Midnight Frustration Rant on Feminism

*offensive language* *conversation about sensitive topics like sexual assault* *also just frustrated ranting* *horrific grammar usage* *my apologies*

I DON’T KNOW WHAT I THINK ANYMORE

FEMINISM MAKES NO SENSE

how am i supposed to stay calm
i am stuck and i feel so much pressure to write but there is nothing in my brain
i don’t know what i believe in
i am a fraud
i don’t agree with everything i say half the time
i feel like a complete idiot
i jumped in so quickly and now i am stuck because the more I know the more I am completely lost
i want to write but to write i need to know what i am saying and i need to devote time to figuring that out and i have no clue

i believe in universal childcare is a right.
i believe a core feminist mission should be to reconcile the public and private spheres because women around the world are either tied literally or symbolically to the home. capitalism is based on individual families and that lack of community makes it very difficult for double income families to provide adequate childcare and pay all the bills. and a double income is a necessity in our economic climate so basically, we are all fucked.
we need to invest in community spaces so that we can reduce the burden of the home on the parents (which is mainly the mother because we can’t help the fact that kiddies need our milk and need our bodies to grow. if you can’t afford childcare you are screwed and mama is going to ave to stay home with her 1 year old and get set backs in her career or lose her clients or try to do both and become crabby because thats what happens when people take on too much they become crabby case and point me right now i am angrily typing because i took on too much).
the Canadian federal government just passed a childcare act that will give LOTS of money to providing childcare where it is needed initially, but with the long-term plan of universal child care. i am proud of my government. though, if they get booted out next election, so much for that long term plan. not enough people are on board to guarantee that we will be making adequate steps towards a capitalist future that MAKES SENSE in contemporary life.

but there are so many opinions i don’t know if i am right
Christina Hoff Sommers will make a video and then all of a sudden i will question everything
i feel like i am wrong about so much and i don’t know enough to start writing
what the HELL am i supposed to do
i don’t know what i think
i feel so overwhelmed
so many people pretend like they know what they are talking about but NO ONE DOES or at least HALF OF THEM ARE LYING
and I JUST DON’T KNOW ANYMORE

i think that feminism is a view point from which to walk towards an egalitarian future. Men’s Rights Activists’ (MRAs’) perspectives is another viewpoint, so is queer theory etc. they are all a part of the vision of an egalitarian world. (unless they are not. then they are failing at their mission and need to rethink shit.)
we need these viewpoints. to make them all the same defeats the point. discussion, debate, compromise… opening ourselves up to finding the best way forward is the point. but that does not mean we have to be divided.
we can all have many perspectives to look through. we can all be capable of opening ourselves to new ideas without threatening our previously held values. being one does not mean not being the other.
i occupy my seat at the table amidst billions who are like me but who are unlike me. our march towards our ideal of equality needs us all to be apart of it, but the point is not conversion but engagement.
WE ARE ALL ALREADY IN THE WALK. WE ALL ALREADY HAVE A PLACE AT THE TABLE. WE ALL DESERVE AN EAR AND NEED TO LEARN TO LISTEN AND DEBATE. conversion of everyone to one perspective is not the point. a recognition of diverse viewpoints and mutual respect is. debate is. democracy is.

(i don’t know what to do about those faschist assholes though. if they refuse to even come to the table and would rather squash it with a anti-love and anti-compassion and a racist sexist hand then idk what the fuck to do. like people who graffiti swastikas. like people who explode bombs on little girls. or people who gun down innocent men and women. i dont know what to do with people who do not care about anyone but themselves. idk what to do with those poeple. i don’t know what to do with all that crap).

i feel like rape culture on campus is legitimate but can become paranoid and we have no clue how to consent and also we are not coping with the whole crisis well.
i feel like a core feminist mission should be to promote assertiveness and communication among individuals in a range of settings. we need to learn how to communicate.
we’ve been avoiding these things for a while now because it is easier to make money by suggesting that women can be empowered by this and that. most people who are the cultural heads of feminism tend to be the ones making money off of it. frankly it is difficult to convince women to join the fight if joining means they actually need to change what they are doing with their life.
a big issue on campus is a lack of assertiveness, a lack of communication and frankly, a culture of binge drinking and casual sex. a lot of people when debating the prevalence of rape culture will point to another kind of sexual encounter that we know too well – the sexual misunderstanding. this is often labelled as sexual assault (it can be both in many cases). but let’s be clear about what it is we are talking about.
prospective sexual partners don’t always speak the same language of flirtation. men and women do not communicate sexual desire in the same way. to say that consent is YES MEANS YES AND NO MEANS NO oversimplifies the language of sexual advances. a lot of flirting is nonverbal and we need to be clear with ourselves about what we want. we (men and women) need to be aware of how we are translating this on to our bodies. we need to take ownership of ourselves and recognise the power of our bodies and our behaviour in our sexual language.
also it doesn’t help that men are typically more assertive and more likely to initiate sexual intimacy so obviously we are going to get women who are hit on and who don’t want that ESPECIALLY IF WOMEN ARE DRINKING AND UNINTENTIONALLY FLIRTING. it happens to us all. but we need to take ownership of that. we need to say: “hey when i drink i make a lot of eye contact and i am very free with my body I need to be on my guard because men may interpret my behaviour differently and i need to be ready to shut down a situation if i feel i have given someone the wrong impression or if they want to take advantage of me.”
likewise if we are drinking until we vomit and we say that there is a point at which we cannot consent (there is) we also must admit that we do not always know what is best for us in those situations. A friend intervening in a situation that they think is potentially dangerous is not disempowering you. it is watching out for you when you are drunk off your ass and in a dangerous situation.
additionally, if we are drinking to such extremes that we are paralytic, we need to take responsibility for our own behaviour and drinking habits. the fact of the matter is that when two people are so drunk that they want to have sex with a lampshade, it becomes very difficult for one of them to tell if the other is TOO drunk to consent. (a helpful tip: put them to bed and try again tomorrow.)
but let’s say one does not do that and pursues a sexual advance that they see as fair game and the next morning the other person doesn’t remember having sex. that is awful, uncomfortable…. is that predator behaviour?
maybe, maybe not. context matters.
the point is, if you are drinking excessively, and if you put yourself in a situation where you can be taken advantage of, you need to take ownership of the scary situation you put yourself in. maybe have a buddy next time. maybe don’t drink so much. maybe don’t lose your friend at a club and stand alone in the middle of dance floor drunkenly dancing to the music and making eye contact with everyone. drunk people are bad at reading consent. watch the fuck out.
maybe we should be teaching women and men to MAYBE DONT DRINK THAT MUCH WHEN YOU ARE NOT IN A SAFE PLACE. thats what my mother taught me. if i didn’t follow that advice, then i was being an idiot. my mother is a kickass lady from the second wave. maybe we should learn from our mothers and sisters and take fucking responsibility. only then are we actually fighting the real rape culture that needs to be fought.
currently rape culture is partially self inflicted on a generation that demands excess of alcohol and other substances. let’s be honest about what that does to our safety.

i am trying very hard to not victim blame.
i have experience with sexual assault. and i know i am walking a fine line between blaming myself for being groped aggressively in a club and admitting to myself that i shouldn’t have left my friend, i shouldn’t have been making eyes at men if all i wanted was to FEEL sexy and have no one advance on me. this was not the place, not the environment, not the time, i was not in the right state of sobriety, i was assuming i was safe because i should be safe, and holy fuck i was being stupid.
not every space can be a safe space. and if we demand to enter the world we have to be fucking ready to handle the world, not the world we ideally want it to be

and i don’t think we should be relying on paternalistic figures to fix every gender issue that comes up, especially on campuses. a lot of these transitions take time to work through society. a policy change wont solve the issue of creepy men. we should be working on everyday feminism as well. we need to take ownership of our bodies and becoming the subject of our experience. we are not the objects. we are not the inconsequential. life does not have to happen to us. we have a choice here, let’s not fuck it up.
let’s choose freedom but let’s acknowledge the risk that comes with that freedom. let’s champion our rights in our lives and support our sisters and brothers who fight to be free from restrictive regulations and limitations in the public sphere and let’s turn away from restrictions upon individual liberties and attacks against the usefulness and value of collective action and community building.
there is a fine line we can walk here. there is a middle ground amid all this fucking bullshit. i want feminism to support an egalitarian future. i want feminism to take men seriously. feminism should not absorb men’s issues, but it should be in conversation with men. it should promote coming to the table. i cannot imagine a more feminist way of dealing with consent. not a shouting match built on domination by yelling our enemies down, but a discussion built on empathy, a listening ear and a drive for action. is that not what we have been demanding all along?

i want the feminism i know and love to walk that line in the pursuit of knowledge, freedom, and love in an egalitarian world.

 

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