Okay… I know, this is not exactly news! And it likely, is not news to you either, especially since you are reading a blog about Feminism. But sometimes you meet specific people or hear a short conversation that really blows your mind. The discussions are always a bit different but generally filled with the same kind of crap they all are.
*** After writing this entry, I realized that this is mostly a rant. Enjoy! ***
As an example, the other day I was chilling in the basement of my (soon to be) fiancee’s basement. I happened to be watching “Iron Jawed Angels” which I had been trying to catch since Courtney at Feministing linked to about 6 months ago, but every time I saw it on it was in the last 10-30 minutes. I live in a small town and neither movie rental store had a copy. When the movie started I was alone, as I would have needed to be to choose such a movie. Not that my partner would object necessarily, but his entourage of dude friends certainly would.
Needless to say one of the aforementioned friends joined me and started to ask what the movie was about. He assumed the depression. When I told him that it was actually about the Suffragettes and the fight for the vote early on in the feminist movement, he actually responded by saying; “Sometimes I really wish it was like it was back then, but I guess women have brains and their own thoughts you know.” Yeah buddy, I fucking know, cause in case you forgot, you are talking to a WOMYN!!!
He continued on to say that it would be really nice if his pregnant girlfriend just stayed at home to take care of the kids all day, as well as cook and clean. I should clarify by saying that at this time, she is on maternity leave and that since I have known this man, he has not been gainfully employed. So I suppose he would have someone to cook the food he couldn’t pay for or clean the apartment where has is in rental arrears.
I still cannot get over the type of crap this guy spews. Thankfully even my “fiancee” is only friends with this person out of pitty and can barely do it for that reason any longer. This is the same person who told us that his girlfriend “is due in August and has only gained 4lbs.” Now maybe it is just me, but dieting while pregnant is probably not awesome for the baby, however, I can totally understand how she may have internalized his comments or attitudes and be afraid to gain some baby weight.
If there was ever a person I wish I could direct to Derailing for Dummies, this would be the person. He always knows better than you do, about life, experiences, racism (he is white), sexism, and generally any topic that comes up in conversation.
It would be impossible to list all of the ridiculous things this person has said in my company, but given the work that I do I cannot leave out the fact that like most “Men’s Rights Activists” he insists that he knows many, many physically abused men – a what about them mentality. The answer is simple, the services exist in their current format because 98% of the time violence is perpetrated by men either on women or on other men. If you really want to know where the services for men are, perhaps you should be asking why women are taught to prevent violent attacks on themselves while men are not being taught how to not attack women in the first place!
“If 98% of all sexual assaults are committed by men, why is it still considered a women’s issue?”