A Ray of Hope From the Younger Set…

23 Jul 2012

Since writing about sexism in politics and the demeaning treatment of women seems to have become my raison d’etre, I have to share an exciting video that came to my attention courtesy of writer Mona Gable at BlogHer. She reports that Vlogger Nineteen Percent takes issue with Beyonce’s song Girl (Who Rule The Word)….

Not so fast! says this fabulous woman…

I was as blown away by her command of the subject as I was by the younger demographic she represents. Particularly since so many young women seem to gloss over the need for any reform in this area.

This video also made me reflect on an experience I had recently, courtesy a friend arranged for me to speak at the Women’s Leadership Forum at Pasadena City College as part of a panel of local women legislators and entrepreneurs.

The Forum held a mixer after the event and a number of students chatted me up, very knowledgeable about current events and a biased media more predisposed to infotainment and smear than real news. One young man, probably nineteen who to me, looked fifteen, was so much in agreement with me regarding the tactics of the drive-by hit squad otherwise known as MSNBC, CNN, NBC et al, he could have been my twin!  I was also pleased to see a number of men in the Feminist Club. And they weren’t there to hit on the ladies.

One young woman asked me, “How do we get the message out about the equality and fair treatment of women to girls who are addicted to the Kardashians?”

Exactly! Her brilliant question brought to mind the late, great George Carlin, who said the media (and our government) does not want you to think critically. They prefer we be distracted daily with bread and circuses, keeping up with the Joneses and something glamorous outside ourselves that keeps us in a perpetual state of want.

As blogger DWP was kind enough to share:

“I am exhausted that we are still making such faint progress. In 1855 while speaking about the issues women face, Lucy Stone famously said”

“…In education, in marriage, in religion, in everything, disappointment is the lot of woman. It shall be the business of my life to deepen this disappointment in every woman’s heart until she bows down to it no longer.” Over 150 years later, women are still overwhelmingly spoils of war and chattel denied income, equal rights, education, safety, and justice.”

Other students with whom I spoke chimed in about the obsession over a woman’s appearance and were none too pleased at the choke hold they felt this demeaning construct has over female political candidates.

In search of more encouragement, have you found examples recently of young people who have wised up beyond our current cult-worshipping culture?

I realized I did not have the greatest answer to the “Kardashian’s question,” beyond telling the young lady to make a stand on the issues — hoping that with enough passion and reason, some kernel of sense would penetrate her reality-tv addled target. But I think, honestly, mine was a rather lame retort. What would you have said?

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Anita Finlay is the author of Dirty Words on Clean Skin: Sexism and Sabotage, a Hillary Supporter’s Rude Awakening, available on Amazon in print and kindle editions.

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