It’s been a while since I’ve graced you all with three things on a Thursday. I know you’re feeling the pain of that specific abandonment. (Not as much as you feel the pain of my now defunct “Shoesday” series, though, I’m sure…)
Today is a bittersweet day, and I’m feeling a wee bit political, so welcome to the “Oh My God, We’re All Going to Die” (political commentary) edition of Three Things Thursday.
- Today is the last full day that Barack Obama will be president. I have very much enjoyed having him as my president. I didn’t always agree with everything he did, but overall, his policies matched my beliefs. We’ve come a long way in eight years. Healthcare reform (although it was gutted by the GOP and wasn’t as good as it could be), marriage rights, increased funding to prevent violence against women, and on and on… Today, I read an article about all the things that our incoming PEOTUS has planned. Beyond gutting funding for arts and humanities, he is also planning on gutting funding for 25 DOJ programs that administer grants to prevent violence against women. Don’t even get me started on Planned Parenthood. (Did you know we’re at a 30 year low rate for unplanned pregnancy? Do you know what makes preventing unplanned pregnancy possible? Places like Planned Parenthood. Do you know what else goes down when unplanned pregnancies go down? Abortion rates! So, if you really are pro-life, why wouldn’t you support access to birth control and health care? I DO NOT UNDERSTAND!)
- Intersectional feminism shouldn’t be that hard for white women to grasp. I’ve given up on arguing with cis/het/white men on the internet (hahahahaha…we’ll see how long that lasts), and I know some amazingly feminist men who don’t seem to believe their masculinity is diminished by a woman’s strength. One of the most disturbing conversational trends I’ve seen in the past few days, though, is the number of white women who call themselves feminists but don’t understand why they (cis/het/white) also have more privilege than WOC and those who are LGBTQ. The number of arguments I’ve seen that start with “identifying differences is divisive/let’s not talk about race or color or orientation/we’re all women together” is so incredibly tone deaf. For all that we as women lack the male privilege, those of us who are white (and cis/het) do not get to diminish the voices of those who have to work even harder than we do to achieve the same things. That whole $0.77 on the dollar that is publicized as the income inequality? That’s only white women. There is nothing wrong with shutting up to hear others’ experiences and interpretations of the world. The more I learn about someone else’s struggles, the more I can rebuild my narrative to include everyone and fight for everyone. Sometimes that means I have to take a backseat, and you know what? That’s okay. Shutting up to let someone else talk is not the same as being silenced. We tell that to men who talk over us – let’s make sure we’re not talking over anyone else.
- Ugh. You guys. The cabinet nominees. I’ve never paid too much attention to confirmation hearings before because I’ve generally done some reading about the candidates, either agreed or disagreed with their nominations, and sent off a quick email to the appropriate parties regarding my opinions. This is the first time I’ve actively watched multiple hearings. Every time I think there can’t be a more ill-prepared and vastly unqualified candidate, I am surprised. Current record holder for me: Betsy DeVos. DUDES! If confirmed, she is going to gut our public education system. She is not interested in making public education better. She doesn’t care about making sure that students with disabilities receive quality education. She wants federal funds to go to unregulated charter schools. She knows nothing about education. Or running large financial systems. Or anything useful at all as far as I can tell. (She does, however, know that there are bears in Wyoming and those bears are apparently a larger threat to our school children than guns. The facts do not support that, but we are moving away from things likes “facts” and “information” and “knowledge” in our educational systems.) As someone who is attending kindergarten open house next week (which is full of crazy anyway), this is disheartening. I can’t afford private school (unlike Ms. DeVos) for my kid and can’t home school (because I don’t hate myself or my child and would like to keep it that way), so I need a good public school system with good teachers.
I’m trying hard to stay positive. I don’t have money to donate right now, but you can bet your ass that once I’m reemployed, I’ll be sending my $$ to all the places that are going to need it most.
Provided I can breathe and walk without trying to hack up a lung, I’ll be marching on Saturday.
I will continue to support my congress people in their fight for ALL American people.