For those who don’t like to read too much, here is a look at some sobering statistics – through images.

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75% try to commit suicide…is that what we want?

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Rihanna after Chris Brown beating.

Rihanna after Chris Brown beating.

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We NEED to talk about this.

Question #162: What can you do to help create a paradigm that abhors this treatment against fellow human beings; before it affects you or someone you love?

Challenge people more often?

Challenge our government to enforce the laws that are there?

Challenge our government to tighten laws?

Report?

Help protect potential victims?

You tell me…

Deep Breath

x

 

On my Facebook page I received a response from my friend Suzi, who pointed out the tricky legalities of the case I discussed in my last post.

She wrote:

“This case has some serious questions that need to be asked. The police were called that evening and no charges were made – now, in a case like this the woman herself doesn’t need to lay charges and if the police had attended to find someone in a state like this charges would have been made. My understanding is the woman was in the house shared by T’eo and was with another player, in his room. This other player is married and the woman was asked by the other two to leave. I guess it could be argued they were trying to protect their friend from a scandal and they called the police when she wouldn’t leave. He informed the club he plays for immediately and they spoke to the police. I wasn’t in the room, I don’t know what happened, how he reacted, how she reacted to being asked to leave and I don’t know what the police saw when they arrived but this is what ‘he said’ and what ‘she said’. She didn’t press charges, channel 9 paid her for her story, she waited 3 months before coming forward to the media and I think if we begin the slippery slope of believing one person over another based solely on gender we are going to end up in a worse place than we are now. We have great freedom in Australia but with great freedom comes great responsibility and I’ve got to say, I don’t think us women are living up to that responsibility in many ways. I’m a card carrying feminist, and that’s why I have come to believe that. Women can manipulate, they can harass, they have just as much ability to abuse as anyone. I’ve just started my law studies again and looking at Family Law cases is an example of how our rights can sometimes not be taken with the requisite responsibility, just as a trip to the city on a train on a Friday night can be a depressing display of near nudity, drunken screeching and sole crushing self abuse. Each case is different and, for me, we have achieved equality when the gender of those involved isn’t an issue and only the actions of individuals are scrutinised.”

You may think that I disagree with Suzi, but I don’t.
She’s right – we do need to talk about each case as it occurs and judge the actions of each party. But the problem I have is that I don’t think we’re getting the true exposure to the cross-section of cases that are occurring in reality, through our media.

I responded with the following:

“I also grapple with a lot of the same feelings as you and I sometimes find it hard to truly articulate them clearly, as they rush through me.
I did hear that charges weren’t pressed and realised it wasn’t that black and white (it never seems to be when it involves a ‘star’).
I certainly didn’t write this to blame T’eo specifically – it’s just that I saw a woman with a broken eye socket and in the one thing that does divide our genders (generally) – brute strength – I just saw another example of brutality and ask what could she have done? 
What do any women who do find themselves of the end of violence, done to deserve it? And there’s a lot of them.
The other bummer is that this happens all the time, (every few minutes?) to women everywhere and the only reporting we get is of the dodgy, weird case with no clear outcome, which paints women as being deceptive – which they may have been, of course – but if that’s all that’s the only type of news story we receive, then a clear picture is painted about women typically lying.
I think that’s deceptive and dangerous, when it’s all we see.
The more reporting like this – the more difficult it is for the majority of women who have had their rights violated, to come forward and ask for help.
I COMPLETELY agree with you about women also having responsibility – I wrote a post a few weeks ago which asked how women disrespect men.
I think we have a looong way to go, hence why I started the blog and named it Questions for Women.”

I’m not pointing the finger of blame to any particular person with my last post – I was merely commenting of the lack of exposure to the very real and horrifying statistics of violence against women by men and wonder where the ad campaigns, pushing for change, are.
But call a man an ape…

Deep Breath

x

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What a day.

It has certainly put a fire in my belly.

I took my mum to see Anne Summers talk about her new book, The Misogyny Factor, as a part of the Sydney Writers’ Festival.

Amazing.

I’m busting to write about it and will soon. There’s a lot to digest, however, and I want to make sure I articulate it correctly and give it its due respect. This is a word Anne used a lot and it’s something that’s deeply lacking toward women.

