Redux of Friday, March 19, 2010
There has to be at least one skunk at the picnic so while all the joyous shouts go out about how far women have come and how things are getting better, I raise my virtual tail and spray some reality.
This month, our fore-mothers who gave so much will be lauded for a few short days and then forgotten as usual. They are only heroes in March, the rest of the year they are human sacrifices. We'll all join them soon on the pile of discards that our gender may become. Men are always looking for that perfect woman and many times, not in a good way. Some signposts -
In the 60's, a nasty ditty, with variations and multiple authors, was sung to thunderous applause. It wasn't funny then and it isn't funny now so I'm not quoting or citing it on purpose, it's done enough damage already. It suggests making a woman out of parts of tables, chairs, horsehair and bottles etc.
The 70's brought forth the perfect woman in the Stepford Wives - I refuse to cite that one too. If you like that sort of thing you can google it.
Glimpses of the future are recounted in landmark books by women that tell of a dire future for women that differs greatly from Huxley’s, Brave New World. These authors lived a woman’s life that Huxley did not. Just check the reading list of Women’s Studies for title and authors.
Eerily prophetic is, “The architects of Gilead began their rise to power in an age of readily available pornography, prostitution, and violence against women…” from The Handmaiden’s Tale by Margaret Atwood.
Today from the advances science has made, it is possible that gorgeous, willing robotic, female-like slaves and science-produced, male-only babies will replace the nagging, screaming, smelly, skanks from hell that men have always privately called women. They only tolerated them this far for getting laid, making heirs, ego stroking and working for their comfort.
Too strong? Listen to your society and what it tells you in blogs, advertisements and nearly all media, of the negative worth placed on women. It gets worse and it won't change, it never has. That is because women will continue to complain about the treatment they get from men but still hold fast to the idea that their own men really do support them and would go to the wall to help them achieve parity.
Bull-ony! The societal pressure on men may be even more fierce and intimidating than it is on women. Have you seen the character of the "hen-pecked husband" or seen how males will reject another man brave enough to wear an apron? Have you seen and heard how our sons are raised in sports and military and life to denigrate women? They are called girlies, momma's boys and worse by their mentors, their coaches if they show any humanity. "Common, ladies", yells the coach or drill sergeant to embarrass and urge them on. Boys and men will work themselves to death to avoid being labeled that hated thing, a female.
Supporting this hatred for women is the myth that men have egos but women do not. It gives men “permission” to “act out” destructively against women who talk back to them, show them up, earn more money or any number of other reasons.
Women have been, and are, contained and controlled by jailers who are the men they believe are siding with them in their quest for parity. The thing is that these men just give that illusion until they are challenged, then they quickly show their true face by stepping on any woman who dares call them on their perfidy. They'd better because the Brotherhood will not allow them to do otherwise.
This system keeps the women's movement from blowing up and threatening the status quo, by letting small puffs of steam out of their boilers of discontent now and then. Men who avow support of women have not only gained women's trust but also their protection. Women will run roughshod over any opposition to these men - they protect their jailers. They often give men a pass for things they excoriate women for.
Women in the military are subject to rape and harassment enforced by the chain of command. Whenever there is a male superior officer over them who uses his power to demand her “service”, she is unable to resist without the full force of tradition coming down on her. "Resistance is futile" in most cases, and you'd better believe it. Fortunately there are exceptions.
Despite all of this there are always some men who will stand by women no matter what they are threatened with. But when push comes to shove, most do not want to lose their position of superiority passed down to them by their fathers and incorporated into their laws and their religion. Women are patronized and paralyzed by these global weeds. Their roots, stems and branches are like crabgrass, virtually impossible to eradicate.
Women's struggle for equality has come so far yet remains essentially at the starting line. There are those that will argue that many advances have been made, but they have no answer to the basics.
· Second class status of women. The stifling patronizing of men. Women's bodies owned by State.
· Women generally will not fight for their rights in the law because lawsuits take money they do not have.
· Women are still paid less than men and treated differently than men doing the same job.
· Sexism and misogyny are rampant.
Answers might be found in history - but women do not have any. As the saying goes: "Marriage makes two people one and there is no doubt which one." So it follows that the two genders [mankind] are one and there is no doubt which one.
