Whatever happened to feminism? Well let me tell you – it died, because there is no way in Hell I would ever describe myself as a feminist.
Why? Good question, because in today’s culture it’s a dirty word. Yeah it said it, it’s DIRTY. Feminists are bitches. Feminists wear flannel. Feminists just need to get laid. Thanks in large part to television and movies (which we all know run our lives) we aspire to be not strong-willed women shouting “equal pay for equal work” … we aspire to fall down a lot and look cute and have some sort of job in PR or baking cookies.
Forget Seneca Falls and burning our bras … screw you Hilary Clinton … today we all just wanna be weak, clumsy heroines -- thanks to “New Girl” and “Twilight” and Katie Holmes, society is teaching us that awkward, annoying and love-sick is what we should all be striving for.
I’m sorry (I love Zooey Deschanel) but her character "trips standing up” (really it was in an episode), dreams of being a kindergarten teacher and mopes around about not having a boyfriend. “Bridesmaids” – another film I love – did the same thing. Kristen Wiig’s character let Jon Hamm treat her like garbage, she made awkward, embarrassing speeches and moped around about, wait for it … not having a boyfriend. Oh yeah and she dreamt of baking cupcakes. CUPCAKES!!!!!!
And these … these are our examples of strong women. These are the shows and the movies that are turning Hollywood on its head because there are FEMALE leads. But whom are they leading? Why is this all we want to be thought of? Cute & Adorable, like a puppy? Oh look, she’s trying soooo hard! We love her (insert condescending chuckle) --
-- SILLY GIRL ... THE REAL WORLD IS FOR BOYS.
See, I am the only female writer where I work. But I don’t really notice it (because like I said, I’m not a feminist … cough… cough), until I’m standing around at the end of the day with all the producers and other writers who are ALL MEN. I start to think, gee this is a lot of dudes. They probably all make more money than me. They probably all demand more perks. And they probably have no problem telling someone to do something all over again because it looks like shit.
But me, I wanna be liked. I wanna be polite. I don’t want to get in anyone’s way. Because if you’re a girl and your strong-willed … you’re a bitch. Hilary Clinton was a bitch. But Barack Obama was enigmatic and strong. The country fell in love with Sarah Palin (ok stupid republicans did) because she was kind of hot and wore glasses. Glasses!! But she was stupid, ergo, she was non-threatening.
A smart girl is seen as threatening. So we smart girls try to hide it. We know to play the cute card, and then slip in the smart. Because we’re supposed to be like Zooey, a hopeless romantic who’s trying to stand on her own two feet. We’re supposed to still be the wide-eyed girl from Kansas trying to make it in the big city – because otherwise we’ll be the nasty bitch, who no one invites to Happy Hour.
That however is why women still make 77 cents to the dollar as men. Why more women (literally) graduate from college, but very few are CEO’s or hold seats in Congress. Why more women are on TV, but very few are writing for it. Why we are just as capable, but hold ourselves back.
The resources are there. The opportunity is there. But we keep getting scared to stand up for ourselves, scared to not care about always being liked. All because we need to change our attitude about feminism. We need to take it from DIRTY ... to EMPOWERING. Our predecessors went on hunger strikes, defied the law, got arrested and stood up when no one else would, all so we could have the rights we do today.
And what are we doing – obsessing over US Weekly, dreaming of becoming NBA wives, idolizing girls who fall over themselves … wishing we were Kim Kardashian (she is literally the worst)? These are not dreams … this is still the oldest profession in the book -- disguised as progress. We need quantum physicists and journalists and Presidents. Not fake hair, and fake laughs and fake ego strokes.
So I am woman, hear me roar ... again. And FYI -- I only wear flannel when it’s cold.