Molly Weasley is a feminist

Molly WeasleyMolly Weasley is in fact a feminist. Some people think that she isn’t a feminist because she’s so grounded in domesticity, but her motherhood does not negate her feminism.

Some people have argued that the final fight scene between Molly Weasley and Bellatrix Lestrange is a symbolic fight between motherhood/domesticity and feminism. They say that motherhood is chocked full of characteristics that feminists despise. They say that J.K. Rowling wrote from a Christian perspective to show the value of true womanhood or some other bull like that.

It’s not true, because feminists don’t hate motherhood. Feminism is about equality between the sexes. Giving women every opportunity that a man has, and every advantage, and every right to do so. A woman should be able to do whatever she wants with her life, and should be able to accomplish that goal if she works hard and is good at that particular thing. She shouldn’t be held back just because she has ovaries. This encompasses everything from a Fortune 500 CEO to a stay at home mom. To each her own.

Not my daughter, you bitch!

Not my daughter, you bitch!

The very idea that feminists could somehow despise motherhood is beyond. That’s just blatant anti-feminist propaganda  Feminists clearly want us all to stop be loving, nurturing, and warm. Of course those evil feminists want all women to be barren so they don’t have to be afflicted with the sexist burden of children.
Molly Weasley Chuck NorrisIt’s true that Molly doesn’t fit the traditional feminist roll; nonetheless, Molly Weasley is a feminist. She’s strong, independent, nurturing, determined, intelligent, strong-willed, loyal, loving, egalitarian, the head of her household–a house filled with mostly boys, and she can fight. She is a fierce warrior who is deadly with a wand. Molly Weasley is not the embodiment of family fighting against the embodiment of something else. She’s a feminist fighting for family.

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Hermione is a Feminist

I remember watching an interview of an actress from the Hunger Games (I don’t know which one) and something she said really stood out to me. She said there aren’t a lot of strong female characters out there, which is why Katniss and the Hunger Games was really cool.


Hermione

I beg to differ.

Let me count the strong female characters in Harry Potter: all of them! Hermione, Luna, McGonagall, Ginny, Molly Weasley, Tonks, Bellatrix, Narcissa, Trelawney, Pomona Sprout, Madam Pomfrey, Lily Potter, Cho Chang, Alice Longbottom, Katie Bell, Fleur Delacour…. on and on and on!

Hermione stands out the most to me, however. She is the most feminist, the strongest, and the coolest. Here’s why:

1. Brightest witch of her age. She makes it cool to be a bookworm. “Honestly, don’t you two read?” Without her, Harry would have Hermione 1never been able to defeat Voldemort the first time, or the second time, or the third… or fourth… or known who Nicolas Flamel was, or known the Basilisk was using the pipes, or been able to save Buckbeak… Okay, basically Harry (and the world) was damn lucky to have Hermione there to know what’s what.

2. Hermione is courageous. (She is in Gryfindor, after all.) Even when she was in her first year of Hogwarts and labelled as a know-it-all, she refused to dumb herself down to be accepted by others. She fears little else but failure. Oh yeah, and she stood up to the greatest, evilist wizard ever. So there’s that.

Hermione Granger 23. Hermione withstood Bellatrix’s torture. It would have been so much easier to give up while trapped in the Malfoy’s mansion filled with deatheaters, being tortured by the infamous Bellatrix LaStrange then to resist, but Hermione resisted.

4. Hermione’s a badass! She snuck into the restricted section of the library. She trapped the annoying Rita Skeeter in a jar when she
finds her eavesdropping, and then blackmails her. She lead Dolores Umbridge into a trap in the Forbidden Forest! She gets this reputation for being prim and proper, but just look how wrong that is.
hermione 25. She doesn’t have the double-ended sword. Usually women who are highly logical/rebellious/aggressive are stripped of their femininity or emotions. Hermione doesn’t have this problem. She was written to eschew stereotypes. She gets to have her cake and eat it too!

6. When the trio are out hunting for horcruxes and Ron leaves, Hermione doesn’t have a break down. Sure, Hermione grangershe’s devastated; but she pulls herself together. She stays to help Harry, and she keeps searching for horcruxes (unlike some female characters… *Cough* Bella *cough*)

hermione granger 17. She’s a true feminist! Hermione is constantly pushing back against the rules, calling for equality. It’s her idea to start Dumbledore’s
Army, which was very against the rules. In GoF, she yells at her best friend after he defends house elves’ enslavement; then she goes one step further–creating a student organization dedicated to the freedom and fair pay of house elves.

Binders Full of Women for Everyone!

To those who don’t know what Romney said during the presidential debate, here is the video with his exact words just for you. It’s only two and a half minutes long: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OX_AN4w3da8

When the woman asked what the president was going to do about inequality in the workplace, the continuing problem of Equal Pay for Equal Work, Obama gave a pretty decent answer in my opinion. Romney, however, well… we all know how that went down.

