As most of you know, when I’m not talking on the air ever hour, I’m on the Internet. I’m on the Internet A LOT. I mean, I’m on this bitch from the moment I get up in the morning until I turn off my iPhone at night. There’s not a lot that goes on on Facebook or Twitter that I don’t know about. Lately, I’ve been seeing a lot of my female friends and acquaintances voicing their opinion on the opposite sex. It’s kind of bugging me, so I’m using my portal of the Internet to complain about it.
On three separate occasions today I saw ladies complaining about men not being “manly” enough. As if somehow, one of the biggest travesties going right now is the current state of the male race. In all three instances, no one was complaining about men hurting them, oppressing them, stealing from them, keeping them from reaching their careerĀ goals, limiting their sexuality or making them feel self conscious about their bodies. In all three instances, it was about men not doing “man” things.
I’ll tell you what happened. For starters, these look like boys to me. Second of all, somewhere within the past 10 years, there was a push somewhere to de-masculinize men and for some, it worked. Don’t kid yourself for a minute and think that these boys wouldn’t be dressing like this if it weren’t working for them. Girls are getting down with these kids and that therefore perpetuates the culture. Want to stop boys from looking like this? Encourage your sisters to stop f*cking them. If girls in clubs got it on with men wearing paper sacks on their heads and rubber boots, you can guarantee that Ed Hardy would be pumping that stuff out by week’s end. We didn’t invent or perpetuate it. You did. Like it or not, men’s style is almost directly linked to how it effects the females in his life. If it’s working, it’s not going to change. We don’t write the fashion rules anymore. You do.
This was posted by another intelligent, smart and funny female friend on Facebook today. A number of other ladies chimed in saying “uh huh” and “so true”.
Here’s my initial response:
I whipped that little ditty up in about 5 minutes in MS paint. Am I awesome or what?
Seriously though, to all of you ladies out there who were all over the Don Draper picture, how does this make you feel?
If you’re fantasizing about Don Draper, you have to fantasize about ALL of the Mad Men world and quite honestly, it only works for white men, that’s it. Do you know what you’d be doing if you were hanging out with Don Draper? Likely getting him another Canadian Club, cooking him dinner and looking after his kids, or getting ready to have sex with him before he took off back to his real life and left you cold and alone. Step out of line? Draper isn’t above smacking a woman to set her straight! Or telling her to get a hold of herself! Or shipping her off to the doctor to get some crazy pills! So along with the fantasy of a smooth motherf*cker like Don Draper taking you out for dinner looking so damn fine in that suit, you also have to remember he can slap you and get away with it, he’s going to reek like cigarette smoke, your career opportunities are limited to “office girl” and “wife” and you can easily be replaced by the cuter, younger girl down the hall. If you’re a minority, you’ll either be cleaning up, driving the cab or operating the elevator. If you’re gay, you’ll be relegated to living in the closet and hanging out in dark parks at night.
Do you know why men aren’t like Don Draper anymore? Because we’ve spent the past 50 years making up for being racist, sexist, chauvanist and all around asshats. We can’t walk around like Don Draper anymore because Don Draper is the symbol of everything we’ve tried to eliminate for the past 50 years through civil rights, feminism, equality in the workplace. He’s the symbol of everything us white dudes used to be at the expense of EVERYONE ELSE ON THE GOD DAMNED PLANET.
I feel guilty even FANTASIZING about being Don Draper, let along trying to emulate the man. Look, I’ll be straight with you, if all the women of the world are ok being treated like the female characters in Mad Men, I have no problem acting like the male ones. Except for Pete. He’s kind of a douche.
Which leads me to Exhibit C:
(Actual friends FB status who is a good person, hard working mom and a friend, but this miffed me)
Let’s flip the script:
“There’s one thing more important than finding a woman who can take on the Zombie apocalypse and that’s a woman who can sew her family their own clothes. SERIOUSLY!! You women need to know these things. It should just be instilled in your brain. If not, you’re kind of useless. THESE THINGS MATTER!!!!!”
Imagine if a man went on Facebook and started complaining like that about a woman that couldn’t sew her own clothes. I’m not talking about a button, I’m talking about sewing her man a god damned suit. Because I’m pretty sure the man getting the Facebook shaming this morning wasn’t getting nailed for not being able to change a tire or replace a burnt out bulb. Would it be cool if a man just threw it out there he was disgusted with his partner because she couldn’t design and sew an evening gown without a pattern? Or maybe diagnose a sick child and nurse it back to health without a doctor?Ā Or maybe midwife another woman’s baby? Because these days, trouble shooting and fixing a vehicle can be almost THAT complicated. I know lots of guys who can fix cars, but I also know lots of guys who can’t. I know a few women who can sew their clothes, but I’m going out on a limb here and guessing that the majority just buy them at the store. I can cook a 5 course meal, do the laundry, do a 5 year old girls hair and scrub the floor by hand, just don’t ask me to fix a vehicle that requires to be plugged into a diagnostic or replace a tranny that’s more a series of electrical circuits, sliders and clips than 10 bolts on a housing.
What I’m getting at here is that why is it acceptable to make gender based attacks on men, but when the script is flipped, a dude is branded a sexist, misogynistic pig? I honestly don’t want the ability to be able to say and do these things. I’m above it. I’ve spent my 31 years on earth surrounded my women (3 sisters. Lots of girlfriends, an excellent wife, many good female friends) to know better than to be a damn pig about it. But I also know when to spot the bullsh*t I’ve practically dedicated my life to avoiding when it shows up on the other side of the fence.
It’s not easy to be a woman. This is know. This is why I have have the utmost respect for the female gender. You guys have it hard. But for everything you have hard, there’s something that a man wishes he could do or get away with that you guys take for granted. Just remember it’s the same for us. Particularly now. There is plenty of “media” and “social” pressure for men to be a certain way, act a certain way, look a certain way just as it is for you. Things are tough all over. However any “real” man knows this, considers this and lives by this every single day. All we’re asking for is the same thing.