Tag Archives: inspiring women

Roseanne Barr: A Formidable Comedic Matriarchal Goddess & One of my Pretend Moms

Feminist Rag Award NEW_Roseanne Barr

I think that all comics or humorists, or whatever we are, ask questions. That’s what we’re supposed to do. But I not only ask the questions, I offer solutions.

A comic needs to understand the big picture in order to fracture it and present it to people so they can see it more clearly. Comedy is the only hope for humanity.

There is so much to say about Roseanne Barr. She’s smart, funny, beautiful, real and makes a lot of sense, for starters. She’s also a writer, a stand up comedian, an actress and a political activist; she ran for President of the United States in 2012, will run again in 2016, and says she’ll keep running until she wins. Out of all the presidential candidates I’ve seen, she’s the best by a long shot and could easily make a clean space in the huge mess that is the colonist Congress/White House that’s been running the genocidal oppression and enslavement show for the last 500+ years in the Americas.

The Conner Family from the television sitcom ‘Roseanne’ (1988-1997)

Like many from my generation, I first learned of Roseanne from watching her sitcom ‘Roseanne’ which ran from 1988 to 1997. This show always made me feel so warm and fuzzy, and still does when I watch reruns. I would giggle with glee at how she smartly, effortlessly, lovingly and effectively ran the Conner household. This simple, funny and smart “blue collar/working class” family probably spoke to and affirmed the hearts of the majority of American and Canadian households who weren’t chasing the elitist American Dream Nightmare and instead were busy being themselves, struggling to survive the day to day shit life throws at us.

The Conner family was the kind of quirky, diverse, fun-loving, down-to-earth, non-judgmental, supportive family I always dreamed of belonging to, and I loved getting lost in this cozy world for the 30 minutes the show would air. This show was such a refreshing change from the bland mainstream Stepford status quo television “programming” on TV, then, and what seems like more so, nowadays.

Roseanne is unapologetic about her beliefs in her uniquely casual yet serious-as-a-heart attack manner. She takes no shit from anyone, which is one of the many things I love about her.

A guy is a lump like a doughnut. So, first you gotta get rid of all the stuff his mom did to him. And then you gotta get rid of all that macho crap that they pick up from beer commercials. And then there’s my personal favorite, the male ego.

Roseanne inspires the matriarchal warrior within me. She also makes me look forward to aging. I see her as I see all women, like a fine wine that gets better with age. She is the kind of person that commands Respect from those smart enough to see her for the spark of beauty and power she is. Roseanne says it how it is in a funny and accessible way, and offers simple solutions to stupid, over-complicated problems created by the colonist culture. Though she isn’t a decolonist and believes in making changes within the current political/legal-economic order of things, I still think she’s still a radical woman just for being herself. I like what she says about her relationship with politics/the political system:

I just want to keep the voice of dissent alive in all of our elections. I don’t really want to hang out with politicians. I’d rather go straight to hell, and not collect $200.

She doesn’t pretend to be a submissive man-pleaser like the colonist patriarchy demands of women, and I love her so much for that, it was so inspiring to me to watch as a young female trying to navigate my way through the jungle of the fucked up misogynist colonist culture.  It takes guts to be ourselves and voice our rejection of the mainstream bullshit lies that society (and sometimes our families) feed us from birth, and Roseanne does it with her unique style of power and grace.

Thank you Roseanne for the radical act of being honest with a triple dose of brilliant hilarity; you are a fresh and fierce gust of inspirational wind beneath my matriarchal wings!

“The thing women have yet to learn is nobody gives you power. You just take it.” — Roseanne Barr

Source for some of Roseanne’s background info and quotes used in this article.

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Chief Tuira Kayapo: A Bold Matriarchal Warrior Who Refuses Colonist Fuckery into Her World

Feminist Rag Award NEW_Chief Tuira Kayapo

“You have no right to destroy our river. The mothers of the Xingu will not allow it.”

No fancy worded pieces of legal paper or laws or money gives anyone the “right” to egregiously impose themselves and their ways on other people and the land they live on. This is the process of colonization and is always done with violence because people don’t like it, and resist when strangers try to take their home away and tell them to live a different way. This is genocide against people, culture, land, and the many non-human animals also living on the land. This is happening on any Indigenous lands deemed desirable by outsiders for its “resources”, and this is what is happening on the Xingu River Basin of Brazil.

For those times I feel hopelessly overwhelmed and eaten alive by the predatory colonist culture and its wake of infinite destruction, it is awesome matriarchal warrior women like Indigenous Brazilian Chief Tuira Kayapo of the Xingu River Basin who breathe life into my spirit. She and her people are fighting with and for their lives.

