welcome to the danger zone

Soapbox Sunday Take 2

So yep, it’s that time. It was going to be soapbox Saturday, but then I was lazy and cold and perhaps fate stepped in to play, because Sunday morning and early afternoon have provided more fuel for my writing.

You can blame twitter. Most of the tweets I receive involve my favorite bands, a few tv shows and news. Let me say, I don’t trust the mainstream media. So I’d rather get my lies in bites than have to read a whole article. I’m not all miltia-driven teaparty whacko in that sense though…I’m still my bleeding heart, not-scared-of socialism, liberal self, albeit, with an open mind, forming my opinions on fact, rather than blind emotion. I’m still not going to be a vegan, or feel sorry for Sarah McLachlan and her animal commercials, so don’t get nervous. I like some vegetarian dishes though, not gonna lie – like hamburger helper made with black beans.

You may or may not know that I am a feminist. That’s right, I am a FEMINIST. Now, that’s a scary word to a lot of men and women. Especially women, even those who support LGBTQ rights. Calling yourself a feminist in 2011 still pretty much equates you to a flannel wearing manly man-hating lesbian. Whatever. I know who I am and don’t have to explain that to anyone, and if you know me, you know who I am, so I would hope I don’t have to explain anything to you either. But still, my being a feminist still encourages bad jokes, speculation, and a bunch of assumptions. Again, whatever, that’s not what I came to the bloggity blog to write about.

Back to twitter. I got a tweet saying I should sign this petition to ask Kanye West’s record label to block the release of his video “Monster” because it objectifies women and portrays them in sexualize positions, mutilated, dead etc. etc. Now, I think Kanye West is an ass, so my gut instinct was to jump on this band wagon. I mean, really do I want kids to see this? What does free speech matter if free speech is going to further a sexist agenda of woman as sex objects? Really, if I am really a feminist, I should be affronted and sign this petition with no hesitation.

Nope, not gonna do it.

Go ahead, make the argument that it is hatred against women.

Still not gonna do it.

But why not you ask?

Here’s why: my signing a petition to block a video isn’t going to change our culture. Wait, you cry, one person can make a difference. And I agree, they can. But signing a petition isn’t how I think I can do that. Writing a bloggity blog entry is my way. Because maybe one person will read this, and maybe it will make them speak up when they see offensive behavior or actions directed toward women or men in the real world instead of just not rocking the boat. I find our culture repulsive in so many ways, it is absolutely mirroring the decline of Rome in all aspects, particularly the way we glorify sex and the sexual objectification of women and men, and even children and are obsessed with material possesions. We don’t value virtues or morals or knowledge or art or beauty any more, unless of course it can sell something. So blocking one sensationalized video from release isn’t going to make people say hey…this is vile and repugnant. It is going to do exactly what Kanye and his record company want…create a fervor and make it more popular than it would have been if we just ignored it.

Just like “Skins” the teen sex-drama now on MTV. This show has been on the BBCAmerica channel for a few years. I choose not to watch it. It’s not Torchwood or Hex, so I’m not interested. But like most great British shows, like the Office or Being Human, Americans just remake them and call them new here in the states. Today I saw a petition to call out the US version of “Skins.” Do I think the show is simply soft-porn and simply a way for old men to get thrills watching young girls get naked? Sure. But the Jersey Shore offends me more – but apparently too many of the incensed “mommies” watch that for them to create a petition to remove THAT  show.

Thus, I fall on the side of free speech. Things offend me every day – stupidity, American Idol, sarah palin, people who drive hummers, American media, bad spelling. If all of these things were eliminated I might be happier, but the fact is they aren’t going to be. So rather than make a petition, I’ll just voice my opinion. And when American Idol and Sarah Palin come on tv I can turn them off.

Don’t get me wrong. I believe government needs to protect me from danger. But poor taste isn’t “danger” and I can avoid it. We’d all be better served if we turn off the TV/computer/cellphone/game system more often and exercised our minds and bodies more to make this world a better place. So for me, just signing a petition doesn’t mean anything except I am too lazy to really take a stand.

Now, it’s back to my Bewitched marathon…I’m busy studying the gender roles in early tv sitcoms. You know, cuz I’m a feminist and all.


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