Problem number one: he didn’t answer the question. He used the entire time allotted to talk about how he was such a great guy and went around collecting binders full of women candidates for the job opening when he didn’t have to, when it was inconvenient for him. 

Thank you, Romney. You’re such a saint.

I completely support recognizing the gap between the sexes during promotion and hiring time. And if every business man was a gender-conscious as Romney claims himself to be, then people and businesses across America would profit greatly.

But the words he used made it sound as if he was single-handedly responsible for giving all these women the chance of their life. Oh, how socially-aware he is. How kind. How elevated.

The problem with Romney’s plan to increase equality in the workplace is that he has no plan. No plan at all. Romney’s exact words are:

“We’re going to have to have employers in the new economy, in the economy I’m going to bring into play, that are going to be so anxious to get good workers they’re going to be anxious to hire women.”

He’s going to increase business, and the business owners will be so happy and so busy that they’ll just magically hire women? Really? Because that happens all the time, right? Maybe we should all have binders full of women to carry around and be enlightened.

What’s more, he generalized women workers to be working mothers. Women need flexible schedules because they have young children. Because they need to be there when they come home. Because their husband/partner obviously can’t take on the traditional mother role and cook dinner for the entire family and she needs to be there. 

And while a lot of women do need flexible hours because the traditional role of mother still falls onto women to be there when the kids get home and to cook dinner, even if Romney’s magical business plan to boost the economy works (which it probably won’t because he thinks trickle down economics are a good idea), even if businesses suddenly boom and grow and need new workers, there’s no plan in place to stop discrimination against women/mothers in the workplace. There’s no plan in place to enforce Equal Pay for Equal Work. There’s no fire under anyone’s butt to make employers allow flexible hours for mothers who do need to be home when the kids come home from school. 

Being a Nerd is Hard. (Anxiety Sucks Ass)

 

When I say being a nerd is hard, I’m not talking about watching Star Wars for the seventeenth time… this month. Or reading comics books, or playing video games consuming your life and you can’t remember what the sun looks like because you’ve been too busy beating Ocarina of Time again. No, I’m talking about the other side of the word “nerd”. The introvert. The socially awkward. The Sheldon/Howard/Raj side of it. (Leonard seems pretty well-adapted to me).

I just went outside to wash a cup in the lounge kitchen area. People down the hall started to talk. Two girls and a guy. Just talking. I couldn’t see them. And suddenly a heaviness descended on my chest, like a fat raccoon with little beady judgmental eyes was sitting on me. I couldn’t breathe. My stomach felt like a tense fist. I just wanted to get out of there. Abandon the cup, save yourself!

(Thank God Harry didn’t say that in the Lestrange Vault)

Anxiety…. Anxiety is hard. My first year in college, I lived in the dorms. There was a community kitchen in the lounge area. I had frozen burritos and pizza rolls in the freezer down there. It was down the hall, not thirty feet away. It would literally take three minutes to go out, microwave a burrito, and get back into my room. I wouldn’t do it. I would go sometimes all weekend long with barely eating anything.

I don’t know exactly why I couldn’t go down the hall, I would just get too… I don’t know how to describe it. I couldn’t. I would sit on my bed and try to talk myself into getting a burrito for ten minutes, I would finally scrape up enough courage to go get food, and before I could open my door more than a crack I would hear voices of girls in the lounge laughing, and I would slam the door shut. The pit of my stomach would clamp up; my body would suddenly feel cold and clammy, like refrigerated meat; and a black, slick fear would replace my hunger.

Anxiety is not rational. No matter how much rationality and logic I poured down my own throat, I couldn’t break the unforgivable curse Anxiety had cast on me.

Just the other day, in fact, I had a little emotional breakdown (can breakdowns even be little?) at the prospect of walking the five minutes to one of the nicer eateries (which is totally a word. I Googled it) on campus because the closest one to me closes on Fridays. My friend offered the solution of asking one of the many girls who live on my floor if they wanted to go with me. That was even worse than going alone. In fact, that idea was at least five times worse. Don’t get me wrong, all of the girls on my floor seem super nice, and nothing bad or traumatizing has ever happened to me at said eatery. But I couldn’t stop crying while just thinking about going.

Now, you may think that this post is me fishing for comfort, or support, or sympathy, but that’s not what I want at all. I am ripping my chest open and revealing my red, beating heart to the faceless, nameless sea of people sailing the frothy, cold internet… and it’s terrifying. But it’ll be worth it if one person, somewhere, somehow stumbles upon this entry, reads it, and thinks: “That’s me”. My deepest wish is that someone out there will realize that they’re not alone, that they’re not the only one who has these sorts of fears and doubts. Because for a long, long time, I thought I was alone. In fact, for a while, I couldn’t even name these feelings. 

