Play Dumb and Boys Will Like You…

Play Dumb and Boys Will Like You...

“…Be smart and men will love you.” As soon as I saw this message on a piece of Facebook flair, I added it to my profile. I then had a Carrie Bradshaw-like moment of questioning social norms and thought, “Could this possibly be true?”

After careful thinking, I’ve decided that yes, the statement featured so whimsically on a piece of flair is true.

As we forge through women’s history month, we are bombarded with messages about what it means to be a woman today.

“He’s Just Not That into You” is making millions of dollars telling women exactly what not getting a phone call from a guy means.

Valentine’s Day yet again showed every young woman that if she doesn’t have someone to spend her life with, she’s clearly doing something wrong.

And, thanks to our weekly doses of “reality” via MTV, we’re shown that there are single guys out there. It’s just that standards might have to be lowered (or dropped all together) to snag one of them.

With all this mixed messaging, it has me wondering, what is feminism today? This question was brought up in my “Women and Theatre” class and no answer was achieved.

While I’m not sure yet what feminism is, I’m getting a clearer idea of what it is not.

Feminism is not the girl who sits in the back of my 9:30 a.m. class every Tuesday and Thursday morning who has no problem expressing her opinion through the edgy buttons on her backpack, but who won’t actually speak in class for fear that some boy might not think she’s adorable anymore.

Guess what? The “boys” who might not think you’re adorable are also the “boys” who are featured in my Facebook flair.

No, they won’t like that you’re smart or that you ask questions, but that handsome history major in the back, I promise he’ll appreciate your intellect. So will the sophomore girl in the front row who is too intimidated to speak her mind.

You, however, are setting a shining example for women everywhere by letting conversation be dominated by men, or by prefacing every thing you say with, “I might be wrong, but…” That’s a great statement. I’m sure Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Hillary Clinton would be really pleased they paved the way so you could express yourself so eloquently.

In the face of this female apathy, I consider myself lucky. As a freshman, I had a great mentor who showed me exactly what being a strong woman meant. Because I found someone who was strong and spoke her mind, I’ve been inspired to do the same. Partly because of this, I feel a personal responsibility to young women on campus, and due to that, I’ve taken part in many pro-women events.

This is my third year participating in “The Vagina Monologues,” The cast of The Vagina Monologues never fails to impress me with their talent and their concern for women all over the world.

It’s an interesting juxtaposition to that girl in my morning class who seems to not care about the local (or world) view of women at all.

I would encourage everyone to come see “The Vagina Monologues.” It’s hard to be apathetic when something is put on stage right in front of you. But then, “The Vagina Monologues” are being held in the BSC again this year, and being so central to campus, someone might see you coming or going. That boy from class might not think you’re so cute anymore. But there will be someone, be it an intellectual upperclassman, or an impressionable freshman girl, who will appreciate the step you just made toward achieving justice for women everywhere.