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Old 05-29-2015, 09:55 AM   #4
glatt
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Arlington, VA
Posts: 26,443
I've got a lot of conflicting thoughts about feminism.

I grew up as a strong feminist. I was exposed to it as a child. For example, my mom served a term as president of the League of Women Voters for Maine back in the 70s when that group was reaching the height of its activity. I believed there were pretty big injustices for women then and something had to be done.

In college, I wasn't active in feminist issues, but I supported them.

I still do support feminism, but I define it more in terms of equal rights and protections for all. Not in terms of lifting only women up or tearing men down. I've been in the professional working world for a quarter of a century, and for that entire time, my bosses have all been women. For over half that time, their bosses have been women. Maybe my personal experiences don't match others, and maybe it's because I'm in a field with a lot of women in it (paralegals) but from where I'm standing, I don't see a need to help women to gain more power over men.

One thing that bothers me is the idea of driving wedges between people. Doesn't matter if it's man/woman, black/white, gay/straight, citizen/immigrant. Whenever I hear people talking about feminism, all I see is a big fucking wedge.

But I support equal opportunities, treatment, and protections for all.

A bit of a tangent...
A friend on FB bragged this week about how she got a car salesman fired because he kept hitting on her during a car sale. His behavior sounded horrible and needed to be corrected, but I didn't see how there should be a congratulatory celebration on FB about destroying this guy's livelihood. She had scores of posts from people cheering her on. And maybe it's all appropriate. This guy had bad people skills and didn't understand the proper way to interact with women. Yes, it's OK to convey to a woman that you are interested in her, but not when the only reason she is spending time with you is so she can buy a car. And even if you make a comment or subtle body language in an appropriate situation, if she doesn't pick up on it or respond in kind, she's probably not interested in you, and you should stop making advances. This guy needs to learn both lessons. Maybe getting fired will help him learn that. Or maybe getting fired will cause him to hate women. The only thing good that realistically might come out of this is the car dealership management might increase their training efforts on what constitutes inappropriate behavior. I kinda doubt it though. So it's a FB celebration about fighting sexism by destroying a stranger's livelihood.

I think my thoughts on feminism maybe changed when I was watching Thelma and Louise with a large group of people, and the feminists in the room cheered loudly when the sexist trucker had his truck blown up by Thelma and Louise. His advances on the women were objectifying and crude, and he looked gross, but he didn't deserve to have his entire livelihood destroyed. And to have that cheered.

It all leaves a bad taste in my mouth. I don't like wedges that divide us.
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