I am a feminist

I am a feminist, not an angry feminist. But I am a feminist and I am angry!

Storytime: Recently I finally got invited to an interview after writing loooots of job applications. Their bureau is as we Austrians would say “in the world’s butt” (meaning far away, mostly not near any civilisation), but I need that job desperately. So I arrived there and sit in front of three people, one of them being the big boss interviewing me. After being asked loads of pretty specific questions and me being slightly on edge towards the end I finished a rather successful job-interview with my maybe future-boss. Hurray!

Until- “Well, you seem pretty confident for a female candidate!”

Are. You. Kidding. Me. No, he was serious, but as I said, I was desperate for that easy and well-paid job and did not want to lose my opportunity by telling him that I was confident as a human being. Maybe he even wanted to test my limits I don’t know. Although his next move, which was helping me into my jacket, led me to the fact he just may be old-class or a tiny bit conservative.

I know we live in a society that has assigned gender-roles, but isn’t it our duty, as a well-informed and educated generation, to destroy those and go back to wearing what we choose to or like and act in a way we feel comfortable to? Why can’t a man help me into my jacket because he is helpful, no matter if I was a male or female?

I am a feminist and there are so many, many more things feminism is about. Not only do female workers get paid less than males, women of colour do get paid even less than white women! Transgender people do not get recognised as their true sex and gender, even after going through operations and therapies. And those are just some of the problems feminists all over the world are trying to fight and find a problem for at this point. Mostly it upsets me how badly lots of people think of feminism, as a cult or something negative in general that is about not shaving and hating men, when it is clearly not.

I do not want to explain every single time, why we all should be feminists, men, women, everyone! Why all our lives could be improved this way. And I personally am going to throw a fit if I hear for another time how women are not capable of certain things because of their nature or society. I want to play video-games without having to prove myself, I want to say “I love football” without people questioning my knowledge of such, I want to go out at night without silently repeating every trick I know for  getting out of someone’s arms and clutching my keys between my fingers.

There is so much more I could say about this topic, but we still have plenty of time and I only just begun 😉

P.S.: I did not get the job

I’m not gay, just a decent human being

 

Heya, this is not about my sexuality, as you might think. I just want to talk about the topic sexuality, as there are many different approaches to it and a lot of misconceptions. I recently started to listen to Tyler Oakley’s podcast “Psychobabble” (I highly recommend it to all who want to have a laugh while listening to the latest star gossip or deep conversations). And one thing he mentioned really stuck in my head, that allies of the LGBTQ+ community should stand up to their beliefs and show openly that they are supportive. So let me do just that and give my opinion to some major misconceptions about sexualities.

  • Misconception #1: Being gay is a choice

Let me tell you that I have read and personally listened to enough heart-breaking coming out stories or in general experiences that lots of LGBTQ+ people go through, to know that being gay in a heteronormative society is not a choice. The fear and hate some people grow up with makes children and teenagers feel so bad and out of place that in moments of weakness they either wish they were straight or never even existed in the first place and those are thoughts no kid should ever have, least of all because of their sexual orientation. Fact is they cannot change who they are or who they love and they should not be pressured to try by being sent to camps or forced to date or even have intercourse with the opposite sex. If strictly heterosexual person can’t make themselves fall in love with someone of the same gender, a homosexual can’t either, just as an aromantic/asexual person can’t fall in love or have sex with anyone.

  • Misconception #2: Being gay/bi/… is unnatural

I find it very ironic and amusing how humankind compliments itself by stating they are extremely intelligent and such an advanced race, but when it comes to cases of rape or the topic of sexuality the arguments often base on our so called instincts to procreate. They are right in one point only, it amazes me how far we have come looking at our technology and all the possibilities we have. On another hand humans can be very irrational and almost stupid. We are so many on this planet and we have knowledge about so much in these times of the internet and social networks – people cannot possibly think that it is of importance for a man to be with a woman to preserve our race? There are so many abandoned children, whose number of cases could be easily decreased by choosing to let same-sex couples marry and actually adopt children. Also as I said, no one chooses their sexuality, so there is really nothing unnatural about that. By the way, there are also lots of animals who choose a same-sex partner. So what do you want to tell me, that dolphins rebel and choose to be gay? Yeah, thought so…

  • Misconception #3: Gay people will turn my children gay/bi/…

No. Seriously what kind of logic is that? Apparently our gay Spanish teacher did not manage to turn any of my classmates gay and an openly gay friend could not prevent being homosexual by being surrounded by straight couples in school, in the TV and basically everywhere. Shouldn’t we all be heterosexual when the only thing they show us are heterosexual couples or over-sexualised men and women who have lots of meaningless intercourse with the opposite sex? As you see, it did not work because that is simply NOT how sexuality actually works. Grow up and do your research.

