Category Archives: patriarchal messages

The Great Bathroom Debate

I have been railing against transwomen and men using women’s bathrooms and locker rooms for quite some time now. I have mentioned the negative or potentially harmful effects of just letting anyone into a woman’s bathroom who says they are female in several posts and tweets. What I haven’t done before is really talk about a possible solution for this problem or what I would like to see instead.

A little history
I can’t speak for the United States, but in my country, The Netherlands, women didn’t always have public bathrooms. A feminist group called Dolle Mina protested the lack of women’s public bathrooms in Amsterdam in 1970 by tying the men’s rooms shut with pink ribbons. This would of course not prevent men from using them, but was designed to make them aware that they should consider themselves lucky to have a place to pee outside of their own homes. They called this phenomenon fighting for “peeing rights”.

Current situation
In my country we still don’t have equality between the sexes in a lot of areas, including bathrooms. Many men’s rooms are larger than women’s rooms; sometimes up to twice the size of a woman’s bathroom. Even when men’s rooms and women’s rooms are the same size, a men’s room often contains double the amount of stalls and at least as many urinals as stalls. Why? Because women’s rooms often double as baby changing rooms and handicap rooms. In many gas stations this means a woman’s room is a single occupancy room with only one toilet, handle bars for wheelchair users and a baby changing table. If any person with a baby or a wheelchair uses the women’s room you’ll often see a line of women waiting outside the bathroom because they can’t even go inside. The most outrageous example I have seen of this practice is in a ferry terminal, where the men’s room was literally double the size of the women’s room. The women’s room, had two stalls. The men’s room had four stalls and five urinals. Only the number of sinks were the same in both. I am guessing this is because men don’t always wash up after handling their dicks, which is kind of gross. Considering the difference in anatomy between men and women, the fact that women menstruate for most of their lives and that they often do the lion-share of childrearing duties, including taking young children to the bathroom, it makes no sense to make women’s rooms smaller than men’s. The line in front of a women’s room is often needlessly long, because the designers of the building added a women’s bathroom as an afterthought and often make them share with handicap men as well.

Gender is a bullshit distinction
The standards for any gender are completely arbitrary, vary from country to country and change over time. Gender is often touted as innate, fixed and immutable. Trans-people say they were born with either a female or a male brain. I don’t even believe in gendered brains and I have yet to see a shred of credible scientific proof that such a thing even exists. Furthermore, the very physical structure of our brains change with age, with learning, with practising, with our thought patterns and with the input from our senses. This has been proven in several studies. We are very much products of our environments. We may not be able to control everything in our psyches or even most of it, but the structure of our brains are not fixed and we can learn and grow. These pseudo-scientific arguments of fixed, gendered brains have always been used to prevent women from acquiring the same civil rights as men and we are still fighting for our fair share of the pie centuries later. Gender is the main tool of the patriarchy to keep women down.

You can’t always tell someone’s sex or gender
Like most people, I have met and known a lot of people through my relatively short period on this planet. With some people it is easy to tell if they are male or female and with some people it is not. Extreme performances of gender make it easier to tell men from women at a distance, but it is by no means a guarantee. I have talked to many gender non-conforming men and women we got shooed out of a bathroom that was designated for their sex, despite the fact that they do not even identify as trans. Bathrooms for men and women are all based on outwards appearances. People don’t seem to care how someone identifies and most of the time won’t even ask. They judge people based on what they think they can see. We live in a society that is obsessed with gendered appearances. We often place an actual value of someone’s existence based entirely on how well they perform their gender. We elevate the best performers of gender above everyone else and shower them with praise. The worst performers of gender are at best invisible and at worst get harassed or even attacked.

What about intersex people?
Are intersex people male, female, both or neither? Or does it depend on the individual? Is a distinction of any sex or gender even useful for intersex people? Do we make them sign up for a gender with identifying documents and a gender performance they may or may not be comfortable with, before we allow them to use a bathroom? Facebook has recently created more identity options for gender and even allows people to opt out of such an identity altogether. Facebook does not exactly have the best record when it comes to diversity and social justice, but even they can see that a distinction of gender doesn’t work; at least not as a male/female binary or even as a gradient. While it might be easy for Facebook to include more options in their gender identity boxes, we can’t expect every building with a public bathroom to include bathrooms for every chosen gender identity out there.

