Skip to content

Your Liberation as a Man Depends on My Liberation as Woman

December 21, 2010
tags:

My friend Dave sent me this yesterday after reading my blog. I got to watch it over my lunch break today. I think it’s important enough to post after yesterday’s topic.

I’d love to know what you all think about it. It definitely escalates the idea of what it means to be a man up to the next level.

Advertisements
11 Comments leave one →
  1. Keep Your Woman permalink
    December 22, 2010 9:09 am

    OH boy… i could write on this for a while! This is a pretty good video, I checked out there website and A Call To Men is doing a great thing in helping to END domestic abuse and violence. It all starts with education and teaching young men the RIGHT way to be a man.

    Obviously this is a short speech, and I have not seen all of the material in it’s fullest, but I’ve got some SERIOUS issues with what it APPEARS to be, and would argue that their definition of the social programing of a man, is the exact opposite of what is being stated, and killing what it means to be a man today.

    First, defining a “man box” sends the signal that it’s not ok to be a man. False.

    Second, everything IN the man box is a negative, or hateful description, and some are just flat out sending a MIXED message. “Don’t be like a woman.” As a woman, would you want the MAN in your life to be like a WOMAN? Hell no. Please refer to my post about BEING A REAL MAN and I’ll show a REAL man box and the real qualities within it. The fact is that there is NOTHING wrong with being like a woman, and a man NOT being like a woman does NOT mean reduce or discredit women AT ALL (like it was stated in the video).

    Again, I do not know all the details of this program and I am ALL for what they are tying to do in ending abuse and violence, but sending a message to a young man that it’s OK to be like a woman, is just going to confuse him even more so than he probably already IS about what it means to be a man.

    What we really need to be doing is teaching each other HOW TO EMBRACE our roles as males and females. How to understand the DIFFERENCES and not FORCE or create some type of in-between/mixed gender. Guys have to start learning that being a man is NEVER something you should apologize or feel sorry for, in fact it’s something you should STRIVE to be with all your strength and courage – and be proud of it. The same goes with women. They need to be proud to be a woman and do everything they can to embrace it.

    Bottom line here is that on the SURFACE of this program (and more so in society) you’ve got a general premise that being a man is BAD. There aiming this at children, so both boys and girls learn that if you’re a man you’re dominant and objectify women and beat them. Bull shit. “Break out of the man box” should really be titled “Break out of the Abuse and Violence Box” and targeted towards those individuals with severe internal behavioral problems, not the general public. It’s a prime example of a case specific issue – being blanketed over something as a whole. It doesn’t surprise me because it’s a common theme in society today.

    I back their stated GOAL 110% – zero tolerance for violence in all areas of relationships, but stand extremely AGAINST linking said violence/abuse to attributes of a man.

    Like

    • December 22, 2010 4:16 pm

      I think I understand what you’re getting at but I have to take exception to your last statement against linking violence and abuse to attributes of men. Men are the ones committing the violent acts, so there has to be something to his point that society is supporting things in men that cause this. Unless you think men are just inherently violent toward women.

      Like

      • Keep Your Woman permalink
        December 23, 2010 8:12 am

        I think that men from a biological standpoint makes have the natural abilities, genetics, and programming to be the hunter, provider, and protector. To say things like “men are committing the violent acts” is false in both facts and reasoning.

        Virtually all statistics on domestic violence show that women abuse just as much as men and more studies these days are showing it equal.

        The fact is that it is a human problem and behavioral problem, not a male or female problem. Reporting of domestic abuse is a major contributor to the misconception that it’s a man problem. Men are far less likely to actually report abuse for fear of being weak or unmanly.

        Those who stand behind the assumption that men are the cause are either mislead, or deliberately misleading. The dogma consistently says the only escape from it to to get rid of the big bad man, and it’s overly politicized due to funding. The largest source of funding for research on violence is through the Department of Justice, and they allocate grants through the, you guessed it, Office on Violence Against Women.

