I would make a terrible feminist

Now before everyone gets all up in my business for making that statement..please read the post.  I would make a terrible feminist, a terrible activist, a terrible lot of things actually. I recently read a post written by a friend of mine about his little girl, and that’s what got me thinking about this topic.  In this post he refers to an article written by a feminist:

“Here is an example from Devorah Blachor’s New York Times article titled “Turn Your Princess-Obsessed Toddler Into a Feminist in Eight Easy Steps“: “Propose that the hatred that Anastasia and Drizella feel toward Cinderella is not the fault of the step sisters, so much as it represents a complete indictment of Western society and its attitudes toward feminine beauty. Suggest that all three women might be victims of the same impossible societal pressures. Work in this timeless Naomi Wolf gem: “The contemporary ravages of the beauty backlash are destroying women physically and depleting us psychologically.”

So, here is my issue with what she proposes.  While it might be true that society often discriminates against less than beautiful women, do we then condone or justify the fact that the 2 ugly step sisters were mean to Cinderella simply because she was beautiful and they hated her for it? I mean surely that’s just doing the exact same thing in reverse? And how does that teach a little girl anything but totally skewed values?

Here’s the thing…when everyone is getting their knickers in a knot about the fact that only 10 of the 50 journos invited to an event were female, I sit in the corner rolling my eyes…loudly. I have many reasons for that and I’m going to try to explain at least some it to you. I don’t believe in women’s rights. THERE I said it.  The simple fact is…I don’t.  What I do however believe in is equal rights.

True, historically (and often still today) females have been severely discriminated against purely because they weren’t male. The same is true for skin colour and many other things…..And this should be fixed.  But to let the pendulum swing in the complete opposite direction and to therefore allow women certain benefits for the pure and simple reason that they are female does not solve this problem…it just creates a new one, building on the already existing problem.  All this serves to achieve is to make sure that a bunch of idiots who can’t do the job are placed in positions of power, which very quickly escalates into chaos. How ridiculous is that?

The problem won’t be fixed until a balance can be achieved…a balance where nobody is discriminated against.  I don’t want to be chosen to do something because I’m female. I want to be chosen to do something because I’m good at it and I deserve it.  I don’t want to constantly fight off people’s opinions because they believe I got something for the pure and simple reason that I’m female.  I’ve been told on many occasions that my opinions would be different if I had ever been the victim of discrimination.  NEWSFLASH: I work in completely and utterly male dominated world where the general male opinion is that I have hair, boobs and a bum and I wear high heels and therefore I HAVE to be stupid, my opinions don’t matter, my ideas are never good, I should be bringing them coffee and I can’t ever be as effective as they are. (Please realise that while I refer to the general male opinion I most certainly do not include all males)

The kicker here is that while it is frustrating and while I have to work twice as hard to prove myself, I kick ass at my job. I’m good at what I do and I constantly prove that. And while it would be nice to be treated as an equal by all my male counterparts I refuse to be treated differently or better or to be given a promotion because the percentage of females in the profession isn’t high enough. I want the promotion because I deserve it.

So here’s what I propose….equal rights.  Give promotions and jobs to the most deserving candidates based on qualification, experience and compatibility.  Give it to the hard worker who towers over all the competition because that is the person who deserves it, regardless of whether that person is male or female.  Sex, race, skin colour, etc should never even feature in this decision.  So returning to my scenario about the 10 out of 50 journos being female….send the 50 most deserving journos, or the 50 most well-known journos or the 50 journos with the biggest reach.  Or randomly select them. But for crying in a bucket please don’t ever send me to an event for the pure and simple reason that I’m female and exclude someone who deserves that spot about a million times more than me. THAT WILL NOT SOLVE THE PROBLEM.

The above only serves as the tip of the iceberg as to why I’d be a terrible feminist. The fact is, I also like it when a man opens doors for me, offers to carry a heavy package, offers his seat to me when there are no other seats available and allows me to walk through a door first. Why you may ask.  Well while everyone is freaking out because they feel like the guys are saying they can’t do it themselves, I’m standing over here going: “Thanks dude!” I feel respected and cherished, I immediately assume that the guy probably has impeccable manners, that he treats his mom like solid gold and that one day he will move mountains to make his wife smile. (yes yes, I realise this isn’t ALWAYS true, but you get my point) You see, my dad does all these things for my mom, and whenever I’m around he does them for me too.  And when a guy does these things he automatically scores points in my mind, because he is a gentleman. And we could really do with more gentlemen in this world, except that the few that we have are almost too scared to be nice to women because they get accosted by the feminists.

And the kicker.  If one day I should be blessed with a little girl I will tell the feminists to stuff it. If she wants to be a fairy princess and wear pink tutus and crowns she may, and if she would like to do so while yielding a sword or a light saber I will cheer her on and if she chooses books and jeans over tutus and crowns I will applaud her choices and encourage her to be the best damn princess/warrior/bookworm/superwoman she can be. And If ever I have a little boy I will teach him to be nice to little girls, to respect them, to see them as equals, to understand that nobody is better than anyone else, to open doors for all females, to offer his seat for the little old lady and to let even the most insignificant looking girl walk through the door ahead of him. I will teach him that he never has to apologize for being male. Because one day my child will be one kickass gentleman.

So hate me if you will and call me what you want. But the cycle of discrimination will never stop if we keep swinging the pendulum back and forth from one extreme to the next. At some point someone needs to reach out and bring it to a standstill right smack bang in the middle. Equal rights for ALL!

P.S.  Guys, I realise that this is my opinion and other people have different opinions…and that’s ok.  Imagine how boring life would be if we all thought about things exactly the same way.  I also realise that while I’ve expressed my thoughts here this is only the tip of the ice berg and does not include all my reasons or arguments for making certain statements.  If I were to include it all here you’d be reading one post for WEEKS.

