Macklemore and Makeup. And oh yeah.. Facebook, too.

Do we really know what a feminist is? We say people do, but more and more (thanks to this wonderful call the internets) I run into people who actually have no god damn clue. I apologize for the swearing, but actually I do not apologize. Because ignorance is one of my biggest pet peeves. Ignorance yells loud while true knowledge whispers. (So, internet, here’s a tip. If you’re yelling, you’re probably not the genius.)

I have a Facebook (plot twist!). And on that Facebook I have liked the page “Women’s Rights News”. Not as news-y as I might have liked, but they have cool pictures. Today, just minutes ago in fact, I came across a Macklemore quote on makeup that I really liked… until I looked over into the comments. Let me show you what I mean.

Macklemore

(click the picture to read the comments. It should work. And if it doesn’t… *shakes fist* Technology!)

Obviously, the first thing you noticed was my fabulous name-scribbling-out skills and the fact that I totally possess them. The second thing is that the hufflepuff picture is me commenting in what might be considered a semi-upset manner. But I agree with what I said to Christina. She has no idea what she’s talking about. Feminism, as I have said before, is not PRO WOMEN YEAH! It’s equality. It’s being valued in society and individually equally. It’s respect. That does not mean that we shun the fantastic and lovely Macklemore, who is expressing a pro-woman opinion (if you hadn’t noticed. Because that escaped Christina’s notice.)

I didn’t even see all of the other comments below Christina’s until I had already posted the comment. Can I just ask this here? What the hell is up with all this fuck Macklemore nonsense?? Do these women not know about the makeup industry and how the media portrays women as perfect and unattainably beautiful and photoshopped thin, and all the issues about self-image and body issues and this obsession with physical perfection?

And in case you other women commenting on this picture didn’t notice, Macklemore is not trying to take away your makeup. This quote actually has nothing to do with you, surprisingly, since the world obviously revolves around you.

No one is saying that makeup is bad (Well, perhaps me. A little. But it’s all so expensive and time-consuming and complicated!). But we are saying that women who do not want to wear makeup, who do not want to mess with the smoke and mirrors, who do not want to jump through the hoops of foundation, concealer, highlighter, setting powder, eyeliner, eye shadow, false eyelashes, mascara, lip liner, lipstick, lip gloss, blush, bronzer…. (*gasp* I’m out of breath. And out of products to name, though I’m sure there’s more), that those who don’t want to do that shouldn’t be penalized, punished, devalued, shunned, made fun of, or laughed at. That a woman should be seen as just as beautiful without all of those hoops as with them. And why is that a bad thing???

Because women do devalue themselves when they don’t wear makeup. And why is that fair? Why is that okay? Why, when we don’t feel like doing that entire Hairspray-level song and dance do we say to ourselves and to others “Ugh, I look disgusting today.” Or I’m such a slob. Or I’m gross. Or etcetera etcetera. That’s not okay to say. That’s not okay to feel. We should feel good about ourselves and value our natural beauty, because you are beautiful. You are gorgeous. Whether you have on ten tons of makeup or you’ve just gotten out of the shower. You are absolutely stunning no matter what anyone says. We should be proud of ourselves, and that is what Macklemore is trying to say.

So, basically what I am trying to say, is fuck Facebook. People are stupid. Makeup shouldn’t be put on a pedestal. The media is lame. Macklemore is right (despite Christina’s whining that he has a penis rather than a vagina. We’re all the same, Christina. One day, hopefully, you’ll see it). And you are beautiful.

 

Six Ways to Solve Sagging Breasts

1. Pushup Bras. We made those things for a reason.

2. Value yourself for who you are rather than by the state of your breasts.

3. Change society’s attitude towards beauty

4. Reject the media’s obsession towards breasts and sex.

5. Embrace nature. Accept gravity. It’s not going to go away, so we might as well try to play along.

6. Duct tape.

But seriously, why are we so obsessed with breasts in this culture? Why? Let’s be honest, they’re just sacks of fat. They are there to feed your child. They’re basically utters on a cow. (By the way, breast milk butter is a thing that exists in the world. I mean, it’s one thing I suppose if its your own milk, but please don’t start selling that shit. That’s just weird.)

