Entries Tagged as 'Style on the Hill'

A Man’s Rights

7.27.2017

By Logan Gossett

 

After losing a house, two jobs and $16,000 in court expenses, Phil – whose name has been changed to protect his anonymity – humbly received his ambitious reward: his son, for five hours, once a month.

        Five days ago he paid a monthly fee of $600 still owed from the home’s mortgage, a fee he will continue to pay until 2027 when his son will be 15 years old. Phil now pays more in child support than he earns from unemployment checks.

“My son was about four inches taller when I finally got to see him,” Phil said. “His mom told him not to tell me what his favorite color is, but I think it’s green. She also told him not to tell me his favorite superhero, but he let that one slip: Batman,” he said. He just hopes to be a close second one day.

Men’s rights advocacy was partly catalyzed by stories like Phil’s. Through forums like MensActivism, A Voice for Men and Reddit’s Men’s Rights board, men’s rights advocacy attempts to provide support and resources for fathers with similar struggles. However, their outreach is inhibited by their designation as misogynist hate groups by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC). The SPLC describes the men’s rights movement as “savaging feminists,” and cites the website manboobz.com as a useful watchdog of the men’s rights movement.

Male mortality rates paint the grisly picture that illustrates the story behind the men’s rights movement.

Advocates see that men are five times more likely to commit suicide than women; that men are twenty times more likely to die in the workplace; that men are four times more likely to be the victims of homicide. Men’s rights advocates see disproportionate workplace deaths and question the existence of disproportionate privilege.

Annie McBride, Assistant Director for the Emily Taylor Center for Women & Gender Equity, suggests that male privilege is not an easily measurable commodity.

“Privileges are things that [men] were born into, not that they’ve had to earn,” she said. “The ability to, as a white person, walk around department stores and not feel people’s eyes on you and be followed. I didn’t do anything to earn that privilege. It was just something I was born into.”

McBride agreed that male mortality and men’s mental well-being is concerning. She argued that toxic masculinity stigmatizes the male pursuit of mental health treatment, something feminism seeks to rectify.

Many scholars believe that the men’s rights movement is simply a backlash to feminism and the progress it has attained for women. Megan Williams, Program Coordinator for the Emily Taylor Center, agreed.

“[Men’s rights advocates] use the language of civil rights to undercut actual inequity,” she said. “It’s really just a reflection of men who are seeing their privilege challenged; seeing the entitlement that they’ve had challenged and thinking that that is oppression or discrimination.”

Men and indebted fathers struggle to reconcile their alarmingly higher rates of experiencing homelessness and being victims of homicide as challenged privileges. Men posting on MensActivism and A Voice for Men often resist the implication that the right to a home and life are privileges to be challenged.

Like McBride, Williams viewed feminism as a solution for the issues central to men’s rights advocates.

“If we’re talking about liberation of men, then that is a feminist project. If we’re talking about a real men’s rights movement, it’s feminism,” Williams said. 

The most urgent men’s rights topic for fathers, however, is the low likelihood of fathers being granted primary guardian custody of their child after a divorce. Custody is six times more likely to be obtained by the mother.

Phil doesn’t identify as an advocate for men’s rights or women’s rights: just a father, if only for five hours a month.

Phil was deployed to work on oil rigs for nine months per year. After four months of working rigs in Saudi Arabian waters, he returned to his home in the deep south to find it empty.

“Everything was gone. Furniture, TVs, kitchen stuff — you name it, it was gone,” Phil said. But, while furniture is replaceable, family is not.

“My heart sank when I knew what she did. All I thought of for months was seeing my wife and kid; maybe watching a movie or something,” Nease said. “Now I don’t even have a TV.”

Phil was the sole working parent while married. While he was on oil rigs, his wife was at home serving as their son’s primary caregiver. According to KU Law Associate Professor Melanie DeRousse, parental roles like those held by Phil and his ex-wife while married limit the outcomes of custody battles.

“Most of the time moms are doing that primary caregiving. The judge wants to maintain that stability for the kids so the kid has access to that attached parent. They’re going to maintain some of that gender disparity that was existing in the relationship into their orders. They’re looking at what will not disrupt the kid’s lives, not some parent’s rights,” DeRousse said.

If the mother serves as the child’s primary caregiver while the father is only parenting during the weekends, the judge will grant joint custody with the father having the kid for the weekend, while the mother maintains the child during the week. Extended periods away from his son while working hurt Phil’s chances of attaining equal joint custody.

Melanie DeRousse said that, while some judges may assume that the kid is better off with his/her mother, “more often than not you have the parties trying to figure out what form of joint custody is going to work for the kid.” DeRousse added that, “Most psychologists would agree with the legislature: joint custody is preferred for the kid.”

As traditional gender roles continue to undergo egalitarian permutations, fathers will begin to attain equal joint custody more frequently. Male mortality rates and mental health still present an issue, however, and men’s rights advocates and feminists view their respective movements as the optimal solution.

