The last thing Females want to be called is “Feminist” – because that might mean “Man Hating.” That’s bad for Straight Ladies, because then someone might think them Lesbian. Even though Lesbians don’t want to couple with Males, Lesbians are “supposed” to be socially available to them and not “Man Haters.” (I know I‘ve been called “Man Hater” before!) So heaven forfend if you’re Feminist!
Patriarchy socializes Females to distrust other Females. And we do. Females fall into other Identity Communities – away from – and often at odds with – each other. Goddess forbid Females actually used Feminism to advance rights for Females. What about the Males?
Because of our socialization, Females resist coming together, or even identifying, as a class. Accordingly, Females are the most dissolved, invisible ingredient in the Great American Melting Pot. We hear of White, Gay, Black, or Poor People. When discussing Poor People, nobody asks whether they are Male or Females (even though – as a class – the Poor are Female and the Rich are Male). Only when discussing Females do concern trolls come calling to ensure you discuss Poor Females, Brown Females, Vegan Females, Gay Females, (Fill In The Blank) Females. That’s no coincidence. Patriarchy places these filters in front of Females to prevent us from perceiving each other as members of the same oppressed class. These obstacles destroy the need for further derails by Patriarchy because Females don’t talk to each other as members of the same class. It divides Females.
Baltimore has no “Women’s Community.” We have the Choice Community, Domestic Violence Community, White Lesbian Community, Black Lesbian Community, and Peace Community, to name a few – but Females inhabiting these worlds don’t generally mix. What would happen if Females talked to each other about what connects us – our Female-ness.
As a Lesbian, here’s a truth anathema to the Gay Community and one that does not reflect “the law.” Sexual orientation discrimination doesn’t exist. That’s right. Sexual orientation doesn’t exist anymore than “gender identity” discrimination exists. When I am treated badly because I “look Butch,” that’s sex discrimination. Heterosexual women lose promotions to less-qualified men because of sex discrimination.
Sex discrimination impacts Females. All Females. We might suffer in degrees, but the root is the same. The root is our sex, and how society used and grooms Females.
Call it sexism or misogyny – sex discrimination is the air we breathe and the water we drink. It is so pervasive that Females (and Males) don’t see it. When we do see it, when all the filters are lifted, you might feel crazy. Your 20/20 vision will earn you contempt from the majority of Females (and Males) who ignore how much “being Female” hurts.
Think about EVERY way in which “society” disadvantages Females. Laws dictate what we can do with our bodies. We are sold a bill of goods on Femininity that makes us hate ourselves. We must be Porn Sexy and Slutty. “Traditionally” Female occupations are low wage.
Once you’ve taken inventory, know, Females, that I love you. I don’t like to get mushy with you, but I feel like you need to know. Focus on Females. Yes, other forms of oppression exist. No doubt.
But what would happen if Females started to organize based on our Female-ness? What if we organized around those agenda items that benefit Females?
We’d need to identify our agenda. Before we did that, we’d have to let go of whatever Identity to which we cling, as these Identities are obstacles to organizing as Females. After that work, ask “what do Females need”? Females have concerns related to pregnancy, childbirth and abortion because of biology. Controlling our bodies is a key element of Female Liberation. Females that have control over fertility have greater education, employment and political participation than Females who lack that control. Females must dictate our sexuality because sexuality has dire consequences for us.
I understand why Females do Identity Politics. It’s “easier” to localize the “problem” in a smaller Identity Group (wherein I might become a White Butch Dyke). But it does nothing for Females. Your little Identity Group might be safe for you, but it’s not enough.
Females need each other. Females should prioritize the good of Females. Feminism provides a new lens through which to analyze What Females Need. What would happen if all Females were Feminist?
Maybe we’d have an Equal Rights Amendment – “Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex.” The Equal Rights Amendment still hasn’t been adopted. The U.S. Constitution does not explicitly protect and extend rights equally without regard to sex (except the Right to Vote). Really.
Females, we could do this. What if we got together in 2012 and realized how much Power we have?
Females – we’re worth it.
Friday, 30 December 2011