Now we skip to this evening and the news has begun.

The story I saw was the one where a ‘Schoolgirl apologises to ‘heartbroken’ Sydney Swans star,  Adam Goodes because of her racist taunt – calling him an ‘ape’ – whilst he was playing.

I think racism is revolting and I understand how he felt.
I was treated poorly growing up due to racist attitudes (against Spanish speakers, apparently!), so I know how it feels.

So let me make it clear that I believe that racism is a social toxin that must always be fought.
They even showed a snippet of the ad being televised, encouraging racism to be abolished in sport.

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Fantastic.

Now there was another story in the news a few days ago, that also related to sport.

This one has an image of a woman with a black eye (ended up being a broken eye socket) and she alleges she was assaulted by Queensland Origin forward Ben Te’o.

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He denies it. Of course.

What incident could possibly warrant that sort of violence?

What?

Against a woman with three men the size of refrigerators, who are part of a football code with a history of violent behaviour against women.

And yet the woman – with a broken eye socket – is being vilified by men AND women (shame on them) for all the reasons that, what, she deserved it in some way?

Would you ever feel you deserved it?

I feel like we’re a world gone mad.
When will our society rally behind women, believe them and find the justice she deserves?

They can’t ALL be liars.

Another disgrace: If not him – who?

Once a ‘celebrity’ is cleared of violence, the case is closed.
So it’s not about finding out who did it and give justice to the victim…
I mean someone did it.
OJ Simpson springs to mind – if not him, WHO?

Who cares, right? As long as it wasn’t the male ‘star’.

When all this whirled through my mind – as I watched the nation stand still and listen, truly listen, to how heartbroken Adam Goodes felt about being on the receiving end of a racist taunt – I turned to my husband and asked:

“Why do men hate women so much?”

I explained my above thoughts on racism  – but I simply couldn’t understand how a racist word gets the coverage it should, while a smashed up woman’s face doesn’t. Again.

Like countless before this victim, it’s the women with the serious physical injuries who are still the ones investigated and given the third degree – in 2013.

Why? Because he said, “I didn’t do it.”?

We are the gentler sex. We are.

Why do men want to squash that? Control it? Violate it?
And worse still, why is it defended?

As the news continued – all the negative stories were violent ones – all done by men; including the hacking death of a man in broad daylight on a London street.

This world needs women.

It’s time to make way for us to fill the space that’s been left empty and fill the void that can tip things back into balance.

BALANCE. Not war to take over. Work side by side, FFS.

Equal in participation and respect.

And it starts by doing everything we can to give justice to women, when they have been treated like animals; beneath men – by men.

Question #161: Where’s the ad for that?

Deep Breath

x

I will be short. But it will not be sweet.

On Wednesday night, I went to a screening of a film called The Trade of Innocents.

It stars Academy Award winner Mira Sorvino and seasoned actor Dermot Mulroney.
Inspired by real events, it explores the gargantuan problem of trafficking girls – in this case, in Cambodia.
Yes, it’s a Hollywood movie but no, it was not picked up by the mainstream cinemas.

*Small rant moment. At a recent outing to the cinema (after a very long absence) the movie trailers on offer were for:

Iron Man #3 – Gi Joe – Star Trek #2 – Die Hard #278 – Man of Steel.

Lots of larger-than-life, über men, being heroes, surrounded by the same super-dooper special effects and gratuitous shots of women in little clothing.* Rant over.

I understand that a movie like the Trade of Innocents is not a big hit with people wanting to escape – but aren’t we endangering our ability to see past the whopping pile of stinking special effects?

Our world is in trouble.

So I went along to this screening, thanks to Liz and Mike Newton-Brown, a married couple who started The Freedom Project a few years ago, and help trafficked children. Actually help.
I met them at the screening of it’s a girl last year and they are truly inspirational.

After the film ended, we were shrouded in dread.
It was sombre in there; silent except for the sound of some sniffling noses being quietly cleared, from crying.

I can’t get out of my head the scene where a sweaty and pasty American tourist says he wants a guaranteed virgin – that he is willing to go as low as a 5 or 6 year old, but that his preference is a 7 year old, “For a month’s use.”
Repugnant.

