It seems that for a lot of lads, the concept of International Women’s Day has just arrived at them. Immediately, and unfortunately as expected, throngs of men have taken to the internet to ask where their own International Men’s Day is.
Because as you know, for real equality, us men have to have the exact same that them wimminz are having. Otherwise it’s unfair. It’s sexist. Fuck it, it’s misandry! Women and their “rights” getting media attention in the news the whole time. When will men’s rights be addressed, eh? EHH??
If you’re one of the men who felt the urge to demand to know when International Men’s Day is, you are part of the problem. The very question itself reveals so much about the attitudes of the person asking it, as well as the prevalent attitudes of society.
What seems to have shocked so many guys today is that women might have something that men don’t have. Because, y’know, women should know their place, right? The simple idea of a day set aside to celebrate women and to talk about women’s rights was met with utter outrage from men who were aghast at the prospect of missing out on something.
I think that this attitude in (too) many men is a consequence of living in a society that fosters and encourages such an attitude.
I have female friends who have told me how they’ve been groped and sexually assaulted on nights out, and how they then had to just ignore it and go about their business, sitting across from their attacker as though nothing had happened.
But you’re not a guy who’d do anything like that, right? Well, I’d fuckin’ hope not. But guess what: you probably already have. “Dropping the hand” or diving in for the shift when someone doesn’t want it is assault. It comes from, and feeds into, rape culture; the idea that it’s okay to cop a feel or molest a stranger. Have you ever gotten a slap for doing that? Yes? Good. You deserved it.
And this idea of catcalling or shouting stuff at women on the street who are going about their business. It’s not a fucking compliment, no matter what you might kid yourself into believing. If you had to live in a world where sexualised remarks, assault, and groping were a part of “normal” life, how do you think “compliments” from the perpetrators would be received?
Had you asked me a few of years ago about my opinions on gender equality, I’d have probably told you (in my ignorance) that men and women are pretty much close to equal. This isn’t the case, at all. Yes, society has come a long way, but we still have a long way to go.
Women aren’t fully allowed to make decisions on their health; men are. Women get paid less for the same jobs that are done by men. Women get physically assaulted by men as part of everyday life; men don’t. Women get bypassed when spoken to and their male partner/friend engaged when their cars are being fixed; not men. When women are raped, they’re made to feel they’re to blame; men aren’t. Women get stuff shouted at them on the streets, probably making them feel scared; men don’t. Women still have to compete with the “glass ceiling” in business; men don’t. Women receive sexist comments thinly veiled as “banter”; men don’t.
This is all misogyny; sexism inherent in our attitudes as a society. You’re a man; society is not against you. Stop pretending you’re a victim.
So lads. Before you start demanding to know when your special day is (because you believe in real equality of course, and not because you’re afraid of women being treated the same as you), maybe take a look at the world around you before you open your mouth and make a fool of yourself. Every you ask when Men’s Day is, you’re embarrassing me, other men who are trying to push for real equality, and probably most importantly (at least in your mind) yourself. Cop on.
PS: If you’ve read this far and are still faux-outraged and demanding to know when International Men’s Day is, it’s on November 19th, as well as every other day.