As I understand, my late mother, a white woman, was the first female union ironworker in Amarillo, Texas. In the early ‘80s, I played with her welding helmet and recall stories of her experience working in an all-male setting.
At that time in my life, I lived with my single mom and two sisters. When able to visit my paternal family, I was the only male present when interacting with my sisters and four female cousins.
Also, I had more aunts than uncles. My older sister was an unrelenting ally in the metaphorical theater of operations that was the traumatic upbringing we called childhood.
I make no secret of admitting that I have posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) which originated in childhood and that was aggravated by military service. All the same, I don’t cling to a narrative of victimhood.
Looking back, I better related to females than males, perhaps due to an insufficient male presence in my life. Boys and men vacillated in and out of my life, though girls and women were ever-present.
From an early age, I was taught never to lay a hand in anger on girls or women. While it was widely accepted that females could slap or punch males, it was clear that I would suffer extreme consequences for striking back.
Are we equal in the eyes of parents and caregivers?
I was brought up to be chivalrous by opening doors, pulling out chairs, walking closest to roads, to be observant and complimentary, and place myself in danger for females. There were clearly defined gender roles and life was much simpler at the time.
Also, I was informed by old-timers and through popular media content that pursuing a woman, even if it required half a dozen attempts to win her over, was considered romantic. Still, not all authoritative and entertainment sources infantilized or coddled women in such a manner.
A number of the films I enjoyed at the time could be considered pro-woman, which further shaped my upbringing. For instance, 9 to 5 (1980) introduced to me the idea of women co-working with men.
I was acquainted with the idea of a stay-at-home dad and career-oriented woman from Mr. Mom (1983). Prior to movies such as these, I naïvely thought that only my mom was a trendsetter with her construction job.
Keep in mind that this was during a time when I used to stump people with the following riddle, learned from a book of jokes and riddles I purchased from school:
A father and son have are both badly injured in a skiing accident. They are both taken to separate hospitals. When the boy is taken in for an operation, the doctor says, “I can’t operate on this boy, because he is my son.” How is this possible?
Imagine a child puzzling other children and adults, because they couldn’t fathom how a woman could function as a surgeon. It was truly a different time. At any rate, I also watched The Burning Bed (1984), in which an abused woman was found not guilty for having murdered her husband.
Additionally, I can’t recall how many times throughout my life I’ve seen The Color Purple (1985), first having watched it in childhood. To me, there were a number of female characters in the film who embodied the strength of female prowess.
Moving to Aurora, Colorado when in fifth grade, my late stepmother, a black woman who birthed my third sister, was an influential mentor who also exemplified fortitude. She would become the most ardent supporter and stable example of rehabilitative potential in my life.
Though she experienced metaphorical birth, death, and rebirth, she didn’t attribute her success to a collective of females beset against men. Rather, she instilled in me the idea of working hard to achieve goals, maintaining faith, and persevering despite suffering that is inherent in life.
My dad, a black man, once expressed to me how meaningful females were in his life. Similar to me, he had more in common with the manner by which women communicated than the method of interaction commonly expressed by men.
In seventh grade, having moved back to Bomb City, I relocated to a children’s home. As was the case up to until that point in my life, I got along better with females though the few males to whom I was close played significant roles in my development.
For my sophomore year of high school, I was removed from the children’s home and placed with a white family. The matriarch and I were quite close. She taught me refined moral and ethical principles of conservatism, as women during my earlier years took a more liberal approach to life.
Prior to graduating in 1995, I benefitted from exposure to female rappers who helped shape my understanding of hip hop and life as a whole. How far so much of today’s female rappers, though not all, have fallen from the sources I enjoyed in my youth.
Entertainers such as Sha-Rock, Salt-N-Pepa, J. J. Fad, Danger Zone, MC Lyte, Suga-T, Queen Latifa, The Conscious Daughters, Roxanne Shanté, Bloody Mary, Ms. Melodie, Oaktown’s 357, Bo$$, Da Brat, The Lady of Rage, Left Eye, Monie Love, Ladybug Mecca, Yo-Yo, Hurricane G, and MC Trouble shaped my hip hop foundation.