I felt sick as I saw girls, the same age as my daughters, being sold for sex – girls who, in the scheme of things, were just unlucky enough to have been born over there, instead of over here…even though it happens here too – albeit on a smaller scale.

Mike and Liz then spoke some facts with us.
A Hollywood movie is one thing…but the following just drove it all home:

800,000 – 4 million men, women and children are trafficked each year.
They don’t really know the exact figures.
Of those:

  • 80% are women
  • 50% are children
  • The average age of girls trafficked, is 11; the average age of boys, is 12.
  • 75% of people sold into slavery, are sold for sex.

A child is sold into slavery every 30 seconds. Every. Thirty. Seconds.

It’s the fastest growing crime in the world.

1. Arms
2. Drugs
3. Slavery

With the first two, once you shoot a bullet you’ve paid for, or taken the drug – it’s done.
It’s used.

But a human being can cost as little as $40 and once owned, is used over…and over…and over…

The three areas of trafficking are:

1. Sex
2. Slave Labour
3. Forced to kill – like child soldiers. These are the hardest to get to and is the worst, as it can include all three unimaginable horrors.

I don’t know what those statistics do to you, but this has profoundly affected me.

The gravity. The insurmountable size of it.
As I walked to my car that night, I cried.

Question #157: What can be done?

Well, The Freedom Project is doing something. It’s  big and they need help.

They’re working in two areas at the moment.

1. Burma – a drug ravaged and fuelled area using child soldiers.

They recently smuggled 10 children into China – out of slavery.

They have saved and are currently looking after 150 children – providing housing, food and education. On their Facebook Page they posted the following image with this caption:

Seriously, this little guy’s smile is SO heartwarming! A precious soul we are caring for – now in a life of FREEDOM.’

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Look at his face.

2. Philippines – An area in the south which wants to be an independent Islamic state, also using  child soldiers to fight this battle.

The Freedom Project wants to build 50 schools. They’ve built 2 so far.

The fil had a quote that said: “They have a massive network – we need a bigger one.”

So that night I decided to join the network:

  • I bought a t-shirt

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  • I will be donating to help them
  • And I have spread some awareness through this post – even if only to a few.

And it doesn’t matter what you do – or what channels you do it through – every tiny bit helps; whether it’s to save one child or a thousand…or dare we dream more?

I leave you with this trailer for a documentary that we were shown before the screening of Trade of Innocents.

It’s called Nefarious: Merchant of Souls – and it focuses on the selling of women.
It has won over 24 Film Festival Honours and can be bought on DVD on their page, HERE.

Please help.

http://www.thefreedomproject.org

Deep Breath.

x

I heard this question asked twice in one day, from two different people, about two different issues.

I think it’s the crux of it all – the question we must seriously ponder and decide when we ‘cross the line’.

Is there a line?

There has been a growing voice emerging and gradually escalating – standing up for the preservation of some basic, bloody principles. Fundamentals.

But there also seems to be a surge in bad, malicious, callous behaviour that’s infecting our culture – like bad apples rotting the barrel.

I don’t know…is it a backlash?

If we look at the current, abhorrent issue of the rape culture we now seem to inhabit, then we need look no further than the Steubenville rape case in the States. *Trigger Warning*

Why this case? Because it’s the first biggie since India. This was the test to see if we changed – even a bit.

We failed. In fact, I feel like we regressed.

The two boys on trial were found guilty of rape – one will serve a minimum of one year and the other, two (an extra year for taking nude photos of a minor and circulating them).

The discussion has been fierce on both sides – but I have to say that I am quite dumbfounded at the reactions to this case.

This girl was stripped naked, raped repeatedly, sodomised and urinated on (tweets support this) – carried around from party to party by the wrists and ankles – whilst unconscious. These boys went a step further by documenting the ordeal by filming, taking photos and tweeting about it.

There is the video where one of the bystanders who watched his mates, laughs about the girl’s  horrifying experience, for 12 minutes and discusses what was done to her – you can see it here. *Extreme Trigger Warning*
(Notice the rifle on the floor by this guy? What a frightening combination.)

