I’ll be honest (if only to move Gloria Steinem’s image farther down my blog page…*shudders*), I actually do continue to experience pangs of guilt for quitting political activism. Bugs me sometimes. BUT, I try to remind myself that the best thing I can do for this country is work on my damn self, and I’ve got some issues needing to be more thoroughly addressed and hopefully resolved. Still not entirely sure where I’m trying to go from here, just not too happy where I’m standing currently. Happy with my job, don’t intend to move, not interested in new romance, battling addictions like most Americans — but recognizing that all necessary changes can’t exist in myself alone. We do have to reach out to one another and express where we’re coming from and what life has taught us so far. Very important to take time to listen too.
I have truly learned a lot on youtube since late 2011 when I went exploring the social atmosphere there. Never had delved into that before, having stuck with music, documentaries, lectures, and tutorials mostly in the years prior. Then somehow I became tuned into this online interaction festival, which swiftly wound up ushering me in the direction of Karen Straughan to be educated on the men’s rights perspective (or at least the AVFM version) after I started poking back around again to check what feminists were up to (never did follow feminism on youtube much, just stuck to blogs, forums and other sites I was more used to). Took up a couple months spending time with Karen’s material. My former partner didn’t care for her message and sometimes complained for me to turn it to something else (him not being an internet user to start with). But I persisted in my alone time and wound up introduced to a wide variety of characters producing content and interacting on the so-called “manosphere.” Strange place. But then again, the youtube feminists I’ve observed are just as strange. So many narrow-minded antagonists on each side of the fence. Part of why I grew tired of gender politics years back and am once again right about now.
After losing interest in feminism, I spent a few years volunteering for a Quaker peace organization and don’t regret it. Taught me a lot. Wish they hadn’t been such big Obama-supporters, and we didn’t seem to see a lot of issues eye to eye, Ah well. It is what it is. It wasn’t a terrible experience, and it brought me in contact with feminist organizations (namely WILPF) and veterans’ organizations (namely Veterans For Peace) who were at least interesting to observe. Learned a lot from all of that and enjoyed showing documentaries to anyone who cared to show up. Cost me some money, but it did feel worthwhile. They consider themselves social justice activists, but not in the way people commonly reference it on youtube. All peace organizations with liberal leanings are apparently all categorized and caricatured in this way, which I don’t think is fair.
Anyway, I’m done with organizations and big groups. And completely burnt out on the political bullshit. But I don’t feel driven to be completely inactive just because of that fact. I do wish to remain active in some respects, just not apparently how others wish I would be. lol But such is life. Sometimes we need to bop to the beat of our own drums. Sometimes we feel compelled to go in a direction we don’t entirely understand at the outset. Life’s about taking risks and following where we feel called, but right now I don’t feel a calling. Just taking in what’s going on out and around, pondering and trying to make sense of what I can while contemplating where to go from here as a little soloist who feels increasingly disconnected from so many of the “battles” being waged out there.
Though I do intend to break down a bit more of my thoughts after having observed the “manosphere” at a future date.