A woman once mercilessly mocked me for singing MC Lyte’s “I Am Woman,” though I didn’t mind. As well, this has essentially been my attitude when being shamed throughout life for not representing traditional masculine traits.
Though I can’t recall when I first encountered an image of Rosie the Riveter, I can remember seeing the illustration and having it explained to me as representing a symbol of empowerment. The female inspirations I’ve listed so far personify precisely that.
Additionally, despite being taught that females were fragile beings who needed protection offered by males, very little of my early influence with females represented anything other than strength. Consequently, I grew up loving, respecting, and appreciating females.
Nonetheless, when I turned 18-years-old, I was required to register for the Selective Service System. None of my female peers were subject to the same requirement, no matter how strong I thought they were.
Are we equal in the eyes of our nation?
Not long after graduation, I enlisted in the United States Marine Corps with a guaranteed contract for military police (MP). Males and females were subject to different physical training standards, though we were promoted according to the same conditions.
Think of taking an exam as a male. You’re required to achieve 100 for a perfect score. Your female counterpart’s requisite is 80 for a perfect score.
This is what some people refer to as the process of equity—assuring so-called “fair” access to resources and outcomes. Some misidentify this term as meaning “equal outcomes.”
However, if person A is intentionally deprived of resources for the benefit of person B, the process more closely resembles injustice and not fairness. On the other hand, equality of opportunity—affording person A and B the same chance to compete, despite outcomes—doesn’t require unjust means.
Obligating men to score higher than woman isn’t fair or just. Rather, doing so closely resembles discriminatory treatment. In military conflict, one imagines a mobilized enemy won’t participate under equitable standards.
Are we equal under the authority of the military or in the eyes of an enemy?
It was in the Corps when I first encountered the term “feminazi,” related to radical feminists who openly practiced misandry (hatred of men). This made collaborative policing quite difficult.
Some of the family advocates who worked closely with MPs were clear about their antipathy for male Marines, and I mockingly painted with the same broad strokes as my peers when labeling the advocates with an assortment of colorful names. “Feminazi” was a milder option.
Still, I was unfamiliar with feminist philosophy at the time. All I understood about feminism was gleaned from lectures in school about suffragettes, as I paid very little attention to most subjects during my early, primary, and secondary education.
In the Corps, I worked alongside what were termed “female Marines” or “woman Marines” at the time. As was the case with my male counterparts, respect was earned from me and not given.
I think I treated female MPs with dignity, though the memory is reconstructive and I have little way of knowing how my behavior impacted others. What I recall is volunteering a significant degree of support for female Marines while receiving detrimental consequences in some cases.
In 1999, having been informed that I won a meritorious promotion board though a female MP against whom I competed would instead receive advancement, because she was apparently involved in an extramarital affair with a senior married Marine, I took no remedial action.
In 2000, when asked for assistance with filing a formal complaint on behalf of a female Marine, and concerning a senior member of our command, I did so and was immediately ostracized from our small detachment when he was relieved of his duties. However, she made no statement in support of me as I was subsequently dismissed from the detachment.
In 2002, I was disciplined for involvement with a female Marine who was separated, awaiting divorce proceedings—purportedly due to intimate partner violence (IPV). For a year following my discipline, I was actively pursued by various members of my command for further disciplinary action.
Nonetheless, the female Marine enjoyed a different standard of justice administration. She received what essentially equated to a slap on the wrist.
Are we equal under the Uniform Code of Military Justice?
Throughout my time as an MP, the majority of base housing calls to which I responded involved IPV. I’ve pulled many Marines off of their spouses, and many dependent spouses off of Marines.
During my service, MPs used the Duluth Model when responding to IPV calls. Per one source, “The feminist theory underlying the Duluth Model is that men use violence within relationships to exercise power and control.”
Because I served under the Clinton administration’s “Don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, there were presumably no lesbian IPV episodes, thus skewing the statistical data. Likewise, when females battered males, I was trained to treat males as the aggressors, further polluting the data on IPV.