Single occupancy and communal rooms
I propose that we stop categorising people as either male or female when it comes to bathrooms and locker rooms. Instead I think we should have single occupancy rooms that open directly into a public area and communal rooms that people can share if they wish. Not every woman or every man is comfortable with undressing or partially undressing in front of people of their own sex or gender and gendered bathrooms and locker rooms make no allowances for personal comfort levels. Stalls in bathrooms often have such big gaps between the panels that you have to be careful where you place yourself or where you look if you want to safeguard your own privacy or respect the privacy of other occupants.

No more bullseye for perverts
Furthermore, women’s bathrooms and locker rooms have not deterred creepy men who don’t identify as transwomen from hiding away in them or recording the women in various states of undress with a hidden camera. If a pervert wants to find a group of (semi-)naked women together they know exactly where to find them: Women’s locker rooms and bathrooms. I feel we would all be a lot safer if we could actually choose how and where we want to change clothes, shower and go to the bathroom. I also feel that removing gender designated rooms would go a long way to make people see gender for what it is and to place less value on it.

Planet Fitness will provide a “judgement free zone” unless you are a woman, in which case: Fuck you!

I must start this post with saying that I am not a member of any gym and that I am not even sure if Planet Fitness has any gyms in my country. However, yesterday I retweeted a news post about how Planet Fitness revoked the membership of one woman, because she complained about a man constantly going in and out of the women’s locker room. In the space of two hours I was tweeted at over a hundred times. I only have just under 800 followers at this point, so this indicated to me just how big the issue of transwomen (read: Men who believe they are women based on superficial and stereotypical views people in patriarchal societies have of women) demanding access to female only spaces is.

The reason women have locker rooms and bathrooms separate from men is also because we live in a patriarchal society in which women’s bodies are considered the property of men. Our bodies are judged, gawked at, defined and altered all in the service of men. In patriarchal societies our bodies funtion as sources of titillation, reproduction, cheap labor and general amusement for men. This attitude towards our bodies puts women at risk. Men believe they have a right to access our bodies at all times and we can do little about it. They will touch us without our consent, put their dicks in us whether we like it or not, imprenate us and ridicule us for failing to stop them. This is why we have spaces that should at least shield us from the worst of it.

But men don’t like it when we congretate without then. Our bodies are theirs and if they can’t check up on us, control our identities and invade our spaces they get nervous. What are women doing when men are not around? They must know, they have a right to know in our society. After all it is men who decide what women are. They determine what we should wear, how we should conduct ourselves, what life choices we should make and above all, what we should do with our bodies.

Women are doing (female) gender all wrong. They are not conforming enough to the patriarchal mandates of feminity as set by men. Why, men can do a better job of being women than women can. After all men created the standards and are more familiar with the rules. Why can’t women see how they are supposed to act and dress and defer to men in all things? This must mean that (some) men actually are women, because women sure as hell don’t seem to have a clue. As long as they shut up and bow down to men’s superior knowledge of all things female men shall tolerate them, but no more than that.

Of course not all men insert themselves into women’s lives in the same way. Some men don’t touch us without permission or rape us. Some men just talk over us or tune out when we speak. But how do we know that? How do we tell the genuinely deluded men who believe they are women from the ones who will violate our bodies? How many women have been attacked in bahtrooms and locker rooms throughout history? How many women have been secretly videotaped and had their bodies turned into porn when they thougt their privacy was garanteed? And isn’t the performance of feminity itself a slap in the face to all women? Your body is made into a walking stereotype that can be performed. Nothing about your actual body is relevant, not the fact that you can get pregnant, that you bleed every month for a large portion of your life, that boys and men start leering at you and turning you into an object before you even had a chance to experiment with your own sexuality. Your history of being made to feel inferior for being born in that female body doesn’t even matter. It is all about identity and the proper performance of (female) gender.

