Saturday, June 18, 2011

Beyonce's "Run the World (Girls)" - True Girl Power?

Beyonce’s new song, “Run the World (Girls)” feels like the modern version attempt to say “girl power!” I see she has good intentions in her lyrics. But in her music video, she looks like a seductive queen, expecting men to either fall over at her beauty, or whip them beneath her feet. Whatever suits her. What kind of empowerment is she achieving in this? Does it really empower women? Is being a sex icon, an object of ogling and sensuality "power"? And is putting men down empowering?

Hardly, I’m afraid. Objectification reduces them from a person to an object for pleasure. Women are not objects, nor mere instruments of pleasure. If that’s what your goal in life is to be, look at how limiting this is. As humans, we are on a journey to reach our full potential and full humanity. It’s inhumane to objectify or allow yourself to be objectified.

Real, womanly empowerment is acceptance of our femininity. Sure, being a tomboy and doing boyish things is ok…as long as you remember to do girly things too. Remember that you were created female, and cherish that gift of femininity. Embrace it.

1 Peter 3:1-5 says, “Be subordinate to your husbands that even if some disobey the word, they may be won over without a word by their wives’ conduct when they observe your reverent and chaste behavior. Your adornment should not be an external one, but rather the hidden character of the heart, expressed in the imperishable beauty of a gentle and calm disposition, which is precious in the sight of God.”

In other words, it is good and empowering to be  interiorly beautiful and gentle. These are some of the things that make a woman beautiful. Sure, girls that flaunt their personalities or bodies as means of getting attention will attract the boys that want to have fun, but then they'll drop them once they’re done. Good men will be attracted to the women that behave in a feminine, virtuous and gentle way.

And by the way, putting men down doesn’t raise women’s position any higher. Men are human persons too, who deserve respect. In fact, men need women’s help. There’s a saying, “If more women would sit down, more men would stand up.” We want men to be better men? Then we should start by being better women and accepting our femininity.  

True power is achieved when we become who we were meant to be. For women, this means behaving chastely and gently. It means respecting oneself and treating people as persons, not objects. 

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