By the time I called law enforcement (LE) to my home during an instance when I was subject to an IPV event, I was allowed to remain in my home though I was advised that if police were again called to the residence I’d be removed from the domicile. Duluth Model protocol was in effect.
My saving grace? I called 9-1-1, I also had a female witness on scene, and my female aggressor admitted to being the sole instigator and IPV actor regarding the incident.
Are we equal when considering IPV protocol?
After the Corps, when undergoing education for a Bachelor of Science in Occupational Education, with a focus on justice administration, I learned more about the influence of feminism on LE protocol. As an MP, I simply enforced policies without understanding their origin.
Disillusioned with LE and the security field as a whole, and for other reasons, I chose to change my career path. Earning a Master of Arts in Counseling in 2011, I learned that the mental health field was overwhelmingly represented by women.
Much of the educational literature I read, research data I examined, evidenced-based clinical intervention strategies with which I was made familiar, and training I received largely related to feminine perspectives. I think it’s uncontroversial to state that the field is feminocentric.
For instance, one source states, “Women are already overrepresented in the field: In 2017, they made up about 82 percent of therapists, 73 percent of counselors and 67 percent of psychologists.” Still, a separate source suggests, “Men consult mental health experts less frequently than women,” as there appears to be a correlation between service provision and use.
After graduating, I began working in a mental health clinic at which I interned during school. My immediate supervisor was a woman who was also a close friend of mine. Though not her name, I’ll call her Penelope.
One day, Penelope heard me use the term “feminzai” and she questioned whether or not I was anti-feminist. I wasn’t. A self-declared feminist, Penelope pulled up on her computer the Merriam-Webster definition of feminism and had me read it aloud.
Though modified since then, the description at that time was, “Belief in and advocacy of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes.” Penelope added that, “Feminism is the radical notion that women are people.”
I was then asked by Penelope whether or not I supported her implied right to earn as much as her male counterparts, which I did. I was also asked whether or not I thought women were entitled to the same rights, privileges, and liberties as men, which I did.
Penelope then answered, “Well, that makes you a feminist.” Though I’d received a brief introduction to feminist theory in counseling, when undergoing my graduate studies, it wasn’t a topic of interest to me and I paid it little attention.
Penelope’s low bar for admission into a sociopolitical movement, and my apathy related to the theoretical and philosophical principles underlying the cause, gave way to my self-identification as a feminist. Still, I took issue with a term that highlighted one sex or gender over another.
At the time, I was unfamiliar with egalitarianism. As well, I wanted to behave according to how I thought a good person would act. I already had a lengthy history of advocating female equality, so slapping a label on myself in a show of solidarity wasn’t a big deal to me.
Nonetheless, I told Penelope that I would identify as a “masculine feminist,” because I saw no point in a title that promoted one identity over another if it was truly a movement focused on equality. Penelope simply shrugged off my modifier.
Over the years, I’ve heard criticism of male feminists as being predators in disguise and pretending to support women while serving an ulterior motive. Typically, this critique implies that male feminists or social justice warriors (SJWs) use feminism as a dating strategy.
Per Gad Saad, “The zoological term ‘sneaky fuck*r strategy’ has indeed existed for a long time. I applied the concept to explain male SJWs.” However, my former advocacy for feminism had nothing to do with wanting to get laid.
From 2012 to 2014, I attended a second graduate school, earning a Master of Science in Social Work (MSSW). I laugh to myself when thinking of how my late stepmother once asked, “How you gon’ be a social worker when you don’t like people?” She was a prophet, of sorts.
During a Foundations of Social Justice: Values, Diversity, Power & Oppression course, a black professor stood in front of the classroom, raised a closed fist, declared herself a “social justice warrior, like Xena: Warrior Princess,” and let out a loud warrior cry. Students were encouraged to take part in the display.
