybody at work (hyperbole alert!) seems to be having them. 3) I’ve recently met someone I can actually envisage having children with. I’m not going to embarrass anyone by naming names – not that said someone or her associates is likely to be reading this – but suffice it to say that she was there on Friday night and I was acting like an infatuated adolescent around her all night: at least, that’s how it felt at the time; my every gesture and utterance intolerably witless and gauche, no matter that she assures me otherwise.

This a far cry from  our post-gig dinner on the Sunday night, when on a far from typical – and perhaps, Burgundy-emboldened – priapic impulse I asked our waitress out on a date after the meal. I’m not entirely sure whether she misunderstood my proposition or politely – invoking her Frenchness – feigned as much. Either way, it was too brilliant a night to be spoiled by such an impersonal rejection. I wasn’t in love with her, after all. Along with the remainder of our party I repaired to the Pavillion Theatre bar around the corner for an informal debrief of the evening’s events and further amusement…

My good mood persists as I speak. I managed to meditate two days in a row – these last two – which is rare for me. I generally only remember to put these nourishing practices into, er, practice when the shit hits the fan: the adage that ‘prevention is better than cure’ buried in a far corner of my pickled brain. Mindful? I’m working on it. In my heightened state I’ve been overly tuned into and really enjoying the amazing autumn light; the – once – unseasonal warmth of the day. I stopped off for a couple of pints at the pub on the way home from work, just to enjoy the warm afternoon and watch the world go by. Whilst I was there I came up with the idea of a nice, simple little blog post before tea, describing what a great time I had last Friday. That was around six – it’s now half twelve…

And here’s one more thing (for those whose patience isn’t yet exhausted). Reviewing my mental ups and downs brought to mind one of my favourite pieces of music, a kind of rock opera – opera’s not quite right, since 6 Degrees of Inner Turbulence isn’t a storytelling album like The War of the Worlds or Tommy, although the music creates its own narrative arc which has a very ‘story-like’ quality – by Long Island, NY band Dream Theater. It’s a flawed masterpiece for sure, specifically in the lyrical department: as much as John Petrucci is a virtuoso of the rock guitar, his words can all too often lapse into cliche, banality and contrivance: but on this occasion, the sheer strength of the music prevails: it rarely fails to move me – especially the About To Crash and Solitary Shell movements. It certainly struck a chord today.

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Metal illness?

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According to University of Melbourne researcher Dr Katrina McFerran, young people who gravitate toward heavy metal music repetitively are more likely to end up depressed.

The powers that be have long had a prurient interest in music favoured by the young: especially heavy rock, rap and (during the late ’80s and early ’90s when raves did much to rekindle the rebellious flames of the early rock’n’roll days) dance. It’s frequently considerd to be a ‘bad influence’ in a nebulous way that studies of this kind do precious little to elucidate, once you get behind the headlines.

I don’t blame researchers per-se, though I’velong suspected that studies that rely on the experiences of such a small sample (50 in this case) to extrapolate general patterns of behaviour are flawed from the off. Large scale, anonymous, open-ended questionnaire-based surveys preferred by sociologist Shere Hite for her famed series of Hite Reports provide a more nuanced response. Having not read the original report I’m prepared to hold fire on the good doctor, but the way the study has been reported in the press is perfectly reprehensible: ‘Heavy Metal has negative impacts on youth’; ‘Heavy Metal fans more exposed to mental illness’ and variations thereof proliferate.

Psychcentral was closer to the mark with its headline:

Depressed Teens Listen to Heavy Metal Music in Unhealthy Way

This turns most of the headlines on their head, more truthfully stating that many already depressed (or at least unhappy) younger listeners are choosing to use music to ‘escape from reality’ as McFerran puts it. Well hasn’t that always been a part of the allure of rock’n’roll? Teenage years are a tumultuous time: exam stress; school bullying; navigating the minefield of emerging sexuality and relationships, starting employment (or not) are all issues that kids may well feel a need to escape from and music is only one means of doing so. The use and abuse of drugs – alcohol and ‘skunk’ weed particularly – ‘reality’ TV, easily-accessible, immersive, violent online gaming and pornography ought also to be considered.

To attempt to distil the souce of behavioural and psychological problems down to one’s choice of music is barely credible. The study is doubtless more nuanced than headlines suggest but today’s consumer of knowledge and advice has little time for the finer points: it’s all about the headlines. This kind of simplistic thinking has reared its ugly head before: remember the implication of Child’s Play 3 around the James Bulger killing? All the above and other environmental factors bear consideration and not in isolation but as part of a complex, interconnected system. Doctors today can on occasion be overbearing; too quick to apply a medical diagnosis and provide concomitant treatment. Sometimes it just is ‘a phase they’re going thru’.

And music can play a positive role in this too. Intelligent rock and pop music can provide a source of inspiration and a sense of belonging to kids fumbling their way thru their formative years.

Porcupine Tree – ‘Fear Of A Blank Planet’

Doves – ‘Black And White Town’

Sure, we should be caring what our kids are feeling (though any half-way responsible parent will be doing so anyway) but knee-jerk reactions to what is most of the time nothing but a harmless diversion really aren’t the way to go. They’re certainly not good science.