Jessica Valenti

Let's Stop Pretending Ivanka Trump Ever Gave a Damn About 'Women's Rights'

So much for Ivanka Trump as America’s moderate savior. The favored first daughter – who wants her name to be synonymous with women’s equality at work – has failed again and again to provide a measured influence on her father’s obsessive rollback of women’s rights. Her presence in the White House, a polished false promise, has done almost nothing to protect the most vulnerable victims of Trump’s policies.

Keep reading... Show less

The Week in Patriarchy: Trump Clearly Doesn't Understand Health Insurance

If you want to be able to sleep this week, do yourself a favor and don’t read the New York Time’s expansive interview with Donald Trump. The president makes little sense as he answers questions about everything from Russia to Jeff Sessions and healthcare – and if you were already worried about whose hands the country is in, this piece will not put your mind at ease. For example, it seems pretty evident that the president of the United States has no idea how health insurance works.

Keep reading... Show less

Trump's Sleazy Flirtation with a Reporter Felt All Too Familiar to a Lot of Women

If there’s one thing women know how to do well, it’s deftly handle lecherous men. That’s why it didn’t surprise me when reporter Caitriona Perry laughed and smiled as Donald Trump made inappropriate comments toward her in the Oval Office. She was doing what we’ve all done, so many times over – trying to defuse an uncomfortable situation.

Keep reading... Show less

The Latest US Shootings Are an Awful Reminder of How Normal They Feel

My daughter is in first grade, but she’s been doing “lockdown drills” since she was two years old – her pre-school started them a few weeks after the massacre of 20 children at Sandy Hook. She knows how to keep quiet when her teachers shut the lights, and that she’s hiding from “robbers” or “bad guys”; she’s not quite old enough to understand the full implications of what the drill means.

Keep reading... Show less

'The Handmaid's Tale' Is Deeply Unsettling but Not for the Reason You Might Think

When Hulu released a trailer for their adaptation of Margaret Atwood’s dystopian classic The Handmaid’s Tale, some conservatives didn’t realize the series was based on a decades-old novel – they thought it was created in response to Trump’s presidential win.

Keep reading... Show less

The Real Reason Mike Pence Refuses to Dine Alone with Women

I have to hand it to conservatives: it’s 2017, and somehow they have Americans debating whether it’s appropriate to dine alone with a woman.

Keep reading... Show less

Milo Yiannopoulos Isn't the Only Bigot Republicans Are Cozy With

It’s odd to watch conservatives distance themselves from the writer Milo Yiannopoulos because he condoned child sex abuse. After all, they just elected a president who has a history of making inappropriate sexual comments about children – including his own daughter – and was accused of walking into the dressing rooms of changing teenagers.

Keep reading... Show less

The War on Abortion Is Only Just Beginning

f you’ve ever wondered what the oft-used and much maligned word “patriarchy” looks like, you need look no further than a picture of Donald Trump, surrounded by white men, reinstating the global gag rule. The policy, which bans funding any international organization that dares to even talk about abortion, has contributed to thousands of women’s deaths across the globe.

Keep reading... Show less

Trump's Sexism Is Trickling Down: Let's Refuse to Accept It

In 1998, philosopher Richard Rorty made a prediction about American politics that turned out to be eerily prescient. He wrote that people tired of “having their manners dictated to them by college graduates” would look for a “strongman to vote for.” He thought progressive gains around race and sexuality would be rolled back and that “jocular contempt for women [would] come back into fashion.”

Keep reading... Show less

Women Are Already on the Front Lines. Now They Get Official Recognition For It

After years of debate, all jobs in combat units are now open to women. Defense secretary Ashton Carter announced the decision on Thursday, saying: “There will be no exceptions.”

Keep reading... Show less

Conservatives Have a Very Twisted View of What Pro-Family Means

It’s not a surprise to me that in the race to win the Republican nomination, the candidates are working hard to find ways to win over women. Each has gushed on stage about their own mothers, or the importance of motherhood, and Marco Rubio made a point in the last debate to talk about the cost of child care. Issues at the top of mind for many women, like reproductive rights and equal pay, of course, will go mysteriously unmentioned.

Keep reading... Show less

Playboy Just Learned That Old Sexism Doesn't Make Money Anymore

Playboy’s decision to do away with naked pictures has little to do with feminist wins and how far women have come, and everything to do with a failing business model: nude centerfolds in the age of Girls Gone Wild, Milfs and Two Girls One Cup seem as outworn and dusty as Hefner’s smoking jacket.

Keep reading... Show less

The Bizarre Anti-Choice Dream World Bolstered By Liars Like Carly Fiorina

There was a time when I empathized with those on the other side of the abortion debate. They felt abortion was murder – and no matter how wrong I knew they were, I understood that believing such a thing would mean fighting to make abortion illegal.

Keep reading... Show less

The Horrifying Truth About Most Shootings

A shooting this week in Mississippi - where a teacher at Delta State University allegedly shot and killed his live-in partner and another professor - has been called a shooting spree and a “love triangle”. What we haven’t really heard it called, however, is perhaps the most important descriptor: domestic violence.

Keep reading... Show less

Money Isn't the Only Reason Why Police Have Ignored 80,000 Rape Kits

The nearly 80,000 rape kits taken from sexual assault victims that have gone untested for so long haven’t just been ignored for financial reasons. Yes, local police departments sometimes lack resources - but what too many are also missing is the ability to treat victims of sexual violence with respect.

Keep reading... Show less

Not All Comments Are Created Equal: The Case for Ending Online Comments

It shouldn’t be a surprise that I’m not fond of comments sections. I think you’d be hard-pressed to find many female writers who are. On most sites – from YouTube to local newspapers – comments are a place where the most noxious thoughts rise to the top and smart conversations are lost in a sea of garbage.

