By: Jacqueline Stafford
Okay, not only did this video make me laugh, but it brought up some very honest issues that women still face on a daily basis. I think this video is the smartest way to address gender equality for this generation. A few months back, Emma Watson's speech to the UN on women's rights got a lot of attention. The sad fact is that her speech generated more negative press than positive, and the focus strayed away from the true matter in question. At first, I was hesitant to think that the girl in the Harry Potter movies could be a serious candidate to bring the revival for women's equality. After listening to her speech I was surprisingly impressed. She came across not only intelligent and articulate, but sincere and passionate. Her genuine devotion to this cause moved me, but I think this third wave for women's liberation needs to be lead by the general masses of females around the world. We don't need just one celebrity spokesperson, we need to come together as a whole. Obviously, women who are already in the spotlight have the opportunity to reach more people, but it seems that the focus is more easily overshadowed by their celebrity status and questions of their true intentions.
Not to say that I am not appreciative of these women who are using their celebrity to gain awareness for this cause. If anything, women who have achieved a certain amount of fame are victims of the most extreme cases of sex discrimination. Everyday they are faced with an overwhelming amount of criticism from all directions. They are either too sexy or too prude, too fat or too skinny, they are considered stupid or trying to be pretentious. So, I appreciate these women for taking a stance for all females no matter what approach they decide to use. Beyonce has dedicated the majority of her newest album to women empowerment. She has put the topic of gender equality back on the map, while also giving it an anthem. Seriously, what can't Beyonce do?
Feminism is such a big trend right now that it even made its debut on the runways of fashion week in Paris this year. The Chanel show featured a (mock) feminist protest with biggest names in the model industry leading the march. Most people think that sexuality and feminism don't go hand and hand, but it's the twenty-first century people. Feministic models may sound like an oxymoron, but why limit any women to having these beliefs just because their profession isn't as self-righteous compared to a lobbyist.
In recent years, I have noticed that more and more women are standing up and speaking out for themselves. The sixties was the time of the second wave for the women's liberation movement, which continued throughout the seventies. Ever since then it seems like the whole topic lost its relevance. I think women today feel as if we have reached equality, and there is nothing else to fight for. I know I felt this way only a few years ago. You hear of so many powerful women and their success stories that we feel like inequality of the genders is something of the distant past, which unfortunately isn't true.
Feminist. The word itself has become misunderstood over time. Feminist don't hate men. Feminist don't have to be ugly. Feminists aren't extremists. Every woman has a little feminist in them. I consider feminism as being proud to be a woman, and deliberately standing up against the injustices we face due to this male dominated world we live in. In the wise words of Beyonce, Who run the world? Girls!
By: Jacqueline Stafford
American society is known for it's superficial values and materialistic tendencies. Our culture puts such a strong emphasis on beauty and youth as being the means to success, especially for women. It is instilled in all girls from an early age to associate aging with negative connotations. We learn to avoid it at all costs. For instance, try and think about how many anti-aging cream commercials you think you have absentmindedly watched over the years? Or, how many celebrity women have you heard being bashed in the media for bad plastic surgery. No matter what, it seems like women are set up to lose. If we age naturally, no one says it, but you lose your relevance. If you take the defense and do whatever it takes to stop the aging process, you will eventually look like a crazy cartoon version of your old self.
Having said this, at the age of twenty-four, I assumed I would still have a few more years to go before being categorized as "old" or "used up". Apparently, I was wrong. I don't know what happens when your on the verge of your twenty-fifth birthday, but it seems to be the marker in a girls life where you should have a set game plan for your future. If you did make a checklist of your expectations of where you wold be, at this point in your life it's even more depressing to realize your nowhere close to checking off one of those items. It really is a milestone in a girls life, because we begin to think about our future seriously. Before recently, anytime I thought about my future it felt so far away. Now with the impending doom of turning 25, and graduating this year, I wish I put more thought into it! Also, at a certain point you realize changes need to be made if you aren't happy with your life. Being a bar rat might never get old for you, but at a certain age it's just not a good look. You start over analyzing your life choices, failed past relationships, and your inability to choose a career.
As of lately, I have been overly concerned with the fear of ending up alone, and never finding that special someone to grow old with. I have never been that girl who has been planning my wedding day since childhood. I don't have a board on Pinterest dedicated to wedding ideas or engagement rings. To be honest I still can't imagine getting married anytime soon, so why am I freaking out about it? Maybe because all my relationships up to this point have been a joke. The increasing engagement announcements on Facebook might be making me feel the pressure. I could be influenced by our societies attitudes that single independent women after a certain age end up bitter and alone.
It's probably a combination of all of these things, but we need to stop driving ourselves crazy over this. How in our day and age, is finding a husband still a huge priority for most women in this country? With all the obstacles women have overcome. The rights we have fought for throughout history, and gain. Modern women have so many more opportunities to take advantage of. So I think it's sad that I personally know so many girls who have put their lives on hold or adjusted them in some major way to be with a guy.
