The Feminist Toolbox by Marie Cartier


Photo of Marie Cartier by Lenn Keller

This spring I am teaching “Feminist Ethics” at California State University Northridge. For the students’ midterm and final we are doing an innovative project that we want to share with the “Feminism and Religion” blogging community. My students have been asked to find a problem in the public world, or their private world, that they wish to interact with and provide a solution for. The solution can solve the problem or a piece of the problem. They must deconstruct the problem and then construct the solution for the midterm. For their final they actually must *do* the solution.

In creating their solution, they must address and use the tools in what I call “the Feminist Ethical Toolbox.” These tools are ones we have been extracting from the class readings (so far we have read the anthologies Feminist Theological Ethics, and Feminist Ethics and Social Policy, and Carol Gilligan’s philosophical treatise on the patriarchy, In The Deepening Darkness, and the students have been using the toolbox and its accumulated (and accumulating) tools throughout the class, in their own lives, and interacting with the toolbox in the reading response journals in terms of looking at wider world issues.

The tools in what my students call “Cartier’s Toolbox” are as follows:

1. Is everyone affected by the decision (the solution to the problem) at the decision making table?

2. If they are not at the table, are they represented at the table by someone who will speak to their interests?

3. Are all points of view represented by equal resources? Is everyone at the table able to present their points of view equally?

4. Is the private considered as important as the public?

5. Is the “I” voice listened to as well as the third person speaking for someone else voice?  Is, as Bettina Aptheker states in Tapestries of Life, personal testimony valid?

6. Do people come from a place of empathy in listening to others, and not sympathy?

There is a training for using this last tool that we use in the class that I call “the circle of empathy” that involves listening and placing one’s self in the center of another’s circle, and trying to view their choices from the center of that circle, rather than judging people through a window. The idea is that when we become conscious of it we realize that we are often looking out at people —rather than trying to see from their point of view. Ideally what we want is to see the same view as the person we are trying to empathize with—seeing from the center of their circle.

Students also practice this “circle of empathy” training by engaging in conversations consciously, for one week at least, by saying “What I wish for you is…,” rather than “What I would do if I were you is….”

One note about the toolbox is that for condition number one to be fulfilled–“is everyone at the table?” –the dominant paradigm’s point of view does not necessarily have to be at the decision making table. Often the dominant paradigm has actually created the problem and if so, their point of view is already firmly in place at the table and already in the conversation.

Following this blog my current students will be posting their ideas for this year’s projects and sincerely hope that you – our “Feminism and Religion” blogging community will provide some feedback and conversation.

Let me elaborate first with at least one example from my last year’s Feminist Ethics class. One student felt the problem she wanted to interact with was the lack of information that women receive who want to get breast implants. Plastic surgeons are not required to give women information about all of the dangers of breast implants. My student did not want to take away a woman’s autonomy to receive implants but she also did not want women to not have the information they need to make an informed decision. She created a tri-fold brochure as her final project outlining the problems that women face if they choose breast implants. Students must document their projects, and the solutions. To complete her part of her proposed solution, she printed stacks of the brochure and delivered them to the waiting rooms of several plastic surgeons that she has discovered did not provide this information and photographed her brochures in their waiting rooms.

Another student was bothered that men had so much trouble integrating the feminist theory of variable gender roles into their psyches. He created a YouTube video interviewing over 100 men and having them hold a white board on which they printed feminine traits that they were not afraid to share with the world. Men held signs that read, “I sleep with a stuffed animal.” “I shave my legs.” “I’m not afraid to cry.” “I love chick flicks,” etc. At the end my student held a sign that read, “Fuck gender roles.” This video project was accompanied by a large art installation of photographs of his informants which he displayed at our women’s center, as well as posting the video on YouTube and other social media sites, and receiving and responding to commentary.

Students from this year’s class will be posting their ideas on this blog—they will be posting what the problem is that they want to interact with, what they see as a possible solution and the solution and/or piece of that solution that they want to actually *do.*

We are very grateful to “Feminism and Religion” for giving us this opportunity to dialogue with a wider audience outside our classroom and we welcome your feedback.

(Drum roll) Presenting the Spring CSU Northridge Gender Women’s Studies 360, “Feminist Ethics” class!

Marie Cartier is a teacher, poet, writer, healer, artist, and scholar. She holds a BA in Communications from the University of New Hampshire; an MA in English/Poetry from Colorado State University; an MFA in Theatre Arts (Playwriting) from UCLA; an MFA in Film and TV (Screenwriting) from UCLA; and an MFA in Visual Art (Painting/Sculpture) from Claremont Graduate University. She is also a first degree black belt in karate, Shorin-Ryu Shi-Do-Kan Kobayashi style. Ms. Cartier has a Ph.D. in Religion with an emphasis on Women and Religion from Claremont Graduate University.



Categories: Activism, Ethics, Feminism, Gender and Power, Gender and Sexuality

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225 replies

  1. Marie, you are awesome. And that Youtube video is beautiful! I smiled the whole way through. Thank you for sharing it here.

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  2. I wish you’d been my teacher when I was in college. But that was in the olden days before there was anything feminist. Your students are so fortunate. How can you export your class to every school on the planet?

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  3. I wish I could see a giant video with a woman holding a sign. Can we keep male faces to a minimum? They have plenty of face time all over the rest of the world.

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    • Turtle women, I respect your can we “keep male faces to minimum” opinion, but I feel that I need to say that this wonderful video show how men like the guy behind this project is affect by living in a patriarchal society and if anything, I think that he made this video to show that he is working for women and their ideology of equality by breaking down gender roles. I just don’t believe that we don’t need to start a “war” or exclude all men in this world to get our voice heard.

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  4. Marie, this is awesome! Thank you for being such an inspirational teacher and allowing your students to not only *learn* about feminism but actually *do* feminism. Loved the video! Can’t wait to see what’s next!

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  5. Before I begin to discuss my ethical problem found in the public world, I want to say that yes, I am luck to have Cartier as my professor (twice).
    As I began to think about the many ethical issues we have in this world, both in the private as well as in the public sphere, I decided to work on a problem that I personally feel passionate about and something I hope I can give more awareness too, considering its not necessarily a “western” ethical issue. I am going to use the feminist tool box to deconstruct the old practice of Female Genital Mutilation, also referred to as FMG. For those who are not aware about this issue, it is an old cultural practice of partially or totally removing the external female genitalia. The minor form of FGM is when the clitoris is removed while the most severe form is when all external genitalia are removed and the vaginal opening is stitched nearly closed.
    There is a perceived notion that this only happens in Islamic world which is a very misleading because FGM is not a religious practice, but rather a cultural tradition performed all over the world such as in central Africa, southern Sahara, part of the Middle East, Indonesia and Pakistan. There are also many reasons why FGM is practiced, including social, economic, and political reasons. In some groups, women who are not cut are viewed as dirty and treated badly because they are disloyal to their culture, and in the end, not marriageable. It is also performed to keep a woman’s virginity by limiting her sexual behavior.
    Whenever you have an ethical issue such as FGM, it’s not easy to deconstruct the problem from a subjective view point. Every person has moral and ethical values that they use to justify their action in life and personally, I want to end this practice because I don’t believe any ethical defense can be made for preserving a cultural practice that damages women’s health and interferes with her sexuality. But I am not doing this project in order to discuss the moral or ethical dilemma in this issue, but rather to inform about the health problems caused by FGM, both short-term and long-term. It is estimated that between 100 million and 140 million girls and women worldwide have received FGM and the question I ask myself is, how do we help these women who have been subjected to FGM with their health issue such as bleeding, infection, trauma, not being able to have sex normally, problems getting pregnant, psychological and emotional stress etc. Another question I ask myself is, are those who practice FGM aware about the sever health issue FGM inflicts on young girls and if so, do they inform the parents the risk they take for cutting their daughters. It is important to recognize that more often than not, those people who make this procedure have no medical training and its often done under unclean condition with unclean tools.
    These and other questions related to women’s health is what I want first and foremost deconstruct and then I want to create a website that can be used to inform people about the health issues. I am aware of the fact that accessibility to internet, let alone a computer, is limited in countries were this practice is found, but I am hoping that this site can be utilize to educate everyone perpetuating this practice about the heath issue inflicted on young girls. I also hope that this site can be a venue for those women who are seeking support, understanding and empathy for the problems they have to go through because of FGM.

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    • great, mona…can you say more about the website? i like that you discuss how the site may not be accessible to everyone…depending on resources. can you think of a way that the site may be linked to resources people may come into contact with — if they do not have access to computers for instance? and is your idea to actually construct the site?…very nice work. i look forward to your continued postings (and class discussions!) on this

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    • Hey Mona, I love your topic and I think it is a serious issue that people may not know much about. For your art collage, and any other art in general ( hopefully you do another spoken word, you are amazing), I think the visual aid truly helps people feel your problem and want to get involved. For your topic especially, the horrible imagery associated with FGM is horrifying, but needs to be seen, as well as you teaching us the health risks involved.

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  6. looking forward to more students’ participation!

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  7. Hi professor, hope spring break is treating you well.
    Yes, my idea is to construct the site by myself. What I was thinking is that this site will include information of the health issue by linking to other useful sites that have done extensive work on this such as Waris Dire, the Somalian model that have written a book about this experience and also started an organization. I believe that by linking to other resources such as Dires organization or other International health organization and women’s right advocates that may have direct contact to these places,the information is more likely to be reached out to more people. Eventually, this could lead to open discussion and more community meeting that provides opportunities to discuss their knowledge of FGM. However, I am still working on the accessibility issue so hopefully I figure out a better way to use the site for more reach-ability. I also want to include personal testimonial on this site from women who have undergone FGM so they can feel that they can share their experience without someone talking for them. I also hope that knowing that they are not alone or wont be treated differently, it can open up a blog conversation where different aspect of the health issue can be brought to the forefront. This is the ideas I have for now…to be continued.

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  8. For my Feminist ethics midterm and final I will focus on the availability of clothing for plus size women (Women with a dress size of 14 and up). I think this is a problem because the average woman is a size 14 and an average women finds very little or no clothing in a regular clothing store. Stores like Torrid or Lane Bryant cater to plus size women and their clothes are somewhat expensive. I think stores like Macys and Forever 21 should have more plus size clothing in their stores. Macys and Forever 21 have plus size clothing online; yet not everyone has the luxury to shop online or maybe no access to the Internet.

    Problem: Plus size women have difficulty finding clothes because mainstream retail stores do not have plus size clothing in their stores.

    Solution: retail stores like Forever 21 have clothes in stores for plus size women

    Piece of the solution. Petition with 200 signatures and a video of people I interview

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    • ok subrina- we talked about this….let’s see you take the toolbox tools through this example

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    • UPDATE: I have made a petition and over the next few days I am going to get my petition online for signatures. I am also going to find 3-5 people to interview for my video.

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      • My online petition:

        http://www.ipetitions.com/widget/view/423897

        Start a Petition by iPetitions.com

        var _gaq = _gaq || []; _gaq.push([‘_setAccount’, ‘UA-307455-4’]); _gaq.push([‘_setDomainName’, ‘ipetitions.com’]); _gaq.push([‘_setAllowHash’, ‘false’]); _gaq.push([‘_setAllowLinker’, true]); _gaq.push([‘_trackPageview’]); (function() { var ga = document.createElement(‘script’); ga.type = ‘text/javascript’; ga.async = true; ga.src = (‘https:’ == document.location.protocol ? ‘https://ssl’ : ‘http://www’) + ‘.google-analytics.com/ga.js’; var s = document.getElementsByTagName(‘script’)[0]; s.parentNode.insertBefore(ga, s);})();

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  9. In the Armenian culture, mothers do not take their young daughters to a gynecologist and the majority of the women never see a gynecologist or GYN until they are married or pregnant. Armenians feel that a girl does not need a GYN until marriage or pregnancy and actually fear that the exams a GYN performs may puncture a girl’s hymen, which is a great risk in a culture where a girl’s virginity or purity until marriage is highly valued. I found an ethical dilemma in this cultural belief or practice because withholding a visit to a GYN can lead to undetected diseases or health conditions which if left untreated or unattended to can lead to something as serious as cancer. The American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology recommends that young women have their first visit to the GYN between the ages of 13-15 or once sexually active, whichever comes first. Among other things, a Gynecological exam includes a breast exam which could help detect abnormal lumps in the breast, a pelvic exam which can detect problems associated with reproductive health, as well as a pap smear which could detect cervical cancer. A GYN visit can also detect an STD and can also provide a girl with an HPV vaccine to help prevent the Human Papilloma Virus which can lead to an array of cancers. I feel the biggest ethical dilemma is that adolescent girls are not in a situation to make the decision to visit the GYN and the parents who decide for them are weighing their decisions based on cultural beliefs or norms rather than medical or health facts. My solution is to create a website which informs of all the risks a girl or woman faces when they do not have the opportunity to detect health issues with a visit to the GYN, the website will offer medical facts and myths (to help ease the belief that a GYN exam might harm a young girl in any way), it will also offer information about what to expect when visiting a GYN, when a visit should be made and what questions to bring to the doctor. The website will also contain resources such as the names, phone numbers, and addresses of several OBGYNs or GYNs local to the Los Angeles County area, who speak Armenian or cater to the Armenian community. I plan to link this website to parenting websites in order to raise awareness with the parents of young girls as well as other websites pertaining to women’s and children’s health, such as http://www.kidshealth.org

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  10. Dr.Cartier and “Feminism and Religion” blogging community thank you in advance for your feedback!

    I wish to interact with and provide a solution for the following problem in the public world: the lack of information that parents (mostly mothers) receive regarding the rights and services that special education students have.