And I know anxiety isn’t an exclusive “nerd” problem, nor do all nerds have anxiety. But I know at the very least some do. I’m one of them. And if you’re one too… I know not who you are, nor how you came to find me, but may I just say…. Hi. How ya doing?  

I don’t have any sort of answers, but I still hope this helps. The best I can do is say I understand.

Best Wishes,

thenerdfightingfeminist

 

  

Cathy and the Bullies feat. a Samoan

 Today, my friend, we’ll call her Cathy, sat next these two girls, we’ll call them Prissy Girls, in one of her classes. (Cathy actually didn’t mean to sit next to them, the Prissy Girls were forced upon her. Perhaps not unlike how the Ring was forced upon Frodo, which was a great and terrible burden, but it taught us all something we can take to heart.)

While sitting next to Prissy Girls, Cathy could not help but overhear their conversation… because they were right next to her and talking not-so-quietly. They would comment on every girl that walked into class. Such as: “She is not cute” and “Look at her hair!” and “She’s not pretty at all”. Mind you, I’m in college. Let me repeat that: I am in college.

First of all, when I was watching Mean Girls, I didn’t realize that real human beings actually acted like that, because no where during high school did I ever come into contact with that. I thought that the drama in that movie was in fact dramatized for dramatic affect. But apparently, someone went down to a high school under cover with a video camera and hid behind lockers and chemistry books to capture real-life footage of high school girls and then made it into a movie.

Second, oh my god, what the hell? Seriously, who does that? I find it absolutely terrifying that while I am walking around campus all day there are people purposefully looking for people to judge.

Third, I have a letter for these girls… *clears throat* :

Dear Prissy Girls,
Grow up. You are in college now. Act like god-damn adults.
Sincerely,
Everyone

Apparently, we need to have a little talk on how to treat people. You should treat other human beings as if they were human beings. Always. Why is does that seem so hard for some people?

For example: One time in high school, a HUGE Samoan football player (he was like three times my size) was running backwards down the hall (trying to catch a football his friend was about to throw. Where the hell is the administration in this school?). He ran into me, and I’m telling you, it was like a bowling ball hit a pin. I went flying; my papers, notebooks, pencils were up in the air, my English book was permanently lodged sideways into the wall. This guy gave me one look, and then kept running for the football. Maybe he thought I had just fallen because he didn’t feel it when my body bounced off of his, I don’t know. Either way, not fun. Was catching the fake hog-skin really more important than helping someone?

But Prissy Girls, I forgive you, because I know the only reason you pass such serious judgment on others is because you’re sad inside. I understand that it is because you are so irredeemably damaged that you have to tear down others in order to build yourself up. And I can only hope that one day you too can blossom into a healthy, productive member of society and stop being such villainous, abominable misleaders of youth.

Let us pray and hope that the high school instinct in people can be sucked out of them using leeches or time. Hopefully leeches. Does anyone know where I can find leeches? I’m sure Prissy Girls will be much kinder without all that pesky blood in them…

No! Time is the answer. Time and patience. Anger, fear, aggression; the dark side of the Force are they. Down the dark path, go I must not. Lied about the cookies, did they.

Watch Out! You Don’t Fit into Society’s Rigid Gender Ideals and Therefore are about to be Crushed by an Ironic Symbol of Masculinity! she called only too late…

Here for you now, I present a collection of Milwaukee’s Best Light Beer commercials… Enjoy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xGItoKaX0BM

What do all of those commercials have in common? Beer. And also hegemonic masculinity.

Hegemonic masculinity is the term used to explain the criteria for being a “real man”; a model for all men to show how they “should” be. Generally, in American culture, there is only one complete unblushing male: a young, married, white, urban, heterosexual, Protestant, father, college educated, fully employed, handsome, tall, of the appropriate weight, and has a recent record in sports. And anyone who fails to qualify in any one of these ways at any time is likely to see himself as unworthy, incomplete, or inferior. Right? All other men who don’t fit this criteria are not manly at all. 

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The tagline of the beer is “Men should act like men”, and those who do not act like “men” should be crushed to death by an enormous beer can that falls from the heavens. Of course.

Clearly, this is unfair and sexist towards men. The men deserve to die because they are not acting like men, but are acting like women, and men becoming women is a fate deserving of death?

However, these men are not acting “like women”. They’re just not being stereotypical, hammer-up-the-drywall, macho-macho-masculine dudes.

The man who was showing love, warmth, affection, and sensitivity to a dog instead of working on the car? He definitely needed to die.

The guy who checked in with his wife? Acknowledging that he cares about his relationship? Obviously worthy of death. How dare a man be considerate. That’s just not how we do things here.

