07 June, 2007

Are Men Endanger of Marginalization?

This morning I was trying to find a radio station while waiting for the diva to come downstairs for breakfast. While scanning through the stations I found an interview with an author about his new book. I stopped to listen as he was asked a question about how "masculinity" has changed since the 1960's.

The author suggested that women's liberation has resulted in the changing of how we define what it is to be a "man." He went on to suggest that men are becoming obsolete. During the 1980's sperm banks became more popular allowing women to have children without a man involved beyond his initial donation. Recent studies suggest that women can have children without a sperm but through a medical procedure. They can only have female children, but... the point is that men are no longer needed. In addition, he stated that a popular book suggests that two women can raise a child better than can a man and woman.

The interview ended, and I continued my search for my morning radio station.

This subject fascinates me.

I don't have an argument against the changes that he stated. I would also agree that the definition of "man" has changed. However, I would argue strongly against the notion that men are increasingly marginalized.

At least they aren't marginalized in my life.

That sounds kind of funny given that I am not sure I want to marry, am a professional single parent, and the diva's dad does not want to be overly involved with her life, leaving me to do it on my own. Looking at my life this way, it could appear that I have marginalized men; that they have little significance in my life.

That would be incorrect.

I appreciate the liberation that women were given in the latter half of the 20th century. Without those women and that movement, I would probably not be where I am today, or it would be much more difficult.

That said, I value men, their perspectives, their intellect, their strength, and physically - well, there ain't nothin' like the real thing!

As women we can do a lot. In many ways, we can and do do the same jobs that men do. We can succeed at them just as men do. But...we can not replace men.

I work in a very genderless field, meaning that it doesn't truly matter which gender does my job, what matters is the skill set that the individual has. Yet, I can tell you that, at times, I seek a male for my team over another female because men are wired differently, respond to different stimuli, and bring a different perspective to the table.

As a single parent, I am aware that I can not give my daughter everything that a mother and a father could give her. Will she succeed without that male influence? Will she be lacking because her dad has chosen to play less of a role in her life? These are questions I can't answer. I am sure that there are studies that will provide the statistics, but then, I don't place a lot of validity in studies. I do believe, based on my own experience, that a father does have an important role in a child's life. I believe that the lack of her dad playing a role will have an impact on her though I don't know what that impact will be nor do I know if it will be negative or neutral. I do know that I can't be a dad, nor can another woman.

Is "man" truly being marginalized? Do women believe that they are the superior gender?

If the author is correct, in regards to society at large, then I need to start a "Save the Man" campaign. Men are a valuable resource; one we, as women, (me in particular) can not afford to lose!


Mike said...

I agree the role of men has changed over the last few decades. Into what I like many men don't know. Women have changed themselves and their place in society. This has affected everything else. We men are still doing what we've been doing since Ogg the caveman. Our niche has been changed, but we are round pegs and by dam it will fit in that square hole.

Bre said...

I think that if we're forever trying to figure out which gender is superior, we'll never have true equality.

Memphis Steve said...

Generally, the women who claim that men are obsolete can't get one. So they get the federal government to provide men's tax money to pay for studies and classes to argue that men are obsolete. Then they publish books claiming that men are obsolete. Lately, it has become a commonly accepted myth in the West. People have heard it so many times, and for so long, that they're believing it. But it's still not true.

Thank God for you. We need more women like you who don't buy into this crap.

guygm said...

What I find puzzling in all this are women who crave chauvinist men. This is the sour grapes whining of a 'nice guy'. But I see such nice women I know who date dudes who:

1) don't want them to have a job
2) demean them and make them feel inferior
3) put them on diets!
4) Don't like to whine like a little puppy on blogs on a Thursday night

That's what puzzles me in this whole area...


TxGambit said...

I will sign up to help that "Save the man" campaign.

To GuyGM, I like the nice guy type. I like that opening the doors, squashing bugs, saving me from the bad guy type. I like the one that likes dogs and cats, smiles at babies and looks my mom in the eye when he talks to her, not over her shoulder looking for an out.

Anyway, I do hope that men are not marginalized because that would be a great lose in both the workforce and our personal lives. As you say, the Exception, they are wired very different and it is this that is needed to balance the world. Yin and Yang, right?

Have the T-Shirt said...

I'm onboard with a "Save the Man" campaign as long as it doesn't backfire and they over-populate thereby throwing off the delicate balance of nature.

cathouse teri said...

I don't think men are being marginalized one bit.

And I have no intention of losing any of the men in my world.

I've never lost one yet!

The Exception said...

Mike - Now it is the turn of men to decide what it is they want. If men wait for women to define what a "man" should be, then... you guys might be waiting for a very long time - and will be quite confused at the end of the process. ;)

Bre - I agree.

Steve - There are lots of women like me. And there are more and more studies indicating that men truly do offer something significant than some would like to believe.

Guygm - That confuses men and women alike. Different women want different things for various reasons. Just like there are those men who want women like you described rather than strong independent women. To everything there is a reason... or not! ;)

TXGambit - You describe a nice guy. I work with women who can not see that men offer something different to a team. They like men etc, but don't see the diverse perspective. It is interesting to watch.

T-Shirt - Over population would be an issue... and you know, they would happily engage in that undertaking if permitted to do so!

Teri - somehow, that doesn't surprise me.

JustRun said...

I agree with so much of this. Society or whomever has confused the idea of equality with being the "same" and really, that is impossible. I don't want to be a man and honestly, I don't want to do man things all the time. It's refreshing to hear this coming from you because many people believe that someone in an independent sort of role such as yourself believe they don't need men and my gosh, that's just not true.
Nice post!

Willow said...

I can't imagine a world without men, nor do I want too! I do believe that men and women have different ways of perceiving things which is why we balance each other out so well.

I've tagged you for a meme. Check out my blog to see if you wish to play along:)

Beth said...

I found your post very interesting. I had no idea that it could be possible to create a life without sperm.
I agree with Memphis Steve that women who think men are obsolete are the ones who don't have a man. As frustrating as men are sometimes to me, I would never want to live in a world without men!

The Exception said...

Just Run - I think that one of the changes is that, for some women, having a man in their lives is now a choice or a want over a need. For me, it is all about a want. I love men and what they bring to the table.

Willow - I will check it out.

That balance is so important. I have worked in female dominated environments... and for me, men truly add so much for me.

Beth - they can drive us crazy, can't they? But how dull would life be without them?

kapgar said...

I wouldn't go so far as to say obsolete. Certainly adaptation is necessary. But complete obsolescence of the gender? Nahhhh... who else would you laugh at?

BeautifulDisaster said...

Men are in no way, shape, or form being marginalized. They still lead the country and the vast majority of fortune 500 companies, and therefore control most of the country's wealth. I do think that women "need" men less nowadays, which is probably a good thing because women have the power to leave unhealthy relationships and men don't have a unchecked power to abuse.

Memphis Steve - do they somehow segregate women's tax dollars so that only the men's tax dollars are spent on those studies?? :)

Carrie said...

Interesting and thought-provoking as usual. I am all for equality between the sexes for the entire world - and as much as men annoy me sometimes or make things more difficult then they have to be... I couldn't live without them.