  • Misconception #4: Being gay/bi/… is a new and modern lifestyle

And again – RESEARCH. Having a gay relationship was not only common in ancient Greece, but often even happily seen and recommended. I have also read of cultures that considered same-sex relationships as something sacred. So don’t try to tell me people only recently found out about those sexualities or identities, as transgender. All those interpretations have existed before, only no one put an actual name on them. Those feelings could only be vaguely described and not named. Today those sexualities and identities (of gender) have names and we can actively label ourselves IF we CHOOSE to (btw – watch “The Danish Girl”, such a good movie about a trangender man in the 1920s)

I do not want to aggressively change anyone’s minds. As an ally of the LGBTQ+ community I want to learn and educate other people, no matter if it’s about what’s fact and what’s fiction or what’s bi- and what’s pansexuality. I want to show people that even if they still don’t like the idea of anything else that is not heterosexuality, there are still ways to live without offending and insulting any of your fellows. There are ways to live in harmony, we only have to listen and learn.

If anybody can find someone to love them and to help them through this difficult thing that we call life, I support that in any shape or form.

Will Smith

Never stop learning

Let’s start right of: do you realize how much there is to learn? I mean we had at least 10-15 subjects in school, where we learned the very base. I mean, I can ask for a free room in a hotel in Spanish and I guess I know what the mitochondria or hypotenuse is, but there is sooooooo much more to all those subjects and other fields we never even discussed in school or don’t even know about in the first place.

For example I thought we learned a lot in school about writing and letter press in the antique and later on. Studying comparative literature now, I learned even more about it and most probably still don’t know everything about it and it really amazes me, but also makes me think about the topic knowledge and what or how much of it we pass on to future generations. I mean, there are things written in books that not enough people read that one day maybe be forgotten forever. If that is even possible?

Every time book burning or something alike comes up, as when the library of Alexandria burned, I get really upset. Not only because a book holds a lot of worth in my eyes, but also because back in the days a lot of documents and books were easily lost in a fire and isn’t it frustrating, imagining there could have been something written that could have changed how we look on certain things or probably there has been a book burnt that could have improved the way we live or our technology in general (at least made it improve faster). And then it makes me sad because I love books. To the present day I cannot bring myself to write into a book without it hurting my soul. Okaaaay, not that bad, I just cringe a whole lot.

Every book teaches you something, no matter if it’s the secret of maths or the wonderful and mystical world of Harry Potter. And let’s not forget about the boring books that teach us appreciating good novels, poetry and what not. So there never is a good enough reason to burn a book, unless you are in the wild and have to survive somehow and there is no other way to keep you warm. When you are not even going to use the fire you set to warm yourself up or cook food, you are only being unreasonable and barbaric. I really like to refer to what Tim Minchin said once:

Whether it’s the Quran or a Harry Potter, whether it’s sacred to someone or not – what sort of fucking idiot burns a book?

And he is right. You do not burn a book. I remember some people in my school doing this after graduating as a sort of ritual I guess and what I thought about was (and they actually made fun of me for that):

  • Why set a fire you are not going to use in any way – not even for marshmallows?
  • The only thing you give to nature by that is CO2, you know?
  • Oh, and by the way, you are burning the stuff that would have gotten rid of the CO2, which is kind of ironic…
  • For fudges sake, book burning has only been happening in places or times when humanity has been at its lowest. There has never been non-fascist, non-misogynist or in general good people who ordered a book burning. There never has and never will be either hopefully.

I did get off topic here didn’t I? Whatever, fact is we live in a time where knowledge is easily accessible, no matter if through books or the internet. We should educate ourselves as often and much as possible to create a better world and to pass on to our kids and grand-children. So my only advice for you this time comes from one of my favourite YouToubers, Connor Franta:

READ A BOOK!

