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Why I’m a Feminist

7 Jul

Feminism gets a lot of crap these days. The word has become less positive and more of an epithet. Feminists are seen as dangerous, irrational extremists who despise men and want to make mountains out of molehills for the sake of being the Better Gender. That or their work is considered useless, as women still get paid less than men, still face harrassment, rape and a bombardment of negative images from media and culture.

What is feminism though? Semantically now, I’m talking about the textbook definition.

fem·i·nism
–noun

1. the doctrine advocating social, political, and all other rights of women equal to those of men.
2. ( sometimes initial capital letter ) an organized movement for the attainment of such rights for women.

so sayeth dictionary.com

I’m not here to give you an history lesson, and it’d take a lot of research to lay out the exact history of feminism. But now that we’ve got a basic definition, I can give you readers a list of reasons why I am a feminist, and what feminism has done for me:

Feminism has given me the right to vote in US elections.

Feminism has allowed me to go to college.

Feminism has made it possible for me to dress how I want to dress, be it in short, pants, a skirt, my sweats, dressed up and pretty or casual.

Feminism has given me the choice to have a career AND/OR be a housewife.

Feminism has given me legal rights in social, economic, and family situations.

Feminism has allowed me to be valued for my brains as well as my domestic abilities.

I am a feminist because feminism lets me go to work for six hours, then come home and bake bread. Feminism doesn’t make me choose my path, it allows me an option c.

Feminism, definitive feminism, the feminism defined above, does not tell us we can’t be traditional women. There’s nothing wrong with a woman who wants to raise her children as a homemaker, work as a cook, sew or teach or be a secretary. Just like there’s nothing wrong with women being doctors or lawyers or CEO’s.

The difference is, little girls would NOT have the ability to become doctors without feminism and the feminist movement of our ancestors. Now we as independent, modern women can be mothers, can be teachers, can be lawyers or cooks or anything else you can think of because we CHOOSE to, not because those are our only options.

Feminism gives me equality. Feminism permits me choice in all my walks of life, the choice to wear what I want, say what I want, BE what I want, and the freedom to express my identity.

Is feminism perfect? Hardly, and I know it. The bad rap comes from stereotyping, a lack of ‘visible’ progress and a misuse of the term.

I’m a feminist, and that doesn’t mean I hate all men. I like men. I also like women, but I’m currently in a relationship with a man and he and I are very happy together. Equally together. There’s no expectation I fill a traditional gender role of being a wife and mother, just the understanding that I can be that if I choose.

I’m a feminist, and that doesn’t mean I think it’s wrong for women to want to be mothers and homemakers. I want women to be happy. I know that my way of being happy (writing books and drawing cartoons and being a cat lady) isn’t going to be the same happy my female friends want.

Fifty years ago, I would not have had the option. I would have tried, but would have to fight tooth and nail for it. Women in the sixties were making progress, but it was still frowned upon for a woman to focus on something other than a husband.

One hundred years ago, I wouldn’t have even been able to try.

I think definitive feminism is taken for granted. Many of us take for granted our rights to vote and go to college and wear trousers and marry who we want or not marry at all.

Sometimes I do too. I forget that this is something new for the world, and in many areas of the world isn’t even common practice yet. Women don’t have rights everywhere. American women are lucky. We can choose.

A recommended movie for y’all: Mona Lisa Smile. It’s kinda girly, and Julia Roberts is in it, but it says a lot about the roles of women in America, today and fiftyish years ago.

I end with a favourite quote:

Feminism is the radical notion that women are people.  ~Cheris Kramarae and Paula Treichler
Y’all can agree, disagree, point out flaws in my argument and reasons why I’m wrong and this post is silly and rambly, but I’m a proud feminist, and firm believer that women deserve rights EQUAL to those of men.
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Twitter WTF: Decoded

2 Mar

I’ve been on twitter for about a year and a half now on a daily basis, and one of the things that never fails to mystify me is the little cluster of Trending Topics on the sidebar. Hashtag fever is still an epidemic, and I find myself indulging in them myself on occasion, whether it’s to make fun of myself, denote something as a drunk tweet, or shamelessly fangirl at one of my favourite movies, TV shows or musicians.

The other purpose of hastags, it would seem, is to confuse the hell out of me every time I look over to the little Trending Topics sidebar. I find myself staring down the list of names, portmanteaued words and unintelligible nonsense, and click them only to find that most of the top hashtags are people asking ‘what the hell does #muttonchip have to do with anything?

