“Check your privilege”. If you live close to a college campus, or are a poster in online forums that center around political debate (such as Reddit), then this phrase should not be new to you. It has become the rallying cry of special interests typically associated with the mainstream American Left. And yet, ironically, many of those who tend to use this phrase have utterly failed to check their own privilege.
Now, let me first preface what I’m sure many will choose to perceive as a misogynist rant with a few acknowledgments: I am an ideological, bleeding-heart liberal who believes in freedom and equality insomuch as they can coexist. When abortion rights recently came under fire in Texas, I stood with Wendy and marched around the Capitol building until my throat was sore and my feet felt like they were going to fall off, in part because, as someone who seeks to avoid parenthood at all costs, access to family planning is as much in my interest as any female’s. I acknowledge that there are religious and social conservative interests (some would go so far as to call them patriarchal interests, but truthfully, there are both men AND women involved) in both the public and private sector, that seek to eliminate abortion, and I have spent a lifetime fighting them on general principle, just as I have fought against racial discrimination, unnecessary wars, and classist economic inequality, not out of self-interest (if my primary concern was self-interest, I would be a Republican), but out of ideological conviction.
But just because these religious fundamentalist and social conservative forces exist, and sometimes manage to obtain and wield economic and political power, does not necessarily mean that American society as a whole is inherently prejudiced against women. Quite the contrary, actually. This feminist mythology of “patriarchy” is in the same vein as tinfoil-hatted crackpottery against “the system”, which assumes the government is some kind of universally bigoted, tyrannical force, rather than the uncoordinated mess of bureaucracies manned by autonomous individuals with radically conflicting agendas it actually is.
Female delusions of patriarchal persecution notwithstanding, in reality, the past fifty years have seen vast improvements in the plight of the Western female to a point where it makes female complaints about systemic injustice harder and harder to take seriously, at least when applied to American society. Darfurs and Saudi Arabias aside, in the first world, women tend to enjoy a certain amount of privilege of which they either conveniently aren’t aware or choose not to acknowledge for the sake of argument. So let’s take a look, shall we?
Education and Employment:
“Over the past half century, women have steadily gained on—and are in some ways surpassing—men in education and employment. From 1970 (seven years after the Equal Pay Act was passed) to 2007, women’s earnings grew by 44 percent, compared with 6 percent for men. In 2008, women still earned just 77 cents to the male dollar—but that figure doesn’t account for the difference in hours worked, or the fact that women tend to choose lower-paying fields like nursing or education. A 2010 study of single, childless urban workers between the ages of 22 and 30 found that the women actually earned 8 percent more than the men. Women are also more likely than men to go to college: in 2010, 55 percent of all college graduates ages 25 to 29 were female.
As of , women held 51.4 percent of all managerial and professional positions, up from 26 percent in 1980. Today women outnumber men not only in college but in graduate school; they earned 60 percent of all bachelor’s and master’s degrees awarded in 2010, and men are now more likely than women to hold only a high-school diploma.
An analysis by Michael Greenstone, an economist at MIT, reveals that, after accounting for inflation, male median wages have fallen by 32 percent since their peak in 1973, once you account for the men who have stopped working altogether. The Great Recession accelerated this imbalance. Nearly three-quarters of the 7.5 million jobs lost in the depths of the recession were lost by men, making 2010 the first time in American history that women made up the majority of the workforce. Men have since then regained a small portion of the positions they’d lost—but they remain in a deep hole, and most of the jobs that are least likely ever to come back are in traditionally male-dominated sectors, like manufacturing and construction.”
(The preceding section is actually a direct quote of a woman, from her article about how liberated women should stop defining themselves in terms of marriage, and embrace a life of youthful promiscuity until a point in midlife, when their age-deteriorated looks make marriage a more practical option for fulfilling their romantic needs)
One of the reasons for the recent advances American women have made is very simple: A ton of money is spent on women every year! By and large, more money is spent on women than on men. By everyone. Suitors, governments, families, and the private sector. There are more federal programs earmarked specifically for women than there are for men. It costs more to raise a daughter than it does to raise a son. And female health care is more expensive. “Helping women overcome adversity” is also a very popular initiative for expensive government and corporate campaigns and programs with no male counterparts. For one of many examples, when statistical analysis of standardized testing showed that girls were flagging in math and science, and boys were struggling with reading, a special educational program was created and funded by legislation specifically geared to help girls be better at math and science, but no corresponding program was created to help boys be better at reading.