    I work with a seventh grade Special Education Student who has Cerebral Palsy. I follow her to all her classes. I am her one to one assistant. I give her support with behavior management, instructional support activities of daily living (as needed), social skills training, task redirection, testing, etc. She needs assistance throughout the entire school day. Specially, she needs assistance for transitions (class changes).
    The school district is not giving all the services that the student is entitled to according to law.

    The student speech is at least 90% delayed. Most of people (her teachers, classmates, and therapists) cannot understand what she says. That is one reason of her frustration. Fortunately, I understand her about 25% of what she says, although; her speech therapy services were reduced from four meetings per week to two meeting per week. Even though she has a lot of difficulty closing the zipper of her jacket and her backpack, her occupational therapy services were limited from four meetings per week to one consultation only per month. She really needs the speech therapy. While the school speech pathologist says she is giving two days of speech therapy a week, the student is actually not getting anything. Furthermore, she has Assistive technology which is supposed to help her to participate fully in the educational activities. This assistive technology is very old that most of the time does not work properly. It takes a long time to start in. It is not set up for printing. In addition, it is written in her IEP that she has accommodations regarding to front seating and big desks, but the teachers have her sit in a regular desk. The student cries for long periods of time in a regular day basis. She also hit her body and bends her glasses. She needs immediate psychiatric attention. Moreover, she really needs the speech and occupational therapy. It gives the impression that no one attempts to help her.

    Using Cartier’s Toolbox (Feminist Ethics)

    1. Is everyone at the table? Is everyone who is going to be affected by the decision made
    at the table?
    No, not everyone who is going to be affected is at the table. They are physically present, but not at the table.
    The mother: The team is worried to present their report and leave. They do not show any interest and respect in listening what the mother is going to say. They do not even let her talk. When she makes an attempt to say something, the administrator said before you said something it’s time for the nurse to present her report; she has to leave.
    The father: The team ignores what he has to say. They don’t include him in the discussion. He does not get much involved in his daughter education. He lets the mother be in charge of that. He needs to take action by at least assisting to the IEP meetings. That means that he needs to know everything about his daughter’s education.
    The student: The team including the administrator ignores her; they do not ask her what her plans are. They do not acknowledge her neither include her in the meeting.
    The paraprofessional (myself): I participated in the meeting saying that the student wrote for me in her Dinovox “I am mad because people cannot understand what I’m saying.” Also I said that she needs a lot of assistance for transitions from class to class, constant prompting to stay focused, on task, and follow directions and finally I said that she needs constant close proximity for instruction. In addition, I said that she has difficulty closing the zippers of her jackets and her back pack. Even I asked the student to close her zipper and still when she was sitting down, she had a lot of trouble and took her about 3 minutes to do it. The administrator said she just needs to take her time and she will do it. That was everything the administrator said. Nobody said anything else.

    2. If you are not at the table is someone going to be there representing you?
    Yes, the mother is not at the table, but she can have an advocate with her in the meetings. That person is a family friend, who knows the student. She supports her by being in the meeting asking questions and clarifying answers.

    3. Do all the voices of the table have equal resources to be heard? No, the father, mother, paraprofessional and the student do not have equal resources to be heard. They have limited resources. The parents don’t have the enough knowledge to be heard and the paraprofessional has limited resources.

    4. Is the private sphere as important as the public sphere?
    Yes, private should be as important as the public, but the team is not giving the student the same importance as they would give to IDEA. Private is closely related to public whatever happens at public squares is talked about and continued at homes, and vice versa; whatever is going on within the small space of a family is well-known to the whole local society.

    5. Is the “I” voice validated or matters/listening also matters? Yes, it should matters, but the student voice who is the most affected does not matter to the team. The group of professionals including the administrator call themselves a team. A team is supposed to work together toward the same goal which is the help the student. The team does not take into consideration what the student says, feels and needs. They don’t give her any importance. We all have a right to a voice, in our lives and within ourselves.

    6. Empathy Vs. sympathy The team, including the teachers doesn’t feel any empathy to her however, there is teacher who feels sympathy for her. I know what the student is feeling because I have a brother with special needs. Empathy is Personal and sympathy can be considered public or impersonal. Since I am having this conversation with her I am being personal. When the student writes or tells me that she fells mad when people cannot understand her, I says, “I feel what you feel when people cannot understand what you say.” I relate with the student since I have had that experience. In many occasions people cannot understand what I say. English is not my native language. I came to United States as an adult. For me it has been and still is very difficult to express in a way that people can understand what I say. I share this with my student and it seems that she feels better when she hears it. By being empathetic I can support the student in her growth and development and empower her.
    Empathy is a necessary quality especially for me that I am assisting my student emotionally.

    Solution
    1. Telling the administrator that my student is crying every day in
    every period.
    2. Encourage the student to be her own advocate by:
    • Writing a letter to the assistant principal asking for counseling services
    • Visiting the assisting principal office to talk about counseling
    • Go talk to a counselor
    3. Encourage mother to ask for sign language
    4. Encourage mother to ask for training about cerebral palsy
    5. Encourage the mother to request the report(s) in advance of the IEP meeting.
    6. Encourage the mother to ask for training on the assistive technology for the student, paraprofessional and herself.
    7. Encourage the mother to request counseling services
    8. Persuade the mother to bring someone as an advocate
    9. Guide her mother to prepare for IEP meetings
    10. Educate her mother to read about special education laws, regulations, and cases to
    get answers to their questions.

    *11. Create a pamphlet that contains parents’ rights and services that an especial education student can have.

    Part of the solution that I will create for the Final

    I provide support to my student and her mother, but because I am employed by the school district, I am limited in my ability to advocate for her without endangering my job. For this reason, I will limited advocate for her by giving her a pamphlet where it is written all her rights as a parent and services that her daughter is entitled to have according to law. Also, I will give the pamphlet to other mothers and fathers that I know and I do not know at school in different times.

    ps I am having trouble relating the problem with the 3 texts read and finding the right quotes. I appreciate any ideas. Thank you all!

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    • this is a fabulous break down of the toolbox!!! do the best you can with integrating the quotes– we’ll discuss this and you” have a chance to revise that part if needed– what you have here is really wonderfully thought out

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  11. Mona Adem… point well taken, but really, the issue is how much space do men take up in the world? That is a feminist issue to me, and I will continually point this out.

    That said, it is interesting to see feminist principles as part of decision making processes. I’m glad practical feminism is being taught, and Cal State Northridge does some great feminist programs and lectures.

    “Is the private sphere as important as the public sphere?” — That is huge, because the oppression of women is not only systemic in the public sphere, the brutality of the oppression occurs behind closed doors…. how much labor is being stolen from women performing non-paid tasks? How much crime is committed against women behind closed doors where police can’t record or witness men beating and raping wives and children? How is the private and public made equal in terms of visibility?

    The silent private sphere is women’s greatest enemy, and also the routinization of oppression that occurs when one actually lives with the oppressors daily. The greatest horrors that women deal with are behind these closed doors, and away from public scrutiny. I’d say stolen labor is huge?
    What would be a feminist punishment for the crime of theft of women’s resources?

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  12. Turtle Women, I understand your point and I think you should continue to point it out. Like you said, it is a feminist issue and something that should be talked about. But I do feel that we should embrace all individuals (women as well as men) point of view who try to make a change in this society and just because we live in a man-dominant world, it doesn’t mean that all men in this world think and act the same. But like I said, I understand you point and I agree with you.
    Furthermore, I thought you brought up some very true but heartbreaking points when describing “Is the private sphere as important as the public sphere? These sphere are NOT made equal in terms of visibility and that’s why many policies made in the public sphere does not benefit the private. This made me think about the child-care system that is lacking in U.S. Why do we not offer women who have children free child-care so they can work while also being mothers. Child-care should not be a private matter, but rather a public to help women balance all the responsibility they have in life.

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    • Great point Mona, making the cost of child care such a huge road block for mothers is yet another way of oppressing us; it trumps on our independence and ensures that we remain reliant on men. This is a road block not only in the way of working, but in seeking an education as well.

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  13. Yes Mona, childcare is a good example. Women do it “for free” just as women cook “for free”– I believe all labor should be compensated. Tax on corporations to pay into a 401 k plan for women who do childcare and who cook, for example. There should be no private world uncompensated, because the home itself is the chief weapon patriarchy uses to extract “free” labor from women, and the billions of dollars that women DON’T get in social security credit or even health care is shocking.

    Every hour a woman doesn’t get paid, is a dollar less caculated for her social security benefit base.
    Think of that!

    Women risk their lives because men insist on constantly impregnating women worldwide. Think of this: a man having penis in vagina sex with women puts women at risk. In many parts of the world, this is a death sentence, and yet men did it over and over and over again.
    Think of all the past centuries, think of men making one woman pregnant 10 to 16 times. So a tax on male sexual practices would be in order too. A very high tax, that would go into the woman’s account automatically.

    And lesbians who don’t have children should get huge tax credits to compensate us for all the benefits we don’t get— and they are legion.

    I believe the tax code and monetary incentives are the best way to get at patriarchal invisibilization of women’s labor. Churches that “use” women’s free volunteer labor should be taxed as well. In fact, all volunteer labor for women should end. Just imagine women’s wealth growing, women have power over millions of new dollars, corporations getting no free labor from women so that their male executives can work long hours.

    The private sector is the main area of exploitation, and any feminist ethics should address this directly. If it doesn’t, the world remains the same.

    Tax reform feminist style!!

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  14. Barbara, Yes I agree we are fortunate to have Professor Cartier as our teacher.She makes sure we can equip ourselves with necessary tool’s for continual personal growth if we so chose to.
    My Problem and Solution
    Problem I would like to address is the lack of united female front in the U.S. political arena, perpetuated by continual fracturing of multiple female agenda’s that are fueled by mistrust and lack of understanding of different social classes. By this I mean there are so many secondary issues affecting women’s life’s, that we fail to address more stringently current primary issues. An example of one such issue, would be the 2009 decision made by the U.S Preventive Services Task Force. ( USPSTF) This committee deemed it unnecessary for women to continue annual mammograms at the age of 40 and that is was now OK if women waited until they we 50 before their first mammogram and then only on a PERIODIC basic. But we shouldn’t worry as it would be up to the patient and the doctor to decide if she should wait. (question you ever heard of a patient and or doctor having the right over an insurance company to deem anything medically necessary. I’m just saying.) There was not one Oncologist, breast surgeon, Radiologist, Radiotherapist on this committee, yet it passed and now affects your life. We have no policy standards set in place to stop every special interest group who choices to attack our hard earned rights. This forces us into a perpetual state of defense and moving forward at time’s is none existing.It would be beneficial for women as a whole to build a political solidarity within our primary issues, such as basic common needs of women.
    My focus is to address the fracturing of female solidarity caused by mis-trust and the inability to generate feminine camaraderie. my wish is to implement a non-threatening success driven walk/run group within a valley based women’s recovery house.
    With the understanding that sunlight and exercise has the potential to increase serotonin leaves in the brain. Increased serotonin leaves has the potential to increase self-confidence, feelings of safety and security, increased better sleep habits and appetite. The gold is to create an environment that has the potential to nurture trust and camaraderie, through an outdoor exercise group. And that these learned skills will be carried into the political.

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    • great ideas and analysis, gina! i think you need to rein in a bit what it is exactly that you will be doing for your “solution” but i love the way this is going– and i did not know that specifically about serotonin an sunlight– although i make sure to spend time in the sun every day…talk more in your midterm analysis how the group will address what you see as the problem– mistrust and inability to generate female camaraderie

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  15. Dear Marie (and all of her students),
    I am really excited to see these projects go up on the blog! This is really excellent!
    Thank you!

    -Sara

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  16. Professor Cartier
    Thank you for your guidance, I’ll make sure to clarify these points.
    G

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  17. Thank you, Dr. Cartier, for this post, and for laying out the tools in the toolbox that have not only been the foundation of our class this semester, but a re-examination on how all issues that effect the public should be viewed, as very rarely is everything presented and accepted without conflicting opinion. I liked the examples you provided in word and video, especially regarding the men holding up traits that are considered to be feminine, when really, they are human things that we all can or may or at the very least have the potential to ascribe to.

    The ethical problem that I wish to examine is that of views towards female body hair. I initially wanted to focus on laser hair removal, and I believe I still will, but in the end the problem is more the attitude that fuels the symptom of extreme forms of hair removal. In part, I am still figuring out how to organize this so the central theme runs throughout.

    I was inspired to discuss this largely because of an interaction with a friend who stated [paraphrased] that “women aren’t supposed to have body hair”. Initially I wasn’t sure how to respond, largely because – for how intelligent the individual who stated this is – it was a very ignorant comment. I understand that body hair can be considered a small issue on the grand scale of things, but at the same time it’s the attitude behind my friend’s statement. It came across that according to the way things are, if a woman has body hair (legs, under her arms, in the pubic region, etc.) that something is ‘wrong’ or ‘defective’. However, the statement was an expression of a preference, not fact. (My friend has since clarified that he’s aware that women have body hair, and that ‘it’s okay’, but that in general body hair is a masculine trait.)

    1. Is everyone at the table?
    Concerning laser hair removal, I believe so. I think the issue is more of an informative and broad-based nature than where hair removal places itself – in its own little bubble, especially in Los Angeles, and the Western world in general. it’s easy to hold a fast-food approach to most anything – you’re in, you’re out, and you’re done and on to the next thing. However, with laser hair removal, there is a lot of time and planning to go into it. Research is needed, especially when considering having a laser directed at one’s reproductive organs. I personally wasn’t aware that it can take four to seven treatments, four to eight weeks apart, to complete the process or laser hair removal. There are other risks, such as skin discolorization, and even then, the hair can grow back.

