When I write about sexism, I am NOT writing about individuals. I am writing about institutionalized, systemic, ingrained sexism. In a patriarchal society, men run everything.
When people write to me and try and defend men by saying there are terrible women out there as well, it has nothing at all to do with the issues at hand. If you meet a horrible person, regardless of gender, they can only be terrible to the people around them. The issues I bring up effect ALL WOMEN. The horrible man, or woman, down the street cannot keep women underpaid or put them in jail for life, for having an abortion. WOMEN have no say over what happens to THEIR OWN BODIES IN A PATRIARCHAL SOCIETY. The individual people that others write about HAVE NO POWER OVER ALL WOMEN. They have nothing to do with the issue.
It’s not strange to me that WOMEN are the defenders of men, protecting them and turning on other women, because that’s part of living in a male dominated society. Part of what patriarchy does is turn women against each other. But individuals are not part of the discussion, when we’re talking about the laws that govern how women live. When women have no voice, have no rights that cannot be TAKEN AWAY from them by men, whenever they feel like it, they have no freedom. Men control how much money we make and it’s always less than what men make for the same work. Minority women are hurt so much more.
My granddaughter (in college) and her boyfriend both got jobs at a pet store. She HAD EXPERIENCE, he had none. He made .50 more an hour than she did because he was male. She asked around and all the other women found out they were making less than the BOYS. That’s sexism and it hurts ALL WOMEN.
The laws protect men, not women. They write them, we don’t. Women are forced into dependency, or forced to struggle to raise children, often without child support, and they make less money just because they’re women. Children are raised with less because they are raised by women.
No matter what men do, some women will defend them to the bitter end. As if individual men aren’t nice, or they will tell you about all the horrible women they have ever met. None of that matters. Horrible people exist, but normally those individuals don’t make the laws that tell all women what they can or can’t do.
Women are punished for being women and they have no power to fight back because they are not allowed to hold positions that give them a voice in their own lives. Men control the lives of women and that includes the violence that’s ALLOWED to continue to keep us in place.
I’m not sure why people don’t understand this issue, but I wanted to try and clarify it once and for all. I hope that does it. It’s not about individuals, it’s about a male dominated system that oppresses women in every way, at all costs, and destroys lives by dong so. And it tries to be invisible by shoving it down our throats from the moment we’re born.