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The Insult And Intimidation Of Black Women Is As American As Apple Pie

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In an ideal world, we would spend the next few hundred words articulating the significance of a Black woman achieving rapid career acceleration in the entertainment industry after decades of hard work. Leslie Jones’s addition to SNL, an institution Whiter than tampon commercial underwear, is a major accomplishment. As is her being cast in the Ghostbusters reboot.

Instead, we are forced to lament what continues to be the striking reality for Black women in the age of social media. That with increased visibility comes increased vitriol. And that we exist in a society that feels entitled to dictate the narrow confines of where Black women are allowed to flourish versus the spaces that we should not encroach.

This isn’t a tale limited to Leslie; the Rio Olympics had us revisiting the targeted insults lobbied at Gabby Douglas, a young woman who has also been open about how the ill-spirited commentary affected her. Talk to any Black woman of any level of notoriety or platform in social media and you’ll be regaled with tale after tale of unprompted gender-based and race-based (and sometimes both at the same time) hate speech from keyboard trolls the world over. Ultimately, the plight of online harassment, on Twitter especially, has been an oft-discussed problem that seems to have received minimal traction from the company on a grand scale. 

One could argue that yes, this happens to many women regardless of gender. But the layering of race is too critical to ignore here as just a minor component. Jones’s costars Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy, and Kate McKinnon certainly haven’t been compared to a deceased silverback gorilla. Or referred to as “big-lipped coons.” Or been the target or a publicly coordinated attack by a Breitbart writer. Or any of the other vitriolic slurs that targeted not just Leslie’s gender, but her race, as well as her aesthetic existing on the outliers of what is viewed as traditionally beautiful for Hollywood elite. Jones has been forced to bear the brunt of the attacks herself, with limited public support (if any) from her costars, a circumstance, which, by her own admission, she is used to. An unfortunate reality for a Black woman with a certain level of exposure.

This all came to a head, when hackers infiltrated Leslie’s personal website with her sensitive personal information, not only doxing her, but leaking nude photos from her iCloud and uploading a video of the deceased gorilla Harambe.

The last time this happened on a major scale — with the victims being Jennifer Lawrence and Kate Upton, amongst others — the public outcry was so deafening that the FBI got involved. I’m still awaiting for any of these two conditions to arise in the light of these circumstances. At the time of writing, her costars have yet to comment publicly in support of Leslie’s continuously unwarranted plight. (Editor’s note: The FBI is involved now.)

Instead, what I have witnessed is a plethora of jokes at Leslie’s expense with regards to leaking her nudes; as if a woman who doesn’t fit the perceived mainstream standards of desirability should be less entitled to outrage at her violation of privacy than the Jennifer Lawrences and Scarlett Johannsons of the world. The impetus behind leaking, after all, isn’t just to share the bits and kibbles of America’s most beautiful; its to inflict shame and embarrassment upon women for exercising the right to celebrate their body at their discretion. And the additional layer of comparing Leslie’s physical aesthetic to that of an animal — a comparison with historically racist implications — is intended to add further insult to her public exposure, inviting criticisms to the concept of her or anyone else to celebrating her form as an exercise in mockery and humiliation.

It shouldn’t be expected of Leslie to just persevere and rise above this. While it is admirable that she has so far transformed the spurts of written violence into moments of awareness and advocacy, that isn’t a weight that she should have to carry alone, and the absence of certain voices to uplift her in these trials and tribulations is also deafening. We shouldn’t be expecting Leslie to push through this adversity, we should be demanding civility and gatekeeping from the arbiters of the ecosystem that was intended to be built for healthy public engagement and not hate speech. Cyberbullying against Black Women shouldn’t be our expected burden to bear; we are people, not battering rams, entitled to justice, civility and a base-level respect that should be afforded to any human at all levels of celebrity. As social media continues to expand and transform, it is paramount that we collectively hold accountable the gatekeepers of the applications we keep viable via our engagement, and demand that the protection of Black women from targeted attacks be prioritized in the ongoing battles of cyberbullying and internet harassment.

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bibliogrrl
1 hour ago
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Chicago!
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EpiPen maker Mylan will make its allergy treatment more affordable

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The maker of the EpiPen will make its lifesaving allergy treatment more affordable after mounting pressure from the likes of Hillary Clinton, who yesterday called the device’s price hikes "outrageous."