A Voice for Men founder Paul Elam argues that feminists preach equality while pursuing favoritism. Annie McBride, Megan Williams and most self-identified feminists disagree, instead viewing feminism as a potential solution for men’s rights issues and equity for all genders.

Both men’s rights advocates and feminists will continue to pursue their ideal of gender equity. Both men’s rights advocates and feminists will continue to provide assistance to men or women suffering through mental illnesses or unforgiving workplaces.

Meanwhile, Phil will be eagerly anticipating his next visitation with his son.

“[My son] likes the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, so I bought him some action figures and Ninja Turtle shirts — stuff like that. Hopefully he likes them; I just wanna see him happy.”

 

If Met Gala Celebs Were Your Professors

5.05.2017

By Rebekah Swank

It’s nearly finals week, and by this point in the semester you have a pretty good read on your professors and their personalities. There are good ones, bad ones, and ones that make you want to walk blindly onto Jayhawk Boulevard with the hope of getting hit by a bus. Here they all are as the 2017 Met Gala attendees. Because fashion.

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Lily Collins wearing Giambattista Valli

Lily is the professor you admire because she really has her shit together. She has six degrees, is head of the department and gets your assignment graded within a day of you turning it in. She’s a hard ass, but you respect her for it.

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Lily Aldridge in Ralph Lauren Collection Custom

Lily Aldridge, on the other hand, is the young, hip, fun professor you want to be. She completed her Ph.D. dissertation in Marrakech, and she doesn’t let you forget it. She wears stilettos or boots everywhere she goes, and you hope to one day run into her at a bar.

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Kendall Jenner wearing La Perla Haute Couture and Kim Kardashian wearing Vivienne Westwood

Kendall and Kim are like those TAs you love to hate. They are rude, not helpful and after you ask them a question, you suspect that they are talking about how stupid they think you are. When they are subbing the professor and realize no one has completed the assigned readings, they promise not to tattle on the class, but then they tell the professor and get the entire class a pop quiz.

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Rihanna wearing Comme des Garçons

Rihanna is the professor we all want to have. She doesn’t take attendance, curves every test, cancels class on a semi-regular basis and doesn’t require students to take a final. She curses, and she admits when she is hungover. She is beauty and grace. She is a queen.

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Joe Jonas wearing Elizabeth Kennedy

Joe is that cute professor you have a crush on. You try to pull a Lindsay Lohan in Mean Girls and dumb yourself down so you have an excuse to talk to him, but he sees right through you.

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Jaden Smith wearing Louis Vuitton

Jaden Smith is that kooky professor who terrifies you. In the middle of his lecture, he says things that are weird, off-putting, gross or a combination of the three. He’s a creepy dude who wonders why he even holds office hours because no one ever comes.

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Zoë Kravitz wearing Oscar de la Renta

Ah, Zoë. She is the older professor you could talk to for hours. She seems to have all the knowledge and wisdom in the world, and you can’t hear enough of it. If you have to talk to her after class, you end up staying for 30 minutes longer than you had planned because you two get swept up in conversation.

The Ultimate Glossier Super Pack Review

4.18.2017

By Rebekah Swank

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I have been using the Super Pack for about three and a half months, and I can say with confidence that Glossier has stolen my heart. When I began this (kind of expensive) venture, my expectations for these three serums were low, but I was still hopeful. My skin was cluttered with small zits and terribly dull, but I think these serums have helped improve both of those problems.

At the beginning of my experiment, I was using Clean & Clear Continuous Control acne cleanser with benzoyl peroxide twice a day. However, a month ago I started using Alba Botanica Good & Clean Toxin Release Scrub, along with St. Ives Blackhead Clearing Green Tea Scrub and Aveeno Positively Radiant brightening cleanser. I’ll use one of the scrubs in the morning, and one at night, and follow each of them with the gentle Aveeno cleanser. I still use the Clean & Clear cleanser with a Clarisonic brush if I fall asleep with makeup on, or if I feel like I need extra exfoliating, but I typically only use it two or three times per week. I believe using products with more natural ingredients in combination with the Super Pack has boosted my results.

What I love most about these serums are the ingredients. Each serum has natural, gentle ingredients that help skin reach its healthiest form. Although my blemishes haven’t vanished completely, I can definitely see a difference in the texture and brightness of my skin.

These serums also go a long way; meaning I’ve been using them for nearly four months and I am only about half-way through each bottle. Because they are so concentrated with magical vitamin goodness, you only need to use three to four drops every day. That makes coughing up $65 plus shipping for these bad boys a little easier.

My favorite serum is Super Pure, which helps with blemishes and irritation. It flushes out impurities from makeup, junk food and alcohol—it’s like a free skin pass to do whatever you want! It feels light and clean on my skin, and I think it’s the Super with the best results.

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The Supers are a great, less expensive starting place for people looking into high quality skin products. They really do take care of your skin. However, I probably won’t purchase all three of them at the same time again. I like Super Pure and Super Bounce way more than Super Glow, so I will most likely buy those separately. I highly recommend the Super Pack; it’s easy to use, easy to incorporate into your routine and feels phenomenal on your skin. Overall, I give it 8.5/10.

