June 8, 2006

On the Fine Art of Man-Bashing

Posted in Personal, Relationships at 12:43 pm by Edward Teach

Recently, I have started a new job at a major corporation. Before you get too excited, it is only a summer job, much like an internship. Unlike my last job, at this postion the majority of my co-workers are women. There are plenty of workers of both genders, but on my shift it just works out that a little over a half of the workers are women. Before you click ‘next blog’ or just tune out, this is not some post against gender equality, women in the workplace or asserting the superiority of either gender over another. I believe both genders were created by God and perfectly compliment one another. That, however, is another post entirely and not what I wanted to talk about. One woman, who for the purposes of this post shall be known as Nellie, is quite friendly and usually very cheery. She also has a black belt in the discipline of man-bashing. What is man-bashing, you ask? Good question… Man-bashing (mahn-bashing): {1} the practice of systematically ascribing the attributes of a one member or a group of members of a gender (in this case, male) to the entire gender. Usually done with absolute negatives and statements such as… ” Oh, it because he’s a man”..or “You know men, they are always..” and such. {2} Hitting a male homo saphiens repeatedly with a blunt object. [see also, bashing, man, woman bashing] For the purpose of this post, we will deal only with definition number 1.

In the few weeks that I have been working there, I have heard many phrases like those above come out of her mouth. They usually happen when she is mad at her boyfriend, but they can come from out of the blue. Frankly, they can make things rather awkward. Me, a male, standing there while she states that my gender cannot tell the difference between lust and love, that we are only after one thing in all relationships, that we are always unfaithful. Awkward can be an understatement. I did not write this post to complain about they way I am treated at work, or my job. I wanted to address a growing trend in society. Nellie is by far not the only man-basher around. Look at your TV set, the comics in your newspaper. At each one of those places, man-bashing can easily be seen. The most saddening is media portrayal of fathers as stupid, brutish, sex-focused beings. What is it that we are showing our young men? Granted, some of what Nellie says about men are true about some men. Although to say things about all men is wrong, sadly some men do fit the bill. It is disappointing that Nellie chooses to hang around those type of men and pursue relationships with them. However, just because the men of her acquaintance are a certain way does not mean that all men are that way. To stereotype is wrong, and BOTH (note the both) genders are guilty of that. I think the heart of the problem lies in the lack of character in today’s soceity. To keep on the topic of men, much less is expected of today’s young men than was expected in the past. Character is not something that most men are encouraged to develop. Without the right mindset and encouragement, many men will turn out like the subjects of Nellie’s bashings. Like many things in life, your expectations have an effect on your results. If Nellie only expects her boyfriend to be a selfish, sex-obsessed person and doesn’t do anything to encourage him to be otherwise (like break up) why should he change? I’ll leave you with this quote from John MacArthur. “Honest character is now seen as totally optional – or worse, hopelessly unfashionable.”

Men, cultivate character; and women, encourage the men in your life to do so.

Calico Jack adds: Quickly, name one sitcom that portrays a father figure who isn’t a lout or a fool. Can’t think of any? Neither can I. Okay, then why don’t we expand our horizons? How many television shows depict fatherhood as something noble…and then actually have a character who lives up to those ideals? I can think of three shows off the top of my head: Veronica Mars, Battlestar Galactica, and Everwood. However, Everwood is off of the air, and neither of the other two are exactly mainstream hits. Can anyone else think of more?

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