And yet, there is an enormous, insurmountable number of people who still think it’s her fault. Blaming the victim. One man went so far as to write the following post over his ‘outrage’ that the rapists were put on a Sexual Offender Registry:

Why don’t we have a Dumb Fucking Whore Registry. Now that would be justice.

Just the title. Speechless. I’m so offended by it.

Why aren’t ALL women offended by this?

Many of the comments left on this post sing a familiar tune – supporting the author’s stance of the girl pretty much ‘asking for it’ – male and female alike – including that she wasn’t raped at all – just digitally penetrated. Saying she shouldn’t have gone out, shouldn’t have gotten drunk, shouldn’t have…etc.

This girl’s human rights were violently and devastatingly ripped from her.
She will never be able to form a healthy relationship with a man, she may have sustained physical injury – like not being able to have a baby, caught a disease and she’s still a child. She’s a minor and has already endured such a horribly degrading, violent and humiliating experience. Never, EVER to be forgotten.

They will do a year or two in juvenile detention. Come out and either rape again – more bad for us – or come out changed men. If that’s the case – great, they gets a second chance.

What about her?

Why should they get a second chance?

So how bad does a rape – or anything for that matter – have to be, before society snaps out of its coma and starts to take action?

Well, I see one of two solutions for our rape culture:

1. Women actually do as they’re told and stay home. They don’t go out. Stay indoors. And if you do go out, cover up so as not to provoke. Don’t smile sending mixed messages that you ‘want it’. There’s only one problem with that…many, many girls and women are raped at home. It’s a tricky one.

2. We hone in on the source of the problem:

Question #153: Why are there so many more men like this?

It may not be you – but if it’s not, you can’t deny –  it’s like a war out there.

Isn’t anyone hearing what’s being shouted? Or is everyone simply turning a deaf ear?

There’s only ONE significant change – I believe – in all our social existence.

PORN.

Yes, it’s always been around but now it’s saturating –  the availability of it – the actual advertising of it, regardless of location – like the local newsagent for families; TV – and what eyes are watching. REGARDLESS.

Women are advertised as whores (I’m sorry for the word – but it resonates best) to both our sons and daughters – look around at the effects this is having on both genders.
Life is imitating art.

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Quite unavoidable, isn’t it?

Is this the world you want?
Its consequences are happening now, to a lot of people. Around the globe. And it’s escalating.

This is bad.

Yet we find it hard to punish and say ‘No’. We give more and more chances – until when?

Seriously.

So I’ll ask again: If not now – WHEN?

Deep Breath

x

PS – I really do want to talk about this. Good guys – any ideas?

My local newsagent located the hard core porn magazines at the very front of the side shelf of his shop. If you send your kid down to buy you the paper – from where the papers are, you can see a magazine on the flat section of the shelf, with a fully naked woman on the cover, sitting on a pushbike.
I challenged him, very politely, saying if he had to have them at all, they should be at the back of the shop. It’s all still there.

What are your suggestions?

I see a pattern in the way we deal with everything – ourselves; politics; the way we ‘survive’; the environment – and it’s looking a tad grim.

The psyche of ‘who we are’ as a species, is tipping toward a greedy, destructive, selfish and stupid one – with some people sadly possessing all four traits.
We collectively ‘cut the nose off, to spite the face’, by encouraging (through action or indifference) the defence of these bad ideals and behaviours – and all for money.
Our soul is disappointingly tarnished with greed.

The outcry to the damaging effects of such behaviours, that are worsening in their intensity, seems to be fobbed off as an annoying distraction. The lack of true change makes this apparent.

1. If it’s a feminist fight, it gets shot down with labels of  ‘hysterical’ / ‘bitch’ / ‘whore’ / ‘liar’ and/or the easy option of using violence – to keep women in their place.

2. If it’s an environmental fight, we actually turn our backs to what Nature is trumpeting – as it globally waves its arms furiously at us.

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It feels like the planet is twitchy – trying to shake us off – the planet we need to sustain us.
More earthquakes and volcano eruptions, cyclones, devastating rain, snow storms, rising seas in the Pacific with islands slowly going under…and that’s just the climate.
Then there’s replacing land with concrete or rubbish; digging enormous holes to deepen our dependence on fossil fuels…and the list goes on.

