Thursday, June 30, 2005

Patriarchy 101

I've just discovered that I am not a member of a worldwide organisation with the conscious aim of subjugating women. Twisty writes:

I'd forgotten for a moment that feminists are required to waste at least half of their waking hours reassuring skittish fans of the status quo that we aren't man-hating nutjob conspiracy-theorists.

I don't know. I'm rather fond of the idea of instantly becoming a member of the Patriarchy (tm) simply by being a man. It's kind of like Darth Vader receiving an award for nastiness:

Caller: Hello, is that Lord Vader on the line?

Vader: Yes, it is.

Caller: Hi, this is the Secretary of the Intergalactic Supervillainy association, and we have some good news for you!

Vader: Oh! Really?

Caller: Yes, we've decided to award you a lifetime membership for achievement in the fields of Intergalactic Supervillainy, Devotion to the Dark Side, and Heavy Breathing.

Vader: *Sniff*. I never knew you cared!

Then again, maybe this just means I have to try harder. I mean, I am a fan of the status quo and all, if by the status quo you mean Western society and culture as it is today. I'm not sure if that's enough, though. Let's just review my position on feminist matters:

- Men are far more likely to commit sexual assault or attack women than women are men. This is a bad thing.

- The assumption of some people, including some people in positions of power, seems to be that women should stay in the home and out of the workplace. This is a bad thing.

- Women have won important freedoms in the past thirty years, such as abortion rights. This is a good thing.

Hmm, that's all a little politically correct. On the other hand:

- Women tend to be paid less than men. This reflects the fact that they choose to work different hours than men and choose to work in different professions to men. This reflects their freedom to choose in our capitalist society. This is a good thing.

- Some women's movements believe that the way to achieve greater representation of women in some professions, such as politics, is by requiring that a certain percentage of people in that organisation have to be women. This is patronising to the women involved, and damaging to the organisation involved. This is a bad thing.

I'm getting there, but I may have to do a little study. If anyone wants me, I'll be browsing the website Men Are Better Than Women. "Some men are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them". I'll be a member of the patriarchy yet!

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