Open Thread #7


A new open thread. Dump your miscellaneous stuff here. If ever you are not sure where to put something, search the categories for Open Thread which will show you the most recent open thread.

90 thoughts on “Open Thread #7

  1. Sargasso Sea

    I’ve been waiting for an opportunity to pass this link along:

    http://www.vagmagazine.tv/

    This is a short, 6 part fiction/scripted video series poking fun at funfem/mozzie feminism (a la S***Walk fanz) and it is hilarious!

    No, not anywhere near RF but hilarious nonetheless.

    (another hat tip to The Kid who keeps an eye on the waaay younger crowd for all us old women!)

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  2. jilla

    Fabulous. “We bought Jemma (fashion magazine in bankruptcy) with the proceeds from our Etsy shop. LOL

    Double slam. I like your Kid.

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  3. rahelle

    I’ve got a question. Yesterday I was chatting with an acquaintance of mine, and one of the things we talked about was the state of feminism today. She identifies as a feminist, but not of the radfem variety. Now, I’m a believer in separatism and I mentioned it to her. She didn’t run away screaming like most women do when I tell them, but she disagreed vehemently, and what she said has got me thinking.

    She said that she doesn’t believe in separatism because oppressed classes adopting a separatist view would lead to, for example, minority communities communities in white-majority countries separating themselves from mainstream white-dominated society. She pointed out that it would, among other things, lead to separation between feminists of color and white feminists. I tried to protest that that was different, but she insisted that to her, as a black feminist, it really wasn’t. She ask, why, if women give up on men, should black women not give up on white women (the same goes for other minority women, but she was speaking from a black perspective).

    I realize now that being white allowed me the luxury not to think about the racial implications of a separatist mindset. I’m ashamed to admit it, but I’ve never properly thought about that. Has anyone, unlike me, thought this through properly? I hope what I’ve written makes sense, I was struggling with how best to articulate all this.

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  4. Sargasso Sea

    I do too. It’s the speparatist’s *slippery slope* thing and I have found it difficult to articulate as well.

    Going to think on that…

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  5. Mary Sunshine

    Rahelle,

    I’m going to give you a link to the blog of a black lesbian separatist. FabLibber doesn’t want live links in her comments, so I’m breaking the link, replacing the h in http with x.

    xttp://margaretjamison.wordpress.com/

    She is separatist with respect to females, but not with respect to race.

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  6. rahelle

    Mary, thank you! Much appreciated. I’ve added Margaret’s site to my list of feminist blogs. Are there any specific posts in which Margaret gives her take on the race vs. sex separatism question? I’ve read through a bit of her blog, and tried searching for a post or comment like that, but so far I haven’t found anything that addresses that issue specifically.

    I look forward to reading your thoughts, ball buster and Sargasso!

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  7. FAB Libber aka Dave the Squirrel

    Rahelle, you/your friend, I believe are trying to compare the racial segregation model (that exists within the mainstream, and is part of the mainstream) and separatist communities that, for the most part, exist largely outside mainstream. As such, not directly comparable models.

    I have also heard it argued that (female) separatist communities are a ‘personal solution’, and yes they are. Those that managed to escape to or find themselves in separtist communities benefit personally, but it does not alter the mainstream. In small numbers, patriarchy allows you to get away with most things (like separatism, lesbianism etc). If on the other hand, significant numbers of the oppressed class either choose lesbianism or separatism, you can bet that there will be retribution. Patriarchy needs a reasonable supply of female fodder.

    For me, my personal solution will be either a solo or small female community, off-grid as much as possible, in a few years. That will coincide with a time when I really won’t be able to sustain a decent living within mainstream anyway. Prior to that, I do my little contribution in various ways, to raise awareness and help other women. Then ‘retire’ from this madness.

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  8. Sargasso Sea

    Greta looks fabulous dahlink!

    “She seems quite happy that no one has asked her to take her clothes off in front of the camera for some time.”

    Yeah, I bet she is 😛

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  9. Sargasso Sea

    ZOMG! Bin Laden had….PORN in his compound!

    Oh, y’all aren’t surprised either? :p

    When I was hearing this *reported* by the librul doods on the tv I could not get over their fucking snickering like 12 year old boys at the idea that OBL had porn. Seriously, not a one of them could keep a straight face and we even had a *Terror Analyst* delivering porny one-liners like it was open mic night at the comedy club.

    But the worst thing was that they were actually saying shit like: No way! I can’t believe it! What a loser!

    Every single one of those doods was trying to act like they don’t have a *stash* of their own. I HATE THEM, the FUCKING LIARS.

    (sorry, Jilla, for the f-word but I just can’t help it!)

    http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/2011/0513/Extensive-porn-stash-Three-ways-US-has-tried-to-sully-bin-Laden-s-image/Porn-collection

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  10. FAB Libber aka Dave the Squirrel

    Who knows really, given the USGuv are partial to making stuff up. But, yeah, the libdudes pretending like they don’t have their own stash somewhere. 🙄

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  11. survivorthriver

    Sargasso Sea, don’t feel I know you well enough to call you S4,
    Vag magazine is HILARIOUS.

    I sent it to my 19 year old daughter up at college. She’s an aspiring digital media artist, and has made many short films. I can’t wait to see what she says….will share.

    I am so behind the use of humor to skewer patriarchy. Ostracism and satire are perfect tools to wield. I love the thought of making Old White Males squirm. For some reason I single them out for my personal venom, because I’ve been working on becoming an Old White Woman alongside, and know their tricks.

    I came over here, and all radfem blogs from BallBuster, she still cracks me up royal. And FL also has the withering biting tongue. Devious humor is our friend.

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  12. rahelle

    “Rahelle, you/your friend, I believe are trying to compare the racial segregation model (that exists within the mainstream, and is part of the mainstream) and separatist communities that, for the most part, exist largely outside mainstream. As such, not directly comparable models.”

