Summary: The list of rules men are supposed to follow grow longer while those for women grow shorter. Many of them are quite asymmetric — and obviously unfair. How will this work for society?
“The world revolves around the creators of new ideas, revolves silently.”
— Nietzsche in Thus Spoke Zarathustra.
Dalrock describes the following article as an illustration that modern conservatism is feminism with a chivalrous cherry on top. I believe he understates the situation. The author unknowingly describes a pre-revolutionary society. People are playing by a rulebook that no longer corresponds to our society as it is. Their children eventually realize this and as adults create new rules. See this little morality tale…
By David Marcus at The Federalist.
“In an age where gender roles are in question,
the prohibition against boys hitting girls is more important than ever.”
“Several years ago while at a barbecue, an old friend who is a liberal feminist and I were watching my 4-year-old son play with her 4-year-old daughter. Eventually there was some dispute over a water gun that led to shoving. Almost simultaneously my friend cried out ‘No shrinking violets’ to her daughter as I yelled ‘We don’t hit girls’ to my son.
“It was an interesting moment, because I realized that my friend was absolutely right to teach her daughter not to back down from confrontations with boys. But I also knew that I was right to tell my son not to push or hit girls. These two ideas are both correct, but feel in some sense at odds with each other.”
It does not take Nostradamus to know what comes next.
“Several years later, my son, in second grade at the time, told me that a girl in his class hit him at school. I asked if he hit her back, he said ‘No, because you told me not to.’ I told him that was good, but then he said that it wasn’t fair, why shouldn’t he get to hit her back just because she’s a girl? I had to concede the point that it wasn’t fair, but I told him that fairness is not always how we should measure our actions.
“He didn’t seem very convinced. So I asked my wife to come over. I told my son and my wife to make a fist and hold them out, then I did, and we all held our fists side by side. Even though he’s only 8, his fist was closer in size to his mother’s than hers was to mine. I asked him which he thought would hurt more, mom’s or mine? He answered, ‘Yours, by a lot.’ He got the point.”
Here we see modern values, showing the overlap between conservative and liberal ideologies. There is a discussion of this at Dalrock’s. The best of that thread…
Marcus: “These two ideas are both correct, but feel in some sense at odds with each other.”
Comment about this by The Question: “Apparently we have uncovered the secret identity of Captain Obvious.”
Old values fail in a new world
Traditional western values imposed restrictions on both men and women, enforced in the usual sloppy fashion by social sanctions of varying effectiveness. Let’s look at their post-WWII version, the version that conservatives wish to preserve and Feminists to radical reform.
An example: men couldn’t hit women and women couldn’t hit men.
“If you hit somebody, you cannot be sure you are not going to get hit back. You have to teach women, do not live with this idea that men have the chivalry thing still with them. Don’t assume that that’s still in place. Don’t be surprised if you hit a man and he hits you back. If you make the choice as a woman, who is 4′ 3″ and you decide to hit a guy who’s 6′ tall and you’re the last thing he wants to deal with that day, and he hits you back, you cannot be surprised.”
— Whoopi Goldberg on “The View”, ABC, 28 July 2014 — See the video.
These rules were taught by parents, schools, and the powerful entertainment industry. Now the rules change. Weak men can hit strong men, but the strong men cannot hit back because they are stronger. Does it make more sense substituting women for weak men?
Whatever the illogic, films and TV routinely show women hitting men, both boyfriends and strangers, usually for trivial reasons (or fun) — with the men cowering before their grr-power. See some examples here. Plus two of many such scenes from the Deeks and Kensi romance on “NCIS Los Angeles.” Deeks, this will not stop after you are married. Get counseling now! But the fans love it!
Such an asymmetric rule cannot work for long. How will a generation of young men react who are raised with such instruction and such stories? Will they accept that women can hit men, but not vice versa?
This set of beliefs leads to oddities. Such as UFC fighter Ronda Rousey boasting that she could beat ‘100 percent’ of men In her weight class — but that it won’t happen because “There’s no setting in which we should condone a man hitting a woman.” Having your cake and eating it too! (Hat tip to Dalrock.)
It has taken centuries to weave the original rule into the fabric of society. Might the next generation unweave it? For a peak at our future, see the videos on YouTube of men hitting women in self-defense (there are hundreds of them).
Note: Although estimates vary, some studies show that men and women are victims of domestic violence at roughly similar rates, although women suffer more serious injuries. But the low rate of autopsies might make skillful poisoning an effective resort for women.
This post describes the evolution of women hitting men in the media, beginning with the first appearance in 1963 of a kick-ass woman: Dr. Cathy Gale (actress Honor Blackman) in “The Avengers”.
A second example: women dressed modestly and men should not look at them.
Many traditional rules had a rough justice or balance to them. Like this one (often broken by both men and women). Now women get to visually push men’s buttons — but men are not supposed to look. This is part of the increasing regulation of how men should look at women, speak to women, and deal with women.
Societies can be disrupted, just like businesses
Marcus’ son went to the heart of the matter when saying that his dad’s rules were not fair. In our system where each individual has agency — making his or her own moral choices — the system must appear fair. If it requires a philosopher or professor of women’s studies to explain the logic of the society’s rules, the rules will not stand for long.
We will see how societies in Europe respond to the flood of migrants from lands where such rule are considered quite mad. Migrants bring to Europe their concepts of masculinity, and many mock the sheep-like men of Western Europe. Will they learn to play by the new rules? Or will their example lead the men of Europe to return to the old standards?
What lies ahead?
Change. We have broken the old gender regime. It can no more be restored than toothpaste put back into the tube. But the emerging feminist regime seems irrational, unfair, and unstable. There is no obvious alternative to it now, but …
“Mankind sets itself only such tasks as it is able to solve, since closer examination will always show that the problem itself arises only when the material conditions for its solution are already present or at least in the course of formation.”
— Karl Marx in A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy (1859). His economics is mostly bunk, but he was an incisive social analyst.
About the author of The Federalist article
David Marcus is co-founder and artistic director of blueboxworld, a NYC theatre project presenting art for non-fascist living. See their website. He also writes articles about culture and politics. See his articles at The Federalist, City Journal, and National Review.
For More Information
Update: Dalrock gives a deeper examination of these issues: What can’t continue, won’t. Definitely worth a look!
Ideas! For shopping ideas, see my recommended books and films at Amazon.
If you liked this post, like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter. See all posts about women and gender, about feminism, about romance, about marriage, about ways to reform America, and especially these…
- The revolution in gender roles reshapes society in ways too disturbing to see — Bloom on relationships.
- The rise of the “kick-ass” heroine in media — It started in 1963.
- Love in the new world, after the gender wars — Allan Bloom on the ‘fall of Eros.’
- Mark Regnerus’s essay: Cheap Sex is the Inconvenient Truth in the end of marriage.
- About Mark Regnerus’ book: Misadventures of a young woman in modern America.
- A look at America’s future after marriage becomes rare.
- The disastrous results of trying to “have it all”.
- The coming crash as men and women go their own way.
- “Celebs Go Dating” shows young women in action.
Two books by Professor Regnerus about the revolution.
Strongly recommended: Cheap Sex: The Transformation of Men, Marriage, and Monogamy (2017). See the two posts (above) about it.