Intro to Women's Studies 2010

etsu: 2011-2014

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Fish out of Water

Today in class we were watching a documentary called Fish out of Water. In the documentary, it talked about the fact that there is a religious aspect to whether agree or disagree with homosexuality. There were certain people interviewed who thought that gay marriage was a sin and shouldn’t be allowed. The thing is, we all sin and make mistakes. The fact that the bible does not actually say anywhere that gay marriage and gay relationships should be banned is something that people need to become aware of. Too many people are focused on “pleasing God” and looking good to other people to stop and realize that the actions of others have nothing to do with them. One of my favorite quotes is by Anne Hathaway, “Love is a human experience, not a political statement.” Who are we to justify what is right and wrong? Why should we have any say in what others think, feel, or do? Gay marriage isn’t harming anyone. People are expressing love in the way they know best. By allowing people to be themselves, we allow our society to be open-minded. It’s something worth considering when you look at personal relationships between two different humans.


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Mommy Wars

Recently I was looking back on some of the articles posted for class, and I reread one titled “Mommy Wars”. This article explain the differences between stay-at-home moms and working moms. This article is not picking a side and saying that one is better than the other, it is simply discussing the fact that there is a huge argument surrounding moms to choices to work or stay at home. People say working moms miss their whole kids lives and abandon them, and then they turn around and say that stay-at-home moms have no dreams and are “taking us back to the 1950’s”. One is not better than the other, and we should stop trying p prove it either way.

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Too Poor to Parent

In the article we were assigned to read for week fourteen titled “Too Poor to Parent” really stuck with me. It talks about how black mothers are having their children taken away and being called guilty for the reasons. Poverty is still very real today. Many women are raising one or more children on their own and simply do not have the money. Also, some do not have the time to get multiple jobs in order to earn the money needed to survive. The story of Lisa in the article mentioned above was heartbreaking. She is a poor, black woman who was raising two young children on her own. She had contacted her landlord multiple times concerning a sewage problem but had gotten no calls returned and nothing done about the problem. She had done all she could do so she called social services to get them to do something about the landlord. When a social worker arrived, she examined the apartment to find no working lights and ruined food in the refrigerator. Lisa tried to explain that she hadn’t had the money to pay her electricity bill that month, but would have the money in a couple of weeks. The social worker promised Lisa that she would get her and her children to a shelter, but instead took her children away from her, placing them in foster care. Today’s society accuses the mothers of being bad mothers and incapable caregivers, saying that they failed to give their children enough food and proper care, but in all reality, most of these wrongly accused women were working their hardest to give their kids everything they needed. Some just truly could not. I understand that some people need help with caring for their children, but I do not believe that these women should be ridiculed and judged for something they truly have no control over. They should simply be helped by being put into a shelter or something. Also, statistics show that most foster children come from poor, single, black mothered homes than wealthy, white homes. Society wrongly judges these poor, black women who work very hard and puts all of the blame on them. We need to reach out and help them.

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The Invisible War

Watching the movie The Invisible War opened my eyes up to what is actually happening to so many women in our military. I did not realize the atrocities that go on behind closed doors to those that I would consider our nation’s heroes. Women and men both join the service and risk their lives for their loved ones to live with freedom. When it came to the military, I had always thought that women were respected as men were since they were there for the same reasons. Knowing that the percent of incidences of rape in the military is so much higher than in our nation makes me sick. Women in the service should not have to constantly fear the people around them who they are supposed to trust the most when they are trying to protect and serve our country. The fact that this continues to happen with little restriction and penalty is mind boggling to me. This film has definitely reshaped my thinking on women joining. I hope that one day women can serve without fear.

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Women in the Military

Most of my family has been in the military at some point in their lives, but I knew that the military was not the place for me.  My dad constantly pushed me to consider the possibility of joining.  After watching The Invisible War, I feel like I made the right decision for me.  I completely respect everyone in the military, but I know that the military has an image to preserve.  They will cover up serious issues just to avoid the negative criticism.  Women are raped daily in every branch of the military and, most of the time, nothing is done about it.  Women are even often afraid to report that the problem has occurred because they tend to not be taken seriously.  In my opinion, more needs to be done to help console this recurring problem of violence against women.  Women deserve the same respect as men.

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Boss or B*tch?

In class, a few meetings ago, we discussed how there are a double standard regarding how men and women act. Nicki Minaj actually said is best in an interview she had with MTV in 2010, Minaj states

“When I am assertive, I’m a bitch. When a man is assertive, he’s a boss. He bossed up. No negative connotation behind ’bossed up.’ But lots of negative connotation behind being a bitch. Donald Trump can say, ’You’re fired.’ Let Martha Stewart run her company the same way and be the same way. [People will say] ’F—ing old evil bitch!’ But Donald Trump, he gets to hang out with young bitches and have 50 different wives and just be cool. ’Oh, Donald, we love you, Donald Trump!’”.

That has always stuck with me, because Minaj brings that topic up in many of her interviews. Why has society placed so much negativity directed towards women when they are being assertive? I myself am guilty of this when i was working for my previous employer. I was not taught to look at women in a different manner, and yet i am guilty nevertheless. Minaj also states

“When you’re a girl, you have to be everything. You have to be dope at what you do but you have to be super sweet and you have to be sexy and you have to be this, you have to be that, and you have to be nice,” she says. “It’s like, ’I can’t be all those things at once. I’m a human being.’

just because societies current paradigm is that women can’t be assertive without being a “bitch” doesn’t mean that society can’t go through a paradigm shift towards true equality.

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Women in the military

I had always heard about women being sexually abused in the military but I never realized just how often it happened and how much it affects the women that it happens to. The film we watched in class opened my eyes a lot to this and I realize now that I am glad I never joined the military and I never want to. I don’t even want my kids to or anyone close to me. Not only are women victims of sexual abuse in the military, but men are as well. The long term affect it has on these individuals is life changing and it makes future relationships hard because they can’t really trust people. It changes how they feel about themselves in a way that they don’t feel worthy or even have the want to live sometimes. I hope for the future that things change so that the brave individuals who enter the military don’t have to worry about someone in their own group or “family” sexually abusing them.