When I stated that I preferred Hercules: The Legendary Journeys, as I was a “masculine feminist,” the professor begrudgingly accepted my qualifier to SJW advocacy. Apparently, and contrary to Penelope’s instruction, the term “feminism” was truly meant to center women.
One fellow military veteran, a female, jokingly declared me an official member of the He-Man Woman-Haters Club for how unpopular I was with many of my female peers. For instance, opening the door for a woman when entering a building was cause enough for vitriolic outrage and I had a lot of unlearning to do in association with my upbringing.
I was fascinated by how many white females were willing to scold me—a biracial, disabled veteran, male—on my “privilege.” There are many things I could say about my MSSW educational experience.
However, those who know me well have reminded me that I tend to sound like a broken record, skipping CD, corrupt MP3 file, or a buffering music source when addressing the matter. Still, there is one particular tale I think is worthy of addressing.
One morning, while attending social justice class, I experienced open misandry when accused of a crime in which I took no part. There was a discussion about feminism and allyship, as males who were present were informed about how we could be “good allies.”
We were told by self-professed radical feminists, some of whom received bachelor’s degrees in women’s and gender studies, that men needed to “step back” and allow women to speak. No, not simply in that moment, though always. Any time a woman spoke, men were to shut up.
Are we equal in the purview of activism?
We were also advised never to question women, always “uplift” women’s voices (e.g., use of a minimal encourager like nodding one’s head in agreement), and to accept that all men were guilty of abusing all women.
While disagreeing with the proposals, the latter one stood out to me. I violated the proposed allyship rules and questioned my female classmates, “What do you mean by all men are guilty of abusing all women?”
The monologue driven from alternating female voices quickly devolved into shouting from a chorus of women. I was informed that because some men physically and sexually assaulted women, and I hadn’t “done more” to stop such crimes, I bore guilt for such atrocities.
As though men were a monolith, all men were culpable. The logic from a flawed premise followed.
Premise 1: All men abuse women.
Premise 2: I am a man.
Conclusion: Therefore, I abuse women.
However, my suggestion to alter “all” to a reasonable “some” or “many” designator was resoundingly opposed. Modifying the inaccurate premise would have made more sense.
Premise 1: Many men abuse women.
Premise 2: I am a man.
Conclusion: Consequently, it is unknown as to whether or not I am guilty of abusing women.
The more I refused to remain silent, avoid questioning, or uplift the voices of my female peers, the more they presented with animated gross motor functioning, elevated voices, and rage-fueled behavior. Some of the women stood at their desks screaming like banshees.
Unable to tolerate distress of the moment, one female student ran out of the room in tears. Two women in particular stood and shook their desks while yelling at me, as others remained seated and joined in the ensemble of chaos.
It would be dishonest to imply that all of the female students in the class opposed me. There were three female members of my cohort (similar to a homeroom class) who were steadfast in their defense of me.
In the moment, I was activated into a full-blown PTSD episode and advocacy from the small contingent of women who supported me allowed me to ground myself and reengage the discourse. Unwisely, I thought a good-faith and rational presentation of ideas would persuade other classmates.
Trying an empathic approach, I asked the seven or so angry women whether or not they wanted to be treated as they behaved towards me. One student stated something to the effect of, “Well, now you know how it feels!”
When I asked for clarity, she exclaimed, “Now you know how it feels to be discriminated against. Women have been going through this for years and now the shoe’s on the other foot”, or words to that effect.
The student demonstrated readiness to engage in a dialogue, even if in bad faith. She was now my focus point for the conversation. I was accused of being oppressive towards woman, solely predicated on the fact that I was a man.
I was getting nowhere with use of rational talking points. As well, I’d mistakenly thought that the discourse could be resolved by talking through an issue. This mistaken idea didn’t stop me from trying.
One female student advocated the metaphorical overturning of a table at which men and women sat. She declared that it wasn’t equality or even equity that was sought, because she desired a transfer of perceived power.
I stated that it was not the responsibility of anyone in the classroom to teach me about discrimination by using discriminatory tactics. I further said that at the point in a society when the oppressed become the oppressor, injustice permeates the situation and no healthy outcome may result.