So, after days and days of staring and pondering, I present to you Lora’s Trending Topics of the hour Decoded, as of 6:00pm CST on March 2nd:

Trending Topic #1: #Focusrally

This appears to be related to the Ford Focus, and it’s at the top of the list because it’s the Promoted Topic. It appears to be related to this and involves people driving across the country completing challenges, reality TV style. I assume the prize is they get to keep the car? I don’t know. The promoted TT’s seem to defeat the purpose of the concept to me, so I pretty much write them off as shameless adspace that keeps the glory of twitter alive.

TT #2: #sorryjustin

Guess what, another Justin Beiber TT. Because the whole ‘ZOMFUG Why didn’t Justin win a grammy whine whine my life is over’ fangirl twitter mess wasn’t enough, now there’s more drama? This twitter apology apparently comes from the fans due to the actions of a crazy fangirl who punched his girlfriend on his birthday? Or something? ‘Beliebers’ remind me a little bit of Twihards, and that’s not something I want to see more of in my life Twitter. Thanks.

Also, the Beibs is only turning 17? Dear Gog, America. You depress the ever living crap out of me.

TT #3: #tigerblood

This is apparently related to Charlie Sheen. And a fellow named Frank McCourt. I don’t know. All I care about with Charlie-boy is that finally they’ll stop making Two and a Half Men. Here’s a relevant link, for the confused or amused.

TT #4: #tipicasmentiras

Roadblock: I know no spanish, and that appears to be the language this originated in. I’m at a loss folks. Even google has given up on me in this case. I think it’s something to do with a facebook app, but the only way to find out was to give the app access to my info. This is harder than it seems folk.

TT #5: McLobster.

Okay, WHAT. Apparently McDonalds is really upping it’s game in the class factor, because the McLobster sandwich is real.
I kind of want to go punch the guy who came up with this in the gut. The words ‘Fast Food Lobster’ should ALWAYS be an oxymoron.

TT #6: Sleepwalker

This appears to be a reference to at least one song. So far Twitter thinks it’s related to an Adam Lambert tune. I’ve never heard it, and I can’t say I care enough about Adam Lambert to track it down, but that’s what that is I think. I guess. Twitter is a thrilling place today it seems.

TT #7: Fleur Agema

Fleur Agema is apparently a Dutch Politician, once again limiting my ability to understand why the hell she’s trending. But here‘s her wiki page, and I think a couple of the tweets referenced racism, so whatever it is, I’m sure it’s thrilling.

TT #8: McSushi.

Okay. No. Just. NO. But it’s real.
That sound? It’s the sound of my hope for humanity dying. Violently.

TT #9: Limburgers

This? I have no clue, but I’m guessing it’s not to do with the slightly pungent cheese. That would be just too boring for the world of gossiphounds and nutjobs that frequent the twitterverse. Or it might be something to do with the Dutch elections. I guess the Loop is off in the distance and I’m over here watching dumb TV.

That or it’s another Charlie Sheen thing.

TT #10: Selic

… yeah, not sure. I think though, judging from all the Portuguese, it’s something to do with this.

So that’s today’s Twitter roundup. Justin Beiber has crazy fans, McDonalds is still gross, and there’s a lot going on with the Dutch. That’s Tuesday in a nutshell on the Twitterverse.

Apparently Doc Brown Perfected his Time Machine

16 Feb

And so gents and ladies, I give you my WTF of the week moment, courtesy of South Dakota Legislature and their rigmarole of anti-abortion folk:

Bill expands the legal definition of justifiable homicide in the state. Critics said the measure legalizes the killing of abortion providers by saying a homicide is permissible if committed by a person “while resisting an attempt to harm” an unborn fetus.”

As my first thought went: “what is this I don’t even.”

Seriously. I DO NOT EVEN. You know what that can cover, according to some definitions? A woman WANTING an abortion. Even a miscarriage.

The. Hell. Fucking. Damn.

My dear father, knowledgeable gent that he is, also acknowledged the ridiculosity of this particular bill, like so many other bills South Dakota has been churning out in the last few years. His theory, and I’m inclined to agree with him, is that the real goal here is not to actually pass this crazy law, but to get it to appeals. Their ultimate goal? Pushing it far enough that it hits the supreme court and Roe vs. Wade ends up coming up, and being overturned.

Fan-tastic.

Fan-fuckin’-tastic.

As I said to my friend Sam, ‘let’s start out own country and get away from this madness.’

When did we start moving backwards? Come the hell ON people!