Have you ever been offended by something so much that you froze, scared of speaking out, of losing your words, or bursting into tears?
We all have.
But have you ever felt so much anger that even days later, you’re still thinking about the cause so much that you know you have to speak up?
That’s why I’m here.
Recently, the class watched Virgin’s Suite & Innocent film, made in 2002 – please watch it so you know where I’m coming from for the rest of this SCAB:
The reason I’m angry is not only because my fellow students showed it in class, but that about 90% of the class laughed at it.
And what makes me even angrier, is that more than half of our class is made up of young women, including myself.
I was fuming.
But the real reason I was fuming was that no one opened their mouth to say it was wrong. And it was.
And you know why?
But not fear of standing up for myself.
Fear of being called “too sensitive” or told that “it’s just a bit of fun”.
Because it’s fucking not.
With all the progress we’re making on equality and diversity, we’ve still got a fucking long way to go.
And that’s my real problem.
In a class with a majority of women, not one of us had the courage to stand up and speak out on this bullshit.
And I’m raising this issue behind my screen, isn’t that saying something?
Some of us did try to start a debate but it was so intimidating and embarrassing that we all chickened out and moved on.
But not all of us did really.
A classmate – female classmate to be precise – felt the need to send us all a message saying we should reflect upon how we would have felt if this short film/commercial/piece-of-absolute-bollocks (I’ll quote her now) “were to demean against homosexuals, people of colour or any other marginalised group instead of women.”
And you know what? Only seven people reacted to this message. I should say, only seven women reacted.
What I’m trying to say here is that in a world where all our voices are being shut down by massive media, we need to be louder.
That fear of being called “too sensitive” or “too angry” should not mold the way we think anymore.
Some battles have been won, but the war is definitely not.
If we want real progress we all need to stand up and have a voice.
And if it needs to be behind a screen, so be it.
Because if in a room where women are in majority we don’t, we’re perpetuating this issue.
Don’t ever chicken out of standing up for what you think matters.
Because I won’t.
PS: If you believe in gender equality but feel offended by this SCAB and dare to call me an “angry feminist”, I’d suggest you reflect upon yourself and have a look at what my flatmate sent me yesterday. You’ve got some serious demons to fight.