Atchison wants the discussion of exploitation and abuse to be about those other johns over there. But too bad! Because prostitution exists upon and because of a foundation of inequality that makes women into things that exist for male pleasure. Some individual johns are more physically violent than others, sure. But we don’t know which ones those are until they become violent, as Trisha Baptie noted in her testimony, nor is physical violence the whole conversation. The fact that prostitutes experience higher rates of PTSD than war veterans do speaks to that.

Happy belated bday to us! 

Oh esteemed readers, apparently we have been so busy over here at Feminist Current that we managed to miss our own bday. But now we are two!

Since our launch on July 1, 2012, Feminist Current has become the most-read feminist blog in Canada, our stats went from averaging 20,000 a month to over 100,000 a month, and we’ve developed an incredible, amazing community of readers and commenters.

I can’t tell you how grateful I am for all of your participation, time, energy, input, feedback, support, and donations. It means so much to me that you would spend your time and energy here and I’ve learned and continue to learn so much from you all.

I’ve said it many times before and it is absolutely no exaggeration to say that Feminist Current commenters are the smartest commenters on the whole internet. I mean, read the comments. Then read the internet. The folks who comment here are truly amazing. I don’t know what I would do without you.

Through the ups and downs many of you have stuck it out here and held me to account as well as offered support. Thank you.

In celebration of our birthday I’m sending you all of my love, respect, strength, and solidarity. We would be nothing without one another.

Until we win.



There is no single argument that could in any way legitimize the idea that men who buy sex from vulnerable and desperate women are an oppressed minority akin to gay people. Also, buying sex is not a sexual identity. Men buy sex because they want to have sex with someone who they don’t have to consider, know, or relate to as a human being. They want their needs met beyond all else and, often, they want someone to use and abuse in a way they can’t get away with in their homes and intimate relationships. That desire has little to do with “sex” if we are talking about “sex” as a thing that is desired and enjoyed by all parties involved — you know, not-rape sex.

Since I’ve been alive and until recently, efforts to disguise and destroy all evidence that women *gasp* grow body hair, just like men, seemed only to increase to points of insanity. Suddenly the only acceptable pubic hair was a creepy-looking Hitler moustache, the merely symbolic “landing strip” – absurd in its purposelessness — or literally none at all, because apparently the prepubescent look is hot (read: men are disgusting).

I’ve announced publicly and privately a number of times that shaving or waxing one’s vagina is gross, unsanitary, and a huge waste of time, money and energy. The upkeep is a daily chore and the results of said chore can result in an itchy, painful, red, ugly, infected mess.

Sometimes when I make such statements I’m told I’m shaming women who shave or that it really isn’t so bad. And honestly, do whatever you want with your body hair. I spend time and money on other ridiculous and unnecessary beauty rituals too, so I’m not here to judge you. But I have to admit that, despite the fact that I don’t think that what women do or don’t do with their body hair should be dictated by fashion or the male gaze, the return of hair feels a little bit thrilling.

We say to the left: in this past decade you have failed to live up to your rhetoric of revolution. You have not reached the people. And we won’t hitch ourselves to your poor donkey. There are millions of women out there desperate enough to rise. Women’s liberation is dynamite. And we have more important things to do than to try to get you to come around. You will come around when you have to, because you need us more than we need you… Fuck off, left. You can examine your navel by yourself from now on. We’re starting our own movement.

- Shulamith Firestone

If you can’t imagine a world without prostitution, then you can’t imagine a world without colonialism, poverty, misogyny, and racism. And what the fuck kind of socialist utopia is that?

The larger question I’m posing isn’t “did Conor Oberst do it?” — because in the end, sorry not sorry, Conor Oberst himself isn’t particularly important. I’m asking the classic feminist question: “do most people truly think women are human?” Evaluating the evidence right now, I’m not getting an encouraging answer.

