I Need Feminism Because…

   We need feminism because a woman’s place is in the kitchen, unless it’s a career choice; in which case only a man can handle that job.

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   You meet people of all types throughout your life and eventually you learn to deal with them with couth (<–one of my favorite words).  Even when you can’t stand these people you learn to nod and smile instead of arguing or telling them directly how much of a fool they are.  Take my in-laws for instance.  I can’t stand them.  They are nice people but MIL keeps trying to put Jesus down my throat and FIL is always telling me about his health problems, even if that problem is a swollen testicle and anal leakage (this is a very real set of issues he has had).  I’m agnostic and a non-theist (not an atheist; just making that clear).  I’m not openly empathetic but I do try to put myself in others shoes upon later reflection, the habits of an introvert are bothersome.  The last thing I want to do while I lay in my bed going through the details of my day is try to imagine myself as FIL with a swollen ball sack and moist (<–one of my most hated words) skid marks.  We disagree on religion and politics but tend to agree on some social issues though I really think they agree for the sake of appealing to whomever meets you at these alleged pearly gates I hear so much about. When we interact, there’s a lot of restraint on both sides.  I try to deal with Marvel in the same way but he’s one of those people I just want to smack with a book and scream,

HEY, I CAN READ AND I’M A WOMAN! *gasp*

   This guy, he comes over to my house, in federal housing, to smoke our weed and drink his beer  after working for “the big bucks” at some lease-to-own furniture and electronics place.  I don’t know if he makes good money or not but he’s always trying to borrow money from us, find someone to front a dime for him or thank us repeatedly for smoking him up. I understand this paragraph may contain some information that would make the edges of a libertarians porch flag curl from repulsion but understand a few things about my situation.  I’m pretty disabled physically and mentally I am two straws of hay away from hiding in a dark corner rocking back and forth telling you to meet all the musical little creatures that hide among the flowers.

 I have issues that could get me really expensive and addictive medications that could either leave me subdued in a medically induced, waking coma or that I could sell on the street for whatever the going rate is for pharmaceuticals.  And I could get the government to pay for all of it while paying 75% of my rent and 1/2 my food bill as well. Instead, I choose to pay my bills with my disability and use what little is left after getting my kids what they need to buy a sack to keep me calm and ease the pain in my joints.  Among other things, it also helps with my chronic acute migraines that have sent me to the hospital thinking I was having another stroke.  Simply put, I would be a bigger burden to the average taxpayer if I took legal medications instead of what I choose.  I don’t usually buy it either, Kasper does, with the money he earns from his job.  He doesn’t have to work; I could be lazy, swim around leisurely in my pool of government-funded self-pity while he works the ridiculously low amount of community service hours (8/month) to exempt him from the work requirement.  But we don’t do that. Believe it or not, I’m not “a liberal” because I’m a 47%-er/mooch but because I actually agree with most of their policies and stances. I’m stuck here for the moment with plans to get the hell out of here.  Do you really think all government aid beneficiaries want to stay within the 47%-er populace of “Lazy Loserdom?”

  Marvel is completely sexist and I often wonder if he’s also unknowingly misogynist but I have no way to tell. Let me tell you why he’s one of the worst kinds of Republican there is. “Wait, what?  You mean Republican’s live in housing?” Wait, what?  You’re acting like republicans never take what they don’t need out of greediness or laziness?  Please, reconsider your life.

   All of my neighbors are here for different reasons.  Some are obvious like the couple in the next building with the son they have to carry with his legs all folded up while they wear a backpack full of his oxygen and other medically necessary paraphernalia.  Some aren’t so obvious like the couple next door with the “decent” looking vehicle and multicultural crowd of visitors that is ALWAYS filling up the parking lot.  Some I wonder about like the people a few doors down that have two newer vehicles, one young kid and both wear scrubs every time I see them. I imagine their student loans put them here but who am I to speculate?  And then there is people like Marvel whose situation is clear to me yet not obvious to the office.

   People dislike Obama for a surprisingly wide variety of reasons.  I’ve learned after a few debates and arguments that it’s best to just let most of these people run out of air.  I’ve learned this is definitely the case with Marvel.  He’s one of those people who truly believe Obamacare is a real thing and has no idea what the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Acts are.  That’s understandable…to a degree.  When someone is trying to explain to you that one is a type of law that attempts to regulate the health insurance industry (yes there’s more and it has its faults but this is not about the PPaACA) and the other is NOT, in itself, insurance, you do not shake your head and continue to repeat your ignorant opinion as if it is fact.  I mean, this guy really believes Obama is going to “chip us to put us in the system.”  What system?! You mean the one you’re already synced to with your social security number, I.D/D.L number, fingerprint and police record?