My breasts don’t feel all that sexy to me. In fact, they’re kind of a hindrance (Sorry, girls). They obstruct my view, and make me top-heavy. I can’t chest bump. I can’t jump, run, climb stairs, or play hopscotch without a bra (Nobody wants to be  hit in the face with their own breasts). They make me feel awkward because of their excellent crumb-catching capabilities. They’re just always in the way. Sometimes I just want to sling them over my shoulder or detach them just for a moment so I can tie my freaking shoes!

And why do we think that bigger is better? I mean, I suppose I can see the attraction, but I think we’re starting to take it way too far. (Or, do I see the attraction because society has conditioned me to see the attraction/think bigger is better?)

In 2011, breast augmentation was the second most popular cosmetic surgery in the U.S. (right under Liposuction) with 316,848 cases. And then fifth most popular was a breast lift with 127,054 cases.

I am so skeptical about whether bigger is better.


big breastsbiggest breast implantbiggest breasts

Now really, is that attractive? Nothing against these women, I’m sure they’re wonderful people. But…. it just looks so uncomfortable. And that last girl in the bright pink top, her breasts were made so big by some sort of hollow coil inside of her breasts that is constantly expanding. The coil-thing expands, and it forces the breasts to fill with fluids, and the coil expands, the skin stretches, and the breasts fill with fluid, until you take the coil out. That sounds horrible.

Seriously, how the hell do they tie their shoes??

And when these women go out, people flock to them. They want their picture taken with these women, or rather, with their breasts. See, unlike normal celebrities where people want a picture with George Clooney or Katy Perry, people don’t know who these women are, nor do they really care. It’s the breasts. They get the women attention, but I don’t really think that sort of attention is flattering.

Could this be one of those urban legends, like Valentines Day was created by Hallmark, or Halloween was cooked up by the candy companies. This social ideal, this standard of beauty–big breasts–was made up by plastic surgeons in order to generate business?? I feel like it’s a perfectly valid conspiracy theory.

Why I don’t like One Direction’s “What Makes You Beautiful,” a feminist perspective.

The other day my sister asked me why I felt the need to break my arm lunging to change the radio station when What Makes You Beautiful came on. I couldn’t quite put my finger on why. It’s wasn’t just because they were a boy band, or because I had already heard the song enough times to fill a lifetime, or because I’m just not into this particular type of music, but something else. I figured out why. It’s the lyrics.

I’m only going to put in about half of the song. I think that’ll be enough. The song is about this guy singing to this girl about how beautiful she is.

You’re insecure
Don’t know what for
You’re turning heads when you walk through the door
Don’t need make up
To cover up
Being the way that you are is enough

Everyone else in the room can see it
Everyone else but you

Let’s start here, focusing on the first few lines. You’re insecure/Don’t know what for. I do. She’s insecure because she’s been bombarded with media and images of beautiful, perfect, unattainable women; women from television shows and movies and billboards and magazines, and she feels like she doesn’t compare. She can’t compare. She’s in high school (presumably). Those years can be the shittiest in life. Her breasts aren’t big enough, her lips are plump enough, her eyebrows aren’t waxed enough, her butt is too small or too big. When she looks in the mirror she doesn’t see the beautiful young lady she is, she sees the love handles on her hips, and the gap in her teeth, and her eyes are too far apart, and her scrawny legs. She doesn’t see the girl you see, because women aren’t supposed to. To know you are beautiful is to be full of yourself, or too confident, stuck up, conceited.

But also, perhaps she is insecure not about her beauty, or her weight, but we can conceive that perhaps she feels inadequate for other reasons, such as she doesn’t have as many friends as she would like, she doesn’t feel smart enough, she hasn’t been to a party, she secretly doesn’t want to drive, or rebel, like all of her other friends do and so in that way she feels like she is an outsider, etc. There are other reasons to be insecure besides beauty.

