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J. J. Brown, Wordslinger

"I Sling Words As I Go Along."

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Opinion

So, there’s this Woman & Lioness post going around……

……that I find extremely manipulative.  At first, I wasn’t exactly sure if I was offended by the piece because of who posted it (which, if you’re wondering, can influence your opinion) or if it really was the piece itself.  So, I held back on my opinion, kept my thoughts to myself and waited to see if it got shared again.

Woman & Lioness.
Understand – the woman would be dead if the lioness felt like it.

It did.

I was genuinely offended and outraged.  It is a sly piece of work, presenting in a complimentary way an insult and denigrating view of women and the choices they’ve made for their lives because they have the opportunity to do so.  It’s implying a great many things without actually stating up-front what these roles are.

So I decided to break it down, line by line.

“Our generation is so busy trying to prove that women can do everything men can do, women are losing the unique qualities that set us apart.”

How are women losing their unique qualities? Aspects of their personalities? Or are they losing aspects of their physical selves? And according to whom? What are their sources? And why is it wrong for them to prove that they can do everything men can do?

All I see are women going into careers that, until recent decades, have long been denied them because of their gender – in sciences, in tech, medicine, military, police, business, etc. I mean, until the early 1970s, women couldn’t even get a bank account in their name or their own credit card without their husband’s permission. In the United States of America.

The only ones placing the expectation that they be as good as or better than men are those who established the rules in the first place.

Mary Shelley created what we call modern science fiction at the age of 19 – she was forever subjugating herself to her husband, Percy Bysshe Shelley. Her mother, Mary Wollstonecraft, ironically, was an advocate for women’s rights, having written A Vindication of the Rights of Woman.

“The God-given femininity & unique way our Creator designed us.”

I almost snorted my drink through my nose when I read this one. Fortunately, I was able to do a spit-take.

Let’s take a look at ancient mythology, shall we? I’m gonna focus on the Greeks because I’m more familiar with them.

Artemis, goddess of the hunt, the wilderness and chastity, swore never to marry; was the patron and protector of young girls; and even aided during childbirth. She is the twin sister of Apollo and her symbols are a bow and arrows, and hunting knives.

Athena, Greek goddess of war and wisdom, is incredibly feminine and intelligent; she was the patroness of the city of Athens; her symbol was the owl. According to her myths, she was generous to those who pleased her and vengeful to those who did not.

Aphrodite, goddess of love and procreation, is also incredibly feminine (as most goddesses of love tend to be) and owned her sexuality. She had a mind of her own and did as she pleased (as most immortals do), with no apology or shame. She was also married to Hephaestus, blacksmith to the gods, but was not faithful to him.

Side note – there is a male version of Aphrodite, named Aphroditus – his statues depict him dressed as a woman, but lifting the skirt so as to show his, um, attributes. He fell out of favor.

Hera, goddess of women, marriage, family and childbirth, was also the sister-wife of the most intolerable, arrogant Zeus.

As I write about her, I am wondering if the creator of the original post I am now dismantling was thinking of her as the ideal woman – a long-suffering wife, who is essentially brainwashed by her manipulative, philandering husband into continually forgiving him and punishing the women he seduces and the children they bear. Because she had a temper and woe be to you if you dared to cross it.

All of these goddesses are aspects of all women – powerful, vengeful, loving, kind, passionate, intelligent, tender, and forgiving.

Humble, not so much.

“Women weren’t created to do everything a man can do…. Women were created to do everything a man can’t do.” – unknown

Again, according to whom? I think a woman can jolly well do whatever the hell she wants to do. She might not do it exactly as a man would do, but who says that certain roles are made for men only and women only?

A woman cannot self-inseminate, like certain plants, except by medical means and men can’t give birth. That’s pretty much the only real difference that I can see.

I bet that ‘Unknown’ was a man intimidated by strong, intelligent women who saw through his shit and refused to be manipulated by it.

“The lioness does not try to be the lion.”

