Why is it that my male friends only care about feminism and equality when it’s about hitting a woman? It’s always ‘Well if you want equality men should be able to hit women’, first of all, I said I wanted equality, not violence. Feminism; the social, political and economic equality of the sexes, to men is nothing more than women growing out their armpit hair and burning their bras. These are statements as part of the movement and not every feminist will do them. Why do us women have to shave our armpits as if body hair is shameful when men don’t? Why do we have to wear something to cover what men sexualized? The answer is, we don’t. So if women want to grow out their armpit hair and burn their bras, then cheer them on for standing up against societies discreet sexism.
I used to work for someone who’s son actually fantasized about hitting a woman, and eventually, he played it out on me in an empty workshop one day. I was left with a busted nose, bruised ribs and bruises all up my arm; but I went away on an Army camp for a week the next day and got awarded best cadet and that was my revenge on him. Proof that he hadn’t made me weak and I wasn’t just someone who filled his fantasy.
Instilled in us are lists of do’s and don’ts; women should shave, men shouldn’t cry, women should cook, men should be strong, the list is endless. Yet the only thing a lot of men often want to talk about is why they can’t hit a woman. A man shouldn’t hit a woman just as equally as a woman shouldn’t hit a man. Violence plays no part in the long march towards equality. This is yet another rule created by society; one that perceives a man can not be made weak by a woman but a woman can be made weak by a man. When in fact both can be hurt by each other. A woman can physically and mentally injure a man just as a much as a man can physically and mentally injure a woman.
Domestic violence when the victim is male is often ignored and brushed off by today’s media and criminal justice systems. Male victims will avoid going to the police or seeking help because well, they should just ‘man up’ right? This ideology is absurd. A 2010 study confirmed that 40% of domestic abuse victims are male. However, only 4% of them reported the domestic abuse, that is equivalent to 600,000 male victims. Male victims should feel like they can seek help, without being judged or seen as ‘fragile’. This sociological idea of what masculinity should be is toxic and so far from correct; no one has to be anything.
This is what men should be fighting for; to be heard and recognized as victims, who’s abusers deserve the same punishment as a female. Males face inequality as well. and we want equality for all. It’s time to break down the gender roles, it’s time for males to fight for more than their right to hit a woman.