    2. If they are not at the table, are they represented at the table by someone who will speak to their interests?
    Definitely, at the very least, by interjecting myself into the discussion as representative has me speaking for other options. At the same time, it others are at the table speaking for the needs to look a certain way, especially in image-oriented professions, or if they just want to have the procedures and can afford it. In reading Feminist Ethics & Social Policy, I was really affected by the idea of autonomy, even if it may further a standard of beauty that has been bred and perpetuated under a dominant patriarchal view in that women are ‘supposed to’ look/be a certain way.

    I want to make sure that men who receive hair removal treatments are represented as well, since, obviously, the procedure isn’t gender-specific. However, the amount of hair removed or that remains, is/might be.

    In reality, however, I think everyone will be at the table once multiple options are presented on a spectrum.

    I realize that I have four more points to cover, and I am piecing this together for our midterm. These will definitely be addressed…

    The fourth chapter of Feminist Ethics & Social Policy, Judith Wagner DeCew writes, “[W]e must realize how nonideal this world is and can be expected to remain.” (79) In a way I feel that tackling this issue of hair removal is small on the grand sale of things, as DeCew states that some feminists believe that some issues “should take low priority for feminist thinkers, given the many rights denied women around the world” (79).

    While laser hair removal was/is the vehicle that led me to this discourse, it is largely the idealization of a particular standard of beauty that (a) may not be shared by all and (b) has the ability to cause pressure or self-esteem issues if it isn’t shared in. I am still tailoring my approach to this issue, because I feel that it’s taking on a “principle-based moral theory” approach, and I want it to be informative, but without furthering a personal stance. I just want to show what options there are, and that there isn’t a be all and end all for standards of beauty. My solution is going to be a video of some kind that details the trends in body hair removal in the western world, interviews, studies, and the like. It isn’t going to state that laser hair removal is ‘wrong’, but it’s going to be informative as far as what it actually is, what other options there are, and pretty much about embracing self, as living at the mercy of someone else’s opinion of you (or women in general) is symptomatic of the issue as well.

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    • ps. This is Lindsey Darden :) Thanks again!

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      • i really like your analysis here and your use of quotes…you have taken a very private issue — body hair– and made an adequate case for how these private isses do have great significance for women in their private and public lives and hwo much energy they take up for us– i look forward to hearing more about this in class!

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    • This is a test I’m having trouble posting my comment to my classmates.

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    • Lindsey,
      As I told you 2 weeks ago if you need someone to interview or video tape, I’m willing to collaborate with you. Just let me know at any time.
      ~Sonia

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      • UPDATE Part Deux:

        Since I plan on posting my piece of the solution to a tumblr account of my own and a few LiveJournal body image/self-esteem sites, I decided to feel out the water in a LiveJournal community properly titled ask_me_anything. Here are some responses to the general view of body hair and the varying ideals there are out there:

        http://ask-me-anything.livejournal.com/35519933.html

        Now that I think about it, I should have asked for location as well as the questions I detailed, but at the very least it is stirring up conversation and will be a good place to place my video and link to a bigger site which will ask for user content and the like.

        I will update more later…

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      • Thank you, Sonia! I will have something to you this afternoon. I really appreciate your assistance with my solution.

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  18. Sweet. Okay. Here goes.

    The problem on which I’ve decided to focus is that women who have been raped don’t have the most adequate of resources. My original thought was to create a resource website that provides phone numbers and hotlines, safe places and spaces, attorneys etc., for each big city in the country. After doing some online research, I found one, AARDVARC.org, which does just this. Unfortunately, it isn’t the best design so it’s a bit gnarly to navigate, but being that I am not fluent in HTML, recreating that space in a more format friendly way is virtually impossible. Then, my thought shifted to creating a space where women were invited to share their personal stories, be it rape, abuse, sexual harassment, etc. I thought that the more women who were given a chance to share their voice, the more women who could begin the process of healing. In researching I found a few sites that did this as well, and it sparked the final idea in my head.

    As a rape survivor, sharing my stories (three time rape survivor I suppose I should add here), has provided a certain amount of healing that wouldn’t have otherwise been possible had I kept quiet and suffered in solitude. However, the most healing came from my own personal solution, something I can do on a daily basis that makes me feel like I am not a victim anymore, and that I am being proactive about protecting myself. This is not a solution to the rapes, but actions I can take to further my recovery. Because the “I” voice has significance, I feel comfortable sharing this action, and because of the toolbox, I am well aware that my solution will not be the solution for all survivors.

    My solution was to quit drinking, because it is the one common denominator – aside from men who are willing to take advantage of women while they are incapable of consent. I have accepted that I am unable to change other’s behavior regarding this matter, and I did not and will not be pressing charges, because of a few different reasons. One, though I realize it is not my fault, I believe I have a part, which is the part I have changed (the alcoholic drinking into blackout). Two, as an former sex-worker with a public persona, I am positive that if I were to attempt to prosecute any of the men, the trial would become about me and my admittedly risque herstory, and not about what was done to me. I prefer to move on with my life and do what I can to make sure that I never put myself in the situation that enabled this kind of victimization to occur. As I mentioned, this is my personal solution.

    So, in short, I think the problem isn’t simply that there are too few resources for women who have been raped, assaulted, harassed, etc., though I wish there were more. And it isn’t simply that there isn’t a place for those who have to share their stories, though there could be better. I think the problem is that the solutions are too narrow, the “reactions” to specific, and some public attention should be given to the struggle (and sometimes brilliance) of recovery, and not just the horrific details. As every woman (or man) who is raped, assaulted or harassed experiences her/his life differently and thus the abuse is experienced differently, I think it would be beneficial to provide a safe space to share individuated solutions to the universal problem of rape, assault and harassment. I will encourage a brief description of the encounter, but request that no triggering details be shared. I want to focus entirely on solutions, in hopes that in finding millions of small solutions, we can piece together a bigger one.

    Here is my toolbox application:

    1. Is everyone at the table?
    People who lack access to the internet will not be in a place to share their stories or solutions. I will be looking into SEO’s to make sure that the site is relevant when certain keywords are searched for.

    2. If not, is someone at the table to represent them?
    The hope is that the more women and men who share their solutions, the more will be represented.

    3. Do all the voices at the table have equal resources to be heard?
    Each solution will be given equal space and attention. They will not be edited (other than to remove incriminating or identifying names) and the will appear on a last entered basis.

    4. The Private is as important as the Public.
    Because these are generally private stories, I believe that in making them public, they will become significantly more powerful. And as the site is solution based, power in the public will help to change the public.

    5. The “I” voice is valid.
    This site is dedicated to the solutions of millions of the “I” voice.

    6. Circle of empathy?
    As a request for commenters, if there is a post requesting advice or interaction, I will ask that it be made in the “My wish for you is that…” I will also create a page detailing why framing advice like this is so important.

    I plan on including my midterm paper on the site for those who wish to read the entire plan and inspiration behind the blog.

    Now, I have a request to anyone at Fem/Relig… I am contemplating on some different URL’s and have found a few that I like and are available.

    VoicingSolution.com
    HerOwnSolution.com
    SheResolves.com

    Any thoughts?

    Thanks~ Jennie

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  19. For my feminist ethics midterm and final I will be discussing a very controversial topic ” teens having unprotected sex.” I believe this is an ethical promblem because it leads to pregnancy and sexsual transmitted diseases. For this ethical problem
    the solution is abstaining from sex or to use contraceptives. The part of the solution I’m thinking to do is to create a pamphlet that provides information of the clinics where teens can go get free contraceptives to avoid unwanted pregnancies and STDS. Please feel
    free to provide with feedback.

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    • ruth- good beginning– but you really need to develp this further– i’m assuming this will happen through your analysis of the toolbox for your midterm? i’m also thinking this has been done..what are you providing that might be new?

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    • Ruth,
      It was nice talking to you 2 weeks ago. We missed you Wednesday. Maybe you might want to deliver the pamphets in the public library, malls, and/or even you can handle them out at middle schools and highschools. There is not a problem with that. Parents will appreciate that since you might enphasize the abstinance. If that is not possible, you will advice them to use contraceptives. I hope this helps.
      ~Sonia

      Like

    • hey ruth, i was hoping you would also try and distribute condoms or make them more available to teens. I never saw abstinence as a totally foolproof method, kids are gonna have sex, but if they had a simple way to get protection, maybe they would be more careful? just a thought.

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  20. The ehtical problem I am addressing is sexual harassment in the workplace. Even though there are laws, there still is an overwhelming issue with this as we have seen in the media. With the most current, previous presidential candidate, Herman Cain, and past President Bill Clinton. This power and control over women to keep women down and oppressed needs to be eradicated. Sexual harassment in the workplace causes many problems not only for the victim but also the employer.

    My ethical solution to sexual harassment that I am suggesting is to educate employees on a continued basis. Employers should be talking about sexual harasssment in the workplace with their employees. This includes, defining sexual harassment clearly. Give examples of sexual harassment, explain consequences of sexual harassment with victim and harasser. Explain way for victims to come and report sexual harassment.

    The piece of the solution that I will do for my final is to go to the director of Human Resources of my company where I have previously been sexually harassed, and take her pamphlets that I have made to have available for employees. I will also see if the director of Human Resources will post on the company employee website information about sexual harassment so that everyone can be informed and reminded of what sexual harassment consists of so we can help eradicate this problem

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    • great list of feelings and ideas, christine– but sexual harassment traiing is mandatory in california…what are you providing here that is new in terms of addressing this problem? good bg. but think a bit more deeply about it

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  21. For my ethical problem, at first I thought it would be a good idea to focus on the fact that many sexual predators don’t see much time, if any, in prison for the crimes they commit against women. Then later, after a guest speaker from the CSUN Date Project came into my Marriage and Family Relationships class and began to educate us on rape and what happens after rape. I was amazed to discover that many survivors of rape do not have a proper support system. Many loved ones turn away from the survivor or don’t know how to respond because of a variety of reasons. These reasons could include a lack of care, confusion on how to best emotionally support the survivor because they can’t relate or misdirected rage. This, to me, is a problem.

    As a rape survivor, I did not have a good support system growing up to help me deal with my issues. I was afraid to tell my mother for fear she would go public with my rape and my face would be all over the news. I was afraid to tell my father because I knew he would get angry and possibly be mad at me. I was afraid to tell school counselors for fear they would lock me up in a mental institution. I was afraid blame would be put on me and I would be treated like I had done something wrong. I have talked to many other rape survivors and many of them shared my feelings.

    My ethical problem is that many women do not have the proper emotional support from loved ones that can help them deal with their rape. My solution is to educate family and friends on the mental processes of a rape survivor and teach them how to help their loved one.

    I plan on making a video using my friend’s production company to educate family and friends on what goes on in the mind of a rape victim. After I educate them, I will then instruct them on how to best deal with their situation. This video will be posted on youtube and will be put on my friend’s production website.

    1. Is everyone affected by the decision (the solution to the problem) at the decision making table? Yes and no. It depends on the person. There are many people who have loved ones who are rape survivors and want to help, but don’t know how or don’t know what to say. These people are at the table but might have the resources they need to help the solution. Then there are those who don’t care about the rape survivor’s situation. These people are not at the table, so we would need to educate them to bring them to the table so they can begin to help their loved one.

    2. If they are not at the table, are they represented at the table by someone who will speak to their interests? Many rape survivors often feel like they don’t have a voice or that their loved ones won’t listen to them. One solution would be for loved ones to sit in a listening circle and listen to how their rape survivor feels. However, because there are too many rape survivors who can’t get their loved ones together, there might have to be someone who can represent them by explaining their feelings to confused and hurt family and friends. The video would be the person who would represent the rape survivor at the table.

    3. Are all points of view represented by equal resources? Is everyone at the table able to present their points of view equally? Once everyone is present at the table, they should have equal resources to then help their rape survivor deal with the trauma.

    4. Is the private considered as important as the public? The emotional testimonies of some of the private parties are very important in educating the public. If I can get some of the people I know as rape survivors to give me a testimony, I can use it in my final project.

    5. Is the “I” voice listened to as well as the third person speaking for someone else voice? Is, as Bettina Aptheker states in Tapestries of Life, personal testimony valid? This video would be designed to help the “I” voice effectively voice what is happening in the life of a rape survivor.

    6. Do people come from a place of empathy in listening to others, and not sympathy? Since many people cannot relate to a rape survivor, unless someone at the table is one, then it would be very hard to empathize with the rape survivor. Most people offer mere sympathy and move on. They might say, “Oh, I’m sorry that happened to you” Or “That’s awful. I hope you get through it”, then they will simply move on with their lives. This video should help family members by putting them in the shoes of the rape survivor. That way, they will not just sympathize, but will empathize.

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    • Jordan, would you be willing to post your personal rape-solution on the blog I am creating? You don’t have to submit your name or anything. In fact, you can say no if you are uncomfortable with it. Just a thought~

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    • jordan- not sure why my original post did not take– i love this idea of your video and your analysis of the steps is perfect…and i’m also very glad you are networking with others in the class to share your story in a variety of ways

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    • Hey Jordan~ I’m posting in advance of your update post…
      Just want to let you know that I’ve posted my site and would love to include any of your info for “family and friends support.” The site currently won’t be able to host video, but if you’d like to include the resources that you find, that would be super awesome. Also, let me know how I can help you move forward with your own project. ;)

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  22. The ethical problem I am looking at focuses on punk women being misunderstood, mostly because they do not conform to societal norms which causes them to be judged and labeled. (I came to this issue from doing research for my paper on Women in the Punk Community for the GWS 400 graduating senior class). From my research, I have found that punk women are often judged because they do not fit the feminine expectations of women. They break boundaries by acting aggressive and masculine, and involving themselves in a community mostly made up of men.

    The solution to my problem would be bringing awareness to the societal struggles of punk women through research, published books, zines and blogs.

    The piece of my solution would be to contribute to a zine, and give a spotlight to punk women. I would want to interview a few women and bring awareness to their struggles in society (jobs, friends, family,) as well as some fun and interesting facts about each one of them. I prefer to do a contribution to a zine that is already established since my article would then be read more.