        The FACTS are widely overlooked and perceptions continuously skewed. Regardless of agenda, it’s got to stop and the only real solutions is to look at it for what it is. Any program pushing the male-abuser female-victim cause is only hurting real progress and hindering the correct education and relay of information on the issue.

        If you have your doubts a great place to start would be checking out The Feminist View Of Domestic Violence vs Scientific Studies By Sam and Bunny Sewell, Family Resources & Research.

        Like

        • December 23, 2010 9:30 pm

          Okay, I guess i should have gotten really specific: men are comitting the violent acts Tony is talking about.

          Furthermore, if you want to talk about facts, do you know that reported statistics of the RAIN Network suggest that 1 in 6 women and 1 in 33 men will be the victims of sexual assault in their lifetime? And 90% of those assaults (against both men and women) are committed by men. And those are just the reported assaults. Furthermore, I don’t know how many deep dark secrets you know, and by that I mean I don’t know if you are the type of person that people confess to, but I am. For some reason people I barely know will tell me very intimate things. (Like how a girl’s big brother used to lock her in a tiger cage in the basement and force her to perform fellacio on his friends. Or how the young man who dilivered the eggs to my table a few years back was in a sexual relationship with a 14-year-old girl.) Judging from my personal experience, I think it’s more likely that 50%-75% of women are the victim of some sort of sexual assault by the time they are 18.

          Admittedly, I haven’t done an official study, but even among those reported numbers there is a huge disparity between the sexes. And although violent crime among women is on the rise, the vast majority of severe violent crime is still committed by men and it is very frequently committed by men against women.

          I don’t agree that this problem isn’t about gender and sex — especially considering the sexual assault rates. Furthermore, with great power lies great responsibility. Or at least it should. And because men (in general) are capable of causing more physical damage to women where violence is concerned it can be argued that they have a greater responsibility in this issue. If a woman slaps a man, it is, indeed abuse. But most of the time he can still retain control of him self and possibly the situation. Maybe even keep it from escalating — even if she laps him with all her might. When a woman is slapped by a man with all his might I don’t think you could claim that the inverse is true.

          Please keep in mind that I am speaking in generalities. There are women who are physically capable of overcoming men. But not most women. Put the average man in a physical contest with the average woman and the man wins the fight.

          Like

          • John permalink
            January 26, 2011 5:05 pm

            ‘because men (in general) are capable of causing more physical damage to women where violence is concerned it can be argued that they have a greater responsibility in this issue. If a woman slaps a man, it is, indeed abuse. But most of the time he can still retain control of him self and possibly the situation. Maybe even keep it from escalating — even if she laps him with all her might. When a woman is slapped by a man with all his might I don’t think you could claim that the inverse is true.

            Had to repeat that. It’s what I’ve long argued. We always have these gender targeted DV campaigns and there is an argument for non-gendered ones because some men are victims of DV.

            Also a lot of the times both women and men are violent in a relationship, but we condone or trivialise the woman’s violence. Basically these campaigns come off as a judgement that in any violent domestic dispute, the man is 100% at fault. This gets many men off side.

            DV campaigns should be based around the idea of responsibility men bare for the extra strength they have. I know it would illicit cries of ‘blaming the victim’, but it also wouldn’t hurt for women to be educated in such campaigns to also show some responsibility and work together with the guy not to escalate things.

            Like

  2. December 22, 2010 9:13 am

    Excellent topic. Religion, Race and Cultural stereotypes have unfortunately taught many the opposite of what the creator of the heavens and earth had in mind.

    As human beings who were brought into this world to choose and perform actions which oppose the negative aspects of greed and misuse of power. If were not brought into this world to choose and perform these opposing forces, then why is our world in such a messed up state. To recognize relational failure in individual, family and community levels is a path towards being the persons God created us to be.

    Some of you reading the next paragraph can choose to mock my opinion, dispute, and challenge it. That is fine. I leave you to think about a simple world order which is not new. It does not teach hate and the atrocities which follow.

