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Friday, January 28, 2011

My 5 Favorite Blog Posts of 2010

Just when you thought all of the 2010 "best of" lists were over and done with, here I come at the end of January with yet another list. I have been wanting to publish this for a while but I could not find some of my bookmarked links and things have been quite crazy at the new gig. But like they say better late than never!!! Here is a brief list of what I thought were some of the best blog posts of 2010.

They are listed in no particular order by the way:

Let's Not Forget the Black Women Who Defined the Civil Rights Movement

The title alone says it all. I suspect when most people think "civil rights" they have visuals of a male southern preacher leading his followers in the fight for equality. The often untold part of the story is that that many women were just as instrumental in bringing about the social change that we take so for granted today. These women were then told to step aside and take the "prone" position when civil rights became a national issue and the cameras started rolling. It has also amazed me how there has been some mumbling over the years that black women somehow "had it easier" because white racists did not see them as a threat. Somehow an oppression olympics developed between black men and black women, with black men being the sole victims of white supremacy and black women being the beneficiaries. This incredibly offensive and dishonest kind of revisionist history would make the Tea Party blush. I dare someone tell Recy Taylor that she somehow had it easier. Black women were raped, beaten, lynched, sprayed with firehoses (the latter being an approved strategy by civil rights leaders, who knew that footage of police attacking women and children would elicit sympathy and outrage), subject to routine street harassment and so on. Faith (the author) reminds us that we cannot forget these stories.

The Womancession

If you haven't already figured it out, many of the blogs on my faves list will be dealing with women and women's issues. The whole reason behind the title of my blog was that I wanted to explore how women could game the system and win! I am not really the "down with the establishment" type, which I will go into a little bit more in another post. June Carbone and Naomi Cahn do a great job in breaking down the economic challenges that women currently face. I also appreciate them for having the courage to state the severe economic danger that early, unplanned pregnancies pose to women:

In the late nineties, unintended pregnancies were falling for college grads while they rose for less educated women. There is every reason to believe those trends have gotten worse. The 2008 teen birth rates in Arkansas, Mississippi, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas were the highest in the country, with more than 60 births per 1,000 teens. Yet, each of these states emphasizes abstinence be stressed over more effective programs.

American policies that fail to invest in the human capital of the next generation, pointlessly encourage early marriage and childbearing, and perpetuate workplaces ill-equipped to adjust to family needs make workers more vulnerable during recessions.

Sex and the City Aftermath, Misogyny Unleashed

I can say that the offensive and incredibly sexist attacks on SATC2 had a couple of silver linings. First, I discovered the Women and Hollywood blog, which is now over on Indiewire. The other was that I was so offended by the reviews that it actually prompted me to write which became my very first blog post! You think the movie is dumb, cool. I get that. Didn't like the writing? That's your opinion and I totally respect that. You had a problem with the depiction of Islam, fine. But the criticism of the film went much deeper than that. Mainly it was review after review of "who do these old bitches think they are!!!!" When the focus became on the actresses looks and age, I knew that something else was going on. I also was annoyed that if a movie featuring women does not pass some feminist purity test, the claws come out. A woman wearing makeup is not setting us back 50 years. If men can have 50-11 movies about tanks, tits and ass, we can have an escapist flick too.

How to Spot An Agent In Your Organization

After seeing some the online antics of the Professional Left lately, I am convinced that many of them are plants. Their behavior is way too disruptive for it to be written off as a simple ideological difference. I have reason to be suspicious: Agent Provocateurs have been destroying social justice organizations for decades:

I’m sick and tired of watching good groups fail because of the wicked people who are still being sent among us. Moreso because of our failure to respond appropriately to these wicked people. I don’t blame them so much as I blame us for not doing anything about them. But we who are intelligent people should be wise enough to know that COINTELPRO still exists, both online and in real life. Yet very rarely do I hear about people being “run from among us” nowadays. So we know that they’re here, yet we continue to let them do their work? They’re not gathering info. They’re making us fall apart. And my survey says that they’re being highly successful. So if you can use this to improve your organization, please do so.
There is no Savior

Again, the title says it all. I think women have a very dangerous mental habit of wanting to be rescued by a man, parent, company, government, church or some other person or institution. Maybe we feel like we have no real control of our lives and therefore must depend on to goodwill of others. Many of us dream of our "big break" and are devastated when that moment never arrives:

There are two things you can do to prevent your own self-destructive B.S. moment from happening. The first thing is to realize that there is no “savior”. There’s probably not one person or event that will “save” your business or blog or catapult you into the mainstream. Rather, it’s consistent effort that pays off. It’s the daily grind of writing, finding customers, and making sure your existing customers and/or community are happy that pays dividends in the long run.
The reason I enjoyed this post so much is because it reminds us all that no one is going to save us, so we must save ourselves. That means continue to make connections, meet new people and pursue opportunity.

What were some blog posts that you enjoyed reading last year?

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