Empowering Discussions, Poetry

Call To Action for the Promised Generation

Promised Generation

by Leah Oviedo

They promised our generation equality

Pulled hoods over our eyes to hide the reality

Work hard and you will reach the American dream

At any cost

They told us it was their fault when we failed

Does that sound familiar?

 

The real bad guys are still pale and rich

Stealing our tax dollars for oily, greasy power

Forget our schools

Forget our mentally ill

Cultivating poverty to keep us in check

Money will never buy happiness

Pull that hood off.

 

They said we can do anything a man could do

We can have it all

We are equal now

Except when they rape us

Except what they pay us

Pull that hood off.

 

Drug dealers and gangs roaming our streets killing our children

Lock away the bad guys, be tough on crime

Police are judge, jury and executioner

Jim Crow never went out of style

Just another form of slavery

Pull that hood off.

 

It gets better we’re told

Adults are mature, respectful

You can be out of the closet

Get married, be accepted

Unless you’re too flaming

Too gender bending

Pull that hood off.

 

The air is cleaner

We don’t need all these regulations

Don’t you want a new phone

A bigger car

Water turns our blood to cancer

Our mothers die

Mountaintops disappear and oceans turn to oil

Our fathers perish

Pull that damn hood off.

 

They are taking your jobs

Taking over your schools

They don’t deserve a living wage

Those people came here illegally

You think you did?

You think nobody civilized was here before you?

Pull that hood off.

 

Eat more chicken, less red meat

Pumped full of nutrients

Full of hormones and poison

Slaughter warehouse

Tortured to death

So you can have a 99 cent cheeseburger

Pull that hood off.

 

Terrorists are everywhere

Let’s kill them

On their own soil

Before they come here

Kill their children too

Just in case

Soldiers are disposable

We will honor them once a year

Pull that hood off your eyes

That suffocating, blinding, deadly hood.

 

Pull it off now before you don’t have any hands to pull with

It’s only uncomfortable at first

Then you feel the warm light

The light of a billion suns

Working together in solidarity

Not charity

Justice for sisters

Freedom for brothers

Healing our children

Who cares which bathroom you use

Opportunities for all abilities

Without borders

Respect Mother Earth

Open your eyes and look around at reality

Where is the equality

Pull that hood off and speak the reality.


I’m an artist and writer on a mission to bring healing arts into the mainstream. If you would like to support my heart work, please consider becoming a monthly patron on Patreon.com/Loviedo. For $1 a month, you can fund programs like my D.I.Y. Therapy: Healing Depression E-course, my monthly “Radical” e-zine and other creative healing projects, like “Cultivating Radical Self-Love: A Collaboration of Healers, Artists & Writers“.

Empowering Discussions

Why Representation of Everybody is Good For Everybody: Ending Negative Stereotypes

Because of the high-profile of Hilary Clinton in the international arena, there’s a lot of speculation right now about the chance that the next president of the USA could be a woman. Other countries have already elected women presidents and prime ministers. Women are rulers and warriors, but we rarely see them on the elementary school walls next to our founding fathers. Seeing a woman president doesn’t just give girls and women ideas of what they can accomplish. It gives young and impressionable boys a more well-rounded way of looking at their female peers. When those boys grow up they will not only see women as objects or less than them, but as equals competent at running a country, not just a household. As men they can support their female peers to have as much privilege as they do.

It’s the same as seeing Misty Copeland dance as the FIRST African-American Principle dancer in the American Ballet. Now, not only can aspiring black and brown girls see themselves in that role, but so can their male counterparts who will one day be on stage with them believing that women of color belong in leading roles.

We need to see BLACK males as happy, successful, kind and good fathers to end the violent thug and drug dealing gangster stereotypes.

We need to see independent and intelligent LATINAS as leaders in our communities, not as sex objects or maids.

We need to see intelligent and accomplished NATIVE AMERICANS in politics, onscreen and n every industry, not as victims of colonialism or dressed in beads wasting away on reservations.

We need to see ASIAN actors in dramas, comedies and romance, not just as kung fu masters, mail order brides or sidekicks.

We need to see strong and independent INDIAN women who are not silent victims of acid attacks, sexism or rape.

We need to see women and men of color in our LGBTQ communities as loving parents, not as tokens.

