Girls are the wee-wees, boys are the poo-poos…
… according to my five-year-old daughter anyway. This lyrical gem combined with some Daily Mail ranting about the inappropriateness of fantastic new Doctor Who companion Amy Pond, an article by the always excellent MaryAnn Johanson (of FlickFilosopher.com) about female action heroes, and the normal bollox about feminists and feminity that we surf along in every day, got me thinking.
I have already expressed my admiration for Amy and for her creator, the unsurpassable Stephen Moffat, over at the pauseliveaction blog, but I’ll say it again – Amy’s a great role model for young girls. I couldn’t be happier that my daughter has Amy to inspire her. Amy doesn’t seem to stop thinking – even in moments where most people would be wondering if they’d stay alive long enough to change their underwear. She’s brave, she’s (overused word, but still…) feisty. So what if she wears short skirts? There are occasions when women dress for the benefit of men, but most of the time I (and I’m confident I’m not alone here) dress either for my own pleasure or to impress other women.
Amy’s drop-dead gorgeous, but that’s not what makes her a great companion – it’s everything else about her. I can’t tell you how sick I am of hearing men judging women for the shape of their legs, size of their bums, pertness of breast – especially when they’re (inevitably) less than pysically perfect themselves.
I confess to several ongoing crushes on some beautiful boys – I’m not saying men shouldn’t be allowed to fancy women – but I’m not interested in them just for their looks, and I don’t make judgemental comments about the 99.9% of men who don’t interest me. It’s just plain rude.
There are many things I wish to improve about myself – assertiveness being top of that list, followed by learning to pause (and think) before speaking – but just because I’m not a great feminist role model, doesn’t mean I don’t appreciate those who are and resent the knee-deep sexism women have to wade through everyday. The problem with walking through this crap every day is that you get acclimatised and forget how much extra effort you’re putting in. If I have a hope for my daughter’s future (beyond leaving a planet that’s actually habitable, of course) it is that she won’t need the waders that we’re currently wearing.