This one is for my younger sisters, who don’t know that they’re my sisters

Recently I’ve been walking around with this niggling rage brewing somewhere in the back of my skull.  In quiet moments the buzz gets louder and I can hear it starting to scream.
And I’ve been trying to ignore it, because like everyone else I’m kinda concentrating on surviving. And part of me hates myself for doing that, but how can I hate myself for trying to survive?; it’s an instinct and it’s a damn good one.

And so I stand and smile and nod when people tell me ‘It doesn’t matter where you come from’.  Don’t rock the boat. and all the while it buzzes, louder and louder and louder…

I feel like I am stood at the battlements and all around me I see people drawing up drawbridges so that people like me can no longer exist. 

It was a while back, maybe it was when they took away the EMA, or when they massively increased uni fees, or when the Brown report came out, when Emma said to me ‘If you and I were 14 now, sat in a classroom,  it’d be like someone had come out and drawn a line across the room, and said ‘you can’t cross that line because you are too poor; you can’t go to college and you can’t go to Uni. And that’s it’.

Many of us were the first. The first in our families to get these breaks.  To go to Uni, to get the ‘professional careers’ . So we didn’t have to have kids when we were young.  So we didn’t have to have a husband to support us, not if we didn’t want that..and now they are taking that away.  And I think of our younger sisters who don’t even know they are our sisters and I feel so fucking angry for them.  We have got to pretend that this isn’t happening.  That the reforms on education and healthcare and and social support aren’t going to fuck over poor people. 

We have to start talking about this.  We have to shout and shout and take back the power which they have no right to.

We can’t let the advancements which have been won for us be taken away from us without a fight. Not on our watch.

We have to do this.  For our younger sisters, who don’t even know they are our sisters.

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About Rachel

zinester/diy-til-i-die/love hate relationship with arts admin/girlpunkfeminist/geek
This entry was posted in class, education, political, random thoughts and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to This one is for my younger sisters, who don’t know that they’re my sisters

  1. davej1103 says:

    Well said! Part of the problem, I think, is the insidious way that the word ‘reform’ has been redefined.

    I can remember a time when ‘reform’ was a kindly sort of word. If someone was ‘a reformed character’, it didn’t mean that they’d become crueller or more destructive. In history classes, when I learned about the ‘prison reformers’, they were never people who’d called for greater use of the cat o’ nine tails or heavier manacles.

    Yet now, the government routinely makes changes that cause great hardship to large numbers of vulnerable people and call those changes ‘reforms’, so that anyone who resists is cast as a reactionary old stick-in-the-mud. How did we allow this to happen?

  2. Emma Adams says:

    I feel this rage and anger too. I agree with Davej too, we’ve allowed this to happen. It’s happened by small turns of the screw. Small lapses. Small changes in word meanings. Small chips and cuts and nips until here we are, basically facing a return to a 1950’s style society with all the inequalities and hardships and misery that that entails. And at the heart of that will be the oppression of girls and women. Because girls and women have always taken the biggest share of that burden. It makes me sick. But the Occupy movement gives me great hope. Something is a rumbling! All is not lost.

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