Thursday, October 12, 2006

Because I'm lazy...Girls Gone Wild

(and mainly because I don't want to create a login name, etc) I am responding here to the plea for help in the comments of my last post.

There seems to be a discussion going on here discussing Levy's Female Chauvinist Pigs.

I'll respond to some of the comments that struck my eye as I go along.

I get sick of "feminists" trying to say that there's essentially one way to be a woman. If we're going to say that women are free to be, do, say, think whatever they want, then that also includes being a "girl gone wild" as well as a Senator or CEO.

See, I have never said that. I know very few feminists that say that. I know rad fems who are spinsters and ones who are stay at home moms. I am so sick of hearing about how feminists tell women what they should do with their life. We don't even tell people to stop watching porn: we tell them that porn is harmful to women, give them evidence and examples, and hope upon hope that they will stop. (Every thinking person should be able to see that easily once awoken to the problems inherent in porn.)

This isn't true. There's a whole movement afoot among feminists who are distressed that educated women are leaving their careers in favor of staying home with their children. It's been said that these educated career women are doing a disservice to the femininst movement and are disrespecting those who came before.

Ok, who's saying this? I'm one of those "crazy" radicals, and I think that staying at home with kids is a noble cause. I want women (and men) to be compensated for staying home. They do as much work as anyone else and deserve to be paid. I'm not alone in this belief. (Especially among radical feminists.)

The last thing I expected this thread to be about was things like Girls Gone Wild. I view that as a sign of how hedonistic our society has become.

What did come into my head when I saw your title is women who have a low view of men. Women who treat their men like children. Women who expect certain treatment from their men but don't reciprocate. Women who want their freedom and choices but don't allow men theirs. There are a lot of them out there.


You're right, we want to be treated with respect and we're the horrible oppressors. Just look at how much freedom we have in this society!
Freedom to walk alone at night, freedom to have friends and acquaintences over without fear, freedom to be safe in our own home, freedom to earn pay equal to our skills, freedom to make laws that benefit our sex, freedom to choose, freedom to wear whatever we want and not be seen as pornography, freedom to be treated as an equal human being, freedom to go out alone and not be "asking for it", freedom from harrassment, freedom to be oblivious to our surroundings, freedom to walk away from a family without repercussions/actually being held accountable for repercussions......(you get the point.)

Oh wait! That's the freedom that MEN have that women don't! Shit! So, who's oppressing who here?

One of the examples give was that "...We are not pursuing the confident, self-determined, powerful, free ideal the women’s liberation movement would have dreamed for its daughters. Instead, our icons are porn stars and strippers and prostitutes. Paris Hilton and Jenna Jameson flaunt their successes in the pornography industry, and in doing so seem to earn our adulation."


Well perhaps when they stop selling the sleazy clothes and those whorish looking dolls for girls we won't have anymore Paris Hiltons!!


Actually it has more to do then just selling clothes. It's about what young women are taught by the media and their peers. They (as I was) are taught that women's worth is in how much sex appeal they have to men. The women and girls who appear in things like Girls Gone Wild have been taught this. Even women who don't flash a camera for male attention and approval are taught this. The fact is that now women are not valued for their ability to do anything. they are valued for their looks, and things like Girls Gone Wild understands and exploits this. The girls are compensated for becoming pornography by being given a hat or t-shirt that tells the men who weren't there they they are hip, with it, and most of all that they have bought in to the patriarchal ideal that women are pornography.

The effects of which not only affect these women, but the college age men (and younger) who believe that deep down every girl or woman who eschews the idea of being walking pornography really wants it.

And that's the heart of the matter.

The idea that men's exploitation, abuse, and oppression of women turns any of us, even the ones fighting against it, into their idea of who we are and what our real wants are. Say no? Well that guy thinks that you're just playing hard to get and really mean yes. What do we call this? Why is it any different then the ideas that push things like Girls Gone Wild on us? Because really that's what it boils down to. Men's beliefs in who we are and how we should act, which is always incredibly self serving.

What we are seeing is women exercising their sexual freedom.

I disagree with this. I think women are being exploited sexually more now than ever before, and it has nothing to do with sexual freedom but everything to do with the media portray of women's sexual freedoms. (somehow I don't think that makes sense as I've written it, but it makes sense in my head ). I'm saddened by how some women are being exploited and demeaned by the "still-male-dominated" corporate and media machine.

The women's lib movement was all about gaining the right of women to choose. Whatever path a woman takes in her life is OK - as long as she is legitimately making a free choice to do so. Anything short of that is a failure of the movement. As someone said "Stay at home mom or executive, saint or slut" - there are choices, but I still do not believe that women have suffient support systems out there - including support from other women who have made other choices - for us to be considered truly "liberated". Frankly, I think there is still a battle or two to be fought before we really win the women's rights war.


HALLELUJAH!! See I'm not alone. If women had true sexual freedom they would be able to express it in their own ways: not the ways that men have proscribed as women's sexuality. But alas, we aren't free. We have to operate within the patriarchal definition of sexuality, which (suprise, suprise) discounts women as beings with sexual agency, but as masturabatory material for men.

(Remeber, especially if you're coming from that forum that I'm talking about men as a group and that individual men can and do buck the patriarchal system.)

3 comments:

Laura said...

Some excellent postage right here me dear :) x

lost clown said...

Why thank you. I was wondering if anyone still read my blog because I thought it was pretty damn good. *sigh*

Laura said...

You were right :) I'm doing nowt much but reading at the mo cos I'm so bloody drained from, well, everything, that I don't have the energy to write. So keep it up, you're helping to keep me from jumping into the Seine! Still waiting for net in my appartment...

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