What did you just call me?!

“Isn’t that right, b*tches?” she asked in a comic voice.  She wasn’t serious; she was our friend.  Actually, she was trying to be her comical self and make everyone at the table laugh.  I don’t even remember what she had been talking about before this comment, but I didn’t think it funny and her attitude was starting to get on my nerves. 

So, without any malice, in a voice as laid back and teasing as she’d spoken in, I replied.  “What did you just call me?”

She didn’t like that I called her on it.  She was shocked and appalled at how picky I was.  I honestly don’t care.  I have too much self-respect to let people go around calling me names like that, even in jest.  I’m furious when men who use it, but even moreso when women do.  How can we tell the men, ‘Hey, respect us’ but then call each other such nasty epithets?  Women should not call other women names.  Period.  We should be standing together.

Before I go any further, let me clarify: I am not a feminist.  Far, far from it.  I think the feminist movement started out great, but has been abused by ladies who think they deserve more than men.  We complain incessantly about how independent we are, and how we deserve to be treated just like men . . . then can’t understand why men no longer open doors for us or pull out chairs?  Hello!!  Sure men and women should be treated equal, but they still are different and we need to embrace those differences, not blend them!

According to dictionary.com , the derogatory term “bitch” started circa 1400.  Here’s what the site says:

……………“BITCH. A she dog, or doggess; the most offensive appellation that can be given to an English woman, even more provoking than that of whore.” [“Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue,” 1811]

Is that what you want to go around calling your friends?  What really ticks me off is the excuses.  People have become de-sensitized because it’s a term they hear all the time on television and in music.  Let me tell you something: TV and music did not come up with this junk.  TV and music merely portray what is going on in our culture.  But you do not need to parrot what you see or hear from America’s famous icons.  Those actors and actresses you think justify your actions seem to keep ending up in either asylums or prisons, in case you haven’t noticed. 

They say “you are what you do”. . . I think that you are also what you say.  Reverend Jeremiah Wright is in trouble, not for what he did, but for what he said.  He yelled words from his pulpit that were viewed as anti-American sentiments.  They were also viewed as racist.  You can see this post for my views on that.  But I believe that terms such as ‘bitch’ fall into that same category.   

What about freedom of speech, you say?  What happened to First Amendment rights?  I think my favorite show, 7th Heaven, summed it up well with their episode on this subject, called “Tunes.”  According to Matt Camden, the First Amendment doesn’t mean you can just yell ‘fire’ if there’s no fire.  He’s right.  You can’t just open your big mouth and think you’ll be fine no matter what comes out. Freedom of speech doesn’t mean that any more than Islamic Extremist acts are legal due to freedom of religion.

That having been said, it is still your mouth and I never criticize people for their words until they aim them at me, as this friend of mine did.  I am not people’s mother nor am I trying to be their conscience.  I’m merely a girl not afraid to stick up for herself and her values.

There are a lot of words people use that, though maybe in good humor, are less than ethical.  This isn’t any insinuation about any of them.  This is about one word that I am sick of and find offensive.  If you don’t know what a word means, my advice is to not use it.  If you do know what it means . . . well, tell me this.  Would you call your mother that?  Your sister?  Grandmother?  Aunt?  Cousin?  Girlfriend/Wife?  Daughter? 

I’m giving you the benefit of the doubt in saying I don’t think most of you would.  So do our culture a favor.  Stop making it such a popular word.  Stop using it.     

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