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  23. Marie, It was such an honor meeting your class! I LOVE the Feminist Toolbox – so thankful you shared it here. I had a few students approach me and tell me that they read your post and want to take your class. :)

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  24. My ethical problem is that there aren’t enough programs that cover girl/women awareness. I remember learning about the reproductive system when I was 12 years old, and not really thinking much about it, but nowadays how society is changing I believe that my my resolution to this problem is integrating womanhood programs into middle schools.
    I have spoken to many friends that have told me that the word sex was taboo in their household. That lead me to believe that in many others’ cases that might be a similar story, thus making me want to bring a program aboard to schools that do not have a similar program.

    I live in Sun Valley, California that has a mixed community of people in the San Fernando Valley. I have heard plenty of stories of young girls being pregnant before they have graduated middle school, and many girls conforming to this norm. The statements that I have heard stem from “Oh it’s ok everyone is doing it, so it doesn’t matter if I do it,” to “It’s alright my papers’ support me now, though they didn’t agree with me having a child at such a young age.”

    Living in such a community where women awareness isn’t a top priority, my solution to this problem is to bring a program to each and every community where girls are not taught about their strengths and where they can make a difference.

    Using Dr. Cartier’s toolbox the 1st step, is everyone at the table that is being affected by the solution, I believe that every one will be brought to the table once the educational program has began. Yes it is a program to bring women into the picture and it is also a program for men/boys to realize that women are an essential part of their lives.

    In the 2nd part of the toolbox, is everyone that is at the table represented at the table, I believe that they are. In my solution, the girls will be represented equally, everyone will be able to speak their mind.

    In the 3rd point, do all sources have the equally resources, I believe that they do, all middle school girls will have the up to date information on any topic that they have questions on. As for the boys in class I wish for them to have a group to look up to as well just like the girls do that can answer any problem that they have.

    The 4th point, of course the private is as important as the public. The private is what is going to help shape these adolescents. They will learn from their parents what is helpful for them to succeed in such circumstances and they will learn that hard work will get them to good places.

    In this program they will learn that the “I” voice is important, that what they have to say is important for other to hear, and that they are not puppets that people will try to control.

    In the last step the circle of empathy they will learn that everyone is different and that they all have different points of views on problems. They will learn to look at problems from the point of empathy and not from the point of sympathy.

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    • i love this idea– i’m assumign and hoping you will actually draw this out more for your midterm in terms of how this will actually work and what kind of tools will be provided within this educational experience to increase self-awareness for girls…?

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  25. As far as ethical problems in our society go, there are plenty of them. One in particular I would like to focus on is the guise of pregnancy centers as abortion clinics. The amount of manipulation and lying that goes into tricking pregnant women to keep unwanted pregnancies is astonishing. I would like to do my part in trying to clarify the difference between the two establishments. My goal is to create a website detailing the difference between the two, and researching the L.A area to find both abortion clinics and pregnancy centers. I will list both on this website, so hopefully women searching for certain things will learn of the difference and be able to make an informed decision.

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    • good idea teddy– needs to be more fully developed and make sure you do not duplicate what is already out there– but good beginning thoughts…detail what exactly you want to do with your website and how you will do it

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    • Update: i have made an outline for my website and brochures, and i will start the actual website this weekend. im considering doing a facebook page, does that sound like a good idea? any advice or other ideas please help?!

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      • Hey Teddy,

        First off I would like to say that I really like your idea, I think it is great that you want to take a stronger stance on this topic. I think you creating a facebook page is a good idea, but as far as the website, how are you planning to do that? It sounds really difficult, why don’t you create a blog page? I actually just posted one and I will be adding more to it hopefully today or tomorrow. Create and account in wordpress if you haven’t already or blogger whichever blog site you want, and maybe that will be easier than actually trying to compose a website. I hope that helps =]

        -Kimberly

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  26. My ethical problem is a person problem that is currently taking over my life and I figured what better than to make it my project.
    I am currently experiencing sexual harassment in my workplace. There are only a few people in my workplace and the man with the most power is the one doing the harassment. I am at a loss because I feel I cannot stand up to him because of his power over me. He is able to reduce my hours however he may please. I am afraid to approach anyone on the issue in fear of being dismissed. It has come to a point where I am uncomfortable to go to work and afraid to work alone with him.
    I want to point out the importance of what is and what isn’t sexual harassment. Many people, such as myself, are unaware of what is too far and how close a manager can actually be with his or her employees.
    My solution thus has to be to bring myself to the table using my resources, which are the District Manager and the HR department.
    I will be making the private as important as the public because I want the harasser to know that I would not let him touch me at home or outside of work, so it needs to be the same when we are in public, in front of customers.
    I am trying to bring others into the circle of empathy for those who experience sexual harassment at work. It is so easy to say “well what I would do is tell him to no touch me” but it needs to be understood that when this person is writing your schedule, it is not so easy.
    For the sake of confidence and legal reasons, I must censor names and any other detailed information regarding the case.

    Like

    • sounds like a perfect opportunity for you to use the toolbox and yes, very much so the private is made public and the personal is political…i look forward to you using the toolbox in this way

      Like

    • hey berlyn, im commenting before you post your update, but i remember in class your boss said he felt “really bad.” i just wanted to say that is ridiculous and your company should be doing more for you. he should be transferred, or fired, not you!

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    • As discussed in class, I have a friend who has worked with the HR department for a similar sexual harassment issue in the work place (he WAS a store manager. No longer emplyed by the company). 1. She had evidence that he was sexually harassing her through text messaging & she repeatedly told him to stop (yet he continued). 2 HR is not going to fight for you to resolve the issue unless you let them know you are unsatisfied!!! I too agree w Teddy ^ you need to make it clear that you “fought really hard to be in that specific store & there is no reason you should have to leave when he is the one crossing the legal wire.” Harassment in the work place is ILLEGAL it is a LAW. But you need Fight to show HR that you are “uncomfortable” working with him Because as you stated, he has the “power” to retaliate for you coming forward. I would definitely be willing to have a phone conversation in regards to any questions you have to help you resolve this to your benefit NOT HIS. 3 He admitted to HR that he was “sorry…” It shows that he admitted to the harassment & HR knows this. Did they mention why he was on leave (chances are they suspended him. Pending investigation). Which means, only you can continue to REMIND HR that you are NOT letting it go. They need to resolve it for you & if they will not fire him for it he needs to be the one to leave the store because it is not okay. GOOD LUCK! Let Me Know if you need ANYTHING.

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      • Thank you so much. I’m looking into it and getting help from coworkers. In the mean time he isn’t on any kind of leave and I have already worked with him twice since the case was closed…it was weird.But I have your email so if I need anything I will be sure to let you know. Thanks again :)

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  27. My ethical problem is that today’s mainstream pornography is filled with misogynistic and violent images and skewed depictions of women and sexual autonomy. These images and depictions lower the self-esteem of young women, especially young women who are building a sexual identity. Mainstream porn (with a focus on internet porn) today is a one variable that influences the sexuality of young women (as there is an entire system of oppression against women, and violent porn is not the only variable to consider), if not very directly, it does so indirectly by influencing its young male viewers. Women are expected to perform the same experiences experienced by women acting on camera. There would be no initial problem here if everybody watching pornography were at the table. I don’t believe many viewers understand the long term affects of watching porn regularly, and therefore my ethical solution to this ethical problem would be to educate the world around me on some of the long term affects of what watching porn can do to an individual’s mental, emotional and sexual health by providing anonymous interviews with different people who have had experiences with some of these issues and by discussing some healthier porn site alternatives that tend to be body/sex/image positive). I will do so by making an educational video and post it on the internets (which I think is appropriate for this particular project, considering most of the problem today exists on the internets.

    Like

    • good ideas here– make sure you do not duplicate what is already out there…also with your project make sure to include who you will link this site to so that it gets out to the people you intend as your audience

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  28. I’d like to start off by saying I appreciate what our Professor is doing and trying to get us involved in opening our mind to a different ideology. For my midterm ethical problem, I want to bring awareness of the different types of birth control methods and how they have found some new complications that occur in the female body. The reason i chose this topic is because my girlfriend is on the birth control pill and a lot of people would rather take the injection or simply jump to the the Plan B (Day After Pill) without a hesitation because they believe they are 100% safe. My solution would be to create a type of brochure that covers all the different types of methods to birth control and which are the safest to use. I would also go to different Planned Parenthoods and drop of these brochures so that women can pick them up and read them. I chose Planned Parenthood because they offer birth control pills and they are usually free, so most women would most likely go there. Although i won’t be able to use all of the tools in the toolbox, the ones that i can use will be very detailed and will do my best to address the issue. I looks forward to bringing my midterm to class and learning about the other midterms.

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    • hector– good ideas- but are you sure this information is not already documented at planned parenthood? do some research and make sure you add to, but not duplilcate, what is already out there

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    • Hector I would suggest to talk about more methods than just the birth control shot or plan b. There are non-hormonal methods. Are you going to put the pros and cons of each birth control method? If not I would suggest doing that.

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  29. For my midterm I decided to do it on my cousin’s struggle with body image issues. She has been dealing with this problem for awhile now, and because I am so close to her I wanted to help her along the process to reaching her goal which is to be happy with her physical appearnace. My problem is my cousin has been dealing with body image issues that affect her perspective on how she views herself. The solution would be my cousin overcomes body image issues and is happy with herself. The piece of the solution I will do is have a small intervention with her and meet with a counselor on how I should approach this issue with her. I will also create a scrapbook for her to have so that she is constatnly reminded of how beautiful she is and that she is never alone. I will use all of the 6 pieces of the toolbox to deconstruct my problem and solution.

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  30. One major ethical problem I want to bring attention to is the lack of Earth preservation. I am aware that there are many organizations out there seeking to improve our situation, but I don’t think there is much emphasis on people to make a difference. I think the topic is kind of swept under the rug because people don’t take the time to learn or care about it as much as they should. Earth is our home and we need to respect it, love it, and nurture it as much as possible. Although we can’t expect radical change to happen from one day to the next, it is important that we at least try everyday to work towards making our planet a safer,cleaner place. It is everyone’s duty to partake in cleaning the earth, at least if not on a grand scale then within their own personal spaces. If people could learn to take responsibility for their actions then our planet could be a better place. I don’t think people understand the severity of the problem if we continue to misuse and abuse our home. Earth is our home, whether we understand it in those terms or not. Earth is the place that we inhabit and if we continue to exploit it then there will be no more life for anyone or anything. As such, I think it is important that everyone educates themselves on environmental issues and at least tries to do their part everyday to make a difference. My part of the solution to this problem is to create a blog or social networking page where I can post data about earth’s situation, and I would also like people to post any additional information that they might have in order to raise more awareness. I want people to become aware of these problems and inspire them to do their part as much as they can. I would also like people to arrange a day where they do something for our planet and upload pictures or write about their experiences. In time if we could do these things everyday then our planet can be a happier, cleaner place to live.

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    • p.s. This is Kimberly Hernandez

      Like

      • kimblery- i really like your passionate enthusiasm about the plight of the earth– as you know several anthology articles we have read talk about this…not sure how your blog or website ;will be different than what is out there already–there is al lot of information aobut the plight of the earth– hwo willyours be different? — try to be more concrete in terms of what you are giving people/wanting them to do wtih information from your blog..

        Like

  31. My ethical problem is that people are growing up to be judgmental towards to LGBT community; an uncomfortable topic for most. I believe that if children at a young age were exposed more to different types of sexuality, they will grow up to have more tolerance for all types of people. Kids with families that are not considered “normal” (heterosexual mother and father) should be respected and valued with dignity, as well.

    My solution is to create a few copies of a children’s book filled with pages of different family types. Families with queer parents, single parents, interracial parents, grandparents as parents, older siblings as parents, families with lost of kids, families with one kid, etc.. Once the books are created and ready to go, I plan on donating some to public libraries and hopefully getting them into some schools as well. Also, I want to go around and show my book to parents in public and get their opinions if they think their kids would should be allowed to use my book in school or if they want their kids to learn about homosexuality at all.

    People oppose fear and the unfamiliar, especially when it comes to heavy topics like this in the classroom. Marriage equality has been and always will be debated for a long time to come, but it is important to promote and initiate pro-tolerance in the classroom. At a young age, children should be taught the value of diversity in all aspects of life.

    Like

    • good idea! make sure to document your trips to schools in terms of donating the book and getting it out there

      Like

    • I am interested in your ethical problem Maricela! I think it is a good topic. My one suggestion would be to do some research about families headed my parents of the same sex or interracial parents. Like maybe writing the children’s story from their perspective. I think if your write the story in their voice you will put them at the table.

      Like

    • hey maricela, I especially love your ethical problem because as we have discussed before, i come from a situation with a gay father, as well as my niece being bi-racial. i was wondering if you are focusing more on the lgbt community or equally as all your different family types listed? i think there is a huge problem of intolerance in society, so i hope to see a lot of focus on this particular situation…best of luck!

      Like

  32. For my feminist ethics project, I decided to solve a big problem within my family. For many years now, my father has been suffering from a well-known disease called, Diabetes. This disease has recently caused blindness in one eye, and just two weeks ago, a stroke. Like many other girls, I love my dad and I am willing to do anything to help him get better. My father suffering a stroke, has made me realize that my family has to do better about preserving our health and the best way to do it is together. The problem that I see is that my family is very unhealthy and we take little part in eating right or exercising. The solution to this problem is a family based routine that not only helps with diet and exercise, but also helps with bringing our bond closer. Immediately beginning this process, members of my family have already cleaned their refrigerators and replaced everything with healthy and organic foods. Due to my daddy’s stroke being so recent, he is not in stable conditions to take part in these activities, that is why I have involved my immediate family therefore, when my dad is released from the hospital he will have no choice but to join our longer living family project. I believe this project will be excellent, not only for a good grade but also to help my family!

