April 2018
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heterosexism, when confronted, is a catalyst for change.

something I realized when watching A Shot at Love with Tila Tequila (which I'm officially no longer ashamed of watching):

Right now, being bisexual, lesbian, or gay is a 'controversial issue' -- and while it isn't a good thing for it to STAY that way, I think it can be a good thing that it is that way. It's a catalyst for change. As a person discovers that they have feelings for the same sex, they realize that the way they have always thought may not be the best way to think. And this thought-shift also happens in their family and friends as they come out to them. Some people are going to be close-minded and resist the change, but for others, this radical shift in thinking not only gives them a whole new point of view, it teaches them how to create MORE thought-shifts. (it would be better, of course, if our parents/society taught us from the very beginning to embrace shifts in thinking, but...)

When you believe something as an integral part of your reality and then that changes, any change after that is easier, because you've been there. This part of your perceived reality changed and you survived it -- hopefully thrived though it! -- so you don't see reality as rigid and unchangeable. You see that you don't know everything; even that what which you are certain is true now, you may disbelieve tomorrow. I think this is really important for understanding one another. I can consider other people's truths to be as real as mine because I know that I might believe the way they do in the future, or I may have believed that way in the past.

And thanks to good_news_net, I learned that it was "this day in 1955, [when] seamstress Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on a Montgomery, Ala. bus to a white man and was arrested for violating the city's racial segregation laws." Thank you Rosa for confronting discrimination and becoming a catalyst for change ♥

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flutterbychild ══╣╠══
I agree with you--being faced with the reality of one's sexual orientation is a catalyst for change; whether or not other individuals use it as such is their own choice. I agree with you that is does present them with the opportunity to do so if they so choose.

The whole Rosa Parks thing was a strategic move by the NAACP so that they could begin the Montgomery Bus Boycott; in addition to being a seamstress she was also a secretary in their offices there in Montgomery, AL.
belenen ══╣feminist╠══
wow, I didn't realize it was planned. I had always heard that she was just tired and fed up. Interesting!
sylvanfae ══╣Spirals╠══
Very well put! My entire reality fell around me like a house of cards, and the rug was pulled out from under me, when I discovered that my religion was a sham.

It was an incredible experience! One that I would never have wanted, as a Mormon, but from this side... best thing that ever happened to me. And luckily it was only scary for a day or two before I became excited about the possibilities that had just opened to me.

Even if it can be somewhat uncomfortable to not have firm certainty about reality and your beliefs, anymore. Heh. But it does help you see everyone else in a more compassionate light, and is like an innoculation against zealotry. And it makes you careful about what you choose to believe. So yeah, I wish everyone could have a catalyst to this kind of experience.
belenen ══╣curious╠══
Oh wow, I didn't know that you used to be a Mormon. I'm pretty curious about it -- my next door neighbors are Mormon missionaries. I believe everything that gives people faith and hope has some wisdom to offer, so I want to learn about it. What would you say is the focus of that religion?
mme_furiosa ══╣╠══
It's funny, sexual orientation. I identified as gay for years, when I was younger. But slowly, as life went on, I realized that I simply value love. I think love is the most important thing in the entire world, and I feel terrible for anyone who is unable to let love in because it doesn't come to them in the package they expected it to.

The "controversy" over sexual orientation baffles me when considering the fact that in nature, a certain percentage of animals exhibit homosexual behavior.

I know it is idealistic, but I wish we lived in a world that valued love and acceptance as much as it currently seems to promote hate and division.
belenen ══╣bisexuality╠══
I realized that I simply value love. I think love is the most important thing in the entire world, and I feel terrible for anyone who is unable to let love in because it doesn't come to them in the package they expected it to.

YES EXACTLY OH I LOVE YOU!!! wow. yes. *agrees 500 times*

The controversy don't baffle me none -- it comes straight out of sexism (in my opinion)!
jenniology ══╣Musings╠══
So true. It sure opened my mind.
belenen ══╣connate╠══
rockstarjoker4 ══╣╠══
I doubt that being homosexual/bisexual will be a big deal for very much longer. Progress does happen, and as soon as people learn to accept this, the "controversy" over having a different sexual orientation will be as blase as calling divorce or birth control wrong- (There will always be some people who dont like it- but it's basically part of main stream society anyways)

What is sad is that the idea that embracing change and alternative points of view is good will probably never come. And while the group of people who believe that love should not be denied just because your bodies look too much alike will no longer be outcast, some other poor group is bound to be the target of persecution.
belenen ══╣analytical╠══
hmmm. Well, I think it comes from the same place that sexism does, and I don't think it will be gone until sexism is. But I believe it will eventually happen.

