What do Feminists Want?

I don’t understand feminism.  Are they asking for equality or chivalry?  You can’t have both.  You can not ask the world to ignore all of the differences between men and women and then be asked to be treated with kid gloves because you are a woman.  There are two examples of women being asked to be treated with kid gloves in the modern feminist world.

Bella Thorne recently went on a tearful rant against Whoopi Goldberg because Whoopi suggested that she not take nude pictures of herself and store them in a cloud.  Bella took nude pictures of herself to send to her boyfriend.  Once she discovered that her information had been hacked and the nudes were stolen she decided to release the photo herself.  The incident was discussed on “The View” and Whoopi told her to protect herself by not taking nudes.

bella thorne and whoopi goldberg

Bella then takes to Instagram to tell Whoopi that she should be ashamed of herself for telling Bella that there are consequences for actions and she can’t naively do whatever she wants and expect everyone in the world to be honorable.  Watch.

Bella’s IG post had a feminist under tone to it.  She felt that Whoopi should be ashamed because of how young women will be affected by her comments.  Feminism tells women to be bold and adventurous enough to take nude photos to transmit and store electronically but if your security is breached you should make yourself out to be a victim.  I would imagine that if you’re bold enough to take nudes in 2019 you’re probably no shrinking violet.

There is always the possibility of the file being stolen from Bella or the boyfriend.  And if Bella breaks up with the boyfriend he could share the picture with God knows who.  I kind of figured that people that sent nudes in 2019 didn’t really care where the photos ended up.  There are dozens and dozens of cautionary tales out there about the consequences of nudes ending up in the wrong hands.  Whoopi was just giving Bella some pretty sound advice.  Make the man wait until you are together again and when you’re apart he’ll have sweet memories.

I want to start by saying I can’t stand Lavar Ball.  I don’t know why we even know who he is because all he is is a stage parent and it doesn’t even seem to me that his boys are setting the NBA on fire.  But for some reason the sports media eats him up.  I don’t get it.  Lavar was being interviewed on ESPN by a sports journalist by the name of Molly Qerim.  She said that she wanted to switch gears in the conversation and Lavar said he would switch gears with her any day.  Ms. Qerim thought that the comment had sexual undertones.  Watch.

Good grief what a prude.  I don’t know how someone equates this with sexual harassment.  If you’re not familiar with Lavar Ball he’s not shy, he likes the spotlight and he speaks his mind.  He probably does have a flirtatious personality but I don’t think that a cutesy flirtatious remark necessarily equals harassment or an unbearable work environment.  Is Molly saying that she was afraid for her safety because of that remark?  If so she should stay home and be a housewife.

Lavar has been banned from ESPN.  I honestly don’t care because he shouldn’t have been on there so much anyway.  But I don’t think he should have been banned for this.  He should have been banned because he isn’t employed by the NBA and is one of these new kind of celebrities that is famous for absolutely no reason.

I had never heard of Molly Qerim before this but she has undoubtedly been influenced by the Me Too movement.  Why else would she be so sensitive to that remark?  She was in no danger because she and Lavar were not even in the same room.

Let’s be honest sports fans.  Most of those women of the sports shows are ornaments and there is no way that they don’t know that.  The women fit a very narrow beauty standard and most of them don’t say much.  They are there to look pretty and facilitate conversations between men.  They are similar to Price is Right models.

Their presence is sexist and demeaning to women because we all know that there are women that know a lot about sports but they may be bigger than a size 4.  My mom could do a good job as an anchor on ESPN because she is pretty darn knowledgeable when it comes to sports and she analyzes games pretty well.  But she is seventy three with two artificial hips and a bad back.  She’s not eye candy for the mostly male audience which is the true job of women on sports channels.

I want to give an honorable mention to Josina Anderson who is smart as a whip and knows what she is talking about.  And the red head that comes on the NBA show isn’t bad either and she’s quite likeable.  I think her name is Samantha.  And we can’t forget the OG Hannah Storm.

So these women that work on these sports channels benefit from sexism and they don’t mind playing into it for a paycheck but the minute a man that is known to be a smart alek makes a cheeky remark they make a complaint with HR and act as if they have been damaged.  It makes no sense to me.  Toughen up girls.  And if Molly thought Lavar’s remark was disrespectful she should have spoke up for herself in the moment.  That seems like the action of an empowered person as opposed to asking someone else to stand up for you because you are such a delicate and meek flower.

Anyway, I just wish feminism would make up it’s mind about it’s identity.  Do you want protection and chivalry or are you as tough as any man?  You can’t claim both identities and claim to be a coherent adult.  Feminists are delusional.

