“When your mother hits you, do not strike back. When the boys call asking your cup size, say A, hang up. When he says you give him blue balls, say you’re welcome. When a girl with thick black curls who smells like bubble gum stops you in a stairwell to ask if you’re a boy, explain that you keep your hair short so she won’t have anything to grab when you head-butt her. Then head-butt her. When a guidance counselor teases you for handed-down jeans, do not turn red. When you have sex for the second time and there is no condom, do not convince yourself that screwing between layers of underwear will soak up the semen. When your geometry teacher posts a banner reading: “Learn math or go home and learn how to be a Momma,” do not take your first feminist stand by leaving the classroom. When the boy you have a crush on is sent to detention, go home. When your mother hits you, do not strike back. When the boy with the blue mohawk swallows your heart and opens his wrists, hide the knives, bleach the bathtub, pour out the vodka. Every time. When the skinhead girls jump you in the bathroom stall, swing, curse, kick, do not turn red. When a boy you think you love delivers the first black eye, use a screw driver, a beer bottle, your two good hands. When your father locks the door, break the window. When a college professor writes you poetry and whispers about your tight little ass, do not take it as a compliment, do not wait, call the Dean, call his wife. When a boy with good manners and a thirst for Budweiser proposes, say no. When your mother hits you, do not strike back. When the boys tell you how good you smell, do not doubt them, do not turn red. When your brother tells you he is gay, pretend you already know. When the girl on the subway curses you because your tee shirt reads: “I fucked your boyfriend,” assure her that it is not true. When your dog pees the rug, kiss her, apologize for being late. When he refuses to stay the night because you lived in Jersey City, do not move. When he refuses to stay the night because you live in Harlem, do not move. When he refuses to stay the night because your air conditioner is broken, leave him. When he refuses to keep a toothbrush at your apartment, leave him. When you find the toothbrush you keep at his apartment hidden in the closet, leave him. Do not regret this. Do not turn red. When your mother hits you, do not strike back.”—“Unsolicited Advice to Adolescent Girls With Crooked Teeth and Pink Hair,” Jeanann Verlee (via wewantrevolutiongirlstylenow)
Whenever I work hard for something and succeed, I feel like I don’t deserve it. It took a lot of work to even accept that this reaction is irrational, but how do I let go of that feeling completely?
By all means, work hard and succeed. That’s great. Just don’t get caught up in whether you deserve success or not, because guess what? You don’t.
No one deserves anything. Fortune and fate have nothing to do with merit. No one deserves to be the Prince of Wales. No one deserves to be a starving orphan in Malawi. The whole notion that any one person deserves any more or less than any other person is predicated on a fundamental belief that there is some form of cosmic justice. There isn’t.
Bad things happen to good people. Good things happen to bad people. The universe is totally indifferent, my friend. Life isn’t fair, and the guilt you feel from your personal success is merely a side effect of your conscience reacting to this cold, hard truth.
The good news is, these feelings are an expression of your humility, which under the right circumstances is one of the higher virtues. You don’t have to belittle your humility by calling it irrational. You merely have to accept it.
If you want to let go of the feelings that you don’t deserve your success, start by recognizing that it’s perfectly OK not to deserve it. Instead, respect the fact that you worked hard. You earned your success, and that’s enough.
There is a country where the leading cause of death of pregnant women is murder by a partner. In this same country, more than a million women were raped in 2008 and women are much more likely to live in poverty than men. Local laws don’t protect their right to bodily freedom and integrity; some rape laws even state that once a woman initially consents to sex, she doesn’t have the right to change her mind.
You may have caught on by now — yes, I’m talking about the United States.
Today a federal appeals court ruled that videos of the Prop 8 trial will not be released to the public. The trial judge promised defenders that the videos would only be used for internal court purposes, and so the videos cannot ethically be released.
This ruling overturned a lower court ruling that the videos be released. Gay rights groups and Prop 8 opponents favored the release of the videos because they would show the evidence behind Judge Vaughn Walker’s ruling, especially after claims arose that he was biased because he’s gay. In addition, the judge is not allowed to keep copies of the recordings.
A very important couple of words in the LA Times article:
The same panel is weighing the constitutionality of Proposition 8, the 2008 ballot measure that ended a brief period in California when same-sex marriage was legal. A decision on that is expected any day. (emphasis added)
“Any day” could mean as early as tomorrow or the sarcastic colloquialism “any day now.” Check back regularly to find out which it is - hopefully it’s sooner than later.