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ink-splotch:

There comes a point where Susan, who was the older girl, is lost to Narnia because she becomes interested in lipstick. She’s become irreligious basically because she found sex. I have a big problem with that.” - JK Rowling

Can we talk about Susan’s fabulous adventures after Narnia? The ones where she wears nylons and elegant blouses when she wants to, and short skirts and bright lipstick when she wants to, and hiking boots and tough jeans and big men’s plaid shirts when she feels like backpacking out into the mountains and remembering what it was to be lost in a world full of terrific beauty— I know her siblings say she stops talking about it, that Susan walks away from the memories of Narnia, but I don’t think she ever really forgot.

I want to read about Susan finishing out boarding school as a grown queen reigning from a teenaged girl’s body. School bullies and peer pressure from children and teachers who treat you like you’re less than sentient wouldn’t have the same impact. C’mon, Susan of the Horn, Susan who bested the DLF at archery, and rode a lion, and won wars, sitting in a school uniform with her eyebrows rising higher and higher as some old goon at the front of the room slams his fist on the lectern. 

Susan living through WW2, huddling with her siblings, a young adult (again), a fighting queen and champion marksman kept from the action, until she finally storms out against screaming parents’ wishes and volunteers as a nurse on the front. She keeps a knife or two hidden under her clothes because when it comes down to it, they called her Gentle, but sometimes loving means fighting for what you care for. 

She’ll apply to a women’s college on the East Coast, because she fell in love with America when her parents took her there before the war. She goes in majoring in Literature (her ability to decipher High Diction in historical texts is uncanny), but checks out every book she can on history, philosophy, political science. She sneaks into the boys’ school across town and borrows their books too. She was once responsible for a kingdom, roads and taxes and widows and crops and war. She grew from child to woman with that mantle of duty wrapped around her shoulders. Now, tossed here on this mundane land, forever forbidden from her true kingdom, Susan finds that she can give up Narnia but she cannot give up that responsibility. She looks around and thinks I could do this better.

I want Susan sneaking out to drink at pubs with the girls, her friends giggling at the boys checking them out from across the way, until Susan walks over (with her nylons, with her lipstick, with her sovereignty written out in whatever language she damn well pleases) and beats them all at pool. Susan studying for tests and bemoaning Aristotle and trading a boy with freckles all over his nose shooting lessons so that he will teach her calculus. Susan kissing boys and writing home to Lucy and kissing girls and helping smuggle birth control to the ladies in her dorm because Susan Pevensie is a queen and she understands the right of a woman to rule over her own body. 

Susan losing them all to a train crash, Edmund and Peter and Lucy, Jill and Eustace, and Lucy and Lucy and Lucy, who Susan’s always felt the most responsible for. Because this is a girl who breathes responsibility, the little mother to her three siblings until a wardrobe whisked them away and she became High Queen to a whole land, ruled it for more than a decade, then came back centuries later as a legend. What it must do to you, to be a legend in the body of a young girl, to have that weight on your shoulders and have a lion tell you that you have to let it go. What it must do to you, to be left alone to decide whether to bury your family in separate ceremonies, or all at once, the same way they died, all at once and without you. What it must do to you, to stand there in black, with your nylons, and your lipstick, and feel responsible for these people who you will never be able to explain yourself to and who you can never save. 

Maybe she dreams sometimes they made it back to Narnia after all. Peter is a king again. Lucy walks with Aslan and all the dryads dance. Maybe Susan dreams that she went with them— the train jerks, a bright light, a roar calling you home. 

Maybe she doesn’t. 

Susan grows older and grows up. Sometimes she hears Lucy’s horrified voice in her head, “Nylons? Lipstick, Susan? Who wants to grow up?”  and Susan thinks, “Well you never did, Luce.” Susan finishes her degree, stays in America (England looks too much like Narnia, too much like her siblings, and too little, all at once). She starts writing for the local paper under the pseudonym Frank Tumnus, because she wants to write about politics and social policy and be listened to, because the name would have made Edmund laugh. 

She writes as Susan Pevensie, too, about nylons and lipstick, how to give a winning smiles and throw parties, because she knows there is a kind of power there and she respects it. She won wars with war sometimes, in Narnia, but sometimes she stopped them before they began.

Peter had always looked disapprovingly on the care with which Susan applied her makeup back home in England, called it vanity. And even then, Susan would smile at him, say “I use what weapons I have at hand,” and not explain any more than that. The boy ruled at her side for more than a decade. He should know better. 

Vain is not the proper word. This is about power. But maybe Peter wouldn’t have liked the word “ambition” any more than “vanity.”