    No, not really the segregation model that exists in the mainstream, but a model of voluntary separation from and avoidance of white people on behalf of POCs. So, comparable (though not directly comparable, I’m sure) to the separation from males and their influence that I choose to practice. She says she feels like giving up on white people (including white feminists) all the time, but she doesn’t believe it should actually be done, and she doesn’t believe women should just give up on men either. Now I feel like there’s a difference between the two, but she maintains that to her there isn’t, and I’m sure as a black woman she can evaluate that much better than I ever could. Anyway, any links to essays/blog entries/articles/anything exploring this topic would be more than welcome.

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  13. ball buster aka murgatroyd

    rahelle, I haven’t forgotten about this thread, I’ve been struggling to figure out how to respond to this. Because, I thought about this while I was offline yesterday and I’ve thought about it today, and you’re right. Being white, I haven’t thought of how race and separatism collide.

    One thing I do know, is that other women aren’t always safe just for being other women. I know a woman who wants to open up a woman’s center, but believes that black women scream racism and shows signs of mental instability (she believed her son was being stalked by demons). I’d never point any woman especially a black woman in her direction. So yes, intentions might be nice but without real commitment to making a safe space for women the results are harmful.

    Separatism is about self preservation, first and foremost. We all have the right to look out for our own sanity and integrity. Women have been isolated from each other over several areas – race being one, but also sexual orientation, class, and other kinds of status keep women a part. I, personally, would refuse to bunk with someone who lorded status over me or had a tendency to be abusive. I don’t expect any woman to put up with that shit, let alone black women who’ve already had a lifetime of that bullshit.

    Let’s say that all but celibate men died off today. Would we still have the isolation and divisions of patriarchy working against us? Sure. To pretend otherwise is to be in denial. Could we overcome that over time? Possibly. I’d like to think so. Men are the root of women’s divisions, no doubt about that. Remove men and we remove 99.9% of the motivation for women to shit on each other. IMO.

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  14. parallelexistence

    She ask, why, if women give up on men, should black women not give up on white women

    Seperatism is not about women “giving up” on men, it is about women creating a space of safety, away from male rape, beatings, torture, forced pregnacy, body control, and every other dehumanising and violent thing that men visit upon women day in day out, in the family, in the home, as well as everywhere else in our world.

    Now, black women may have given up on white women, they may not want to make friends, they may wish for their own black women’s communities, they may even (ie usually, as most women are) be more identified with *male* grievances around race and/or religion, they may despair at the cluelessness of white women in general BUT…

    A feminist separatist is escaping MALE violence against women, and MALE standards and hierarchies.

    … it is not women (of any colour) who are killing, raping, beating, making chattel of black women the world over. That would be the MEN they are most in contact with in their homes, the MEN in their families, the MEN in their local churches and communities, the MEN in their goverments, the MEN in the global corporations etc etc.

    However a male-identified woman will make herself “separate” from other women because she chooses to put the male cause, the male dick-waving contests, the “poor oppressed nigel sons/brothers/neighbours” above anything else. (If it happens to men it’s a human-rights tragedy remember. If it happens to women ? Well, who cares ?)

    In summary:

    Feminist separtist: taking refuge from the patriarchy
    Black/white/yadda/yadda separtist: taking sides with men who want to preserve, but gain a better position for themselves in the patriarchy

    That is the difference.

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  15. Sargasso Sea

    Yes, I haven’t forgotten about this (the separatist question) either but it seems that what has already been said I am very much in agreement with.

    No need for me to elaborate 🙂

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  16. rahelle

    Thanks for the replies, ball buster and parallelexistence!

    Ball buster, I’ve been thinking a lot about this:

    Remove men and we remove 99.9% of the motivation for women to shit on each other. IMO.

    There are days when I believe this with all my heart, and days when it just seems too optimistic and too good to be true. Among separatist women, the sexual orientation differences in status wouldn’t exist anymore, obviously. Race, class, other kinds of statuses… It’s enticing to me to think about removing men from the equation resulting in a world without oppression(s). Sometimes, though, I have doubts. (Not that that means we shouldn’t remove men from the equation, of course.)

    parallelexistence:

    “Seperatism is not about women “giving up” on men, it is about women creating a space of safety, away from male rape, beatings, torture, forced pregnacy, body control, and every other dehumanising and violent thing that men visit upon women day in day out, in the family, in the home, as well as everywhere else in our world.”

    I know what separatism is. The “giving up on men” part refers to giving up on trying to get through to them, giving up on trying to explain our plight to them, giving up on trying to reform them, giving up on male “allies”, giving up on the belief that maybe, just maybe they’ll understand, giving up on the hope we can change them, giving up on unnecessary contact and unnecessary relationships of any kind with men, both in the interest of preserving our physical safety and preserving our sanity. The giving up on those hopes and beliefs is what leads to separatism… well, at least, that’s how it worked in my case.

    To clarify, the conversation between me and this woman did not revolve around male-identified women, it was primarily about (separatist) feminists – ie. if feminists in general practice separation from men, why should black feminists not practice separation from white women (including white feminists). So, no “poor oppressed nigels” whatsoever as a factor in our conversation. Sorry if I didn’t make that clear before.

    I do however agree with your point about violence being what makes the race and sex situations different, very much so. But for me at least, while physical safety is a huge part of why I’m a separatist, it’s also about preserving my sanity and inner well-being (for lack of a better word). WOC are mostly not in physical danger from white women, but their inner well-being IS threatened (from what a lot of WOC tell me themselves). I guess a lot of this boils down to whether people believe that, hypothetically, without men as a factor there’d still be racism or whether they believe racism in women stems just from being male-identified.

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  17. parallelexistence

    whether … racism in women stems just from being male-identified.

