So, who is the ethnic minority?

Posted in 1 with tags , , , , on April 26, 2010 by prekosifa

Last week I was listening to a debate on the radio about the worryingly increasing amount of teenage murders happening in London at the moment, this was on the back of a fifteen year old who was knifed to death on the previous weekend. The gentleman caller was asking for help to put an end to this problem, its solution he believed, lay in looking in a number of different areas like poverty, education and social issues. One important area he did touch upon, and one that I hadn’t heard in a long time, was history. For kids to understand and know where they come, enabling them to have pride in their past, will reflect on their behaviour and therefore their future. A long shot perhaps but in a world where nothing is for certain, many other things have been tried…and have all failed.

This got me to thinking about how the perception of ourselves, and thus our own importance, is reinforced, good or bad by what happens in the wider world around us. History is a case in point as when I was at school we learned all about Roman, Egyptian and Greek history. We also learned about British history and briefly, very briefly, touched upon slavery, and that was a mere paragraph in my text book, (thank you William Wilberforce!).  So in five years of studying history at the most important time of my life, in a Grammar school, the only thing I learned about black people was that we were slaves. The fact that I knew there must have been more to it was largely irrelevant, as was the fact that my dad was a constant source of knowledge about my own family’s long history. The simple fact was it didn’t get much respect in my wider world of the school classroom and so that feeling of being marginalised and unimportant was readily accepted from a very young age, and worst of all was done unwittingly.

But it is not only in history class where a young black boy can feel unimportant, Geography is perhaps a much clearer one. The map that most of us know and recognise from school is called the Mercator map, famous for its blatant inconsistencies that somehow managed to be overlooked by the ruling powers for almost 400 years. The map, first produced in 1569 was racially and geographically biased, most notably in its reduced sizing of continents like Africa and South America against Europe and Britain in particular. Obviously in those days information was scarce and knowledge of the wider world was limited in fact, most ‘learned’ English scholars believed in their being mythical beasts and monsters in these far off lands populated by a darker race of people. Zounds! No problem with any of that, but when the same map is still being used when I was at school over 400 years later…something is fucked up!
How important do you think black kids would feel if they realised just how big the continent of Africa was?, and if this truth was backed up everywhere, in school atlases, on news reports in McDonalds happy meals promotions! After all, in this day and age nothing is real until it is plastered over everything.

Interestingly, in 1974, a German historian and cartographer by the name of Dr Arno Peters produced a map that was not racially biased and was area accurate, that is, it showed the continents to be of a truer and  more proportional size. But this map was condemned from the start and was not widely published, why, because over educated scholars of the time decided against it. Just what were they afraid of?

Conspiracy theories abound and to be honest, the actual reasons I am not interested in. It is the effect of these illegal acts of knowledge falsification that I have a major issue with because the end result may just be a disassociated youth who has no interest in the world that he is in. To deny people the correct information must surely be wrong as it allows for the continued racial biases that we find in most areas of modern society today and allows for the continuation of such a system that is at its heart racially unfair. It is then, way too easy for terms like ‘ethnic minority’ to be banded about acquiring more meaning and relevance than they should have in the first place.

Looking at the Peters map, just who is the ethnic minority anyway?

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Gilrs will be girls…won’t they?

Posted in 1 with tags , , , , , on April 19, 2010 by prekosifa

Last Sunday, I decided to take advantage of the first signs of summer and take a trip to the park with my son and his friend. The park was packed full of like minded souls taking advantage of the hot sun and my young charges were happily playing on the swings and throwing stones at each other when a commotion on the far side of the children’s area grabbed our attention.

A group of youths were the cause of the uproar and in the centre two teenage lads were trading blows like they were on Saturday Fight Night!, at least, I thought it was 2 boys. Upon closer inspection I realised that one of the ‘boys’ was in fact a girl, but she was giving it all she got. The fight was split up by one of her friends and she took the opportunity to spit in the face of her male aggressor, before being urged to go in the other direction. The excitement over, everybody got back to what they were doing and pretty soon all was forgotten.

Had I just witnessed the new face of feminity?

