Much of what was done in the past doesn’t make sense. To discriminate against more than half the population of the planet merely because of gender, for thousands and thousands of years, was an idiotic waste of resources. Why women tolerated it down through history is baffling. That it exists anywhere in the world today is astonishing.
Much of the modern(?) feminist movement was also bizarre. I understand the idea of throwing off oppression, but burning a bra is merely depriving a woman of a valid means of support. The same principle applies to despising men for their gender–we need men almost as much as men need women.
Forcing a certain form of restrictive or body-hiding clothing upon women is also insane. Doing so does not dignify the female body, but it does suggest males in favor of it have extremely limited self-control. I don’t wish to advise women to wear next to nothing, but neither should women have to ‘hide’ themselves. We have no reason to be ashamed of our gender, nor should any society be allowed to say differently.
Reality sometimes enforces common sense. My dad was born in 1910, and I was impressed by the fact that he never insisted I should ‘act like a girl.’ He was raised on a farm with several older sisters, who had to work as hard as any man. They could take care of the animals and the land. My aunt Eva was very short, but she had the personality to take on any challenge, be it a team of horses or a house full of children. She was used to being in charge, and we all knew it. At the same time we knew she was a strong woman, not a scaled down version of a man.
I have three older brothers, so I was raised with the idea of avoiding things that were ‘sissy stuff.’ I liked toy cars, and science fiction, and climbing trees. There weren’t that many girls in the neighborhood, and when I did find them, they usually wanted to do things like ‘play house.’ (Sissy stuff.) I found that dolls were quite lazy. When there was one that you could ‘feed,’ inevitably you would have to ‘change the diaper.’ Ick! Toy cars and trucks could move, and with a bit of imagination, they could take you places. Just like a good book.
Boys, on the other hand, weren’t used to having a girl playing with them. I was shut out of one ‘game’ in elementary school, because it was deemed the domain of boys. I’ve hated it ever since. I’d rather not participate in or support a game that shuts people out.
I consider myself a sensible feminist. I don’t hate men. I’m not out to ‘get revenge’ for thousands of years of inequality (I doubt that’s even possible.) I do expect equal pay for equal work. I also expect women to stand up and act like adults.
I’m thoroughly disgusted with the ‘princess’ attitude that’s still far too prevalent. You know what I mean: women who drive a car, but refuse to learn how to change a tire, or check the oil; women who pretend to be all helpless and smitten when a handsome man comes into the room; female celebrities whose current claim to fame is how stupidly they can behave.
Feminism is not carte blanch to behave like a total bimbo. That’s the perception real women strive to change. We are sisters, and cousins, and wives, and mothers, and single people, all trying to make the world a better place. We work hard, regardless of what we’re wearing. Real men appreciate us.
In fact, real men don’t feel the least bit threatened by competent women. It takes nothing away from them to allow us to be in charge and have the positions we earn. If a man is polite enough to open a door for a woman, she should be polite enough to thank him. Real men don’t get upset when women open doors for them, either. It’s called ‘co-operation.’ Competition is when you’re both trying to win the same position. A smart woman knows the difference, and doesn’t need to shred someone else’s self-esteem in the process.
Real women don’t need to dress in a way that limits them, although some of us do dress in a way that helps other recognize who we are. I can often tell when I’m walking past another manager. She’s usually wearing some form of business or business/casual clothing, and either minimal makeup or none at all. (I tried makeup for a while–it didn’t help.) She projects the attitude of a dignified person whom others listen to. Real equality starts to be achieved when women find their self-confidence and their voice.
Perhaps it’s time for a sensible feminism to take the place of the rather strange, illogical, man-despising one that used to storm down the street. Times have changed, probably in spite of it rather than because of it. And as for burning your underwear, what you do in the privacy of your own home…
Thanks for reading. 🙂
Phyllis K Twombly