Feminism? No.

I recently had an argument (not debate) with a feminist. In her rather pompous, presumptuous and arrogant attitude, she said “it is amazing that someone in this day and age can hold views as you do”. I respond in kind, its amazing that someone can hold your views. But how? Aren’t the views I hold old fashion and not in line with modern science and culture? What exactly are my view on gender differences and relations?

First and foremost, I absolutely agree that both men and women should share the same foundational rights. This should go without being said. I find it odd that irrational feminists tend to argue against views that I hold nowhere but in their own minds.

There are different kinds of feminism, each at different times and with different objectives. In modern times, the type of feminism that exists attempts to minimize any gender-specific legal or social expectations and differences. This is generally a good thing, but it has gone to the extreme. In doing so, they selectively ignore differences between the two genders, even if they have tangible ramifications outside of mere social construction.

Here is my view: Men and women should be treated the same in the general spheres of life. However, where there exists a tangible and objective difference between the two, exceptions in treatment should be accepted or deemed blameworthy sexism.

Examples: Women are especially vulnerable to male attackers at university campuses. Therefore, the university I attended established a womens’-only self-defense class, free of charge. Obviously only women benefit from this. Many AIDS-ridden African nations use government funds to pay for male-only circumcision. This is special access to medical care only afforded to men. My cross-country and track teams required the male runners to be faster than the female to make varsity. By any definition, that is sexism.

A key example of gender-related differences is covering the body in public. By law, a man can expose more skin on his body than a woman. Some feminists see this as blameworthy sexism. Perhaps they’ve forgotten the effects they have on men? The response is typically that men should control themselves. I agree, we should not be animals. But do not pretend that you can dress however you want and that there are effects in the opposite gender, especially unwanted effects he has to deal with.

These differences should be accepted and not seen as blameworthy or negative. Instead, they recognize the reality that human beings are not androgynous, we exhibit sexual dimorphism.

But according to feminist theory, any and all differences in treatment between the two genders should be minimized. This is based on the 11th century notions like the Tabula Rasa, the antiquated, demonstrably unscientific notion that we only behave as we do purely because of socialization, and not because of biological programming (ie, nurture). They reject the modern synthesis of the Nature vs Nurture debate, and posit “Socialization” as the excuse for gender differences. So to the feminist, I retort, it is amazing in this day and age that someone can hold the views you do.

The reason feminism of this sort exists is because the roles that men occupy based on biological factors are seen in a positive light, whereas the roles that women occupy based on biological factors are socially deemed as lowly and backwards. As a result, women want to “elevate” themselves and take what has classically been in the domain of men. They argue that any differences are from social constructions and in many cases outright deny them. The result? They run up against the reality of nature. Exceptions exist in all things, but the vast majority of women would not dream of playing football with a 200lb linebacker. Likewise, men cannot give birth. Neither of those two is mere socialization.

There was a study in France that said that women occupy lesser paying jobs then their male counter-parts. This divide was not based on passing up females for promotions, but largely because women tended to raise their children after childbirth and therefore lose years of experience and pay increases.

What I find hypocritical is that feminists will make gender-based exceptions for women, but will not make the same exceptions for men. For example, no one raised a finger against a womens’-only self-defense class. But, imagine if there was a mens’-ONLY self-defense class. That’s sexist and wrong!

So to conclude this rant: In general, we are the same, but where there are exceptions, allow them to occur and do not consider them blameworthy or wrong.