Don’t get me wrong, I am not the kind of person that believes that women belong in the kitchen, or indeed that there is a particular way in which men and women should act, but what I have noticed lately is a shift in the way that some females behave. Girls now are following in the footsteps of their male classroom counterparts when it comes to violence and straightforwardness. The rise of the ‘pornification’ of women in the media, has been matched by the rise of the laddette. The beer swilling, foul mouthed females who lurk until closing time in bars and clubs around the City, always ready to down a pint or two as quickly as possible and too eager to lay you out flat on your back if you say the wrong thing or stare for too long in their direction.

Just what is going on?

But maybe I am being unfair. Am I basing my opinion on what a woman should act like on an age old stereotype put in place by men way before my time? Am I indeed sexist in my approach and beliefs that it is normal for a woman to act demure and ‘princessly’, not being expected to paint a fence or change the wheel of a car, but will always look better in an apron or dressed to the nines in clothes created more for the male gaze than for any type of physical practicality? I admit that I came up in this male dominated world therefore hold some male dominated views and yet there still seemed something wrong with seeing a girl trade blows against a boy. In my opinion the boy should have known better, if that had been my son hitting a girl, I would have been more than disappointed. (But then again, if a girl was acting like a boy and started a fight against my son, I can’t say wholeheartedly that I would be angry with him if he gave her a bitch-slap!) .

You see to me if you act in a certain way, then you can’t really blame anyone for treating you in a certain way. It may just be that this rise in more masculine femininity has come on the back of a more feminine masculinity. Men are spending more and more on cosmetics and stuff to make you look and smell pretty than anytime before in history. Now, its certainly not the first time that men have dared to care for their appearance but the last time it wasn’t met by an equal shift by women in the opposite direction. In the past, when women were held further down than they are today, men were allowed to play whatever roles they wanted to, often donning ridiculous wigs, and horrific makeup, and looking like 17th century pimps! Today things seem to be changing but unfortunately the good is mixed with the not so good, encompassing behaviour like I witnessed in the park.

Logically thinking I suppose what we should see is a middle line where men and women act more or less the same, where women can stand on equal terms with a man, receiving an equal amount of acknowledgement. Maybe that is the effect of a changing world, maybe this is what this world needs to redress the huge imbalance that has occurred since time immemorial and so perhaps, maybe we are just going to have to get used to it. Now, I don’t think that we will see a blanket transformation of harder female types appearing on the horizon like zombies out of a Dario Argento film, it will be more a gradual thing taken up only by those who are eager to do so.

And so, as long as there are women out there happy to play the ‘stereotype’ that I have come to know and love, everything, in my world at least, will be copasetic!

If you want my advice…!

Posted in 1 with tags , , , on April 12, 2010 by prekosifa

Relationship taboos haunted me from when I was young. Being in the house with two older siblings and two older male cousins, I was given loads of ‘supposedly’ sage relationship advice that would steer me clear through the relationship minefield that would hit me as a teenager. ‘There are just certain things you don’t do’ is what they said in chorus, and the top three were;

You don’t sleep with your friend’s sister

You don’t sleep with your friends ex

You don’t sleep with your friend’s mother, (Aunties were okay though!)

I never asked why these taboos existed in the first place. I just took it on board that my family were just giving me the benefit of their vast experience.

The Sister
So for years you been hanging out with your best mate, going round his house, sharing his food and generally becoming that half brother hybrid he never had, you were always welcome through the door no matter what time of day or night. You even had his mom doing your ironing and fixing you sandwiches, and all of this would stay the same, as long as you didn’t take a second glance at his little sister.

Things used to be okay, back when she was still in primary school and then again when she was going through that awkward geeky stage trying to fit into her new body. But since her 16th birthday you couldn’t help but notice her. She sees you as the brother she can have sex with, you see her…, and that’s the problem, you see her, and all you do now is want her. At meal times she practices her flirting skills on you, the older man who should know better, but really and truly doesn’t at only 18. Next thing you know you’ve visited her secret place and are now secretly seeing each other. Now you have to tell your mate!

Just don’t do it was the advice I got and whether or not it is like the scenario described above, or just a drunken fumble behind the pub with your mates not so pretty twin…I was told to just stay away and I always adhered to this, well, almost always.

