You Tell Me How to Be a Girl in 2010

Questions, doubt, ambiguity, and dissent have somehow become very unmasculine. Authoritarian maniacs are premiers, czars, and presidents. Each one is more righteous than the next. Each town they bomb each human they kill is done for “humanitarian” purposes.

People don’t own the water in their own village and they certainly don’t own the diamonds and gold. Millions are forced to make dinner out of garbage and dust while Russian businessmen and movie stars are buying 500-million-euro villas on Cote Sud.

Bees have stopped making honey. People are drilling in all the wrong places. The U.S., Russia, Canada, Denmark, and Norway all claim the Arctic but none of them seem to care that the polar bears are drowning.

They are fingerprinting, photographing our licenses and teeth. Big Brother is now in our phones, our pods, our PCs. Not one of us feels even a little safer. New Age mental health providers turn out to be former war torturers with beards. And the pope in a dress showing off his ermine trim and cuffs is telling everyone that people kissing people they love is the greatest evil. A woman running for U.S. vice president believes in creationism but not global warming.

Why is everyone so much more afraid of sex than SCUD missiles? And who decided God wasn’t into pleasure? And if the hetero nuclear family is so great how come everyone is fleeing it or paying their life savings just to sit in a room with a stranger and cry about it?

The Iraq war cost nearly $3 trillion. I can’t even count that high but I know that money could have would have ended poverty in general which would have cancelled terrorism. How come we have money to kill but no money to feed or heal? How come we have money to destroy but no money for art and schools?

The fundamentalists now have billion-dollar armies. The Taliban is back but never went away. Women are burned, raped, bludgeoned, sold, starved, and buried alive and still don’t know they are the majority.

Water is clearly running out but even in the desert where there’s serious drought the golf courses are green and lush and the swimming pools are full of water for the twelve rich people who might decide to come.

Special people adopt hand-picked babies in faraway lands. Their flights there cost more than the babies’ parents made this year. Why don’t just give it to them? Slavery is back but never went away. Jus ask anyone who’s been whipped how deep the legacy. Six million dead in the Congo and they never made the news, and don’t tell me it doesn’t have to do with color and minerals.

Poor folks are dying first from hurricanes shame tsunamis radiation pollution floods and neglect. Rich folks just put up fancier super-electrified gates on their private perfect cities.

Everyone’s having “benefits” and throwing fancy parties with lots of swag so the rich people feel good about giving away the tiny little bit of the whole lot they have. But no one really wants to change anything. If you really want it you have to give something up like everything and then those that have, wouldn’t, and then who would they be? And that’s too complicated so they write checks and keep doing the same old things. Selling change. Making revolution profitable. Corporations own everything anyway even our hippie jeans, memory cells, and rain. Why do so many women leaders look like Margaret Thatcher and act even meaner? Why doesn’t anyone remember anything? And how come rich bad people get paid lots of money to give speeches and poor bad people are tortured in prisons? Is there anyone in charge? Or is this whole thing spinning out until it explodes or dissolves? And if there is something we can do why aren’t we doing it? What happened to fury? What happened to accuracy or accountability? What happened to not showing off your wealth? What happened to kindness? What happened to teenagers rebelling instead of buying and selling? What happened to teenagers kissing instead of blogging and dissing? What happened to teenagers marching and refusing instead of exploiting and using?

I want to touch you in real time not find you on YouTube, I want to walk next to you in the mountains not friend you on Facebook. Give me one thing I can believe in that isn’t a brand name.

I’m lonely. I’m scared. Girls younger than me are giving blowjobs in homeroom and they don’t even know it’s sex. They just want to be popular and get some respect. Most girls my age are taking pills or eating or starving or getting nose jobs or implants or getting cut or covering themselves or desperate for a way to be awake without faking to be alive without freaking to be serious to be true to even think of loving someone when we’re already doomed.

You tell me how to be a girl in 2010. 

I say let’s go for it if it’s all coming down. I say let’s speak it let’s fight it let’s right it there’s nothing to hold on to if it’s already gone. They left it to us. It sucks but it’s true. It’s you and me baby. 

—Eve Ensler, from I Am an Emotional Creature


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