This is not an article recounting insipid, high school-esque events like the gossip junkie in your fourth period gym class. This is a piece about the repeated pitting against each other of female public figures perpetuating gender inequality, with the idea that all women hate other women, therefore men should hate them too (and discredit their intelligence or refuse to hire them or govern their organs). I promise. Bear with me.
Our latest media grenade was dropped by the same media moguls that we’ve all painfully overdosed on: Kanye West, Kim Kardashian, and Taylor Swift. The only reason this situation should be getting any coverage at all is because it is publicity stunts like these that lead to sexism in every layer of society.
After Kanye’s song “Famous” was released, anyone with respect for women was sick from his lyric, “I feel like me and Taylor might still have sex / Why? I made that bitch famous.” Not only is he insinuating publicly that he intends to try to sleep with Taylor Swift, which leaves a very unsafe feeling in my gut (strike one), but he is referring to her as “that bitch” (strike two) and discrediting all of the hard work she put into her wildly successful career (a whopping strike three).
We tried to relax about the gross lyrics, moving on to other thoughtless media scandals, but then Kanye came out with a video even more frightening than the lyric. The video showed wax figures of female celebrities tangled up naked in bed with their abusers, making any victim of assault (which is an alarmingly high number) flushed red with fear.
Among those celebrities was Taylor Swift, yet again ruthlessly exposed without a teaspoon of provocation.
Act III of this episode of Real Life Soap Opera aired last weekend on Snapchat when Kim Kardashian posted video recording of a phone call between Kanye and Swift. A most likely illegal move, these “receipts” (as the kids are calling them) make it look like Taylor Swift did in fact know about the lyrics before the song was released, contrary to her comments in the media the past five months. As you may have seen, if there lies a smartphone within one hundred feet of you, the internet is now broken from overuse. Memes and GIFs comparing Kim K to Cersei in the Season 6 Finale have coated every strand of the interwebs, and articles like this one have run rampant across every website.
But I’m not here to congratulate Kim for sticking up for her man. I’m not even here to discuss what the actual truth of the situation might be--especially because it seems so rehearsed that I’m mostly just waiting for them all to come out and take a bow. The only substantial piece of this puzzle is that it is the epitome of prolific seeds for sexism. When we see women attacking other women, it sends a message to society that all women behave this way.
Right now, the Twitter vultures circling this conversation have been focused on praising Kim:
I vow never to make fun of Kim kardashian again. Her loyalty to her man and her ability to destroy her enemies is straight up medieval.
— Owen Benjamin (@OwenBenjamin) July 18, 2016
From the looks of it, it seems that the internet is on Kim’s side, ruining Taylor’s picture perfect reputation forever, labeling her a “snake” and a “troll.”
The conversation is sending the message that when a woman like Taylor has been publicly assaulted, other women like Kim should not support and defend her. Instead, they should praise the one who has been abusing Taylor for years. It teaches people to completely forget about Kanye’s disgusting behavior and focus only on further humiliating the Taylor.
“Women hate women,” “I’m not like other girls” type of sexism is nothing but a great way to make sure that we never reach equality. If women hate women, then why shouldn’t everyone?
And thus, because of similar storylines on TV and in Hollywood, we have government regulation on our organs, lower wages, endless rape threats on social media, rape and sexual assault in real life, glass ceilings, cat calling, stalkers, and sexism in every other form.
I don’t know about you, but in the reality I’ve witnessed, not on my iPhone but in real life, women LOVE women! Women empower women! We’re not constantly jealous or scheming to get ahead. We’re sharing each other’s work, hiring one another, and commenting “You’re perf!!” on each other’s Instagrams! I genuinely have not seen a woman attack another woman in such a calculated maneuver ever in my life, not even in seventh grade. This is not how women behave.
Bottom line, if we’re going to get so riled up about such an insipid media stunt like the paps on Lohan, can we at least pour our cyber energy into stopping the perpetuated sexism that spawns from it?
Please and thank you.