The Grievances Of A Brown Girl

The Grievances Of A Brown Girl

Dear Brown People, this is for you.
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You would think that living in the 21st century (where women are already fighting to break the glass ceiling) that we, as brown women, wouldn't have to face sexist remarks from our own people. But unfortunately, the progressive mindset stops when it comes to our own Pakistani women (and dare I say other South Asian women).

We are seen as a threat to the Pakistani culture for expressing ourselves. But. Let. Me. Stop. You. Now.

I grew up in a country where female infanticide was at an all-time high and women were frowned upon for "disgracing" the family name for having a female baby. People claimed that the family name ends with a girl when a girl gets married. Honestly, do you even know how biology works?

The child's gender has nothing to do with a woman. But maybe you would already know that had your mothers been allowed to go to school. Maybe that vicious cycle of gender-based abortion would have ended. Maybe the words "female infanticide" would not have a statistic attached to it, with a target right over our countries. And now here we are- the new generation of women working to end the sexist remarks of a patriarchal society. By the way, female infanticide is still a thing, and will always be until we are educated.

My father raised me as 'his eldest son' and my mother made sure I was educated as much as I wanted to be. So please, do not sit there and tell me (and all the other brown girls): "Being a doctor is too much work. You will be old. Your hair will grey. No one will marry you. Why not just settle down?"

That is not YOUR choice. That is MY choice.

Do not ask me preposterous questions like "Women are surgeons too? HOW?"

Do not tell your daughters not to eat because "they should be dieting because boys don't like fat girls."

And lastly, don't tell your daughters that they are "not supposed to dress that way because that's how boys dress."

My parents did not leave an entire continent altogether for you to impose these bylaws on me. My parents did not leave their home behind so that I can sit here and play dress up for a boy.

We live in a society where the phrase "log kya kahenge?"

(what will people say?) is a killer of dreams. That is outright preposterous. Do not try to alter the way in which your daughters express themselves just to impress a boy. No, that is not how this works. That is not how this should work.

Cover Image Credit: Vitaliy Lyubezhanin / Unsplash

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12 Signs You're From Jackman Maine

You know you're from Jackman just by these few things.
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1. You never lock the doors

The entire parking lot at the store is filled with running cars, all of them with the keys still in the ignition. All are so easy to steal and yet no one touches them.

2. You almost never miss a sports game

Whether you are a sports fan or not, you almost never miss a game. Either you go to watch a friend play or to hang out, there are very few games that you have missed.

3. The cold doesn't bother you

I can't tell you how many times I've gone out in 20 degree weather in a t-shirt to do chores, or have shoveled off the deck in bare feet. Almost rarely the cold seems to be a bother.

4. You own either a snowmobile or ATV

Because what else is there to do in town? Seriously?

5. You've walked down the street all night

And you know that after 5, the road is silent. Unless it's on the weekends when everyone from Quebec is driving through.

6. You go to Old Mill and not the Town Park

Let the tourists go to the park and enjoy it, we'll just enjoy our sandy little b each.

7. You LOVE going to Slidedown

If you don't love the falls, are you even from around here? How can you not love going to Slidedown?

8. The tourists are hilarious

Now we won't say that to any of them because Jackman is a tourist town and needs to have the tourism, but some of the things that people say or do are laugh worthy.

9. Everyone has seen a moose in their backyard

And I mean everyone. I've seen one walk around in the Post Office parking lot, if they're wandering around there, they will be everywhere.

10. Hunting is a way of life

So is fishing. I don't think I know anyone in town who doesn't hunt or fish.

11. Everyone is shocked at your graduating class number

Every time I tell people I graduated in a class of 11, people stare at me like I just grew horns out of my head.

12. You know everyone

Self-explanatory.

Cover Image Credit: Bill Jarvis

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'Crazy Rich Asians' Didn't Get An Oscar Nod, But 'Bao's' Win Was A Victory For Representation

"Bao" told the story of many Asian immigrants and children of immigrants in a way that is hardly seen in mainstream media.

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This year's Academy Awards were held on Sunday, February 24. Upon the initial announcement of the Oscar nominees, many were surprised to see "Crazy Rich Asians" completely missing from the list, especially following the film's momentum through award season. However, there is still plenty to celebrate in the world of Asian Americans following the awards show, including Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin's win in best documentary for "Free Solo," and, of course, Domee Shi's win in best animated short for "Bao."

"Bao" was the accompanying short film to "Incredibles 2" in theaters. The film represented aspects of Domee Shi's Chinese heritage, bringing her culture to a mainstream audience. However, its impact runs far deeper than just its visual components. Asian viewers could see their own stories depicted in the parent-child relationship in "Bao." We could remember our own moms while watching the mom in the film prepare food for her dumpling son, and we could reflect on our own relationships with our parents while watching the son grow more distant from his mother. "Bao," for many, was a deeply nostalgic and personal experience. It told the story of many Asian immigrants and children of immigrants in a way that is hardly seen in mainstream media.

Seeing a film like "Bao" being produced by such a large company as Pixar, not to mention it being presented alongside such a highly anticipated movie as "Incredibles 2," was in itself an impactful moment for Asian Americans. To see "Bao," a film that depicts the stories of so many members of the Asian-American community, receiving an Oscar is something very much worth celebrating. It is not only a win for the film itself and Domee Shi, but for the Asian community as a whole.

"Bao"'s win shows that the stories of Asian Americans can be successful and is, hopefully, another step towards improving the representation of Asians in Hollywood and mainstream media.

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