I love women — their sensibilities, their features, their practicality, their zeal, their natural and profound counterpoise to the often irrational male Id and ego. This is a woman’s world, not a man’s; just ask the 2013 government shutdown, which was busted wide open by the fairer sex.
Is it some kind of reverse sexism to enjoy residing in the feminine realm?
To quote Charles Adams, son of the second President of the United States John Adams, “nothing so like perfection, in human shape [and in my own humble opinion, human mind], appeared since the world began.”
I have to agree.
Therefore, it’s painstakingly difficult for me to understand how in today’s world, where people are afforded instant knowledge thanks to the Internet at our fingertips, they can be so blind to ongoing social injustices that they perpetuate them, sometimes unknowingly and oftentimes purposefully, in the form of lowbrow humor.
I’m speaking, of course, to feminism and women’s rights.
People too often disregard an immense struggle of individuals or groups by veiling it in attempted comic relief but ultimately their endeavor proves little more than their own ignorance.
Allow me to elaborate.
I recently encountered an individual who posted a meme under the guise of comedy depicting a man driving a car and a woman in the passenger seat. The meme suggested a new iteration of seat belt, one strapped across the woman’s mouth in order to prevent the man from causing anymore accidents.
The assumed punchline: it’s unsafe to let a woman provide directions, driving advice, or basic conversation while a man operates a vehicle, playing on the tired notion that women are generally poorer drivers than men.
One day later, this miscreant posted another meme: a temperate sky over a grassy field on which a picnic blanket and basket was spread. The text: “That awkward moment at a feminist picnic when they realize no one has made any sandwiches.” (As seen above).
The fact that this person had the audacity to post two consecutive derogatory memes towards women wasn’t what struck me most.
It’s that he actually thought it was funny, the way toddlers find poopy puns funny.
This kind of deprecating humor is a rampant issue in our society. It perpetuates negative stereotypes, reinforces false gender roles, attempts to assert dominance over women and has absolutely no place in our world.
Some of you might be rolling your eyes and defaulting to a coincidentally oft-regurgitated GOP motif that our generation has become too politically correct, that we’re not blunt enough or daring enough to call out people or actions at the risk of striking a sensitive nerve. In some scenarios this may actually be true, but men’s continual aim to achieve women’s submission is abhorrently discriminating — like the aforementioned political party being adverse to the LGBTQ community, the Islamic community or Syrian refugees.
Let me be absolutely clear: this isn’t a rant against Republican politics.
I’m trying to make a point that some topics which some people deem casual, cool and absolutely kosher is not, in fact, permissible and should find no room in the conversations of any self-respecting woman or man.
Earlier I mentioned that the Internet offers users a wide-reaching ability to rake knowledge at the type of a keyboard or swipe of a screen. But it’s a double-edged sword, offering a veil of anonymity which in turn bolsters the confidence of someone sitting in front of desktop, laptop or mobile device to the point that they’re perfectly comfortable spewing vile degradations, the only consequences perhaps being found in easily-ignorable comment section threads.
In that same vein, the Internet acts as a blank canvas for propagandist memes, videos and other undignified media to carry on messages wrought with shame.
This country is founded on the principle of equality and even though its founders implied for that right to be reserved for white, wealthy, property-owning males, we’ve finally come around — much too hesitantly, in some eras dragging our heels kicking and screaming — to the basic fact that this extends to all walks of human life.
Lest we forget, it was less than a century ago that women nationally gained the right to vote and 18 amendments had been made to the Constitution before it was lawfully enacted that they did.
Gained is the wrong word.
Women had to take it for themselves. And they did so with conviction.
In a sad twist of irony, the girlfriend of our perpetrator at hand defended his actions, acquiescing to subservience instead of even simply acknowledging a kernel of wrongdoing on his part. In essence, she thumbed her nose to those who battled for rights she clearly takes for granted.
In 2016, when the homo sapiens are remotely exploring the surface of Mars and taking high resolution photos of Pluto, women are still struggling to break the ranks of corporate executives, political leaders and even, by law, earn the same rate of income as their male counterparts.
When an enlightened Abigail Adams wrote to her husband, John, while he attended a Continental Congress well before ascending to the presidency — during a time when women held steadfast roles in kitchens, parlors, and in Abigail’s case, as farmhands while husbands orated, deliberated, negotiated and politicized — she urged him to “remember the ladies” when declaring independence from Great Britain.
“Do not put such unlimited power into the hands of the husbands,” she penned boldly. “Remember all men would be tyrants if they could. If particular care is not paid to the ladies we are determined to foment a rebellion, and will not hold ourselves by any laws in which we have no voice or representation.
“That your sex are naturally tyrannical is a truth so thoroughly established as to admit of no dispute, but such of you as you wish to be happy willingly give up the harsh title of master for the more tender and endearing one of friend,”
I am certainly one to appreciate good humor and if there’s any to be found in this entire situation it’s this: this uncultured man who thinks it’s funny that a woman should be designated to provide meals at any gathering, including sandwiches at a picnic, in fact makes sandwiches for a living up in Salem — clearly the ceiling of his professional career.