Sunday, March 31, 2013

Marina & The Diamonds

The first time I saw a picture of  Marina online, with her bows and heart-shaped mark under her eye and curly hair, I passed her by with the idle of thought of great, another teen pop star that's going to fade in three months. A welsh singer-song writer about the age of 27 by now, Marina is a solo artist, with the Diamonds part being a reference to her last name, Diamondis, and that it stands for her fans, not her track band. I didn't think of her, didn't really care for her at first. I didn't really start to appreciate her until I heard her song Sex Yeah, a song that I ended up playing so loudly on repeat in my room in the summer of 2011 that I ended up jacking up one of my speakers. The lyrics:
"Nothing is provocative anymore / Even for kids / No room for imagining /'Cause everyone's seen everything / Question what the TV tells you / Question what a pop star sells you /Question mom and question dad /Question good and question bad."

"If history could set you free (from who you were supposed to be) /If sex in our society (didn't tell a girl who she would be) /'Cause all my life I've tried to fight what history has given me
If women were religiously/Recognized sexually/We wouldn't have to feel the need to show our ass, / Just to feel free /Been there, done that /Got the t-shirt/Sold my soul/And yeah the truth hurts /Tired image of a star /Acting naughtier than we really are"
Well I actually enjoyed the music for this song, the lyrics really blew me away. It's so rare for "successful" female pop stars to write about female sexuality without somehow relating it to men or superiority/inferiority to other women. Marina identified as a feminist in 2010 in interview for the magazine Company, and I think that you can see this is in a lot of her lyrics. In an interview with the Charlotte Observer in 2012, Marina commented on her feminism:

“Sometimes, I think it’s circumstantial in terms of how you’ve been brought up and faced oppression, or felt different than your male counterparts,” she says of her willingness to own the term. “My dad was a Greek man. He treated me differently than a boy. That angered me. And I was stubborn and headstrong, and you apply that to what happens in your life.
“I enjoy when I see female artists speaking about feminism and acknowledging it’s this something to talk about.”

Steubenville and the Media

"Cry all you fuckin’ want, your tears don’t mean shit to me. Your tears mean dick to me, just so you know."--Jersey Shore, in a moment of truth.

As I've mentioned in a brief post earlier, it is time for an update on Steubenville. The trial began in February, and the verdict was reached half way in March. The 17 and 16 year old, Trent Mays and Ma'Lik Richmond, were found guilty. Both will be sentenced to at least a year and two years

The two boys gave statements to the court following the verdict. “I would truly like to apologize to (the victim), her family, my family and the community,” said Mays,who addressed the victim by name. “No pictures (of the victim) should have been sent around, let alone be taken.”---From the NY Daily News, report from Christian Red and Teri Thompson

What a horrifying statement. It's an apology for leaving evidence of the crime, instead of the crime itself. For getting caught, instead of taking away the rights and voices of human being, humiliating her and shaming her.

The reaction from the media has also been horrifying. For example, CNN's coverage, which sympathized with the rapists, and didn't mention a word of the victim. You can watch it here. Candy Crowley and and Poppy Harlow lather them in praise---what a shame it is for these good students to lose their promising futures, what an emotional event it was.

Tweets are accusing the reporters of turning the clock back on feminism with their misplaced compassion and blame-the-alcohol banter. Some are labeling the women as rape apologists. "What about the promising life of the rape victim?" asks one Twitter user, while another posts, "Wonder if Poppy Harlow found it hard to watch those boys laughing after the rape, too?" [link]

Some people are so outraged with the poor reporting that there has even been a petition created on demanding on on-air apology for sympathizing with the rapists.

ThinkProgress and HuffPost  have both written articles noting the trend of the victim-blaming from not just CNN, but ABC and NBC. A lot of the blaming comes from the fact that she was drunk, that if she hadn't chose to go drinking and be under the influence it would have never happened. This may be true--but the argument completely misses the whole entire fucking point of the magnitude of such a heinous crime.

When we glorify rapists and shame the victim, we take a step back. The lesson learned is not that rape is bad----but that in some possible cases, that it is deserved. That rape is not bad because you are doing something unspeakably horrible and evil to another human being, but that it could hurt your life. And that---that's pretty fucking scary.

I'm alive

Ok, so the internet is down right now because we're painting the house, which apparently means that we have to disconnect the router. SO, I'm going to have to write these blog posts with out any internet links or research, which is really annoying, because on my gmail I had this list of topics I wanted to discuss on, but I don't have any access to information to help make a somewhat decent post. Bear with me as I ramble and put you guys up to date on my life.

Today is Easter, and as you can tell, I'm a lazy ass and started all my posts five hours til midnight. How I spent my day was crawling out of bed, candy, going on Tumblr, cleaning, sleeping, cleaning, eating, roughhousing with Maddie, then finally reaching toward the idea that I might need to settle down and actually do my homework.

I've been terribly unmotivated as of late with my homework. It's the weather---staying on the computer all day and working on textbooks and doing online quizzes makes me want to crawl out of my skin when the sun is out shining and the thermometer is peaking 50.

Thank God for Spring. This winter felt like it was never going to end. I worked my ass off all through last term. I pretty much gave myself a break in March, because I was afraid I was going to go crazy and snap if I added on any more pressure on myself.

Which I have plenty of, now that we're getting closer to the AP tests. I'm taking the AP Lang and US History tests, both of which I badly need to start preparing for. I have two stories for Torch for next issue. I'm taking the SAT and ACT in June because I don't have any money or time for it in the spring. I have a job which I'm afraid I might lose because I'm a shitty salesperson. The old anxiety is starting to creep up on me again, and I hate it. I'm trying my best to squash it down.

The other day Dr. W came into my class and started talking to us about making sure we're ready to graduate for next year. I felt like I was going to throw up when she was done. I'm pretty much doing everything my own way---not the recommended courses like four years of math and science. Journalism and Paralegal/Pre-law for me, but I hate feeling like it's not enough. I don't even feel like I know what I'm doing anymore.

Things are going to get better. This is just my last dip in my springtime depression that I always seem to go through every year. I'll be ok.