We need to see those who are DISABLED as competent and suitable to succeed in business, science or as athletics, not as damsels in distress waiting for us to save them.

It’s not just young children who need to see them so they too can become all they can imagine and more. It is ALL OF US who need to see this so we can stop our snap judgements and prejudiced views. We need to see real diversity so we can insure that everyone has an equal chance. For those of us with privilege, in whatever form it is, it’s time to step up, to pull strings and level the playing field so we no longer have the upper hand. We must do this not as if we are the only ones who can “save” others who have less, but as their equals. We won’t lose as much as we think, but we will gain so much more!

WHAT STEREOTYPE ARE YOU SICK OF?

WHAT NEGATIVE STEREOTYPES DO YOU HOLD?

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Find my BOOKS on Amazon.com and Bookemon.com.

Check out my ART & DESIGNS onZazzle.com/OviedoStyle.

Want freedom from DEPRESSION? Read my D.I.Y. Therapy posts.

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Empowering Discussions

A Short Rant on Balanced Growth

What we desire is usually good for us because we are all unique and what we want is relevant to our self, experiences and beliefs.  The main problem seems to arise when our desires become unbalanced and then so does our life.

A popular example these days is the fairy tale debate. Do we want girls growing up into women who wait for and rely on Prince Charming to save them? Is it healthy to not fend for yourself? On the other hand are we telling them they have to be so strong they should never let a man help or support them? Should we teach our children to sick to stereotypical roles in life or should we teach them dissent. Personally, I lean towards a lot of dissent and the crushing of stereotypes. Other people lean towards assigned roles. That is fine. We are human and have free will to believe differently then anyone. I will not tell people what they should teach their kids. All I will do is give you another point of view and encourage you to ask questions instead of simply accepting everything as is. What you take away from my words are up to you.

I enjoyed princess stories and the accompanying films as a kid. I am fine with them still being around for future generations because they are fun. It’s the all encompassing addiction society has with girls being pretty little princesses who are oh so devoted to their prince that gets on my last nerve. I was both a tomboy building forts in the woods and interested in cute outfits and playing house. I loved (and still love) math and science as much as cooking and sewing. I love pretend as much as the real world.

For boys it seems to be crassness that is cherished.  Swear words are so cute when said by a 8 year old. Burping extra loud and scratching their crotch is an obvious way to be manly. Then of course there is the unequal treatment of women. Even in children’s movies boys are encouraged to see women as objects of lust or in domestic roles. They constantly see men ogling women, calling them dirty words and focusing on the size of their breasts.  I don’t want my 10 year old thinking that a woman is only as worthy as her cup size.

Let us teach our children instead that there are a variety of roles they can play.  Tell them that being a real man is not based on the size of your fist or how many women you have sex with.  Tell them that girls can be presidents, rescuers and moms when they grow up. Make sure they know that how we look does not equal how good or bad we are. Encourage friendships with the opposite gender at a young age. Lastly let them know that it is up to them to teach their children about how many choices we all have.

Balance is the word of the day people! BALANCE!

Empowering Discussions

My First Book Is Published!

YAY!! I am so excited to finally have published my first book. This journey has shown me that life is wonderful again!

The book is titled “I Am More Than Just A Girl; Empowered. Informed. Equal.” and gives young women information to make educated decisions about their lives. The book is interactive and includes topics like respect, confidence, self defense, sexual assault and domestic violence. There are fun projects, journal pages and exercises for girls to empower themselves and lean about euqality.

Preview my book here, http://www.bookemon.com/read-book/150828 and if you know any young women ages 14 or older or parents of a girl, please share the book with them.

Empowering Discussions

LYBD is BACK!

LYBD, Love Your Body Day is celebrating 14 years! NOW, the National Organization for Women hosts LYBD each year to support women in loving their bodies and not feeling bad because they are not skinny enough or tall enough, or because they don’t have perfectly perky breasts or perfect skin.

So it’s that time of year to climb up the mountain (or your roof) and holler at the tops of your lungs “I LOVE MY BODY THE WAY IT IS!” If you are not interested in yelling from a roof or feel like you would attract trouble, than how about saying it while you stand naked in front of a mirror?

Why shouldn’t you love your body anyway? What’s not to love? You use it everyday, so that’s one very important reason to love your body right there.

