I always get mad at things I read or see on the internet, especially things made by trolls, and it makes me even angrier because I KNOW that they’re succeeding in their mission. That’s usually why I refuse to reply to obvious troll comments online, because 1) it’s a waste of time, 2) I don’t want to give them what they want 3) it’s common sense and 4) I get belatedly angry all the time. Sometimes I won’t even know I’m mad about something I read or was said to me until a day later when it’s too late to make a difference. Other times I’ll be spitting and red in the face but I won’t be able to put into words the reason behind my rage and I’ll have to sit down and write it all out and think about why I’m angry and why I think what was said or done was wrong and whether my anger is justified or not. Let’s face it people, ain’t nobody got time for that shit. Point is, when I’m angry, I rarely have the right words to say, and often come up with something better when it’s too late.
SO, why make the exception for this? This is one of those article that like to tease a sensitive topic (one man, singular, telling women, plural and universal, what to do) for attention from all across the internet. Whether intended or not by the author, it’s a troll article, because of many reasons: 1) It makes too many assumptions, 2) it is made up 90% of one person’s opinions and is under-researched and 3) it tries to pass off all these subjective variables as law, and dictates that certain behaviours are wrong or should not be done. There are many reasons why I should ignore posts like this, such as the fact that it is mostly made up of opinion, and that this guy is free to write whatever he wants on the internet, or that there are many people in the comments already voicing the same objects as me, or even the fact that I hate voicing my opinion because even though I know where I’m coming from and is confident in my own voice I can’t be bothered to defend myself against people who are obviously wrong (jk, no one is wrong on the internet, right???). What can I say, I’m just that lazy most of the time.
HOWEVER, recent events have changed my mind about being soft-spoken and with-holding with my words. I’m tired of letting passive-aggressive, narrow-minded, self-important people walk all over me all the time, so obviously I’m going to take it out on the internet. And this time I’m so horrified, maybe more horrified than this interview on CNN that I had to stop reading the article several times to remind myself to breathe.
Ladies, Please Stop Doing This On Instagram
THIS IS THE ARTICLE IN QUESTION. I am so torn right now between telling you to go read the article, or telling you to boycott this one and others like this because they don’t deserve the clicks or views or comments or whatevers. BUT, I don’t have much of a following on this blog (thank you to those who do read this crap), so I don’t think any of those suggestions will be taken into consideration by many people anyway.
First off, I would like to point out that this article is extremely androcentric and therefore extremely biased. Why are men not mentioned in this article? Because I have seen my share of artistic, personal, pornographic male photos out there (thanks for that, Tumblr), but their self-esteem is not under attack here. Hmm. Sit on that for a bit, while I move on to other problematic issues.
Take your assumptions, for example. Do you know all of these young women on Instagram? Have you talk to them, sat down with them and gotten to know them? Probably not (since you think them so lowly and unworthy of your approval), so how do you know where they get their self-esteem? And during that non-existent conversation with them did you also ask them why they’re on Instagram too? Maybe they’re posting these pictures not because they think that’s how they will become happy with themselves, but because they’re happy with themselves? How would you know? You don’t! So shut the fuck up! You also don’t know what they do for a living! You don’t even know their age! They could be 25 and fucking successful, and just because they post pictures of themselves on Instagram you instantly assume they are unemployed and worthless. They could even be 15/16 and be working towards their future career. You. Don’t. Know.
Two can play at this game. If I were making assumptions I would assume that you, as a father of a 15 year old girl, feels guilty about how aroused you are by these photos and need to defend your ego by attacking others and displacing blame onto other people, telling them what they should or shouldn’t be doing so that you can feel like a good person. Not “contributing to rape culture”? You are part of it, because that’s the kind of logic behind victim blaming. Instead of teaching society not to rape, you punish women for getting raped. It’s okay for a pervert to be a pervert but not okay for people to post pictures sexy of themselves?
But I’m not going to do that (even though I just so totally did, in your face), because you could be a well-mannered guy and a good father except you have a medical condition where you come off as a jackass on the internet (that was a joke, not an assumption, if you missed that).
Also don’t you dare, as a man, talk to women about our self-esteem. In a male-dominated society, girls are taught growing up that our self-esteem needs to be defined by what other people see, so yes, in that case you are right in that “[women’s] self-esteems (or lack thereof) being fuelled by the wrong things”. This sentence implies that a woman’s self-esteem comes from beyond what she might be aware of, but instead of discussing the real issue of media’s tendency to objectify women (which you had SUCH a good lead into) you attack the women directly, who are surviving the only way we know how to, the way that society has taught them to. Again, victim blaming rears its ugly head. It’s not the media’s fault for teach our precious daughters wrong values, it’s our daughters’ fault for falling into that alluring commercial trap that you would never have fallen into yourself! Not in a million years because you’re so great and smart ermagerd.
In many cases it is difficult for women to feel comfortable in our own skin and love the self that we see in the mirror, and just when we feel confident enough to wear our own skin proudly you tell us that we can’t and it’s because our confident isn’t real? Guess what, you are also dictating what women should do in order to be “happy” or feel “beautiful”, and you are also dictating how women should define themselves. Just because a woman doesn’t get paid for taking a picture of herself doesn’t mean she’s not allowed to take these pictures and post them online. By your logic, if I don’t get paid to play games, then I shouldn’t touch a video game because I’m not a professional? You’ve GOT to be kidding me. Yeah, if you’re going to go into technicalities I guess she can’t be considered a “model” or whatever, but she can still do modelling. I’m not a professional gamer, but I can still play games.
Let me also give some advice. If all of this stems from your concern for your daughter, why don’t you get off the computer so you can be a parent and teach her values yourself instead of complaining about women on the Instagram? Society doesn’t have to be something abstract and intangible. Society can begin with you.
P.S. And you’d better start soon because you are part of the problem.