The issues.


Long-term readers of this blog will know that I’m not really one for wearing ribbons (especially pink). I think it’s important to remember ‘the issues’ always, not just when it’s trendy to do so, and I’m not sure if a wee strip of fabric is going to make a difference.

(Hypocritically, I make exceptions for red ones. Go figure.)

I also subscribe to a more inclusive form of feminism generally, one based on treating all humans like humans capability of amazing things (and terrible ones), rather than segregating women from men to fight for the betterment of the lives of girls and women.

That having been said, obviously, there are some very bad things that affect women far more than men that still need addressing.

Today is the 23rd (!) anniversary of the massacre at the École polytechnique in Montréal, when a gunmen named Marc Lépine, citing ‘fighting feminism’ as the reason, shot 28 people (killing six), before taking his own life. It was a national tragedy, leading to stricter gun control laws in Canada and the establishment of the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women.

This happened when I was 12 years old. It affected me deeply at the time, as it would any self-identifying pre-teen feminist (oh boy, was I popular in middle/high school, y’all). I’m probably definitely not doing enough with my ire.

Please take a moment today to think about what it means that we still need this day, in this day and age, because the problem is still that acute. Read about the No More Stolen Sisters campaign . Find out about women’s emergency shelters in your community and see what you can do to help. Weigh in on whether SAVE (in Edmonton ) and Men Can Stop Rape are on the right track and that their campaigns will be more effective than teaching women to be terrified and ready to fight back at all times (or work excellently in conjunction).

I’m a realist; I don’t know that we’ll ever ‘solve’ this problem, since the world probably needs assholes* to keep everyone else motivated to make things better. But things could be better. Let’s try to make that happen.

* After a family squabble, my aunt called another relative an asshole. My mother called her out on this and said ‘He’s not an asshole. Assholes have a use.’

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