Sunday Bloody NYT Sunday: Special Don’t You Dare Say "Not All Men" Edition

Sunday Bloody NYT Sunday: Special Don't You Dare Say "Not All Men" Edition

As it damn well should, the Times leads with the horrific shooting in California Friday night, but nothing about the Times’s dispassionate reporting style can capture the godawful misogyny that is at the core of Eliot Rodger’s murderous rampage in Santa Barbara. To its credit (?), the Times does link to Rodger’s full manifesto, which is a document that oozes hate for women, that causes the hair on the back of your neck and your arms to prickle with sick recognition: this might be mental illness, but it is an illness that is not unfamiliar to women who routinely and disproportionately are the victims of harassment, neglect, violence, and death at the hands of men. Rodger’s actions were an extreme manifestation of a cultural view that is not actually uncommon: that women “owe” men attention, that women who don’t put out are bitches, that women who do put out — for other guys, of course — are sluts, and all these women get what they “deserve” — violence from men.

Sorry, there’s actually nothing funny in that intro, but fuck if we’ve got something funny to say about this.

There’s a repulsive sort of fortuity to the fact that the Times also has a piece this week about traveling alone while female, an act that is often fraught, and rightly so, with the fear of violence, even when it doesn’t lead to actual violence.

The piece is comprehensive and far-flung, tackling whether violence against women in countries like Turkey, Mexico, and India is more prevalent (SPOILER ALERT: maybe, maybe not!) and the pervasive view, abroad or at home, that bitches be asking for it.

Hakan Haykiri, 51, who owns a store that sells tourist knickknacks in the [Turkish] neighborhood in which [American tourist Sarai] Sierra was found dead, agreed that the case had not affected his trade, dismissing the violence as too common globally to matter.

“The same things happen everywhere in the world and it does not affect tourism,” Mr. Haykiri said. But he went on to say: “If the woman does not flirt, a man would not attempt to do anything, any harassment. Everything starts with a woman.”

This kind of victim-blaming was not terribly uncommon among men I spoke to in Turkey. Erkan Turkan, 30, a manager at Istanbul’s Volare Tour, interrupted a question about whether Ms. Sierra’s murder had affected business by saying, “She was asking for trouble.”

Fuck you.

Oh and hey ladies, if you’re not worried about violence, sexualized and otherwise, being exacted upon your person for the crime of being ladies, why not instead fret about how ugly and old your lady-hands are, even as you celebrate your engagement?

Dr. Matthew Schulman, a Manhattan plastic surgeon, said he sees about eight patients a month specifically for hand treatments. “Everyone wants to see pictures of engagement rings, whether it’s looking at their wish pic or sending photos to their friends to announce an engagement,” he said. “They are becoming more aware of what their hands look like, much more than getting a manicure.”

Age spots, veins or a bony appearance (or, horrors, all three) have become an obsession for some women. And as with all obsessions, there is a price to be exacted. In Ms. Valencis’ quest for that perfect selfie of her diamond-adorned hand, she contracted for a series of six intense pulsed light (I.P.L.) and chemical-peel treatments and two syringes of an injected gel substance called Juvéderm Voluma XC for a total of $3,000.

God forbid your friends just bask in your happiness, or even in the glow of your new engagement rock. Naw, your friends better bask in the glow of your PERFECT FUCKING HANDS.

Everything is terrible.

God, after all that we’re relieved to read some cool New Pope news about how Pope Francis totally gonna fix the Israel-Palestine crisis, yo.

Pope Francis waded into the stalled Israeli-Palestinian peace process upon arriving here on Sunday, issuing an extraordinary invitation to President Mahmoud Abbas of the Palestinian Authority and President Shimon Peres of Israel to join him in his home in the Vatican for “a heartfelt prayer to God for the gift of peace.”

The pope also gave the Palestinians an uncommon boost by openly endorsing “the State of Palestine.”

Oh. He also kissed Abbas and called him a peacemaker. Can’t nobody rein in Pope Francis.

Remember when we had to pretend that callow fuckface George W. Bush was a man of letters and thoughtfulness? Guess what?! It’s time to do that with baby brother Jeb!

But in ways big and small, deliberate or subconscious, the younger Mr. Bush seems to have defined himself as the anti-George W. Bush: an intellectual in search of new ideas, a serial consulter of outsiders who relishes animated debate and a probing manager who eagerly burrows into the bureaucratic details.

Allies said that reputation — as what the Republican strategist Karl Rove called the “deepest thinker on our side” — could prove vital in selling Mr. Bush as a presidential candidate to an electorate still scarred by George W. Bush’s legacy of costly wars abroad and economic meltdown at home.