Susan is a young woman in the 50s and 60s. Frank Tumnus has quite the following now. He’s written a few books, controversial, incendiary. Susan gets wrapped up in the civil rights movement, because of course she would. It’s not her first war. All the same, she almost misses the White Witch. Greed is a cleaner villain than senseless hate. She gets on the Freedom Rider bus, mails Mr. Tumnus articles back home whenever there’s a chance, those rare occasions they’re not locked up or immediately threatened. She is older now than she ever was in Narnia. Susan dreams about Telemarines killing fauns. 

Time rolls on. Maybe she falls in love with a young activist or an old cynic. Maybe she doesn’t. Maybe Frank Tumnus, controversial in the moment, brilliant in retrospect, gets offered an honorary title from a prestigious university. She declines and publishes an editorial revealing her identity. Her paper fires her. Three others mail her job offers. 

When Vietnam rolls around, she protests in the streets. Susan understands the costs of war. She has lived through not just the brutal wars of one life, but two. 

Maybe she has children now. Maybe she tells them stories about a magical place and a magical lion, the stories Lucy and Edmund brought home about how if you sail long enough you reach the place where the seas fall off the edge of the world. But maybe she tells them about Cinderella instead, Sleeping Beauty, Rapunzel, except Rapunzel cuts off her own hair and uses it to climb down the tower and escape. The damsel uses what tools she has at hand. 

A lion told her to walk away, and she did. He forbade her magic, he forbade her her own kingdom, so she made her own. 

Susan Pevensie did not lose faith. She found it. 

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Companion to this piece

(Source: ifallelseperished)

laughterkey:

heyveronica:

This is a photo of Arielle Lipsen (a good friend of mine) who was thrown to the ground and hit with the butt of a DEA agent’s rifle. She is now wrongfully being charged with assaulting a federal agent during a DEA raid of her sister’s smoke shop in Texas. Her sister gave the following statement to a local news site:

“She was having a conversation with a female agent, and trying to give the agents the lock code,” Ilana Lipsen claimed. “She was trying to tell them there was no key, but a code. There were too many officers and about half of them were doing nothing, then this one agent charged at her, threw her, kicked her legs out from under her, and when she was falling, her leg brushed up against his leg. That’s when he said ‘you’re trying to beat a federal agent’ and shoved the butt of his rifle into her neck.” (via BigBendNow)

Arielle reached out to me last night asking if I could help get eyes on her story because not only is she being wrongly accused, but her bond restrictions are insane. She said: "Part of the bond restrictions is that my sister retract all her statements from the press and say that I was never assaulted and that she lied."

There are a lot more details here, here and here.

She asked me if I could get people’s eyes on this story. This is a thing to scream about. There’s no reason for a federal agent to put his hands on an unarmed, unthreatening citizen. Not only was she assaulted (LOOK AT THAT PHOTO) but now they might actually send her to jail.

Wow. Can they put restrictions like that on her bond?? They won’t let her out unless they tell the press they lied? I can’t eve wrap my brain around that.

causewecool:

spankmeagainplease:

Feel free to sexually harass me if you’re male. You know what they say “Boys will be boys.”. Although I’m not sure any of you will want to do that since I’m not very modest, therefore not attractive.
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The new principal at my school used two phrases while addressing new dress code rules to a class.

"Modest is hottest." and "Boys will be boys."

He should have said something more along the lines of: “The school dress code was established to provide our students with a safe and orderly learning environment that is free from distractions.”

Let’s start with the phrase “Modest is hottest.” Shall we?

Modest-Having or showing a moderate estimation of one’s own talents, abilities, and value.

If modest is hottest, then it’s not modest.

You are literally sending the message to young girls, who are already struggling with self confidence, that hiding their body makes them more attractive. You are establishing a sense of shame in these young, developing minds and bodies. A human has the right to wear whatever they feel comfortable in. Showing less skin doesn’t make you any more attractive. Showing more skin does not make you any less attractive. When someone calls you attractive that just means that they are attracted to you.

At what point in your career did you find it appropriate to define my “hotness”? Why are you at all concerned with how “hot” I am? You are teaching us, through modesty, to be objects of sexual arousal. I’m sorry, but I don’t dress myself to look “hot” for anyone. I dress myself as a way of expressing myself and my body. “If covering up my body is supposed to make people sexually/physically attracted to me, then how would those people feel if I decide to have sexual relations with them, without clothes on?” “How am I supposed to love and feel proud of my naked body and develop a sense of sexuality when exposing my body is deemed shameful and unattractive?” Since when should being “hot” be my concern. I don’t want to be with someone who just thinks I’m hot. I want to be with someone who loves and respects all the parts of my mind, personality, and body. THAT’S what you should be teaching, not “How to be hot.”.

My body is not a sinful temptation that needs to be hidden. 
My body is not your personal, sexual object. 
My body does not overshadow my character. 
My body is not any more sexual than a man’s body. 
My body is not here to look “hot” for you.

