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!