Wednesday, May 28, 2014

If you are female. By Terre Spencer

If you are female, the 6000+ year existence of patriarchy is a long war of terror upon you and every one of your sisters with untold millions of female casualties.

If you are female, even if you are not being beaten and sold this very minute, you are a slave to the male gaze, to male expectations of "woman." If you think that the hours you spend on your appearance are "for myself" the terror has colonized your mind.

Every catcall, every denied job, every assumption that male is normal and female is "other" is an act of war. every education denied, every FGM, every time men interrupt, dismiss, deny, minimize, patronize or in any way fail to allow women a seat at the table of power —because power is what we are really talking about, not constrained "choices."—a skirmish has occurred. Except it is so normal that we do not call it an act of war any more.

Every abortion denied, every attempt to make contraception difficult to obtain, every attempt to shame women for taking power over their own lives is an act of aggression.

Every female selectively aborted, abused, violated, assaulted, attacked with acid, married off against her will, shamed, raped, prostituted and/or murdered is a casualty in this long, long war on women.

We have turned the other cheek. We have coddled, ignored, placated, and done exactly what you've asked. We have given you 6000+ years of unpaid labor and submission. Your misogyny increased. You gun us down us for the crime of being female.

This is not about "guns" or "mental illness," this is about the hatred of women: misogyny. As painful as it is, women need to see that ‪#‎yesallmen‬ benefit from patriarchy. Your son, your husband, your boyfriend, you father, you brothers, uncles, cousins. Every man benefits from patriarchy. And misogyny is growing. In those same men. Women, you cannot shirk from this reality.

Men steal our time, our accomplishments, our emotional succor, our energy and our lives. The little flashes of time that we call "war" (where men go maim and kill each other while raping and killing women as "collateral damage") are intentional distractions so that the everyday crimes that men commit against women all day, every day with patriarchal blessing are not looked at.

I have had enough. Do not expect me to see misogyny as anything less than an act of war. Because I won't. Because seeing the enemy clearly is the first step in defending ourselves. It is time to wake up. Yes, it is all men.

And, no, I will not plead with, bargain with, beg or in any way negotiate with men for better treatment. Men can well deal with their own loss of humanity themselves. I will continue to help women see that patriarchal misogyny is the very air that we breathe every day. Because when women see that, we enter the war with eyes open and are fully prepared to engage battle.

Patriarchy is war on women and men are war criminals by their own definition.

For women, the war is every moment of her life. There is no bunker to return to, no trench to dodge the bullets. Men are everywhere, taking up space and dominating our lives.

Start with saying that being born female is to be born into a lifelong war. Start with that. And see the misogyny everywhere. And pray to goddess that you do not get shot today for simply being female.

By Terre Spencer, shared with permission.


  1. The women that are taught to turn on their own daughters, mothers, sisters to continue the domination. Woman on woman crime.

  2. This is what I feel. This is what I believe. This has been my life, in every moment that I can bear the anger of looking at this reality. Thank you for putting words to this--words that are not my own thoughs, so I know I am not alone in feeling and knowing these things to be true.

    1. Wonderful expression, it has been and probable still is in so many hidden ways in my existence as well. But I see Us All much stronger and braver in our own Feminine Power!

  3. Love this! Beautifully Spoken. Reason why I don't care about the men's experiencing war, because when a woman steps outside she is always stepping into a minefield.

    I've held this perspective forever, which is why i never cared for war movies and shit, because none of them are as brutal or as violent or as long as the world war on women.

    Nothing really for me to do except to dedicate my life to staying dick-free, avoiding men, and trying to influence other women.

  4. Well spoken. Even if you use the term Female- instead of woman- because you were taught that.
    The origin of using 'female' more frequently than the humanizing "woman", comes from police describing a crime on TV.
    Usually, as a corpse. Then, Hip Hop picked it up...then everyone else. Now, I get this disrespecting dehumanizing label thrown liberally around by women.

    I am a Female- so is a cow, or a dog.

    I am a woman-because I am a human being. I would like to ask you to see the difference, and start using woman -again, please.

    1. I chose 'female' because that covers girls and women. Strictly speaking, 'woman' is an adult female and 'girl' is a female child. Girls and women are both 'female." Both girls and women suffer under patriarchy. "Female' seems tidier than 'girls and women.

      However, I am not seeing the pop culture distortions that most everyone does see. I do not watch TV, so I have missed the crime shows on TV. I am mercifully buffered from hip hop, as that subculture is utterly revulsive to me.

      Perhaps I am being too literal? I do not see 'female' as dehumanized, but I have not seen crime TV or listened to hip hop. I will ask around and consider your request.


  5. Men are also ensnared in patriarchal atrocities. It always amazes me that men sit on boards and bodies of power and never once realize there are no women present or that women make up so little of the numbers if they are represented at all. Note the US Constitution had not one woman on it. How can women accept laws that were made without any representation? Therefore women, declare yourselves free of man-made law. Let us think about writing our own Constitution. I think we should go by feminine decision-making for a couple of years or so, until we install a totally direct-democratic system (which isn't hard). This we're going to have to do but not ask for permission. We can do it right now.

  6. Thank you for this. While I agree 100% that patriarchy is a disgusting manifestation thought up by males to dominate, well basically everything, women, animals and Mother Earth; it is women that really make my hair stand up on end. Has anyone read some of the anti-female BULL that women post on Pinterest. When women stand together and say ENOUGH, NO MORE, then and only then will it change. As long as these indoctrinated, and probably not very intelligent, women not only accept it BUT TRY TO PROLIFERATE this unGodly nonsense, things will continue as they are. In the end of course, they will become aware but I am not waiting around for them.

  7. And yet so many women turn their bodies over willingly to men and their patriarchal “management “ of childbirth!!! I don’t think anything frustrates me more than women, not communing and learning from women about the most basic and strongest female role of power and strength but instead, believing men and their decades of lies about how we need them to “manage” birth through their technologies and interventions or else our babies and ourselves will die by the thousands!

  8. i agree mostly but it is true that mothers and grandmothers have told young daughters any type of excuse for men to get away with their behavior. how many of us have heard, "Men need it or they go crazy", "they have needs", "it's your job as the wife..." so we are as much at fault for allowing it to happen and being brainwashed into believing it is the way it is supposed to be. We need to re-educate ourselves and our elder ladies that we deserve better, not as Women but as People.

  9. I agree Alicia. I had a catholic church brochure from the 60's [in historical terms, not that long ago] stating that even if the wife has no interest she must have sex with him because "she cannot understand how hard his work is". I was gobsmacked! My husband was not complimentary -his response is not repeatable here -but this is what mothers, in all ignorance that it is pure indoctrination, pass on to their daughters. The whole knight on a white horse rubbish, the wedding fairy tale, it has been proven to be profoundly untrue and yet it continues. I/we are partners, equal partners. I love your last comment " People.".