    I think racism is a male invention, but one which everyone has then taken on board. Ditto misogyny. Radical feminism challenges these male inventions of course.

    If you are talking about black feminist separatists then actually in that case I would say fair enough. It is a quite different issue than the pandering-to-your-nigel’s-ego “separatism” (which is anti-woman basically).

    There was a good discussion recently at Reclusive Leftist which covered some of these issues

    http://www.reclusiveleftist.com/2011/04/14/the-normalcy-of-misogyny/

    Check out in particular comments 15, 21, 25, 34, 42, 50, 56, 57, 58, 59

    It’s well worth the read.

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  18. FAB Libber aka Dave the Squirrel

    More on Ms Mills-Westley, the woman beheaded in Tenerife. She had complained about him in another shop just before it happened. The disturbing part was that the dude had recently split up from his girlfriend (and therefore just takes out his frustrations on a random woman).
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/spain/8514833/Killer-who-beheaded-British-woman-in-Tenerife-is-detained-indefinitely-in-secret-hearing.html

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  19. Mary Sunshine

    Aha! I was just about to post the CBC link to the story.

    It’ll be fascinating to see how the dudes spin this. 🙂

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  20. Mary Sunshine

    How the bloody hell are they going to convict this guy when they can’t even convict a high school football player of rape??!!

    What are all the rape apologists going to do?

    I can hardly wait.

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  21. FAB Libber aka Dave the Squirrel

    You are allowed to live-link to here, or any twanzphobic* radfem blog 😉
    I know, I am strict, I have you all scared, LOL

    *if in doubt, linking to any blog in the blogroll is a handy approved guide.

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  22. Mary Sunshine

    Judge Denies Bail to I.M.F. Chief in Sexual Assault Case

    BWAH-HAH-HAH-HAH-HAH !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I just can’t get enough of this.

    😀

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  23. jilla

    Trans=raped. Women =consent and love. See? That’s where those stats come from they keep waving in our faces, those four trans who were raped while sporting surgery so amazing no one could tell. (See GM’s latest Verily post).

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  24. FAB Libber aka Dave the Squirrel

    On the sleezebag Schwarzenegger:
    # Housekeeper had baby boy who is now around 14 years old
    # ‘Mother’ Mildred Baena ‘had sex with Schwarzenegger in family home’
    # Maria Shriver and the alleged mother were pregnant at the same time
    # Boy’s mother continued to work in Shriver’s home during pregnancy

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-1388212/Mildred-Baena-Mother-Arnold-Schwarzeneggers-lovechild-revealed.html?ITO=1490

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  25. jilla

    I believe it would be impossible to be a domestic employee and not be persistently put-upon by male(s) in the household.

    It happened to me every time. It’s worse if you are a work immigrant, Filipina or Latina. Or or some other visible race, or a work immigrant. Then if you refuse, or resist the employer will complain to the agency, or immigration making up some lie such as you stole, or were the agent of the assault. “Consensual”.

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  26. jilla

    Whew. I got knots in my stomach just reading that. A good job done.

    Unfortunately, he’ll just be replaced by another one of the boys so the party isn’t embarrassed and can make lots of platitudes and promises.

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  27. FAB Libber aka Dave the Squirrel

    Strauss-Khan:
    International Monetary Fund chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn has resigned following allegations he sexually assaulted a hotel maid in New York.
    In a statement, Mr Strauss-Kahn, 62, said he had already informed the executive board of his intention to step down “with immediate effect”.
    He again firmly denied the criminal charges against him.

    Hah hah, he has realised dudebroland has thrown him to the wolves and won’t be covering this one up, not like all the others (and I am sure there would have been more than just the one prior, cover-ups).

    World’s smallest violin, playing for Strauss-Khan today… 😛

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  28. FAB Libber aka Dave the Squirrel

    Schwarzenegger:
    Arnold Schwarzenegger’s love child ‘born just FIVE DAYS after Maria Shriver gave birth’

    Arnold Schwarzenegger’s wife and housekeeper mistress gave birth within five days of each other, it has emerged.
    Mildred Baena’s son, believed to be the former California governor’s love child, was born on October 2, 1997, according to documents unearthed today.
    The actor and his wife Maria Shriver welcomed their second son, Christopher, on September 27 that same year.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-1388408/Mildred-Baena-Arnold-Schwarzenegger-love-child-born-5-days-Maria-Shriver-gave-birth.html

    Filed under: Things that make you go “ewwwww”

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  29. FAB Libber aka Dave the Squirrel

    Viagra could make [men] deaf
    Viagra could make you deaf, doctors have warned.

    Viagra and similar impotence drugs have been linked to hundreds of cases of sudden hearing loss around the world, including some in the UK.

    Doctors have begun to warn that the drugs could damage users’ hearing after a spate of people in the US with auditory problems.

    Experts, including some from Charing Cross, Stoke Mandeville and Royal Marsden hospitals, were so concerned by the claims that they demanded an investigation from official watchdogs across three continents.

    Users in America, East Asia and Australia were questioned as to whether they suffered hearing loss shortly after taking the pills.

    Forty-seven suspected cases of sensorineural hearing loss – a rapid loss of hearing in one or both ears – were linked to Viagra and related drugs Cialis and Levitra. Eight were from the UK.

    However, another 223 reports made in the US had to be excluded due to a lack of detail.

    The researchers are not sure how Viagra might affect hearing, but it may be that the chain of chemical reactions it triggers have knock-on effects in the inner ear.

    The average age of those affected was 57, although two of the men involved were only 37, the study found.

    Dr Afroze Shah Khan, of Charing Cross Hospital, said: “Medical practitioners involved in the prescription of these drugs need to be vigilant about this potential side-effect.”

    However, the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency, Britain’s drugs watchdog, said complaints of hearing loss linked to Viagra were “extremely rare”.

