Tuesday, September 13, 2016

(Kind of) An Open Letter to Madonna


I haven't followed the Rocco Ritchie custody battle very closely, but as the product of a broken home I certainly feel for everyone involved. (But if I'm completely honest, I tend to be VERY pro-mom given my own experiences.) Yet I found myself very disturbed with Rocco's mother after stumbling across The Daily Beast's recent article on the topic, How Madonna Lost the Bitter Custody Battle Over Son Rocco, by Tom Sykes. No, I'm not about to jump on the "Madonna's a bad mother" bandwagon. Raising children is extremely difficult, and what little I know about her parenting seems like she's doing a fine job. What disturbed me is that I saw yet another example of her using terms for the female anatomy as the ultimate insult for a man -- you know, because there's nothing more demeaning you can say about a man than to compare him to a woman. (Guy Ritchie's a "cunt" and the Trump sons are "pussies.") How someone as pro-LGBT and pro-feminist as Madonna could be so tone deaf (ignorant? inarticulate?) as to think this is at all acceptable is beyond me. (Is she 12? Her social media presence makes it hard to tell sometimes. There's really no better way to describe Donald Trump's cruel sons than calling them what bullies in high school called me ... for wearing neon rubber bracelets and listening to your music?) Because of toxic masculinity, men and boys are bashed and murdered on a daily basis around the world for not living up to the societal "norm" for what being male means. (As are women for similar reasons.) I know you don't want to be feeding into this, so why are you? 


11 comments:

Matthew Rettenmund said...

I find it kind of weird that this bugs you so much. I'm sure 90% of your readers happily use the word cunt when attacking, well, cunts like Phyllis Schlafly or Sarah Palin. Pussy has long since become commonplace. (Maybe because cunt, from the Brits, is becoming so much more dominant? I feel like pussy is if anything rather dated.) I do agree it's clear it comes from a place of demeaning women—and I think fag or "so gay" are similarly negative in their origins, I just would argue they're still quite literal while "pussy" has lost its anti-woman vibe. Anyway, that's my thought. If anyone was going to cast aspersions on her Trump post, I would think it would be for her penchant for wearing fur, including—though it's been a while—some very unnecessary garments, like a chinchilla coat that comes to mind, while finding the Trumps killing animals to be beyond the pale.

Bill Carter said...

FWIW, in the UK, using the word "cunt" as an insult has much less weight than it does in the US. It's pretty much the rhetorical equivalent of calling someone a "prick"--not acceptable in polite conversation, but (usually) not enough to get you beaten up and thrown out of a bar.

Remember that scene in Shawn of the Dead? "Do any of you cunts want a beer?"

As a longtime resident of London, she's adopted the local vernacular.

J i m said...

fwiw, "pussy" comes from the word "pusilanimous" meaning timid, cowardly, fearful. idk how a woman's anatomy became known as a "pussy," but I think it's unfortunately circumstantial that we associate the insult with with it.

macguffin Fifty four said...

I get what you're saying, but disagree. Pussy and cunt and dick and asshole and prick are all insults that are thrown around in pretty equal measure. We all assign negative connotations to our anatomy (and pretty much anything else) when using them as insults. Would I betray myself and other men by calling someone a "dick"? I wouldn't think so. Just because people use words for one gender's privates doesn't mean their negative intention extends to the entire gender. It's one thing to support and defend women from insults, but I think their genitals are going to be ok without such over sensitive reactions. My two cents.

Sandy said...

I wonder why Rocco doesn't want to spend more time with someone who calls his dad a CUNT?

greg said...

I'm sure all of those internationalists in Nashville got the reference!

"And my son Rocco is being a bit of a scallywag!"

VM said...

Social media has been her biggest enemy. (I think it came along too late in her career for her to master it.) It's also revealed that there's not a lot of "there" there, sadly.

Damian said...

Do none of your readers seem to know that "pussy" is used interchangeably with "f*gg*t" in many (you might say deplorable) quarters? I find that hard to believe, given the troubled personal experiences of many of us. The usage is problematic, and an enlightened personal style guide would read, "Avoid." You're absolutely right that it's tone deaf. Leave that term to the roadhouse bar and junior high gym class.

Dwight Williamson said...

I'm sure they upped daddy's child support- even - after she had to pay daddy a hundred million or more plus real estate just to get the divorce. Guy Ritchie is a dickhead loser, and as usual like all sociopaths , kinda hot!

Bill Carter said...

Sometimes a pussy is just a pussy.

"A Tribute to Mrs Slocombe’s Pussy":

http://www.lowculture.co.uk/2016/01/30/a-tribute-to-mrs-slocombes-pussy/

Sometimes, it isn't.

Blobby said...

I wonder why Rocco doesn't want to spend time with a woman who tells the family story to thousands of strangers at a concert. She *might* have thought it was some message of love, but to a teenage boy it is an embarrassment.

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