My friend’s son is in love with a Pokémon character and I totally get it. I fell in love with a cartoon girl too and I’ve been raising money for her ever since. She is the girl from the the Girleffect.org video (Charity) and I’m scared to death for her. I watch her run from poverty, HIV, menacing hands that try to grab her and force her into prostitution. I watch her meet the odds at every turn and onto the silhouette of this running girl I transpose my two daughter’s faces, my face as a child, my best friend’s daughters and I fret. What if I hadn’t been born to Fred and Eleanor Wertz in Upper St. Claire Pennulvania? What if my children hadn’t been born to me? What of the girls who have abuse and poverty and disease in their lives? I want to save them.
Then I think…what about the boys? Don’t I want to save them too? I do! What I’ve come to understand is that if I save the girls the boys get saved too. Here’s what I learned. It’s as John Mayer sings, ‘girls become lovers who turn into mothers’. A saved girl, a girl with education, purpose, and a chance to live a life of meaning can, in turn, educate their boys. Girls become women and healthy women are a powerful, loving influence who teach empathy and values. Boys who become men grow up in a new world where the opposite gender is not chattel, objects, or garbage. Mr. Mayer goes on to sing, ‘boys would be gone without the warmth from a woman’s good, good heart.’ If girls are invested in then boys win too.
So here’s the tweet: When you save half the sky it turns out you save the other half too. So what about the boys? We get to save them too.