Saturday, August 11, 2012

A MUST READ if you're SICK of the lack of diversity in comic book movies!

Here is an EXCELLENT piece I first read on Oh No They Didn't. 

Original source here: On Marvel, Mandarin, and Marginalization by Marrisa Lee - from
At ComicCon 2012, Marvel Studios announced that Sir Ben Kingsley will be playing a version of The Mandarin, Tony Stark’s traditional yellow peril arch-nemesis, in Iron Man 3. The announcement was a sudden about-turn from previous statements the Iron Man directors have made about the Fu Manchu-inspired villain.....

Kingsley’s casting has made some waves; he is a British actor of partial South Asian descent while the Mandarin was originally of Chinese descent in the comics. It’s complicated by the fact that the Chinese government is virtually co-financing and co-producing Iron 3 through DMG film group; China likely had a say in the depiction of The Mandarin in Iron Man 3. [A stamp of approval from the Chinese government doesn't mean much given Asian Americans who live in the United States as a minority group are arguably more strongly affected by sinophobia and stereotypes than the people of China or the Chinese government. (eg. Han Chinese people living in China have access to unlimited representation of themselves in their domestic entertainment industries; Asian Americans do not.)]
Does the casting of Kingsley serve to perpetuate the stereotype that all Asian ethnic groups are interchangeable? Or does it simply cement Marvel Studios’ decision to shift the stereotypical bad guys of the comics from “yellow peril” to “Middle Eastern/South Asian terrorism”? (The first Iron Man film had the Ten Rings bad guy Raza, played by South Asian American actor Faran Tahir.) Rather than debating among ourselves about which Asian American or Asian actor should have the sad privilege to continue the legacy of the reviled Fu Manchu-esque Mandarin, or hand wringing about how Asian Americans don’t have much say in how to reinvent or salvage unforgivable stereotypes that have caused great harm to our communities, there are more pertinent questions we need to lob at Marvel. 
Questions like: How did we end up with The Mandarin in a Marvel Studios movie before any Asian American lead heroes?
Or even just: Why isn’t Marvel really utilizing it’s pantheon of women heroes or characters of color?

Thursday, August 9, 2012

A few thoughts on stuff I've been reading about SMP and such

Before you begin reading this, you may want to look up terms such as "Sexual Market Place", "alpha", "beta".  These terms are used to deal with the dating scene, sexual matters between males and females, and general interactions between the sexes.  A good place to start is Hooking Up Smart created by Susan Walsh.  There are a whole lot of other sites that discuss this subject but personally Walsh's site is more well-rounded.  But that's just my personal opinion.

There are a few things I've been noticing a while when visiting blogs focusing on the SMP (Sexual Market Place) as it's called in circles and blogs focusing on men's issues.  Guys who identify themselves as "beta's" express how upset they are about how eager and how quickly females have sex with "alphas" while with betas, females are less eager and less willing to have sex with them. 

My thing is this though.  Anytime a woman complains about not being noticed by by guys, other men are quick to say "Oh well, you were (or are) just focusing on the alphas/studs/etc., etc.", basically disregarding her experience.  They say that if she, I guess, expand her focus or whatever, that she'll notice more men interested in her.  To them, if you are modestly attractive, then it's almost a guarantee that there are guys attracted to you.  Simply put, chicks have it easy to them.

But wait a minute...couldn't the same be said for these betas who are upset at the lack of attention they they receive?  If they are focusing on only the really attractive girls, I'm sure that the less attractive girls or modestly attractive ones are ignored....girls who may be interested in them, if they would only pay them any attention.  It's like a guy who focuses on the "cheerleader" and pays no attention to the "band geek", "the good girl", or "nerd".

There's another way of looking at this too.

Are males and females obligated to consider EVERYONE, absolutely not.  If you're not attracted to someone, then you're not attracted to someone.  The whole issue seems to be the lack of people you find attractive being attracted to you.  Sure there are people out there who are attracted to me...OK.  But if I don't find them attractive myself, then most likely it won't go anywhere, especially considering the fact that I am VERY visually oriented when it comes to attractiveness in men (something that's apparently rare in females).  So while I think it'd be nice for people to expand their horizons when it comes to attractiveness, people have preferences.  But we should realize that when we go strictly with our preferences, we ignore those who may find us attractive who aren't attractive to us. 

Well in the end, I think both males and females struggle with being ignored when it comes to the opposite sex.  I'm sure guys will say that they have it worse, but I wouldn't be so quick to think that females have it so easy.       

