POSITIVELY AWARE September/October 2012
Wholistic Picture - Battle of the Sexes?
With all the evidence that there is indeed a “war on women” being waged by “conservatives,” it’s hard not to feel a “feministic” response. I am not a feminist. But I am also not in favor of any woman being forced to have a child she cannot support financially, emotionally, physically, or spiritually, just as no man should be forced into fatherhood that he doesn’t want and can’t do well.
But I digress. Some feminists have been heard to say that no man would be here without his mother’s body having created him. I have to wonder how they could have missed the fact that a man (the sperm had to come from one of them, after all) was also involved in that creation. But then, I thought, couldn’t such biological criteria be used to argue the case for the opposite side of every agenda? Women have testosterone too and yet the number of female-only causes far outweighs male-only ones. At this stage of human history, I doubt that there is any black or white person who doesn’t carry a gene inherited from an ancestor of the other color and yet we have racism from both sides. And, as I’ve said before, aren’t people who develop cancer after years of chain smoking just as deserving of the medical care and treatment they need to survive as people who acquire HIV after years of unprotected sex with multiple partners?
When feminists angrily accuse me of misogyny, I stand by my belief that BOTH sexes are as valuable and as worthy of living as the other. And yet, if a man published a calendar called “How is a jar of Vaseline better than a woman?” I’ve no doubt he would be verbally castrated by the very women who publish “How is a cucumber better than a man?” And, by the way, the word for the female equivalent of misogyny, misandry, rarely sees the light of day, though both obviously exist in full force.
I have frequently been amazed by the number of commercials on PBS and other progressive media sources that tout the urgent need to get more girls to become scientists, engineers, and mathematicians. What about the boys who are truly, innately passionate about math and science? And where are the commercials urging more boys to become nurses, teachers, and dancers? Fact is that each sex has natural tendencies and the problem is not in getting people to go against those natural leanings, but in the rest of us accepting whatever choices they make. As a former girl, I can tell you that there is nothing on Earth that could’ve induced me to become a scientist, engineer, or mathematician. Why should I have been forced into a field I had no interest in? Why should any boy be forced to take Home Ec over Shop, to play the flute instead of football, or vice versa against his own interest?
Throughout history, there have been courageous activists of both sexes fighting for things that were good for everybody. Without Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony, the issue of women voting might never have come to the forefront, but it took 56 men in Congress to pass the amendment that gave women the right to vote. Rosa Parks and Martin Luther King were both crucial to the civil rights movement, but it was Lyndon Johnson, a white guy from Texas, who made it the law of the land.
We need to stop putting each other in neat little boxes. People—every sex, every race, every religion, every size, every age, with every illness—have to decide for themselves what’s worth fighting for in this lifetime. Since 2009, we’ve had a lot of people, many who call themselves Christians and/or Republicans, deciding that the only thing worth fighting for is whatever goes against everyone who doesn’t look, believe, or act like them. But now we also have more, including some Christians/Republicans, waking up, shaking off complacency, and standing together in all their glorious varieties to fight for justice, equality, and the things that are best for the Whole.
“Men should be advocates for all and not just their own gender!” feminists stridently shout. Shouldn’t women? Shouldn’t we all? Regardless of the composition of our chromosomes, we are all human. None of us would be here without the contributions of both male and female. So I propose we stop being “feminists” or “masculinists” (See? not even a word for it!) and do our best to become humanists.
Breathe deep. Live Long.