Happy Equality!

I don’t even know what to say, I’m so thrilled at The Supreme Court decision.

I feel like this decision means a lot to me because I was starting to lose faith in humanity a tiny bit.
With Caitlyn Jenner’s debut and the Charleston, SC shooting I have found that more and more people I know (and sometimes am related to) are frighteningly ignorant and intolerant.

It’s one thing to hear about and be aware of racism and transphobia/homophobia, but that awareness still does not prepare you for the shock and sadness you feel when people in your life say really bigoted things.

All I can do is keep being the best advocate I can for equality and basking in fantastic moments like today.

Until next time. ❤

Advertisements

True Life: I use to hate women.

Over cupcakes and wine, I was telling a close friend about the blog’s new direction when she offhandedly remarked, “And to think, you use say you were not a feminist.” she paused, “You kind of hated women.”

That kind of brutal honesty is when you know you have a true lady in your life. ❤

It’s sad, but true: I was not always a feminist. In fact, I was known for being the anti-feminist with the catch phrase “I hate women” which was then followed up by a list of reasons women suck.

Really it was just a list of reasons why I sucked.

I thought feminists were too pushy and opinionated. That the term “feminist” had too much stigma attached to it. Grade A patriarchal brain washing right here!

I’m not super proud of this.

Even when I started to finally identify strongly as a feminist, I refrained from talking about my opinions and issues I faced because I felt like I had no agency. I felt like my less than clean record for being a supportive woman meant that I had no ground to stand on.

I realize now, the aforementioned concern is really stupid.

If I can’t believe in my own change, how can I expect others to change?  If I can’t offer others the opportunity to reevaluate and evolve then I am writing for nothing.

This is part of the reason I chose not to start a new blog, but rather continue writing from here where my history and progress are documented.

I’m really fucking imperfect. I still find myself thinking petty things, getting intimidated by other women and not talking kindly all the time. I guess the growth is found in my realizing I’m doing these things and once becoming aware, not consciously participating.

I hold hope that if I can go from proudly announcing that I hate women, to a self proclaimed feminist killjoy, maybe I can inspire a few converts along my journey.

Until next time.

Engaging vs Telling

Sometimes I’m the absolute worst person to handle issues regarding sexism/inequality/general-feminist-peeves.

Often my initial reaction is to rip my bra off and strangle the violator with it.

Occasionally, I’ve been known to say/write/do inflammatory things when I feel wronged.

I’ll be honest, if you start talking about why abortion is wrong (no matter how good your reasons are) I’m going to start to steam and then I’ll tune you out.

It’s involuntary, but it’s also unproductive.

I read this recently: http://www.vox.com/2015/6/3/8706323/college-professor-afraid

The article is definitely worth your time. It’s just a friendly reminder to not shut down contrary opinions, but to listen to the opposition.

I’m a big believer in education as a way to equality. Personally, I want to make sure that when I am talking about feminist issues that I’m engaging with people rather than haranguing them. Part of that for me means listening to doubters, haters, ignorant stupid fuckwads and learning from them rather than just attacking them.

This American Life just did a show on the effectiveness of engaging with people who oppose your opinion. It’s a bit different than the Vox article, but fascinating, still in the same vein and worth a listen. (Really though, when isn’t Ira Glass worth a listen?)

I’m not sayingI’ll never harangue people ever again (let’s be real),  but I’m working on choosing those I harass more selectively.

Until next time!

Mark Kozelek

I received very disappointing news the other day when a close (and super rad) lady friend told me about how the singer of Sun Kill Moon is a sexist asshole. I’m a pretty big fan of Red House Painters (his former band) so this was pretty disappointing news to me.

This news also brought me back to a question posed to me as I was showing a coffee blogger around Providence. I’m paraphrasing, but more or less he asked if the ethics of a place were a factor in my choosing to support a particular business.

I have done my best to resist shopping at places like Target and Forever 21, so I answered immediately that it was a big factor.

Fast forward a few days and now I’m here to bemoan the fact I feel like a shit feminist every time “Katy Song” comes through my headphones.

If I pirated the song (and I’m not saying that I did)  but theoretically, would that negate the “supporting” the artist? Or is playing his music enough support to justify deleting the discography from my itunes?

This is where being a feminist becomes fucking hard. With a business I can say, “I’m not going to give money to someone who fights against my rights!”

The logic of not financially funding your opposition is pretty obvious.

But with music, is it possible and fair to say that one can enjoy music separate of the musician?

In other words, I suppose I’m wondering is there any middle ground in feminism or is it as simple as anyone not apart of a solution is apart the problem?

Well, I have no answers for you. I’m just a girl trying to live consciously.  If you’ve got answers/opinions I’ld love to hear them.

Until next time friends.

Rights for Rights

I struggle a lot with Freedom of Speech and feminism.

In June of 2014 the Supreme Court struck down a Massachusetts law that banned protesters within 35 feet of abortion clinics. They saw this law as a violation of the protester’s First Amendment rights.

And I agreed.

I feel like I have some ground to stand on here since I’ve had an abortion. Though I only had one miserable looking protester ask me about Jesus on the way in, I wasn’t terribly worried about it.

In general I completely respect protesters rights to express their beliefs. I knew what I believed and nothing short of the apocalypse would’ve kept me from that procedure.

When asked why I am such a supporter of the Supreme Court’s decision, I respond that I believe feminism should not advance the rights of women by crushing the rights of others. It should be about raising women strong enough to walk past protesters.

Then a week or so ago someone wore a #meninist shirt to the office and I thought I was going to light him and his rights on fire. (Sidenote: violence is very likely not the answer)

Yes, there is a difference between wearing a very sexist shirt in a place of work (where equality and cohesiveness are important) and protesting at an abortion clinic. However, I work in a really creative and free environment and putting limits on someone’s personal expression feels wrong to me in both situations.

After several days of mulling over the situation I concluded that while I hate the message, ultimately I do support his right to wear that shirt. I also resolved that I respect my right to tell him that it’s offensive. If he still wears it, then he’s just announcing himself as an asshole. But maybe, if I explain to him why the shirt is offensive (and I could be going all “idealist” here) but just maybe he’ll stop wearing it.

There is an issue in society where people draw a disconnect between what kind of sexism is acceptable. The people at the abortion clinic fight for a cause they believe they’re educated in. This dude was wearing a shirt promoting what started as a sexist online joke. The protesters are labeled “crazy”, but this guy is just “kidding”. The fact of the matter is It’s all sexism, it’s hateful, it’s ignorant and there is no difference.

Hate is hate. Whether your tossing a pamphlet in my face with a dead fetus on it, or joking about revenge porn and equality it’s still sexism.

I can only hope that by being a Proud Feminist Killjoy and exercising my own Freedom of Speech just as loudly, eventually sexism will not be acceptable in any form.