But what was the big deal. On one level isn’t your mate showing you no respect by basically saying that you are not good enough for her, a bit of a piss take. Or else he could be saying ‘I know what you are like with women, and you not very nice’, or he could be saying ‘I will get jealous if your time spent over at mine is not about me anymore’. Then again maybe he has it in his head that you have been watching his sister since she was thirteen! And to be honest, there is probably an element of truth in each of these statements, scary I know

The Ex
You’re best friend broke up with his woman and you were nominated to talk to her, and get him back in there. Or else your mate split up and you stayed friends with her because you were always friends. Whatever the reason you suddenly find yourself hanging out more and more with this person, at first talking about the one thing you had in common, your mate, and then deciding to stay as far away from this topic as possible and talk about everything else, instead. Problem because now you can really get into each others heads. On top of that because there is no sex, you spend all your quality time talking and doing other things together. Your mate doesn’t say anything, not because he isn’t bothered, but because he doesn’t know just how much time you have been spending at his old address. And lets face it, you’re not in a rush to tell him and she isn’t either…not yet anyway. So eventually the inevitable happens and that innocent hug goodbye at her door, ends in the two of you in the sack declaring undying love for each other in between thrusts! Sexual frustration has won the day and now you have to tell your mate that you might need a best man!

Just don’t do it. That was the advice I got from my friends and my older brothers. You see there is a secret code here and this is the ultimate no no. From a legal stand there is obviously nothing really wrong about it, but this falls more under the realm of a moral issue, and morally it is wrong. From your boys point of view, you must have been sweating on his missus the whole time they were together! From your point of view I think you were too, kinda, or is jealousy the motivator behind this one. Then again it could just be true love, and if it it is then anything you go through will all be worth it.

The Mother
Your mates mum is one of those darlings that just seems to get better with age. When you were thirteen it was obvious she had to remain the things that wet dreams are made of, and fourteen and fifteen weren’t much different either. But when you got to 16 you noticed that she noticed you. Her comments always related to your new size and bigger frame and she made constant references to you growing and maturing. Yes, my friend, she had seen you but you were still at that age where nothing could really happen. You didn’t know what to do anyway with a woman her age and everything she said could have just been innocent. So, you forget about her and she just becomes the topic of schoolboy memories when you chat with your other old school mates, the milf that got away!

So you are out drinking in a bar one night, years later, when a woman approaches you. It takes you a minute to realise that the woman standing in front of you is ‘Stifflers mom!’ One drink leads to another and before you know it, you’re bumping uglies wherever and whenever you can! Then you’ve got to tell your mate, or at least dodge him for the next few weeks. He won’t understand, may get angry, and will want to punch your lights out!

Just don’t do it. Yes, it is the ultimate schoolboy fantasy but people will get hurt in the fallout. As a teenager, if you are lucky enough, you can always claim ignorance and innocence of what was occurring (works in a court of law!), leaving you with amazing memories and a story to tell around the campfire! In reality, there is the age gap to contend with and the probable difference in tastes, but you know what? If you happy and you know it…fuck it! Your mate will understand and as long as you get him a Christmas present and tell him he doesn’t have to call you ‘dad’ after you’ve moved in, he should be cool…eventually.

I guess the point I am making is if something feels right, you should just go for it. There will always be those out there that disagree with what you want to do or thnk they should advise you on your life, and more often than not they have other issues going on that they are not dealing with. I never thought to ask my brothers what their advice was based on and it came to me, eventually, that the advice they saw fit to give me, just wasn’t worth the toilet paper it was written on!

Food is wonderful!

Posted in 1 with tags , , , , on April 5, 2010 by prekosifa

This year was the first time in ages that I have looked forward to Easter. Not since I was a little boy have I celebrated this ‘holiday’, as sometime over the years its importance has been lost on me. Possibly because of the huge commercialization of the Easter egg, or maybe because of the strange and uncanny disappearance of the Easter bunny, who knows?

The truth is, since Christmas I have looked forward to any kind of public holiday, the reason being…food. You see at Christmas I cooked for my family, twelve greedy mouths salivating at the thought of a well prepared Christmas feast! I took on the challenge, struggled and laboured for hours in a hot kitchen and…drum roll please… succeeded in producing a meal Henry VIII would have been proud of. The praise I received afterwards made it all the more worthwhile and yes I did suffer from a bigger head than normal, but so what? Surely I deserved it. It was my way of grabbing the limelight for a few weeks and showing appreciation to my mother who had done the sane thing for years usually to no noticeable appreciation.

This got me onto something.

