Posts Tagged 'feminism'

Women Who Know Their Place

I don’t know who originally wrote this piece, but it was forwarded to me today by my friend Cindy.  It may not be my writing, but I wholeheartedly agree:

Barbara Walters, of 20/20, did a story on gender roles in Kabul, Afghanistan, several years before the Afghan conflict.  She noted that women customarily walked five paces behind their husbands.

She recently returned to Kabul and observed that women still walk behind
their husbands. Despite the overthrow of the oppressive Taliban regime, the women now seem to, and are happy to, maintain the old custom.

Ms. Walters approached one of the Afghani women and asked, ‘Why do you now seem happy with an old custom that you once tried so desperately to change?’

The woman looked Ms. Walters straight in the eyes, and without hesitation said,

‘Land Mines.’

Moral of the story is (no matter what language you speak or where you go ):

BEHIND EVERY MAN, THERE’S A SMART WOMAN

The Last Frontier in Discrimination

I wasn’t taught to feel this way.  The concept of sexism wasn’t even really an issue in my household back in the 1960’s and ’70’s when I grew up.  Mom worked outside the home part-time.  Dad could cook.  There generally wasn’t a lot of stress over household chores because my beautiful saintly little Italian grandma came over every day while mom worked and gladly did most of the day-to-day chores and got dinner started.  She spoiled us with popsicles and nickles for penny candy.

The sense of unfairness started to build about the time that my younger brother got out of weekend dish duties once he was old enough to cut our small lawn with the push mower.  Dad said that was only fair.  But it wasn’t.  I would gladly have pushed that lawn mower out in the warm sunshine instead of spending all day Saturday cleaning up dishes after the never-done-eating brother and dad.  (Mom happily worked at the downtown department store on Saturdays).  I hate housework today for the same reason I hated it then.  It’s tedious, thankless, and endless.  At least if I had to cut the grass, it would be noticeable and it wouldn’t need done again for a few days.  I remember being so riled up about the unfairness of it all that one day I just grabbed the kitchen faucet and yanked it from side to side in anger.  My dad thought it was quite amusing.

As I got older, the women’s movement for equal rights affected me deeply.  I subscribed to Ms. magazine.  I fumed over the way women were marginalized and treated unfairly.  I know for a fact that I’m every bit as good and smart and important as anyone else in this world.  My gender certainly doesn’t make me less so.  Yet, women are still treated differently.  We’re very often paid less than men for the same work, passed over for promotions we deserve, and still end up doing most of the crappy thankless housework.  Just because we’re female!sexistsuperman

In many circles, women are brainwashed to believe that their gender makes them subservient and relegated to a preordained role in life, whether or not that’s how they personally want to live their life.  They are taught to hide their talents and defer their dreams and submit to their man, whether he is right or clearly wrong.  Then, lest their true sense of fairness and justice allows them to question this, they are quoted excerpts written eons ago in various religious texts by men who lived when only the strong (or subservient) survived.

These books often talk about how all men are created equal, and to be kind to your brother.  They mention how to treat your slaves and your women.  Today, in the civilized world, we abhor slavery.  We don’t treat our slaves with kindness because we understand that slavery is wrong.  And we don’t have them.  But women are still supposed to submit to their husbands, just like they were instructed to thousands of years ago.

Thankfully, in most civilized cultures, we recognize that discrimination is evil and insidious.  A person’s worth is not determined by the color of his or her skin or the religion they grew up with.  How crazy is it that it’s still acceptable to treat our very own mothers, sisters, daughters and wives as something slightly less important than the men in our world?  How can anything rationalize this discrimination?

Just Enjoy The Perks, Ladies

Believe it or not, at one time this mellow mama may have been considered an almost militant feminist.  A lot of you may not even remember Ms. Magazine, but I was a subscriber when it advocated equal rights for all women, and not just lesbians.  I read it before it became mostly ads, like most magazines.

If someone  said or did something blatantly sexist, I would tell them off.  Women that would actually choose to stay home and be happy taking care of their families seemed pathetic to me.  Hey, I didn’t even wear a bra.  (Of course, I really didn’t need to).

As I got older, I’ve gotten wiser in some ways.  If someone is offensively sexist, I just avoid them.  You really can’t change someone like that, and I really don’t care to try anymore.  They probably don’t have the gray matter to comprehend that no one is intrinsically better than someone else based merely on their race, gender, etc.  I still cringe at those wedding ceremonies where the poor clueless bride promises to “obey” and “submit” to her man, but then I transport my mind to a tropical island while thanking my lucky stars that I  know enough to realize that no one has the right or power to control or dominate my life, and the only thing I plan to obey is my conscience.  I’ve also learned firsthand that it is a pleasure being able to take care of one’s family.  Well, sometimes it’s a pain in the ass.  But it’s definitely not pathetic at all.

While the United States, in theory, advocates equal rights for all, we know this is not exactly the way things are in actuality.  Women still earn about a quarter less an hour for the same job.  A woman has run for the highest office in the land, but still lost out to a less qualified man.  But fighting for our rights doesn’t mean giving up the perks.  Actually, we will do better fighting this war as women, not as wanna-be men.

Earlier feminists thought the way to win respect in a man’s world was to give up their femininity.  They tried to act and dress more like men.  They were throwing away their best assets.  They tried to do it all, and wore themselves out.  Even though they still earned less than the men, they insisted on paying their own way.

