Roundup: Pole dancing for preteens

Plus: Fox News' "groundbreaking" and allegedly apolitical abortion documentary.

Published October 23, 2007 12:05AM (EDT)

Republican women hotter than Democrats? So says a virtual flier quickly making the rounds on Facebook. As Feministing asks, is that supposed to be a persuasive political argument?

Gender-neutral bathrooms coming to a college campus near you. There's a movement on college campuses to redesign bathrooms so that they have a single stall and no gender designation. The movement is meant to accommodate transgender students and faculty, but also promises everyone some extra privacy, reports the Chicago Tribune. Unsurprisingly, some conservatives are fighting the movement, arguing that it "normalizes" transgenderism. To which I say: piss off.

Pole dancing: Fun for the whole family! On two different continents there's a controversy afoot over pole-dancing classes being offered for preteens. In the United Kingdom, the classes were offered in Cardiff, the capital of Wales, for kids as young as 11 years old. After city councilors complained and parents protested, the classes were canceled. It's even more bizarre in Australia: Pole-dancing classes are being offered for kids as young as 7 years old in Sydney. Angela Conway , a spokesperson for the Australian Family Association, said, "There are plenty of exercise tools out there ... By putting children in a pole dancing exercise class you're teaching children a sexual body language that they don't know the meaning of but adults do." Julie Perry, the mother of an 11-year-old who took the class, rebutted: "It's not slutty or anything. I've seen pole dancing on TV and they don't do anything like that here. It's building up her strength ... She's much stronger, healthier and more confident." In all seriousness, when did jungle gyms go out of style?

Why are top female chefs so rare? New York magazine posed that question, as well as whether it's harder to raise money as a woman, to some of the city's hottest female chefs. Alex Guarnaschelli of Butter responded: "I have colleagues -- male colleagues -- who say to me, 'Yeah, I just met with a big group of investors to open a restaurant,'" she said. "I'm looking at them, trying to sip my coffee, like, 'Yeah, bro, that must be rough.' And I go home and trade in the coffee for tequila. Did I do something wrong?"

Fox News on abortion. The "fair and balanced" news network is advertising its upcoming "groundbreaking" documentary on abortion, which "does not touch at all on the political debate." Here's a sneak peek at a couple of the special's subjects: A weeping 20-year-old who's had two abortions in less than a year and a drug-addicted single woman who has already had five kids by two different men. What a balanced, nonpolitical choice of subjects! If you feel like raising your blood pressure, it airs this Saturday, Oct. 27, at 9 p.m.

By Tracy Clark-Flory

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