November 13, 1995
Well, I got the flu shot
- but not soon enough.
Wheeeeee... that wasn't fun.
Almost back to normal, at least I've stopped making
out my will.
Two examples of the mis-use
of freedom of speech are in the forefront right now...
One is what is being tagged as the Cornell-four. Four
young men of Cornell PROUDLY put their names to a list of 75 insults to
women, most of which had to do with non-missionary style sex acts as well
as illegal acts such as rape, physical violence, and intimidation as well
as just plain insults.
You know, all that sophomoric stuff of guys who don't
have a sex life.
There has been much discussion about their right to
distribute such filth under the First Amendment... which we think they
have... but more and more women are not only objecting to the insults,
but they are insisting that these boyz be held responsible for their actions
... again which we think should be done.
If you want to distribute such s--t, wear it on your
One woman summed up the arguments: "substitute
`nigger'for 'woman' and see if you can defend it as free speech without
It is rumored that so many women at several colleges,
led by Bryn Mawr sent so many objections to the Cornell-four and to the
college's administrators and academic staff that the Cornell computer system
It is with pleasure that we report the boyz are going
to be dealt with by the administration and their email privileges have
However, we MUST stay vigilant to what happens next.
Too often in the past, things of this sort are allowed to be moved onto
the back burner and disappear.
There are too many apologists who excuse them as "boys
will be boys."
NO ! They were rude, filthy, nasty, ugly, crass, insulting,
dirty - and if my son at five years old had acted that way, he would have
been punished severely.
What the Cornell-four incident brought out is that
the WOMEN'S MOVEMENT IS ALIVE AND WELL, and as we warned leaders several
years ago in an editorial in my state's NOW newsletter, the young women
are going off in another direction, organizing themselves in a different
way... perhaps returning feminism to its roots.
The college women were DEFENDING themselves. They
were drawing a line in the sand... And that is the difference that NOW
headquarters and the controlling Feminist Majority should be aware of:
these women ACT, they don't sit around tables discussing things to death,
they don't pass resolutions at board meetings or at conferences that are
never heard of again...
They have confidence in themselves, their worth, and
will be damned if they let a bunch of idiot children passing themselves
off as men treat them with less than human dignity.
The other point is not so
good and it has to do with the prong in the side of NOW in the form of
I get a kick out of Tammy - and she has served a great
purpose in the past in trying to get the NOW movement off its complacent
Unfortunately, I think she's gone a bit off far in
her campaign against OJ.
According to CNN, L.A.'s answering machine is now
giving out the home phone number of OJ Simpson's agent. He is complaining
that he is being harassed and receiving death threats which I completely
discount as the usual crap. I GET HARASSING MESSAGES ALL THE TIME FOR DISTRIBUTING
CATT'S CLAWS AND YES, I'VE GOTTEN DEATH THREATS. So frankly, I don't have
much sympathy for the jerk. Such cry-baby complaints are automatic with
those who are trying to avoid the truth. This guy
hired himself out to a nasty human being in order to make a fast buck,
and honey, when you play with those in the mud, you gonna get muddy.
But I do object to his home number being given out.
That is a terrorist tactic used by the Religious Supremacists,
the anti- abortionists and has no place in the feminist movement. Aren't
we better than them?
Fighting fire with fire only burns civil liberties.
Tammy, step back, take a deep breath, and get your
anger under control.
You have a great potential for doing good, especially
in keeping track of OJ and letting the rest of the country know what he's
up to. Please don't f--k it up so that the powers that be in the sedate
officialdom can remove you and quiet any objections or objectors.
You're wrong on this one, Tammy. Very wrong.
This message from a NOW member:
"... until we get some kind of national NOW listserv set up, Catt's
Claws is the only place I think of as a "central meeting ground"
for NOW folks. You should probably take no small amount of pride in that."
You betcha I take pride in it, but I remain angry
that NOW and its altar ego (sic), the Feminist Majority, control the news
and views so that their opinions, and only THEIR opinions get out. We,
foolishly, thought NOW was supposed to be a grassroots organization. By
definition grassroots means direction from the bottom up, not dictatorship
from the top down.
