I know we all have them, the days when everything wrong with society just roll off your shoulders and you can meander through your day unfazed. Then there are those days where, with something as small as one word, or gesture, or picture, or memory, or add-your-own-noun here, we let the weight o’ the world dump itself on us, the wheels start turning, and a rant bubbles up ready to explode.
My surfacing rant seems to have begun with the now daily news feeds highlighting terrorist threats to every corner of the known world. I am not a warmonger by nature, but I am at the point where I want to scream, “Blow these god damn insane people off the face of the earth and be done with it.”
Related to that is the execution style killings that are coming into vogue, IE: this story or even this one, or the hundreds of others that jump across our respective TV and computer screens each day. Does no one see that there is a deeper, underlying issue surrounding the reason that violence and murder is so prevalent – oh wait, of course we see it, but we either don’t care or can’t begin to formulate reasonable means to change those deep issues.
Speaking of issues, when will white America have the guts to speak up and admit that RACE IS STILL AN ISSUE in this society. It’s an issue because we keep labeling and finding definitions for this idea of race. My skin is darker than yours, so what? My eyes are a different shape than yours, so what? My nose is broad and my hair is curly, SO WHAT? I am a human being and my insides are just like yours white people so stop pretending you are better than, more intelligent than, more entitled than, me.
We have Ferguson in our heads and we all have our opinions. Who wants to debate that this story has absolutely no racial motivation?
I can’t leave women and gender out of this post. My personal struggles in this area are prominent right now because of the essays on menopause that I contributed to. If sexism isn’t bad enough in 2014, add aging to those existing sexist gender issues. A woman who is unwilling, or unable, to conform to societies ideals on aging is done for. You were never equal in the eyes of American society when you were eighteen, or thirty-five, or maybe forty-ish. Reach fifty (that’s a broad estimate) and your status drops so far down the list of social inequality that you can barely see the top of the hole you’re buried in.
I’m focused essentially at this point on the beauty standards ascribed to women. Standards that are not mandated for men as they age I remind you. Standards that women, as purveyors of femininity, must achieve to keep their man and uphold social norms or be ostracized as deviant. Standards that have absolutely no baring on the intellectual status or ability to be female. Standards that society has crammed down the throats and into the psyches of females from Day 1. Even we can hold onto beliefs that have ruled our existence and become the way we must live to conform.
Women age and bodies change. The same things happen to men, but who cares, because men make the rules. I rant not because bodies change, but because I care how my body changes are informed by male standards of beauty, and because I cannot, as of yet, let go of my own need to live up to some of these standards. While I rant at gender ideals and sexism, I also acknowledge my own irritation with myself for caring.
Oh, this is only the tip of the iceberg. I am done though, as I can feel the physical toll of this small post on my blood pressure. I am leaving this desk and this computer for a day of adventure. Thank you all for the freedom to express myself. I can assure you that there will be more rants to come.