Celebrating 4 Years

Hey there, Radical Readers!

This month The Radical Idea is celebrating its fourth birthday-~-that’s four long years of researching, writing, and posting about the things we all care about-~-and in honor of this occasion (which I admit I will probably find more momentous next year when we finally hit half a decade), I’ve decided to compile a list, not of the most viewed posts on The Radical Idea, but of some I just liked (or that other contributors on the blog have particularly liked).  And so, in no particular order, here they are:

1. On Doing Gender and Being Gendered: Or, How You’re Socially Constructed Too

2. Devaluing Women’s Work, Devaluing Women: A Feminist Perspective On Staying Home

I’m all for feminism fighting for women of color to have choices, but not for feminism to stand by and let women who do this important work be talked down to or treated like they are lesser members of society.  Who is to say that the woman watching your children is doing something less important than the teacher leading class or the lawyer defending a drug trafficker?  Who is to say that the woman cleaning your house isn’t providing you with a service just as valuable as the service provided by your accountant?

3. Like a Virgin: How Society Invented Virginity and Vilifies Sex

4. Trigger Warnings: Why I’m Offended You Think It’s About Being Offended

Imagine for a moment that someone was injured.  Maybe they have a sprained or twisted ankle.  And they were with a group that was considering going on a hike.  Would you force them to go on the hike, or would you ask them if they were up for it.  You’d ask, right?  You’d ask because they’re injured, but they know their own physical limitations, and maybe they can handle a hike on a twisted ankle, but maybe they need to sit this one out, and wait until they’ve healed, and then they can go back to hiking.

Trigger warnings are the conversation where you ask if everyone is ready to go on the hike, so someone can brace up or tell you they need to sit it out.

5. Staying, Surviving, and Defying the Good Victim Paradox: A Perspective on Domestic Violence

6. Fox News, Annie Get Your Gun, and a Glance at the Calendar

Because feminism doesn’t argue that women shouldn’t be feminine: it argues that femininity doesn’t have to be this pitiful secondary concept.  Femininity and strength aren’t mutually exclusive.  You can be beautiful and empathetic and caring and still be smart and ambitious and successful.  Feminism says that we got our idea of femininity all wrong, that we underestimated women and what they’re capable of for centuries.  Anyone who says that you can’t be feminine and a feminist is lying to you, or doesn’t understand feminism in the slightest.  Feminism says “yes we can” when the Patriarchy says “You can’t, now make me a sandwich”.

7. What Does Choice Really Mean?

8. Gay Marriage Has Nothing To Do With Love: Anti-Assimilation and a Radical Vision of Queer Revolution

Inclusion is not liberation. Assimilation is not liberation. Why is it that our goal is assimilation into the hetero-patriarchal institution of marriage? The marriage equality movement has attempts to depoliticize the inherently political nature of living as a queer individual into a discussion centered more often than not on whether or not it is “right” to be queer. We’ve wasted so much time arguing with people about the morality of our identities that we haven’t been able to take a step back and assess why and if we want to get married in the first place.

9.  On Feminism, Relationships, and How We Aren’t Fish

10. Why I’m Tired of Being Polite

We are being talked over by money, reputation, perceived social value.  We are being talked over when individuals like Bill Cosby and Charlie Sheen are permitted to have massively successful careers in spite of allegations and convictions which demonstrate that they are abusers.  We are being talked over when we celebrate and protect male student athletes at the expense of female student survivors.  We are being talked over when very real issues regarding consent education and the need for better response mechanisms at universities are overshadowed by schools desperately blaming institutions like Greek life.  We are being talked over when survivors are still being functionally put on trial because they need access to services, or simply want justice.

I’ve come a long way as a feminist and a blogger in the last four years; the posts I chose to highlight here (only some of which are mine) represent a range of issues I’ve had to learn to apply a feminist lens to, issues I wasn’t necessarily interested in before I started writing The Radical Idea.  I’ve learned so much, in these last four years, about intersectionality and what it means to look at the different sides of an issue, and it is an ongoing learning process for me, all the time.  I hope that all my readers remember that, wherever you are in your feminist journey, it is a journey.  There is no magical button that we press that suddenly erases every problematic thing society has taught us, and if you find yourself still mis-stepping, it is okay.  Every feminist I know has moments where they say something without realizing what the implications were, or say something they do not mean.  The important thing, as I have learned from writing this blog, is to learn from those moments.

To those of you who have stuck with me, whether it is over months or over years, thank you.  And for those of you who just casually read this blog, thank you as well.  Writing is great in and of itself, but it’s even better knowing you are out there reading.  Special thanks to Corey Nyhus and Matt Massaia, who have been guest writing for this blog; your thoughts and perspectives are extra appreciated-~-and if anyone ever wants to send a post my way, please do not hesitate to reach out and email me at radicalbutlogical@gmail.com.

~ by Randi Saunders on July 20, 2015.

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