Putting Words into Ears, Not Mouths: I speak for myself
Living in an area where grammar was constantly disregarded, my childhood passions were incongruously literary. I must admit that I used to look down upon web 2.0 journalism or “blogging.” Of course, the kind of blogging I was familiar with involved teens whining about their unjust curfew. However, this was before I became aware of the world around me and its many crises. I naively assumed that, since I went to school and learned proper writing skills, everyone else would have to do the same. I never fathomed that many of the world’s children would never have the opportunities that I took for granted. It did not occur to me that women and girls would be barred from these opportunities because they are viewed as chattel. It was only education, the deadliest weapon against ignorance, which opened my eyes to the suffering just beyond my line of sight.
With Web 2.0 journalism like Pulsewire, I have come to realize that the most valuable education in ending violence against, and the oppression of women is their own voice. Reading books on genital mutilation and sex trafficking will only tell us so much about what our fellow womankind are suffering. The only people who really know these crises are the women who have survived them. I am thrilled that Web 2.0 gives them a chance to tell people, without the medium of authors, journalists or news media, what they really want and what we can do to help.
After reading Half the Sky by Nicholas Kristoff and Sheryl WuDunn, I learned that the most successful change for women in an oppressive community usually comes from within. Those of us who are born with freedom and the ability to help must listen. For, though certain cultural practices are unquestionably demeaning and often deadly for women, we cannot simply stomp into a place and say, “Stop! You are wrong; you must live this way instead.” Web 2.0 journalism could allow the women who are closer to these situations to speak up, to tell the world what kind of action they need in order to achieve freedom. Women’s voices have been silenced for far to long. After all, women remain the largest and longest oppressed group in the world’s history. By giving women a forum to speak, we can give power to women who have been denied rights and respect. Their bravery and endurance subsequently give power to everyone.
I have decided that I would like to dedicate my life to women’s global fight for equality. This decision resonates within me and gives me a sense of purpose. I want to understand the challenges that women face and, instead of becoming enraged, do something about them. Finding Pulsewire helped me in my resolution to become a journalist and bring uncensored knowledge to a world that has turned a blind eye upon women.