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Gender Block: I have tits; give me real stuff

Hillary Di Menna

Another just-plain-hilarious-meme is circulating! A picture of a woman, serene expression on her face, arms extended sits above a picture of a man, arms extended, looking to the sky in anguish. On hers it says, “I have tits, give me free stuff” on his, “I have a penis blame me for everything” So funny! Women have been on top all along and because of the sex they were born with. And men have been discriminated against for the way they were born! Wait …

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I know it is just a meme. I do. And yet it really, really pisses me off. There are obvious reasons: it reduces women to their physical attributes, it claims women have it easier in life than men because of our sex appeal, and  it is even kind of slut-shaming—you know, because the fact that a woman has breasts in the first place makes her sinfully slutty. Thanks, Bible.

The “free stuff” breasts provide are unsolicited comments and uninvited stares. They are what makes the fifth grade girl who developed first a “slut.” For a large part of society, cleavage, of all varieties, seems to freely label what kind of lady one “truly” is— dependent on how much or how little is showing. When a woman breastfeeds everyone is free to have an opinion on it —and heaven help her if she can’t breastfeed for any of the many possible reasons—because then she is not a woman. Which brings me to small-chested ladies: by so-called popular opinion, we aren’t even deemed women because we don’t have “tits” to get us “free stuff” in the first place.

And, who wants that free stuff, anyway? How does this one part of our body make our lives easier? Through our paycheques? In abuse shelters? (The lack of) executive  positions? The taunting we get when we are kids, the grabs we get in crowded subway stations—trust me, this isn’t the free stuff anyone wants.

This is such an old rant but snide comments and their internet meme counterparts bring this offensive discussion up over and over again. Women have breasts, of all flipping shapes and sizes: Get over it, world! Just, get over it.

A former This intern, Hillary Di Menna writes Gender Block every week and maintains an online feminist resource directory, FIRE- Feminist Internet Resource Exchange.

 

 

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