I generally don’t like dogpiling on people. Maybe it’s because I’m older, and maybe it’s because I’ve been a victim of it in the past, but I typically don’t like the mob mentality of jumping on someone just to score internet points. It’s part of the larger problem with “call out culture” that has the potential to toxify even the most mundane of conversations.
I typically like to give people the benefit of a doubt, assume they’re good people with good intentions, since most people generally want to do good in the world, or at least not do harm.
This is not one of those times.
Sometimes there are things that are so beyond ridiculous that they need to be called out. They’re begging for it.
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There is some kind of weird moment every blogger/public personality experiences at some point. There’s a point where, until that moment, you’ve been operating inside your little bubble doing whatever it is you’re doing. You’ve grown your fan base to over 50,000 people, and they generally agree with most things you say. Sure, there’s the random idiot who stops by and says idiotic things – idiots are gonna do what idiots are gonna do – but on the whole, things have been going smooth… Until that moment comes.
For the blog ‘The Transformed Wife’, perhaps this is that moment.
The blogger Lori Alexander published an article today titled “Men Prefer Debt-Free Virgins Without Tattoos.” What’s more, they created a cover image/meme for the article that probably didn’t do them any favors:
As you can see, hilarity ensued.
And it is l a y e r e d.
My first reaction was to laugh hysterically at it. I thought that this was expert-level satire. I thought that surely, nobody would make the tragic mistake of suggesting that a woman (or anyone) should be debt-free. Or that unless you’re a virgin, you’re not desirable. Or that once you put ink on your body, you’re disgusting. This has to be a joke, and they gave the joke an exclamation point by using, quite possibly, the only font that’s worse than Papyrus.
I thought wrong.
Some of the responses on the share I put up on the aSE Facebook page:
Sorry Martha, I made the mistake of opening the link as well.
This is a serious article a real person seriously wrote, and they mean every word of the meme, and the article. And it only gets worse once you actually read the article. I’ve responded to the majority of the article below, to save you from giving them a click.
There are many more reasons why Christian young women should carefully consider whether or not they go to college, especially if they want to be wives and mothers someday.
OH SHIT LORI, THIS IS A WHOLE RELIGIOUS-BASED THING, ISN’T IT?
I’m not second guessing their message here, I’m first guessing. Who said that it should be anyone’s goal in life to get married? Why should that be anyone’s primary life goal?
Secular universities teach against the God of the Bible and His ways. It’s far from what God calls women to be and do: it teaches them to be independent, loud, and immodest instead of having meek and quiet spirits.
These are real words that were supposedly written by a real woman who was allegedly not being held at gunpoint and forced to write them. Basically what she’s saying is “if you get yourselves an education, you’ll learn that you don’t have to shut up and sit down when you’re being spoken to.” Classy, Lori.
The blog quickly dives into “testimonials” from readers about how, I assume, women should only speak when spoken to. When you almost immediately resort to using testimonials, instead of actually explaining or justifying your point, you might have an extremely terrible argument. If your point is valid, you shouldn’t need to almost immediately point to someone else and say “hey look, they agree with me!”
“Men don’t want to marry a women with debt. Most of this debt comes from college. They would also prefer a woman who still lives at her parent’s house that has not had other relationships. Do those two things and you will be highly sought after.”
WOW. In other words: don’t go to college. Don’t learn things. Don’t become your own person. K.
Remember the first time you ever rode a bike? It probably wasn’t that great of an experience. You might have lost your balance, maybe you fell and skinned your knee. But after riding it a few times, you got the hang of it and know how to do it in a safe and healthy manner. Why do you think you would be able to just jump into a serious relationship then?
There are literally studies that show romantic relationships are healthy for us.
“If they go to college, they are unlikely to stay home raising their children to pay off the debt and use the degree they spent years on.”
Since when is it incumbent on a woman to, not only have children, but also stay at home raising them?
Believe it or not, it gets worse (Lori adds her own thoughts in parentheses after the “testimonials.”)
“The husband will need to take years teaching his wife the correct way to act, think, and live since college taught them every possible way that is wrong.” (Sadly, most young Christian women wouldn’t listen to their husbands since they’ve not been taught to live in submission to their husbands. However, it’s the older women who are called to teach the younger women biblical womanhood and most husbands have never seen it modeled in their lives so they wouldn’t know what to teach.)
I have a goddamn education degree myself and I barely feel qualified to teach things to kids, nevermind take on the responsibility of teaching an adult. As if an adult should need to be taught anything in the first place? If I had to “teach” my girlfriend anything other than why Goldeneye 64 is the best video game of all time, I wouldn’t be nearly as attracted to her. I love and value Emily because of how intelligent she is, how funny she is, and because I don’t have to teach her how to be an adult who has her own opinions. I love her because she’s not afraid to push back when I have an opinion she disagrees with, not in spite of it.
“They will start having babies later in life. That is if they can still conceive naturally.” (Is college worth having less children? I will never understand how women prefer careers over having precious babies.)
WHAT THE SHIT, LORI? YOU ARE WHY WE CAN’T HAVE NICE THINGS.
“It’s very rare to find an 18 year old woman that continues to work and live at her parent’s house until she meets her husband. It’s pretty much a joke to all who do that.” (It’s actually protection for young women to live under their father’s roof until they get married, if they are able, and there’s nothing wrong with doing this if they want this protection.)
What if she’s looking for a wife instead of a husband?
“Your posts sound crazy to anyone who does not believe the Bible is true. Most girls have not read the Bible with their father or husband to explain it to them. That part is important. Instead of learning it from their parents, they seek out books or movies on how to interpret the Bible which leads them down the wrong path.”
No. Stop it. Your posts sound crazy. Period. End of discussion. No qualifiers needed. Because they are crazy. I’ve actually read the Bible, and I am blown away that anyone can possibly think it’s real.
Lori closes the article with this final thought:
Young women, be wise in the path that you choose to walk on. Keep a long-term vision of your life and how you hope it will be someday instead of acting upon all of the “what ifs…?” that many will throw at you. Trust God with your life, study the Word, and take the narrow path that leads to life. Stay virgins until marriage, out of debt, and don’t get tattoos!
Imagine living a life where you felt that knowledge was dangerous, and that it was better to not learn new things every day. Imagine having this much internal hatred that you felt that you owed someone else gratitude for simply existing with you. Imagine that your entire value in life was identifying as a parent to a child, and nothing more.
This is exactly what religion does to you. It teaches you that you’re broken, that no matter what you’ve done or will try to do, that you’re wrong, and that you’re in a constant state of needing to be fixed. It teaches women specifically that they should be subservient to men, that they shouldn’t pick up a goddamn book because that’s dangerous – they should just sit quietly in the corner until you’re spoken to. Religion teaches you that women are property, who are to be controlled.
Religion is a poison that infects the minds of others and encourages them to put all their self-worth into raising a child, instead of being an actual human person who has hobbies and friends and actually lives their life.
And since Lori closed out her article with a Bible verse, I think it’s appropriate for me to close out with one as well:
If a man finds a girl who is a virgin, who is not engaged, and seizes her and lies with her and they are discovered, then the man who lay with her shall give to the girl’s father fifty shekels of silver, and she shall become his wife because he has violated her; he cannot divorce her all his days. (Deuteronomy 22:28-29)
A shekel is 0.497 ounces, so 50 shekels is 24.85 ounces. Silver is $15.85 an ounce today, meaning it cost just $393.87 to rape someone, according to the word of God.
If instead of condemning rape and rapists, your religion tells you to throw a few Benjamins at the victim’s dad, maybe it’s time to re-think the value of your religion.