In other news....I need to stop taking these big breaks in between posting lol :P

Sunday, May 6, 2012

The Trayvon Martin Tragedy and the Media's Handling of News Involving Black Victims of Crime

There has been alot of talk about the Trayvon Martin tragedy, and I have my own views, which I will get to in a moment.  But first I want to discuss the media's handling of the case.

It was around late-March I think when the nation was made aware of the incident (around second to the last week in this month). But here's the thing....

I first read about the case when reading this article.  Check out the date of the was March 7, 2012.  The actual incident took place February 26th!

Now think about how long it took the mainstream media to even mention the case, much less broadcast it nationwide.  In fact, you could consider it a miracle that this case even made it that far into public consciousness.

I see it time and time again...if a victim of an attack, murder, or disappearance is not a beautiful white woman or a adorable pretty white girl, then most likely the media won't pay any attention and report on the crime nationwide.  Or drop the story all together for one missing white woman like CNN did in 2009.  Then there's good ole Nancy Grace.  All the disappearances/attacks/murders she has reported have been of white women and girls. Excerpt from the article How the Media Treat Murder:

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Using Birth Control = SLUT????

Rush Limbaugh has once again stirred up controversy with his comments about Sandra Fluke, a Georgetown law student, who - in her Congressional testimony - argued that birth control should be covered by health insurance at religious institutions.  From NY Daily News:

Conservative radio host declared Georgetown Law School's Sandra Fluke "a slut" for arguing that birth control should be covered by health insurance at religious institutions.
The shock jock mocked Sandra Fluke for arguing that her fellow students shell out $1,000 a year in out of pocket expenses. Georgetown University, a Catholic institution, does not cover  birth control as part of its health insurance plan.
Limbaugh dismissed Fluke’s assertion that women may be prescribed the pill for medical reasons and accused her of merely promoting promiscuity.

“What does that make her? It makes her a slut, right? It makes her a prostitute,” he said. “She wants to be paid to have sex. She's having so much sex she can't afford the contraception.”
Limbaugh went on to insult Fluke’s family for raising a daughter with loose attitudes.

“Can you imagine if you're her parents how proud of Sandra Fluke you would be?” he said. “Your daughter goes up to a congressional hearing conducted by the Botox-filled Nancy Pelosi and testifies she's having so much sex she can't afford her own birth control pills and she agrees that Obama should provide them, or the Pope.”

In order to accentuate his point, he played the 1970s soul song “Troglodyte (Cave Man)” by the Jimmy Castor Bunch. He shouted “get pregnant!” over the lyrics about clubbing and grabbing women.

Even the top-ranked Georgetown Law School, a Catholic institution, did not escape Limbaugh’s sexist wrath.

“Well, I guess now we know why Bill Clinton went to Georgetown and why Hillary went to Wellesley,” he said. “Well, all the sex going on at Georgetown.”

The Case of the 41yr old Teacher and the 18yr old Student

You would have to be living under a rock (or not watch the news) to not know the latest teacher scandal.  From the Modesto Bee:

A 41-year-old Enochs High School teacher in Modesto has resigned and moved in with an 18-year-old student. The reaction has been largely shock, disapproval and betrayal.
The teen's mother has waged a very public campaign on Facebook since last week, when her daughter moved out of the family's home and into a Modesto apartment with the man. He has left his wife and children, one of whom is a junior at Enochs

Modesto police are investigating whether there was inappropriate contact before the girl turned 18 in the fall.  And school district and teachers union officials worry that an ethical and moral line has been crossed, even if the student is legally an adult.

James Hooker was placed on paid administrative leave Feb. 3 by Modesto City Schools and resigned Feb. 22, he said Tuesday. Hooker taught business and computer classes, and he was an adviser to three active campus clubs.

"In making our choice, we've hurt a lot of people," Hooker acknowledged. "We keep asking ourselves, 'Do we make everyone else happy or do we follow our hearts?' " Hooker and Enochs senior Jordan Powers said Tuesday in an interview at The Bee that they are making a life for themselves "day by day."

Powers was in Hooker's virtual business class and an associated club until his suspension. They said they met when she was a freshman.

Tammie Powers, Jordan's mother, said she believes Hooker pursued her daughter. She said her daughter's grades fell this year, and Jordan had panic attacks.  "I believe it was the stress of the lie," Tammie Powers said. She said her daughter was "always compliant," kept her room tidy at their Waterford home and minded her curfew. No R-rated movies until she was of age. No lone trips to the mall or the movies.

"I was really, really careful. I wanted her to be safe," she said.  "In hindsight, in retrospect, I should have looked at things differently," Powers said.......