[Chorus]

Baby you light up my world like nobody else
The way that you flip your hair gets me overwhelmed
But when you smile at the ground it aint hard to tell
You don’t know
Oh Oh
You don’t know you’re beautiful

Let’s be honest here, she could be faking that hair flip and coy glance downwards. Whoever this little girl out there is, no offense to you, but it is a possibility.

If only you saw what I can see
You’ll understand why I want you so desperately
Right now I’m looking at you and I can’t believe
You don’t know
Oh oh
You don’t know you’re beautiful
Oh oh
That what makes you beautiful

But wait, a minute ago you were saying how she shouldn’t be insecure, but it is that insecurity that you like? That’s what makes her beautiful? That is exactly what I just said up above in my very first paragraph. Girls aren’t supposed to be confident. They’re not supposed to know they’re beautiful. We like them insecure. We like them anxious. It makes girls “cute” and “delicate” or some other bullshit like that.

So c-come on
You got it wrong
To prove I’m right I put it in a so-o-ong
I don’t know why
You’re being shy
And turn away when I look into your eyes

Everyone else in the room can see it
Everyone else but you

Well, I just told you why. Or maybe she’s just shy. Maybe she likes you and is embarrassed. Maybe she grew up in a family that never taught her the skills to look people dead in the eye when they talk.

There’s basically no new lyrics after this point in the song. It just repeats itself a few times before ultimately coming to a final and complete end.

I just don’t really understand the song. Yeah, boy meets girl, boy likes girl, girl is beautiful, boy sings about girl…. but then he sings about her beauty, she doesn’t realize her own beauty, that’s why he likes her, and then he wants her to own her beauty? The logic doesn’t quite follow.

Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Cannibalism, and Gender

Ever see those Cinnamon Toast commercials? They’re weird, right? Slightly disturbing, cute, and funny all at the same time. Those crazy squares are cannibalistic, always eating each other, sometimes even themselves!

They work together to try and hunt down their own species and reap the rewards of the cinnamon and sugar, and then are betrayed by the very same squares, or they fall into a messy trap. Survival of the fittest in pursuit of deliciousness. And rightly so. Can you blame them?

Cinnamon Toast Crunch

Cinnamon Toast Crunch 4

But something caught my attention the other day. The first two words of the commercial said “Hey, Ladies.” and then the last words, the sort of tagline was “Everybody craves those crazy squares.” Now, this may just be the English major in me (we like to pick things apart and look at the details) but I couldn’t help but think of those two opening words.

Cinnamon Toast Crunch 1

Maybe the commercial is directed towards us ladies because women’s tongues are different then men’s and are more inclined to sweets.

Or maybe its because women on their period crave sweets. Or it’s the hormones, you know?

I kid, of course.

Cinnamon Toast Crunch 2

But then again, it’s interesting how they target the cereal towards women, but have that cereal then be cannibalistic and treacherous.

Hm…

But then again, I suppose the Toasty squares aren’t actually female. They’re more gender neutral, which, because they don’t have long eyelashes and luscious pink lips, mean they look male. That could possibly make up for it, right? They only said ladies, but then the actual members look male. That gets them off the hook.

No, wrong again. Because feminism isn’t just interested in women, we’re interested in masculinity and men, too. So, it also catches my attention that the cannibalistic, self-destructive, shifty, backstabbing Squares are male-esque characters.

But what are you going to do? Damned if you do and damned if you don’t. Criticized with women and men. Well, that’s just how things are, I suppose. The problem is this isn’t like an intentional attack on gender, it’s just there. We don’t think about it. It’s ingrained in our skin and it comes out in our media in things as small and insignificant as cereal commercials.

Morgan Freeman’s take on the Conneticut Shooting, Shrimp Tacos, and Fox News

“You want to know why. This may sound cynical, but here’s why.

