Monday, December 15, 2008

Musing: On Glamour Magazines

written Apr. 28, 2008

Astonishment, surprise, nausea - all feelings appropriated from a casual flip-through of a few men's and women's magazines. The garbage that is continually pushed into our minds as members of this vindictive, blind society is shocking and outrageous. But who is really at fault here? Is it the media, Hollywood, that tells all men to be muscular, bronzed, unemotional and well-endowed? Is it the world of fashion and women's magazines that communicates to adolescent girls the reasons to be as thin as possible, as intellectual as farm animals and as available to men as they would like? Or is it society as a whole where we are all to blame?

We cannot blame a specific person or group for these crimes against human integrity. From the beginning of time until the present, there has always been an equality struggle between men and women. And sometimes it seems that all hope is lost; we should just throw our hands up in the air and admit defeat as we crawl back into our uncomfortably numb gender roles.

I, for one, am not ready or willing to do that. Every flip of every page of these magazines starts a fire in my heart, an ache in my belly, and a scream in my throat. I have to force myself to breathe in and out slowly, deeply, so that I do not hyperventilate from the mixture of tension and passion within.

So, what can I do? How do I release all that is within me without exploding? I take each day as it comes; I converse with those who have their own questions. I remind myself that every encounter with someone is a chance to make a difference; to offer a new perspective. I hold onto my dreams and try my best not to be discouraged by the seemingly harmless advice I'm fed; that which leaves me malnourished and starving for something tangible and true. One day at a time, one person at a time, I'll influence positive change, healthy transformation, until I am able to leave this world with the knowledge that my life was not wasted and the world is a better place because of me.