What is sad is that the idea that embracing change and alternative points of view is good will probably never come.

It will come if parents start teaching that to their children! Or so I believe. And I hope to eventually open a school that helps parents teach that. ;-)
rockstarjoker4 ══╣╠══
A school to teach parents about embracing change? God, I love that idea!
cheshm_badoomi ══╣╠══
I'm curious, why do you watch "A Shot at Love with Tila Tequila" ?
belenen ══╣feminist╠══
At first it was a guilty pleasure -- I watched because I wanted to be Tila and have a bunch of people to choose from (though most of her choices were crap, since MTV picked them on looks). Then I watched for Dani, hotness & uniqueness & compassion & nonjudgmental-ness... and then Tila finally realized that she was in fact bisexual, not 'deciding,' and I loved the show for having a real bisexual. I thought that was huge progress, since the only other show I know of that had bisexuals (the L word) treated it like a phase and did not give it any credibility.

And it's surprisingly non-sexist. There is still some sexism, of course, but much less than in your average 'normal' show. Partly because it's not about real life, maybe, but also partly because the star of the show obviously sees men and women as equal.
cheshm_badoomi ══╣╠══
Hm. Okay.
I had never heard of the show until you referenced it on your LiveJournal. I googled it and was pretty horrified to be honest. I decided to use it as the topic for my final paper in my women's studies class (Cultural Studies of Gender) this semester. There is so much that I personally find disgusting about it that I couldn't even choose one episode to concentrate on.. my professor and I agreed that one segment would be sufficient - the "fashion show" segment on the first episode. The show was so upsetting for me that I couldn't handle watching any other episodes. I don't know, I'm offering my opinion, but I don't know if you want it, so I'll stop. Obviously anyone has the right to watch and enjoy whatever they like, I'm not trying to be offensive, I just... wanted to understand why someone would watch it. I'd send you my paper if you were interested but it's not done :) haha, I have a very small outline of a presentation I had to give to the class on it, but again, no idea if you even care/are interested.
belenen ══╣feminist╠══
I was definitely horrified in the beginning -- that 'fashion show' was HORRIBLE, as was the message -- that men offer material goods and women offer their bodies (so men are only as good as their bank account and women only as good as their 'whore' factor). I kept watching out of morbid fascination and then I actually began to like it, later on when the tone changed.

I would be interested to read the outline, at least. ;-)
cheshm_badoomi ══╣╠══
This is copied and pasted from the handout I gave to the class. The questions part was something we needed to include to get feedback from the class, I've decided that im only doing the fashion show segment. I'm going to concetrate on the male gaze (in case you aren't familiar with her you should read Mulvey) and how the show is(not resembles, but is) pornography.

Working Thesis:
The television series A Shot At Love With Tila Tequila presents itself as a medium where taboos regarding sexuality are explored/broken while simultaneously exploiting those it claims to liberate by marketing itself as pornography.

The show appropriates feminist notions of female freedom and recasts them through traditional forms of patriarchal domination, such as pornography.

“Female freedom is defined strictly in terms of committing forbidden sexual acts. Female heroism is in getting fucked and wanting it. Female equality means that one experiences real sexual passion—driven to it, not faking,” – Andrea Dworkin, Intercourse.

I want to examine how Tila actively participates in fulfilling this notion of female freedom and also how the show is a form of pornography by considering:
 Tila’s sexuality and how she discusses it/it is presented.

 Ways in which Tila complies with or becomes holder of the male gaze (Mulvey).

 How men and women are expected to compete for Tila’s affection – On the first episode men gave gifts to Tila, whereas the women presented a “fashion show” where they were asked to wear “a sexy outfit that best describe[d] who they are in a relationship.”

 The advertising surrounding the show, specifically the word choice in advertisements (see show description on back).

 The music selection on the show, especially during the “fashion show.”

I am not sure if I should concentrate on a particular scene, or if it is better to consider the entire episode. I would like to focus on the “fashion show” - particularly the outfits the women choose, Tila’s reaction to them and how she embraces the male gaze in this scene, but I am not sure if it would be beneficial to eliminate discussion of the men and the significant role they play in the show.
on communication, social justice, intimacy, consent, friendship & other relationships, spirituality, gender, queerness, & dreams. Expect to find curse words, nudity, (occasionally explicit) talk of sex, and angry ranting, but NEVER slurs or sexually violent language. I use TW when I am aware of the need and on request.
Expect to find curse words, nudity, (occasionally explicit) talk of sex, and angry ranting, but NEVER slurs or sexually violent language. I use TW when I am aware of the need and on request.