    Like

  33. For my ethical problem is the use of diet pills a numerous amount of Americans today consume diet pills as a resource to resolve their issue of overweight. In addition, the majority of them are women and young females. Women are more obsess in loosing weight to look the best and some of us women will do anything to look hot and sexy. Yet they use diet pills as a substitute of exercise and nutritional diets. However they ignore the future side effects it can cause. My solution to my ethical problem will be to design a pamphlet. That will form a plan to different types of personalities and body types. For example if the person is very overweight then that person will follow a diet with exercise and fun outdoor activities. Also if the person is average weight and would like to get fit then that person will follow a set of activities that will make them stronger. then i will also engage other options with different types of exercises and nutritional balance meals therefore, the person will not get bored for the same routine everyday.

    Like

    • ok– this solution i think is out there already-but -how will your informational pamphlet be different– part of the solution will also involve how this information will get to the people who need it and how this information will change their lives if that is the solution you want…we’ll talk some more in class today about “creating pamphlets” as a solution– bec. part of the issue will involve how the pamphlet will get into the hands of those who need it and what they will do with the information once/if they get ahold of it…

      Like

  34. The ethical issue i will be discussing is women in the media and how they are portrayed. Escaping the influence media has is very difficult to do because it has such a large impact on our society and particualrly on women and young girls. the media plays a large role in eating disorders, depression, and low self esteem amongst women and young girls. there is so much pressure on women to be thin and perfect in order to fit into socities view of what beautiful is. instead of using the media as a way to embrace and empower women it tends to degrade and objectify a women. this is an isssue because the media displays an unrealistic and unattainable view of beauty and perfection. by creating a look that is hard to achieve, diet and cosmetic industries are sure to keep growing in profits. what these companies dont tell you is that almost every photo that goes into the magazines and ads are photoshopped and retouched to create a perfect and flawless woman. the number of eating disorders among teens continue to rise each yet yet the average model today fits the body mass index criteria for anorexia. plus size models and colored women are highly under represented in the media. the media makes it more acceptable to objectify and sexualixze a woman and her body because it has become so normalized to see women in the media being viewed as sexual objects which puts women at an increased risk for voilence and danger. the media also justifies gener steroetyping and gender roles and most often women in the media are not portrayed being successful or independent.

    there will be three steps to my part of the solution to this issue. for the first part i will create a video that makes poeple more aware of what is actually going on in the media.i will post it on social networking sites such as facebook, twitter, and youtube. by doing this i will be able to reach out to a large group of poeple of all different ages. For the next step i will create a zine that has positive images of women and it will feature stories and images of powerful and succesful women. the last part of the solution will be a website that i will create about this issue.

    Like

    • ok kelsey! i like your enthusiasm but these three are too much unless you want to focus on the website and make your video something that you embed into the website as well a perhaps an on-line ‘zine that sort of is like a blog or commentary page on your website? focus on one part of this solution– otherwise i’m afraid you will have take on to much to be successful

      Like

  35. For my feminist ethics project i decided to talk explose the coming out process for LGBTQ identified individuals of Armenian descent. Since it is such a taboo to be queer in this cultures, most of the kids that realize that they are gay either hide it from their familier or leave everything behind and move away because most of the time their families do not accept them. The way i decided to deal with this problem is creat an all Armenian queer group for these indiviuals to have a safe space to turn to and be able to creat a community. Also i am going to make pamphlets with useful informations for parents and family if they wish to share with. as the group grows i would like to have weekly or monthly meetings where we can discuss exactly what we want to do with the group and at the same time built closer relationships with each other. I realize that this does not resolve the whole problem but it is a start.

    Like

    • yes- i agree it is agood start. please add how you will do outreach– how will you ge the pamphlet into the hands of those who need it., etc? remember you will need to do a results assessment after your solution creation. i’m glad you are tackling this. i know from having you as my student all year that this is a very personal and much needed outreach for you and other armenian students

      Like

    • I can assist with handing out the fliers in any areas you need. Just let me know where & when would be best :-) I would be glad to assist in any way possible. If you should realize you may need help with something else just let me know alinapetlin@yahoo.com

      Like

  36. For my midterm, I am focusing on the use of beauty products and women. I have had so many conflicting thoughts about this topic, especially lately as I am coming of age, and coming to terms with my identity, values, and place in this world. I am excited that I have crossed paths with the course at the same time that I am really developing my idea of what my identity as a woman means to me. Although learning about yourself is lifelong process, I looking forward to the opportunity to apply my personal values to an assignment in this course.
    In regards to my topic: I am conflicted about the idea that make up exists, period. I want to research how make up came about, and what was the original purpose for it (such as stage makeup, or for a costume, or to represent a particular class status). I am bothered that women feel the need to “put their face on” before they are seen in public. I am bothered that people are told they look “dead” when they aren’t wearing make-up, because they aren’t used to being seen like that. No one is born with make-up. People aren’t “dead” without it, they are just being themselves! So it makes me think, what is wrong with being exactly what you look like? Does everybody need to cover up or enhance their natural look? What is wrong with how I am naturally.
    I am bothered that in a desperate act to look better, they are not concerned or aware of the harmful ingredients in makeup. Beauty products have tons of ingredients that are actually bad, and can even link to cancer. However, not many are aware of this, and also not many companies actually inform consumers of these risk. I feel it is unethical to sell beauty products, or any product actually, that has harmful chemicals, and not inform people about it.
    For my assignment, I will research various beauty products, learn what the ingredients are, and the possible dangers of using such products. As part of *doing* the solution, I will create a power point with the information I’ve learned, and present it to my sorority and a few other sororities. In addition, I will create an informative pamphlet, and pass them out to the sororities.

    Like

    • ok– good. but a lot of this informaiton is already out in film form ,etc. research in your sorority– why do people not have acess to the existing information? what will make a difference in your sorority for them to hear this informaiton? yes– create a power point and do it through out the greek system sororities at csun– good idea!! document the attendance at the evets so you can do results assessment later. nice deas here! (i know how hard it is to talk about sorority girls and make up use– i was a sorority girl in college!! delta zeta!)

      Like

  37. Problem: Many students between the ages of 15-24 are dropping out of high school.
    Solution: Encourage an after school program to keep kids motivated in school.
    Piece of the solution: Create a publicity campaign for a non-profit organization that addresses this problem.

    Like

  38. As a twenty-one year old woman I consider myself a socially conscious individual. I have my education to thank for that. I also understand that I am a consumer and consider music a huge part of my life. I buy into popular culture and music is a big part of that culture. When I’m sad, I know just the right songs to listen to, when I want to dance, I know which album to play. I love music because it is so relatable and influential but when I’m driving in the car and listening to the radio and literally every song is either about sex and degrading women, drinking, smoking, or partying not to mention there is so much vulgar language every other word is bleeped out! I ask myself is this what my younger brothers and sisters listen to as well? Of course they do, I also ask myself can they understand and decipher what these messages mean and how it affects them? I think back to when I was younger. I was very influenced by music and popular culture.

    The Problem: In 2012 the mainstream industry continues to popularize music where majority of the artist are male and lyrics as well as music videos promote images that hyper-sexualize and degrade women.

    According to our popular local radio stations such as 102.7 Kiss FM, 97.1 Amp Radio, and Power 106. The top 15 most played songs are as follows:

    1. Strip – Chris Brown
    2. Rack City – Tyga
    3. Wild Ones – Flo Rida (Feat. Sia)
    4. Make it Nasty – Tyga
    5. I beat the pu**y up – YG
    6. Avy Ladies – Tyga (Feat. Travis Porter)
    7. Function – E-40 (Feat. YG)
    8. Toot it and Boot it – YG
    9. Patty Cake – YG
    10. Dance (A$$) – Big Sean
    11. The Motto – Drake
    12. Birthday Cake – Rihanna (Feat. Chris Brown)
    13. Beez in The Trap – Nicki Minaj
    14.Faded – Tyga (Feat. Lil Wayne)
    15. Stupid Hoe – Nick Minaj

    Just The top 5 songs alone contain degrading lyrics such as:

    Warning Explicit Language!!

    1. Chris Brown – Strip:
    “Which one I’ma take home
    Get my freak on
    If you ain’t freakin’, we ain’t speaking
    You think I’m playing?
    No, I’m not
    Let me see you back it up and drop
    Yeah, I wanna see your legs in the air” – http://www.metrolyrics.com

    2. Tyga – Rack City:
    “Rack city, bitch, rack rack city, bitch
    Ten, ten, ten, twenty on yo titties, bitch
    100 deep VIP, no guest list
    T-Raw, you don’t know who you fuckin with
    Got my other bitch fuckin’ with my other bitch
    Fuckin’ all night, nigga we ain’t celibate
    Niggas say I’m too dope, I ain’t sellin it
    Raw fresher than a motherfuckin’ peppermint
    Gold Lettermans, Last King killin shit
    Y-Young Money, Young Money yeah, we gettin’ rich
    Got ya grandma on my dick [haha]
    Girl you know what it is” – http://www.rapgenius.com

    3. Flo Rida – Wild Ones
    “I am a wild one

    Break me in

    Saddle me up and lets begin
    I am a wild one

    Tame me now

    Running with wolves
    And i’m on the prowl” – http://www.directlyrics.com

    4. Tyga – Make it Nasty
    “Uhhh. Yeah Bitch Make it Nasty
    Tongue down her throat
    While the other bitch gaggin
    Bottles in the basket
    Pills in the plastic
    She gone do drugs, but we don’t do acid
    Fuckin on the mattress, hit a bed spring
    Ain’t nothin better, it’s the best thing
    Gotta China bitch, straight from Beijing
    Pussy so tight, all she do is scream
    Oh, bend it over, make you touch your toes
    I like how she merry-go-round round the pole
    Pose, ha, open, close.” – http://www.azlyrics.com

    5. I beat the pu**y up – YG
    “I beat the pussy up like ali

    Mexican bitches call uh nigga popi 

    Stop signs won’t even stop me

    oh yo name Tati, well what that shit do

    Young cold nigga,
    fuck you in 
the igloo

    I’m the pipe man fuck you on the nightstand 

    she said her ass look fat in the right pants
    And you know I ate her pussy cause she light skinned

    Fuck you on the bed, bathroom, or the couch

    Yea I get it in baby girl no doubt

    I make you say Oooo I make you say OH

    I hit it from the back while you touch yo toes

    we could do it on the stairs, do it upside down

    I heard you got uh boyfriend fuck that clown” – http://www.elyricsworld.com

    Songs Like these are constantly on rotation and played at least 5 times a day on each radio station!

    The Feminist Toolbox:
    1. Is everyone at the table? Is everyone who is going to be affected by the decision made
at the table?
    – This is a very controversial ethical issue. When it comes down to each artist, the writers who write the content that is in their songs; no, not everyone is at the table. We have laws that allow freedom on speech and freedom to express what you consider an art, so there are no rules or regulations that inhibit what an artist can create. The women are affected in society by the content of this material are not at the table when it comes to producing and packaging this music. These same women are also not at the table when songs get picked to be on popular radio stations. Women however, are at the table as consumers when it comes to buying this music and participating in the music videos.

    2. If you are not at the table is someone going to be they’re representing you?
    – In an industry already dominated by men, where men also make up majority of the popular artist, it is hard to say whether or not they is someone representing women as whole. I would say there is no one representing women and telling these artist and producers, “hey you really need to watch the over sexualized content in your music”. It is having a negative effect on young girls and contributing to negative societal views dealing with women and their sexuality. If anything the idea that sex sells is being promoted to make money and its what works. The little bit of women artist that we do have like Rihanna and Nicki Minaj buy into the tactics that sex and more sex is what they need to sell. What mainstream society needs is a balance of positive messages and images. There are so many unrepresented artists out there that are not being played on the radio and that needs to change.

    3. Do all the voices of the table have equal resources to be heard?
    -Not at all. The people with the most money have the power to get their songs played on radio stations and that is how music gets heard. You will hear the same songs played on the radio constantly and that is because the record labels that put out the music have the money to make sure it gets played and people buy it. What women need to understand is that we have the power as women to stop buying music that degrades and exploits us. We have the power as women to say these messages and content are unacceptable and their needs to be doors opened for other artists who have a power message to send other than sex, drugs, materialism, and putting each other down. I realize because of the power structure it is easier said then done.

    4. Is the private sphere as important as the public sphere?
    -In this case I would consider the mainstream music industry the private sphere and the consumers particularly women consumers, the public sphere. Yes the private is just as important as the public, if anything I think as consumers the public is more important because we determine how rich these artist will get because we buy and support their music. The problem is it seems as if the tables are turned. The private sphere has the power to influence what the society consumes. If all we hear are the same artist on the radio constantly, they are who we as consumers are going to be obsessed with. But if women in generally take the time to actually listen the music and the lyrics these men are saying and say, “I don’t appreciate being misrepresented in this, I don’t like being disrespected in this way, women are worth more that these messages and images, and I will not support this artist”. The public sphere will have a huge impact on their pockets, forcing the industry to come with something else. Again because of the power structure this is easier said then done.

    5. Is the “I” voice validated or matters/listening also matters?
    In the case of the mainstream industry continuing to popularize music where majority of the artist are male and lyrics as well as music videos promote images that hyper-sexualize and degrade women. The “I” voice which would represent like me who say, “I don’t support these artist who’s lyrics degrade women”, “I think it’s wrong that the artist who put out this material are more conscious about how it negatively affects women”, and “I want to say something about it”. The problem is that the “I” isn’t big enough or loud enough to be heard, they as in women are quick to be shut down and dismissed.

    6. Empathy Vs. sympathy
    In an industry where it is glamorized to be overly sexual and women’s bodies are used as objects of sexual desire, there isn’t much empathy from the broader audience, because it is a big part of what fuels the industry. But when we get to the reality of our society and you hear about instances where woman are harassed, sexually assaulted, and mistreated. We as women need to take a step back and address what drives these problems.

