On January 1, after doing some serious thinking about what I wanted to focus on this year, I started this post as an intro to some changes I’ll be making to the blog in 2016. I was going to talk about what I learned about creativity and career in 2015 and where it has led me in terms of my plans for Brightside Creatives, and as much as I’d like to take some time to explain that all to you guys, something much more important came up that I need to talk about instead. Something I simply can’t shut up about anymore.
We need it now, more of it, desperately. We need to talk about how women are being represented (or not represented at all, as the case may be) in our society, and we need to talk about the culture of inequality and misogyny that permeates the upper reaches of our politics and sport and media. Its time to stop shutting up about it. Because as much as I would like to say up until now I’ve been behaving as a genuine feminist, if I am honest I must admit I’ve averted my eyes one too many times. I’ve stopped myself from really letting loose about what I think for fear of not being liked, or having others roll their eyes at me.
Not anymore. During my holidays I watched one too many films (and not old ones, current films released last week, last month, last year) that not only don’t pass the Bechdel Test, their male characters would be breaking harassment and discrimination laws were the script to be playing out in real life. I’ve seen too many news stories this week that demonstrate that misogynistic men in power are deemed completely acceptable until they are caught. I’ve spoken to too many women lately about the discrimination and harassment they’ve experienced in the workplace, on the street, and in other places where they should have a right to feel safe.
Is this really the world we all want to live in, in 2016? I don’t. I’m tired of it. Completely over it in fact. And its about time I took responsibility for being an adult woman who can clearly see there is a major issue with our culture. As far as I’m concerned now, if I’m not actively choosing to change this culture whichever way I can, I’m doing a disservice to myself, the women around me, and most importantly, most frighteningly, yet another future generation that we are leaving this legacy to.
So the most important change I want to explain to you is the resolution I have made to remove my own passivity in the face of gender inequality. This year I will actively focus entirely on women’s stories. I will share them, write about them, talk about them, read them, watch them, encourage them, and celebrate them.
I’ll still write about creativity and career here on the blog, but from now on it will be explicitly for women, about women, by a woman. I am removing the veil of democratic writing and thinking which has dominated the way I’ve shared information on the blog until this point (partly due to my nature, partly due to fear of not being liked) and there will be much talk of politics, current affairs and What I Really Think.
And what do I really think? I think we have a long way to go in our fight for gender equality in this country. I think we know that. I think we can all do better, and do our bit. So I’ll be doing my best bit on this little platform I have that belongs to me — I will take responsibility for my part and share, write, talk, read, watch, encourage and celebrate my heart out for myself and all the women I know who deserve much, much, much better than this.