all sparkly and shit

Finally, a Wonder Woman movie – and men find a way to make it ALL ABOUT THEM.

The lovely Janelle Gray recently asked me to respond to the uproar over the all-female Wonder Woman screenings for her amazing blog, Echoes of the Struggle, and I gave birth to that word baby so quickly it’d make your head spin. Admittedly, I asked a few men to proofread it for me and got some pushback – which in the end means I’m DOING THIS SHIT RIGHT! mwahahahahahah! She’s shared my piece over there, but I wanted to share it with my ASAS readers, too, because too much feminism is never enough, especially when it comes to this MAGICAL movie that I wept all the way through. Get those footnotes at the bottom, y’all!

Yes, fellow feminists, it’s true. Due to a handful of female-only screenings of the new Wonder Woman movie that took place recently, some delicate snowflakes[1] are simply so wounded by their barring from these specific screenings of a female-centric movie[2] that they’re declaring reverse sexism the new normal. On message boards and in letters to their politicians, they cry, ‘We have dealt with this unfair treatment for *DAYS* now[3] and we are FED UP!’

 Okay, men, okay. We hear you. Our auditory skills are not the issue at hand here. I actually have some empathy for where you are finding yourselves right now! I know how shitty sexism can feel, and believe it or not, I once found myself in a similar pair of shoes on a different topic. Allow me to explain.

 Growing up in a tiny town in Ohio as homogenous as mine was, I was spared any real critical thinking when it came to diversity. Crossing paths with anyone outside of the white, cis-gendered, middle class, Republican, straight, and Catholic or at least Christian norm was like brushing shoulders with a unicorn at the Wal-Mart, and that person was generally treated with, at best, a open-mouthed stare.

 Most, however, didn’t include little me. I considered myself a feminist long before I knew what word meant, much to the chagrin of my father, and all on my own. I was going to be bastion of open-mindedness, dammit, and I hoped beyond hope that I would one day be able to escape my white suburbia move to the city of my dreams, New York, and finally live side by side with a cornucopia of people different from me, creating art and basically living the storyline of RENT, sans the disease, of course.[4]  After all, I was a friend and protector to the sole little girl of color in my elementary school that was regularly bullied and shunned, I once dressed as a suffragette for Halloween, my family was one of the few in our town that *didn’t* go to church, and I was deeply involved in the local community theater in which MULTIPLE gay men participated! Come ON!

 So when I was clicking through the channels at my friend’s house one day in my tweens and came across BET[5], I was DUMBFOUNDED. BLACK entertainment television?!  Isn’t that RACIST? Why would they get their own channel? Aren’t we divided enough without making a separate TV STATION about it? This was bullshit!!! Of course, a number of years and endlessly patient friends of color later, I came to realize that although it lacked the official name[6], white peoples’ television was just TELEVISION. Basically ALL of it.

 We don’t see the forest for the trees, but white people, especially men, don’t exactly lack representation in any aspect of the media. To this day, save for a few shows like Blackish and seemingly endless vehicles for good old atheist-hating, wrong-beauty-queen-crowning Steve Harvey, TV is still so, so, so white. BET took nothing from my experience of TV as a white person, and it added to others’ lives. I’d call that a win.

 What I and many other people of privilege have learned is that when minorities have a chance to connect with one another, an opportunity to have a voice and to be seen, to celebrate who and what they are, like in the oft-maligned ‘safe spaces’ that some have objections to, it takes literally nothing away from those already in the majority. It may feel as if it does, because they may have to *slightly* change something they do or a way that they think, but that isn’t ACTUALLY encroaching on them at all; that’s just called LEARNING! And do you know what the cool thing is? That means that, quite the opposite from how it may feel at first, you are EXPANDING your horizons! It’s growth! You get MORE, and OTHER people get more too! Isn’t that cool?!

 So no, I don’t believe that female-only screenings of Wonder Woman are a symptom of an anti-male society, filled with ‘reverse sexism’ that ignores the needs of males. I believe in giving a few inches of space to a group of people[7] who have been previously underserved *read in movie premiere voice* IN A WORLD, WHERE MEN DOMINATE THE MOVIE BUSINESS, ESPECIALLY IN ACTION AND COMIC-BASED FILMS. And hey, guess what, we live in a country that allows us all the freedom to do almost anything we want to do, so if these menz want to host a no-girls-allowed screening of every film ever made by men, for men[8], I say DO IT! I guarantee you women won’t care. More power to ya, boys! We’d be in a suddenly blissfully MRA[9]-free world, much like Wonder Woman’s all-female home, Themyscira, far away from the Patriarch’s World[10], and we’d no longer NEED screenings such as these.

 Until then?

 Privately screen on, ladies.

[1] Men. Some of them, anyway.

[2] A film that they could, of course, easily see on other screens in the same building or in movie theaters across the world. But NOOOOOOOOO.

[3] Try it on for 9,000-ish years and then get back to us, okay, boys?

[4] Of course, what looked like Sesame Street in my 10 year old head turned out to be, 12 years later, me desperately signing last-minute on an apartment I could barely afford across the street from a pizza shop that served as a front for a burgeoning drug kingpin in a building full of Dominican families (they looked BLACK but spoke SPANISH, I had no idea that was possible and my twenty-something gringa brain was muy confundido for a few weeks), one of which I displaced when I moved into my newly slightly-renovated-for-the-white-girl apartment complete with heat (!) and roommates (roaches y ratones) and successfully growing up into the gentrifying hipster I never realized I’d dreamed I’d become. ‘Why don’t these families LIKE me,’ I wondered, as now-homeless Aunt Somebody glared at me walking up 6 flights of stairs to her old apartment.

[5] All music channels were blocked in my house to keep my delicate sensibilities shielded from the evil influences they presented. It pissed me off to no end at the time, but looking back, I’m thankful for at least being spared a metric shit-ton of lame-ass early reality TV programming and garbage pop music.

[6] WET would be an awkward thing to name a station anyway, it implies less ‘White Entertainment Television’ and more awkward 90’s girls-washing-cars softcore videos, not to mention how mind numbingly boring 24 hours of The Lawrence Welk Show, Duck Dynasty and Seinfeld reruns and bowling and fishing tournaments would be.

[7] Literally 50% of the world’s population.

[8] I cannot IMAGINE how long it would take to see EVERY male-dominated movie. Siri?

[9] Mens’ Rights Activist, for those blesssssssssssed enough not to know what that acronym means. Can I have your life?

[10] Of both WW comic book fame and EVERY DAY FOR EVERY WOMAN ON EARTH.

 

Hope you enjoyed.  Now click back on over to Janelle’s bloggity blog blog for more great reading, and GO SEE WONDER WOMAN.  And if you’ve already seen it, GO SEE IT AGAIN.  I LOVE YOU, PATTY JENKINS AND GAL GADOT!

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This entry was published on June 16, 2017 at 6:33 pm. It’s filed under Bitchin' and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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