    God created human beings to be relational. Throughout the old and new Christian text, God illustrates his relationship to Christ, the church, then humankind (in that order) as one of foundations for love and forgiveness. Respect for learning and living these things open our minds to equality and respect for one during all times. We are to be sensitive to one another-men and women alike. We have not destroyed this; however, we as a society have been pew warmers, status bashers, gender haters and whoremongers long enough.

    Work through that which you know to be good and true. Practice your faith and share with women and men. Be relational.

    Like

    • December 22, 2010 4:18 pm

      Andy, I have to say here that as a group the men I know who have the worst ideas about women are the ones in the church.

      Like

  3. Lurker permalink
    December 23, 2010 2:52 pm

    As someone who’s been reading Crystal’s blog for a while, it’s funny that this is the topic I choose to break my silence. I’m probably in over my head, but here goes:

    @ Andy – While I disagree with you many times, and I share Crystal’s view that the misguided “Christians” use gender roles to castigate women (not my personal Christian friends who honor and respect them), your post is the best you’ve written, brother. Many times Christians forget the simple message – love.

    @ KYW – I don’t think that you and Mr. Porter are as different as you might think. I think both of you would agree that the definition of what is a “man” has been skewed in today’s society. But if I had to choose a solution, I would lean toward Mr. Porter. Is it nearly as important to define who we are, as it is to asked how do we affect or understand those around us? Maybe his most powerful statement is “…what are we teaching him about women?”

    I like your blog – a strong, confident, intelligent, caring (keep inserting your own positive adjectives here) male is what a “man” SHOULD be. But it doesn’t seem to be in this day and age. I’ve lived and worked in a variety of situations, and many men I’ve met are EXACTLY what Mr. Porter talks about. They feign strength. They expect not to be questioned. They neglect input. They objective women (I had to giggle a little here…just look at the title of your blog – “keep” gently infers possession. Sorry. I know it’s not what you’re meaning, but it made me snicker). And sadly, they lash out at criticism.

    If I were to add one caveat to my insights, it would be race. I am not a minority. And most of the men I have known, I am sad to say are not either. So, speaking from the side that has ALWAYS socioeconomically been in charge – white, male, Christian – through my rose-colored glasses, it reads like a self-defense after the fact. Furthermore, play a little game with me: replace the male and female in your previous post with any two differing positions (christian/muslim, black/white, homosexual/heterosexual):

    “First, defining a ‘white box’ sends the signal that it’s not ok to be a white. False.”

    “Second, everything IN the Christian box is a negative, or hateful description, and some are just flat out sending a MIXED message. “Don’t be like a Muslim.” As an MUSLIM, would you want the CHRISTIAN in your life to be like a MUSLIM? Hell no.”

    “What we really need to be doing is teaching each other HOW TO EMBRACE our roles as heterosexual and homosexuals. How to understand the DIFFERENCES and not FORCE or create some type of in-between/mixed sexual preference. Heteros have to start learning that being a hetero is NEVER something you should apologize or feel sorry for, in fact it’s something you should STRIVE to be with all your strength and courage – and be proud of it. The same goes with homosexuals. They need to be proud to be a homo and do everything they can to embrace it.”

    I hope an obviously intelligent individual like yourself isn’t fuming right now – or thinking of some vitriolic response. Like I said, I’m now a lurker with you as well. And I think many men need to hear what you have to say. But for me, since I can’t be a black, or homosexual, or woman I like the idea of trying to “liberate others in order to liberate myself.” I look forward to a response.

    Like

    • December 23, 2010 9:35 pm

      Thank you for your response. I’m happy that you have broken your silence and come out to let my readers know some of your opinions. I will need to re-read your response when i have more time so that i can give you a full response. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU for commenting.

      Like

    • Keep Your Woman permalink
      December 28, 2010 3:37 pm

      No fuming or ill will AT ALL and I thank you for your very intelligent input. You make very valid points, and like you said, we can’t be anyone else, or a different person, and the only way to find out what it’s like is to open up and hear what they think or have to say.

      Like

  4. December 24, 2010 5:08 am

    My liberation as a man is tied to your liberation as a woman… so true…

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: