Equality isn’t yours to give, only yours to block.

Equal rights are under attack, largely by men. It’s interesting because human rights were by no means equal.

Equality isn’t a pie – equal treatment for women doesn’t mean there’s less equality for men.

Lest some get offended and “not all men” me, there are enough. But by all means, share your protests.

Too many men, not “not all men”.

I’m angry.

I’m angry that the leader of the official opposition in Canada used an anti-women hashtag for four years, recruiting as supporters the kinds of men who are angry and dangerous, mostly in the direction of women.

The hashtag MGTOW stands for men going their own way.” If only they would. Unfortunately, they hold nasty views about women and their role in society, including forced partnership and monogamy, and they work hard to find sympathetic voices in the media and government, to some success.

Heterosexual partnerships, of course. LGBTQIA isn’t something they entertain other than to suggest violence against.

Poilievre courted the angry-over-mostly-nothing, far-right wing of the conservative movement, the same people Republicans in America court with inflammatory lies, propaganda, and Fox News.

The global move in governments to the far-right, the rise of de facto dictators, and the rise of racist, oppressive, Christofascist philosophies in conservative parties should terrify everyone. Especially because too many people hold their noses and vote for evil because that’s the political party that’s theirs.

Women need to be terrified, though many carry water for those who want them forcibly pregnant in the kitchen. Definitely out of the public sphere. Propaganda has won when its victims enforce the rules themselves. Though to be fair, not all are victims. Some embrace the banner of racism and bigotry with glee.

Women aren’t automatically awesome.

I’ve been working on the self-care part of eating disorder recovery. Being nice to myself was something that was for later when I was thin. Reclaiming self-care has been both nice and a challenge.

I’ve become a skincare junkie. I’ve also rediscovered fashion. Hooray for YouTube. People make videos about everything and I’ve been watching like mad. How to apply the perfect smoky eye. The best moisturizers for people over forty. How to make a coffee roaster.  

I’m not always internally focused.

I especially like the fashion shows. In the early days of my eating disorder, I was fashion-obsessed. Back then, my focus was equally divided between the skinny models and the fantastic pieces they wore.

Until it wasn’t. I gradually lost sight of clothes. How wide the models were was all that mattered.

When I was in my twenties, fashion was low-rise jeans and heroin-chic. Beyond thin was in. People looked at those with eating disorders with envy. Mostly because they couldn’t get into our heads.

But then those who were very thin started needing psychiatric help. And fashion houses and advertisers were outed as using children as models to achieve the ideal female body. And the world shook its head. It was momentarily horrified. For a time, models got diverse. Somewhat diverse. And somewhat larger.

the lovely bones

But there’s always pushback when women start standing tall. When they start holding positions of real power. When they start demanding equal pay and help at home.

When they have the arrogance to suggest that their bodies are theirs.

Low-rise jeans are back. This I don’t mind. My body type is curvy and the difference between my waist and hip measurements means finding pants that fit is generally a challenge. Except for low-ish rise. I fit the hips and boycott the problem. It was like heaven after a lifetime of mom-waist jeans with pleats, and I’ve never strayed (nor from bootcut, which is, in my opinion, the perfect jean leg).

I like the low-rise but give a pass to the ultra-low. First off, that’s a lot of information to give strangers about my personal shaving habits. Second, the fascination with protruding hip bones was something I recognized as a problem. It was one of the demands my eating disorder made. You have to be very thin to achieve that body as an adult human. It’s the natural body of very few women.

It’s the natural body of children.

Children are mostly powerless in the public sphere. They don’t run companies. They don’t run governments. Notable exceptions aside, children are part of the home sphere. We don’t involve them in our problems. We make most of their decisions for them.

We’re benevolent dictators, but it’s a dictatorship nonetheless.

John Curtis, an American Republican thinks the same thing about women: “I wish, as a man, I didn’t have to make this decision,” John Curtis said, referring to how the state legislatures which are now empowered to decide the legality of abortion are dominated by men. “I wish women could make this decision.”

They can’t for reasons they are unable to articulate without resorting to insults or bizarre science.

His opinion isn’t an outlier.

The fashion shows for spring and summer 2023 have hit YouTube. Fashion runs half a year ahead in terms of shows. There are a lot of skirts. There are a lot of blazers, albeit with high collars, enormous sleeves and cutouts that render them awkward. You can’t see well and your arms are busy controlling your clothes.

The skirts had issues as well – for many fashion houses, the hobble skirt is back. Paired with impossibly high heels made at odd angles rendered walking a feat. The other option was skirts made with yards of fabric, also requiring concentrated attention to control.

The amount of sheer was also a revelation. Equal rights require nudity. This is the cycle in fashion, at any rate.

And, as reported by the media, the low-rise pants and visible thongs are a hot ticket. They’re G-strings and ultra-low-rise if one is being accurate. Nothing restricts movement and function like the sense that your pants are seconds away from hitting the floor.

Sitting is also a no-go in pants designed to be barely there and barely functional.

I saw a great many corsets. If one is going to restrict movement, one might as well restrict breath. Not that wearers will worry about that. They’ll be too busy thinking about food.

power dressing?

Kate Moss once said, “nothing tastes as good as thin feels.” Perhaps, but I know this to be true – people who don’t have a rail-thin body naturally think about food a lot when they’re starving themselves into societally-absent eating disorders.

It’s because we’re hungry, even if we’ve forgotten how to correctly label the sensation.

Most of the models looked thin and hungry.

When women’s rights are under attack, fashion often follows suit. I don’t think it’s necessarily intentional, we simply live in the same machine and are open to the same influences.

But the politicians are making me angry, and the fashions are making me worry.

Be concerned if you’re female or know one.

We’re under attack.


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