You need to read this if you’re going to understand what I shall now write about.
Obviously I identify as a feminist. But I want to be a fair feminist, because if I’m not, then I’m perpetrating the same mistakes as anti-feminists. So I read this male privilege checklist, and I agree with MOST of the statements, a lot. But there are some statements that I think we need to be careful about before we make them, and these are them :
22. If I’m careless with my driving it won’t be attributed to my sex.
This might be a “just-me” thing, and maybe I’m an asshole, but when I see someone aggressively driving, I usually always assume that it’s a 20-30 year old male. I think to myself, typical – it’s all that testosterone. Which is the same thing that guys do to girls – you’re so emotional, you can’t make responsible decisions. That’s the same thing as saying, “You have so much testosterone, no wonder you’re driving like a Grade A Asshole.”
24. Even if I sleep with a lot of women, there is no chance that I will be seriously labeled a “slut,” nor is there any male counterpart to “slut-bashing.”
Yes there is, it’s called “man-whore”, but it’s used a whole lot less often – sometimes females might say derogatorily of a male, “He’ll sleep with anything that has a vagina and two legs.” But it’s not a widely accepted viewpoint and it’s more seen as, “Well, he’s a guy, he’s just horny, that’s just how guys are” – whereas with women, sleeping around is seen to show poor character.
25. I do not have to worry about the message my wardrobe sends about my sexual availability.
If I see a guy who’s wearing clothing who shows a lot of skin, I think he’s trying to put out signals to women. Case in point, Ian Holmes aka the Shirtless Wonder. But, a lot of the time, the general assumption is “Wow, he’s REALLY comfortable with his sexuality!” Again, not necessarily a negative thing. With women, the general attitude “They must be desperate for attention” or “What a slut!” But I also feel that women body parts are more “in your face” than male parts. When a woman wears a shirt with enough cleavage to choke a musk ox, I’m like, okay, that’s gross, I wish you wouldn’t do that. When a guy is walking around not wearing a shirt, my reaction is more, “Okay there Fabio” but I don’t really care. However, if the guy is wearing really tight speedos and no shirt, THEN my reaction is more like, “Please never do that in front of me.” I think it depends on which body parts are “on display,” so to speak. I don’t think dressing “scandalously” is a thing that’s just restricted to women, although women do have more restrictions, more often, and more judgments are made if they dress a certain way. But it also doesn’t mean that it never happens in the case of men. I think probably with men, the reaction in society is more, “What a character” or “gee that’s funny.” It’s not as harsh as it is for women.
26. My clothing is typically less expensive and better-constructed than women’s clothing for the same social status. While I have fewer options, my clothes will probably fit better than a woman’s without tailoring.
That’s because women have different bodies. Which can also be seen as a privilege as well as a disadvantage, so I don’t feel like this one really counts.
29. If I’m not conventionally attractive, the disadvantages are relatively small and easy to ignore.
Maybe, maybe not. I don’t think we should discount that males also have a lot of pressure to have a certain body type. Maybe we have more, but I don’t think that gives us the right to be like “Your suffering compared to mine is minimal.” It doesn’t give us the right to forego compassion for others.
35. The decision to hire me will not be based on assumptions about whether or not I might choose to have a family sometime soon.
I don’t know about assumptions, but if you don’t get hired based on the fact that you’re pregnant, that just seems like…common sense. That’s because men aren’t the ones who get pregnant. That’s not really sexist, it’s just…like a fact. Women are the ones who get pregnant, men aren’t. I don’t see this as an issue of feminism, I see it as an issue of one person has a car, one doesn’t. Who’s going to do the driving? The person who has the car.
38. If I have a wife or live-in girlfriend, chances are we’ll divide up household chores so that she does most of the labor, and in particular the most repetitive and unrewarding tasks.
I know a lot of guys who do a lot of repetitive and unrewarding tasks around the house. I think if that’s the way it’s happening, it’s a problem with the relationship, not necessarily with widely accepted notions about what work females or males are expected to do around the house. It’s largely situational. If you don’t like the chores you’re getting, maybe you need to tell the person you’ve chosen to shack up with. And also, they’re CHORES. Are any chores NOT repetitive or unrewarding? Not really. They’re chores. Just suck it up and do them.
39. If I have children with my girlfriend or wife, I can expect her to do most of the basic childcare such as changing diapers and feeding.
Not if you’re married to me. I know a lot of guys who do a lot of diapers and feeding. I also know probably a bigger amount where females are expected to do that, but that’s because they are part of the problem…they aren’t objecting or saying no.
45. On average, I am not interrupted by women as often as women are interrupted by men.
Not in my life’s experience, but okay. Maybe I just have the experience of having too many amazonian type women in my life, but I find women interrupt just as much or more than men. It depends on the person, again.
The rest of the statements are spot on, of course. I leave you with this. It’s about “being white” but I think it applies to being male AND white….”I can go in a time machine and go to ANY time, and it will be fucking awesome when I get there!” Now that’s a male privilege that wasn’t on the checklist.