    A spokesman added that reports of an adverse reaction to a drug do not prove the medicine caused it.

    The research was published in the journal The Laryngoscope.

    Like I really care… it’s a pity it doesn’t make them all drop dead of heart attacks … Hef included, the old sleeze, he pops them like lollies.

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  30. FAB Libber aka Dave the Squirrel

    Malcolm Webster guilty of killing first wife and attempted murder of his second

    MALCOLM Webster was found guilty at the High Court in Glasgow today of murdering his first wife and attempting to murder his second in a bid to get life insurance money.

    Webster, 52, had denied murdering Morris in an Aberdeenshire crash in 1994 for a £200,000 life insurance payout.

    He was also found guilty of the attempted murder of his second wife Felicity Drumm in New Zealand in a similar plot in 1999.

    The crash in 1994 came just eight months after Webster had married Mrs Morris and was originally treated as a tragic accident.

    Webster, from Guildford in Surrey, drugged her, driving the car off the road and starting a fire while she was unconscious in the vehicle.

    It was only fourteen years later in 2008 that police announced they were re-examining the death of Mrs Morris.

    The investigation then moved to New Zealand, where Webster, a qualified nurse, was involved with a crash which his second wife surivived. It was later found that she had a strong sedative in her system.

    Again, the motive was insurance fraud – this time the sum was estimated at £750,000.

    In February 2009 Webster appeared in Aberdeen Sheriff Court charged with murdering his wife in 1994, as part of a life insurance fraud.

    The murder trial began at the High Court in Glasgow on 1 February this year, making it the longest criminal trial with a single accused in Scottish legal history.

    The jury took less than four hours to convict Webster.

    The brother of Mrs Morris, Peter Morris, called Webster a “monster”.

    Mr Morris said: “Hopefully now Claire can rest in peace. I feel that she hasn’t been able to do that until now.”

    He said of Webster: “He’s a monster. If the police hadn’t caught him the killing would have gone on.”

    Webster claimed his first wife’s death was a tragic accident and denied the charges against him, but the jury of nine women and six men found him unanimously guilty of the murder.

    He was described in court as a “cruel, practised deceiver”.
    http://www.scotsman.com/news/Malcolm-Webster-guilty-of-killing.6771066.jp

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  31. FAB Libber aka Dave the Squirrel

    Sadly, it only seems to be colour-blindness (and not sure if it is only temporary). But, heart attacks are on there (goody! die you fuckers, Hef particularly)
    http://health.howstuffworks.com/sexual-health/sexual-dysfunction/viagra5.htm

    And younger dudes that don’t actually need it, can develop erectile dysfunction. Hah hah.

    Frankly, the best side-effect would be if their dicks would fall off, or heart attack, I am not fussed.

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  32. Mary Sunshine

    The reason he got bail: the second judge is male. The first judge, the bail-denying judge, is female.

    Male-bonding to the max.

    He’ll fly, France will love him, males everywhere will love him, and the woman that he raped will end up living on the street, her child taken by Children’s Aid.

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  33. FAB Libber aka Dave the Squirrel

    I am curious as to why he was staying at ‘a luxury suite at the Sofitel’, and the article mentions ‘[he] would remain under 24-hour home confinement in the apartment recently rented by his wife’. I gather that the apartment could have been rented after his arrested (but could also have been beforehand), but why was she not there also at the Sofitel? The only other explanation is that she has only just flown into NY. But, if she had already been in NY, then very sus’ that she was not also staying at the hotel…

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  34. Mary Sunshine

    Oh, she was in Europe when he was busted. There was a big media event when she arrived in NY.

    I’ve been following this pretty closely.

    The armed guard at his door? He “bears the expense”. How does that work? Private security company? he writes the cheque? What a farce.

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  35. jilla

    Not sure if this is the thread, but can’t find one more specific.

    http://www.arcc-cdac.ca/action/under-the-majority.html

    What Could Happen to Reproductive Rights Under a Harper Majority?
    By Joyce Arthur, Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada

    May 18, 2011

    The Harper majority and its right-wing base could take many actions over the next four years to restrict or try to restrict reproductive rights and access. A Conservative majority means that the pro-choice movement, its allies, and the public are the true Official Opposition when it comes to protecting the right to abortion. We must hit back hard and fast at any attempt to restrict abortion rights or access. Even if that attempt is likely to fail, it will still give us an opportunity to educate the public and establish closer working ties with the NDP.

    The following list is a prediction of possible actions that could be initiated or promoted by anti-choice MPs, the Pro-Life Parliamentary Caucus, the Prime Minister, and other anti-choice government officials, as well as by the anti-choice movement. Predictions are based on the history of past anti-choice actions, anti-choice news stories and wish lists, mainstream news stories, and U.S. anti-choice measures that could be imported to Canada. The likelihood of each prediction coming to pass is also rated, although this is somewhat subjective.

    Private Member Bills
    1. Introduce private member bills. (highly likely, top priority for the anti-choice movement)

    There have been 43 anti-choice private member bills and motions introduced in Canada since 1987. None have passed, but with a majority government, the chances of passage increase, especially if we can’t count on Harper whipping his Cabinet to vote against them. Anti-choice leaders are already warning us to expect a private member’s bill limiting abortion by the fall. Here’s some past PMBs and motions that may be the most likely ones to be re-introduced:

    * Establish legal personhood for fetuses, such as by making them separate victims of crime (similar to Bill C-484), or by changing or muddying the definition of “human being” in the Criminal Code.
    * Permit medical personnel to refuse to serve patients who request abortion or birth control services (similar to Bill C-537).
    * Criminalize abortion after 20 weeks of gestation (similar to Bill C-338).
    * Criminalize “coercing” women into abortion (similar to Bill C-510).
    * Compel abortion providers to provide medically-inaccurate information to patients under the guise of “informed consent”, including false claims that abortion leads to breast cancer, post-traumatic stress disorder, infertility, etc. (similar to Motion M-482).