    The Solution:
    As women who are workers and consumers of these industries, we need to continue to address the over sexualized images and content that constantly floods the media. We need to realize that popular main stream media is what helps fuel the mentality and ideologies that the young people develop about sex and self-image.

    My Part: I come from a long line of generations where black women have been the targets of scrutiny when it comes to sexuality and self-image. We’ve seen it in movies, music videos, magazines, ect. Today, mainstream Hip-Hop continues to be a huge driving force in how women are portrayed and perceived sexually. It has not had a positive effect on society at all. When I hear and see things that say, all black women are promiscuous, they all want to be strippers, the are all gold diggers and so on it really makes me wonder how can we as black women start to change the views in society since these images are all they see.

    I have decided to use social networks, such as YouTube, Twitter, Tumblr, and Facebook to spread knowledge about the state of our younger generations and how mainstream society help enforce lyrics as well as music videos that promote images that hyper-sexualize and degrade women.
    As a feminist, I will speak on issues that not only affect black women and their sexuality and self-image, but women’s sexuality as a whole. I plan to go against the grain and bring to light controversial topics and spark debates on issues that negatively affect the black community today. I am passionately concerned about the state of our younger generations being brought in mainstream society. I plan to lead by example and motivate and spread ideas about positive self-image and sexuality. The Feminist toolbox has provided me with special tools for continuing personal growth in my life. I can only hope that as I get older and gain more knowledge and experience; I can help contribute to solving problems ethically in my community.

    Thank you all for taking time to read this and providing your input on this situation and if there is even more that can be done to combat this issue.

    Like

    • great analysis, karism- but using social networks to speak out is not quite enough of a solution– if you want to write a blog and set up ommentary on it and refer to your blog on social netowrks that would work–are you planning on making a video for youtube?

      Like

      • Thank you professor. Yes I have created a YouTube account and in the works of creating a video, which i am super excited for! My blog is almost complete, so hopefully I will get some good responses. I’m tryin to make it as tactful as I can so it does’t just become one of the many rants that a random person has against the music industry. As I go further with this assignment I realize that I clearly cannot change the industry. But on a personal level at least I hope to just be a conscious indivdual that goes against the grain. This issue affects me on a personal level becasue I have younger siblings who idolize these artists and inturn want to emulate them be be cool. I get it I was there at one point. I just hope to help instill in them good values and let them know that doing what they see and hear will lead them to certain experience that they could possible avoid. Thank you again for your feedback.

        Like

    • I really think you deconstructed your problem very thoroughly, and it looks like you have a wonderful handle on how you will go about your solution. Music is a highly influential means of communicating what general society approves of, whether it is beneficial or demeaning, and you have reflected this by displaying the abundance of songs that do just that! I look forward to your final project, most definitely.

      Like

  39. There has never been any reason for my family to not communicate with my mothers’ side. We were always really close growing up and had more vacations with those family members than all of my fathers side put together. However, after the death of my mother and the marriage to my fathers wife now, that communication changed dramatically, almost over night. My youngest three sisters were then between the ages of one and six and now they are between the ages of ten and sixteen. As you may have realized it has been approximately nine years now since my three youngest sisters were allowed to make contact with my family members on my mothers’ side. Because my youngest three sisters still live at home, they are affected by this decision. However, they are not involved with making that decision because they are not at the table, so to speak, and are therefore not equally represented.
    Now that I have given a little understanding behind my family ethical issue, I will give the details to my solution approach. The first thing I am going to do is listen to everybody’s side in regards to the issue. I need to understand everyone, especially my father and his wife, in order to achieve the best outcome. For this to show the best result I believe it would be wise to start with baby steps, so to speak. To do that, I will first involve only my grandmother (on my mothers’ side) to assist with reconnecting attempts. My grandmother is also affected by this and has no legal say with making the decision to not connect with my youngest sisters.
    Each letter will consist of their thoughts as if speaking to both my father and his wife even though they will not actually be given the letters. I want to get their thoughts and questions on the top of their mind so it is fresh because the next step would be to reach out to my father. Because I know my father will not write a statement in regards to the issue, I plan on having a casual conversation in regards to it first. The next step will be to ask my younger sisters and grandmother to write a letter. I know it has been approximately 3 yrs since my grandmothers’ last attempt to reconnect with my father so I will ask my grandmother to write an email to my father in hopes to reconnect again. After discussing the issue with my sisters I will discuss their thoughts on approaching my father about it. I will discuss with both my grandmother and sisters the different approaches they should take when talking to my father, so I can help guide them through the process more easily and coach the best way I can. This will allow for a face-to-face interaction with my younger sisters regarding this huge issue that they have not been able to have a voice in until now.
    I believe that this new approach that I have come to understand in this feminist ethics class, has definitely given me the opportunity to take on my particular situation differently. I can only see a great change for the better in my family ethical issue.

    I appreciate any ideas that will allow me to assist more with my personal family issue/s.
    Thank You

    Like

    • alina- in this instance i do think there has to be some connection to why the split happened in the first place– can you get that information? for yourself– even if you don’t connect it to the assignment…have there been befefits to not connecitng? and what are the benefits to all in connecting?

      Like

      • I did have a brief conversation with my father in regards to the “why.” his response was that my grandmother & my aunt apparently tried to get between his wife & him before the marriage… :-/ I asked my grandmother this & she said they were just “looking out for us girls” because it was 3 months after my mothers death that he met my step mother & 2 months after that they decided to get married… She said they just questioned him & it escalated to where they are now. The only benefit I can think of would be with my fathers wife & my youngest sister (who was a new born of course when my mom died). Because the separation is between my mothers family not being allowed to make contact, my youngest sister would not “question” our step mother about my mom. Even after these 10 yrs she really hasn’t asked about her “birth mom.” The benefit to reconnecting is that the youngest 3 girls would be able to see & visit my mothers side. They would hear “positive” stories about my mom as apposed to only the negative my dad tells when ever she is brought up. Although, this last year he hasn’t been saying anything really negative about her. But also hasn’t been saying anything at all…

        But an update in my situation-My grandmother has sent an email to my father…I had a conversation before hand (as mentioned above with my father & grandmother) to figure out “how” she should best approach it. & we decided to start with an “apology for past issues.” We went over major points to say & how to say them of course. She mentioned how she is really hoping to move forward because she is not getting any younger lol & would like to spend what time she has left with the family, even if its just occasional telephone calls to start.

        She just sent the email yesterday & when I talked to her this morning she had not received a reply… I’m going to give it a couple days simply because he may need to discuss it with his wife before writing back. But I had already discussed trying to reconnect with my 2 younger sisters. The 16 yr old said she would try to casually ask my father about my grandma & see where the convo goes from there. If he is more open to talking to her then she will ask if she can talk to her… If he is not “in a good mood” then she will just leave it casual until next attempt. Sigh*

        Like

    • Alina, you can also organize a get together reunion or a party after they have writen and reading the letters. In the reunion you can post pictures of both families of all times.
      ~Sonia

      Like

    • Alina — this is such a sensitive and personal ethical problem and I really applaud you for working towards actively doing something about it. In working on my ethical problem and respective solution, I have discovered that because it is so broad, it is much more difficult than anticipated. Your problem/solution is a beautiful and noble one, and I really think your deconstruction and analysis of it, as well as your steps forward thus far, have at the very least made some realizations come up for you. This is a real process, and it is going to have real effects. I admire you for this and find myself personally touched by it. The best of luck; I know the ripples will be felt! Keep on keeping on… very well done.

      Like

  40. For my Female Ethical project is about the Tenure teacher and the union conflicting with a proposal for a better education the students. The students are expected to meet certain expectation, yet are are not provided with adequate teachers that will help them reach their that goal. It is unfair, to put all the pressure on the student at not look at the whole picture and the core issue that has nothing to do with the students in the public system. My ideal solution would be to, re-invent the wheel, times have change and the school system needs acknowledge it. I will be getting signature from parents and students, provide them with information about this issue and how it affects our children. I will be writing a letter to the School district and sending along the signature obtained by the parents and students. Also, will be using Facebook and other web resource to get the word out.

    this is very challenging, but well worth the try!

    Thank you,

    Rubi Torres

    Like

    • I totally agree with you. The district is using substitute teachers. I know the case where they are having a different sub every day for almost three months. Do you imagine how the students are acting. If you are in the need of more signatures, I can help. Let me know.
      ~Sonia

      Like

    • Rubi, I’m so glad that you came out with a plan B since plan A did not worked as espected.
      Sonia*

      Like

  41. updated
    Dr.Cartier, “Feminism and Religion” blogging community and Feminist Ethics class, this is an update of the problem that I want to interact with. There is a lack of information that parents (mostly mothers) receive regarding the rights and services that special education students have. I work with a seventh grade Special Education Student who has Cerebral Palsy. The school district is not giving all the services that the student is entitled to according to law.

    The student speech is at least 90% delayed. Most of people cannot understand what she says. That is one reason of her frustration. Even though she has a lot of difficulty closing the zipper of her jacket and her backpack, her occupational therapy services were limited from four meetings per week to one consultation only per month. Her speech therapy services were reduced from four meetings per week to two meeting per week. She really needs the speech therapy. While the school speech pathologist says she is giving two days of speech therapy a week, the student is actually not getting anything. Furthermore, she needs a new Assistive technology to help her to participate in the educational activities. In addition, it is written in her IEP that she has accommodations regarding to front seating and big desks, but the teachers have her sit in a regular desk. The student cries for long periods of time in a regular day basis. She also hit her body, pull her hair, bite herself, and bends her glasses. She needs immediate psychiatric attention. It gives the impression that no one attempts to help her.

    Part of the solution that I will create for the Final
    * Create two pamphlets one in English and one in Spanish that contains parents’ rights and services that an especial education student have.

    I provide support to my student and her mother, but because I am employed by the school district, I am limited in my ability to advocate for her without endangering my job. For this reason, I will limited advocate for her by:
    *Inviting her and other parents to go to the library for a workshop. The workshop will given in Spanish every Tuesday starting April 16 until the end of the school year which is around June 16.
    *In the workshop, I will give them the pamphlet,
    *I will go over the information containing the pamphlet, and
    *I will answer any question that they might have. At the end of the workshop,
    *I will pass down a survey in Spanish to assess the effectiveness of the workshop.

    I appreciate any feedback.
    Thank you,
    Sonia

    Like

    • I think this is a great solution! My sister-in-law works in the same field and she has told me that many of the parents though they should be informed are sometimes not fully informed. Hopefully everything goes as planned, and if it does maybe you can round up some co-workers that can help you get this information out to more parents. Good Luck!

      Like

      • Sarai, thank you for taking the time to commment on my problem. To try to solve the piece of solution is not have bing easy as I thought. I have had some obstacles.

        Like

  42. I published the website. It isn’t complete, and will grow (in the public eye), but any feedback would be tremendous.

    Additionally, as the site does grow, I think that forming a non-profit organization and perhaps taking the dialogue generated as a result of this blog to colleges across the country could really institute some incredible change. I think if we can talk about what it takes to heal from rape in a new and comprehensive way, perhaps we can talk about what it means to be raped in a new and more comprehensive way.

    http://www.SurvivingRape.org

    Like

    • Jennie, your website is amazing, truly amazing…Everything from the pictures to the quotes makes this website so alive and the message of healing is expressed throughout the site…You are really doing something wonderful for other women who might need this because this topic is too ignored and under-discussed…
      By the way, if you are forming a non-profit organization, I would love to help…
      Mona

      Like

    • Jennie, your website is beautiful. And I would love to share my story on there for you! I know we already talked about it in class, so if you want, I can email you my healing story.

      Like

    • Hi Jennie! Your website is awesome. I love what your doing! I’d love to share my story as well and provide ways of dealing and coping with incestuous sexual abuse. Alot of this goes on and people are afraid to speak out. But this website is really inspiring and I can’t wait to see it grow even bigger.

      Like

      • Thank you so much Karisma! I am excited about it’s potential, and especially excited to share important stories of healing. Your courage to share inspires me, and will help countless others. We can talk about it more today…

        Like

    • Wow Jennie, I love your website, I could not stop reading the daily meditations and loved reading some of the comments. You have created something truly positive for women everywhere, I have a friend who suffered rape and incest as a young child and am excited about passing your website on to her. Great job!

      Like

    • Hi Jennie — I’m really amazed at your website. This element of healing is very innovative and modern. Seeing it live is really awesome. The layout is very inviting and user-friendly, as much as it is serene. A lot of sites I see concerning such issues are sort of cut and dry, minimalist. And while that may be fine for information’s sake, it isn’t very inviting. Keep up the good work… and thanks for making navigating and tapping into the resources you have very easy.

      Like

      • Thank you Lindsey! I appreciate the feedback re the layout and format (it’s a ripoff of my other site so I’m glad that it seems to stand separate).

        Like

    • I too was amazed when looking at your website. You did an amazing job :-)

      Like

    • Jennie! Great site!! for experience i know it is difficult to find the support needed to over come any change especially rape!!

      Like

  43. Its me Ale again with my update, what i have done so far is research more
    into my problem Diet Pills . Which now my focus is the use of
    diet pills in teenagers.
    My next step is to contact the High school’s Health and Physical Eduacaton
    instructors and also the Health office and explain my project.
    Therefore I will be making pamphlets that will be distributed with a speech
    that I will be giving at this high school. And i will also leave pamphlets in
    the Health office.