I don't have time to set up a listserve and my system
doesn't have the facility. The listserve would necessarily be moderated
and limited so that ONLY subscribers would be able to post. Freedom of
expression would be allowed and encouraged. But there has to be some was
in determining if any subscriber has gone beyond the realm of decency or
common sense in their posts.
It's a HUGE project - anyone stupido enough to volunteer?
The potential is for the RE-EMERGENCE of the Feminist
Movement as a POWER in this country...and teaching more and more women
that Cyberspace is women's space.
On a listserve I subscribe
to one woman asked with NOW's role was in the U. N. Women's Conference
at Beijing. The answer is simple: Nothing, nada, zilch.
Several officers attended but there was absolutely
no publicity, no input, no recognition.
We've read something like 10-20 million bytes of Beijing
news and happenings so we're not speaking out of ignorance. As far as anything
of value goes, NOW's input was nothing at Beijing or Huairou.
Lthrdyke (Moonshadow) wrote
(Salud y pazin):
"Nicaragua is now the only country in the world
which is governed by a woman president and a woman vice president. Following
the recent resignation of Vice-President Virgilio Godoy in order to be
legally eligible to run for President as the candidate of the Liberal Independent
Party (PLI) in next year's elections, the National Assembly voted to name
Julia Mena, also of the PLI, the new vice-president of the Republic. Mena
is a school teacher and member of the National Assembly's executive committee.
President Violeta Chamorro had wanted Fernando Rojas Zelaya of the `National
Project' political group, to be voted vice-president. According to rumors,
Chamorro then would have resigned from the Presidency leaving Rojas, a
supporter of her son-in-law, Antonio Lacayo, in power. Then Lacayo, not
having his mother-in-law in the presidency, would not be constitutionally
prohibited from running himself for that office next year. The plan, however,
backfired with the election by the National Assembly of Mena."
Almost sounds like the deals that are made at National
NOW to keep from having open elections... not all women who take power
are nice, unfortunately.
We can't think of the book
right now that pointed out that English - although the most commonly spoken
and written language in the world - is not one language. Recently we found
a dictionary that explains English words to Americans. As a reader of English
novels and mysteries, it has proved invaluable. No wonder I could never
figure out who done it because I really didn't know who done what. But
it takes a sense of humor and a vivid imagination to translate into American
these signs found in various hotels. (Thanks to Ken Pope)
In a Paris hotel elevator:
Please leave your values at the front desk.
In a hotel in Athens: Visitors
are expected to complain at the office between the hours of 9 and 11 A.M.
In a Yugoslavian hotel: The
flattening of underwear with pleasure is the job of the chambermaid.
In a Japanese hotel: You
are invited to take advantage of the chambermaid.
In 1991, Irene Petroupolou,
the editor of Amphi, a lesbian and gay magazine based in Athens, was fined
and sentenced to five months in prison for indecent speech. She had placed
an editor's note in the classified section asking heterosexual men to stop
responding to personal ads from lesbians because they "have nothing
in common in bed." The sentence was overturned on appeal and she served
But the case serves to illustrate the growing attempts
at censorship against gay and lesbian publications world-wide. There have
been 21 incidents of harassment, censorship, and abuse directed at gay
publications and journalists in 14 countries - including the U.S.A. and
Canada - reported recently by the Committee to Protect Journalists.
"The average CEO "earned"
as much as 41 factory workers in 1960, 42 factory workers in 1980, 104
factory workers in 1991, and 157 factory workers in 1992. Even Business
Week editorialized that "disparity tears at the social fabric."
The U.S. leads major industrialized nations with largest gap in CEO-worker
pay. Japan's average CEO, for example, earns less than 32 factory workers.
And U.S CEOs want us to think the problem is overpaid U.S workers."
Author Holly Sklar didn't compare the average CEO's
take compared to women's salaries - but it would figure out to be something
like 260 women workers' salaries compared to 157 factory worker salaries
to equal the average CEO's earnings...
Catt's Claws and Women of
Achievement have been recommended for members of the League of Women Voters.
