Monday, August 29, 2005

don't dress up fancy

What I am about to print is embarrasing - mostly because it comes from someone who in PNG academia and also because this is (very sadly) indicative of some of the very real fucked up social issues we are facing today - especially in regards to AIDS.

As a woman in this country I can tell you that there are some very socially & psychologically retarded neanderthals out there that will distort and creatively massacre and regurgutate biological theories and historical scenarios to suit their own malformed agendas ... agendas that promote the idea that women are responsible for all the shitty things that men do to them. Women, who in this country are the driving force behind informal labour and 76% of the economy; women who sell 20t iceblocks to send their children to school with a bread roll in their pocket; women who do not have the money or the opportunity to have recreational sex but are married to men who do - men bring home the deadliest of all STDs - AIDs. The AIDS statistics in this country are truly shocking ... because of lack of education, because sex is a taboo subject, and largely because of misdirection by the likes of our friend who wrote the letter below.

So you'll understand why this letter makes me so mad I can't see straight. In another place, this might seem like some kind of ridiculous hoax - trust me when I say that unfortunately that is not the case.

JCD picked this up in last Thursday's Post Courier.

Don't dress up fancy
AIDS is a major threat to all those who are sexually active. We hear and see from the media about the safety measures to be taken against AIDS. Use of condom is the safe way to prevent against AIDS. Of course, this is not true because it is like removing upper parts of an unwanted plant in a garden without having to uproot it. The plant will grow again in few weeks time. In the same way, so many condoms are involved in sex but never effectively prevent the transmission of the virus.Sex is a reproductive process which occurs in every living organism at certain times. In animals, the female is on heat for only three days waiting for a male counter part in order to reproduce. Birds and frogs make sounds to attract male counterparts when ovaries are ready to be fertilised. The similar phenomenon is true for humans. That is to say the females leave some private part of their bodies exposed in their dressing. When male counterparts see it their eyes receive the message and send it to the brain. The brain receives it, converts it and then sends another message to the male reproductive organs to act accordingly. Thus, produce hormones that stimulates the whole body which leads to unsafe sex, rapes and so on just to satisfy the desire. Those women neglect their duties as woman and relate themselves as a sex object. I am a biologist and I have a lot more to say on this, but please National AIDS Council, instead of promoting condoms do something about fancy dressing.

I really don't know what he is on about - even if we ignore all the mumbo-sexist-jumbo and the joke of a lecture on biology & the laws of attraction - as JCD said, women here do not dress 'fancy'. Unless mumus and meri blouses and laplaps and massive outsized shirts and loose shorts and long skirts are 'fancy' clothing.

Back in the 60s and the 70s women in Port Moresby wore the shortest skirts and the highest hotpants ... all the name of the truly world-wide fashions and free-love etc beliefs of the time. Since that time, the skirts have got longer and women don't wear shorts unless they're well below the knee. Women dress BAGGY ... as a woman here, I can see there is definitely an attempt by young women on the street NOT to attract attention, by clothes, or heaven forbid - fashion. Nothing is too short, nothing too tight. And when on the (very) rare occasion it is - everyone notices. It makes me so mad that we are being SUBJUGATED yet again ... please note NOT every man from PNG is a backward-looking ignoramus ... but there are a few who make it horrible and hard for the rest of us - primarily because their mentality has encouraged a general perception that women are somehow responsible - RESPONSIBLE - for what befalls them. And I don't see men taking responsiblity for their ignorant views - they make women responsible for the horrible and often violent consequences of those views. I see men, both the 'good' men and the ignorant a**holes, expecting us to cover up and accept the status quo.

Not so long ago, I was sitting at the airport, waiting for a friend on a flight and one man had the audacity to come off the street and tell me to cross my legs - can you even imagine?? Needless to say I gave him the death-stare and told him in no uncertain terms that I was the boss of my legs and he should shut up and f-off. I mean, the thing is, a lot of these guys look at women as propietary - even women they do not know - like women must be careful not to excite the highly excitable imagination/organs of the male who then is unable to control himself and its ergo, always, her fault, when she gets attacked, mutilated, violated, killed.

The letter above does not say anything entirely new - it was accepted for a long time in British and even Australian Courts that women had a duty not to set-off the uncontrolable impulses of rogue males ... that somehow a woman should take responsibility for being attacked.

I will refrain from a massive rant & rave - mostly because I have work to do. But now you can see just what kind of uninformed sometimes ingenious and defintiely ignorant attitudes women here are up against. And because the vast majority of women are not formally educated and not aware of their 'rights' to be treated equally etc ... they absorb these destructive views and at the very least, accept them as the way of life here.

According to my family, my problem is that I can't understand that. And I tell them no - I understand it - I just can't accept it.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ricebag you said it! This letter left me with a sour taste in my mouth. But what I found most disgusting was not the content but the fact that the writer is an academic in one of the highest tertiary institutions in this country. If this is the level of thinking of academics that we are churning out at our top level tertiary institutions then God help our beautiful country, 30 years on and going backwards

08 September, 2005 13:37  

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