The Problem with Maleness

29 09 2014

I am learning how to articulate my fight a bit better. I want to move against male privilege in all forms: masquerading in whiteness and masquerading in oppressed bodies.


Male privilege is the ability to walk into a situation with everything ready for you, working for you, created for you. If it is not all these things, then people will hurry to make it so, no questions asked. Female disadvantage is often being the ones who make these things happen for the male. We make the adjustments, we fill in the gaps, we do the work behind male work – but all credit is his.


We cannot just show up. We have to prepare life to be served easy to the male. We have to do the initial, intermediary and concluding work so that males can move through life at a faster pace than us, but only because of us.


We are those who live in the space that the male does not give a second thought to. We are fillers. We make sure that males’ lives run smoothly. We are the fairy godmothers to male fairy tales. They attribute it to luck and miracle, we attribute it to our exhaustion. We are seen only when we have failed to make life as smooth as possible for the male or when we have made it so smooth that it may dawn on them to share in the recognition.


Maleness whether white or not, assumes that it deserves ease. It assumes that it deserves everything except equality that it, somehow, cannot afford. Advantage is too precious; more precious than honoring half of himself. Even if oppressed ethnically, racially, socially, sexually or religiously, maleness somehow finds remnants of power.


Females cannot just show up to a life ready for her. She has to organize the mess that is the underside. She has to create opportunities out of nothing. She will always be a reproducer, even if she does not want to be.


We cannot live in expectation like our male counterparts can. But we want to. We do not mind preparing, making easy for males if males do the same for us. When it is out of love and desire to serve those who serve us, work becomes worth it, for it is shared. When obligation gives way to love, and expectation to service, then just maybe “male” won’t be such a painful ontology-shaping word to many.




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