    Like

  44. Update:

    Hello everyone, so far I have done an introduction about myself and why I have started a blog. I am planning on starting a new post soon so that I can upload it within a couple of days. In this post I am going to be adding links of organizations involved in nature preservation. Tomorrow is Earth day! =D so I think it is great that we are all mindful of what we are doing to our planet. Although, I think it is great that we dedicate a day to our planet, it is important that we are mindful every single day! Also, some time next weekend I am planning to have my event in which I will be doing a larger scale cleaning of the beach with some family and friends. I will be posting this idea on the blog and hopefully inspire others to do the same and write about their experiences. =]

    Like

    • Let me know what day you will do a beach cleanup and I will tweet about it to try and get more people to go. (Also, if I am available I’d be down to help ;)

      Like

      • Awesome =D thank you very much, I am trying to figure it out, hopefully next weekend if not sometime during the week next week, this week is just crazy for me but I will let you know a few days in advance so that maybe we can set something up.

        Like

    • Hey Kim, love your beach cleanup day and your ideas for the blog and the website…if you need some suggestion for post to put up, I think a great thing to do is to have some youtube videos that show how much damage we have done to the earth. I always think that visual communication is the best way to grab peoples attention because I recently saw a very disturbing documentary on this issue and how we are killing animals with our trash…just a thought if you haven’t already considered it as an option…By the way, thanks for the email about the flier.for my project…will check it out..totally forgot to email you back..thanks Mona

      Like

    • Hey Love this idea! There are so many issues going on daily with regards to the damage that we are doing to our planet. I provided a link to an article below about the current effects of the BP oil spill and whats its done to the sea food we eat!! This can be something to add your blog if you like. :)

      http://www.foxnews.com/scitech/2012/04/18/eyeless-shrimp-and-mutant-fish-raise-concerns-over-bp-spill-effects/

      Like

    • I love your idea to help the planet. I think it would be cool if you tried to organize more events to go out and do something for Earth for people on the website that want to get involved. if you need any help let me know :)

      Like

    • I currently don’t have a car; I bicycle and bus everywhere I go. In other words, I’ve been behind the idea of lessening our carbon footprint as much as we can. I’ve blog and a Twitter account if you would like the word to get out about your beach clean up. I’d love to participate as well.

      Like

  45. Hey all! Its karisma with and update on how my project is doing.

    To recap my problem was:

    In 2012 the mainstream industry continues to popularize music where majority of the artist are male and lyrics as well as music videos promote images that hyper-sexualize and degrade women.

    My Solution is:
    I have decided to create a blog and use social networks, such as YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook to spread knowledge about the state of our younger generations and how mainstream society help enforce lyrics as well as music videos that promote images that hyper-sexualize and degrade women.

    So far I have got the following social sites set up…
    Blog: http://changestartswith1.blogspot.com
    YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/ChangeStartsWithOne
    Twitter: https://twitter.com/#!/ChangeStartsW_1
    Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/ChangeStartsWith1

    Next step is to creat a video where I show how the problem affects the behaviors, mindsets, and values of young people in our society.

    Its coming along and I’m very excited. Please provide any feedback you can! I truly appreciate your thoughts on this issue and what the solution should be! Thank you

    Like

    • I “liked” your facebook page! I think this is really awesome. Maybe you can get help from classmates to get your social sites recognized and out there for people to see!

      Like

    • Great idea and such an important topic! The younger generation is being affected because these artists make it seem “ok” to do and act in ways that are not good. Some of their lyrics, videos, and actions are degrading and they do not realize the great impact they have on younger generations.

      Like

    • Thank you all to have liked my page!! I really appreciate it. Since I’m new to the twitter culture I would love ideas of what my first post should be. Or ideas on how to get the best out of twitter. Thank you guys for the feedback!

      Like

    • Hey Karisma, I really like what you are doing as far as getting the word out about women not being portrayed positively in the music industry. I think it is great that you are taking different avenues of social communication to get your point across. I love your blog, it is too cute and powerful, you are doing an awesome job. =]

      Like

    • I too “liked” your Facebook page :-) Also just fyi they removed the video you borrowed from youtube. It was too violent apparently under it’s terms. I wanted to see how ridiculous that kid sounded Grrrr. anyways Great page. Keep up what you’re doing. btw my best friend said she liked your project. She also read your previous posts :-) Wanted to let know

      Like

  46. Update:
    My issue was harassment in the workplace from my own manager. The case was concluded and the issue was addressed. my manager feels upset about the issue and apparently, that is all. We won’t be working together for the next couple of weeks and if anything further hapens I am to report the issue to my HR rep.
    To be honest, i don’t feel any better. My next step is to find out what exactly to do in this situation. The lack of a “no tolerance” policy is highly disturbing.

    Like

    • Berlyn…if you dont feel better, then I really think that you should take this matter further… This is your workplace and if you don’t feel safe or satisfy with the outcome, things must change…I know it must be hard, but YOU are not the one that should feel bad because you haven’t done anything wrong what so ever….

      Like

    • Hey I hopefully gave you a lot of advise but I posted it on you original post.. Check it out & let me know if you have any questions or thoughts. You can always call or email me directly. If you should need “guidance” through the process, my email is alinapetlin@yahoo.com I can give you my contact info from there :-) I am definitely willing to help you with the next step. Just Let Me Know.

      Like

    • Hi Berlyn I understand you on your issue a year ago i went through similar but it was not just I the one who was feeling the same way there was other females that i didnt even know about so they filled a complaint on that manager when I found out I also joined them and therefore they ended up switching him of location but i recently heard he no longer works there. Now in my recent job our head manager was also accused of sexual harrament and it was three females who accused him he no longer works for the company. Im guessing it will be great if you knew others that also feel sexualy harrased in your same job that can help you its just a though… But honesttly i think your not the only one there in your job im pretty sure there is someone else who is in your situation but there affraid to talk or act to the problem !

      Like

  47. Update:
    Sexual harassment in the Workplace is the problem that I am working on. I am in the works with creating a pamphlet that has information on sexual harassment in the workplace and information for the victim on what to do and where to go. This is an issue at my workplace, so this week I am going to set up an appointment with the human resources director to see if I can place the pamphlets around campus. I know that I don’t have control over other’s behaviors, yet I hope to create an atmosphere where people will be reminded on what sexual harassment is, so that sexual harassment won’t be such a problem.

    Like

  48. Update:
    Punk women being misunderstood/judged by mainstream society was my problem. So far I have asked girls to participate in an interview.I have received one yes, and I am still waiting on 3 other.
    My next step will be sending out the interviews and then putting them together for my friend’s zine.
    After that I will work on my editorial page and outline for my mock zine.

    Like

  49. Update:
    So now, I have launched my website for Female Genital Mutilation, but still working on some things that I want to include in the site..Right now I am working on to link it to other organization that has worked on this issue extensively and that travels to the areas that mostly perform FGM… I know it will be a challenge to make the information reach the people that need it the most because of accessibility but I believe I can do it with time and help from these organization. I am also looking around to other health or women organization in LA that might work or have worked on this issue so I can visit them and see what they have done so far…still a working progress, but the website is up and running…

    Like

    • Hey Mona!
      Nice running into you on campus today! Like I mentioned, hit up GoDaddy.com and set up a user account. Then search the URL you want to see if it’s taken- if not, go ahead and buy it and we will get together those week and I’ll help you set up domain masking…

      Xo

      Like

    • Hi Mona,

      Great job on launching the website already, I would love to be able to see it. Do you have the website link we can use to visit the site?

      Like

    • Hi Mona im very imterested to know more about this issue its first time I ever hear about this. Its a vvery strong and iporatant issue that alot of people dont know I am looking foward to see you website Good Luck !!

      Like

  50. up date problem/solution
    Have spoken with committee on name usage, expecting a response later in the week. Have started gathering names for first group launch, and discussing possible launch date for luncheon. Looking for camera crew to film for free.

    Like

  51. Update :

    I have recently gone to a few different public libraries and looked at a variety of children’s books and I haven’t found one like the book I want to create! This week I am planning to go out to school districts and find out their policy on teaching materials, especially the children’s books. Also, I’ve made my book’s outline and hopefully this week, start on the illustrations and work on the script!

    Like

    • I know I dont have to post on your “update” but as your partner I would assist in any way you need. Just let me know… Alina :-)

      Like

    • Hey Maricela,

      As I mentioned in class, I took the English428 course last semester (which is Children’s Literature). We covered a variety of multi-cultural children’s texts, and for one class session we talked about diversity in families. The professor had some really great books about diverse families, even some books that showed 2 dads! I was shocked, and also very pleased.

      Here is her contact information:

      Dorothy G. Clark, Ph.D.
      Associate Professor of English
      Jewish Studies Interdisciplinary Program Faculty
      Subject Matter Option Advisor
      California State University, Northridge
      (818) 677-7225
      dorothy.g.clark@csun.edu

      I really encourage you to email her and ask her the titles and authors of those books! She would be very helpful. Also, she’s very passionate about her job and about children’s literature, so I’m assuming she’d be glad to help you! =)

      -Ashlee Morales

      Like

    • I really love your idea! I actually told my mom. She’s a preschool teacher and she said that they had just gotten a new book that showed 1 lesbian couple, but that’s about it. I told her about your idea and she loved it. A good idea would be having the book almost finished or finished to show around so they have a clearer idea of what you’re trying to bring about.

      Like

  52. Update to problem/solution:
    I am finding that the ethical problem I am choosing to bring to light is more of an attitude that permeates societies in general, although I am focusing on Western society’s views towards women. I was initially going to tackle the issue of laser hair removal, but figure I might try to work an angle that uses the issue of hair removal & women and how said issue is a means of judgement by those that don’t abide by it via traditional means. ie women are ‘supposed to’ not have hair on their legs, under their arms, or on their pubic regions; they are ‘not feminine’ if they do… my general question regarding this is — since when? And concerning this issue and others, it gives room not only for a patriarchal bias to continue, but for women to continue it against other women.

    I am setting up interviews with women who don’t abide by ‘the norm’ when it comes to hair removal; so far I have an outline of questions that I will be sending out before mid week. I will be meeting with my buddy, Ashlee, since our projects are similar, and we will bounce off further ideas this Wednesday.

    Like

  53. Update: I have began the process in creating my scrapbook. I have gathered pictures, materials, and quotes to place in the scrapbook. I have also emailed one of my friend’s family member who is a psychologist to set up an appoitment within the next week. I will also call the CSUN counseling service and set up an appointment with them to talk to them about how I can help my cousin with her body abuse.

    Like

    • Hi Alexis,

      It is great that you are so passionate about helping your cousin. Talking with a CSUN counselor should be pretty helpful. However, I think instead of making an appointment, you should walk right into the office and check out the resources there. They have tons of pamphlets/handouts about various issues. Making an appointment with a counselor takes about 2 weeks (unless you wish to seek personal counseling because your cousin’s issue is really affecting you, then go ahead! More power to you!)

      Also, there are other clubs on campus that deal with these issues, such as JADE (Joint Advocates on Disordered Eating) That is the perfect club to check out! There is also G.E.M. (Girl Empowered Movement) at CSUN. Their mission is to empower young teenage girls. =)

      Best wishes!

      -Ashlee Morales

      Like

    • Alexis- I think you’re doing well on working on your solution. I think making a scrapbook for your cousin with things that can give her some inspiration is a good idea.

      Like

    • Hi Alexis! I think it’s so nice that you are helping your cousin deal with her body issues. She’s lucky to have a cousin like you! You are doing a great job! If you need any help please feel free to contact me

      Like

  54. Update with my problem I am trying to have the group WYSE to my local middle school I have contacted them both and I am waiting for their replies. I also went to the middle school but unfortunately they told me that the person that I needed to speak with wasn’t there. I did get a business card and I’ve called and have left messages. The next thing that I’ll be doing is setting up a meeting with them.

    Like

  55. UPDATE: toxic make-up

    Hello all! The end of the semester is approaching so soon! Let’s all stay motivated, focused, and continue to view every experience in school as a learning experience.

    This weekend I emailed various sororities about presenting during their business meeting. I stated in my email that my time frame for presentation is May 7th-May11th. I have not heard back from any of them! Ahhhh! Hopefully they respond by tomorrow (I just sent a few emails tonight) If they don’t respond… I’ll cal them personally, and if that doesn’t work… I am not sure how I am going to get an audience of a group of females. Hm. I am certain it should work, though.

    Aside from that, I am going to start on my power point this weekend.

    Like

    • Hi Ashlee! I was thinking about your project earlier and I have some ideas for you. I am a former employee of the beauty company Ulta. Many of the customers that came into ulta complained about how their makeup was making them break out or was causing bad reactions with their skin. Mostly this was due to the fact that they were using bad drug-store brand makeup. Have you thought about going to beauty stores like Sephora or Ulta and handing out a pamphlet with all the facts on toxic makeup instead of relying on sororities? That way, your going to your target audience: people who wear and purchase makeup.

      Like

    • Hey Ashlee, thanks for the general encouragement; semester’s end is approaching quickly so focus is needed! Good luck with your contacts! I agree with Jordan’s suggestion; perhaps broadening your audience will get more attention to your piece of the solution. Doing a comparison with drug-store (or generic) make up as opposed to something MAC or from Sephora and so on might be a good place to start. I’ll see what I might be able to find as far as other make up manufacturers and will get back to you on this thread.

      Like

  56. An update with my video project for the family and friends of rape survivors. I have made an outline for the video, and have started on a script for the video. I already have 1 person I can interview. I would like a couple more if I can get people to agree to be on camera. However, since this is a sensitive topic, it might be slightly difficult to get people to talk about their experience with the aftermath of rape.

    I have started filming this week, and hopefully should be finished sometime next week or even the week after that.

    Like

  57. I have begun the creating and design of my website which is titled Gynecological Health For The Armenian Female. It is still in its beginning stages and I am in the process of collecting medical data and stats to input on to the website. I find that I am choosing my information very hesitantly for fear that I may be held accountable for the information even though I am pulling them off of public resources. This is my first website ever and I would love to get some feedback from others who are a bit more experienced and perhaps know how to cite information on a website to ensure that the reader knows where it is coming from.