Trawling along the aisles of the supermarket, seeking inspiration for practice meals, I began to notice the crap that they put into frozen and canned foods. Ingesting bad chemicals and ‘code named’ secret ingredients cannot be good for us. When I buy an Apple pie I want 2 basic things, Apple, flour, sugar (but not too much), butter…you know the usual stuff. Not the crap they end up putting in it and that’s just the start. Take a look for yourselves sometime and see for yourself but before you decide to do something about it, if anything combine what we put inside us, with what we cover ourselves with, in the form of moisturising creams, body sprays and shampoos. Trust me, the findings are even worse. What is insanely criminal though, is the fact that we are willing accomplices in the battle to forego our own common sense for the sake of ease, the promise from a good ad campaign and the failure to be arsed enough to care enough about ourselves to check the small print! So what if that girl from friends has nice wavy hair, you will get nice wavy hair too if you put industrial thinner on your head! And lets not forget the aluminium in our aerosol deodorants… aluminium?…metal? No wonder my armpits feel so cold after I spray!

What is amazing to believe is how easy it is to make these things ourselves. Now I am not going down the route of a hippie greenie, I am just saying to think about it before you dismiss it. You just never know.

Anyway, I digress.

Fresh product would have to be the way forward from now on, taking inspiration from Jamie Oliver, the ‘Reggae Reggae’ sauce man and my mum. Cooking is cool with a glass of your favourite tipple and some 80’s tunes playing in the background. (My journey into the world of homemade moisturising creams and shampoos may be a topic for a future rant).

So we get to Easter and I decide now is the time to do that roast, make those veg and create a dessert of such greatness that it will be talked about within family circles for years…well at least until the next family gettogether! I created my menu, something simple this time, Turkey; roast carrots and baby sweet corn in olive oil; roasted new potatoes with crushed black pepper and sea salt; rhubarb and apple crumble with homemade ice cream or custard for dessert…perfect! (No starter, just have more potatoes!).

Next, I needed some guests. My son was with me this weekend so I invited some friends and family, not too many, just enough. Anyway I prepare this feast and guess what…nobody shows up! Well, not except for my son, who I guess was there by default, (if  he did have a choice, I honestly don’t know which way he would have gone!) Remarkably, he sat with me at the dining table and ate his food quite happily for a change, (he much prefers to sit in front of the TV with a tray on his lap and an absent expression on his face!). Now he was no fuss, he just got it down his neck. He passed on the dessert though instead preferring hot brownies and ice cream, (i think it was the rhubarb!).

Afterwards my cousin passed by with his family, a plesant surprise, and now my son had someone to play with and I ended up having a great evening, watching the TV, (The Clevland Show), whilst flicking peanuts at my cuz who kept falling asleep. In fact, it was just like being at home.

So now, I won’t take any opportunity for a public gathering lightly. These sacred days are too important to pass over and treat like a blight on the calendar, and an interference to our busy schedules. I may be quite late catching on to this but I now see that holidays are a time to sit back, relax and chill, really chill. To take a load off  and watch the world slowly go by, from a distance for a change.

With that thought, and with my belly grumbling and rumbling I’m now thinking about polishing off the leftovers and watching some television.

Hope you all had a Happy Easter.

‘The Jeeps, Lex Coupes, Beamers and the…!’

Posted in 1 with tags , , , , , , , , on March 30, 2010 by prekosifa

Now that I have become a real Londoner and climate change enthusiast, I have abandoned my motor vehicle for the wonderful public transport system. I get my green credentials, am doing my bit for the environment and am saving loadsa money in the process. But I do miss the independence owning a car brings and when I do own another car, and I do plan to at some point in the not too distant future, I aim to get a new car, something that will befit a man of my status.

As much as I know a runaround will suffice, the reality is I will probably go for a ‘ride’, one that wouldn’t look out of place in a 50 cent video! One that acts like a CV and has women crossing over the road in the hope that I will run them over! – a four wheeled Lynx advert! You see, I know how the world works and a top of the range motor vehicle does more than turn heads and get you into clubs. It gets you beautiful girls and instils envy in all the other guys you see on your daily travels. A nice ride goes hand in hand with designer clothes, top restaurants and a designer pad, The only companies that need apply for the position of giving me status are Lexus, Mercedes, Audi or BMW or any forty grand plus four by four, or anything that is obviously ‘up there’. A phat ride lets the world know you have arrived and ensures you get the respect you deserve. At least I think it does…doesn’t it?

