The New Enlightened Male

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By: Grainne Rhuad

Not too long ago I found myself at a page that I frequent.  The point of this post was to make fun of the insipid, the silly and the asinine.  Usually it is quite entertaining.  However on this week I found myself more than a little disappointed.  One of the things being made fun of was a product created for women, by women and marketed via internet sales to women.  The author described it as “Not only fucked up, it’s a bit embarrassing.  So just go read it…” You can see this supposed “fucked up” product HERE they are called ‘Sexy Period’ and frankly, as a woman I was a little puzzled as to why they were embarrassing and even more gobsmacked that someone would consider them fucked up.  I thought they were actually a good idea.

With a little more reflection however, I found that it’s really not surprising that a modern and ‘enlightened’ male would hold this opinion.  It has happened before and it seems that some men no matter how much they claim to love the female form, brain, opinion, etc. really cannot wrap their minds around the intricacies that go into being an actual woman.

This isn’t the first time in history this has occurred.  As far back as the Roman Empire Women could legally inherit and own property, but could not legally defend it.  A bit of a catch 22.  They needed a man for that.

However for a better example my mind wanders to the Victorian Era.  The Victorian English and by proxy Americans were led in social policy by a woman, a queen to be exact.   As a woman, Queen Victoria was strong willed, had a good man by her side who advised her well and cared about social conditions (as far as it was possible to care when you really didn’t understand the poor due to your own position.)

It was a time in which science and invention abounded.  New medical procedures were being discovered.  The mentally ill were being looked at from a new and different angle.  Religion was beginning to take a bit of a back seat to social policy and new items were being invented daily to help and ease the hard work that women did in the home.  Vacuum cleaners, Irons, Electricity, Electric motors, flush toilets, indoor running water and bathing tubs, better less astringent soap at cheaper prices, The Sewing machine, telegraph and telephone, the phonograph, photography, The Model T.  In terms of medicine new techniques for surgery were perfected most notably the use of Ether which Queen Victoria herself used in childbirth.  A better understanding was beginning in regards to female maladies.

And yet at the same time no man wanted to see his lady wife perform fallacio, or even really see her naked body.  This was a matter for the ladies of Fleet Street and Piccadilly Circus.  Whorehouses were doing a brisk trade during this time of feminine enlightenment.

Indeed even though women were being taught to read, their libraries were still segregated.  Men didn’t want women bothering themselves with science or politics, unless it pertained to giving their old clothes to the poor, or anything not of a serious nature.  No, for women there were sewing magazines, instructional manuals on how to keep a comfortable home and silly romance novels.  Indeed a woman couldn’t even write and publish a book, most women writers of the time had to take a nom de plume that was male.

But what does all this have to do with Period Panties?   The apparent disgust displayed for a completely natural female function, indeed a necessary function for the continuation of our species harkens back to this old attitude.  It seems that in this new age of enlightenment men want to talk about, discuss women as their equals maybe even entertain the ideal of them being better in some areas but do not want to see it in practice at all.

While women as a tough and driving force in the board room may make for a good movie script or fantasy it doesn’t play out in real life. According to payequity.org, today, women earn 77%of what men earn, which is an average of $10,622 a year less. Add the factor of ethnicity, and African-American women average 61%, and Latinas just 52% of what white males are paid for similar work.

According to last week’s White House fact sheet, two-thirds of American families have a woman as the sole or co-wage earner. A $10K+ average reduction in earning power—almost $900 a month—affects a family’s standard of living.  And because women head 85% of single-parent families, it’s no wonder that single mothers struggle financially, particularly minority women. And that means their children suffer, and by extension, our communities as well.

This disparity doesn’t seem to have anything to do with how men view women’s “extra-curricular” activities like the unmentionable menstrual cycle.  However today’s male is quick to point out in conversation both casual and formal that women’s estrogen levels would “obviously” get in the way of her doing serious work, like running a country.  It is a subject that was brought up during our last Presidential race in connection to both Hillary Clinton and Sarah Palin.  It was in fact Sarah Palin and her apparent silliness that probably cost McCain the Presidency.  Putting aside what kind of person Palin actually is, it was entirely unreasonable to judge her based on her bikini body, which was run in quite a few well respected periodicals.  See, it’s easy to reduce a woman to what her body is and does and men don’t want to be reminded of that, not at all.

Likewise the ‘New Enlightened’ male wants his children to be raised to be healthy, intelligent, given all the best that they can.  However they do not under any circumstance want to see a baby’s mouth sucking on a breast and certainly not in public.  Myriad products have been created over the past years to prevent the heinous sight of uncovered boob, from clothing that barely opens to let a mouth through to tent-like apparatus to cover the mum’s naughty bits as well as the child.  Even then I have seen men sneer at tented nursing women in public, making faces that clearly state they should not be subjected to breast feeding.  Indeed after a brief comeback in breast feeding in the U.S. during the late 80’s and 90’s a concerted campaign has been waged to push bottle feeding over breast feeding.  Proponents of which would have us believe that formula made by Nestle (which by the way has been sued for human rights problems in their formula plants in Mexico) is easier for colicky babies to digest than mother’s milk.

Yes the ‘New Enlightened’ male wants the sexy woman he was promised somewhere in the men’s magazines the same men’s magazines that counsel men to stay away from the following women: [Source: AskMenMagazine]

The Smart-Ass

Every man likes an articulate woman, a girl who can voice her opinion, sound intelligent and impress your friends with a philosophical debate on the downward spiral of modern politics. OK, maybe that’s pushing it a bit, but a woman with verbal confidence can be a hell of a turn-on. But let’s be realistic—while it’s always nice to date someone who is charismatic and well-versed, it’s something quite different to date a woman who beats the opinionated war drum.

