Feminism originally sprung out of women’s legitimate need to free our sex from gender based oppression. To the sad extent that feminism has now become a means of inhibiting men’s rights and freedoms, it has become the very enemy it set out to overcome: Gender based oppression. As females or males, we all no doubt experience some form of sexual bias or outright intolerance at times. Really, it’s time to stop giving the opposite gender a taste of its own medicine… the same sauce that’s so good for the gander will be served up with the goose again eventually.
If feminism has been the goose laying golden eggs for women, small wonder if men are working to clone it. That’s obviously justifiable self-defense – our species is necessarily male and female, if increasingly confounded by that fact, and masculinism is quite an appropriate rejoinder to the apparent matriarchal trend of society. Funny: spellchecker doesn’t quibble with “feminism” in the least, but decidedly objects to “masculinism:” there’s gender equality for you. (See Wendy McElroy’s “Gender Issues Impacted by Masculinists” for the source of the inspiration for this column.)
We’ve come a long way, baby. Such a long way that many women are now wondering if our strides have been empty, or progress is being made in the wrong direction. Women wanting to become full time mothers and homemakers often find that they cannot, or are derided for their choices. They find themselves casualties of an over-zealous campaign to aggressively liberate an entire gender without first respecting individual preferences.
Women who wish to pursue a career often find that women’s careers look suspiciously like jobs that men might have offered as a subtle form of revenge; aping the business suit sans the tie, working brutal hours, bringing home stress, neglecting ourselves even as we fuss in the mirror. We pay exorbitant taxes to support a domineering government still largely comprised of men, and bad ones at that, yet we consider ourselves fortunate to be able to vote for them. Have we done a hostile takeover of an alien world, or contributed our cooperative efforts to one where the sexes are equal, and equally happy? If we were contentedly equal we wouldn’t fight like cats and dogs, or as men and women.
The oppressed will try to find a way to have the last laugh, and begin a whole new cycle of oppression, resentment, and subsequent liberation. If we don’t apply the historical lessons of being downtrodden with an empathetic eye to the opposite gender, the war of the sexes will continue forever. Just like the war on terrorism, if some of the people we may have helped vote into office have their way.
The state will support women’s rights, because if it didn’t, women would be pulling in unison against it. Political power has harnessed female power by casting men into the perennial role of hobgoblin; and in so doing it has successfully and equally cast women into the role of hobgoblin for men! H.L. Mencken would probably be in tearful hysterics if he could see us now. What a tangled web we create, when first we practice to liberate.
Women set out to achieve equal freedom, and seem to have settled for equality in slavery instead. We’ve achieved the right to enlist to fight unethical men’s wars, to run their businesses or compete against them; the right to attend the same mind-numbing schools, and infiltrate the shady old boy networks that we might once have objected to. “If you can’t beat them, join them,” the old saying goes: Maybe some clever and unscrupulous men have adapted the so-called feminine trick of conquering by yielding, and since they couldn’t subdue women, they let us join the club instead. A pretty effective strategy, even if we’re all vaguely sorry now for uniquely individual reasons.