feminist writer

Planned Parenthood: Kardashians Redeem Themselves

I’m happy the Kardashians have gone and filmed a segment at Planned Parenthood because it puts a very well-known face on women’s reproductive health rights, which are important to focus on at this point in time in the United States and Canada also.

Planned Parenthood is the first place I went to for contraception. I got birth control pills at my Mom’s encouragement during high school. I didn’t even end up having sex with the person I was dating while I was taking the pills, but I appreciated the judgment-free help I received at Planned Parenthood in Hamilton, Ontario.

Anyways, I’ve also had an abortion. I got pregnant because I was delusional about how dangerous my blackout-drinking habits were, and a guy I didn’t even remember meeting had sex with me and I ended up pregnant. I didn’t even consider for a second having the child. The guy who had impregnated me scared me, and I knew I wanted an abortion. I received exceptional medical care and was able to pay at a private clinic in my city of Vancouver for an abortion that cost around $600.

Clearly, access to money was helpful here, so my class had a definite impact on how quickly I could schedule an abortion. I have never, ever regretted having an abortion at 23 (I’m 33 now). I wish I didn’t drink out of control like a maniac, so I didn’t end up with an unwanted pregnancy.

I found the actual procedure much less traumatic than those anti-abortion picketers who hold signs up about how babies are being aborted with full arms and legs. I had an abortion at 5 weeks and the doctor doing the procedure showed me the peatree dish with what looked like a strong period, nothing more, and I breathed a sigh of relief. I don’t want to get pregnant again and have an abortion, but if you do end up with a pregnancy and don’t want to give birth being proactive can make the recuperation period easier, based on how I experienced things. Anyways, I’m so thankful I had this option, and other women deserve this option also. That is why the conservative side is scary and eerily similar to The Handmaid’s Tale reproductive metaphor.

Planned Parenthood exists throughout the United States, and at sites they offer different things such as abortions, abortion referrals, contraception, and of course, education about sexual health. It is an essential service in my opinion. It is dangerous to children’s well-being to be born to mother’s who do not want to carry the pregnancy to term. Unwanted children cannot be cared for in the same way that wanted children can. For this reason, and many others, abortion is essential in our society.

I respect the Kardashians for going to a Planned Parenthood (check out their site here: Planned Parenthood site) in California to film a segment and to stand in line with Planned Parenthood to continue to raise awareness of how much funding Planned Parenthood requires to help as many people as possible, but also laws that make abortion services available to people and affordable. Safety matters to.

Thank-you unbelievably visible Kardashians for doing your part to draw more people’s attention to Planned Parenthood. Anyone who thinks the Kardashians are all bad is pessimistic and ignoring FACTS. Especially since the Kardashians are so famous, because if I were them I’d be extra scared a vengeful anti-abortion person might shoot me to make a point.

Love you Kardashians forever!

Why Is Brad Pitt More Comfortable With The R-word Than The A-word?

Brad Pitt has just done an interview with GQ, and in it he reveals the most in a long time about himself, his divorce, and his kids (but nothing juicy about Angelina specifically).

Anyways, he basically acknowledges his own role in the divorce without critiquing Jolie, that must take some control because she can’t be perfect, and points to his own partying and alcohol consumption as big problems.

B.P. then goes on to say that he hasn’t drank for 6 months. Prior to that he describes himself as “retarded” (I thought all politically correct folks knew this word is a no-no nowadays…especially when it is being used in the way that refers to moving backwards or regressing. Many people with mental handicaps are progressing and represent inspiring examples of human beings, and since the word “retarded” ended-up often being used with the intention of making someone with a mental disability or challenge viewed as less than others, which is wrong and inaccurate) in an emotional sense. Pitt claims that he wasn’t good at showing his emotions, and infers that he repeated his own father’s example of, “Father knows best” and a “war mentality”.

While I don’t know Brad Pitt at all, it was surprising that he referred to himself using the r-word (which I must admit I still use in my vehicle during road-rage so I contribute to the negative prejudice that the word promotes towards people with mental disability’s as well) he wouldn’t flat-out label himself an “alcoholic”, which it sounds like he is, since he is now abstaining from alcohol entirely. When asked why he choose to quit drinking Pitt simply said, “Don’t want to live that way anymore”.

I enjoyed this interview, and it re-established my Pitt Fandom, I think he is going to put out something incredible soon, but it did make me think of how harshly our society judges alcoholics when someone prefers to use the r-word (which I thought he would know enough to steer clear from) to describe themselves over the a-word. R-word is offensive because it has a history of being used to put people down.

I’m an alcoholic and I don’t mind the label, because my life is much less scary with my own self-labelling of alcoholic than it was when I refused to call myself an alcoholic. So maybe alcoholic has a huge negative association for some people, but in terms of my own self-perception it doesn’t, and maybe that is why I’m wondering what makes Brad Pitt so scared to call himself an alcoholic (maybe court will judge him more harshly with his kids if he does, who knows?).

Maybe it means nothing at all.

Am I Too Uptight Because I Think It’s Weird When A 5 Year-old Wears Lots Of Make-up?

This is Jessica Simpson posing with her daughter (the child on the left dressed as a mermaid) Maxwell, who just turned 5, as well as her husband Eric and son Ace.