Planet Fitness has made it abundantly clear that they care about men feeling welcome in their facilities, but they will kick out any woman for who “violates” men’s comfort. In 2014 women have been kicked out for wearing tank tops, for being pregnant, for wearing a headscarf and for being “too pretty”. All of these things staff of Planet Fitness told the women made other patrons (read: men) “uncomfortable”. This year they have gone one step further and kicked out a woman who just wanted the same comfort level Planef Fitness offers male members. This really sends home the message that actual women don’t matter.

As I have said before, transwomen are in danger from other men. There are other men who will attack, rape or even kill transwomen. But instead of calling men out on their abuse behavior they turn around and bash women for not kissing their asses, validating their massive, narcissistic, male egos and allowing them to invade their space even further than they already have. It seems to me that their anger and outrage is entirely focussed in the wrong direction.

Reddit is in love with me

I haven’t been very active in the past few years. School still swallows up most of my focus and it leaves me with little motivation to write anything else. I am hoping that will change soon. My future is uncertain and I suspect is true for most who run towards the end of their education. It’s both a scary and an interesting time.

I did, however, take some time to look at my stats today and what kind of people visit my blog. Predictably most people find my blog either through a search engine or Facebook. That has been the case for much of this blog’s existence.

But a new suitor has arrived on the scene. It seems my little, almost inactive, blog is getting quite a bit of attention from Reddit and the MRA section of Reddit in particular. My average readership has been up for months now, despite an almost complete lack of new content. Seriously, if you check the recent posts the vast majority are reblogged posts from other feminist bloggers.

Men’s Rights redditors are for a large part responsible for keeping this blog alive through its quiet years and I thank them for it. Because of them I have a reason to blog again in the future. I should take care to write about Facebook and PIV some more, because those posts really gets the kids drooling.

For your amusement, check out the screenshot below:

You don’t have to have PIV, ever.

I am sure I have touched on this topic several times, but it always surprises me that straight women never consider this an option. For over 80% of women PIV ranges from boring to painful and makes a sexual experience with a guy either annoying or a real drag.

While he thrusts his STD/pregnancy-stick inside of you, you either wonder when he is finally done or hope he’ll be done really soon so you can let the pain die down. You just hope the condom is still in place and that in his enthusiasm to masturbate inside your body he actually bothered to ensure there is no condom mishap. But, really, you know the only reason he is wearing a condom is because he knows he won’t get any pussy without it.

In the above paragraph I have been crass on purpose. The stress that accompanies the possibility of a pregnancy and being being stuck with said pregnancy is something no man would ever be able to understand. It is a sometimes a crushing fear that adds to sex being less pleasurable when it involves PIV. Often the shear reluctance of a man to put himself in women’s shoes is incredibly off putting, in the same way that it hurts a lot when he mocks us for insisting the front door is locked at night. There are risks we women face, both due to our biology and our social status in society, that a man will never have to worry about.

Men make it painfully obvious they are not our allies and they are not our friends, when they time and again show us that our safety and comfort is not important to them. It becomes almost impossible to believe a man who says he loves a woman when he callously disregards her fears and her pleasure and only wants her to have an orgasm because it boosts his ego as a “lover.”

I just want to say to my fellow women (who sleep with men) that other options are available to you. You don’t owe him anything when it comes to sex. In fact sex with women is a privilege they should consider themselves damn lucky to get. They don’t get to make demands or requests, because we take the vast majority of all the risks. We are more at risk of not only becoming infected with an STI, but also to get sick from it. And we are the only ones to risk pregnancies.

If he is unsatisfied with the sexual encounter he always has his hand. I repeat, you don’t owe him a damn thing. If there is something he wants that you don’t like, there is no way it is ever OK for him to ask even twice, much less try to blackmail you into it. These guys are not worth having sex with. There are actually guys who don’t whine and try to make you do shit you don’t want. Find them and let the rest just fuck off. Or stick to masturbation or lesbianism. Every option is better than a dude trying to pressure you into having PIV.

The story of a feminist take-over of a Facebook page

Update: Facebook is now blocking the link as “spam”. Also I broke a record today. I have over a thousand page views on the blog in just a few hours. The previous record was just above 700.

