The Feminist Leader Who Became a Men's-Rights Activist - Cathy Young - The Atlantic: "Karen DeCrow, the feminist attorney and author who served as president of the National Organization for Women from 1974 to 1977, died of melanoma last Friday at 76. Although her passing was widely noted in the media, most the obituaries and tributes overlooked the more unorthodox aspects of her work. A lifelong champion of women’s rights, DeCrow was nonetheless skeptical about many key aspects of latter-day feminism, including its focus on sexual violence and male abuse of women. She was also, for much of her career, a men’s-rights activist...
DeCrow raised eyebrows in 1981 when she served as defense counsel to Frank Serpico, the former New York detective and whistleblower, in a paternity suit. Serpico claimed the plaintiff had used him as a “sperm bank” and lied about being on the Pill while knowingly trying to conceive, and asserted that he had a constitutional right not to become a parent against his will. (The family-court judge, a woman, ruled in Serpico’s favor, but he lost on appeal.) DeCrow, by then a lawyer in private practice in Syracuse, New York, endorsed Serpico’s argument on feminist grounds. “Just as the Supreme Court has said that women have the right to choose whether or not to be parents, men should also have that right,” she told The New York Times, calling this “the only logical feminist position to take.”
In a 1982 letter to the Times, she wrote that since men have no legal power to either veto or compel an abortion, it is only just that they shouldn’t have to pay for a woman’s unilateral decision to bring the pregnancy to term: “Or, put another way, autonomous women making independent decisions about their lives should not expect men to finance their choice.” DeCrow also championed men’s rights as fathers, arguing for a “rebuttable presumption” of shared custody after divorce...
DeCrow was willing to do it, and to say that many divorced mothers whose professional lives would benefit from shared custody were unreasonably opposed to this option—not only because of the social stigma of being viewed as “bad moms” but out of sheer hostility toward their ex-husbands. In a 1984 Father’s Day column, DeCrow described a conversation with a client, a divorced mother of three who was having childcare troubles because of an unusual work schedule: “‘What about the father?’ I asked. ‘Is he willing to take them during those hours?’ ‘Their father?’ she exclaimed. ‘That’s just what he wants!’” To some feminists, this may sound like a troubling echo of misogynistic stereotypes of the spiteful ex-wife; but to DeCrow, it was a human issue, not a “gendered” one. In a 1994 interview, she lamented that “in the battle between the sexes, men and women will go practically to the end of the earth in illogical, irrational ways to give each other pain.”"
...in the early 1990s, she applauded Katie Roiphe’s critique of “rape-crisis feminism,” The Morning After, as a courageous challenge to a “new puritanism” that depicted women as perpetual victims of male predation. Recalling the bad old days when girls were taught to deny both their brains and their sexuality, DeCrow was tangibly impatient with the idea that “being whistled at, or even slurped at” amounted to “oppression.”"
...There were other heresies, too. DeCrow, who started her feminist journey by fighting sex discrimination in the workplace, contributed a foreword to Warren Farrell’s 2005 book, Why Men Earn More, which argued that the pay gap is due largely to men’s and women’s different workplace behavior and career choices; understanding these patterns, DeCrow believed, could help women’s advancement."
Scott Adams Blog: School Shootings 06/13/2014: "I know you're furiously trying to determine if I am pro-gun or anti-gun so you can decide how much extra to hate me. So let me state my position as clearly as possible: I am pro-data. And the data is incomplete. Obviously there's a strong correlation between gun ownership and gun deaths. But how much of that is causation as opposed to correlation? One can never know if Americans own guns because we're violent people or we're violent because we own guns. Isn't it likely to be some of both? Common sense says that having guns lying around the house makes gun violence more likely. But we don't know if the accessibility factor is 10% of the story or 90%. Maybe the rate of stabbings would skyrocket if guns disappeared and that would close some of the violence gap. My point is that it's hard to size the problem of gun risk, and that matters because the goal is low risk not zero risk. If we wanted zero risk in all things at the expense of personal freedom we would fill every swimming pool with bubble wrap...