I stutter because when you are driving out of the showroom, amid smiles from all the staff and feeling as cool and as dapper as you dare, they fail to tell you about the hidden ‘extras’ that come with owning an expensive piece of metal. And I tell you these extras in no particular order of importance.

As soon as you hit the highway and have got her back home where she belongs, after you have admired her in the late evening under a beautiful sunset and it is time to stop polishing her and go to bed…you will worry, Hidden Extra number 1. This worry is like nothing you have had before, especially if you don’t have kids, because while you attempt to sleep with one eye open, your ‘mortgage’ on your drive is desirable to others. And like leaving your girlfriend unattended in a club, undesirables will zoom in as soon as they fuckin can, their one goal, to take…your…shit! When you wake up your car could be in a crate making its way across Eastern Europe…along with your Best of Michael Jackson CD. After a while you do get used to the threat and just hope that your baby, equipped to the teeth in new technology, will be able to protect herself, resisting the strong temptation of another ‘man’ entering her doors without your permission, (little bro’s don’t count…although they should!).

Hidden Extra number 2, they never tell you how much you will worry about damaging the new ride. For a while you think puddles will damage the paint work and the acid rain will turn your baby into a soft top! All not true of course but there is the real threat of scratches, bird poop and, dare I say…the dreaded RTA. You wonder how you will deal with it and the realisation that maybe you should have read the small print in your insurance terms and conditions, (how much is the excess??) After she is fixed your baby is no longer perfect. The dents may be long gone but the memories take longer to fade.

So you even get past this, and you‘re going out to clubs and raves all over town. Restaurants are your thing, or just cruising up a high street, getting maximum exposure, lovin the life your livin’?  Maybe not, because now you have a horde of fans who you don’t really know. Are they friends or enemies? Some of your friends will actually be enemies, lauding over the coveted front passenger seat, your own personal ‘scrub’, jealous and proud in equal measure. Others that were seemingly enemies are now friends just because they have the same kind of status ride as you. You don’t really know these people and it seems pretty flimsy that you now talk because of something so…shallow! But talk you will, in shopping car parks or at car washes you will have the kinds of conversation that includes phrases like, ‘what’s your MPG?’, ‘Has she a DOHC?’ ,’Six cylinder V8, right?’, and ‘how does she hold at 120?’ All said under the gaze of admiring glances. Ever notice how status car drivers’ crew together in public places like car parks and car washes, removing themselves from the general populous who dare to drive Toyota Corollas and Ford anything’s?

But moving on, you do get used to this new way of being and start to live your life in a constant state of not knowingness, aka Hidden Extra 3. You don’t know if your new group of friends like you or your riches; your new girl is into you or the colour map feature on your Lexus dashboard; and whether or not that group of guys across the street are admiring your rims or preparing to jack you! After a while these things can play on your mind and can inform your decisions to drive with a baseball bat under the seat, and a 9mm in the glove box, centrally locked into your own platinum plated prison with the world passing viewed through your own wide screen windscreen, your portal into the dangerous world outside. This extravagant, well earned purchase, meant to signify freedom, in a way actually becoming quite the opposite.

I remember the first service I got for my brand new Jeep a few years ago. It was a Ice black, tinted windows, big wheels, booming sound system, plush all leather interior, (just thinking about it now makes me horny!). Anyway, the mechanic told me with a broad smile on his face, that I needed three new tyres…three fuckin tyres! How the fuck did I need three tyres? I can understand needing two at a time, but three? Anyway a trip to the tyre shop stood me at over £600! I had gotten use to the car itself being a mortgage payment…but the accessories as well? The electric door mirror that got busted by another driver…£300, the torn leather behind the passenger seat (a parting gift from one of my god children)…£100. The scratches on the bumper…£250. It felt like these figures were getting plucked out of thin air, but they were very real indeed. Just last week I heard about a guy whose £60,000 BMW left him stranded after a night out because it couldn’t drive on the icy roads, being a rear wheel drive. This dude had to walk home because his ‘super palace chick magnet’ on wheels, was not fully equipped for the British weather. For that same price he could have bought at least a dozen cars that could have made that journey quite easily, in fact, for that same price he should have been given another car with its own fuckin chauffeur!

I do not write to discourage all you out there that like a nice ride, that like to be seen in the right vehicle and would sooner drive a Masserati and live in a council flat than buy a ‘good enough’ vehicle and own your own home. I fully understand the feeling you get when you are behind the wheel of something that turns heads, that gives you status, and makes you feel important, because life is hard enough and full of people that will ignore you given half the chance anyway. I get it. They fulfil a need in the narcissistic world in which we now live.

