I know you may already be boycotting Feministing because of, well, because of loads of reasons.
You may have decided not to go there anymore back when Jessica Valenti’s book Full Frontal Feminism came out and it was shallow racist crap predicated on condescending to young feminists, or when the criticism by women of color was ignored, or attacked.
You may have decided not to go there anymore as part of the boycott triggered by Feministing’s transphobia.
You may have stopped going there after their classist “boycott Walmart” post (no linklove for Feministing, sorry.)
Today I am asking you to boycott Feministing because of the bullying, privileged, bad faith way they have treated feminists with disabilities.
The chat, ostensibly held to improve treatment of disability at Feministing, was a joke. It was a lot of denial of responsibility, especially from Miriam, (“do you think we have control over our comment threads?”) capped by Courtney’s tone argument against amandaw.
In the follow up post on Feministing, Courtney said she was “excited” to learn more about disability, but then rattled off the suggestions for improvements without attribution to feminists with disabilities. When feminists with disabilities came to Feministing to criticize the follow-up post, there was no response from Courtney or any other Feministing contributor, even though she commented on the thread itself.
When I e-mailed Courtney, Jessica, and Miriam to ask for an explanation, only Courtney e-mailed me back (see comment thread), to say that she was no longer willing to engage publicly regarding the chat or the follow up post, and that if Amandaw wanted an apology she could contact Courtney herself. This flies in the face of the agreement that feminists with disabilities were very careful to secure, that the chat and subsequent discussion would be public. (Feministing’s consent to that agreement is right at the beginning of the chat transcript linked above.)
I think Meloukhia is right. This is evidence of bad faith. As of now, Feministing’s follow up post is still up, lending credence to the wrong idea that they are working on disability inclusion. In other words, they are getting a free improvement to their image because of the work feminists with disabilities did for them, when in fact they are maltreating and actively marginalizing feminists with disabilities. This is dishonest and I don’t think we should be silent about it.
Consequently, I am asking you to boycott Feministing. This includes:
1) Taking Feministing off your blogrolls,
2) Not linking to Feministing’s posts or community posts, and
3) Raising awareness of the abysmal way Feministing has treated feminists with disabilities and other marginalized people.
I note that meloukhia’s open letter to Feministing is already at the bottom of the first page of google results for “Feministing.” How about raising that signal even more?
Other suggestions and discussion welcome here.
Please boycott Feministing.
Update: See also my post here.