    New PMBs that could be introduced are based on existing restrictions in the U.S.:

    * Force women to undergo and view an ultrasound of their fetus before they can have an abortion.
    * Require women under 18 to obtain parental consent for seeking abortions, or require abortion providers to notify parents of minors.
    * Require women seeking an abortion to receive mandatory counselling from a religious anti-choice “crisis pregnancy centre” (similar to the bill recently passed in South Dakota)
    * Require women to notify the “biological father” before they can have an abortion.

    Defunding of Abortion
    2. Launch provincial campaigns (by the anti-choice movement) to try to defund abortion, particularly in the Prairies and Maritimes. (highly likely, top priority)

    3. Call for a national referendum to defund abortion, and if successful, penalize provinces that fund abortion, similar to Bill C-515 or Motion M-83. (highly likely, top priority for the anti-choice movement)

    4. Continue to allow New Brunswick to openly violate the Act by not funding the Fredericton Morgentaler Clinic, and refuse to enforce the Canada Health Act against other provinces that defund abortion. (highly likely)

    5. Continue not enforcing the Canada Health Act in general, or amend it to make it more toothless. (highly likely)

    Harper said in the election campaign of 2004 (the year he became leader of the Conservative Party), that he would oppose any bill limiting provincial funding to abortion services, and would not support a referendum on abortion. But in 2001, Harper said that provinces should exercise complete autonomy over healthcare, including funding it. After he became Prime Minister, Harper expressed support for the Canada Health Act, but has shown he cannot be trusted. As soon as the Conservatives were first elected in 2006, they largely stopped enforcing the Canada Health Act, allowing provinces to flout the Act openly. For example, the feds simply dropped the arbitration process that the previous Liberal Health Minister had initiated with New Brunswick, essentially giving NB the thumbs-up to continue its illegal refusal to fund the Fredericton Morgentaler Clinic. At least five provinces are turning a blind eye to private clinics that charge a fee, with no repercussions from Health Canada. Further, Harper supported the Quebec plan to allow private health care insurance and private clinics, breaking a 2006 election promise that he would enforce the Canada Health Act.

    If the Harper majority further erodes the Canada Health Act, it could lead to the gutting of national healthcare standards, leaving each province free to do its own thing. Besides the risk of increased privatization of healthcare and patient user fees, it would make it easier for provincial governments to defund abortion. Since New Brunswick is already not being penalized, other provinces have little to fear from the feds if they defund abortion, at least at private clinics.

    However, defunding abortion may be a near-impossible task for the anti-choice movement, as provinces would be reluctant to invite a Charter challenge. In 1991, 63% of voters in Saskatchewan voted to defund abortion, but the incoming government dropped the issue after getting legal advice that it would be unconstitutional, because defunding abortion while funding pregnancy and childbirth would constitute discrimination on the basis of sex. Nonetheless, it will be very important to fight a defunding campaign and use it as an opportunity to educate the public on the medical necessity of abortion. A recent Angus Reid poll showed that 44% of Canadians support full funding for abortion, so we are not far from achieving a majority in case a referendum ever does take place.
    Defunding of Reproductive Health and Rights
    6. Continue defunding domestic organizations and women’s groups that support or advocate for reproductive rights. (highly likely)

    7. Continue denial of funding to International Planned Parenthood Federation. (highly likely)

    8. Defund other organizations and programs (domestic or international) that provide abortion services or other reproductive health services, including contraception and comprehensive sex education. (highly likely, at least for abortion)

    9. Fund anti-choice “crisis pregnancy centres.” (highly likely)

    Dozens of domestic groups have had their funding reduced or cut under Harper’s reign so far. The IPPF submitted a new funding application to CIDA in the spring of 2010 that complied with Canada’s new prohibition against funding safe abortion, but have still not heard back.

    Abortion is not the only area of women’s healthcare that may be at risk. In the U.S., the Christian right is working hard to cut all federal funding for reproductive healthcare for women, including contraception, PAP smears, STI screening and treatment, breast exams, cervical cancer screening, and other essential care. Meanwhile, tens of millions of dollars in federal funding have been awarded to CPCs in the U.S. since 2000.
    Parliament, Senate, Supreme Court, and Legal Measures
    10. Appoint two or three anti-choice judges to the Supreme Court (out of at least five vacancies), and appoint mostly conservative judges at lower courts. (highly likely)

    11. Appoint more anti-choice Conservatives to the Senate. (highly likely)

    12. Appoint anti-choice ministers, secretaries of state, or other officials in portfolios that affect women’s health or reproductive rights. (highly likely)

    13. Continue to weaken and undermine Parliament and its committees, so that the voices and work of pro-choice MPs can more easily be silenced and shelved. (highly likely)

    14. Refuse to ratify or recognize international agreements, protocols, treaties, and laws that recognize women’s reproductive rights. (highly likely)

    15. Invoke the Charter of Rights “notwithstanding” clause to override court decisions that conflict with government ideology. (not likely, but often touted by anti-choicers)
    Public Policy
    16. Use the new “Office of Religious Freedom” to privilege and empower right-wing religious groups over secular groups. (highly likely)

    17. Promote or implement anti-choice policies or positions in health, education, the justice system, human resources, foreign affairs, and other areas. (highly likely)

    18. Refuse to sanction research or support medical trials on abortion drugs or new abortion technologies, and discourage Health Canada testing and approval. (somewhat likely if mifepristone approval gets closer)

    19. Ban public funding for research or programs involving the use of embryonic stem cells. (not likely, but a priority for the anti-choice movement)
    Other sources:

