“Women spend more time wondering what men are thinking than men spend actually thinking.”
This harmless bit of droll humor appeared as a “Fun Fact” our local Senior News publication a couple of months ago. Harmless? Apparently not. Bob from McKinleyville got his hackles up to complain, in a letter to the editor in the May issue. “I wonder if this type of ‘humor’ would be received without an email like this one if the genders were reversed. It is no longer acceptable to employ this type of humor directed at woman, and it would not be acceptable to employ it directed at men either,” he writes.
Damn right, cheap shots against women smell of misogyny. I grew up with “ditzy blonde” and “yo mama” jokes, probably thinking they were hilarious. Times have changed, happily, and so have I. But you know what? If anyone wants to tell jokes — even silly ones, like the one above — at the expense of men, that, in my mind, is just fine. After years — millennia! — of men putting women down under the guise of humor, it’s only fair that women get a bit of their own back, and I think it’s probably good and healthy for us guys to grin and bear it. Getting a dose of our own medicine may help remind us that, just maybe, all those stupid cracks we made about women stung. (Bob: lighten up and get a life.)
And, responding to a commentator from last week, I suggest that the only place that misogyny can be compared equally to misandry is in the dictionary.
This came up for me in the midst of the Roe vs. Wade leaks. The Supreme Court is apparently on course to overturn the enlightened 1973 decision of that court making abortion legal in all 50 states. Why is overturning it a thoroughly bad thing? I can come up with a host of reasons, using words like “theocracy” and “rights.” Mainly, though, I believe the decision to overturn Roe vs. Wade is wrong because it’s being made, on balance, by men. And just as it sucks for a master to have power over slaves, it sucks for men to have power over women. Particularly over their uteri. Consider:
- House of Representatives: 29% women
- Senate: 24% women
- Supreme Court: 33%
women (Until 1981, it had been zero.)
- All POTUS: 0% women
Per the latest Gallup poll on the subject
- Pro-choice men: 45%
- Pro-choice women: 52%
In 2020, women earned on average 84% what mean earned for the same job.
The 1972 Equal Rights Amendment is still not fully ratified.
- Juvenile victims of rape: 82% female
- Adult victims of rape: 90% female
Men haven’t yet earned the right to equate jokes at their expense with jokes at the expense of women.