Presidential candidate, Willard Mitt Romney.
“We know that when women lead, the world is a better place, which should embolden us all to focus on encouraging young women to aspire to leadership positions, especially those of international import. Given the myriad worldwide crises and conflicts that compound daily, we need an army of Hillary Clintons and Anne-Marie Slaughters preparing to take global leadership positions in the years to come. We must do everything we can to encourage, inspire and engage young women in global careers and find ways to bring their voices to the table. And if they want to wear pant suits doing so, all the better.”
- Cari E. Guittard
Boundless compassion for all living things is the surest and most certain guarantee of pure moral conduct. Whoever is filled with it will assuredly injure no one. —- Arthur Schopenhauer
And, as is true in Schopenhauer’s case, most of us are still under the influence of unconscious cultural memes. With effort we can free ourselves of many of them, but, I doubt we can be free of all of them. In spite of his phenomenal mind and ability to think deeply, Schop was a racist, a sexist and an egoist (in some regards). I still greatly admire his thoughts on the will and animals; He is my favorite dead philosopher. He represents, to me, a good example of a full human being with both great flaws and great strengths. What Schop wrote about boundless compassion is true, and thoughtful. It stuns the mind that Arty thought he could have boundless compassion for women and “dark peoples” while still seeing himself, and his fellow white males, as greatly superior to them. Kind of an oxymoronish idea of boundlessness. :( Knowing this about someone with such a remarkable capacity for cutting through all the gibberish, it makes me want to work harder to become aware of, and wriggle out of, my own unconscious molds. Not always an easy task.
Men who want to flirt with women have to realize: Women live in a state of continual vigilance about sexual safety. It’s like having a mild case of hay fever that never goes away. It’s not debilitating. You’re not weak. You’re not afraid. You just suck it up and get on with your life. It’s nothing that’s going to stop you from making discoveries, or climbing mountains, or falling in love. Sometimes you can almost forget about it. It doesn’t mean it’s not there, subtly sucking your energy. You learn to avoid situations that make it worse and seek out conditions that make it better.
If a female stranger is wary around you, it is not because she suspects you are a rapist, or that all men are rapists. It’s because a general level of circumspection is what vigilance requires. Don’t take it personally.
If this frustrates you, try to remember that women are blamed for lapsed vigilance. If a woman does get raped, everyone rushes to see where she let her guard down. Was she drinking? Was she alone? Was she wearing a short skirt? Did she go to a strange man’s room for coffee at 4am?
A woman must be seen to be vigilant as well as be vigilant. If she is deemed insufficiently vigilant, she will be at least partly blamed for any sexual violence that befalls her. If she’s regarded as downright reckless, that “evidence” can be used to completely exonerate her rapist. If it comes down to a he said/she said dispute over whether sex was consensual, as so many rape cases do, the dispute becomes a referendum on whether the woman seems like the sort of reckless person who would have sex with a stranger.
If a woman does go back to a strange man’s hotel room at 4am, even if she only wants a coffee and conversation, she’s more or less given him the power to rape her. No jury is going to believe she went up there for anything but sex. So, don’t be surprised if a stranger reacts badly to that suggestion."
I wish there were a song that could become mainstream, sung by someone wildly hip and popular like Adele, that was about women standing together, and for each other, as sisters around the world. I am serious. Music transcends culture in many cases and we really need young women on board.
~ The Thoughtful Cynic