Tuesday, 14 June 2011

Right to individuality

I've just read two inspiring blog posts by two lovely bloggers, as a response to a less inspiring blogpost, and I thought they were both too empowering to keep them from you on this rather gloom Tuesday morning. To give you a little idea of the situation: this woman has writen a post, thinking she is a "true" feminist and powerwoman, by claiming that smart women who like cute things (such as unicorns, cupcakes and the colour pink) are dumbing themselves down as to be less intimidating to men. On top of that bullshit, she tries to underline her point by using Elizabeth's photo. Wow. Can you imagine what that feels like? To have someone say those things and trying to prove she's right by using you as an example?

Both Elizabeth and Kaelah have written pretty strong responses to this piece on their own blog, as the original author doesn't allow any comments on her website (laaaaaame!). People like Julie Klausner anger me so much. Don't we live in the 21st century? Haven't the women before us fought hard enough to gain the rights we have now? Why does she (who claims to be an empowered woman herself?) imply that all other women's behaviour revolves around the desire to catch a man? Why does she imply that any other woman who is different from herself is per definition (her definition) a bad feminist, or a bad woman? Basically: where does she get off telling all the rest of us (us being every girl having different interests than herself) how to feel, think and behave?! She is telling girls to stop acting like children (as if this could actually attract a husband?!) and start reading books "from before we were born".

Well, newsflash: I read a lot of books. I read all the time. I read Shakespeare and Hemingway and Brönte and Orwell and all other examples of classic literature. But I've also read the entire Twilight series in two weeks time. (I'm on team Edward) Because I want to. Because I like to. Because I enjoy it. Not because I want to dumb myself down for a man. To be frank, no man would be impressed by that anyway. And as much as I understand her point that no woman should dumb herself down for any man, why does she imply that we do just that, only because some of our interests defer from hers?

I am a grown woman. I love wearing high heels and I love feeling sexy. My favourite colour is pink. My favourite film? Disney's The Little Mermaid. And Gone With The Wind, which incidentally is about an empowered woman. I have tattoos, and I love cupcakes. My favourite drink is a very strong Belgian beer. Rainbows are pretty. I love to giggle with my girlfriends about cute boys. I have two degrees, both a Bachelors and a Masters. I speak several languages, albeit not all of them as well. I own a house. By myself. And still I'm a girly girl. It's called individuality. It's called freedom. The freedom to be whoever you want and flaunt it.

It's the 21st century, why should I not be allowed to be myself and be proud of it? By a woman nonetheless. What, we all need to behave like men in order to be empowered? I thought that was the last thing we wanted to achieve? I'm baffled. And I hope there's not one girl out there needs to feel down or less proud because of dumb reactions like that. There are still too many people in the world that can't be who they want to be because of societal pressure, I don't think we need to add ourselves to that list by telling each other who we should be. Diversity is beautiful, embrace it.

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