A Shout-Out to the 21st Century Liberal Male
I’ve been doing a lot of thinking, and I decided this warrants a post. I had a couple conversations in the past few weeks that have given me an extraordinary amount of hope for the future of male-female relationships, and I think it deserves some dialogue…or, because no one reads my blog, some monologue.
I’ve been discovering that the new wave of feminists for the 21st century are…male. This is not to say that female feminists are a dying breed–I don’t think we are–but just that the new generation of men, specifically the current 18-30s, are reconstructing traditional gender roles in a way that I think will prove to hugely impact the way men and women relate to one another in positive ways.
They believe in equality. That is the truest, most sincere basis of feminism–that men and women should be treated as equals and be granted equal opportunity. And they believe this because they have been shaped by the earlier waves of feminism–they take it for granted that men and women are equal.
They abhor violence toward women. Whether it is rape, spousal abuse, or emotional/verbal abuse, it isn’t okay with these guys. Really not okay. In fact, they speak out about it vehemently and passionately.
They are opening up about their own issues of mistreatment. Abusive wives and girlfriends definitely exist, but instances of physical and emotional abuse of men are usually either unreported or simply dismissed. This new generation is speaking out, and rightfully so. Equality is equality, for all people. And violence and abuse is unacceptable, regardless of who perpetrates it.
They are opening up, period. They express themselves. They tell how they feel. They ask for help. They are thoughtful and tender and kind. They are protective and gentle and honest when they are conflicted.
They believe that women’s sexuality is beautiful and vital. They want to please their partners. They see women’s sexuality as something valuable, something important, and something fascinating. They see it as a strength, and they respect women’s confidence in the bedrooms.
The words “whore” and “slut” have long been the only ways of describing women who have had multiple sexual partners. Men are “players,” but women are “sluts.” The staggering difference in connotation, even on a purely etymological level, is one of the remaining barriers in women’s equality in the sexual realm. I recently came across a new term, made popular by a song–and it holds a connotation much more similar to “player” than “slut.” The term is “maneater”–and while it might sound negative, it’s usually spoken with a modicum of the respect given to “player.” I have to say, I’m pretty content with that.
These men are hands-down amazing. They are hugely impressive. They believe in partnership–and I think that they will have more successful relationships than their predecessors.
To all of you 21st century men out there–you are awesome.
Posted on 10 November, 2008, in soapbox, thoughts and tagged abuse, beauty, double standards, equality, feminism, hope, men, respect, sex, sexuality, trust, violence, women. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.