Unfortunately, these types exist, and for those who haven’t had the privilege of strapping on your helmet and hunkering down for a verbal assault, you’re definitely not missing out. Everyone comes from different wombs, so why does she seem to get angry with you when you can’t agree? Some women simply like to test you to see how well you stand up for yourself; others just like to exert their own power. The Smart-Ass exposes your intellectual weaknesses and will subsequently cut you down because of it. This is a type to avoid at all costs, as she will make the rest of your evening miserable while she stomps on your heart with an egomaniacal boot.

The Gold Digger:

It doesn’t take a genius to know that wooing a woman requires a trifocal effort of body, soul and spending power. As standard romantic procedures, you’re going to have to take her for dinner, buy her flowers, whisk her away to the mountains for the weekend, and show her that the world is your oyster and she’s the pearl. But if I can give a word of caution to my free-spending comrades out there (I’m guilty of this too), make damn sure she’s actually enjoying your company and not just your wallet. If you start to notice that she’s expecting you to pay for everything but the kitchen sink, your credit card bill should be enough of a red flag to warrant an emergency landing.Here’s some sound advice—if you approach a woman and the first words out of her mouth are “I’ll have a Vodka Seven,” chances are she’s probably out to score some freebies, so proceed with caution. If her friends show up and start ordering drinks as well, there’s a good chance they’ll all dissipate into the crowd once they’ve been served, leaving you with the tab. Avoid the Gold Digger type at all costs. Like the old proverb goes, you can’t buy happiness, and a woman who thinks otherwise isn’t worth your time.

Ms. Right

It was not too long ago that I had to end a relationship with this type of woman, much to my disappointment. She had a bevy of outstanding qualities, but her inability to accept a different opinion ultimately led to a breakup. Every time we got together, she would declare her astuteness and would never take my advice because it was always wrong. Ms. Right is, well, stubbornly set in her ways—she’s correct about everything, and if you even so much as make an unfavorable whisper, she’ll lash out at you with the voraciousness of a python. The sad part is, Ms. Right types are hard to change, as their personal pride tends to get in the way of understanding others and the world around her, so all you can really do is avoid these women. She may have been spoiled as a child, or perhaps she has just hung around too many snotty girlfriends for her own good. Either way, the red flags on these women fly high. Steer clear.

The Psycho

What is it about women who feel the need to call their man 10 times a day? More importantly, what is the guy going to tell a woman that he didn’t just talk about an hour ago? The Psycho will disrupt the balance you have in your day between work and home. She will meld your personal life with your business life, and make it clear to you that she exists and is planting her rump right in the middle of your daily agenda. What’s worse, if you tell her to stop being so obsessive and dependent, she’ll completely deny any obsession she has. She will see it as a sign that she has to work harder to win you over, and then she’ll end up bothering you more. See the vicious cycle here? The Psycho will never give up, and will drown you in her own insecurities about relationships and life. If you find yourself in this predicament, I encourage you to take the blue pill and wake up from your impending nightmare.
The Rebound

This type of woman is probably the most notorious on this list. You’ve heard the warnings to avoid being the “rebound” guy, and it’s a proven piece of advice. But yet, so many of us mistakenly fall for a woman without having a clue about her past relationships. When we encounter a beautiful woman who makes a hell of a first impression, the attraction we feel is clockwork human behavior. We seem to skip over our judgments in the hope that this will be love at first sight. But in this day and age, we are more often than not led down the wrong path, and what guys see as a blessed relationship is really just a temporary comfort for her.

The Rebound knows you are a good guy, so don’t think you’re failing the test. However, you’ve shown up at the right place at the wrong time—the invitation said seven, but you arrived at six. You’re too early, and she’s not ready. It’s difficult to offer any advice on how to pinpoint these types of women, but a good indicator is how persistent her friends are in trying to set her up with you, and how reluctant she is to do it, much to the chagrin of her friends. If you sense reluctance, trust your instinct. Don’t bite.

***

Yes we want none of that, we want sassy, sexy, smart but not smart-aleck and please do not let us know about breast leakage when you are feeding our babies!  That would be filed under icky and embarrassing and bat-shit crazy just like panties that keep your menstrual blood from leaking.  Because although we definitely do not want to see, smell or know about menstrual blood we also don’t want to come across any online stores catering to your obvious need to hide it from us.

You know what?  How ‘bout we just build you a tent?  We won’t go so far as to call it a Harem or anything but feel free to go there to hide out when you want to be womanly, we’ll be at Fleet Street, with the rest of our Misogynist* friends trying to discover new ways to make life easier for women like eliminating the need for the menstrual cycle entirely.

*Misogynists hate and discriminate against women but they still like fucking them. [Source: Urban Dictionary]

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=misogynist

http://www.pay-equity.org/PDFs/PFA-FactSheet-2010.pdf

http://work.lifegoesstrong.com/equal-pay-day-have-we-really-come-long-way-baby?utm_source=OB_work&obref=obnetwork

http://www.dol.gov/wb/equal-pay/WH-Equal-Pay-fact-sheet.pdf

http://www.victorianlondon.org/crime1/pros-09.htm

http://www.ivillage.com/5-types-women-men-avoid/4-a-283910?obref=obnetwork

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