  Another tangent, sorry. He thinks Obama created a “welfare state” in this country and totally agrees with Republicans that we need to cut funding to all social programs.  He doesn’t think we should raise minimum wage and thinks we should close the borders.  He doesn’t even know what he’s saying, I’ve actually struggled to listen to him.  I am not exaggerating when I tell you this guy zones out while he’s talking. He literally sounds like a humanoid record player stuck on repeat. I’ve tried holding a real conversation with him, which is actually difficult since I‘M A WOMAN, but all he did was repeat “the system” as if interjecting it into every other sentence I spoke would somehow verify and solidify his opinion that Obama is a Muslim King tyrant.

   It’s one thing to be rich, or to be content in your longstanding comfortable position (bubble) you worked hard to develop and think this way but to be down here in the system?  It makes no sense.  This dude is Mexican, his dad knocked up a chick after he crossed here illegally.  He wouldn’t even be here if the borders were closed.  He lives in housing with the “wife” he won’t marry so he won’t have to be on the lease which would force them to pay more in rent and lower their SNAP benefits. His wife is able-bodied, has four kids and receives child support for two of them (one is older than 18 and the other is Marvel’s) and yet she doesn’t work.  Instead, she’s on the committee for this property.  If you are on the committee, it’s considered community service.  If her child support counts as income (I have no idea if it does), her rent is super low or nothing at all.

   I just assumed this guy is ignorant about how his wife is working the system; he seems unable to not only answer my questions but understand them as well.  She’s lived in housing her whole life (not exaggerating) and he has not.  I honestly thought it was KareBear that was lazy and unwilling to do anything more than douse herself in expensive perfumes and shop online.  This is how he talks about her.  He blames the fact that their son is almost 8 and can’t count to twenty or say his abc’s without pause on her.

She’s home all day, she should work with him more.  What does she do besides be online all day?

   I don’t know what she does and don’t care but he drew this view of her that I wouldn’t have drawn on my own.  All I know for sure is she makes a lot of frozen pizza and loves her church and perfume.

   It’s hard to have an opinion while you listen to this guy talk about things he knows nothing about and when you speak, he completely ignores you.  I’ve told Kasper that if Marvel comes over here I’m not going to sit here quietly because I’m a woman.  I don’t go in the kitchen when Kasper has a visitor.  I only go in there when I have a reason.  I will sit next to my husband and participate in the conversation or I will be where I choose to be and read, watch TV or mess around on my phone/tablet.  I will not be ignored because some guy decides my opinion has no value because it comes from the mouth of a woman.  I cannot even count how many times he’s asked Kasper a question and I answered and Marvel just repeated the question to Kasper like he didn’t hear me.  I will answer again only I will be loud enough not to be ignored.  I will not allow a man to enter my house and disregard me because of some sexist principle’s he holds dear.

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   As if what I’ve already pointed out isn’t bad enough, there’s more.  It’s one thing to ignore me in my own house which only leads me to believe I intimidate you by not being a stupid woman willing to let men speak for her and it’s one thing to have your political views regardless of how much or why I disagree with them but it’s a whole other thing to come into my house and tell me

I’m traditional.  A woman belongs at home with the babies, cooking for her husband.  It’s just not right to let a woman work.  She should be home and her man needs to work.

   Did I mention he’s a Republican that lives in housing and feeds his family with government provided food stamps he thinks the government should cut the funding to?  Did I mention that he lives here mostly (if not completely) rent free? Did I mention that he thinks Obama created a “welfare state” or that he’s pretty religious? Did I mention that he’s frauding the system he thinks is unsustainable (according to his agreement with Republican policy and stances) by  not reporting his residency here or his income?  This guys ideologies keep him in the very situation he can’t afford to condemn.  What I didn’t mention about this guys hypocritical behaviors is this: a few weeks ago he came over for some random reason just after dinner.  Kasper and I have a post-dinner, end-of-the-evening routine that involves a great deal of teamwork thanks to my disability.  We work together to make and serve dinner and then we work together to clean up from dinner and just the day in general.  It’s smooth, the way we work around and with each other.  It’s almost rhythmic without trying.  We know what we have to do and we don’t expect the other to fall into a gender role and “do their job.”  We both cook, do dishes, vacuum and bathe the children. Marvel stood there for a few minutes watching us work together with a language only we can speak at this time of day and then he finally said, “Wow, you guys really work together.  That’s nice to see.”  He sounded confused, bewildered, intrigued, and anything but opposed.  This leads me to one conclusion:

This man needs a little feminism in his life.

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