Friday, June 08, 2007

A Guest Post: “Margaret Mead* is on to something”

Editor’s Note: Esteemed regulars… unknown lurkers… random readers… Scott and I are pleased to present a Guest Post by someone who is well-known in the blogging community. Please give a warm TBWA welcome to Erin of Queen of Spain and BlogHer and read her insightful post about making a difference. Without further ado, read… and enjoy.

Being an American is exhausting.

I spent the first part of this week in tears. Hanging a yellow ribbon from the tree in our front yard and showing my children the stars on the American flag billowing below the ribbon. Their uncle has gone to war, again.

As I struggled to explain to a 4-year old exactly what a "soldier" does, I thought of all the families involved in this monstrosity of a war, the children left behind, the Iraqi's lives destroyed. Despite my 100% disagreement with this war and the idiots who started it, I found myself damn proud of our soldiers and their families. Of our stupid, stupid country and its stupid, stupid military.

So as I swelled with pride and wonder for my fellow Americans, imagine my disgust and bewilderment when I had to explain to a Canadian just how FUCKED up our government is when it comes to helping our children. Helping the poor. Helping one another.

It started simply enough, a post about us fat ass North Americans and our lazy, lazy, kids. I tried to explain socioeconomics. I tried to explain the lack of education. I tried to explain why a lard-ass Ogre, who shills for McDonalds, would be our spokesman for combating childhood obesity. I tried to explain that yes, Taco Bell can be found in our public school cafeterias and yes, our produce and healthy foods cost more than the average family can afford. They buy the shit, because the good stuff is more money and hey, it's got our government's stamp of approval.

The more I explained the more I shook my head. The more I explained the more embarrassed I became. The more I explained, the more I was moving to Switzerland.

Why does America do this to me? I don't expect to agree with everything that goes on in the great USofA at every single moment. I also don't expect to hide my head in shame when I think of the clusterfuck that are these 50 states lately.

Just when I had shaken my redhead so much it hurt, I saw a light. I got an email. I watched something I've been involved in since the start head in a new direction. One that made me swell with pride. One that reminded me it's not about the country. It’s not about the borders. Its not about who's government does what. It's about what we can do, together.

Ladies and gentleman, may I present BlogHer's ACT:

We are excited and honored to announce today, with Elisa, Jory and Lisa, the launch of BlogHers Act, a yearlong initiative to harness the incredible power of women online. That would be you.

BlogHers Act will take on two things –

1. Making a difference on a single global cause

2. Identifying the top four issues that women online want the U.S. Presidential candidates to address in order to win our votes in the ‘08 Election.

Imagine the opportunity that’s in all of our hands right now.

All of us know the positive, productive, monumental ACTION of bloggers, especially women bloggers, when rallying around a problem, an issue or an event. Since we started blogging a few years back, we’ve witnessed - and been so lucky to be a part of - countless moments, big and small, when bloggers worked together to make a difference.

Hell yes. Now get off your fat ass you lazy American, Canadian, or um, non-North American and do something.

*Editor’s Note: For those of you who don’t know who Margaret Mead is, she was an American cultural anthropologist who developed the field of culture and personality research and was a dominant influence in introducing the concept of culture into education, medicine, and public policy. Her ethnographic studies focused upon aspects of gender and culture in a variety of societies.

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