Whole Foods is not just a great place to get grapefruit, they also have a vegan sour cream that is hard to find. So two weeks after being affronted by “powerful women” on the cover of an area glossy monthly magazine, their automated doors opened to another revelation peering at me from a bright red box.
“The GOP’s War on Women,” said the headline, “—and Why Women Must Fight Back.” The irony was not lost that this was the Boston Phoenix declaring this war. The irony was found and it was seizing up our stomach.
David S. Bernstein’s Talking Politics article (“Will Women Fight Back?” it asked) is well researched and illustrated, kudos to that. But there was more going on in this issue than meets the eye. “Lamb Jam Thank You Ma’am” was the punny headline a few pages later, from staff writer Eugenia Williamson, while page seven offered “When Dickwolves Attack,” a three-page story about Penny Arcade founders Jerry Holkins and Mike Krahulik’s off-color rape humor.
The irony, of course, is that all of this righteous indignation is funded, in part, by the exploitation of women.
At issue is the Boston Phoenix “Adult” section, and mainly its first few pages. It’s fine and good for the Phoenix (admittedly a Dig competitor) to produce a paper and carry the “free speech” torch in front of its Adult section. Chat lines? Great. Porn reviews? Love em, wow, so insightful. Fake dicks? Got one in my drawer.
But in a statement on January 20th of this year, Suffolk County District Attorney Daniel F. Conley told reporters the story of Ryan Duntin, aka “Mr. Real,” who was indicted in 2006 on one count of inducing a minor into prostitution and three counts of deriving support from prostitution.
In the DA statement, there was this paragraph:
Ryan Duntin called himself “Mr. Real,” and he even had that moniker tattooed on the skin of a girl he’d named “Precious.” Duntin had lured “Precious” into prostitution when she was just 16, and he turned her out on Craigslist and the pages of the Boston Phoenix. By the time she came to our attention, she was 19 and showing the ropes to this pimp’s latest acquisition – another 16-year-old girl.
Did you see that?
So while we are happy to see them give voice to Courtney Stanton and her persecution by the Penny Arcade masses, and as Bernstein’s article fairly quotes Eleanor Smeal of the Feminist Majority, we can’t help but wonder who will tell the story of Precious?
Page 10 of the Phoenix continues Maddy Myers lengthy dissertation on the subject of using the word “rape” in the virtual world, but page the of their Adult section promises that the “ultimate reward” of “Ashleigh, the 20 year old All American blonde haired, blue eyed girl next door” is “making you happy.” She is “located in Cambridge.”
There’s nothing virtual about that.
This topic has come up in this column before, and sometimes it feels like the proverbial deceased horse. But with its newest issue, the Boston Phoenix is putting forth, in multiple articles, section after section, they are in full support of women’s rights and are on their side.
Yet only a few pages later, it’s quite clear they are not.
COACH GETS 4 FOR RAPE was the headline in the 50-word story on page two of the Boston Metro Tuesday morning, but what really got our attention was story just right of that. “Your neighborhood, in just 140 characters” was a hard-hitting tale of ONEin3’s 100-tweet strong campaign to get people, young people specifically, to Tweet a new slogan for the neighborhood they live in. Some of the offerings:
South Boston: If you’re Irish, you’re family. Wait, you probably already were family.
West Roxbury: No matter how much we make, you still confuse us with Roxbury.
North End: Testing how much people will pay to live in a closet that smells like Italian food.
“Welcome to Twitter-town” was the front-page headline (it’s the page after the giant Macy’s glossy wrap). ONEin3 member Michael Nicols is pictured, posing with his Twitter device, complete with tweets from @GordonEdes and @BostonPhoenix. Without explaining how this slogan process works, it claimed that “More than 100 participants have gotten pretty creative so far”
If by “pretty creative” they mean racist, more racist, stereotypical and simplistic, they nailed it.
ONEIN3 IS A REFERENCE to the 20-34 demographic in Boston. Can you tell what demographic this Monday Boston Globe headline is in reference to?
What are bunions and is there a way to prevent them?
Tweet us the answer: @mediafarm.