Monthly Archives: May 2011

Being a Feminist

I would never utter the word feminist at school, let alone declare that I am one. This has nothing to do with what I am sure some of you are thinking, that she she ashamed of it. And I know a few of you would probably take that one step further and say, well, that makes sense, really, I would ashamed too. But it is nothing like that. It’s because the people at school wouldn’t get it, they would think that I am some nutter that doesn’t shave and is frantically urging all women to burn their bras. But that isn’t what feminism is about for me. And the students that I attend school with wouldn’t understand it.

So I don’t bother advertising it. And why should I? I think feminists can have the impact that they want to have without declaring that they are in fact feminists. It is sad, however, that feminism isn’t a concept that is embraced, and that many people know very little about it. And I guess it isn’t just a lack of knowledge which is sad, not everyone is going to take interest in it, and they shouldn’t, it is more the assumptions that people make, and the opinions that people form, when they really don’t have the first clue about what they are talking about.

There are many good things about calling yourself a feminist. So of course there are going to be some bad things. Labeling yourself as a feminist is a hard thing to do. Mainly because it involves labeling yourself. I get that many feminists are probably thinking, hey, that isn’t fair, that isn’t what I signed up for, I’m about creating my own kind of feminism, or I don’t agree with everything about feminism, just enough to call myself one. I’m not talking about what you define as feminism, I’m talking about what society defines as feminism, and more specifically, what adolescents define as feminism. And unfortunately, society won’t always see it the same way you do.

I have known from a young age that feminism was going to be my passion, my belief, my religion, and my whole life was going to revolve around it, and that all my morals and values were going to be based on it. But it is hard admitting to yourself, and to others that this is what you believe in. More than your friends, more than your family, more than your families friends. It is hard. Why? Because it is putting yourself out there. It is letting everyone’s own definition of feminism become a part of your life. Because not everyone is going to understand your own personal definition of feminism.

I think feminism is a lot like Christianity. Both have started because of one main, big, popular idea, and both have broken into different forms of it. There are different forms of Christianity, and there are different forms of feminism. I think that people should keep that in mind, just because people call themselves one thing, doesn’t mean that they are what they think you are. By that I mean, just because someone calls themselves a feminist doesn’t mean that they are what you think a feminist is.

There are many good things about being a feminist as well, it isn’t all bad. You get to be a part of something big, a movement, and you get to make it up. You get to stand up for what you believe in, practice what you believe in, make people’s heads turn. One of the biggest lessons that I have learned, is that feminism is not one size fits all, and that you can make it whatever you want it to be. Whether people understand what you are about or not.

 

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For those who are easily disctracted

Yesterday was an interesting day. I had the day off from school because the teachers were learning how to use the computers. If they are trying to keep up with the students them they may as well quit while they are ahead, but it is very funny watching them try. Anyway, the two main things that I wanted to achieve that day were to finish an assignment, and do some cleaning.

It’s an interesting dilemma, I either finish my design and technology assignment, or clean the bathroom. So I started off cleaning the bathroom, and once I decided I had had enough of that, I did some of my school work. And then finished the bathroom.

So it turns out that if I ever want to get something done, I have to pick two things that I really don’t want to do and do both of them. I get sick of one, move onto the other. And knowing that there isn’t that much time in a day, I know that I’m going to have stay focused to get everything done. But it works, especially for people who get easily distracted. You should give it a shot.

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What’s the point in that?

It’s something that I wonder about a lot. The point of living, I mean. Why should humans even exist on this planet? What is our purpose? How do we help to human race, and more importantly, how do we help everything that is beyond that? Why do we get up in the morning, live our lives? Get jobs have kids, whatever we do, why? Why is our life important? We live it, we die. What’s the point in that?

People who wonder these things, but decide that it is worth living, for whatever reason, are lucky. They can dismiss these thoughts and never question this with the same intensity again. Those that don’t, they are the not so lucky ones. And they aren’t okay with just livings without wondering why.

So why are some people okay with our existence, even though to many, it seems pointless. Is it because they have something to live for, or just assume that they are here now, better make the most of it until it is too late. Or do some people just not want to know, would rather live in ignorance because questioning things is dangerous, especially if there isn’t any answers.

What is the point of our existence anyway? I’m convinced that there isn’t an answer for that. Some people will help change the world, and our society. Some will work within our society, supplying it with things it needs to grow and succeed. And some people will will work against our society. But I think people live and exist for reasons that only they can discover themselves. It’s when you can’t discover that reason, that is when you are truly lost.

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History

It has been something that I have learned a lot more about since I started high school. At first I thought, okay, I’ll just sit though it, learn a bit, no harm no foul, but recently I have discovered that value of learning about the past.

The thing that a lot of people over look about learning about history is that it has very little to do with the past and a lot more to do with the present, than anything else. You learn why things are the way they are, how we as humans developed, how ideas developed, how religions developed, it helps you understand and form opinions about things.

I have also found it beneficial because I finally understand a lot more about what people talk about, when they refer to certain events in history. Learning about history makes me feel smart, and well rounded. Plus, it is really really interesting.