Update 2: Facebook doesn’t seem to be blocking links from Whiney Dudes anymore. I don’t know when they lifted it or if it was an automatic block based on the number of times it was posted in a short period, but it works again.

Most feminists already now that men lie. Just because women don’t feature much in the history books does not mean our contributions to the world don’t exist. Men have embellished their accomplishments, conveniently ignored women’s work or have claimed credit for things they haven’t done. As a result our representation in malestream media is either minor or mischaracterised. The images and footage of women are one dimensional and distorted. It is extremely rare to see a woman portrayed in mass-media as she actually is.

We have no voice and no control in this media either. When we try to speak up and speak out against these gross misrepresentations we get harassed, threatened and sometimes even assaulted. This happens everywhere, including on Facebook.

Facebook is moderated by an unknown number of people hired either directly by Facebook or outsources to other organisations. It would not be that far a leap to suggest that the vast majority of these moderators are men who are Facebook users themselves and that they do not like women, as evidenced, among others, by the following story of the experiences of me and my friends.

A few days ago the sole admin of a pornographic Facebook page called Bra-Busters asked one of my friends if she would like to be an admin of the page. He was looking for new content and had hopes that she could provide it. She agreed to this and was made an admin. Her first act as admin was to remove his admin status from the page. She subsequently invited us to co-admin with her, to which we happily agreed. This is where the trouble began.

I joined in a little later than the others and offered to take down the original content. Up until that point they had simply pushed down most of the pornographic pictures that had been posted on the site. Below is a small and less malignant sample of what the page used to contain right up the moment we started posting our own content:


I won’t post the rest of it or the comments that had been posted to the pictures, but needless to say is that the words “slut”, “whore and “bitch” had been used frequently. I spent about an hour deleting all the old posts and afterwards I felt a little sick. Not only was the objectification of the women posted, who seemed often not even aware they were being fotographed, obvious, but there was also evidence of extreme hatred for these women as well. The men loved to look a the pictures, but there was neither respect nor admiration for any of these women.

Up until the point of the take-over the page had almost 4000 likes. When we began replacing the porn with feminist imagery and messages these fans became aware of the fact that the nature of the page had changed significantly and they felt the need to revisit the page and make their sentiments known in no uncertain terms:

well fack you bra busters!! and fack you bra busters new editor bitch!! you took a small very enjoyable part of my day and have managed to piss me off by ridiculing me, go scissor your buth biker slut girlfriend.

As a joke we began to download the profile pictures of these guys and caption them with textballoon and their own words we had copied from the messages they were leaving on the page. A few examples:

Tylor Weaver2

Samuel T2

This enraged them even further and they demanded that we take down the pictures. They even enlisted some of the women they knew on Facebook to get the pictures taken down. These women often had no idea what it was about and some of them were horrified when they found out what they had been asked to get in the middle of.

I apologize to you as I don’t want to be his messenger. I was told that he was unable to report the photo himself, but apparently he’s able and therefore I wish I never got into the middle of this. Whatever people were on that page now makes me sick. Thank you for sticking up for women

We refused to comply with their demands. The next day I found out the images of these dudes had been reported as “pornography”. Facebook had removed the reported images and given me and another admin a ban from posting anything on Facebook for 24 hours. As of writing this, the ban is still in place for me.



The ban and Facebook’s prior refusals to remove actual pornographic materials from Facebook that me and my friends often reported awoke us to the fact that Facebook was extremely selective in upholding it’s own “community standards“. I have never heard back from facebook about anything I have ever reported, but the moderators managed to get to us in less than 48 hours on bogus claims. Facebook’s reporting system does even make it possible to report child pornography. The closest you can get is “sexually explicit content”, which was used against us most effectively by former fans of the page.

