Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Tradition and Privilege

Tradition and privilege, privilege and tradition. Excuses, excuses, fucking excuses.

The other day, a friend of mine said that he was aware of having been privileged growing up, because he's male. He was aware of it. Presumably until he worked out he was gay, not that the privileges of being male and white stopped then, but the other one must have done.
We're all aware of each others' privilege and each others' lack of it. AT least I think we are, maybe I'm just too naive about that, or too ideological.

Then today, that one lone slap across the face that brings you to your metaphorical knees. That lunge. The card that comes addressed to a non-existent Mrs. His First Name, His Surname. Because God forbid that I should HAVE ANY FUCKING EXISTENCE AS A BEING OUTSIDE OF MY MARRIAGE.
Ask anyone that you know who still does this to women, ask them why they do it and they'll say 'tradition'. Right, tradition. Tradition is having mince pies for Christmas, or standing up for an older person on the bus, or seeing your mate on her birthday. Denying the existence of someone you know well enough to send a card to, isn't tradition it's simply an archaic practice designed to keep women firmly in their place, second-best to a man.

I have a friend, a much younger woman than me, who burns with the humiliation of this, burns. And she won't say anything for fear of offending the person or persons who do it.
When the FUCK did it become more important not to offend the bigots than to champion the rights of those who are actually being treated as though they had lower status? Seriously?

On a different other day, a different friend said to me that remembering to speak respectfully to women was a little bit stressful. I made light of this, since one would assume it would have to be humour in poor taste. But behind that is an attitude that 'yay, equal rights, so long as we don't have to put ourselves out at all, so long as we don't have to make any effort, and so long as even a single atom of our being doesn't leave its comfort zone.'

Well, guess what?
Firstly, I've personally, never asked anyone to do anything difficult, simply speak to me respectfully, without implying that women are of a lower status than men. Not too hard you'd think.
Secondly, if it were hard, well, frankly, it should be, it isn't, but it should be, because equal rights are insanely important, and we should have to think about them every time we do something to promote them.
And thirdly, in the name of tradition, wtf? That woman who denied my existence, couldn't even claim that pathetic excuse, because she's been in a same sex relationship for donkeys' years.
So yes, WTF?????

I am SO pissed off and SO depressed about this.


Sleepy said...

Was it me?

Schneewittchen said...


Très amusant.

In the unlikely event that you had some kind of stoned brain spaz-out where you could only remember Kev's name whilst writing the cards, AND you'd had the foresight to duct-tape the Tame Pharmacist to her chair so that she couldn't stop the madness, I wouldn't blog about it, I'd give you direct gbh of the earhole.

This one lives in Spain, otherwise Kev would have been on the doorstep with a baseball bat last night. He doesn't take too kindly to anyone on the spiral arm of his family thinking he might marry someone who didn't have their own identity. (Not his exact words, but roughly paraphrased).

Sleepy said...

I'd been doing all the 'Foreign' cards in one hit and there are older relatives in Ireland who DO expect their cards addressed that way.
I thought I HAD had the stoned brain spaz-out but couldn't be sure!

My stomach did turn....

Schneewittchen said...

Well, since we don't even have the same surname, we must have a one third chance of it coming addressed correctly.
Of course, on that basis, the interesting one could be the Doc/Rev's card.

Sleepy said...

You'll have to ask them! Can't for the life of me remember what I did there....
Oh Christ!
Stomach flipped again..