May 24, 2013

Beyonce On Gender Equality, Power, And Who Decides What’s Sexy

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What is the issue?
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“You know, equality is a myth, and for some reason, everyone accepts the fact that women don’t make as much money as men do. I don’t understand that. Why do we have to take a backseat? I truly believe that women should be financially independent from men. And let’s face it: money gives men the power to run the show. It gives men the power to define value. They define what’s sexy. And men define what’s feminine. It’s ridiculous.”  -Beyonce

I don’t remember where I ran across this initially, but I remember being struck by it enough that I wanted to pull it up again and think about it more. Bey understands. Money is power. Power defines society. She has brought attention to a greater consequence of inequality. We are told how to ideally live and work and be, and these ideas are perpetuated through media, advertising, business, politics, etc.: the forces that control much of our modern lives externally, but also seem to have a resonating internal effect.

Sometimes I think that it’s not a matter of misunderstanding how powerful, intelligent and influential women are. I think it is understood, and it is daunting and threatening. Because what happens when we live in a world where all people are equal? What happens in a world where we don’t try to control one another, but live in harmonious acceptance? We lose the concept of superiority. Those in power are debunked, and nobody wants to be taken down from their greatness. Because what will they be left with? The reality that their lives have been lived for the sake of attaining societally-generated success. They are left with the fact that the way they will have to find happiness and contentment is by actually creating it for themselves, not just being “powerful” by our culture’s standards. They will have to learn to be loved and revered for who they are, not what position they hold.

I hope some people do have to come to terms with these things sooner rather than later. I hope that we all come to understand that sometimes confrontation is necessary to undo what has been so detrimentally done. I also hope that we understand that confrontation does not and should not necessarily mean violence or anger or hatred. Rather, justice, truth, courage, and above all, equality. TC Mark

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