Another day, another trip to the store - and another encounter with the soft-core porn at the checkout. You know what I mean: Those impossible-to-avoid magazines and periodicals which, if they were displayed in the manager's office, would bring a sexual harassment lawsuit crashing down on his head.
I'm more encouraged than usual, though, because the woman ahead of me in line took the time to turn the offensive images around, then asked for the manager so she could register her complaint.
"Good for you," I said while she waited for him to appear.
"I'm sick of it," she replied. "I can't even bring my kids in here anymore. What kind of message does that stuff give them?"
I'll say it again: Good for her. I hope her dignity and her concern for the future are contagious, because too many women have gone silent.
It's time to do a gut-check, and well past time for each of us to take a good, hard look at ourselves and ask what we want our legacy to be. Women, especially, play a huge role in determining what the future will hold, because we are the Keepers of the Gate. Or we used to be, before we were rendered impotent - blindsided by the social experiment that was Second-wave Feminism.
Don't misunderstand: I'm a full-on Feminist, but of the purist type. I believe in the inherent value and power of women, and not the oxymoronic notion that we must be masculinized in order for our gender to be relevant.
The cultural landscape will always primarily reflect not only the ways in which women are regarded - which is what I write about so often - but the ways in which we regard ourselves. These days, fewer and fewer women respect themselves enough to hold a hard line against the forces that seek to destroy the future, because way too many have relinquished their dignity in an effort to be accepted. Those who choose to speak up anyway must endure mockery and judgement. (There are a multitude of reasons for that, but that's another discussion, which you can find here.)
If you agree that a society is defined by the value it assigns to women, then you might want to ask yourself how we're really perceived, how you're affecting our station in this culture - and what that means to our children and the world they're inheriting from us.
So here's the question: What kind of legacy are you creating?
The question is simple, and its answer is reflected in the generation that includes our children. Take a long, serious look at them, and then consider your response carefully.
See you next time -
Jenna Brooks is a coach, a consultant, and is the award-winning author of the October Snow series. She welcomes your comments through her website, Jenna Brooks Online.
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