Mylan NV will offer a savings card that covers as much as $300 of the $600 cost of an EpiPen two-pack for those paying full price, the company said in a statement. Previously, the savings card covered $100. Mylan added that it is expanding eligibility for its patient-assistance program, which makes the allergy treatment cheaper for underinsured families.

These changes do not actually lower the $600 list price of the EpiPen, which delivers a hormone called epinephrine that ends a potentially deadly allergy attack. There’s less than $1 worth of the hormone in each EpiPen, which are sold in two-packs due to federal guidelines.

The price of the EpiPen has jumped over 400 percent in the past few years. Mylan chief executive Heather Bresch, who is the daughter of Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia, said that the company "recognize[s] the significant burden on patients" from paying full list price.

The move comes a day after Clinton called on Mylan to cut the price immediately. Some senators, including Susan Collins of Maine and Claire McCaskill of Missouri, had made similar statements, as did the American Medical Association.

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bibliogrrl
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angelchrys
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Overland Park, KS
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bibliogrrl
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Illinois says goodbye to the EpiPen

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By Terry James

SPRINGFIELD – Gov. Bruce Rauner signed a bill that will save local paramedics thousands of dollars when treating those who are having allergic reactions.

Illinois State Sen. Chapin Rose said the same medication in the very expensive EpiPen can be delivered through a syringe for pennies on the dollar.

“You can get it for $50 if you just dispense it out of a vial,” said Rose. “$2400 versus $50 that is just crazy.”

Rose criticized EpiPen maker Mylan saying ‘[they are pricing themselves out of business.’ He said they are losing a large buyer of the product when Illinois no longer needs to buy EpiPens.

Terry James can be reached at terry@wjbc.com.

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satadru
16 hours ago
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Reducing artificial demand is one way to deal with the problem of artificially constrained supply.
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angelchrys
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bibliogrrl
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bibliogrrl
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dogmatix: idiopathicsmile: idiopathicsmile: emilysidhe: idiopathicsmile: theragnarokd: idiopath...

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dogmatix:

idiopathicsmile:

idiopathicsmile:

emilysidhe:

idiopathicsmile:

theragnarokd:

idiopathicsmile:

it is pretty hard to find solid statistics on wolf attacks, but as far as i can tell, wolves in north america kill way way way less than one person a year, which means that forces more deadly to us than wolves include: dogs, ice fishing, and getting crushed by a falling flat screen tv.

…further complications to trying to write non-ridiculous angst into a werewolf story

“you don’t understand…i’ve done things under the full moon that i can never take back…one time i ate a squirrel”

“I SNIFFED MY OWN BUTT. THE INDIGNITY HAUNTS ME STILL.”

“i have pooped in the woods and now must go brood about it. don’t try to follow me. 

…and seriously, be careful around your flatscreen, it is probably heavier that you think.”

European wolves (before they were hunted into extinction in most areas) attacked humans purposefully a lot; it’s in the historical record.

North American gray wolves have a natural fear of humans and attack people very rarely, really only when threatened or starving.

So like, imagine, like, a divide between people who got infected with Old World and New World lycanthropy.  One makes you this dangerous beast that sees humans as a viable food source an another makes you perceive humans as a threat.  Imagine people getting it wrong!

Some shady paranormal group capturing a werewolf to use as security but it just runs away when people trespass.

Some hunters go deep into the woods to murder a werewolf clan for their pelts but it turns out they’ve isolated themselves so deeply because they have the European strain and none of the hunters survive.

New werewolves are so confused because the websites give conflicting advice:  get yourself to your nearest national park when you’re about to turn and just let yourself run free; if you try to cage yourself the claustrophobia and the smell of people will make you panic and you could really hurt yourself or someone else.

vs

If you’re anywhere near human civilization you must make sure you turn in a closed space that you can’t escape from in wolf form or you’ll definitely kill someone.  Just try to take a nap during the full moon, OK.

And they’re like, WHAT DO I DO WHICH ONE DO I HAVE?

updated position: at the end of the day, there are, in fact, a number of possible compelling werewolf problems

case in point, the global werewolf cultural divide!

on the subject of the global werewolf cultural divide, another update, per wikipedia:

Wolves from different geographic locations may howl in different fashions: the howls of European wolves are much more protracted and melodious than those of North American wolves, whose howls are louder and have a stronger emphasis on the first syllable. The two are however mutually intelligible, as North American wolves have been recorded to respond to European-style howls made by biologists (x)

that’s right guys: wolves have accents

@darkicedragon

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bibliogrrl
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