Dear Human Race

What on earth happened to humanity? What happened to respect for human life? What happened to compassion?

But wait….I’m getting ahead of myself.  Many of the people who read this here blog are not on twitter and don’t know the circumstances that brought on this little WHAT? parade.  So let me tell the story first.

Last night after work I headed on over to a complex in sunninghill to pick up a set of keys from the supervisor as a favour for a friend.  As I turned into the entrance of the complex I heard shouting, saw a bunch of young men run away and realised that one of the young men was slowly making his way towards the entrance.  When he got to the entrance he collapsed, and it was only then that I realised he was covered in blood.  Adrenaline kicked in and I was phoning Emergency Services within seconds.

The security guard manning the entrance helped the man out of the road and used his jacket as a cushion so as to keep his head elevated.  He then came running towards me begging me to help him to help the man as he didn’t have a phone and no way of contacting an ambulance.  The relieved look on his face when I told him the ambulance was already en route and that I wouldn’t leave him on his own, is one I’ll never forget.  I managed to park my car and get my “Car first Aid” kit out of the trunk and together the security guard and I managed to at least apply some gauze and a bandage to the man’s head.  Well, the security guard did the work (wearing the rubber gloves from my first aid kit) and I stood next to him explaining what he needed to do.  It was at this time that I was forced to look at the wound on this guy’s head.  It was horrible.  Just thinking about it makes me sick to my stomach.

Because his wound appeared to be rather severe I was trying to keep him talking.  With a head wound like that the last thing we needed was for him to go to sleep or pass out.  The story came tumbling out slowly.  His name is Andrew.  He was walking home with his friends when his friends started arguing and fighting amongst one another.  He tried to stop the fight and then one of his “friends” stabbed him in the head, robbed him of all his stuff and ran off.  They took everything.  He couldn’t remember his surname, nor was he able to give me a contact number for a next of kin.  He was losing blood at an alarming rate, drifting in and out of consciousness and starting to slur, and still no ambulance.

Many people passed us.  Most just stared and drove off.  Nobody offered to help, nobody wanted to be involved.  Most people probably thought he was a thug anyway.  My heart was breaking.  After waiting for an ambulance for nearly 40mins a young gentleman (and I call him a gentleman because he truly deserves that label) was leaving the complex.  He stopped next to us and offered to take the victim to a hospital.  He said that he could understand that as a young lady it would be dangerous for me to take the guy to a hospital, but he’s been watching us and we’ve been waiting for an ambulance for a long time and the victim was fading fast.  He just felt he had to do something.  He was still willing, even after I explained the risks to him in case the victim should die on us.  I have a great respect for this man…there are still some good people in the world.

We helped the victim into the car and they sped off.  The amount of blood that had soaked the jacket we were using as a cushion and the ground around where Andrew was lying was alarming.  I canceled the ambulance, completely forgot to get the keys and headed home.  Waiting to hear what happened to him.  The gentleman phoned me about 2 hours later.  He had rushed to the nearest hospital, which was a private hospital, because the guy was fading fast.  I was impressed to hear that the private hospital accepted him, even though he didn’t have a medical aid.  He lapsed into a coma shortly after he arrived and his wounds were labeled “severe”.  He was taken to ICU shortly after he arrived and the hospital assured the gentleman that they would try to stabilize him, but as soon as it was possible they would have to move him to a government facility as he didn’t have a medical aid.  The fact that they were willing to treat him though, and that they are willing to continue treating him until they can move him impressed me.  They also promised to give us some more feedback on the victim today.  The stab wound did however reach far within the brain, and even if he did survive he would suffer long-term brain damage:(

Due to the robbery he had no ID and the only information we were able to get from him was his name.  The hospital notified the police who came to get his fingerprints in an attempt to ID him.  My heart ached knowing that there might be a mom/wife/child/sister/brother/father/girlfriend at home who couldn’t understand why their loved one wasn’t coming home and we had no way of notifying them.

I didn’t sleep very well last night.  Every time I closed my eyes all I saw was blood and the wound *cringe*.  I’m feeling rather jaded this morning and it’s probably a combination of sadness and lack of sleep.  What really got to me was the attitude of people in general.  People didn’t want to be involved.  People were scared to help.  And while I’m shocked and appalled by this, at the same time I can, to an extent, understand it.  Has our country become so bad that people refuse to become involved because it is too dangerous?  And because our country has changed so much that you can no longer just help other people because the danger of you being dragged into something and being accused and tried for various things.  How very sad.  I remember a time when people would assist people involved in a car crash because the main focus was on saving a life.  These days people don’t because they are afraid of being sued for damaged or being held responsible should a victim die, even though it was not their fault.  It’s shocking!

I realised another thing…diseases like AIDS have changed us as human beings and our levels of compassion forever.  Even after I had retrieved the rubber gloves from my first aid kit I was not really willing to physically assist the victim, and I was only too grateful when someone as selfless as the security guard grabbed the gloves and was more than willing to assist as long as I was willing to instruct him on what to do.  What would I have done if he had not been there?  Would I have conquered my fear of this dreaded disease and realise that I was doing what I could, or would I have stood by and just waited for the ambulance to arrive? Or would I have found a different way of helping him without putting myself in danger?  The truth is…I don’t know. Does this make me an awful person?  I don’t really know the answer to that either:/ Could I have done more yesterday?  In this case I don’t think so.  I wasn’t alone and we did what we could and we phoned an ambulance and we kept him warm and we kept him awake, which was a hell of a lot more than a whole bunch of other people were doing.

Andrew and his family are in my prayers.  I’ll keep you guys updated as and when we hear from the police.