Thank you. One LWV listserve owner (name lost in the downloading) sent
me the lowdown on that unbelievable mess that was supposed to be the Post
Office's salute to the 75th anniversary of woman's suffrage in the U.S.A.
and turned out to be a slap in the face. Many women have refused to accept
the stamp (me included) - and many thought it was an accidental misprint
that would be worth money someday, sure that no one would DESIGN something
like that !!!!
Hardly a misprint, but we do think - together with
the Susan B. Anthony dollar that is so close in size to a quarter that
it can't be used in circulation - that some people in the male-dominated
government have an agenda that includes insulting women.
The U.S. Post Office description: "The 1995
suffrage stamp is a montage of two photographs from the legacy of protestations
in the long struggle for the enfranchisement of women. The design combines
a 1913 photograph of a procession of women descending upon the White House
during the inauguration of President Woodrow Wilson with a 1976 photograph
of ERA supporters marching to the Illinois State Capitol.
"TECHNICAL DETAILS: Designer: April Greiman,
Los Angeles, CA, Art Director: Derry Noyes, Washington, DC, Typographer:
April Greiman, Project Manager: Elizabeth Altobell, Stamp Services, U.S.
Postal Service, and Modeler: Joe Sheeran, Ashton-Potter (USA) Ltd."
We'd sure like to hear April Greiman's side of the
story - did she realize what the end product would be or was it changed?
A former woman prison guard
at a men's prison in Lanchasire, England has won a sexual discrimination
case in which "fellow" officers exposed their genitalia to her,
another exposed his butt, but what is worse, also left her in isolation
to lock up 48 male prisoners on her own. Not even the men guards do that.
She was also ordered to search cells, and search
male prisoners, but not strip search them. Authorities agree that cells
cannot be properly searched without a strip search, but she would have
been held responsible for any contraband later found that would have easily
been found in a strip search.
Male guards strip search female prisoners all the
time, in fact, male police officers in the U.S. all too commonly strip
search women who have been arrested for traffic violations. All they have
to say is the poor darling was so despondent that they feared she was suicidal.
A new WEB page, Women &
Politics edited by Dr. Janet Clark with Amy Hembree as assistant editor
looks really interesting. http://www.westga.edu/~wandp/w+p.html
Their blurb sums it up: "Women & Politics
is one of the select academic journals that encourages research and the
development of theory on women's political participation, the role of women
in society, and the impact of public policy upon women's lives. Women &
Politics' home page provides links to other sites, instructions for article
submission, and addresses for mailing lists. An archive of abstracts of
papers appearing in past issues is also under construction."
BTW, has anyone found an easy way to record WEB addresses?
I have a little notebook that I jot things down in but surely in this computer
A former Royal Air Force
corporal whose husband refused to have sex with her for eight years after
she had a secret abortion has been awarded 10,000 pounds by a British tribunal.
Her husband, Peter, a Roman Catholic, was so horrified
that he refused to either have meals with her or sleep in the same bed.
She was also shunned by her sister. She had told everyone before the marriage
that she was "adamant" about not wanting a family and there is
some evidence that Peter impregnated his wife against her wishes.
The tribunal in Leeds ruled that her claim for sexual
discrimination against the Ministry of Defence warranted a payment of L10,000
plus interest. The tribunal chairman, John Prophet, said the unlawful policy
of forcing pregnant servicewomen to resign had forced Mrs. O'Hare to decide
between her career or her baby.
Mrs. O'Hare left the RAF in August 1989 in the hope
of salvaging her marriage. Her barrister, Dinah Rose, said: "The effect
of the termination on her life and her previously stable and happy marriage
has been little short of tragic. The couple are still together but there
has been a severe, long-lasting effect on their relationship. Mr O'Hare
is a Catholic and that may in some part explain the depth of his reaction."
CC-->> Ah, the self-righteous: HE feels it
is HIS privilege not to use birth control overshadowed HER right not to
be a mother. And the British RAF thinks its OK for its service personnel
to be fathers but not mothers.
Catt's Claws salutes volunteers
Jennifer Gagliardi for posting Catt's Claws through her listserv.
Women's rights are young and tender
and we must protect them from the plagues of holy hypocrisy and newts.