Stick and Poke

4.12.2017

 

By Melissa Yunk

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“You do not want to poke too far to make yourself bleed but far enough to hear an audible “pop” when you pull the needle out.”

Rachel Bennett, a senior from Basehor, cringes at her friend’s words, but continues to wrap her sewing needle with some thread. She finishes sketching a small tree on her wrist, dips the needle in the bright green ink and gets to work. Stick. Pop. Stick. Pop.

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Bennett and her friend are giving each other stick and poke tattoos in her friend’s attic, surrounded by burning sage, discussing witchcraft.

“I was not initially planning on giving myself a tattoo, but I like to think of myself as a spontaneous person so it didn’t take much to change my mind,” Bennett says.

Stick and poke, or DIY tattoos are not a new trend—they’re common in jail cells across the nation—but they are the latest thing in tattoos among young adults and on college campuses.

A simple Google search makes it clear how much of a trend this is. In a matter of seconds, you’ll find quirky how-to videos, endless tattoo ideas on Pinterest and Instagram, and even DIY kits in stores such as Etsy and Amazon.

But you don’t need a kit—it’s possible to do at-home tattoos using common household products. All you need is a sewing needle, some thread and ink.

Caroline Roe, a sophomore with eight stick and pokes, has perfected the process. After cleaning and shaving the area of the tattoo, she does a rough sketch of her design idea. She then sticks the needle in the eraser of a pencil and wraps the thread around the sharp end of the needle to hold the ink.  After putting together her tool, either she or a friend continuously pokes over the sketch until it is finished.

A small stick and poke can take around two hours, approximately four times as long as a traditional tattoo. They also fade faster than professional tattoos and tend to hurt more. Roe says the consistent speed of a tattoo gun needle often helps numb the pain after a few moments. However, when tattooing yourself, the inconsistent speed and depth of the poke makes pain constant and more intense.

Roe also has a few traditional tattoos, but likes the DIY method because of the extremely low cost—practically free—and artistic freedom. “Sure, parlors might be more clean and it is nice supporting artists,” Roe says. “But I really like the spontaneity of stick and pokes and being able to have full control of the designs.”

However, sacrificing the cleanliness of a tattoo parlors is not such a good idea. Kim Ens, director of clinic services for the Douglas County Health Department, talked about the risk of acquiring infections such as Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C and even HIV when using unprofessionally sanitized needles. The only way to guarantee a needle is sterile, she says, is to use a brand new one. Bennett sterilized her needle by running it under a flame and wiping it with rubbing alcohol.

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“It may not have been smart,” Bennett says. “But it was something.”

Ens added that ink that is not diluted or meant for tattoos can also lead to variety of infections or allergic reactions, so it is important to use the correct ink. “Overall, my opinion is to not do it to yourself,” Ens says.

Despite these concerns, there is still appeal behind stick and poke tattoos, whether it be the elongated adrenaline rush, the comfort of doing it in your own home, or the gritty appearance both girls spoke of.

“I feel brave and accomplished after finishing,” Bennett says. “Sure, slightly endangered but the feeling of doing it and being proud of something I made is worth it.”

Kansas City Fashion Week F/W ’17

4.04.2017

By Mary Ann Omoscharka

Kansas City Fashion Week celebrated its 11th season last week, from March 26th until April 1st. The Fall/Winter ’17 showcase offered four runway evenings and an amazing total of 37 designers. The event that used to take place at the Union Station premiered a new location, the spectacular Grand Hall at Power & Light in downtown Kansas City, MO.

The celebrations kicked off at the Bubbly & Bowties event at R24 Studios, with a strict cocktail and black tie dress code, unlimited champagne and a fabulous Dior beauty bar that gave us a little make-up upgrade with bold lipstick and a fierce cat eye. Sponsors included R24 Studios, Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant, J. Rieger & Co. Dior, Events with Soul and AUI Fine Foods.

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Thursday Night Runway Show at the Grand Hall at Power & Light

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ROGER FIGUEROA

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WIKI WANG

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AMANDA CASAREZ

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MADYSSEN JEAN

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LEE JEANS

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NOELLE DESIGNS

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CRYSTAL BRAKHAGE DESIGNS

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MORE THAN JUST FIGLEAVES & ERIN PAIGE

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Saturday Night Runway Show at the Grand Hall at Power & Light

Special thanks belong to the amazing designer Munelle De Vie who dressed us in her beautiful S/S ’17 collection that she presented at KCFW last season. You will be able to shop her entire collection on her website soon!

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MICHAEL DRUMMOND

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TOMBOY

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BARBARA BULTMAN

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christianMICHAEL & DOLYN BAGS

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GEORGINA HERRERA

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HOUSE OF COCHON

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LUCIA’S SARTO & DOLYN BAGS

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sHe by christianMICHAEL & GEORGINA HERRERA

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We would like to thank the organization team of Kansas City Fashion Week for having us and for creating such an amazing event and atmosphere. See you next season!

Photography by Maggie Russell

 

 

 

 

 

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