I also questioned at what point my radical feminist peers would concede victory, as no rational answer was received. It appeared as though the potential grift or fraud associated with feminism was everlasting outrage and accumulated resources without a clear objective in sight.
During the event, our professor stood silently and motionless, as though she was paralyzed. In the week following the event, I met with the professor and she stated, “Never in my time of teaching have I witnessed a student being attacked like you were and I apologize,” or words to that effect.
It was because of that classroom episode that I de-identified as a feminist. I finally understood that while some members of the movement perhaps advocated equality, there were others who sought to exercise the same privilege, power, and abusive behavior they claimed to oppose.
I no longer support all women, just as I don’t support all men. While I don’t typically assume an “anti” stance against most things, I certainly am not pro-feminism or pro-SJW.
Are we equal under the concept of feminism?
During my time in the MSSW program, I learned about the progressive stack, of which one source states, “The technique works by allowing people to speak on the basis of race, sex, and other group membership, with preference given to members of groups that are considered the most marginalized.”
It seemingly didn’t matter to my female peers that some of their ancestors could have owned some of mine. I was a male, they were females, and there was no method of outclassing their stacked victimhood deck.
Dating a Latina social work student, I was able to observe how such stacked methods were being used to transform feminism into intersectionality, a concept introduced in 1989. For instance, attending an alumni leadership group for Latinos, I was introduced to the term “POC” (person of color).
There was discussion about how white feminists were said to have historically advocated and maintained power for other white women while leaving other oppressed groups out of the movement (i.e., POC men and women). I can’t honestly state that this was incorrect.
The discussion led to my brief exploration about what feminism actually was, not simply an elevator pitch to increase ally membership. Though I’m not a feminist scholar, and at best I use an ignorance-informed perspective regarding the movement, here’s what I learned.
First wave –
According to one source, the first wave of feminism was from 1848 through 1920. A separate source states, “For 70 years, the first-wavers would march, lecture, and protest, and face arrest, ridicule, and violence as they fought tooth and nail for the right to vote.”
As it was explained to me by Penelope, first-wave feminists were apparently advocating the right to vote and work, striving for greater access to parental rights, and for the ability to own or share in ownership of property. She made clear her reverence for the “brave” feminists who paved the way for women everywhere.
One imagines it all depends on the definition of “brave.” Additionally, one wonders about whether or not terrorists are to be celebrated for their violent actions.
According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation:
Domestic terrorism: Violent, criminal acts committed by individuals and/or groups to further ideological goals stemming from domestic influences, such as those of a political, religious, social, racial, or environmental nature.
A separate source clarifies that terrorism is “the calculated use of violence to create a general climate of fear in a population and thereby to bring about a particular political objective.” Even if one’s sociopolitical objective is believed to be just, violence to create fear as a means to an end may be viewed as terroristic.
Per one source, “Mary Leigh who, acting with others, poured petrol over the carpets of a crowded theatre, set fire to it and then detonated a bomb.” Even if bombing for justice, such an act may be terroristic in nature.
A separate source states, “Bombs and incendiary devices were detonated at banks, railway stations, churches and even Westminster Abbey. Saunderton railway station and Croxley station near Watford were destroyed, and Kitty Marion destroyed a train near Teddington on 26 April, 1913.”
Using the steel man technique, one imagines that a critic may suggest, in the way of el-Hajj Malik el-Shabazz, “The price of freedom is death.” Still, how can this rhetoric not be used to justify seemingly any cause one vehemently supports?
Second wave –
According to one source, the second wave of feminism was from 1963 through the 1980s. A separate source states, “In this phase, sexuality and reproductive rights were dominant issues, and much of the movement’s energy was focused on passing the Equal Rights Amendment to the Constitution guaranteeing social equality regardless of sex.”
Penelope informed me that second-wavers ushered through the sexual revolution, brought forth abortion policy, advocated increased access in the workplace and within institutions of higher learning, addressed violence against women, and was said to be more radical than the first wave.
