Once the party died down at FFF headquarters, I realized we have a blog to run! After cleaning the margarita salt out of my hair and unearthing my shoes from the giant pile of nuts that had spilled from our man-shaped pinata (rest in peace, Gordy) I sat down to get to work and fill the pages with the same sublime thoughts that fill my mind.
I know my thoughts will be fascinating to everyone who comes to this page - i.e., my parents and the friends I make look at it. First of all, can I pull off clogs? Also, what is Christian Bale like in person? What did that footage in ‘Grizzly Man’ that Werner Herzog did not play sound like? Where’s my burrito?
Mostly though, my thoughts turned to Masculinism. There is a definition of masculinism you will find on urban dictionary or Wikipedia that is basically a men’s rights movement, and it is inexplicably called ‘masculism’ at times. It’s a bunch of asinine crap - but kind of hilarious in its ridiculousness.
The other definition of masculinism - a definition that is useful for something other than my own amusement at MRA’s stupidity - is thinking and acting in a way that does not necessarily discriminate solely based on physical gender, but privileges and rewards those who behave in ways that are traditionally thought of as masculine (note that I am not saying that there are characteristics that are naturally masculine or feminine, but that our society thinks of traits in that way). I first recognized this phenomenon while I was living in a cooperative that housed 14 people. Often in meetings, the people who could most forcefully make their points while appealing to logic and reason were greatly respected, whereas those who showed any emotion or based their decisions on how they felt were looked down on. These behaviors crossed gender lines, yet it is still an issue of sexism because it denigrates traditionally feminine behaviors, communication styles, and modes of thinking.
Masculinism is a problem within feminist circles, as well. Women often get upset when another woman does not actively rise up and fight oppression with full force. The types of things you are just supposed to be able to fight just as easily as thinking that it’s wrong include workplace harassment, street harassment, and any and all sexist comments that one hears. Apparently, if you don’t go all Death Proof on their asses, you have ‘made yourself into a victim.’
This is just a thinly veiled version of plain ‘ol victim-blaming. You take someone who has been socialized their whole life to be submissive, you harass and abuse them, and then they are responsible for the harassment and abuse because they didn’t karate chop the harassers and abusers.
Think about this the next time you interact with someone. Do you treat people differently if they are softspoken, versus someone who is outgoing and gregarious? Do you ever look at someone who is angry but can’t express it to the person causing the situation and think it’s their fault if they don’t say anything? This is not to say it is a bad thing to be outgoing, or to be assertive and confront people when they do offensive things. It is merely to say that our society continually privileges and rewards those who carry those characteristics, and paints others as deserving of any trouble that comes their way because they should learn to fight it.