Word on the internet is that certain female celebrities –Shailene Woodley, Taylor Swift, and Katy Perry, to name a few – are shying away from the “F” word. I missed the TIME articles which dealt with the issue directly – and Shailene Woodley specifically – but I have been following the chatter in various blog posts. Even AOL deigned to give the subject a tile or two.
So, I’ve been thinking: how often do I use the “F” word? When did I start? How do I feel about all the controversy?
I have never heard my mother use the “F” word. I don’t think I ever heard my Aunt Renee use it, either, but I know she encouraged her daughters to use it. I think the rest of my family is pretty evenly divided on the subject.
I believe I began using the “F” word in high school. A few of my teachers at Girls’ High encouraged it. I know I never would have been admitted to LaSalle College without the “F” word. I owe my career, my credit score, and even my mortgage to the “F” word.
I am pretty sure Hillary Clinton embraces the “F” word, although I can’t recall if I have ever heard her use it in public.
And, while Sarah Palin would rather be caught dead than caught using the “F” word, she could never have been a Vice Presidential candidate without it.
My gynecologist, my veterinarian, my family doctor – whether they realize it or not, they most likely owe their choice of professions to the “F” word.
So I find myself feeling fairly distressed when young women with power blanch at the “F” word – the very wellspring from which their power emanates – as if it really were the “F” word. Because it means that those of us who have embraced the “F” word may not have gotten the word out well enough.
Yes, it is disheartening: Shailene Woodley,Taylor Swift and Katy Perry are frightened of the “F” word.
But there is good news, too:
I understand Beyonce’, Natalie Portman, and Amy Poehler have no problem with it at all.
By now, I hope you have guessed that I am not writing about the “F” word here. If you have been following the fallout from the TIME articles, you know the “F” word I mean:
By one definition: the social, political and economic equality of the sexes.
Not a bad word at all.