Availability bias is “the tendency for people to overweight new information or events without considering the objective probabilities of those events over the long run.” What the first wave of feminism didn’t resolve, the second wave’s radicalism could address—perhaps with little consideration of unintended consequences.
As well, myside bias is “the tendency for people to evaluate evidence, generate evidence, and test hypotheses in a manner biased toward their own opinions.” Evaluation of second wave feminism’s effectiveness may largely be associated with in-group preferential regard rather than societal concern as a whole.
It was arguably the second wave that brought about a conspiracy theory that surprisingly receives so little pushback: the patriarchy. The notion of a social system in which positions of dominance and privilege are primarily held by men may have been true historically, though arguably is now a shadow of past oppression.
Third wave –
According to one source, the third wave of feminism began in the 1990s and is said to continue to this day. A separate source states, “Third wave feminists are believed to be less rigid and judgmental compared to second wavers who are suggested to be sexually judgmental, anti-sexual, and see having too much fun as a threat to the revolution.”
Penelope told me she identified as a third-wave feminist, mainly due to her advocacy for sex-positive versus sex-negative feminism. This framing has been disputed by others who posit that liberal versus radical feminism is a more fitting formulation.
At any rate, Penelope rationalized that third-wavers were refining matters related to a so-called “gender pay gap,” a push to “believe women” regarding allegations of sexual misconduct, and address various other social issues (i.e., hepeating, manterrupting, manspreading, etc.).
Unlike the first and second waves which conceivably addressed reasonable concerns, third-wave feminists sometimes spotlight frivolous matters, such as how air conditioning in office space is a form of sexism towards women. Noted sex differences, be damned!
When WEIRD (western, educated, industrialized, rich, and democratic) feminists have most of their needs met, new issues are seemingly created to sustain the objectiveless perpetuation of victimhood. When initially considering the unsustainability of this model, I disturbed myself.
“How could a rational person ever support an endless push for justice without at least defining when enough would be enough—clearly indicating a proposed endpoint?” I thought to myself. After examining the matter further and challenging my beliefs, I arrived at a reasonable answer.
Apparently, rational thinking has very little to do with emotive outrage. Colloquially speaking, if people “feel” as though they’re being victimized or oppressed—regardless of whether or not they objectively are—they will likely seek to oppose their perceived oppressor.
Add to this the indication that one’s oppressor will never be defeated, so one must forever “fight” something like the bogeyman that is “the patriarchy,” and I can make rational sense about irrational behavior. I can understand without advocating feminism.
Fourth wave (intersectionality) –
According to one source, the fourth wave of feminism has no definitive beginning date and is considered to currently exist. A separate source states, “Some people think we’re still in the third wave of feminism since the fourth wave isn’t so much of a shift as the continued growth of the movement.”
Still, another source clarifies that the fourth wave is “characterized by a focus on the empowerment of women, the use of internet tools, and intersectionality,” as well as seeking “greater gender equality by focusing on gendered norms and the marginalization of women in society.”
One imagines Penelope wouldn’t disagree with the fourth wave, though this matter was never discussed with her. Nonetheless, I recall during my MSSW program that female, non-white SJWs openly split from the umbrella of feminism and adopted intersectionality.
Per one source, “The concept of intersectionality describes the ways in which systems of inequality based on gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, class and other forms of discrimination ‘intersect’ to create unique dynamics and effects.”
Kimberlé Crenshaw is often credited with having introduced intersectionality to the common lexicon. Crenshaw elucidates intersectionality thusly:
Black women sometimes experience discrimination in ways similar to white women’s experiences; sometimes they share very similar experiences with Black men. Yet often they experience double discrimination—the combined effects of practices which discriminate on the basis of race, and on the basis of sex. And sometimes, they experience discrimination as Black women—not the sum of race and sex discrimination, but as Black women.
It was during the MSSW program that I observed feminists ally with other supposedly oppressed, marginalized, and disenfranchised groups. For instance, when I received graduate education, LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer) was an oft-used acronym.