Haha yes the best way for us to recover from the skin-flaying level of wounds inflicted upon American and the world by W. is to elect his little brother. Genius plan.

Keeping it fresh, social etiquette guy gets to tackle something that is much more akin to Advice for the Lovelorn today than his usual beat.

My boyfriend and I have been together for about two years. Last week, I overheard him on the telephone telling a good friend that he would like to break up with me. (Literally: “Bro, I want to dump her.”) He thought I was out of the apartment, so I haven’t said anything about it. It felt like eavesdropping to me. But he’s not acting as if he wants to break up. In fact, he’s been incredibly sweet lately. I’m afraid I’m being delusional. Should I say something to him? And if so, what?

Our advice to this, of course, would involve yelling and confrontation and perhaps several creative iterations of the phrase “what the fuck, dude?” including, but not limited to, “what the ever living fuck, dude?” and “what the fuck, dude, fuck you.” Social etiquette guy is way more graceful and tentative, suggesting waiting for a good relaxed moment to tackle the question and also noting that sometimes bros need to blow off steam to other bros. He does at least point out that the writer should ask him or herself if they want to remain in this relationship, because social etiquette guy is nothing if not even-handed.

What are the rich people up to this week? Oh, buying apartments with master bedrooms bigger — and of course more ornate — than your entire house, you sad sack of poor.

[T]he floor plan shows just two bedrooms, including an enormous master suite that takes up roughly half of the 31st floor with an expansive sitting room, a large master bath and two capacious dressing rooms, one of which has its own half bath.

Truly, who could bear a bedroom without a sitting room? It’s just boorish to even contemplate.

Before we tackle our regular columnists, there’s an op-ed in this week’s Times by novelist Karl Taro Greenfield that has everyone all-aflutter because it is one of those thinkpieces that flails around at the question of whether our current media appetites are making us dumber or more shallow or why choose, and its very existence is going to spawn SO MANY MORE thinkpieces.

It’s never been so easy to pretend to know so much without actually knowing anything. We pick topical, relevant bits from Facebook, Twitter or emailed news alerts, and then regurgitate them. Instead of watching “Mad Men” or the Super Bowl or the Oscars or a presidential debate, you can simply scroll through someone else’s live-tweeting of it, or read the recaps the next day. Our cultural canon is becoming determined by whatever gets the most clicks.

Is that true? Perhaps! Or not! But fuck if we are going to write a thinkpiece about it, and neither should you, Gentle Reader.

Today, Thomas Friedman performs the neatly Friedmanian trick of making you fucking hate him and his topic, even though he is writing about something you entirely agree with, which is that we must tackle climate change as a comprehensive global issue, and as one that will affect our descendants and their real ability to thrive in the world. But of course Friedman descends into being Friedman, and then it is just terrible and all Flat World-ish.

The abiding strategy of our parents’ generation was “containment” of communism in order to be free. The abiding strategy of our generation has to be “resilience.” We will only be free to live the lives we want if we make our cities, country and planet more resilient.

Urm, Tommy? Not all of us are your age, and presumably there are many readers of the Times who have parents who struggled only against the horrors of mid-1970s soft rock. Also, for fuck’s sake just show some restraint. You could have written an entire column about how we need to act on climate change RIGHT FUCKING NOW without delving into your nonsense-speak and we would be far more likely to heed its call.

Perhaps we’re feeling a bit stretched thin, taut, over the whole Elliot Rodger thing, but Maureen Dowd’s column this week strikes the creepiest false note imaginable. Dowd set out to write a little remembrance of Arthur Gelb, the former Times editor who died earlier this week, but it turns into an icky little vignette that is more shudder-inducing than charming.

My favorite story, which I made Arthur retell on a BBC radio show a couple years ago, was his “drunken prank” on Marilyn Monroe.

One night in the early 1950s when he was about 30 and was working on night rewrite, he and his fellow rewrite guys took their 10 o’clock dinner break at Sardi’s. Monroe came in with a group and was seated at the next table. Her dress had a low-cut back, and Arthur said he and his pals were “mesmerized by her back” and her “absolutely flawless skin, very white, very pure.”

“One of us said, ‘You know, wouldn’t it be wonderful to be able to just touch that back?’ And before we knew it, we were talking about who would have the guts, the nerve, the bravery to touch her. We all put up a couple of dollars and said the first person who leans over and touches her will collect the money. And I, with bravado — I was kind of a wise-guy young man — leaned over quickly and just touched her with my forefinger.

