Monday, December 17, 2012


Bitch is one of those loaded words in our society.  For some, it's a way of comparing a woman to a dog.  For some, it's a way of saying a woman doesn't know her place in society.  For some, it's what women call a woman who goes against the grain.  For some, it's a man who acts like a woman.  In my family, Bitch is a badge of honor.  When I say I was raised by New York Yankee bitches in the wilds of Arkansas, I say it with great love about my matriarchal upbringing.  Because in my family, if someone calls you a bitch then you must be doing something right! 

One of my favorite Bette Davis quotes about the subject neatly sums it all up, "When a man gives his opinion, he's a man. When a woman gives her opinion, she's a bitch.”  I say it's time we start to take the word back.  I love how the queer community has taken the slurs used against us and turned them into compliments.  Such as, "I love that butch look you got going on."  Faggot, Tranny, Butch, Dyke, Fairy, Bitch, the list goes on and on.  But rather than give the haters ammunition to use against us we've turned it around.  If you use the term to describe yourself it takes the intended sting away.  Hell, we turned "queer" from a derogatory term to a descriptive and inclusive one.  So let's do the same thing with bitch.

My proposed re-definition of bitch:

Bitch [bich] Noun.  Slang.  A person who stands by their convictions and is not ashamed of who they are, especially a woman.

So from now on, when someone says you're acting like a bitch, you can respond with, "I know.  Thank you for noticing."  If you need a derogatory term for someone who is rude (and who doesn't from time to time?) I've always been partial to "asshole".  It's gender-neutral and has a nice sharpness to it that can be downright satisfying when shouted.  I won't say that I haven't called someone a bitch out of anger before, but I make a conscious effort to reprogram that instinct, just like when I switched from "bless you" to "gesundheit".  It might be awkward at first, but once you commit to it things get easier and easier.  Let's turn this slur into a compliment just like we have with others before it.  Now get out there and change some minds, bitches!

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