Firstly, allow me to introduce foreign readers to a novel Australian expression … ‘drop-kick‘. This post was originally about one drop-kick in particular. It was then broadened to consider how female drop-kicks are represented in the media generally, particularly in the context of the current COVID-19 pandemic.
That article mentions “a man diagnosed with coronavirus who recently travelled to Hamilton Island“. Actually it was a woman. Until this tourist travelled there, there were no other reported cases of COVID-19 in the region. The article also mentioned that the “ABC understands the patient recently travelled from New South Wales where they were first tested.”
A regional newspaper article published on 19 March 2020 (pay-wall protected) provides further/clearer details of the incident …
“A woman admitted to Mackay Hospital on Tuesday with coronavirus defied health orders and flew to Hamilton Island after being diagnosed with novel coronavirus in Sydney. It is understood the UK tourist, in her mid-30’s, was found on a Hamilton Island beach after NSW Health authorities alerted their Queensland counterparts”.
“She is understood to have told health authorities she did not understand the directive to self-isolate after testing positive to Covid-19“.
Meanwhile another article decries people who point the finger at those who may be carrying the virus:
“Seriously people, this is not the time for judging, finger pointing or shaming. Our world is in uncharted territory, we are all desperately trying to filter through the mass of news we’re consuming eager to decipher what works for us and our families.”
Yes, similar to the way feminists refrain from finger-pointing at, or shaming, men. All the time. Oh please, spare me the tunnel-vision!
A few more items related to the impact of Covid-19:
Yes, don’t be shocked but it’s been claimed that many women mix with local men whilst enjoying their holidays. But relax, because it’s so so different to that nasty sex-tourism thing that men do. I mean it’s not like the boys are prostitutes or anything, and it does seem fair that if they take time off work to show you around then a lady would buy them a meal or small gift. Or two.
Still those MRA scumbags rubbish anything that women value. So how have other feminists explained these very special holiday experiences?
“When women pay men for sex, it doesn’t have the same social effect because there is no history of women enslaving men” (Source)
““female sex tourism” oversimplifies the motives of these women and that “romance tourism” explains the complex nature of what these women are engaging themselves in while involved in romance tours. They also explain that the expression “female sex tourism”, “serves to perpetuate gender roles and reinforce power relations of female subordination, romance tourism in Jamaica provides an arena for change” (Source)
“Once, sometimes twice, a month I meet up with Justin, a 36-year-old divorcé. We go out for a meal and maybe to a club before spending the night in a hotel … But what differentiates our dates from the norm is that I pay for Justin’s company, including having sex with him” (Source)
Greetings and thanks to followers and/or supporters of this blog. Some of you might have noticed the lack of new posts for the past six or more months, and wondered if I had grown disinterested in the issues addressed herein …
Well, let’s flash back to December 2017. Imagine yours truly and family sitting in a Ford Mustang convertible parked on the side of the road in California. Though it was winter we had the top down and had pulled over to put some warm clothing on, or some such thing.
Sounds pretty cool huh?
Well yeah, but then an unlicensed/uninsured drunk slammed their car into the back of ours whilst they were barrelling along at highway speed. Both cars were write-offs. I have no memory of this, nor of the next couple of weeks of my life. The next thing I was aware of was sitting up in bed in what I thought was a bizarre looking motel room (who chose this place anyway?)
This was in fact the second hospital I had been admitted to by that stage. I learnt that I had been talking for a few days. I wish someone had taped that stuff … it could have been the meaning of life or something very insightful (joking). I was also told that I had been helped/taught to do everything beyond simply breathing. It was like someone had pushed a reset button on a laptop, and I was coming back online.
This unfortunate change of plans meant goodbye to our plans for a special Christmas dinner in Vancouver … and a whole lot more.
Anyway everyone survived, and luckily I was the only member of our family to receive more than cuts and bruises. So it would seem that god kept me alive to continue this blog. Either that or I was just lucky. But that doesn’t sound as profound so I’ll go with the former.
So my head’s been kind of fuzzy and I forgot all my passwords, and you could say that we’ve been rather tied up with medical, insurance and legal matters (unbelievably, only just winding up in August).
And updating this blog was one of the things that suffered.
OK, so what’s to learn from this episode?
Holidays can go from dreamy to nasty very quickly, so enjoy them while you can
Purchase travel insurance! And get it from a reliable provider. If we had not had travel insurance then this episode would have cost us more than US$300,000. Oh, and be sure to provide your partner with details at the start of your holiday, as it’s too late once you’re unconscious
Don’t anticipate getting compensated quickly, don’t expect the process to be easy, and don’t expect to cover all your costs. Our travel insurance claim took over five months to resolve (and was surprisingly time-consuming) and the court case took about seven months.
