As feminists, we have to be able to speak honestly about patriarchal systems, and religion is no exception.
I wrote in a recent post that one of the best things in life is basketball. But another one of my favorite things... is critical thought. Debate. Confronting ideas that may be uncomfortable.
Wherever you fall on the political spectrum, I hope we can all agree that no idea, ideology, or religion should be exempt from skepticism.
Which is why I'm so stoked to share this amazing guest post by Shruthi Sailesh, who studies biotechnology and economics at the University of Waterloo. She enjoys debating and writing about politics, feminism, and literature. For more of her writing, follow her on Quora.
Kids these days -- amirite?
No, but actually. For real. Kids these days are more sensitive and fragile than kids of the past. Even according to the president of an elite university that I spoke with recently, “Today’s college students are not like you.”
Want me to lose your audience's attention immediately? Then drop the u-bomb.
"Let's unpack this."
Unless the Next Words Out of Your Mouth Are Going to be, "Can I Help ___?" Do NOT Tell Me I "Look Tired"
When I wrote For the Love of God, STOP Asking People If They're Okay, I never really thought anyone would care. I love psycholinguistics (I just finished James Pennebaker's The Secret Life of Pronouns, and it was SOOO good!), and I'm all about empowerment... but people hardly seem riveted when I talk about either topic.
But somehow, STOP Asking People If They're Okay tends to be one of my most popular posts every month. Given this, I've got another one to add to the list:
STOP TELLING PEOPLE THEY LOOK TIRED.
"Required, ongoing, cultural competency training for all Academy employees" is dangerous and unethical.
I am a proud member of the Exeter alumni community -- see also: What it's Like to Go to Phillips Exeter Academy, the "Best High School in the Country". Exeter made me a thinker. It made me a listener. It made me unafraid to share my opinions. The Harkness Method of teaching, in which every class is a debate, a dialectic, or a discussion, was a foundational part of who I am now.
And now, due to an ill-informed Change.org petition, the future of that is at risk.
Some of the Most Interesting, Thought-Provoking (Though Slightly Controversial) Topics for a Speech or Assembly in 2017.
So you've been asked to give a speech, talk, or assembly. And you want it to be memorable. You want your audience to think -- to feel something. To question their entire worldview, perhaps.
Now you just need a topic.
Skip the boring cliches. No one wants to hear you talk about abortion, the death penalty, gun rights, or minimum wage. These are huge and broad topics, and you're not an expert. You'll put your audience straight to sleep.
This week, I bared my soul in the semifinals of Mars Studios' songwriting contest... and I lost. But I had a wonderful time competing, and I got some helpful feedback from the judges.
And, due to the lyrics of one of my songs, I was reminded of the most hilarious review anyone's ever written on Amazon.
1 Reason Why the Graphic Rape Scene in 13 Reasons Why Was Important, And Teen and Preteen Girls Should See It.
I had no interest in watching a show about teen suicide. But after seeing so many articles praising the Netflix original, 13 Reasons Why, I decided to check it out. I mean, supposedly it was one of the best teen dramas of all time.
The show was kind of boring and not that good. But it had its moments, and I was able to find some value in it. Including the controversial rape scene, which critics say was too graphic and emotional and explicit.
I had the opposite reaction. This was exactly the rape scene that teen and preteen girls need to see.
I Bared My Soul in the Semifinals of the Mars Studios Songwriting Contest... And Then I Lost. But I'm Super Glad I Tried.
I'll come right out and say it: I'm not sure how I even made it to the semis. It's not that I don't have confidence -- I do (#ChooseBeautiful). It's more that every single songwriter in the first round was incredibly talented.
But regardless of how it happened, it happened. I progressed to the next round -- and I was incredibly lucky to have two good friends drive all the way to Capitola from Mountain View to cheer me on. (Maybe that's what I'll write my next song about! I'll call it "Over the Hill," or, "Basically Long Distance," or something.)
"I'm socially awkward."
"I have, like, zero social skills."
"I don't want to go to the party because I never know what to do at parties."
We've all heard -- or even uttered -- such phrases. Maybe when you hear it, you feel sympathetic. But when I hear it, I feel slightly annoyed. "Socially awkward" is a choice. Saying you have "bad social skills," to me, sounds like saying, "I'm bad at basketball," when you haven't played since middle school.
About the Author
Eva is a content specialist with a passion for play, travel... and a little bit of girl power. Read more >
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