Some pictures are worth a thousand words, like the ones below.  The first image is Chief Kayapo using her machete to smack upside the head a bunch of colonist bastards who are trying to rape her land and genocide her culture for the usual reasons – greed and what they think is power – as the white male supremacist colonist culture has done and continues to do to all indigenous cultures across the globe, yours and mine included before our ancestors had the so-called “civilization” process inflicted upon them.  The second image is her scolding two colonist men for the same reasons.  Look at the colonists’ facial expressions — such disrespect for this woman and her people!  It looks like they know deep down what they’re doing is damn well wrong but they can’t see past their inflated egoes to show this woman and her culture RESPECT and leave them the hell alone to live as they want and choose. How is it that greed is so powerful an emotion that so strongly blocks people’s humanity?

In 1989 the Xingu River in Brazil was greedily eyed by soul-less colonists to make dams out of for profit. The indigenous outcry resulted in the plan dying out, but 20 years later, in 2008, the colonists, via an electric company (ElectroBras), once again were pushing the dam-building project. A dam that is said to be the 3rd largest in the world which affects the entire WORLD since the Amazon provides around 75% of the world’s oxygen and is home to so much Life and a large, diverse ecosystem.  The Indigenous resistance as explained in this article:

When the [colonist] speech was finished, a group of indigenous women and warriors rushed the stage, brandishing machetes and war clubs. The apologist for genocide was shoved to the ground and poked with a machete , cutting his arm. He was pulled away by conference organizers and taken to a hospital. [The Woman who cut Rezende’s arm was Tuira Kayapo — the same woman who slapped an Electrobras official with her machete at the 1989 gathering.]

The Kayapo people’s response in a letter to the government and electric company wanting to destroy these people’s land and way of life (and by extension, the people themselves):

We have decided that your word is worth nothing. The conversation is over. We, the Mebengôre Kayapó people have decided that we do not want a single penny of your dirty money. We do not accept Belo Monte or any other dam on the Xingu. Our river does not have a price, our fish that we eat does not have a price, and the happiness of our grandchildren does not have a price. We will never stop fighting: In Altamira, in Brasilia, or in the Supreme Court. The Xingu is our home and you are not welcome here. (source)

The colonist project of swooping in on land that is not theirs and destroying it and its people all in the name of profit and “resources”, has never been a good thing, yet it continues. Most normal people in the world are against it, yet those with money spit on Indigenous People and blindly, ignorantly go forward with their genocidal projects. What will it take to STOP this insanity and return to traditional Indigenous ways of life, and leave alone those who already live this healthy way of life, such as the Kayapo, before we’re all destroyed? What does it take to stop the the psychopathic pathology of greed? This is a greed that is normalized, taught, encouraged and rewarded by the euro-colonist “modern” “western” culture. How do you awaken such deeply asleep hearts and minds, who cannot see the genocidal devastation they cause?

“We are united by the disrespect of the government, the lack of consultations, the destruction of our lands.”

Our world — especially those of us in “developed” nations who participate in “development” projects in our own backyards and foreign lands — are in desperate need of mentors and heroes like Chief Kayapo who show us what it means to be a good, brave and truly free person and what really matters in life. There are no manuals or Idiots’ Guides to such things; it takes much inner reflection and life experience and following our hearts and having respectable people around us to learn from and inspire, in order to create/grow into a healthy identity and fight for what is right.

I am grateful that women like Chief Kayapo come to our attention and I wonder how many more such formidable women are out there that never see the media spotlight. I know there are many, and my search for them continues. If I identify as a feminist, it is due to women like this who embody the ideas of matriarchal heart, spirit and power, making me proud to be female and excited to continue honing my own warrior traits.

UPDATE on Aug.18, 2015: I don’t know where the dam project stands today or how Chief Kayapo and her people’s are doing, but I know it’s not good. The People continue fighting for their lives as this genocidal “development” project continues. I will update with more news when I’m able, and my thoughts and prayers are with this community, and wishing I could do more than that…Besides writing the government and circulating petitions and other such admin efforts, the whole 6 degrees of separation thing has us connected in some way to people in charge of such “development” projects. This is the direct “in”, and the most difficult – trying to change these people’s minds, appealing to their humanity, helping them understand that any reason that supports such projects are not good enough, and all excuses that keep people in a colonized lull. We must DEcolonize. RESPECT existence and resistance to genocidal projects, and do the right thing. All lives depend on it.

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