    Like

    • Hey Lusine~ I would recommend searching other websites for a rough outline of a legal disclaimer to include on your site. My site has one under legal stuff, and so do some other informational websites. If you type into “the google,” there are plenty of disclaimers available for your use if you don’t want to mishmash up your own.

      I’d love to check out the site when it goes live, will you be posting a link here?

      Like

  58. I met with the non-profit organization I am helping and created a timeline for the press materials. I finished my research and finished writing a backgrounder and biography.

    Like

  59. I was able to create the pamphlets in English and Spanish. I gave them to two mothers and also I have had the workshop.

    Like

  60. UPDATE= I was able to create the Parents’ rights pamphlets in English and Spanish. I gave them to two parents (mothers) and also I have had the workshop for those two mothers. Every tuesday they have been invited to go to the library for a workshop. I feel the moral obligation to continue having the workshops even Feminist Ethics and the semester ends. They need so much representation. I have also placed pamphlets in the shelf of the Special Education office and I took pictures of those. In addition, tomorrow will be my student’s EIP meeting and I’m going to attend to support her and her mother, hopely the father will attend too. I have advised the mother and the student to speak up and fight for their rights.
    ~Sonia

    Like

  61. Update:

    I am still posting Daily Meditations and have since changed the voice with which I write them to the “I,” because I realized that if I am going to offer a website with suggestions as to healing, I should be making it about my own journey. I’m finding that the more time I spend working on this website, the more unresolved trauma comes up in me so it’s proving to be an incredible process all around.

    As an updated artistic piece about the site, I wrote for my other blog, http://www.BecomingJennie.com, and find that the written word is a much easier method of expression for me than the collage format in class.

    Dr. Cartier, would you like us to post pictures of our collages here? Was that the journal assignment? Or is a new, written piece about what the artistic expression has provided us sufficient?

    Thanks for all those who visited and continue the site.

    Like

  62. UPDATE Part Deux:

    Since I plan on posting my piece of the solution to a tumblr account of my own and a few LiveJournal body image/self-esteem sites, I decided to feel out the water in a LiveJournal community properly titled ask_me_anything. Here are some responses to the general view of body hair and the varying ideals there are out there:

    http://ask-me-anything.livejournal.com/35519933.html

    Now that I think about it, I should have asked for location as well as the questions I detailed, but at the very least it is stirring up conversation and will be a good place to place my video and link to a bigger site which will ask for user content and the like.

    Having done this so far has really helped in seeing a sampling of who really is at the table regarding attitudes, practices, and viewpoints — there was even a little back and forth in there as to why body hair is viewed as “gross” or otherwise; still, if others expressed an ill feeling towards the body hair, they were quick to express that they were not in a place to judge another because of it. I’m loving the responses, to be honest, and am working the other pieces of the toolbox into my responses to the responses. And so on.

    I will more than likely add more to this later.

    Like

  63. update #2:

    I have set up my appointment next week with the director at my employment in human resources and I’ve been working on my pamphlet on sexual harassment in the workplace with infomation for victims.

    Like

  64. My ethical issue is centered on the inequities of education and how much power race and class actually possess when it comes to resources and opportunities that certain schools receive.

    Similar to countless schools residing in destitute communities around the U.S, Oakland public schools operate within a system that is designed to fail Oakland youth. The majority of young people living in Oakland are poor and working class Latinos and African Americans. We are the ones that experience the absence of required resources obligatory for a sufficient education. My school was, without a doubt, set up for failure. For instance, for the first couple of weeks, my school did not receive any breakfast or lunch from the district to serve to the students. We were all expected to focus and concentrate in our classes with growling hungry stomachs that lasted all day. This went on for weeks. My school didn’t have a library; instead, we had one large bookshelf that consisted of a few books that the teachers brought from their homes for the students to read. We had some computers but most of them didn’t work or they were really slow which resulted in students not being able to complete assignments. We were supplied outdated worn out textbooks to learn with that were donated from other schools. Using Dr. Cartier’s Feminist Toolbox, Black and Brown students in Oakland are not being brought to the table.

    Literally, less than five minutes away from my high school, there is a group of students that are brought to the table who receive an adequate education in a school with enormous resources. Piedmont is a city that is actually located completely inside the city limits of Oakland. Although Piedmont is technically inside of Oakland, it is a known fact that residents of Piedmont disassociate themselves with the remaining regions of Oakland. People residing in Piedmont are mostly white and later generation Asian American immigrants. There is an immense difference in the public education system in Piedmont compared to Oakland.

    It is interesting that Oakland’s closest neighbor, Piedmont, does receive adequate education, and Oakland does not. It is also interesting that there are only two major differences between the young people in Piedmont and Oakland: race and class. It is not, nor will it ever be ethically correct for certain groups of students to receive an adequate education while, less than five minutes away, other groups of students are receiving a subpar and inferior education. The facts don’t lie. White and Asian students in Piedmont are held in higher regards than the Black and Latino students residing in Oakland. They are being prepared to enter the real world as leaders, while we are being prepared to work for them and to fill up their prisons.

    My Solution:
    In my sophomore year of high school, I became a part of the Step-to-College Program (STCP), which succeeded in granting 25 out of 26 high school seniors, including myself, admission into a CSU or a UC in 2008. The STCP recruits a cohort of low income students who are usually in their freshman year of high school and provides them with essential skills necessary to transition from high school to the university for the entire four years of high school. Numerous students that are recruited in STCP are referred by teachers and schools that have given up on them and deemed them as unruly deviants. I just so happened to be one of those students.

    Although my school lacked ample resources necessary for adequate growth and development, the teachers at the STCP constantly went out of their way to make sure the students were educated about history that was relevant to our lives as well as how to transform Oakland’s impoverished conditions for the better. The Step to College Program website is http://www.rosesinconcrete.org.

    The majority of students in STCP are the first in their families to attend a 4-year university. After our class graduated high school and went on to college in 2008, the teacher who is primarily responsible for the entire STCP college admittance, Jeff Duncan-Andrade, kept the cycle going and took on another group of disadvantaged youth from Oakland. For my short term solution, I plan on providing unconditional love along with true sense of hope to the students who are currently in the STCP. Whenever I am back in Oakland, I will make sure to stop by the STC classroom and assist the students with their homework, projects or whatever else they may need assistance with.

    Like

  65. Update: I have received one completed interview and I am waiting on two others. I should be getting the second one today or tomorrow.

    Like

  66. Update I am met with the appropriate person at the school and pitched my proposal, she wants me to speak to another group of people and thus I am preparing the speech I will be giving them.

    Like

    • That’s great I’m glad they liked your proposal and you were able to set something up. I hope you’re good at giving speeches! Good luck.

      Like

  67. UPDATE!!!
    As you may rmbr I am trying to tackle a 9 year distance between my father & my mothers side. Starting with my grandmother, she sent the email as mentioned previously. My father & his wife have since scheduled a phone conversation with my grandmother. From that conversation they agreed that they are still pissed :-/ However, they mentioned that she will be allowed to talk with my younger sisters over the phone once a week… It’s a start at least… But I can still hear the tears in my little sisters voice when she first talked to my grandmother on that first hidden phone call. At least now I wont have to hide it… The next push will be for visitation but I don’t think I will push that one just yet…………………….

    Like

  68. Alina… i have to see that reading you post put a smile on my face. Even though its really sad to see what has happened in your family, you have managed to break down some of the barriers and I think thats great. Not only for you, but for your entire family and I believe that they will be forever grateful for what you have done so far and continue to do….Your father may not show it yet, but it will come….

    Like

    • I am glad you got a warm feeling from this response, Mona. Feminism is a community of people seeking freedom and liberation, so finding similar minded people can cause an emotional reaction.

      Like

  69. Update….I am still trying to get a hold of my human resources representative to let them know that further action needs to be taken. Since the case was closed I have worked with my manager several times and he has been treating me very differently. Ignoring me, alienating me and asking me to hand him things he is right next to. I have documented all of this and just need to get a hold of HR for, hopefully, the rest.

    Like

    • Berlyn I feel really bad your case was thrown out. I think the manager should have been fired for his actions. I’m glad you’re not giving up and staying strong. My only suggestion is to stay strong and don’t give up. Sexual harassment is wrong and no one should have to go through that.

      Like

    • Hi Berlyn,
      California Law states the companies with 50 or more employees must have Supervisors attend a class on Sexual Harassment every two years. You may want to find out if your company has, including other locations, 50 or more employees and falls under that law. Also, here is a number to call to ask questions, The Department of Fair Employment & Housing at (800)884-1684, or you can visit their website at http://www.dfeh.gov. Another website that may be helpful is Equal Employment Opportunity Commision at http://www.eeoc.gov. Hope this helps some.

      Like

    • Thank you Cristine for helping Berlyn giving her those resourcers. That will help!
      Sonia

      Like

    • Human resources is not a valid place for assistance. They are there to hire and fire people, but H.R. is typically a “cold” department within a capitalistic framework, where profits are paramount.

      Like

  70. Hi classmates! I need help. I am not sure how to apply “is the I voice valid” to my problem of toxic chemicals in cosmetics. This particular step of the toolbox is really hard to apply to my problem. Does anyone have any ideas? Let me know. Thanks! =)

    Like

    • Hello classmates. Part of my solution is for me to have a petition. My problem is getting the petition out there for people to sign. I have set up two different online petitions. Does anyone have any suggestions???

      Like

      • Hi Subrina,

        If you have a facebook or twitter you can definitey get your friends to support and sign by posting a link on your page or tweeting the link to the petition site.

        Hope that helped somewhat hehe.

        Like

  71. Update #1.

    Have been going to different locations to talk to parent and students about public education reforms! Many believe we need it, however, feel and claim to feel powerless in this situation. i was shocked to hear this concern from too many parent. I have obtained signatures for change and for the teacher unions to back off. The first priority should be the students.
    This are the site i have been using http://www.teachersunionexposed.com/ads.cfm

    Spanish- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nBqOHGktCsc&feature=related

    Like

    • Rubi,
      Great job! I like your videos. The first thing we can do is be a difference in the children’s life and be the light in that dark place.

      Like

  72. Thank you Marie! I am thrilled about the opportunities for intergenerational feminism sparkling in this page. I am still reading. The video is so reassuring about the future, your students are an inspiration on how to keep the thrill of joy, heart, within the rigors of mind work. Using visual arts and performing arts… these reminds me of Karen Armstrong insistence that education and leadership in the US need a dynamic infusion of myth (art and science). And you and your students are precisely doing that. What is more, in the context of ethical resolution of social injustices. You all rock!

    Like

    • Vrinda,
      Thank you for spending time in reding our posts. We appeciate your complements. The only thing that I can say is that we are all doing this because we have someone who represent us and have helped us to be at the table. That person is Dr. Cartier. I personally feel fortunate to be part of Feminism and Religion blog.
      ~Sonia

      Like

      • Anialca and Sonia, thank you for your kind note. Indeed kind. I am not sure to which post of mine you are responding. As a spiritualist woman, and grandmother, who concentrates on what we need to create, in my humble opinion, I appreciated Dr. Cartier’s article in Feminism and Religion immensely. When I read “Change My Mind, Move My Heart: Feminist Ethics in Practice” by Marie Cartier, it was the first that I had read of Dr. Cartier. an I found her Feminist Toolbox an amazing contribution to women everywhere. I am happy to know that you count with the support of such a brilliant woman and scholar.

        My comments many times reflect a tendency for being critical about missing aspects in the discussion or essays. I am not sure if I have anyone who represents me… but I have also had the privilege of studying with most honorable teachers to whom I am ever indebted. The inspiration of a teacher like Dr. Carter is enough to keep one motivated to contribute with all our passion everything we can to a world sadly in distress.

        Sorry I did not answer before. I seldom entered wordpress, until now that I joined an online writing group called collaborative-writer.com and I am glad that I found your note. Best wishes in your studies and contribution as a woman scholar.

        Yours in Goddess,
        Vrinda

        Like

  73. Hello all, Just a quick update on my project.. Here is the video I made on Violence in mainstream porn. Please leave comments!

    Like

  74. My solution isn’t going as planned. It turns out that I’m not as great as making videos as I thought; however, I would like to think I’ve done better in site layouts and topics to at least incite discussion, whether they’re agreements or disagreements. All of which are welcome.

    I’ve been keeping an informal blog/website on the backburner if in the event I was unable to do the video in the way I had originally designed, and in the meanwhile it became a sort of conversation-starter. I recently started a Facebook page for it (inspired by one of our classmates’ projects) and in the meanwhile it has received a little more traffic. Few people have commented in regards to it on the actual internet, but it’s receiving hits from as far as the Netherlands and Australia at this point. Which is more than kind of cool.

    What I’ve discovered so far is that it seems that people generally have an interest in information, but unless it is ultra controversial, viral, or something preach-to-the-choir-esque, deep conversation and discussion on certain topics are hard to come by. At the same time, knowing that people are looking helps, because there is the thought that maybe they’re taking away a different perspective.

    Here is a sample post: http://beautifuluniquesnowflake.wordpress.com/2012/05/09/beauty-is-as/

    Any feedback is appreciated, as aside from this course, I would like to continue outreach and discussion via this blog in the future. Thanks for everything you do!

    Lindsey Darden

    Like

  75. Blurb – For the problem of teenagers using diets pills i decided to created a pamphlet, that would educate young teenagers to make them aware of the consequences of consuming diet pills.

    Like

Trackbacks

  1. Change My Mind, Move My Heart: Feminist Ethics in Practice by Marie Cartier « Feminism and Religion
  2. Feminist Ethics? « Beautiful Unique Snowflake
  3. Feminist Ethics Class and Final Problem Solving by Marie Cartier « Feminism and Religion

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