The Gender Wars

I recently read these two articles. The first was written by a man about things men don’t know about women. The second is a rebuttal of the first post, written by a woman and an avid feminist.

http://www.theage.com.au/comment/the-10-things-women-wont-tell-you-20140116-30wkp.html

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-01-21/ford-the-treachery-of-hairy-women/5208716?pfm=ms#comments

Now I’m sure that just about anyone could have a field day pulling apart these articles for whatever their personal agenda may be. Unfortunately, I find this black and white, stereotype slandering to be both tedious and unhelpful.

How long is it going to be before people actually realize that gender doesn’t really matter that much?

Men and women both cheat, members of both genders can be cruel and manipulative. Just as men and women can both be gentle, loving and generous.

What is more important? Really. What genitals a person has, or the actions they take and behaviors they exhibit?

It seems to me, that in these gender wars between feminists and anti-feminists, everybody is essentially losing.

Feminists started out with an admirable goal: equality. And that’s something that I believe in wholeheartedly. Between men and women, between different racial groups, between heterosexuals and homosexuals. Every single person on this planet has the right to equal opportunities, to love and respect, and to voice their opinion without threat of violence. But equality doesn’t mean that every one is the same. We’re not all the same. Men and women are different. But so too are women different from other women and men different from other men. Each individual has a different life experience, different goals and dreams and fears.

It seems to me that it’s about time we started treating individuals as individuals.

Instead, I find that everywhere I look I’m finding generalization and stereotypes, fueling anger and retribution in the form of MORE generalizations and stereotypes. As seen in these articles and the responses to them.

“Oh, but I know a woman who had an abusive husband… so feminists must be right”

“Butt, I saw a husband being abused by his wife… so anti-feminists must be right”

I mean WAKE UP. I’ve seen both of those things, I’ve known women who have cheated on their partners, I’ve known men who have cheated on theirs. I also see men all the time who are loving and kind and would never in a million years raise their hand against a woman. And I’ve known women who are strong and independent and don’t need a man to feel fulfilled in life. I know women who can’t wait to start families, I know women who are petrified of the thought, value work more than family, or simply don’t feel the need to have children at all. I know men who work hard, men that don’t, men that would love to raise their children at home.

This is part of the human condition. We are all different.

These gender wars pull us apart and make us see each other in stereotypes and generalizations. Do you live that way?

I hope not.

I try not to. Sometimes it’s a struggle. To see through the bullshit that gets thrown at us all the time. From the media, from friends, from family. From ourselves.

Maybe we should start enacting some of the values we try to teach our kids. Be kind. Don’t judge a book by it’s cover. We’re all unique. Treat others the way you’d like to be treated.

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One thought on “The Gender Wars

  1. That was good! I too get tired of the gender wars.

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