Currently, allyship has led to growth of the acronym to LGBTQQIP2SAA+ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, intersex, pansexual, two spirit, asexual, allies, and allows for room of continued growth). It’s not dissimilar to Axis and Allied powers of World War II bonding together to fight one another.
However, there is no armed conflict for which such delineation is necessary in this case. Nonetheless, when feminists expanded support of matters unrelated to women and girls, they inadvertently advocated an unusual sociopolitical alliance that is arguably counterintuitive to the aims of feminism.
Notably, I’ve found it thrilling to observe the serpent devouring its own tail now that so-called trans-exclusionary radical feminists cling to a modicum of privilege and power as spaces previously preserved for girls and women are rapidly eroded. What a time to be alive!
We are now at the precipice of absurdity, as Ketanji Brown Jackson—who may one day hear cases before the Supreme Court of the United States, as they relate to women—when asked to define what a woman is reportedly “dodged the question as outside of her role on the bench, saying, ‘I’m not a biologist.”
The tools I was given during my MSSW indoctrination were well-suited for dismantling, deconstructing, disrupting, and destroying perceived oppression—even if such oppression was mostly nonexistent in the WEIRD world. Now, we are at a point in history when academic rhetoric has led to the deterioration of society.
Leaving behind the halls of academe, I established employment with a cabinet level department of the United States government. There, my female supervisor required that males be assisted by females when conducting home visits, though females were free to operate on their own.
Males were also subject to sharing a small office as females enjoyed their own spaces, men were paid less for performing the same duties, and males were repeatedly interrupted by our female supervisor at meetings, though women weren’t treated in a similar manner.
Icing slathered on the metaphorical cake of sexism was that my supervisor inferred that women were better suited for the field of social work and she subsequently assigned a portion of my caseload to a female coworker. Verbal prejudice aside, discrimination through action resulted.
A female Equal Employment Opportunity Commission judge heard my case, assisted by her female colleague. I was represented by a female attorney and a female union president.
The government agency’s attorney was a female and she was assisted by a female colleague. At the hearing, my female supervisor admitted to having used sex-based decision-making and action.
The judge ruled, “This is the rare claim where there is actually credible evidence of an action being taken because of a protected basis, but not comprising an adverse action nor making up part of a hostile work environment.” One may speculate why this ruling resulted.
Are we treated equality before the law?
I was raised to respect girls and women, as I’ve done so throughout life when such respect is earned. For a brief time, I identified as a feminist, because I thought being a good person meant supporting females.
Countering my ignorance with knowledge about what feminism actually represents, largely due to misandry experienced during my MSSW studies, I’ve broken away from identification with feminism. I don’t need a label in order to be a good person or to treat people with dignity.
It occurs to me that feminism as a movement, from its inception, wasn’t truly about equality. Likewise, exploration of feminist rhetoric and behavior in living memory contradicts expressed aims of many feminists.
I no longer make a categorical error by attributing the category of feminism to the category of justice. All the same, I don’t aim to interrupt the serpent as it dines on itself in glorious destruction.
If interested in learning more concerning the truth about feminism, I invite the reader to watch The Fiamengo File 2.0 video series. For those who seek mental health treatment from an ally of feminism or intersectionality, you’ve come to the wrong practitioner.
For all others, if you’re looking for a provider who works to help you understand how thinking impacts physical, mental, emotional, and behavioral elements of your life, I invite you to reach out today by using the contact widget on my website.
As a psychotherapist, I’m pleased to help people with an assortment of issues ranging from anger (hostility, rage, and aggression) to relational issues, adjustment matters, trauma experience, justice involvement, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, anxiety and depression, and other mood or personality-related matters.
At Hollings Therapy, LLC, serving all of Texas, I aim to treat clients with dignity and respect while offering a multi-lensed approach to the practice of psychotherapy and life coaching. My mission includes: Prioritizing the cognitive and emotive needs of clients, an overall reduction in client suffering, and supporting sustainable growth for the clients I serve. Rather than simply helping you to feel better, I want to help you get better!
Deric Hollings, LPC, LCSW
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