Could we have some civility in the feminist blogosphere, please?

via Bitch Magazine, which summarizes the feminist blogosphere’s response to the hiring Olivia Munn as the latest “correspondent” at “The Daily Show.”  I’m arriving really late in the game so I’m not going to comment on Munn (also I only have very basic cable so no longer watch TDS).  Instead, I’m going to focus on an observation made by one of the commentators to Emily Gould’s article in Slate:

“Thank you. I also have been trying for a while to get on board with Jezebel, but I have been deeply turned off by the “more correctly feminist than thou” tone, both in the articles and in the increasingly ridiculous comments section where I have had 22 year olds quote women’s studies textbooks at me about the definition of feminism. Seriously? It’s like a parody male fantasy of what ball-breaking feminazis are like, the irony being that all this venom is directed at other women posters as well as female subjects of articles.”

Now, I agree with many of the Slate commentators that much of Gould’s article is the pot calling the kettle black.  Yet, I’ve encountered this “more feminist than thou” perspective in my exchange with Amanda Marcotte at RH Reality Check.  Here is her reply to my post:

“Someone’s right to have “diverse experiences”, and certainly anyone can go off the pill if she likes. But Eldridge goes way beyond that. She hides behind “just asking questions” to spread paranoia about the pill, and then when called on it, denies that’s what she’s doing. It’s really irresponsible, and not based in science. For instance, this all came up in the context of a discussion about means to expand access by making the pill over the counter, which you were against. It’s really bad faith to suggest that you’re on the “it’s all good team” when you pop up only to argue against any measure that would make it easier for women to use the pill if they choose.”

Off course, that’s not what I said. Here is my reply to her comment:

“‘I’m not suggesting banning anything.  I also think that the argument in favor of an OTC switch has merit (which I said in my first comment on Amanda’s original article).  My point — which may have been lost in the harsh language of my post above — is that there are multiple issues at work here, not just a battle between science and conservative politics.  For example, how will the OTC switch affect the cost of oral contraceptives?  Using the case of the OTC switch for emergency contraception (which I strongly support), the cost went up considerably and because it was an OTC product, was not included in prescription drug coverage.  Although I agree that some people (conservatives especially) exaggerate the dangers of oral contraceptives, there are also some serious risks for some women that should not be ignored. ”

[Dear readers:  as further proof of my position, see my endorsement of the Oral Contraceptive Over-the-Counter Working Group].

Will Marcotte be satisfied with this, or will she continue to see me as part of the anti-science “feminist woo” crowd?  We’ll see.

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1 Comment

  1. 1.) http://www.thedailyshow.com It’s free. I don’t have cable and I wouldn’t have tv at all if a friend hadn’t given me hers last year. Also, please see http://www.colbertnation.com
    2.) You? Anti-science? That’s just absurd, considering you’re a medical and disability historian. Your class last year was all about women’s issues and medicine/science! You know you’re not anti-science and so does anyone who actually listens to what you say and even glances at your credentials, so I wouldn’t concern myself too much with what this woman thinks of you. In any movement, there’s going to be people who think they’re more x than thou, but that has everything to do with their own issues and nothing to do with you.

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