California has a Victims of Crime compensation process but it won’t address loss of personal property (and in our case for example, the rental car we were driving, and which was destroyed, was considered personal property). Even if the judge orders “restitution” as part of the sentencing process, as happened in our case, unfortunately there is no guarantee you will receive anything … let alone, anytime soon.
Apart from my family not being seriously injured, the only other good news was that the attitude of police/first responders and staff of the relevant District Attorney’s office was consistently respectful, helpful and positive.
On holidays and I thought it would be nice to provide a light-hearted change from another soul-destroying account of the ongoing ravages of gynocentrism and its bastard child, 3rd wave feminism.
I therefore dedicate this post to those readers who, like me, are afficiendos of the tradition of high-tea.
Today my partner kindly treated me to a visit to 137 Pillars House in Chiang Mai, Thailand.
Which is kind of funny considering my last post was entitled ‘Who pays on dates?’
I couldn’t fault the experience. I’ve had high tea in some pretty swanky places, such as the Ritz in London, the Empress Hotel in Victoria BC, and so on … and today’s experience was right up there. Click here for a photo tour of this stylish venue.
And not a harpy to be seen or heard.
So should you ever find yourself in this neck of the woods, come along and eat your fill. Then swan about like one of those mythical patriarchal overlords … if only for a precious hour or two.
Unfortunately I couldn’t but help to overhear their conversation. Were they talking about the beautiful natural environment all about them? No. Perhaps they were discussing the abundant cultural attractions? Nope. They were dissecting their experiences with guys they had met on their travels.
More specifically, they were discussing all the things that those guys had said or done or been, that rendered them unattractive as partners – or even as human beings. According to their toxic banter every one of those men was a loser. It was a bit like the girls described in this article, but ten years on.
With such an unpleasant demeanour, and competition from far more graceful and kindly locals (pictured below), I do hope those female tourists enjoy their solo journey … for the remainder of their holidays and beyond.
My next stop, just a kilometre or two down the road, was a famous Buddhist retreat where, thankfully, I managed to restore my sense of calm.
Now those women in the restaurant may or may not consider themselves to be feminists. I guess it is possible that they were merely ordinary folk who had been touched with the nasty stick.
Nevertheless on returning home that encounter got me thinking about whether anyone had written anything about feminism and Buddhism, and so I got busy with google and soon found a few references (below).
“I do not intend to be critical, but I simply do not understand how misandry and Mahayana are supposed to fit. Are you professing to adhere to a particular faith, and then immediately bending that faith to suit your neuroses? Are you taking refuge in the Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha for the benefit of all sentient beings just so long as no men are involved? …
Misandry — contempt of men — together with misogyny — contempt of women — are nothing more than gender-specific expressions of misanthropy — hatred of human beings. Since this is the very opposite of Buddhism, why should we give any voice at all to such thinking? Why should we pay this any attention, or give it any ground? Isn’t this something we should try to overcome?”
Another post that touches on western women in Thailand is here
The issue of traveller safety encompasses many topics such as sexual assault, robbery and scams, motor vehicle accidents, food poisoning, STD’s, animal bites, etc. Within the mainstream and online media however most attention is directed to sexual assault, and most media coverage of traveller safety focuses on threats to the personal safety of women. It’s as if males are immune from muggings, drink spiking, motor vehicle accidents, etc, or are deemed to be incapable of benefiting from advice.
Nevertheless, out in the real world, males are just as vulnerable to these threats as are females. No one questions that women are deserving of support and advice in relation to the issue of traveller safety. But it would appear that men being men, well you know, they should just suck it up. Or something.
Actually I just read a post in a feminist blog that informed me that men don’t need this sort of advice because men “can look after themselves“. Well to the extent that men *can* look after themselves whilst travelling, they do so chiefly by following the same sort of advice that they offer to women (and then get called victim-blamers!). Funny thing that.
Aside from feminist bias I can’t think of a logical reason why journalists persist in compartmentalising, along gender lines, their coverage of this issue … that is unless the goal is simply to perpetuate a myth of eternal victimhood.
And so it is that much of the online discussion of traveller safety is devoted to women railing against the injustice of being unable to dress like a hooker – according to local mores – without getting approached with offers of work. Oh, wait, perhaps the patriarchy made them do it? Just what is the big deal about briefly modifying one’s normal fashion style? Those people promulgating this crazy notion of polite compromise as being akin to outright capitulation, have a lot to answer for.
Guys, on the other hand, seem to be able to enjoy their holidays just fine without the need to show off their butt cheeks whilst shopping in the market.
No, no-one deserves to be harassed or raped. In an ideal world we could wear whatever we chose, and go where-ever we wanted at any time of the day or night, without attracting judgement or a violent response.
