Gender Equality, Men, Men's Rights, Women, Women's Rights

Ladies, We Can’t Have It Both Ways

Today on one of my networking sites, someone posed an interesting, and very valid, question. She asked if there were any resources on how to deal with men in and out of the workplace. She felt like some men were difficult to communicate with and she sensed there was a barrier to advancement for women. I don’t question for a minute that she is feeling this, but I’m going to go off the beaten path here and play the devil’s advocate. Don’t judge me. For many years now everything in society has been pushing women’s agendas: our rights, job and pay equality, positions on the corporate ladder, etc. I’m not saying that this is bad; it was well needed, and we deserve that equality, but don’t you think we may be going just a little bit overboard? I am a fierce supporter of women who have been sexually assaulted, and victims of physical injury inflicted by men, but even the #MeToo movement has gotten ridiculous, in my opinion. I feel it has had the undesirable, paradoxical effect of minimizing the plights of survivors of true sexual assault. If you eat too much yummy ice cream you can get sick or fat, and if people claim every tiny little touch as a sexual assault, society sickens. You know, too much of a good thing. Soon we may not even be able to distinguish legitimate victims from fame and fortune seekers and angry women who indiscriminately charge men with insignificant “offenses”. Don’t get me wrong, men should keep their unwanted gropes to themselves, but can’t we establish some guidelines as to what is worth pursuing?  

In the corporate world, I have seen reverse discrimination first-hand. My husband has worked in HR for many years, but the past decade or two has shown an increase in preferential treatment towards women. A female boss hired a woman for a higher supervisory position for which a man was the top candidate, even admitting to him that he was better qualified, but they wanted to hire an “outside person who might have fresh ideas”. (Who just happened to be a woman). He was also told by the boss that he did not win the vote among the staff, which he learned was blatantly untrue. He was very close to his team and his colleagues were stunned and angry. One earlier time, a male held a management position in a bank and his boss was a woman who may have disliked men in general. One by one she found ways to discharge them due to “reorganization”, or she made it so bad for them that they had to leave.  I later learned that all the men he had worked with were gone and the department was almost, if not all, women.

Even on TV men are portrayed as clueless doofuses. Almost every boss you see is a strong woman working with a weaker or goofy man. Women are kick-ass protagonists in heels on dramas and action movies and men are weaker and/or less intelligent sidekicks. We women want to have our places and be respected, and yet slender actresses are all decked out in high heels and tight clothing that shows optimal cleavage and having a little exaggerated wiggle to their walks. We claim that we don’t want to be objectified as sex symbols and we get mad if men look at us like “that”, but then why do women dress in this manner or allow themselves to be outfitted in that way on the screen? Pornography is an obscenely (pardon the pun) lucrative and immense business , but who is responsible for that besides the creators? Women. Lots of them. Women using their sexuality to make money. Be respected or be intentionally sexually appealing for profit and gain. We can’t have it both ways, ladies.  

So yeah, she probably does feel that from men because they are threatened by us. Their jobs, their respectability, their intelligence, even their mere presences are rebuked by some women. Heck, we don’t even need them to have children, anymore, so what good are they? A whole lot more than people want to believe, and until THEY are shown more respect in this world, they probably will continue to feel threatened by us. I don’t know, maybe it’s because I’m one of the lucky ones that I can write this. I have had a good one for almost 46 years and a few years before we got married, and sometimes I feel that I am the one who doesn’t deserve him.