Was the last wipeout the dinosaurs?
We haven’t got a hope in hell against this old soul fully turning on us.

It’s the one hunk of rock we’re on, isn’t it? I mean it’s ALL connected.
So why have Australians fought the Carbon Tax, when we all know (even the Opposition) it’s for the better?
In fact, it has already lowered emissions and it’s aimed at big businesses doing the most damage to our planet – you know, the people making millions/billions in profits.

I suppose a better question would be, ‘If not this – what?

3. And if it’s a political fight, we neglect policy; we neglect using the government in power to its full potential – regardless of whether one voted for them or not.
This was never more apparent than with our latest Prime Minister, Julia Gillard.
She has been systematically vilified from day one – distracting her (for example) with press conferences on her character, rather than just letting her get on with it.

What good does that do any of us?

Did anyone know that last week, this government passed a bill that made fantastic changes to the current National Disability Insurance Scheme?

Kim @allconsuming wrote the following piece about this decision and its wonderfulness – Quite Something. She writes:

“I do not care what your political leaning, I do.not.care. but this Government is the first to actually action it. The first to say this is important, to say to the four million or so Australians who have a disability that they matter.

To grasp the scale of that, those four million people equates roughly to the population of Melbourne. Then consider the 2.6 million Australians who care for family members with a disability. Now you’ve got the population of Victoria.

As soon as you hear someone start to say how great it is but gee, how we can fund this, how we can pay for it I want you to tell them you’re talking about the population of Victoria. You’re going to turn your back on an entire State?”

Yes – it seems we do tend to turn our backs,  if selfish wants are jeopardised, which then paves the way for the media to create spin on our general ignorance and feed the masses biased reports on our government. And it is biased if you don’t get informed about the good stuff along with the bad.

Balance.

Question #151: So how will people vote? How will women vote?

Will environmental policies get a look in?
How about women’s issues? The gender equality gap – where the female gender suffers most from poverty and violence – globally –  than its equal. Does that get any importance?

I lobby for equal pay for all women.
If there’s no money in the budget, they can just bring men down a peg and bump women up. Easy. They’ve had a good go of it.
We also need to look after our single parents who have had their payments cut by Centrelink, if their youngest child has turned 8 years old. A devastating blow…

OR will the simple mentality of those who cling to clichés – not policy –  determine our collective fate?

I shudder to think.

Our people, politics and environment are all interwoven and connected, and it’s the obsession with making money and gaining power – astronomical money and power for some (regardless with how they got there) – that is slowly choking our very existence.

It’s time to lobby for these big important changes, recognise we’ll have to sacrifice to get them and see which government can best accommodate.

I want change. I want balance.

Deep Breath.

x

*TRIGGER WARNING – image may upset*

I awoke this morning with mixed emotions.

It was International Women’s Day and I wanted to quickly shout a ‘Woooo Hooooo’ to my sisterhood before getting ready for work, but there was also a feeling of some aimlessness.

Returning to full-time work on the Monday just gone (after caring for my injured husband) and due to the extra workload I was about to encounter – I decided to give social media a bit of a break, so that I could have some time without feeling incensed.

Because that’s what I was feeling.

How could I not?

When Facebook Pages like Being an Asshole, promoting hatred against women, are considered appropriate for viewing, even though it’s been reported for its promotion of violence.

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How can men who defend it not see that by making a joke of this very real violence to countless women, it gives them permission to downplay how atrocious it is??

When a billboard promoting a strip club is placed in front of a boys’ school in Brisbane, is deemed honkey-dorey by the Advertising STANDARDS  Board, when also reported for ‘grooming’ boys – teaching them to be sexually obsessed.

When the devastating statistics about the global pandemic of violence against women, inspires a t-shirt company to create many, many t-shirts bearing slogans such as: Keep Calm and Rape Her or Keep Calm and Knife Her. Amazon was then the place to get them.
(A computer program was blamed for generating the phrases – yet the word ‘him’ doesn’t appear anywhere…hmmm…)

It’s all getting a bit nasty.

Question #150: Could it be a back-lash to our ever-louder voice?