- Joy Wagner

Most men don’t seem to “get” pregnancy or reproduction. They want kids — whatever they think that means — but for so many men, the idea of “having a family” is just that — an idea, not a reality.
The photos are still out there, but I have never seen them. I would have come out with the story when the incident happened, but – as pathetic as this sounds – didn’t think anyone would give a shit about a non-model getting a dick, albeit a famous fashion photographer’s dick, shoved in her face without any proof whatsoever. I seriously regret just pushing it aside, as I have done time and time again when it comes to incidents involving myself and sexual assaults, a history that goes back to when I was a young teenager. But hearing that New York magazine is going to publish a story absolving the sleazebag of a load of sick, sordid stuff he most definitely, obviously did to multiple women is enough to finally incite me. The guy shouldn’t just be locked out from the fashion photography world, he should be in jail. Add another girl to the list!

James Franco is a petty, pompous, incoherent, self-absorbed tool 

Oh so I read James Franco’s essay about Lindsay Lohan for you.

Here is what I have gathered:

1) James Franco is bitter that Lohan said she slept with him and wants to punish her because he is a childish, petty little jerk.

2) James Franco thinks that he can fool us into thinking he isn’t a terrible writer by being as incoherent as possible. But he can’t fool us! We are not fooled.

Please do not bother reading his essay. I do not want you to waste any minutes of your life on it. Not a one.

Mostly what you need to know is that Franco’s entire objective is to insult and publicly humiliate Lohan while kind of sort of but not really pretending that he feels sorry for her:

“I ran my fingers through her hair and thought about this girl sleeping on my chest, our fictional Hollywood girl, Lindsay. What will she do? I hope she gets better. You see, she is famous. She was famous because she was a talented child actress, and now she’s famous because she gets into trouble. She is damaged. For a while, after her high hellion days, she couldn’t get work because she couldn’t get insured. They thought she would run off the sets to party. Her career suffered, and she started getting arrested (stealing, DUIs, car accidents, other things). But the arrests, even as they added up, were never going to be an emotional bottom for her, because she got just as much attention for them as she used to get for her film performances. She would get money offers for her jailhouse memoirs, crazy offers. So how would she ever stop the craziness when the response to her work and the response to her life had converged into one? Two kinds of performance, in film and in life, had melted into one.”

Oh you hope she gets better, huh. Oh she’s so damaged, huh. You know everything about her, huh. You understand her. And it’s just soooo sad, huh Franco. You’re so fucking sensitive.

Of course his concern is feigned. What’s incredible is how transparent he managed to be about that.

Painting Lohan as a sad, desperate, damaged victim in a rambling essay you kind of sort of but not really pretend isn’t only intended to embarrass and punish her isn’t what you do to help people you are worried about. It’s what you do when you have an ego the size of house made out of tissue paper.

“I dreamed about vampires, and a voice came to me. It was a demon. The demon said, ‘I live on the power of celebrity, and I am celebrity. I am the power bestowed on people like you by all the myriad reflectors of your celebrity: the tabloids, the blogs, the fan pages, the way we sit in fans’ minds, the way people read us through your roles in films, etc. This is our public persona, partly created by you and your actions, and partly by these reflectors that act in concert and become me.’ It was a voice of permission, a voice of castigation, a voice of supreme supreme.”

Yeah you know what else that demon does, James? It tells you that you should write things for magazines.

“Every night Lindsay looked for me. My Russian friend, Drew, was always around like a wraith. He, like the blond painting, was my doppelgänger, writing scripts about rape and murder. A Hollywood Dostoyevsky, he had gambled his money away. We played a ton of ping-pong. My room was on the second level, the exterior walls hugged by vines. Every night Lindsay looked for me, and I hid. Out the window was Hollywood.”

She looked for him every night. She was obsessed with him. He wouldn’t sleep with her because she’s oh-so-sad. She looked for him and he hid. She’s desperate, he’s not. He’s just a nice guy trying to hide from this crazy cray.

Anyway, there’s no real reason I think any of you should care particularly about this news apart from being able to add it to a growing list of nasty, sexist, douchey behaviour from a pompous tool.

Go away, Franco. You’re gross.

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