I try not to be a glass-half-empty type of person. I couldn’t swear to be a glass-half-full person, either. More of a realist, I suppose.
But after scanning my news feed and doing some musing this morning, I’m starting to wonder if it’s time to be cautiously optimistic about the general public becoming “woke” to the historic, systematic male domination/sexism/oppression of women that is the way of the world.
Early in this election cycle, I was disturbed by what I was reading, seeing, and hearing from many young women in the United States. The attitude at that time seemed to be that sexism was a thing of the past. That the fight for equality for women had been finished and we’d moved on. One obvious example: the election of a woman president wasn’t important; we didn’t need that symbol because we’d already achieved so much.
In other words, naive and historically ignorant bullshit.
Just as the progress made during the civil rights movement of the 60’s does NOT mean that we’re a post-racist society, the fact that women have been voting since the 20’s and there are some female legislators does NOT mean we’re a post-sexism society.
But the narrative seems to be changing. I think we have some real anti-heroes to thank for the subject of oppression of women being taken seriously again.
There was Roger Ailes, top dog at the biggest manufacturer of sexism in the nation, being sued and fired for sexual harassment of employees.
And then there was the Candidate Who Must Not Be Named and his degrading, insulting descriptions of his right to sexually assault women.
Women have lived with this kind of treatment since the beginning of time. Now we’re speaking up, telling our stories, and saying “It’s got to stop.” Decent men are incensed that famous misogynists are being held up as typical males.
But the election cycle is almost over.
I call on all women, worldwide, to continue shouting to the rooftops. Demand to be treated and spoken of respectfully. Demand equal time in those office meeting room discussions. Demand equal pay. I call on all men to watch for instances of inequality and call it out. To stand up for the women they work with and live with, in the name of justice.
We have to keep it up, for our own sake, and for the sake of our daughters who come after us.
It’s the only way to ensure that the tectonic plates will continue to shift.