I, instead, choose to accept the good with the bad.  I appreciate when my husband opens the door for me or holds my coat.  He knows I can do this myself.  It’s just a nice gesture of appreciation.  If I was single, I wouldn’t fight my date if he wanted to pay the check.  And if we women choose to work outside the home part-time or not at all, there is less negative stigma attached to this than there is for the men in our lives.

Sometimes Big Daddy suggests that I go back to work full-time so that maybe he can stay home.  Yeah, right.  Now that staying home is actually fun and I can do the things I want to do, instead of changing poopy diapers and arranging carpools, I’m going to give that up?  I’d really like to help him out.  But I’m going to keep enjoying one of the perks we women have and continue to work my part-time job.

On Feminism, Ugliness, and Hypocrisy–I’m Heaving It Out Folks

I’ve been stewing about this for days.  I’ve avoided writing too much about this because I didn’t want to get too ugly or offensive.  But now, after hearing Governor Palin’s speech, I don’t feel the need to get so ugly.  This woman can handle the ugliness, the sexism, and the hypocrisy that the left-wing media and good-ole-boys want to dish out.

There are just a few things in this world that really rile me up.  One is irresponsibility.  People that make big mistakes and don’t want to take responsibility for the consequences is one of the main problems in our country right now.  People make bad decisions all the time; that is human nature.  But when they will not take responsibility for their actions, when they want innocent people to bail them out of the results of their bad decisions, this really pisses me off.  Banks get greedy and make bad loans.  They should know better.  But when the little scheme backfires and people can’t pay back the loans, well, let’s get Joe Taxpayer to bail them out of their little gamble.  When people take out loans they should know they can’t afford, or build on flood plains without springing for any flood insurance, why should the rest of us who make better decisions and use common sense be forced to pay for it?  We’ve already paid for our own insurance, and our own higher interest rates on OUR mortgages.  None of these people were going to share with us if the little gamble worked out for them.

Another thing that scalds me is sexism.  The Democrats have used this issue for years, claiming themselves to be the champion of womens rights.  Women should be allowed to work outside the home.  Their kids will be fine in daycare.  Mommy doesn’t have to be chained to the house and kids.  I guess it’s fine so long as that woman is plugging along at minimum wage waiting on tables, or teaching at preschool.  It’s ok if she wants to be a clerical gal.  But the minute a woman wants to step into a position of power, a position those big-shot men want for themselves, well, suddenly they start worrying about the poor babies at home without their mommy.  Nobody ever freaking worried about Al Gore’s 4 kids under Tipper’s care while he was Vice President.  Why the sudden concern for Governor Palin’s family?  What about Barack Obama’s two adorable little girls?  How will they survive while Daddy does all his Presidential duties?

I happened to walk past the TV today when that horrible show, “The View,” was on.  I never intentionally watch that show since it makes me retch.  They can’t possibly pay poor Elisabeth Hasselbeck nearly enough to sit there every day and put up with the bile spewing from those big-mouthed vapid witches.  Little Liberal Whoopie, normally so pro-woman, is just tsk-tsking away about how all these “little” kids are going to manage without their mommy.  You freaking liberal hypocrite!  First of all, one of the “little” kids is old enough to be in the military.  The second “little” kid is soon going to have her own little kid, and she and her boyfriend are actually taking responsibility for the little “mistake” they made.  Hmmm. responsibility.  It’s a word not often found in the vocabulary of these liberals, the party of missing daddies, aborted mistakes, and politicians who won’t sign their poor rejected child’s birth certificate.

There.  I said it.  Well, at least some of it.  Enough to feel better for now.  Unfortunately, I’m sure the hypocrites of the world will get me fired up again.

On Democrats: Are They Really Female Friendly?

Watching Senator Hillary Clinton’s speech at the DNC really made me wonder.  Why isn’t she their presidential candidate?  She is very intelligent, articulate, and experienced enough to become an effective leader.  I know I’m eating some of my very own words.  She and her group-think policies scared me at first; however, after hearing some of the very scary leftist policies of Senator Obama, the United States bashing done by some of his closest allies, and his lack of any real solutions other than pretty rhetoric about how we need change (any idea how all this change will be funded–besides more stealing from the middle-class and the job creators?) and Senator Clinton looked better and better.  In fact, she’s not that far left of Senator McCain.  They both are pretty much near the center of the political spectrum, closer in ideology to the majority of hard-working everyday Americans who love this country and want to make it better.  The Democrats seem pretty excited about Michelle Obama playing the traditional role of devoted mommy and supportive first lady, but for all their feminist talk, do they really want to see a female president?

As a lifelong feminist myself, I could never understand the Democrats single-minded support of policies that are so damaging to women.  On the surface, abortion seems to be all about female rights.  It’s “freedom of choice” for the woman, or so it’s touted by the Dems.  It actually is a desperate reaction by a scared woman who is blinded to better options.  It’s a painful choice made by a girl that lacks support from others in her life.  Who it actually helps is the guy that made her pregnant who no way wants to be saddled with 18 years of child-support payments, or maybe the big-shot married bum that doesn’t want his wife to find out he was playing around.  At some point in her life, I would bet that any feeling compassionate woman would feel some pain and remorse for her child that might have been.  In fact, I worked with a girl that had an abortion when she was a teen.  I could sometimes see the pain in her eyes when she talked about it (which wasn’t often).  I’m sure the pain was much keener when she went on to have her other two children and saw how special they were.  Making women over-reliant on government aid is another thing that keeps females poor and dependent.  These are not things that are helpful in the long run to our sisters and our daughters.  But it might earn the Democrats a few votes.


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