It’s because of the way the media reports it. Flip on the news and watch how we treat the Batman theater shooter and the Oregon mall shooter like celebrities. Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris are household names, but do you know the name of a single *victim* of Columbine? Disturbed people who would otherwise just off themselves in their basements see the news and want to top it by doing something worse, and going out in a memorable way. Why a grade school? Why children? Because he’ll be remembered as a horrible monster, instead of a sad nobody.

CNN’s article says that if the body count “holds up”, this will rank as the second deadliest shooting behind Virginia Tech, as if statistics somehow make one shooting worse than another. Then they post a video interview of third-graders for all the details of what they saw and heard while the shootings were happening. Fox News has plastered the killer’s face on all their reports for hours. Any articles or news stories yet that focus on the victims and ignore the killer’s identity? None that I’ve seen yet. Because they don’t sell. So congratulations, sensationalist media, you’ve just lit the fire for someone to top this and knock off a day care center or a maternity ward next.

You can help by forgetting you ever read this man’s name, and remembering the name of at least one victim. You can help by donating to mental health research instead of pointing to gun control as the problem. You can help by turning off the news.”

And he’s right. On so the day of the shooting, plus the day after, so many of my friends of Facebook lamented the horrible tragedy that is this devastating shooting, but then they also pointed fingers towards gun control. Gun control is not the problem here. People who want guns will get guns, whether or not it is illegal. The problem here is how we are treating these tragedies. With fame and almost glory. (Not the kind of glory as we would like, but they’re infamous monsters whose names will be remembered, maybe forever.)

And Fox News didn’t even get it right. Once they heard a name that could possibly be the shooter, they went online and got a profile picture off of Facebook and spread it all across the news. It was this guy, Ryan Lanza:

Ryan Lanza

But he didn’t do it. He wasn’t even close. It was this guy’s brother who was the suspect, but this is not the right Ryan Lanza, just a guy with the same name.

We are spending too much time pointing fingers: it’s society’s fault, it’s the violent media’s fault, it’s violent video games... Pointing fingers doesn’t help anybody. We need to start trying to increase the good, try to increase understanding, awareness, and help.

We need to stop listening to the news. Especially Fox News. Seriously, it’s worthless. It’s become sensationalist and dumbed down. They don’t tell you what’s happening on in the world. They laugh and make jokes and tell you how to make Cheesy Potatoes or Shrimp Salsa Tacos. Fox wants to entertain you, not inform you. A recent study was done and showed that the viewership of Fox News had an average IQ ten points below the national average.

And they went online and plastered an innocent man’s face all over the nation as being a killer, apparently without any sort of research or fact checking.

Let’s substitute human reason for shrimp tacos and Facebook slaughters.

Let’s try to build understanding of the world around us.

Let’s try to support research rather than point fingers and glorify killers.

But let’s now have a moment of silence for all of those who died needlessly, whose names we don’t remember, whose faces we never knew.

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And then let’s try and love one another rather than fester and hate.
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What do Lady Gaga and the Hunger Games have in Common?

What do Lady Gaga and the Hunger Games star Jennifer Lawrence have in common? Good question. They’ve both been in the news, not for what they do, but for how much they weigh. Oh unknowable universe, what will you come up with next?Lady Gaga gains weight

In case you haven’t heard, and this news made headlines by the way, Lady Gaga has gained weight. Yes, that news made headlines.
She’s gained about thirty pounds, and she has no intention of losing the weight. [Fuck yeah.] She’s going to dress the same and do all the crazy weird meat-related things she’s always done, but just going to do it with a different figure. And, depressingly unsurprising, she has been criticized for gaining a few extra pounds, but in the way of Lady Gaga, she doesn’t give a shit. Her words: “I don’t feel bad about it.”

And she shouldn’t.