Next up is “Boys will be boys.”

Being a boy refers to your gender. That’s all.

It does not make you constantly sexually aroused, animalistic, or sexually uncontrollable, but for some reason society has come to the conclusion that you are this stereotype. This is extremely sad. This gender stereotype is unfair to all men. By telling them who they are as a man you are absolutely taking away their moral agency. “But he’s a teenager. He’s raging with hormones.” You don’t think I’m raging with hormones as well? Believe me I am. Men are not stupid. They are not unable to see when someone is not consenting to sex. It’s not ‘in their nature’ to rape because they are a man, it’s not ‘in their nature’ because IT’S WRONG TO RAPE SOMEONE. Raping someone is a cognitive choice. (how modestly the victim dresses does not affect them being raped). When the few people that do sexually harass people happen to be male and you use the excuse “Boys will be boys.” you are not only excusing their behavior, you are condoning it. It’s this “Boys will be boys.” mentality, culture, and attitude that condone sexual assault. Whenever the excuse “Boys will be boys.” is used, it’s just an exercise of male privilege. It’s this attitude that condones sexual assault. You are giving them a free license that makes it okay for them to be sexually violent, that says “Well I’m a boy, it’s just who I am.” Sex needs to stop being about “no no no bad dirty gross shameful” and start being about “Yes. Let’s have consenting sex because I want to.” Consent. THAT’S what you should be teaching, not “Well you know how they are… Boys will be boys!” 

Boys are not sexually uncontrollable.
Boys do not have a genetic, animalistic, violent nature.
Boys are not born with a natural desire for destruction or control.

Despite what society and culture keeps trying to cram down everyone’s throat, having a penis doesn’t make it okay to sexually harass someone. The false idea that men can’t control themselves is so unfair and completely ridiculous.
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The next day He called me down to his office to discuss my concerns. (Students and teachers told him about it, which I expected)
I spent a good hour and a half arguing with the principle about his comments when he called me down to his office, today. I offered to send him what I posted if he was interested in reading it. He said “No, that won’t be necessary.” I explained to him that I wanted him to read what I wrote and I would appreciate it if he did. He said “No, I don’t really care to read it. That’s okay.”

I asked him what he meant by the phrase “boys will be boys” and he explained that if a girl is inappropriately dressed that it can lead to inappropriate, sexual touching and staring (sexual harassment). If a boy chooses to sexually harass someone, it’s his choice no matter what his gender is.
He explained to me that boys are more “wound up” than girls are. I didn’t quite understand what he meant by that so I asked him for a different adjective and after a minute of mumbling he chose the word “aggressive” but then followed that up with “…well I don’t think that’s the correct word to use…”. I agree, not the best word to use, eh? 

I asked him to explain why boys are different than girls in this regard and he said “Well to start, all boys are attracted to girls…” I interrupted with “No. There are actually boys who are attracted to other boys.” He laughed and said “Oh, yes of course!”… I guess that part must have slipped his mind.

I asked him, in general, what the difference is between girls and boys. He said that boys “misbehave more” and are “outgoing”. He said that girls are “reserved”. That’s all. That’s the word he used, “reserved”. Boys and girls are different because they have different organs and hormones. Being a girl doesn’t automatically make me reserved. Just like being a boy doesn’t make you automatically misbehave. I explained to him that by using the phrase “Boys will be boys.”, he is excusing and condoning bad behavior from boys, such as sexual harassment and rape. “But that’s not reality, that’s your opinion.” he said. 

He explained that his daughters “behave” and that his nephews were disrespectful… because they are boys. I said “That has nothing to do with their gender. They act that way because of how they were raised, the environment they are living in, and the choices they make.” 

I told him that the phrases he used were sexist and stereotypical and unfair to all genders. I explained to him that many students and people of society were offended by what he said and the phrases he used. I told him that I thought he should apologize for what he said and explain to students and society that this kind of message is not okay or appropriate.

He said he wouldn’t apologize for that, but he would give me an apology, which was “I’m sorry you feel that way.” 

After he dodged almost every question I asked by sharing his plans to improve LHS, he decided that he had had enough of not being able to answer my questions or concerns and ended our discussion by saying “I’m going to end this discussion.” and I was sent back to class.
There is so much wrong with what this principal is doing that I can’t even list it, but yeah here’s your takeaway:

He explained that his daughters “behave” and that his nephews were disrespectful… because they are boys. I said “That has nothing to do with their gender. They act that way because of how they were raised, the environment they are living in, and the choices they make.”

They are disrespectful because you have specifically told them they can do whatever they want and you will excuse it because they’re boys!

Lakeland Senior High School and his name is Mr. Martinez

(Source: brunette-nymphette)

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