Amendment:

I forgot about the Cuba Gooding Jr. incident.  The Cuba Gooding Jr. groping incident is easy to forget about because it was a bunch of nonsense.  There is a boring and confusing video which confirms that the allegations of groping were a bunch of nonsense.  Watch.

 

After I watched this video for the first time my initial reaction was “What the heck did I just watch?”, because I didn’t see anything happen other than a bunch of people socializing and flirting at a bar.  Cuba put his hand on her knee during the video but I don’t know the nature of their relationship so I don’t know that that was an inappropriate touch.  The woman claimed that her breasts were groped but I didn’t see that happen.  Perhaps he brushed her chest with his hand but I didn’t see that either.

I could understand how a woman from the Jane Austen era could be very offended and upset if she was transplanted into a happy hour in an urban setting and a man brushed against her breasts even accidentally.  Those women had expectations of men and upheld feminine standards.  Women could have that kind of society if that’s what they wanted because women set the standards and make the rules.  But women have decided that they want to be thought of as independent women that are completely in charge of their bodies and sexuality and can speak up for themselves.

But evidently they can’t.  None of the situations in this post are about rape.  The Cuba Gooding incident isn’t even about sexual assault because he has been arrested, released with no charges filed.  Bella Thorne wasn’t as angry with the person that stole her images as she was Whoopi Goldberg who gave her opinion on a matter that Bella made public.  All of these women claimed to be victims after they were simply criticized, made uncomfortable or perhaps a man brushed against her.  And now they want people arrested and kicked off TV and such because they felt dishonored.

Oh but wait, I thought that women didn’t want their femininity honored.  Obviously they do but there is give and take.  A lot of modern women just want to take.  That’s what feminists want.  I’ve answered my own question.

The Handmaids Tale: Season Two

<<SPOILERS AHEAD>>

I finished watching season two of “The Handmaid’s Tale” last weekend.  For the most part I enjoyed it but it was a bit slow moving in parts.  In other parts it felt like the writers were writing and adding things to the story line in order to fill up time that was already allotted per episode.  And a lot went on in season two.

I read the book and watched seasons one and two so the trials of the handmaids is turning into a blur to me now.  It took me a while to get through season two and I had to check it out from the library twice.  Binge watching shows is a lot of work but I’ve also been very preoccupied with the NBA Playoffs and Finals.  But this is what I recall happening in “The Handmaids Tale:  Season Two”, not necessarily in this order.    SPOILERS AHEAD!

June is captured, imprisoned and brainwashed after being a fugitive while pregnant.  Emily is sent to The Colonies.  Janine is sent to The Colonies.  Moira works as a surrogant mother while in exile in Canada.  A handmaid that had her tongue cut out goes on a suicide bombing mission.  She’s successful.  Nick gets married in a state sanctioned arranged wedding.  Due to the suicide mission there is a shortage of handmaids so Janine and Emily are taken from The Colonies back to the lives of handmaids.  Janine is happy to be back.

colonies

(The writers did a great job transitioning Janine from the novel to the screen.  There wasn’t much to her in the book but she’s a likeable character on the show and she’s tough as nails with a good heart and manages to find the bright side despite her bleak circumstances.  The actress does a wonderful job of playing a long suffering woman who has lost her mind but continues to function in her daily life.)

Janine

Nick’s marriage is a disaster.  His wife Edend finds a new man and the two of them defect from Gilead in the name of love.  They get executed.  June/Offred goes into false labor.  Nick drives Offred/June to an empty house where she is reunited with her daughter and the daughter’s new mother.  The visit was arranged by Commander Waterford without Serena’s knowledge.  June had several flashbacks of her first pregnancy and the birth of Hannah.  Nick gets attacked by guardians and June/Offred is left in the house alone where she gives birth to a girl.

false labor             hannah

Commander Waterford and Serena Joy look for June in the empty house where she saw Hannah.  The couple argues while June listens.  Meanwhile June finds a gun in the house and puts the pair in her cross hairs.  She doesn’t pull the trigger.  The Waterfords leave in frustration because they didn’t find June.  The didn’t really look.  All they did was scream out her name as they stood in the center of an empty mansion.  Nick returns to the house to get June.  His attack was a misunderstanding.  June could have driven off in a car that looked like a Hot Wheels and headed north to freedom but she couldn’t open the garage door.

June finds Eden’s Bible in the house.  Gilead is obsessed with religion but owning a Bible is contraband and reading it is illegal.  Serena leads the wives in a petition to their husbands to make Bible available to citizens.  She is punished by her husband and has two fingers amputated.

