What’s up with all the man-hating on the internet these days? Sure some men are fantastic assholes, but there are a lot of women assholes, too. I’ve met them, and I’d say the ratio is around 50:50. Men have not cornered the market on being jerks, and I think we could all stand a little more kindness toward everyone.
Yes, we live in a patriarchal society. I acknowledge that. I also acknowledge that I have the right to get an education, have a career in any field I choose, participate in government elections, wear whatever I want to, and speak my mind if and when I’m so inclined. American women have more opportunity and freedom than ever before. Certainly there is still plenty more to be done, but I’m concerned about the latest wave of feminism.
Specifically, it’s very trendy right now to have some grand complaint, real or imagined, about why “men suck.” That’s a pretty hateful and sweeping statement about an entire gender of human beings. Frankly, I’m a little bit tired of it. Firstly because that gender includes a lot of great people I really admire. Secondly, because those exact phrases are heard on elementary school playgrounds every day. The only difference is they say “boys” instead of “men.” Not very impressive.
If the goal is to be treated with respect and equality, the proper course of action probably isn’t clamoring on the internet about mansplaining. When I read things like that I wonder how the men in those women’s families feel. It must be pretty insulting, maybe even embarrassing – particularly for those men who have done nothing to promote unequal treatment of women. Maybe a better tack is to do stop blaming men for everything and use the power we have to achieve more equality.
For instance, there are over 100 differences between the male and female brain. Some of those differences make women better multi-taskers, more intuitive, and able to consider a range of solutions prior to taking action. These are meaningful facts that move the conversation forward. Shouting on Twitter about how “you guys” must be destroyed because it “demeans women” and “women” needs to be changed to “womyn” because (bla bla bla I can’t even care) is slamming the conversation into reverse. If hearing or reading “you guys” or “women” cripples you, please turn in your vagina – we’ll give it back to you when you’re a big girl. Equality for women is an important and multi-faceted issue. Please don’t block the road to progress with petty complaints.
Likewise, I don’t think trying to change a college curriculum because it’s “offensive to some women” helps us. Literature is literature. We want equal opportunity in education, unless the mean stories in books are hurting our feelings? Not a very powerful position.
Additionally, insisting on growing armpit hair to insure men don’t objectify women is just silly. If you want to grow it out, party on, but the statement you’re making is completely overpowered by your actual vagina. Mainly because unless you’re walking around with your arms in the air with a tank top on, no one is going to know you’re making this bold statement (unless you post it all over instgram and tumblr). I hate to oversimplify but heterosexual men will still want to have sex with you even if you have armpit hair. True story. Exhibit A: Miley Cyrus actually makes armpit hair look HOT.
I would totally make-out with her, except I’m close to being old enough to be her mother and that’s becoming Madonna-level-sad. But hopefully you see my point: arm pit hair can be taken off the critical issue list.
Apparently young ladies are also taking to granny panties now to prove their feminist point. If this means the same thing as putting on your “big girl panties,” I’m all for it. Otherwise, I’m not following. The only people who see your underwear are people you’re having sex with and your closest friends. That’s not a very wide audience for your “platform for change.”
I understand the notion of creating our own standards for “beauty,” but personally I’m more concerned with fair pay and having control over my uterus. Maybe I’m old-fashioned but my advice is to get your ass to work, do a good job, and act like a grownup who has something to offer. Can you imagine a world where men whined about a syllabus? Or chose different underwear to demand fair treatment? Or launched an anti-face-shaving movement to prevent being objectified?
No. You know why? Because other men would punch them in the dick, and women would roll their eyes and wander off to have sex with men who don’t require pacifiers. Meaning: they wouldn’t do that because it’s reeee-dicccccc-ulous. It makes no sense to me that women should expect a different reaction.
If we want equal treatment and to be respected by humans of all genders, we need to be respectable, and respectful, humans. To me that means suit up, show up, and prove we have everything it takes to be an equal team member. Not scream about equality with hairy armpits and giant panties that no one can even see. I mean show up in the places where it actually counts, like at work, in the voting polls, and in our universities.
Because truthfully? When people with vaginas behave like idiots, the only thing holding us back is US.