Sunday, July 17, 2011

What Women Want and Whether They Should

  Women have an extremely broad range of desires. This has been exploited in television, film, and by comedians for years. Women love chocolate. Women want to change the men they're dating/married to. Women want the perfect guy (who doesn't exist). Women prefer romance to sex, etc, etc. But today, I'm not here to talk about relationships and the power struggle that often (or perhaps only stereotypically often) occurs within them. Today, we're going to cover feminism. DON'T PANIC. I'm not going to take sides or pull a "girls rule, guys drool" argument on you. I'm going to examine what I see as today's version of feminism, and what that means for society. I've settled on a touchy subject for today, so I hope nobody takes this the wrong way.
    Today's version of feminism seems to be more about dominance and overpowering men rather than equality with men. When I hear women talk about doing things that are new, never been done, or different, they don't talk about what a huge step this is for womankind. They talk about how they are better than men, can do a better job at something than men can do, have qualities no man has. And in some cases, strictly on a case by case basis mind you, they're right. But something should be noticed here. The case that some women make is no longer "I can do anything a man can do;" now, the argument is: "I can anything a man can do, only better." When did the mentality shift from equality to domination? Fair treatment to bypassing? Female empowerment to overpowering men?
    This concerns me. Whenever one group has more power than another, it never turns out well. The powerful group never rules with equanimity and justice, but eventually becomes drunk with power and ego, and is determined to stay in power. This leads to the sublimation, or worse, of the group who has less power, and we all know how that ends (Slavery, discrimination, genocide, I think you get the picture).
    Desiring equality, the possibility granted to do the same things as men, if she should so choose, is fair. It's a reasonable request, and even a reasonable expectation. But it becomes a cause for concern when it becomes more than equality, when the desired result is a matriarchal system instead of a democracy, no matter where it's implemented--in the household, the workplace, the community, the government, or elsewhere.
    We should strive for a society that prefers equal opportunity and fairness over always wanting to be the best at something. It's nice to be the best. You get awards and pay raises and compliments for being better at something than someone else. But sometimes, it's more productive when there's collaboration. Sometimes it's more beneficial for everyone when we work together, rather than working to outsmart and one-up each other.
    I may have drifted into politics and business a little more than intended here, but my point is the same regardless. For any group that desires dominance rather than fairness: there's no I in team, and, sticking with the topic, without men, we'd just be wo. So, and this is directed at men and women alike, get what's coming to you, what you've earned, but not at the expense or demise of someone else.
Other people: can't live with 'em, can't live without 'em.


Outnumbered said...

Call me an anti-feminist or whatever but I think that men are always going to be better at somethings and women are always going to better at others and there is never going to be any kind of real equality because we put ourselves in these boxes "boy" "girl" "minority" "rich" whatever...we need to think of ourselves as individuals, because it's the power of the individual at the base of anything which makes everything happen. And I like my men can be better at running down stairs if they want.

Constant Writer said...

I totally agree that men are better at some stuff. I snuck in a subtlety on that note, something like 'they should have the opportunity to do something if they choose to do so'. I don't think we should try to be equal at everything, but if there are some things women want to do or ought to have, play baseball or have equal pay for equal work, they should. I agree that it should be equal on an individual basis. Each individual has different abilities and different desires, so they're each going to want to do different things. We can't all be rocket scientists or marathon runners, but if we want to do so, we should have the possibility available to at least try it even if we fail.

+Constant Writer

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