I spent a lot of this week thinking. I've been thinking about our society and sexism. I've been thinking about yet another case of boys rallying behind a "Consent is Overrated" cry and wondering where that cry is coming from. Who is telling them that this is what it means to be men?
I've been thinking about how some men see women as unknowable beings. I've been thinking about how quick people are to try to quiet the women who speak out, loudly, in opposition of such thoughts.
I've been thinking of how rape threats are now considering to be part of "online bullying" and how I think they are waaaaaayyyy more than bullying.
I've been thinking about how all this is happening during Women's History Month.
I've been thinking a lot. I don't have any answers. But I know women's lives matter, even though it sometimes seems the world is doing its best to silence us.
The links below are all written by women. They are written by women questioning beauty and brokenness. They are written by women who are looking at the way we judge each other. They are written by women who feel they are measured by standards of how we look in the world, rather than by who we are.
"Kissing the Scale Goodbye," from Mr. Thomas and Me. "I am beautiful because beauty happens everywhere, especially inside of me. And that is a weight no scale is going to measure." I don't own a scale. (Unless you count the WiiFit.) I see no reason to own a scale. My worth is not measured by numbers that tell you absolutely nothing about the person I am.
"Negativity Online," from Design Sponge. "But what is “too” much? And who decides what’s “normal”? Here’s what I think: There is no normal and there is no perfect. Luxury and “dream lives” are all relative. What seems excessive to one person seems normal to another." This. So much this. What you see online, including right here, is a curated view. It not anyone's everything. Perfection is a myth. It's easy to see something and be snarky. But snark is about you, not about the other person. It can be much, much harder to be kind. To the person on the internet. To yourself. KINDNESS MATTERS.
"Don't Read the Comments," from The Mary Sue. "Toxic commenting policies are a much greater enemy to true free speech than moderation policies. They shame into silence those who already have the least voice in society, and they terrify and intimidate those who do dare to speak." Imagine an online world where Terms of Service and Community Guidelines were enforced and you could actually read the comments. What would that look like? Oh wait, I don't have to imagine. It exists.