will you marry me = a marriage proposal
will, you, Mary, me = a foursome proposal
Will you, Mary me = Cavewoman Mary helps Will recover from his Amnesia
Will, you marry me. = Will’s time-traveling partner
And people keep trying to tell me that punctuation isn’t important
We have shows like 30 Rock and Parks and Recreation struggling to stay on every season, and shows like Two and a Half Men and Big Bang Theory having no trouble at all. Shows like the latter two, which capitalize on trivializing women and their roles or attempting to put them in “their place,” become the most popular and successful shows on TV. So this poses a grander question: Why does our society enjoy sexism so much? Or, more importantly, why is our supposedly progressing world so opposed to breaking this sexist quo? You might say that it doesn’t matter – it’s just a TV show. But it’s not “just” anything. Everything matters, especially television. Everyone enjoys television, and until that arena of entertainment can employ more ladies and create shows that demonstrate the depths of different types of characters – women, people of color, and the LGBTQ community – our society that is so incredibly susceptible to what’s on that silver screen is going to continue to inherently absorb sexism.
So when shows like 30 Rock go off the air, that precious air time is replaced by shows that still present women as sex objects, dumb blondes, nagging wives, emotional coworkers, or ugly neighbors. We, unfortunately, still live in a world where a show run by women is a landmark, but we have to hold tight to those landmarks and make sure they keep breaking down those discriminatory norms.
Does your boyfriend or brother spend a lot of money on skin and hair care products? Does your dad spend much time at the hairdresser or beautician?
In your city’s daily paper do most of the political news items feature women? Are most of the stories in the business section written by and about women? Is there a special ‘Men’s Section’ filled with celebrity gossip, fashion and beauty tips?
When you watch a big sporting event on TV, are the athletes usually women? When you watch female sporting teams are there hot guys in tiny outfits cheering for them on the sidelines?
Do girls you know talk openly about getting off while watching porn? Do they boast about their sexual conquests?
When you’re at the food court, do your female friends happily gobble down a large burger and fries combo while your male friends pick at a salad and sip diet coke?
Do the majority of the fathers you know spend most of their time at home washing, cleaning, cooking and taking care of their kids? Do you often hear mothers refer to looking after their own kids as ‘babysitting’? Have you heard women talk about earning brownie points for cleaning their own house and washing their own clothes? Are you sick of men going on about how hard it is to balance work and parenthood?
Are your male friends afraid to walk on their own at night? Do they avoid drinking too much in case they get raped? Do they dress to protect themselves from attack and always carry their keys poking through their knuckles? When they complain about all this do your female friends shrug and tell them that’s just how the world is?
If the answer to all of these questions was yes, wouldn’t that mean something was wrong? Is that still true if the genders are reversed? Does it matter?