It creeps me out that her daughter has so much make-up on! Yes, my mind immediately goes to child predators and the way in which Maxwell might already believe that getting attention for how one looks is the most gratifying or satisfying kind of attention there is.I don’t think it is, but maybe that’s only because I haven’t received a lot of attention for my looks, so I’ve had to seek  out self acceptance elsewhere. I think it can be dangerous when a person primarily defines themselves based on how hot they are, and yes, I’m judging because the picture of 5 year-old Maxwell makes me think Jessica Simpon is messing with her child’s head. Oh, and it is very, very important to note, I am not a parent. Therefore, that makes me extra bitchy and annoying because I’m commenting on Jessica Simpson’s parenting (I do love Jessica Simpson, I think I still have some of the Newlyweds on DVD…she’s a goofy person) even though I have no clue how hard it is to be a parent.

The Ol’ “Kardashians Don’t Have Jobs” Argument: Demeaning Work Women Do

This is what never makes sense to me about people who hate reality TV because it is all “fake” but simultaneously argue that people like the Kardashians “don’t have jobs”. Yeah, entertainment, which is a huge stress relief for me, can involve making fake things or situations interesting because the fake scenarios are fun or interesting to watch (they might even relate in some ways to real life as well, I think they do). The “Kardashians don’t have jobs” argument was something I once again encountered last week when I attended my friend’s son’s 3rd birthday party.

One of my friend’s friends (who felt the need to emphasize that she is “not a feminist” so you can’t offend her…yet she was offended by almost everything the other people said at the party, interesting…) asked me what’s new with celebrity culture, and I said that Kim Kardashian is getting hated-on for joking about how the flu helped her lose weight and for saying it’s an an effective diet right before the MET Ball, but if you only consider whether or not a diet helps you lose weight. It is not depending on how physically harmful a diet is–it’s not that offensive. I’ll point out Kim never denied or commented on how dangerous flus are. I bet she realizes it’s not an ideal state to have the flu! One could say she was just looking at the bright side of things, but the sad reality is because of her famous and influence there are going to be some sick people trying to get themselves sick to lose weight. Kim Kardashian can’t be blamed for all of those people, but she should consider them when writing things like this on a public format.

Anyways, this led into my friend’s friend saying that the Kardashians don’t have jobs. My other friend’s boyfriend, who I know doesn’t watch or enjoy the Kardashians but gets that they’re business people and entertainers who are SUCCESSFUL at their jobs, was really getting into arguing with the friend’s friend that they do and I joined in as well. I eventually noticed myself getting way to into the argument and the topic changed shortly thereafter.

It’s funny because the same friend of a friend was just showing off earlier about how her life is good because she is cruising at her job and making $30 an hour. Aren’t the Kardashians just cruising at their jobs of dressing up, selling people products and their TV show, showing up for professional appearances and doing press, promoting themselves on various social media outlets and taking the best financial options available for their time (aka work)?

It seems to me that this critical female who wants to demean everything the Kardashians do (and yes I think they use their sexuality as one of their primary means of attracting attention and financial offers…it’s okay, I’m a fan and on board with hit…I love looking at beautiful women, what can I say? Supply and demand is a huge part of capitalism.) is somehow jealous of the Kardashians, because the argument that they don’t have jobs makes no sense.

Capitalism to me appears to me to involve people pursuing the best financial reward available for what they are willing and or able to offer up in return. The Kardashians are highly privileged individuals in the sense that their beauty, family heritage in Hollywood have helped them greatly in terms of their success, but they are still undeniably inspirational business women who have found ways to use what the Lord has given them (nope, I don’t believe in God, but I do like that statement and I like to capitalize for emphasis) and maximize their own personal bank accounts (financial status has a huge impact on one’s own personal freedom, which means being rich can be very empowering for women and create options that would simply NOT be there if the females weren’t rich).

So, this leads me to think that this friend of a friend is falling into something I notice that I still do as well in an attempt to put down a female that I dislike, which is to resort to the age-old virgin/whore complex. Bad women are whores: lazy, liars, etc. Good women are virgins: honest, sweet, submissive etc. And since Kim Kardashian has made a sextape some people will ignore everything else she has done that has taken lots and lots of TIME and ENERGY to claim she is a whore. See it’s not that easy to be born drop-dead gorgeous now is it? Kardashians ain’t nearly as bad as people say. I defend them because of the sexist, anti-feminist attitude behind the argument that the KARDASHIANS DON’T WORK.

Clearly, they do work–but those who criticize the Kardashians don’t value all work, only the kinds of work they think are respectable I guess. It’s so weird actors who are on scripted shows are viewed as having jobs, but reality TV actors on shows everyone freaks-out about being scripted and totally staged doesn’t involve real work? Scripts. Stages. Sounds like working as an actor but they’re playing themselves to me. Makes no goddamn sense. This is another part of this weird delusional reality projected forth by people who are jealous that certain individuals got a way better deal in the whole realm of capitalism and financial gain than they did. Yes, the Kardashians make way more money than you do for doing work that is possibly easier than yours, but it’s not like able-bodied people are quick to give up their wage which can be higher because there are more jobs available to able-bodied people, because someone who is incapable of moving their body and is disability and can’t make a lot of money? People are inherently selfish, but it seems like most people want to deny this in themselves. I don’t deny it about myself. I have a regular job, but I also call up my Mom’s (she’s 55) 87 year-old ex-boyfriend every few months or so in great part because I know he’ll usually send me a cheque for around $5000 after. Does it feel dirty? Yep. But I like cash. If you’re above money, good for you. I don’t need to pretend my financial status doesn’t have a great impact on a lot of things (but of course not everything) in my life.