“I thought I’d touch her and maybe she wouldn’t even feel the touch. But she swung around and said in the loudest voice imaginable: ‘Who did that?’ And we just went into our clothes to hide. It was just the most horrible moment you could possibly imagine. And her friends said, ‘Come on, Marilyn,’ and they calmed her down and turned her around. I collected the 10 bucks and we got out of there.”

That is not actually a charming anecdote! That is a fucked-up view of the world where you figured that a living breathing person was just a porcelain goddess and you bet over who should go up and touch her like you were betting on seeing who would touch Boo Radley’s front door and you DIDN’T THINK SHE’D NOTICE BEING TOUCHED.

Fuck you.

We never thought we’d be relieved to get to a Ross Douthat column, but there you have it. Ross is nattering on about the Tea Party and how their legacy is yet unwritten and what the fuck is he even on about?

[T]his is why the Tea Party’s legacy is unfinished — there are several politicians, all elected as insurgents and all potential presidential candidates in 2016, who still aspire to be the Tea Party’s version of Obama: Marco Rubio, Rand Paul and Ted Cruz. And because each embodies different facets of the Tea Party phenomenon, each would write a very different conclusion to its story.

Ross then goes on to explain all the cool different things a Rubio, Paul or Cruz victory would bring to the table, forgetting that all of these people are simply cruel little men who want to kick the poor and reward the rich and also too make sure they control what ladies put in and take out of their bodies. Not a one of these people are revolutionaries but they are all indeed reactionaries. We can see how little Ross would get confused.

Small blessings: Thank god the Pope thing happened too late Thomas Friedman to write about it this week and thank god the Elliot Rodger thing happened too late for Ross Douthat to scrawl about it, because we’d have to endure Friedman’s bloviating about how the Square People made the Pope see the light and Ross Douthat pretending to be even-handed about misogyny while really just talking about how college ladies are slutty slut sluts and if colleges would just crack down, ladies wouldn’t get themselves murdered. Something to look forward to next week!

[NYT]

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    This post was deleted.

    • mrsmayhem

      NOT THE TIME, DUDE.

      • zerosumgame0005

        it was part of the article, didn’t you read it?

        • glennisw

          Yes, but unlike you, I understood it.

          • zerosumgame0005

            at least Richard Martinez knows who the REAL bad guys (besides the pathetic lump of hormones who did the shooting) is, who put the gun in his and so many others hands and who encouraged people to use them to solve all of their problems. You and other men posting bland “support” posts meant to exempt YOU from any of the blame being heaped on all other men is not smart, or brave, or honest. for once go after the REAL enemy, the NRA

          • sonaliraq

            The real enemy is our violent misogynistic culture of aggrieved entitlement, the NRA is enemy #2.

          • Haribo Lector

            The NRA are just a product of enemy #1, and will dry up and peel off once the actual infection is treated.

        • mrsmayhem

          I did, but I am a Lady, and as such the knowledge I got from having read it fell directly out of my vagina. Thanks for explaining it though. Really cleared things up.

    • DL

      Being upset at a man for something that one should be upset at said man about is VIOLENT MISANDRY!! WON’T SOMEONE THINK OF THE MEN??

      • glasspusher

        exactly. Being upset != violent

      • zerosumgame0005

        funny how a man yelling at a woman is considered violence, but not the other way around…

        • $73376667

          funny how a man yelling at a woman is considered violence

          Where and by whom? Or, in the manner of the Fount of All Knowledge, [citation needed].

        • JMP

          Uh, no, a man hitting a woman is considered violence, as is the other way around. No one considers yelling violence.

        • DL

          Oh no..poor men. So OPPRESSED AND MISANDRIED INTO OBLIVION. Go back to reddit and cry there. Now is not the time for some MRA-esque loser to be spouting nonsense on an article that doesn’t even have anything to do with it. Your boy who murdered a bunch of innocent people already got his puerile manifesto published…isn’t that enough for you folk to shut up for at least a FEW days? Go fedora shopping or something and leave the adults to converse in peace.

    • Jason M

      BIll Maher on why there’s a double standard between men and women: “Because they’re two different fucking things.”Don’t be a putz.

      • zerosumgame0005

        please, one GUY says something you are shallow enough to consider a “deep thought” and you think it’s the last word.

    • Haribo Lector

      Your fedora is obviously on too tight; it’s cut off the circulation to your brain.

      • zerosumgame0005

        stop Sieging you Heil so often and clean your keyboard one of these days.

