30 Day Challenge: Day 23

23. What’s something relatively “simple” you’d like to change about pop culture? For example: the use of ‘retarded’ synonymous with stupid in conversation.

For this prompt, Brittany wrote about people using “gay” as a synonym for “stupid.” That one really irks me, too. My ex boyfriend used to say it and his excuses were “I’m not homophobic, I support gay marriage, it’s just a phrase,” and “what else am I going to say?” To this I would respond with all sorts of adjectives that he could use in place of the word “gay.” For example, what’s wrong with just saying “that’s stupid”? Are you worried about offending stupid people? The definition of stupid is “lacking intelligence or common sense.” Being gay is not a choice, but being stupid and ignorant often is. 

But since Brittany chose this as the one thing she’d change, I’m going to choose something else. I would change the way that men who act or look “less masculine” (according to our society), are treated. I am a feminist, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t know how hard men have it, too. There is so much pressure for them to be “manly” and simple human acts like crying are frowned upon and made fun of. I’ve mentioned this before, but my ex was embarrassed to cry and rarely ever did because when he was younger and he did, his dad would tell him to “be a man.” I can’t imagine growing up that way. They get called “pussies,” which is problematic and offensive to women as well because our genitals are being used as an insult for men who are not fitting into society’s masculinity cookie cutter. Phrases like “are you on your period” or “is it that time of the month” are thrown around which are damaging to the men they’re directed toward while simultaneously instilling the idea in their heads that if they’re even a little bit sensitive, they’re like a woman, which is a bad thing. There are so many things wrong with the way society treats masculinity and it’s not good for men or women. 

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