Wednesday, October 10, 2007

GUEST POST: Girl Fights and Boy Toys

Suggestion: for a quick, deep glimpse into the heart of the beast, go for half-hour treadmill workout at your local gym where you can gaze at a battery of overhead flatscreen TVs, each tuned to a different channel.

A random sequence of images from this morning's visit:
—an endlessly repeated video clip of a vicious girl fight in a high school locker room
—a promo for the Bionic Woman (much running, jumping, drop-kicking of bad-guys)
—a music video of Jennifer Lopez beating the crap out of more bad-guys in a brothel or something, setting an example for the oppressed sistahs
—a Hummer barrels menacingly towards the viewer through a nighttime wilderness, scaring off would-be attackers (wolves, scorpions); in a second ad the Hummer is shown from a gamer's POV, barreling into a morphing sequence of rough terrains (desert, arctic, tundra).
— yet another news story on a private "security" firm killing more civilians in Iraq, two women shot dead in their car

What seems to be the signal cutting through all the media noise? Is it that it's OK now for women to be violent, because, hey, we all get to watch, while men have ramped up to the next level and gone invisible (and unaccountable), inside our all-terrain, obstacle-and-reality-proof paramilitary vehicles? We can't be sure. But let wolves, scorpions, the environment and helpless civilians beware.

[UPDATE: Deborah Siegel was originally slated to appear on MSNBC this afternoon to comment on the Ohio middle school girl fight video mentioned above, but the story was preempted by the tragic school shooting in Cleveland. With shock and sadness we recognize that the two events are part of a broader ongoing crisis — rage and violence amidst our children — which seems to compound itself day by day. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims in Cleveland and their families.]

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