on prejudice and stereotypes and flying in the face of all that

Whip It is probably one of my favourite movies right now. It features great directing by Drew Barrymore, a rocking soundtrack, hilarious and talented actors and actresses, roller derby! (aka girls beating the crap out of each other), female empowerment and whatnot, and a whole lot of heart.

This movie is so close to my heart because I feel like I’m at a stage in my life where I can relate so much to the character of Bliss (played by Ellen Page. Yes, yes, I know some of you know that I’m a big fan of her work.. but this goes soo way beyond my love and admiration for her). I guess it’s the whole parental pressure and disappointment, and finding out where you belong and who you are as a person, knowing that you don’t quite fit in with your parents’ and right-wing society’s notions of what a girl is supposed to be like; like a triangle being forced into a square-shaped hole.

The whole idea of being judged by the way that you look was brought to my mind a few times today. I painted my nails black the other day, and when the male half of the (pa)rental squad noticed, concerns that I was hanging out with “the wrong crowd” were brought to the surface – as if I had joined some kind of cult or was out doing drugs and getting drunk and having sex – all because I had recently cut my hair short and gotten a piercing and dyed my hair and painted my nails and was talking about not going to church anymore. And when my dad saw Ruby Rose on TV today, he made some sort of comment about the way she looked and that she must be a bad person or something along those lines. It’s this kind of thinking that I vilely detest. That a person can be judged as being “a bad person” just because of their haircut or the way they dress or what they have on their skin. And you know what, it hurts to think of what my dad thinks about me and how he sees me, but as a matter of fact, I am not sorry for the way I choose to look, and I am proud that my appearance sends a message out to the world. It says, “You can judge me all you want, but I don’t give a shit, because my self worth and my identity and who I am as a person are not dependent on what you think and how you see me.”

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  1. Hey Jan! Haven’t seen you in yonks. I saw someone who I thought looked like you the other day but she had totally different hair.. And now I see it probably was you! 🙂

    Cool blog. I reckon our prejudicial stereotyping of others stems from a failure to love. That is, we jump to conclusions and think the worst of someone.

    At least, I think this is what I’ve done often in the past. I used to be pretty arrogant and looky-downy on people (I hope I’m less so these days) and very quick to judge people and put ’em in boxes (always negative ones) before I’d actually stopped to get to know them.

    Keep writin!

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