Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Patriarchy Hurts Men Too: but it is not about the men!

Well, for my social project, I sought out some "trolls" (One who posts a deliberately provocative message to a newsgroup or message board with the intention of causing maximum disruption and argument) on a few various blogs, and websites and spark a conversation with them about feminism and what it really means. I was surprised to find a great number of post regarding the representation of men within the feminist movement. Thanks guys, and I mean guys, for perpetuating the patriarchy by including the White man in the list of oppressed groups -- We [us White men] have so much oppression coursing through our veins that we even oppress ourselves!

After an "insightful, tepid, discussion" with some of these fine folks I realized that in my self exploration in my feminist studies I may have come across in class as though I thought in any way that the feminist movement was to include any aspect for male social justice -- this is simply not my belief. In order to see through this lens, I had to attempt to establish some sort of basis to relate to the subject matter; in reality, any pretend oppression I adopted is NOT real.

Feminism is not for the rights of men. It is important to realize, however, that the relinquishment of the Patriarchy will have benefits that extend to include men -- everyone for that matter. Before I continue my point though, let me first introduce a most basic definition of feminism. The dictionary definition of Feminism is quite straightforward and concise; it reads as follows:

feminism n (1895) 1 : the theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes 2 : organized activity on behalf of women's rights and interests — feminist n or adj — feministic adj

Feminism is not a form of sexism, so men, we do not need to include or defend ourselves in the discussion of where the prejudice falls. Even in its extreme application feminism is merely a push back against the Patriarchy. Radical social feminism or the radical libertarianism movements do not attack the individuals who identify with being men, but rather the social position at which "he" lives, and the social construct that perpetuates this morbid imbalance. Quite simply, it is not even about equality but rather equity (shout out to Shula for emphasizing the difference) in the feminine; both in the perspective and for the actual individual. We men, and women alike, benefit from understanding one another; having an acknowledgement of an individual's worth. We [men] have our representation, in full (or damn near it) within dominate society. Feminism does not target the man; it is not even about the man, but rather a woman's role and her acceptance at full worth into society....

To illustrate this point, let us think about the Bechdal-Wallace rule. To meet this rule a movie has to have at least two women, who talk to each other about something other than a man. Few movies pass. Can you think of a single film without two men in it? We men are represented, women are not. We do not have to restrict any part of our participation in this world to allow for the incorporation of the feminine view. Our way is not working, suffering and destruction are at an all time high. If you accept the idea that these are the last days (the apocalypse), then so be it. I suggest something else, something other then the sky is falling and there is nothing we can do about it. I suggest, allowing for women to represent themselves, and for us, as men, to realize the equity in what they bring to our lives. Who knows, "that pretty lil' thing" may just blow your mind!

Posted by: Josiah

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