It seems like every article I’ve read on Thought Catalog or Jezebel or EliteDaily lately has been about one of three things: race, gender, or homosexuality. I have to say, I’m pretty tired of talking about all three things. Now, if you’re part of the “wrong” side of any of those groups, you probably already hate me – “why are YOU allowed to tell ME what you’re tired of hearing about?! You’re probably a white, heterosexual male who’s never had to deal with anything bad ever! And I can rant until my head explodes, but because of your male white privilege and you get to listen!!!” Well, I’m a chick with Albinism, and I’m still tired of talking about it.
Let’s start with women, because I am one. What do all these feminists actually want? Is the goal really just to get every male on earth to beg for mercy and kill themselves at your feet? Because that’s what some of the crazier opinions I’ve read sound like, and I don’t get it. Do you really want women to run around dressed like hookers, treating men like shit, and have men stop being allowed to be men and somehow alter themselves for you? Will that be enough for you? Do the anti-feminists really hope to be submissive and traditional, cooking and cleaning and hopefully getting beaten by their drunk, misogynistic husbands (who they were forced to marry)? I’m going to doubt that’s what either group wants. So what would make things all better then? Someone please tell me.
Unless you were raised in a religious extremist household/part of the world, I’m guessing you don’t hate women. Even if you WERE raised in a woman-hating home, maybe you grew up and realized you can think for yourself. The point I’m trying to make here is that women in the western world are treated pretty well. There are a lot of really crap examples of men treating women like shit, of rape and injustice and that pesky wage gap, but really? Girls can go to school and play sports and become rocket scientists and have a family, or run a company. Unless you solely focus on the negative, it’s a pretty decent time to be female.
Next, race. I’m white. Like, super de duper scary Albino from the Da Vinci Code white. And I grew up in a predominantly Mexican (not Hispanic, every single person I grew up with was Mexican, not Peruvian) area. So I was treated like a queen by all the “minorities” right? Haha no. I was made fun of constantly, I had my blonde hair shaved off in my sleep, none of the white people music I liked was played amongst my friends, hell most of my friends’ parents didn’t speak English and all the signs in the supermarket were in Spanish first. I was very plainly the minority. So, no, you lovely commenters don’t get to tell me that I “don’t understand because I have white privilege and I’ve never been in this position, and I’m not black so my voice doesn’t count”. That’s not how this works.
Enough with the background on why I feel I get to talk though. Racial discrimination in the United States sucks. It’s a deep seated problem that stems from centuries of ignorance and hatred. But this isn’t 1848, black people are allowed to do whatever they want. You can be who you want to be. You have a way better chance at getting into college and becoming an engineer (for free) than I had. However, the problem still persists. Many predominantly black neighborhoods (many, not all) are pretty dangerous places to be. Schools are ill equipped, drugs are abundant and gangs are a problem. What can be done to help this? My first instinct would be to go in and help clean up, help raise money for schools and community programs…. But that has been going on for decades and the situation is ongoing. So what needs to happen?
In such neighborhoods, bad things happen. Things like Mike Brown getting shot. So, what do all of the Ferguson protestors want, aside from “to close off the highway”? Did y’all want Darren Wilson killed? What does justice look like to you? Not exactly related, but I’ve been hearing about this a lot lately too – what does more “people of color” in the media look like? The overwhelming majority of athletes are black, and faring pretty damn well. Oprah, a black woman (gasp) is rolling in money and devout followers. I can think of several examples, but what I’m getting at is: what do you want then? To overthrow white society and run the country? Do you want to be treated just like white people? Or do you want to be special and different and not have to conform to the same rules? I just want to know what you’re looking for here.
Finally, homosexuality. There was a follow up episode of Oprah that featured several people from a small town in the south, who had been on her show in the 80s when AIDs reared its ugly head. These people were on the show to say how they felt about AIDs and homosexuality 20+ years later. The VAST majority of these people apologized for acting like psychotic assholes, they explained that they were ignorant and scared, and sad for how they had acted. This was now only thirty years ago. In only 3 decades the United States has gone from being terrified of the gay community to embracing it.
There are gay bars slammed with people, gay celebrities with beautiful families, gay athletes and company owners and teachers and friends who are loved and respected. Little kids are taught to accept gay students in school. Straight people all over the place are fighting alongside LGBT folks trying to get gay marriage legalized everywhere – people are being supportive and inclusive instead of ignorant and scared. And yet, there’s always some article saying “is it REALLY ok to be gay?? In 2014??” or “this person was berated for being gay”. Honestly, people get berated all the time, straight or LGBT, and the people who berate them are assholes. They’ll never go away, and I think all of us should try and focus on the positive, even just a little.
I have a lot of questions about how to help people who obviously feel “less than” or like the “minority”, because I, and most people I know, just want to feel important and supported and worthwhile and completely understand why everyone wants those things too. But I really am tired of just listening to people bitch about what a horrible place and time we live in. There will always be weak areas, there will always be mean, crap people who are out to fuck up your day and the way you feel about yourself. But things are getting better. They really are. And I don’t understand why it’s politically incorrect for me to notice that.