Oh, 80s. Oh, Don Johnson suits with no shirt. Oh, postapocalyptic cardboard sets. Oh, primitive computer graphics.
80s, you were trying so hard to be the future.
And here we are in the actual future, and most days we don't get out of our pajamas.
So last night, I lay awake in bed for hours, feeling a bit brutalized because of a very funny, very apt, very smart deconstruction of The Phantom Menace that had a lot of smart clever things to say about constructing a narrative.
It was also, not incidentally, misogynist.
In small ways, and in great. Mentioning that a character complains like a girl. Calling C-3p0 "effeminate" as if that were a bad thing. Illustrating and adding violence against women as a running gag.
You know what?
I do not actually think those jokes were intended to hurt me. I think they were intended to be funny.
And yet, they left me feeling like a bad person. They left me lying awake at night, wondering why people hated me because I happen to be female.
And I realized, they don't. The people who make these jokes do not realize that they make me feel bad, or wrong, or toxic simply for having been born female, or queer. They don't actually mean to make black or Asian or Latino or Middle Eastern people feel less human. They are just... made a little uncomfortable by difference.
And so they alienate it.
And they don't realize that they are alienating me. A human being. Somebody who will lie awake at night wondering why they hate her.
Tonight, I am watching the Oscars.
I have watched Seth MacFarlane make jokes about women and blacks as if we are not people with hearts.
I have watched Ang Lee and Samuel Jackson and Halle Berry and Shirley Bassey and Salma Hayek and a dozen others be beautiful and gracious, and I have to think--
--as Ang Lee said--
I still want to punch Seth MacFarlane in the face. A song about Meryl Streep's boobs? Really Seth? Where's the song about Ewan McGregor's dick?
I know you do not mean to hurt me. I know you do not mean to make me feel less than human.
But sometimes you do.
Oh, you do.
And you, Seth, are not the first one.