Is it weird that some of our most patriotic holidays (Memorial Day and 4th of July) happen in the summer? Memorial Day isn't just about remembering those who fought, but about the unofficial start of summer. That means everyone can celebrate, right? Wrong. I guess it's better for these commemorative days to be associated with warm and happy feelings than actually reflecting on our actions as a global "super power." The 4th can’t really be avoided because history, but maybe Veterans Day/Memorial Day could have been in the winter to make it more of a somber holiday, where we really reflect on the army’s practices. Holidays like today and others make it hard to criticize our country and self reflect because if we discount those who died, it seems as though they died for nothing. And dying for nothing is a really horrible end for anyone. So we say they died “defending our country” and “we wouldn’t be here today without those who served,” but we don’t really know that. Just like we don’t really know if they died for nothing. That's an alternate history we’ll never get to live out, so I guess both statements “died for nothing” and “died protecting us” are kind of invalid? This holiday also goes without mentioning COs, it’s just to remember the “heroes.” Most go into he army with good intentions, but then the total institution of the military changes them for the worse or brings out qualities in them that they wish they didn’t know they had. At the same time, people go into the military for less patriotic reasons too, people who just like to be violent may join, just to be kill. Some people thrive, others don’t. It’s just a whole unfair system to not only those who fight, but the victims within the military and those who died as victims on the “opposing side.”
In an episode from Season 9 of The Big Bang Theory an Asian “joke” about Asian women was made that needs to be unpackaged. This joke can join the long list of jokes that I’ve already compiled this year. Kripke, a co-worker of the gang, was calling out to women online through Sheldon’s online live show, Fun with Flags. He said, “[looking for] Asians 18-24 no fatties.”
There are plenty of songs where singers (men and women) sing about unrequited love due to the parent(s) not understanding their partner. But there’s an overwhelming amount of songs where it’s the girl’s parents that are the "problem." She either has to runaway from them, sit quietly waiting for her prince to come, or her lover fights with her parents on her behalf. This can be attributed to the long-standing view that women are her parent’s property, only to be sold off as a burden to another man. Women were only valued if they were virgins and chaste, if they ruined that chastity out of wedlock, then they were subject to sever punishment or outcaste from society as a worthless. Thus, a woman’s parents would keep short reigns on their daughters to control her sexuality and their personal freedom. Though we have come a long way from these feudal practices, remnants of seeing women as property of their parents are rampant in today’s pop songs. There's some sort of romantic notion that a parent’s overprotectiveness could somehow equal love, rather than seen as a problem of adultism and sexism. Not to mention, women are only seen as desirable when the answer is no (whether it’s coming from the parents or themselves), which adds to rape culture. It tells others, that when a woman says no, she really means yes, and to chase after her (literally) more than ever.
I’ve been known to despise The Big Bang Theory (BBT). I originally liked it and watched the first 7 seasons with pleasure, but at a certain point, I realized that it was actually making fun of nerds rather than championing them. It also just turned in to Friends except they were “nerds.” However, there is one commendable aspect of the show that I discovered recently. I decided to watch the newest episode of Season 10 and I was surprised at how much the show has changed. Not just the premise and plot, but also how some of the characters and comedy has changed. The laugh track is still annoying, but some characters that I thought would never evolve did, while other stayed the same. The comedy is now more grounded in making jokes about each other rather than racism and sexism (though themes of that still run rampant throughout the show). I think what makes BBT everlasting and a staple in over 19 million viewers lives is how much the actors put into the characters, as well as the writers. Each character has their own profile. There’s no guessing game to who the character is. We know their likes and dislikes, their insecurities, and their strengths.
Can I just say that we’re more comfortable thinking of Jennifer Garner (essentially a 13 year old in a 30 year old body) in a thong than talk about menstruation? We could have taken the opportunity to talk about puberty and what it’s like to be an adult woman, but instead we see her/imagine her in "sexy" underwear? I guess that’s just because women are constantly being seen as sex objects, and periods are “gross.” All women really want to do is wear thongs when they get older, right?
The newest episode of CBS’ sitcom, Superior Donuts, recently aired an episode ridden with jokes about Asian women's' butts and Asian men being “tiny.” All of these jokes were said by the black main character Franco, who of course can’t be racist because he’s black, EH WRONG. Like I keep saying, just because you’re discriminated against doesn’t mean you can’t discriminate yourself. In fact, a lot of people who are underprivileged also have privilege, which blinds them to the fact they too have unconscious bias. Also, like I keep saying, CBS and other major cable networks, as well as Netflix (I’m looking at you Kimmy Schmidt), please STOP THINKING IT’S OKAY TO MAKE ASIAN JOKES. Not to mention Franco wore a Chicago Blackhawks jersey in one episode without making any mention that the Blackhawks logo is racist. Native American people are not your mascots.
21 year old English major and ESL Teacher. Currently living in Fortaleza, Brazil. Feminist and kill joy with a cause.