The War on Terr’r Part 2: She’s Such a Slut!

20 May

It isn’t only men that hate freedom. There are a lot of women who have decided to side with the terrorists and adopt their tactics toward other women in the hopes that, by doing so, they can appease the terrorists and protect themselves from acts of terrorism. I’m here to tell you appeasement doesn’t work, and it’s high time all these Ms. Neville Chamberlains realize that they’re doing business with the enemy. The War on Terr’r begins on the home front; it’s essential that we as women (and as Americans) all realize who the real terrorists are and band together to fight terrorism at its source.

Appeasement comes in many forms, but its most common manifestation is in the actions of women who attempt to enforce limiting feminine gender roles on women who don’t wish to adhere to them. Let me tell you what I mean by that.

By the time most girls reach junior high, they’ve been so inundated with the message that their chief worth lies in their physical attractiveness and their ability to attract boys’ attention that they have almost no hope of ever believing otherwise. They’ve probably been reading Seventeen and playing with Bratz longer than they’ve been doing long division, and they’ve probably spent more hours watching gender role-reinforcing television programming than they’ve spent reading, playing with their parents, and eating combined. Pink shit abounds these days. It’s no wonder, then, that adolescent girls, who have yet to develop the capacity to understand the entirety of the burden that has been placed on their shoulders by a fascistic ideal of femininity, tend to internalize the dominant culture’s ideas of womanhood and attempt to enforce them on themselves and others. They have yet to realize that it isn’t possible to be the object of every boy’s lust and respect at the same time. They have yet to discover that you can’t have rewarding friendships with other girls if you look at them as the competition. They have yet to find out that, if they play along, their lives will be dominated by the quest for male approval and acceptance and that, if they don’t play along, they can expect to find themselves victims of countless small (and not-so-small) acts of terrorism at the hands of male terrorists and their female appeasers.

In a patriarchy, women are valued for their usefulness to men, and women who adhere to patriarchal values judge other women by that same standard. Once the contest for male attention kicks off, girls discover that they only have one means of competition available to them, their appearances, and the results of that realization are not pleasant. Other girls become a source of fear in such a scenario, and nothing breeds hate like fear. When we don’t have any way to distinguish ourselves from our peers, we tend to develop hostile attitudes toward them. It’s a disgusting trap, and it’s no wonder that girls grasp at whatever straws they can reach in an attempt to escape it. That means that, in the absence of other means (appearances notwithstanding, because very few girls are born with the kinds of looks that allow them to escape this game) of distinguishing themselves, girls are left with one option: using the tools of patriarchy to tear other girls down in order to improve their own position within the patriarchal system.

It’s in junior high and high school that girls begin deploying those most hurtful of weapons, insults and exclusion, against their peers. I think most of my readers will agree that they first began hearing girls refer to each other as whores, sluts, skanks, and hos at around age 12. It’s also around age 12 that girls begin to get really vicious in their evaluation of their peers’ appearances, fashion choices, and behavior. Adolescent and teenage girls are probably the meanest people alive, and their terroristic actions during such formative times might just be responsible for a larger part of women’s unhappiness in this world than any other factor. But it isn’t their fault. They’ve been told that their worth will be determined by how much male attention they can garner, and they’ve been told that women who don’t follow the rules of the game of femininity are to be shunned and feared, and most certainly not emulated. They follow the rules, they do the toenail painting, the tanning, the waxing, the hair straightening, etc. They put on the restrictive clothing, the painful shoes, and the make-up. They pretend to be less intelligent than they are, they pander to male egos, and they mold their personalities to fit what they think is expected of them as women. They remain chaste whether they want to or not, and they don’t complain that boys get rewarded for hosing around. They go along with all this bullshit, and then they see someone else get the male attention they thought was their due for all that hard work simply because she’s prettier, or because she cheated by not following the restrictive rules of femininity and chastity.

So they try to force other girls back into what they believe is a fair competition (but which will never be one) through acts of terrorism. Adolescents and teenagers fear nothing more than the censure of their peers, so calling a girl who breaks the rules a whore, ugly, or something even worse (I’m sure there’s new slang I’ve yet to have to hear) is an extremely effective terrorist tactic when deployed against young women.

It is in this crucial period that I believe the most difference can be made in the War on Terr’r. These young women have to be told that appeasement isn’t the way to deal with a terroristic patriarchy. They need to be told who their real enemy is, and that it’s treasonous to treat their fellow victims in such a manner. They need to be made aware that it’s the unreasonable demands being placed on them that deserve their ire, not the few girls brave enough to resist those demands. And they need to be told often, because the message coming from the other side is repetitive and loud, and it comes backed up by the threat of terrorism, as I’ve defined it (tactics that make use of fear to manipulate people’s behavior, in this case the fear that boys will not pay attention to them and that their lives will thus be without meaning). Girls need to be told that when boys call them ugly, when boys call them sluts, when boys attempt to render them invisible or worthless with their acts of terrorism, they ought to tell those boys to fuck right off, not attempt to appease them by turning that sort of terroristic behavior loose on other girls.

