@large__marge yuuuuuuuuuuuuuuup. Like, if things are this bad (or ok "bad") for upper-middle-class white women, how bad must they be for everybody else? I mean, I was sort-of-but-not-really kidding with the "why we need organized labor" comment further up, but seriously, maybe we should look at countries where women -- and men, actually, so that there's less stigma against men taking part in this work, which is in fact difficult friggin' work -- have actual childcare options, and maternity leave, and access to healthcare for themselves and their children, and means of preventing unwanted pregnancies, and actual sick and emergency leave, and reasonable working hours so that they can spend time with their children. If even the upper-middle-class white women don't have these things available to them, what the hell chance do the rest of us have?
@SarcasticFringehead I really like you.
@hallelujah I agree, but in fairness that's sort of my baseline.
@SarcasticFringehead ha ha ha oh god. as the kids say, I KNOW THAT FEEL
like seriously a lot of this seems to be, in many ways, at least as tied into the fucked up ways we think about labor and work in this country as it is into sexism? which, it's definitely about that too, because (among other things) lol the eternal gendering and corresponding undervaluing of affective labor, but some of those comments about everyone being too tired for domestic work and men wanting to spend some time at home, too, just also hit my "when can we have a socialist revolution already" button hard. idk my bff intersectionality, I guess?
@commanderbanana I do! Hilariously ("hilariously") I was thinking about this whole post and the comments yesterday while walking to the Metro station after work and got some of the most obnoxious street harassment of my life when I drew attention to myself by saying "excuse me" in walking past someone on the escalator. But at least I was polite, amirite?
@Miss Maszkerádi I'm willing to agree that there may be a middle ground, but I think it's much narrower, and much harder to define, for women -- how many rapes are justified with "but she smiled at me and answered my question, how was I supposed to know she didn't want it?" A woman doesn't smile at a random stranger and she's incapable of holding up her end of the basic "don't be an asshole" social contract; if she's too friendly then she's asking for it. I don't get the sense that this kid is actively being a brat, just that she's not going out of her way to be a Disney princess.
Like, I think I am also pretty polite person, even to the point of passiveness/timidity (it's only in the past year or so that I've managed to just smile and say "no thanks" to people trying to collect for charities or sign me up for their mailing list or whatever outside of my Metro station on my way home without feeling super guilty and uncomfortable). I have moderate-to-severe anxiety -- I take Zoloft daily and Xanax as needed -- and one person being rude in the wrong way will leave me shaky for hours. But even I, super-oversensitive to rudeness and any implication of hostility as I am, didn't bristle at all when reading about this kid's behavior.
So yeah, definitely a mileage-may-vary situation, but like I said, I feel like the absence of active "niceness" (smiling, allowing every stranger who wants to engage you to do so) is being declared by the Internet to be active rudeness. Which I guess is what is getting my hackles up about this whole conversation (by "this conversation" I mean not this thread here with you and me, which is perfectly civil but the entire Internet-wide discussion of the article, I should specify).
@Miss Maszkerádi No worries, sorry for writing the friggin' novel there! I guess what gets me is that the line that people mostly seem to be getting "this kid is a brat/asshole/bitch" from is But when strangers talk to her, she is like, “Whatever.” She looks away, scowling. She does not smile or encourage. but that's preceded immediately by her telling us that this child is perfectly polite in dealing with people during necessary interactions.
Like, it's pretty telling to me when people make the assumption that she must be tossing her hair and saying "whatever" to every waiter in a restaurant. And, I mean, I have a lot of leftover retail rage, I do not tend to give customers the benefit of the doubt because they are generally total assholes, but there's no indication here, to me, that this kid is doing anything of the sort, instead of just not smiling at every rando on the street.
(Alternatively, perhaps my assuming that she's just not smiling at every rando on the street is indicative of my feminazi paranoia and I am just an asshole who assumes that every man is a rapist. In fairness, I am an asshole, but it's for a number of other reasons.)
I guess a lot of the discussion and the "well assertive is all well and good but" is interesting/frustrating to me because I don't see anything in the article that suggests active rudeness to me, and it's deeply telling, for me, to hear people who do see active rudeness. "She does not encourage" strangers to engage with her is apparently the same as "she actively discourages" strangers from engaging with her, there is no middle ground, and I do feel like there is a middle ground for dudes, where they can not be smiling all the time and also not be considered actively rude, but there isn't one for women, and it starts even when you're a child.