While surfing my pre-selected channels, I came across Rosanne performing stand-up comedy. It was recent, and I watched for two minutes, then found a better show, I think it is called, Battle of the Wedding Planners. Genius programming it isn’t, but much more entertaining than hearing uninspired crap. I like Rosanne’s comedy from years gone by…she was funny and the Domestic Goddess bits still resonate with me. Funny is funny. Sometimes I don’t want to laugh because my ‘better judgement’ may discern something is too lowbrow, or easy as in dirty, but funny is funny…right?
“I hate women,” Rosanne whined into the microphone. “Women are bitches, they suck, I hate them.”
My heart didn’t race or skip a beat, it can’t- I have a pacemaker, but a small part of my heart felt a big sadness. I hear these words a lot. I hear them from the teenage girls I teach, I have read them and heard them from grown-up women. This notion, hating one’s own gender, is only women hating women unless I throw in gay men who hate specific males due to prejudice. Men just don’t proclaim they hate other men. They don’t, and if you want to give me specific example, please be sure it has the same meaning as it does when girls say, “I hate girls,” and the boys say, “yeah, girls are awful.”
As a girl/woman I am proclaiming today that this in-gender hating needs to stop. And Rosanne, you aren’t funny when you say it and then proceed to think calling women names along with the liberal use of the ‘f’ word makes it funny. Sorry Rosanne, only the Queens of Comedy can make attitude sans jokes into a HBO special. See, they were specific, they hate skinny, white women. Not all women.
Why are we haters? Does this go back to Junior High and Bitch Boot Camp? Is it because when we tell our best friend a secret she tells all of her other best friends? Is it the competition to be the prettiest, the loudest. the most charitable? And, is it not true that BECAUSE women are very powerful, amazing creatures that men have tried to keep us down since the dawn of time? The Greeks kept us locked away in hovels (thanks Sparta for allowing us into the open and even letting us participate in bull jumping!) Jewish laws had us in the back of the church (and bus if there was public transportation in those times) with our mouths shut and head covered. We weren’t counted as citizens. We are still veiled, burqa-ed, and the awful practice of genital mutilation continues in areas of Africa. We are paid less and given fewer opportunities. All of this energy in keeping women quiet in the backrooms makes me think of how powerful and scary we must be.
No wonder the witch is ubiquitous.
I was brought up hearing stories about wicked step-mothers (okay some of those stories seem plausible now that I personally experienced a step-monster). Really, just loads of stories about wicked wicked women. Is this the groundwork for our girls to slip more easily into girl-hating? Cinderella had wicked step-sisters as well. Then there is the continuing portrayal of older crone-like women with big starched hair, and a look on their face like they are constantly smelling an unpleasant odor, as if life stinks in general. I am guessing that since we women are fighting battles on both sides, some of us age with an angry-faced battle scars.
Who are the women who love other women and would never say the ‘hate’ word outside of the ‘L’ word demographic? Is Oprah real? I would love to see someone say to Oprah while the cameras were rolling that they hate women. How about Barbara Walters? She seems like a warrior for women. It was very ballsy (see, why am I using a male term when I clearly believe women are the more powerful gender? Oh, it must be that my language is much more phallic-based!) of her to create a television show with a panel of women. Say it…you HATE Elizabeth Hasselbeck, or Whoopie, or Joy or that other lady who has very little knowledge. The fact remains that the show works. Obama on The View? Whatever, he knows a little bit about power, does he not? To have an opinion gives some power to the source. I am telling you women are power.
Sure, most of us would lose a wrestling match with a man- thanks Andy Kaufman, but our power is more profound. If our strength was the only facet, there would be no veils, no burqas, no mutilation.
Next time I hear a woman say, “I hate women” I may encounter her for a moment and remind her she just poured some loathing onto herself, her mother, her sister and daughter. Her aunts, grandmothers and all of us who have the ability to suckle and grow other humans. She has undermined the soul of sisterhood, which is already torn and tattered. She has thrown a dart into the heart of the human race- there I said it!
How powerful would women be if we all truly understood who we are?
Roseanne, you hate women? You hate yourself, and that, sister, isn’t funny.