Recently, I mentioned Lady Brigade and i Rock the Boots because these companies are started up by female veterans and focus on supporting female military service awareness. Earlier this week, I had the fortunate opportunity to meet Michelle Bravo from i Rock the Boots; although I didn’t intend to meet her, she was in our office to talk to our director and I introduced myself. I wanted her to know that I wanted to accomplish something similar and looked to her (and Lady Brigade’s) designs because I did not want my efforts to infringe on their products. I know we find ourselves in particularly challenging times because our society is built on competition and there is a fine line to be drawn between innovation and imitation. I want to respect these women for their achievements. They both took different paths than what I’ve planned for myself, which is not a bad thing at all. These women have their own styles and I hope their clients appreciate the effort and quality of the products.
This being said, I think it’s important to delve more into what negative feedback is arising and think about why female veterans find themselves in this predicament. Below are some more snapshots of comments from the Buzzfeed article about Lady Brigade. The first one is worth really discussing, because not too long ago, I was asked to make a drawing that represented the notion of “make you own damned sandwich.”
This problem is a hegemonic view of women “belonging” in the kitchen. It is a statement not expressed specifically at women in the military but like other demeaning stereotypes geared towards women, this one has trickled down into the military. Apparently, a lot of people have caught on to their annoyance (or support) for this “Make me a sandwich (or sammich, depending on how dull one wants to sound)” statement. My Google image search brings up all sorts of interesting items:
Now, with my image, what do you think are the positive connotations being expressed regarding female veterans? As well, in what ways does the drawing reinforce stereotypes about female service members? There are no right or wrong answers, but please use consideration and clean language to comment on the matter. Thanks.