The current “Me Too” revolution (and that’s what I feel it is – a revolution) is encouraging to me, along with so many other women, in many ways. As a young woman entering the workforce I was confronted by not only the reality that men were my bosses and held the power of job or no job over my head, but I also felt the workplace reality of ‘men’s work is more important than my work’. And that fact evidenced itself to me every day. In other words, women in the workplace did not, in my estimation, receive the respect that they both earned and deserved. For whatever reasons our bosses imagined or supposed, we were lesser employees. A couple of reasons stand out in my mind: men were considered the breadwinners of any family and were, therefore, entitled to more money to support their families. This was believed to be the case even if a woman was a single mom and the sole support of her children. Another was, heck, women get pregnant. They can't work if they're pregnant, then they leave. This wasn't necessarily true. Women are every bit as capable of power positions as are men. To me it all comes down to respect. Men should respect women, and women should respect themselves. Aretha Franklin’s wonderful song “Respect” comes to mind. Yea, Aretha!
With today’s uprising of women in all walks of life, whether it be politics, media, entertainment, or the corporate or sports world, women are now encouraged and emboldened to come forward and expose the long hidden sub-culture of sexual discrimination, harassment, and abuse.
What can anyone do? What can I as a writer do to help young girls to grow up strong and confident enough to overcome discrimination, harassment, and abuse? Girls must grow up secure in themselves as equals, as competent adults with the strength to succeed anywhere they choose to be.
Several of my stories for young people offer strong female characters that are presented with obstacles they must overcome. My female characters are not of the Wonder Woman ilk. They are flawed. They have human weaknesses and doubts. Don’t we all, male or female? But my characters find the strength to overcome the obstacles in their lives and to succeed. This is a message all young girls need to hear over and over. Females have long been deemed to be the stronger sex. It is often this way in nature. But for some reason, as our females reach the age of sixteen or seventeen they are often beaten down by many facets in our society (media being the most egregious culprit), telling them that they exist solely to please the men in their lives. I hope that this Holiday Season, and for many seasons to follow, parents will give their daughters the confidence to become all that they wish to become in their lives. It’s the greatest gift of all.
Try these: “Desert Ghosts”, https://www.createspace.com/5037344 , “Finding Hope”, https://www.createspace.com/4648118 , “Heart Songs”, https://www.createspace.com/5499547 , or “Voyage of Dreams”, https://www.createspace.com/5362770 , and its sequel “Voyage Home”, https://www.createspace.com/7295770.