Monthly Archives: March 2004

I wonder…

…how many people see things like this or this and have the notion that they should get the skull themselves, and then have tattooed on themselves the skull's carvings?

I once gave a pair of skulls to a friend who's an artist. One skull was perfect with full dentition and was prepped as a museum piece, and indeed, had come from a medical collection. The other had no teeth, was beat up, and had been graverobbed after a flood destroyed a Chinese cemetary.

My friend was feeling uncomfortable having the latter skull with him, and felt that maybe he was a part of the former inhabitant's suffering. Now, in an attempt to help end that cycle, he includes that skull in much of his artwork, giving it respect and life again.

PS. The above links are actually to a pretty neat site that's run by a frequent BME contributor…

Something that should be mentioned

Even without Bill Heath et al's additions to the anti-FGM bill, it's still a pretty messed up bill that I don't support… It's still a repressive anti-woman bill that shouldn't be passed as is. The part that gets me is the start of the second section, defining the criminal as,

Any person:
(1) Who knowingly circumcises, excises, pierces, or infibulates, in whole or in part, the labia majora, labia minora, or clitoris of a female;
(c) This Code section shall not apply to procedures performed ... when necessary to preserve the physical health of the female or during or after labor or childbirth for medical reasons connected with the labor or childbirth.

So to be clear, this bill even its original form takes away women's right to their bodies. It says that even adult women have no right to have corrective genital surgery (more, more, more — links to a local plastic surgeon) unless it's being done for the purposes of childbirth. Men of course are still allowed to have genital enhancement surgery in Georgia, and male circumcisions are also legal of course.

I have no problem with a law that says you can't cut up your kid's genitals. But I have a big problem with a law that effectively says the government owns the genitals of the adult citizens, rather than the people themselves owning them. If you call your Senator, consider asking them to be clear that this is a law that applies to minors only. This law is wrong, in both flavors its been presented in.

The land speaks

Today is the 200th anniversary of the US government giving Native Americans notice that they were no longer permitted to live East of the Mississipi. Along those lines, tomorrow is the 190th anniversary of Massacre of Tohopeka, in which Andrew Jackson and his men killed hundreds of Cree. To count them, they cut off their noses, making a pile of almost six hundred, and brought back grisly souveniers — the skins of the natives, cut off like animals, to later be tanned as decorations.

This is what it looks like outside my apartment right now. There's a lot of fog. I've included two photos so you can see how kooky it is.

Of course, Saturday is Rachel's day if we're playing the anniversary game, with Saturday being the 72nd anniversary of Amelia Earhart's solo flight across the Atlantic (the first for a woman). As you probably know, as much as people like to think she flew off to a tropical love island, she was later killed by her drunk male navigator. Earheart's death is only a small part in a giant “conspiracy” to keep women from flying. After all, women test pilots and women astronauts have consistently outperformed their male counterparts from day one — so much so that NASA had to quietly scrap their female astronaut program, since they would have ended up with an all-woman moon program.

I wonder how different a place the world would be if NASA had allowed those women to — without any men involved — land on the moon and be humanity's first extra-terrestrial ambassadors? What message would it send to the people of the world (and the people of the United States)?

Other than that, I wonder if it's Condoleeza Rice that's going to take the fall for 9/11 (more). It's kind of looking that way… I wonder, in the dirty game of politics, do you throw a black woman to the wolves in a situation like this, or do you protect the few black women insane enough to become Republicans at all costs?

Other than that, I find it highly amusing that the US is saying that it can stay in Iraq as long as it wants (past the formal occupation conclusion on June 30) becuase it already has a UN resolution to do so (more)! So the June 30, 2004 date has at least been pushed back to December 31, 2005 I suppose. This game they play with the UN is really quite funny…

Another dumb fuck

This hate-filled article is about Ella and Julien, both wonderful people who many of you know. Here's a copy of the letter to the editor that I sent:

From: Shannon Larratt
Subject: Re: "Lashings of Love" (March 25, 2004)

Dear Editor,

Bill Brownstein disgusts me. Congratulations for having hired one of the more closed-minded writers in this country. He may be ashamed that Ella and Julien live in Montreal because they have fit and attractive decorated bodies -- but I am equally ashamed that he lives in Canada (and it has nothing to do with his unattractive old man body or his bizarre face-width fish grin).

Whatever happened to Pierre Trudeau's Canada where what we did in our bedrooms was our right to enjoy as we see fit?

When I go to Montreal I'm proud to be in a city that's got a rich and diverse culture with people living in a myriad of different ways and expressing themselves in a radiant tapestry that makes Canada the wonderful place it is. As a people, most of us understand that it's important that we foster these arts, rather than just discarding them as "mutilation". It's sad that Bill Brownstein doesn't think much of these Canadian values, and it's even sadder than a reputable newspaper would print his hatred.

Canada isn't about old men's onanism over "mud rasslin'" and the "Victoria's Secret catalogue" that Brownstein opines for. Canada is about a wide mix of people helping each other to create a great country that all individuals are able to be themselves in, without fear of being attacked for simply saying "hey, this is me, and this makes me happy".

Shannon Larratt

Old pictures

I found some cool old pictures of my brother, looking for some to show to someone who sent in a photo of their armwrestling fan tattoo — I thought they'd get a kick out of my brother being a world champion in it…

Pretty impressive!