I haven’t blogged in a long time for many reasons, the primary reason being my desire to learn an intersectional approach to feminism. Furthermore, I’ve been concentrating on finishing a novel I’ve had on the back burner since college, moving yet again, and generally focusing on my own private life.
That is what I would rather be doing than writing this right now. I’d rather be concerned with my job, or my weekend plans, or the phone calls I have to return. I wish that I could just live my life without the shadow of women’s oppression hovering over me at every turn.
I’m trying to live my life. But it seems that we can’t rest anymore.
It started with the Boko Haram intelligence network that abducted more than 200 girls this past April in Nigeria. While an online activism campaign circles the web bearing the hash-tag #bringbackourgirls, arrests being made locally, it would seem that the Nigerian President has not yet commented on the incident and victims have yet to be returned to their families. Wouldn’t you know that in the face of this tragedy, the American public is treated to this:
Behold Ann Coulter, quisling and extremist extraordinaire, mocking the trending incident and using it as a platform to beg for her own attention. Are you so callous to the suffering of others, Ms. Coulter? Are you really that heartless and entitled?
However, when one starts researching, where is the rest of the #bringbackourgirls fury? Have we already forgotten about the girls who have been potentially forced into arranged marriages, simply because other headlines have caught our fancy?
It doesn’t end there. The next cause for alarm took place at UC Santa Barbara in California, where yet another incident involving a madman with a gun killed several people. What makes this a feminist issue, you ask? Well, before Elliot Rodgers went on his shooting rampage, he posted several Youtube videos stating his intentions. You can see part of the transcript below (warning, this is not fun to read):
You girls have never been attracted to me. I don’t know why you girls aren’t attracted to me but I will punish you all for it. It’s an injustice, a crime because I don’t know what you don’t see in me, I’m the perfect guy and yet you throw yourselves at all these obnoxious men instead of me, the supreme gentleman. I will punish all of you for it. [laughs] On the day of retribution, I am going to enter the hottest sorority house at UCSB and I will slaughter every single spoiled, stuck-up, blond slut I see inside there. All those girls I’ve desired so much. They have all rejected me and looked down on me as an inferior man if I ever made a sexual advance toward them, while they throw themselves at these obnoxious brutes.
This shook me and Victoria to our very core, as we have heard men and boys in our lives become angry over the very same complaint – that women don’t like them and wind up paying attention to the “wrong” men. Obviously, Rodgers has proven that this behavior is, in fact, a slippery slope that leads to something worse. He has also proven that the phenomenon of Men’s Rights Activism is incredibly harmful, because it can lead unstable people to do unthinkable acts. Furthermore, the men who fell victim to Rodger’s killing spree were also a part of the sick entitlement he felt, further showing that this is potentially unsafe for men as well, thanks to the sexist and racist manifesto discovered after the attacks.
And finally, mere hours from our nation’s day of independence, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of Hobby Lobby, stating that they did not have to cover certain contraceptives in their health plan benefits for their employees if it violates the company’s religion.
That’s right…the company’s religion.
This is problematic (read: horrifying) for many reasons. Let’s dive in:
1. This ruling now essentially states that corporations have religious beliefs and that these beliefs are above the law.
2. The courts are essentially slowly overturning Obamacare by saying that corporations are exempt.
3. Corporations and companies now have the power to deny certain contraceptives, medications, and the like from their employees if it violates the company or corporate dogma. And it doesn’t end there, either – now different religions exemptions, regarding employment of LGBTQ people, are being requested.
4. This essentially just crushed the ideology of separation between church and state.
What this means is that women are being oppressed on an international, political, and social level. I genuinely fear for the fate of this country, and indeed this entire species, unless hatred towards women has finally ended. We take one step forward and another step back. Are we going backwards? Are we reverting to the dark ages?
Tomorrow is our country’s independence day. I don’t know if I feel like celebrating this country anymore.
When will this end?
“The moment of betrayal is the worst, the moment when you know beyond any doubt that you’ve been betrayed: that some other human being has wished you that much evil.”
― Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid’s Tale