This is all due to overcompensation for obsolete stereotypes. Because girls are stereotypically perceived to be “weaker”, they are given more assistance than boys, who are expected to “be strong” and “tough it out” (with less support from their families and social institutions). Over time, this overcompensation has stacked up to create a significant advantage for women. And most women will act the part just to keep the special treatment coming. When you factor in the money that is spent on women in the course of dating, the old stereotype about women being money pits is not just anecdotally true, but statistically true as well.
And what kind of precedent is set by raising young women in this manner? A terrible one! Privilege spoils, power corrupts, and when you treat someone with kid gloves for their entire life, the effect on their character is not often positive. When you examine the systemic benefits of being raised female, you begin to understand the ridiculous sense of entitlement that many American women have. Because women have always been given special treatment, not only do they begin to expect it, but they have difficulty understanding the perspectives of anyone who HASN’T been given special treatment, in what I like to call the “Let them eat cake” effect. As privilege increases, the capacity to empathize decreases, and this explains why modern women are no longer the nurturing healers they used to be.
Inequality Under the Law:
Recently, PFC Bradley Manning was sentenced to a very long jail term for treason regarding his dispersal of classified documents to Wikileaks. Upon sentencing, Manning revealed that s/he is actually a transgendered male who prefers to identify as a female. Perhaps it would have been more wise for Manning to reveal his female gender identity BEFORE sentencing, as statistically, women receive shorter jail sentences than men, even when convicted of the same crimes.
Again, it’s that idea that women are weaker, and “can’t take” the punishment, or will somehow suffer more than men for it. This is just one of many ways that women are insulated from the consequences of their own actions by a society that puts them on a pedestal. The thing is, this isn’t the only area of society where this is happening. It’s happening everywhere, but the court system is where it is documented and statistically apparent.
This isn’t the only preferential treatment that the American justice system bestows upon the female gender. Women are also statistically more likely to prevail in court, whether it is a criminal matter, divorce, custody battle, restraining order, or simple financial dispute. These statistics are symptomatic of the fact that women elicit more sympathy than men, something which might be explained by the next section.
Women are, by and large, considered by humanity as a whole to be more attractive than men. While men tend to find only women attractive (besides the 5% homosexual statistical anomaly), women tend to find both men and women attractive. This means that women simply have more cross-gender mass appeal than men! Inherently, women are more physically attractive and hence have a greater social influence. This is a fact known by advertisers, which is why advertisements more frequently feature female models and spokespeople than males. Females are more attractive and more inherently persuasive than men. Think of it this way: would you be quicker to crush, a cockroach or a kitten? Obviously, the kitten is “cuter”, which is why they are kept as pets, as opposed to uglier animals, which are considered vermin and exterminated. Women complain about professional limitations, but really, given an equal skillset, who do you think is more likely to get hired? An attractive young woman or an ugly old man? Who would you rather be in the cubicle next to you?
How many attractive men do you know who have modelling headshots on their instagram? How many male go-go dancers are there? How about male strippers or prostitutes? Women simply have an easier time taking advantage of their looks, in some cases even making a living off of them. Most men simply do not have that option, no matter how handsome they may be. Western society simply places more value on female beauty than male handsomeness.
No wonder why women have more sex than men, and with more partners! That seems like a nice little perk to being female, doesn’t it? Not only do they have more sex, but it takes a lot less effort for them to get it. A woman will be extended social opportunities just for being inherently attractive, even if she has no other merit. Just look at this terrible online dating profile that was created as a joke, and yet still received over 150 messages in less than 24 hours! Most men would be happy to get 150 messages in a year. And of those 150, many are likely to be well-connected, rich, or able to offer the woman some kind opportunity, even legitimate job opportunities, which are only available to a man who works hard and has capability.
And also remember that female social privilege is independent of how attractive they are, or aren’t!
Obviously the right to choose whether to carry to term or terminate a pregnancy is something that women have been fighting to preserve for some time. But shouldn’t an individual (male or female) be held responsible for the consequences of their own choices? And yet even as women have fought for their reproductive rights, they have also stuck men with the bill. Not only that, but since the final say in the decision to reproduce is the legal power of the female, then don’t females technically bear responsibility for overpopulation? The biological imperative to reproduce is something hormonally felt by women and not men, and marriage, often painted as an evil, patriarchal institution by free-wheeling women in their twenties, is just as often considered a means to get men to fund the fulfilment of their maternal instinct by women in their 30’s. In other words, why would a woman settle down unless there was some benefit to be derived from it, IE: financial security and a good father for her offspring?
Abuse and Infidelity Perpetrated by Females:
As women have come up in Western society, so has female abuse and infidelity. It was once thought that men had a fear of commitment, but as the balance of social power has shifted towards women, we now see that fear of commitment is not a function of gender, but rather one of social power. The more social options one has, the less willing they are to commit, male or female.