Keep reading... Show less

Anti-Choice Movement's Twisted Ploy to Pretend They Care About Racism and Sexism

A strange thing has been happening to the anti-choice movement. Suddenly activists and legislators that oppose abortion care about sexism, racism and ableism. Well, not really - but they’re working really hard to convince us that they do.

Keep reading... Show less

Anti-Abortion One-Upsmanship Will Haunt Republicans in the Election

If 2012 was the year of Republican men saying stupid things – from “legitimate rape” to pregnancy from rape being something “God intended”– this must be the year of Republican men simply being stupid. There’s no other way to account for the complete meltdown that the party’s presidential hopefuls are having over abortion, racing to the right in a short-sighted effort to win the nomination while leaving themselves high and dry for the general election.

Keep reading... Show less

College Demands Rape Victim Hand Over Names of Anyone She’s Had Sex With

When a woman accuses a man of rape she can expect a certain amount of horror to follow: harassment from her community, victim-blaming nastiness about what she was wearing or drinking, the risk of her identity being revealed and the knowledge that her rapist will likely never be punished. Now it seems there’s one more worry to add to the list - that her past sexual partners might be interrogated.

Keep reading... Show less

The Latest Anti-Choice Move: Try to Take Custody of a Woman's Fetus

States have tried all sorts of things to prevent women from having abortions. They’ve enacted waiting periods, ultrasound laws and parental notifications. They’ve passed laws that force doctors to lie to women and force women to visit with ideological zealots. Some legislators have even attempted to make women get a man’s consent before obtaining the procedure – a paternalistic permission slip to access their legal rights.

Keep reading... Show less

One Perk of Older Age? Fewer Catcalls

Being on the subways and streets of New York while female used to mean walking through a veritable gauntlet of harassment and catcalls. But lately, a curious thing has happened – my world is a much quieter place. The comments and lascivious stares from men have faded away the older I’ve gotten, leaving an understandable sense of relief. But alongside that is a slightly embarrassing feeling of insecurity that, with every year that goes by, I become more and more invisible to men.

Keep reading... Show less

The War on Drugs Reaches Into the Womb - and Threatens Abortion Rights

What does the war on drugs have to do with the war on abortion? More than you’d think: the anti-choice movement has been successfully using drug laws to give fetuses legal personhood rights for years. Today, 18 states consider drug use while pregnant to be child abuse - a standard that not only punishes pregnant women who need help, but that has profound implications for reproductive rights.

Keep reading... Show less

The War on Drugs Has Reached into the Womb - and Threatens Abortion Rights

What does the war on drugs have to do with the war on abortion? More than you’d think: the anti-choice movement has been successfully using drug laws to give fetuses legal personhood rights for years. Today, 18 states consider drug use while pregnant to be child abuse - a standard that not only punishes pregnant women who need help, but that has profound implications for reproductive rights.

Keep reading... Show less

We Need to Stop Rapists, Not Change Who Gets Raped

What if rape reduction programs are actually just redirecting assault? A new study published in The New England Journal of Medicine found that an anti-sexual assault program directed at first year female students in three Canadian colleges lowered women’s risk of being raped by half. For the women who took this course, that kind of reduction is amazing. But what about those who didn’t?

Keep reading... Show less

Sexists Are Scared of Mad Max Because It's a Call to Dismantle Patriarchies

I hadn’t planned on seeing Mad Max: Fury Road, but once I heard that some menhad declared the movie a feminist conspiracy of mass-emasculating proportions, I couldn’t resist.

Keep reading... Show less

Sexual Assault Is an Epidemic. Only the Most Committed Apologist Can Deny It

For as long as college rape has been in the spotlight, there have been detractors insisting that the prevalence and severity of sexual violence on campus isn’t really that bad or that the steps taken to stop sexual assault are too extreme. This week, though, a study out of Brown University should have those people eating crow. Should.

Keep reading... Show less

You Might Not Think You're Sexist – Until You Take a Look at Your Bookshelf

Director and screenwriter John Waters once said: “If you go home with somebody, and they don’t have books, don’t fuck ‘em!” Wise words, but I’d add: Especially if they don’t have books by women.

Keep reading... Show less

The Only Thing Shameful About 'Revealing' Prom Dresses Are Adults Who Obsess Over Them

There was a time - a simpler, more fun time - when going to the prom meant getting a cheesy corsage, awkwardly dancing and yes, maybe some backseat-of-the-limo action. These days, though, instead of enjoying what’s meant to be a joyous and slightly raucous evening, students are being humiliated and even kicked out prom for wearing “inappropriate” attire.

Keep reading... Show less

It's Great to Have a Vacation. And Even Better When You Leave Kids at Home

I love my daughter. But I love her even more when I come back from a vacation without her.

Keep reading... Show less

College Rapists Should Not Be Able to Transfer Schools to Avoid Consequences

A bit of good news for college rapists: if you’ve been accused of sexual assault and don’t feel like sticking around to deal with the consequences on campus, you can simply transfer schools and no one will be the wiser. Thanks to a privacy law for students, young men accused of rape don’t even have to disclose the complaint to their new school.

Keep reading... Show less

Women Should Swap Their Bourbon for a Bong

It felt serendipitous that I was in Denver when I read that there’s been a steep rise in women’s binge drinking across the United States. Because it struck me that if women smoked pot – now legal in Colorado – with the same gusto with which they seem to imbibe alcohol, perhaps we’d be in better shape.

Keep reading... Show less
BRAND NEW STORIES
@2022 - AlterNet Media Inc. All Rights Reserved. - "Poynter" fonts provided by fontsempire.com.