Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Speaking of men...

Amanda responds to comments about MRA issues, and there are some interesting comments, so far.

In particular, I really appreciated this, from Peter:

Some of the issues are very genuine, but the solution to the real ones is ALWAYS de-genderizing the issue and applying some other rational basis. For example, things like child-support and alimony. It isn’t a “men’s issue” as much as needing a retooling for fairness based on pay and such and applying those standards to everybody (and until the pay gap and the social expectation that mothers do all the work change, any rationally applied standard is going to skew toward men paying women in the general case.)

The rest of the issues always strike me as the sort of thing where the privileged are complaining about the (very real) dirt on their silverware while the unprivileged are asking to be allowed to eat at all.

The current patriarchal system does privilege some individual women and does badly oppress some individual men. Denying that helps nobody, but using it as an excuse to perpetuate the system is insane.

It’s one thing to be on the bottom of the heap and try to level the field. It is another thing entirely to be on the bottom of the heap, value the heap, and try to throw others down so you can climb up the hill on their backs.

I've already talked a lot about this, but it's totally worth repeating: if men are legitimately and honestly concerned about the treatment of men, we have allies, but the bulk of the work is on our shoulders. Inquities with regards to childcare and the draft are harmful to everyone, and it's counterproductive to start pointing the finger at women or feminists, as though they don't also have a vested interest in fixing those broken systems.

Anyway, there are some really interesting comments there, and I'd definitely suggest checking it out, if you haven't already done so.

1 comment:

Cara said...

I like the silverware metaphor. I'm storing that one in the back of my brain somewhere.