Did this writer not watch any National Geographic programs? The lioness would actually kill the lion (and here’s an example of one doing just that, in a zoo. He probably pissed her off one too many times). The lion is just a figurehead of the pride – the lionesses do all the work.

Also, she can actually develop masculine traits, like like growing a mane, and altering her behavior to act like a lion.

“She embraces her role as the lioness.”

Um, whut? She doesn’t ‘embrace’ her role. She IS her role. Stop that.

“She is powerful, strong, and nurturing.”

I’ll buy that – mothers are like that, all across the board.

“She does not mistake her meekness for weakness.”

Again, whut?

Lionesses are NOT meek. They are predators – they go out and kill the prey that feeds the pride.

Will someone please tell the idiot who wrote this post to go and watch some National Geographic and maybe spend some time with people who actually know something about lions? Like, you know, a zoologist?

“The world needs more kind, compassionate, humble, faithful, persevering, confident, fierce, bold, pure, and tender-hearted women.”

I agree with this one, too.  I am all of those qualities, I embody them every day of my life because I do not know how to be any other way and still feel authentic. I’m pretty damn lucky to know a LOT of women these words in the last sentence describe.  And they have nothing to prove to anyone, least of all a man.

But you know what? It’s a ploy, tacking this on to the very end. The whole of this post is a sly guilt trip and back-handed insult to women AND men. Leaving this final sentence to the end is manipulative.

You know what this sounds like? This sounds exactly like the propaganda used after World War II, to ‘encourage’ women to leave the work force and go back to being wives and mothers, to forget about having a life and autonomy over one’s finances and future.

The text of the actual post.
Author Unknown. Typical.

In short, unless you, as a woman, are a wife and mother, completely subjugated to the needs of your man, you are trying to be a man.

I call human feces on that.

Calling it bullshit, horseshit or hogwash would be an insult to the bull, the horse and the pig.

But it’s written very prettily, isn’t it?

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Opinion: What do you do when…….

……..your local service provider damages two businesses so badly it keeps them closed for more than a year? And they dig their heels in to keep from paying for said damages?

This is what happened in my hometown in July 2014. Water pipes underneath main street ruptured and flooded out the one-screen movie theater that has stood since 1914. It had been remodeled and updated only a few years earlier, complete with an area to accommodate those in wheelchairs. At the same time, the restaurant next door had been wrapping up its own remodeling and was preparing to re-open. Both businesses shared a common hallway to the restrooms.

When the pipes ruptured, the water not only flooded the theater auditorium up to the three-foot high stage/screen area, it compromised the foundation under one of the restrooms. The theater has been red-tagged, meaning it is not safe to go inside the building. The restaurant, which is safe and ready to go back to serving local patrons and tourists, cannot open without access to those restrooms.

red tag

This occurred a little over a year after another main break that left 800 residents without water, which is touched on here and here. The second link includes a video clip from KEYT, a local news station.

The water company in question has been a poor member of our community since it became the primary source of water service for parts of my town. It has not been helpful or responsible in helping the two businesses it has essentially kept closed due to its inability or outright refusal to own up to its responsibility.

Below, letters to the company in question, posted where one would ordinarily find posters for the current movie playing.

letter1  letter2

Between these two letters is a photograph of the theater’s auditorium looking towards where one would naturally expect to see a screen.

screen view

My apologies for being in the shot.

Below are pictures taken as recently as March 2015 of the interior of my local movie theater, where I grew up watching classics, independents and current releases.

The top photo shows where the audience would have sat, eating popcorn or candy with friends and family.

audience

This second photo shows where the small stage (which stood approximately three feet high) stood and where the screen hung just above it.

stage.screen

It has not changed as of this writing, on July 5, 2015. Many in my community are fed up with the foot-dragging and the non-answers and the insurance companies unwilling to own their responsibilities.

Below, is a photo taken on July 4, 2015, showing the citizens of my town protesting. We want our theater back. We want our restaurant back. We want a company that is a good citizen and acts responsibly in our community.

ojai

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