Your body is unique and helps differentiate you from pod people. See, yet another reason to love your body!

Another reason? You only get one body, so you best start loving it before it’s gone.

You can decorate your body however you want, with tattoos, piercings, hair color and a good old dash of Vitamin D that brings a flush of color!

Oh my, so many reasons to love our bodies. I bet you can think of a reason to love your body.

Do you love your sparkling eyes, your loving smile, your feet, your nose, your knees, your strong legs, your soft arms, the shape of your face? WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR BODY?

Answer that question with one part of your wonderful body and then keep adding until you love every single tiny cell that makes your body as beautiful on the outside as your strong loving soul on the inside!

Today is the day to start loving your body for the rest of your life. This is YOUR year to love love love your body. The next time you see a advertisement of an airbrushed woman or celebrity on TV, remind yourself that you LOVE YOUR BODY the best.

I spent years hating how much taller I was than all my friends. I hated my uneven eyes, my huge feet, my chubby stomach, my frizzy uncontrollable hair, my gigantic nose, my crooked teeth, my thunder thighs, my scars. Basically I spent hours each day feeling sorry for myself and hating myself in the ultimate pity party.
Change didn’t happen over night. Eventually I got used to being tall because I went out more and met other tall people. I started enjoying life by hiking, playing tennis, riding my bike and anything fun outside. I love to move, which keeps in good shape and while my stomach is still flabby and not even close to a six pack I stopped caring. I feel healthy. I eat better. My thighs may indeed be thunderous, but I don’t really care. I have other realist issues in life to deal with like losing my best friend and figuring out how to make an income off of my art. I am no longer spending hours in front of the mirror crying about how ugly I am or wishing that I was as pretty as an actress or model. Most days I don’t even wear makeup. I prefer to enjoy my day instead of fussing over how my make up looks.

Loving my body has made me happier, it has given me loads more time to do other stuff and I am constantly stopping people from berating their own looks. We are all beautiful, we don’t all need to look the same. We can be chunky, we can be skinny with no curves, we can even naturally have a “popular” body, it doesn’t matter. It’s what we do with our bodies that will create a life worth living.

Don’t sit around with friends and diss your bodies in a spirit of being equally unattractive. When you start to complain about your body stop yourself. Compliment yourself and your friends instead, even if you only whisper. If you want to change something about your body, please do your research first. Cosmetic surgery is dangerous. Putting implants in your body can cause health problems and death. Extreme unhealthy dieting will just make you sick and it probably won’t last. You and only YOU are in control of your body.

LOVE YOUR BODY TODAY AND EVERYDAY!

“This post is part of the 2011 Love Your Body Day Blog Carnival”
🙂

Empowering Discussions

What does it mean to be female in our world?

It means you have the power to give life. Sure it takes a man and a woman to create life, but women are the people who are accountable for bringing a child into our world. You are a giver of life and you have the power to teach your children that they are beautiful loved and equal in your eyes. Women are more likely to stay at home and nurture a child and spend more time with them than the father. This is an inconvenient truth (Though there is no reason for men to not spend time nurturing a child after they have left the womb. In fact we need more men to nurture their children).

It means you can be raped by a man and told that it is your fault. Or maybe you are told that that person couldn’t control themselves. Well that is just not true. Rapists are not poor troubled boys or disturbed men. Rapists are people who want to control and inflict pain on another person. So it also means that you can fight back. You are NOT a victim. You deserve to be treated with respect and you have a right to say NO!

It means you are strong! You are equal to a man. You are not less, you are not better. You are equal. Perhaps your family, your religion and your culture tell you that you are less and nothing more than an object, but that is just not true. You are capable of being amazing! You can change the world or change your community. You can be a scientist, a writer, a director, a CEO, a mother. You can be whatever you want to be. Always listen to mind and never listen to a world that says you are less than equal.

It means you are beautiful. Your eyes, your hair, the color of your skin, your weight, your height. These make you beautiful and unique. You are beautiful without makeup, with frizzy hair, with freckles, with a few extra pounds or a lack of curves. You are most beautiful when you laugh and when you smile. Don’t believe the hype that you need to look plastic perfect. YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL!

More here: mpwru.webs.com

What does being a female in our world mean to you?