Sunday, April 15, 2007

Sometimes You Just Need To Say You Are Sorry

In Left Blogtopia, there has been a controversy for several days due to remarks made by Markos Moulitsas ZĂșniga, the proprietor of Daily Kos that many including myself considered insensitive to women. For days now, many of the feminist bloggers have called on Markos to re-examine his views about how women are treated, threatened, insulted in the blogosphere.

This all came about because a female blogger, Kathy Sierra, was stalked, had her number, address, social security information posted. People also did photoshop pictures of her being murdered with her decapitated head in a noose. This woman is a technology, not a political blogger. Markos' basically told people to toughen up.

After days of demands that Markos actually read what has transpired, and to quit being insensitive, Markos apparently gave great thought to the issue, and wrote the following this morning.

I don't disagree with anything Lindsey wrote. I disagreed with using a bloggers threats as an excuse to foist upon us all a "Blogger Code of Conduct".

That's what I was saying. 1) There are assholes that will 2) email stupid shit to any public figure (which includes bloggers, but 3) that won't be stopped by any blogger code of conduct.

You see, stupid asshole psycho threatening emailers don't care about codes of conduct. That's all.

After 3 days, here is his response to all the outpouring from women bloggers who have detailed rape threats, being raped in real life, knowing others who have been attacked, stalked, and were outraged by his chauvinistic attitude. That was it.

It's bullshit. Like any other enterprise in the market place, Markos got to be where he is through a combination of hard work, some talent, as well as fortuitous timing. He is the biggest, but like Woolworth, GM, K-Mart or any other large enterprise, his position isn't permanent. He is acting arrogantly like those big concerns before they got their comeupance. There are better writers than Markos. There are better progressives. I encourage everybody to seek these people out and give them your eyeballs, your ad clicks, and your donations.

It's Markos' choice to be chauvinistic, obtuse, and unrepentant. It's ours to decide "if we want to lie back and take it".

Update:I scrolled down to the bottom of the thread today that Markos posted and found the following "gem" there.
I guess that the relevant standard is that we have to not only tolerate the fears of our emotional weakest links, but we also are obligated to agree with them, lest we get flayed alive for not caring enough about their fragile emotional states and irrational attribution of every life's misery on the dominant patriarchy.


I guess it isn't enough to support sexual equality in all areas of life, gay rights, affirmative action, racial equality, a wider safety net and a greater government role in health, safety, financial and business regulations. Now I guess we have to agree to wallow in the emotional fever swamp of femynyst academia and the professional victim class.

This is why people are pissed Markos. Your cavalier attitude towards women's issues enables people like this to feel safe in dismissing women's issues. Is that your intent, or is it not?