Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Andrea Dworkin: Dead at 58

I heard that Andrea Dworkin died via the radio in the car as we were driving home from a concert. I only heard her speak once in person and the image I still hold of her in mind is still intense. Andrea dressed in cutoff blue coverall and boots, heavyset, her hair long and curly standing in an open space next to Sisterhood Bookstore in WestWood. She attracted a big crowd. She said what no other women I knew had the guts to say. She spoke the truth about male violence against women and she made you feel the enormity of what women have suffered and saw squarely the connection between our miseries and the culture of pornography that men had created for their own selfish benefit.

Some people even some feminists say Andrea went too far, fighting for a cause that crossed over the line of free speech and a free press. I found myself standing on both sides during the heat of the battle. It was strange but I felt both sides were right and both were wrong. In the end, the louder voices which always do seem to win made Andrea and her friends like Catharine MacKinnon and Pauline Bart seem smaller and less powerful in their struggle against pornography and sadomasochism. As I sit here wondering, maybe if we had listened to Andrea and not fallen somewhere in the middle or on the free speech side we wouldn't be here thinking feminism was dead. Andrea, your voice was clear and strong but hard to hear. Some won't miss you but the soft voice inside me was glad you were here. Your voice, Your position will rise again.


Originally uploaded by sm1raphael.

for information on the illustrator of Migra Mouse go to:

Lou Dobbs on CNN: No Place Left to Go

Every time of late that I turn on the tube to see the news in the afternoon, instead of factual news, there is Lou Dobbs pontificating on the issue of what he calls illegal immigration, no quotation marks for him. I might as well be watching Fox News or worse, Pat Buchanan or Klan News. Yes, he has experts on who are trying to support immigration reform and who are for undocumented workers' rights but they are a minority voice on this show which keeps banging away on the theme that America is Exporting America, name of the show at times, meaning we have too many foreign people within our borders which keeps citizens from having jobs they need.

Right Wing extremism has taken over all the main stations now and there is no place except for public radio and KCET and the like to go anymore for relief from this mass racial and ethnic hysteria that permeates the news now. Lou Dobbs support the Minute Men Project, a group of independent militia suppposedly guarding the borders against the wishes of the Immigration and Naturalization Services (INS). The arrogance and lack of understanding on this show about the economic forces has already been pointed out by many of the experts on immigration who come on the show and point out the consequences that would befall us if all these undocumented workers should go away all at once much of our agricultural industry would collapse and many of the other services we take for granted would come to end too.

I suppose one could argue that exploiting poor workers is not a moral place to argue from; however from the workers point of view, it is a step up and a way out of poverty in the long run. People are going to get here one way or the other, no matter what Lou Dobbs and his Minuteman friends do or don't do. Let's get real and deal with a full deck on the immigration issue. We need to work diplomatically with Mexico to solve the issues affecting both countries which are poverty and limited avenues to opportunity in the rich neighbor next door. Too bad the right wing and people like Lou Dobbs who raise the spectre of terrorism in an abusive way when it is convenient to their issues has kept Bush from working with Vicente Fox on that matter.

Lou Dobbs has stolen the last shred of sanity I had when watching news type shows on CNN. No place left to go on the major channels. Please get Lou Dobbs off the air.
He remlinds me of that other Has Been Pete Wilson who used the immigration issue and found himself out of a job and out of touch with the public in the end.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005