Rape and Nail Polish

Introducing Undercover Colors, the "first fashion company that empowers women to prevent sexual assault". This may have come across your Buzzfeed or other internet surfing recently, a nail polish that can detect date-rape drugs.

This idea is pretty cool, and the awareness it raises is awesome. Sexual assault is a huge problem, and products like this help to bring it to light and get people talking.

But it's not going to stop rape. Not even close. 

Firstly, the people who would stop to check if their drink has been spiked would probably be the type who wouldn't leave it unattended in the first place. Secondly, the most common date-rape drug is actually just alcohol. Thirdly, anti-rape underwear didn't stop rape. Neither did the anti-rape condom, or anything else on this absurd list.

Anti-rape products can actually cause more harm than good. The Guardian addresses this, pointing out the danger of the "as long as it isn't me" mindset. Products like "anti-rape" nail polish may help individuals avoid getting raped, but does nothing for preventing rape as a whole, and opens the gate for victim blaming after an incident, like asking whether or not the victim was wearing her anti-rape nail polish. Feministing goes into more detail about the difference between "avoiding" and "preventing".

We need to stop teaching people that rape is only going to happen with unattended drinks and stranger danger. Yes, a rapist may be a roofie slipping creeper in a bar, but it could also be a best friend or even a significant other. We need to teach everyone that the most important thing is consent, and that without a clear, freely given "yes", sex is never ok.

We need to hold rapists accountable, and stop blaming victims. The problem isn't that women don't know if there's a roofie in her drink; it's that people put roofies in drinks. Alexandra Brodsky, one of the founders and current co-directors of Know Your IX, puts it very nicely, "... I really wish that people were funneling all of this ingenuity and funding and interest into new ways to stop people from perpetrating violence, as opposed to trying to personally avoid it so that the predator in the bar rapes someone else.”

10 Reasons I'm Sick of Tinder

After 500 matches, I believe the spark has finally gone out in my love affair with Tinder. I'm really, really sick of it. And slightly repulsed.

1. Every time I slip up and mention a guy's name in front of my parents, I have to quickly make up a different backstory for them.

Yeah, we met, um, two years ago, through a girl I met at camp. In New York. Once. Yeah, absolutely nothing sketchy going on here. Please don't look at my phone.

2. I don't have the stomach for these pickup lines anymore. 


3. Do you have any idea how hard it is to try and keep up ten different conversations at once?

Are you Josh with the motorcycle? Or Josh with the dog? Or the Josh that goes to UConn? I don't want to scroll back up to the beginning of this trainwreck of a conversation, so help me out here. 

4. The lack of punctuation is actually driving me crazy.

"your hot". MY HOT WHAT.

5. Everyone has the same name as my ex.

Or some variation of "Connor/Conor/Conner". How is that even possible? Did all of your parents plan this? Was there a baby naming party I missed?

6. Everyone is cheating on everyone.

7. I still don't know how to tell my friend her brother has a tinder. 

I can't even look at him. Shirtless mirror selfies really ruin the way you see someone.

8. Relatives keep asking why I'm single. 

So nice of you to ask, as a matter of fact, no, I haven't met any nice boys lately. 

9. I don't want to look through your stupid "tinder moments".

 It's like snapchat, but worse, and with surprise dicks. SURPRISE. 

10. I'm starting to feel a little desperate.

Seriously, I keep getting blocked. But I'm pretty, right? I'm funny! ANSWER ME.

I'm done. So done. 

Awkward Questions

"Do you have any STDs?"

Oh God, what an awkward question. Part offensive, part paranoid, and altogether unavoidable.

I guess the general rule is that if you're not coming in contact with someone's junk, it's none of your business. And trust me, I don't want to be the girl to freeze before locking lips and ask about any history of cold sores, but I don't want to be at risk.

XOJane's Ask Emily answered a question about how to approach the subject, and frankly, I hate the response. She wrote that the boy asking sounded like he was "in danger of becoming one of those guys whose STD paranoia sucks all the fun out of casual sex." She goes on to recount her experience trying to suck off a guy after a first date, when her partner stopped her and screamed "Don't put your mouth on it!" First of all, good for that guy. I wouldn't trust unprotected oral on a first date either. And as much as it probably offended her, he had every right to stop her. Sex carries risk. And people are allowed to protect themselves.

As for the "STD paranoia" that "sucks the fun out of casual sex", I guess I've got it too. And it can make for some awkward questions. But nothings worse than not being able to relax because all that's running through my head is some variation of "Oh god what if he kissed a girl with herpes and he didn't know it and its not showing but I'll still get it because viral shedding and I'll bet he's never used a dental dam in his life and don't like a quarter of people have an STI?"

That said, the conversation doesn't have to be awkward. The classiest way I've come across is  simple. "Before this gets too far along, I want to let you know I got tested in _____, and my results were _______. What about you?"

At the end of the day though, everybody can lie. Whether or not they mean to. Most sexually active people will get at least one type of HPV in their lives, and most of them don't know they're infected. Whether or not you ask, be prepared either way, and know how to protect yourself.

Just Now on Twitter

Alright, so I tweet fairly often, and I generally just goof around on it. Usually I choose nonsense avatars because I think it's hilarious to imagine my nonsense tweets coming out of their mouths.

My latest and greatest
Anyway, a little bit ago, I tweeted this picture.

I found it while I was browsing on Imgur this morning, and I felt like it summed up my feelings on the whole #WomenAgainstFeminism thing (which I have written about before). Misandry is the hatred of men (the opposite of misogyny). A misandrist is the type of person pictured, the type of person that #WomenAgainstFeminism is attacking, a person that hates all men and tries to paint the entire gender as evil. That's not what a feminist is. 

The problem isn't that feminists hate men (they don't). The problem is how many misandrists have confused their movement with feminism, who have declared that feminism means men are evil (they're not).

Anyway, that tweet got a lot more attention than I meant it to, and things got a little crazy. I got a handful of replies and private messages from a mix of people who either thought I was:

  1. An anti-feminist, and told me it was therefore my job to hunt down feminist nazis and "burn them at the stake"
  2. A feminist, and told me they were laughing at me, or that I should burn myself. 

Anyway, I tried to tweet again to try to clear things up.

Let's be clear here (unlike the grammar of that tweet, yuck). That's not what feminism is.  I believe it's wrong to portray an entire movement or gender as evil or pedophilic. I will never defend rape, regardless of the gender of either party.

I'm a feminist because I believe in equality. For everyone. Equally. And I think muhfeelz is an asshole because they have an entire twitter dedicated to accusing women of supporting female rapists, not because of their gender (which, come to think of it, I don't even know).

Anyway, everyone was quickly blocked and muted (so forgive the lack of more screenshots because apparently when you do that, everything disappears), but I didn't want to pretend this didn't happen. Because it did. "Feminist" is still a bad word, and apparently, justifies wanting to burn someone. And that's a problem.

My twitter is not an outrightly feminist twitter, and wasn't the place to start a flame war. Nobody should ever be telling anyone else to burn each other.  Just be decent to each other. And let me go back to tweeting nonsense.