On a brighter note, something good has come out of this after all. The captioned pictures of the guys who left derogatory comments on the page were a huge hit and we keep getting requests for more. Because facebook may delete these pictures we have been sure to make copies and they are now uploaded on this blog:

Whiney Dudes

The page called Rapebook and the subsequent blog have also chronicled Facebook’s selective moderation. Even this has not been the first instance of Facebook’s lack of content control or disrecpect to it’s clients. Facebook does its’ very best to foster a culture of hostility and bigotry and below are articles that outline Facebook’s soddy moderating history:

* Facebook’s Refusal to Shut Down Video of Woman’s Murder Disgusts Public

* An Open Letter to Facebook

* My Placenta vs. Jay-Z

* Inside Facebook’s Outsourced Anti-Porn and Gore Brigade, Where ‘Camel Toes’ are More Offensive Than ‘Crushed Heads’

* Facebook faces new privacy criticism, moderators can see info

* Network of ‘Moderators’ Decide What Photos Can Be Posted on Facebook,   Google, Other Social Media

* Facebook Uses an Army of Third World Moderators to Wade Through Flagged Content

* The dark side of Facebook

Money is not a a substitue for consent

Update: This post originally appeared on the Radical Feminist HUB, which as of 21-02-2013 has disappeared. I am reposting it here, so it is still accessible.

Whenever the issue of prostitution is broached, people often refer to it as a “job like any other”. “Most” or “all people hate their jobs”, is the phrase that rolls off the tongue without much consideration and they ask the person who frames prostitution as institutionalized rape “would you be doing the kind of work you do if people didn’t pay you for it?” To which I can answer without hesitation “I would and I have, and I still do when a friend or relative asks me to.” This is both because I like my job and I happily do the people I care about a favor.

This is not so with sex acts. I am only willing to have sex when I feel like it, with a person of my own choosing. You can’t pay to do it and you can’t ask it of me as a favor. This issue is non-negotiable for me. Do you know why? Because I am a privileged, childless, woman who lives by herself; I have no one who depends upon me for survival, I answer to no one in my personal life and the situation in my country is such that, though I am a student incurring more debts each month, there are systems in place that provide me with enough money to live off. I am by no means starving or in a deep financial trouble.

My situation gives me the choice the refuse work, to apply for jobs that I find interesting and to leave the jobs I hate, all of which I have done in the past many times before. I am also in the privileged position that none of the work I have done is even remotely illegal or stigmatized and I can put it all on my resume. How does my situation compare to that of the average prostitute, porn-actress or escort? Well for one thing, if any of them of them wishes to switch “industries”, and an average of 80% to 90% of them currently want to, they will end up with a nice big gap on their resumes which any prospective employer would ask about. Many of those who work as prostitutes don’t even come clean to their family or friends for fear of being judged or even being reported to the police.

When think about rape, what is it you think about? Forced sex? Sex without consent? Sexual assault? Strange men jumping out of the bushes and attacking a woman? In either case you don’t think of the woman as having said “yes” and you may even get the mental image of a woman screaming “NO”. If a woman would not have sex with you if the choice was completely free, but will “consent” to it if you paid her to, then are we still talking about consent? Can you pay someone not to say “no” to you or even to say “yes”.

The situation of women the sex-“industry” is such that the vast majority of them do it either because they are unable to pay for their own survival, because of (threat of) violence or to support a drug addiction. There doesn’t seem to be much “choice” involved for many of them when deciding to do this kind of “work”. This is of course not true for all forms of prostitution. There are women who do have other, very viable options when it comes to generating an income. Those are the prostitutes you’ll most often hear from in the media; the ones who do have a voice and often advocate the “work” as “choice” and some of which refuse to keep the “low end of the business” into mind. In all honesty I have yet to hear of a current “low-end” prostitute with her own platform. All those whose words I read and hear from about the horror of prostitution are those who have managed to exist it.

When you pay for the “services” of a prostituted woman, you are not merely removing her choices, but you are also exploiting a person in a particularly vulnerable situation. If it were easy for her to get her money elsewhere and she wasn’t living with the constant threat of violence over her head, do you think she would even feel flattered if you offered her money to be allowed to use the holes in her body? I don’t know many women who don’t, at some level, feel revulsion, when such a proposition is made. They, like I, want to matter and be respected for who they are and what they have accomplished, not for their anatomy.

