Around the Web for Jan. 17

Here’s a brief look at some highlights from around the web today — a mix of four thought-provoking  articles and commentary that’ll give you whiplash from shaking your head. Here goes:

Te’o Controversy: Where’s the Coverage on ND Football Sexual Assauts? – Salon.com

I know many of you are enthralled by the craze surrounding Notre Dame football player Manti Te’o being the alleged victim of a hoax involving an “exclusive online relationship” with a woman who does not exist (according to Deadspin’s investigation). While it’s attracting plenty of media attention, including the Te’o-ing craze growing on social media, Irin Carmon at Salon highlights the double standard in coverage of ND football players committing sexual assault — and how they get a free pass from media and administrators of their program.

Isn’t it a bit odd that ND hired a private investigator for the Te’o hoax, but apparently hasn’t done so when recent reports of sexual assault involve their football players?

Using Mrs. Doubtfire to Mock Trans People – Media Matters for America


Fox News, the crown jewel of journalism (NOT) arguably outdid their continuing mockery during coverage (can we even call it coverage?) of LGBT people and community issues. An online story titled “California and Oregon Insist on Transgender Health Coverage” came with an illustration from the film “Mrs. Doubtfire.” If you’re a fan of the movie like me, you might recall the scene when the social worker visits his apartment and, while dressed as Mrs. Doubtfire, he uses pot lids to extinguish a fire accidentally set on his bosoms.

Right, Fox News, because mocking the disparities in health coverage faced by trans people is absolutely hilarious. And clearly they’re equate all trans people with people who dress in drag. Sigh.

The photo has since been changed after outcry, but without any apology from the network.

Whole Foods CEO Compares Obamacare to Fascism – Think Progress

John Mackey, CEO of Whole Foods, interviewed with NPR earlier this week and shared his thoughts on the Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as Obamacare. Apparently he thinks securing the best, affordable healthcare for the greatest number of people — which the law aims to do — is comparable to the violent, dehumanizing oppression endured under fascism.

And he says:

“Technically speaking, it’s more like fascism. Socialism is where the government owns the means of production. In fascism, the government doesn’t own the means of production, but they do control it, and that’s what’s happening with our healthcare programs and these reforms.”

According to Think Progress, Mackey wrote a controversial op-ed a few years ago comparing the ACA to socialism. You’d think a business CEO would understand the differences between these two forms of government, but he’s just one in a number of wealthy executives who exercise little-to-no consciousness on their need to be ethical, socially conscious citizens and leaders. It’s all about their paycheck, not caring about the communities and employees they impact.

And last but not least…

Oxygen Picks Up New Show “Fat Girl Revenge” – New York Daily News

As if we need another show besides The Biggest Loser to subtly reinforce fatphobia, NBC Universal is picking up a new show where women who have lost substantial weight confront their former bullies, ex-boyfriends, family members and others who belittled or mocked them because of their weight. The show’s title says it all — they’ll get back, “get even” and, per the press release, move on from their painful pasts.

I’ll have more to say about this particular issue in an upcoming post, though the concept of this show is beyond disappointing, as is the network itself (on the whole). With other series that denigrate and exploit women such as “Bad Girls Club” and the now-cancelled pilot for “All My Babies’ Mamas,” a show like “Fat Girl Revenge” is yet another example of how the network produces images that denigrate women rather than empower viewers to “live out loud” as their slogan states.

I’ll keep a close eye on this one, though the show’s air date hasn’t been released yet.

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