I am so angry. I read something today that has stuck with me and I can’t shake my disgust, my anger, and my sadness.
Are you familiar with the blog, 38 Pitches? I wasn’t until today. It is the official blog of Curt Schilling, a pro baseball player. He is also the father of a daughter, an athlete, who was recently accepted to college. He was proud and tweeted as much. What followed after some typical ribbing rendered me speechless.
The response? Vile. Hideous. Surprising to him but unfortunately not to many women.
Mr. Schilling was besieged with obscene, violent, and threatening tweets from men who described the violent sexual acts they were going to do to his daughter. The tweets were grisly, explicit, and far too vicious for this blog. But I do encourage you to visit Curt Schilling's blog and read the whole story.
The tweets came from some young men who are clearly threatened by young women with accomplishments, girls who are talented in ways maybe they aren’t. In other words, girls and women with power or with the potential for power. And it is clear, WHEN WOMEN HAVE POWER MEN LIKE THESE FEEL THREATENED. And when these men feel threatened they react in the only way they can regain that power—through violence, rape, physical assault, even of the virtual variety.
Do you know why I’m so pissed? Because it’s crap. It’s a crappy reason and I’m sick of it. Boo Hoo, I feel emasculated by strong women.
I’m sick of girls and women being judged by their sexuality. I’m tired of hearing fathers tell their sons not to throw like a girl. I'm over women feeling as if we can't be strong for fear of being called a bitch. Why is this so freaking hard? Why in 2015, almost 100 years since women received the right to vote, do we still need to have this conversation?????
Where are our strong fathers teaching their sons, "WE VALUE WOMEN!” Men who extol the value of women in the workplace, in the home, at school, wherever. It has to come from the fathers and big brothers! It must be a MEN’S issue and not a women’s issue. Where are the dads telling little boys that they don’t get to step in front of girls while waiting for the slide, ones who explain to their sons that they are changing the channel because that show does not portray women in a positive manner. Where are the dads who are taking their sons to task for talking about women as “whores” or other derogatory names?
And moms, let’s get in on this too. Let’s stop buying dolls who look like hookers, stop allowing Bratz, Monster Highs, and the like in our toy rooms. Let’s get on Disney to STOP SEXING UP THE PRINCESSES. Why are we still telling girls to stop being bossy instead of praising them for being confident in their abilities? And why aren’t more moms encouraging their daughters to play with smart toys that encourage thinking, exploring, and discovery instead of dumb toys that teach them how to match their shoes to their dress? Why aren’t moms reminding their daughters that, “Whether or not boys like you is not an accurate measure of your worth and that any boy who doesn’t value women doesn’t value you.”
But you know what? It doesn’t mean crap if we aren’t living those values. Are we? Do we demonstrate daily that we are the people we want our children to be? Are we strong? Are we confident? Do we walk the walk? Well, if we aren’t we are wrong and we need to get it together because this isn’t going to get better if we don’t live our lives authentically, demonstrating the gender values we SAY we want in the world.
I can go on and on. I wish I could shout it from the rooftops. I wish I had a large outlet in which to reach millions of people and hope that these events open up discussions with teenagers and their parents, parents with other parents, whatever. Why isn’t this being broadcast on the news? Why aren’t we hearing this on social media outlets? Why aren't the colleges these men attend talking about it (Hi Montclair Statue University and Brookdale Community College to name two)? Why aren't the police involved for the making of terroristic threats?
WHERE IS EVERYBODY??
All I have is a little craft and DIY blog on which to post my thoughts. I also have my own actions to reflect upon to make sure that every single day I am on this earth I am a demonstration of the person I hope my daughters will be. Will I be perfect? Heck no. But my daughters and their future world need Jim and I to try.
I expect backlash from this post. I'm being judgy. Who am I to tell anyone how to raise their kids. I'm making a big deal about this. Whatever. I don't care. Say what you will.