Sunday, December 12, 2010

Most women are one man away from welfare. ~Gloria Steinem

This blog post has been a long time coming. This will probably be just Part One of many blog posts of mine on this/these subject/s. It most definitely won't be the last. If you know me this well by now, you know that I'm a feminist. Yes, I'm one of those. As much as I kind of, sort of, don't want to admit it, I am. I get into arguments with men (who aren't my close significant other) who call me "baby", "sweetie" "good girl" (I just did a little shudder at that last one, did you?) I quietly in my head have arguments with thirteen year old girls (and their parents) who have children. And with women my age who seem to think that finding a man and marrying him is our only salvation and we just can't seem to possibly survive by our own devices. But truly, it's not our fault. We have been socially conditioned from the time we pop out from our Mother's womb. We're sung pop hits, told fairy-tales, read poetry, watch movies about finding love. And not just about finding love. But waiting for that one special man who will sweep us off our feet and let us stay at home and cook and clean while they win the bread elsewhere. But the thing is that most men are not capable of doing this. It's not their fault, they're socially conditioned as well. Now, I can tell you first-hand that as a woman who is most definitely deeply and truly in love, that it is grand. But it's not everything. I promise you that. And I can also tell you that most people my age were raised by single women who often times did not get credit for the insane amounts of work they were just expected to do. And by Fathers who lied, abused, ran off, cheated, didn't take responsibility, etc. And we're told to give them the benefit of the doubt because, well, it's not their fault. They're socially conditioned.

From a very young age, I questioned everything. I severely questioned the authority of "rules", moral values, and most significantly, The Bible. I had been taught most of the stories since I was young. I even went to private Christian school until the 3rd grade and went to church frequently until I was about in third grade. I went to church for a brief time in middle school. I went on church trips. But I think all of the illusions shattered when one of the pastors told our youth group that we should be leaders in the Church and that we should consider becoming preachers as well. I went to express my interest in becoming a preacher and was told that I couldn't. And that I should try to become a preacher's wife. Little did I know that God has prerequisites for becoming a Church leader and that having a penis, testicles, and a Y chromosome were a few of them. I shouldn't have been surprised, there is justification in his attitude. 1 Corinthians 14:33-38 goes as follows: "As in all the churches of the saints, the women should keep silence in the churches. For they are not permitted to speak, but should be subordinate, as even the law says. If there is anything they desire to know, let them ask their husbands at home. For it is shameful for a woman to speak in church."

I could go on and on about Bible doctrines that subjugate and opress women. But that would be besides the point I'm trying to make. You find it in the Old and New Testaments, the Koran, the Bhagavad Gita. And you find it in modern day movies, songs, the fashion and beauty industries. In the magazines on the shelves of the checkout counters. In the t.v. advertisements we see every day. On billboards shouting at us and our cars on every interstate drive we make. But the most important thing is that we stop buying in to it. That we realize that as soon as we stop giving these people our collective time and money and that WE SHAPE OUR ENTIRE WORLD that these things will either change or completely cease to be.

You don't have to signal a social conscience by looking like a frump. Lace knickers won't hasten the holocaust, you can ban the bomb in a feather boa just as well as without, and a mild interest in the length of hemlines doesn't necessarily disqualify you from reading Das Kapital and agreeing with every word. ~Elizabeth Bibesco

I wish someone would have told me that, just because I'm a girl, I don't have to get married. ~Marlo Thomas

Men weren't really the enemy - they were fellow victims suffering from an outmoded masculine mystique that made them feel unnecessarily inadequate when there were no bears to kill. ~Betty Friedan


  1. I can appreciate some of the points you're making... however I am a conservative Christian who lives all alone and supports herself fully. I don’t have a boyfriend/husband/baby daddy. I bring home the bacon and then fry it up and wash my dishes when I'm done. I've been married, single, divorced, and in a relationship... I worked and supported myself and my significant other sometimes I was the only one working.
    My point is I think in our current society we can no longer push it off on women being oppressed. Most families are two income families, I know stay at home dads, I know women whose salaries are twice that of their husbands, we are no longer TAUGHT to be the weaker sex.
    Like I said I am a conservative Christian and yet I never felt like I was expected to get married, quit work and pop out babies. And I watched all of the Disney movies, romantic comedies, and read romance novels and the Bible.
    I think we have to stop looking for excuses as to why we are failing and instead strive to succeed.

    Sorry for the rant.
    Thats just my opinion.

  2. I completely agree that we need to stop looking for excuses and strive to succeed. But, in order to succeed we do have to examine the reasons why we haven't already done so. In order for women to make the same wages as men who have the same job expectations (and earn equal oppurtunities for promotions) there needs to be some sort of social/ economic/ cultural shift. Employers do see hiring pregnant and women who may become pregnant as a risk because supporting them comes out of their bottom line. And even though a handful of companies may offer paternity leave, most still do not. And thats because men are not usually seen as the caregiver for children. Little boys aren't given easy bake ovens or babydolls to play with. The main reason why women seem to have more of an economic stronghold and often becoming the breadwinner of the house is because a lot of male domintated industries have nearly collapsed. Not because of women were suddenly seen as equal, even though I do think that is kind of shifting.

    I don't know about you, but I can't tell you how many times THIS WEEK I have been asked when Josh and I were getting married and/ or when we were going to have children. Josh and I have been told by friends and family that we're "living in sin" because we're not married. And I even remember you telling me that you told Brad's family that you had two seperate bedrooms and that even your Father told you that you needed a man in your life to support you.

    I bet if you stayed at home and watched t.v. during the daytime and watched the Today show or soap operas that more than half of the commercials would be for baby/ cleaning/ cooking products. Not car, investment, bank, sports or video game commercials. We may be "equal" but we sure aren't treated that way.

    I want to finish with this. I love you dearly. You're one of my best friends. But this is my opinion.

    <3 ladybomb

  3. There are always people looking to keep other people down, but if I stay down I am the only one to blame.
    And girl I love you!!! You wil always be one of my best friends.