Martha Southgate author of “The Taste of Salt” was complaining about the movie “The Maid” on CNN. Then, on comes one of the actresses and says something like, that she had to debate doing the movie because she had trouble with doing a part (that of the maid in 2011), that being a maid is demeaning.
Now, don’t shoot me if I misunderstood because far be it for me to get anything wrong and run with it, but I’m not about to stop now.
Is being a ditch digger demeaning? Is it more demeaning to be a lawyer than a doctor or a babysitter than a waitress?
Were these maids possibly treated in a demeaning manner? HELL YES!
But, were they also doing an honest day’s work for less than an honest days wage to feed their families? HELL YES!!
No matter what society you live in, you do the best you can with what you are given.
I grew up in the 50s, in a household that did not believe that women should go to college. Women were to be taken care of, (all the while they are cleaning the toilets, that is.) Did I finally get my butt through college? Yes, I did. Did I pick the best vocation for the money? Well, no!
I started off in pre-law. Made straight A’s and thought about doing something, other than being a lawyer in this vein. Then, I got a divorce and needed to work to support my girls. So, I became a legal secretary. It was there, I was good at it and it was a wage. I never once thought about it being demeaning to be a secretary rather than a lawyer.
I have, however, been treated in a VERY demeaning manner by bosses, and then I have had other bosses who treated me like family.
In the end, I’m an artist and there is definitely a reason why they call it us “Starving artists.” I have my hand in about five separate ways to
make a living. I get $200 here and $20 there. I don’t care if I paint toilets, there is nothing about working any job that is demeaning.