Thursday, April 10, 2014

Long discussion on double standards.

I tend to have a lot of halfway deep thoughts.

Meaning, I ponder something for awhile, and then a little person (or something more immediately pressing) comes and distracts me away from those deep thoughts.

This is why the more children I have, the less I blog.

It's also why a lot of my thoughts come out not quite finished. It's like the oven of my mind wasn't completely on the right degree, or the thought was taken out a little early. And, while chocolate chip cookies that are still a little doughy taste delicious (along with slightly undone brownies...I think I need a snack!), no one likes the pizza that comes out of the oven with underdone crust.

I'm hoping my latest ponderings are more like the cookies and less like chewy dough. :)

There's been a lot of social media chatter about the CEO (former, I suppose) of Firefox and what he chose to do with his own personal money in the privacy of his own personal life 4 years ago. I have read arguments from both sides and I get frustrated with double standards that most people have.

Mainly, "I want the freedom to say and believe whatever I want to say and believe, but don't you DARE act on your beliefs if they go against mine or the main stream."

I don't mean it just for that issue. In fact, this was just the final piece that sent my mind into blog mode, since I've been chewing on this for awhile (again with the food metaphor...hmmmm...).

The main topic that got me started with this is the discussion about companies and whether or not they ought to provide birth control coverage for their employees. I hear so many people get all up in arms about how it's keeping women under the thumb of the man if we don't provide birth control through the insurance.

I read about how if we don't allow women to have access to abortions, we are doing a disservice and might as well go back to the days when women were expected to keep quiet and stay at home and serve the family.

People yell about women's rights and equal rights and how oppressive society is.

I could write an entire blog about how empowering it is as a woman to take control of our sexuality and figure out how our cycles work and actually take control of our fertility without having to rely on synthetic drugs to do that (I'm talking about in terms of preventing a pregnancy, I'm thankful for progression in science that has allowed people to have children when it otherwise would have been impossible), but that's not what this blog is about.

I want to point out the glaring double standard I see in society.

On the one side I hear about how it's those darn Republicans who are so concerned with oppressing women and gays and minorities that if something isn't done about it we are going to go back to the days of segregated water fountains and where it's lawful to beat your wife if she doesn't make you a sandwich fast enough.

Yet, I don't think people realize how it is main stream media that is sending us an entirely different message! We claim that we want equality for all, and yet if my Christian friends even whisper about believing in the Bible they are mocked and ridiculed and told that they are terrible people. Even if they are the most tolerant person in the world (tolerant in the ACTUAL meaning of the word, loving someone and accepting them for who they are, even if they don't agree with what they do).

We are told that women are equal and can do anything, and yet we are constantly hit with images of "the perfect woman". A skinny, unhealthy, sex kitten who is at the command of anyone with money.

Think I'm exaggerating? Listen to popular music.

No. Seriously. Listen to it.

I'm not one who listens to much popular music. I know, I really should immerse myself in it more due to my job, but there's only so much I can handle.

I was at the gym working out and listening to a lot of the Hip Hop that is played.

Want to know I have learned from popular music?
1. Women must be referred to as B*&^*es. (Awesome. Thanks!!)
2. Women are only useful for sex and objectification. If we are not being used for that person, then they are a problem. Refer to point 1.
3. If you really want to take full advantage of the B*(&^es, you must supply them with copious amounts of alcohol because, as one "artist" so tastefully put it, "The drunker they are, the less they can resist you." Awww...thanks!

I'm sure I could go on, but...yeah.

Do you know how many people I have heard protest this message? ZERO. Not one person has said, "Wow, can we please stop with the degrading of women?"

I don't think that birth control and it's accessibility is the problem. I think that telling our daughters (and sons) that women are people and equal and trying to 'empower' them through encouraging them to understand how sex works (which, really, throwing birth control at them isn't teaching them how it works, it goes SO MUCH DEEPER), while the media screams the message that they are only worth what they can be used for is messing them up!

I teach Jr. High and I'm saddened at the things I observe and hear from my female students. I have 6th graders (that's 10 and 11 year olds, by the way) who get harassed at school by their male peers. The boys do it because it's "cool" to snap bras, cat call, smack butts, grab chests, etc., while the girls suck it up and deal with it because it's "part of growing up". And yet, the main theme in most Jr. High settings is, "Don't bully someone for being gay."

As a mom of boys I have a huge responsibility to teach my sons what it means to respect women. We have an ongoing dialogue in our house about this, not to mention my amazing husband who models this daily.

I'm not exactly sure where I'm going with all of this (again, halfway thought out ideas that have been interrupted already three or four times). The thought train has gotten derailed a few times. Someday I will be able to complete a thought, but for now, I'm content to hammer out things on my little blog for a few people to read.

Feel free to join this discussion in the comments on Facebook. I really would like to hear well thought out thoughts on this. I do ask, however, that you refrain from name calling and generalizations. And, if you feel like going back and forth between one other person, perhaps privately message that person or friend them on Facebook so that you can do so without me having to see it (I have friends whom I love who passionately believe different things and I don't like to see my friends picked on). :)

Also, I realize this has a few different topics of thought. Forgive my muddled brain. Someday I will sleep through the night uninterrupted again. At least, that is the hope. Please, no horror stories about how when I'm older I will become an insomniac! :)