    * Campaign Life Coalition. 2009. Legislative Proposals.
    * Canadian Press. May 12, 2011. ‘Debate is on’ as thousands protest against abortion on Parliament Hill. Globe & Mail.
    * Craine, Patrick. May 12, 2011. 59% of Canadians want restrictions on abortion as March for Life revs up: poll. LifeSite News.
    * CTV News. May 4, 2011. Tory backers push for ‘truly conservative’ government.
    * Jalsevac, John. May 12, 2011. ‘The debate is on!’ – Record-breaking 15,000+ attend Canadian National March for Life. LifeSiteNews.
    * Leishman, Rory. May 10, 2011. Time for a referendum on abortion funding. The Interim.
    * Mrozek, Andrea. May 3, 2011. Post-election musings. ProWomanProLife. [proposing a bill to ban abortions after 20 weeks]
    * Pro-Choice Action Network. Autumn 2000. Dooms’Day’ in Canada: Abortion Rights Threatened by Alliance. Pro-Choice Press.

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  36. jilla

    This was on American tv recently (apparently–I got it as YouTube).

    For anyone who still thinks pharmaceutical drugs can help you, the medical profession knows what it’s doing, the FDA, MHRA, TGA et al operate at arms length from pharma.

    Dr. Oz: Four things the drug companies don’t want you to know

    Part 1 and Part 2

    Of interest:

    Women on multiple drugs
    Proven: No efficacy for anti-depressants (about the middle of part 1)
    You can report side effects from your drug, but the FDA et al will only hear about it if your doctor reports, and THEY DON’T HAVE TO.

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  37. FAB Libber aka Dave the Squirrel

    They also mentioned statins and heart disease, which had very little benefit in males, and no known benefit in females (again, heart disease and attacks in females are different).

    The elderly are the ones that start clocking up the medications. They keep getting more and more scripts to counter the side effects from the previous/other medications they are taking.

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  38. jilla

    Re: The newly elected majority Conservative government. I never thought 35 years after marching and advocating, after the triumph of seeing the Morgentaler clinics open, we’d be fighting for abortion rights again.

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  39. FAB Libber aka Dave the Squirrel

    Yes, elderly = primarily women, they are about 70% or more (depending on age bracket). And because most of the elderly are female, that is also why the elderly = poverty thing.

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  40. FAB Libber aka Dave the Squirrel

    On abortion and reproductive rights, yes, the last 35 years is being eroded away. Not sure when the libfems & funfems will wake up to the fact that there are more pressing concerns than ‘reclaiming slut’ and looking hawt for the lads…

    In fact, surely reproductive issues should be the No.1 issue for fun fems??? After all, all that ‘fun’ (PIV) comes with consequences for females.

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  41. jilla

    Good news and bad news: good they are seeing this as abuse, not sex.

    Bad that they keep isolating what they learn, and not connecting it to the wider issue of it being abuse against women, not one culture, or one age group, or one location.

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  42. jilla

    I can’t find the original story. There’s an update. They know she was on her knees. They know she spit out his semen after he forced oral sex on her. But what’s the kicker?

    “(The) evidence will not be consistent with a forced sexual encounter..”

    So what would that be? That her throat was not ripped? That after he forced her down and held her head she didn’t struggle so her neck wouldn’t be broken?

    The fuckers. Damn them all to hell.

    During their investigation, authorities cut out a piece of carpet and swabbed sinks and other surfaces in his hotel room. Investigators told the AP they believed the carpet in the hotel room may contain Strauss-Kahn’s semen, spat out after an episode of forced oral sex by the maid.

    The forensic evidence is the first to link Strauss-Kahn to the woman — and it’s also on track with what his lawyers have suggested would be his defence.

    Strauss-Kahn’s attorney Benjamin Brafman declined to comment on Monday. At a court hearing last week, he told a judge that forensic evidence developed in the investigation “will not be consistent with a forcible encounter” — leading to speculation that Strauss-Kahn’s defence would argue that it was consensual.

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  43. FAB Libber aka Dave the Squirrel

    That is fucking unbelievable Jilla.

    But then again, the defence for the dude who murdered Jane Longhurst also tried making out it was all consensual sex, just oh-dear, kinky sex gone bad. See, even murdered women apparently ‘consent’. There is no amount of fighting back, forensic evidence, corpses, bruises or anything else that will ‘show’ rape and violence any more.

    So yeah, damn them all to hell.

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  44. jilla

    What else could they come up with, that she agreed to felate him? But if she negotiated, we know she did that so she wouldn’t risk pregnancy. That of course will not be seen as a woman trying to save herself from greater harm, but “consensual”.sex between two willing adults.

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  45. FAB Libber aka Dave the Squirrel

    Harm reduction strategies are NEVER factored into sexual assaults.
    But quite likely he forced it into her mouth anyway. Bastard.

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  46. jilla

    Johnson Aziga is being assessed for Canada’s Dangerous Offender status, for dangerous criminals whom the courts believe will definitely re-offend.

    Aziga infected 11 women with HIV. He told the women he had no STD, although he knew he had HIV. After a period of time, and trust, each of the women stopped using condoms.

    In April 2009, a jury found Aziga guilty of two counts of first-degree murder, 10 counts of aggravated sexual assault and of attempted sexual assault in relation to his neglect to protect the women.

    During the last trial (he’s being tying it up in court since 2003) he spent four hours telling the court about his own hardships, including the cause of his neglect, an undescended testicle which embarrassed him.

    http://www.thespec.com/news/local/article/537618–aziga-finally-apologizes-in-bid-to-avoid-dangerous-offender-status

    At the end of the story write-up the reporter breaks down the stats for prisoners with Canada’s Dangerous Offenders status.

    See anything missing?

    “Since 1978 there have been 522 people designated as dangerous offenders. As of April 25 there were 441 “active” designated offenders. According to the Correctional Service of Canada, 419 are incarcerated, 18 are being supervised in the community, one has been deported, one is on temporary detention, one is on bail and one has escaped.”