The problem with female infidelity is mainly that there is no sympathy for its victims. In fact, men who are cheated on are more likely to get blame than sympathy. If a woman cheats on a man, this calls into question his virility and adequacy. If a man cheats on a woman, he is simply just another sexist pig.
Possibly the most disturbing is the trend of women perpetrating violence against men, reports of which are not often taken seriously. Legally, a man is on very precarious ground even if attempting to defend himself from such an attack. And there certainly is no safety net for battered males or single fathers, no community outreach shelters or support groups. Perhaps this, among other things, is the reason why men are statistically four times more likely to commit suicide than women.
Social Conventions and Gender Roles:
Existing social conventions flat-out give women a ridiculous social advantage, and beautiful women tend to put the “socio” in “socio-economic inequality”. Modern feminism has often sought to abolish female gender roles, even while holding men to theirs. Most women would consider the idea that cooking and cleaning are female duties to be horribly offensive to their feminist sensibilities. Indeed, it seems that any attempt made by men to define what a woman should be is vehemently resisted by women. And yet these same women have no problem defining male roles and what men should be.
Probably one of the male gender roles most abhorred by most men is that of initiating romance, mostly because feminists have drilled into us a kind of guilt and learned helplessness about it. If you hit on a girl and she’s into it, great. But woe be the man who makes an advance on a woman who isn’t feeling it. Most women have not learned the art of graceful rejection, and thus will heap a man with shame just for trying. Over time, a man with bad enough luck will simply quit trying, relegating himself to loneliness and the negation of his sexual needs. Often, men are chastised by women simply for making an attempt at romance (or going about it the “wrong way” according to women), but a man who keeps to himself will find he is settling for nothing! After all, how often do you hear of women asking men to dinner in contrived attempts to get in our pants?
What women tend to do, is passive-aggressively send signals to men in order to entice them, instead of pursuing men directly. This is because women don’t want the risk or responsibility of initiating romance, so when it turns sour, they can always say “this whole thing was your doing”. And this convention of bait and reel, enticing men to pursue, is quite deliberate on the part of females. It’s how they get men to spend time, money, and energy on them, in a kind of romantic ju-jitsu. Although women like to paint romance as the man being in control, this is only superficially true. The entire point of traditional romance is to make men subservient to women: asking them out, buying them candy and flowers, getting down on one knee to propose… The whole point is to strip men of their dignity and exploit them. The male role in courtship is the romantic equivalent of a fraternity hazing ritual, complete with paying ridiculous dues.
Think about it this way: If you were an alien from another planet with no knowledge of human social conventions, and you saw a man on bent knee, begging a woman for permission to spend money on her, who would you think was the dominant gender? What about the fact that men fight and die in resource wars while women sit pretty at home leading much easier lives? Even though men have a more robust physical system than women, they live shorter lives on average because they put more stress on their bodies for the benefit of their communities and are more likely to meet violent, unnatural ends.
This is all because of the male gender role. We are expected to “be tough” and endure hardships that are deemed “too much” for poor, defenseless women. And this isn’t just regarding physical toughness, but emotional toughness as well. Basically, men are encouraged to be dominant, aggressive, and emotionally insensitive, because it’s really the only way to fulfill our basic needs. Women are terrible at supporting sensitive males, mostly because they expect men to be slaves to female emotions, not exploring their own. It’s not quite that women are sociopaths, who have no emotions, but they assign their own emotions more importance than men’s.
What happens when one of your male friends complains of being single on Facebook? At best, they are ignored, and at worst they are called “whiny”, “needy”, etc, in attempts by society to manipulate their egos and negate their emotional needs. Women who complain of loneliness on the internet, on the other hand, are inundated with invitations to dinner. Over time, this social advantage piles up to make women the social hubs they can sometimes be, and men just spokes on the wheel. It has gotten to a point where men simply aren’t allowed to have feelings, and I sincerely doubt that most women could handle the male plight of applying for love and being rejected, as opposed to women, who enjoy the much better position of having their pick of a pool of applicants.
Trying to explain the plight of a single man to a woman is like trying to explain the plight of a person dying of thirst to a person who is drowning. Women complain of being inundated with unwanted sexual advances, without even stopping to consider what it would be like to not have any social opportunities except for the ones you create for yourself. They can’t imagine what it is like to not be invited anywhere, not be given free admission or drinks, because then you would be just another sausage at the sausage fest. Trust me, having to turn down a few people you don’t find attractive is worth the inconvenience, considering your alternative is to play the other position, face a lot of rejection, and yet still be expected to either keep making advances or die alone. And as long as men are footing the bill for any attempt at romance, promiscuity will always be in the female interest.