Essentially, society, customs, women and men have not changed toward the status of women. Because society and custom is male directed, only men's history comes through, while what would be women's history is not considered important and if it is written down it is usually a footnote - she is his property and she lives in his shadow and only by his permission.
Possible changes in the status quo are discouraged by threats and are fiercely fought. It is only when a movement or a person breaks the barrier and substantial change is in the offing that we see and experience the massive forces at work to keep women from ever uniting with a common goal - their own personhood.
One very recent example was publicly demonstrated when an extremely intelligent and qualified woman sought the office of president of the United States. For some time she overcame the many huge barriers that the patriarchal, system-driven media raised against her and her supporters and they were formidable. Then just as it seemed she would surely win the Primary of her Party, the Party itself rose up and buried her under its own broken rules.
Wouldn't you think the media and much of the public would complain if a small group of people took the votes of two states from one candidate and gave them to another? Wouldn't you think that when a political party broke its own rules and the federal laws to stop this woman that someone in high places would shout, "NO!"
But few think anything of the sort. Women's present is set in the concrete of the past and there aren't enough women or men with guts or will to change this.
It is still mostly women who teach kindergarten and grade school. Why do so few of them protest the absence of women in History and other textbooks? Why is only one ineffective month given over to promote the interests of women when they are more than 50% of the population? One would think, considering the state of the nation that their interests should be promoted 12 months of the year.
We as people tend to honor and relate to the blocks that form the structure of our society. We seldom see or honor the mortar that holds the blocks together. We go apeshit over a battlefield hero or a movie star or construction workers but women's existence and their daily heroics and horrors are mostly ignored because they are taken for granted - because most women take themselves and their situation for granted.
There is, and unless something drastic happens, no women's history and there shouldn't be. We are human beings and the history of our people should include us. The fact that it does not stands out like a festering blister on the big toe of humanity and it is easier for the system to buy a bigger shoe than treat the infection.
Most women have learned to fear the repercussions of doing anything that changes them and thereby changes others. Most women are content to go along to get along - making the yearly prayer march to the 30 days of March where hopefully the word, "woman", is used more than, ho, bitch, girl, chicks or any of the pejoratives that fill the streets and blogways.
Women's bodies, and their children, are held hostage. We hear daily about what happens when a woman defies a man. His social structure tells him that she is his property and he is just enforcing his rights. For women to do anything about this on a large united scale would amount to carnage worse than the Witch Burnings of women by the Christians.
Men have the MONEY, police forces and the army, not to mention the government and the legal system. Police are the worst abuse offenders - their wives and girlfriends who protest are met with the full force of his buddies if they report a cop's abuse.
The law says get a Restraining Order to keep the batterer/killer away legally. How'd that work out for you - all you women carved up/shot down/choked and dead? Where are all the metals of valor given to women who died protecting battered women in safe houses?
Can women make a future? Possibly. But not until they unite and insist that every baby girl born is given the same supportive training and respect during her formative years as every baby boy. When the female starts out life in parity, there is great hope that she can become a force to be reckoned with. She will no longer think of herself as not-human but as a competent member of the human race. Gender will be an expression of one's genes, NOT one's status, intellectual capacity or ability. Neither gender will believe itself superior to the other. Now boys are conditioned and trained from the crib to become men; girls are conditioned and trained from the crib to become dolls.
Is giving girls the respect and training now given to boys, Utopia? Not so much. But I have seen the results when parents, despite the criticism they get, train and treat their girls and boys equally, not according to their gender, and demand that each respect her/himself and the other. These children could change the world around them. The girls grow up to be healthy, formidable people who don't need cloths by Whosis or Botox by the barrel to define them.
But they stand out as targets - as prime threats to Paternalism. Will the present system allow them to live and procreate in any appreciable numbers? All the years of teaching, all the training, all the religions, government, all the money, all the male bonding to enforce conformity of thought and dress that has conditioned men to take their own superiority for granted and all the years of female bondage leading to women's compliance argues against it.
Men will not give up that ego trip that is always there for them - that no matter how little they succeed or how badly they do in life, they are superior to and better than more than half the population of the world. If women had been born into that lofty environment, they wouldn't give it up either.