Well, the mixed feelings I awoke with today are due to me believing that – YES – we are becoming louder and stronger and I feel enormously proud to be a part of this new movement…

But is it working? Can we see any change?
We seem to be inundated with violence and exploitation – perpetuated by the Internet, I know – but it still IS what it IS.

An indifference to us – whether active or passive.

I believe we can make a profound change – both women and men…there’s just one problem:

Most are afraid to speak up.

And I understand that fear.
The other day, I confronted my Newsagent  – a more elderly man – about the fact he had Zoo Magazine on a stand facing the street, near the front of the shop. I explained that not only is it bad enough that any kid can buy it, it was unavoidable to see the objectified woman on the cover, from the street.
So even if you choose not to go into the shop, that culture is still in your face. Still being advertised.

I had butterflies throughout the whole exchange. So nerve-racking.
As I left him, he was contemplating the location of the magazine and when I drove by later, he had taken the stand down.

Victory!
A small one, but one none the less…and it felt good.

So, it’s time.
It’s time to join the ranks for a better world for women. We deserve it.
Our nature is a nurturing one and it leaves me profoundly baffled as to why our other half want to continue to keep things the way they are.

I saw an argument by a man saying that he simply couldn’t understand why women wanted equality to men, when we’re not the same.

We know we’re not the same – it would not have made sense for nature to make us the same – but we are equally needed to balance things out.

Yin and Yang.

Yin and Yang

That’s what men and women are – predominantly one gender with a bit of the other. Of course I’m being very general – nature provides a rainbow of variations to this – but you get my drift.

So, Happy International Women’s Day!

I am for balance and I am for all women and hope the good men can join our voice.

An amazingly awesome documentary was made in the States called:
MAKERS: Women who make America – narrated by Meryl Streep.

Watch it by clicking on the link above – see how women have fought since WWII and continue to do so – see our modern-day leaders – be inspired – and join today’s movement.

Deep Breath x

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With interest, I have been watching the reaction to yesterday’s Oscars.
This interest started to turn to a calm, but deep, indignation at how far the women’s movement has yet to go.

Today, Gloria Steinem (legendary) was on The View and she said we’re:

“Halfway there. We once fought for an identity to vote and now we are fighting for social and political equality.”

Yesterday, The Oscars was more than just a night with a few crass jokes.

It went beyond that. This article looks at why it was so wrong.

The Oscars: 5 Things that need to Change

“Consider that sexist comedy alienates at least half of the show’s intended audience. Everyone who managed to endure Seth MacFarlane’s jokes last night deserves an award. As many news outlets have astutely pointed out, a broadcast that should have been about the recognition of talent devolved almost immediately into ugly, juvenile humor. Next year, send a boldface memo to the show writers: No awards show should be a megaphone for jokes whose punch lines boil down to “Ha ha, you’re a woman.”

…and I saw your BOOBS!

It’s just so juvenile.
ANYONE can make these sorts of jokes. They’re a dime a dozen – amongst most teenage boy groups in the western world – and yet we applaud and revere it?

Putting aside Seth Macfarlane using women (predominantly) as the butt of his boys’ toilet humour, he actually sang the names of accomplished actresses, such as Meryl Streep, with the line, “I saw your boobs!”

How old is he? 12? Are most men saying they are too?

On this sophisticated night that is supposed to celebrate the craft – it sounded so infantile and was embarrassing to watch.

Pedestrian. My brain is starving for stimulation. There’s nothing to watch.

I’m in shock that comedian Jason Alexander – who tweeted:

is actually turning his back on his own craft to support the Boys’ Club.
He thinks that’s funny? Well…there goes my respect for him as a comedian.

The worst part of the boob song (yes, it gets worse) is that many of the movies he chose to that these boobs appear in, were ones depicting rape and sexual violence – like Jodi Foster (who was honoured with the Cecil B. DeMille Award at the Golden Globes) in The Accused.

No Respect.
This then paved the way for more.

* Rihanna’s abuse joke, laughs at her and every woman who has to live with that horror.
What about Chris Brown? Where’s the joke about the abuser?? Why isn’t HE being laughed at?