I don't care if Ryan Gosling himself came to my door and professed his love for me; and told me that he was leaving Eva Mendes to run away with me. I mean obviously I would work something out, but I'm not getting my hopes up since he is a new dad and all. I just can't imagine throwing all my plans aside, leaving my job, and family, my great apartment to go be with some guy who most likely doesn't come close to a Ryan Gosling look alike. Girls, can you please start thinking about yourselves first, and not the guy your with for the moment. I mean come on do you really think your going to get married in your twenties, and stay married to that same person for the rest of your life. NO! At this age no one has a a clue about what they want out of life, or even who they really are. Are we forgetting that more than 50% of the marriages in America will end up in divorce?
Women, I suggest you put all your energy into building your future, your career, your self-worth, and of course being happy. You don't have to start life when you meet the right guy, you can start right now! If you are an accomplished independent women I don't know what guy wouldn't be interested in that. You most likely will attract the men you want to actually be with. Lets be honest, if you don't need a guy that's when they seem to want you the most. Just imagine, 10 years down the road if you take on this philosophy of life. You will be at the height of your career making bank, possibly in a happy and equal partnership, while all those people who are getting married now will either be divorced, or on their third kid. You'll be going, look at me now mathafuckas!
Seriously, ladies no guy in their twenties has marriage on their mind. If they aren't worrying about it then we shouldn't either.
By: Jacqueline Stafford
Ever since boarding school I have fantasized about the day I could live alone. The idea of living alone seems so liberating with the freedom to do whatever you want, whenever you want. Guess what, it's even better than I could have imagined.
The first, and most amazing part about living alone is not having to deal with roommate drama. You don't have to worry about waking up your roommie if you come home really late one night. You don't have to fight for your turn to shower in the mornings. Sharing a bathroom in general is something I don't miss. You can have a male prospect over without having to explain every little detail the minute he leaves. You don't have to deal with your roommates jerk of a boyfriend who doesn't clean-up after himself (even though he is essentially living with you, rent free)! You don't have to worry if your not spending enough time with your roomie. You don't have to worry about cleaning up your mess if you don't want to. On the other end of the spectrum getting annoyed that all the cleaning is done by you, because if you don't, it's not done at all. Of course, the borrowing of clothes dilemma, which can destroy the best of friends. Yes, it's nice to borrow your friends clothes. It is a different situation when your clothes start to go missing, and if you do get them back it's stained or shrunk. Simply, it's ruined, and you should have just kept the damn shirt and reimbursed me.
You might be thinking, well I would get lonely if I lived by myself, but the truth is eventually your going to have to be alone. I think having roommates is extremely stressful, compared to living on your own. Seriously, it feels like being married after awhile. You will reach a point where every little thing they do starts to get under your skin. Some people might feel differently about this, and to those people I would highly suggest for them to try and be on their own for awhile. If you are freaking out after five minutes of not being around people, texting, or snap chatting you have a problem. I really don't understand this phobia, probably because I am the polar opposite. To these people I say, get over it! If you don't give yourself the chance to have some "me" time you won't ever realize how awesome you really are. Seriously, having no one around to judge you, impress, or entertain is what I live for. You can be as weird as you want! Watch all the bad reality T.V you can take, and there isn't anyone to make you change the channel. Do your strange beauty regimens. Jam out and break it down to some T-Swift, because even though you won't like to admit it, you know all the lyrics to her new song.
You could say I am a homebody. Realistically, I'm straddling the line between being an average introvert to becoming a complete and total recluse. On that note, I have to ask, what's so wrong with that? Ever since I first started living on my own people's reactions to me not having roommates were/are always puzzling to me. They are usually taken by surprise, at first. Then follow up their shock with something along the lines of, "What do you do by yourself all the time?", or "Oh, don't you get lonely?". I have to then sit there and explain that no I actually enjoy it, and no I'm not constantly suffering from severe boredom.
When I first moved into my adorable one bedroom apartment I was very excited, and proud. I thought this was what we were all working towards, isn't it? When I meet people who are approaching their thirties, but still have five roommates, I have to wonder why. It can't be purely based on finical reasons. I know plenty of people who have good paying, full-time jobs who could very well afford living alone. Maybe, it's an unidentified epidemic of the condition commonly known as FOMO, or fear of missing out. It's a real thing!
Seriously though, the most reasonable answer is that everyone is too scared to move on from the college carefree mentality, and most people prefer to have the guarantee of always having a drinking buddy. These are the only reasons I can think of, and they just seem ridiculous to me. I shouldn't be made to feel like an outcast for having my life together. I just just feel like everyone my age has taken on this new gypsy inspired lifestyle of never settling down, and traveling to wherever, whenever they can. It sounds good in theory, but I think it is overrated. I am happy that I own a bedpost, and actual framed artwork instead of tapestries. Maybe I'm lame because of this, but I consider it a sign of maturing. Sorry I'm not sorry.