Wednesday, January 15, 2014
Traditional and Stereotype Aren't Necessarily The Same
CES 2014 just finished up last week, so I have been reading a bunch of articles from people that were there. A lot of cool stuff will be on the shelves at some point and I wanted to one of those 'in the know.' Today I read an article that prompted this post--and you can read it here. In a few words, the author is (as far as I can see) saying that just because some electronics/accessories are made for the 'fashion conscious,' then they are dumbing things down and belittling women. Riiiigggghhhhtttt.
My second to youngest granddaughter just turned 6. For her birthday, I asked my daughter what would be something to give as a gift. I was told that her interests were 'super heroes, princesses, and gymnastics.' Her favorite color also happens to be pink. My six granddaughters range in age from 4 to 18 and each of them are super hero/fantasy/scifi fans who (for the most part) love the color pink, ruffles, shiny things, and most everything 'girlie.' Not one of these girls can be 'talked down to' just because she wants/likes traditional 'girl stuff.' These girls are traditional--in so many ways--but they definitely are NOT stereotypes.
Far too many people--like the author of the article I linked to--seem to think that stereotypes and traditionalists are the same. I am a traditional stay-at-home and have been for almost all of our marriage. I am far from a stereotype. My interests range far and wide. I like scifi and fantasy--really am not a fan of any romance/tear jerk books or movies. I'm a tech freak--I would rather have the latest, fastest, most expensive computer before getting a new washer/dryer. I cook and clean, sew, do handwork, and many other 'traditional' things, but I would rather watch a hockey game than be domestic. I don't wear ruffled aprons and don't particularly gravitate to the color pink. (There is nothing wrong with pink--I actually have a couple of things in the color--but I wear black until they come up with something darker.) I am far from a stereotype.
Being traditional is something that is ridiculed these days--and using stereotypes is a way to slam traditionalists. Just because a person is a church-going Christian, then s/he is automatically a bigot. Just because someone is a Republican, then s/he has money. If someone is white, Republican, Christian, and southern, then s/he is a redneck who hates pretty much anything that isn't white, Republican, Christian, and southern. There is no room for accepting that there may be some diversity among the traditionalists, just as there is diversity among the 'progressives.' I don't know why it can't be understood that someone can embrace the best of both worlds.
So, I tell the companies out there "bring on the 'girlie' items." If I want polka dots and bows, I will buy the product with polka dots and bows. If I don't want them, I'll move on to something else. But I certainly like the fact that there is a choice for those who may want it! And there certainly is nothing wrong with being a traditionalist.