It’s Not a Pee Pee or a Wee Wee, It’s a Vagina

I gotta say, getting our asses handed to us has inspired progressives to put the party back in political party. And the performance of Vagina Monologues just yards from where State Rep Lisa Brown, 3 days ago, was silenced for saying vagina one day earlier was just such an event.

There were great signs, great T-Shirts, and more great signs. Lots of canine vaginas joined us in sisterhood. As the sun began to set and we settled in to listen to the actresses recite the monologues, it began to feel like any outdoor evening performance–only every tenth person was in pink and lots of great energy.

And over and over, the entire crowd yelled out the word that, Friday, got State Rep Lisa Brown silenced: vagina.

Best of all was the spontaneity of it. Eve Ensler explained that the idea to stage the Monologues was offered up to her by an activist (I think her name was Rachel) in a tweet at 5AM. The next day, Ensler called State Senator Rebekah Warren to see if she could put it together by today, Ensler’s day off. Warren, who was at an out-of-state conference all weekend, nevertheless pulled it together. And Eve and Lisa and Rebekah and Barb Byrum (silenced for saying vasectomy) and State Rep Rashida Tlaib (who advocated we use the Lysistrata option) and Senate Minority Leader Gretchen Whitmer and a bunch of very talented actresses (h/t Anne Savage) joined together to bring thousands of women and men together to embrace that word so frightening to those trying to legislate women’s autonomy away.


14 replies
  1. jimbo says:

    Incidences like this I think are a distraction (war on women, the hatred, the blatent lying by romney, the assaults on unions and democracy, the murder of Trayvon Martin, the fascist four on the supreme court) to cover up attempts by agencies like the koch bros to subvert this country: a coup. I cannot believe all the setback to American Democracy is uncoordinated. The kochs are conducting a secret conference tomorrow in San Diego. I think it’s time to consider a perp walk for those who think they know better than We the People. Somebody needs to put the pieces together, preferably the DOJ, but in lieu anybody to get the ball rolling.

  2. tejanarusa says:

    Fabulous! And I see Eve Ensler and Rep. Warren are coming up on Lawrence…grinning hugely in the teaser.

    I dunno about distraction…it’ll at least get some attention, and frankly, those in the midst of the active struggle in the leges need some lightening of their load…like a break to recite “The Vagina Monologues” on the steps of the Statehouse. Frankly, I love it.
    If the legislators have any shame, it isn’t evident, but if there is any left in them, this ought to bring it out.

  3. Mary McCurnin says:

    It is not a distraction. It is push back in the form of humor and sarcasm. That V sign for victory now means Vagina.

    I went to see the Vagina Monologues in San Francisco a long time ago. There was a homeless man sitting against the wall of the theater. He piped up and said “Look at all those vaginas standing in line.” He couldn’t help himself and we all laughed. It was actually kind of sweet.

  4. MadDog says:

    The only way I could think of saying this out loud was to imagine someone else saying it.

    For example, think of CNN’s Wolf Blitzer interviewing State Rep Lisa Brown. I could well imagine him ending his interview this way:

    “Our gentlemen’s parts salute your lady parts!”

  5. Neil says:

    Eclectablog has more cool photos taken by Anne Savage that illustrate what EW described above:

    The power of this amazing response is the implicit confidence that women united in opposition to these measures will defeat this oppression, imo.

    We’re winning the culture wars, maybe not in the short term but certainly in the long one. Now, if we can fend off economic enslavement and the corporate coup of our Republic.

  6. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Great work everyone.

    The trouble is that the complaining politicians here still say when they go to the toilet whether they have to No. 1 or No. 2. They know that No. 1 is also useful for going blind, getting others into trouble but not themselves, and accepting rewards from their fondest electoral admirers. Oh, and they think that EasyJet vacation to Labia Minora means a week in the Mediterranean sun. They aren’t likely to get what all the fuss is about.

    The good news is that almost everyone else will get it. Shame, derision and humor are good for getting out the cant; they’re not so good for public education, public policy or raising a family. Well done, everyone.

  7. prostratedragon says:

    No, I think this response kept the Great Vaginal Flap from becoming a distraction, not the other way around. People have come together for a memorable occasion, across various other social boundaries as it appears, and affirmed the point that neither vaginas themselves nor the state of having one is reason for horror or revulsion.

    Of course, some are too terrified to express their feelings on the matter as plainly as this gentleman (the usual blues double entendre pretty much collapses to a point in this one), but that should be their loss, and not the loss of free speech or representation by State Rep. Brown and her constituents:

    “Snatch It Back and Hold It”, Junior Wells, with Buddy Guy on guitar

  8. orionATL says:

    @David W. Hogg:

    i have mentioned this (very casually) to my granddaughters’ parents (which include my sons, whose mother, a health professional, was very direct and precise in her terminology of reproductive parts, as was i).

    my experience has been that precise terminology just does not seem to catch hold here. i think it’s a “widely used social terminology” phenomenon, rather like the media referring to democrats as “the left”.

  9. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Accurate terminology registers; it’s filed for when needed, which is not in the backyard or schoolyard, but with adults and in school. Children and occasionally adults learn both and use them appropriately when they do.

    When children only learn pee pee and wee wee, they learn that they are not to be trusted with the real world, that there is something nasty about it or them. That’s good for inculcating dependence and shame, but not much good for honesty and trust.

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