Serena is a founding mother of Gilead but begins to lose faith in the nation only after being mutilated by guardians under her husband’s orders.  Oh, and she had the opportunity to escape earlier on in the season but decided to remain loyal to her husband and country.  She met an American politician while on a diplomatic trip to Canada that was willing to help her leave Gilead behind.  While she was in Canada she was stared at and treated with coldness and disdain by Canadians.

June makes another run for it with her baby in her arms with the aid of Martha’s.  They have an Underground Railroad system that guided June through a series of backyards in the neighborhood where she was met by a car that waited for her by the side of a conveniently empty, untraveled city street.  She took way too long to get in the car.  Emily was in the car too.  The escape was planned by Emily’s new commander who is a tough one to figure out.  He’s a compelling character that creates some interest in Season Three.

BIG TIME SPOILER ALERT:

Oh yeah, Emily killed Aunt Lydia!  It was fast and brutal.  That took me all the way out.  I was a bit sad.  Aunt Lydia is a villain but I felt a bit bad for her when she died and I kind of miss her.

June handed her baby off to Emily who misses her son who is in Canada with his other mother and shuts the door.  She’s going back to liberate the handmaids a la Harriet Tubman.  And that’s how the season ends.  (I enjoy dystopian novels.  I’ve noticed everything that happens in all of them has already happened to Black people in America.)

While all of this is going on I’m thinking of more reasons why Gilead would never work and why the plot of this story isn’t feasible.  First of all there are way too many men standing around.  There are a bunch of men standing around all day and they don’t do anything other than watch women.  There is no way that relationships like that of Eden and Isaac wouldn’t be common.  Eden and Isaac seemed to have sweet young love so perhaps that would be rare.  But there would at least be a lot of hanky panky and drama going on.  And the men would literally kill each other or stage their own revolution.  That’s usually what happens when men a bunch of men are bored.

The amount of idle people are problematic in this story in other ways.  What is the GNP of Gilead?  All of their human resources are tied up in enslaving women and there is no money in having babies.  A bunch of men are standing around with guns outside.  A few men drive people around.  A bunch of women are imprisoned in homes and are only let out to go to the store.  Who’s making the money?  What fuels their economy?  Is there a stock market?  I’m not sure the currency of Gilead was ever mentioned.  I think the only currency is the food stamps the marthas and handmaids use at the store.

The United States military is the most well funded in the history of mankind.  This story wants us to believe that a bunch of uptight religious fanatics that dress like Pilgrims overthrew the US government and defeated the American military within three years tops.   And if the Gilead army is so powerful why would these men tolerate a government that regulated sex in such a way? It wouldn’t happen.   I say three years tops because the young actress that plays Hannah looks the same in “The Before” and the scene where she is reunited with her birthmother and children grow and change fast.

What was stopping all those women in The Colonies from rebelling against the overseers and making a run for it?  They had absolutely nothing to lose and the authority figures were far outnumbered.

The most interesting character in season two is young Eden.  Eden is a patriotic daughter of Gilead and she is young enough to not remember “From Before”.  She believes in the values of Gilead and wants to honor God as a dutiful wife and mother.

The problem here is that her state issued husband is in love with the handmaiden that is pregnant with his baby.  Actually that’s not the problem.  Even if there was no June/Offred or baby the marriage would still be a mess because Nick isn’t attracted to Eden in the least.  It’s as if someone sent a kid to come live in his house without talking to him about it first.

eden

Eden followed her heart to the very end.  She never turned away from God or Isaac.  She could have lied and spared her life.  She could have tried to conceive a child with Nick which would have spared her just as pregnancy spared June.  But she remained true to herself to her watery death.

Eden’s death was an honor killing of sorts.  Her father snitched on her.  Side note, Isaac is a jerk.  He had a soft spot for Eden but her life may have had a similar ending regardless.  Isaac was brutal.

eden and isaac

Season Two was OK.  I enjoyed Season One much more because it was more focused.  Season Two was doing too much.  I’m guessing Season Three will be about June liberating the handmaidens and bringing about the downfall of Gilead.  Then the series will end.  It kind of needs to end.

ending

 

NW

Over the weekend I watched a film called “NW”.  It is based on a book by the same name by Zadie Smith.  NW stands for north west, no it’s not about Kanye West’s daughter.  I hope that doesn’t disappoint you.  NW refers to the British postal code of north west London where the principle characters of the film grew up together in a housing project.  The film circles around two girlhood friends Natalie and Leah who are now in their thirties with families and careers.