But don’t forget those hidden costs, those things that do not come in the brochure, or are talked about in the marketing campaigns that are there simply to entice and enthral you. These are the very things that will bring your dream purchase back to reality, and that’s not a bad place to be. Me?, for now I am happy just strolling along with a smile on my face being connected. It may rain from time to time, and I may get wet, but at least I know who’s pissing on me!

Equal opportunity clothing…anyone?

Posted in 1 with tags , , , , , , , , , , on March 22, 2010 by prekosifa

I had been thinking about doing some further academic studying when a friend suggested I should consider a Masters Degree. She made it sound so simple, all I would need would be a worthwhile area of study and something original that interested me and dealt with a burning question. As a writer I wanted it to be something that had some artistic merit as well. A day out shopping gave me all I needed and perhaps a little bit more than I bargained for.

Is it just me or is the fashion world a little bit one sided in the West. I say this because when I look at adverts on TV I notice that very few of them are geared towards non white people, marketed specifically for me. Now I am not getting on a band wagon and I am not going to start crying out for equality across the board in everything because I don’t think this is realistic or indeed possible. But as an observation, I realised that some black people in particular, suffer in mostly minor ways every time they purchase certain items of clothing.

So what started this?

I went to the Dagenham market this morning, in East London. Now East London is probably the most multi cultural place on this planet and I say that with some confidence. As I watched the diversely back grounded people on the market, two African women stood out in particular. They were shapely, over weight by the European modelling industry standard, and were squeezed into tight fitting jeans. I could see the look they were going for and at first thought that they simply had the wrong sizes on. Then it occurred to me that perhaps they didn’t and maybe the problem was their shape, they had good back sides! And it would seem that ‘good’ back sides were not the industry norm! If a jean doesn’t fit your shape it doesn’t matter what size you get, but how do you get jeans that are made for your own racially unique shape? And what effect does not being able to do so have on you? Right there, with a hot dog in my mouth and a new duvet cover under my arm, the idea for my PhD thesis was born, the title? Western Jeans Fashion, and its visual effects on a non conformist customer base – A Psycho Social perspective.

Perfect. But where was the proof?

A few years ago a friend of my second cousin’s, who worked in the car industry told me that all cars built were based around a standard driver’s height of 5ft 9 inches. Obviously I understand that as a car manufacturer, you have to pick a height and go with it but when you think about the number of women who now drive, (compared to how many did when the car, and the standards, first came about), coupled with their average size, you quickly realise that most women, and short men for that matter, suffer driving vehicles that are not really made for them.

Fashion is the same thing. I believe that most clothes are based on a standard European body size and shape, probably five foot 6 with no discernible additional material for the back side and this makes sense given the way the Western world is. Unfortunately it also means that anybody not fitting this ideal, this racially biased norm, is wearing clothes not made for them that will ultimately fail in doing their job of fitting properly.

As an alternative example, in Nigeria, in West Africa, fashion for women is based on a different shape. The clothes that are worn complement the wearer and are for that bigger fuller woman, aka the ‘Aunty’ look. Browsing through a Nigerian fashion magazine you would be hard pushed to find a small model, it just isn’t the norm and is a joy to see, (not that I’m a chubby chaser), it’s just refreshing to see something…real!

So what is my argumentative issue?

My issue is that the West has enormous pulling power on every single race on the planet. The influence of America and Britain on the rest of the world is overwhelming and with cities like London, that are now a beacon when it comes to a multicultural society living and sharing together, the disparities that develop are there for us all to see, if we look close enough. But surely it is time to recognise and move past this. It seems that we as a people are trying our hardest to fit into something that isn’t made for us. Now I am not saying to abandon jeans and other useful garments, I am just saying that if we are not being catered for then perhaps we should look elsewhere, or maybe just ask the companies in question to spare us a thought and adjust those age old sizes to ones that take into account the vast array of ‘Benetton’ people now wearing their products. As individuals perhaps we should ‘vote with our Western credit cards’ and demand something a little more ‘fitting’. It’s not too much to ask for is it?

With the world changing the problem I suppose will eventually die out, leaving things to change naturally, over time.