  • zerosumgame0005

    And just to point out it’s not all men;http://americablog.com/2014/01/woman-stabs-husband-squirrel-buying-beer.htmlyes, some bitches are crazy too…

  • Vienna Woods

    Pet peeve: people who leave out the “of” following “couple”.

    • glasspusher

      That stops bothering me after I have a couple drinks.

      • mfp

        iswydt

  • glasspusher

    How is this HNTP, or do you need a separate section for this?

    • doktorzoom

      It’s Media, and therefore a story for this here blog. Don’t take the title too literally, mang.

      • glasspusher

        OK. People who misuse literally make me figuratively insane, anyway.

  • $73376667

    Instead of watching “Mad Men” or the Super Bowl or the Oscars or a presidential debate

    Each of these four clearly being the pinnacle of American intellectualism…

    • marindenver

      Well, especially if it’s a Republican presidential debate. . .

  • Wendy Belgard Hanawalt

    I love you with an abiding passion. You give voice to the screaming in my head. I can sleep now.

  • A William Michael

    Ross Douchebag calling Obama a left-wing liberal president was one of the funniest things I have read all week. Really, is this what passes for serious thinking on the right?

    • Elaine Kurpiel

      Yes.

  • docterry6973

    Next week will bring even more happy nice times I am sure.

    • nothingisamiss

      No fucking kidding. I didn’t even consider that Ross Douthat will OF COURSE write about these shootings, and, most enragingly, #YesAllWomen. I may need to start banging my head against the wall right now.

  • glasspusher

    Who is it who draws Archie comics? He has a thing for people gaping, in profile.

  • VirginiaLady

    Ladies, we need to find a way to get this to work for us. Like we can’t be convicted of anything because we obviously don’t know anything and aren’t capable of anything. We don’t know we’re beautiful!

  • Greg Comlish

    The Santa Barbara slayings were honestly confusing. Roger’s dad is a Hollywood brand. Roger drove a BMW for fuck’s sake. I’m sure he had money in the bank. Physically he’s attractive enough. I’m as puzzled as Roger as to why nobody wanted to fuck him. I mean, aside from stewing resentment, misogyny, and a tendency towards mass murder. i’m just saying to Roger that “if somebody were going to go on a rampage against spoiled CA dbags you would have been near the top. I’m not sure if your inability to score qualifies you as a victim.” These things are always kind of a chicken-and-the-egg sort of deal. Which came first: his alienation from other or his hatred towards them. Originally it was probably the alienation, but the two were probably working in concert for several years at least. The guy could have gotten laid. All he had to do was drop his bullshit attitude. Or not: just take Daddy’s money and buy a hooker and work out your entitlement issues later, preferably with the help of LSD. It took me literally less than 20 seconds to Google “Santa Barbara Escort” and find a list of candidates. Just think Elliot, if you had just saved the money you wasted on guns and ammo then you could have been spending all day today fucking this gorgeous blonde sideways:http://santabarbara.backpage.com/FemaleEscorts/new-hottt-fresh-and-sexy-blonde-playmate-23/3987329She looks gorgeous! Just like one of those hot ass bitches that reject you constantly. Doesn’t fucking her sound like a constructive solution to your crushing sexual desperation? Doesn’t that sound more fun that permanently joining the Pantheon of Murderous Rejects and then dying before you even get a chance to grab a tit? If you’re nice to Ms. Hottt & Fresh, she might even help you get over your bullshit. If you got over your bullshit, you’d probably even live long enough for somebody to fuck you without paying her. And best of all, nobody would have to die. Not the hot girls you hate, not the hot guys they are fucking, nobody. Everybody lives. It’s such a tragedy. Such a goddamn shame.

  • marindenver

    Good for Marilyn that she made no doubt about what the boundaries were! And I agree, that is NOT a charming little anecdote. MoDo is outdoing Pegs Noonan in the creepy factor.

  • Come here a minute

    Nobody ever said it was a sin to touch a mockingbird.

  • Poly_Ester

    Jeb needs to ditch the Karl Roveish glasses and get himself some Rick Perry Smart Spex if he want to win,

  • Adam Pack

    ‘The Tea Party’s version of Obama’…What even the fuck would that look like? Really, I’m finding it hard to visualise.

  • Swampgas_Man

    My local fishwrap didn’t find the whole “massacre” thing important enough to put on the front page. Depressing, y’know.

  • Haribo Lector

    In Maureen’s defence; Gelb’s anecdote of how he assaulted Marilyn Monroe is actually a pretty appropriate thing to repeat in his obituary, as it tells us the kind of man he was.