In case you didn’t know, Lady Gaga was once a child. A very voluptuous Italian child. She used to make herself throw up because she thought she was ugly because she wasn’t breath-thin. Now, I think she intentionally gained weight (at least in part. I read in an interview that she talked to her
 image consultant or some other big wig about discussing her look change) to give girls a role model to look up to that wasn’t as thin as the legs of a giraffe [not that Lady Gaga is necessarily the best role model for young girls, but inevitably she is so let’s look on the bright side]. Which is awesome. How many stars out there diet and exercise and diet and exercise to look thin and beautiful? A whole damn lot. Thank god someone is taking a stand. It’s a damn brave thing to do, because people are going to be spitting fire. Actually, they are already.

On a similar note, Jennifer Lawrence is refusing to diet for her roll of Katniss. Some critics have said that she should be a lot skinnier if she’s supposed to be a starving girl. This follows that standard in Hollywood that people need to suffer and change their appearance for a roll. Like Natalie Portman, who was praised for dropping 20 or so pounds for her movie The Black Swan; or Danny Devito who gained 60 lbs for a roll. Or Rene Zellweger who had to gain weight for Bridget Jones Diary, and then had to loose it for other roles.

Lawrence said that she was very aware of how she looked for Katniss, and she was focusing on being fit and healthy rather than skinny Jennifer Lawrenceand malnourished. I’ve been on a few online forums looking at this stuff, and what I keep running into is that people think she’s crazy beautiful, which she is. But I kept finding comments somewhere along the lines of “She’s really hot, so it’s okay she’s not super skinny” over and over again, and it pissed me off. There are a whole lot of assumptions to be made based on that one comment. It’s okay not to be skinny if you’re beautiful; or she’s beautiful despite the fact she’s not underweight; or maybe if she hadn’t been crazy beautiful, their comment would change to Yeah, she should have been skinnier if she was a starving girl.

(By the way, Katniss was not a starving girl, despite living in a starving town. In the books, Katniss was a serious hunter. Her family ate better than most of the families in District 7 because she was always bringing home food for them. She wasn’t starving, she shouldn’t be thin, people don’t know what they’re talking about. How in the world could she have won The Hunger Games if she was thin, frail, and weak?)

But both these stories about Lady Gaga and Jennifer Lawrence… are they really news worthy? Apparently so, because they are. Because people search these kind of things out and read about it. Why does this matter so much? I think it’s sad that there are news articles about these women’s weight. Choosing not to diet is newsworthy. Gaining a little weight makes headlines. Is this or is this not kind of fucked up? I’m not talking about journalists and news sites doing a really bang up job of bringing the public important news; it’s this standard of beauty, this pressure on women, to be beautiful and thin in the media. I always hear about the pressure the media puts on women… it’s right here! We’re still doing it.

We hear about Lady Gaga gaining weight, and not about some one like let’s say Adele, because Lady Gaga is a sex symbol, and her gaining this weight is contrary to the popular public belief of what beauty and sex is.

We hear about Jennifer refusing to diet because she’s a famous woman and famous women have a long line of history of being thin and
gorgeous; of being anorexic and bulimic; of popping pills and getting plastic surgery done to be plump and symmetrical; of being the most beautiful people on earth. And hearing a celebrity is on a diet is not something that the public shakes their head at and says “She’s already beautiful. She should just love herself for who she is.” No, we instead go “Yeah, good for her, losing some weight,” or “What diet did she use? I want to try it too.”

These famous people, the people flooding the media, are invariably and unfortunately the people that we as a whole try to model ourselves against (probably more so children and teens than anyone else). The more people we have coming out and not only saying love yourself for who you are, but actually doing that, the better off we’ll be I think. That message will start to seep into the younger generations. They’ll take it seriously because a celebrity said it instead of their moms.

Hm, I wonder if I’ve gotten a smidgen off point here? Oh well. Let’s bring it back. Anyone who thinks it is their business to tell these women how they should and should not look can go fuck themselves. There, that seemed to wrap it up nicely.