I thought this was a great story and a very well made, meticulously cast movie.  It kind of reminds me of the 2005 movie “Crash”.  “Crash” took place in Los Angeles and had a large cast of ethnically diverse characters with different lots in life.  The people in the story seemed to have nothing in common other than living in the megapolis of LA but their lives are all intertwined through a series of events.

“NW” operates in a similar fashion.  The characters range in social status and experiences.  People that you wouldn’t expect to cross paths do.  There are two other characters in the film that grew up in northwest London.  And just like in real life it’s interesting to see how people with similar starting points take different paths and end up in very different places in life years later.

“NW” is a story and commentary on race, class, femininity, masculinity, identity and how it all intersects.  The mainstreamed, straight laced people make questionable moral decisions and have unrighteous motivations.  You will loathe some of the respectable characters for their deceit and arrogance while some of the edgy ones display honesty, decency and even honor and chivalry.

I don’t believe that Hollywood would or could have made this film.  I don’t think they would have made the right casting decisions.  The casting choices were very important to the telling of the story.  I can tell that the actors were chosen deliberately and the film makers did a great job of choosing personnel.

It took a lot of sensitivity and cultural awareness to be able to choose actors and to understand the cultural nuances involved in being Black, mixed an immigrant and White.  Kudos to them.  I have a hard time picturing Hollywood placing Nikki Amuka-Bird in the role of a trophy wife.  But traditional Hollywood would have seen Zoe Kravitz or Zendaya more suitable for the part of a wealthy man’s wife not a woman so…Black.  She nailed it though.

nikki amuka-bird

 

O.T. Fagbenle gave a great performance in “NW”.  I was reading about the cast after watching it and the article mentioned one of the actors is in “The Handmaid’s Tale”.  I was confused because I’ve been watching “Handmaid’s Tale” and I wasn’t making the connection.  Fagbenle plays June’s husband Luke in “Handmaid’s Tale” and Felix in “NW”.  He is one heck of an actor because his appearance was not drastically different from one part to the other but he was completely unrecognizable to me.  He even appeared about ten years younger in “NW” even though the movie aired on BBC in 2016.

OT fagbenle

There is a lot that can be said about this film but I actually don’t want to spoil it for anyone that hasn’t seen it and may want to watch.  It’s a mature and thought provoking movie with no real heroes and no easy answers.  I would recommend it if you are looking for something to watch.

Here is a link to the film if you can tolerate sparkly stars framing your movies.  Enjoy.  I just got a copy from my local library.

 

 

 

It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

It’s the most – wonderful time of the yeeeeeaaaarrr……  Just kidding it’s not that great but it is pretty exciting.  Ladies and gentleman it’s time for the 2019 NBA Playoffs, starring my hometown team and favorite sports franchise ever the Detroit Pistons!

I’m pretty excited that the Pistons made it to the Playoffs this year.  I’ve been checking their standings for  the last month or so hopeful that they would get to the post season.  I rarely watch NBA anymore because I don’t have time most evenings and the NBA only broadcasts about eight teams repeatedly.  My Pistons are not one of those teams.  So I’m thrilled to get to take in some basketball that I actually care about.

In the first round of the Eastern Conference Playoffs my Pistons are playing the #1 Milwaukee Bucks.  Under different circumstances I would be cheering for the Bucks.  I don’t recall them having a lot of success over the years and I like to support small market Midwestern teams.  If I was a betting woman I would always bet on the long shot and the sleeper teams.  But the Bucks are playing my Pistons so I of course want them to lose so my boys can make it to the next round.

detroit pistons

The Golden State Warriors are playing the LA Clippers in the first round in the Western Conference.  I would love to see the Warriors lose.  They are a great team, Steph Curry is a good, Christan family man.  I really do like them but I’m sick of them.  I don’t like dynasty teams of any kind.  And national NBA broadcasts are pretty much the Steph Curry Show.

Playoff Bracket

I hope the Rockets win their first round so they can defeat the Warriors in the second round.  Realistically the Warriors will probably get to the second round.  If they get to the Finals again this could turn into another snooze fest just like the Superbowl LIII.  We get sick of watching the same teams every year.  I mean I would watch because Golden State vs. anyone in the East could be a compelling match up.

There are some exciting teams in the East.  Toronto and Philadelphia have been fighting to become dominant.  Indiana has been pretty solid and respectable the last few years.  And it will be interesting to see what Orlando and the Nets can accomplish in the Playoffs.  I hadn’t thought of the Orlando Magic in years.

My adopted team is the Oklahoma City Thunder.  I can see some of their games locally on cable.  Love the one you’re with right!  I also think that Russell Westbrook is fantastic.  He is a heck of a player and he seems to be a great family man.  Some say that he has an attitude but I think that he’s assertive and has leadership skills.  He also doesn’t tolerate people disrespecting him or treating him in a condescending way.  You see, the way American society is set up that will get a Black man labeled as having an attitude.  I would love to see the Thunder do well.