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If a rapist wants to rape, a rapist will rape

On most of the feminist blogs that I have been reading at the moment there is at least one post on the subject of rape, and on those posts there is usually a comment stating that rape isn’t just the rapists fault, but in some cases it is the woman’s as well. So I thought I would share my opinions on that. Because I can.

It will never cease to amaze me how so many people legitimately believe that rape is not entirely a man’s fault. An interesting and valid point was raised on a blog titled A Touch of the Crazy, well one of the many interesting and valid points raised on that blog, was that was that people feel the need to blame the victim in this crime because the rapist is blamed so routinely. So they feel the need to question the situation and draw conclusions about the woman, and how her actions have impacted on the situation, instead of how the man’s actions have affected the woman.

One thing that a lot of people argue is that if a woman was drunk, and then raped, that it is her fault too. I’ve got a two pronged argument on that, my first point being what difference does it make if a woman is drunk or not? Is a rapist less likely to rape a woman who is sober? Could a woman fight back or stop the man from raping her if she was sober? Maybe some men might target women who are drunk, but 9 out of 10 ten times I think rapists will rape a woman sober or not.  Yes, women may but themselves in more risky situations than she normally would, but then again, maybe not. Any situation where there is a rapist involved could be a dangerous situation, but you aren’t going to know about it until it is too late.

If drunk women are going to be held accountable for their own rape, then what other situations would a woman be held accountable for someone raping her? Walking outside at night alone would be one. She is putting herself at risk. In fact, going anywhere alone could mean that someone could rape her. Knowing people is dangerous, a lot of rapists rape people they already know. On the other hand, some men don’t really care, and would rape anyone, so not knowing people well, and not knowing whether they are trust worthy is putting yourself at risk. Going on a date is putting yourself at risk, you could be date raped. Bloody waking up in the morning is putting ourselves at risk, having fathers, husbands, male friends, all of these things are putting ourselves at risk. So at what point do we say it was the victims fault, that she was asking for it, and at what point do we say it is entirely the rapists fault? It is simply not fair to assume if she hadn’t done this and she done that that she wouldn’t have been raped. At what point do women stop living their lives because we ‘might’ get raped.

When you look at many other crimes, the victim is never blamed in this fashion. If someone works at a petrol station at 12am in the morning, and someone decides to rob the place, and shoots the staff in the process, no one ever says it was the persons fault for having that kind of job. No one seems to care if a murder victim is drunk, it doesn’t change the fact that the murderer killed someone. It doesn’t somehow undo the crime and make it better. Because the murderer was always going to kill, just as a rapist was always going to rape.

Rape is a hard enough case to win in court, because there is always the argument that the woman asked for it, or that she agreed to it. Why, instead of saying if a woman didn’t do this and didn’t do that can’t we say well if the rapist didn’t decide to rape, then there wouldn’t be an issue. No woman asked to be raped, and when someone decides to rape, it isn’t a mutual decision. It is reached by one person, and I don’t care what anyone says about what the woman did or didn’t do, it is and always will be decided to by one person and one person only. If a rapist wants to rape, a rapist will rape, and there is no way anyone could possibly say that those decisions that an individual makes are anyone else ‘s fault but their own.

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There is no ‘good’ time to have children

When is a good time to have children? Well, it’s plain and simple, let me talk you though it. Firstly, you have to be over 25, but younger than 35, because once you are 35 there is a higher chance that something could go wrong with the baby. You have to be married, because god knows what would happen to a child if it grew up without a father, and if the marriage turns sour, you have to stay in it because how could you possibly bring up a child on your own? What would people say? When you fall pregnant you must keep the child because abortion is just completely out of the question, and it’s just too bad if you aren’t married, or are too old or too young. It’s a very big problem when you are raped, because then there is no father around, and if you are a teen mum, then you had better get ready to cop some criticism. Should have kept your legs crossed, really. And if you were raped, you were probably asking for it.

THERE IS NO ‘GOOD’ TIME TO PUSH A HUMAN BEING OUT OF YOUR BODY. Criticizing mothers about when and to whom they fall pregnant, and what happens in their lives after they fall pregnant, isn’t helping anyone. And criticizing people about terminating a pregnancy is just as bad, as they are allowed to make their own decisions for themselves. Besides, they either get abused for keeping the baby, or terminating a pregnancy. Both decisions would have an impact on them for the rest of their lives, and our society doesn’t need people reminding others of those decisions, because it is none of their business.

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Paper Giants

Paper Giants is a mini television series that aired on the ABC. Asher Keddie, plays the main role, magnificently, of course. She plays Ita Buttrose, the woman that started Cleo magazine.

This mini television series gives a great amount of insight into life in the 1970’s for women. It also gave me a better understanding about what the magazine Cleo was supposed to be and how it started, and all the things that Ita Buttrose had to over come to get the magazine published.

This woman was pregnant and had one child, had a husband that was a student, who eventually walked out on her, because he apparently couldn’t cope, and had death threats issued to her. And yet she managed to take this all in her stride. She never let being a woman stop her.

Asher Keddie with Ita Buttrose

If you want to watch Paper giants, it is on You tube, and will be on I view for a short time. Love it, if you haven’t seen it, watch it.

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