Tuesday, August 26, 2008

"She broke my heart": Feminism in the 21st Century

"Roy Den Holannder's War On Feminism" by Meghan Daum, along with a few crumbs, found its way into my lap this morning:
In a news release, Roy Den Hollander, who's best known for suing Manhattan nightclubs because they offered free or discounted Ladies Night drinks to women, claimed the university could not use government money, such as federal financial aid, to fund its Institute for Research on Women and Gender. Women's studies courses, he maintained, discriminate against men and are therefore in violation of the 5th and 14th amendments. He also called Columbia a "bastion of bigotry against men ... [that has] thrown its influence and prestige into violating the rights of men by offering a women's studies program but no men's studies program."
The article goes on to divulge that Mr. Hollander went through "a bitter divorce from a woman he says turned out to be 'a Russian mafia prostitute.'"

Feminism: a kettle of worms I've been itching to open up and hammer out the details. My english major afforded me the time to mix metaphors ... atrociously, but not time to take any "Women's Studies" classes.

Growing up evangelical fundamentalist, feminism was damned near a dirty word. Today, I call myself a feminist and embrace all the demonization and evolution of that word.

A Christian can call themselves Christian before, during, and after premarital sex while smoking a joint and practicing karma sutra. Christian also describes the submissive, abstaining, skirt-wearing, don’t drink, don’t smoke, don't dance persuasion. When an idea is good and has potential to change the world for everyone, regardless of class, race, or sex, everyone wants to claim membership.

And just like Christianity, the longer an idea like Feminism gets kicked around, the messier things get.

Unfortunately, there are plenty of reasons for women to demonize and stereotype men. We’ve spent decades trying to find the balance between being pathetic, submissive Victims versus full blown, proud-to-be Bitches. Every cultural fight worth fighting argues that no one should be forced to choose between being either a slut or a sweetie.

In all fairness, we’ve come far enough to admit that there are plenty of men out there misused in all sorts of disgusting and subtle ways by women. It may still be a man's world, but that doesn't mean women are off the hook. Let’s face it, male or female, if you don’t have a daddy issue, then you probably have a mommy issue.

Living in the “Shy Man Capitol” of the US, I have no doubt men can be as passive-aggressive as any stereotypical, put-upon woman.

What goes around comes around.

Which brings me back to Ray. I also live in the "almost" Beer Drinking Capital of the US (bow to Milwaukee). Funny how the two titles compliment each other.

I’ll give Ray the benefit of the doubt on his argument against “Ladies' Night Out” drink specials.Think about it: how much more sexist can we get? Why should we make exceptions for women to drink for free… just because we have vaginas???

I’m fully aware that alcohol can help in the seduction process. However, I’d rather see both men and women grow a set of balls that function drunk or sober, than rely on the “Ladies' Night” freebies to circumvent the mating, or enlightenment, process.

(yes... we women have balls... they are just internally located:)

Ladies: What makes us so worthy of free drinks? Though it is tempting to put ourselves on pedestals/high-heels just to feel as though we are on equal footing with men in the dive bars, I think it’s time to put Ladies’ Night Out drink specials out to pasture.

I'm sure there are plenty of creative, less sexist ways to lure women into public intoxication. Any ideas?

In all seriousness: Read the article. I’m a fan of Meghan Daum. Meanwhile, Ray probably needs to hang out with a therapist, and I DON’T agree with his argument that “Women’s Studies” disenfranchise the male population by forming a vagina religion.

To what extent are his arguments legitimate? To what extent does he need to CTFO (chill the fuck out)?

If all else fails, ask yourself: WWJJD?

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