But it’s not an ideal world, and it is foolish to ignore patterns of behaviour correlated to higher levels of threat, in favour of feel-good public rituals and esoteric babbling about the need to “educate” men and boys. Sounds a lot like comfortable insulated upper middle-class delusion to me. The criminal underbelly of society, along with the mentally ill, naughty boys (and girls!) one and all. They just need a good talking to, and a couple of good Powerpoint presentations should do the trick.
Christian schools have been teaching the “do not steal” lesson for a couple of thousand years now, and we still seem to have a bit of a problem with theft. I am not saying that there is no place for education, but I sure wouldn’t be relying on it as the biggest stick in my armoury.
Oh, but heaven help any man who attempts to join the discussion and helpfully suggest tips like “don’t get drunk or take drugs”, “dress conservatively” or “don’t walk alone at night”, for they are immediately labelled victim-blamers and rape-apologists!
This theme, that the behaviour of women never causes nor contributes to the problems they encounter or anything bad that happens to them, is a feminist mainstay. And dare you suggest otherwise then you are the bad guy, even if you really don’t think you are … because your mind has been corrupted by “cognitive bias’ and ‘systemic sexism’. Move over Scientology!
And so in April 2014 a Australian feminist journalist by the name of Tracey Spicer wrote an article about how she didn’t want her children sat next to men on flights – see the article and related discussions here and here. This article in a feminist web site contributes nothing to the debate but there are some interesting points buried amongst the readers comments.
This blog post discusses an article by Wendy Tuohy on the same topic, but which in this case drips with hypocrisy bearing in mind the pronounced feminist bias of her prior repertoire of articles and offerings on social media.
Earlier generations of Australian women were mostly empathetic to a fault.
Nowadays perhaps not so much.
Empathy with the resident citizens of overseas countries
Some time ago I was reading the results of a survey of overseas travellers. It found that most travellers were disturbed by displays of cultural insensitivity by fellow travellers. Unfortunately the survey did not breakdown its results on the basis of variables such as gender.
This got me thinking about my own experiences living and travelling in Asia.
Thai culture is quite conservative but Thais will rarely inform tourists when they have crossed the border of social acceptability, unless they venture far beyond the bounds of decent behaviour. Expressions of polite conduct such as kreng jai – the Thai version of our ‘good manners’ – is highly important to them.
Mention Thailand and most people think of men behaving badly. And indeed some men do … as do some women. The difference is that those western men who misbehave tend to do so within touristy nightlife areas, in many cases within recognised ‘red light areas’. Their behaviour generally involves drunken debauchery within the confines of go-go bars or the like. There is nothing laudable about this, but at least the local Thai people in such areas tend to be inured to witnessing this type of behaviour. Outside these areas I have witnessed exceedingly few examples of western male travellers displaying overt cultural insensitivity.
In contrast I have seen many examples of western women behaving inappropriately outside the bar precincts. A common issue is that of wearing skimpy and revealing clothing in and around temples, and in public places such as markets or parks. This occurs despite the fact that any guidebook on Thailand clearly states that such clothing is considered unacceptable, as well as there being signs installed in many locations.
On this note I happened across the following comments by a female editor of an English-language magazine in Thailand:
“Then there is the trio of English lasses who were found wandering around Wat Phra Singh a few weeks back in their bikinis! It has nothing to do with cultural insensitivity or ignorance. It is just a willful refusal to give a crap. Their grandmothers would have taken a wooden spoon to their bottoms had they trotted into the local church dressed that way.”
I have never confronted anyone about this particular transgression, but from discussions in online forums the attitude seems to be “this is my style, why should I have to change to suit them?”, or they are old-fashioned/sexist and *they* should change. I have also noticed plenty of instances of western women exhibiting exceptionally intrusive, pushy and loud behaviour in public places (particularly for example during community events).
Anyway that’s what this correspondent has noticed in going about his daily business, but discussions with Thai women revealed some other issues. These were women who either ran businesses, or worked in other peoples shop-front businesses (not bar-related, I hasten to add). I must first explain that Thai women are generally in awe of western women, and in general there is no underlying animosity whatsoever.
One after the other these women told me similar accounts of their dealing with western female customers, and of their surprise, dismay and occasional anger at the rude behaviour they often encountered. This included body language (like eye rolling and pained expressions) plus clicking noises of annoyance, and rude gestures and insulting words.
As noted, these were just my own observations – what do others think? Are western women travelling overseas less inclined to observe and maintain local cultural decorum, than western men? And if so, why? Do you think it might it be related to an increasingly overdone feeling of entitlement, and of being beyond criticism/censure? That sense of feeling oneself to be a ‘special snowflake’?