I Don’t Want To Be So Serious! 

 

Looking back at the previous entries, there is a disturbing trend among them: There is so much serious, depressing material. It gives the impression that I am really serious, and it really depresses me. There is so much I want to talk about, but I am stuck speaking out about autism issues, civil rights issues, and just issues in general. I wanted to talk about things that were fun and universal, not serious.

I want to talk about fun stuff, like how Rihanna is a hardcore Trekkie, and Star Wars! I am a total geekgirl. In fact, when I heard the Wachowskis came out as sisters, I was cheering for the fact that fellow geekgirls had somehow snuck their way into a position of power and influence in a place they would not have normally gotten in the door! I am all about Rainbow Brite, Star Trek, The Matrix, Sailor Moon, Sherlock….but I’m stuck drilling ________ Lives Matter into your heads. (Fill in the blank with your type. Unless you’re a Stan Smith. Then you don’t need to say “My Life Matters” because it actually does. For example, Donald Trump is a Stan Smith.)

Believe me, sometimes I need to rant and strike out about stuff like Star Wars as a form of self-care. Oh, and just so you know, I LOVED Jupiter Ascending. As a matter of fact, I would design my wedding around its botched wedding scene. I don’t care who knows. I suggest you watch it, you know, unless you’re insecure about your manhood or something stupid like that.

Oh, and By The Way….

People are just flabbergasted that Carrie Fisher / Leia Organa Solo actually aged before their eyes. Come on, people! That’s what women do! They age! I have also noticed that nobody has hated Harrison Ford / Han Solo for aging. Just putting it out there.

Boy, the world is confused and hateful of reality.

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Women and Clothes

Wear a hijab. Don’t wear a hijab. Wear a bikini. Don’t wear a bikini. Be sexy. Don’t be a slut. Be smart. Don’t be a bitch. (Yes, I went there.) Show some skin. Don’t show that skin. Is it any wonder women get confused as to what they wear in youth, and screw it all to be comfortable in old age? I have noticed that to those in power, fashion is important on a woman.

Have you noticed that women are not allowed to wear the same amount of clothes that men are? If you’re in a conservative nation, you wear more clothes – ranging from longer skirts and head coverings to the all-covering burqa seen in the Taliban-controlled Afghanistan. If it’s in a more secular country, it’s less – sometimes a lot less.  The trouble is, do any of these people in power know what women want? Do they even care?

Religious codes aside, there is a lot of ignoring what women actually want. Maybe it’s the fact that since they are, well, women, they are made to feel less than true citizens. It’s even worse if you have a different skin color, or a disability. For example, there is a movie about disabled sexuality called “Yes We F**k” because people still think those of us with disabilities do not. Plus, there is also the stereotypes associated with women of different colors than, say, the palest Northwestern European, which still dominates world media to an extent. (It’s almost a game of “How Much Do You Look Like a King of Britain?” where only the most resembling can even get to the final rounds.)  Anyway, the trouble with all this is that women who do not feel they can stand up to this grievously high, white, able, etc. level of beauty are left out as if they are not even human. A dark-skinned woman in a wheelchair is barely recognized above apes, for example.

What does this have to do with clothes? Simple. They put inordinate amounts clothes on darker skin, less “abled” bodies, unskinny bodies, and female bodies in general. And somebody somewhere is going to go crazy and berate them for the amount of clothes they are going to wear anyway. Is it any wonder women who are older get tired of it all? Because it is too taxing on the young psyche, let alone the older one.

So, screw all the mixed messages, because you’re not going to please everybody. Wear what you want, because that’s all that matters. I just want to know that the clothes you wear do not make you less of a person, no matter what everyone else says.

 

Beauty as Whiteness: From a White Girl’s Perspective

I had a vision last night: of a high fashion show with models of color standing with the models of white as friends. Many dark skin models standing together with light-skinned models. African features, Asian features, Hispanic features, all standing as one. I mean, look at this picture:

dove-real-beauty-campaign

But the current system of beauty will not let that happen. As it currently stands, whiteness is beauty, while other races’s features are ugly. I am going to use racism as a starting point to show the flaws of the beauty dictatorship.

My eyes were opened by an article in Everyday Feminism about how whiteness is still the measure of beauty in our age, and it got me thinking: Why does this racist attitude persist? I mean, look at Lupita Nyong’o, Viola Davis, and Frieda Pinto! To equate beauty with whiteness is to leave those beauties out in the cold. There are so many more examples of dark-skinned people that it drives me nuts when I hear about people trying to look white. And it still exists: take a look at this ad for skin brightener/whitener:

SkinLightenerAd

There are women who use this sort of thing all around the world. Jessica Simpson’s beauty miniseries even tracked the story of someone who ruined her skin from these skin brighteners. It appalls me that people are

It goes even further from there. I once came through a shop where the owners were Hispanic, and all I saw in the dolls were blondes. They looked nothing like the beautiful women who I noticed were Hispanic – even though they come in all colors and sizes – and it bugged me. It bugged me because it had gotten to a point where the Hispanics were exercising racism upon themselves – that they were hating themselves and making themselves less in their own eyes. The message is clear: only love yourself if you are white.

It even bothers me that people of color are lightened in advertising even to this day. Yes, I have seen this, too. Take a look at this redesign for Disney Princess Jasmine from Aladdin. On the left is Jasmine in the movie, and on the right is Jasmine in the movie, and on the right is how Jasmine looks in the Disney Princesses merchandise:

JasmineWhitening

Don’t think that real people are left out of this. Take a look at Beyonce’s L’Oreal ad:

beyonce-loreal

I wonder if Tiana from the Princess and the Frog gets similar treatment? It sickens me to no end that anyone is left out of acceptance for who they are. This is especially true for those with darker skin – also, it is true with those who undergo surgery to look beautiful.

