Oh here she goes – brace yourself for a feminist rant. I’ve grown my armpit and leg hairs, and am working on a fuzzy moustache that would make my teenage son proud.
Feminism is generally not considered a nice word, as it has such negative connotations. These connotations came about due to some mislead man-haters acting like douche-bags. But they don’t speak for me, nor do they speak for any real-life feminists who are smart enough to know the true meaning of the word. Feminism is simply the belief that women and men are entitled to social, political and economic equality. I’m not sure I know anyone who wouldn’t agree with the concept of feminism on that basis. Nor would I want to.
The thing is, I find a lot of my male friends have developed a bad habit. They’re not bad guys – I wouldn’t be friends with them if they were. And I believe they do see women as their equals, which basically just shows they have common sense. But I’ve noticed they unknowingly speak to women in a completely different way to how they speak to men. And unfortunately, women seem to encourage them.
Here’s the scenario:
Female makes mistake, man says “trust you to do that”, woman laughs as if to say “oh well, I’m just a little bit silly”.
Man makes mistake, second man says “you stuffed up here”. The two men proceed to talk about how to fix said mistake. End of story. The latter is much preferred for both parties.
I’m sure it’s an unintentional habit. If a certain joke consistently got me a few laughs, I’d probably keep going with it, too. Trust me, I get it, and I’m not overly offended. I’m just bored with it. Sexist jokes are so predictable I could say what line comes next like some sort of clairvoyant.
And I’m not fazed by being the only jerk who doesn’t join in on the giggles. You could call me the surly one, but it’s an inaccurate depiction. I’ll laugh along with almost anything, and crudeness is my forte. But to me, sexism isn’t remotely funny; it’s just boring.
Broad generalisations like how all ‘females listen to terrible music’ or ‘females waste money on shopping’ are also boring. Females listen to whatever the heck music they like, some of us spend bugger all on clothes. Just like some men do.
Of course, you can respond with the old cry of “women can be sexist, too!” And I completely agree. Just like it’s pretty ordinary to label women as all the same, it’s just ordinary to label men as all the same. Jokes about men not being able to boil water are outdated. If your spouse is unable to fend for himself in the kitchen, I suggest that rather than assume all men are like him, you realise that you’ve hooked up with someone who’s a bit of a loser. And that’s not a gender issue.
We create what we expect, and when we walk around saying “all men are jerks” we prove ourselves right because that’s what we’re looking to see. If we walk around saying “all women are idiots” then that becomes what we see.
People are inherently flawed, and also inherently good. I expect to see a mix of goodness combined with some bad habits and deep seated beliefs that I may not necessarily agree with. So that’s what I see. It doesn’t mean I have to join in on the laughs when the jokes are bad. Tell me to lighten up if you wish, but I’ll still be sitting here unfazed, combing my moustache.