The dude with the clothes matching his wife? Whipped! He lost control of his woman. (And if you notice, once the guys reject him, his wife does too. She lets go of his hand and kind of inches away from him. Rejected by everyone.)

The man blotting his pizza, caring about his health, and perhaps even his appearance? Dead. And good riddance. (This is ironic because most older men in America have worse health than their wives. Not to mention this is a Light Beer commercial.)

A lot of this idea of masculinity has to do with the time we live in. If you notice, all of the “real” men are doing manual labor: digging a hole, fixing a car, grilling outdoors…. A hundred years ago, the perfect man would be he who did not have to do any physical labor. He would have slaves or servants to do it for him. Today, that has completely changed. The men were smoking, eating, drinking, working, getting dirty. Their masculinity was about brute strength. And this doesn’t really seem all that odd to us, because it is in fact hegemonic, and we don’t realize it’s there. We’ve integrated it into society so thickly, so deeply, that it only seems natural to us. Of course guys are rough and sweaty. What else would they be?

However, if this idea of “masculinity” was in fact natural, a hundred years ago the manliest men would also be digging holes and greasing up the … horses. If this really was natural, there wouldn’t be such great differences across time and space.

Here in America, two guys holding hands—not cool. Guys don’t generally hold hands, not unless their lovers. But in Africa, across the sea in the Middle East, guys hold hands. It’s a sign of friendship, of comradery. Guys do it all the time there, and it’s normal, it’s natural.

A guy I know, we’ll call him Gerard, served a Mission down in Africa recently. He had a tour guide to help him navigate the town. The tour guide was going to show him where such-and-such was, so he reached down to grab Gerard’s hand and instantly Gerard snatched his hand back, absolutely shocked. His tour guide looked at him strange, he was kind of hurt and confused. The tour guide was just trying to show him the way. Why had he not wanted to hold hands with him? Weren’t they pals?

It was extremely weird for Gerard to hold another man’s hand, and it was weird for the tour guide not to because of these two conflicting ideas of masculinity.

What’s so wrong with two guys holding hands in America? Oh right, because it’s “gay”.  … Oh, sorry, that was my cue: *Gasp!*

But wait, now why is that a bad thing? Oh right, because of this thing called hegemonic masculinity that says all real men are straight men, and real men are hardass Schwarzenegger S.O.B.’s that would never show affection or emotion because truly they’re half robot inside. And any deviancy will be met with the swift and just verdict of a giant beer can falling out of the sky to murder them on the spot. Silly me, how could I forget?

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Whoopsi daisy! How did that get there?

I am a Nerd, Thank You Very Much

I am socially awkward. I am introverted. Rather than going out with my friends, partying, or patrolling for cute guys, I like to stay in and read, or write, or watch Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I love Percy Jackson, Harry Potter, Firefly, Narnia, Legend of the Seeker, X-Men, Primeval, Star Wars, Star Trek, Lord of the Rings, Portal, the list goes on. I am a nerd. A nerd I say!

However, my sister says I’m not a nerd. She says I’m not cool enough to be a nerd.

So in recent events, the “nerd” has grown in popularity. Except not really. Things that used to be looked down upon have suddenly sprung up as not only being socially acceptable, but endorsed. But these supposed “nerds” are not actually nerds. The popular people are still the popular people on the top of the food pyramid, and the socially awkward people are still on the bottom. As one of my favorite memes would say:

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It took me a long time to accept my identity as a nerd. People made fun of me, called me weird, and teased me, hissing out nerd like Basilisk venom. I used to lie awake at bed at night wishing as hard as anyone ever could to be anyone else but myself, wishing not to be a nerd.

It took years, and the vlogbrothers, to accept that part of myself. But I did accept it. And not only that, I learned to love that part of myself. And now, all of the sudden, the same people who cursed me with the name have now stolen it from me. They’ve stolen it from us. They’ve stolen our identity.

Well, who am I now? Where the hell do I belong? I can’t be a nerd, I’m still not “popular”, so where does that leave me?

It leaves me in the desert on a horse with no name.

It leaves me standing on a beach with naught but a name and your word it’s the one I need.

And I don’t care if Shakespeare thinks that a name doesn’t matter, and that which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet. Name does matter. And I have lost mine.

No. No I have not. I am not just going to sit idly by, blooming on the walls, while something so important to me is stripped away like hair on Michael Phelps. No can do. I reclaim my nerdom, clamping it close to my heart with white-knuckled fists. You cannot take away my name.

Dear people who think they can just put on a pair of glasses and call themselves a nerd, GTFO. This is my territory, and I intend to keep it. I plan to defend my title as vigorously as Dr. McCoy defends his. I intend to keep it like Smeagol keeps the Ring. I mean to fight for it like Peter does for Narnia. And for Aslan! And I shall treasure it like Snape does Lily. Always.

Best Wishes,

thenerdfightingfeminist