Props to Netflix for creating an original series that’s not only entertaining, but also majorly inspiring and educational.
The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Dear White People, as it’s name suggests, is racially charged and a bit aggressive… I’m sure the internet is pissed about it (I don’t plan on reading any comments, but I’m sure “reverse racism” and “all lives matter” are rampant — these peeps probably need to watch the show again to get the “educational” gist I was referencing). The truth is, we could all stand a little education on racially-charged topics that are affecting the world today and the societal norms that exist because of them. I found several themes in the show very interesting — the perspectives of different racial communities on bi-racial couples, how different members of said communities choose to deal with their feelings about being grouped a certain way — but the message that stood out to me most went beyond race and made a profound statement about all of American society:
“You do realize all we do is complain about things. It is as though Americans would have no identity if not for their near-constant outrage.”
For real. We are all so constantly outraged — myself included. My theory is that it stems from a desire to be understood and accepted. And if someone doesn’t agree with what we’re saying or doing, well, “haters gonna hate.” And that’s how you just keep on “doin’ you.” But the context of these statements needs to change. More often than not when I hear someone say “you do you,” the context is along the lines of “fuck these people and what they think. You should do what you want and they can just deal with it!” We’re trying to force people to accept our thoughts, views, and beliefs by making them watch us practice them. But the real freedom comes from not having someone who you know disagrees with you finally accept you, but from literally just doing you. For you. No one needs to know.
I got this idea from my girl C. Paj. (check out That’s Deep Bro right now) and it’s stuck with me for awhile now. To paraphrase, we live in a society where we want to be heard. We want to be accepted and understood and able to scream to the world that this is who I am and I love it!! The trouble is, no one cares. Or worse, they do care and they disagree with you and so choose to make that known. We all want to be liked (loved?), but the truth is not everyone is going to accept you. Or like you. Or agree with you. And that’s ok. You don’t need EVERYONE to accept you in order to “do you.” You need YOU to accept you and, honestly, that’s it. But we’re humans so it’s nice to have a few people on our side. So, find a couple of friends that support you. Do the stuff you like with them. The world honestly does not need to know what you’re into, what you like, how you think, etc. And if you choose to put those things out into the world (for example, by writing a blog post about it :), understand that lots of people won’t agree. And they may express that. Granted, they could probably be nicer about it, but just like you’ve expressed what you’re into, they can now express their thoughts.
Which brings me to the larger point of my… what is this, a rant? I think a lot of our relationships are formed and sustained thanks to the anger that we’ve come to identify with. We bond over hating the same things — particularly other people — because we want someone we can relate to when we feel angry — someone to share a little side eye with when our frenemies talk shit. But relationships built on hate just aren’t happy! We, as individuals, can’t be happy when we’re constantly going around judging others. And why are we constantly judging others? Because we’re judging ourselves. We have high standards for ourselves and we’re constantly worried that someone may not like us, or think we’re good enough, or god forbid – actually do something better than us. And so we hate. And when someone hates on us, we call them a hater and hate them more. And the circle goes on and on.
Unfortunately, this way of thinking is far too common among women. We can’t just be happy for other women when they achieve things or live in a way we wish we could. When we see a woman who seems strong, capable and comfortable with herself… well, that’s all the more reason to hate her. Why? Because we wish we could do what she’s doing, say what she’s saying, or feel the way (we think) she feels. HOW DOES THAT MAKE SENSE??? I heard a quote around election time on an episode of Ari Shaffir’s Skeptic Tank that got me thinking about the way women treat other women…
“Nobody hates women more than women.”
It’s so true. We spend so much of our time hating on other women, we don’t even truly appreciate our own awesomeness and successes. And more importantly, we don’t take the time to understand what we envy about that woman so that we may grow and learn to embody her power. We just ate bitches cuz they’re skinnier, nicer, funnier, more successful, smarter… Those aren’t reasons to hate someone. They’re characteristics to appreciate about the people in our lives and try to embody if they’re important to our happiness.
Ok, so I somehow took a racial topic and made it all feminist… but the point is, all of the -isms are based on judgement. And if we just stopped craving validation from society and truly did our own thing, we could make it stop. That’s not saying you should hide from society… I’m saying imagine a society where literally no one cared what color your skin was, who you like to have sex with, if you go to church, etc. etc. etc. Or better yet, imagine a life where YOU didn’t care about those things in other peoples’ lives.
Ok, that’s what’s up for tonight. ✌