Edit: Oops! When I copy-pasted, I lost a paragraph. Here's the full version.
A while ago, I posted a link to this article and threw the floor open for discussion. WOW, did I get a lot of responses. I’m sorry I haven’t had a chance to respond more quickly, but I’ve been pretty burnt out by life lately.
First of all, I do agree with both clayse and an_aikidoka: It is a very unfortunate by-product of the radical feminist movement that too many feminists who feel they’ve been ‘abused’ simply use their newfound power just to turn around and stomp on men in return. This is hypocritical in the worst way; men are, in many cases, just as misused and unfortunate as women. They do get abused, and they are more likely to successfully commit suicide. This is a situation that is desperately wrong and we as a whole society should be trying harder to rectify it.
It’s easy to get swallowed up by resentment and revenge when we perceive that we’re hammered down by someone more powerful than us. I know, I struggle with resentment a great deal myself. That’s the problem with revenge, though: it’s too simple.
Too many people get caught up in feeling like a victim. It’s a way of abrogating responsibility for pulling yourself up out of the shithole someone else put you in. Our society is formed in such a way that there is always someone putting down someone else. The problem is that too many people don’t realize, or refuse to acknowledge, that only they can be responsible for bringing themselves up. Too often, we simply turn our energies towards passing on the injustices of society to someone else we perceive as ‘deserving it.’ Imagine what we could do if instead we devoted those energies to bringing other people along with us as we claw our way back up?
Families, and societies, need diversity to truly thrive. Male, female, transsexual, black, asian, white, all these differences can be things that divide us as a culture and as a species, or they can be gifts that make our world richer. I, for one, would rather die than live in a homogenous world; it would be too damn boring to live in.
Overcoming these gaps takes change, and people are terrified of changing. Rather than take responsibility for becoming better, too often we are caught in the trap of repeating the same mistakes rather than face the terrifying unknown. Sometimes what keeps us from facing change is the fear of having to admit that we’ve been wrong in the past. But that’s too easy.
The next step that we have to take as a society, and as a species, is take responsibility for bringing everyone up with us as we rise, instead of using others as a stepping stone on which we grind our boot heels as we pass. I’ll leave you with a quote from the article that inspired all this, which is why I liked it in the first place: