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Here is a short test of your sexism:
If you want your son to always have a job, encourage him to train as a home health aide. His greater physical strength is a tremendous advantage.

Personal Note: I have five younger brothers. My mother had five younger brothers. Her three youngest brothers were closer to my age than hers, and were my big brothers. I have two grandson, five and 17 months. I attended Fordham University as a sophomore the year they admitted women as freshmen and was often the only women in my classes. My male bosses has been more supportive than my female bosses. I struggle with misogyny.

Misandry, hatred and disdain for men in general, is probably the most underused word in progressive political debate. Although a lifelong feminist, I have always loathed knee-jerk male-bashing and defended men against stereotyping. Wikipedia has a decent definition of sexism: "Sexism is commonly considered to be discrimination and/or hatred of people based on their sex rather than their individual merits." Both men and women can be sexists; both men and women can be the victim of sexism.

The glorification of the macho man is sexist. The idea that little boys can't cry or wear pink or play with dolls is sexist. The denial that fathers are just as loving, nurturing parents as women is sexist. Questioning the masculinity of a man who stays home and cares for his children is sexist. Expectations that daughters are better qualified to care for aging parents are sexist. .

Four days a week I helped take care of  now 5-year-old grandson until he was 2.  I  recaptured many memories of my youngest brothers, 11 and 13 years younger, as little boys. I remember their tenderness, sensitivity, gentleness. Yet even when we were all keeping watch at my mother's deathbed at home for a week, only one of my brothers cried openly. His four brothers in another room assumed it was me.

 Sexism underpins our whole glorification of war and violence. It cannot possibly be defeated in one generation. All of human history is not changed quite so quickly. Hanging out with Michael in NYC playgrounds and streets, I am conscious that preschool boys possibly suffer more from sexism than little girls. When a girl shows interest in traditionally masculine activities, it is often seen as upward mobility. When a boy shows interest in girlie things, people start wondering if he is gay. Older men in the elevator started fretting over Michael's curls when he was 15 months old.

 All of us are crippled by such sexist attitudes. Preschools and elementary schools are a better match for most girls. Boys too often wind up on medication so they can conform to classroom rules and expectations. The idea that boys can't be babysitters or men can't be daycare, kindergarten, and grade school teachers is disgustingly sexist. Home health agencies seem to find it unimaginable that a client might want a guy to care for their aging mother. The idea that every man is a potential rapist or sexual predator is hideously sexist.

 Women cannot have it both ways.If they want fathers to share equally in parenting, they have to let fathers find their own way to parent. I observed a group of stay-at-home fathers with their toddlers at the Children's Library at  42nd street. They were fantastic with their all-over-the-place toddlers, showing great humor, love, and appreciation and a total absence of up-tightness..

 Anne Marie Slaughter's article on Why Women Can't Have It All in the Atlantic is a prime example. According to her, men just don't care as much as women do when their jobs deprive them of time with their children. But her husband stayed in Princeton during the week and fathered her sons while she was working for Hillary Clinton in DC.  Anne-Marie just showed up on weekends.

Men are still locked into the primary breadwinner role, making  more money than their wives, rarely having the opportunity of part-time work or flexible work. I suspect men are in even greater danger of losing their jobs or never being promoted if they put family first.

I have been appalled by the male bashing that has characterized too many comments on Slaughter's article. The energy and passion expended on attacking other women's choices  or blaming fathers need to be directed at  American corporate capitalism. The possibility of flexible work schedules so dads can take care of their children is rarely discussed. In the rare instance where fathers are given paternity leave, they fear to take it because they dread the daddy track.

Since I began blogging in 2003, I recognized that we need a nonviolent revolution to create a family-friendly Amerca. It needs to be even more sweeping than the civil rights movement. I am appalled that the Slaughters of this world get so much attention for discovering something that I started discussing with my future husband when we began dating in 1966.  My brothers, sons-in-law, and nephews have the same difficulty combining work and family as my father did, as my children's father did.

Fathers and mothers need to work together so have families have some of what they need.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Well, first of all, (8+ / 0-)
    Misandry, hatred and disdain for men in general, is probably the most underused word in progressive political debate.
    is word salad.

    And secondly,

    Women cannot have it both ways.If they want fathers to share equally in parenting, they have to shut up
    That would be NO.  Women do not ever have to "shut up".

    Your post is not helpful.

  •  What is this post even about? (9+ / 0-)

    "Misandry", first of all, is one of the most OVER used words in a lot of gender debates online. There is an endless supply of "mens rights activists" (the equivalent of white people who believe in reverse racism) who think misandry is the biggest threat to human existence ever known.

    Unfortunately they'd also completely disagree with you that men need to become more emotional and less inhibited by gender stereotypes. For the most part they LOVE the gender stereotypes and feel that the worst thing that ever happened was when we stopped believing in men's evolutionary mission to spread seed and establish their manly heroism through war.

    •  What Is Post About? (4+ / 0-)

      Frankly, your post seems to exemplify what I was talking about. I admit my view of men is shaped by real life experience, not by what happens online. I don't think the blogosphere is exactly representative.

      by Redstocking on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 10:40:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I've raised two boys (7+ / 0-)

        They'd be the first to tell you that it's an advantage to be a male in this society. Because it is and probably always will be, thanks to sheer brute strength and the convenience of their anatomy relative to women.

        However, you really need to face up to WHO is saying boys shouldn't cry/wear pink/play with baby carriages ... it's not women. It's men. I never reinforced any of those stereotypes and can't stand them, but I think you've identified exactly the wrong culprit in blaming it on "misandry".

        •  yeah I noticed that too (4+ / 0-)

          the main perpetrators of misandry are other men. They are the ones looking at you like youre a freak when you say you are a caretaker, homemaker, etc. They are the ones nervously laughing when your boy likes the pink shirt over the blue. Are there some women out there doing the same thing? Sure. But I would venture that a good portion of it is men too.

          Squidward: The noises! How are you two making those noises?

          Patrick: Well, that's easy. All you need is a box.

          SpongeBob: And...imagi~nation!

          by rexymeteorite on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 10:47:03 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  women too (8+ / 0-)

            it's both.  down here parents are afraid to let their boys play house or with dolls because they fear their kid will turn gay.

            it's pretty equal between the women and men down here. both sexes put their children in their place respective to gender.

            it's not common to see parents who let their kids figure things out for themselves.

            it starts early too.  women can't stand for their babies to mixed up as the opposite sex.  blue for boys and pink for girls.  

            and we're probably all a little guilty of it at some point, some time.

            -You want to change the system, run for office.

            by Deep Texan on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 11:18:01 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  We All Are a Little Guilty (5+ / 0-)

              Deep Texan, you are absolutely right that we are all a little guilty.

              I worry that parents' finding out the sex of their babies so relatively early in pregnancy increases sexism. In my generation, you are 9 months to anticipate either sex.

              I did not buy sexist toys. I art supplies, blocks, legos, puzzles. Their father made a splendid dollhouse that both boys and girls love. I searched out nonsexist books and frequently changed male animals into girls. It is harder for my three daughters now mothers to avoid the pink princess explosion.

              I think babies should wear bright primary colors; red is my favorite baby color.

              Kids tend to be in group settings younger. It might be harder to protect them from the general cultural sexism.

              My daughters are 39, 37, 33, and 30. In too many ways we seem to be going backward.


              by Redstocking on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 11:29:28 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Meh. (0+ / 0-)

              I gave up on judging a baby's gender early on, when my two were bald as Ike and I refused to tape a bow on daughter's head just so people would stop saying "Isn't HE cute?" - even when dressed all in pink.

              Just say, "Isn't that the cutest baby EVER!" and parents then introduce little [Andrew, Megan, whoever] and I can usually know if it's a boy or girl...

              Ah, the wisdom grandparents earn! §;o)

        •  Sexism Is the Culprit (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          gzodik, raincrow, Mortifyd

          But isn't sheer brute strength increasingly less valued in our society? You are right about convenient male anatomy. I could not stand that my baby brothers could do something I could not do, and tried an embarrassing number of times to pee standing up. I finally figured out it was  the lack of space around the toilet, not my inadequate aim, that was the real problem:)

          I took care of my grandson in a Chelsea playground and playrroom that was entirely women except for an occasional grandpa. Almost all of them were nannies from all over the world. They were a lot more guys in the same playground in the 70s. But then people weren't working such long hours.

          I confess I was a little uneasy about giving my grandson a pink stroller, but every boy in the playground gravitated to it while the girls ignored it:)

          But I agree that both men and women are guilty of misandry just as both are guilty of misogyny. I am not impressed by generalizations about gender differences. If my oldest had been a boy and my second daughter a girl, I might have succumbed to the generalizations other parents were making.

          I believe sexism is the main culprit. In the 70s and 80s we were rather obsessed with nonsexist childrearing. I don't think my daughters ever had a  pink toy. Now, when I walk into a kids toy store, I feel sick.

          by Redstocking on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 10:58:37 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Men don't have more dangerous jobs (3+ / 0-)

            Unless they choose them. And they get paid a hell of a lot for that risk. It's another opportunity to make money that women don't have - again due to the brute strength you're saying doesn't matter.

            I'm extremely confused by your claim that you are a misogynist. You mean you hate your own gender? I have always gotten along well with men also, and was even in the Coast Guard in my younger days (had loads of fun), but I'd feel like a traitor to myself if I joined in on all the misogyny that surrounds me in this society. It hurts me that it is still so prevalent. I'd never want to add to it.

            •  Had a boss once (3+ / 0-)

              who explained to me why I was making HALF the money my male counterpart made doing much less of the same job than I did - that he's a man so he needs more money to "support his family" than I needed, to actually support my family while husband was back in school on the GI Bill.

              Nor was my male counterpart required to put up with 70-something boss sneaking up behind his workstation to rub shoulders - "you look stressed..."

              I got pretty darned good at quickly sliding out of my chair sideways and taking myself elsewhere quickly...

              Until equal pay for equal work is a reality - and not a reality achieved by lowering everybody to minimum wage - I don't have all that much sympathy for men who feel other men don't appreciate their chosen professions as manly enough.

            •  I don't agree (6+ / 0-)

              with this so much

              Men don't have more dangerous jobs (1+ / 0-)

              Unless they choose them. And they get paid a hell of a lot for that risk.

              That may be true in some circumstances, but not many. Being a cell tower climber is the most dangerous profession today and they generally make about 10 dollars an hour. Construction work is not much better paying.  

              There are not that many jobs that require brute force nowadays. Being a Administrative Assistant pays more than a lot of jobs done mainly by men and in a lot of cases is not viewed as okay for men to do this work.  The same is true of nursing and in teaching, especially when it comes to grade school and middle school teachers  and teachers assistants at all levels.  Women are now equal to men when it comes to being school Principals.

               There is a glass ceiling for women when you get to the very top of most business professions, but they do okay up until then.

              However, men of color are blocked much more than white women at any level except for the most low paying jobs. Many of these advantages that white women speak of are advantages to white males of a certain class. But there is a large portion of non-white men (who make up about 35% of the male population) who do not enjoy the benefits you speak of. This kind of thinking exemplifies why many nonwhite women are not that interested in the women's movement except maybe when it comes to birth control.


              by jennybravo on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 12:40:01 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  Nonsexist childrearing. (0+ / 0-)

            In the '70s we lived in a rather isolated country situation, and were determined to raise our daughter without sexual stereotyping.  We bought her little overalls and toy tools.

            Then, one day I saw the poor thing cradling a stick in  her arms, cooing to her "baby".

            If it had been a boy, he would have been pointing it like a pistol, going "Pow! Pow! Pow!."

            Stereotyping is bad, but you can't fight DNA.

            GOP: Bankers, billionaires, suckers, and dupes.

            by gzodik on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 11:48:56 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Such nonsense (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              raincrow, Mortifyd, Avilyn

              I raised two boys and a girl. They all enjoyed water guns. They all enjoyed stuffed animal "babies".

              •  Are you very young (0+ / 0-)

                or just not an objective observer? Hm. Maybe you have an ideology that says the Y chromosome can have no genes that affect personality? What do you call your planet?

                GOP: Bankers, billionaires, suckers, and dupes.

                by gzodik on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 12:47:20 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Tell us: which are the "gun genes" on the Y chromo (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Mortifyd, Avilyn

                  some? And while you're at it, how about a link to research on X-chromosomes, gene dose, and babydoll-love -- do girls feel twice the inclination as boys?

                  Every baby has its own personality and brings that personality to the sex role training that begins the moment it is born.

                  In my family, our sex role training included guns (powder/lead, water, and cap) and stuffed animals for boys and girls alike. My brother eventually grew away from stuffed animals.

                •  No just an experienced parent (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:

                  I've got two awesome sons and one awesome daughter. NONE of them ever behaved like programmed devices. My daughter hated Barbies. My sons didn't like cars or trucks. They all liked guns, as did I and my sisters - because guns are FUN. (Toy ones obviously) They DO something. Dolls do nothing. They are an extremely dull toy that inspires neither imagination nor exercise.

                  My kids are grown now and as normal as rain. I am eternally grateful that I never listened to the evo psych squad. It seems to me they are, as a group, so deficient in normal instincts and intuition that they decide to let some random road map tell them what girls and boys "are".

                  It's all nonsense. My life proves it. My kids lives prove it.

            •  Did your non-sexist childrearing (0+ / 0-)

              extend to home schooling, no TV, no movies, no radio, no advertisements, etc.? Did you screen all of your daughter's playmates to insure that they were equally insulated from sexist influences? If not, I have to point out that the belief that parental influence can counter all external influence isn't born out by practical experience.

              That said, no one is claiming that there aren't innate differences between male and female but such differences clearly exist in varying degrees in given individuals rather than as genetic absolutes. It's certainly not news that some women lack a maternal drive. The number of women who remain childless by choice is proof of that. Then there is the phenomenon of male couples who adopt children. For such people, biology is clearly not destiny. At least not in the simplistic, binary sense you suggest.

              Nothing human is alien to me.

              by WB Reeves on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 01:34:57 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  total load of crap (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Avilyn, Cassandra Waites

              Damn near every child in my Army post childhood had a gun toy -  male or female - we were all soldiers children.  Male soldiers and female soldiers.  Sometimes we shot things, sometimes we cuddled things or played M*A*S*H on them.  Boy can cuddle and girls can shoot.  

              Way to bring the point of the diary home.

              And we sail and we sail and we never see land, just the rum in the bottle and a pipe in my hand...

              by Mortifyd on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 01:38:09 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  So I guess in your view I have faulty DNA? (0+ / 0-)

              As I liked toy guns and sports and trucks and tractors, even though I'm a female?  

              I’m a feminist because the message is still "don’t get raped" not "don’t rape"

              by Avilyn on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 02:14:58 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  Hrubec's post exemplifies what, though? (0+ / 0-)

        Sheesh, it's like being in a Cheech and Chong sketch.

  •  This post is a mixed bag (7+ / 0-)

    of good bad and ugly.

    Some points I actually kind of agree with. I especially get upset when, if a small boy has long hair, or happens to have a particular interest in girls toys over boys, everyone thinks he is gay or slow (me, about 20 years ago). I was put on medication, given tests to show if I had learning disabilities, hell they even told my mom at one point that they thought I was (and they actually used this word) "retarded". All because I was an absolute handful, I didn't conform exactly to the prescribed rules of the class.

    On the other hand, I am no MRA. I am not going to tell you that men have it "tough" in our society. We are still a privileged class. That much has not changed, at all.

    Nor do I think its helpful at all to tell women to shut up. Perhaps a little sexism in your own post? We should all be aware of our equal capacity to slip into prejudices and -isms.

    Squidward: The noises! How are you two making those noises?

    Patrick: Well, that's easy. All you need is a box.

    SpongeBob: And...imagi~nation!

    by rexymeteorite on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 10:32:32 AM PDT

    •  a particular bugaboo of my (6+ / 0-)

      parents-in-law is on television, especially on sitcoms. I have heard them say many a times that the televisions portrayal of men -- stupid, oafish, unintelligent, unfeeling boors, tears at the fabric of marriage and ultimately drives men and women apart.

      A theory which I am not sure I believe, but at least they aren't parroting the bigoted "gays are ruining marriage" line that their other conservative neo-Catholic contemporaries are spouting.

      Squidward: The noises! How are you two making those noises?

      Patrick: Well, that's easy. All you need is a box.

      SpongeBob: And...imagi~nation!

      by rexymeteorite on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 10:39:57 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Yes I am Sexist (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Rezkalla, raincrow, Mortifyd

      I haven't posted on it yet, but I do struggle with my own sexism and misogyny a great deal. I grew up male identified and have always been closer to men. I also have always love to debate and argue with men and am not intimidated easily.

      Some men are a privileged class, more privileged than women. But most of us are part of the 99 percent.   Men also have by far the most dangerous jobs and are injured on the job far more than women.

      My point wasn't that men have it tougher than women, but that sexism hurts all of us.

      I agreed I should not have told mothers to shut up, so I edited that out. But I have listened to so many mothers complain about their partners' childrearing methods at the same time they are complaining they don't do enough of it..

      by Redstocking on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 10:45:39 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  well, technically, all men are of a privileged (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        eru, Smoh, Avilyn


        Your point about all being the 99% is well taken, but I think that is a different -ism entirely -- classism. When talking specifically about gender related issues, I believe it is at least fair to say that men are the priv. class and women are the disadvantaged class.

        Squidward: The noises! How are you two making those noises?

        Patrick: Well, that's easy. All you need is a box.

        SpongeBob: And...imagi~nation!

        by rexymeteorite on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 10:49:46 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Who Is Privileged? (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          gzodik, Mortifyd, Avilyn

          I don't  disagree with you if we are talking about economics and power. But there are different kinds of privilege, and the opportunity to take care of young children seems to me the most challenging, thrilling job of all. My real peer group is the under-three's) They are by far the best learners I have encountered in my almost 67 years.

          Almost all caregivers of young children  and elders are paying a huge economic price for that privilege. We totally devalue family work and exalt market work.

          by Redstocking on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 11:07:13 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Legally and economically (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            CuriousBoston, Smoh, Avilyn

            Females are the disadvantaged group. For example, the glass ceiling still exists. I am not going to find links. I happen to know for a fact that when a man and a woman do the same work, on average the woman gets paid less. Local state and federal governments feel it necessary to pass laws about their reproductive processes. What laws have been passed about a males reproductive system that didn't include greater access to viagra? None that i have heard about.

            The media constantly portrays women as objects. Yes, this is happening more and more to men as well, but it still has a way more wide-ranging affect on women. Women are held to an often unattainable standard of beauty, and when that standard of beauty (inevitably) cannot be attained, it crushes self esteems. Again, this is happening to men to, but I would posit that not on the scale that it is happening to women all over this country and all over the world.

            seriously, you are not going to change my opinion on this. Males are privileged in our society.  

            Squidward: The noises! How are you two making those noises?

            Patrick: Well, that's easy. All you need is a box.

            SpongeBob: And...imagi~nation!

            by rexymeteorite on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 11:16:20 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  But feminists don't even talk about men (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              gzodik, Dr Swig Mcjigger, Avilyn

              being "objectified." Once on DKos someone tried to shut someone up with just this: "But feminism has nothing to do with men." Well, if that's true, then, yeah, you'll never notice men being increasingly "objectified" as well.

              I personally believe it makes much more sense to understand the prevalence, say, of barechested men with big muscles, tattooss, piercings, etc that grace the covers of countless magazines such as Rolling Stone, as part of a body cult in the US today. Indeed in countries usually viewed as more macho and sexist, such as Mexico, this body cult does not exist (as it does here). In short, I think the Second Wave instinct to always start with some mythical "woman" just doesn't work well this day in age.

              One boy against the Stock Market all Wall Street ascream. --Allen Ginsberg, "Elegy Ché Guévara"

              by Anak on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 11:30:09 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  yes it happens to men too (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                you'll notice I specifically said that in my post.

                For the record, I don't care about "waves" of feminists. It really doesn't matter to me.

                Squidward: The noises! How are you two making those noises?

                Patrick: Well, that's easy. All you need is a box.

                SpongeBob: And...imagi~nation!

                by rexymeteorite on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 11:34:31 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  I Hate Male Body Colt (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Anak, raincrow, Avilyn

                The male body cult is do discouraging. When I was young, I thought all men were going to have long hair, wear beards, earrings, colorful clothing. I find hairless chests and six packs a total turnoff. Both my husbands have been bearded and furry.

                As a young woman, I naively thought women were freeing themselves from the cult of beauty and fashion. I never dreamed that men would succumb. I despair of all the women of my generation who are "fighting aging."  They are  mutton in lamb's clothing.

                My mother, my 12 aunts, and my grandmas never fought aging, and I thought they were beautiful.


                by Redstocking on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 01:00:13 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  This feminist believes men are objectified. (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Avilyn, Dr Swig Mcjigger, Anak

                And depersonalized and minimized precisely in proportion to the objectification, depersonalization, and minimization of women.

                Back in the 70s, I was THRILLED to hear that one of my political heroes, Kate Millett, was coming to out-of-the-way southern Virginia to lecture on feminism. I ended up jumping in her shit for her cavalier assertion that women should not serve in any combat capacity because if they're captured they can be raped. I was gobsmacked, disappointed, and so incensed I could have snatched her baldheaded. As if men have not historically been tortured with genital beating, burns, shock, and mutilation; anal penetration; and oral rape! As if my Navy brother's sensation of pain was not as exquisite as my own! As if he, or any male, was somehow "naturally" better equipped to handle the psychological and physical traumas of war! What unmitigated arrogance and hypocrisy. Equal rights and opportunity my fat white ass.

                Millett wouldn't admit the bigotry, ignorance, and complete failure of imagination and compassion underlying her assertion; and a number of attendees booed me until I drew wider cheers by arguing we should protect BOTH our boy and girl children by sending NEITHER to war.

                What's sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander. THAT is feminism IMNSHO.

            •  About male objectification (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              raincrow, Avilyn, Dr Swig Mcjigger

              Rexy, when you were growing up, did you never compare yourself to images of "the masculine ideal" that were presented to you? Did you ever feel inadequate by comparison? If so, how do you think it affected your development? If not, do you think your experience is representative of most boys?

              I have my own answers to these questions based on my own experience and I'm genuinely curious as to how your experience differs or corresponds with my own, not mention males in general.

              Nothing human is alien to me.

              by WB Reeves on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 12:57:05 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  In regards to parenting, though (0+ / 0-)

              Women are the "privileged" class and men are the "disadvantaged" (although I dislike both of those terms.  Women are heavily favored in custody cases, and often when the man ends up with custody, the women don't end up paying child support.

              I'm not saying you're wrong, BTW, that overall, men are generally the privileged class (or at least white men; race is a whole 'nother can of worms); but there are definitely areas for improvement.  Just as there are lots of areas for improvement in how females are treated.  

              I’m a feminist because the message is still "don’t get raped" not "don’t rape"

              by Avilyn on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 02:22:25 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  I'm pleased to report (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            raincrow, Mortifyd, WB Reeves

            that all my younger-generation men are good fathers, and not just in the providing (money) way. One of my college age grandsons has never worked any other paid job than child care, and kids love him immensely. Doesn't work at the Y anymore, but has a steady list of weekend clients he met there whose kids won't stay with anybody but him. He's going to cosmetology school at the regional tech college so he'll have a fall-back means of making a decent living, and has become a Mary Kay beauty consultant to hopefully pay his way through herbalism school when he gets his C-license. Because that's truly where his passion and talents lie. I know that because I've been doing herbs/remedies for about 25 years, and he's been an apt - no, a gifted - pupil from the moment he moved here a few years ago to find a path to his future.

            I expect he'll be a star in all his endeavors, and he has chosen (several) paths that closely align with his sweet and caring nature, his aesthetic sensibilities, and his gift for knowing the natural world. Intuitively, colored by nearly photo-recall on plant classifications and species, encyclopedic data base on effects, uses and complementaries. Every bit as impressive as other college-age grandson's great in-head database of dinosaurs, all shapes, sizes and habits. That one's doing geology now, grad school lined up for paleontology - reflecting the passion and talents of HIS life.

            If you (or other readers) have made assumptions about either grandson's sexuality - i.e., "manhood" - purely from this grandmother's description, you just might be guilty of something mentioned in this diary's title.

            •  What a Wonderful Grandma You Are! (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Joieau, raincrow

              Joleau, I hope you are as proud of yourself and all your younger generation men as you should be.  I hope my grandsons turn out nearly as wonderful as your grandson. What a wonderful grandmother you are!


              by Redstocking on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 01:16:02 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  But then the problem is when Second Wave (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          jennybravo, raincrow

          feminists still define lots of things as "gender-related issues" instead of "societal issues." Decades ago, the Third Wave questioned such broad statements as "men are the privileged class," instead stressing the hyphenated identities we all have. But the Second Wave rolls on and on... No wonder younger women ignore them.  

          One boy against the Stock Market all Wall Street ascream. --Allen Ginsberg, "Elegy Ché Guévara"

          by Anak on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 11:15:34 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  how are they not? (0+ / 0-)

            seriously? I am not getting it.

            Squidward: The noises! How are you two making those noises?

            Patrick: Well, that's easy. All you need is a box.

            SpongeBob: And...imagi~nation!

            by rexymeteorite on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 11:19:47 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  how are *we* not... (0+ / 0-)

              heh I am a guy too.

              Squidward: The noises! How are you two making those noises?

              Patrick: Well, that's easy. All you need is a box.

              SpongeBob: And...imagi~nation!

              by rexymeteorite on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 11:20:57 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I'm saying as a starting point (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                WB Reeves, raincrow

                it is kinda meaningless. "Black men belong to a privileged class compared to Callista Gingrich and Ann Romney." Well, maybe, but don't you think this is an odd starting point in trying to understand social phenomena?

                One boy against the Stock Market all Wall Street ascream. --Allen Ginsberg, "Elegy Ché Guévara"

                by Anak on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 11:35:48 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

          •  I Don't Swim in Waves of Feminism (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            I do agree that most issues are social issues.

            However, ignoring the experience of people who have gone before you is not a recipe for effective political change. I was a feminist during the second wave, though I always had a great many problems with it. What characterized it was dissension. So generalizations about second wave and third wave feminists don't hold up.

            American society encourages women to rely on experts rather than older women. Feminists might have made more progress if each generation of women did not need to establish that they are not like their mothers.

            II identify far more with my daughters', my nieces', their friends' generation (born 1973 to 1982) than to my own.


            by Redstocking on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 12:15:08 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  No (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Mortifyd, Avilyn
          well, technically, all men are of a privileged (1+ / 0-)


          not unless you only referring to white males.


          by jennybravo on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 12:41:57 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  i understand - i have an example (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    raincrow, Mortifyd, Dr Swig Mcjigger

    we were talking about the rise in bugs this season at work.  my coworker, a woman, said she is afraid of all the june bugs.  I replied saying june bugs are harmless, what's to be afraid of.  She said they're icky and I am a guy so I wouldn't understand.  

    To me that is sexism.  It's everywhere really.  

    -You want to change the system, run for office.

    by Deep Texan on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 11:14:27 AM PDT

  •  Yes (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I will believe men are the language oppressed when they have to get an ultrasound up their ass to go to a strip club.

    The power of language is dependent on societal power.

    Education is a progressive discovery of our own ignorance.

    by Horace Boothroyd III on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 11:26:19 AM PDT

    •  Sexism Is Not a Contest (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      raincrow, Mortifyd

      Men and women should not be having a contest to determine who is most oppressed. Denying the impact of sexism on men is not going to make them more feminist.  The fathers of my children's generation are more involved than fathers were in my generation. But society has changed very little. We have a 1950s workplace based on the assumption that every ideal worker has a wife at home to handle family work.

      In general, women have been far too passive in controlling their reproduction and childbearing.  The 33 percent C section rate upsets me even more than restrictions on abortion.  When I had my first children, the foremost pregnancy book recommended  immediately walking out of an obstetrician's office if his C section rate was above 5 percent.

      by Redstocking on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 11:46:33 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I really like you HBIII, but! (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Avilyn, Dr Swig Mcjigger

      Are you comparing having an abortion to going to a strip club?


      by jennybravo on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 12:52:34 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I get you, but I disagree (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Horace Boothroyd III, Avilyn

      that your analogy has value in the conversation as it's going now.  Not to say it would not be highly pertinent in talking about how women are subjected to unfair body controls - but that's not the topic.

      I don't know about you - but while I did enjoy some change in status - it was not all that much and in many cases I would have actually benefited from staying female.  Except for the insanity and dead part.

      Male status is in flux in our society right now and we should acknowledge that rather than pretend it doesn't matter in the face of other cultural shifts.

      And we sail and we sail and we never see land, just the rum in the bottle and a pipe in my hand...

      by Mortifyd on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 01:47:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I appreciate this diary, Redstocking. (4+ / 0-)

    Thanks for your work on it.

    Lots to say, but gotta run. I note that the people who are reccing the diary are not the ones who are staying to comment with you.

    Following you now.

    •  no rec from me (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      the diary has problems, to me. The diarist made some good points, but the premise of the diary is flawed.

      Squidward: The noises! How are you two making those noises?

      Patrick: Well, that's easy. All you need is a box.

      SpongeBob: And...imagi~nation!

      by rexymeteorite on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 11:36:02 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I've read this site daily for six years and (0+ / 0-)

    have never seen any misandry here.

  •  More Time With Young Children Than With Daily Kos (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I  want edto provoke debate, and I am glad that I have.

    I have spent far time with children under five than I have  spent on Daily Kos or any other political blog. Having 5 brothers and 4 daughters, I have always been suspicious of too many generalizations about sex differences. As a children's librarian, I have seen hundreds of little kids.

    Sexism is the air they breathe just as was true for my daughters and their friends. Girls are allowed a far greater range of behavior and dress.

    My mom, because she had 5 brothers, was very tolerant of little boy energy, physicality, what now is characterized as aggression. I have always been struck by how boys suffer without male caregivers and teachers.

    by Redstocking on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 12:02:25 PM PDT

  •  Test Your Classism and Sexism (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    If you want your son to always have a job, encourage him to train as a home health aide. His greater physical strength is a tremendous advantage.

    by Redstocking on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 12:04:46 PM PDT

  •  Media Portrays Women As Objects (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I should have made clear I am talking about American women, not world women. I realize that is a shameful confession.

    Sometimes women seem complicit in their own oppression. I have never understood why women read "women's" magazines. I don't truly understand manicures or pedicures, dying your hair, etc. Men are not making women diet. When I was in college in the 60s, we obsessed over our political purity over the best hot fudge sundaes in town. Did our actions match our politics? We danced for exercise. I never knew anyone who went to a gym. Were they invented?

    I thought we had won the battle for comfort over fashion. Can a serious woman wear high heels?  The female shoe industry seems a front for podiatry.

    I want my husband to find me sexy. But why should I care about any other male or female gaze?

    I highly recommend encouraging your daughters to be disobedient, however difficult it makes your life in the here and now.  

    I confessed I suffer from misogyny.

    by Redstocking on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 12:41:48 PM PDT

  •  "Misandry" is one of the favorite (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    terms of the "men's movement."  You'll hear it more often, though, phrased as "manhating" and "male bashing."  This "reverse sexism" argument could have rolled right out of the mouth of Warren Farrell.

    First, sexism is a totalizing system.  It's based on patriarchy: the rule of the father.  "Fathers" (metaphorical and actual) wield power over women and children (including sons).  Preservation of patriarchy depends on making sure that everyone stays in their place, which means: men on top, women underneath.  Anyone who threatens that system, and who claims that gender is not destiny, is going to be punished. This goes for women who step out of line, who want masculine privileges (which men think of as rights), and it goes for men (sons) who don't toe the line, too.  The deepest insult you can give a man in this culture is to equate him with a woman.  And the most threatening thing a woman can do is "act like a man."  Overall, this system benefits men, but not all men.  It certainly doesn't benefit men who want to play the cultural roles assigned to women, or who fail to "act like men" in any fashion.

    But make no mistake, even when men are punished for stepping out of line in a sexist system, they are not punished for being men.  They are punished for acting like women. They are punished because the authority of the patriarchs is undermined when the sons don't follow in their footsteps.  Woman-hating (not man-hating) thus underlies all the complaints that the diarist makes on the behalf of males who want to work in non-traditional fields, and who want non-traditional roles within the family.  Woman hating; not misandry.  Those men are being punished because they're not man enough.

    Women, on the other hand, are punished when they don't match the patriarchy's notion of "what women are." Women who "act like women" are rewarded in limited ways, and gain benefit from turning on their sisters who choose to "act like men." Patriarchy (like every totalizing system) builds in a snitch network, cultivates a class of female overseers to support it, at the same time drums into women's heads, from birth, that they're "naturally" less than men. Every institution in society reinforces that notion. It has to, because the whole power structure is based on a Big Lie, and every bit of truth needs to be utterly annihilated if that lie is going to survive.

    All the rest is hand-waving.  The bottom line is that relatively few men actually get to be patriarchs.  Sexist men hope they will (usually in vain, like most Republicans want to be rich).  So if you're a guy and you want to fight for your right to work in traditionally female professions, or you want to spend time at home taking care of your kids, you ought to be pro-feminist.  And if you're a feminist, and you want to change the world, you've got to figure out how to talk to the men who aren't benefitting from patriarchy, or who don't want to be patriarchs.

    But this "oh, poor men" stuff is nonsense.  As is the claim that feminists are the problem.  Patriarchs are the problem. Sexism is the problem.  Guys, if you don't like the fact you don't have the freedom to act like women, then fight the real power, which is sure not in your sisters' hands.  Take it up with Big Daddy.  (It sure as hell is easier to blame it on women, though.) Women, if you feel inclined to bash other women as "sexists," check yourself, because you're all doing the work of The Man.

    In my opinion, diaries like this do not help, and they give sexists ammunition for attacking feminists, and deflecting attention from the real problem.

    "If you fake the funk, your nose will grow." -- Bootsy Collins

    by hepshiba on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 01:27:31 PM PDT

    •  I agreed until your last two paragraphs (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      which entirely trashed your first five.

      "Oh poor man"? "Feminists are the problem"? Did you even read the diary?

    •  I don't disagree (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      with most of what you've said but I do think that denouncing the diarist as giving sexists "ammunition" is over the top. That's an argument that could be made against any criticism of Feminist theory or practice.

      Since Feminism isn't a monolithic creed but a body ideas and analysis, some of which are in conflict, it not only isn't above criticism, it requires criticism to facilitate its growth and refinement as a practical tool for combating sexism. Criticisms must be judged on their merits or lack of same, not dismissed as giving aid and comfort to "the enemy."  

      Nothing human is alien to me.

      by WB Reeves on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 01:52:42 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Feminist Ideologues (0+ / 0-)

        Thanks for that WB Reeves.

        I have always been a feminist since I was practicing for my first communion at age 7. At the time I was taller, and stronger, and smarter than my little brothers. I was outraged that boys were going up to the altar rail first. "Sister, Sister, why are the boys going first?" "Because they can be priests; they are closer to God." Then I found out that my heathen little brother could be an altar boy, even though my Latin was immensely better than his stumbling attempts.

        16 years of Catholic education/indoctrination gave me a lifelong distaste for ideologues, even if they claim to be feminists.

        by Redstocking on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 02:27:01 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Patriarchy and sexism is the problem. (0+ / 0-)

      But I don't think the diary is a problem; I think it was well done.

      I can't think of any sane person that wouldn't argue that the patriarchy is the main problem. The male dominated power structure (only slightly chipped away in all these years) still has a long way to go.

      And women suffer from sexism still far more than men do.

      Women still aren't treated as equals in regards to combat duty in the military, equal pay, and rights to their own bodies.

      Sexist media and objectification are something women have to deal with constantly.

      The term "women's work" for domestic duties is still thrown around by rednecks today, though at least that's declining as well.

      But, modern American sexism still hurts men. I don't think it's unfair to point that out. It's all that "be a man," shit, which usually means be A) gross and B) insensitive.

      If I paint my nails, who is going to give me more grief? My male coworkers or female ones? The male ones, likely.

      What, guys can't cry? Why the hell not?

      The last draft we had was men-only. What if they bring the draft back and it's males only? I have to die because I'm male?

      Dating. Why should I, as a man, be expected to take the initiative? So we get to deal with the rejection? Hell no. That's just not my style. And it's worked out pretty well for me, I'm happy to say, so I'm glad that 1950's garbage is going in the wastebin where it belongs.

      Also, the idea of tradionally male activites. Sports, working on cars? Crap, all of it. I like some "guy stuff" and some "girl stuff", but none of these activities in reality having anything to do with gender. It's a societal creation. There is no "guy stuff" or "girl stuff"!

      I'm a feminist in the very essence of the word: I believe in equal treatment and no double-standards.

      That goes both ways. Men can suffer from the patriarchy as well. I'm not going to be a "bro" and go along with those filthy humanoid animals. The idea that I have to "be a man", which is a nonsensical notion.

      But yeah: any reasonable person knows that women currently have it a lot worse.

      •  I agree that sexism is the problem (0+ / 0-)

        Thanks for the excellent comment. I find that using the term "patriarchy" just alienates people who don't consider themselves feminists. Sexism is much easier to understand and oppose.

        Of course women around the world have it a great deal worse. No comparison. I was talking about the United States. Could one seriously argue that black women have it so much worse than black men, for example?

        Men and women should be allies, not competitors for most victim awards.

        by Redstocking on Thu Jul 12, 2012 at 06:53:09 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I get what you mean. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Avilyn, Prinny Squad

    I want to work with kids.  I'm a guy.  no working with little kids.  But we would have so much FUN learning and playing together - but society says I'm a pervert for having a penis.

    I would be a kick ass preschool or kindergarden teacher.  But even at college when I looked into changing to early childhood education - oh no, you can't do that.  Something must be wrong with you that you want to be around little kids.  We don't want MEN around our little kids.

    Funny.  I have a dad and I wanted him around a LOT more when I was a little kid.  But what do I know, right?  Dickholders don't count.

    And we sail and we sail and we never see land, just the rum in the bottle and a pipe in my hand...

    by Mortifyd on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 01:55:00 PM PDT

    •  The greatest job (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Avilyn, Mortifyd, Prinny Squad

      I ever had was as a teen working with 6 to 9 year olds at a daycare center. Sadly, I don't think that would be possible today.

      Nothing human is alien to me.

      by WB Reeves on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 02:05:15 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I loved being a babysitter and kids loved me (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        WB Reeves, Avilyn, Prinny Squad

        largely  because I interacted with them and played with them instead of turning on the TV and telling them to shut up.  

        But no, I don't think it would be possible today.

        And we sail and we sail and we never see land, just the rum in the bottle and a pipe in my hand...

        by Mortifyd on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 02:10:56 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Men Should Teach Little Children (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          WB Reeves, Avilyn, Mortifyd, Prinny Squad

          Mortifyd and Will Reeves,

          A while ago, I wrote a post asking if your babysitter is a guy, and i was horrified how many women said they would never consider one. My NYC daughter has always used male babysitters, and both my grandson and granddaughter seem to prefer them. "They are more fun," they explain. Some of my fondest childhood memories are of my young uncles babysitting.

          My brother has taught grade school in Portland Maine for thirty years. He says the climate has totally changed. If a little kid falls down, hurts himself, is bleeding, he is not supposed to pick him up. That is deranged.

          What messages are we sending our children?

          by Redstocking on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 02:19:51 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Men and Young Children (0+ / 0-)

    I decided to write a separate diary on men and early childhood education.

    by Redstocking on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 02:58:21 PM PDT

  •  as a teenager, my oldest nephew (0+ / 0-)

    was quite the babysitter.

    When I was a teenager, I wanted to apply for a summer job working in the local cemetery.  My brother shouted at me "only men do that!"

    As of right now, I loathe all anti-choice politicians with an intensity greater than the radiation output of a thousand suns. 3.13.12

    by GenuineRisk on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 09:18:04 PM PDT

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