Hardly surprising. Here is the actual quote:
"[My music] is sexually empowering women. There's a stigma around feminism that's a little bit man-hating. And I don't promote hatred, ever. That's not to say that I don't appreciate women who feel that way. I've got a lot of gay women friends...I'm not wrong. I'm free. And if it's wrong to be free, then I don't want to be right. Things are changing."
When things are called empowering, they are usually demeaning instead, or at least counter-productive (Suicide Girls, pole-dancing workouts, "choosing" to wear makeup, etc. etc). All too often, "adhering to the standards of the patriarchy" is conflated with "empowerment"--supposedly because a woman made a choice, it is therefore a feminist one. But as long as the patriarchy exists, no sexual choice is a true choice. "Empowerment" is another false construct of the patriarchy that tells women they can have all the fun of feminism with none of the man-hating stigma. It's not feminism. Only true feminism empowers women. And while there are many feminisms and it's not my place to define what "true feminism" is, it is definitely within my power to point out what is NOT feminist.
The "times are changing" part is also troubling, because the message that women should embrace gender roles, be willfully ignorant of sexism, and take off their clothes to make the men happy is not a new one. It has been around forever. The weird thing about our culture is that it is simultaneously extremely puritanical and hypersexualized. We need to be less narrow-minded about sexuality. But changing that doesn't mean objectifying women's bodies even more, even if they're doing it themselves. At the same time, we need to stop hypersexualizing women's (and girls') bodies.
The only solution is the complete destruction of the patriarchy. Only then can women be sexually free and empowered. Until then, we are the sex class. Right now, no matter what we do, no matter what choice we think we're making, we have no true sexual agency.
Now, I don't really care what one person, especially a celebrity, thinks about feminism. It certainly doesn't change what I think about it. And who knows if LG really believes what she is saying? What I care more about is how LG's quote gives such a concise description of the patriarchy's main weapons: delusion and denial. Keeping women misinformed about what feminism is and keeping them unaware of their inescapable role as sex objects makes its job that much easier.
And the "gay women friends" thing is dubious, to say the least. Having gay feminist friends doesn't give you a free pass to say anti-feminist things. And it's completely dehumanizing. Of course, gay women are defined first and foremost by their gayness. They are not given names or personalities, just vague friend status, used as justifications and little else. I will be ever so happy when people finally stop using the "my [insert minority here] friend said it's ok" defense.
5 years ago