When we are talking about sexual freedom, why is it that so many people merely mean the sexual freedom of men to stick their dicks into women with impunity? What about our sexual freedom to say “NO” or not even having to say “no”? What about our freedom to choose the life and work that we really care about? Why is it that people feel that it is men’s prerogative to fuck where they like regardless of whom they hurt? Regardless of what dangers they put the person they fuck in? Regardless of the fact that women may not enjoy the sexual encounter and merely fake their enjoyment. It is so often that John’s say “well she seemed to enjoy it, so I wasn’t hurting her”, without even considering the fact that if she didn’t fake that enjoyment she would most likely not get anymore clients.

It doesn’t matter which way you spin it, when money is involved in arranging for sex acts the issue of consent becomes dodgy at best and rape at worst.

On being made a rape-victim

It happens increasingly more often, that not only do women not get justice when they report sexualised violence and threats, they also get sued for having the audacity to report the violation of their human rights. Men who accuse women of being “false” rape-accusers are often believed, but women who accuse a man of violating their rights are automatically assumed to be lying. Worse even, an immediate investigation into her entire life ensues. Everything she has ever done or said since the moment she was born is under close scrutiny, while the history of the accused in left untouched and is even off-limits to media and lawyer probing, but the women get one of the closest background-checks by an army of reporters and lawyers.

“Who is she? ” “Where was she born?” “Who were her parents and where did they come from?” “What is her name?” while we often keep the names of the accused a secret unless he is already well known. “What does she look like?” “Is she pretty?” “Has she ever had sex before?” “Was there ever a man who wanted to have sex with her?” “What does she do for a living and how much money does she make?” “Is she involved in politics?” “Has she ever had an abortion?”

In short, the race is on to find evidence of a lack of moral character. They will keep digging till they found something and what they can’t find, they make up. Her phone gets tapped, her e-mail account broken into and she is followed around day and night. She becomes an instant celebrity if the man accused is high-profile enough and it always ends badly for her. The women who reported Assange, without even accusing him of rape, are in hiding.

There could even be half a dozen women accusing him of rape and intimidation and he will still get off. But everyone feels really sorry for him and literally want to kill the women who showed a little backbone. Last year alone is littered with examples of this and it only gets worse.

The average statistics in western nations indicate that 20% of all rapes are even reported and less than 1% of them result in a prison sentence. Less than 2% of rapes are deemed  “unfounded” and that number is only based on a lack of evidence that a certain acts took place. If a victim of a rape waits too long  or showers before going to the hospital for a humiliating examination of her genitals, there is already a chance of her report ending up in that 2% range. these statistics vary little from year to year and country to country and are depressing indeed.

Still there are a great number of rapists in jail. Can you complete the math? To summarize this means that rape happens every second of every day to an estimate of 1 in 4 women in western nations alone and the vast majority of the rapists get off scott-free.

Rape is so normal in our culture that people hardly recognize rape even when it happens to them. People expect a rapist to be a stranger who jumps out of the  bushes in the middle of the night in a deserted area. Who will first kill a woman’s chaperone and then proceed to beat the woman till she is (nearly)  unconscious and finally rape her and then leave her and the chaperone behind severely bleeding and heavily injured if not both dead. This is what most people believe rape is and it doesn’t help that the media shows mostly the portrayal of a rape.

Most people don’t expect to be raped by a parent or husband or boyfriend. A friend they have known and trusted for years who suddenly decides not to take no for an answer. A co-worker or boss who decides to use some pressure to force a sexual encounter. People also don’t feel the way they expect to feel. They expect to feel fear and justifiable anger towards the person who raped them. Instead what many experience is shock, surprise, shame and confusion and self-doubt. They initially search for answers by examining their own behavior and feel reluctant to being regarded as a victim. Because that implies a powerlessness and weakness and who wants to feel or be weak? On the other hand, if they did have power enough to stop their rapist doesn’t that mean they are to blame? Does that mean they weren’t raped?

I never understood why slut-walkers were so keen on claiming the word “slut”, but completely reluctant to reclaim the word “victim”, because that is what we are when we talk about being raped, how we have been made a victim and that we are somehow to blame for and supposed to be ashamed of being a victim. That victims have no agency or power and what we couldn’t stop others from doing to us becomes our whole identity.