I’m not leaving out the Asian eyelid surgery girls. The fact that they undergo surgery to look more “beautiful,” which I have established, means more white, is outrageous. I mean, you could die or go blind on the table! I first heard of this on the Oprah show, when Lisa Ling talked about it as a normal thing among Asian girls. As I said before, the message from the beauty industry is: you are ugly.

As a white woman, maybe I’m supposed to find this all flattering, but I don’t. This troubles me, as a matter of fact. It redefines beauty as reflecting those in power, and I cannot see myself as an evil emperor, especially since I am locked out of the beauty dictatorship by way of size.

The truth is, I find that all people are beautiful, even the ones who are dark skinned, who have Asian eyelids, who have curly hair, and who have bigger sizes. The beauty dictatorship is terrible, and it must be overthrown, to make way for a beauty democracy.

Seesaw Living Hurts Us All

Pro-black is not anti-white. Pro-white is not anti-black. Pro-woman is not anti-man. Pro-disability is not anti-abled. Why do I have to explain these things to people? All I ever want is to make our society equal. Trouble is, most people do not see the potential of a society which counts everyone as equal, and really judges people by the content of their character. They only see a society which caters to Western European powers – in other words, how much do you have in common with Prince William of England, or with Donald Trump? To add on to this, those who have a lot in common with Prince William or Donald Trump are paranoid of other people who want a level playing ground, because they think life is a seesaw-that one person has to be down in order for another to be up. This kind of thinking is wrong, and inaccurate. Sure, the Western European, Able-Bodied Man has an advantage by his power, but it does not have to come at the expense of those who are not them. Due to my Christianity, I believe this type of societal oppression is quite sinful, because we all came from the same family. We are all related-we can all produce children from each others’ races, for example. Everyone should have an equal chance to prove themselves – I was raised to believe this.

In current society, there is a complicated web of classes and statuses, which can make one’s head spin, but certain things can raise your status to the next level:

1) Money

2) A penis at birth

3) Light skin and Western European features

4) Full use of all your body

5) Heterosexuality

6) Western European Religion

7) Western European Ethnicity

8) Neurotypical Function (Not Autistic, for example)

Of course, this is not an exhaustive list. Now, I know there are controversial mentions above. The point of those is, even if you morally disagree with a person’s choices, that does not lock them out of love and respect. If you’re Christian, for example, Jesus Christ said “Love your enemies.” There is no excuse for not treating a person with love and respect.

Now, back to the seesaw mind. Using the above statuses reduces life to an Us and They dynamic, where in order for Us to be up, They must be down. As you can see, if They move up, it will bring Us down. The trouble is, when you are pro-Us, you are anti-They. For example, pro-black is assumed to be anti-white. Pro-woman becomes anti-man. In this Us and Them dynamic, no one can be equal, and no one can get ahead without harming another. But I believe there is a better way.

Humanity, I believe, should not be divided and put on a seesaw. Humanity works best when everyone can advance everyone, so that no one gets left behind. Besides, do you think you can handle the paranoia that comes with the Us and Them dynamic? I have not seen a single human being live well when divided away from other human beings. People crave companionship, and if all the people you can get it from are somehow unacceptable, you will be one lonely person. I hope this opens your eyes a little, as my eyes continue to open to the false notion of the seesaw dynamic.

Why I Care

I get it. I am a white woman. In that, I am privileged, to a degree. I am also autistic, but I did not receive the controversial Applied Behavior Analysis therapy, nor did I get other types of “therapy” such as restraint and seclusion. I am also fat. Let’s face it. I am 4’ 11” and a size 20. There are some things which give me a certain amount of privilege, plus a very loving and accepting mother, and a father who loved me the way he could. Now, with all of this going for me, why do I care about the person with skin darker than mine, the person in the wheelchair’s dignity, the fellow autistic who was abused? There are a myriad of reasons why. I am compelled to be concerned about my fellow man and woman, and understand why they might have a degree of mistrust toward me. I get that. As I explore these reasons and troubling, unfair and often untrue stereotypes about this type of person or that type of person, I also get my eyes opened to some pretty stupid and cruel treatment of others by people I am familiar with. For instance, one of my friends a couple of years ago got offended by another woman talking about her and her race as “you people” negatively. I’m not sure if that other woman’s eyes are opened yet, but my eyes definitely are.

It is wrong, and visually comical, to try and set a type of people into a narrow box of behavior. Let me give you an example from my own life. A stereotype of autism is that we are all skinny white men who are proficient in math and cannot grasp intangible subjects, like love and fashion. I have only met one person who could wholly fit the stereotype, and he was not autistic. Besides, my family taught me how to love, and What Not To Wear demystified fashion for me. Let me also tell you something: I am not a skinny man. Have you been reading this? If so, I applaud you. We have a saying among the autistic community: If you’ve met one person with autism, you’ve met one person with autism. I swear, other people think we have a hive behavior or a hive mind or something. We do not all react to everything the same way.

We all are members of different cultures and families; we all, however, have one thing to set us in common: We all have human hearts. We cannot live without our hearts. We have an innate sense of right and wrong as well. Our differences are so many, yet there are so many things we have in common. Besides, those in power love to point out the differences of the oppressed to keep them fighting each other, so they can stay in power. I’ll wax on that another time. Let’s come together among our commonalities so we can help each other and do what’s right. That is why I care about others who are different from me, because those differences are minor in comparison to the fact that we all have human hearts.