An Open Letter to Erica Jong

Dear Ms. Jong:

I read with great interest your post at the Huffington Post today and I’m writing you because I feel that there’s something wrong between us, some kind of great and terrible misunderstanding, and I’m not sure how to rectify it.

I, myself, fall kind of in between second and third wave feminism.  I’m too old to be completely okay with this “I love blow jobs and snark” stuff the third-wavers do, but too young to feel much affiliation to the “We are an all powerful sisterhood of change” stuff you second-wavers seem so keen on.  I think that gives me a little perspective on what’s going on here and, I have to tell you that I think the problem is two-fold:

1.  You second-wavers who have power and cultural influence (like you and Steinem) have that power and cultural influence because you worked for the system to expand to make room for you–and by extension, us, and we are, I think it goes without saying, profoundly grateful.  But we, in general, tend to think that the system is fucked up.  So, while it’s great that we can find our place in the system, and maybe even rise to the top of that system and become President of the United States, those kinds of symbolic victories don’t have the same meaning for us as they do for you.  Yes, we’ll be thrilled with a woman president, but I just don’t think that we’re willing to believe that voting for Clinton means something about the place of women in the system, because, like I said, the system is fucked.

We would, I believe, like to completely revamp said system or do away with it all together.  Getting power within the system seems to many of us to be a way of appeasing us and not about real, substantive change.

2.  It’s kind of shitty of you to say

But it’s different this time, say the women of my daughter’s generation. We’ve won the battle. We don’t need the White House.

No young feminists say this. Which you would know if you treated young feminists as your peers and took what we had to say seriously.  There are plenty of feminist bloggers out there.  You could read us (well, not me.  I have a potty mouth, which apparently turns some folks off).  And listen to what we’re saying and consider it as coming from your peers, instead of just making some stuff up and setting yourself in opposition to us.

After all, we don’t believe we’ve won the battle.

Also, I would like to point out, if you don’t mind, one thing: you have a great deal of power.  You can complain about being “token,” but at least you’re on charitable boards and prize committees.  You get published.  You write for whoever you want to write for.  You are a queen bee.

And you are, in that very post, attempting to rally all of the little worker bees into voting your way.

The weird thing is that few of us are saying that we wouldn’t vote for Clinton if she was the nominee.

Ha, no, I take that back.  The weird thing is that one of the reasons you list for why we should not vote for Obama is

Youth has come in the person of Barack. Male? Not really. Think of his wife. Two for the price of one–like Billary in 1992. But will Ms. Obama be the prez? Not really. Power behind the throne.

And I’ll admit to being confused about what you mean about Barack not really being male, but let’s overlook that.  Look at the rest of what you’re saying.  No, Ms. Obama will not be president.  But Ms. Clinton is running a campaign based, in part, on her White House experience.  So, that experience counts for Clinton, but wouldn’t for Obama?  I don’t get it.

Here’s the thing.  Either one would be a fine candidate.  Either one would be of huge symbolic importance.  This isn’t going to be our (females) last shot at the White House and this ugly notion that you and Steinem seem to think is some kind of valid point–that in the U.S. there’s some kind of competition between blacks and women (sorry, black women, you don’t exist or need to pick a team or something) over who’s going to have their oppression salved first and we women deserve it more–needs to stop.

You keep saying that it’s not a competition, so really, stop acting like it is.

Yours in sisterhood, or whatever.

Aunt B.

Where Not to Get Your Sex Ed

I have nothing to add to Renegade Evolution’s awesome, awesome post, except for just these two things: 1.  If we had real sex ed in school, people would not have to turn to porn for information, and 2.  I’m embarrassed to admit that, reading through her lists, I had a number of ‘Whew, I thought I was the only person who didn’t like that’ moments.

[Should I even add that it’s not quite safe for work or can you figure that out on your own?]

[Also, I just want to add that, to me, Renegade Evolution is an illustration of why the internet kicks so much ass.  I might never know someone like this in real life.  Her circles and my circles would never overlap.  I find myself going ‘Eh, I don’ t know…’ about half of what she says.  And yet, I love to read her.  Love it.  It opens up a part of my mind I didn’t even know needed opening.]

Shut Up!

Okay, I am starting to take this personally now. First and continuing, I’m dissed by Progressive Nashville. Fine.

But now I’m dissed by the Democrats?!

What does a girl have to do to be recognized as a Lefty around these parts?

This is because I have a potty mouth, isn’t it? Little Pasture, tell me, is it because I have a potty mouth? I mean, I try to live by the tenants of the Democrats. I sneak five or six illegal immigrants around town every day (okay, not really, but if I could convince cute men with beautiful brown eyes to get into my car and whisper ‘La-urrra’ in my ear, I’d totally do it). I do drugs (well, not illegal drugs, but come on! I have terrible lung problems. I can barely breathe as it is, let alone smoke that crazy reefer). I am as promiscuous as I can get other people to agree to. What more can I do?

Edited to add:  Tiny Pasture fixed it!  The Democrats love me!  Which is good because, in all honesty, I just can’t vote Republican and would be in big trouble if they tossed me out of the Left.

Random Things I’d Want With Me in a Haunted Orphanage

1.  This dude.  I both like to oogle him and I’m jealous of his ease in front of a camera.  I’d like to be that comfortable in my own skin.

2.  The Professor.  As has been established, I run around the world with my hands waving over my head, screaming in horror, just at anything, so last night, at the movie, I was gasping and yelling and looking through my fingers.  Y’all, there was a kid in a creepy scarecrow mask!  His mom was so creepy–she had a doll of her creepy kid she pushed in a stroller–that it made my brain go “A-woo-ga” just to try to block out some of the horror that was her.

The Professor’s sitting there cool as a cucumber and, I kid you not, she actually said to me, “I don’t get why that part or that part was supposed to be scary.  Those were just little kids.  They just wanted to play.”

So, dang, if you have a house full of ghostly children and you need a babysitter, I’ve got the person for you. 

3.  This from the gender that brought you lighting your farts on fire and nuclear bombs.  Okay, it doesn’t actually fit with the theme of this post, but imagine, if you will, how, even for me, it would be nearly impossible to be scared in a haunted orphanage while listening to the Professor and Exador fight.  And once she had the ghostly children on her side?

That would be something to see.