We also can't know if gun ownership will ever protect future citizens from the tyranny of the government. One argument says that the army has the biggest guns and so citizens are effectively defenseless if the government becomes a dictatorship. Therefore, owning a gun doesn't protect you from the government. The counterargument is that if an American becomes a dictator, every one of his friends and extended family members would be bullet-riddled by the end of the week courtesy of the gun owners. What would be the point of becoming a dictator in a country where you can't leave your enclave and you just killed most of the people you care about with your actions? I think gun ownership does add a thin layer of protection against a risk of a dictatorship by rational leaders, but that risk is of unknown size. How do you value the thing that might happen but doesn't?
The only thing I know for sure is that the "It is in the constitution" argument is misplaced. No matter what the founders had in mind at the time, we have the option to change it. So the question is what makes sense today, not what a bunch of hemp-smoking slave-owners thought hundreds of years ago. I'm curious if you think you have enough data to form an opinion on the topic of American gun control. Gun control qualifies as common sense, but in my experience common sense in the context of insufficient data is irrationality in disguise."
New Ruling Shows the NSA Can’t Legally Justify Its Phone Spying Anymore | Opinion | WIRED: "The Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals said no this week to tracking your movements using data from your cell phone without a warrant when it declared that this information is constitutionally protected. The case, United States v. Davis , is important not only because it provides substantive and procedural protections against abuse of an increasingly common and highly invasive surveillance method. It also provides support for something Christopher Sprigman and I have said before — that the government’s other “metadata” collection programs are unconstitutional."
The Heart of the Matter: Iraq, Vietnam, and Why US Foreign Policy Elites Won't STFU: "With Iraq splitting into three (eight years ago, I explained why this was going to happen and why the US should get behind it), I wondered whether any establishment media outlets would refer to a civil war there. I did a search for the applicable terms, and came up with… not much. Apparently, if it’s happening in a Designated Enemy Country like Syria it immediately gets called a civil war. But if it’s happening in a country we ourselves destroyed, we can't bear to be overly accurate and descriptive in our nomenclature, so it’s just "militants."
I also searched for “Iraq Vietnam.” Because you don’t have to be a historian to remember that this sounds an awful lot like the endgame in Vietnam... Here, I was intrigued to see that my search returned one big hit: a Daily Beast article by the ultimate foreign policy insider: Leslie Gelb. According to the headline, "Iraq Is Vietnam 2.0 And U.S. Drones Won’t Solve The Problem."
...Gelb supported the war in Iraq. He was part of it. He lent it triple-distilled establishment cred. So how incredibly psychologically convenient for him that “the problem” isn’t the war he supported, the war that killed up to 500,000 Iraqis and turned another 4,000,000 into refugees (in a population about 20% the size of America’s), the war that destroyed whatever infrastructure was holding the country together. No, the only problem is the Iraqi government. And it actually gets worse from there.
...this notion that when America “squanders” (rare moment of honest nomenclature there) the lives of its soldiers in foreign wars, we’re doing it for the good of the people of the countries we invade, rather than for our own selfish ends? It’s the psychological gift that keeps on giving, enabling people like Gelb to go on supporting America’s wars because America’s wars really aren’t wars at all, no, America's wars are in fact simply the magnanimous gifting of freedom and democracy to poor benighted peoples overseas, bestowed in beneficence by a generous, loving, enlightened people. Gelb’s subtext is right there, though it would be considered uncouth in his circles to say it plainly: You're welcome, Iraq, you fucking ingrates. Now no more freedom gifts for you until you show us you’re mature enough to use them responsibly...
If our “good guys” can’t supply this motivation for themselves, Americans should have learned by now that we in our goodness and kindness and sacrifice cannot supply it for them. That’s the central lesson of warfare for more than half a century. That’s the essential moral Americans can’t seem to learn.
More pure American beneficence! More foreign ingrates! And… I’m sorry, but holy fucking shit, that is "the central lesson of warfare for more than half a century”? That is "the essential MORAL Americans can’t seem to learn”? That America is good and kind and sacrifices selfishly, but that’s not enough to supply foreigners with the proper motivation? That someone can say something like this out loud while maintaining a brand as a Serious Foreign Policy Expert rather than being castigated and shunned as a moral monster is stunning."
I dug on The Equalizer tv show when I was a kid. This looks to hold up pretty well. Denzel in full "Man on Fire" mode.