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  47. FAB Libber aka Dave the Squirrel

    I gather “522 people” is code for “522 male people”. 😉

    It is appalling that these prisoners can tie up the legal system for so long, with appeal after appeal. They do it just for something to do.

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  48. Mary Sunshine

    Whoa!!! There might be a woman who’s a dangerous offender. 😎 <=dunno if that's a smiley. It's supposed to be googly eyes.

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  49. jilla

    There isn’t. There is one Long Term Offender. That’s a different designation.

    csc-scc.gc.ca/text/rsrch/reports/r125/r125-eng.shtml

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  50. jilla

    Well it took me 3 tries deleted, but I finally got one in.

    cbc.ca/q/blog/2011/05/25/susie-bright-on-q/#socialcomments

    Wouldn’t it be great if they interviewed Rebecca?

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  51. jilla

    First it was the undescended testicle’s fault.

    NOW, a CAT did it.

    google.com/hostednews/canadianpress/article/ALeqM5jTrBrleaeqUpfejiszmaISbbrFPQ?docId=6964228

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  52. jilla

    This isn’t even funny. Related to Death Cat, it was in a vet office and Aziga thinks the equipment had not been cleaned properly.

    Do you want to hazard a guess as to whose job it was to clean the equipment.

    http://www.google.com/hostednews/canadianpress/article/ALeqM5jTrBrleaeqUpfejiszmaISbbrFPQ?docId=6964228

    However, if he gets out someday — ie) does NOT get dangerous offender status which means prison indefinitely — he promises he would only have unprotected sex with women whom he had told, but who were “risk takers”.

    Do you want to guess who “risk taker” is a euphemism for?

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  53. jilla

    Of course there’s no excuse for beating someone. However, in the second link, it makes it clear this was an ongoing battle between neighbours over … dogs?

    And where are the “allegeds”. We could send them some. When it’s a woman who is assaulted, attacked, beaten, gang-raped, found dead in her home surrounded by her babies, the headlines say something like:

    “Alleged mob allegedly assaults person”

    The next time a woman is walking in her neighbourhood/pushing her baby in a stroller/working as a hotel maid and assaulted, I’ll expect the headlines and story to stress “She said the attackers called her (words commonly used for women) repeatedly during the attack”.

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  54. FAB Libber aka Dave the Squirrel

    As the tale (tail?!?) that Aziga spins is so unnecessarily detailed, my guess is that it is all bullshit. I mean, ffs, what is “moody siamese cat” doing in the tale? It is typical of pathological liars to fabricate and weave tales/tails in that manner to make them more convincing. “Risk takers” is code for either rape or he won’t tell them, and will, if ever released go on to infect as many more women as he can. Can they not detain him under some contagious disease act, considering he has actually admitted that he will again have unprotected PIV with “risk takers”.

    As for the TW attack business, sorry, but no speshul snowflake on “twanz hate cwime”. There was previous dispute(s) over dog(s), and the attackers were connected to the victim – at least one being the cousin of the person the TW had the dispute with. So the TW status is a red herring in the story. TWs reckon they are “women just like us (FAABs)” yet continue to want to be held up as ‘speshul status women’. The TW status in the story is irrelevant, and should not have been mentioned at all. If twanzjacktivists continue to do this with any (TW) incident and try to hold it up as transphobia!!, then they lose credibility.

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  55. jilla

    This from the last write-up. Keep in mind this guy is incarcerated and has been in 2003. All this is for the benefit of the dangerous offender designation decision.

    I think “risk taker” means a prostituted woman.

    :~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Hamilton Spectator:

    If Aziga is ever given his freedom and if he ever manages to be on the brink of having sex with a woman to whom he has disclosed his disease and who consents to forgoing the condom … HE STILL HAS A CHOICE.

    He can choose not to have sex.

    He can choose not to put another person’s life at risk.

    (…)

    If a woman wanted him to wear a condom, he would, he testified. That would prevent him from, say, being convicted of yet another count of first-degree murder or sexual assault.

    Also, there’s “the issue of reinfection,” he told the court. “For my own good, I don’t want to get another strain of HIV.”

    In April 2009, a jury found Aziga guilty of two counts of first-degree murder, 10 counts of aggravated sexual assault and of attempted sexual assault.

    If he is declared a dangerous offender, Aziga, who turns 55 in a few weeks, will remain in prison for an undetermined amount of time.

    For the past two days he has been on the witness stand, something he never did at his criminal trial. It wasn’t until mid-afternoon Thursday that his testimony finally moved from the hardships of his upbringing in Uganda, his Canadian university education and government job, his failed marriage and the stress of having an autistic child to the 11 women whose lives he ruined.

    “This is the question everyone in the country, if not in this world, waits to know,” defence lawyer Davies Bagamiire said dramatically. “Why did you not disclose to those women your HIV status?”

    Aziga offered a remarkable number of reasons:

    He thought he was going to die. He was lonely. He had financial problems. He wasn’t “empowered.” He was not “ready.” He was depressed. He had migraines. Public health nurses didn’t tell him what to say. There is no word for penis in his native language. He was waiting until his custody battle ended. He was too drunk. He didn’t want his boss to find out. He was embarrassed because he has an undescended testicle. Talking about sex is taboo in his culture. He was sometimes wearing a condom.

    Oh yes. And he really wanted sex.”

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  56. FAB Libber aka Dave the Squirrel

    Ah yes, prostituted women – sorry, I was distracted by all those sexual assault charges that he had clocked up.