And that applies to adult women as well. Sure, adult women tend to be less overtly vicious toward each other, but that’s only because they’ve learned to tear each other down in much more subtle ways. I don’t know about you, but I still struggle constantly with having internalized the terrorists’ values, and I think about this shit constantly. Just imagine how hard it must be for the type of woman who rushes to say, “I’m not a feminist or anything, but…” to resist turning to appeasement.

Remind yourself when you are thinking about other women that they aren’t the enemy, that you aren’t in competition with them, and that, regardless of the fact that they may be appeasers, they aren’t the real source of terrorism, but rather people in need of a dose of the Truth (capital T). Be charitable and remember that it’s easier to join ‘em than to beat ‘em, but make the appeasers aware of the consequences of their actions,* and then turn your hostilities toward the real terrorists. If we fight them where they live, eventually we won’t have to fight them where we live anymore, and isn’t that the goal of the War on Terr’r?
To be continued…

* Note: Unregenerate appeasers still get kicked out of the band. I say, “If you aren’t with us (or can’t be convinced to join us), you’re against us.”


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6 Responses to “The War on Terr’r Part 2: She’s Such a Slut!”

  1. chlorophyll May 20, 2008 at 6:46 PM #

    Oh god, I was totally the new girl in 8th grade that all the cool girls loved to call a slut behind my back. I was smart, not terribly slutty, but still “managed” to “snag” a popular boyfriend. I was certainly gossiped about and ostracized, and even that popular boy in all his pot-induced stupidity was able to observe that the girls didn’t like me because they saw me as a threat. It didn’t help that whenever a popular girl would say snide things about me when I walked down the hall, I would respond with a direct “fuck you.” It definitely made me grow up with an intense fear, hatred, and mistrust of most girls, especially since my own mother was a feminine terrorist of the wost kind: the unfulfilled housewife kind!

    Unfulfilled women: the worst kind of person to be around. They will pander to the men and boys but viciously work to try and bring another female with potential down. It definitely blurs the way that I view the world.

  2. Windstorm May 20, 2008 at 7:42 PM #

    Yes, we need to get to the root of this by teaching young girls what’s actually going on.

    Though maaanny years have passed since I was 12, I still remember exactly what you’re describing, as if it were yesterday.

    I remember as a kid buying into the patriarchy as if my life depended on it; being in awe of the “popular” girls, and being absolutely terrified (TERRIFIED) of being disliked by a boy, any boy. In retrospect, I was a shell of a person as a kid.

    I’m just grateful now to be an adult, to be “free,” or working towards freedom, and to have a grasp on what’s really going on.

    Thank you for this fabulous series of posts. I love your site!

  3. Konservo May 20, 2008 at 8:25 PM #

    Given this clear proposal for state sanctioned terrorism, namely:

    To mandate a sex strike by women in the state of Colorado on January 1, 2009, in support of United States combat troops.

    I was wondering if the proper course of action is going to be a pre-emptive strike against the terroristic proposal. How dare this man presume to use women as pawns, terrorizing female citizens of Colorado with restrictions on what they may or may not do with their own bodies (note, men may still have sex with each other, women may not).

    I suppose, that they “ought to tell those boys to fuck right off,” and, accordingly, Lysistrata (though, fictional) who is frequently held up as a feminist icon, is, according to your definition, a terrorist who turned “terroristic behavior loose on other girls.” In fact, she is guilty of treason, right?

  4. syndicalist702 May 20, 2008 at 8:45 PM #

    It’s a damn shame that women can be the biggest misogynists. I can cite a few examples.

  5. C May 20, 2008 at 9:28 PM #

    What the fuck is that guy “konservo” talking about? He needs to get off his pedestal, anyways another great post! I’m in high school now, and from reading this post it made me think that high school now is a lot better than when you went to school. I’m not a part of those groups of superficial people and even though there are groups of girls like that who just absolutely hate their lives, you can tell, I’m not shunned or shamed for choosing not to be like that. Mind you, I’m never going to get as many boyfriends as them which is the only possible reason for why I think they put themselves in those shallow situations. But I’m really happy in high school, none of that catty girl bullshit.

  6. Nine Deuce May 20, 2008 at 11:03 PM #

    I’m not quite sure what he’s talking about, and I suspect he’s not either.

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