You know, I normally say that I pity the people who buy into this whole “bitter, ugly feminist” stereotype. Nothing wrong with being physically unattractive, especially when you consider how much time and resources conventional attractiveness can consume, but here’s the thing about stereotypes – they are a tool for idiots to engage with the world (sort of like the antennae on the heads of the scary blind ants that populate certain sections of the South American jungle).
I’m not exactly sure how to react to the perpetuation of this stereotype by a… feminist, specifically as it relates to feminist writers. This drawing is brilliant because it manages to channel two stereotypes for the price of one – the other one proclaiming that, uh… let’s see… blond writers who wear pink and drink cocktails have no actual thoughts in their head (as exemplified by the rather empty thought-bubble).
As a blond writer who wears pink and drinks cocktails (I normally prefer beer, but there’s at least one picture of me on Facebook drinking a mimosa or buck’s fizz that the online radical feminist polizei can get a hold of, so why not go ahead and admit it), I am, in all honesty, amused.
Who’s responsible for many of the cracks on women’s intelligence or lack thereof? Men. More specifically, sexist men. The sort of guys who’ll make excuses for rapists on account of all men being primitive sex-beasts who can’t control themselves at the sight of a bare female ankle, then turn around and say that because Einstein and Newton were men, it’s actually the women who are primitive.
Sexist men looove telling women that they should dress and act a certain way, then proceed to denigrate the women who actually do. In their universe, a woman who doesn’t strive to be conventionally attractive hardly counts for a human being at all (in fact, your average goat probably has higher status in these d-bags’ eyes), but a woman who does is just a bubble-brained idiot good for boning and fetching beer during the game and not much else.
Women get in on this act as well. In fact, they regularly manage to out-douche the men when it comes to gratuitously insulting another woman’s looks and/or intelligence level. Now, I personally see no problem in calling an idiot an idiot. Or, for that matter, acknowledging the fact that someone might be ugly (I’m not Miss America by a long-shot, for example, but growing out my bangs and having a raging cold is presently making me look like a creature from one of those psychologically scarring children’s stories you spend the better half of your life trying to get over).
I do see a problem with insisting that blond hair and pink dresses equal stooopid, while short-cropped brown hair, a pissed-off expression, and an enduring friendship with Charlotte from “Charlotte’s Web” (read: no social life) somehow automatically makes you a genius expert on the world’s problems. Especially if the author behind such a statement insists, literally in the same creative exhale, that she is a feminist.
I know quite a few bespectacled hermits – in fact, on many days of the week, I am one (I currently work from my laptop at home, and rarely bother putting in my contacts). It doesn’t make me any more intelligent than wearing a Stephen Hawking mask would. Seriously, I’ve tried this, it doesn’t work.
I have to wonder – have all the minute details of the “real feminist” character on the right side of this cartoon have been accounted for? Are we sure, for instance, that she’s not wearing a pink g-string under all that sensible clothing? And if she is, does it deduct from her brain activity at all?
What? Hey, I’m not the one who started this whole “let’s police women’s looks and attire even further” thing. I just want to make sure that Ms. Righteous Feminist Who Reads Actual Books isn’t hiding some terrifyingly pastel secrets from her admirers.
If, in the past, panty-checks at online radical feminist conventions were required solely to weed out the evil transgender people, now there’s even a better reason to conduct them: making sure that no stray La Senza customer can pollute the ambiance with her radioactive, lace-clad crotch.
The drawing’s creator has already stated that her intent was misunderstood. Perhaps this is really so. Perhaps I really don’t get all of the intricacies of an illustrated “dumb blond” joke. Goya also had his detractors in his time.