Then again, maybe I am completely wrong and those two women were wearing tight jeans because they thought they actually looked good! Maybe they just had bad taste and a completely different view to mine as to what works and what doesn’t work in the public arena. Could it have just been that?

If it is, then I guess what my title should be is possibly, Western Jeans Fashion – and how it shows the disillusionment and short sightedness of its non conformist customers – A Psycho Social perspective.

Yes, this could work.

Perhaps that doctorate may not be too far away after all.

Too young to be a mother?

Posted in 1 with tags , , , , , , , , , on March 15, 2010 by prekosifa

A few weeks ago, an author dared to suggest that there was nothing wrong with girls as young as 14 years old having babies. She was ridiculed and publicly cursed for her point of view and I am sure received the usual amount of death threats, obscene phone calls and hate mail because she dared to voice an opinion that was not in keeping with the majority.

A guest on a live  TV show looked physically sick and got extremely angry about it on live television. The host had to calm her down in the end but not before she said that not only were this woman’s comments way off, but that she had no right to make them in the firt place because she didn’t even have kids of her own! As I watched the drama unfold I questioned what all the fuss was really about.

It’s a fact that girls are ready to give birth from as young as 12 years old in some cases and in some countries in this world this is what still happens, and yet girls in these countries are not vilified for it. The scientific argument therefore stands in place. The moral argument however is the one that we always go to, citing how unfair it is for the girls and making the assumption, in this country anyway, that the state will end up raising these kids. The psychological argument says that girls still in their teens to do not have the mental aptitude to be able to deal with the headaches that a new child can bring. Industry heads throw their two pence worth in by saying that these girls will not be able to add to the economy and the govt is worried that Britain will become known as a country of teenage mothers.

No surprises there.

At the end of the day, the view we have of a teenage mother is always one who lives on a council estate and gets benefits. The father is usually a layabout or a brick worker who doesn’t take responsibility, if he is known, chances are the young mother in question was putting it about a bit and just may not know who the father is anyway. Not until they all land up on Maury or any other daytime paternity show! This is the picture we have been given from the media and this is the single story we hold to be the truth. To dare to accept to live in a country with teenage mothers seems to suggest that as an individual we should be ashamed and that as a society, we are failing.

But let’s take a look from another angle. What are the good things about young mothers? Well for one, if you had your child young by the time you hit your twenties you are ready to join the workforce without the pressure of leaving to have babies later, employer happy, mother happy!

As a young mother, you will share a different kind of relationship with your offspring, perhaps making you closer and more understanding of their plight, what I like to call ‘the generational argument’.

With so many girls not sure of what they want, perhaps it is the perfect time to be having children rather than hanging around getting drunk or high or having lots of random meaningless sex and a monthly abortion.

I could go on but I think you see my point. For every bad reason there is a good one and therefore I am inclined to believe that perhaps what needs to change is our moralistic and high filuted attitude to this subject. One thing that makes me chuckle is that with the number of wars that this govt is getting us into, where do they think the troops will come from?

Perhaps what needs to change is our attitude. Perhaps we need to look at the bigger picture and move away from this idea that science is only right when we say it is. There may be a good reason why young girls and young boys can become parents. There may be a good reason why it is important for the world to be structured in this way and just because we cannot see it doesn’t mean it is bad. If someone dares to speak out no one has the right to vilify them for their beliefs or question them on a moral high ground that they themselves couldn’t possibly reach. When I see women, castigating other women, especially over childbirth, I always wonder what else is going on there. When we feel strongly against something there is always little more to it, something a bit personal that we are really angry about.

Now in saying all of this I am not stating that teenage mothers are the way forward, I just think that for some girls it may be right for them. I do not criticise or make a moral judgement on it; I will look at what the benefits may be. My reasons? Well on a day like today where we celebrate Mothers every where, I don’t think it right or fair that some will get better press than others.

If either of my girls had dropped a child while they were teenagers would I have been angry? No.
Would I think they had thrown their lives away? No
Would I make them feel like they were a burden on society? No
I would do the only thing that I could do, be a young grandparent! (maybe that is what the fuss is really about?).

A good mother should be patient, flexible, loving and nurturing. A good mothershould love and care for her children. A good mother should want the best for her child and will always put her child first. A good mother is an important and necessary requirment in today’s social and economic climate.  So, to all you  mothers out there, no matter how young you may be, Happy Mothers Day.