Looking back over phone records, she said she found an estimated 8,000 text messages between the teacher and student going back through the summer. In the fall, about 32 texts a day, starting at 6 a.m. were recorded, she said......

On Facebook, Powers has called Hooker "an arrogant pervert," among other things, and urged readers to "help get the word out" about his involvement with a student.
The hundreds of responses are, for the most part, supportive of her. Many express disbelief.

Read more here:

David Wainwright posted that he sees teacher and student as complicit in the relationship, then added: "I just wouldn't of expected this from my fav teacher. What is the world coming to?"
Modesto City Schools Superintendent Pam Able confirmed Hooker's resignation Tuesday morning.

"Allegations of Mr. Hooker having a relationship with a student is the source of great concern for staff, students and parents. I consider student-teacher dating relationships to be not only unprofessional, but immoral," Able said via e-mail.

Modesto City Schools Board President Rubén Villalobos said Tuesday: "Schools need to be a safe place. Anything less than that is a failure." He said he could not comment on the case, but said in general teacher-student romances are wrong "because of that unequal balance of power."

Hooker knows his decisions may have cost him his teaching career. He taught business courses for 15 years and advised three campus clubs — Future Business Leaders of America, Mock Trial Club and Virtual Business Club.  Extra jobs such as the clubs earned Hooker $28,000 in added pay in 2009, the latest figures immediately available. District records show Hooker made $110,537 that year.

Hooker and Jordan Powers said their relationship was strictly teacher-student until mid-December, when they started talking more frequently and then dated. "I just kind of knew that she's the one," he said.

Powers turned 18 on Sept. 5, and Modesto police say that makes her a consenting adult. However, Lt. Rick Armendariz said there is an ongoing investigation involving a high school teacher and student.

Hooker confirmed Tuesday that he remains the object of a police probe. He said he is confident he will be cleared of accusations that any physical relationship started while Powers was a minor.  "There's no evidence of that. There's no proof of that. It didn't exist," Hooker said.He said the criticism is part of a campaign of lies he and Powers face online and in person. "I've been portrayed as a monster through all of this," Hooker said. "I'm not a monster. I'm not any different than I've always been."....

Hooker said he hopes to get a job in the private sector. "We're just taking it day by day," he said.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

And We're Supposed to Be in a "Post-Racial" Time....

For those who say that racism or racist tendencies is no longer a big issue, or that we're "post-racial", check this out and get back at me afterwards....

From the The Huffington Post:
The unexpected emergence of Jeremy Lin from the depths of the New York Knicks' bench has been a dream for headline writers and just about everyone who loves puns. The "Linsanity" has spawned some Lincredible wordplay as well as some really unLinteresting phrases.
And, now, we may have found our most offensive headline from a mainstream media outlet.
Several hours after the Knicks' Lin-spired winning streak was snapped by the New Orleans Hornets, ESPN ran the headline "Chink In The Armor" to accompany the game story on mobile devices. ESPN's choice of words was extremely insensitive and offensive considering Lin's Asian-American heritage. According to Brian Floyd at SB Nation, the headline appeared on the Scorecenter app. The offensive headline was quickly noticed, screen grabs, Twit pics and Instagrams were shared and it began circulating widely on Twitter.
The use of the word "chink" is especially galling as Lin has revealed that this racial slur was used to taunt him during his college playing career at Harvard. After a brief run, the headline was changed to "All Good Things.."

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

TAXES - a Necessary Evil

A few moments ago, I had a little chat with my Dad about Republicans and taxes.

We were watching the local news about Virginia Beach public schools possibly undergoing what will probably be the worst tax cuts in years.  Things like no summer school, no sports for middle school, and teachers having to do 3 furlough days (temporary unpaid leave), just to name a few.

We then got on the subject of Republicans and how they always brag about (or want to brag about) not having to raise taxes or stopping the raising of taxes, which then leads to cuts on schools and needed programs.

I don't like the idea of raising taxes, no one does, but the question is, where will the money come from???  How can we pay off our debt (or at least try to)?  I would rather pay taxes than to have budget cuts on schools, space research, social programs, etc.

Speaking of which, Romney claimed that he doesn't need to focus on the poor because they have a "safety net".  However that "safety net" is what he and other Republicans want to cut funding for in the first place!

Ahem...anyway, by no means am I an expert on politics, but really makes me sick that Republicans want to try so hard at not raising taxes, but at the expense needed programs, especially those for children.  It seems like schools are the first thing to have it's funds cut.  Is it really worth it?  I don't think so.

To me, taxes are simply a necessary evil.