    Me thinks that Aziga should just accept his never to be released status, and amuse himself by writing “The Big Book of Male Excuses”. That last paragraph was a hoot and a half on pathetic excuses. I particularly like “no word for penis in his native language” (as he had committed those offences in Canada, how relevant is that? Is he maintaining that he only slept with native Ugandan women who spoke no English??? My other leg plays Jingle Bells)

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  57. jilla

    His university degree was taken here, in English. Pretty sure there is no universities teaching in his native language, and also pretty sure sexual words would be his first English words. They always are.

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  58. jilla

    No consent in unconscious sex case: Supreme Court

    WARNING: Contains graphic content
    CBC News
    Posted: May 27, 2011 10:20 AM ET
    Last Updated: May 27, 2011 10:26 AM ET

    The Supreme Court of Canada ruled Friday on a case related to consent for sexual activity. The Supreme Court of Canada ruled Friday on a case related to consent for sexual activity. (Adrian Wyld/Canadian Press)

    The Supreme Court says an unconscious woman can’t give consent to sex. In a split 6-3 decision, the court restored the sexual assault conviction of a man who penetrated his female partner in the anus with a dildo in 2007.

    The man was originally convicted of sexual assault but that was overturned by the Ontario Court of Appeal. The woman testified at trial that she consented to being choked unconscious and that she understood she might lose consciousness.

    Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin, writing for the majority, said a person must be conscious during sexual activity to give consent.

    Justice Morris Fish, writing for the dissenters, said that the woman consented to the sexual activity leading up to her unconsciousness and the unconsciousness itself.

    The case, brought to the top court last year, centred on whether someone can give advance consent to sexual activity that takes place while unconscious.

    The case reached the top court after Ontario’s appeal court acquitted a man, known as J.A., who had earlier been convicted of sexual assault against his partner, K.D. The couple practiced kinky sex and engaged in erotic asphyxiation. The man would choke his partner until she fell unconscious and then have sex with her. In the instance that caused the complainant to go to the police, the woman accused the man of sexually assaulting her with a dildo in her posterior while she was passed out.

    She told police she did not consent to that activity but later during the trial, she admitted she had consented to the activity and complained to police more than a month after the incident because of an argument she had with the man. The trial judge still ruled that the complainant could not legally consent in advance to sexual activity while unconscious and the man was convicted.

    The Ontario Court of Appeal then overturned the conviction. The majority of judges concluded that there was no basis for the lower court judge to find that a person cannot legally consent in advance to sexual activity expected to occur while that person is unconscious. One judge gave a dissenting opinion.
    Canadian Press

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  59. Sargasso Sea

    No word for penis in his native language?!

    That is totally compulsive lying behavior. Jeezus, it’s like saying there’s no word for *breathing* in my language.

    Actually there are 9 words for *penis/dick* in his native language according to a handy-dandy online dictionary that took me about 40 seconds to pull up.

    What a chengelele!

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  60. jilla

    Back to the Supreme Court decision on the woman anally raped while her hands were tied behind her back and she was unconscious. Turns out boyo had 23 prior assaults on his record. She didn’t make a formal complaint until a week or so later, and then after they had had an argument. Then, she recanted. Then she came back to it.

    Classic domestic violence/spousal abuse/rape.

    The relevant parts of the latest story:

    “Judge Nicholas sentenced the defendant – a career criminal identified only as J.A – to 18 months in jail. She said that he was dangerous, incorrigible and presented a continuing threat to his partner and their young son.

    J.A. was also ordered to see his son only under supervised access.

    Among J.A.’s 23 previous criminal convictions are three for domestic violence – including twice against his current partner. In one of these assaults, he kicked in her door, attempted to hit her with a wine bottle and called her a “whore, bitch, skank.”

    His conviction was later overturned by the Ontario Court of Appeal in a 2-1 ruling.

    The majority reasoned that an individual who consents to being sexually manipulated once unconscious has exercised “personal autonomy,” and that the possibility of withdrawing consent does not exist once one slips into unconsciousness.

    “The only state of mind ever experienced by the person is that of consent,” the majority said, comparing consenting to future sexual activity as being roughly equivalent to a patient who consents to surgery, knowing that it will be conducted while she under anesthetic.

    Writing in dissent, Mr. Justice Harry Laforme countered that the complainant’s consent was negated the moment that she passed out. “Consent ends when the active, independent, operating will ceases,” he said.

    Feminists and legal scholars saw the case as a serious erosion of a requirement that consent to sexual activity be revocable at any time.

    They feared that it could open the door to accused rapists claiming to have mistakenly believed a complainant agreed to sex before falling asleep or being rendered unconscious by alcohol or drugs.

    University of Ottawa law professor Elizabeth Sheehy, an expert in sexual assault, said the ruling created a sexual playground where inert bodies can be used for sexual purposes on the basis that consent was granted at some earlier date.

    “You are basically saying: ‘I’m your sex slave,’“ Prof. Sheehy said. “You can have sex with me when I’m not there.’“

    However, defence counsel Lorne Goldstein and Howard Krongold, who represented the 43-year-old defendant, argued that sexual freedom lay at the heart of the case. They said that it stood for the notion that individuals can exercise free control over their bodies.

    The defence also stressed the fact that the complainant approached the police only after a domestic squabble. She later recanted, which they claimed ought to have ended the matter.

    To the Crown, however, a recantation is a red flag signalling that a woman has been pressured to drop her allegations.

    “Sexual activity is the product of an ongoing, consensual relationship, Prof. Sheehy said. “The question is, are we really prepared to say that people can consent to having their bodies used in those ways? I think it degrades our humanity.”

    And for pedants and those who just like keeping track of these things, as they erode. And this one was a 6-3, so not all supremely intelligent and fair minded judges take umbrage at raping a woman who’s tied up and passed out.

    http:// (space) scc.lexum.org/en/2011/2011scc28/2011scc28.html

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  61. FAB Libber aka Dave the Squirrel

    The three prior dv charges seal the deal really.
    He needs a cell next door to our matey who cannot say the word cock in any language.

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