Welcome to the 21. Century!

Hello there! Welcome to a world where the human race is somewhere in between being open and tolerant towards others and totally closed up and conservative. If you ask why, you live under a rock. Watch the news.

Here is a personal story that, yes, is not that important, thinking about the fact racism and homophobia still exists, but still shocked me somehow.

The other day I wanted to walk into the building I live in, when I spotted a neighbour I don’t really talk to, but still see every now and then. So I did want to hold the door open for him. I, a young lady, holding the door open for a young man. Didn’t bother me in any way, until he said “No, it is alright”. I thought I didn’t hear him correctly and insisted on him walking into the building. Afterwards he did say thank you, adding “Normally it’s the other way around, haha” and I responded “Well, we do also live in the 21. Century, so.” I should not have to add that this was the most awkward elevator ride I have ever experienced. Adding a tight-lipped smile to my comment I stayed silent for the whole ride. I was offended. He was offended. It was awkward.

For heavens and hells sake, why would anybody feel offended if somebody holds the door open for them? Did I somehow attacked your masculinity, young man? Do you feel sterilised because a lady held the door open for you? Well, then I have to tell you that I enjoyed destroying your conservative look on the world and society, because I WOULD DO IT AGAIN, MUAHAHAHAHA!!!

Okay, let’s get serious again.

I do know that it was common for a woman to walk behind men and to let them hold doors open for her, but didn’t we already grown as humans? Does society still think a woman is not capable to take care of anything? How do you expect the next generations to accept women in every job sector, as equal to men and as strong enough to make their own decisions, if we won’t accept a woman to hold the door open for a man when the situation is given?

I want to live in a world where a man holds the door open for me and vice-versa, not thinking what an awesome gentleman he is, but because he is a human being as much as I am and it is a form of politeness and respect. Yes, it is nice to get invited to dinner where you don’t have to pay, but I will never assume it (by the way: who invites mostly pays, unless stated or agreed otherwise). Yes, you should help someone, no matter what sex or gender, when they are having difficulties carrying heavy bags or something. And yes, even as a man you should offer your help to a man. I know the “Bro-Codex”, it is okay. Really, bro, really!

To any future “men-I-will-hold-the-door-open-for”: if you feel offended by a female that holds the door open for you, start looking for your confidence that has been buried, when society threw their standards on what “real men” have to be like on you. I feel sorry for you being raised in that way, just as many other men and women, but it is on you now to educate yourself and make a difference. I hope you make the right choices.

(Wow, that escalated quickly ^^)

Now let’s end poverty!

Well, well, well, isn’t that great? Marriages for everybody in every state. I’m not going to lie, I got tears in my eyes when I read the news. But let’s not talk about that.

While I enjoyed pictures of 80-something year olds finally getting married and lots of heart-warming proposals I couldn’t ignore the negative comments and outcomes of it. But before that, didn’t someone want to set himself on fire? …No? Alright.

I saw a lot of posts especially on Tumblr for LGBTQ+ people to be aware that now, that homosexual marriages are legal, lots of homophobes will attack them to show their anger. What began as an for me slightly offensive post made me realize towards the end that yes, there will most likely be more frequent attacks on homosexuals and it makes me sad. Seriously, most of them are already living in fear and now being extra careful because some people won’t control their completely conservative hate is totally ridiculous. It should be the government, the police sleeping with open eyes, not a scared gay 14 year old child.

Besides that we have those who scream for attention in times like these. “But what about the homeless? The poor ones??? HEALTH INSURANCE??!?!?” Damn it, can’t we appreciate a step forward for once without someone feeling left out? I get it, those are all problems governments, also that of the US, needs to take care of, but the American LGBTQ+ community can register a victory for once according to their rights and lives and I am pretty angry that so many people downgrade it by comparing it to e.g.: poverty. One step at a time; we can’t end world hunger in a day! What is a lot easier is giving every person their right to love and live the way they want without any fear because that is the basis for a happy life and at least a more realistic goal.

For now there is nothing more I want to add, let’s all appreciate for a moment that we are walking towards better and more open-minded times.