Today: Jul 17, 2024

Women are strong without men

Mackenzie Hurlbert – Copy Editor

Last week, a kind, chivalrous gentleman wrote an opinion piece defending women and their rights. It was a noble effort, which stated repeatedly that women should be treated as equals, that they are not property and should not be subjected to the sexual beck-and-call of domineering men. While I agree fervently with those previous points, I regrettably have to admit that the gentleman’s argument took a turn for the worse when he started discussing men’s duty to protect women.

The reference to women as “beautiful and soft human beings that should be protected and cared for as long as they are alive” caused me to gag. Honestly, this desperate and helpless fair-maiden act ended in the Middle Ages. Women aren’t dependent or waiting on men to be rescued. If I’m waiting on the corner of Dixwell, I’m not some desperate princess awaiting my knight in shinning armor to return on some gallant steed—I’m waiting for the bus.

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Women today are just as capable of protecting themselves as men are, and depicting women in such a powerless and dependent fashion made that gentleman, in my eyes, a hypocrite. Within the article he preached how women should be treated equal, yet he ended it by saying women need protection and it is men’s duty to provide that. I can provide for myself thank you very much, and I really don’t view myself as “soft.” I appreciate the good intention behind the argument, however it seems two-faced to preach equality yet depict weakness.

As politician Faith Whittlesey said, “Remember, Ginger Rogers did everything Fred Astaire did, but backwards and in high heels.”

Likewise, his point about men’s duty within the military as defenders of our nation made his argument one-sided. I am certainly thankful for those men stationed within our military, but I am just as thankful for the hardworking and resilient women defending our country alongside them. Protecting our country is not a duty left solely for able-bodied men. Both sexes are relied on for the security and safety of our nation, and therefore this duty to protect is a burden carried by both men and women. This quotation by Will Rogers, an actor and well-known celebrity in the 1930s, captures the essence of my argument: “Women are not the weak, frail little flowers that they are advertised. There has never been anything invented yet, including war, that a man would enter into, that a woman wouldn’t, too.” My sentiments exactly Mr. Rogers.

I do respect the writer’s opinion and agree with him upon most points. In fact, I am appreciative of his stance and believe more men should openly support women’s rights like he has.

Unfortunately, it is often the case in our society that manhood parallels with dominance, and misogyny creates an instant mindset of superiority. This gentleman’s call for equality and the end of women viewed as property is admirable and appreciated; however the insinuation that women need protection because of their supposed weakness, and therefore inferiority, seemed counterproductive to his argument.

“To protect” is a duty shared by the human race, and just because men may have bigger muscles doesn’t mean women are incapable of protecting themselves and others. Some may agree with my point, while others may grumble and name me a disgruntled feminist. Whatever the case may be, actress Bette Davis sums it up nicely: “When a man gives his opinion, he’s a man. When a woman gives her opinion, she’s a bitch.”


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