In order for the Thunder to do well they will have to get past the Trailblazers.  I’m a 90s NBA fan so the Trailblazers bring back fond fantastic NBA action.  The Blazers were always in the 90s pro basketball mix.  The current star of the team is Damian Lillard who seems like a quality human being.  But I’m still hoping OKC takes them out.

Anyway, best luck to all the teams in the 2019 Playoffs especially the Detroit Pistons that kind of need it.  There’s nothing in the world like a good basketball game.  I’m look forward to getting enthralled in the matches and sad once it’s all over.

 

 

Nene Leakes Deserves Better

I am a long time fan of the show “Real Housewives of Atlanta”.  I’ve watched it from the beginning and since the beginning Nene Leakes has been on the program.  She is the matriarch and the anchor of the franchise whether you like Nene or not.  But I don’t think that Nene is getting the platform she deserves for her loyalty and dedication to the franchise.

Nene Leakes

About a year ago a RHOA marathon came on TV and it showed the early seasons.  I was reminded about why I fell in love with the show.  Those women are hilarious.  I love the dry humor, sarcasm, deadpan expression and reserved cattiness of the so called housewives with a touch and sometimes a lot of African American spunk (It’s not attitude it’s spunk).  And Nene Leakes has become famous for being the spunkiest of them all.

I will admit that watching RHOA is like watching science fiction.  It’s far fetched but you accept the story within the world that is being presented to you.  We the audience have made a decision to accept the real housewives and just play along.  Reality TV is as believable as WWE wrestling but we tune in for the entertainment value and now that so much time has past we feel invested in the characters and their lives.

I believe that Nene Leakes is a nice person.  I really do.  I think she appreciates the Housewives franchise and the opportunities it has created for her.  I think Nene is down to Earth and has never forgotten her roots or tried to be something she’s not.  Yes, I can tell she’s had a nose job and wears blonde hair but I’m sticking with my previous statement.

Here is the problem with Nene Leakes and RHOA as it stands.  Cast members have come and gone from RHOA and producers are casting younger women.  One of the new stars is thirty four year old Eva with the Taratula from America’s Next Top Model and the wife of Ronnie Devoe of New Edition and BBD fame who is quite young.

RHOA has taken a nasty turn and no longer relies on dry whit and humor for entertainment.  Without Sheree and Phaedra that went out of the window.  Now they rely on drama and bitchiness.  Porsha resorted to violence one season during the reunion show.  Nene is placed at the center of a lot of the cattiness but at fifty one she’s too old for all that.  She should know better and be above it all.  Being a part of that type ratchetness is really undignified but for a woman Nene’s age it’s tragic.

Why on Earth is a woman at Nene’s stage of life arguing with thirty year olds over gossip?  Why is she arguing with fans on IG?  It shouldn’t happen.  I caught a glimpse of Lindsey Lohan’s reality show and she came across as a mature, mother hen that was concerned about the people that she described  as children that work at her resort or whatever it is.

The “children” are people in their twenties and Lindsey is only thirty two.  But we all know that Lindsey has been through some wild stuff which would give her a mature perspective on life.  Lindsey didn’t involve herself in the reckless, youthful activities.  She, like Nene Leakes has been there and done that.  There is no more energy for childishness, at least there shouldn’t be.

lindsey

Since I believe reality shows are staged and loosely written I think the producers of RHOA need to develop a new persona for Nene.  Her rebirth should be modeled after the very likeable Angela Raiola b.k.a. Big Ange from “Mob Wives”.  Rest in peace Angie.  During the reunion special of “Mob Wives” the host asked Big Ange why she wasn’t involved with the drama between the other women on the show.  Big Ange said she didn’t relate to them as peers because she was a lot older than them.  She was their parents age.  Ange sat quietly for most of that reunion special as an observer.  That’s called being a good and grown woman and that’s  what I want Nene to start doing.

bigangresizedjpg

Andy Cohen is making a fool out of Nene at this point.  He is using her larger than life personality to hold RHOA together because producers are experimenting with newer cast members but Nene is coming out on the losing end.  I want Nene to show some leadership skills and extend her maternal instincts to her young cast mates.

I want the other cast mates to look up to her and see her as a mother figure instead of squabbling with her about nonsense.  She’ll still be the star because we all know her and she is the cornerstone of  the show.  Judge Judy says that the goal should be to do less work and make more money as one gets older.  Nene is working too damn hard!