A woman’s virginity is highly prized and sought after. This creates a privilege in the form of many unsuccessful attempts to woo a virgin, usually at the expense of men. Conversely, there is no male virgin privilege, as a man’s virginity is not valued. This leads to disrespect of a man’s honor. If a man were to have sex with a woman and then disappear, this would generally be considered “taking advantage” or “disrespecting her honor”. But if a woman does the same to a man, not only would he not be taken seriously if he complained, but he is actually supposed to enjoy it! This is a disgusting double-standard, which is especially hypocritical insomuch as men who have “too much baggage” or a romantic history with too many partners can be castigated and ostracized by the same female community that repeatedly, purposefully jilted them.
Rose-colored Lens of Femininity
Many women I have met tend to have kind of a naive outlook on life. They think that the world is a better place than it actually is, that people are nicer than they actually are. This is because their beauty, desirability, and privilege have colored their perception of reality and the way they are treated. Because social convention requires that women be wooed, women often tend to only be exposed to the best sides of people. Whereas the poor, the ugly, the underprivileged, and the male are exposed to a totally different side of people. Because no one is trying to win them over and they might as well be invisible. Or worse yet, they might be a target of exploitation because no one respects them.
Contrary to popular female belief, there is no brotherhood among men, and men are probably even more prone to disrespect eachother than they are to disrespect women, whose favor they are expected to curry in order to get romance. So this difference in perspective can often cause women to have unrealistic opinions about the nature of society and people. When they meet a realist who sees world for what it truly is, they tend to think of this person as “negative” or “judgmental”. But in reality, their privilege has simply disconnected them from reality.
In addition to being charged with “toughness”, men are also perceived to be less moral than women. It can sometimes be hard for people to believe that a woman lied, stole, was violent, or behaved unethically. But the truth is, women have statistically demonstrated a growing propensity for violence, dishonesty, and promiscuity. And yet these are things more commonly attributed to men than women. The stereotypical man is perceived to be this violent, aggressive sex fiend, and indeed, those men who don’t fit that stereotype often have their virility questioned by the female community.
So in any dispute between a man and a woman, more often the woman’s word is valued more highly, which is probably why women do better in court. As I mentioned before, this is a general social trend which is exemplified in particular in the legal system. Judges and juries are humans and make the same cognitive errors in judgment that all humans do. What’s sad is that mistreatment of young men is rationalized by the sexist crimes of their grandfathers. It’s passive-aggressive transference when women mad at Rick Perry take it out on some jaded divorcee just because he’s angry he got cheated on by a generation of women run wild. Male-bashing and blaming men for female problems are becoming more common, as are false allegations of rape! And speaking of rape, thanks to the Prison-Industrial Complex, America is the only country in the world where more men are raped every year than women! So you have more women graduating from college, more women becoming lawyers and judges, and then, they put men in a situation where they will be anally raped. Justice is served!
Conclusion: The Growing Divide between Feminism and Liberalism:
Basically, we are coming to a point in time in which the feminist special interest is beginning to come into conflict with the basic tenets of liberalism, which are: equality, compassion, open-mindedness, social inclusion, sharing, and LOVE! Yes, that’s right, even Jesus, one of the very first liberals ever, was a huge proponent of the crazy ideas that everyone needs and deserves love, that lack of love is the source of all humanity’s problems, and love cures all. But we are facing a generation of females who, while sexually available (for a price), are incapable of love.
This is why feminists are often called “feminazis”. Because when feminism devolves into petty female chauvinism, feminists aren’t liberal anymore. They have adopted a self-serving philosophy, are acting purely in self-interest and have abandoned liberal ideology, becoming conservative feminists a la Ayn Rand. These women have no interest in equality, but rather, domination. If it weren’t for the Democrats’ sympathies to their cause, they would all be lassiez-faire capitalists. Female chauvinists have simply become too selfish to rightfully be considered liberals. And given that most masculist complaints of modern women bear a lot of resemblance to feminist complaints of men fifty years ago, it is safe to say that feminists have become the very monsters they originally set out to fight.
These are complaints about women’s social and increasingly systemic advantages that most men would agree to, but few men would want to sign their name to. That’s because they don’t want to be ostracized by women as a ‘misogynist’, which has become a catch-all label for anyone that opposes the will of women, ever. But that’s OK, because I didn’t write this blog to become popular. I wrote it as a canned argument against the next trustifarian hippie-crit girl who wags her finger at my working class liberal male ass, urging me to “Check my privilege”.