* Jessica Chastain’s character in “Zero Dark Thirty” referred to by Seth as “every woman’s innate ability to never ever let anything go.”

* 9-year-old Oscar nominee, Quvenzhané Wallis, was connected sexually with George Clooney in another ‘joke’ and Clooney was the one who received an instant apology. What??

To add insult to injury, the majority of the male population (yes, the majority because I’m not hearing much opposition from guys) are telling us to zip it. It’s aaallll good.
THEY think it’s funny – and so do all the guys –  so what’s the problem?

Imagine…a HILARIOUS bit where Jack Nicholson’s penis is compared to a shrivelled up, baby zucchini (based on what we saw in a movie) or that Daniel Day Lewis had a flaccid penis and we SAW IT!! Hahahahahahaha!!
No – we will never see that happen because guys wouldn’t do that to each other but…*newsflash* neither would (do) WE!

Do women play a part in all this? Of course we do.
I have always stated that and is the main reason for starting this blog.

But this is about The Oscars. It was shit and men are saying it’s OK.

It’s not OK.

Question #149: Who are we becoming…or have already become?

Deep, Deep Breath.

It’s going to be a long battle.

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking – pondering – reflecting – over the last few days.

I’m feeling quite disillusioned (on a grand scale) but it’s not upsetting me…I just want to figure out what the next step is. There’s an aimlessness to my thoughts.

I know, through social media, that there is A HUGE amount of us standing up and voicing our objections to things that seem ludicrous to be even out there in the first place – but they’re flatly being ignored.

A few days ago it was about the hateful and violent images and memes that Facebook allow to remain online – despite protest – and then the latest atrocity being the adult club billboard in front of a boys’ school that the Advertising Standards Board has deemed appropriate to keep up – despite protest – grooming our future’s sexual tastes.

I won’t go on because the list is literally endless and too dispiriting.

Many of us have written and complained, but to little or no avail. There have been some small victories but it’s not on the scale necessary to bring about change.

So today I found myself thinking – what’s the point? (bad of me, I know)

Today I had a hectic afternoon in the car driving up and down, picking up and dropping off etc. when I heard the following song for the second time on Triple J. The first time I only caught the end of it and what attracted me was the divine voice and music – today, however, when I heard it in full, I listened to the lyrics.

The song is ‘God-Fearing’ by Sarah Blasko, from the album, I Awake.

You’ve got a nerve, you know you make me hate
One thing I’ve learned, you try to take away
I’m not beaten down, I won’t behave
Just listen this once or you will rue this day

You have no respect
For me tonight if you’re not listening
It might be unkind but it might be right
But you’re not listening

Set them up, knock them down
Cast them left, cast them right
God-fearing tonight

Biting my lip and holding my tongue
Was the most stupid thing that I’ve ever done 
Got carried away, let myself down
I’ll shoulder that blame if you’ll admit what you’ve done

You have no respect
For me tonight if you’re not listening
It might be unkind but it might be right
But you’re not listening

Set them up, knock them down
Cast them left, cast them right
God-fearing tonight

I adore this song. It resonates so strongly with how I feel.
Completely frustrated that I – WE – are not being listened to. Not respected. Second-class.
The lines I put in bold are the standouts for me (and I love that she sings them looking straight at us in the video).

I played it to my 10-year-old daughter in the car. It was just the two of us.

I’m in her ear about certain topics – I have to be.
After all…we live in a society which allows porn billboards to go up in front of schools. I have to prepare her.
So we talked about the lyrics  of this song – about not keeping quiet when the wrong thing is being done and that responsibility needs to be taken by the parties that do wrong, for change to happen.

I parked the car in the driveway and we just sat there listening to the magical sound of the violins (we both love them) waiting for the song to end before getting out.

As we got out of the car, she said to me:

“I want to thank you for raising me the way you are…helping me…(paused)…I don’t know how to explain it.”

I said, “You just did,” and gave her the biggest, massivest bear hug.
Lump in throat; heart swell…you know.

All this from one song – so I thought I’d share it.

Question #148: Feeling inspired (and equally indignant) to use that voice of yours?

Deep Breath

x

Sarah Blasko

Sarah Blasko