You may be relieved to know that this is not a political post; Holy Hell, Social Media of late is like willfully diving into a mosh pit of apocalyptic savages – facebook is probably the worst only because of format, length, nested replies and linking of names whether you approve or not. How can anyone of logical thought NOT respond to irrational bullying?
This is a post about character, perception, and the reality of what shapes the human story – so it is very relevant to the stories we write.
In the maelstrom of belligerent politics, a survey about the election given to female teens came across my feed. It was a relatively small focus of 332 females age 14-17 who were questioned about the transient effects of the Clinton / Trump argument.
Some were empowered that they could be in a position of leadership, some were frightened by what that meant. Some were suddenly conscious of their bodies and how males looked at them. There was no good or inspirational result to this poll (in my opinion). All I could do was think back to when I fell into that age bracket and how I would have answered.
I would have thought the pollsters were out of their minds. I would have laughed and gone on with my life.
SO much of it comes from the house(s) you are raised in. As a teenage girl, I never gave a shit about what people thought of my body, and I never thought, ‘hey, I want to be in a position of power.’ BUT I also NEVER thought that being a leader was out of reach, or that there was any position that was ONLY attainable by a man. These mindsets have carried through to my adult years and while they may prompt small minds to talk, they prompt curious minds to do.
I would not attribute this to parenting that was progressive or politically oriented — more to being given the space for independent thought out of lack of time (or term) for helicopter parenting.
Today, 99.9% of children believe in the politics of what they hear their parents rant about, and from what I can see, that means my son is surrounded by 7 out of 10 kids who (male and female), are not allowed the core value of independent thought to bolster their confidence. This is what America has to get right and this is the stuff of good story.
Every year in America, we celebrate Independence Day, but a scant few know what that truly entails.
EVERY HUMAN ON THIS PLANET AND BEYOND IS ENTITLED TO INDEPENDENT THOUGHT, the courage of their convictions and the pursuit of their dreams, regardless of gender, race, age or nationality.
The characters that are oppressed in our stories are the characters that resonate with our audiences because – clearly they are the characters that are oppressed in our lives.
Write with the theme of independence and everything else will fall into place.
Here are the survey and article if you are interested. http://nyti.ms/2eAONEO